A hearty beer with a haunting bite
A Review of Nosferatu by Great Lakes Brewing Co.
Posted on 10/22/2012 by Chops
With Halloween just around the corner, it seemed only natural to toast the occasion with a Great Lakes Nosferatu Imperial Red Ale. Nosferatu is named after the classic 1922 German vampire film. Billed as a ''beer with bite'' by Great Lakes, this imperial red has a hop kick that sets it apart from others in the genre. And as a big fan of both horror movies and imperial red ales, you could say that I was quite giddy to do battle with the Nosferatu.
In the glass, this beer has a clear ruby red coloration with a brownish hue. It comes with a frothy white head that has really nice retention. On the nose, I was greeted with that signature sweet candied malt aroma along with a rich biscuit vibe. At this point I was expecting the usual alcohol burn, but was rather introduced to a faint hop sting. It quelled the alcohol burn quite nicely and reduced it to a mere under layer. I was pleasantly surprised by this phenomenon and immediately filed it under my ''traits I would like to see more of in imperial reds'' mental folder.
I found that the aroma translated very well to the flavor. A malty biscuit note sets up shop as a base flavor. Churning on top is an airy piney hop sting that ends up creating a feeling of dryness. Several other flavor notes make appearances, namely caramel, toasted nuts, and some dark fruits from the alcohol. The beer has a medium body with a sticky quality despite the dryness. The alcohol burn is present, but remains as a tame under layer akin to the aroma. The alcohol does meet up with the hop profile from time to time to create a warming effect, which I found to be really cool.
Overall, the Great Lakes Nosferatu Imperial Red Ale is a fantastic beer with a mysterious personality. The namesake fits it perfectly as a hearty beer with a haunting bite. Great Lakes is well known for crafting world-class beers, and Nosferatu is no different. I can happily recommend this beer to any and all beer fans. Seasoned drinkers will appreciate it as a stellar example of an imperial red ale complete with a cryptic bite. Novices can utilize this beer as a flavorful introduction into the style, but should tread with caution because the beer does pack a shadowy aggression.
I really loved this beer and I can't wait to get my hands on more. Halloween is my favorite time of year and I always look forward to the festivities. This year and from here on out, I shall be accompanied by Nosferatu.