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Dark Horse Perkulator Coffee Dopplebock | Dark Horse Brewing Company

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444 Reviews
Dark Horse Perkulator Coffee DopplebockDark Horse Perkulator Coffee Dopplebock

Brewed by:
Dark Horse Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Doppelbock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by oberon on 10-18-2007

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 444 | Ratings: 1,026
Photo of rlee1390
3.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-Ruby brown, some carbonation, one finger head that doesn't last long.

S-Coffee, hazelnut with roasted malts.

T-Balance of coffee, nuts, roasted malt and bread. No bitterness.

M-Medium bodied, nice carbonation and easy drinking.

O-Impressed by the balanced of the coffee, wasn't that overpowering. Maybe some more of the Doppelbock could have come out but all in all it was tasty.

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Photo of suspect
3.85/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Central Waters Snifter. Thanks to RocPorterFanatic for the BIF hookup.

A: Deep mahogany/amber color. Pretty clear with lots of floaties. Aggressive pour leads to a one finger head that disappears. No real lacing to speak of.

S: Lots going on here - big malt profile, ABV is present in the nose. Coffee is faint and on the back end of the nose. It's got a lot going on but it's put together entirely well.

T: Follows the nose pretty well but the tast comes together a bit nicer. Smoother malts, caramels, molasses. ABV not present in the taste and neither is the coffee really. Flavor is good and better than the average Dopplebock.

M: Medium body, plenty of carbonation. Smooth and not biting finish.

O: A good dopplebock. A really good dopplebock. This one has a lot of flavors mixed up together and they really do go well. This is a good one and I'm glad I have another bottle.

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Photo of Infamous7100
3.9/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a deep carmel to mahogany that is mostly transparent. A thin brownish head forms and is quick to disappear except for around the inside edge of the glass. Minimal lacing.
S: an insane amount of ground coffee jumps out of the class. It dominates the aroma, but for some burnt malt and barley notes.
T: Follows the nose, but turned up to 11! Coffee coats the tongue along with a pleasant roastiness. I can detect some of the sweet malt toward the finish that does a decent job of balancing the coffee and roasted flavors.
M: more carbonated a than expected but it does mellow. Fantastically smooth and creamy and not as heavy as I thought. A long and outstanding aftertaste.
O: a very interesting and unique brew. Most dopples are malt bombs, but this turns them on their head with the addition of the coffee. I love thier interpretation and willingness to up the ante on the style. Big fan of Dark Horse and this does nothing to change my opinion.

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Photo of BarryMFBurton
4.12/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A coffee dopplebock? I’m sold. Cheers.

A: Hazy brown, body, almost no head. Thick and dark, looking more like beer mixed with coffee than a coffee beer. Small spots of lacing with silky-smooth beige retention.

S: A hell of a lot of coffee: hazelnut-flavored cream and spent grounds waft huge from the body, sweet and creamy rather than bitter and roasty. Luscious vanilla and half-and-half aromas continue, resting atop the fruity date, mineral water, and buttery caramel of dopplebock character.

T: From first sip, you can taste both the bock and the coffee flavors – very well-balanced. Sweet cookies and cream, vanilla, sugar cookie, and Irish cream with a medium-bodied fruit underbelly of fig and date. Bock notes continue with bread, burnt sugar, semisweet chocolate, and tangy, brandy-like alcohol, sprinkled lightly by a watery coffee flavor. There’s a bitter kick as the coffee fades, but it happens rather fast, like the coffee was added more for aroma than for flavor. Finishes a tad dry from the coffee roasts, with lingering malt syrups that are common in dopplebocks and Scotch ales.

M: Medium body, right in between thin and thick. It goes down smooth but refreshingly drinkable. It’s like milk: I’d rather drink it cold, but that’s not because it needs it to compensate for wateriness. Yep; milky.

O: This has a coffee character much unlike most dark coffee beers: it’s light, it’s aromatic, and it’s much more like coffee and cream than fresh-ground java. I enjoyed it immensely. I could see myself drinking this is in the morning or after dinner, though I think I’ll keep the pre-noon drinking to a minimum…at least until the weekend.

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Photo of steve8robin
3.85/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought this because it sounded interesting. Not many coffee doppelbocks out there. 12oz bottle...

