St. Pauli Girl Special Dark
St. Pauli Brauerei C.L. Wilh. Brandt Gmbh & Co.

St. Pauli Girl Special DarkSt. Pauli Girl Special Dark
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Lager - European Dark
Ranked #140
Ranked #50,195
3.05 | pDev: 16.72%
St. Pauli Brauerei C.L. Wilh. Brandt Gmbh & Co.
St. Pauli Girl Special DarkSt. Pauli Girl Special Dark
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Reviews: 241 | Ratings: 417 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of TallMBA

4.47/5  rDev +46.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Haven't had this in a long time. It was my favorite but the distribution in the USA disappeared. Rating is from memory. I started loving German beer when my Dad let me eat the foam off his beer when I was a little kid while living in Germany.

Jul 17, 2021
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mothmanscott from Georgia

3.57/5  rDev +17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

From notes 8/21/12: Pours a clear, deep cola brown with amber highlights. The pour produces a couple of fingers of tan, shortlived head that leaves no lace. Aroma is dark caramel, toasted bread, butter, and nutty with a metallic hint. Taste is toasted and caramel malt, grain, roasted nuts with a burnt note in the metallic finish.

Nov 11, 2018
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Squire from Mississippi

2.99/5  rDev -2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Unforgettable label.

This looks, smells, and tastes like a rich, dark Lager but is let down by the texture and finish. It's as if all the promise is up front and starts falling off from midpoint on. I think part of the problem is they have to finely filter then pasteurize the daylights out of this beer to keep it stable for the export journey. The ABV isn't high enough to make this one for aging so it's best consumed fresh, which is an ongoing problem with some of these imports. I know, shelf life of 6 months and all that, still the ones available locally are usually older. Green bottle and warm storage are problems as well.

I would certainly buy it if I found it fresh and/or properly stored.

Apr 16, 2016
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BlackBeerPirate from Illinois

3.9/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Taste is roasted malt, crisp and yet creamy. Dark brown in color and mostly clear. A nutty aroma and a medium body. Smooth head with some lace.
A gentle drinking lager for anytime.

Nov 05, 2015
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VABA from Virginia

3/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A-Pours an amber color with a slight head and lacing
A-Aroma has malt hints
T-The taste follows the nose with a malt flavor
M-A medium bodied well carbonated beer
O-A good beer

Sep 24, 2015
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laramis from South Carolina

3.25/5  rDev +6.6%

A: it poured into a the pint glass a very clear deep dark brown. The head was an off brown color about one inch in height that dissipated quickly with little lacing.

S: Probably the best aspect. Toasty at first the grain aroma becomes sweet there are hints of toffee and caramelization.

T: a bit of a let down after the alluring aroma. Dry malts and a sweet toastiness up front finishing with a slight bitterness. Yet it seems a bit watery and lacking the robust flavor I expected.

M: The feel was rather light with good fizziness on the tongue like the washed out flavor it lacked the presence that was expected

O: I certainly liked this beer it had good flavor and was very drinkable if underwhelming. However the scent of the beer was great complex and inviting it was a very pleasant aroma. I do not want to sound like someone who dismisses macro brews but I feel like that is what is holding this beer back perhaps that's just my bias. Still it is worth a try and is a good option if the selection is otherwise limited.

Aug 22, 2014
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utopiajane from New York

3.5/5  rDev +14.8%

Lets pretend there's no such thing as style. Like we do for so many other beers but not for macros. This poured dark brown with brilliant clarity. Hues that verge on crimson but never meet the color red. A variety of hues from honey brown and caramel brown to fiery yellow golden honey. A fat head of tan foam that fell well and left a ring and film on top and slippery wet lace to slide down the glass as it drank.

Brilliant toasted grain greets the nose. Grain that comes to the bright edge of blackness and stops short. Toasted dry and has become graceful in it's dryness. Kissed by a bit of faint honey. Light caramel and a very forward hop grassiness. Sweet grass, a touch herbal, a touch pungent but finally sweet.

Taste is sweet with caramel and lip smacking luscious. It's even sensual. Dry toasted malt that embodies all the colors I described in it's flavor. It has been toasted sweet but not rich or black. It comes to the palate like toasted grain with it's inherent sweetness that has come from deep within it. Lush caramel and a sweet drizzle of honey. Beautiful sweet grass that leans into a hop bitter that startles for this style of beer.

Creamy soft mouthfeel with no biting bubbles a bit of spice tickles the palate on the way down and it's done and leaving a bit of surprising stickiness.

Flavorful, rich, but not heavy. Intense dry malt.. I thought it was worth drinking.

Aug 15, 2014
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JuicesFlowing from Kansas

3.23/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a shaker pint glass.

The beer is a dark ruby brown. A cream colored head recedes to a film leaving very light lacing.

The aroma is of toasty grains with faint chocolate.

The beer tastes like the aroma but with a little sour tang in the finish.

