1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Heineken Dark Lager - Heineken Nederland B.V.

Not Rated.
Heineken Dark LagerHeineken Dark Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

516 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 516
Reviews: 245
rAvg: 3.22
pDev: 19.88%
Wants: 18
Gots: 21 | 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)
View: Beers (16) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Heineken Dark Lager Alström Bros
Ratings: 516 | Reviews: 245 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Billolick

New York

3.13/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

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.

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2004 02:17:27 | More by Billolick
Photo of StevieW


3.35/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

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.

Serving type: bottle

05-04-2004 00:11:01 | More by StevieW
Photo of Tballz420


2.88/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 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.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2004 07:21:47 | More by Tballz420
Photo of fdrich29


3.7/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 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.

Serving type: bottle

03-27-2004 01:45:08 | More by fdrich29
Photo of goindownsouth


3.4/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

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!

Serving type: on-tap

03-21-2004 18:16:08 | More by goindownsouth
Photo of coasterfreak75

North Carolina

3.25/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

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.

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2004 01:39:04 | More by coasterfreak75
Photo of Zorro


3.45/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

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.

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2004 04:43:56 | More by Zorro
Photo of ADR


3.1/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

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.

Serving type: bottle

02-17-2004 15:41:28 | More by ADR
Photo of johnrobe


3.3/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

If you have to drink Heineken this is the one to get. I have a nostalgiac affection for this beer as it was the very first "dark" beer that I tried, long before I was on the craft brew path. It pours a deep mahogany with a beige head that quickly disappears. The aroma is of burnt toast, roasted nuts and bittersweet chocolate, very appealing, IMO. Unfortunately the taste doesn't back up the promise of the aroma. Toasty, roasted grain flavors come through in the flavor with some non-descript, simple sweetness. Not bad, just not enough oomph. It's a very clean brew that could use a bit more malt to add some character and mouthfeel. Still, this is not a bad choice if you're looking for a light-bodied dark beer.

Serving type: bottle

02-03-2004 04:58:36 | More by johnrobe
Photo of TastyTaste


3.35/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A nice deep maroon color, with a creamy tan head. Smells of roasted malt and sweetness. This is much better than heineken lager. Still a little too thin and sweet to be considered a very good beer, in my opinion, but much improved over their flagship brew.

Serving type: bottle

01-07-2004 02:38:24 | More by TastyTaste
Photo of palma

New York

3.03/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Wow, I was shocked when I tried this beer. I was expecting the flavor of heineken lager - which I do not care for, but it was not the case with this beer. This beer was totally different. Taste was very sweet and nutty. Since it is a dark beer, I was expecting some sweetness, but I could not believe how sweet this beer was. I drank this beer twice, since I really do like it. I did however get a slight stomach ache afterwards. Wasn't sure if it was the beer so I drank it again another day but got the same feeling in my stomach again. Weird because the beer tastes great. I would definately drink this beer again if I didn't feel sick after drinking it.

Serving type: bottle

12-14-2003 04:07:14 | More by palma
Photo of skar

New York

2.68/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle - Served quite warm

Appearance/Head: Reddish brown color, clear. Decent, if a little light head.

Aroma: Not too strong. Homebrew Malt Extract with notes of cinnamon, brown sugar, and coffee.

Taste: Clean, malty, slightly sweet, with a little late spice. I can't notice any hops at all.

Bottom line: If you like malty flavors, and you are at a bar with a limited beer selection, give Heine Dark a try. Otherwise, it is simply a medicore dark lager.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2003 13:26:30 | More by skar
Photo of Ellbert


3.65/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This was much better than I expected. It was a nice brown/red color with a small head that faded to a lace. The smell was malty. The taste was malty as well with a little bit of hops at the end. The mouthfeel was very good. It was nice and meaty and had well rounded edges in accords to cabonation. I could make this a session beer easily.

