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Bohemian Black Lager - Spoetzl Brewery

Not Rated.
Bohemian Black LagerBohemian Black Lager

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1,325 Ratings
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Ratings: 1,325
Reviews: 501
rAvg: 3.44
pDev: 14.83%
Wants: 15
Gots: 119 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Spoetzl Brewery visit their website
Texas, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Todd on 09-02-2006

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,325 | Reviews: 501 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of CrazyMacHarris99
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a very dark brown that light barely passed through. There was a nice off white head but it dissapeared as quickly as it formed leaving nothing. The beer ended up looking like flat pepsi. The smell was a little sweet with a roasted malt aroma. I really liked the taste though. Tasted of sweet and roasted malts with a nice tartness in the finish. The mouthfeel was a little thin which is good for the style but seems a little odd for such a dark beer. Overall, I really liked this for what it was, a lager that is dark enough for me to enjoy on a regular basis. I'm a big fan of Yuengling and make it my go to beer when nothing else on tap interests me but if I see this in the same place I might switch it up.

Photo of msubulldog25
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle with a twist-off capped, poured to a pint glass. Thanks to LarryKemp for bringing this to Oregon back in late May and for 'spreading cheer with Shiner beer!'. As I understand it, this once-released beer (commemorating the brewery's 97th year) has been recently re-introduced under the 'Bohemian Black Lager' name.

A: Very dark, 'black' at first glance. Shows with some back-lighting to be a warm mahogany, clear with plenty of rising carbonation. Head starts as a massive, fizzy three fingers of light tan. Drops quickly to a bubbling, pockmarked cap that looks something like a pancake. Not long after, head is almost gone entirely, save for one of two patches of film fed from below. No lace.

S: Sweet and malty, a sensible charred huskiness. Has an oatmeal-like graininess and a faint mineral-like yeastiness.

T: Tastes like dark bread crusts and toasted nuts (pecans, maybe?). A pleasing sugariness, with notes of candied fruit, and a mild tartness mixed with darker grain husks. Finishes with a lingering sweet spice and toasty bittering.

M: Without a "best before"-type date on it, it's tough to know how old this bottle is - suffice to say the carbonation isn't doing much. Sorta flat and thin in the mouth, light feel overall

D: Low, sessionable ABV and satisfying flavor...past experience tells me this would pair nicely with grilled meat. Certainly I want to try this again; Schwarzbier is a style both my wife and I have grown into and this seems like a good one - just want to try it in the freshest state possible. Looking forward to more coming this way from Texas sometime soon.

Photo of HardTarget
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle Inspection: Great label from an art perspective. Black with silver lettering. Claims to be a Schwarzbier, with Czech Saaz and Styrian hops. Served in a Shiner pint glass.

Aroma: Mild corn similar to Shiner Bock, also some malt sweetness and dark roasted grain which has a bit of coffee and chocolate in it.

Appearance: Opaque black with a tan head that struggles to hold a cover but gives some loops of lace.

Flavor: Dark roasted grain is at a great level, giving a full roasted taste but hardly any astringent bitterness. The beer is a bit sweet but well balanced. No real hop flavors to speak of. Again, a mild corn note which may be a house yeast element.

Mouthfeel: Medium body, high carbonation (a touch too high for me), lingering finish.

Overall Impression: A solid beer. I’m glad to see another Shiner choice out there. This would pair well with some BBQ.

Photo of maximum12
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to RandomBattle for this extra, a beer often seen but never picked up. Carved in half & poured into our cute little Christoffel tasting glasses that fit six ounces of liquid nicely.

Pours black with white foam; something I don't recall seeing before. Aroma is rich & malty, with a singe of smoke to it. No lager overtones at all. Huh.

Bohemian Black Lager brings a heavy dose of woodsmoke, not at all what I was expecting upon popping the cap with my Superman thumb. Coffee is mixed into the smoke, which creates a unique combo that I haven't encountered in the wild (or captivity) before. Sweet malts & light hops roll in to round out the tasting experience.

