Heineken Dark Lager | Heineken Nederland B.V.

630 Ratings
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Heineken Dark LagerHeineken Dark Lager

Brewed by:
Heineken Nederland B.V.

Style: Euro Dark Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-08-2001

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Ratings: 630 |  Reviews: 261
Photo of JMad
3.45/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I drank this from an English pub glass...

The beer is a dark brown color with red highlights and a bubbly tan head that quickly faded. The smell is mostly roasted malt with some nutty flavor and earthy hops. Tastes a bit weak, there are flavors of roasted malt, molasses abd copper. Feels thin and watery with low carbonation. This is a solid brew I could see myself drinking this if there isn't craftbeer to choose from.

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Photo of magnj
3.36/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

a - deep drown with ruby body is dark but clear when held up to sun. head retention low.

s - clean nose with mild hints of dark malts and dark fruit.

t - Dark fruits, bocky, mild roasted malts in finish. sweet throughout.

m/d - medium body, somewhat sticky considering abv. interesting beer, interesting to drink a non-skunked brew from heine.

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Photo of wcintula
3.42/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Not a bad beer at all. Pours brown with red highlights, little tan head with lacing. Very big on the malt smell. Sweet tasting, roasted coffee, with light hopping, lager yeast is evident. Easy drinking, somewhat comparable to Negra Modelo. Good beer, enjoyable even.

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Photo of jadpsu
3.45/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark ruby brown, red. Not much of a head and not much retention, although there is some sticky side lace left on the glass. Clear clarity.
Smell is a lot of maltiness and clean. Has a bit of a sweet malty smell, as well a hint of coffee.
Taste is also about malts, a little sweet up front followed by some dry hops that give a little bitter bite at the finish.
Thin, mouthfeel, creamy.
Certainly better than its green bottled lager brother.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.1/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Heineken Dark has a medium, tan, creamy head and a very dark, reddish-brown appearance, with moderate carbonation. The aroma is of malt and some sort of cream or milkiness. Taste is quite malt oriented, and there is some bread flavor with it that is probably from the wheat ingredient. There is little hop character with this beer. Mouth-feel is fairly heavy, and Heineken Dark finishes smooth. Overall, I really enjoyed this sample and would highly recommend giving it a taste.


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Photo of morebeergood
3.5/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had some Chinese food tonight with my wife at Mandarin Gourmet in Brookline. On the menu, the beer list includes one offering merely shown as "dark beer". I asked the server, and he replied it was Heineken Dark. I hadn't had one before, so I gave a bottle a try. Poured into a short stemmed water goblet. Dark brown color with red highlights. Got a decent sized head with a sturdy pour. Smell was bready and malty. The flavor was actually decent. It reminded me a bit of a cross between a brown ale and a dubbel; it had the similar flavor profile of each. A bit malty like a brown, but a touch of sweetness as in a Belgian ale. Mouthfeel was somewhat thin but smooth. Drinkability was surprisingly good for a Euro dark beer. It paired well with the food, and was a lot more flavorful than a run of the mill Heineken.

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Photo of tozz8
2.27/5  rDev -30.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

12 oz bottle into a pint glass

A--Dark Amber with an inch of fizzy,light tan head

S--Almost no smell. Bready with a little caramel

T--Watery with bready and caramel notes. Bitterness from hops is present, but it doesn't add to the flavor much at all

M--Thin to medium body with decent carbonation

D--Easy to drink. Just not interesting to drink

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Photo of ronniebruner
3.88/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Definitely one of the better Euro dark beers. No similarity in comparison to regular Heineken. Has a bittery malty taste, a beautiful dark amber color, minimal head, and a slight, but welcomed aftertaste. Definitely a beginner beer, but you can never go wrong with Heiny Dark!

 276 characters

Photo of 3HovsepiansBrews
2.95/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A - Dark red with a tan head. Although it is dark, the body even looks a little thin.

S - Mostly toasted/roasted notes from the dark malts. A little bready.

T - A tiny hint of some coffee/chocolate from the roasted malts, but it is really watered down, so there is not much too it. There is no hop presence to speak of. The flavor is really one-dimensional and dilute and really only comes at the front of the sip. Although there is a little sour yeast flavor towards the end that doesn't really help the taste.

M - A really thin body, with medium carbonation.

