Dark Cloud | Mother Earth Brewing

very good
129 Reviews
Dark CloudDark Cloud

Brewed by:
Mother Earth Brewing
North Carolina, United States

Style: Munich Dunkel Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by evantwomey on 11-04-2009

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Reviews: 129 | Ratings: 402
Photo of akorsak
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 12 oz bottle from Chips. I've been impressed with Mother Earth thus far, including this ale on-tap.

A: The dunkel lager has a rich brown fullness that could pass for cola or coffee. The more concentrated the glass makes the ale, the darker, blacker, it gets. A finger of head on pour was quick to dissapate.

S: The nose is bready, predominantly roasted malts, that isn't overwhelmingly strong. Chocolate aromas follow the breadiness, adding depth.

T: My first sip is luxurious, velvety smooth with a heavy dose of dark malts. Chocolate flavors mix with the roasted grains, a dark flavor that isn't as strong as the lager makes it look. The dunkel is remarkably smooth, going down very, VERY easily.

M: The beer is moderately carbonated, allowing the chocolate flavors to linger after each sip is gone. Velvety and smooth, a nice dunkel lager.

D: I prefered the beer out of a bottle, as I was better able to control the temperature. I really dig the full flavors and sweet smoothness. A hit from Mother Earth.

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Photo of farrago
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Solid two fingers of cream tan to eggshell white, airy but doesn't dimple much, retention is decent just a steady, even dissipation, the lacing steals the show with nice thick streaks clinging tenaciously. Bronzed orange to redwood in color, its clarity is obvious, however, its darkness of hue prevents transparency from any distance, slightly more orange at the glass bottom. The nose unfolds layers of sweet maltiness, caramel, butterscotch, molasses and chocolate fudge, blends in some orange reduction, cherry syrup and brandy-like notes, still you do get a little graininess, if nothing overtly hoppy. Full-bodied without heaviness, inches forward at a slow, steady gait. Drier here than the nose might suggest, that said, definitely leads with molasses, caramel, chocolate and vanilla, maybe even a little licorice before getting to the more natural orange zest. Bready like raisin bread, mild wheat accents. The carbonation is about average and unobtrusive, While dry, doesn't detract from a softer touch on the tongue. While may lack complexity for some, better thought of as a beer crafted for simple enjoyment. And does very well for itself as such.

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Photo of DefenCorps
3.63/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thank you, Mike. Here's to you and Sarah.

Pouring a clear reddish brown with copper highlights, this beer is capped with a dense, light brown head that recedes to a disk leaving some lace. The nose is very good, opening up as it warms up, with a definite chocolate bread character with some caramel. Very, very clean, this smells like a very well brewed lager. Along with the chocolate, this smells like dark wheat bread. No real hop character is discernible.

The palate opens with a blend of cocoa, wheat and caramel sweetness. This is moderately sweeter than the Weltenburger I had a few days back. Bready and moderately sweet, there's a little roast as well. Drying on the finish with a mild sweetness (mostly dark caramel), this beer has a medium-light body and a soft, creamy carbonation. Not as dry and crisp as I'd like, but then again, I haven't had too many beers of this style. Very drinkable, I'd like to revisit this.

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Photo of zeff80
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a clear, burgundy gold with a two-finger, tan head of foam that receded fairly quickly. It left minimal lacing.

S - It smelled malt and of sweet breads. A very subtle chocolate aroma.

T - Caramel and chocolate flavors lead off with roasted malts not too far behind. There is a mild bitterness.

M - It was relatively crisp and sharp. A light bodied lager with a dry finish.

D - This is a pretty solid dunkel lager. It delivers a nice taste with the mix of caramel and chocolate notes.

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Photo of tpd975
3.72/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

from bross242 thanks Billy.

A: Pours a roasty brown small tan head, little retention or no lace.

S: Aromas of sweet bread, caramel, roast and light chocolate.

T: Nice sweet and malty. Wonderful candy notes of caramel, toffee, and brown sugar. Nice tones of chocolate with hints of roast throughout.

M: Medium in body, smooth, tasty.

D: Good, about as good as a dark lager can be!

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Photo of maximum12
3.63/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to ROBORB who dropped this brew into a northwards floating box. Love to see more Munich Dunkels around the old tap handles & bottle shops, but alas, I fear I'm peeing the wrong way into the wind.

