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Heineken Dark Lager | Heineken Nederland B.V.

258 Reviews
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Heineken Dark LagerHeineken Dark Lager

Brewed by:
Heineken Nederland B.V.
Netherlands | website

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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Reviews: 258 | Ratings: 621
Photo of Zorro
3.48/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a deep dark brown brew.

Smell is sweet with a big whiff of ORANGE CIRCUS PEANUT! Up the nose! There is a malt and bubblegum smell in this too. The 4.0 is more for uniqueness than greatness.

Taste is much more sedate than the smell. Candied fruit and molasses. No sign of any bitterness, this is Newcastle Brown Ale Times 3 in the taste.

Mouthfeel is adequate.

Drinkable, great for a macro but I can find better.

 429 characters

Photo of tone77
3.23/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a dark amber color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of caramel and malts. Taste has some malts and caramel, a little milder than I expected. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and has average drinkability. Overall this is a fairly good beer.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.23/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a four-finger light tan head that fades quickly leaving no lace. Clear deep amber color. Medium bodied and very light carbonation. Sweet malty nose. Starts sweet finish is like a dry root beer. Better than their lager. $1.45 for a 12oz. bottle from Colonial Spirits Acton, Ma.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.45/5  rDev +5.2%
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.

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Photo of beerthulhu
2.18/5  rDev -33.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

A: Poured a dark mahogany red with a respectable 1 finger creamy khaki colored head that lasted for several minutes.

S: some light dried prunes and dark caramel raisins but was pretty faint overall.

T: The initial flavor was light and watery with sour caramel raisins and a light metallic nature. Overall the flavor was wishy-washy at best with some soapiness to it and a light dry burbon alcohol.

M: light, watery and wishy-washy as well.

D: Drinkability was a huge disappointment, dump and avoid at all cost.

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Photo of Bitterbill
3.11/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

It poours a clear drak brown with lots of red highlights and a 2 finger head of foam. I'm serving this cold and the size of the head of foam surprised me. There's not much lacing but overall, it's a very nice looking brew.

The smell is typical of the style, light everything: grain, malt, and hops.

The taste starts off malty with some grain, light breadiness, and a hint of some nuttiness. Light bitterness throughout that I can't say tastes citric or grassy or piney....jsut plain light bitterness. An ok taste.

It's close to medium bodied at times with pretty high carbonation.

Drinkablity? The abv obviously isn't a problem, I just find it lacks any kind of oomph so 1 bottle at a sitting is enough for me.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.03/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Never reviewed a "Heineken" but this one stood out so I picked it up. Hope it's as good as the reviews...

A - Wow this is a pretty beer. Color is a clear dark amber and the head is a creamy half inch of mocha head that turns quickly to a lace ring.

S - Damn that's faint. Maybe some chocolate of cocoa but it's mostly lager yeast and sweet malts.

T - A bit harsh maybe it's the yeast or hops but I do get some sweetness out of the mix. Mostly chocolate and caramel are the strongest taste but you really can never forget the harsh flavors of this euro lager...

M - Medium bodied kind of hard to drink.

Overall man are some folks trying to hype this beer? not nearly worth the A rating to some and not close to a B+ either this is just a typical Heineken brewed with more malt. Pass on it if you can!

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Photo of avalon07
3.15/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a nice brown color and a somewhat thick texture. There was about a quarter inch of foamy head and some OK lacing.

S: Smelled mainly of malt, but also yeast and a little hops.

T: An odd taste. Very malty up front, then it thins out and becomes watery and uninteresting. Neither good nor bad.

M: An average amount of carbonation and a dry finish. Medium-bodied.

D: While this is certainly better than most other Heineken beers, it's still wildly uneven on the whole.

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
2.91/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cool red and brown beer, professional looking in terms of clarity. I miss the regular Henie skunk in the aroma. This one is dead earthy, and not as good, well, not good period.

Taste, wow, this was thicker than I expected. Bitter too. Still not much for hop taste. Seriously thought it was a little rye bready. Malty for a lager. Much sweeter than green Henie.

Not a bad beer, but I wish it was more like the green. With that said, if you hate the green, I'd say check this out, its very different.

 501 characters

Photo of RBorsato
4/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown with a nice tan head and good carbonation. Light roasty, light chocolate and burnt malt aroma and flavor. Medium-light bodied with a smooth finish; a bit dry from the roasty character.

A nice Euro Dark Lager and much nicer than Beck's.

Label states: "Est. 1873"

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Photo of Gusler
2.06/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

As a rule, I would not rate anything from Heineken, but as I was given a sixer of this beer by an acquaintance, what the hell.

