Dark 266
Cameron's Brewing Co.

Dark 266Dark 266
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Lager - European Dark
Ranked #110
Ranked #47,729
3.28 | pDev: 15.24%
Cameron's Brewing Co.
Ontario, Canada
Dark 266Dark 266
Notes: Cameron’s Dark 266 is a rare breed of beer that was originally brewed as a one-off draught for one of our specialty beer bars. The demand for an encore was so persistent that that we had to bottle it and share it with everyone. Specialty imported hops and dark malts result in a chestnut coloured lager with a wonderful lacy head. Taste the deliciousness of a North American Lager with the complexity of a German Schwarzbier.
Reviews: 34 | Ratings: 60 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by RedAleMan:
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RedAleMan from Canada (ON)

3.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Nov 30, 2012
More User Reviews:
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pootz from Canada (ON)

3.7/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

( I had to make this clear because this is what is stated on the label and is self apparent in the taste...but god knows when the correction will show up on BA)


Pours a dark chestnut-cola color...lightly hazed..decent sticky tan colored cap lasts and laces the glass.

Aromas of mocha, cocoa, toffee, dark toast a light blush of wet hay and earthiness.

Big dose of caramel and toasted malts in the front leave a burnt toffee on toast discernment...midway there is a wee bit of complexity with some nuts and earth tones added to the sweet roast character. Finishes slowly as the metallic and burnt husk astringency tastes slowly take over...aftertaste is lightly charred bitter with some caramel.

Ample Malt backbone, sturdy body, creamy mouth feel, roasty-earthy character.

Certainly a well crafted Canadian dunkel with a unique character which I enjoy. smooth, flavorful, satisfying. Certainly this brewer’s best offering and the second best dunkel on the Ontario market...hope they make this a mainstay brand.

Aug 29, 2007
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Phyl21ca from Canada (QC)

2/5  rDev -39%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Bottle: Poured a dark brown color ale with a medium off-white foamy head with minimal retention. Aroma of molasses malt is quite overpowering. Taste of molasses malt are also overly present in this beer and it’s not something that I generally look for. Hops are pretty much non-existent and body is just above average. I’d say this is generally quite boring…

Jan 05, 2006
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TerryW from Canada (ON)

3.25/5  rDev -0.9%

Nov 08, 2014
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BDTyre from Canada (BC)

3.56/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

So-so dark lager from Cameron's. Looks good - dark brown with ruby highlights and a creamy two finger head.

Really light smell to it; mild malts and not much else. Very "watery" nose.

The taste is better: toffee, slight hop bitterness. Very faint metallic tinge. Malty without being to rich and there is no skunkiness one tends to find in lighter lagers.

Light, but not too thin. The wateriness in the nose does not come through in the body. A good alternative to macro lagers.

May 19, 2010
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Mindsquall from Canada (ON)

4.23/5  rDev +29%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up this morning from the brewery and this I found to be a pleasant surprise.

It pours a nice dark red, head is a little lacking but there's some lace on top. Smell is fresh, sweet, with some slightly roasty characteristics. Flavor is quite delicious, strong malt profile with hints of Maple and Brown Sugar. This goes down nice, smooth and easy.

I found this to be an excellent beer. Definitely will have again.

Jan 13, 2007
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MMansfield from Canada (NS)

1.51/5  rDev -54%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

Brought back sample from the brewery.

Apperance: Pours a cola brown with a tanned cap. Settles to a tiny ring with next to no lace.

Aroma: Intensely fruity, almost like a cherry fruit rollup. Very sweet, no hop profile.

Taste: Infected yeast with a finish similar to stomach bile.

Mouthfeel: Thin, moderate carbonation.

Final Statement: No Comment.

Feb 18, 2008
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biegaman from Canada (ON)

3.03/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Since Cameron's doesn't specify how dark this dark ale is meant to be, we won't deduct them points for it being relatively see-through nor for the well kindled, light chestnut tone. In all honestly, actually, this is a fine looking ale, especially when you come to appreciate just how spongy and throttling its sepia toned head and lace really are.

