Chris, the kind man that he is, patiently waited for me to arrive at his house yesterday to try Molson’s latest creation, Rickard’s Dark. I must admit, my expectations were not all that high going in – a major brewer such as Molson has aggressive sales targets and reaching sales targets often translates into brewing bland beer. Sadly most macro-brewed Canadian beer has to appeal to most beer drinking Canadians, and most beer drinking Canadians are intimidated by a dark flavorful porter. With that said, There is nothing stopping Molson from brewing quality porter and I was hopping for the best.
Rickards Dark, a self proclaimed “porter”, poured a deep, but nowhere near deep enough, ruby-brown. Of course I was only able to appreciate the colour after removing the supplied blindfold. I would very much love to speak with the marketer who came up with that idea – most brewers are proud of their beer’s appearance.
The aroma was quite mild and I couldn’t much detect any maple syrup. Similar to the color and aroma, the beer was mild and tasted quite similar to other Rickard brews. Faint flavors of roasted malts, chocolate and nuts was detected, key word being faint. For a more in depth tasting review check out Greg Clow’s review at Taste T.O.
The Final Verdict
Rickards Dark is just not a porter, it is much closer to a mild ale or nut brown ale. Porters are dark, rich and flavorful – Rickards Dark was neither of the three. It is certainly not a great beer, but not foul in any way either. My hope is that Rickards Dark will serve as a gateway beer, introducing many beer drinkers to the unknown world of dark beer.