Dark Ale
Ground Breaker Brewing

Dark AleDark Ale
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American Porter
Ranked #1,015
Ranked #39,494
3.46 | pDev: 22.25%
Ground Breaker Brewing
Oregon, United States
Dark AleDark Ale
Notes: Formerly Harvester Dark Ale

Our Dark Ale is the third beer rounding out our current lineup. It uses a very dark, near espresso-like roast of our chestnuts. The extra dark chestnuts lend a roasty flavor and aroma with notes of chocolate and dark fruits. The hops take a supporting role in this beer allowing the roastiness to come forward in the palette.

25 IBU
Reviews: 5 | Ratings: 15 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of StonedTrippin
3.74/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

served on nitro, this beer was possibly my favorite from our visit here. what a cool place, and what a cool idea to make a beer like this with toasted chestnuts and lentil to keep it gluten free. this is really the only one of their beers i tasted any chestnut in, and its a cool complexion, the roast is very different than it might be from a dark barley, less bitter and charred and such, more chocolate notes come out, more protein and nuance too though i think. it comes across just a little sweet, which i think works with the nitro feel, but its also a little thin, i thought most of them were here, but its tough to compare to normal grain based beers. notes of sarsaparilla and almond, cocoa and raisin, this was quite the layered little beer. a little light on the roast to fall into the porter category i think, but on the brown ale spectrum its really nice. despite being a little watery, it has a really great smoothness about it. not without hops, there is some balancing bitterness on the back end, a little grassy thing, and even a little spice. tasty and clever and well done. i was impressed with everything here.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

22oz bottle, 4.5% ABV. Nice to see a GF option from Portlandia, that nirvana of brewing. And as usual, I have to get my dander up about the misuse of the palate/palette/pallet grammar issue, from the very people who should just god-damned well know better.

This beer pours a clear, medium copper amber hue, with two pudgy fingers of bubbly, rocky, and tightly foamy ecru head, which leaves a few instances of sudsy peninsular lace around the glass as things gradually recede.

It smells very much like butterscotch ice cream - a sturdy semi-sweet chestnut, walnut, and/or pecan nuttiness, milky caramel/toffee malt notes (WTF?), and very soft herbal, leafy hops. The taste is much more astringent in its approach to said nuttiness - almost acrid, like the sweetness has been recently bled out of the whole affair, the malt also taking a certain nosedive - more egdy alternagrain than anything pale or caramel malt-borne, with some roasted coffee beans, bittersweet cocoa, and peppy herbal, leafy hops rounding things out.

The carbonation is quite prevalent in its robust frothiness, the body on the lee side of a standard medium weight, and kind of pithy in its plain as the day is long smoothness. It finishes more or less dry, the initial promise of a sweet nuttiness now long dead - a clammy bready graininess sort of lingering in repose.

A huge step forward in the G-F world of brewing, where barley and wheat are no longer welcome. Not sure that I would flatter this one by deeming it any sort of 'porter', but it is a serviceable enough brown ale, whose denomination is still too hard to discern. As expected, a bit lacking in its overall bearing, but patently agreeable, I would imagine, to those whose such options are so much more limited than mine.

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Photo of mactrail
3.22/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I have had to admit that Harvester makes actually drinkable sorghum beer-- not just drinkable but actually enjoyable, in several flavors. I don't know whether they toast their sorghum to make it dark, or if it's just a lot of chestnuts. While it doesn't taste quite like a barley beer-- there is nothing like dark roasted barley malt-- it doesn't really taste like chestnuts either.

In any case, this is a lovely shade of russet brown with a perfectly acceptable foamy cap in the glass. The mouthfeel is a little silky, but even blindfolded you wouldn't think of an oatmeal stout, even though that's the other main ingredient. There is just a sourish twinge and a rather bitter aftertaste. Thank goodness there is no gluten in hops or who knows what they would be using for bittering.

A hint of butter in the aroma. Overall this makes for a decent, though peculiar quaff, with some body in the mouth and a grainy, dark, bitterish, tangy flavor. From the 22 oz bottle bought at Bottleworks in Seattle.

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Photo of Scotchboy
3.65/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber picked up from Whole Foods in Portland OR. This beer was my wife's but I siphoned off a 4oz taster...

A: Dark transparent brown, with golden hues...small amount of off-white head and minimal lace.

S: Pleasant for a GF offering...there is sweetness, but its not cider-like, which is my main complaint with most other GF beers...chocolate, hints of roast coffee, roasted chestnuts, and nutty earthyness. Surprisingly beer-like for a GF beer.

T: Taste follows the nose, there is a decent amount of bitterness, chocolate and nutty sweetness, a moderate roasted component, hints of coffee and toasted nuts, finishes dry.

MF: Creamy medium body with lighter carbonation. Just fine for the style.

O: Pretty good - I will even go '4' because this is by far the best GF beer I've tried. The dry finish and slightly un-beer-like aftertaste almost drags this one back into the pack of other gluten-free 'misses' but overall this beer scores well as a good GF option.

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Photo of Reidrover
3.13/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber from "Lifesource" Salem. $5.99 Decided to take achance on this new gluten free brewery Nice warm fireside brown ale with a good sized frothy light tan head. Toasty roast ,nutty aromas..small ding of milk chocolate. Pleasant enough Hnn very espresso coffee flavour..indeed its mainlly black coffee, some nuts and dark sour fruitiness. Very thin and even watery on the palate but I am still enjoying the coffee after taste. Brave attempt and it has some good points but probably wont get again..unless i get Celiacs

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Dark Ale from Ground Breaker Brewing
Beer rating: 83 out of 100 with 15 ratings