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: 701
Photo of thecheapies
3.18/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Hazy, dirty pink-orange with a long-lasting little soft white cap. Nice lacing, actually. 4.0

Fresh raspberries, slightly caramelized malt sugars, slight tartness. Light hopping with herbal notes. 3.5

Tangy wheat-structured malt backbone with raspberry skins, firm fruit tartness, and some caramel-like malt flavors. Not my bag, but not bad. 3.0

Highly carbonated. Swishy medium body. Ok feel. 3.0

I can't drink this kind of a fruit beer too fast. It's interesting enough, I guess. A regrettable order at the bar. 3.0

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Photo of Shrews
3.16/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into a pint glass

Pours into a nice 1/2 inch head with a light brown color. Little to no rings of head left around the glass as you drink. Head tapers off as you drink.

Can faintly smell the berries. A light smell of hops as well.

Light raspberry taste with slight bitterness on the back of the tongue. The raspberry taste masks the hops and barley. Slightly carbonated which goes well with the raspberry taste. It is a pretty faint taste of raspberry.

Slight carbonation and bubbles mixes well with the light raspberry taste.

The ale sort of tastes like a light nationally branded beer (ex. Bud, Miller, etc) with a faint raspberry taste. Tasteless really, minus the raspberries.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.58/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass, sure why not!

Dark dull amber brown, with not much head, a faint off white appearance five to some good rising carbonation from the body. I will say it's better than average, but nothing really grabbing me, I wish I could say more.

Nose grabs next to nothing in fruit character. Faint bitter bile smell, but luckily a nice bready soft biscuity malt comes to the rescue with some soft crackery graham cracker. Raspberry forward on the nose.. no..

Moving along the palate hits, and improvement is a big step up. Giant pie and crusty malt taste and finish with an almost rhubarb and fruit component. Tartness no, but a soft malt bodied crust mixing with a true fruit component.

Overall, gives to a fruit pie component with a lingering crusty finish. First whiffs and impressions though are not that impressive, mixing with an appearance that is less than satisfying. No major complaints, but no raves either here...

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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 cosmicevan
2.43/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

been sitting on this one for a while. was in the mood for some fruit juice, but didn't have any...and saw this one. perfecto. poured into a cantillon tasting glass.

a - brew poured orange with a tizzy foamy head that slowly bubbled away. lively champagne like visible carbonation. semi sticky lacing.

s - fresh raspberries. a bit of soda like sweetness. some maltiness and gooey toffee.

t - just like the smell...BURST of raspberries. overly so. an overdose of raspberry gooey thickness. a bit cloying. kind of gross.

m - thick and chewy. the beer itself isn't that great and it makes my mouth not lookin like i'm enjoying myself.

o - overall i was looking for a nice raspberry beer. this was raspberry alright...but kind of gross. too thick and chewy. although i was able to get through a small glass of it, i opted to move onto something else and didn't finish it. this one is not for me. there are plenty of tasty raspberry beers out there, so i don't see why you'd go for this one.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
2.6/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a snifter.

2.5 A: Opaque peach amber color. Two fingers of frothy white head. Retention is lacking and no lacing is left.

2.5 S: Bready with raspberry essence. Doesn't smell bad, but it's simple and the raspberries aren't strong enough to wow me like they do in something like NG Raspberry Tart.

2.5 T: Pretty much like the nose. The raspberries are more than half assed, but barely. Maybe 4/7s assed. Otherwise, simple like watered down juice or something.

3.5 M: Medium body. Good moderate carbonation. Not quite creamy, but something like "frothy."

2.5 D: Not even close to the worst of the fruit beers, but still not good. I doubt my gender is the target buyer for this.

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Photo of jimmah120
3.03/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle with no date

Very cloudy yellow with a red hue. 3 finger head that dissipates quickly. Smells faintly like skunky strawberries. Tastes like an odd mix of malt, hop, and tart raspberry - in that order. Aftertaste is all raspberry. Mouthfeel is light and crisp but a bit astringent.

I like how natural and tangy the raspberry is, but the farm house ale taste doesn't jive well with the fruit. The pervasive fruit separates itself from the more natural beer taste and just doesn't blend. It's still very easy drinking and unique.