Well color me surprised. I don't know why, but I didn't expect much from this beer, & it's good, especially considering the low ABV; so few brewers can make a tasty low ABV beer, & this is nothing if not flavorful. Lots packed into this package.

Photo of grittybrews
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a dark cola brown into a tulip with a finger of light khaki head. Slight roasty aroma with a hint of cocoa.

Generous carbonation balances a slightly thin mouthfeel. Somewhat generic charred, roasty malt up front with a hint of chocolate and a lingering bitterness on the finish with a mild coffee/smoke character.

Not a profound example of the style, but all the elements actually come together pretty well when you're in the mood for an easy-drinking beer with some extra character.

Photo of NCBeernut
3.64/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle and label are all black with thin white lettering. Kind of cool looking. I haven't had too many in this style, so I don't have much basis for comparison, but here it goes.

Pours with a decent enough head that ends up leaving no lacing. Body looks flat black, but is actually a very dark brown. No reddish highlights at all. Smell contains lots of charred malts...a very earth quality to this one...maybe some peat aromas. Not too sweet smelling. Taste doesn't surprise. Just what you would expect after that aroma. Some char, earthy peat qualities, slight hop bitterness with a bone dry finish. High carbonation...not so much in a bubbly way...it just adds a little carbonic bite to it. Not bad for the style. Nice to see Shiner trying something new.

Photo of lawlerj
3.63/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A - almost black, deep brown w/ a light tan head. Head dissipates relatively quickly.

S - some sweet malt and a lot of bitter chocolaty/coffee type aromas in there somewhere.

T - there is definitely a lot of bitterness/burnt flavor going on here. Coffee and dark, bitter chocolate. Definitely crisp, but maybe I'm looking for a bit more sweetness to mellow the roasted malt. I'm not sure if I like it or not but it's definitely interesting. The more I sip the more intrigued I become. I guess that's the sign of a good beer.

M - very light bodied, easy drinking, pleasing carbonation.

O - this is actually my second time tasting this beer. The first time was in the midst of an all afternoon/evening/night session, and it did not agree with me at all. I was actually apprehensive to give the second bottle a try but I'm pleased that I did. I enjoy the darker flavors combined with the lighter mouthfeel - an easy way to get the complex qualities without the heaviness that I find in some bigger beers that I enjoy.

Photo of cheers2beers
3.63/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: A dark brown,almost black liquid with a toffee colored head that stacked up roughly two inches high and disapated about the same pace that it arrived. Many columns of bead are found but there is not much laceing to speak of.

Smell: The aromas are some dark fruits, light hops, smells like a bock almost.Not bad by any means but does have a slight disagreeable odor.

Taste: The taste consists of raisins, vanilla, light malts with a small amount of hops that seems to balance the whole thing.

Mouthfeel: Light on the palate, medium carbonation. Has a slight bubblely finish. Very smooth and easy drinking kind of beer.

Drinkability: Overall, This was a good beer. I would recommend this for at least a try. This may even be my favorite offering from Shiner,right next to shiner on tap.


Photo of MmmIPA
3.63/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice black body with carbonation bubbles coming up.Small one finger head that fells to a nice patch.Lots of small carbonation bubbles hitting the surface.Good looking beer.

Notes of toasted malts,roasted maltiness also.

Roasted and a small amount of burnt taste.The taste gets sweet towards the end of the sip.

Thin mouthful and spritzy mouthful.

Good beer but I thought it wanna gonna be better.Ive only had the type of beer a few times in the past but Ive had better.

Photo of Jgoth34
3.63/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of barefootbrewer
3.63/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This beer poured a back color with a thin creamy head which lasted a long time. The smell was malty ans slightly sweet. The taste is bitter with a hint of sweetness that makes a nice balance. It has a surprisingly thin mouthfeel. The smoothness and lighter body of this beer make it quite drinkable.

