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

439 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 439
Reviews: 169
rAvg: 3.61
pDev: 14.13%
Wants: 24
Gots: 89 | 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

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 439 | Reviews: 169
Photo of briman
3.68/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap and poured into standard pint glass.

Pours dark brown, almost black with a thick one finger tan head which dissipated quickly.

Smell is somewhat subtle, mostly dark roasted malts.

Taste is about the same as what I expected, dark malts, with a slight burnt quality to them, and a tinge of bitterness due to the roasted malts. No hop bitterness to speak of. Flavors somewhat subtle as well, and seems like you've got to let it warm up a bit to get a good feel for them.

Medium bodied at best, may seem thin to some, but exactly what I would expect from a Schwarzbier. Finishes just as it starts, with the slightly burnt
taste following through until the end.

Very drinkable, certainly a beer I could have a few of in one sitting.

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.

Photo of BeerRun13
3.8/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to kbub6f.
This beer is black. A nice thick tan head formed and fell quickly leaving it looking like flat cola.
The smell was very very faint. Coffee like and earthy.
Intriguing taste. Sour grass like and coffee. The taste wasn't super strong like you might think. Porter like, but it is a lager which seems to give it a different flavor all together. Seemed well balanced.
The mouthfeel was pretty good. Light and very refreshing (strange for such a dark beer).
This beer was hard to make out, but very easy to drink.

Photo of Mitchel
2.91/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Ugly Pug black lager pours a very dark brown almost black but not quite. The off white head almost instantly fell to nothing and leaves little to no lacing. It smells like earthy burnt chocolate and wood….yes, wood.

The beer tastes of burnt chocolate and tannin…almost smoky. Not much more. It makes me think that they squeezed the grains to get the color out of it and at the same time got too much tannin. Very carbonated and finishes like burnt coffee. It finishes dry but again, burnt. It is a very sharp tasting beer. It is much of what I feel that Schwartz beers should be.

I don’t have much to say about this beer. It is not for me, but not a bad beer on the whole. The label alone is worth buying a sixer. The picture is great and there is a little story on the bottle about the name of the beer (if you are interested in that sort of thing). It is worth a try.

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.

Photo of pentathlete
3.72/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark dark brown, translucent at the edges, no head (actually, I turned my head and missed it) and carbonation is tough to see, even on a clear top. Smell is coffee, toasty malt, and burnt sugars just the way it should be. Taste is roasted malt, bitter and wet along the edges. The beer lacks body, mouthfeel suffers a touch from the wet edges. This is an easy to drink and satisfying beer that just needs a few improvements to be an excellent schwarzbier.

Picked up in OneBoxBIF from assurbanipaul. Thank you.

Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.62/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured into the glass translucent black with a white head which fell to nothing in an instant.

The aroma was strong caramel malt smoothness and chocolate. Almost the aroma of a milk chocolate bar.

The flavor was chocolate with a bit of astringency and tannins. Not quite crisp and slightly grassy in the bitteirng and with an expresso roasty flavor.

The finish was dry with lasting slight acrid rosted grain bitterness into the aftertaste. The body was medium light or just a smidge more. Good aroma, lousy head retention and just ok flavor.

12 ounce bottle.

Photo of Gagnonsux
3.63/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The color is dark brown, with an average-sized, light brown head. Retention is okay. The aroma is a sweet smelling combination of chocolate malts and roastiness. The taste has a strong element of roasted flavors upfront with hints of chocolate popping through towards the middle through the finish. The necessary sweetness rides in alongside the chocolate flavors and keeps the roastiness from going overboard. Personally, I find the roastiness to be too strong for a schwarzbier, with levels almost reaching a weak dry stout. Still, this is a good beer and easily the most interesting choice from the three standard Rahr beers.

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

Fort Worth's Rahr brewery has taken the low road in beer.
By that I mean lagers. Bottom fermenting, get it?

The Ugly Pug is a fine tasting dark lager with sweet, vanilla overtones
with a faint hint of coffee. This beer is very smooth, making it easy
to have 2-3 back to back in a session without weighing heavy on
your palate.

