Dark Horse Raspberry Ale | Dark Horse Brewing Company

236 Reviews
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Dark Horse Raspberry AleDark Horse Raspberry Ale

Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Mitchster on 08-05-2003

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Reviews: 236 | Ratings: 702
Photo of JudgeRoughneck
4.57/5  rDev +35.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

This is a very nice dull honey-colored beer with thin but well-built white head and big splotchy lacing. Nose is fresh beer smell with a floral/ perfumey hint of....seriously...roses. This beer smells like roses. It smells like a girl and I'm about to make out with it.

Mmmm she kisses nice. I'm really impressed with this fruit beer. It has a really sturdy pale malt and honey sweetness that is anything but cloying and the rasberry is so refreshingly restrained. It just sneaks in at the end to add an almost lambic-type sourness. The alcohol plays an interesting role here too. It isn't something you taste or really notice, but you can just tell its in there. Maybe it's in the nose or the mouthfeel. I don't know. Despite everything going on here the beer stays light bodied and creamy on the palate.

I'm not a big fan of most fruit beers but if I was, oh man, this would be the one.

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Photo of paxtonthegreat
4.5/5  rDev +33.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my favorite fruit beers. Dark horse uses real michigan raspberries and you can tell in the taste! A very fresh raspberry taste which also tastes like a beer and not just an artificially flavored we made this for you girlfriend kind of thing. Getting this mixed with the black bier is also wonderful.

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Photo of dthrift3
4.5/5  rDev +33.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The color caught me off guard immediately from pouring. I was expecting a more red color than an orange, but I'm a "newbie", so I could and probably wrong in my expectations here.

The beer starts off sweet, but seems to be evened out midway through the sip. Maybe some honey perhaps? Whatever it is, does not effect the taste, but helps smooth out the sweetness. Finishes smoother than bitter.

Would for sure drink this again!

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Photo of nortmand
4.44/5  rDev +31.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Presented in a 12 ounce bottle with cool artwork.
Pours muddled red-orange, with some white head and little lacing.
Smells tartly of raspberrry, nice, sweet and subtle.
Rich frontal raspberry flavor ending with a full bodied wheat presence. Very nice.
Lightly carbonated, which fits with the rich, smooth body.
This beer bridges the gap between light and flavorful. Manages to be a relatively light beer, but with a nice full bodied wheat presence. This is definitely a beer worthy of quaffing several liters.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.42/5  rDev +30.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The last of my three bottles from a recent trip to TJ's in Paoli.

My pour resulted in a finger of ecru head with decent retention. Nose was filled with sweet red raspberry! I have recounted many times in my reviews of my late paternal grandmother's raspberry bush in her backyard garden and let this be no exception. Color was a slightly hazy reddish amber. Mouthfeel was medium with an unexpected raspberry tartness, as opposed to the perfumy taste that accompany many raspberry beers. I should be drinking this on a hot summer's day, rather than a chill Thanksgiving morning. C'est la vie! Finish was very dry. Zephyr winds could be heard blowing across the Sahara. I think that I may sweeten this up with a shot of that Labatt's Porter from earlier.

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Photo of putnam
4.37/5  rDev +29.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

There is a reddish glow to this old gold-colored beer. Zero head.
The bouquet reminds me of those berry-flavored waters from brands like Perrier and Cap-10. Rainy, light and subtle. At the core there is a pleasing sour lager aroma.
On the palate there is ample raspberry infusions charged with silky, windy lines of gas. More neutral than assertive and thankfully not sweet at all. Tangy, buttered grain flavors at the root. Nice that they didn't overplay the raspberry or the sugar. Kudos!

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Photo of adamette
4.3/5  rDev +27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Originally posted a few days ago but then deleted somehow. Live review. Poured from the 12 oz. brown bottle with basic black cap that I bought at Siciliano's in Grand Rapids for $1.69 during my visit there last weekend. No observed "best by" date on the label. The label, incidentally, is pretty cool. Kind of a swirl of bees, raspberries and some green material. Perhaps there is honey in the beer? Also, this was the beer that was in the same line at the brewery when I tasted their stout and I could still taste the raspberries, so I anticipate that this beer will be quite flavorable. Also, proudly poured into my Dark Horse Brewing pint glass that I bought at the brewery last week.

A A glowing orange body that reminds me of all of the other dark horse beers (all of their somewhat translucent beer bodies look similar). Really, it is an attractive look. Moderately creamy head stuck around for a few minutes. 4.0

S Light raspberry and possibly honey to the nose. This smells interesting. 4.0

T Light barley behind nice, soft raspberry and honey taste. Excellent beer which is what I now expect from Dark Horse. 4.5

M Light with minimal honey like stickiness. 4.0

D Very drinkable. I mean I think that this beer was brewed to be this drinkable and man, it works. 4.5

Notes: Probably my favorite fruit based beer.

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Photo of alleykatking
4.27/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle. Had during the Dark Horse tasting.

A- Pours a light reddish semi-hazy color. Two finger light tan head comes and ends on a cap after a minute. No real lacing on the sides of the glass.

