Bohemian Black Lager - Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner

Not Rated.
Bohemian Black LagerBohemian Black Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
78
okay

1,361 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,361
Reviews: 519
rAvg: 3.44
pDev: 14.83%
Wants: 16
Gots: 149 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner 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.
View: Beers (25) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 1,361 | Reviews: 519
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.25/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Pours an almost opaque super dark crimson-brown with a foamy khaki head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of dark roasted malt, cocoa, and metallic aromas. Taste is much the same with cocoa and char flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of roasty bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an above average beer that is drinkable but the metallic aroma I am getting is not too pleasant.

Photo of kylehay2004
3.18/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: half finger head with poor retention on a very dark brwon body with some light getting through.

S: roasted malts, earthy hops, dark chocolate and toffee.

T: roasted malts and burnt toast up front. finish is mild coffee but not at all dry as I would expect. Fairly simple.

M: lighter body than expected. highly carbonation.

Overall: Drinkable but too carbonated. Flavor is simple and not at all memorable. Too bland for my tastes.

Photo of metter98
3.48/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A: When viewed from afar, the beer appears black in color but upon closer inspection when held up to a bright light it is clear very dark red and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin tan colored head and a large collar that rises up near the edges of the glass.
S: Moderate aromas of dark malts are present in the nose with notes of roasted malts.
T: The taste very much follows the smell but also has some hints of cola-like sweetness and very faint amounts of bitterness.
M: It feels a little more than light-bodied and thin on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is very easy to drink and goes down easily but seems to be too thin and a bit watery. It's not a bad choice if you are looking for something you can drink a lot of but has some roasty flavors.

Photo of Thorpe429
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to jsh420 for this bottle. Reviewed from notes.

Pours a deep brown with a light head and not much retention or lacing. Nose is crisp roasted malt with some light caramel and chocolate. Taste is roast with coffee and chocolate and some light earthy hops. Fairly light win good carbonation. Just like others I have had from them, this drinks well but doesn't pack much flavor.

Photo of brentk56
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a cola color with a moderate head that leaves a bit of lace around the glass

Smell: Rather sweet, with a modest aroma of chocolate and caramel

Taste: Like the aroma, this one is rather sweet, kind of on the milk chocolatey side; not much flavor development after the swallow; becomes watery on the finish

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: What happened to the hops? Just to sweet and lacks complexity; easy to drink, however

Photo of BEERchitect
4.07/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I don't really expect much out of the Shiner camp, but they dealt a nice surprise with this Schwarzbier. The typical black look with dark mohogany highlights and nearly opaque. Though head retention was timid, the lacing proved excellent. Obvious aromas of charcoal-like black malts backed with solid notes of caramel malts and nuttiness. The flavors were dominated with a simple and dry black malt that left a chalk-like, powdery feel in the mouth. The flavors weakened as the beer went down, but never became water or characterless. The beer is a very good representation of the style, though the caramel character caught me a bit by surprise. Quite dry and fleeting in the finish. Very clean and flavorful without getting heavy or over-sweetened. The best of the Shiner beers so far.

Bottle: 10-28-09. Thanks Exiled!

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.3/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

not as dark and roasty and complex as the more authentic beers in this style, but a plenty sessionable dark lager that is still at least a step better than say the chive beer that just came out. more red than black in color, especially in the light, with a short lived inch of tan foam. nose is lager yeast and sweeter amber malts, i dont get much bitter roasted barley on this at all. there is a little more in the flavor, but this is still an extremely light beer for a dark lager. that and the low abv make it drinkable enough, but it finishes a bit sweet and a bit metallic, a real tun off. passable but not special.

Photo of Knapp85
3.88/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was givent to me by a co-worker who did a trade with someone from Texas. I poured it out into a Sam Adams pint glass. The color was very dark brown with a light tan color head on top. The head had a good retentions which was impressive to me. The smell of the beer gives of a pretty typical roasted aroma with some lager yeast aromas. The taste is a little chocolaty and with the lager bitterness in the aftettaste. The flavors are better as the beer warms up a little. The mouthfeel is a little creamy, no bite to this one at all. Overall I found it to be a pretty nice Black Lager.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.24/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Dark cola brown with generous scarlet and gold highlights. The beer looks opaque, but then it's an overcast early morning outside my front window. Unfortunately, the head drags the appearance score down with it. The styrofoam-like foam is soft and airy and fizzy and completely unsticky.