Mouthfeel is really carbonated.

Overall, this beer suffers from green bottle syndrome, but is otherwise sessionable when in the mood for the style.

Jan 04, 2014
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BMMillsy from Florida

2.7/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Creamy brown pour from the bottle with very little head. Aroma is a sweet roasty malt, rather rich, with some spice. Flavor follows closely, with deep sweet malt flavors, roast, watery chocolate. The finish here is a bit rough just like other St. Pauli's. Mouthfeel is full bodied for the ABV, with adequate carbonation. I find this very similar to Leinie's dark, though not nearly as pleasant. Can't recommend this one, but not nearly as awful as the regular St. Pauli.

Oct 18, 2013
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brewskifan55 from Mississippi

3.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a plastic cup at a party. Shameful of me.

A: Brownish black with a half finger off-white head that sputtered out rather quickly. Significant lacing.

S: Malts and grains, but subtly so, on both counts. A hint of chocolate.

T: Comes across like a dark lager, which is what it is. Robust, yet tantalizing from the grains. Sweet with a semi-dry finish.

M: Medium with medim carbnation.

O: Haven't had it in a while. Better than I remember. A smooth drinker with German attitude.

Jun 10, 2013
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smokinyodas from Florida

3.19/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

Clear dark brown pour, fast dissipating fine white head. Lightly roasted malty aroma and sweetness flavor with a tad bit of biscuit and bitter spices from the hops. In short it's just a below Average Dunkel and probably not the best example of the class, but it's still easily drinkable. And if I was to describe this beer it would be like a watery Pilsner with lightly roasted malts.

Mar 04, 2013
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UCLABrewN84 from California

2.92/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Best before 7/2012. Oops.

Pours a clear dark reddish-orange with a foamy khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small streaks and dots of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of toasted malt, caramel, and bread. Taste is much the same with burnt and fruity flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a slightly below average beer that is drinkable but nothing I would want to drink again.

Jan 27, 2013
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TMoney2591 from Illinois

2.76/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served in a Lagunitas mason jar.

I was expected/hoping for a more...shall we say, ethnic?...version of the Girl on the label. Oh well... This stuff pours a clear garnet-brown topped by a finger of sandy tan foam. The nose comprises barley, very light and watered-down cola, and very-lightly-toasted biscuit. The taste brings in more of the same, with a thorough sense of sourdough-ish bread pervading the proceedings. The body is a hefty light, with a light moderate carbonation and a wet feel. Overall, a pretty limp beer, with hardly any character to its name. Thankfully, though, this means it has little in the way of true offensiveness as well, but that's a pittance of a consolation.

Jan 04, 2013
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metter98 from New York

3.2/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is clear very dark ruby red in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high off white head that died down a bit and left some bubbles covering the surface and a collar around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of sweet toasted malts are present in the nose.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and has some sweetness along with some notes of tea leaves and hints of nutty malts. No bitterness is perceptible.
M: It feels light-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: Although this beer came in a green bottle, it doesn't taste skunked. The beer is very easy to drink and I would have no problem drinking several of these in one sitting.

Dec 29, 2012
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DoubleJ from Wisconsin

2.83/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

It took me almost 6 years since my encounter with first and only St. Pauli Girl to go to the dark side. At this rate it will take me another 6 years to go to the non-alcoholic version. Here comes a 12 ounce green bottle. On to the beer:

Amber brown in color with caramel hues. Carbonation bubbles are visible in the body despite the dark color. The head forms small on top, with little retention and leaving a few dots of lace. The nose has a slight toastiness, husk, a little caramel. Actually kind of bland at first sniff, only to become more full with time.

St. Pauli has the character of a dark lager, but a little more watered down and with the addition of sulfur. Modest dark bread and touches of raisin make a decent overall flavor. The body is light and spritzy, yet easy enough to drink.

Better than the pale lager, but a way's away from a good dunkel. That said, it would be an acceptable choice in a pinch.

Dec 25, 2012
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dbrauneis from North Carolina

3.13/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a clear medium brown in color with some ruby red highlights and some very light amounts of visible carbonation. The beer has a finger tall fizzy dark beige head that reduces to a medium mottled patch of very thin film and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of Munich malts with some nuttiness and more than a touch of sweetness to it. Very light notes of toasted malts.

T: Upfront there is a decent amount of malts in this beer - I detect roasted and Munich malts with some light amounts of nuts and light to moderate amounts of sweetness. Light notes of earthy malts which lend a very light amounts of bitterness in the finish which fade quickly.

M: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation.

O: Overall this is a very easy drinking beer that is sessionable and would definitely be worth having again.

Dec 24, 2012
Photo of wac9
wac9 from Pennsylvania

3.4/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

saw this in the store and it called to me and wow glad i did , great color almost black very tasty this beer works for maybe on a winter day or a summer day this beer taste great and looks great it offers something for people who dont like heavy beers just right in the middle its german and it dark and i like for a slow night in november not a bad beer enjoy

Nov 28, 2012
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nukem5 from Pennsylvania

2.81/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours a nice dark brown with reddish hues and big tan cap. Some nice lacing and decent retention.

