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Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) - Brouwerij Het Anker

Not Rated.
Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue)Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,421 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,421
Reviews: 823
rAvg: 4.31
pDev: 10.67%
Wants: 168
Gots: 184 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Het Anker visit their website

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-03-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,421 | Reviews: 823 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of armock

New York

4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a mahogany color with an off white head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is of dark fruit with some alcohol

T - Follows the nose but its a little sweeter with the dark fruit and some spice comes out

M - This beer has a medium body with high carbonation to it

D - Just about as drinkable as you can get for an 11% Belgian very good taste that I enjoyed a lot worth trying

Serving type: bottle

04-22-2009 16:36:43 | More by armock
Photo of bonkers

New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I split a 750 ml bottle with a friend, poured into oversized wine glasses. The pour is a muddy plum color with a moderate white head, light lacing. The aroma is sweet, spicy and has a hint of bubblegum? The flavor is great, cotton candy, bubble gum, and dark fruit, with a lingering sweet finish. The beer is full/medium in body, average carbonation, and the alcohol is well hidden. The beer went down way too easy for such a big beer, highly recomended.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2011 16:50:11 | More by bonkers
Photo of brewandbbq

New Hampshire

4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Vintage 2005, "Grand Cru of the Emperor" moniker. 52 degrees from the cellar.

A creeping gush began after disgorgement, no hurry to get in the glass but I was surpised at the meager head that developed.
Barely a trace of any foam on the surface after a few minutes and very little lacework.

Aromatics lead off with candied figs, rum-soaked raisins, caramelized brown sugar, dark fruit, and clovey phenols.
Hints of grape jam, sweet malt, and spiced rum follow through.

On the chewy side of medium bodied with a creamy, tacky mouthfeel. Slightly syrupy.

Ripe stone fruits, sugar-dusted figs, plump raisins, and grape jam start the palate. Boozy dark rum notes step forward along with hints of burnt sugar, sugared dates, and caramel-drizzeled cotton candy.

Finishes with a building warmth, lingering sweetness, and dark fruit.

Still quite sweet after four years, and the carbonation is low. Otherwise a world-class Strong Dark or Quad.

Serving type: bottle

02-06-2009 00:37:51 | More by brewandbbq
Photo of theWrkncacnter

North Carolina

4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz corked bottle. 2006 vintage. Pours a deep mahogany brown that's very opaque. Moderate head with minimal lacing. The smell is somewhat strange. I want to say that it smells like turpentine, but in a good way, if that makes any sense. The alcohol is definitely there in the nose, but in a very nice way. It combines with citrus and other fruit scents to make a very interesting and very good nose. Taste is amazing. I loved this beer instantly. The alcohol is fairly well hidden, which makes it very easy to drink. Once the head is gone, it's very hard to tell this appart from a dessert wine. The taste is sweet with citrus and sugar and only a moderate alcohol taste. Do I taste a bit of chocolate on the aftertaste? Maybe I'm crazy but I think there's some there. Complex would be a great way to describe this beer. As the beer warms, the alcohol comes out more but only reinforces the dessert wine quality of this beer. Perhaps this is a bit too sweet, and that might push away some hop-heads like myself, but I think for this style it's not a problem.

Bottom line: this is a killer brew, pick some up now while you can; I'll definitely be picking up another bottle soon.

Serving type: bottle

03-17-2007 01:05:10 | More by theWrkncacnter
Photo of kawilliams81


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Bell's tulip from a cage n corked bottle.
2005 on the neck of the bottle.

A- Pours a dark amber with a 1 finger light tan head. Minimal lacing.

S- Lots of dark fruits and toasted malts, spices, and has a champagne-like smell to it (champagne yeast?).

T- Sweet toasted malts and lots of dark fruits, spices, bread, belgian yeast.

M- Full body with high carbonation, again possibly from a champagne yeast. ABV is there but not hot at all.

