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Bohemian Black Lager - Spoetzl Brewery

Not Rated.
Bohemian Black LagerBohemian Black Lager

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1,305 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,305
Reviews: 497
rAvg: 3.44
pDev: 15.12%
Wants: 15
Gots: 106 | 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: 1,305 | Reviews: 497 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of CraftBeerTastic
3.35/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Ba Review #56
Served On: 9/4/2011
Glassware: Wheat Glass

This was from the Shiner Family mixed six pack.

Look: Poured a deep dark ruby red with tinges of copper around the edges. Head was ½ finger of tan spongy foam. Carbonation bubbles were slow but steady.

Smell: Rich lager tones with some sweet roasted malts in the background. Caramelized dark fruits were also present. It had a clean freshness in the nose – similar to the other Spoetzl offerings I’ve reviewed.

Taste: Roasted malts at first - then a brief note of semisweet brown sugar and caramelized plum. The finish was a roasted malt with the brown sugar lingering. A hop bitterness also contributed to the finish.

This is another fantastic offering from Spoetzl. This is a very complex – yet drinkable Schwartzbier that just screams quality.

Photo of MrDonQuixote
3.38/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 12 ounce bottle into an oversized wine glass:

A- Beautiful jet black color with not much of a head, and what head there is, dissipates quickly

S- Smells of chocolate and malt

T- Very mild taste, slightly malty, with a nice coffee finish

M- Smoothish with a bit of carbonation

O- At one point early in my beer education this was one of my favorite beers (as I am from Texas). At this point, it is still enjoyable, but not nearly one of my favorites

Photo of 2xHops
3.58/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Every time I drink this beer, I am always undecided if I liked it or not. At the time of this review, I have tried this beer at least five times.

The appearance is good, and it is as advertised. It's nearly black, and it shows up in the taste as well. You could tell that there's some roasting going on with the taste and how it lingers well after you have swallowed. The beer's slightly thin, and a bit under carbonated.

Overall, it's not a bad offering, and apparently one of the more popular offerings from Shiner? I suppose, for many Texans, this reminds them of Shiner Bock? I don't see how, but it's definitely one of the more interesting beers the brewery has to offer.

Photo of elNopalero
2.8/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into what else, my Shiner pint shaker glass. Beer pours a nice inch and a half of head that quickly and almost completely dissipates into a very thin layer. From arm’s length the beer appears black, although its more of a dark auburn/reddish brown. I’m picking up on a very muted roasty aroma here, while detecting notes of a sweet maltiness. Heavy carbonation makes this beer appear lighter to the taste than I’d expect, given the sweet/malt notes. However, that doesn’t improve the taste. It’s sweet, a little too sweet, almost sickingly so. I don’t remember it tasting so unpleasant, as this was one of my go-to beers during Shiner specials. Could be I liked it more a year ago and my tastes have radically changed, or my options in Tejas expanded to where I no longer drink it and forgot just how it tasted? Either way, as a schwarzbier] it misses more than hits. Can’t say I expected all that much but I’m writing this one off as a letdown.

Photo of claspada
3/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Typical black body and dark cream/light tan head.

The nose expressed deeply caramelish and dark roasted malts with a hint of molasses and some burnt sugar.

The tastes begin with mild dark 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.

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.

Overall, it's a fairly well-balanced and rounded dark lager that's okay but not memorable or revisitiable by any means.

Photo of redfire89
4.13/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Really dark brown color
S- Faint smell of roasted malts
T- Hints of choclate, coffee, and brown sugar
M- Balanced and easy to drink, you can drink the whole thing and not even realize it.
O- Really good I've been meaning to try this for quite awhile, it's something I will probably have more often.

Photo of jondeelee
3.48/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

The smell is not as heavy as I would expect from a black lager, though there are still light malty scents, focusing mainly on brown sugars.

The flavors come out far stronger on the tongue, starting off with an immediate chocolate malt buzz that washes over the tongue with its lovely almost-burnt taste, then switch gears to bring out lighter Grape Nuts cereal grain fare that almost seems like it should belong in an pale ale. Toffee and caramel flavors are also present here. The chocolate malt then comes back at the end, leaving a second layer of almost-burnt flavoring that lingers on the tongue for a moment after the beer has gone down. Hops seem to be kept to a minimum, as I barely manage to pick up any grapefruity bitterness. One odd note for me was that the carbonation seemed to have been cranked to at least ten, if not eleven, making this just about the fizziest black lager I've ever had. And I did find the brew just slightly more watery that I would have liked.

