Golden Era | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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Golden EraGolden Era

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Pilsner

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Golden Shower is brewed with all continental pilsner malt and hopped with the finest noble hops.

This beer is dry-hopped in the conditioning tank for 8 weeks.

80 IBU

Added by Jason on 03-28-2006

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 296 | Ratings: 325
Photo of dfillius
3.06/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Drank in a pint glass.
A: Moderate pour yields one finger of white head that subsides fairly quickly to a thin ring. Slightly hazy, I'd like it clearer. Dark gold like an IPA, darker than I expected an imperial pilsner to be.
S: A bit of alcohol up front, some malt, where's the hops? I would expect even a modicum of hop aroma for any imperial variety, especially one with a pronounced hop character in its forebear's style guideline.
T: A tad of alcohol, some malt and some off flavor. Some hops are apparent after a few sips, and the beer improves markedly once it is at about 55 degrees, however the dominant flavor is still cooked veggies.
M: Starchy/chalky like a green banana. It warms my throat and belly on the first sip. Too hot. Some liquid coats and lingers a bit on my tongue.
D: Hard to get through the first half of this one. As it warmed - and it wasn't frigid to begin with - this beer improved markedly.

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Photo of aerozeppl
4.05/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into pint glass.

A: Nice slightly cloudy golden color. One finger of white head with a decent amount of lacing.

S: Malts hit you at first then the hops. Neither really dominate.

T: Tastes like a slightly maltier version of a pilsner. Not too bad considering the unique take on the style.

M: Really syrupy and thick even for a double pilsner. Subtle and good carbonation.

D: For the abv and unuique style a very drinkable beer. Not something I would seek out every day but very well done.

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Photo of FleeVT
3.74/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz. brown bottle, bottled on 2/2/08.

A: A beautiful clear golden brew with a white head; like a ray of sunshine in my glass. Head fades quick but leaves a layer throughout the beer.
S: The pilsner malts hit the nose first, with a speckling of hops. A caramel sweetness hangs back from the crowd. The 9% ABV is evident in the nose, with a cleansing effect on the balance.
T: An expected dose of hops on the palate jumps out first. It provides a great balance to the caramel sweetness of the malts. Floral accents help the crisp clean finish.
M: A creamy and heavy bodied pilsner. Moderate carbonation enhances the creaminess.
D: I would definitely oder again. Like most Dogfish offerings, it delivers an abundance of flavor.

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Photo of PlaywrightSam
3.62/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into tulip glass. Golden (obviously) in color, very clear, moderate to minimal amount of white head that retains to a caked on layer. Decent lacing.

The smell is very heavy light malts, caramel, some citrus notes in there, maybe even some tropical fruit. The hops are sort of distant but they're there.

Taste is very sweet up front, the hops making a pretty firm appearance in the finish. I feel like the balance is a bit off, I'm left with a sweetness in my mouth that's a tad sickly... Alcohol is definitely present on the finish, as well. Mouthfeel is smooth, moderate to low carbonation.

This is definitely an interesting beer, I've never had an imperial pilsner. But I have to say, I'm not a huge fan of normal pilsners, so I'm not a huge fan of this beer either. It's definitley a nice brew, it has some really nice layers to it that come through when it warms, but there's just something off in the balance. I love almost all of the DFH offerings so maybe my standards are a bit too high... But definitely worth a try.

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Photo of JackWeizen
4.01/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A puffy white head forms into my taster glass as I pour, jumping above the rim, but holding its position. It fades slightly with each sip, leaving a line of sticky lacing. Golden color, with the ultimate clarity. I'm very impressed with this beers look.

A deep sniff takes in floral and spiciness from hops, and major amounts of pilsner malt. Clean aromas, but complex. Alcohol is present.

This stuff has a great taste. The balance of a quality Czech pils is well maintained. The hops do well to bitter the beer without detracting from the malt. They have a nice floral aftertaste. The malt itself is clean, and well treated by the fermentation.

Carbonation could be a little stronger, but the body is there. Alcohol sits in the tongue after each sip.

I could go for another, but I only have one. A great "extreme" beer.

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Photo of Monkeyknife
4.23/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle a clear bright straw color with a rich foamy white head.

Aroma of sweet malts and slightly bready with a nice amount of floral hops.

The taste is very clean with a dollup of sweetness to it. The sweet malts give way to a floral hop finish. Each sip hints at the 9% alcohol presence.

Medium mouthfeel, smooth, and moderately carbonated.