O- Very good Belgian strong dark ale! Like the sweet dark fruits and flavors from the yeast as well.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2012 21:15:16 | More by kawilliams81
Photo of Gueuzedude


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2003 bottling, Sampled January 2004:
The cork explodes from the bottle. A deep ruby color that is topped by a dark tan head. Aromas of plum, raisin, lots of dark malt aromas, and slight notes of alcohol emanate from my glass. The taste is rich and sweet with dark fruit (cherry, raisin, and fig) and alcohol in the finish. The mix of fruit and alcohol is evocative of brandy. Ends with a bit of acidity, which is a nice balancing note. The fruitiness is perhaps most reminiscent of dark cherries, though there are some subtle notes of peach as well.

This is quite good, very rich and a definite brew to savor. Could perhaps use something to balance the sweetness and fruitiness; maybe some Belgian yeast complexity or some off-setting spice notes. This beer is very smooth, with no harsh components despite the high alcohol.

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2004 00:07:41 | More by Gueuzedude
Photo of joe1510


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Binny's, Plainfield

2007 Release
10% ABV

I picked this bottle up about 15 months ago and it's been in the cellar ever since. Grand Cru of the Emperor fills this here little goblet with a murky, deeply red liquid that appears black unless backlit. When the light sits directly behind the glass there are tiny yeasties suspended throughout and large, slow rising carbonation making its way to the surface. A soft pour brought about a one finger head that settled to a solid cap and thick creamy collar that leaves behind some impressive sheet lacing.

The first thing that hits me when I stick my nose in the glass is anise but as my nose gets deeper somehow dips into dark molasses. There are handfuls of dark fruits loaded into this brew with prunes, figs, and spicy rum soaked raisins being most prominent. Bready caramel stays steady throughout the nose and mild fruity esters float through the background with banana leading the way. When this hits room temperature a surprising cherry note leaps from the glass and is very prominent. That just boosted the score! A deep pull brings forth some spicy alcohol that adds to the overall aroma.

This beer is the essence of what these BSDAs are all about in their glory. Hugely complex flavors layer each other and seem to shift after every drink. Bready and caramel sweetness lay it down while the dark fruits have a hand in all the intricacies. The banana is mild but noticeable while the Bing cherry plays a large role as this beer warms. There's a spicy alcohol on the finish that adds yet another layer of depth to an already deeply complex beer.

The body of this beer is what I've come to love in the finest brewed Belgians out there. This beer weighs in at 10% and has a moderate body with an airy enough carbonation to bring out that perfect velvety texture. There's not a hint of alcohol in the flavor but there is a faint fume or two rising through my nose. You can't ask for any better than this!

This beer goes down incredibly easy, so easy in fact the booze can catch up to you fairly quickly. Besides that this is a beer to be sipped and savored. It really opens up for the better as it breathes and is purely drinkable for such a bruiser.

I've sampled this beer a few times over the years and have thoroughly enjoyed every bottle I've come across. This year-plus old bottle is outstanding just like the others. This truly is a classic and one of the best in its loose fitting style.

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2009 02:57:58 | More by joe1510
Photo of Overlord


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I say goddamn! This is a sparkling gem of a beer. Better work on your beer muscles, though, as this is overpowering in aroma, taste, and alcohol content.

Pours a sardonyx, carnelian laced brown with little to no head, just some bubbling and a slight rim of white foam.

The smell, and taste, are aggressively sweet and boozy. Almost more in common with port than your standard macrolager. Gigantic banana flavors, spices, sweet caramel malt, some sort of candi/molasses background, and maybe some figs or prunes mixed in. Unbelievably potent on your tastebuds and nose.

Truly marvelous. I do wish, however, that the mouthfeel was a tad bit thicker. But, a small quibble, overall.

Serving type: bottle

02-03-2008 10:16:32 | More by Overlord
Photo of DaftCaskBC

British Columbia (Canada)

4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2011 Vintage.

A: 1" tan coloured head that left a nice lacing over very dark mahogany cloudy liquid.

S: Yeast, alcohol esters, figs, pear, cherry, sweet brown sugar.

T: Pear and apple up front which transitions to cherry, figs and a finish which a fair amount of alcohol. Main criticism is that it does not hide the alcohol as well as it could.

