Dark Ale

One of the things that annoys me is when I come across a beer that’s not been added on here and it’s described as a Dark Ale. What do people add them on as? A broad question, I know.


Dark Ale and Ruby Ale are styles not recognised by RateBeer. Besides the fact that they are ales (top fermented), the style is just a colour description. Ruby Ale is at least somewhat more specific than Dark Ale. What is dark? Black? Deep brown? Ruby? Deep amber? I suppose Dark Ale makes sense to describe an ale that has the colour of a porter, but not the roasty flavour of a porter or a stout. Some of these ales might also be called a Dark Mild, if the level of hop bitterness is modest.


It’s true that it’s not all Dark Ales that are Amber Ale, Brown ale, Mild or Stout Porter…

I did a search for Dark Ale and the onward I looked at had all been had been added under a different style. Everything from Black IPA to Traditional Ale.

As it was, the Dark Ale I bought was smoked and ended up adding it as a Porter - Smoked. I think.

I’m going through Canadian Brewers right now and there’s many beers labelled as Dark Ale without any mention to Porter, Stout or Mild Ale…and that are not India Dark Ale/ / Black IPA…their style seem to be randomly chosen most of the time… probably a DARK ALE generic style would help for those…

Dark Ale is indeed what most of us would recognise as a Dark Mild. It’s a marketing term made up by people who don’t like the words ‘mild’ and ‘bitter’.

It’s the same with Amber Ale - it’s a poncy marketing name for Brown Bitter. And yes, as far as I can tell, American Amber is really Bitter, given a hoppy USAnian twist. American Bitter as opposed to English Bitter. :slightly_smiling_face: