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Heineken Dark Lager - Heineken Nederland B.V.

Not Rated.
Heineken Dark LagerHeineken Dark Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

533 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 533
Reviews: 248
rAvg: 3.21
pDev: 19.94%
Wants: 20
Gots: 27 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Heineken Nederland B.V. visit their website

Style | ABV
Euro Dark Lager |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-08-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 533 | Reviews: 248 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ybnorml
2.83/5  rDev -11.8%

A dark brown beer with some ruby highlights. Has a small beige head that disappears immeadiatly. There is a very light roasted malt aroma with a hint of sweet molasses in the background. The flavor has hints of a malty sweetness and a roasted bitterness. But hints is is as good as it gets.

ybnorml, Jun 25, 2005
Photo of etaggie09
3.4/5  rDev +5.9%

Appearance: light cola brown with ruby highlights. A fairly modest head sticks initially but dissapates after a couple of sips to near nothingness. The lack of lacing was quite disappointing.

Smell: rich, sweet malt with caramel. A mild, bitter roastiness also pulls through. Rather one-dimensional, but somewhat enjoyable and better than average.

Taste: A moderate balance of sweet caramel malt and roasted malt character are complemented by a very mild bitterness for a fairly dry finish. Through retro-olfaction, a thin sweet wine taste presents itself. A very simple flavor that is mildly sweet and roasty. Too thin and not very complex, but satisfactory.

Mouthfeel: thin and a little flat. Needs more carbonation to make the mouthfeel more lively to compensate for the rather weak flavor.

Drinkability: Oh, I have drunk my share of Heineken Dark when I was in the mood for a simple session brew. Of course there are much better session brews out there, but a good micro session brew is hard to find around New Orleans.

Notes: This is an average beer that doesn't taste bad, but certainly does not impress. This is just a beer that I kill time with friends with and it hasn't let me down. If better microbrews were available, I would drink them, but there aren't many choices in New Orleans apart from Martin's Wine Cellar. In short, Heineken Dark is a beer I sometimes choose to have and will never turn down.

etaggie09, Jun 24, 2005
Photo of KarlHungus
2.08/5  rDev -35.2%

Pours a dark brown color witha very small tan head that recededs fast into nothing. The faint smeel is sweet and malty. Taste is very unimpressive, and bland. There just isn't much there. The smell does not translate over into the taste. There is a mild sweetness and a mild bitterness, but nothing that stands out. The mouthfeel is medium-thin. Overall, this beer is bad.

KarlHungus, Jun 07, 2005
Photo of BrewMaven
3.43/5  rDev +6.9%

Leaving work today, I was given this because it wasn't the other guys "thing".

Pours a nice deep, clear ruby, sporting a half inch tan head..Lace was present throughout the glass.

Roasty malt aroma..maybe a hint of cocoa?

Taste was same as and the roasted taste was followed by some charred notes on the dry finish.

Light to medium mouthfeel with lively carbonation.

Not a bad drinking beer.. I prefer this over standard Heineken for the simple fact that there is a little more going on here and the brown bottle better ensures the beer won't be skunky from being light struck.

BrewMaven, May 30, 2005
Photo of alexgash
3.43/5  rDev +6.9%

Sure looks a lot better than green bottle pale Heineken. Dark cola brown body with a amber edges and a dense cap of light tan head. Nose consists of clean, soapy, lightly roasted malts, dry cocoa, and whiffs of metal. Lightly sweetened malt up front; kind of cola-ish and brown sugary. Toasted caramel and light cocoa flavors detectable. Finish is lightly roasted and mildly bitter with lingering tobacco and cola malts. Light-medium body with adequate carbonation levels. Not bad really.

alexgash, May 10, 2005
Photo of Domingo
3.68/5  rDev +14.6%

A good beer when your options are limited but you want a dark lager. This brew is typically available in areas where anything but domestic (or Corona/Heineken) is a rarity.
It's easy to drink, lacks the typical Heineken skunky bitterness and actually has a nice color.
It's not something I'd go out with the specific intent of buying, but if your options are limited to the typical items most people think of as "beer," this is a good choice.

