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

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 129 | Ratings: 402
Photo of JISurfer
3.6/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had the great opportunity to try this at the Charleston Beer Exchange. The brewer came in and gave out samples, because they might work on distributing into South Carolina next year. After sampling the beers he had, especially the barrel aged Tripel Overhead, I sure hope they can make it work. Anyway, this was a nice version of the Munich Dunkel. It was light in body, but dark in color, and had a pleasant coffee/chocolate taste. Along with the nice taste, it had a good nutty/malty/chocolate smell, with a slight hop undertone. Very easy to drink, because I do like the maltier beers, and it's even better when they don't have you feeling bloated.

 651 characters

Photo of Roser
3.6/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- medium to dark (root beer) brown. Nice tan head. Light to moderate dissipation with some lacing, but nothing noteworthy.

S- clean. Roasted coffee. Caramel and malt. Mineral quality (similar to an oyster stout).

T- burnt coffee, cocoa,

M- light body. Not too much carbonation. Bitter up front. Very crisp.

O- good. Would recommend and have again. A solid American version of a classic German style.


 418 characters

Photo of DearthVader
3.61/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

12 oz courtesy of LSUPT

Poured into my Alpine pint.

Very beautiful beer. A huge tan head forms atop the mohagony body. Very detailed lacing throughout the glass and the head retention was incredible on this one.

Smell is a faint nutty smell hidden behind grains and slight raisins.

Taste is nice with a smoked almond flavor that pairs with the raisins and wheat characteristics.

Its hard to believe I enjoyed the taste so much even through the harsh mouthfeel. This beer is way too carbonation. It makes it very tough to drink.

This was an ok beer. If they lower the carbonation and try to make it more aromatic, it would be near perfect.

 647 characters

Photo of korguy123
3.62/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Special thanks to TheSevenDuffs for this
12oz into DFH Signature Glass

A- Dark almost totally opaque black/brown pour. Dark hazelnut when held up to the light. Half finger off white head settles quickly to thin ring. Lacing is good, and carbonation is so so.

S- Sweet roasted malts, figs and plums. Brown sugar and slight vanilla. Banana and subtle raisins.

T- Figs and plums, brown sugar, sweet toasted malts and a bitter aftertaste.

M- Thin to medium bodied. Carbonation is a little prickly on the tongue.

Still slowly venturing into this style, especially now that the months are getting colder. Not bad, can't see myself trying again though.

 650 characters

Photo of smakawhat
3.63/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a pilsner tall style glass.

A deep red mahogany brown, with red chestnut edges towards the bottom. Just a big dark red, with light cream tan bubbles at about three fingers in height and soapy retention.

Lots of clean and flavorful aromas. Nutty and husky grain. Hazelunt almost into caramel. Clean, crisp and mineraly. Very nice.

Kind of interesting. Palate is rocked litteraly, but an almost mineral and earthy body. Big crystaline mineral rock finish, which just cuts through the malt base like a sharp sword. Finishes popping mineral fresh also with real dry carbonation. Hints of caramel and some backbone but a bit jarring palate feel.

It's not bad but the super spritzy mouthfeel just slices through the palate and destroys much of the flavor that seemed to be hinted on the nose.

 818 characters

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.

 931 characters

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.

 1,060 characters

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

This beer is hard to characterize for me. I have been on a dark beer kick lately and I thought maybe this might be fun to try, since it's a local company. Overall, this beer looked and tasted just fine. I probably wouldn't go far beyond that. I think it rates in the "B" area for me. I think it's a pretty decent beer for the style, and I wouldn't tell people not to try it.

 374 characters

Photo of stakem
3.64/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

June 2014 bottling I picked up last year at the brewery and forgot about in my fridge. 12oz into a tulip, the brew appears a deep mahogany color with ruby clarity when held to the light. A khaki cap fades to a thin film leaving spotty lace.