This is a very nice Imperial Pilsner from Dogfish Head.Very easy to drink. These could easily lull you into thinking this is a sessionable beer. Don't be fooled. One or two is plenty.

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Photo of ZimZamZoom
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice looking bronze color, bright white head, tight bubbled and clingy.

Aroma is a pleasant blend of earthy malt, mildly spicy hops, vague peppery notes and alcohol. Interesting and bold.

Taste is full of the hop spice, some sweet malt, and warm alcohol. The alcohol leads to a nice bitter hop finish that does keep on going for a while.

Full bodied and rich. Smooth mouthfeel and drinkable despite the high ABV. Sure I would drink another...just maybe not right away. This beer is big and bold and beautiful.

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Photo of sincereNc
3.85/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into an Ommegang tulip glass

A- Golden, straw colored. Poured one finger of head

S- Didnt get as much as i would have liked. Floral and slighty sweet. Nice hops aroma as well.

T- Starts off with an almost overly sweetness, then leads into a nice jolt of hops. A nice balance between the two though. Just enough bitterness too.

M- Great carbonation with a slight creaminess to the mouthfeel.

D- Even with a well hid 9% , its still a sipper to me.

Reviewed on 2/21/08

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Photo of dsa7783
4.12/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz single bottle copped from Buy Rite on Oak Tree in South Plainfield... As far as the Imperial Pilsner style is concerned, this is certainly one of the best depictions of the style out there on the market, for sure... Dogfish did exceptionally well with this one - creating a strong, flavorful, and eccentric Pilsner bursting with strength and character... Pours a hazy, cloudy, straw-colored, golden appearance with a big foamy and frothy head that exhibited some staying power before eventually receding... Smell was bursting with fresh hops, honey, and florals...
taste strongly complemented the aroma, with noticeable hops, sugars, yeast, sweet candies, and an ultra-fresh, floral taste that exceeded expectations... Excellent stuff, with a good mouthfeel and an equally high-level of drinkability, where the hefty 9% ABV struggled to flex its alcoholic muscles behind a rich conglomeration of clear, clean-cut, fresh flavors that dominated for a Pilsner... Very good, high-quality stuff... Definitely recommended... The only down-side to this great beer was the slightly strong sweet flavor that pervaded this sample.. this one would have defintiely been better if it had been slightly more hoppy and bitter and a little less sweet... nonetheless, good stuff..

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Photo of oberon
3.73/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pilsner a deep clear rich golden with a large blooming sticky white head that clung to the glass as it settled slowly.Big vinious hop aromas herbal and citric with that green tea element that a few others have noted a bit of iron and residual sweetness as well more like a APA to me really.Hops dominate the palate as well cascade-like citric tones and some soft herbal notes,there is an underlying sweetness wich becomes more prevelent as it warms.Iam a hop head no doubt about it but when I drink a impy pilsner I want more pilsner qualities,Sam Adams version was more raw and not so "Americanized",still not bad.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.15/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a deep golden color ale with a small foamy head with some retention but no lacing. Aroma of sweet malt with some dry European hops. Taste is a weird mix between a very sweet malt base with some dry hops at the end. Body is quite full with some good carbonation and no apparent alcohol. I thought this was way too sweet and not the best form this usually interesting brewery.

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Photo of iconoklaztor
3.98/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer is very interesting. It has a massive amount of carbonation. Tons and tons of tiny bubbles finish their life at the bottom of this Imperial Pilsners head. The smell is some what (matt) grainy. The taste is the same and a little alcoholic. The mouthfeel is somewhat dry. The drinkability is nice. This brew has a full, robust mouthfeel.

Overall, I think this beats the hell out of the Sam Adams Imperial Pilsner. I like this brew!

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Photo of bassmantin
3.99/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very transparent golden yellow with signficant carbonation and moderate white head.

Call me crazy, but I think it smells like green tea. That's the hops shining through. Taste is very interesting. Not a whole hell of a lot going on, but the hops are interesting. Pure unadulterated hops. Decent alcohol taste lingers at the end. Not bad.

Overall: Not complex, but an interesting case in hoppiness.

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Photo of MiguelMandingo
4.03/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked this up at Chevy Chase Wine and Spirits in Washington DC. The only other Imperial Pilsner I have had is an SA Hallertau Imperial Pilsner, and I prefered DFH's over SA's. This has a certain depth of flavor, and I felt SA's was over-hopped for over-hopping's sake.

Poured a 12oz. bottle into a pilsener glass.

