Eastside Dark | Lakefront Brewery, Inc.

216 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Eastside DarkEastside Dark

Brewed by:
Lakefront Brewery, Inc.
Wisconsin, United States

Style: Munich Dunkel Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.52%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-12-2002

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 216 | Ratings: 527
Photo of Kkasprzak
4.6/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Delicious. Flavorful and aromatic at a serving temp of 50-55 deg F. Smooth without bitterness. Not hoppy but you can taste a hint of hops. A malty flavor throughout. I can enjoy one over 30 minutes or drag it over an hour. Best of all, I can drink these all day/evening.

 270 characters

Photo of Bighuge
4.57/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer pours dark rubby and throws a medium creamy brown head that is gone in a minute. Nice aroma of roasted malt, chocolate and coffee bean. Nice taste. There's a musty burnt malt taste. Maybe a little molasses. Some chocolate too. A little brown sugar sweetness. The taste is very nice. No harsh bitterness detected at all. Very easy drinking. Medium body. I could drink quite a few of these without blinking an eye.

 422 characters

Photo of Offa
4.55/5  rDev +25%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is a wonderful beer that took me by surprise .

Dark copper, it has a large, light tan head that slowly shrinks to a permanent 1" head.

The aroma is very nice, grain, dark bread, crust, hints of chocolate, caramel, and pine.

The taste is similar, mostly fresh, moist whole-wheat bread, hints of earth and pine, very light hints of caramel, herbs, and chocolate. It's zesty but very smooth, easy to drink, yet complex and full of flavour.

 447 characters

Photo of dhannes
4.51/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle that had warmed up to about 55º into a Perfect Pint...I received this about 8 weeks ago, so that could impact the flavor.

A=Rather dark brown...darker than Madtown Nut Brown but not quite as dark as Sprecher Black Bavarian--coffee colored. Eggshell colored head of about one finger that lasted just under a minute.

S=Malt, coffee, and bittersweet chocolate.

T=Moderately sweet, with moderate chocolate and moderate malt flavors. A touch of hops, perhaps, and no bitterness to be found. Reminds me of an Edmund Fitzgerald.

M=Spot on body for a lager--not too light, not too heavy. Light carbonation makes it rather drinkable--would make a great session beer.

O=I was rather impressed, as I envisioned a more bitter beer. I love Lakefront's red, and this is another winner...will definitely buy again. This would pair well with hamburgers, I think, or even do by itself.

 895 characters

Photo of MVotter
4.38/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Aroma from the freshly opened bottle: malts, spices, yeast

Aroma after the pour: breads, yeast.

The Eastside Dark Munich Dunkel Lager pours into a tall pils glass with a nice thick tan head, which settles back to a one finger thick froth; on top of the dark tea brew, good lace retention.

Wow! Tasty brew for sure from the start; delicious roast and coffee malts up front ... mmm, sweet malts vs. a biting roast in the finish.

The mouthfeel is very effervescent, medium body, extremely drinkable.

 501 characters

Photo of botham
4.35/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pilsner glass. pours a deep chocolate brown with a finger of light tan head. the brew itself is mildly hazy.

smells malty, with chocolate and caramel malt dominating, with a nutty base and a crisp character. great smelling dunkel.

taste is of chocolate and creamy caramel up front, followed with the same nutty base and a frothy character. a supurb lager, extremely crisp and clean. great on the palate without being overly bold.

aftertaste is more of the same, only further in the distance. light chocolate, caramel, nutty base with a touch of hops.

mouthfeel is medium-bodied, with a very smooth and creamy texture.

drinkability is great. this is a lighter brew that contains a great balance of flavors, yet doesn't feel heavy in the mouth or stomach. cheers!

 793 characters

Photo of ForWhatAlesYou
4.33/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle into the tulip

A: Appears black but reveals a perfectly clear deep mahagony brown with ruby tonality. Off white dense head. Great lace. Very nice.

S: Malty with a little smokiness. Makes me want to drink up.

T: The roastiness of the malt is king and it is great. Toasted spice, nuttiness, crisp fresh hop finish. Excellent.

M: Viscous at first, ends dry. Tight carbonation.

D: Excellent.

 405 characters

Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.32/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle from The Lighthouse in Manchester as part of this brewery's sampler 8-pack. Pours dark brown with ruby-red highlights and a half inch of light tan head. Smells like chocolate, caramel, with just the slightest hint of hops. Tastes chocolatey and nutty with smoke and fruit notes on the finish. Full bodied with ample carbonation helps make this dunkel even more drinkable. Very tasty - a really solid dunkel.

 425 characters

Photo of slyke
4.29/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I couldn't resist trying Eastside Dark since my grandfather ran a 3.2 tavern named the East Side Inn from 1933-1982.

