Garten Bräu Munich Dark
Capital Brewery

Garten Bräu Munich DarkGarten Bräu Munich Dark
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Style:
Lager - Munich Dunkel
Ranked #84
ABV:
5.4%
Score:
84
Ranked #37,070
Avg:
3.71 | pDev: 10.78%
Reviews:
127
Ratings:
231
From:
Capital Brewery
 
Wisconsin, United States
Avail:
Year-round
Wants
  13
Gots
  9
SCORE
84
Good
Garten Bräu Munich DarkGarten Bräu Munich Dark
Notes: Styled after a traditional European Dunkel lager with dark caramel malt flavor with smooth dry finish. One of our Original Brau beers, Capital Dark is our most award winning beer and still remains an all-time favorite.
Reviews: 127 | Ratings: 231 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Beginner2
Beginner2 from Illinois

3.89/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

One of the nice things about re-reviewing a beer is that you mature and can appreciate some things more. (And admitting it in writing both purifies the soul and accelerates the learning experience.)

Capital Dark is a good dunkel. Right for the right session. (On a crummy day, I was waiting for the rain to stop so the Cubs could win the NLDS.) Like most dunkels, Capital Dark is better as it warms. I let this one warm.

I like Capital. They stick to their knitting in the German tradition and it shows in their quality. (I also was a student in Madison, before even home-brewing was legal!) Anyway... based on the BA reviews, they haven't brought this one out for three years. And they should release it more often as Capital Dark is, I'm guessing, one of the top 10 dunkels I've Had.

Nov 28, 2016
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

3.74/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

another fun unheard of brew from the beer census guys, they really hooked me up! this is loosely a german dark lager, and i think its pretty authentic. the malt is more like a brown ale with some chocolate character, more like dry cocoa, and a hint of caramel while staying dry and light on the palate. the lager yeast is evident here, it does a nice job drying up the finish and giving it a seasonally perfect crispness. im not sure why i expected this to be darker and heavier like a porter, but i am pleasantly surprised by its lightness overall. the grain captures all the darker flavors, but drinks like a blonde lager, just easy down with upbeat carbonation and a quick finish. probably one of the better american takes on this style i have come across, true to german roots but just different enough. i could drink a sixer of these no problem, and enjoy and appreciate the lower abv.

Oct 26, 2014
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jwc215 from Arizona

3.82/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours brown with a head that soon becomes patchy. Some spotted lacing sticks.

The smell is of lightly roasted grain, some cocoa and a touch of earthy noble hops.

The taste is of sweet dark grain, bread that is similar to a light pumpernickel and a hint of cocoa. Some musty grass in the finish.

It is crisp and smooth with an appropriate light to medium body.

A well-balanced, easy-drinking traditional dark lager! Enjoyable!

Apr 23, 2014
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vette2006c5r from Minnesota

3.77/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Capital Dark pours a dark brownish color with a small lacing head. There is a malty and yeasty aroma. The taste is much of the same, good yeasty flavors, with a good solid malty backbone. Good body, nice flavors, a bit on the watery side. Overall its a nice dunkel watery, but enjoyable.

Dec 01, 2013
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rhoadsrage from Illinois

3.13/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a bowtie glass)
A- This beer pours a dense but clear glowing brown body with a thin beige ring of foam.

S- The faint deep toasted malt hint is a bit lagered and the aroma is very clean.

T- The clean lagered nougat flavor takes on some dry toffee as the beer opens up and a clean dry finish ends this beer.

M- This beer has a light mouthfeel with a scrubbing fizz finish.

O- This beer is clean and well lagered with hints of flavor from some dark malt that takes on a bit of a woody oxidized flavor as it opens.

Jan 28, 2013
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falloutsnow from Illinois

3.02/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

From: Friar Tuck's, Savoy, IL
Date: "00114A10356" stamped on bottle's bottom
Glass: Ayinger willi glass

Capital's Dark is altogether fairly forgettable, blending a modest brown and dark malt sweetness with subdued European hops for a dark, though bland, lager with few distinguishing marks such as toasted nuts or chocolate. One that I will probably not seek out again.