D - Considering the thin body and low ABV and really reserved flavor this one is really easy to drink. However, the not-so-great flavor kind of takes away from the drinkability.

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Photo of mbrown26
3.8/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A dark ruby color with a beige two finger head. Went down to a nice lacing that liked to stick to the side of the glass.

S: Definitely some sweetness, bread and yeast. Maybe some caramel.

T: A mixture of bread tastes and sweet tastes with a clean bitterness on the back end. Leaves somewhat of a bitter aftertaste.

M: Lots of carbonation. Well balanced beer. Not syrupy, but not a light bodied beer either.

D: Easy to drink. My second Euro Dark Lager and I like this style, so far.

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Photo of TheKingofWichita
3.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a deep brown russet color with a thick soapy off white head and some lacing. Smells of vanilla and barley soaked in wet dog scent. Tastes of barley, some sweet malts, and a little hop bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium with minimal carbonation. Drinkability is decent.

 271 characters

Photo of Swill5786
3.23/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a dark brown with ruby highlights. One finger head gone in a jiffy. Fruity aroma dominates - a blend of prunes and apples. Also a faint malt essence coming in under the rest. Taste is initially covered up by carbonation, but malt sweetness eventually emerges and fruity hops come in behind the rest. Nothing firm and distinct about this dark lager, but several qualities are muddled together. Vague breadiness long into the aftertaste. Medium body. Lack of excellence and clarity leaves me done at one.

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Photo of MrGuinness77
5/5  rDev +52.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

a friend recommended this beer for me to try, and im glad he did. its incredibly hard to find it but i finally found it after looking @ 30 different liquor stores i finally found 3 six packs at a bevmo in orange county (and bought all 3 of them). normally i cannot drink heineken but i can easily say this is brew is now one of my top 5 favorites of all time. if you ever get a chance to at least try it DO NOT pass it up.

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Photo of Lauthaha
4.57/5  rDev +39.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a beer mug.

Appearance: The beer pours forth from the bottle with a deep ruby/mahogany color. One-finger thick head recedes to a simple frothy coating on the top of the beer. Very dark...not opaque, but close to it.

Smell: This is a very intriguing scent, something I haven't experienced a lot of lately. At first, it seems like licorice, but I suppose it could be nutmeg and/or cinnamon as well. This is a beer that would go great with pumpkin pie, a great fall beer. Smells amazing.

Taste: Truly spectacular. Definitely a nutmeg/cinnamon vibe to it which sets complacently in the malty base. The hops are not overdone; nothing about this brew is overdone. Though I can detect six or seven distinct flavors (anise, cinnamon, nutmeg, pumpkin, malt, hops) not one overshadows any other. The fact that it is so perfectly mixed makes me want to give this brew a five. What the heck.

Mouthfeel: Lightly syrupy, it gently coats the tongue. Savorable, yet it rinses cleanly. Also very, very good.

Drinkability: I could definitely drink more than a few of these on a long night. The only stopping point is the fact that this beer is so extraordinarily tasty, I wouldn't want to burn myself out on it. It's also just a little rich for a session beer, so I can't give it a perfect score here.

This beer (according to the label) won two awards in Paris in the 1800s. If that's the only critical acclaim this beer has enjoyed, that would be a shame. I would definitely recommend this beer to anyone who enjoys a good dark lager. Just fantastic.

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Photo of 828beagle
4/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass a dark mahogany with a nice foamy beige 2 finger head. Good retention and substantial lacing. Slight roasted nutty aroma. Taste was dominated by sweet malt, caramel, and raisin bread. A medium-light body with big carbonation. Goes down easy and is quite refreshing. Unintrusive aftertaste. A year-round session brew and much more likable than regular Heineken lager.

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Photo of savaship
3.63/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance - The first thing that struck me was how impressively dark the color of the beer was, Dark amber and very clear, no cloudyness at all.

Smell - heavy pleasent smell of toasted malts, hints of other lighter smells my nose is not attuned enough to pick out.

Taste - Sweet initial blast, followed by a gradual transition after swallowing to a clean bitter aftertaste that lingers in the back of the throat for a bit.

Mouthfeel - very slightly heavier feeling than a domestic light beer. Carbonation seems appropriate for the feel without affecting the flavor.

drinkability - Average drinkability, the lasting bitter aftertaste wears on my palette after awhile, making this beer a shorter than wanted experience.