Appearance - It is a straw yellow gold color, and it produced a rocky two finger head that slowly dissipated. It left a bit of lacing behind as the head dissipated. It looks very enticing. There is a constant stream of carbonation bubbles from the bottom of the glass.

Smell - The smell is interesting. There is a slightly sweet scent that is closely tied to a certain breadiness. There is a floral hop note that is very appealing. There are notes of citrus - primarily lemon. It smells very clean.

Taste - There is a slight sweetness in the initial flavor - I expected it, being that this is from DFH, but it is much more subdued than their other beers. The sweetness quickly gives way to a bready note (presumably from the pislener malt), and the sweetness returns in the form of caramel or honey, all before the hops kick in. The hops are very tasty - flowery at first and then very bitter. Very tasty, complex.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied. The beer is slightly oily and sticky as it washes back down the throat. The carbonation level is near perfect - prickly, complementing the bitterness of the hops very nicely.

Drinkability - This was an easy brew to drink, despite it being 9% ABV. The flavor and scent were very interesting, a very unique beer for me at this point in my beer drinking career. I am not a huge fan of pilseners, but I really enjoyed this one. I wish I had picked up a second bottle.

If you ever see it, give it a shot.

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Photo of ffejherb
3.98/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle into Troegs Hopback glass on 2/4/08.

A - Pours a beautiful clear, golden amber body with two-finger rocky white head and tons of carbonation bubbles swirling to the surface. Solid head retention with lots of thick lacing around the glass.

S - Extremely fragrant grassy hop nose with some citrus and sour lemon notes and a hefty whiff of alcohol. Very sweet malt with a slight biscuity aspect and lots of caramel.

T - Starts off with a very sweet malt aspect that lasts for a while, then transforms into a sharp bitterness, like noble hops on steroids. Lots of strong, grassy hops with some citrus bitterness and lemon pucker. Bold malt sweetness with bready and biscuity qualities.

M - Exceptionally smooth and creamy... quite a pleasant surprise! Plenty of heat from the 9% ABV, as well as adequate prickle on the tongue, thanks to the ample carbonation. Long-lasting bitter finish that is slightly metallic.

D - Despite the high ABV%, I find this quite drinkable due to the smooth mouthfeel and big, bold flavors. Not sure how many of these I could handle in one sitting, though. Chalk up another extreme brew for DFH.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.8/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, $6.49 at Lone Hill Liquors in Glendora, CA,

A: Pours golden, with a firm white head, good retention and good lacing.

S: Bready malt, a hint of acidity, and a flowery hop character, some alcohol in there as well.

T: Bready at first, almost a sourdough character, slight caramel/toffee, then a light-medium bitterness comes up, light IPA range, I'd say - very floral and earthy and also a smooth ethyl alcohol profile came in there too.

M: Solventy, medicinal, smooth and crisp, with some light resin.

D: An interesting beer, interesting flavour, though at the price, I'd rather have a Midas Touch.

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Photo of Traquairlover
3.9/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12-oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A = Golden honey color, white head, dissipates quickly with medium lacing. Carbonation is medium-light with medium sized bubbles.

S = Sweet light malt smell, light scent of honey and flowers, smells of the salty seashore, hops scents of both citrus and pine varieties in about equal measure but they are understated because of the sweet malt smells. Pretty light but well balanced.

T = Light sweet malt flavors, then floral hops, then a very bitter bite. The taste is less hoppy than I expected from the style, but from the bitterness it is clearly a very highly hopped beer. The finish is very long and very bitter. The taste before the finish is a very interesting mix of sweet honeyed grain flavors mixed with a slight saltiness.

M = Medium to heavy bodied, great mouthcoating, perfect carbonation which pleasantly teases the mouth without either getting foamy or being too stinging.

D = This is a good Imperial Pilsner, but I would have liked more flavor from the hops, not just the bitters. It is very pleasant though and I would definitely drink it again.

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Photo of tgbljb
3.85/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a clear golden color with sparse white head. Thin coating with no lacing.
Smell is restrained with a light maltiness.
Taste is of bready malt with a nice bitter sensation at the finish. Alcohol is completely hidden.
Finishes with a stronger bitterness that leaves a nice taste retention.
An enjoyable beer. I'm sure the alcohol will hit me soon.

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Photo of PinbackerAle
3.96/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I picked up several beers this evening, but all of them came from the warm isle except for the Dogfish Head Golden Era. Upon getting home I decided there was no other choice.

The appearance of this brew is perfect. It is a beautiful gold with wonderful white head. The beer looks extremely inviting.