A: A murky brown brew with a small 1/4 inch tan head that fades quickly to thread sized lace around the edges of the top of the brew. Decent.

S: I smell some malty coffee upfront which gives way to a bready chocolate roast. Decent.

T: Opens with a mildy boozy roast which quickly opens up to a mild coffee roastiness. The middle features some caramel toffee notes quickly followed by a mild booze / hop bite leaving a boozy coffee roast in the finish on your palate. Good.

M: Medium body with a medium carbonation level. A sweet roasty finish. Good.

O: All in all, this is a good brew. Nothing really spectacular going on but worth a try if you like coffee beer. It features mild coffee with overall mild flavors capped off with an alcohol bite. This one would be a good substitute for coffee on a late fall morning in the woods of Maine.

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Photo of peabody
3.28/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Very clear and amber brown with two fingers of off white small suds that dissapate really quickly.Lacing on the glass.
Smell is fruit and malt. Raisin and date and strong malt/hop/yeast burn in the nose.
Taste is mellow malt and sugar caramel with a hint of coffee. Very little coffee here.
Mouthfeel is clean for the most part but the sugary malts take over after the alcohol leaves the palate.
Very light on all the flavors and the alcohol is way too prevelant.

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Photo of beer2day
4.05/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

4-pack from Bottle Rev in Raleigh.

Pours a dark, muddy, grainy brown with a thick, 1-finger dirty beige head. Light retention and lighter lace.

Coffee grounds, light caramel malt, and an earthy aroma of tilled earth come to mind. Very rich.

Coffee hits up front and carries well through the finish. Caramel malt competes well with the coffee flavor. Smooth, sweet finish with hint of bitters mainly from the coffee.

Thick, chewy body. The coffee flavor and the heavy body go well together.

Very nicely done.

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Photo of AmitC
3.82/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with less than a finger thick off-white creamy looking head. Low on carbonation. Decent to good lacing. Color is brown to copper with slight ruby hues. Opaque and hazy.

Smell :Roasted malts and coffee. Slight caramel and bready notes.

Flavor : Very much like the nose. Coffee is extremely prominent and looks like a ground coffee powder was added during the brewing process. Coffee provides it characteristic bitterness of coffee powder and it is certainly overbearing the malt. Coffee dominates the sip upfront and towards the end. Malts in the middle fail to provide the balance.

Mouth feel: Medium to slightly full body. Low on carbonation. Dry on palate. Not very easy to drink to overpowering presence of coffee.

Good brew nonetheless. Style wise a 4. With a personal bias: 3. Would i buy it again :No, But was definitely worth a try.

After note : Some dark coffee powder like thing settled down at the end of glass.

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Photo of Scotchboy
3.97/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle sent from laymansbeerfan (thanks man!) poured into a Deschutes tulip.

A: Pours a hazy dark gold, nearly brown...the head is small and relatively short lived, decent lacing.

S: Hearty coffee with a prominent malt backbone...caramel, toasted bread...roasted coffee and toasted malt, sweet bready notes.

T: Taste follows the nose, great balance since the coffee flavor is great but it doesn't overwhelm the rest of the beer or the bready Dopplebock notes underneath. Just enough sweetness (caramel maybe?) blends with the flavors as well.

MF: Medium bodied full flavored beer, lower carbonation.

O: An impressive and enjoyable beer. I like how the bready, toasty Dopplebock notes work in harmony with the coffee.

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Photo of Ryan011235
3.82/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Celebrator glass on 10/7/12

Dark, stained mahogany brown with one horizontal finger's worth of smooth foam. Lots of rising bubbles. Thin retention. There are a few thick arcs of drippy lace.

I'm surprised coffee isn't stronger in the aroma, though I'm not complaining. Coffee beans and a light amount of roast are mix amid notes of dark bread, caramel and earthy hops.

Likewise, the coffee flavor is modest and even more integrated than in the aroma. The hops are moderate, too. Both of these are good things as perceived bitterness is very low. There is a lot of toasted bread and grains going on here, making a plenty robust malt profile.

The body is full, moving slowly with a languid granular feel. Carbonation is on the low side. All in all, the feel is pretty easy going to a fairly big beer such as this.

