Ugly Pug Black Lager - Rahr & Sons Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Ugly Pug Black LagerUgly Pug Black Lager

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BA SCORE
82
good

163 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

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Reviews: 163
Hads: 440
rAvg: 3.61
pDev: 6.93%
Wants: 23
Gots: 95 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Rahr & Sons Brewing Company visit their website
Texas, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: assurbanipaul on 12-18-2004

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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 163 | Hads: 440
Photo of Morris729
4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown mahogany color with a short tan head that fades into a creamy lace. Nose is dominated by roasted coffee beans with some fainter notes of dark cherries in the background. Taste begins with roasted malts and fresh espresso followed by notes of bitter burnt coffee and spicy hops. The bitterness remains in a lingering aftertaste. A pretty interesting beer and another winner from the boys in Fort Worth. (420 characters)

Photo of deBeers
4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This schwarzbier from Rahr and sons pours a deep black mahogany tinge with a with a creamy two-finger head that settles into a velvety thin layer concentrated around the ring of the glass.

Notes of coffee and chocolate come through in the taste along with the smell. Swishing this around in your mouth really smooth the pleasant hop bitterness out and bring outs the coffee notes much more. Very clean with a smooth aftertaste that reminds me of the hops as opposed to roasted malts. One thing I don't like is that it leaves my mouth just a bit parched. I think this might have a little more to offer when combined with a meal due to this factor.

All in all, a very tasty enjoyable beer for the style. I would have liked to see the actual mother-in-law's pug in black and white as opposed to the drawing but presentation is good overall. It's nice to read about the background/history of the brewery as well.

Kudos to Travis for getting this out to me and giving me the chance to savor a nice, easy drinking black beer from Texas. (1,041 characters)

Photo of lackenhauser
3.97/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep chestnut color-nowhere near the darkness Id expect from a schwarzbier but a nice color none the less. Good, low roasted aroma. Very nice roasted flavor. Somewhat coffee or espresso like. Good body-holds the whole package together. Overall a very drinkable schwarzbier. Well worth a try. Thanks mushroomcloud. (313 characters)

Photo of Dizzy
3.95/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark brown, almost black with garnett highlights when held up to light. Tan head quickly recedes to a ring. Aroma is roasted malts. Taste is chocolate & coffee, finish is roastiness and bitterness. Medium to light bodied, lots of carbonation. This is a good one, a good session beer and not as sweet as some Schwarzbiers. This is a regular in my fridge. (359 characters)

Photo of Redrover
3.95/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was on of four Rahr beers on tap at the Flying Saucer in Fort Worth. Way to support the local breweries!!

Served in a standard straight pint glass, the beer is an opaque black with brown highlights and a creamy beige head.

Nose of charred malts and brown sugar.

The taste leads with dark roasted malts, molasses, a hint of coffee and some baker's chocolate. Well integrated.

The mouth could be a bit heftier, but it does make it easy to session. Give me more black lagers! (481 characters)

Photo of goatgoat
3.95/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear black that becomes woody with garnet tones when held to light. An aggressive pour brings a tall creamy tan head which falls over a respectable, but not impressive, amount of time. No lace to speak of.

Aroma is gentle. Light sweet malts, honey. A bare hint of dark fruit.

Flavor is much "darker" while still being refreshing. Still sweet and malty. But with a roasted character and a coffee note in the finish, along with a low bitterness. No specific hop character. Not as crisp as other lagers but still a very clean flavor.

Light body. Carbonation is a high but not biting.

This was quite an enjoyable surprise for me. I started the 6pack with some trepidation and was wonderfully surprised. It's not the kind of beer that you go on stupid adventures with. It's not the kind of beer you bare your soul too. It's not the kind of beer that can't shut up and pummels you with flavor after flavor.
It's the kind of beer you sit on the porch with and watch the cars go by. (987 characters)

Photo of Higravity
3.95/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Damn nice black lager. Slightly chilled pours black tinged with red covered in a thin white head. Smells of clean lager with a malt roasty character and a touch of spicy hops. Taste is mild delight, smooth roast and creamy malt slight chocolate after taste that mixs well with the delicate hop bite. Nice mouthfeel and very drinkable, Texas is lucky to have this beer and I would not mind calling it my own. (407 characters)