S: Aroma is non existent aside from a slightly metelic scent and maybe some very light toast and malt.

T: Bitter hops and sweet malt combine to do battle sadly no real winner here.

M: Nice rich texture and carb level medium bodied with a slightly metalic taste at the back of the tongue.

O: Overall an ok beer but can do without it maybe just not my style or fitting in my taste zone.

Nov 25, 2012
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sommersb from Tennessee

3.05/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Tasted On: 04-23-2012
Freshness: Best by 11-2012
Packaging: 12 oz. green bottle
Glassware: Willi Becher
Purchased: Gift from a friend

A: Clear, brown beer with red tint -- looks like a cola. Head is average, but dissipates quickly. Lacing is pretty sparse.

S: Aromas are of biscuit malts and bread, with light hop character. Smells are not very strong overall.

T: Main element is toasted grains, along with some earthy bitterness. Also get a bit of harshness.

M: Lively carbonation on a light body. Finish is dry and balanced well between the sweetness and bitterness.

O: I'd say this was an average-tasting dunkel

Apr 24, 2012
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barczar from Kentucky

2.83/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear deep brown with amber highlights and a solid one inch dark cream head that quickly dissipates.

Aroma is strong diacetyl, buttery popcorn, and a caramel seems supported by toasted malt, finishing nutty.

Harsh toasted malt dominates the flavor, burnt bread, and a strong amount of grain husk. There's a metallic finish that is offputting.

Body is lighter than most for the style, with moderate carbonation, finishing fairly astringent.

Definitely some issues with this brew. There are many better in this style.

Apr 18, 2012
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Fatehunter from Oregon

3.06/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass. A caramel color with a finger and half of head that held well.

Smells metallic and bready.

Light bitter at first, metallic in the middle and stronger bitterness at the end. It has the faintest roasted malt flavor too.

Smooth, almost creamy texture. Low carbonation and medium body.

Not great, not bad.

Mar 18, 2012
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RoamingGnome from Wisconsin

3/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle into a Blatz pint glass. This was served pretty well chilled.

A) This is a pretty deep brown, which is right for the style. There was not much head, just a thin layer of white foam that was gone in a hurry. No lacing. Kind of a cola look to this after it settles.

S) The aroma is of grain, darker malt, light sweetness, a bit of roast and a little bitterness

T) The taste is whole grain cereal with nuts. The darker malt and toasted flavors make this more earthy than sweet. The finish is kind of bitter, with an aftertaste that lingers a bit.

M) This is pretty light, feels crisp, fairly well carbonated. I wouldn't call it smooth, but it went down alright.

O) This is far from terrible or undrinkable, but if you are in the mood for a good dunkel, this should not be your plan A. In fact, it likely should not be your plan B, C, or D. You get the picture.

Feb 19, 2012
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donmonkey1 from Tennessee

3.55/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Dark,Dark brown, darker than Coke. Nice light tan head that dissipates way too fast and doesn't really have any lacing. It's hard to see the carbonation in the dark beer.

Smell: Mild molasses, dry toast, metal

Taste: Mild molasses, dry toast, toasted nuts, thick tree bark, coffee,a little malt sweetness,tinge of metal.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, not much carbonation.

Easy to drink, nice variety of flavor. The carbonation was good, but I would have liked more. This is a totally decent beer.

Feb 10, 2012
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BeerKangaroo from Alaska

2.67/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

In a pint glass (also tested in a pilsener):

A: clear reddish brown colored body with a small fizzy head that practically dies immediately, some light carbonation seen rising and the lacing doesn't last and drips down the side

S: malty along with some bready/grainy substance and just like the regular St Pauli's, there is the "skunkiness" as well

T: same malty, bready and grainiess to it as the smell, the hops come out just a bit here in the taste.

M: light to medium, sessionable, bland aftertaste and finish

O: basic euro-lager, It's nothing great but it was drinkable but I don't think I would buy this again

Jan 19, 2012
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ZenAgnostic from Texas

3.27/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into Three Philosophers mini snifter. Best before 09.2012 stamped on bottom of back label.

Appearance - Dark brown amber body. Small offwhite / almost tan head with decent to low retention and stick.

Smell - Very nutty, earthy, and bready.

Taste - Light. A bit nutty and bitter. Stale hay. Does not hide what little alcohol it has.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied. Some bite and crispness. Mildly tannic.

Overall Drinkability - Paired this with breakfast. Eggs, homefries, and bacon. Worked well. Could be a little less tanic. Decent over all.

Jan 04, 2012
St. Pauli Girl Special Dark from St. Pauli Brauerei C.L. Wilh. Brandt Gmbh & Co.
Beer rating: 71 out of 100 with 417 ratings