The nose delivers a dark caramel and molasses vibe reminiscent of dark Karo syrup. Looks like the flavor has some work to do. Note: warming opens things up just enough to earn a bump in score.

Bohemian Black Lager is just an okay schwarzbier. Spoetzl Brewery, for the most part, hasn't impressed me yet. Like the vast majority of their offerings, it's too light and too simple. Yeah, it's probably inexpensive, but so what? Quality has always been more important than quantity for true Beer Advocates.

It tastes like a Euro dark lager that's a little bit darker than usual. There is something here that's worthwhile, but there isn't enough of it. The flavors include the same dark caramel and molasses of the aroma, as well as an undercurrent of black licorice. The Czech Saaz and Styrian Goldings hops provide a balancing amount of bitterness and no real flavor.

The mouthfeel is BBL's Achilles' heal. A lack of malt results in a disturbing thinness, even when taking style into consideration. In addition, the bubbles are too big and soda-like, which leads to an initial harshness, followed by a flat feel as the carbonation fades too quickly.

The black and silver label is great and is exactly how the label on a schwarzbier (black beer) should look. Too bad the contents of the bottle aren't quite up to snuff. I would have no trouble drinking Bohemian Black Lager in a pinch, but it isn't a beer that I'll buy again.

Photo of oberon
3.78/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Schwarzbier is a style you dont see a whole lot of and well to be honest I didnt think this beer would be real traditional, but I gotta say I liked the subtle qualities of this.Poured into my Monchshof schwarzbier glass a deep cola color with a fluffy off white head that left shotty lace as it settled.German malt aromas,iron and metallic with some bitter chocolate and earth,with a slight roasted nut element,flavors are quite earthy and dry with some metallic notes and unsweetened chocolate.Toastiness shows thru as I drink more and its quaffable,not bad,not bad at all.

Photo of zeff80
3.83/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a dark brown color with hints of ruby. It had a two-finger, tan head that was fairly bubbly and left behind some lace.

S - It smelled of malt and a mossy/earthy quality.

T - The first sip had a coffee-like taste with a malty kick. It was rather bittersweet.

M - It was soft and smooth. A light to medium-bodied beer.

D - This is a pretty good brew. The coffee taste is unique.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
2.93/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Dark brown, black body, and quite clear, with a very thin, very wispy, off-white head.

Smell: Very wimpy, moderately disappointing nose overall. Faint notes of chocolate, roasted grain, and Texas-born sorrow.

Taste: Thin, watered down flavors of toast, roast, and chocolate with a light caramel sweetness. Small hint of grain. Still watery. Lightly spicy Noble hops with a very low amount of bitterness. Short finish with meek tastes of chocolate and roast. Eh.

Mouthfeel: Light-bodied. Medium carbonation. Somewhat watery.

Drinkability: While the thin, watery nature of this beer lends itself to overall drinkability, the lack of flavor and complexities prevents me from wanting to ever again wanting to drink it in the first place.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.83/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in an Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull shaker pint glass.

Ah, inexpensive bottles for my mixed-sixer. Love it. This one pours a lovely translucent garnet-brown topped by nearly a finger of off-white foam. The nose comprises light roasted malts, light coffee, cocoa powder, and a twinge o' flowers. The taste holds notes of cocoa, light roasted malts, thick and toasted caramel, and a swig o' roasty toffee. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a wet feel. Overall, a somewhat surprisingly nice schwarz, nothing too exciting but pretty tasty and highly drinkable nonetheless.

Photo of nickfl
3.53/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - One finger of very light brown foam on top of a brown-black body with amber highlights showing through. The foam fades away quickly and leaves behind some spotty lace.

S - Brown, malty aromas of caramel and toffee. Some light hops in the background.

T - Toffee and caramel malt flavors dominate the beer initially with a hint of herbal hops that grown in the middle. Notes of brown sugar and licorice with some light roasted notes. The beer finishes with dominant flavors of sweet caramel and light hop bitterness for balance.

M - Medium body, moderately high carbonation, and a somewhat sweet finish.

D - This is a decent beer, but it is lacking in comparison to classic examples of this style. The roast character is a bit subdued with sweet caramel dominating the beer in a way that almost makes it seem more like a bock than a black schwarzbier. The sweet finish only serves to intensify this impression. Drinkable, but not something I would buy again.

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.83/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this beer at a backyard barbeque so I have to admit to some lack of care in this review. On the other hand, what I can say is that it fit in nicely, sitting in the shade during a warm summer day with a wide variety of foods and good company.