On the pour a deep incarnadine color, the head miniscule, the color something akin to dirty grey, the lace AWOL. Nose prototypical malt and nothing else, the start slightly sweet with the top cadaverous and the finish ferine in its acidic bite, hops as one would expect for the style and brewery sparse, dry aftertaste, another “Habeas Corpus” beer where’s the body, and where’s the flavor.

 524 characters

Photo of cbutova
2.45/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A- Poured into a pint glass with a dark brown hue, some red hints around the edges. Light tan head forms to about a finger but doesn't retain very well. Small ring but no lace.

S- Lager yeast, buttery hints and a dark caramel malt profile. Fades after just a few sips.

T- A mix of a dark lager and the general Heineken flavor. It starts out with buttery hints, cereal grain, brown sugar and some slight roast, caramel and toasty malts. It then kind of takes on a slight fruit, sweet and yeast bread feel. Ends up closer to straight up Heineken.

MF- Light, watery body with high carbonation that stings that palate. Somewhat foamy feel with light bitters.

Tastes somewhat comparable to other examples of the style I have tried. It just lacks depth generally and reminds me too much of regular Heineken in the end.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
2.43/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a clear, dark copper color with a rapidly diminishing tan head. Leaves no lacing and barely even a collar.

Smell is sweet and caramely with a bit of sulfur and stale coffee. Does not smell all that inviting.

Taste is exponentially better than Heineken Lager, but still is not all that tasty. A bit too sweet with a fake chocolate flavor and an astringent, plasticy aftertaste. Body is light and only slightly watery, carbonation is adequate. I would probably take a Baltika #4 over this one, but I've yet to come across a Euro Dark that I really enjoy.

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Photo of Suds
3.32/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Really, this beer is not all that bad....in fact, it's a decent flavorful dark lager. Pours deep brownish-red with a slight , whispy head. Roasted grain and hop aroma is faint, but appealing. Initial taste is sweet and malty. Very drinkable. Light body, and slightly watery mouthfeel, but not nearly as light as expected. This beer is certainly overpriced, but it is enjoyable.

 377 characters

Photo of mynie
3.65/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not too familar with the style but the pour seems pretty good. Nice chocolately brown with a decent beige head.

Smells like toasty malt, chocolate, and a bit of adjunct grain. Pretty nice, actually. Perhaps a bit too mild but still crisp.

Starts with a node of toasty marshmellows going into very sweet milk chocolate malt and ending on a rush of halfsour hay and grass. Once again, pretty nice, if a bit tame. Certainly crisp and refreshing.

A surprising beer, to say the least. Heads and tails above its lighter counterpart.

 535 characters

Photo of KarlHungus
2.08/5  rDev -36.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a dark brown color witha very small tan head that recededs fast into nothing. The faint smeel is sweet and malty. Taste is very unimpressive, and bland. There just isn't much there. The smell does not translate over into the taste. There is a mild sweetness and a mild bitterness, but nothing that stands out. The mouthfeel is medium-thin. Overall, this beer is bad.

 372 characters

Photo of rodbeermunch
2.58/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.5

Light brown opaqueness, mild tan head on the beer. Aroma of skunky dark lager yeast. A little bit of noble hop.

Unattractive malt bitterness and thin body despite its color, absorbs the light skunkiness to its own detriment. Tastes hotter than it is, toffee running around with burton wormwood on moist.

 309 characters

Photo of RoyalT
1.77/5  rDev -46%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Appearance – Clear light brown body with a typical bee-bop head that went up and down in less than ten seconds.

Smell – Nice scent of toasted malt and caramel.

Taste – Ugh! An insult to dunkel lager to say the least. It’s tough to explain. The cheap, burnt malt flavor is somewhat bitter but nowhere near nice. The tease of caramel sweetness turned into a handful of Sweet-N-Low picked up from the floor of a dirty diner after a long week. I think I actually tasted a cigarette butt in there.

Mouthfeel – Flat and difficult to swallow. The worst.

Drinkability – The smell wasn’t that bad, but that taste was evil incarnate. Sorrow I couldn’t offer much positive here, but the only purpose for making this beer would seem so that a regular Heiny-in-a-can doesn’t taste so bad. This "one" rating was well earned.

Comments – Chase this with a shot of Jaegermeister.

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Photo of mfnmbvp
2.91/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle, no apparent bottled on date, 5.00% abv, not listed on the bottle. This was my first Heineken beer ever, reviewed in detail on the back of a K-Mart receipt. Poured into a miniature pint glass.

A - Pours a very dark black cherryish type color. Nice two finger cream head.

