Great Lakes Eliot Ness | Great Lakes Brewing Co.

3,187 Ratings
Great Lakes Eliot NessGreat Lakes Eliot Ness

Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Ohio, United States

Style: Vienna Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
An amber lager with rich, fragrant malt flavors balanced by crisp noble hops.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-11-2001

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 3,187 |  Reviews: 1,025
Photo of MShirokov
2.31/5  rDev -43.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.25

I got this beer on-tap at the local bar yesterday based on the reviews, and expected a fantastic lager. At first I thought they gave me the wrong beer, but I double-checked and it was the right one.

It doesn't really taste like a lager to me, at least as far as the usual German lagers go. It tastes like.. well.. cardboard. My girlfriend said it after taking a sip, and I was amazed, because that same description was in my head the instant I tried it. It tastes like a combination of watered-down whiskey and cardboard. I hope something was wrong with the tap at that place, because it's hard to believe this is the beer that's getting such excellent reviews. The color seems to match though - a dark amber. So, it's definitely "unique" but I won't be drinking it again.

 774 characters

Photo of Gold
5/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I've been to Munich, Germany and Great Lakes is the next best thing in the U.S. for the greatest lager out there. Perfect, delicious lager and it follows the beer purity laws. This is high quality stuff right here. Highly recommended. The variety pack is a great place to start for Great Lakes wide array of excellent offerings.

 328 characters

Photo of ObeMaltKinobee
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of SubpoenaDeuces
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of trim200xc
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of jsurfs82
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of buzzy
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of Daktah
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of hockeyfighter19
4.25/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of dcbeers
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of BeerOps
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of cosmonick
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of JGaudio
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of wonothesane42
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of DylanK
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of lilmissbeer
4.73/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I love this beer. Great Lakes is an awesome brewery, I love that they're actually trying to do something for the environment/be sustainable/etc. and are still making great beer. This is the best lager, hands down. All-around great, highly recommended.

 251 characters

Photo of TheBrewo
4.23/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This brew was served from the tap at MacGregor’s Grill and Tap Room in Canandaigua, NY. It arrived in a dimpled house mug, showing a bright reddish amber coloring. It held a one finger tall head of tight light brown bubbles, showing great retention. This left thick sheets and patterns of lacing. No haze or sediment was noted, and carbonation appeared to be light. The aroma gave appropriately adjuncty grain, with significant contributions from pale malts and mild caramels. There were also notes of milky creaminess, big toasted breadiness, savory saltiness, red apple sugars, freshly picked strawberries, faint booziness, and solidly grassy hops. With warmth came more tinny metallics and straight bitterness of yeast. Our first impression was that there were great, fresh hops to blend, but the real show was in the spice and depth to the malts, and the other complex inclusions. The flavoring opened with apple sweetness, light milkiness, black pepper spice, coriander, toasted pale grain, and sweet nectary hop syrups. The middle came to peak with grassy, earthy, and sticky hops blending well with the toasty pale malts. To mix were clovey and medicinal phenols, and clean honey sweetness to top the balance. The end came with strong penicillin medicinals, plastic phenols, sweaty moldiness, lactics, depth of toasty (and almost roasty) pale malts. Hollow saltiness and cone hoppiness were the last notes to leave the palate. The aftertaste breathed of banana esters, grainy caramel breadiness, pale grain, light adjuncts, sweaty saltiness, musk, moldiness, mineral, and earthy and floral hop sweetness. The body was medium, and the carbonation was medium. There was big foam and cream on the sip, with nice slurp, smack, and finishing pop. The mouth was left cooled, with a sticky coating keeping it wet, and never really drying it. The abv was appropriate, and the beer drank nicely.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this brew was the nice blending and balance throughout the flavoring, with emphasis on spice and phenols from front to back. This kept things fresh but deep, but made the hops work extra hard for the final mix. The soft slurp was nicely contributory to the experience. This beer stays nice to the style and is easy drinking, making it perfect for a relaxing night watching the game.

 2,315 characters

Photo of CB2maltygoodness
3.75/5  rDev -8.3%

Photo of Sparky44
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of WillieThreebiers
4/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of coz
4.5/5  rDev +10%

Photo of RyFikes
4.89/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance- Clear, dark amber color. Thick beige head.

Smell- Toffee, caramel, brown sugar, with nutty characters.

Taste- Caramel and toffee notes, little cinnamon and brown sugar. Hoppy sweet finish. Bitter coffee after taste, with a roasted nut quality.

Mouthfeel- Carbonation gives way to a lot of residual flavor. Full body flows really well from one flavor to the next.

Overall- Everything blends perfectly. Very well balanced.

 440 characters

Photo of TheBeerAlmanac
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

Photo of DrinkDrankDronk
4.5/5  rDev +10%

Photo of pin
3.5/5  rDev -14.4%

Great Lakes Eliot Ness from Great Lakes Brewing Co.
4.09 out of 5 based on 3,187 ratings.
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.

    Learn More
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.

    Learn More
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Learn More