Guinness Black Lager | Guinness Ltd.

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Guinness Black LagerGuinness Black Lager

Brewed by:
Guinness Ltd.

Style: Euro Dark Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by mdagnew on 04-03-2010

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Reviews: 445 | Ratings: 1,972
Photo of Swim424
3.43/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured from a 12oz bottle

A-appears black. up to light its very dark amber. nice lightly borwn creamy head that holds a thin layer on the top.

S-maybe a little oatmeal/ or coffee. smell pretty crisp. not really any hops. getting some of the "roasted barley". not a very powerful smell though

T- not a whole lot of flavor here. up front some coffee briefly then mostly a little roasted malt finish and thats about it. some carbonation, not alot. hard to describe but no overpowering flavors.

MF-pretty smooth. sort of creamy. again not a whole lot. decent aftertaste.

O-this is decent. definitely enjoyable. not alot of alcohol. not as thick as it appears. I dont mind this at all. nothing exceptional but overall pretty good.

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Photo of jlindros
3.43/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a fizzy 1 finger darker head that fades at a med pace with hints of lacing, over dark black-ish beer with slight light coming through.

Nose has cheap lager aromas, kinda macro but not skunked, hints of darker malts like roast and caramel.

Taste is lighter as well, macro produced lager flavors but not too bad or bitter, hint of metallic, some darker creamy malts, hint of roast and caramel, some bitter hop flavors. the metallic flavor comes out a bit more on the finish with more bitter hops, sticky finish, and touch of dark creamy malts.

Mouth is med bodied but creamy, with decent carb.

Overall kinda meh, drinkable but some off flavors, tastes like it was macro produced but not skunked or terrible, with a bit of hops and creamy malts.

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Photo of BDIMike
3.43/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a jet black color. There is a medium sized tan head with a slight bit of lacing.
Smell is nice. A good lager hop smell with a very subdued roasted malt smell. The aroma makes me think this beer will be very well-balanced.
Taste has a very nice balance to it. I expected more of a roasted malt taste. The taste has a nice roasted and caramel malt flavor, but it is heavier on the hops than I thought. A good Euro lager taste balances the dark malts.
Mouthfeel is okay. A medium thickness. A slight bit of carbonation gives the beer a refreshing sip.
Drinkability is good on this black lager. Normally, I can't drink too many black lagers, because the smoky dark malts get to me. However, this beer has a nice balance with very nice drinkability.

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Photo of StaveHooks
3.43/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours an opaque black body with 1.5 fingers of tan head that sinks into a cap of micro bubbles.

S - Earthy yeast, wet cardboard, copper, sweet toasted grain.

T - Dark malts, grassy hops, light molasses, spicy bite, hints of fruit, raisins, old coffee, finishes dry some spice.

M - Light to medium body, moderate carbonation.

Better than I expected. Easily sessionable. Alot of people will probably hate on this because its from Guinness but it's actually not too bad for style.

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Photo of drunkenmess
3.44/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Really expected more from this beer. Wanted it to be awesome, turned out not bad. A little light for my taste, love the heavier stuff. Still love Guinness! Just not this...

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Photo of mattkoon
3.44/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

this black lager from guinness is pretty good. the color is black with a light tan head. the smell is nothing remarkable. theres a little hint of smoke and some nuttiness, but nothing really grabs you. i do like the taste its less potent than guinness draught. which makes it really drinkable. its like you get all the fashion of walking around with a black beer in your hand with out anyone knowing that its tame. guinness is a lot heavier than this you could drink several of these in one sitting. i dont know if this beer will catch on- i dont see die hard guinness drinkers likeing it- and i dont see bud drinkers picking it up but i think is pretty good.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.44/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

sounds like this is getting some pretty negative write ups. not all the way sure why, as for a european dark lager on a budget, its pretty good, practical, drinkable, and generally fine. a lighter color with a lesser body, like a darker root beer in the glass, but the head is nice. how dark and thick did you expect it to be? i think it fits the style fine, and even has a nice deeper darker roast on it in both nose and taste that makes it somewhat distinct, somewhat obviously a guinness product, and somewhat worthwhile, despite the poor reviews. its a nice beer for cooking, but its also a nice one for drinking, even with a little age on it (forgotten bottle in a basement box), but its pleasant still, smooth, oddly rich for how dry it is, and really well carbonated. a lighter side of dark ale, even with the grain depth. licorice, scorched barley, euro lager yeast with a little oxidation. its about what i expected, but i think its well better than its ratings here. it was never going to change the world, but its a more than passable dark lager. in the right context, this is great beer...

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Photo of tdm168
3.46/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep black with 1/2" of off white, foamy head that has decent retention. The nose is faint roasted malts and a heavy euro lager yeast. The taste is roasted malt with a faint chocolate finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, well carbonated, rich, and smooth.

Overall, this beer drinks easy and tastes alright, but it's simple so if you're expecting a lot you won't find it here.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.46/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - eschewing the label instructions to enjoy straight from the bottle (ice cold no less), this 11.2 ouncer has no trouble fitting in a shaker pint. A finger of light mocha head is nice, covering a dark beer with a burgundy hue. Some good resilience and lacing as well.

