Dark Lager Tasting (May 13-15)

Discussion in 'Beer Talk' started by FBarber, May 7, 2022.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. FBarber

    FBarber Poo-Bah (6,065) Mar 5, 2016 Illinois
    Moderator Society Trader

    Everyone is invited to join the BeerAdvocate community starting on Friday, May 13th and continuing through Sunday May 15th for an online tasting of "dark lagers".

    For this tasting we will be including the following Beer Advocate recognised styles:
    In addition any other type of dak lager is welcome - especially Czech Dark lagers - which are a style BA should recognize! #FreeCzechDarkLager

    Regardless if the beer you end up drinking is completely new to you, an old favorite, or a cellar pull, stop in at any point over this weekend and share what beer you're drinking with us. When posting in this thread, please include your thoughts, tasting notes, and/or a full review of the beer. Your notes and/or review can be as detailed as you wish, but some comments on the beer are required - this is a tasting event after all! Posts accompanied by picture(s) are, as always, highly encouraged.

    Need suggestions for a beer to get for the tasting thread? Post here and you'll get lots of helpful suggestions. And, if possible, try to support your local breweries when purchasing beers for this tasting thread. Due to the quick turnaround, there will not be a separate tasting thread next weekend.

    Finally, have an idea for a future online tasting that you would like to see? Go over to the Online Beer Tasting Idea Submission Thread and suggest an idea for a future tasting: https://www.beeradvocate.com/commun...-tastings-idea-submission-thread-2022.664091/
     
  2. REVZEB

    REVZEB Poo-Bah (11,075) Mar 28, 2013 Illinois
    Society

    Nice!! Will have to intentionally have a CDL ready now. Join the movement! #FreeCzechDarkLager
    And never forget #SplitUpSaison
     
  3. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    I'll mention this early on: not all Rauchbier is dark. Witness the new Roaring Table/Riverlands Heller Rauch that's out.

    @herrburgess
     
  4. FBarber

    FBarber Poo-Bah (6,065) Mar 5, 2016 Illinois
    Moderator Society Trader

    True, but it falls under dark lagers here on BA, so its allowed.
     
  5. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    Hmm. :thinking_face:
     
    AlcahueteJ and HorseheadsHophead like this.
  6. zid

    zid Poo-Bah (1,726) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    In my opinion, this aspect of BeerAdvocate classification simply isn't good, but for the sake of this thread, I would imagine that a dark Rauchbier is keeping in the spirit of the thread and a golden Rauchbier is not keeping in the spirit. Common sense should be applied. Apologies to @FBarber if I've said anything against his intention (his post above seems to indicate that I have, so he can correct me or clarify if needed).
     
  7. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    You're really asking for a lot there! :grin:
     
  8. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (2,345) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
    Society

    BJCP includes color in its style guidelines.

    According to them, the lightest of the styles listed is Vienna Lager (SRM 9-15). The darkest two are Munich Dunkel (17-28) and Schwarzbier (19-30). Rauchbier is 12-22.

    That, of course, says nothing about how dark any specific commercial beer of those styles will be.
     
  9. zid

    zid Poo-Bah (1,726) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    Lately, when one of these threads happens, my initial reaction is that I won't buy any (or many) beers to participate with... and then I end up buying waaay more than expected. This event was no exception. I went from thinking I'd skip it, to buying 11 beers. Yikes! That's gotta be the most ridiculous yet for me. Speaking of keeping in the spirit of the thread and avoiding pale lagers, I'll post one spoiler pic below. This beer qualifies for the thread right? Actually, it's not a joke. I have a plan. Looking forward to next weekend.


    [​IMG]
     
    rgordon, SABERG, Whyteboar and 6 others like this.
  10. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    Thinking about my current stash, I think I have one dark lager -- a traditional Bock, so I'll probably have to opt out on this event. My monthly budget is spent.
     
    Whyteboar likes this.
  11. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    Are you looking at category 32A in the 2021 Guidelines? I didn't see any SRM listed for the style, only that it should match the base beer, but could be darker.
     
    Rug likes this.
  12. deanzaZZR

    deanzaZZR Aspirant (216) Jan 8, 2015 California

    I recently received a shipment from Enegren so I'm in on this tasting. Oddly the beer was described as a Czech style dark lager on the website, but the cans say American Dark Lager. It is 5.8% ABV which I think does not fit the CSDL guidelines.
     
  13. ChicagoJ

    ChicagoJ Poo-Bah (1,780) Feb 2, 2015 Illinois
    Society

    Thanks for kicking this off Frank! Sorry to hear about your loss, and safe travels home!

    Goes to Dovetail's website: WTF - Dovetail only has one of these styles available (the Vienna Lager). Chicago J says, if it's not Dovetail, it's crap! :grin:

    I'll figure something out, plus gives me an excuse to finally buy some beer (Kolsch!!!) after diligent cellar clearing these past six months. :sunglasses:
     
    Whyteboar and FBarber like this.
  14. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (2,345) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
    Society

    I admit I'm not fully versed in navigating the BJCP document, but in the 2021 guidelines I was referring to 6B, 7A, and 8A&B.
     
