kujo9 (1094) - North Ridgeville, Ohio, USA - SEP 19, 2003
3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 10/20
Lasting beige head on a deep copper/mohogany body. Aroma is of chocolate malt and toffee(diacetyl w/ crystal malt?) Very little Munich malt if any. Hop aroma is absent and is clean of any fruitiness. Very malty chocolate and caramel flavor, the diacetyl carries over into the flavor, but it's not unbearable, nor is it appropriate. It does however add a little complexity to a beer that needs it. Well balanced w/a slightly drier finish and a clean, chocolatey aftertaste. There's also a slight sourness probably from the dark grains. Hop finish described in the CD seems to be non existant. Moderate carbonation and fuller light bodied m/f. I'm thinking this bottle is a little past it's prime. The diacetyl in most darker beers has been due to a beer being over age in my experience. I could be wrong, but it's just my opinion. I'd like to try this one in a more fresh sample and I'll re rate if I get one.
jsquire (3678) - St. Marys, Ohio, USA - SEP 19, 2003
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 17/20
Deep ruby red out of the bottle with a big frothy head that looked like a rootbeer float to me. Lots of attractive lace. Earthy grain nose. Surprisingly light on the palate given the look and aroma of this beer. Lots of roasted grain flavors. Bright sugar sweetness with vanilla bean and bitter chocolate. I was surprised how much I liked this beer. I will go buy more for the fall season.
wunderbier (1434) - Tampere, FINLAND - SEP 9, 2003
3.4 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 13/20
12 oz bottle, wine glass, 7/17/03 bottling, 55 degrees. Large, tan, frothy, creamy head is slowly diminishing. The body is a dark red-brown that is clear around the edges (no haziness). Caramel, nutty, toasted grain malt; flowery hops; clove and pepper aromas also. Moderately sweet, lightly bitter flavor becomes a lightly sweet, moderately bitter finish. Nice malt / hop combination. Medium-full body, watery but slightly dry texture, moderate carbonation. Slight coating effect detracts from the mouthfeel. The bottom line is: the best Harpoon I’ve had so far.
OldGrowth (2854) - the Containment Area, North Carolina, USA - SEP 7, 2003
3.3 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Bottle: O.K. nose Lite roasted malt with hints of ash,smoke,chocolate,coffee. Good color clear dark amber. Moderately carbonated. medium head that faded quickly. baking chocolate and coffee flavors. Thin body with a linguring chocolate bitterness. O.K. beer lost some points on the nose, Still one of the better offerings from them.
TAR (2518) - Lafayette, Colorado, USA - SEP 5, 2003
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Clear pecan. Pearly, large-bubbled foam. Uninviting aroma of mushy plum, earth, and diacetyl. Slightly vinous with touches of caramel and musty black malts. Soft mouthfeel. Sacattered large-bubbled carbonation. Faintly acidic, initially. Lovely transition into dark malt territory with subtle notes of raisin and black currant. Tingly diacetyl surrounds the dark malts. Finishes somewhat dry and medicinal, with overly asserted diacetyl and a beautiful burnt sugar/black malt integration. Black coffee aspects emerge at room temperature. And much to my chagrin, the aroma was scantly hopped and the esters overshadowed the dark malts. The mouthfeel was also too bubbly. I love firm, toffeeish-dunkels, but this doesn’t possess any of those traits. But it certainly has the sugar and chocolate flavors, which is what makes it tolerable.
Racegoer (353) - Indiana, Indiana, USA - SEP 4, 2003
2.7 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 9/20
malty, seet and a little coffee,medium brown with decent lacing. Pub pack, very little presence of hops, typical of the style though with no flair, these Harpoon beers are just plain boring
Drew (2411) - Kent, Ohio, USA - AUG 25, 2003
3.1 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
Dark brown with a light brown long lasting head. Malty and sweet, this goes fine with food, but tastes thinner than it looks. The sourness at the end got on my nerves...seriously.
krisbierjaeger (844) - dolores, Colorado, USA - AUG 13, 2003
3.9 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 17/20
i'm like a kid with homework: i put off the rating till the last minute. i had a whole sixpack of this but i'm just getting around to rating it as i drain the last bottle. i enjoyed harpoon dark very much, but now, finally logging on to check everyone else's impressions, it appears others aren't quite as enthused as i am--i mean, as i THOUGHT i was. i thought it poured a rippling walnut brown with mars-red highlights, but i guess it's just plain brown. and the guitar-top spruce colored head was full, but you know, in a way that seems kinda mediocre on second thought. a rich aroma of lightly smoky wheat bread with zinfandel touches of fruitiness and coffee seemed very elegant BEFORE i read the other reviews, but i stand corrected. maybe it's more like just dirt and rusty bed springs. embarrisingly, i was under similar misapprehension about the flavor, i'm so glad i didn't gush about what seemed to be a fairly lithe vanilla-toasted arabica-bean and fudge character comfortably astride a reasonably hoppy lager. it seemed quite tasty and at least medium-bodied, but i'm probably wrong. i'll just go back and erase where my fond memory says "damn nice" and update it all with: "okay, pretty good, better than a glass shard in your eye." i do wanna fit in.
Darkover (1524) - Columbus, Ohio, USA - AUG 11, 2003
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 14/20
Dark brown with a light tan head. Malt aroma with a little coffee and caramel. Caramel malt flavor. Also has some hop bitterness in the flavor and finish. Pretty good.
CaptainCougar (7133) - Columbia, Maryland, USA - AUG 7, 2003
3.8 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
Sweet malty aroma with a good lager profile flows from the dark brown body. Head is mostly tan and lightly lacey. Chocolate and caramel control the malty body yet exhibit a mellow hoppiness. Smooth throughout, including the finish. Great flavor and extreme drinkability make this one of the best dunkels I've had.