Overall--and especially for those just being introduced to heavier and darker beers--this is a nice, solid offering.

Photo of SpdKilz
3.75/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to a generous BA (forgot who sent this extra, sorry!) for this beer. Cheers!

Appearance – Pours a dark brown/black into a tulip glass with about a finger of tan head that dissipates somewhat quickly leaving slight lacing.

Smell – Roasted malt, smoky oak, slight cocoa and chocolate.

Taste – Some nice mellow flavors. Roasted grains and malts, a bread, toffee, caramel, and coffee. A nice oak and smoke flavor hits midway through the warming up of the beer. More flavorful than expected.

Mouthfeel – Lighter bodied, crisp carbonation.

Overall – A pretty damn quaffable beer. Better than I was expecting. Would grab with a meal at a restaurant.

Photo of tdm168
3.4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a rich, brownish black with a quarter inch of head. Very little retention. The nose is quite bland; sweet, roasted malt, just a hint of chocolate, and a little yeast. Taste is roasted malt with an almost burnt charcoal character and lager yeast. In the finish there is just a hint of hop bitterness for balance. Mouthfeel is light and thin with a great deal of carbonation.

Pretty thin and watery. I like the roasted malt, but not the burnt flavor that sneaks through. I also am not a fan of how much lager yeast is noticeable over the malts. Not awful, but not great.

Photo of jamescain
2.95/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours black with dark red hues and a white head about a finger thick that quickly fades into a ring around the side of the glass.

Aroma: Hints of roasted malt and that’s about it, not very strong.

Taste: Like the aroma, roasted notes and not much else.

Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation and a light body with a dry finish.

Overall: Of Shiner’s offerings this is probably their better ones, but even it is not that spectacular. It's just mehh

Photo of schmidtn
3.75/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Part of a variety 6 pack purchased today that Spoetzl sends out.

Poured into a wine glass. Dark. Creamy head that dissipates into a light lacing on the glass.

Smells of chocolate malt, and a dash of smokiness.

Carbonated nicely for the style Flavor is that of a lighter homebrew stout (I mean this as a complement) Nice use of bittering hops. Almost gives that dark chocolate taste/aftertaste.

A nice beer and not as heavy as it looks.

Photo of cagocubs
3.75/5  rDev +9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into pint glass.

A: Pours a very dark brown, looks opaque when finished pouring. A very small white head that recedes without lacing.

S: Roasted malt, hops, smokey chocolate smell.

T: The roasted malt and sweetness prevail at first. The smokey flavor comes through and leaves you with a nice bitter hop finish. Some sweetness remains on the palate.

M: This had the taste of a stout/porter without the bulky body of one. It was well carbonated and crisp. Lighter body than expected. Good aftertaste.

O: I think Shiner has provided a great example of a schwarzbier, an interesting brew that I would def. have again.

Photo of DavidSeanNJ
3.25/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into a standard pint glass.

Very dark jet black liquid with a tan head about a quarter of an inch thick. Some lacing, but nothing noteworthy. Smell was roasty very similar to freshly grind coffee beans. Some sugar and sweetness in the taste, but a nice bitter backbone. Nice thick and oily mouthfeel. Very carbonated. Best from Shiner thus far, but still nothing over the top.

Photo of goldbot
3.4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours mostly opaque black with thin off-white to tan head. Subtle grainy malt aroma, a touch of roasted coffee. Toasted flavor, bready with some coffee and roast malt. Barely a hint of floral hops. Decent, smooth mouthfeel. Definitely a balanced beer with good drinkability.

Photo of ManuelHerrera
3.13/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Pours deep dark brown with a pearly white head and visible carbonation. Looks like a dark beer that's palatable for a large audience.

S - Underlying smokiness elevates a malty chocolate smell. Overwhelming taro root style earthiness, kind of like root beer.

T & M - Malt sweetness of espresso met with earthiness, but cut through with a carbonated lightness that makes this beer far from heavy and syrupy. A mild hint of smoke savory flavor adds depth, although this isn't a tip-top quality beer it's still a worthy effort.

O - Overall an easy dark beer to drink, not a premier beer but with a try especially if you like dark flavors but can't commit to the deep cuts of heavy beer.