    Whyteboar and FBarber like this.
  15. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    Okay, so the base styles of what a Rauchbier can be.

    But if you look at 32A, Classic Smoked Beer, there is mention of many styles that breweries use as their base with Rauchmalz -- including Pilsner.

    Check the "Comments" paragraph in 6B.
     
    #15 steveh, May 8, 2022
    Last edited: May 8, 2022
  16. BigIronH

    BigIronH Meyvn (1,364) Oct 31, 2019 Michigan
    Society Trader

    Came upon one CDL in the store on Friday and picked it up. It’s chilling now, awaiting next weekend. It will be my first in that style. Cheers.
     
  17. zid

    zid Poo-Bah (1,726) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    Why not open the Bock for this? See the quote from FBarber above.
    _________

    If your memory is accurate, a guideline that suggests that Czech dark lagers can't be 5.8% is silly. They can have an ABV in the double digits.
    _________

    Rauchbiere can be any color. The German one that just won a medal in the World Beer Cup is golden. The Brewer's Association style guide bothers to split up Rauchbiere into Helles, Märzen, and Bock categories... but this is obviously a heavy-handed way of mirroring Schlenkerla's most popular exports. The BJCP guide might work well enough for them in a competition setting, but it's just nonsense as a guide to understanding beer. Their "Rauchbier" category (6B) was only designed to describe some specific Rauchbier Märzen, and all other Rauchbiere are supposed to be entered into their "Classic Style Smoked Beer" category (32A). They view Rauchbier at Märzen strength as a "base style" and other varieties of Rauchbiere as smoked versions of different base styles rather than Rauchbier. They claim that category 32A is for beers that are NOT "Bamberg-style Rauchbier" but then they list a bunch of Bamberg Rauchbiere as examples of 32A. Regardless of certain beers being flagships, "classics" or having longer histories... creating the impression that Schlenkerla Rauchbier Urbock is not really a Rauchbier is an unreal and messy embarrassment. @herrburgess
     
  18. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (2,345) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
    Society

    Like I said, I'm not fully versed... I was just looking for some color guidelines as to what a "dark lager" is.
     
  19. tolar111

    tolar111 Crusader (715) Aug 17, 2008 New York

    I have a 4 pack of Köstritzer Schwarzbier and I'll look for other dark lagers when I go
    to the beverage center this week. I'm going to just stick to the Beer Advocate recognized styles
     
  20. SFACRKnight

    SFACRKnight Poo-Bah (2,024) Jan 20, 2012 Colorado
    Society Trader

    I grabbed some Prost Vienna lager and Bierstadt Tmavé 13° so I should be set.
     
  21. zid

    zid Poo-Bah (1,726) Feb 15, 2010 New York
    Society Trader

    Don’t get me wrong. I wasn’t trying to be critical of anything you wrote. :beers:
     
    Whyteboar, steveh and MNAle like this.
  22. Peach63

    Peach63 Meyvn (1,073) Jul 17, 2019 New York
    Society Trader

    If I can find one, I'll certainly join in.
     
  23. jesskidden

    jesskidden Poo-Bah (2,426) Aug 10, 2005 New Jersey
    Society Trader

    In 1977, when the magazine New West did a Beer Test, the winner, Anchor Steam Beer, was listed as "(dark)":
    [​IMG]
    the sub-heading of the article noted "...Dark beers were clearly preferred, in taste as well as aroma. A California entry was the grand winner; Mexican imports did well..." The latter included Indio, Dos Equis (now called "Ambar" but at the time the only Dos Equis), as well as the Philippines' San Miguel Dark.

    (Note that the Anchor label dates from when the brewery was still called simply "STEAM BEER BREWING CO.").
     
  24. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    I'd rather stick with a Dunkel or Schwarz (even a CDL) for the tasting. Besides, I already reviewed that Bock here.
     
  25. mvogt

    mvogt Initiate (102) Sep 10, 2021 Massachusetts

    Honestly I might just stick to the Kostrizer this weekend. Czech dark lagers are (relatively) thick on the ground around here but Kostrizer is such good value for money. Did not buy a 12-pk of Negra Modelo yesterday but was tempted.
     
  26. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    .67 cents? $4 a six-pack? And even *I* wasn't old enough to drink then. :confused:
     
  27. beer_beer

    beer_beer Zealot (595) Feb 13, 2018 Finland
    Society

    Think I'm set for next weekend. "Tumma" means dark...

    [​IMG]
     
  28. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    How does "crisp" translate in Finn? :grin:

    I always find the mix of languages in marketing to be humorous -- if not a little weird. :wink:
     
    Whyteboar, AlcahueteJ and beer_beer like this.
  29. beer_beer

    beer_beer Zealot (595) Feb 13, 2018 Finland
    Society

    RAIKAS, would that sell?