S- Raspberry jam is the first thing I smell. Light bready malts in the background but the raspberries come through this and only let them come through in hints. I am quite surprised that the raspberry is super huge..smells like summer to me.

T- Big raspberry upfront in the beer. The bready malts are kind of in the background and only come into play in the back end of the beer. There is a light "other" fruity smell that I can't put my finger on. The taste though is mostly raspberry and to be honest I mostly like it. The bottle doesn't lie about what it is.

M- Light medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is a little higher than what I liked but still good. Raspberry left all over the palate and well into the aftertaste. Alcohol is a little drying on the palate after each sip.

D- This is a very refreshing beer that would be perfect during the summertime. I think Dark Horse pretty much hit the nail on the head with this beer. Good job guys. Perfect beer for people who like fruity beers.

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Photo of tmitch75
4.27/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazy orange color with one finger of creamy white head that dropped to a spotty thin layer.

Sweet honey smell with a slight fruity edge, but not overpowering. Tastes like an above average pale ale with honey and raspberries. Fruity sweetness is obvious but blends quite well into the picture. Good hop finish.

Creamy smooth medium body.

This is a very drinkable and very well done fruit beer. I am generally a fan of fruit beers but this one is special in that the fruit is well integrated into the overall package. Not overpowering or sticky sweet. Kudos to the folks at Dark Horse for another fine beer.

Tasted on tap at Firkin in Libertyville on 3/29/08. They had just run out of KBS 2 hours prior!

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Photo of deejaydan
4.27/5  rDev +26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Gotta hand it to them for what this is, a Raspberry beer. Pours a dark straw/amber color, massive head, and decent lacing. Smells like, well, raspberries. I guess that's what they are going for so they nailed it. Taste is purely the tartness of the raspberries and, well, nothing else. No hint of hops or malt. Very clean. Very carbonated, so much so that it tends to explode in your mouth. A good beer for a fruit beer, something for the less hardcore beer drinkers to go for.

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Photo of schoolboy
4.17/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As a fan of creative fruit beers, this one works. It has a beer-like appearance, like any ale. The fruit aroma is obvious but subtle.

The taste is reserved - raspberry but not overly so. There are hops and malt overtones.

This is a fruity one would drink again, though only ifI were in the mood.

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Photo of entenduintransit
4.17/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Murky, unfiltered appearance (which I love), delicious aroma, the taste takes a moment to hit, but when it does it's pleasant. Not overbearing with the raspberry but it does take the forefront. Feels great in the mouth with a surprising amount of carbonation. Aftertaste is typical of a fruitbeer. Not the best that Dark Horse has to offer but surely underrated in my opinion.

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Photo of scruffwhor
4.14/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Always seem to be partial to any kind of beer that has fruit in it. The color was a hazey, pale sunshine with some light sediment at the bottom and a very light, thin head at the topThe aroma is a lightly sweet ands hinting at a tart flavor raspberry. The taste is a little hint of tart, and good, natural flavor. Little bit of sweet, pale malt mixes with the natural goodness of the raspberry. Very easy to drink. No overwhelming fruity flavors. Just good for cooling down when you are in the Summer sun.

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Photo of CoSMoSYS
4.11/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The drink poured a cloudy orange with barely any head, which disappeared rather quickly after the pour, and no lacing at all. There were also a few carbonation bubbles coming up at any given moment.

I smelled this from the bottle and could detect a definite raspberry smell, however when I poured it into the glass, I couldn't put my nose on any one smell except for the crisp raspberry and hops. Maybe my nose isn't that distinguished yet?

The taste of the beer was excellent. Not too sweet or tart. You won't be puckering your lips after a swig. The carbonation in the beer provides that special kick that adds value and you can feel it when you drink. Very easy beer to drink as it is light to medium bodied.

I would definitely recommend this drink to everybody, even the doubters of a good fruit beer.

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Photo of TCMike
4.08/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Produce a 2 finger white head after pouring into a glass. The color of the beer is a cloudy gold, with a smidgen of pink.
The aroma is a bit week, but of a little bread, and raspberry.
The taste was much better than smell. The raspberry comes through more. No hop bitterness noticeable.
The carbonation is high, and mouth-feel is light, and dry.
This is a good, easy drinking, warmer weather beer. The low alcohol makes it a great summer session beer.

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Photo of Brewsip
4.05/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This beer is not too sweet; it has a nice after taste and pairs well with foods more commonly combined with wine. It is also good with heartier foods such as bacon wrapped dates and pretzel puffs with beer cheese sauce. Will buy to serve at summer gatherings at home.

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Photo of ModemMisuser
4.04/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this in a bottle.

Usually I don't dig fruit beers much. Too often they're too "fake" tasting, and/or overwhelmingly sweet. This one isn't!

Taste is of a very good malty ale, with a slight-to-moderate real raspberry flavor in it. It's not artificially colored, either. It's beer colored - in this case a very light brown. Aroma shows a faint raspberry scent.

A very good, refreshing beer for a hot summer day when you want something a little different.

