Podkovan Dark | Pivovar Podkováň

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Podkovan DarkPodkovan Dark
25 Ratings
Podkovan DarkPodkovan Dark

Brewed by:
Pivovar Podkováň
Czech Republic

Style: Euro Dark Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 3.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Blakaeris on 01-28-2006

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 25 |  Reviews: 20
Reviews by beveragecaptain:
Photo of beveragecaptain
3.75/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle. The ABV is listed on BA as 5.8%, but my bottle says 3.8%. This beer pours out a dark brown with a medium sized head. Chewy malt aroma. The flavor is similar to the aroma. It's a little like molasses. There's a definite nutty flavor. I can't detect any hoppiness. Although the beer tastes very malty, it seems watered down. It's like two parts dopplebock mixed with one part water. I enjoyed this beer. It's a good example of a dark beer that is not thick and heavy.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of AltBock
3.12/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

1 pint 0.9 fl oz. bottle with a label that has the Czech Republic Santa Claus drinking a stein of beer. That beer he's drinking must be really good because he has a million dollar grin on his face and he's giving that beer a thumbs up. I would be happy too if I was drinking a stein of beer and sitting on a keg of back up beer. On the guy's right and left side is the brewery symbol of a horseshoe with barley and hops in the middle. This symbol can also be found on the white foil covering the cap. The back label has the brewery symbol, name of the beer, US Government warning, barcode, refund values, and the actual street address of the brewery. It appears they didn't want to bother the consumer with a tacky best before date because that would be too helpful. Who would want that?

Appearance: When poured into a Brooklyn Brewery Euro pint glass, this Czech beer is a dark burgundy with a few dark ruby red highlights. The color was great, but the head of foam needed some work. It was less than a quarter of an inch in height and what appeared to be an off white color. It was too little to tell, but I'm 95% sure that it was an off white color. What little head of foam was there quickly dissipated into islands of white bubbles sitting on top of the beer. It didn't want to bother with leaving any rings or lace.

Smell: The aroma all the usual stuff to it, sweet caramel, a pinch of roasted malt, and a dab of hops. Nothing out of the ordinary, until all of those aromas faded. After all those little aromas, a grape bubble gum aroma emerged. It was either grape bubble gum or those grape flavored gummies. Whatever it was, it was certainly a grape aroma. I had no idea they could put the power of the grape into a beer aroma. The new stuff you learn everyday. Thanks Podkovan!

Taste: It had a light and sweet taste that featured sweet roasted malts, sweet caramel, sweet dark fruits, and the slightest touch of bitter hops at the end. The hops were the only thing that weren't sweet. I got a question. Where were the grapes in the taste? There were no grapes in the sweet dark fruits. If there were grapes in this, it would have made this a little bit more interesting than what it was. As you can tell, there really wasn't much in the taste and whatever taste there was, was sweet. How sweet of Podkovan to do that.

Mouthfeel: It was light and heavily carbonated. Not only could you taste the carbonation, but you could hear it when you poured it. It sounded like I was pouring a bottle of pop instead of pouring a bottle of beer. The aftertaste was faint with sweet roasted malts and a pinch of hops.

Drinkability: For some reason, I enjoyed this beer. I wouldn't mind having this one again in the future. The grape aroma made this beer a little interesting. Podkovan Dark isn't expensive at all and it was decent. What more can I say?

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.02/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, the difference between the Podkovan Dark and Lager is like night and day (pardon the pun). Their standard offering is a basic, somewhat characterlless Euro lager, but their Dark is a beautiful example of what a dunkel should be.

It pours a clear deep chestnut brown that almost turns to deep-stained mahogany. It has a bit of a crimson cast, and some orangeish highlights can be seen at the base of the glass and along the sides. The frothy light tan head rises up to over a finger's thickness at the outset, and then settles shortly into a wide collar. Lacing is limited. I'm not sure what the ABV is, the label on my bottle reads 3.8%.

In the nose it's caramelish and cocoa-like with a bit of nuttiness, subtly roasty with a note of warm brown sugar. Very welcoming!

The body is light-medium, and it's gently crisp with a moderate carbonation; which helps to explain the lack of head retention as there's just not that much body there, nor the CO2 bubbles to bolster it.

The flavor is pretty much as the nose indicates it will be, but a little bit more complex. It starts with a lightly sweet, grainy, and caramleish malt; then expresses a drier, cocoa-ish side and more subtle roastiness across the middle; follwed by and some nuttiness and a bit of leafy hops at the swallow. It's remarkably well-balanced with it's delicate sweetness upfront, slowly drying as it crosses the middle and then into an underlying bitterness in the finish with lingering notes of woodiness, and some bitterness that's not unlike that of roasted-peanut-skins.

I find it light and easy to drink, but also flavorful and compelling. It's a great session lager that reminds me a bit of an English mild without the fruity yeastiness - of course, I guess that's what a dunkel really is, huh? Very nice!!!

