Dark Horse 4 Elf | Dark Horse Brewing Company

BA SCORE
87
very good
827 Ratings
THE BROS
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Dark Horse 4 ElfDark Horse 4 Elf
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company
Michigan, United States
darkhorsebrewery.com

Style: Winter Warmer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.75%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by granger10 on 11-27-2003

BEER STATS
Ratings:
827
Reviews:
204
Avg:
3.87
pDev:
11.63%
 
 
Wants:
55
Gots:
155
For Trade:
7
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 827 |  Reviews: 204
Photo of Hankjrfan84
5/5  rDev +29.2%

Photo of splax23
5/5  rDev +29.2%

Photo of ROBSTARR
5/5  rDev +29.2%

Photo of MarcatGSB
5/5  rDev +29.2%

Photo of Torrey3
5/5  rDev +29.2%

Photo of paxtonthegreat
5/5  rDev +29.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Easily my favorite winter beer ever along with Samichlaus. This strong winter warmer packs in tons of flavors reminiscent of cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar, and allspice. Every winter I frequent dark horse a lot to get my hands on lots of this. Like I said, best winter beer. ever.

 280 characters

Photo of GordonQuid
4.94/5  rDev +27.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a Ommegang Tulip glass.

Jet black with a one inch creamy head and thick lace.

Smells of black currant, mulling spice, chocolate and debittered black patent malts rolled up in pine needles.

Taste is a creamy blend of chocolate and dark malts with just the right amount of mulling spice and piney hops; creamy and silky smooth. The alcohol is not at all apparent in the taste. BE FORWARNED that this is 11.50%! The bottle does not indicate the ABV. After I quaffed this offering down in a matter of ten minutes (because this stuff is deliscious!) I noticed the buzz was hitting me hard. DAMN! I am in the holiday season now! This reminds me of the 2009 Anchor Steam Merry Christmas Ale but on steroids.... The A-Rod of Christmas Ales!

This is extremely drinkable and satisfying. Complex yet quaffable. If you like holiday offerings than this is Christmas in a bottle. If you can't stand the in-laws buy a four pack of this stuff and their your new best friends.
Slap your Mother-in-law on the ass! Hell yeah! Blame it on the Elf....

An extreme offering by Dark Horse. I love you guys! Big shout out to Marshal Michigan!

Happy Holidaze!

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Photo of AndrewHeisler
4.9/5  rDev +26.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Photo of Trooper92292
4.88/5  rDev +26.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Great for the holidays by a warm fireplace. I originally gave this a lower rating but I just had it on tap at one of my favorite bars and it's even better. A great winter beer from Dark Horse.

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Photo of Stezz420
4.84/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

1st beer from dark horse. Probably the best winter warmer I've had to date.


Dark stout looking beer. Decent head with good retention.

Smells like christmas popery, surprisingly very citrusy also.

Tastes like how it smells. A little bit of dark malt and chocolate come through also.

Perfect amount of carbonation goes down very smooth.

Over all im glad I tired this beer while it was around. Would love to try the barrel aged version if I can find a bottle.

 463 characters

Photo of ssjkyle
4.84/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of Arcous
4.75/5  rDev +22.7%

Photo of marv3mania
4.75/5  rDev +22.7%

Photo of little_star
4.75/5  rDev +22.7%

Photo of TheBlackMallard
4.7/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours black into my snifter with about an inch of off white head.

Smell: Nutmeg, Cinnamon, Allspice, Vanilla, and Ginger.

Taste: Aforementioned spices along with Chocolate malt. Full bodied with medium carbonation. Alcohol shows up a bit as it warms, I have a hard time believing it's only 9%.

Absolutely amazing and everything I'd want from a Winter Warmer. I wish I could've picked up more of this, it's on par with 3 guys if you ask me. Definitely one of my favorite beers. I hope they keep brewing it.

 509 characters

Photo of parris
4.63/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Beer looks and tastes fantastic. Up front it's like a nice trappist quad, but it finishes a little hoppy. Definitely recommended.

