Dark Cloud | Mother Earth Brewing

very good
128 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: 128 | Ratings: 400
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 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 Gushue3
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a dark, transparent brown that looks very dark brown, and and deep hazy amber brown when held to the light. The head is whitish one finger with smaller retention and smaller lacing.

S- matly with some sweet and dark fruit scents in there too. Very nice scent i dont get to smell too often. Lots of fruit.

T- medium malt taste that carries to the finish. Sweetness is prominent throughout thay is sinilar to the fruity nose. The sweetness lingers through the finsh.

M- mouthfeel is medium with lower carbonation.

O- nice beer and everything works good together. Nice extra beer.

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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 TheRock7755
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I can't find too many Dunkel's out there. I came across this at a 1st annual craft brew tasting fest in the Cumming, GA area. I was happy to find this in the store. It is regional, and has a distinct smoky flavor.

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Photo of JayQue
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a couple of bottles with dinner at the Bayou Smokehouse and Grill at Banner Elk NC. Nice take on the style from Mother Earth brewing. Pours a clear brown color with a fairly nice size off white head. Good retention and lacing. Would have ben even better without the frosted beer glass.

Aroma is fairly good, mostly roasted malt.

Good solid flavor. Roasted malt slight grassy hops bitterness and a hint of chocolate.

Mouthfeel is fairly light as befits a lager. Nice and crisp...refreshing, an excellent complement for food. Stood up nicely to the humungoid brisket nachos and barbeque platter I ordered.

An excellent accompanyment for food or slightly higher than average abv as a session beer.

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Photo of evantwomey
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a reddish-brown, 1-finger head with good lacing and good retention. Excellent clarity. Nose is clean with a sturdy helping of dark fruit aromas, toffee, caramel, and a hint of roast. Reminds me a lot of a doppelbock like Celebrator, just less intense.Taste follows the nose, the same flavors are there but a little muted. Some malty sweetness up front, finishes smooth and silky, no bitterness. Clean throughout, no off-flavors to note. Mouthfeel is very nice - full and smooth, but not cloying, so the beer remains refreshing. I would have no trouble burning through a few of these.

This is my first beer from this new brewery, and I'd have to say I am pretty impressed. If I see this on the shelves I wouldn't hesitate to buy a six-pack. Definitely worth trying.

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Photo of atsprings
3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Flying Saucer served in a standard pint-glass a very dark brown with a thin khaki head that diminishes to a ring and leaves spotty lacing on the glass. Aroma is slight fruit and dark malts. The taste is a nice blend of sweet fruits, dark malts, molasses and slight dried fruits. The beer is fairly light bodied and smooth with mild carbonation. This is an enjoyable beer, especially for the colder months.

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Photo of TWM
3.86/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Not terribly familiar with the "Dunkel Lager" style of beer, so am just writing how I found the beer as opposed to a comparison to expectations.

I didn't know what to expect when I got this; I bought it because it's a local brewery but the beer isn't my favorite porter/stout/dark ale type. In fact, I tend to avoid lagers. This one surprised me very pleasantly.

Overall, what made me happy is that it has the rich tones of a dark ale while maintaining the lighter, "crisper" notes of a lager. The appearance was a nice color and a small head, minor lacing.

Smell was not much. For some reason I smelled a lot more sweetness than I tasted.

Taste was excellent- and I'm not even qualifying it as "for a type of beer I don't generally like." It's good, full stop. The malt was delicately roasted, and blended with the hops. None of the flavors were powerful; this is not a strongly flavored beer, but rather a well balanced, more moderate blend of flavors. Definite caramel tones, lightly bitter that was just perfect to balance out the malt. A nice mouthfeel, not syrupy or watery.

Really like this one, and will keep it in mind next time I am in the mood for something other than the usual.

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Photo of TAMaverick
3.86/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I poured this beer into a frosted mug and it came put with a solid head on it of a deep cream color. The head stayed around for a while in the form of a very thin layer. The color of this beer is mahogany. The smell, well I had to only give this a 3 because my nose is plugged and I can't smell so I dont necessarily want to just throw a number out there. The mouthfeel is great not overly carbonated and goes down smooth. The taste is a little stronger then what I like but it is still a tasty beverage. Overall great buy and would recommend!

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Photo of glid02
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Pours a dark brown color with a one-finger tan head. The head recedes into a wispy layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of muted dark malts with very slight amounts of crisp lager yeast. As the beer warms hints of light chocolate also waft out.

Tastes a bit more complex than it smells. Dark malt flavors with very slight hints of sweeter caramel malts kick things off. Midway through the sip hints of earthy hop flavors make an appearance but are showed up by hints of sweet light chocolate flavors. The chocolate fades out into a mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with smooth carbonation.

Drinkability is also good. I finished my glass quickly and could have another.

Overall this is a tough style to do well as there's nothing present to mask off-flavors but I think these new guys did a pretty good job. A solid beer that's worth a shot.

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Photo of KenC
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a dark mahogany. A solid three fingers of off-white head. Head retention and lacing lasted to the bottom of the glass.

S: Light caramel malt and cherry aroma. I could detect a little bit of the hops and bread.

T: Like the smell, there is malt and cherry with hops. The finish is slightly bitter, and a touch chocolate.

M: Medium bodied with lots of carbonation. (New keg??) A clean after taste, a tad dry.

