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Bohemian Black Lager - Spoetzl Brewery

Not Rated.
Bohemian Black LagerBohemian Black Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
78
okay

1,131 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,131
Reviews: 481
rAvg: 3.44
pDev: 14.83%
Wants: 9
Gots: 52 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Spoetzl Brewery visit their website
Texas, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Todd on 09-02-2006)
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Ratings: 1,131 | Reviews: 481 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of t0rin0
t0rin0

California

4/5  rDev +16.3%

02-09-2013 23:39:08 | More by t0rin0
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

3.26/5  rDev -5.2%
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.

Serving type: bottle

12-12-2013 03:05:22 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of djrn2
djrn2

New Jersey

3/5  rDev -12.8%

03-10-2013 18:27:18 | More by djrn2
Photo of Thorpe429
Thorpe429

Illinois

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.

Serving type: bottle

10-26-2010 12:27:46 | More by Thorpe429
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

3.25/5  rDev -5.5%
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.

Serving type: bottle

04-25-2008 12:16:14 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of metter98
metter98

New York

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.

Serving type: bottle

11-23-2013 00:51:21 | More by metter98
Photo of brentk56
brentk56

North Carolina

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

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2007 00:52:41 | More by brentk56
Photo of BEERchitect
BEERchitect

Kentucky

4.08/5  rDev +18.6%
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!

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2006 15:37:25 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of ChainGangGuy
ChainGangGuy

Georgia

2.95/5  rDev -14.2%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

01-05-2009 20:31:40 | More by ChainGangGuy
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kjkinsey

Texas

3/5  rDev -12.8%

12-07-2011 18:03:31 | More by kjkinsey
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jaydoc

Kansas

3.5/5  rDev +1.7%

01-23-2014 03:39:24 | More by jaydoc
Photo of Texasfan549
Texasfan549

Texas

3.25/5  rDev -5.5%

07-18-2013 19:01:44 | More by Texasfan549
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

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.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2009 22:25:08 | More by oberon
Photo of kylehay2004
kylehay2004

Florida

3.15/5  rDev -8.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2012 00:54:02 | More by kylehay2004
Photo of Knapp85
Knapp85

Pennsylvania

3.9/5  rDev +13.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2011 23:23:03 | More by Knapp85
Photo of TMoney2591
TMoney2591

Illinois

3.85/5  rDev +11.9%
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.

Serving type: bottle

11-04-2010 17:48:28 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

3.85/5  rDev +11.9%
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.

Serving type: bottle

05-28-2008 12:27:13 | More by zeff80
Photo of NeroFiddled
NeroFiddled

Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev +11.9%
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.

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2007 19:19:01 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of nickfl
nickfl

Florida

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.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2010 06:28:58 | More by nickfl
Photo of TheManiacalOne
TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

3.85/5  rDev +11.9%
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.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2008 03:05:40 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of russpowell
russpowell

Oklahoma

3.68/5  rDev +7%
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

Serving type: bottle

12-04-2007 04:43:51 | More by russpowell
Photo of WVbeergeek
WVbeergeek

West Virginia

3.35/5  rDev -2.6%
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.

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2007 23:44:06 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of Slatetank
Slatetank

Pennsylvania

3.78/5  rDev +9.9%
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.

Serving type: bottle

04-16-2008 16:59:49 | More by Slatetank
Photo of jlindros
jlindros

Massachusetts

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.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2011 04:57:56 | More by jlindros
Photo of Mora2000
Mora2000

Texas

3.43/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a black color with red highlights and a tan head. The aroma is roasted malt, but it is a little bit faint. I really expected more from the aroma. The flavor is much stronger. I get the expected roasted malt but I am also getting quite a bit of smoke. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

I have had this beer numerous times over the years and it has always been my favorite Shiner beer. I never remembered the smoke in the beer before, so I am not sure if I always just missed it or if this batch was smokier than others in the past.

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2010 05:23:17 | More by Mora2000
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Bohemian Black Lager from Spoetzl Brewery
78 out of 100 based on 1,131 ratings.