I've passed over this many times. It's now on my radar. Definitely worth a shot.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.15/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Drawing inspiration from the savory, malty-rich bocks of Germany, the Dark Horse Brewing Company immulates these flavors with common grains of American microbrewing along with artistic additions of coffee that seems to emphasize the earthen roast and bitterness already exhibited in the base beer.

Perkulator opens with a firm brown appearance that's mostly clean. Only a mild haze casts ruby highlights beyond the brown hue. Building a creamy tanish head, the beer retains and laces fairly- where the beer doesn't dissapoint, I'm looking for better foam character as well.

Caramel and coffee floods the olfactory senses along with peripheral notes of lightly scorched toffee, bread, and lighter nuttier coffee attributes similar to Kona. Lightly fruity, mild notes of cherry, dates, and figs round out the scent with a twinge of alcohol lurking behind.

Malty-sweet to taste, the overt malt taste carries bold caramel, molasses, and toffee- some on the lightly burnt side. It's these flavors that bridge into the coffee additions seamlessly. The earthy char of toasted malts reach into the pungent, herbal, and chocolaty notes of coffee and pull out a more moderate java tone of spent coffee grounds. A late arriving palate shows the fruity bock notes of burnt currant, dates, and cherries just before the alcohol taste gives mild tawny vinous taste to finish.

Medium bodied, but seemingly fuller because of the relatively high residual sweetness, the bock starts and ends with a semi-sugary texture. An extended middle palate delays the finish, making the beer much more of a sipper that drinking beer. Alcohol warmth and malt-balanced finish signal closure but extends well into the next sip.

Although Perkulator is inspired by traditional dopplebocks, I would prefer more adherence to the malt richness rather than caramel sweet taste. The base beer favors the sweet tooth rather than the savory fullness and bready textures. As the coffee registers with the taste buds, they seem a bit strained and lacking the freshness or silkiness of the classy coffee shop. This version is a satisfying beer but becomes a bit ambiguous.

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

Served on tap in a 12 oz glass

This beer is hazy amber brown with very little of an off white head. The nose is slightly roasty and rather bland. The beer starts out with a smooth feel with toffee and caramelized dark fruits. It follows up with some roasted notes. The last taste of the beer is all coffee, strong, roasty and dry coffee flavors stick on the palate. The beer sounds like an unusual blend but somehow works and doesn't really taste as strange as you may expect. This is a well done and unique brew. Definitely worth checking out.

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Photo of Holland
3.58/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: light brown with a thick tan head

S: coffee, sweet malt

T: coffee, sweet malt

M: medium body, heavier carbonation, smooth but cut by the fine bubbles

O: not really complex, but it's good at what it does went for. Unfortunately the coffee drowns out any flavors the doppelbock base would have provided. $12 for a 4-pack at Super Liquor IV in Ann Arbor.

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Photo of rudzud
3.85/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Received as an extra in a trade and poured into my Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a nice dark chestnut hue with a good one finger off white head that slumps down to leave a thick, creamy quarter inch blanket. Nice light lacing.

S - Light roasty coffee and malts here with very light nutty aromas and lager yeast.

T - Nice dopplebock notes here accented with good coffee notes, nice and bitter and roasty. My complaint on this is the slight faint metallic not eon the finish.

M - Mouthfeel is very good. Not too boozy, almost light. Very drinkable.

O - Overall this was a pretty good dopplebock. Wish it didnt have that faint offputting aftertaste though. Very unfortunate.

 671 characters

Photo of wisrarebeer
4.03/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Coffee doppelbock, really!!

A: great color, great head, great everything, some cloudiness
S: intense roasted coffee, some malt backbone
T: well-made, balanced between malt, hops, and coffee
M: a bit OTT with coffee but decent still
O: interesting and definitely drinkable

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Photo of WastingFreetime
3.55/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours out a very dark brown with two fingers of sand colored head that lasts for about two minutes, leaves behind minimal lacing. Body is on the heavier side of medium thickness and carbonation levels are on the lighter side of medium strength.

Smells of freshly dampened coffee grounds and cured tobacco leaves. Tastes heavily of black coffee, but only moderately of bready malt and merely a touch of yeasty / nutty character. There is a modicum of baking chocolate and herbal tea flavor that appears as the glass warms up towards room temperature. The finish is quite dry for a doppelbock and extremely earthy.

