1. American Craft Beer Fest returns to Boston on May 29 & 30, featuring 640+ beers from 140+ brewers. Tickets are on sale now.

California Black Beer - Dale Bros. Brewery

Not Rated.
California Black BeerCalifornia Black Beer

Educational use only; do not reuse.

29 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 29
Reviews: 18
rAvg: 3.2
pDev: 19.38%
Wants: 0
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Dale Bros. Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Euro Dark Lager |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: russpowell on 01-03-2008

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
Ratings: 29 | Reviews: 18
Photo of DeadeyeOTDO
3/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of Green_street_hooligan
4.28/5  rDev +33.8%

Photo of LXIXME
3.75/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of Gobzilla
3/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of SoCaliC8
3.75/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of yoitsarch
2.75/5  rDev -14.1%

Photo of Furlinator
3.5/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours translucent dark brown with a slight red tint. The head is off-white and leaves faint spotty lace.

Smell is of sweet roasted malt and molasses up front with faint coffee and a hint of nut aroma on the back end.

Taste is mostly sweet malt and molasses with a hint of coffee and faint hazelnut on the finish.

Mouthfeel in fairly light bodied with medium carbonation.

Overall, a pretty decent beer. It has many of the same characteristics as some popular brown ales and nut brown ales.

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.2/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

On tap at Dale Brothers Brewery in Upland, CA.

Pours a clear dark brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, caramel, and nutty aromas. Taste is much the same with nutty and caramel flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an average beer that is drinkable but has a much better smell to me.

Photo of ashishangelo
3.75/5  rDev +17.2%

Photo of rob99er
3/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of t0rin0
3/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of beerpadawan
3/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of redoak075
3/5  rDev -6.3%

Photo of steve8robin
3.45/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got this bottle from a friend in CA. 22oz bottle...

A: A clear reddish color with a tiny white bubbles atop the brew. Ok.

S: A malty bready scent upfront. Some faint hints of vanilla in the middle and some wheat on the back. Ok.

T: A watery nutty taste upfront with a huge wheat wall. A creamy oat flavor on the backend. Interesting. Decent.

M: Light body with a good carbonation. A creamy finish. Decent.

D: Goes down very easy for some of the wrong reasons. Good.

All in all, nothing special. Tried 3 beers from this brewery and would not lose sleep to never try anymore judging from these.

Photo of femmebiere
3.76/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It has a dark amber coloring with little light coming through. There was a thin head, but it went away quickly. There was not much of a smell to note any flavors. It was a very smooth drink with a malty taste without being rich. The mouthfeel is smooth and clean. There was a sweet finish with a hint of bitterness. It was a nice beer that isn't complex that is nice to relax with.

Photo of weazal
3.37/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

SMELL: Not very aromatic. Mild dark sweetness a la molasses and maple syrup. The faintest note of smoky coffee. Some dark fruit sweetness comes out as it sits.

TASTE: A pleasant combination of a full mouth-feel with the brisk, easiness of a lager. Similar faint, dark, sweetness. A tangy berry-ness as other's noted. Hard to put your finger on before it goes down pretty quickly. Mild lingering sweetness.

A nice casual beer for when you want something decent but don't want the beer to dominate the experience.

Photo of GRG1313
1.57/5  rDev -50.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Pours brown/black with a very short and thin white head.

Nose is all simple sweet malt and with a candi sugar nose. Some cooked peaches and pears-smells more Belgian that black beer.

Mouthfeel is thin, fizzy and with no body or character.

Flavors are completely missing. There is a thin, citric light lemon character. I would guess lemon or lime Perrier if I had this beer blind.

There is nothing redeeming here. I would say an old bottle (and which is perhaps the case) but I tasted it only within about a week, or so, of purchasing it off the shelves of a local store.

Photo of jdhilt
3.42/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a one finger light tan head that vanishes leaving no lace. Light-medium carbonation and medium bodied. Clear amber color. Nose is roasted malts. Favor is some caramel and roasted malts. Clean finish. Their best effort so far. $4.49 for a 22oz bottle from Liquorama Upland, CA.

Photo of LycraCladChamp
4.48/5  rDev +40%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I decided to read the BJCP guidelines while judging this beer. this is my first judging for BA so here it goes.