M: Thick viscosity and a high level of carbonation. Some drying from the alcohol.

O: A good beer that would probably be best aged, so that the alcohol is muted. However, I believe that Unibroue's Terrible is a similar and better Belgian Strong Dark Ale.

Serving type: bottle

10-16-2011 00:52:04 | More by DaftCaskBC
Photo of drummermattie02


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2010 vintage, poured into a St. Bernardus goblet.

Color is dark brown with an off-white head that disappeared quickly. Virtually no lacing.

Smell is very sweet and boozy, lots of caramel, banana, and spice -- maybe some fig/prune in there too. Taste is very similar, the yeast comes through a bit more here though and is pleasant.

A very good beer, although the feel was a bit thin, but not in a way that really detracted from overall enjoyment.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2011 18:03:05 | More by drummermattie02
Photo of irishking1977

New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a ruby red/brown into my St. Bernardus chalice, with virtually no head and little lacing.

S: Aromas of dark candi sugar and dark fruits. Very pleasant.

T: Quite sweet. Hints of brown sugar and dark fruits, as suggested by the aromas, including raisins and grapes. Mild spiciness at the finish, probably due to the ABV. Speaking of the high alcohol content, with the exception of the spicy finish, it is almost undetectable. A very drinkable brew.

M: Somewhat syrupy, but that is to be expected with this type of brew. The high sweetness is probably a reason for this. Middle of the road carbonation and a moderately full mouthfeel.

D: Not as complex as some other Strong Dark Belgian ales, (Chimay Grand Reserve) but still amazingly drinkable. I think the first time I had this, I thought it was going to be a golden ale, and was disappointed to find it was a dark ale. This second time around, knowing what I was getting, I've appreciated this that much more. Excellent interpretation of the style, and quite possibly one of the top ten in the style. Wine drinkers, or those who do not like excessively hoppy or bitter brews, could appreciate this one.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2010 23:24:07 | More by irishking1977
Photo of lionchow


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The cork pops with a a loud, sharp snap. Pours copper/amber with a thick tan head that lingers slightly.

Aroma is filled with caramel and candi sugar, a hint of milk chocolate candy. There is a mild but bright cinnamon spice note. Some butterscoth is also apparent.

Flavor is super caramelly, lightly buttery. They complement each other well. One of the few beers I have found where diacetyl works well in the beer. There is also raisin, fruitcake, and a mild clove like spice. It is very drinkable and tasty.

The moutfeel is slick and mouthcoating.

This is an excellent beer. It would be great for dessert. More sweet and caramelly than other quads, but it does it right. Not cloying, just outstanding.

Serving type: bottle

11-19-2011 06:07:21 | More by lionchow
Photo of poundboy


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Cuvee Van de Keizer- The American version seems to be "Grand Cru of the Emperor". This beer, by any name, would still be one heck of a brew. My bottle was the 2005 edition.

Appearance: In my tulip glass it sits, dark mahogany brown with a persistant though thin bone white head. When held to the light, it becomes a saphire jewel, indicating the treasure in store for the drinker.

Smell: Alcohol, sweet ripe fruit. No overly strong aromas, but the taste more than make up for it.

Taste: Wonderful. Very reminsent of Westy 12 and St. Bernadus Abt 12. Noticably sweeter than either of these, but perhaps that is just because my bottle is so green. Sweet fruit when it first touches your tongue, then warming, pleasant alcohol notes. finishes with a bit of bitterness, perhaps from a larger than normal addition of hops, perhaps some other belgian brewing magic.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with ample carbonation, and a hefty ABV, this one dances on the tongue more than most.

Drinkability: Very good but a bit too sweet to drink several of. Also, the $18 I paid for one 750 will prevent me from drinking as much of this as I would like.

Serving type: bottle

03-13-2005 22:05:11 | More by poundboy
Photo of jera1350


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Vintage 2009.

Deep copper brown color. Dense head of lively foam with terrific retention.

Exquisite nose that is highly complex. Cake, shortbread cookies, dark fruits, dates, fig, pudding.

