Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) - Brouwerij Het Anker
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Ratings: 1,478 | Reviews: 826 | Display Reviews Only:
3.3/5 rDev -23.3%
A - Into da snifta. Pours a hazy, opaque brown with a wispy white head, made of of big bubbles. Kinda ugly. Bits of lacing but nothing standout.
S - Grape brandy, brown sugar, cinnamon, prunes, alcohol, Belgian yeasty goodness.
T - Booze, dark fruits like plums, raisins, cherries all make an appearance. Also a big molassesy, brown sugary sweetness. A wet cardboard staleness jumps in for a moment, and finishes quite sweet. REALLY sweet.
M - Should have more carbonation. My biggest gripe about the entire brew.
D - Cloying, plus lack of carbonation makes this rather unappetizing. Getting through this 750 is proving to be rather tough.
Notes: I had lowered my expectations after trying the Rood, but this didn't even meet those. It smells and even tastes good, but the lack of carbonation threw me off quite a bit.
I may blame this on a bad bottle, but I won't pay the price of admission on this one again.
11-29-2008 21:44:29 | More by SaucyA
3.33/5 rDev -22.6%
A - Dark reddish-brown translucent body with very minimal head that quickly dissipates. Not much lacing and the carbonation looks a bit low.
S - Very sweet, fruity aroma; a very faint hint of alcohol. I can smell hints of plums and cherries, but they are very faint (even more so than the alcohol).
T - Not much to write home about, the taste is moderately sweet and has a bit of warmth at the end. There is absolutely no bitterness at all. This one is far from complex.
M - Surprisingly thin body and very little carbonation make this a bit unimpressive for me. It's not bad; just average.
O - This 2010 bottle isn't very impressive. It's not a bad beer, but just rather average. Reading some other reviews, it seems I may be in the minority with my opinion, but when compared to the various Trappist strong dark ales, this one just doesn't stand up.
10-23-2011 02:02:10 | More by mikedotnet
3.35/5 rDev -22.1%
Poured a murky dirty brown with a thin off white soap ring head.
The smell has some nice belgian yeast notes along with hints of fig, raison, and plum with a touch of banana esters. Very sweet candy like.
The flavor is overly sweet to me, almost just a big blast of brown sugar and dark fruit, not much else going on.
The mouthfeel is very creamy and silky smooth.
Not real high on my list of Belgian Darks.
04-22-2013 00:18:40 | More by bashiba
3.35/5 rDev -22.1%
Pop the cork in a sink to be safe. Mine overflowed, but I had a glass ready and only lost about a half an ounce.
Wow.. I have to agree with anyone who said that the odor of bananas was profound. That's pretty much all I smell. This is going to be a sweet quaff.
Poured into a thin 12 oz pilsner. Head is pretty standard for the style. Minimal lacing. Thick, tiny bubbles. Head settles to about 1/4". Pours a little darker than the brown glass bottle.
First taste, my buds are inundated by the banana odor and I can think of nothing else. Phenols, yeast, sugar. Too sweet. Very thick. Malt and earthy fruits dominate this beer, as they should any belgian ale, but this is almost absurd. If you like that sort of thing, more power to you. The flavors are just a little too intense here, and they cling to the palate for a long time after you swallow a sip. Even swishing with water can't clean things off.
There is no need for me to have 750ml of this beer. Unless you are sharing this with someone else, there is no reason for you to do the same.
09-14-2006 00:40:12 | More by Lupin
3.38/5 rDev -21.4%
2008 on neck. Served in Chimay goblet.
Pours a clear dark ruby-brown. A finger's worth of tan head falls quickly. About half the glass is covered in sheets of foam that diminish to a fine lace.
Aroma is strong and prominent during the pour. Brown sugar and dark fruits. Doughy bread. Spice with a hint of clove. Heavy handed alcohol.
Flavor starts heavily sweet, syrupy, which is cut by spice. Alcoholic heat and dryness take over the finish. A medium light body but with a syrupy quality. Lively carbonation that is alternatively tamed by the syrup and distractingly prickly.
This is a tricky brew. Light, but sweet, coating, and filling. The alcohol and sweetness make it interesting for a glass, but wearying after that.
05-30-2009 00:47:14 | More by goatgoat
3.43/5 rDev -20.2%
750 mL bottle poured into an Allagash chalice. 2011 vintage.
Appearance - Pours a deep mahogany with a nice khaki head. Decent retention and some lacing. Looks quite nice.
Smell - Bananas, cherries, strawberries, and just a hint of caramel. Excessively fruity, but it's nice. Looking for a bit more depth from it.
Taste - Wow, it's sweet and extremely fruity. Tons of banana and cherry. Again, not much depth to the caramel, but it's got a tremendous amount of sugar in it. Sweet and boozy in the finish.
Mouthfeel - Creamy and thick. Boozy with medium-low carbonation. The sweetness makes it quite sluggish.
Overall - It's got good flavors but so much sweetness and booze that it's not quite a good beer. Above average at best. I'm surprised by the reviews. Perhaps this needs time to mellow.
05-10-2012 02:36:16 | More by Alieniloquium
3.43/5 rDev -20.2%
Bottled 2002. Murky chestnut brown hue. Creamy beige head with homogenously sized bubbles. Intricate webs of lace remain. Vinous waft of sherryish fruit upfront in aroma tapers, allowing sugary dark caramel and clove to emerge. Hint of must and butter. Mellow banana esters surface as the beer breathes. Functional, but not overly enticing aromawise. Mild honey like sweetness hits the palate initially, then yields to a bitterish melange of bread crust and powdered baker's chocolate. Sweetness then resumes, this time of a clean, molasses tinged dark caramel nature. Herbal, clove phenol appears late, and detracts from the malt character, which had almost developed into a rich, carob undertone. Lightly bodied and well attenuated, but the paltry hop bitterness leaves overall balance well skewed towards malt sweetness. Finishes with a snap of clove laced sweetness, but otherwise dry and clean. It's certainly a flavorful brew, but residual and caramel malt derived sweetness clashed somewhat with the phenols, thus preventing greatness. This bottle was quite young. Definitely a beer worthy of cellaring.
