Saranac Chocolate Lager - Matt Brewing Company
Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
Ratings: 170 | Reviews: 64 | Display Reviews Only:
3.23/5 rDev -4.4%
From the 12 fl. oz. bottle. Sampled on February 3, 2013.
The pour is a copper-amber color with a lingering off-white head and lacing. I expected it to look much darker for something with chocolate in its title. But it is also a lager so that has to come into play I guess.
The aroma is light in milk chocolate with a slightly more vanilla and caramel malt feel than chocolate. Clean hops though.
The body is creamy and in the medium range.
The taste is more akin to a sweet caramel malt lager than chocolate. Actually vanilla would be the better descriptor. There is a slight lingering bitterness at the tail end. Probably my least favorite selection in the Saranac 2013 Winter Mix Pack.
02-04-2013 00:49:18 | More by puboflyons
3.73/5 rDev +10.4%
Autumn orange in color with good clarity. Poured with a short white foam that quickly disappeared. Lightly toasted and caramel malt aromas with chocolate in the bacground. Starts off a bit thin but quickly evolves into a medium bodied beer with tangy, robust carbonation. Caramel and dark toasted malt flavors up front quickly followed by chocolate flavors that grow through the middle. Tangy hop bite from start through the middle. Flavors and feel take a smooth turn toward the end. Finishes with a toasted malt finish.
01-28-2013 02:37:25 | More by IronLover
4.46/5 rDev +32%
not doing the astmo kinda drunk. thank you saranac 12 beers of winter
this is a wonderful winter beer. hazelnut and chocolate flavor. great mouthfeel. precisely a chocolate lager. one of my favorite ive had for the past three years. if you like sweet beers you will love this. ive always been happy with any up state new york brew
01-20-2013 07:33:41 | More by Hop_kulture
3.91/5 rDev +15.7%
12oz longneck bottle
A) Pours with a two finger, off white head that retains itself for a while. Settles to sticky lacing at the edge of the glass. Clear copper colored body.
S) Caramel. Yeasty. Hints of chocolate.
T) Pleasant malts up front and throughout - caramel, toasty, and slightly buttery. Finishes with a mellow hop bite.
M) Smooth. Lighter side of medium bodied. Dry finish.
O) A decent brew. I'd definitely drink another one.
01-20-2013 02:49:13 | More by u2carew
3.48/5 rDev +3%
A- pours a medium-dark amber with a one finger head that dissapates to a small layer that sustains on top, no lace.
S- toasty malt with some caramel and cocoa nibs are noticable at first, but beyond that- grains and cooked sweet corn,and just a bit of spicy hops at the end
T- sweet cacao mixes with some caramel malt with a bit of hazelnut character. Underlying under the sweetness is a toasty character with some grain. There is a light herbal hop finish on the back end, the finish is quite dry.
M- medium body with moderate carbonation, leads to a foamy mouthfeel and a creamy finish
O- I appreciate that this one holds up the malt character expected with a bock, but the combination of this with the chocolate seems a bit unbalanced. It's worth a try however, as it is quite different. Wouldn't put it anywhere near Sam Adams Chocolate Bock though.
01-18-2013 03:17:35 | More by Treyliff
3.3/5 rDev -2.4%
Pours a light amber color, not much of a head and very little lacing, not as dark of a pour for something called "Chocolate Lager".
Smell is mostly caramel malt with a very subtle hint of cocoa, definitely on the sweet side.
Taste seems a bit watery, definitely wishing for more of a chocolate presence considering the sweet caramel malt is the largest aspect of this beer, it does have a crisp refreshing carbonation though.
01-17-2013 21:56:11 | More by deltatauhobbit
3.68/5 rDev +8.9%
A - Poured from 12oz brown bottle into short stem chalice, this beer yields a silky smooth beige head of about a finger and half. Little to no lacing left behind as the head gives way a little too prematurely. Color is a rich amber hue but seems a little cloudy.
S - Fresh bread dominates with very subtle notes of cocoa, hops, and alcohol. Pleasant....definitely not offensive.
T - Umm....ok, so I'm expecting more in the way of the cocoa. It's there but it is sooo subtle you really have to seek it out. Slightly above average for the style. Crisp with a dry finish...slightly warm too. Not very bitter either.
M - Not to thin. Just the right amount of carbonation for the style.
O - One of the best of the bunch from the Holiday sampler, but nothing spectacular. A little too safe. I wish Saranac would take a few more chances with their brews...if they were just a little more daring they might fare better. [ii]D. Cheers!
01-13-2013 20:10:05 | More by HarryPotHead
3.49/5 rDev +3.3%
A: Medium amber colour, white head that pours about 1/2 inch think. There are a few particles floating in the beer, looks like yeast particles but hard to say.
S: Sweet chocolate with some floral hints.
T: The cocoa comes through very well in this lager. There are hints of malt and caramel but it is not distracted by the cocoa. There is a strong dry finish
M. light-medium bodies, silky with good carbonation. The carbonation cleans up the cocoa and allows the bitterness to come through.
O: I had expected a bit more maltiness to compete with the cocoa but other then that the bitterness and the dry finish are pleasant.
01-10-2013 02:23:47 | More by Kremlock
3.75/5 rDev +10.9%
A- 1 finger head dissipates rather quickly
S- malt with sweet chocolate and a herbal hint of hops
T- the first thing to strike is a chocolate sweetness/slight bitterness combo. Then a slight maltiness mixed with a tiny hint of cocoa in the background arrives. The beer finishes kind of on the dry side with an ever so tiny bit of alcohol warmth. This beer is very well balanced.