Appearance: Dark red/deep ruby. reminds me of a ruby porter. head disappeared rather quickly but it had a slight brown tint to it. The beer is rather clear. Style: 4.5 Me: 3(I would have liked to have longer lasting head retention)

Smell: Very faint malty notes, a little sourness/DMS (Reminded me of when my dad would sauté squash on the BBQ) NO hop aroma at all. Style: 4.0 Me: 3.0 (I don't like the idea of carbonated squash juice)

Taste: No hop flavor. Very crisp flavor. there is a moderate flavor of Carmel and roasted malts. Style: 4.5 Me: 4.5

Mouth-feel: the beer is light and relatively low carbonation. Style: 4.5 Me:3.5 (I like a full bodied beer)

Drink-ability: the beer is very drinkable Me: 5.0

The beer come up short on the tongue (there is no staying power behind the beer, once you swallow the beer the flavors are gone). This reminds me of the brown tootsie pops from my childhood, or last week. Overall a very well put together beer. I hope when you try the beer you judge it like I did according to style and personal preference SEPARATELY.

You defiantly need to try this beer if you have a chance.

Photo of mothman
3.72/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into pint glass.

Color is a burnt bark brown. Pours hardly any white head that fades to a thin ring around the edge. No lace noted.

Aroma: Very smoky. Roasted malts, chocolate, caramel.

Taste: Huge smoke flavor. Roasted malts, chocolate, coffee, caramel, earthy hops, and toffee.

Mouthfeel: Very smoky, smooth. Medium bodied with a decent amount of carbonation. Ends with a smoky flavored sticky aftertaste.

Overall, not a bad beer. Very drinkable. It appears that smoke is the main component of this beer and think it might be a little better if the smoke didn't dominate the flavor, still quiet drinkable.

Photo of augustgarage
2.47/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Dogfish Head shaped pint glass. Beer was bottled on 5/11/09 (just over 3 weeks ago).

Liquid is somewhere between auburn and bole, and glows a ruby-tinged burnt umber against the light. A substantive but short lived beige head leaves a very thin ring of foam just barely sustained by carbonation. Clarity is excellent.

The aroma is lightly roasted coffee, a slight sourness (perhaps from yeast), and a strong savory whiff of dimethyl sulfide.

It tastes of weak or stale coffee, unripe apples, light malt, and chocolate. Fairly sweet overall. Faintly nutty. Maybe a slight touch of diacetyl (butter/cream). A bit like a poorly mixed black & tan made with a decent porter rather than a stout. Unfortunately, the vegetal flavors become overwhelming...the "creamed corn" aspect interfers with everything else.

Crisp, fairly light-bodied but very smooth, almost slick really. Carbonation is decent but disguised.

A Dark American Lager that does well with appearance and OK with mouthfeel, and has some good flavors, but is pretty much ruined by DMS.

I'm having difficulty finishing my glass...

Photo of yemenmocha
3.28/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours medium brown with tan head. Nose is somewhat faint, but has noticeable brown sugar and roasty components. Rather thin bodied on the palate (almost watery) with some light toasted grain flavors, brown sugar, and a light & sweet finish. Easy drinking, but only because it is so watery.

Photo of ikats
4.12/5  rDev +28.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark ruby with a sizable light tan head that dissipates quickly. Light aroma - malt sweetness (may be a touch of chocolate) and light spicy hops. Taste is similar to aroma - light malt sweetness followed by a light bite of the hops. A touch of crispness. Light body and very drinkable. I think the mouthfeel is pleasant too. Carbonation is a bit on the low side. I would not hesitate to reach for it if I was looking for something light to enjoy quickly. This is not a flavor bomb.

Scanning through a few previous reviews, I was surprised by the number of low grades. It actually prompted me to review BJCP guidelines for the Dark Lager style. And I think this beer is very close to the style. I think it is well made, and I'm enjoying it.

Photo of Bung
2.63/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

22 oz bottle. Kind of a brown pour, with a nice off white head. Malt aroma with some fruit, citrus? Some roast malt, little caramel/mocha, metallic, but mostly bitter. Finished pretty dry and clean. Reminded me of some of the dark bier I had in Germany. Straight forward, not all that complex. Near watery thin. Didn't really care for them or this one.

Photo of BretSikkink
2.66/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Served from the keg with a thin, tannish head over a brown body with lots of highlights.

The nose is frankly nonexistent; I'm getting a little bit of toasted malt, with a fruity, dark berry-like note. I was hoping for some roasted flavors that just aren't appearing.

Light body and over-carbonated taste has a large influence of dark berry sweetness, a little diacetyl, and a little nutty flavor. Not much to go on, and certainly shy of the connotations of "black beer".

I'm pretty unimpressed by the thin, tart flavor and general lack of assertiveness from the malt and/or hops. Won't go back to this.

to view all ratings, reviews and sorting options.
California Black Beer from Dale Bros. Brewery
76 out of 100 based on 29 ratings.