The smell the Golden Era gives off is a powerful one. A complex mixture of fruits and hops immediately hit the nose.

The taste compliments the smell quite well. Simply put this beer is delicious. It's definitely not too sweet but does have that character. The alcohol is extremely well masked and barely pokes its head through the onslaught of hops, fruits and malts. It reminds me of a DIPA to some degree.

The mouthfeel is slightly thick and definitely worthy of its Imperial prefix. It has a mouthfeel similar to a DIPA and it is very rewarding.

The drinkability of this brew is definitely high as it is quite enjoyable, but it is quite demanding on your wallet so I couldn't imagine drinking that many in row. It's not that type of beer anyway. Sit somewhere comfortable, relax, put on some Jazz (or whatever you dig while you drink) and just enjoy this beer. Don't multitask more then necessary, just enjoy the brew.

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Photo of saintwarrick
3.89/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My only wish is that I had gotten a bottle that said Golden Shower on it. To impress my friends, who are easily impressed.

This brew poured a very straw golden color with a half fizzy, but thick head on it that was a decent quarter inch and never fell. Aroma is slightly hoppy, but not over the top like Sam Adams' Imperial pilsner, another good hoppy pilsner. Some fresh cut grass also in the smell, while the taste has a lot of that with a shot of lemon juice for good measure. Nice hop bitterness at the end, but not mouth-puckering hoppy, like some of the other brews in this style.

All in all, the most approachable of this style. Very tasty and quite drinkable for 9 percent.

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Photo of mt5000
2.51/5  rDev -32.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Beer pours a golden color and quite clear. Aromas are predominantly hops, with some citrus, pine, grains, and a vague malty aroma very much in the background. Taste is simply not good. It's nearly all hops, very much out of balance, and is far too metallic. I think what Dogfish was going for here was an American Pilsner with more hops added to the batch, but the result is that the hops take over the beer. It's also far too hot. Not drinkable at all, I couldn't finish my glass. If you really, and I mean really, like hops then you might like this beer. I love Dogfish Head, but they've always been a little hit or miss.

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Photo of phishgator
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pilsner glass. Nice big head, fluffly white with tight carbonation throughout. The color is a pale yellow and clarity is amazing. The hops can be smelled from across the room. Seem to be the traditional style hops for the style. The taste is a little hot from the alcohol. The hop bite comes into play form start to finish. The malty backbone is there and makes the brew's body a bit thick. I would have to say that as the brew warms its not as good because the alcohol really shows.

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Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.26/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Appearance - pours a golden orange into a goblet. Not much head formation, just a thin cover, but some decent lacing ridges around the high water mark. Beautiful clarity.

Aroma - starts off with a candied fruit scent and doesn't go very far beyond that. A little alcohol creep as it settles in. Kind of faint and non-descript after a minute or two but a trace of the sweetness remains.

Taste - a rich chewy grain at first, brief and without much time to show any depth. Hops come in pretty quick, showing signs of the classic pilsner but in a very intense way. Of course the bitterness is ramped up, but the flavor intensity is such that I don't fully recognize them as pils-style hops. It's a good sharp bitterness, little if any medicinal traits. The swallow and finish show quite the profile, along with some late abv warmth about halfway through the bottle. The 9% is not that evident but it emerges after a bit.

Mouthfeel - big, more than sturdy enough to carry the imperial name and with a good crisp level of bubbles.

Drinkability - I have enjoyed the 4-pack, but would not likely re-visit this one. The pilsner flavor is one I tend to enjoy more in less intensity but more rounds.

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Photo of paulthebeerguru
3.95/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured into a snifter. pours a straw yellow color with a solid white head. really nice lacing. Aroma of golden raisins, a very sweet bouquet, with a hint of high alcohol. Sweet malts with a great amount of hops in this imperial pilsner. Mouthfeel is a little dry with a nice warm sensation. Confuses the palate. This has probably been my favorite imperial pilsner so far. Great job as always, Dogfish Head.

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Photo of slvrmon82
4.8/5  rDev +29%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

AKA Golden Shower AKA Prescription Pils... Now Golden Era

A - Real clear real light for the punch.

S - Very malty with lots hops at the end.

T - Wow. An Imperial Pilsner huh. Amazing. Really complex with not a lot of alcohol in the finishing taste.

M - Very crisp and light. Perfect for a hot summer day.

D - Dangerous! You could easily drink more than you know of this amazing one of a kind beer.

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Golden Era from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
3.72 out of 5 based on 325 ratings.
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