Photo of hooliganlife
3.92/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

thanks to Phoenix2443

pours dark cola black, quick fizzy cocoa cream head. very light retention.

sweet roasted malts, floral hops, a touch of licorice and dark fruits

light charcoal roasted malts all around. sweetness through out. light floral and citrus notes that linger in and out. bit of a bitter dry finish.

moderate carbonation, moderate body. feels full but drinks light.

a decent schwarbier. quite well rounded. nothing really stood out but everything complimented each other. i would drink this again, a fine example of the style. (545 characters)

Photo of xymyl
3.92/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance is tan head atop a dark mahogany beer with copper highlights. Head is dense but fragile and falls to a film of very small bubbles in short order leaving some lace around the glass.

Smell is clean malt and smoke with a lightly floral background and a slight milky smell.

Taste has less boldness the nose leads one to expect, but there are many hidden dimensions of toast and caramel that are very enjoyable. There is also a very faint black licorice note in the finish.

Overall: This is a very good example of a Schwarzbier and I can't find anything to complain about with it. But I would love to try the exact same recipe with a slightly higher malt bill. (669 characters)

Photo of drunkboxer1
3.92/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Not as black as a lot of these beers tend to be. Deep brown, chocolaty color. Smells sweet and like roasted malts. A good amount of dark malt character in it, with a small amount of hops balancing it out a little. One of the better interpretations of this style I've had. (271 characters)

Photo of crusian
3.91/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

reviewing to syle... if reviewing to my personal taste, it would be a c-, d+

fresh ugly pug from their new factory... or roof, or rather, now that they are open. as you can see from the previous post to this one, about 3-4 months ago...

pours a nice black... darker than I thought. little to no head on it... detracts from it visually.

smells very smoky with lots of chocolate, though I am afraid it is a bit too cold to get much more off of it.

tastes very smoky, and light... kind of refreshing. very light for such a dark beer. you can tell it is a low abv. very distinct lager taste.

mouthfeel indicates much more carbonation than the head implies. which is good. mouthfel is nice, smooth, light.

very drinkable if you like this sort of thing. not a bad crossover beer for those on the fence about craft beer, as it has the light lager taste. (853 characters)

Photo of Kromes
3.9/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Black with ruby highlights and a thin soapy head.

S: Sweet roasted malt and coffee aromas.

T: Initial taste is a sweet roasted coffee and chocolate flavor. There are some floral notes from a very slight touch of hops. It finishes sweet with a chocolate aftertaste.

M: It is very light in body with low carbonation, maybe watery, but I kind of like it.

D: The light body of the beer and the great flavors make this a very, very good session beer. Especially in these winter months. (487 characters)

Photo of biegaman
3.89/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a dark, dark brown colour. Not at all black when held to the light, even some clarity sneaks through. First stricking feature is a well pronouced smokey character which is quite predominant both in the nose and taste. Excellent roast malt. Flavour is well developed but a little short of anything fantastic. Sometimes one-dimensional, simple roast caramel malt. A little bit of hoppy character somewhere in there. All in all a fresh black lager, very enjoyable.
Thanks CRWills for the trade! (499 characters)

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass, I picked this up from Central Market in Fort Worth while we were staying with a friend. Pours a jet-black, with no head. The nose had slight toasted and sour malt characteristics. Flavors were dark roasted, with a sour malt backbone. The beer has a good balance, with a smokey-sweet aftertaste. The beer has a mostly crisp finish, with a slight linger to the smokey characteristics. Tasty. (429 characters)

Photo of MADhombrewer
3.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- Dark brown. Reminiscent of cola. Small head, no lacing.

Aroma- Small aroma. Roasted malts, and hops. Little bit of alcohol. Some coffee after it warms.


Taste-Light roasted malts. Crisp hop flavor throughout. Small coffee and chocolate notes come out as it warms.


Mouthfeel- A little more thicker than a "normal" lager. Nice carbonation.

Drinkability- Good drinkability. Easy going and light.