Serving type: bottle

10-31-2003 06:54:37 | More by Ellbert
Photo of hotstuff


3.63/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I can't believe I am saying this, but for a beer brewed by Heineken this is a fairly decent beer. It poured a medium sized tan rocky head with fine-medium sized bubbles that mostly diminished. There was carbonation observed and it had an opaque body with a reddish-brown hue. The nose consisted of malt and caramel with a sweet brown flavor. The mouthfeel was smooth, slightly tingly, thin textured, and light-medium bodied. The downside is that it lacks in the flavor department.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2003 00:22:34 | More by hotstuff
Photo of RoyalT


1.7/5  rDev -47.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Appearance – Clear light brown body with a typical bee-bop head that went up and down in less than ten seconds.

Smell – Nice scent of toasted malt and caramel.

Taste – Ugh! An insult to dunkel lager to say the least. It’s tough to explain. The cheap, burnt malt flavor is somewhat bitter but nowhere near nice. The tease of caramel sweetness turned into a handful of Sweet-N-Low picked up from the floor of a dirty diner after a long week. I think I actually tasted a cigarette butt in there.

Mouthfeel – Flat and difficult to swallow. The worst.

Drinkability – The smell wasn’t that bad, but that taste was evil incarnate. Sorrow I couldn’t offer much positive here, but the only purpose for making this beer would seem so that a regular Heiny-in-a-can doesn’t taste so bad. This "one" rating was well earned.

Comments – Chase this with a shot of Jaegermeister.

Serving type: bottle

09-10-2003 01:17:34 | More by RoyalT
Photo of Gusler


2.05/5  rDev -36.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

As a rule, I would not rate anything from Heineken, but as I was given a sixer of this beer by an acquaintance, what the hell.

On the pour a deep incarnadine color, the head miniscule, the color something akin to dirty grey, the lace AWOL. Nose prototypical malt and nothing else, the start slightly sweet with the top cadaverous and the finish ferine in its acidic bite, hops as one would expect for the style and brewery sparse, dry aftertaste, another “Habeas Corpus” beer where’s the body, and where’s the flavor.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2003 23:38:46 | More by Gusler
Photo of Ianhockey91


3.2/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Not a bad beer, but not great, its a cookie cutter example of a dark euro. At first pour, it comes out a very very deep mohogany, with a tan head that fades fast. Wit hthe first sip, youll notice a good amount of malt, and a lsightly thin mouthfeel, but not overly watery, some hop notes are found at the end but not as much as you would expect. Not a bad beer if you cant find better.

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2003 21:50:32 | More by Ianhockey91
Photo of clvand0


2.28/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

This beer pours a dark amber color with a small head and moderate lacing on the glass. The aroma is slightly sweet and interesting. I really had decent hopes for this one because I thought that since it was dark, it would be decent - not sucky like normal Heineken. I was wrong. The taste was a little malty, but pretty crappy and enjoyable - the taste was very reminescent of normal Heineken with a bit more sweetness. Didn't like it much.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2003 03:49:18 | More by clvand0
Photo of fattychubs

North Carolina

2.98/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark ruby amber, some lace stays from the light brown small head, sweet bread like aroma. Taste is somewhat malty and grainy with a with a sweetness, then hoppy and slight bitter, finishes crisp. Pretty thin in the mouth, and medium high carbonation.

I liked the beer at first, but towards the end of the glass I got bored with it. Nothing wrong with it over all, okay balance, just slightly boring.

Serving type: bottle

07-12-2003 22:03:34 | More by fattychubs
Photo of aaronh


2.13/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Deep mahogany body really throws off some red highlights, topped by a decent but loose light tan head that relatively quickly fades to nothing. Aroma of slight whiskey malt and old socks. Maybe moldy malt. Taste is slightly better, with a wet grain taste that gives way to a touch of roastiness. Hint of bitterness on the dry finish. Actually quite astringent. Mouthfeel is harsh, with moderate but noticeable carbonation atop a weak body. Drinkability is poor. This is a typical macro style lager with a bit more character, but I still don't care for it.