My criticisms for this one all revolve around the doppelbock aspects being somewhat obscured by the loudness of the coffee aspects. I would have preferred a bit more doppelbock backbone supporting the coffee rather than getting smothered by it. A coffee doppelbock is a great idea; but in this brew, it feels as though the two ideas are fighting each other rather than working cooperatively. And for better or for worse, the coffee faction is winning, quite decisively.

 1,106 characters

Photo of Fitwitchik
4.17/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

From a bottle into a snifter

Smell is like brewed coffee grounds. Dang I love that smell!!

Taste is coffe upfront then the follow of dopple. Classic flavor.

Not too thin which is huge relief. This concerned me...

Overall very happy with this years brew. It has been hit or miss in the past but glad 2012 was A O K.

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Photo of jimmah120
3.38/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

look is a cloudy, hazy dark brown. smell is roasted coffee grounds, bread rolls, dry leaves. Taste is bitter sweet bread, caramel rolls, dry leaves, roasted coffee beans. Feel is light and crisp, but not watery.

Solid beer, but ultimately forgettable.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.7/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a medium brown color, with a large off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains roasted coffee beans, caramelized malts, lager yeast and a touch of hops.

T: The taste likewise starts out with a strong and creamy coffee flavor that is followed by breadiness from lager yeast and a hearty malt character. The hops presence is mild but complementary and provides some balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly bready.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: A little tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, decent representation of style, it’s a solid beer but there are better coffee-flavored alternatives out there.

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Photo of n2185
3.49/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours dark brown with a finger of khaki head that recedes into a frothy ring with no lacing.

S: Lots of creamy chocolate and coffee on the nose with some sweet nutty and roasted aromas toward the finish.

T: Similar to the aroma, sweet chocolate and creamy coffee dominate with slightly bitter roasted malt and nutty flavors on the finish.

M: Medium body and carbonation, this beer is nice and creamy with smooth carbonation.

O: A solid beer overall, if a bit simple. The coffee unfortunately overwhelms the doppelbock aspects, but it's still enjoyable.

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Photo of AltBock
3.48/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. I had two bottles and both bottles had different labels. I had the one that’s pictured here on BA. That’s the one that’s done by Jared Brownell. The one I’m reviewing has a more sinister label. This bottle had a label done by Joseph Krystofiak. This label depicts the devil (?) as a two headed goat beast with a human body and giant bat wings. This devilish creature is sitting on a throne of fire with his cup of morning Joe in his left hand. His right hand is extended and is making a signal with his fingers. You can also see that his right arm is tattooed with the word “ferment.” Directly below the devil in bold red early 80’s heavy metal font is the name of the beer. Flanking the picture is all the mandatory US information. No best before date or bottle code anywhere.

When poured into a Tuborg Pilsner glass, this devil of a beer was an extremely murky hazelnut brown. This beer was so murky that I could barely see the silhouette of my fingers on the other side of the glass. It could have been the murkiness that caused this beer not to have any highlights. It was just a straight up hazelnut brown color. There was actually a decent sized head of foam on this beer. The initial head of foam was ¼ to ½ inch in height and a faded tan color. I thought the head of foam was going to quickly fade away into the pits of hell, but a small skim of tan foam decided to stick around until the last drop of beer was gone.

The aroma was all about the coffee and less about the Doppelbock. What are you going to expect from a beer named “Perkulator?” The first aroma that came popping out was of course the dry roasted coffee beans. Hiding behind the strong aroma of coffee was a touch of dark chocolate, a few raisins, a whiff of roasted malt, a slice of day old nut bread, and a speck of hazelnut. This beer then finishes up with a subtle grassy hop aroma. I would have liked more Doppelbock aromas shine through the massive coffee wall, but I can’t have everything.

It tasted like the coffee wanted to completely take over the beer, but the Doppelbock aspect of the beer said no to that. Some Doppelbock flavors were able to break through the coffee wall. Just to get it out of the way, the first taste this beer had to offer was the dry roasted coffee beans. The thick coffee taste did a small build it before the Doppelbock came in. The Doppelbock flavors consisted of dry roasted malts, a touch of day old raisin bread, a fig or two, a tiny speck of dark chocolate, and small amount of roasted hops at the finish line. The coffee taste was fine. The Doppelbock flavors were good. But this beer seemed a little too dry for me.