Domingo, Apr 27, 2005
Photo of walleye
2.63/5  rDev -18.1%

from the bottle. poured a dark amber with a light tan head. aroma, malts some sweetness, almost brown sugur almost white, a roasted nut . not a whole lot going on with this one, got hints of malts and hops, some sweetness, and a dry mouth feel. do not think I will buy this one again

walleye, Mar 16, 2005
Photo of yeagerbm
3.58/5  rDev +11.5%

This beer is one I thought was great in my macro drinking days, so when I saw a single on the shelf I thought I'd revisit it.

The beer is actually quite good looking with a very nice reddish brown color which is very bright and clear. The head is light brown and dense when first poured and swirled. I would have given this a 4.5 for appearance if the head would have stood up on its own.

The smell is slightly roasty, moderately malty and has a little bit of raisin like fruity aroma to it.

The flavor is smooth with a moderate malt sweetness and a definate roasty taste. Hop flavor is minimal if any, which would be fitting for the style. The bitterness is appropriate to balance the malt sweetness. There is a sharp finish which to me seems to be from the roasted malt. The overall flavor is a bit grainy and could improve with a more rounded malt flavor.

The mouthfeel is smooth and slick with medium light body thickness.

Overall a pretty good beer. Could use a little refinement on the malt but not too bad. I would have probably guessed this one was a decent brown ale if I didn't see the bottle. This one is definately worth a try.

yeagerbm, Mar 04, 2005
Photo of allengarvin
3.38/5  rDev +5.3%

Appearance: clear reddish-brown, with a good initial head. I was about to give it a 4.0 in appearance, but the head completely disappeared in under 30 seconds.

Aroma: Clean, grainy aroma.

Flavor: Clean, slightly sweet grain. More malt than the standard Heineken, giving a pleasant bread flavor. Hops are fairly low but take the edge off the sweetness. Finish is clean and brief.

Mouthfeel: Moderate carbonation and a crisp, clean texture.

Completely ordinary dark lager, basically.

allengarvin, Feb 01, 2005
Photo of TheDeuce
3.55/5  rDev +10.6%

Appearance-pours a very dark ruby red color, nice clarity through the glass, not that much head but what is there does stick around

Smell-dark malts are prevalent throughout the smell, some hops and a dark burnt chocolate aroma overtop

Taste-initially strong with a lot of flavor in the form of dense dark chocolate mixed with sweet malt, lightens as it goes down, fairly smooth as well.

Mouthfeel-fairly smooth going down, aftertaste is quite good not too bad at all.

Drinkability-a very drinkable dark lager, not too light or heavy, balanced enough to have a few when desired.

Overall-a pleasent surprise, this is a fairly well flavored and deviously drinkable dark lager that also isn't too overbearing. This could end up becoming a guilty pleasure for me from time to time.

TheDeuce, Jan 18, 2005
Photo of WesWes
3.8/5  rDev +18.4%

The beer pours a beautiful ruby red color with a thick frothy tan head that quickly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a dry, yet malty scent that boasts of pale and crystal malts along with lager yeast. The taste is decent. It has a smooth malty flavor with a dry lager yeast finish that is a bit watery. It has good mouthfeel. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good dark lager and another fine offering from Heineken. It goes down easy; a good drinker.

WesWes, Nov 22, 2004
Photo of SilentSabre
3.93/5  rDev +22.4%

Nothing at all like the much more popular green Heineken! Poured very red. Nice slightly off-white head which almost appeared to have a slightly creamy consistency. Nice lacing, but the head disapeared a little too fast. The smell was very malty, and a bit sweet, too. Taste was of a dry roasted malt with almost a toasted aftertaste. Very nice. The mouth feel was a lot thinner than I would have thought by simply looking at it and smelling it. So much so that I rated it as average. That is really that only real negative thing I have to say about this stuff, is that it is really thin. Other than that, I thought it was great!

SilentSabre, Nov 13, 2004
Photo of connecticutpoet
3.48/5  rDev +8.4%

This one was a nice red-brown lager with a pretty good head. A far cry from their regular skink whiz.

The aroma was of darker malts, a touch of sweetness. Not too bad.

The taste was likewise of darker malts, a little sweet, maybe a touch of roasted malt toward the end. Not bitter at all.