Pours very dunkel into my pretty chalice, with only a slight beet color about the edges. Smell is rich roast & a big roll of malt sweetness.

Mother Cloud isn't selling a bill of goods. The malts in this thing are rich, heady, sweet, with an edge of roast, maybe a fig or raisin, maybe not. The lagering leaves this feeling like a porter, but lighter, sharper in the tastes, less cloying. Once this passes the palate there's a cleanliness that one doesn't often find in a beer - it passes & it's gone, like an afternoon rain shower washing everything clean. A beer like this can be experienced on tap, & still drive home, while not sacrificing anything in beer geekery.

Good beer. I've been saying this a lot lately, but we could use more of these low-ABV beers that pack in a lot of flavor. Is this really so difficult? This dunkel makes is seem easy.

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Photo of tempest
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a single at Chip's Wine and Beer. Poured a dark amber with a short tan head. The aroma (very strong aroma) and flavor are ruled by a rich, dark bready crust, caramel, and coca character. It begins dry and then a sweet candy note rolls in before a mildy bitter and fruity finish. This is a great take on the dunkel lager style and the best beer from Mother Earth I've had. Find this beer if you dig the style.

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Photo of CosmoHopHead
3.92/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: poured a dark, ruby brown with minimal head and very thin lacing

S: roasted malts and burnt chocolate with some nuttiness and earthy hops

T: unsweetened chocolate and toffee with roasted malts and a faint touch of caramel and hops

M: a bit thin in the mouth with a light body and mild carbonation

D: very easy to drink with a pleasant aroma and smooth finish. a nice session beer

Overall, this is the second offering I've had from this brewery and I have been pleasantly surprised by both. Wouldn't mind trying more of their line up.

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Photo of Bung
4.22/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz. A rather brown, but dark brown, pour, only a minimal amount of cream head. Recedes to a small ring.

Nice malty aroma, plenty of cocoa and chocolate. Light lager yeast, earthy peat, leather.

Flavorful, yet not overbearing in any way. Nice malt, cocoa, peat earthy grass and minimal hops. Finishes pretty dry almost like an Irish stout. Probably the best for this style I've had, but not sure what to expect. Liked much better than the Penn Brewing version listed at right.

Really shines here. A much better than average mouthfeel, pretty creamy and mid bodied. The carbonation keeps it lighter on the pallete though and extreamly easy drinking. Possibly found my new session semi-local craft brew.

First from Mother Earth and an excellent effor. Wish more brewers would put out a dark lager or Schwarz.

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Photo of Walken
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Mother Earth: Dark Cloud (Bottled: 03/10) (Tasted 06/15/10)
12 oz bottle, poured into a dimple mug.

Appearance: Dark chestnut with a shimmering ruby hue when held up to the light. A vigorous pour down the center yields a nice khaki head, composed of medium sized bubbles. Chunks of lace adorn the sides of the glass and a nice frothy cap stays intact.
Odor: Heavily toasted bread and soft chocolate with a subtle toffee and plum in the background.
Consistency: Even, medium body with a dry, malty palate. Carbonation is subtle but certainly in there in force, keeping things smooth all the way through.
Flavor: The aroma is very telling of the full-on malt assault that is about to go down. Dry chocolate/toasty bread malt flavors hit repeatedly and don't let up, fruitiness in the background provides a slight acidity that somehow balances the dry malty flavors. Malt flavors ride long into the off-dry finish.

Great dunkel, If this beer were available to me, it would likely make regular appearances in my fridge.

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Photo of daliandragon
3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a translucent medium brown with a reasonable quantity of tan head and the beginnings of some decent lacework as well. Sometimes dark bees look a little out of place in a tin pilsner flute but this one seems to fit it we. The nose is a little faint with chocolate, smoke and a bit of dark fruit.

Very flavorful and refreshing. There are some very late hops to dry the finish out but the bulk of the sip is moist, almost juicy, fitting the style well as I see it. Dark malt with cocoa powder seems to be the main flavor. Mouthfeel is a touch thin but that is par for the course with Munich dunkels and German lager as a whole.

This is a faithful representation of the style and very easy to drink, Nice job Mother Earth.

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Photo of Greencoat
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle from Chip's in Kill Devil Hills, NC. Pours to a fizzy, blood red with a minimal - but lingering tan head. Beautiful. Nose is caramel sweet and toasted malts with a small amount of burnt character.