Aroma - grainy with a decent note of roastiness. Light but nice enough.

Taste - roasted grain, like a thinned down standard Guinness. Some balancing hops have this on par with the flagship beer. The flavor hits a note of metal at times on the swallow, maybe due in part to crisp carbonation. The ending allows a light roasty aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - it's unusual to taste the Guinness flavor in thinner form. Too accustomed to the nitro format I suppose. Crisp, dare I say refreshing for a roasty brew.

Drinkability - good flavor in a lighter form. A workable alternative when options are limited.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.46/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From 11/24/11 notes. Uncle picked up a 6er of this and this actually becomes my first Euro Dark Lager as I inch closer to trying all of the 104 different styles. Style #99 reviewed, poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

a - Pours a dark brown, almost black color, with one inch of white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of roasted malts, smokey malts, bread, and toasted malts. Roasted malts dominate, but otherwise a bit bland and not much here. Not bad at all, but pretty average

t - Tastes of roasted malts, dark fruits, toasted malts, light wood/smokey notes, and some bready malts. A step up from the nose with the fruit, and the roasted malts dominate again. Pretty nice.

m - Light to medium body and moderate carbonation. Very easy to drink.

o - Overall a pretty decent beer; looks like I like this one more than most. If you're looking for a beer like Guinness' Irish Dry Stouts, this isn't it, as it is more of an easy drinking lager, but I liked it. Lots of roasted malts and some nice fruit in the taste as well, I'd have it again.

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Photo of Mitchster
3.46/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

$1.59 for a 12oz bottle. "Cold brewed with roasted barley", "Enjoy ice cold straight from the bottle". Hrmmm. OK, here we go.

Pours out to a near black, deep brown, clear, forming a tall soapy light tan head with very good retention and solid lacing. Moderately brisk carbonation. The aroma is rather weak...suggestions of a lager yeast strain and grassy hops like Harp with a little bit of sourness and roast. The mouthfeel is a little acidic, flimsy, with a light body. The taste opens with grassy hops, pale malts, a clean ferment, a mild to moderate pleasantly balanced bitterness and a decent touch of roasted character in the finish.

Nothing spectacular, which is what happens when you brew a beer with mass appeal, but not too shabby either. It's decent and easy to drink and would satisfy me in a pinch, but I'm not inclined to buy it again either.

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.47/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2 ounce bottle. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours black with about an inch tan head that went away quickly. There's a decent amount of lacing left on the glass. Aroma is roasted malt, coffee, and some bittersweet chocolate. Taste is similar to the aroma, but there's also a slight nutty flavor. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it's pretty easy to drink and is well carbonated. Overall it's not bad, it's probably not going to impress you but I think it's a nice sessionable brew. I'd buy it again, it's a decent choice for a lower alcohol brew to end the night with.

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Photo of Amalak
3.48/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I wonder if this beer gets hit because it's made by Guinness. This is a solid black lager; it tastes like I would expect your basic black lager would taste like. Someone burnt, a bit carbonated, refreshing, with a mild sourness. It's only a slight bit watered down. Is this excellent? No, but it's a decent offering.

Color is black with an almost brown, bubbly head that leaves a good deal of lacing.

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Photo of Seekerpilgrim
3.49/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Pouring a deep, deep brown with strong burgundy tones there are strong notes of burnt malts and a creamy sweetness that seems to be common to the Euro Dark Lager style. On the tongue the same smoky dryness that you get from a Guinness Draught, but more subtle, sweeter, like mild chocolate or weak coffee. The hop presence is slight but discernible, here to add a bit of bite and balance, leaving a mild, crisp aftertaste.

I wasn't really sure what Guinness wanted to accomplish with this new offering, but since it strikes a perfect balance between the bone dry Draught and the chewy Extra Stout my guess is that is exactly what they were looking for; a beer to reach for when you want a Guinness but are put off by extremes. This is actually growing on me, a good session beer with a bit more character, as well as a great companion to a meat heavy pizza or tomato and red pepper soup. Cheers!

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Photo of utopiajane
3.5/5  rDev +13.6%

Pours dark and completely opaque without much ruby hue or chance to see it. Thick persistent tan head of loose bubbles that lasted and left lace. Nose is low malt aroma that has a a light bit of floral hops that come forward as it warms. At first there is a only a grain scent then as the beer opens up , there is a light caramel, a bit of weak coffee and a lightly sweet and very light cocoa powder.

Taste is rich and fullish. A very small hint of the green apple right out of the bottle and then it fades off in the drink in submission to the roast. Medium mouthfeel and very creamy. Smooth malt that does show some mild roast as the beer opens up, light caramel, light cocoa and weak coffee. It finishes with a roasty dryness and a touch of hops at the very last minute.

I would say that this beer is not terribly sweet but has a luscious mouthfeel that accents the subtle flavors that it does have. Has a brief bite from carbonation and drinks very well. After taste is brown bread.

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Photo of adamrobertt
3.5/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I'm not sure why everyone is being so hard on this beer. It's not spectacular, but it's a decent beer. Comparing it to Milwaukee's Best is just uncalled for.