O: A good example of its type. Dunkel lagers are rarely offensive. Sitting out by the bay in Currituck… sunset…beer, yeah nice.

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Photo of aubuc1
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle dated 12/28/10

Pours a clear but dark brown with a thick light tan head. body looks like a coca cola.

Smell is a sweet, bready, lightly roasty.

Taste is a very good, rich bread with a sweet then dry finish.

Mouthfeel is very good and overall this is a quality beer.

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Photo of travis224
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Really liking Mother Earth. This beer pours Coca-cola color with a nice white head. Smells of malt, maybe roasted peanuts. The taste is very nice, coffee, maybe some spices, great body and really easy to throw back. If this was available near me I would drink it all the time. Great session beer. Easy to drink but still complex. Mother Earth does it for me again.

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Photo of socialistpete
3.89/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark red/caramel in color, large head with fine bubbles which is retained well. Slight roasted flavor finishing sweet with balanced hop flavor and slight hint of alcohol. Could easily drink a few in a row! A friend was kind enough to bring me 13 different Brews from North Carolina he got while in Asheville.

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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 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 metter98
3.94/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high tan head that died down, consistently leaving a thin head covering the surface and lots of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of Munich malts and spicy hops are present in the smell.
T: The taste is similar to the smell with the Munich malts offering flavors of toasted malts. A slight amount of bitterness is present.
M: It feels medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is quite easy to drink but offers some complex flavors from the Munich malts and noble hops.

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Photo of chinchill
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle bottled on 7/3/11.

Pours a near clear dark brown, with a moderate size, creamy tan head.

This is an exceptional brown lager. It has a lovely sweet malt aroma and corresponding flavor. Hints of caramel; no burnt or off-notes.

Medium-thin body with perfect carbonation.

O - one of the best of style, in my experience.

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Photo of soccerman7
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass

A - Very nice garnet color. A solid finger of head that gave way to a ring on the edge. Wonderful carbonation. Only drawback was a cloudy appearance.

S - Baked bread, sweet graham cookie. Herbal hop aroma on the tail end. Very nice and a touch different than I have had on the style.

T - First thing I noticed was the hops actually. A prickly herbal spice that gives way to graham cracker, honey, toasted bread. Slight earthiness.

M - Very good mouth feel and easy drinking. Slightly sharpness.

O - A very good beer that is worth grabbing. Wish it were available up here. Well done.

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Photo of jifigz
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a stemmed Allagash glass.

A: A very dark brown with reddish hints and hues. A nice head that is a foamy white. There is also some pretty nice lacing as the beer is being drank.

S: Bready, malty, and slightly spiced smelling. There is also a mild grape Kool-Aid like flavor.

T: The taste is also very bread-like and sweet with the grape Kool-Aid making a mild entrance and then giving way to a slightly roasted profile.

M: The mouthfeel feels a bit thin and watery to me. I am not extremely familiar with this style but it seems appropriate. It matches the flavors well and feels consistent.

O: A pretty good beer. There are solid flavors here and much to be appreciated but it remains delicate and extremely easy to drink and enjoy. A great and very refreshing lager.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to BucketBoy for the opportunity to try this one. 12oz. bottle served in my Weihenstephan weizen glass. Bottled on 05 10 indicated on the label. Pours a mahogany brown with a semi-hazy clarity and a 1.5 inch, frothy, tan-colored head embedded with ringlets. Head eventually settles into a solid, quarter inch skim with a couple semi-concentric bands of lacing present during the tasting. Nose expresses malt, dark fruit and perhaps cocoa. Taste follows nose - more cocoa and less fruit is expressed in the flavor profile; very tasty without being overly sweet. Mouthfeel is light-medium with a lively carbonation. I'm not overly familiar with the style, but I found Dark Cloud to be quite tasty and easy drinking. All and all very enjoyable brew.

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Photo of dirtylou
3.97/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz single, Vintner Wine & Spirits - Charlotte

appearance: served in a duck rabbit shaker pint, murky cola body with garnet hues, light tan ring.

smell: roasted nuts, english toffee, cocoa, caramel, dark fruits provide a nice sweetness. Smells great.

taste: nice and smooth - dark malts, woody, caramel and toffee, cherry and cocoa, lots of dark fruits, earthy tones.

mouthfeel: moderate carbonation, smooth with a dry finish

drinkability: good

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Photo of BuxMontBeerLover
3.97/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Given a bottle by Rich Wagner, a Pennsylvania Brewery Historian. Thanks for the beers, as always, Rich!

Enjoyed in a DFH Signature Glass.

A - Beer pours a slightly translucent, reddish/ brown color. A one finger head on the initial pour. After a few minutes just a faint beige film on top of the beer. Very little lacing left on the side of the glass.

S - A sweet, bready aroma. Very inviting.

T - A decent beer. A malty beer with hints of chocolate. Very tasty. Not overy sweet. Well balanced between the malts and hops. The alcohol is barely noticeable.

M - A well carbonated brew. Medium consistancy.

O - I thought this was a well-crafted brew. It's not a style that I normally gravitate towards but it is a very tasty beer. Easily sessionable due to the low alcohol. Not a beer I would necessarily go out and buy but I enjoyed it just the same. Thanks again Rich for your generousity.


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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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Dark Cloud from Mother Earth Brewing
3.88 out of 5 based on 400 ratings.
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