That said, I was initially impressed by the massive head, and the retention that followed. Typical black body and dark cream/light tan head.

The nose expressed deeply caramelish and dark roasted malts with a hint of espresso and some burnt sugar and sticky dark fruit character.

In the mouth it was medium-light, and fairly bubbly - not exactly what I'd expect of a schwarzbier - but at the same time not off by too much.

The flavor delivers darkly caramelish maltiness wrapped around a bit of roasty bittersweet chocolate. It's moderately bitter, and dry in the finish with a flicker of dark malt acidity. Hops are relegated to far, far background status.

Overall, it's a fairly well-balanced and rounded dark lager that's got more flavor than the usual. Enjoyable and drinkable.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.83/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Acquired via trade from breity, so a big "Thank You" goes out to him. Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep black color, with a thin off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of roasted malts, coffee, lager yeast and a faint touch of hops.

T: The taste is malty but well-balanced with flavors of roasted coffee and dark chocolate up front but it's not overly sweet. There's a mild but complimentary hops presence. The after-taste is slightly bready and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium-to-high carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, good representation of style, I found this beer to be surprisingly refreshing for a dark beer. It's definitely a beer worth drinking several of if you're in the mood for the style.

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 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 Slatetank
3.82/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I picked this up at Liquor Barn in Louisville, KY. Poured cold into my lager mug.

A - Dark mahogany w/ a rootbeer like appearance peripherally. The head is like a cloud of basic tan punctuated by pockets like craters and the foam makes a tight bead.

S - Very creamy, bready and nutty w/ roasty coffee-like aromas and sweet dark cocoa hints w/ slight herbal notes from the hops.

M - Very carbonated w/ a creamy feel, gently nutty w/ sweet caramel textures holding off until late in the taste and cocoa roasted malt w/ herbal hop in the finish.

T - The dry light toasted malt and pine accented hop flavors are there w/ more cocoa and bready flavors emerging in the middle. More coffee acidity and bean-like oily taste w/ an herbal hint keeping up until the gentle malty finish. The flavor has touches of coffee w/ caramel, vanilla and husky dry grain that lingers on.

D - This is a very easy style for me to enjoy as a lover of coffee, lager, porter and German beer in general. I didn't embrace this style until I left Germany, but this has all the finer points of a good schwarzbier. The feel is a bit more crisp and almost chalky, though. I consider this one of the better products Shiner has to offer. I find this very drinkable and would have loved to have a case to share, but they don't sell this, at least I have never seen it around Central PA.

Photo of mactrail
3.05/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dark golden brown rather than black in the glass. The head comes up a dark beige but does not last too well. The body is best described as watery.

A slight sweetness on the lips. A hint of walnuts but not much malty taste. Some scorched oatmeal and flax seed flavors. Rather dry and dirty after some sipping. Inoffensive but it could certainly use a touch of crispness. Kind of a drier version of the Shiner Bock.

This just seems to be barely more interesting than any flabby lager. From the 12 oz bottle purchased at Pinkie's in San Angelo.

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

Decided to try this since I saw the new packaging. Loved the labeling

Pours chestnut with reddish tinges & 2 fingers of tan head. Above average lacing & head retention

S: Roasted malt & licorice notes

T: Roasted malt, a bit of caramel & smokeyness up front. Dryness & some nice fruitty notes as this warms. Finishes dry, with slight sour notes & herbal hops, a bit of caramel & molasses

MF: Light/medium bodied with a little too much carbonation

Drinks good, but needs more malt backbone, still, this is better than I remember the 97 tasting

Photo of Rifugium
4/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at Elephant & Castle, Chicago, IL

Poured a nice, dark, cola brown with a wispy eggshell head that receded to a patchy layer. Dark roasty malts in the aroma with notes of coffee and sugar. More roasted malts in the taste, toffee, semisweet chocolate, and a coffee bitterness. Practically no hops detectable. Not as smooth as some schwarzbiers I've had, but I still liked it a lot. Medium-bodied, dry finish, and quite drinkable.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.33/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Again gotta love this little German style brewery from down in Texas and anyone who's ever driven through the lonestar state knows there basically two options that people drink as their local, Shiner Bock or Lonestar. Nice to see other German style popping up from them this one appears a dark cola ruby brown almost dark black nearly opaque...nice sized tan head dwindles rather quickly with light even lace that sticks to the glass well. Aromatics have alot of those dry slightly bitter dark chocolate roasted qualities mild watered down coffee with herbal hop traces going on. Flavor more watered down roastiness with dark chocolate cocoa powder and a subtle caramel sweetness with mild herbal hop finish overall a very light schwarzbier. Mouthfeel is light bodied evenly carbonated nothing too remarkable but definitely smooth going down . Drinkability is decent better than most dark style lagers around but I tend to want more flavor hell with Sam Adams Black Lager there's just no need to ever go for this one again.