Pours a 2cm head of light tan, fairly dense and small bubbles, which have a fairly froth-like appearance. Retention is about average, lasting a minute or two as it collapses to a modest cap of foam atop the beer. Lacing is excellent, with substantial blotches and clumps along the sides of the glass. Body is dark brown in color when out of the light, amber-brown with strong red hues when in. Carbonation through the transparent body, noticeable but modest.

Aroma is of crackers made from slightly toasted and roasted grains. Not much in the way of toasted nuts, cocoa, overall rather bland and unassuming. Least impressive aroma from a Munich Dunkel Lager I've had yet.

Major flavors in the beer are dark and brown malt sweetness, with mildly bitter hops in the background. Tasting opens with brown malt sweetness combined with a bit of mineral character. Mid-palate takes the sweetness and adds a modest hop bitterness to the background, while the back of the palate picks up European hop bitterness with a small contribution from dark malt sweetness. Aftertaste is satisfying: of modest cocoa and bitter European hops, creating an effect of bitter, European-style chocolates.

Beer is medium-light to light in body, with a bit of wateriness noticeable around the edges. Carbonation is medium to medium-high, creating a fairly prickly mouthfeel at first, before the beer fizzes up on the palate to become more flowing and creamy. Finish is semi-dry.

Sep 10, 2012
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scaliasux from Wisconsin

3.65/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Dark reddish-brown. Appears clear. Medium tall tan foamy tan head.

Smell - Rich medium roast malt. Bread, chocolate, coffee.

Taste - Rich malts. Bread and slightly bitter chocolate. Light spicy hops. A little watery.

Mouthfeel - Medium.

Overall - Pretty decent example of the style, perhaps not as richly malty as I'd hoped.

Jun 05, 2012
Photo of deebo
deebo from Michigan

3.66/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Poured into a pint glass this brew gives a finger of light tan/cream head that quickly breaks down into a skim layer. Reddish brown with pretty good clarity.

S-Slightly toasted malts with a backdrop of grainy cereal adjuncts lingering into a hint of alcohol.

T-Nice notes of toasted malt (mostly sweet but some light bitterness here too. A bit like an American brown but with more of a lager taste in the end as you'd expect from this type of beer.

M-Medium carbonation and body. Finishs pretty crisp, just a hint of bitterness.

D-A nice beer to drink with a bit more malt character than a standard lager.

O-A solid beer that I wouldn't mind having more of. I prefer this as an alternative beer to have in the summer when I'm craving some toasted malt character with good drinkability when I need a break from drinking the standard warm weather styles.

10-10-13-found a bottle of this that was sitting in the cellar since the 4/12 review. A beer that is definitely different fresh. After 1.5 years it has taken on a pretty strong raisin type flavor. Finish is long and moderately bitter. Still drinkable but now tastes like a hybrid dunkel/dubbel. It's not bad-just kind of odd. Growing on me as I finish it.

Apr 26, 2012
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WastingFreetime from Wisconsin

3.47/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Appears a transparent yet darker reddish-brown in color with a single finger of fizzy cream colored head that dissipates down to a collar in about two minutes, no lacing. Smells of medium levels of dark roasted malt character with a prune / fig garnish on top. Tastes mostly malty, but maintains strict levels of dryness throughout with a strong level of carbonation on a lighter body. I've had better and I've had worse than this one for the style.

Jan 27, 2012
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mynie from Maryland

3.83/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ahh, how I love the Munich Dunkel. Er--not a particular fan of the style, actually. It's just nice to see a beer that's labeled "dark" actually get classified into an actual style, so I got some idea what I'm in for when I open it up.

And, they kind of nailed it. It's dark ruby and smells like cereal malt, german yeast, and fruit. The worst part is the middle, which is a little too sour for the style. The best part is the end, where the yeast rubs up against the bitter malt and a lit wee bit of spicy hop and dark and ashen and refreshing.

Aug 02, 2011
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BasementBer from Canada (MB)

3.7/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Raisin brown to purplish red in color. Off white head with medium lacing.

S: Sweet malts and roasty notes.

T: Nose is malts to be sure then the middle brings in the robust character of the body. But in style, the finish is light and easy to drink.