131 characters

Photo of mentor
4.62/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle provided by Eyedrinkale, ala BIF20. Thanks for the opportunity! Hard pour to get a thin layer of light brown head over a dark brown liquid. Can't see through, even when held to light. Smells wet sweet and of chocolate, ginger, molasses, nutmeg, and perhaps coriander (coriander is a spice I have limited experience with). Very enticing. Taste is equally complex and the flavors bound through numerous transitions. Wow. Starts nutmeg while drawn in the mouth, then a very aromatic ginger as the liquid settles across the tongue. The ginger sting settles, but never quite disappears. The next flavors to dance across my palette are chocolate and a gentle nutty. The nutmeg then re-appears along with a sweeter herb, which I think is coriander (sweet with rounded esters, but still a bit of a woody quality about it) as part of the swallow/aftertaste. The aftertaste is a touch bitter, no maybe sour, consisting of a mix of alcohol hot and ginger yow-za...but, also tastes vanilla and smooth. Also, as I ponder another aftertaste, I taste some orange zest...no white pith, it's pure orange skin. Lots going on here...this beer is a wonderful challenge. Burps are sweet chocolate. Medium body and moderately (and sharply) carbonated. The numerous flavors in this beer 'play nice' with each other and also do not 'talk too loud'. I get a sniff each time I take a sip and I wind up being so intrigued by the smell that I steal another whiff before I pull it away.

Near the end of the glass, I'm getting an overall impression of a complex and woody character that's similar to the burned cask character of some whiskies. The ginger in the beer is like a bit of pixie dust to keep me from thinking this could be an oak-aged product. I think, what really makes this beer, is the chocolate. With searching, I find it from draw to swallow, with varying intensities. It lays a nice backbone that the diffferent spices can whirl away from, but then step to the safety of.

I feel like a sod, having drank this in July. It *really* would be a great sipping beer in front of my fireplace on a dark winter night.

 2,108 characters

Photo of jp32
4.62/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pours a color somewhere on the fence between deep, dark brown, and pure black. A decent head sits atop as well. The beer is pretty darn dark for a christmas ale, and that is all good in my book.

The aroma is hoppy and spicey with notes of pine, nutmeg, and cloves. Some roasted malts appear in the background the more the beer warms.

The flavor is also big on both cloves and nutmeg, but with a strong malt backbone that really beefs this up compared to other christmas ales. Chai tea is present, as well as some faint hints of ginger.

Mouthfeel is a well carbonated medium bodied beer. Exactly what you'd want this one to be.

 634 characters

Photo of Jrcassiday
4.56/5  rDev +17.8%

Photo of Jeffreysan
4.55/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle, poured into a goblet

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, completely opaque, pitch-black color with an eighth of a finger of white-colored head that quickly dissolved away into a thin halo of foam that gripped the sides of the glass.

Aroma: Nice aromas of toasted malt and spices, such as cinnamon, clove, nutmeg, star anise and licorice. I also get notes of brown sugar, dark molasses, toffee, and roasted nuts. Smells great!

Taste: Really, really good! Lots of roasted malt flavor up front, flowed by lots of dark chocolate, clove, nutmeg, brown sugar and a touch of dark cherry. Very interesting and delicious.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and nicely effervescent as there’s quite a bit of carbonation. With an ABV of 8.75%, there is surprisingly, no alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is a delicious beer! I love the spices, dark chocolate and dark cherry! I see why this has an exalted reputation! If it’s available next year, I’ll certainly get a few bottles to enjoy over the holidays!

 1,022 characters

Photo of wattersmike90
4.55/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Grabbed one of these from D&L truk stop in Aubrun, NY. If you enjoy spicy winter brews, this is for you.

Reminds me of the Southern Tier Warlock.

147 characters

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.53/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - mostly opaque, a hint of brownish red around the edge. Light mocha head settles and holds at a thin cover. Lace on the glass is thin, sticky.

Aroma - a lightly smoked, peaty malt sitting under a blanket of anise and perhaps some ginger and/or clove.

Taste - malty, lots of cinnamon. Chocolate on the swallow and loads of cloves. The swallow is all cinnamon and clove, super spicy, I dig it.

Mouthfeel - slightly heavier than average, nice for this style. Carbonation is just a bit fluffy to help counter.

Overall - a delicious warmer, darker style with lots of spiciness.

 588 characters

Photo of DCgolfpro
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MidwestBA
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of Ksoden1186
4.5/5  rDev +16.3%

A very dark cola colored beer with an off-white head.
Winter spices on the nose.
A wonderful tasting winter ale. The spices shine and the alcohol is not apparent at all.
This is one of my favorite winter ales and really sets itself apart from many others. A very unique beer that is wonderful.

 295 characters

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Dark Horse 4 Elf from Dark Horse Brewing Company
3.87 out of 5 based on 827 ratings.
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