This is a nice black lager. I have never heard of the brewery until jenray hooked me up with two of their beers. I am looking forward to trying their other stuff. Thanks jenray. (595 characters)

Photo of MUSHROOMCLOUD
3.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ugly Pug has a 1 1/2" creamy tan head on top of a dark brown liquid that has ruby highlights. The head eventually recedes to a creamy 1/2" and has very good retention. Good lace.

Aroma of burnt toastmingles with a tinge of something metallic. There is a hop twang in the aroma as well. These seem to be two completely seperate and opposite smells, they never reall seem to converge. In an odd way there is a layer of burnt aromas and a layer of hop aromas (make sense?).

The taste follows the nose in that the creamy burnt character seems to take the forefront. Salty? Nutty. Charred, grilled flavor. Very appealing. This is not a typical roasted, earthy flavor; this is burnt!

Rich, full creamy mouthfeel. Very different from the other two or three schwarzbiers I have tried. This one is a little more robust. Good drinkability. Left me wanting another bottle. (870 characters)

Photo of assurbanipaul
3.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served at the brewery before being released to bars. Poured black and thin with a medium head that settled into a foam ring around the edges. Nose of mild dark malt flavors, some unsweetened coffee.

Taste is dark-roast malt without the heft or creaminess of a stout. Bitter roasted coffee flavors, dry, almost no sweetness whatsoever. Lingering aftertaste, not entirely unpleasant.

Mouthfeel is light, slightly acidic and biting. Leaves just a touch of stickiness on the lips and tongue. Easy to drink, very true to style. (528 characters)

Photo of mattcrill
3.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Twist off standard brown bottle with no real useful label information. Thanks to HardTarget for the chance to sample this Texas goodie...

Aroma: Dark roasted grains, a touch of carmel, some yeastiness, and a hint of esters that conjure up images of plums and raisins.

Appearance: Crystal clear ruby colored pour with a pillowy white head that disappates and collars the glass.

Flavor: Balance of carmel sweetness with bitterness asserting itself towards the middle lending to notes of black patent and chocolate. Rye bread notes on the finish and no hop presence to speak of.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied and appropriate given the style. Lively carbonation with a crisp finish.

Overall impression: Highly sessionable. Kind of 1 dimensional. Would benefit from some increased malt complexity but overall a very nice take on the style. Recommended. (856 characters)

Photo of aeminter
3.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a flute the beer is a deep brown-black with amber hues at the edges of the glass. The head is nice and foamy, almost three fingers high, and a lovely cappuccino tan. Minimal lacing.

The smell is a nice roasted chocolate, almost tootsie-role-like. Malty and deep with a hint of caramel...it may sound strange, but it makes me think of Halloween.

This almost tastes like a baby stout in its roasted flavor. It has a nice clean light finish. Good lager characteristics.

It's light bodied with nice carbonation and a dry finish. (539 characters)

Photo of Premo88
3.86/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle poured into pilsener

L: dark ruby red up to light, looks dark brown/black with no light; small head of beige/tan foam, maybe 1/2 inch tops, no stick and no major lacing, collar is nice but not huge. color and clarity are fantastic.

S: toasted, roasted wood ... some coffee, maybe dark chocolate, but burnt wood is the key note

T: toasted wood ... sweet, too ... the malt taste here is not burnt but close, very well-toasted and lots of woody oak taste; baker;s chocolate in the aftertaste

F: looks and pours just a bit flat (a Rahr's thing across most of their beers), but it feels strong and good, plenty of carbonation, nice lightweight crispness

O: it's full of toasted-malt flavor with a ton of sweetness, and the oak-wood/baker's chocolate aftertaste is very nice ... the sweet knocks down the bitterness a bunch, which makes for a pretty taste, easy-to-handle brew. a beer I'll definitely grab again. (933 characters)

Photo of RonaldTheriot
3.85/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rahr & Sons Ugly Pug Black Lager has a thin, beige head, some lacing, and a dark, yet clear, ruby red, bubbly appearance. The aroma is faint, but one can pick up some dark-roasted barley malt and sweetness. The taste is of burnt toast, rich coffee, some chocolate powder, and sweet, dark-roasted malt. Just a touch of hop bitterness presents itself. The mouthfeel is light and watery, and Ugly Pug finishes crisp, clean, refreshing, mostly dry, mild, and highly drinkable. Overall, this is good.