The aroma requires a lot of smelling to come up with only a little to say about it. The bouquet has only piddling elements of sweetness and roast, with a light coffee-cake kind of flavour in its breath. Roasted malts can be noted but they seem in alarmingly low numbers, same can be said of its nearly inconsequential portion of dark fruity esters.

Although it negligibly resembles a German schwarzbier (or even Munich Dunkel) this simply doesn't have enough malty character to really qualify for either style. Indeed, when the brewery boast that this "offers the drinkability of a North American lager" what they really mean to say is that this has about as much flavour as the typical North American lager.

Which is to say: very little. And what little - what very, very little - flavour is there isn't exactly the most savory or sumptuous neither. A light but acrid roast, it resembles water that's been infused with spent coffee grinds. Hints of stale caramel or rotten dark fruit might be noted as well but, by and large, this is weak and painfully plain.

People who like this little flavour and character in their beers are not the ones likely drink a beer with 'dark' in its name. Colour aside, this has no difference from most conventional pale ales or lagers; it has no more sweetness, roast, bitterness or body. The brewery claims that it took 266 batches to get the recipe right - I suggest they try a few more.

Jun 26, 2010
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cratez from Canada (ON)

3.22/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle from the Cameron's Mixer Pack, purchased at the Lawrence & Avenue LCBO. Deep chestnut brown with copper edges and a sliver of cream white head. Some lacing lingers after each sip. Smell is cream, dark bread dough, brown sugar, pecan, fruity and floral aromas. Taste is basic roasted/black malts, some sweetness, water, vague spice from the hops, barely traceable nuttiness to finish. Mouthfeel is light bodied, thin, watery, only a touch of creaminess midway, small bite toward the end, drying chalky finish, no aftertaste. Easy to drink, but ultimately a bland and characterless beer.

Jul 26, 2010
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mintjellie from Canada (ON)

3.36/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Deep chestnut brown colour; ruby highlights show when held to light. Topped by two fingers of tan head. Fair retention and good lace. Mute aroma - toasted bread and light coffee notes, a hint of burnt sugar. Pleasant but quite weak. Malt forward, burnt toast and black coffee flavour, lightly sweet; finishes clean aside from some light char that lingers in the back of the mouth. Light-bodied with low carbonation. Thin, but not quite watery. A little slight on character, but what's there tastes decent.

May 13, 2012
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thehyperduck from Canada (ON)

3.51/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

341 mL bottle from a sampler pack of four (packaged on Nov. 8th, 2011). I've had trouble generating heads when I pour this style of beer, so I basically dumped it into the pint glass this time, revealing a deep chestnut brown-coloured brew that is not quite dark enough to be opaque. There are ruby-red highlights under the light.

At first the beige-coloured, two-finger head is creamy and luxurious, but its retention is still rather poor, and after a few minutes only a film on the surface remains. There is a thin creamy collar around the edge of the glass as well, which leaves streaks of lacing in its wake. The aroma is alright I guess, but kind of bland. Sweet caramel malts are pretty dominant, with some roasted coffee notes.

Decent taste with bready, lightly roasted malts, caramel and molasses being prominent. Hints of roasted coffee, or perhaps baker's chocolate. Roasted malts and bitter coffee meet in the finish, which is brief... this is a fairly clean brew without much aftertaste. Thin-bodied with mild carbonation, but as far as drinkability goes, it is as high as any pale lager's.

Smooth, mild and easy to throw back, this is a serviceable, fairly enjoyable example of a beer style that I often find either bland or cloying. Potentially very sessionable if you are in the mood for something dark, but not complex enough to satisfy serious beer geeks... I could definitely see myself getting this again if I found it on-tap somewhere.

Nov 16, 2011
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Reinheitsgebot71 from Canada (ON)

3.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

The first of the Cameron's 4 pack sampler graciously given to me by the brewery.

A deep mahogany body with caramel ruby glances in the light rests below the mocha head. Some good retention here, as one would expect of the style.

The nose is of chocolate, slightly fruity grape esters. Sour tones of apple mix with mild coffee bean scents.

Flavours of cocoa and caramel are balanced by some minimal hopping. Everything is very clean and crisp while still having a good malt base of flavor.

