Dark Horse LagerJanuary 1, 2014
Elevator Brewing Co.
Dark Horse Lager won a bronze medal at the 2007 Great American Beer Festival.
ORIGINAL GRAVITY: 1047
Aromas of coffee and cocoa waft out of the glass of this clear brown lager. The beer sports just a skiff of a khaki head that lingers long. Flavors are stronger iterations of the same coffee and dark cocoa with a slight hint of earthiness in the background to keep things balanced. There’s also a light nuttiness and a citrus tang that mingle well with notes of minerals and wood. A lingering roastiness is a bit sharp near the end, but the moderate carbonation and smoothness makes everything work well together. A nice version of a European dark lager.
- Lisa Morrison
Because the Vienna style is so under-represented, it’s difficult to find an archetype on which to base judgment, but Elevator’s copper-red lager seems to tick all the right boxes. Chestnuts and chocolate fill the doughy aroma, with the same nut and chocolate notes, plus a layer of caramel, washing over the tongue. It’s more bitter than expected, however, with a strong grassy hop character and a tannin-like dryness, while the bottom fermentation adds a slenderness and crispness to proceedings. Those grassy hops linger in the firmly dry, nutty finish even though roasted grains keep pushing through. Enjoyable.
- Jeff Evans
Lisa Morrison, aka the Beer Goddess, talks beer every day at her beer store and taproom, Belmont Station, and on a weekly radio show in her hometown of Portland, OR.
Jeff Evans is author of the Good Bottled Beer Guide, The Book of Beer Knowledge and Beer Lover’s Britain. More of his writing can be found at www.insidebeer.com.