01-18-2003 17:34:18 | More by marc77
3.43/5 rDev -20.2%
very dark but shows red notes in light. extremely thick head. very pretty.
smells of candy sugar and earthy sweetness and alcohol. tastes like molasses. warming alcohol. some floral notes, and caramel, and more molasses.
mouthfeel is somewhat slick, very full and kind of syrupy. not something I'm terribly excited about.
09-25-2005 15:52:46 | More by texashammer
3.45/5 rDev -19.8%
2006 vintage. Shop also had the 2001, but it was twice the price.
Poured from a 750ml bottle into my Gulden Draak tulip glass. Body is a deep reddish-brown, and suprisingly clear with a bit of suspended particulate matter. No fogging whatsoever. Head was off-white and dissipated slowly but steadily.
Smell has lots of up-front booze and an incredible amount of old brandy oak. There is a bit of a bacterial lambic-ish fruity smell as well. Minor notes are of caramel and raisins.
Taste is at first sour then immediately sweet, then with another bit of sour at the end. Initial brandy notes continue, along with good dark german bread. The sour notes of the smell develop into cherry and currant as the sweetness comes into play. What hops are there are all herbal, no bitter or floral notes of which to speak. Belgian funk goes without saying for the style. I suspect a bit of spontanious fermentation in this vintage, that lactic smell is just signature.
Mouthfeel is aggressive thanks to good, strong carbonation and high ABV. The constant balance between sweet and tart is a bit much at times, but the best parts of the flavour that hide inside each sip are enough to keep you going.
I realized about halfway thru the first glass that I am drinking this beer MUCH too early. 9 months wasn't long enough for this beer to really finish conditioning. The flavours are all there and are brilliant, but they haven't yet come together in a way that only age can bring.
I will have to grab another 2006 while they're cheap and put it away for two years, and update accordingly. I think this could be an incredible icon of the grand cru world, given it's time.
01-07-2007 07:13:40 | More by ojiikun
3.45/5 rDev -19.8%
750 ml, 2008.
Appearance: as expected from the style.
Smell: sugar. Taste: sugar. A very single-layered brew lacking complexity and subtleness. Great for birthday occasions: I was stunned by sugary might of this beer, against which cake's sweetness has no chance of prevailing.
Towards finish gets syrupy like anti cough medicine for children.
Alcohol is barely noticeable and the beer is easily drinkable, both probably due to high level of sweetness.
Guys at Het Anker should realize that art of brewing is more than just adding tons of sugar to the ingredients.
Overall, not a bad brew, but definitely not worthy to be put among giants like Chimay Blue or Rochefort 8. Its average rating of 4.3 is way to much.
04-28-2009 15:08:11 | More by crnipeter
3.48/5 rDev -19.1%
A - Cloudly blood amber body with little bit of off white head and a little lacing
S - Thick molasses spices with sweet dark fruit
T - Spices, raisins, and sweetness
M - Medium thick body with light carbonation
D - Pretty enjoyable and easy to drink but to strong to session
01-18-2009 22:50:10 | More by midaszero
3.5/5 rDev -18.6%
Hazed chocolate cranberry color. Yeast pours adds chunks of globular sediment. Looks like the contents of a broken lava lamp. Thin, wispy tan head.
Overpowering nose of raisins, shoe polish and rubbing alcohol. Some of the more subtle fruit and spice notes get trampled underfoot, but are noticed in the periphery.
Taste falls along the same line. Raisins are noted first, and continue to linger throughout. Large amounts of toffee/butterscotch. Fairly resembles scotch in some of the alcohol tones. More in taste than perceived strength. Some subdued pear juiciness is recognized. There is a plastic flavor that stays steady for the duration, serving as a major distraction and seems to eat up all the spices. Powdery chocolate hues enter towards the finish. Yeast pours turns this softer and breadier. Rides out with residual prunes notes.
Decent, yet nothing remarkable in the mouth. Yeast helps bolster a slightly thin texture.
ABV% is well hidden, as it should be.
While this is decent, and somewhat interesting, a few critical flaws keep this from being anything special.
01-14-2003 22:45:09 | More by cokes
3.5/5 rDev -18.6%
750ml 2004 edition. Sampled April 2005. Pours a deep cloudy brown with small tan head which diminishes quickly and leaves light lace. Smells of sweet candi malts, dark fruit, and vinous alcohols. Tastes quite sweet. Lots of sticky malt sweetness on aged, port wine-like base. Slightly dry and yeasty finish. Quite syrupy in the mouth, with only a slight prickle of carbonation. Not a bad beer by any means, but too sweet for my palate and lacking any significant layers of complexity.
04-07-2005 01:23:09 | More by dgallina
3.5/5 rDev -18.6%
I'm not sure if this is a new brewery. It seemed to have popped up out of nowhere. I saw the beer on tap at my local and now it's available in numerous varieties at numerous beer stores.
Strong Dark is not my favorite Belgian style but this is pretty good considering. Very strong in flavor, a little lighter than expected in color, more coffee than chocolate, great carbonation, decent aroma. I'm looking forward to trying some of their other varieties.
03-06-2010 15:34:32 | More by david18
Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) from Brouwerij Het Anker
96 out of 100 based on 1,478 ratings.