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Photo of Jamesthebrit
3.46/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Hazy reddish brown. I thought the red here was nice and subtle and I appreciated that.
S: Super super weak raspberry smell. Otherwise didn't smell like anything, which isn't necessarily a bad thing.
T: Again, super subtle on the rasberry taste, and I was expecting more. However, as a ale this had some great execution with a little bitter hops and a little wheaty flavor.
M: Sat very well. No lingering gross flavors and the carbonation was on the money.

Overall I was looking for more raspberrys but it was a pretty good beer regardless.

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Photo of BBP
3.21/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a burnt orange color with decent head, and some nice lacing. Retention is better than expected.

The aroma is not surprisingly full of raspberries. They lead the way with a more candy like fruitiness. Aside from that, nothing really peeks through.

The taste isn't what I'd classify as all that great or all that bad. It's really quite unoffensive. It makes a bit of sense when DH's heavy beers drink easy, that their light drinks drink easier yet. I do get some raspberry, but it's nowhere near what you'd taste in a lambic. It's also fairly short lived as well.

Underneath that, there is some honey richness though, and a well crafted, albeit light ale. I'm enjoying it while I drink it, but I don't think I'll remember it after it's gone. There's also some nice bready malt to be found as well for a brief bit.

The mouthfeel is Medium light in the body. Without the overaggressive carbonation, I suspect it would be much thinner yet. It has an average weight to it. The finish is slightly dry and mildly sticky.

Overall, I don't expect that I'll pick this one up again, but by no means would I recommend people to pass it by without trying.

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Photo of Aiptasia
3.92/5  rDev +16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Snuck a few sips from my SWMBO's pint glass while we're sitting here watching Ghost Adventures.

A: Pours a hazy malty peach color with only slight head and a barrista's hint of lacing across the surface.

S: Smells of raspberries and wet hay on the nose.

T: Hints of raspberry, mango and star fruit on the tongue with a biscuit yeast middle. Nice balance on the alcohol with a touch of plum on the aftertaste. Not over fruity, just well balanced.

M: Drinks easily. Very refreshing beer. Minimally carbonated.

O: Very nice crowd pleasing spring festival concert going beer.

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Photo of metter98
3.32/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: The beer is yellowish amber in color and poured with a finger high off white head that died down but never completely faded away.
S: There are strong aromas of raspberries in the nose.
T: The initial taste is filled with pleasant flavors of tart raspberries; however the aftertaste is off and doesn’t leave you longing for another sip. The citrus flavors from the hops and the raspberries don’t seem to pair well together.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: Provided you can get past the finish, the beer isn’t that difficult to drink.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.5/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

cherries and hints of woody notes. Spices of all kind blended in, rich as all hell, this was more of a cherry ale then a stout, but superb. A Rich, tart and yet sweet cherry notes, peppery and loaded with spice. Such complexity,richness, this was indeed exactly what I was looking for. Smooth, light body with a nice carbonation that was great for an ale, but light

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Photo of johnnnniee
2.83/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a slightly cloudy deep golden color with a smallish white head that shows marginal retention. Smells of raspberries and faint bready malt. Sweet malty aroma with a distinct tartness that I assume is from the berries. Taste is malty sweet with tart raspberries and a hint of Belgian yeasty esters. Medium body and carbonation level with a slick almost sweet mouthfeel. This one was kind of meh. I wouldn't be surprised if this bottle had been sitting for a while before I purchased it.

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Photo of Dope
3.58/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: A slightly hazy, very pale orange pour. Surprisingly bubbly white head. Retention is okay with minimal lacing.

S: Sweet raspberries, and lots of them. A little bread beneath it.

T: Raspberries up front, surprisingly tart. Sweetness kicks in and rounds it out with the malt which tastes pretty wheaty.

M: Fairly thin, nothing notable to it.

O: Honestly not a bad fruit beer. Not fruit soda like a lot of fruit beers. This is more tart and doesn't taste like they just dumped a lot of raspberry syrup into it. Otherwise not bad, just simple and straightforward.

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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 kmatlack
3.35/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Received his as an extra in a package from a great BA. Poured from a 12oz bottle into my 8oz Double Bastard glass.

A- Pours a foggy orange brown color with a small white color head that comes and goes quickly. Lively carbonation keeps small white blotches of bubbles on the surface.

S- Smells of grains, raspberries, no hop profile. Not alot going on in the aroma department here...

T- This beer is a liquid peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Crazy. A mildly tart raspberry flavor up front, that fades into a bready, grainy flavor. Pretty good.

M- Good mouthfeel, not over carbonated, not flat.

