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12 Most Popular Dark Beers to Try

In the realm of beer, a dark and enigmatic elixir awaits, promising a journey into a world of robust flavors and tantalizing complexity. 

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Barman serves glass of dark cold beer at bar counter.

Dark beers, a captivating category of brews, beckon to the adventurous palate with their rich, velvety depths. These are the drinks that embrace the shadows, finding their moment to shine in cozy pub corners and by roaring firesides. What makes them truly exceptional? It’s the symphony of flavors they unveil – from the silky notes of chocolate and coffee to the subtle hints of caramel and roasted malt. Join us in exploring the allure of dark beers, where every sip unveils a new layer of intrigue.

Bell’s Expedition Stout

Bell’s Expedition Stout
Source: bellsbeer.com

Bell’s Expedition Stout boasts a rich, velvety profile with robust coffee and dark chocolate notes intertwined seamlessly. Hints of molasses and dark fruit provide a delightful complexity. Brewed with roasted barley, malt, and a touch of oats, it’s a quintessential example of an imperial stout. Best enjoyed by a crackling fire on a chilly winter’s night, it stands out for its bold flavors and full-bodied character, setting it apart as an exemplary choice among dark beers.


Zero Gravity Extra Stout

Zero Gravity Extra Stout
Source: zerogravitybeer.com

Zero Gravity Extra Stout captivates with its rich, bittersweet symphony of flavors, reminiscent of the finest dark chocolates and a freshly brewed espresso. It achieves this delightful profile through a masterful combination of roasted barley and chocolate malt. This stout makes for an ideal companion during evenings when you seek solace by the hearth or a cozy spot at your favorite pub, offering a comforting, full-bodied experience.


Sprecher Black Bavarian

Sprecher Black Bavarian
Source: sprecherbrewery.com

Sprecher Black Bavarian takes you on a journey through Bavaria with its captivating blend of dark Munich and chocolate malts. This marriage results in a beer that balances a pleasant caramel sweetness with a subtle, roasted bitterness. Steeped in the traditions of Oktoberfest celebrations, it distinguishes itself as a genuine representation of Bavarian craftsmanship, making it perfect for festive gatherings.

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Deschutes Black Butte Porter

Deschutes Black Butte Porter
Source: deschutesbrewery.com

The Deschutes Black Butte Porter invites you to savor a harmonious blend of dark chocolate and coffee, enriched by a delicate hint of citrus zest imparted by Cascade hops. Crafted in the heart of Oregon, it stands as an emblem of the Pacific Northwest’s craft beer culture. Ideal for winding down after a day exploring the outdoors, this porter offers a taste of the region’s rugged charm.


North Coast Old Rasputin

North Coast Old Rasputin
Source: northcoastbrewing.com

Named after the enigmatic Russian monk, Old Rasputin is a dark and brooding imperial stout that delivers a complex fusion of flavors. The marriage of roasted barley and a dash of Pacific Northwest hops results in a bold, coffee-like richness with a subtle toffee sweetness. This stout serves as the perfect companion for contemplative evenings by the fireside or for pairing with hearty, savory dishes, making it a standout among its peers.


Alaskan Smoked Porter

Alaskan Smoked Porter
Source: alaskanbeer.com

Crafted with malt smoked over alder wood, Alaskan Smoked Porter showcases a unique and intriguing smoky character, akin to a campfire’s embrace. This robust porter carries notes of toffee and caramel, offering a delightful contrast to the smokiness. It truly shines during fall camping trips, adding a touch of the Alaskan wilderness to your outdoor adventures.


Young’s Double Chocolate Stout

Young’s Double Chocolate Stout
Source: youngsbeers.co.uk

Young’s Double Chocolate Stout is a luxurious indulgence for your taste buds, featuring a velvety texture and an unmistakable chocolatey richness. Real chocolate and chocolate malt combine harmoniously, creating a dessert-like beer that satisfies your sweet tooth. Best enjoyed as a delightful after-dinner treat, it pairs beautifully with desserts or simply savored on its own.


Ayinger Altbairisch Dunkel

Ayinger Altbairisch Dunkel
Source: ayinger.de

Hailing from Germany, Ayinger Altbairisch Dunkel offers a refined balance of malt and hops, resulting in a nuanced flavor profile. Nutty and caramel notes take center stage, with a gentle bitterness providing a subtle contrast. This beer thrives in theconvivial beer gardens of Bavaria, making it an ideal choice for savoring with friends in an outdoor setting.

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Jack’s Abby Smoke & Dagger

Jack's Abby Smoke & Dagger
Source: jacksabby.com

Experience the rich, velvety allure of Jack’s Abby Smoke & Dagger, a masterful blend of smoked malts and luscious chocolate notes. This dark beer sets itself apart with its intricate dance of flavors, marrying roasted coffee beans with subtle caramel sweetness. Crafted from traditional ingredients like barley and hops, this robust brew is best savored on a crisp autumn evening, alongside hearty fare or a cheese platter. Its distinctive smokiness lingers on the palate, making it a standout choice among dark beer connoisseurs.


Guinness

Guinness
Source: guinness.com

Guinness, the iconic Irish stout, boasts a creamy, full-bodied profile marked by hints of dark chocolate and roasted coffee. Crafted from the finest barley and hops, this classic beer stands out for its timeless appeal and unforgettable taste. Best enjoyed in the cozy embrace of a traditional Irish pub or as a comforting companion to a hearty stew. Its rich, complex flavors and velvety finish make it the quintessential choice for those seeking a taste of the Emerald Isle.


Bravus Brewing Oatmeal Stout

Bravus Brewing Oatmeal Stout
Source: bravus.com

Bravus Brewing’s Oatmeal Stout redefines the genre with its luscious blend of dark chocolate and roasted oats. It’s brewed using simple, natural ingredients such as malted barley, oats, and hops. What sets it apart is its remarkable gluten-free profile, making it accessible to a wider audience. This stout shines during the colder months, offering warmth and a touch of sweetness that pairs wonderfully with desserts or a cozy fireside chat.


Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous

Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous
Source: stonebrewing.com

The Stone Sublimely Self-Righteous black IPA marries the boldness of an American IPA with the depth of a dark ale. It’s a masterful fusion of roasted malts and a burst of hoppy bitterness. Crafted with care using barley, hops, and yeast, this beer stands out for its adventurous spirit. Best enjoyed when you’re seeking a complex, hop-forward experience that challenges conventions and delights the taste buds, especially alongside spicy dishes or grilled meats.

See also  16 Most Popular Pilsners to Try

Please drink responsibly, be fully accountable with your alcohol consumption, and show others respect.

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Paul Kushner

Written by Paul Kushner

Founder and CEO of MyBartender. Graduated from Penn State University. He always had a deep interest in the restaurant and bar industry. His restaurant experience began in 1997 at the age of 14 as a bus boy. By the time he turned 17 he was serving tables, and by 19 he was bartending/bar managing 6-7 nights a week.

In 2012, after a decade and a half of learning all facets of the industry, Paul opened his first restaurant/bar. In 2015, a second location followed, the latter being featured on The Food Network’s Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives.

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