crankball (6) - Butler, Pennsylvania, USA - SEP 20, 2001 does not count
Best local beer to Pittsburgh........................................ dfb99 (4) - USA - APR 26, 2001 does not count
one of the best darks i've had.............................................. daviddeep99 (9) - New Orleans, Louisiana, USA - MAR 18, 2002 does not count
The best Pittsburgh beer, and better than most I've had elsewhere. Plenty of subtlety; not too bitter or too sweet. mattduling (64) - Fairmont, West Virginia, USA - MAY 24, 2002
An excellent beer. It's very smooth and has a wonderful malt taste.......... PennPils99 (6) - Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA - JUL 17, 2000 does not count
AN Excellent example of Municher Dark Lager. Nice roasted, aftertaste. Great Session Beer!
TheBeerLover (1027) - DC Metro Area, USA - JAN 25, 2006
One thing I really love about living in the Mid-Atlantic is the German influence in the area. States like Maryland, and Pennsylvania really have a German influence that can be see in many local specialities, and that includes the beer. Pennsylvania really is a fantastic place for a beer lover. Cities such as Philadelphia and Pittsburgh are just brimming with great beer. What really makes it great for me, is the variety of beer styles that are available. I use to live in New England, and that six state area with the exception of maybe, Rhode Island, is another fantastic place to find great beer. Good luck trying to find a lager though. New England is mostly all ales, which is great, but when my German beer loving palate craves a good lager, I’m glad I’m in an area that can brew some of the tastiest, and most authentic lagers in America.
Lagers are much harder to brew than ales. They are cleaner, and rounder, and can’t hide any flaws that could be hidden with a big dose of hops or a funky ale yeast. You can tell a poorly made lager because "there is no place to hide" so to speak. When a brewery cheapens a lager with adjunct such as corn and rice, you can taste it. I find those types of "light" lagers to be poor examples. You should be able to taste malt in every glass of a good lager. Lagers are about balance, a harmony of water, malt, and hops. So simple, yet so sublime. Lagers are more expensive to brew, they must be cold conditioned, and usually for a one to three month period. Lager is after all the German word for "store". A true test of a great brewery is; can they brew a great lager.
The Pennsylvania Brewing Company, of Pittsburgh, PA passes that test with flying colors. This brewery does exceptional German beer styles, some of the best I have ever tasted. I have been fortunate enough to have visited the brewery in Pittsburgh, and I can tell you from first hand experience, this place for a beer lover is a "must visit". Penn Dark is a Munich Dunkels by style, and it is an outstanding example of this malty, slight roasty, dark lager. Penn Dark pours to a bright, deep brown color, with a nice white head, and a good bit of carbonation. The nose on this beer is sublime. Nice sweet, slightly chocolatey and slightly roasty malt aromas are balanced with some nice hop aromatics. The palate is a lean malt backbone of Munich malts, a touch of sweet malt, a touch of roast, a touch of chocolate. This is a very gentle beer, with a very soft and smooth body, round and clean. This beer finishes with more good malt character up front, then is balanced out again with a mild hop bitterness. Whole flower Hallertau hops imported from Germany are used in this beer.
Really a wonderful Munich Dunkels, very well balanced, and stylistically accurate. This beer is flawless. I would match this beer with classic German fare such as saurbraten, spatzel, and red cabbage, or perhaps some Pennsylvania Dutch fare such as ham, potatoes, apples, and dumplings.
urbnhautebourg (997) - Annapolis, Maryland, USA - NOV 14, 2002
A very easy drinking beer with a terribly appealing balance and an elusive, distant sweet dark note (blackberry?) that drives me wild. I think this beer appeals to certain of my idiosyncrasies and I cannot therefore recommend it to all, but I for one could drink gallons of this stuff. Gusler (2653) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - DEC 7, 2000
Drinkable, a good well malted and decently hopped beer. Nice mouth feel, decent nose, a good beer overall. NYHarvey (2153) - New York, New York, USA - MAR 23, 2006
Courtesy of Matta
The aroma was grassy at first and has some powdered soap and earthy notes, but as it warms it becomes malty sweet with hints of molasses and brown sugar. Dark, red-tinted, brown in color with a firm thumb thick creamy tan head that diminishes slowly. Fore is malty and ever so slightly smokey, but it more a carmalized kind of burnt/smokey than a Rauch smokiness or even a peat smokiness. Has a richness that is very hearty and breadlike, but slightly sweet like honey wheat bread dipped in molasses or caramel cakes.
The finish almost evokes some sweet dark fruit, but it is more like the afore mentioned carmalized and molasses flavors playing on the malt and suggesting that fruity sweetness. This is a very well done brew that lives a subtle, but pleasant life on the tongue before fading away with whsipers of roasted, but sweet, malt. It’s a low key beer as far as flavor intensity so I can understand a low rating rating on this site, but it is far too well made to only have a 61 overall. MrRain (472) - St. Louis, Missouri, USA - APR 10, 2008
12oz bottle poured into a dimpled mug. Despite the other ratings I found this to be an exceptional beer. I like dunkels anyway but this is pretty tasty. It pours brown with a medium-sized rocky head. The lacing is light and soapy looking. The aroma consists of toffee and something unidentifiable not quite like mild-to-medium hot pepper. The body is medium. The flavor is mildly burnt but not smoked. The malty toffee tones come through well balanced with the hops. This is nearly a gulping beer. The finish is quick with little after taste.