S - Vague smell of smokiness and dark fruit, but they are minimal and somewhat artificial smelling. Little bit of bourbon vanilla presence begins to emerge as the beer warms.

T - Dark fruit of some kind and cherry come to mind initially. Carbonated; but not overwhelming. Slight artificial type sweetness. A decent adjunct styled beer, better than I was expecting, considering the terrible rap that regular Heineken Lager gets from people I know.

M - Nice chocolate kind of aftertaste, slight carbonation is well balanced enough.

Overall, definitely worth trying at least once. I haven't had the regular Heineken Lager yet, but judging from the hype I imagine that the Heineken Dark Lager is probably a better choice.

Heineken Dark Lager ---3/5.

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

This one's crystal clear and a scarlet infused brown color. It has a nice deep red tint to it. An off white head tops it off (for a minute), but recedes quickly. It only reached a finger or so deep. Little to no lacing lined the glass. The color's pretty good, but the rest is a little disappointing.

The nose is weak and underwhelming. It features some caramel and toffee malt sweetness throughout. Yeast and grainy notes take up the secondary level. Smells like there's some light dark fruit present (mostly plum). There's a faint spicy scent on the tail. It's tough to get much out of it. It's all very weak and the individual parts don't work well in tandem. Aside from the lack of strength, there's nothing overtly bad about it. It's just not very good either.

The flavor is a little better, but not enough to trigger a bump in score. Primarily, it features a sweet caramel and toffee malt flavor. There's a light cocoa flavor that wasn't apparent on the nose. It's grainy and yeasty throughout. Whatever dark fruit I was getting in the nose is extremely faint. So faint that I'm questioning whether my palate's playing tricks on me. A light spicy and herbal flavor emerges it late. It's somewhat light and subtle. I can't tell exactly what individual spice or herb it may be. It doesn't really hurt or help. It's just there. The flavor's much like the nose. There's some individual flavors floating about, but they never really mesh or collectively work to produce a meaningful flavor. There's just a little here, a little there. Meh. Average.

It features a light body that feels a tad watery. It's not smooth at all. Carbonation is fairly light, but doesn't seem to help it attain any desired level of smoothness. Drinkability is average at best. Everything about this beer is average and pretty forgettable. It goes down quick and easy, but doesn't present anything to really enjoy.

Heineken Dark Lager is very average in the grand scheme of beer. The nose is weak, the flavor's convoluted and uninspiring, and it's not enjoyable. That being said, I don't really hate it. There's just not much to like. If it had something to add some pizzazz, it'd be dramatically improved. Maybe some hops? Pretty average all around. Maybe worth a try, but I wouldn't suggest seeking it out.

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Photo of alexgash
3.41/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sure looks a lot better than green bottle pale Heineken. Dark cola brown body with a amber edges and a dense cap of light tan head. Nose consists of clean, soapy, lightly roasted malts, dry cocoa, and whiffs of metal. Lightly sweetened malt up front; kind of cola-ish and brown sugary. Toasted caramel and light cocoa flavors detectable. Finish is lightly roasted and mildly bitter with lingering tobacco and cola malts. Light-medium body with adequate carbonation levels. Not bad really.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.1/5  rDev +25%
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 Reidrover
3.45/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nice enough looking beer , when poured into my gl;ass. Darkish amber..almost even garnet in colour..nice sized off white head..though it did not last. The aroma is surprisingly malty and even touches of chocolate. Again the flavour is much more malty and even has hints of chocolate( milk), small hop bit at the end. KInda average on the palate..does tend towards wateryness near the end. Not a bad dark lager at all..I would drink again, but hardly a classic

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Photo of beergoot
3.59/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

The beer exhibits a dark, ruby-red body with a thick, chunky head. Malt grains combine with a faintly chocolate scent to produce a pleasant aroma. Taste comes across with a nice roasted malt character with hints of mild chocolate; light hop bitterness pops up at the finish. Light yet deceptively rich body, smooth and buttery.

Another beer that I used to drink decades ago but haven't touched in years. I recall back then that this beer was a delicious find and I think this holds true today. Perhaps a little fizzy on the mouthfeel side of things, but its warm, welcoming dark flavors are the highlight.

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Photo of tgbljb
3.77/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a mediums reddish-brown color with moderate off-white puffy. Fair retention.

Smell shows some nice caramel notes with a touch of roasted malt.

Taste combines the caramel and roasted malt nicely, and while the flavor is good, it is too restrained.

Finished with some taste retention and a full mouthfeel.

Nice drinking, but nothing out of the ordinary.

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Heineken Dark Lager from Heineken Nederland B.V.
76 out of 100 based on 258 ratings.
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