Photo of jlindros
3.63/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

THanks to duff247.

Pours a lighter almost 1 finger fizzy head that fades semi quickly, over dark molasses mahogany brown color.

Nose of dark crystal malts, molasses, caramel, brown sugar, toffee, light roast, smooth brown malts, some light crisp lager fruit aromas.

Taste starts very porter-esque, light creamy dark malts, light oatmeal like, some hints of smoke, plenty of dark crystal malts, toffee, brown sugar, molasses, roast, some light grassy hops, slight bitterness, light crisp lager yeast and light fruits, smooth. Where are the hops? Finishes crisp with a bit of lingering sticky feel, hints of smoke and toffee linger. Pretty flat on the hops, if this were a dark ale it would be a lot better than trying to come off as though it has hops. As it goes I'm starting to get a bit of diacetyl, with hints of buttered popcorn and gritty dry toast.

Mouth is medium bodied with decent carbonation, a little slimy and stick though.

Drink is pretty good, dry crisp finish, smooth and light abv, very sessionable, bit of stickiness.

Photo of briman
3.63/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours virtually black, but with deep ruby highlights when help up the light.

Aroma has caramel, light roast, and an earthy hop elements way in the back.

Flavor follows suit. Caramel, light roast, maybe a pinch of coffee grounds. Some graininess in the finish, but otherwise pretty clean.

Medium body, with moderate carbonation. Has a slight chewiness to it. Overall a pretty decent Schwarzbier. I wouldn't mind if the roast was kicked up a tad bit, or maybe an element of dark chocolate....just something to add a little more complexity. Very drinkable, and would certainly have again.

Photo of KrisPaulk77
3.63/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured this into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass.
The beer poured a dark black color with a substantial head of creamy tan foam. The head never really diminished all the way, and there was a good solid 1/4" inch of foam through the whole pint. The beer had showed deep garnet colors when held to light.
The aroma was clean and lager-like, but with touches of roasted barley and sweet malts, a hint of cocoa, and faint florals. Very pleasant smelling.
The taste was quite good, better than I expected from Shiner. Slighty sweet malts upfront, chased by light roast and chocolates, balanced by a fairly clean bitterness. Decent body and carbonation.
Overall, a very drinkable beer from Shiner. I'd buy this over Shiner Bock any day.

Photo of danielharper
3.63/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Received in trade with Morris729. (Thanks Morris!)

A: Black, with a reddish brown tinge in the middle. A bit of head that dissipates rather quickly.

S: Malty, but fruity -- notes of raspberry deep in the heart of this beer.

T: Still the malty body, with a nice bready aftertaste. Some notes of vaguely-defined fruit on the tip of the tongue. Interesting, enticing.

M: Heavily carbonated, but overall fairly moderate mouthfeel. Tickles the tongue, but goes down easily.

D: Overall, makes me think more of a sweet bock or Marzen than a schwarzbier. Really not a bad beer if you can find it relatively cheap, or are just looking for a palate cleanser. This is pretty much what I wish mainstream beer would be in America.

Photo of secondtooth
3.62/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pretty much black, with an average head of tan bubbles. No lace at all.

Aroma I get is malty -- a little roasty chocolate maybe, but that's it.

Flavor is equally as roasty/chocolatey sweet. No complexity at all, much like all the Shiners I've had.

Photo of plaid75
3.62/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured a deep brown hue with a two finger cream colored head. There was very good retention and lacing.

The smell featured light roasted malts and a touch of sweetness.

The taste offered moderate sweet malts and a light roasted barley.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style.

Overall a nicely done black beer.

Photo of predikit
3.62/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours brown, settles in the glass black. Head recedes immediately, leaves no lacing on the glass.

Smells slightly hoppy, some sweet smelling notes.