Nose is pleasantly chocolate-like mingled with fruity raison and suggestions of caramel, toffee and molasses before a bit of herbal and mineral/metallic edge comes into play.

The taste is sweet and fruity like raisons and plum mixed with dates, light chocolate malt, earth, minerals and roast. There is a very subtle buttery diacetyl touch to this that brings the focus back to caramel malt and slight fruity alcohol inclusion.

This is medium in body with modest carbonation. A decent brew that I probably did a slight disservice by forgetting about for a year but it still held up fairly well.

 839 characters

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

I had this beer on-tap served in a pint glass at the Mellow Mushroom in Fayetteville NC.

A-The beer was dark brown to garnet with no visible haze.

S-Chocolate and nutty-like graham craker aromas were predominant with little to no hop aroma.

T-Initially, the beer taste of roast and chocolate malt. Moderate to lower hopping levels balance a mild malt sweetness that is accented with a slight graininess in the background.

M-The moderate carbonation and lighter body made for a lighter to moderate mouthfeel.

O-Overall, this was an enjoyable session beer that can be enjoyed in quanity. The beer was fresh and free of defects.

 632 characters

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.

 527 characters

Photo of Kegatron
3.7/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a deep clear amber, with a finger of off-white head. This sticks around with a ¼ finger of foamy richness, which dots the sides of the glass with lacing. The aroma smells of dark roast, herbal hops, and a deep tangy fruitiness. Sweet malty notes of cocoa and caramel sweeten things up some on the edges. Solid little nose here.

The taste has a toasty and roasty sweetness to it, with a herbal and fruity tang that works its way in as well, before spreading a gritty and earthy bitterness out onto the tongue. That sweet tang hangs pretty tough in the back of the throat after each sip. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and crisp throughout and is generally pretty easy feeling overall. No complaints with the feel.

While I appreciate this being a bit more complex feeling than your average Dunkel, all of that sweetness, hops, fruit, and roast helped create a deep tang to the taste that got to be a little much at times. Nose and body was spot on though and really helped keep things on the right track. I would give this another try at some point.

 1,092 characters

Photo of TheTippler
3.71/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very dark brown with a thin head. Lots of roasted nut flavors in this one. A bit of chocolate flavor too. This beer tastes very lightly sweet and lightly bitter. Very slightly sweet and lightly bitter. A sniff of this beer fills the nose with roasty aromas.

 265 characters

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!

 384 characters

Photo of buschbeer
3.73/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 FL. OZ. bottle
Served in a pilsner glass

A - It is a deep amber, almost rust, in color. It has some amber highlights. On top sits three inches of thick, tan head.

S - They managed to capture that skunked smell of a Euro-lager. I manage to get some cocoa aroma as well.

T - The taste starts out with some sweet cocoa. Then some metallic and skunk flavors creep in.

M - Moderate

O - It is a good representation of the style. I enjoyed the cocoa aspect of this beer. The skunked metallic flavor was not my favorite.

 523 characters

Photo of RedneckBeerz
3.73/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Rogue pint produces a clear dark tea brown brew with a 1/2" off white sandy colored head with nice weepy lacing sliding down the glass.

Very nice aromatic dark malts with a hint of hops in the background.

Very nice flavor on the tongue, malty and well balance, perhaps just a smidge on the lighter bodied side for this style, but still very drinkable brew in light of the medium carbination.

This is definately not a Warsteiner Premium Dunkle, but it is a great American representation of this style.

For me, this is a solid B+ Munich Dunkel. Keep on representing Tar Heel Brewers !!

 626 characters

Photo of Fieldzy27
3.74/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a footed pilsner glass.

Look: Pours an almond brown color with a lot of light penetration, the head is bone white and deflates quickly to very thin layer of tiny bubbles covering the surface of the beer. Not insanely impressive but the color of the beer is very nice.

Smell: dough and bread with hints of toffee and a little caramel are the strong points here, a little nuttiness and dark fruit upon further inspection. Not a wildly complex aroma but nothing offensive for sure.

Taste: Malty and sweet , bread and biscuit with some toffee notes again. Sweetness is washed from the pallet by the carbonation and the beer slips into a clean dry finish with a slightly nutty aftertaste. Very drinkable.

Feel: carbonation level is perfect for this beer. Keeps it light and refreshing with out being fizzy. Very well done.

Overall: A tasty beer, I'm a big fan of this style and enjoy the german varieties very much. This doesn't exactly stand up to its german counterparts but If I was in the mood for a dunkel and this was on tap I would not pass it up. Drinkability begs for a liter mug.

 1,122 characters

Photo of n2185
3.76/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a clear mahogany with two fingers of off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both good.

S: Touches of caramel malt and dark fruits at first followed by lightly bitter hops and biscuit and bread aromas.

T: Similar to the aroma, there are touches of malt and dark fruit followed by some bitter, piny hops. The finish is of hearty bread and is lightly bitter.

M: Medium-light body with lots of carbonation, this beer is fairly crisp but leaves a somewhat bitter aftertaste.

O: Overall, a pretty decent dunkel lager. I could easily put several of these back on a warm day in the sun.

 598 characters

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.

 420 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.77/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured on-tap at the brewery and served in a shaker pint, the beer is a dark, chestnut coloring with a filmy, clingy, white head. Nose of roast notes, coffee, and dark caramel, and some fig and date notes. Flavors are roast and nutty forward, with some old world fruit sweet highlights, and a bitter undertone. Smooth and crisp bodied, with a tangy caramel sweetness and roasted notes. Crisp, clean finish, with a sweet linger. Very solid brew!

 444 characters

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.

 564 characters

Photo of zeledonia
3.78/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottled 24 May 2011. Thanks to n2185 for the bottle.

Pours a deep coffee brown; light behind it brings out some reddish shades. About a half-finger of light tan head that fades pretty quickly, leaving decent lacing.

Smell hits heavy with slightly sweet biscuity malts. I don't get much beyond that, though. A bit of fruit around the edges (figs), with some noble hops hiding in the background.

Taste is better - fuller, richer, and more complex. It brings those malts, but they're more bready and fruity, without that strong toasted character that's in the nose. A bit of chocolate and toffee - nice sweetness and depth. There's a slight hop tingle that comes through late and balances things out quite well.

Mouthfeel: medium body, but feels full and chewy in the mouth. Carbonation is right where it should be - medium-high, enough to keep the flavors on the move but not so much that I can't taste them.

Quite a tasty beer. The toasted malts in the smell are a little funny, but everything else about it is solid. I like it.

 1,032 characters

Photo of clayrock81
3.8/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a dark brown body with an offwhite head that stays around and leaves minor lace patches along w/ a light airy malt smell of both sweet and bready malts along w/ a touch of herbal hops. A light, sticky body that has a good dry edge as the herbal hops are light and balanced with some sweet caramel malt as well as cocoa and roasted and bread malt. Finishes real dry and is a nice dunkely that isn't overly sweet or complex but well-balanced and is an easy to drink session beer.

 484 characters

Photo of busterwhite
3.8/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a brown/ dark copper color with a 2 finger head that dissipatned quickly. A small amount of lacing on the glass.

Smells of sweet malt, a little spice and yeast.

Tastes of roasted malt, a little sweetness and spice. Just enough bitterness to balance things out on the finish.

Mouthfeel is light, carbonation is good.

First time drinking a dunkel lager, this is a smooth and easy drinking beer.

 403 characters

Photo of mactrail
3.81/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Rich hoppy lager.

Quite attractive in the glass with a fine roiling head and excellent carbonation in the mouth. Hint of grainy flavor along with some roasted malt. Hops come on strong after a few gulps. More like an Amber Ale than a dunkel with all the hops. Fairly thin body. Nice nose as you exhale but not much fragrance in the glass. A little burnt almond.

Very creamy and pleasant to drink.

 398 characters

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

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.