This lager drinks like an ale with a highly malty body full of complexities. Caramel is the most obvious flavor, while prunes and other dried fruits hide in the back. I usually find these flavors to be overbearing, but this beer is very well balanced. Hops do their job of balance and nothing more. This is a very finely crafted dunkel, I hope these beers find their way to Ohio soon!

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Photo of thegodfather2701
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Poured dark brown with an off white head.

S-Chocolate and coffee were prominent on the nose. There seems to be more malt than hops in this brew, which wasn't a surprise.

T-Chocolate, coffee, toffee, caramel. Very delicious. Malts dominate, but there is some hop presence. It actually tastes very porter like, just slightly sweeter.

M-It seemed a little thin. I was expecting it to be slightly thicker.

D-Very drinkable. I could definitely see myself drinking more of these in the future.

Overall, this was another solid beer from Mother Earth, which is becoming one of my favorite NC breweries. This beer paired very nicely with the bbq I was eating on Saturday night.

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Photo of oldhippie247
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark brown with red hues when held to the light. Thin head and low-med carbonation.

Nice lightly roasted/chocolately aromas. Very inviting.

Chocolate follows through on the palate. Hop bitterness is second to roasted malt bitterness. Medium mouthfeel.

Very good overall. A great option for those who think they don't like dark beers.

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Photo of javincik
4.07/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a pilsner glass

A-Pours a deep ruddy brown with a two finger slightly off white head. Color shows more of a reddish tint when held to the light.

S-Most aromas of toasted malts and grain. Very bready. A little brown sugar and maybe a hint of toffee.

T-Malt sweetness with toasted bread up front. Proceeds to a more rounded sweet grain in the middle before finishing with a crisp touch of hops to balance it out.

M-Medium to medium high carbonation. Overall, light in body, but appropriate for the style. Carbonation lends some creaminess. Nice crispness in the finish. For an American take on the style, a very nice mouth feel.

D-Great. A nice session lager when one is looking for something a little darker than a Helles or Pilsner. Could easily drink 3 or 4 of these during a poker game.

Overall, a really solid effort from a new brewery. I'm glad a NC brewery has finally produced a nice lager. Having local access to this, I have to say that this will be a regular in my rotation.

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Photo of beer2day
3.68/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very deep red pour, almost brown, with 2-finger dark cream head. Fair retention and nice lace.

Nose is very sweet with malt as expected. Brown sugar and raisins/figs mixed together. Smells a little like a fruit cookie.

Sweet hit and middle. Gets a little cloying towards the end. Sweet bread dominates the finish. Picking up some ripe fruit, but more cherry than the raisin/fig of the nose.

Strong malt body, much more so than the relative abv would suggest. Very substantial.

Would stand up well to a bbq meal here in NC.

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Photo of bigbluebeerguy
3.82/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into a pint glass. Dark amber with a very thin cream colored head which receded quickly to a ring. No lacing.

Smell was mostly that of coffee, bitter chocolate, and a little dark fruit.

Taste was better than the nose. Still coffee, but a nice roasted malt, some breadiness, maybe a little toffee. Sweetness of the fruit flavor is balanced nicely by a touch of bitterness.

Mouthfeel is good, mild carbonation, medium bodied, with just a touch of bitter aftertaste.

Very drinkable brew with a nice blend of flavors for the ABV.

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Photo of JohnQVegas
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle into pint glass, purchased at Bruisin' in Asheville.

Pours deep brown, hints of red poking through, with a thinnish light-khaki head that disappears into non-existence quickly enough. Not much in the way of lacing. Adjusted slightly for the fact that 20% is too high of a percentage for appearance - consider it my own personal crusade.

Nose is quite toasty, breadcrusty, a bit nutty, some lightly fruity esters.

Taste follows suit - breadcrusty and toasty up front, with a hint of roasty bite, nutty, some cocoa, nice bit of molasses provides a nice sweetness. Dark bread covered in molasses; excellent. Same light fruitiness in the nose comes through underneath all that in the flavor. Beautiful, flavorful beer.

Mouthfeel is, again, excellent. Medium bodied, with a satisfying but light carbonation and a long, full finish that lingers happily on the tongue for many minutes afterward.