RJT (501 characters)

Photo of Dope
3.84/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours dark brown with a big fluffy light brown head. Head fades slowly with wonderful retention. Solid, heavy walls of lacing left behind.

S: Nice toasted malt, pretzel-like. Creamy milk chocolate mixes in. Surprisingly nice.

T: Mild sweet and creamy chocolate up front. Sweetness runs out into a toasted malt finish with bittersweet chocolate. Dry in the finish - well attenuated.

M: Very smooth, not watery at all.

O: A simple but tasty schwarzbier. Nice toasted malt and chocolate flavors meld and balance nicely. (526 characters)

Photo of bditty187
3.83/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ruby brown in hue, clear and shimmering, the liquid looks well enough. Off-beige head, at the apex the foam was over two-fingers in height. Rocky. Head retention was very good; it slowly faded to a chucky, rough-looking cap. A smaller cap did last the entire consumption, impressive. The subsequent lacing was spotty and unorganized but it was prevalent nevertheless. This is a good-looking beer!

The nose was graced with a soft sweetness in the form of caramel and coffee. Plus there were some toasted grains. Grassy hops with an earthy residue. I swear there is a kiss of smoke too. I like the nose because it, more or less, says exactly what I’d expect a Black Lager to proclaim. I do wish the potency was louder and I would have like a rounder aroma. Still, as is, I found the bouquet to be well-constructed and inviting.

Tasty. I’d be lying if I said I’ve tried a lot of Schwarzbiers because I haven’t. Based on what I’ve tried, I’d say Ugly Pug is the pick of the litter. If nothing else, it fits what I think a Schwarzbier is supposed to be. Minimal roasted qualities, I detected some smoked earth, some faint coffee, and a smattering of caramel. Again the toasted grains are noticeable. Grassy hops. There is a fair amount of bitterness, as to be desired. The aftertaste is long, especially for a lager because otherwise this is a clean beer. I do like how it won’t let me forget what I just swallowed. Like I said, this beer is tasty.

The mouthfeel doesn’t do much for me. It is not too thin (or too beefy) but it feels lackluster. Low carbonation, but it fits this beer well enough. The mouthfeel is good, don’t get me wrong… but I would have like something else here. What, exactly, I don’t know.

This is a very drinkable Schwarzbier; I enjoyed every sip. If this were a local, I would quaff it often. It is flavorful and easy to drink… what more do you want in a beer? Nothing. Give me a six-pack and a glass and I am sound as a pound. Thanks assurbanipaul. Tasty beer. Great label. Thanks. Try one! (2,037 characters)

Photo of LacquerHead
3.83/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this in Dallas just before I went to the American Airlines Center to watch the Blackhawk's first game of the season. (Oct 7)

It came in an ice cold bottle and was accompanied by a frozen mug. I had to let it warm up a bit.

As with most schwarzbiers you are going to get a dark beer that is not too heavy but not too light. And I think Ugly Pug lived up to the style. It had all the malty characteristics one would expect to find in a dark beer. It was roasty and toasty. I was expecting a little bit more, but I was happy with what I got.

My only real complaint was that it was a little bit too carbonated for my taste. However, it's ease of drinkability made this easy to overlook.

This will probably be my go-to brewery whenever I find myself in Texas. (766 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.83/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Acquired from hojuwestlake, so a big “Thank you” goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep reddish brown color with a thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is smoky with a little bit of chocolate, dark fruit, coffee & hops.

T: The taste is well-balanced and smoky with flavors of chocolate, dark fruit, coffee and a good hops presence for the style. The after-taste is bready, smoky and slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, very clean finish.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not very filling, good representation of style, I could stick with this beer for a while, it’s a good beer to drink when you want something on the dark side but something that isn’t very heavy. (820 characters)

Ugly Pug Black Lager from Rahr & Sons Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 163 ratings.