The beer pours a lovely brown color with a finger of tan head that fades rather quickly.

The smell is really something sweetness, roastiness, a little chocolate, a slight citrus tone, the faint scent of alcohol.

The taste is equally interesting. All of the notes present in the aroma are in the taste along with a resiny hop note.

Mouthfeel is good. Just the slightest coating of the mouth with a crisp finish.

This beer is solidly drinkable and one I would enjoy sessioning. Definitely recommended. Cheers!

 640 characters

Photo of KarlHungus
4.22/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This brew pours a dark brownish-black color. The head is one finger in height and recedes slowly into nice lacing. The aroma shouts of caramel, but there is also roasted malt and butter. The tase is very relaxing. Caramel tries to dominate but is cut through by roasted malt and chocolate. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with ample carbonation. Overall, this is a very good brew. I will certainly keep an eye out for this one.

 426 characters

Photo of Gavage
4.21/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours a clear brown color with a 1" head that falls to a thick surface foam. Light lacing develops.

Smell: caramel and a hint of chocolate is detectable by the nose.

Taste: caramel, soft chocolate, prunes, red apples, and decent bitterness create a nice flavorful lager.

Mouthfeel: crisp throughout. Medium bodied. Aftertaste is brief as the flavors leave the tongue quickly.

Drinkability: superb session beer here. One of my favorites from Lakefront.

 467 characters

Photo of SPThirtyThree
4.2/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours with a khaki, slightly lumpy cap just over a finger thick, floating atop a dark, molasses-colored beer. Doesn't quite leave lacing, but rather, deposits small spots of foam on the glass.

S: Malt and ester. Grape, fig, toasted biscuit, with a slight pepper and hint of citrus. A pleasant, soft, fruity smell, accentuated by a slight grassiness.

T: Roasted malt, sweet and creamy. This is a delicious beer. It's not heavy, but it has a big, creamy, effecvescent mouthfeel, and a big body. The hops and carbonation mix for a smooth but crisp bitterness. The hops are earthy. Finishes dry, but sweet and nutty.

D: This is a very drinkable, very sessionable beer.

Overall, this is a great Munich dunkel, presenting a complex malt flavor.

 746 characters

4.19/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Nice roasty, semi-sweet smell with a kiss of bitterness. Medium body with a dark delicious taste. Medium bodied and smooth with pleasant effervesence.

 150 characters

Photo of RedBaron
4.15/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A solid, well-made dark lager.

The beer poured with a nice, sustaining off-white head. The color was a very dark amber.

The smell was of chocolate and toasted malts. I could tell from that alone that this should be an interesting beer. It was!

The initial taste was of those chocolate malts (so sweet and so fresh!) as well as of a roasty, caramel character (my guess is roasted carapils malt went in to this beer). The finish was delightful, as the upfront sweetness gave way to a quick dry finish. The presence of a good hop character (perhaps Saaz), must account for the nice finish.

Good mouthfeel--not cloying at all, yet neither watery or light. The right ratio of malt lends to a patchwork of wonderfully balanced taste across the palette.

Drinkability factor very high. I'm not sure if this is the darker version of the Klisch pilsener, but whoever had the idea for a good, dark lager got it right here. Very much in the Munich style of dark lagers.

 973 characters

Photo of LeftyBWS
4.15/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle into a pint glass.
A: Darkish brown beer with some red tinges; one finger of soft light brown head on top that settles to a thin layer on the brew and leaves an occasional slippery lacing sheet.
S: Nutty and earthy malts, hint of sweetness (perhaps toffee?). There's a faint oily hop scent, but the malts/sugars dominate.
T: Malty at first, smooth and nutty, followed by a tingly hop nip in the middle. (Later sips seem to bring this hop flavor earlier in the taste, interestingly enough.) The finish is smooth and brings in an earthy malt taste to level the hops, letting a soft and sweet flavor linger, much like a chocolatey toffee, almost. Quite nice.
M: Creamy, malty, kinda sweet and kinda bitter, but not all at once. Overall, pleasant and satisfying.
D: Very good, tasty and satisfying and easy to drink, and no alcohol flavor.

 869 characters

Photo of Beertron
4.13/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Lakefront is a great Wisconsin brewery, though I find it strange that they're not located on the lake. Regardless, they were a big hit at our 1st Swine & Swill and Eastside has always been one of my favorites in their lineup. Now, let's see how they hold up to the vigorous review process. From bottle to glass...

A - Poured 1" large fizzy head. Retention was pretty solid leaving a thin, spotty layer of head that wasn't going anywhere. Some strong carbonation within the dark body.