M: coffeeish feeling on the tongue with a watery feel in the throat.

D: Good beer to go back to back with, refreshingly light in taste but with a quality that is savory.

Apr 30, 2011
Photo of robbyc1
robbyc1 from Illinois

4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clear dark brown with ruby highlights. Head is thick leaving a thick ring as it dissipates.

Aroma is roasted dark grain, and a hint of chocolate.

Taste is roasted dark grain with a touch of dark fruit sweetness. Finishes mildly dry with a lingering charred dark grain bitterness. There is a deep, rich, malty bomb. Chocolate for sure. Huge roasted flavor, and a bit of bitterness. Very nice.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied.

Overall a solid Munich Dunkel. Good bit of roasted malt flavor.
Very nice. Well put together, and certainly a bold flavor.

Apr 22, 2011
Photo of jsh420
jsh420 from Illinois

3.11/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours dark dark brown with a 1 finger off white semi tan head that left spotted lacing

smell - not very complex i pick up some caramel malt little fruit

taste - the nose might not be all that but the flavor is better - roasted grains dark fruit malt some chocolate

mouthfeel is a medium body with decent carbonation

overall this is an ok dark lager but not worth a repeat buy

Apr 18, 2011
Photo of Blakaeris
Blakaeris from Iowa

3.5/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear dark brown with ruby highlights. Head is thick and soapy, leaving a thick ring as it dissipates.

Aroma is roasted dark grain, and a hint of chocolate.

Taste is roasted dark grain with a touch of dark fruit sweetness. Finishes mildly dry with a lingering charred dark grain bitterness.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied.

Overall a decent Munich Dunkel. Good bit of roasted malt flavor.

Mar 31, 2011
Photo of bashiba
bashiba from Iowa

2.98/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured a deep ruby red with a very light head.

The smell has a light cedary and caramel nose with hints of chocolate, very light.

The flavor has a very light malty flavor with some nice hints of grain, bread, and a touch of oaky cedar.

The mouthfeel is light and a bit thin and watery.

Very average, light with not much going on, even for a session lager a bit on the boring side.

Mar 31, 2011
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BeerLover99 from Illinois

3.42/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: deep brown, trace head, no lacing.

S: mild malt, toffee, and whiff of roasted nuts

T: sweet caramel/toffee, malt middle, mild bitter finish

M: light/medium body, slight tongue prick, above average carbonation

D: Not my favorite Capital, nor the best Dunkel. There are much better out there; that being said I could easily down a 6 pack of this...average.

Mar 13, 2011
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innersanctum from Illinois

3.45/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Capital Dork is alright and I'll enjoy the six pack recently purchase.

CD has a crisp mouthfeel, a distinct lager with a slightly sweet finish.

But I've got more to say about CD's packaging. First, the label on CD has an obvious circle that covers enough of the 'A' in Dark to make it look like 'Dork'. If you guys from Capital Brew are reading this then please pay attention. You don't have to tell me that I'm drinking the High Life to help my self esteem, but don't tell me that I'm drinking Dork Dark! In fact I rather admire the gothic font, just please move your logo somewhere else on the label.

Second, the style listed herein, on Beer Advocate, is a Dunkel. Some other lesser regarded, but more commercial site (I didn't say ratebeer here) said Dunkel too. CD is a bit too tight and malty to carry the description of Dunkel but CD retains some of the crisper flavors of Dunkel to warrant it more of its cousin; there's enough of a hint of Dunkel in CD to know its in the family, but it has different parents. Dork, or Dunkel, lets just say CD, is rather like a blend of Munich Lager with some Dunkel added.

Feb 01, 2011
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dbtoe from Wisconsin

3.53/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass
A pretty good dark beer. I like most dark beers and I'd take it over others but it's not one I'm going to get often.
Look is dark brown with a head that reduces to a cap and sticks around to the end.
Smell is pretty much roasted malt.
Taste is all bitter chocolate mellows a little as it warms. I don't really get anything else.
Feel very carbonated and medium body.
Drink a very drinkable beer I could easily down a 6 pack.