Photo of kojevergas
2.61/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with generic label art and twist-off pressure cap acquired as part of a Spoetzl variety 12-pack box at me local HEB grocery and served into an Independence Brewing pilsner glass in me gaff in low altitude Austin, Texas. Reviewed live. Expectations are below average; I'm not confident Spoetzl is the brewery to pull off an amazing (or even average) black lager. Reviewed as a black lager because it identifies as such.

Served cold, straight from me fridge. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: No bubble show forms as I pour.

Pours a 1.5 finger head of khaki colour. Nice creaminess and thickness. Fluffy complexion. No real lacing as the head recedes. Head retention is above average - about 2-3 minutes.

Body colour is a dark amber-black. No yeast particles are visible. Understated and rich, but I wouldn't call it vibrant given its darkness.

Overall, it's to style.

Sm: Dark malts, vague roast, syrupy caramel, sticky blackstrap molasses, raisin, fennel, and a bit of a vinous and/or herbal note. Not particularly appealing, but it's inoffensive. Definitely comes across as sticky and syrupy, though. Surprisingly, it does have a slight floral hop undertone.

No alcohol or yeast character is detectable. This one's almost all malts.

Not particularly looking forward to it; it's not alive or inviting. Certainly not a unique or special aroma.

T/Mf: Caramel heavy with plenty of molasses. Sticky and syrupy as a result. A buried hint of musty roast does little to satisfy my craving for roast. I do get a vague sense of licorice/fennel, accompanied by an unpleasant sugary sticky sweetness. There's also some of that nebulous vine/herb note I mentioned above. A highlight is its brief foray into mildly dark fruit notes, which yields a hint of grape and maybe dates. Some cola-esque sarsaparilla/sassafrass. A bit of chocolate malt is a nice addition here, but it gets buried by the other less interesting dark malts; we don't get any fine cocoa dust or rich dark chocolate at all. Any hopping is floral in character but generic, and minimal in its presence.

No yeast character or alcohol comes through.

Smooth and wet, with a bit too much body for the lack of depth and diversity of flavour. Flaovur duration and intensity is average for the style. It's not carefully balanced, nor is it gestalt, but there's some cohesion here. It's got a focus and direction. Constructively, it really needs more roast, and I'd like to see the mouthfeel less syrupy and sticky. Overcarbonated in classic Spoetzl fashion; they're almost function like a glorified macrobrewery at this point. A bit too thick; it's got too heavy a presence on the palate. The texture is by no means custom-tailored to the taste, but it does a decent job I guess.

At least it's not harsh, biting, oily, gushed, or hot. But I can't emphasize enough that the stickiness and syrupy quality have got to go.

Dr: A generally drinkable black lager from Spoetzl, but it's not worth getting again - even at its modest price point. I wouldn't recommend it to friends, but I'll kill off the two bottles that came in the box without resentment. It's a tough style to really execute right, and Spoetzl's crowd-pleasing ambitions don't allow for a more refined attempt at a black lager. Overall, it's below average for the style, and I think we can anticipate seeing Spoetzl phase this one out over the next five years.

C-

Photo of jwc215
3.7/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours black with dark brown hues around the edges. A fizzy thin head tops it off. Some lacing sticks.

The smell is grainy with a hint of coffee roast. Mild, earthy hops are in there.

The taste is of sweet chocolate and anise with mild coffee-like roast. A touch of hops is enough to balance thesweetness in the finish. The initial taste is very good; unfortunately it seems to die off, but holds up there enough to give it the higher of two scores I had in mind.

The carbonation makes this somewhat fizzy. The fizz calms down, but not much flavor lingers. It's not too thin. Easy enough to drink if you can get past the initial soda-like fizz.

This is a black lager with a good taste (that ends pretty abruptly). This is a "nice enough to enjoy" lager with nice "black" notes.

« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Bohemian Black Lager from Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner
78 out of 100 based on 1,361 ratings.