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Photo of bashiba
3.8/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a nice dark amber with mahogany highlights and a thick creamy off white head.

Smell has hints of maple, toffee, and oak mixing in with the sweet malt smells.

Taste has a very strong nuttiness with hints of smoke and maple poking through the slightly sweet profile. There is just a touch of earthy hops, but this is definitely a malty beer.

Mouthfeel is light and creamy.

Drinkability is good on this one, one of the better versions of this style I have come across.

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Photo of jsh420
3.2/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours a dark amber brown with a 1/2 finger head that leaves no lacing

smells a little skunky with sweet grains

taste is lightly raosted sweet grains with a decent amout of hops on the finish

mouthfeel is medium body with a so so amount of carbonation but a little flat that leaves a creamy finish

drinkability is so so since i just split a baltika 4 and was blown away on how good it was so i dont see drinking this onw again

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Photo of naderator55
3.42/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

When poured this beer has a nice two inches of head. That dissipates soon. A dark beer that can still be seen through, almost has a goldish hue.
The smell is almost a slight skunky not neccasary bad kind of that pilsner smell.
The start shows the roasted malts that are used. Quite nutty. But after that chocolate/coffee taste you are yearning for something else. This would probably be a lack of hops. Otherwise not a very complicated beer. A little more alchohol would improve the overall taste. This does have an almost creamy feeling in the mouth which is appreciated. The benefits of the low abv is that this beer could be drank quite a bit.

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Photo of matjack85
4/5  rDev +11.7%

Photo of brushpig
3.77/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled at the Beer at the Pier 1 Fest in Chicago
Dark nutty brown in color, with a very light head.
The aroma has chocolate, malts and a light roasted nutty smell.
That taste is simular to the smell with chocolate, coffee,malt, and nuts. Very enjoyable.
I liked the feel in the mouth, light, with good balenced carbination.
Being not to heavy or filling of a beer, along with the flavor make this a nice choice. Recommended.

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Photo of imaguitargod
1.36/5  rDev -62%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

I purchased this one for a really cheap price and it looked pretty interesting. Unfortunately, looks can be deceiving. It pours a nice, Carmel colored beer with small head and no lacing. But that's where this stops being a "dark" beer. The taste is overly perfumed and malty. After three sips I'm about ready to dump this out...and I almost NEVER do that with a beer because that's sacrilegious. There's also a slight hint of raisin and the beer leaves a horrible mouth feel. And what this? 3.8% abv? 3.8% ABV?!?!?! Who the heck would want to drink that? I'm pouring this watered down fizzy brown stuff out.

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Photo of Danilov
4.19/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of brandoman63
4/5  rDev +11.7%

Photo of ernie
4.08/5  rDev +14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A decent beer from a very old Bohemian brewery. Dark ruby color, lots of coffeish-fruity aroma, rich malty-fruity taste, hints of caramel and dry fruit. Great 'cappuccino' head, fine lace. May appear too sweet, but after a first half-pint you realize how nicely it's balanced. Same beer is marketed in the States and some European countries as Diplomat and it's confusing 'cause Samson beers from Ceske Budejovice bear the same name for export markets. Recommended!

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Photo of jmscott
3.26/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Had one last night, and overall, I wasn't incredibly impressed. I've had many fine Czech beers before, and I had hoped this to be on par with the others. The 'dark' only applies to the color, a deep-amber/brown with golden hilights. It's deceiving, and doesn't taste or feel nearly as substantial as it looks. It has a watered-down texture, not nearly as heavy as you want it to be. The taste has hints of caramel and nuts, that kick in moreso in the aftertaste. Goes down smooth, but it doesn't leave me with the satisfication that I really want in a beer. It's okay, definitely above average, but not great in my opinion.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.12/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A new brew served up at Marrika's Bier Stubbe. A very refreshing brew for such roasted malt character. Smells rich with a moderate brown ale and chocolate aroma. Light cream scents decorate the beer. Tastes very bold with flavor, but light in body. It's kinda like a Porter Light, if there were such a thing. Finishes very clean, much like a good Schwarzbier with a snap. Certainly better than about any other Dark Euro Lagers that I have tried. I would stack this up against the best of German Dunkels.

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Photo of lackenhauser
3.73/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice rich brown color. No head anywhere. Low aroma-sort of a malty sweetness. Somewhat metal like. Good malty flavor-nice balance between the hops and some chocolate malt. Slightly sweet finish. Good body-quite full for the style. A very drinkable beer. Nothing beats a good dark Checz lager when you can find them.