Hands down, the best Texas brewed Schwarzbier I've ever tasted.

Photo of Melchizedek
3.52/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Not real impressed on the pour--I went through the better part of a six of this and had a hellish time getting any kind of head to rise. What head there was was pretty thin and soapy-looking, and didn't last. The color's good--dark brown, much like coffee (especially with the nonexistent head).

The smell isn't potent, but it's definitely nice; roasted grain and coffee hints dominate. The Pug is slick in the mouth, a bit thin (although maybe I'm displaying some stout bias). Not a lot of complexity to the flavor, mostly those roasty notes and earthy grains with minimal hop; there's a bit of a mineral, salty bitterness in the background, giving a mineral-water impression despite the lack of noticeable carbonation. As it warms, the coffee notes become more distinct and appreciable, especially in the aftertaste.

The drinkability of this brew is definitely its saving grace; I could happily take down three or four without a thought, and its flavor is pleasant enough to enjoy like a coffee, without necessarily pairing it with a meal. It's unpretentious enough to be a great gateway beer, I would guess.

Note about head problems: I have had this from a keg and experienced none of the above troubles with the head. From everything I hear, my particular six looks to be the anomaly.

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.

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!

Photo of Octagonal
4.04/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark ,almost black, with some amber hues. About an inch of creamy head subsides rather quickly.
An aroma of coffee and roasted malt..
When tasting, the roasted malt and coffee continue through a slightly bitter finish. I really enjoy the aftertaste.
The dark beer has a light body, quite carbonated that goes down well.
I really enjoyed this beer and will definately have another.

Photo of hojuwestlake
4.03/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This black lager had a clean blackish-brown color with a cream colored head that disapates not long after poured.

The smell is slightly roasted with a hint of cold coffee. Has a smoothe mouth feel with a little bite on the way down.

A lot of malt/oaty taste with a bit of sweetness like a porter or oatmeal stout but not as heavy. Light bitter finish with a pleasnt aftertaste.

Photo of allengarvin
3.6/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours out a ruby-tinted brown with a slight off-white head. Aroma is lightly roasted. Taste is a mix of roasted, coffeeish graininess and pleasant bitterness. Finishes dry and quite clean. Moderate body and medium carbonation. I've enjoyed this beer more on draught, but never tooks notes. In the bottle, it's a fairly ordinary dark beer.

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.

Photo of HardTarget
4.07/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap at the Bluebonnet Brewoff ’05. A hard plastic cup.
Aroma: My sample was a touch cold, but I noted a slightly (what I call) dusty porter smell.
Appearance: Deep brown almost black with some clarity noted at the corners of the glass. Nice off white head left tide marks even with the small sample.
Flavor: Fair balance with a sweet side, some mild mineral flavors (which I find a touch overbearing in the blonde and red) that were at a nice level. Almost more of an oatmeal stout than a porter taste, I wouldn’t have picked Schwarzbier, but then again, I haven’t had many to compare it to. It did have a slight sour edge.
Mouthfeel: Rich texture with a medium-light body, good carbonation.
Overall Impression: Very tasty! Rich dark flavors, nice looks, I think we have a winner! I seem to enjoy Rahr & Sons beers more on tap than in the bottle, and I think it is that “mineral” taste. It seems appropriate to some German styles; I just find it slightly distracting. The Pug seems to have only hints, or the tastes covered it a bit more. Either way; my favorite beer from this new Texas brewery!
Recommended!

Photo of LarryKemp
3.41/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer was a deep clear black with a nice malty nose. I was sitting next to a smoker so that limited the fragrance.

This beer was not as malty as I would expect but had more hop bite than what one would expect in the style. When I had this beer at the brewery, it had much more malt and far less hops.

The mouthfeel was medium and smooth.

Overall, this beer showed no off aromas or tastes. I will try this again and probably edit this review. When drinking it at the brewery, it was my favorite from Rahr. At the Flying Saucer tonight, it left me a little less enthusiastic. I guess this means I will be forced to go drink it free at Rahr Brewery on Saturday.

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.

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Ugly Pug Black Lager from Rahr & Sons Brewing Company
82 out of 100 based on 439 ratings.