This is a medium to full bodied beer with a decent level of carbonation and a dry roasted aftertaste. The after taste consisted of dry roasted coffee beans, roasted malt, and some more day old raisin bread. It was the taste of roasted coffee beans that lingered on for long time.

Dark Horse certainly wasn’t lying when they labeled this beer as coffee Doppelbock. Did this beer have TOO much coffee? No, I think it had the right amount of coffee in it. It was just the quality of the coffee they put in this beer. The coffee was far too dry. As is, it’s not a bad Doppelbock. If you’re ever in the mood for a dry beer with a strong taste of coffee in it, then pick up a bottle of “Perkulator.”

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Photo of MadScientist
3.7/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an amber-brown with red highlights and excellent clarity. There is about a half a finger of a creamy tan head with excellent retention. My bottle had some sediment in the bottle so handle it carefully if you want clear beer.

Wow, you smell the coffee before you've even poured this in the glass although it lean towards the wet grounds aroma. Behind that there is a moderate melanoidin and hint of carmel.

The taste is like coffee and bread crusts with some malt flavors of dark fruit. There is a decent amount of bitterness and a balance of moderate sweetness resulting in a semi dry beer. The crusty flavor lingers into the long finish along with a bit of alcohol warmth.

This is a full bodied beer with a moderately-low level of carbonation.

I love coffee almost as much as beer and this is good example however the wet coffee ground aroma detracts. The flavors really come together as it gets warmer.

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Photo of drpimento
3.64/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured this at a good temperaturre with a medium size, light tan, foamy head that soon settles and no lace. Color is a clear mahoganey with a plenty of bubble trails. Aroma is malt, coffee, molasses, roast, dark ripe fruit. Flavor's like nose, not overly sweet, slight bitterness, and enough carbonic tang to balance. Body and carbonation are good. Finish is like flavor, fairly long, and a liittle boozy. Not entirely convinced that coffee can be used in almost anything.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.67/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a mug.

Pours a hazed copper with a couple fingers of creamy light mocha head. This retains with a smooth foaminess that throws up a rich cascade which hangs thick swathes of lacing up on the sides of the glass. Fresh coffee grounds give the aroma a flavorful kick, which gives way to more of a roasted nuttiness and a sweeter mix of cocoa, toffee, and then some ripe citrus along the back.

The taste has a decent Doppelbock base to it of caramel, roast, nuttiness, and green citrus, with a light to moderate amount of bitterness. Rich roasted coffee character mixes in and meshes well with the cocoa and nutty flavors of the base. The finish is fairly dry on the tongue with notes of lingering bitter fruit and roast. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, maybe a touch fuller, with a chewy sharpness that prickles the tongue a bit but then gets a little easier along the edges and back of the feel. There is a touch of alcohol presence here but it overall isn’t too bad.

For what this is, it isn’t too bad, as it does seem to successfully find that middle ground between coffee beer and Doppelbock. The coffee definitely makes an impression in this though. This one is interesting. I’d be willing to have it again.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.3/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a nonic.
No date on the bottle or info. Awesome label!

A - Poured much lighter than I expected, it's a murky brown amber color that's on the verge of being an opaque brown. Dense light khaki foam rises to the top and lowers slowly but leaves little lace behind.

S - Coffee grounds are immediately evident on the nose with a background of toasted malts. The aroma has a very earthy feel to it, almost like dirt smell but, with this beer, it works out ok. Very heavily roasted cold coffee overall.

T - The earthy flavors overtake the coffee. The sweetness of the toasted malts are well balanced by the coffee ground bitterness but that fine earthy aroma in the nose doesn't translate well to the tongue. The finish tastes like dirt and...

M - ...has the mouthfeel of dry, crusty dirt. Of course that could be from the coffee. Perkulator is medium-full bodied and bitter on the finish from the cold coffee grounds. It's still got that nice lager character to it though.

O - This beer starts out nicely but the earthy dirt-like flavor stemming from the coffee is bothersome. The idea of a coffee doppelbock is awesome but either this is too old or the idea wasn't executed to the best possible way.

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Dark Horse Perkulator Coffee Dopplebock from Dark Horse Brewing Company
3.73 out of 5 based on 1,026 ratings.
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