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Photo of Infamous7100
4.02/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a hazy ruby color with about a one finger tan head.
S: Raspberries make themselves known right away, but it's not overwhelming to me like other fruit beers. Also get some bready notes.
T: Naturally, the raspberries are present right away, but what I enjoy most is that they aren't overwhelming. It plays great with the bready flavor of the beer. Nice balance.
M: Medium carbonation and very smooth.
D: Unlike a lot of other fruit beers, this one isn't so sweet to the point where you don't want another. Very clean and refresing. Great grass cutting, summer beer.

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Photo of HopDerek
4.02/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy burnt amber color with some floaties. 3/4 of an inch of creamy white head has average retention and leaves some good lacing. Smells faintly of tart raspberries, lemon, straw, and honey. Tastes of honey sweetness followed by some biscuit wheat, then the raspberry presence comes in with a light lemon finish. Medium light in body with good fizzy carbonation, smooth and crisp but a little thin, a nice sweetness combined with some tart and sour notes for a good balance. Not one of my favorites from Dark Horse, but it is easy to drink and refreshing, definitely good to enjoy on one of those hot summer days.

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Photo of pat61
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours brilliant pinkish amber under a thin, offwhite foam collar.
S: the raspberry on the nose is somewhat muted and matched by grainy malt and a light hop touch.
T: A dry palate with light grains and a balance between the raspberry, malt and hops. M: Medium body and carbonation.
O: The raspberry is not as intense and could use something tart to poke it up a bit.

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Photo of WakeandBake
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Notes fromAug 23, 2008
Pours an amber/copper color,with a thin white head. The first thing I noticed was the wonderful fruit aroma,that matched the initial taste of raspberries and faint hops,later on I got some of the malt flavor to boot. Nothing really stood out in this Ale but I find it to be well rounded and not too tart like some fruit beers tend to be. Nive crisp finish,dry. I buy this once a month or so just for a change.

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Photo of tubacharlie
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap, the pint arrived with a decent white head with some retention and lacing. A hazy, unfiltered orangeish-light brown color with sufficient carbonation to leave a nice ring of foam at the edge, even after sitting for a half hour while interrupted.

The scent of raspberries is clearly evident in the midst of a fruity hop nose, especially at first sip. Carried into the flavor, the raspberry is a little more pronounced, but only enough to give a nice tartness to the overall malted barley profile. Good deal of hops give it a pale ale style. The tart fruit blends well with the hop bitterness for a flourishing finish.

Not really a what I would consider a "fruity" beer, it is a well-crafted pale ale with just a touch of berries, and not at all sweet. I especially enjoyed it mixed half and half with a strong Belgian style, Dragonmead's Final Absolution (a Rasolution?). The tart bitterness cuts the slight sweetness of the Belgian and produces a complex, tasty fusion of flavors.

Pairs nicely with Chicken a l'Orange.

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Photo of Lauthaha
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a beer mug.

Appearance: Beer pours a burnt sienna/orange color with a thin but frothy head. After the head settles, I swirl the remnants of the bottle around to unsettle the yeast, and pour it into the beer. Now, it's more of a milky/cloudy burnt sienna/orange. Head wisps away to cirrus clouds atop the beer.

Smell: Crisp, cool raspberry flavor with some subtle bready undertones. Just like a fruit beer should smell. Reminds me of "Shorts Soft Parade."

Taste/Mouthfeel: Beer is, true to appearance, slightly milky, with some light and bubbly carbonation. Raspberries mingle with a gently toasted malt character, and that's about it. A very simple brew, and it goes down moderately dry.

Overall: A solidly good beer. Nothing outstanding about it, but if you are into the fruit beer, it's absolutely worth a try.

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Photo of PattyMelt
3.99/5  rDev +18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This is a biased review, as this is my favorite go-to beer when I'm not sure what I'm in the mood for. I know it is not the best beer in the world, but I love it and always enjoy it no matter what kind of beer-drinking mood I am in!

A- Pours coppery, with a small head the thins out.
S- Pretty good, you can smell the raspberry but it is not really overwhelming
T- Great! The raspberry taste is stronger than the smell, in my opinion. Raspberry beers are my favorite fruit beers, and this has just the right balance, enough raspberry that you can really taste it, but just below the brink of being too sweet. There really aren't any other strong flavors in there. Some malt to balance out, but that's about it.
M- Very light bodied, easy to drink. Not a whole ton of carbonation. A small bitterness on the back of it, but very clean and drinkable.

O- Like I said, my staple go-to. Enough flavor that you are actually tasting something, but light and easy enough to just kick back and relax with!

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Photo of jpmclaug
3.98/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a tulip

A - Ruby/orange body with a small white head

S - A hint of raspberry syrupy type flavor but not much more than that.

T - Raspberry flavor up front and then finishes with a light malty flavor at the end. Pretty refreshing. Would be nice to have on a hot day.

M -- light body with a good amount of carbonation

D - Easy drinking refreshing beer. If you want a beer that tastes like Raspberries then this would hit the spot. I wouldn't mind having this again but it isn't a must have by any means.

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Dark Horse Raspberry Ale from Dark Horse Brewing Company
3.38 out of 5 based on 702 ratings.
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