The body is smooth on the tongue if somewhat watery.
A decent dark lager that would make a good summer quencher.

Jul 29, 2010
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Electros from Canada (ON)

3.21/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Jan 10, 2015
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Griffith from Connecticut

3/5  rDev -8.5%

Jan 09, 2014
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irishkyle21 from Canada (ON)

3/5  rDev -8.5%

Sep 05, 2013
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biboergosum from Canada (AB)

3.3/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 20oz pint at my hotel bar in downtown Toronto, before a nice anniversary dinner with my better half.

This beer appears a clear, very dark brown colour, with prominent mahogany tints, and one finger of tightly foamy, bubbly, and soapy beige head, which leaves some decent melting iceberg lace around the glass as it slowly recedes.

It smells of mild roasted biscuity caramel malt, an oily nuttiness, some plain mid-day, lightly milked coffee, an apple and orange orchard fruitiness, and rather understated earthy, leafy hops. The taste is lightly roasted bready malt, a muted caramel sweetness, breakfast toast, southern biscuits, and softly acrid fruity, herbal hops.

The carbonation is moderate, the body medium in weight and plainly smooth, with a pithy, almost, but not quite, milky sourness. It finishes somewhat sweet and malty, with an increasing musty dryness.

A standard Canadian micro-brewed dark ale, with maybe a bit more complexity than is the norm, but still nothing to get all that excited about - now, on to the more vaunted wine pairing(s) for the evening - bring it on, Reds.

Jan 31, 2010
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drtth from Pennsylvania

3.53/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

The dark brown beer is served in a nonic pint glass with a 1/2" light tan head that leaves some lacing as the beer is consumed but doesn't itself persist very long before becoming a layer on the surface.

The aromas include coffee, a bit of slight roasted malt, some orchard fruit and and some hints of dark bread.

The flavors are much as expected from the nose with a fair amount of roasted bready malt, but there's also just a hint of sweetness and some fruity and herbal hops.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with some persistent moderate carbonations. As the finish begins any malt and sweetnes slides a way to leave the fruit and coffee which then go away to allow a dry slightly earthy dryness.

On the whole a nice middle of the road quality beer that isn't much to write home about but which is smooth, tasty and worth trying.

May 01, 2014
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GodOfBeer from Canada (ON)

3.8/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Wow I can't believe this has such a low rating, I thought this was a pretty good beer.

It pours a nice thick dark with a tanned head that leaves some lacing.

Smells somewhat nutty and malty, some burnt grains also.

Smooth nutty/malty flavour with some caramel/chocolatey notes on the finish.

Overall a good dark lager?

Oct 27, 2008
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bobsy from Canada (ON)

2.98/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I was pleasantly surprised by the quality of the auburn, so I figured why not give the 266 a try...

Poured a very dark chestnut brown with a foamy off-white head, that settles to a small cap, but doesn't lace much. Muted treacle aroma. The flavour is fairly plain - some dark fruit, a touch of caramel, a faint hint of coffee roast and smoke in the tail. There's also a strange flavour in there that I can't quite nail. Its almost like cream that's starting to turn. Although it adds a little bit of interest to an otherwise bland beer, I'm not sure its a good thing. Fairly light body and medium carbonation is more or less par.

Kinda plain and disappointing, although I'm sure it would be a decent stepping stone beer as there's more going on in here than in some of the more commercially available beers. The vote is still out on Cameron's - one good, one bad.

Dec 04, 2008
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terryeckmeier from Canada (ON)

2.54/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thought I was going to get this nice beefy dark styled beer but was left thinking where is the umpff. All in all very drinkable and would be a great dark beer for someone who doesn't drink a whole lot of beer especially dark. Although the colour is nice don't let it fool you. All in all a decent beer but I was hoping for a nice dark roasted malt, bitter finish. Well I guess I will just have to try all the Cameron's beers to find one I like.

Mar 12, 2009
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TheHammer from Canada (ON)

3.5/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Well, it only produced a finger of head that didn't lace or sustain whatsoever. The body is as dark as night but show cases decent carbonation and a deep and dark ruby.