It looks like a black lager. Nearly opaque with a somewhat fizzy head. It doesn't have much of an aroma but a faint whiff of roasted malt is present. The flavor is primarily of roasted malt up front with a nice bready aftertaste. It tastes a lot like Harp would taste if it were made with roasted barley. The beer is a bit thin in the mouth and doesn't have much texture. Overall it's a decent, if not overly complex black lager.

A nice session beer if anything else. Not too high in the alcohol department and it goes down easy.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.5/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served in a Guinness imperial pint glass because I had one. Beer is black with a big tan head, medium and large bubbles, some lacing but not much, low retention, moderate carbonation.

Aroma is a schwartz beer aroma, mildly sweet, some lager character, a faint roast.

Beer is medium in body and tastes like nothing really. I take that back it is rather thin on the palate, finish is fine, unoffensive but not bold or interesting in any way at all. A lot like Guinness.

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Photo of tjsdomer2
3.53/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Solid white foam and decent lacing. Slight amber radiance, but it's mostly dark brown.

Smell: Very pale lager-like smell. Definitely some adjunct in there, something I haven't smelled before in a dark lager. Faint cocoa.

Taste/Mouthfeel: Faint coffee flavor. Pretty decent for a Euro dark. Smooth finish, as always with Guinness products.

Overall Drinkability: Not a bad brew. Still not nearly as good as Good Ole' Guinness Stout.

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Photo of vfgccp
3.53/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Black with deep cranberry highlights, nice head on the initial pour but it dies out, low lacing.

S - Roasted malt aroma. Pretty subtle overall.

T - Roasty and malty with a touch of bitterness on the front end. The finish is a light dry roast.

M- Pretty standard for a black lager, slightly thin but nice bubbly feel.

O- Average drinkability, it is a nice malty and smooth dark beer.

---Rated via Beer's Advocate for iPhone

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Photo of y2jrock60
3.54/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Dark brown with a off-white head that laces nicely.

S- Very mild aroma reminiscence of a macro produced beer. There is a slight roasted malt aroma with virtually no hop presence.

T- Upfront light roasted malt flavor followed by faint hop dry aftertaste.

M- Barley any carbonation with a flat mouthfeel. Light-medium to medium body that increases with every sip.

D- Highly drinkable.

I was a little disappointed by Guinness's take on Black Lager, but it's not bad.

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Photo of wattoclone
3.55/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As a huge fan of Euro dark lagers and schwarzbiers (is there actually a difference?), I had to try the Guinness version. I found this one very smooth and drinkable as they should be. Not the sweetest or most bitter but the balance was about perfect. Sure, I would rather have a draft Kostritzer but since I live in the US, this is not always possible. Right out of the bottle this is a great dark lager which would pair well with any food. If I had more income I would keep this beer in stock but unfortunately in the present economy I cannot afford it. The McSorley's Black Irish Lager brewed by Pabst is much more affordable and IMHO has more flavor.

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Photo of Kmortis92
3.55/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This was my very first black lager and it has been a great introduction into the field! I look forward to trying more since trying this beer very pleased! this was a good change from the usual college beers (hence I'm a college student). I will continue to purchase this beer it has a warm malty taste to it that is welcoming! Ha I tend to crave this taste throughout the day nothing like any other college beer (bud light, miller lite, nat. Lite, etc...). Furthermore, this beer has kept my interest high into beer since I use to think it just tasted like breaded water; this proved that notion wrong by dispelling it to the types of beers I had drank before it. I know I'm a novice but I look forward to working my way through my beers to sharpen my buds! I hope this review helps someone!

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Photo of keeganfrank
3.55/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black liquid with a thin, off-white head. Aromas of roasted grain and yeast, with a hint of chocolate. Toasted chocolate flavor with crisp grains and seltzer. Light hints of caramel and cola. Has a light, easy-drinking body despite looking like something that should be much thicker. I'll definitely be drinking this again.

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Photo of Treborofmoria
3.56/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Guinness Black lager is exactly what it says it is. A commercial, mass produced dark lager from a company know for their stout, that being said. Could it be more hoppy and aromatic? Yes. Can you taste carmelized, dark malt? Yes, medium taste. Is it lighter in mouthfeel, due to being a lager? Yes. A lot of people have trashed this beer for all of the above, unfairly I think. Is there better examples of this style, undoubtably(sp). Is this a great beer to someone who thinks Guinness stout is too heavy or burnt tasting, but wants to hang with the Guinness crowd? YES. Its a serious lighter version of a dark beer. Its not trying to conquer the lager market.

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Photo of ronniebruner
3.57/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

This is a very worthy effort from Guinness. Although not a traditional lager, this is something completely original in the lager category. The beer is not as dark as one may think, it is a dark amber color and pours a nice amount of head and lace. The beer has an earthy aroma and taste, leaving a nice hint of earthy malts on the palette. Overall this beer is great and easy to find, making it a great choice when the selection is limited at your local supermarket.

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Guinness Black Lager from Guinness Ltd.
3.08 out of 5 based on 1,972 ratings.
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