Serving type: bottle

06-26-2003 16:20:15 | More by aaronh
Photo of Beastdog75

New Jersey

2.88/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Heineken Special Dark lager really doesn't have anything too special about it, but it is a decent dark Euro-lager that is superior to the regular Heineken lager. The fact that this comes in a brown bottle is quite a relief. This is a somewhat pleasantly surprising beer for those who are used to Heineken's green bottled products.

Heineken Dark pours a nice brown color with a decent light tan head that doesn't really leave much lace. The smell is of just some roasted malts with some slight coffee like qualities. The mouthfeel is thin and more carbonated than most darker beers, but there is a decent smoothness to it. The roasted malt flavor is the most dominant feature of this beer, but the initial taste is slightly sweet with hints of alcohol. Slight notes of coffee are present, and there is a roasted bitterness about this beer that is a little astringent. Decent amount of dryness in the finish. The aftertaste is a carryover of the roasted bitterness, and this beer finishes with just a little alcoholic warmth.

In summary, a decent product. Not as drinkable as some other similar beers, but much less offensive than the regular Heineken lager.

Serving type: bottle

06-24-2003 00:50:58 | More by Beastdog75
Photo of AtrumAnimus


4.35/5  rDev +35.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First of all I have to take this one with a grain of Heineken Salt - per say. Heineken has it's own strain of yeast and signature undertones like North Coast and many other breweries. The difference here is Heineken is typically much older than those. That given:

This pours a beautiful dark brown - tannic like the Louisiana Swamp - Admittedly odd for a Dutch beer but I go with what I know - after all it is a hell of a lot better than the color of the Amstel - no?

The nose is rich roasted malt with the signature Heineken Hops. The mouthfeel is perky and carbonated with a smooth finish.

The taste is nearly excellent - Heineken Lager is good - this is much better. I really enjoy this and I am glad I tried it again after so many hundreds of other beers. This somewhat reminds me of St. Sebastiann Dark meets Heineken Lager. - The best of both worlds; if you catch my meaning. The flavor is robust with a hint of roasting and the classic Heineken flavor. Sweet Malt with lively hops touched off by signature yeast.

Very satisfying still to this day. Heineken’s Lager is such a large seller it becomes a "typical" beer that is for every day drinking on a budget that can replace absolute shit beer like Bud or Miller, etc...

The downside of that is we become too accustomed to The Lager as a bare minimum beer. Therefore we give little credibility to the other Heineken’s on the market. Get past that commercial stigmata - then you can enjoy their more craftier brews.

Serving type: bottle

05-06-2003 15:30:35 | More by AtrumAnimus
Photo of beerluvr

Ontario (Canada)

3.5/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This pours with light brownish head that settles on top of clear ruby liquid tinged with brown. Dark malts and some caramel detected in the nose. Taste is pleasing to the palate, with notes of light roasted malt that offers a bit of dryness, minimal hop bitterness..just enough perhaps, and again, some scant caramel flavors pop up midway. Finshes smooth and satisfying with a light, light bittersweetness that quietly fades away. Fresh samples really make all the difference here. A great intro to dark beers for someone curious about them.

Serving type: bottle

04-30-2003 16:11:55 | More by beerluvr
Photo of Naerhu


2.33/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

What the hell is wrong with this beer company? Malt, hops and food coloring? Gimme a break!

Appearance: Decent head that disappears immediately, no lacing. Ruddy color.
Aroma: Rye bread
Taste: Medium sweetness and body. Pumpernickle and cola flavor. Clean and boring.
Mouthfeel: its beer, nothing else to say
Drinkability: Totally unexciting. Why bother.

Serving type: bottle

04-09-2003 05:58:56 | More by Naerhu
Photo of Rifrafboy


2.9/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A decent example of a macro European dark lager. Head is dark white, with very little lacing. Taste is of chocolatey malts, with a slight hop taste. The finish is a bit rough, burning on the way down. I liked this somewhat. I wish it were cheaper here in the states, as I might try it more often. Not a great dark lager, but not bad.

Serving type: bottle

03-15-2003 13:57:50 | More by Rifrafboy
Heineken Dark Lager from Heineken Nederland B.V.
74 out of 100 based on 516 ratings.