    There's a whole series of CRISP: https://www.sinebrychoff.fi/tuotteet/?term=&brand=62853

    If you can't have alcohol, at least you can have something CRISP :grin:
     
    #29 beer_beer, May 8, 2022
    Last edited: May 8, 2022
    Whyteboar, AlcahueteJ and steveh like this.
  30. John_M

    John_M Poo-Bah (7,164) Oct 25, 2003 Oregon
    Moderator Society Trader

    That was an expensive beer back then. At your typical NorCal grocery store, Anchor steam, Heineken and maybe Beck's (if you went to the right store) were the only beers so expensive (all three were typically displayed in the tiny import section). I think Michelob was priced in the $2.79 - $2.99 range back then.

    There were some delicatessens and speciality stores where you could find more expensive imports (usually from Germany or Great Britain), but for the most part, consumers were content with AALs. Most people I knew back then weren't even aware of the distinction between lagers and ales. I know I certainly wasn't.
     
  31. MNAle

    MNAle Poo-Bah (2,345) Sep 6, 2011 Minnesota
    Society

    Would those from the UK think snack food? (crisps) :grin:
     
  32. JackHorzempa

    JackHorzempa Poo-Bah (5,430) Dec 15, 2005 Pennsylvania
    Society

    'Back in the day' most people (including me) would just call it "beer". The vast majority of the time, "beer" meant a lager beer but I am not aware of folks using "lager" in their parlance until the later 1980's when Yuengling Traditional Lager was first brewed and then in Pennsylvania when peopled asked for a "lager" that meant they wanted a specific brand of beer: Yuengling Traditional Lager.

    Interestingly in the area I grew up (Philly area) Ballantine did produce two brands:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    I had a good childhood friend whose father was a regular Ballantine Beer (i.e., lager) drinker but I was not aware of any father's in the neighborhood who drank Ballantine Ale.

    I have a friend today (a bit older than me) who told me that 'back in the day' his father was a regular Ballantine Ale beer drinker.

    I really don't know what was the first ale that I ever drank. Maybe it was Victory Hop Devil in the mid 1990's?

    Cheers!
     
    Rug, SABERG, Whyteboar and 8 others like this.
  33. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    I probably bought my first six-pack of import beer in 1978 -- Swiss Lowenbrau, if I was to guess. But I couldn't tell you what I paid if I had to save my life! :grin:

    But I'd been studying up on beer and definitely knew the difference between Lager & Ale -- after all, those Canadian beers were all ales and they'd kick your butt! :wink:
     
  34. John_M

    John_M Poo-Bah (7,164) Oct 25, 2003 Oregon
    Moderator Society Trader

    Exactly Jack. Back then, the term beer, lager and ale were all used interchangeably. I think Rainier might have been making an ale back then, but even then, it wasn't entirely clear to me just what that meant.
     
    Whyteboar and Bitterbill like this.
  35. John_M

    John_M Poo-Bah (7,164) Oct 25, 2003 Oregon
    Moderator Society Trader

    Probably a lot. I would guess in the $5.99 range.

    I was in the army from 73 to 76, and went home to visit an army buddy in Santa Cruz in 75 I think (he got out of the service roughly a year before I did). Having lived in Germany for several years, we thought we were beer conniesseurs, and disdained drinking BMC stuff. In truth, the American AALS really did taste pretty watered down after drinking German lagers for so long. Anyway, my friend took me to some specialty store where they had bottles of German Lowenbrau (among other things). Individual bottles (11.2 ounces as I recall) were around $1.29 a bottle, which I thought was obscene at the time. We bought a couple of other German imports as well. Nothing tasted very good to us, and my guess is that there was probably a freshness problem. The store owner acknowledged that there wasn't much demand for them (a couple of regular customers that would order some from time to time), so there was no telling how long they'd been sitting out (they weren't refrigerated of course).
     
  36. unlikelyspiderperson

    unlikelyspiderperson Poo-Bah (2,037) Mar 12, 2013 California
    Society Trader

    Some of the lessons of youth stick with us for a lifetime, eh? :wink:
     
    Whyteboar and John_M like this.
  37. John_M

    John_M Poo-Bah (7,164) Oct 25, 2003 Oregon
    Moderator Society Trader

    Indeed. However, I actually drank quite a lot of BMC stuff in college, with no noticeable ill effects. It wasn't until I started getting into microbrew/craft, and observed the reaction by the big boys (who clearly wanted it to go away in the worst way, and weren't adverse to employing illegal practices if that's what it took), that I became a bit more intolerant of BMC type products.

    These days, there's so much well made craft lager available, my current feelings about BMC are largely irrelevant. I avoid drinking AALs because, at least to my palate, craft lagers are far superior and more enjoyable.
     
  38. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    Other than my GPA. :grimacing::rolling_eyes::wink:
     
  39. mvogt

    mvogt Initiate (102) Sep 10, 2021 Massachusetts

    ...and my relationship choices...
     
    Whyteboar and AlcahueteJ like this.
  40. steveh

    steveh Poo-Bah (3,373) Oct 8, 2003 Illinois
    Society

    I've forgotten all but the good ones. :grin:
     
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.