Mouthfeel was all right, nothing spectacular. A somewhat drinkable beer though, much much better than the green-bottled crap.

connecticutpoet, Nov 09, 2004
Photo of Thrasher
2.75/5  rDev -14.3%

I am a true lover of lagers, in all styles. That said, I absolutely despise Heineken. It's one of the worst beers out there, and its high price and huge popularity constantly infuriate me. Heineken's trademark skunky flavor has been the subject of countless beer-geek discussions, and I for one have resolved never to touch the stuff again. So when I stumbled across a sample of Heineken Dark, I wasn't sure what to expect. I approached the beer with an open mind, and was pleased to discover it didn't have the sewerlike skunkiness that makes their regular pisslager so hateful. So is the beer a success? Does it redeem the Dutch as a nation of beermakers? (I hate Grolsch and Amstel too.) Not exactly. The beer is too sweet and remains cloying long after the swallow. I've experienced good German dunkel lagers, and I recognize that the big malt sweetness is a force to be reckoned with, and that a delicate interplay with the hops is necessary to keep the beer from going overboard. However, either the makers of Heiny don't know jack about hops, or wanted to make the beer as licorice-sweet as possible to appeal to the tasteless masses. A somewhat appealing dark ruby liquid sustains a buoyant, persistent head, with a heaping aroma of sweet caramel and molasses. The flavor is initially appealing, but there is no dryness, no finish, simply a lingering sweetness that tastes like red licorice (a confection I hate with a similar acuity to that of yellow Heineken). The beer is not BAD; in fact with the proper caramelized dish it might be pleasing. At this particular moment in time, though, it is too sweet, too cloying, although I am pleased to say it is not nearly as disgustingly bile-inducing as that dribble that comes in the green bottles.

Thrasher, Oct 30, 2004
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.28/5  rDev +2.2%

Appearance - pours a dark amber with a bountiful head. The initial cap becomes a thin covering inside of a minute, and nothing at all eventually. A solid looking beer, but it could use a hat.

Aroma - a light whiff of malts, then ground coffee. Pleasant but weak.

Taste - doesn't taste as malty or robust as it looks. The light flavors are kind of hard to define, just a bland maltiness. The carbonation isn't overpowering, but enough to prevent much taste pre-swallow. After the swallow, some warm smooth chocolate tones are picked up. A better finish, just barely getting this one above average.

Mouthfeel - average carbonation, average body and weight. Good balance between crispness and smoothness.

Drinkability - a worthwhile session beer for the most part. I enjoyed it.

brewdlyhooked13, Aug 16, 2004
Photo of BuckeyeNation
2.68/5  rDev -16.5%

Clear reddish brown with light (and objects) easily visible through the beer. No carbonation can be seen rising from the bottom of the glass. The beige head is soft, falls to a spotty film and leaves mere scraps of lace. Underwhelming nose of caramelized grain coupled with a light spiciness.

The flavor is acceptable initially with elements of sweet dark caramel and chocolate. Within several seconds though, each mouthful morphs into a whole 'nother flavor, something resembling sour, wet tobacco leaves (it's about as tasty as it sounds). The nastiness abates somewhat as I get deeper into the glass, but it never goes away completely. The body is on the thin side of medium, not too far out of line for the style.

I can't say that I like Heineken Lager, but I do find it to be drinkable. Heineken Dark though needs a recipe change. The Dr. Jekyl beginning is okay, but the Mr. Hyde finish is definitely not.

BuckeyeNation, Aug 13, 2004
Photo of Reidrover
3.45/5  rDev +7.5%

Nice enough looking beer , when poured into my gl;ass. Darkish amber..almost even garnet in colour..nice sized off white head..though it did not last. The aroma is surprisingly malty and even touches of chocolate. Again the flavour is much more malty and even has hints of chocolate( milk), small hop bit at the end. KInda average on the palate..does tend towards wateryness near the end. Not a bad dark lager at all..I would drink again, but hardly a classic

Reidrover, Jun 17, 2004
Photo of Billolick
3.13/5  rDev -2.5%

12 ounce bottle, pours dark brown, with an average looking off white head. a bit of chocolate in the nose. Taste is a bit skunky (yes even the dark is skunky!) with notes of cocoa, caramel and chocolate maybe a little wet cardboard. Medium body. Fairly smooth stuff. Clean and non descript with flavors that are sort of muted. Eh, not my favorite stuff. worth a try if youre into dark lagers.