Very wine like in flavor. Port wine, huge sweetness, red grape juice, fig, wine alcohol, blackberry brandy and simple syrup. Deep complexity.

Awesome feel of velvety smooth fullness.

A beer like a fine port wine. Lots of sweetness and complexity. Wonderful brew for sipping.

Serving type: bottle

08-26-2012 04:26:43 | More by jera1350
Photo of TheBungyo


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2000 vintage. 8% ABV, not 11% for this year.

Poured dark scarlet brown with a meek white head. The dominant note in the nose is cherries and maybe rum. Maybe a little red licorice too. Taste is kind of syrupy sweet cherries, lots of floral notes, caramel, and more red licorice. Mouth is nice. A bit thick with carbonation that feels active as you let the liquid play around the mouth. If I had money to burn I could see buying this often. Luckily I have access to many aged vintages ... for the right price.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2006 06:14:21 | More by TheBungyo
Photo of yemenmocha


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours cloudy brown with thin head that doesn't last long.

Nose is plummy, cola-like, raisin-like.

Palate reminds me of soft fig newtons, raisins, and has a viscous jammy character. Not much in the way of hop influence.

Finish is on the sweeter side and alcohol is disguised.

Serving type: bottle

12-29-2008 01:13:49 | More by yemenmocha
Photo of Dogbrick


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at From The Vine monthly beer tasting Oct 13th, 2003: 2003 Bottle: Dark ruby/amber with a medium beige head and nice lacing. Aroma of plum, malt, caramel and banana. Fairly rich and complex with a nice vinous blend of fruit (apple mostly), malt, chocolate and a little alcohol. The finish is sweet and lingering. Definitely worth getting again.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2003 15:27:32 | More by Dogbrick
Photo of ahommell


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into Tulip Glass from 750 ML Bottle. 2012 Bottle

A: Deep brown that, under light, turns a deep orangish hue. White to off white small bubbled head. It sticks around for quite a while. Lacing throughout.

S: Belgian yeast. Dark fruits. Cherries. Very light hops... smooth and mellow.

T: Surprisingly sweet. But... FANTASTIC. Cherries, prunes, elderflower. Belgian yeast. Can't find the 11% alcohol at all. Some sips... I wonder if I am tasting a sweet/sour wine.

M: Medium to light body. Hard to believe it is so light for the amount of materials to make style/alcohol.

O: This is very tasty. I have read some great reviews saying I should age longer... I would agree. I think this is fantastic brew, but slightly green. 2 years are just not enough to really pull the flavors that other reviewers are finding.

Serving type: bottle

06-22-2014 03:26:46 | More by ahommell
Photo of peensteen

Ontario (Canada)

4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brown with ruby highlights, cap of off white head, lots of lace here as well. Smell is full of dark bread and fruit, plum, raisin, bruised banana, lots of sweet caramels and dark sugars, some yeasty notes in here as well. Taste is full of dark bread and brown sugars, dark fruits, plum, raisin, dark berry and jam like, a bit of yeast, fairly sweet darker sugars, just a small hint of alcohol. Light-med carbonation, full bodied with a creamy smooth feel. Solid stuff here, alcohol goes largely undetected, good stuff that will get better with age, perhaps a bit too sweet to tackle a full bottle alone again though.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2012 14:58:27 | More by peensteen
Photo of oglmcdgl


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at bluedog chalfont. Served in a tulip glass.

A- comes to me with a good finger of light tan head that settles quickly leaving a thin shin on top and a thick ring around the glass. Hazy dark red brown in color with a nice glow in the light.

S- sweet and spice with caramel and cloves coming to mind. Some fruity esters with a touch of cinnamon and nutmeg.

T- the nose don't lie. This tastes exactly like what it smells like. Layered spice and sweet with a strong belgian yeast fruitiness. Caramel covered dates with fall spice and candied plums. A lighter peach apricot fruit comes in later with some significant warming.

M- a bit more then medium in body and a nice mid to light creamy carb. Hint of heat as it warms.