Drinkability is excellent as well. Goes down fantastically easy, and leaves you savoring every sip. World class beer.

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Photo of silver0rlead
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark brown color with a thin tan head. The aroma has some nice malty complexity with notes of cocoa, pumpernickel bread, oats, chocolate and a little dirt, along with some toffee and coffee. The flavor is very similar to the aroma, with a huge maltiness that is reminiscent of unsweetened cocoa, coffee, toffee, pumpernickel bread, and some peat, along with a mineral hoppiness and a little alcohol. The mouthfeel is appropriately light without being thin, and drinkability is really good. Really solid dunkel here, this isn't a style that I'm especially familiar with or fond of but this beer was nicely executed.

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Photo of rockyfire
4.33/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The name fits this beer perfectly. Dark Cloud, like a warm summer afternoon when the clouds start rolling in.

Apperance: Pours a dark rich mohogany. Light colored head forms.

Smell: Aromatic. Its definitely a very malty beer. There are great malty notes to it with a faint sweetness; some fruits, surely a little caramel, maybe toffee.

Taste: Heavy dark malts, roasted, in the taste. The caramal taste is there as well. Its a great taste. It is definitely worthy of a high score.

Mouthfeel: This does a good job of taking away some of the crisp, bubbly charactoristics of a lager and gives it good smoothness. Its thin, but heavy enough to have some depth.

Drinkability: You can drink these all night. Its a world class beer and its definitely good enough to satisfy your tastebuds day after day.

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Photo of oberon
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep garnet with a thin but well retained off white head,a nice mix of cocoa and roasted nut in the nose,rich aromas.Flavors are well rounded with a mix of sweet caramel malt and bitter unsweetened chocolate,a nice earthy/roasty finish makes it highly drinkable.A very nice dunkel lager,not overly sweet but just the right amount,well done.

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Photo of blackie
4/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: tall lager glass, average off-white head atop a clear, dark cocoa brown ale

s: nutty roasts predominant with some darker caramels or toffee providing a light sweetness, really heavy on the munich malt it seems

m: medium carbonation, lighter bodied, not as bright and lively as might be expected, but the smoothness works well

t: again, full flavors of nutty malts on a clean lager structure, not sweet but there are some persistent heavy malt sugars, hops contribute little flavor but a light spicy bitterness graces the finish with a lingering woody, diluted molasses flavor

d: love a flavorful lager, easy on this hot spring night, I do feel that it may have been better rounded out by dialing back some of the darker malts - but the big flavors that come through at present are pretty appealing

sixer kindly carried up by a friend, dig the label too

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Photo of Onenote81
3.77/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

So glad these guys are available here in the Triad now! Poured this into a standard pint glass. Pours a deep dark brown with a thin tan head on top. Retention was pretty weak and it left little-to-no lace on the glass. Scents of molasses, dark breads, toffee, and some licorice.

This beer is fairly full-bodied with a good carbonation backing. Sweet flavors of bittering dark chocolate, toffee, molasses, and a good mealy finish. Bitterness is very low on this one. This is all malts and I like it. Very good beer. I'd get a sixer of this and enjoy it immensely.

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Photo of wedge
3.77/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark copper-brown under a small - but thick and creamy - cap. Rich, dark and fruity aroma...kind of toasted, raisin-bready with a hint of toffee. Mildly sweet dark malt flavor. Toasty caramel and chocolate with a slight bit of bread crust and finishing tartness. Lightly bitter, medium-light bodied, and a little creamy. Pretty good...I've liked everything I've had from these guys so far. Easily drinkable.

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Photo of jwhancher
4.43/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Received a few bottles as a gift. Poured into a pilsner glass.

A: Pours a clear dark amber with slightly tan head. Head was two fingers thick and took its time to slowly fade.

S: Some good roasted malt character with toasty notes. Solid malt profile aroma.

T: Nice chocolate & caramel malt profile. Very pleasing. A bready character comes through.

M: A bit on the lighter side. Nice carbonation. Even on the sweet/bitter category.

D: Excellent in drinkability. With a lighter mouthfeel & very solid malt profile, I could see myself flying through these.

Wasn't sure what to expect, but was pleasantly surprised. Will go nicely with a hot sausage w/sauerkraut later tonight.

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Dark Cloud from Mother Earth Brewing
3.88 out of 5 based on 402 ratings.
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