Billolick, Jun 02, 2004
Photo of StevieW
3.35/5  rDev +4.4%

12 oz bottle at Luna's in Stuart, FL. Pours a dark brown nearly shiny mahogany color. Foamy light tan head settles fast. Leaves smalls traces on the glass. Smell is a slightly toasty, sweet, molasses. Not unpleasant at all. Nothing like the traditional Heineken lager. Taste was mostly sweet, slighltly malty. Touches of carmel and toasted biscuit. Some buttery and no hops to note. An overall very pleasant surprise. Stays together then finishes watery for the most part. Easy enough to drink, better than I expected and good in a pinch.

StevieW, May 04, 2004
Photo of Tballz420
2.88/5  rDev -10.3%

For the record theyre calling this Heineken Dark Lager now.

This brew is a clear, dark brown colored drink, with a decent sized brown bubbly head topping it off. Some caramel malt scent. Clean tasting, some roasted malt tones, some slight hop bitterness. Medium/thin bodied. I know what the idea is that theyre going for, but theyre keeping the flavor low-key to attract the people who dont like the taste of beer. Not bad but dont buy it unless its on sale or the best thing in the bar.

Tballz420, Apr 10, 2004
Photo of fdrich29
3.7/5  rDev +15.3%

12 oz bottle that was sitting in my fridge for an undeterminate period of time, purchased by someone other than me.

Poured a deep brown with hints of red. Thin tan head that receeded to the center, leaving a miniature depiction of Hurricane Grace. Left a ring of lacing around the glass.

Smells strong of malt with a malty, bready taste. The beer says what it needs to say, lets you think about it for a bit, then goes away and expects you to take another sip. I could have one or two of these, but I'm certainly not sitting back with a six pack to pass the waning hours. Worth a try if it's free, like this one was.

fdrich29, Mar 27, 2004
Photo of goindownsouth
3.4/5  rDev +5.9%

All in all, not too bad. I was not really expecting much from this one, but it somewhat held its own in the world of dark lagers. The head was thicker than I anticipated, but quickly was relegated to something less prevalent. The aromas offered something of deep and rich roasted malt, and perhaps something on the mocha side. Not the worst dark lager I have had. A definate surprise, in my book.

Zum wohl!

goindownsouth, Mar 21, 2004
Photo of coasterfreak75
3.25/5  rDev +1.2%

The pour was dark copper with a nice three-quarter inch head that quickly dissapated to a thin foam. The remaining head stuck to the glass nicely. The smell was light and sweet with no real great overtones of anything other than malt. The drink starts very sweet with a slight hop bite in the middle followed by a smooth clean finish with little or no aftertaste. This would make a great lawnmower beer.

coasterfreak75, Mar 16, 2004
Photo of Zorro
3.45/5  rDev +7.5%

Pours a deep dark brown brew.

Smell is sweet with a big whiff of ORANGE CIRCUS PEANUT! Up the nose! There is a malt and bubblegum smell in this too. The 4.0 is more for uniqueness than greatness.

Taste is much more sedate than the smell. Candied fruit and molasses. No sign of any bitterness, this is Newcastle Brown Ale Times 3 in the taste.

Mouthfeel is adequate.

Drinkable, great for a macro but I can find better.

Zorro, Mar 11, 2004
Photo of ADR
3.1/5  rDev -3.4%

Clear tea-like brown color with a middling head in size and overall duration. Laces in spare simple strings. Some pumpernickle to the overall bready aroma. Mouthfeel is a tad on the watery side, the flavor is pleasantly neutral in malt sweetness with a decided graininess to add some texture. Low degree of hoppiness overall. The finish is the most distinct part of the beer, light but dry with a continued grain fabric. The attenuation and non-threatening middle-of-the-road flavor leads me to believe that a lot of people could find this brew accessible.

ADR, Feb 17, 2004
Heineken Dark Lager from Heineken Nederland B.V.
74 out of 100 based on 533 ratings.