S - A very powerful scent of fruity and yeasty scents. The malts in this bugger provide an alluring sweetness and one can catch a small dose of plum or pluot buried within.

T - When compared to its relatively one-dimensional smell, this is fabulously complex. Of the various flavors layered upon each other, it's worth noting that all have a bit deeper, earthy flavor. There's some medium-roast coffee notes up front, along with softer characteristics of banana, pumpkin and nutmeg. Following this is a blast of heavily-yeasted dough (a la pizza crust, soft pretzels or breadsticks). In the finish, the malts shine through. They're toasty and even a bit smoky but not terribly heavy. For as much as the malts rule this brew, the overall flavor seems pretty acidic. This is a good thing.

M - This is cool-feeling and smooth. It's medium-bodied with a soft, pleasant bitter that lingers a short while.

D - Pretty damn high. The alcohol level doesn't seem out-of-whack and you don't start losing interest after the tastes have thoroughly coated the palate. I could drink (and have drank) plenty of these in a sitting without tiring of it or having it over-power the taste buds.

F - There are plenty of foods that this beer would make friends with and most of them are on the pedestrian side of things. The acidic and yeasty flavors would make this beer a shoe-in with pizza, especially pizza done properly with a nice whole-wheat, cornmeal crust. It would go quite well with some saltier breads like a mean focaccia and even some other starchier foods like celeriac or good ole cream of tato soup. Caraway seeds would make for a nice contrasting element in any of the aforementioned. Finally, some grilled or, better still, smoked chicken would really do the trick here.

O - This is a damn solid brew. While certainly not anything groundbreaking, it's flavors are complex and balanced. All the while, this remains an excessively approachable beer both to session and to mix with a wide variety of pretty common foods.

 2,519 characters

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.12/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep cola brown appearance much darker than the current Penn Dark being brewed at the Lion. Head is light beige, lacing is even but scant. Aroma has a tartness working it's magic amongst the darker malts, cocoa powder and coffee roasts in the forefront with mineral water yeast nuttiness that appears in most of the beers I've had from them. Herbal tea leaf notes in the finish with an air of smokiness, complex light beer...I like it. Flavor has a fruit sweetness under the light coffee and roasted milk chocolate layers, along with more of a slightly lactic mineral quality that just works in a dunkel. Hell this is better than Hofbrauhaus Pittsurgh's dunkel. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied really a dry roasty finish going with tartness lingering on the sides of my palate. Drinkability overall is pretty effin' good, one of those effortless beers that I would probably imbibe on while visiting the brewery.

 915 characters

Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.12/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle poured into a Lakefront imperial pint
5.52% ABV

A - Very dark brown, Eastside Dark is a clear dunkel, barely noticed through it's weathered copper highlights, and capped by a fleeting ivory foam that leaves wispy specks of lace on the pint.

S - Chocolaty roasted malts impart cocoa dryness that works perfectly with the very subtle yeast notes while bread crust and soft nutty tones expand Eastside Dark's malt complexity.

T - Caramel sweetness underscores the roasted malt profile that brings cocoa and bitter chocolate to the forefront. Bready malt flavor is there, coating the tongue with heft but not a thick feel.

M - Eastside Dark looks foreboding but it's rich profile is smooth and rather light-bodied, finishing cleanly for a lager, only lingering with balancing bitterness.

O - Another smooth and outrageously drinkable lager from Lakefront, Eastside Dark is, as the name suggests, dark but, it's bready, chocolatey malt profile has an almost creamy feel that finishes with a nice lager cleanliness. Flavorful but not heavy.

 1,053 characters

Photo of Mitchster
4.09/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Brewed with Chocolate, Black Patent, and Munich malts. Hopped with Mt.Hood. OG=1.060. The last of a surprisingly good sampler pack from the brewery. Brewed June 2004.

Pours out to a slightly hazy very dark mahogany, forming a medium sized dark beige head with poor retention and minimal lacing. Carbonation is moderate. The aroma begins with sweet milk chocolate, walnut, toast, and some subdued floral hops. Swirling produces campfire, nutty grain husk and concord grapes. The mouthfeel is sharp at first (more on this later) but melds into a smooth finish. Medium bodied. The taste begins with quite a surprise...sour grapes...not unlike the level of acidity you would find in a Flanders Red, this is quite tart. Obviously this one has some quality control issues, but you know what? I like it! The malts feel flimsy and watery because they can't hold up to the sourness. Plenty of lactobacillus in here. There is a predominate note of black patent astringency in the finish with some mild herbaceous bitterness. This is not the nasty kiwi fruit sourness that I got from Reaper Ales (shudder...), but an honest-to-goodness Oud Bruin sourness. Nice! Aftertaste of peanut butter is interesting, indeed.