D- for 11 abv its masterfully used but not hot in any way. This is a great bsda.

Serving type: on-tap

10-02-2010 02:20:44 | More by oglmcdgl
Photo of Daniellobo

District of Columbia

4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Intense and long dark ale with a great sipping quality.

Presentation: 12 oz draft serving. Menu offers a short but well crafted description. Notes year (2009), and Alc. by Vol. (11.0%) Served on a Golden Carolus Goblet.

A - Dark brown serving with a 1/4 " creamy head, fair retention, lumpy surface memory with good strokes of lacing.

S - Nice nose, rather sweet, hinting at a complexity of caramel and dark fruits.

T - Complex range, pretty hefty, with brown sugar, caramel, dark fruits... Raisins, plums. Memories of port. Yeasty touch in the back with a gentle bitter touch and a hint of spiciness..

M - Medium-full body with generous carbonation that fades adequately as the brew progresses. Boozy lingering finish.

D - Rich and pleasing sipper.

Notes: First Carolus I have had, and as a slow brew with a broad range it is rather pleasing. A bit overpriced on this draft import serving, but that aside the experience was well worth it.

Serving type: on-tap

07-20-2010 06:54:17 | More by Daniellobo
Photo of htomsirveaux


4.33/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle tried 22 Oct 2010. Served in the 0.3 L Unibroue snifter. Think this was the 2008, didn't record that data.

Large thick light tan head. Well carbonated. Clear dark reddish color. Smells of banana cake, apples, and ethanol. Starts with lots of green apple. Syrupy. Ethanol is warming but not hot. Dark fruit, raisins, dates. Apple and plum throughout. Medium to heavy body, warming alcohol. Lingering sweet aftertaste with some alcohol warmth.

I don't recall where I got this, but I want some more.

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2012 05:32:48 | More by htomsirveaux
Photo of Tone


4.31/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark brown color. 1/4 inch head of an off-tan color. Good retention and good lacing. Smells of tartness, sourness, sweet malt, slight pale malt, and a hint of hop. Fits the style of a Belgian Strong Dark Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with a low carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, alcohol, slight pale malt, hint of roasted malt, slight hop, slight dark citrus, and slight yeast. Overall, good appearance, feel, body, and complexity.

Serving type: on-tap

04-18-2013 18:06:50 | More by Tone
Photo of KingSlayer


4.31/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

750 ml bottle cellared for 1 year.
pours a dark deep brown with oxidized red hue liquid, little to no light comes through, 3 finger light beige compact head forms, awesome retention and lacing.
nose composed of malt esters, dark fruits, pear, belgian yeasts, bread and alcohol.
palate is the same, alcohol present but really doesnt seem to be 11 abv, nice sweet start followed by the complex aromas and flavors, alcohol, spices and bit of hops finish rounds it up really well. dark fruit boozy aftertaste that mellows and blends overtime in the last part of the tongue.
velvety medium body nice carbonation.
very very nice BDSA, not too sweet, definitely packs a punch, tasty and complex, evolves well as reaching room temp. i will have it in any special occasion, its a sipper thou, took me a whole afternoon to finish the 750 ml.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2013 01:20:51 | More by KingSlayer
Photo of nataku00


4.3/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 2009 bottle into a shaker pint. Beer is dark brown, tinged with red on the edges. A half a finger of off white tan colored foamy head that left a lot of lacing. The head stuck around for a while, aided by the large amount of small bubble carbonation streaming up from the bottom of the glass.

Nose is mostly dark fruits (figs, cherries), bready malt, and spiciness (cloves and a bit of anise).

The taste follows the nose, dark fruit sweetness hitting the tongue, continuing into caramel and spicy bread malts. A bit of alcohol on the finish, but expected for the high ABV. Good balance of sweetness and spice though.

Medium bodied beer with ample soft carbonation that just keeps the tongue engaged in flavor. Lingering alcohol flavor on the tongue ensures that this is a bottle to share, and to savor slowly.

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2011 07:21:46 | More by nataku00
Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) from Brouwerij Het Anker
96 out of 100 based on 1,421 ratings.