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Photo of jsprain1
3.5/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- An amber, or perhaps ruby colored beer. very thin khaki lace.
S- bready malty aroma, rather subdued.
T- Dark bread, some malt, and just enough hops to balance it all out throughout the palate.
M- Medium weight, less than average carb, but not in a detrimental sense.
D- All around a slightly better than average beer, and one preferible to the mainstream "normal" heineken.

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Photo of SamN
3.6/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Very nice amber reddish glowing hue. Thick bubbly head with aggressive pour. Quite nice.

S- Strong caramel malts and toasty nuts in here. Slight edge of tinny hops, but overall much better than I would expect from Heineken.

T- No richness to be found, mostly a watery American amber red. Malt backbone, slight sweetness and balanced by a mild hops finish. Not outstanding, just solid.

M- Watery and too thin, needs to be brought up a bit in terms of body. A more flavorful lager needs a bit more body to make it a contender.

D- Above average. This is a much better beer than I am used to from the usually embarrassing Heineken. A bit more body and an firmer sense of self would make this beer really good.

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Photo of rootbeerman
3.57/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured down the middle of my duvel tulip

A: pours dark brown, with a finger of light brown head which also fell to a thin haze layer.
S: toffee and caramel malt. smell some what reminds me of a bock
T: another that is very similar to the smell but not as sweet and with a bit of dry citrus hop.
M: smooth but not thick, carbonation is good.
D: due to the fact that it taste more like a bock makes it even for tastier and drinkable for me.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.65/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a medium brown color, with a short off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramelized malts, lager yeast, nuts, brown sugar and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out bready with flavors of grain and dark malts followed by mildly sweet flavors of caramel and brown sugar. The hops presence is mild but complementary and the malt character is hearty but not too heavy. Both help provide a decent balance. The after-taste is slightly bready and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, good representation of style, I found this beer to be much better than I had anticipated. I was pleasantly surprised to find that this beer is quite sessionable.

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Photo of AlexCorleone
4.38/5  rDev +33.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance- Dark brown though with red shines. Nice close foamy head off the pour, nice appearance overall.

Smell- Fresh grains, cream, nutty and slight yeast and malty smell, basically the smell of tamed out lager almost metallic nose.

Taste- Nice balance of malts and lager kind of a flavor, reminds me of a lighter bock, very refreshing malts with a very slight touch of hops

Mouth feel- Very smooth creamy and easy drinking, light body and acid notes coming from CO2.

Drinkability- Nice balance of a lighter lager and slightly darker tones, easy to drink more than a six pack.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.45/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Heineken Dark was one of those beers I drank in the 80's when I wanted something different. That was before I got into the craft styles. This poured an amber-red with a two-inch or so short-lived frothy tan head that fizzles. But the carbonation remains active throughout. Bottle no. 927452852044 had a mild mixture of caramel malts, thin hops, and bread. The taste had a sweet bitterness like an ESB with a nudge of thin hops at the end. I drank this quickly and easily. It does bring back some memories but there are plenty of similar and superior beers to choose from these days.

 582 characters

Photo of mtnbikerpa
2.92/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle with no freshness date. Pours dark amber color with about an inch of head. Lots of carbonated bubbles coming to the top. No real scents. Flavor full of malts. Not hoppy at all. No real balance. Pretty easily drinkable. I prefer fresh Heineken Lager better.

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Photo of hardy008
2.53/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Reddish brown color with a tan head and decent retention. Smells of dark malt with grain. A slight caramel aroma. Tastes consists of caramel , grain, and some chocolate. Thin watery mouthfeel with decent carbonation. The drinkability is below average. Not much to get excited about here.

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Photo of Kopfmeister60
4/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

If you like dark beer this is a must try. Aroma is malty but not skunky. It pours with a light brown creamy long lasting head, is a clear dark caramel color, smooth and creamy to the palate with a nutty toasty flavor. With little aftertaste it compliments a variety of foods, ie. brie and rich cheeses, spicy dishes, but doesn't overpower like Guinness. Low alchohol and good price makes it a good choice for a party. Not easy to find, it's worth looking for.

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Heineken Dark Lager from Heineken Nederland B.V.
3.27 out of 5 based on 630 ratings.
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