I stumbled upon quite an odd find here, but lucky me. I'll have to revisit this in the future as I've been happy with the rest of the sampler. If I were rating this as a dark lager, it would score horribly, but hey, it's a good beer, so I'll score it as it's own entity. I'm sure that this probably a very good dark lager, as the aroma was great for a style I generally abhor.

 1,585 characters

Photo of Jparker37
4.07/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottled week 1 of October 2011 and poured into a Samual Adams perfect pint.

A - Deep chocolate brown, with an off-white head that pours small and recedes to a thin circle of foam at the edge of the glass. Clear "bright" with no lacing but the color is rather delightful.

S - Rich munich malts, slightly toasty, slight sweetness. Turns quite nutty as temperature increases.

T - Coffee roastiness with a complex array of light to dark sweet malts. Touch of bitterness at the finish for balancing but still a touch sweet.

M - Medium-full bodied with light to moderate carbonation.

O - Great color to this beer. I thought that malt character was wonderfully complex with a clean/refreshing finish that forms an overall satisfying brew.

 740 characters

Photo of granger10
4.06/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Kind of a lighter woody amberish color with a sparse lightly tan head that fades. Doesn't look too appetizing. Smells really nutty. Really sweet with caramel notes as well. First sip delivers a rich smooth flavor one expects but often doesn't find in a Dunkel. A touch of roasted hazelnut flavor is there. Some semisweet chocolate flavors come around underneath the nuttyness. A touch herbal and acidic fruitiness in the back. Actually has more carbonation and liveliness on the palate than appearance would suggest. Better than most Dunkels, flavorful and drinkable.

 567 characters

Photo of doubleshovels
4.06/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Great drinking Munich Dark. Pours with a slight, white head. Light amber seems just right for a Munich. Great mouth feel and easy drinking, starts and ends dry (without being bitter), but gives up a fair amount of sweetness in the middle.

Overall, a good example of a Munich dark without going over the top.

 311 characters

Photo of soze47
4.05/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 oz. bottle dated second week of August (1 1/2 month old). Sadly, the last bottle from a great Lakefront variety pack.

Appearance: Pours dark brown, but not so dark that light can creep through. Nice tan head of one finger that is very thick, but dissolves quickly.

Aroma: Clean maltiness with a heavy roasted caramel/toffee scent. Subtle chocolate tones.

Taste: Everything tastes roasty and toasty. Great balance here. This is most definitely malt forward, but the hops do a good job of keeping the rich caramel and chocolate sweetness from getting out of hand. Flavors combine to create a coffee like aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Smooth and creamy, but not very heavy in body. Not cloying in the least, but flavors leave a pleasant after feel on your tongue.

Drinkability: Highly Drinkable! This would be a perfect beer for cooler weather, but crisp and refreshing enough to have year-round.

Overall: A stellar way to end the variety pack. I can see enjoying this one again soon during a football game. The balance and light body are what sell me on this variation of the style. It is not as robust as it could be, but I think that is one of this beers strengths.

 1,167 characters

Photo of ZimZamZoom
4.03/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a 12 oz. bottle into a pilsner glass. A lovely dark brown with nice red tones and a great looking tan head. Tightly packed and rocky as it starts to break down, it does not so much leave lacing, it kinda leaves a solid coating on the glass everywhere. Really pretty beer!

A nutty, roasty aroma that includes caramel and some dark malts. A nice little hint of spicey hops as well. The nose tingles pleasantly while taking this one in. The taste is really very nice as well. Caramel toffee sweetness is joined by a nice little hop spice and then gives way to a semi-bitter finish, alcohol is also evident in the finish. There is a smooth creaminess to this that is almost dessert-like.

Really a medium bodied lager that has a fullness to it that satisfies. I could drink another but I feel like that would probably do it for me. Not bloated but comfortably full I'd say.

Excellent example of this style. Best beer in the sampler hands down.

 948 characters

Photo of trevorjn06
4.03/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark amber/brown color that when held up to the light has a ruby glow to it. There is one finger of tan head that recedes to a thin layer of foam on the surface and leaves some lacing on the glass.

Aroma is dark roasted malt and DMS initially, some coffee emerges as well.

Taste is malty with some roasted notes and a hint of chocolate and caramel. Finish is some dark fruit and a bit of roastiness.

Mouthfeel is medium and coats a bit with a bit below average carbonation.

Overall this is a fairly complex lager with some nice roasted and dark flavors that manages to still be light enough to be easy drinking. It is malt focused yet not too sweet at all.

 668 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Eastside Dark from Lakefront Brewery, Inc.
3.64 out of 5 based on 527 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.