Photo of kemoarps
3.13/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

pours a deep (just a bit darker than) coca cola (almost) black. minimal head/lacing.

The nose is almost sweet, with a caramel malt tinge to it, almost smokey, though I wouldn't quite describe it as such.

Has a sweet burnt caramel tinge to it, with the hops coming in at the very finish. They are by no means overwhelming.

small (not light, small as opposed to round robust) carbonation and a smoothe-enough finish, leaves one satisfied, but not necessarily clambering to find another one.

Came in a Shiner family pack; all in all it was decent. Not one that I would ever go out of my way to pick up, but not an UNenjoyable experience.

Photo of BeerAmbassador
2.93/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. Color is mostly black with a bit of ruby shining through when held up to the light. Thin head that dissipated quickly and left no lacing behind. Aroma is coffee some darkly toasted grain and a bit of something sweet on the end, I know this sounds bizarre but I almost got a faint hint of grape soda. Mouthfeel is a bit thin on this beer and I think it's biggest downfall is it's carbonation. The bubbles are very large, like coca cola or club soda. Not something I am looking for in a beer. Oh well, better finish drinking it before it goes flat...

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 ranger7
3.9/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into a tumbler.

A - Pours black, but not thick. A low tan head dissipates soon after pour, but lingers. Nice.

S - Some coffee and malt. Good smell.

T - Same as the smell - coffee and malt, with maybe a dash of chocolate bitterness. Easy to drink.

M - Although this beer is dark, the mouthfeel is unexpectedly thin. Some carbonation. A little weak.

Summary - Shiner Black is one of my favorite "any day" beers. It is drinkable in any season, with many meals, as well as fairly enjoyable on its own. There is nothing particularly special about Black, with mouthfeel being the least spectacular, but as a casual beer I have enjoyed it.

Photo of devinoconnor
3.73/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this beer in a Shiner sampler pack. Although Shiner beers on BA don't get much respect, I''ve always thought their beers are enjoyable.

Pours a dark brown, almost black color with a little head.

Smells is smooth, rich with malts and coffee and toffee flavors. Taste is much like the smell. A tad bitter on the end.

Photo of gmfessen
3.45/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, beer appears black in the glass but when held to the light it is really more of a very deep crimson red; a light head that quickly breaks up to just a thin ring with continuous carbonation rising to keep the ring in tact. The nose is mainly malty sweet with just hints of more darkly roasted malts which give a slight burnt note. Taste is very similar with the sweeter notes coming through early and the slight astringent, burnt bitterness rounding out the taste. The mouthfeel is rather light in body with a fairly aggressive yet thin carbonation. Overall a decent tasting brew but not one I could drink a lot of in one sitting due to the mouth drying bitterness.

Photo of PDXHops
3.48/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle poured into a shaker pint. It looks black inside, but out on my covered porch it's more of a deep mahogany shade. A thick skim of foam lingers impressively, but doesn't leave a whole lot in the way of lacing.

Clean roasty nose with a light dusting of cocoa. A crisp drinker with very light chocolate sweetness and a bit of lingering raisin. It's mainly dry, grainy, roasty and quite quaffable. Nice dry finish. A simple, but enjoyable beer that goes down with ease.

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

A: Pours mostly black with a small amount of light brown foam that dissipates soon after the pour is done.

S: Roasted and a little sweet caramel flavor comes right off the top. A somewhat clean yeast smell as well

T: Low amount of malty characteristic, medium amount on the roasted flavor with a slight bitterness halfway through to finish it off.

M: light-medium body with too much carbonation.

O: It could be better if it was a little thinner and had less carbonation, but the roasted flavor, malty character and bitterness of the hops is there.

Photo of mdunman
3.75/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A: Opaque black with a thick tan head and good linger.

S: Sweet malt, twist of lemon and barely noticeable hops

T: Understated roasted malt up front, a little bit of dark chocolate and a good complementary dryness at the end.

M: Full body, decent carbonation.

Enjoyable beer overall, not the greatest by any means but still quite good. Shiner, once again, the best value for money in its class.

Photo of Dodt
3.38/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

picked up a sixer of this beer from the nice people at the spoetzl brewery.
poured from the bottle into the pint glass
appearance cola colored with a light brown head
smell a bit of coffe with some malt
tasteroasted malt and coffee
not a bad representation of the style

Bohemian Black Lager from Spoetzl Brewery
78 out of 100 based on 1,305 ratings.