O- A good beer for what it is. I am not huge on the style, but this is worth trying, it was enjoyable.

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Photo of redblacks75
3.07/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Served from a 12oz bottle into a Samuel Smith imperial pint glass.

A: A thin white head is noticeable. It dissipates very quickly. A nice reddish-amber body to this one. I will say there is some unpleasant looking sediment noticeable in each bottle. With the aggressive pour on the first one, not the one I'm reviewing it made me apprehensive about the floaties now in my glass, but, it did not effect the beer whatsoever.

S: Raspberry of course, and very mild, grainy malt.

T: The taste of course is raspberry, but, not the sour aspect you might expect. I get more of the sugary aspect of the raspberries.

M: While not unpleasant, for whatever reason, I was hoping for a little bit of a thicker body. This is one of the thinner fruit ales I have had. It has a dry finish I should note.

O: Generally Dark Horse really impresses me, this however is just an average representation of the style from other tastings I've had from this category. I can say I'm glad I've had it. Just not my cup of tea within this style though.

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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 wingman14
3.67/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy light orange with a frothy white head that stuck around for a bit. This one has a dominant raspberry smell with many sweet characteristics, and some subtle malt presence. The overall smell isn't as strong as expected. The taste is all raspberry from beginning to end. The flavor isn't sweet, it starts out tart with the raspberry up front. Finishes with a kool-aid like taste. This one is a light mouthfeel with high carbonation. Not the best for the style, the raspberry didn't feel like if fit the beer well.

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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 1Adam12
2.87/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours reddish golden. Huge head that lingers. Nice lacing. Smell: dude wheres the raspberry? Just yeasty here. Slightest fruitiness to it, but come on. Same with the taste. Maybe the slightest bit of spritzerish raspberry to it, but once again, come on! Just yeasty. Mouthfeel is decent. Slightly carbonated and creamy. I opened this before I sent it as an extra, and I'm glad I did for fear of embarassment. Just not very good. Not bad, just not good. Nothing like I would expect a dark horse brew to be. Just no raspberry...at all. Avoid this one.

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Photo of mothman
2.16/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours 1 finger of white head. Color is murky pink hued golden orange.

Aroma: Fake raspberries (artificially). Caramel and some spice.

Taste: Same raspberry flavor. Fruity pebbles. Kind of bland. Spices. Band-aid flavor.

Mouthfeel: Smooth. Lighter bodied with a medium amount of carbonation. Ends dry.

Overall, not a very exciting fruit beer. The raspberries taste way too fake. I'd choose a different fruit beer over this one.

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Photo of jhp40219
3.38/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass.

A - Pours with a nice white head that sticks around. Light copper color in glass. Leaves some lacing on the glass as you drink.

S - Raspberries, caramel, wheat, slight bread smell.

T - Raspberries, but not as strong as I had expected. Definitely not too overpowering. Sweet Tart candy, wheat, a bit of malt.

M - light, not overly carbonated. Like an ale should really.

O - I don't really have a strong opinion on this beer either good or bad. Not bad, but nothing memorable either.

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Photo of ebby82
3.97/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light amber into a pint glass with a nice head.

The aroma is raspberries all the way. Any other aroma is masked by the berries.

The taste is again primarily of raspberries. A tangy, slightly bitter raspberry taste and aftertaste. Tasty.

This is a very tasty fruit beer. Not amazing, but very drinkable and enjoyable.

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Photo of TMoney2591
2.58/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in a Dogfish Head shaped pint glass.

Random pick to fill my mixed sixer today. Yeah, I'm honest like that. It pours a somewhat hazy straw-amber topped by a healthy finger or two of dusty light-cream foam. The nose comprises stale raspberries, wheat, corn, flowers, and a hint of blueberries. The headliner berries may come off as stale, but the smell isn't yet objectionable -- just not thoroughly fresh. The taste holds notes of medicinal and artificial raspberry, dehydrated strawberry (like the kind you'd find in Special K and other such cereals), toffee, musty wheat, lemon rind, and a touch of weak clove. Okay, it kinda starts off fine, but devolves quickly into tongue pain. The body is a light-ish medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a slightly slick and kinda grainy feel. Overall, another failure at making a palatable raspberry-infused beer. Why is this so damn hard (asks the homebrewer who has failed all sorts of times before...)?

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Dark Horse Raspberry Ale from Dark Horse Brewing Company
3.38 out of 5 based on 701 ratings.
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