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Photo of brentk56
2.82/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy dark amber color with a firm head that leaves a nice pattern of lace

Smell: While there is a nice roasty quality, there are some other things going on that I don't like - adjunct corn, I'm afraid, that gives it a DMS smell big time

Taste: Starts out rather sweet but there is a strange flavor that builds mid-palate that is slightly astringent and medicinal; after the swallow, the roasty flavors return so it is best not to linger over this one; a touch of charcoal on the finish

Mouthfeel: Light body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Just cannot recommend this due to its many flaws

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Photo of Fugazme
3.66/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark ruby red/brown in color... 1/4" light tan head that stays pretty well. Thick head. A very nice looking beer. Very appealing.

Extremely malty nose. Syrupy sweet with notes of raisins and dried figs. A touch nutty with some hints of honey.

Mouthfeel is decent... quite carbonated.

Malt upfront on the taste... nutty... dried fruits.

Overall a nice selection.

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Photo of cbl2
2.21/5  rDev -38.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

7/6/2007 $1.95 1 pint 0.9 oz 3.80% No best by date.


Pours a dark ruby red with little to no head.


Odd adjunty aromas, with corn, grape juice and soda predominant.


Worse tasting than it is in aroma. One sip and I'm cringing in pain from the sickly sweet overly fruity flavors. A second sip, and I question myself as to why I am subjecting myself to this torture. Thin treacly mouthfeel throughout, this is vile and insipid. Down the drain you go.

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Photo of Minkybut
4.65/5  rDev +29.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Beer poured into a 16 oz glass at 50 degrees. Beer did not have much of a head which was disapointing but actually did adversly affect the taste as I though it would. Taste was slightly chocolate/malty but not too overbearing. I was very pleased with this beer and will purchase again.

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Photo of malty
4.05/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a copper chestnut color with a fluffy 3/4" light beige head. Micro suspended motionless particals in the liquid. Nice lacing.

Soft roasted malts in the nose with a slightly sour nip. Hints of coffee and sour dough evoke after a few brisk swirls of the glass.

The flavors of lightly roasted malts and wood stand nicely beside the timid hops. Slightly nutty and sweet caramel where the maltiness is displayed.

Mouthfeel is soft and medium bodied. Fine carbonation makes this feel superb on the tongue.

Drinkability is great. Nothing overpowering in this lager, making it very pliable & welcoming.

Overall a humble and simple dark lager that stands on it own two feet. The maltiness bloomed upon getting to room temp. The fluffy head had great staying power. I was very pleasantly surprised just coming off a less than remarkable regular lager from this brewery an hour ago. Very good IMHO.

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Photo of Blakaeris
3.62/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Apperance is nut brown with a thin head and no lacing.

Smell is sweet malt with a touch of chocolate.

Taste has a very strong nutty smokiness to it that is interesting. Sweet malt up front with a touch of hops in the finish to bring the flavors into balance.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and lightly carbonated.

All in all this isn't a bad brew.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.88/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lucent blood orange with bright tangerine edges and a lovely looking three finger cap that is the color of butter toffee. The busily bubbled surface becomes semi-rocky as it descends, depositing an impressive amount of cheese grater lace in the process. Perhaps the best looking Euro dark lager that I've ever laid eyes on.

The nose fits the style, but is far too subtle. It's lightly roasted malty with hints of cocoa and coffee; a pleasant enough aroma that just might achieve the next highest score if I could better appreciate its nuances.

I haven't been too pleased with the EDLs that have crossed my palate in the past. While Podkovan Dark isn't outstanding beer, it's a fine example of its style because it has guts. At last, a dark lager that aspires to be a light porter rather than a pale lager with caramel extract added.

The most intesting thing about this beer is how much like coffee it tastes, especially on the finish. I'm not a huge java fan, but that particular flavor element adds an immeasureable amount of personality to a style that is rife with boring versions. I wasn't kidding about the light porter comparison; there's a fair amount of malt here and a near equal amount of hops.

Because of my big beer bias, I always find it difficult to pass judgment on styles that are light by nature. While the body/mouthfeel is lighter than I'd like, it's clearly in the upper reaches of the EDL range and, therefore, deserves kudos.The restrained amount of carbonation is just about perfect.

I'm one of the few who think that Podkovan Lager is worthwhile beer. I'm happy to report that Podkovan Dark is even better. Again, it's hard to find much to like in a style that contains dud after dud after dud, and I've struggled on more than one occasion not to simply write Euro dark lagers off completely. If this beer has done nothing else, it has restored my faith in an often overlooked style.

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Photo of KAF
3.25/5  rDev -9.2%

Photo of kinger
3.42/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is nice and sweet, bready with some dark brown sugar. Poured more of a dark amber color, thin head and minimal lacing. Light to medium mouthfeel, clean finish. Flavor is essentially a nice helping of sweet malt with a slight bitterness in the end. Decent dunkel, really enjoyed this one.

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Photo of imperialking
4/5  rDev +11.7%

Podkovan Dark from Pivovar Podkováň
Beer rating: 3.58 out of 5 with 25 ratings