M- Nice: not highly carbonated and on the thin side of middle but only by a hair. It's not at all chewy and not at all offensive.
O- This is a very nice beer: not outstanding but nice in an average kind of way. The style says bock, I say it's a very drinkable dunkel. But as a bock it is underwhelming, as a dunkel it is a nice average sample for the style.
01-06-2013 21:16:35 | More by papaglide
3.8/5 rDev +12.4%
Served from a 12oz bottle to a Pilsner glass
A: One finger head. Not much lacing but some. Transparent copper-orange color typical of a Bock. Died down kind of quick.
S: Small amounts of cocoa and a yeast smell. The alcohol was quiet evident in the smell which is odd because its not too apparent in the taste.
T: Once again some of those cocoa flavors. Nothing to strong but it is there. Bitterness is mild to none which is understandable for a Bock style beer. Nice caramely flavor at some points if your willing to search too.Really there isn't too much to the taste but what there is is pretty good tasting.
M: Pretty nice carbonation, maybe a little bit heavy though. The bubbles immediately tickle your tongue on impact.
Overall: It was a solid beer. Probably wouldn't go looking for it again but I enjoyed the experience.
01-05-2013 22:03:31 | More by Haydn-Juby
2.63/5 rDev -22.2%
Best before March 31, 2013. 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with standard pressure cap served into an Oskar Blues pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are low given the brewery. Acquired at Argonaut Liquor in Denver, Colorado as part of a Saranac variety box; all the others in the box were underwhelming to say the least.
Served straight from the fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.
A: Pours a 1.5 finger beige colour head of nice cream and thickness, and good retention. Body colour is a caramel-copper. Appears overcarbonated judging by the bubbles. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Pretty underwhelming for a chocolate lager.
Sm: Caramalt, sweet malts, and some floral hop character. Generic and bland. I don't get any chocolate at all. No yeast character or alcohol is detectable. I'm none too excited for this one, lads. An average strength aroma.
T: Sweet and heavy on the caramel, with some good heavy-bodied malty bock notes. Some nice candi sugar notes are its only notable characteristic. It's rather simple, but it fills out nicely, hitting the demands of a bock - just not those of a "chocolate lager." Still, I'm glad it's a bock and not a schwarzbier. Lacks balance in spite of its simplicity. Built in a boring fashion, but it's enjoyable in a general sense; I do love beer itself after all. There's little to say about it given how little is going on.
Mf: Sticky, light, smooth, wet. Poor palate presence. It does feature good thickness, satisfying style conventions. Overall, it doesn't complement the flavour profile that well.
Dr: Drinkable but underwhelming. A boring bland beer that in no way satisfies its declared style. This is not at all a chocolate lager. I wouldn't have it again, but it isn't horribly priced. Another forgettable beer from a mediocre brewery. I'm unsurprised they brew for Costco.
01-05-2013 05:04:28 | More by kojevergas
3.48/5 rDev +3%
Pours a clear, dark copper color with a foamy, off-white head that recedes to leave minimal lacing.
Aromas begin with toasted bready maltiness, with a sprinkling of cocoa powder. There is some grainy malitness in there as well with a scant bit of caramel as it warms.
The tastes begin with some toasty, crackery pilsner maltiness, some light toasted nuttiness. Finially you get some light cocoa and some toffee sweetness and a light nondescript bitterness presumabley from some noble hops.
The mouthfeel is on the heavier side of light-bodied with medium carbonation. Finish is fairly dry and clean
Overall having this after Samuel Smith's Chocolate Stout was maybe not fair but this really lacked the flavor profile I was looking for. The lager yeast presumabley scrapped much of the sweet flavor out of this beer leaving a more clean balanced flavor profile, but maybe just the chocolate and lager combo aren't a match you see too often for a reason.
01-03-2013 16:43:22 | More by claspada
3.45/5 rDev +2.1%
A new take on an old favorite! The taste and texture of German dunkel is complemented by both raw chocolate spice and also the strength of bock. The grainy-sweet but silky smooth flavors that ensue simply belong together.
Pouring frothy, deep, and dark- its garnet hue is brilliantly clear. Slightly off white, the foam that separates from the beer skirts the beer with a sheet of bubbles that proves long lasing and speckles the glass with lace. It's an impressive looking beer throughout.
Elegant aromas of toasted malt, light toffee, hazelnut, and freshly kilned cocoa nibs all give the supple and sultry scent of Nutella. But with background whiffs of cooked corn, starch, and alcohol, the beer breaks away from breakfast time nutrition and steps into the adult beverage world.
The common taste of German dunkel is alive and well here as the part-grain, part-malt balance gives up its caramelized sweetness and mild starchy flavor. Toast, light coffee, toffee, hazelnut, and clay earthiness gives the beer its robust taste and remarkable dryness. But just as the taste of dunkel settles in, the added complexity of chocolate enters in and gives the beer added smoothness, savory, and earthy spice that is pleasantly unexpected and carries the beer through the finish.
It's grainy-sweet texture is simply on par for dunkel, but the grain character is in danger of astringency if not for the creamy textures that are aided by the cocoa nibs. Nutty, creamy, and lightly slick to the palate, these textures further detract from the corn-like character of yeast. Its late fade from creaminess to semi-dryness falls just short of completion as the beer lingers with residual grain sweetness and cocoa oils.
Sell this beer as a dunkel and I'm all aboard. It's satisfactory and appealing with nuances of complexity that is unexpected yet rewarding. But as a self-sold chocolate infused bockbier, my mind is set on higher expectations.
01-03-2013 06:17:04 | More by BEERchitect
Saranac Chocolate Lager from Matt Brewing Company
78 out of 100 based on 170 ratings.