Smell: A mild toffee smell with some smoky coffee notes, but sadly it just isn't making enough of a presence. Warming didn't seem to help it's case either. Nice, just not forceful enough.

Taste: A very simple offers, starts with a modest sweet Toffee malt that permiates through the entire experience. The toffee builds as dark chocolate and coffee flavours peak just as a sweep of smoky slightly burnt taste mixed with hops that doesn't quite sit right. I've never encountered something like that.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation is a bit too flat for my liking and that odd ending to the beer is odd, but apart from that it's quite good. It leaves you with a very mild malt and toffee aftertaste and the shifting of tastes in the beer is quite good until the end.

Drinkability: Far higher then I would expect from a dark beer, but it is a dark lager. It's smooth going down, and the odd end doesn't linger long enough to hurt the cause. Strikes me as a late spring drinker.

Final Thoughts: Cameron's has always struck me as a gateway brewery. They don't quite brew stuff that appeals to the beer connoisseur but they are certainly not the kind of brewery who brews macro swill to get by. This beer is no exception, and is really the kind of beverage to ween someone off adjunct lager syndrome and into more flavourful beer drinking.

Jan 03, 2011
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MeisterBurger from Canada (ON)

2.74/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The last of my Cameron's Mixed Four Pack.

It looks like a poured a Coke, dark with walnut hues, into my Sam Adam's perfect pint glass. Little retention or lacing to speak of.

The aroma is light roast and sweetness but really there's not much going on here for me except--and I'm just going to go on a right-out-of-left-field tangent here and say mild curry. Some Coca-Cola notes come out as it warms.

The taste is caramel and roast with an overall rounded dark fruitiness and breadiness about it with notes of coffee.

Mouthfeel is watery and light.

Of the four that come in the mixed pack I would have to say this is the weakest. There's just not a lot that interests me in the taste.

May 13, 2011
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kwjd from Canada (ON)

3.27/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark reddish-brown, but not quite opaque, colour with light tan head. Some spotty lacing down the glass. I can smell some hops with the dark chocolate malt. Flavour has a mild bitterness, but it wasn't too much to overpower the sweetness of the beer. Quite sweet overall, maybe a bit too much. Body is a little bit thin, but carbonation was nice. Easy to drink and have pitchers of, but not something to seek out.

Aug 30, 2010
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bylerteck from Canada (ON)

3.31/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Last of the 4 pack sampler.

A - Pours a dark amber. Bright. Can't see any carbonation. Soapy, fluffy khaki head is 2 fingers. Creamy half finger head remains throughout with good rings of lacing.

S - Toffee, cola, burnt coffee, dark malts.

T - Cola, toffee, partially roasted malt. It tastes 'dark' but just like a weak coffee or something. It's not fruity or roasty. Flavourful though not all that great. Dark breads.

M - Medium carbonation, medium body, cola type finish.

O/D - Not bad, but it could be improved upon. It's got too much cola and burnt coffee. Needs improvement, but it's alright.

Jul 16, 2011
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JohnnyBarman from Canada (ON)

3.18/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle from a mixed four pack. I vaguely remember having this on tap a few years back, so it's certainly been a while.

Poured into a conical pint glass. Dark indeed, but held to the light and a soft chestnut hue overtakes the brew. The pour leaves an off-white head that displays good retention and some sticky lacing. Not bad at all.

Nose is grain (a distinct scent that I always associate with Camerons), caramel, fruit, dark chocolate and a bit of roasted coffee.

Not bad to the taste. This is a decent dark lager that's easy to drink. That same grainy flavor, coupled with a mild roasted character and breadiness. The whole thing feels thin, though, not a robust brew by any stretch. Pushing English mild brown territory. Same with the mouthfeel - thin carbonation, thin bodied.

Certainly worth a try, as this is by no means a bad effort (indeed, as I can see from my review, "not bad" as a descriptor keeps coming up) - it just needs some work to stand out among the other efforts featured in this dark ale heavy province.

Feb 22, 2011
Dark 266 from Cameron's Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 77 out of 100 with 60 ratings