Sep 24, 2010
Photo of steveh
steveh from Illinois

3.31/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Grabbed a sixpack with the redesigned label that I hope is more fresh than the last sample I had of this Cap brew.

A -- Beautiful, clear chestnut brown color with a thick, eggshell white head that settles slowly.

S -- Grainy aroma with some vague spiciness, even sourness back. Wish there were more rich malty tones.

T -- Bread crust character up front that blends into that vague sourness then into a roasty character more reminiscent of a Schwarzbier. Finishes dry and the sweetness is lower than I expect from a Munich Dunkel.

M -- Light medium body with a soft to slightly syrupy mouthfeel.

D -- Drinkability is definitely good, this is a dark beer to scare your friends with then watch their surprise at it smoothness and "lightness." I just wish this was more like a true Munich Dunkel; sort of like a Doppelbock in character without the high ABV kick.

Aug 09, 2010
Photo of Beejay
Beejay from Virginia

3.76/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Black in the glass, held up to the light and it is blood red. Nice off white head.

S: Light hop aroma, something sharp in there, but I can't put my finger on it. The malt is subdued, but present.

T: That is a deep, rich, malty bomb. Lovely. Huge roasted flavor, and a bit of bitterness. Very nice.

M: Medium to thick bodied, carbonation is good.

D: Very nice. Well put together, and certainly a bold flavor.

Aug 09, 2010
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beerwolf77 from Wisconsin

4/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to BeerFMAndy for tossing me a bottle of this.

Poured into my pint glass the beer is rusty amber brown. An aggressive pour gives me a huge three fingers of light beige head. Solid retention. A thick coating of lace is left behind as well as a nice cap.

The aroma is mostly toasted malt and a touch of spice. Swirling produces a decent amount of dark fruit and nuttiness.

The flavor has a strong malt backbone with hints of dark fruit, coffee, roast nuts and spices. Actually more going on than I antcipated.

Medium body with light carbonation.

Overall another solid lager from Capital. They sure do love the lagers.

Aug 06, 2010
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sweemzander from Illinois

3.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle poured into an imperial pint. No bottled date. Thanks to BeerFMAndy for this one!

(A)- Pours a clear brown-ish amber color that produced a decent tan head with decent retention.

(S)- A light nutty roastedness. A rustic feel with a light grassy corn meal dryness.

(T)- Very similar to the smell. A rich; rustic profile to it with a creamy nuttiness.

(M)- A good carbonation level and balance. A good malt profile with a lightly dry, hopped background.

(D)- Truthfully, not one of my most favorite styles, but this is rather good for what it is. Fits the style well and works well as something for the early fall season next to a bonfire. Good stuff.

Jul 23, 2010
Photo of deereless
deereless from Colorado

3.58/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Light brown in color, thin layer of light head, quite clear - 3.50, S: Initial whiff has a strong cacao and powered chocolate milk mix though the nose fades relatively quickly, faint fudge and candied dates, some roasted grains, no real hops that I can perceive - 3.00, T: Medium roasted malt on the palate, soft coffee, noticeable earthy hop bite - likely one of the nobles, a bready sweetness is present along with some chocolates - 3.75, M: Medium bodied - 3.50, D: All around a very drinkable beer - 3.50

Jul 02, 2010
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Strix from Wisconsin

3.72/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured dark brown, decent head with some lacing.

Smells of dark malts, dark fruits, and earth. The slightest lingering grain note.

Warm bread, malt, cocoa, earthiness, and dark fruits in the taste.

Medium mouthfeel and carbonation.

An easy drinking flavorful lager. Not world class, but I'd have another.

Jun 03, 2010
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WJVII from Wisconsin

3.13/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass this brew has a clear dark amber when held to the light has a great red hue. There was a 1 finger off white head that settled to a thin cap. The aroma is a spicy with some dark malt notes and a slight molasses hint. The taste is malty upfront with some dried fruit in the back, plums, raisins, and burnt caramel. The brew is a little thin and the light carbonation could be a little stronger. This is an OK brew, but not really a bold dark lager as I like.

May 21, 2010
Garten Bräu Munich Dark from Capital Brewery
Beer rating: 84 out of 100 with 231 ratings