Taste is light coffee and chocolate notes, finishes with an oat quality. Tastes a lot like Guinness only a bit more watered down.

Very thin, watery, medium carbonation, fairly smooth.

Not bad at all, but I would go to Guinness before this.

Photo of mikeg67
3.62/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Pours dark brown with beige, creamy, short-lived head. Aroma is of grassy hops and toasted, nutty malt. Medium, smooth body. Toasted nutty malt and roasted grain balanced on the palate by grassy hops, some hints of caramel. This is a nice brew for Shiner.

Photo of AustinEric
3.62/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Underrated and just rare enough to catch my eye at the pub.

Photo of philbe311
3.61/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Big rich rocky tan foam with a very loud fizzy sound... Moderate retention gives way to a full thick creamy lacing... Some very small and very rapid carbonation bubbles can be found around the sides of the glass towards the very top of the glass... Some foam clings to the sides of the glass with each sip, but then fades...

S - Mild all the way around... Mild roasted malts... Mild bitter baker's chocolate... Mild licorice... Mild graininess... Mild scent of weak coffee... If you haven't caught on yet, the key word here is mild... A certain muskiness permeates...

T - Roasted malts... Very weak coffee... Some dark chocolate... Cream... Some bready malts...

M - Light, delicate, and fluffy... Minor tinges of carbonation on the tongue... On the thin side of medium bodied... Very smooth all the way around...

D - Uber-sessionable... Not much in the way of complexity, but not every beer needs to be... This is mild, enjoyable, and a beer I would embrace in the future... Not the best Schwarzbier, but a respectably solid one... Never have I had such a wonderful beer with such an average taste...

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.61/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Part of the Shiner variety pack. A rare style, but one of my personal favorites. Pours a nice dark red, almost black. Off-white head to it. Smell is nice and roasty. Taste is medium bodied, great mouthfeel and nice balance going down. Finishes clean and smooth with a bit of spiciness. Pretty impressed by this one, compared to others of this style it's definitely better than average. A nice drinker, this Shiner mixed pack is starting to look like a solid mix!

Photo of Flounder57
3.61/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle was poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger mocha head that reduced to a thin layer. It is a dark brown black color with no vision of anything. Very typical for a schwarzbier.

Smell: Toffee, caramel, doughy, bready, chocolate, roasted, and lager yeast.

Taste: Same as above. Sweet and like a loaf of bread. Reminds me of a bock a little bit.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, light to medium bodied, a little chewy, some sweetness, and low to medium carbonation.

Overall: Nice Schwarzbier. I could revisit this one again this winter. Easy to drink and enjoyable.

Photo of HalfFull
3.6/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. Pours a deep brown with ruby highlights and quite clear. Offers a thin off white head after a somewhat vigorous pour, which settles out in a couple minutes to a surface film. Decent lacing and cap regeneration as needed.

Malty lager notes on the nose, some chocolate and a decent amount of hops as well.

Taste initiates as if this were a stout though surely with less body. Notes of chocolate up front with some hops at the back. A firm carbonation clears things out quickly though there is a bit of lingering dark cherry and caramel on the finish. Good feel though perhaps a bit too much on the carbonation as for the feel, though this also allows for a soda-like drinkability. Decent.

Photo of EagleTalon
3.6/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours to a fluffy beige head that falls to a thin ring of foam and bits of lace. Color is dark cola/Dr Pepper. Crystal clarity. Aroma is very mild with pale lager-like malt and spicy noble hops evident. Very faint roast in the aroma. Flavor is very mild and lagery; it has very little in common with its appearance. Saaz hops give nice balance to the mild sweet dark malt. Nice clean finish with residual malt and hop notes. Mouthfeel is light to medium. It has a bit of fullness to it in the finish. Carbonation is moderate. A good beer that is as good as any other schwarzbier made in the USA.

Bohemian Black Lager from Spoetzl Brewery
78 out of 100 based on 1,325 ratings.