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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.
BA SCORE
96
world-class

1,559 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,559
Reviews: 836
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.7%
Wants: 185
Gots: 232 | FT: 15
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Het Anker visit their website
Belgium

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: 1,559 | Reviews: 836 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of drumrboy22
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 vintage. Poured from 750mL bottle into a Westvleteren chalice. Beer was a deep red color, with a velvety, creamy, tan head. Heavy lacing around the glass.

Aroma was caramel, dark fruits and brown sugar.

Taste was caramel, raisins and other dark fruits, light spices. Delicious.

Very full bodied beer. Creamy, thick mouthfeel. Nice light to moderate carbonation.

Fantastic all around beer. I think this one would age very well.

drumrboy22, Jun 21, 2009
Photo of Sarlacc83
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2011 bottle consumed 9-8. Split 4 ways. Reviewed from notes.

A: Thick brown with a fluffy lasting head. Sticks to the glass.

N: Malty raisins. Lots of estery yeast. Cloves. Plume and caramel/toffee. Candi sugar.

T: Belgian yeast, raisin, bananas. Plums and raisins. Noticeable alcohol, but as is the case with most BDSAs, it melds well with the flavor profile. Lots of the sweet sugar flavors, caramel and toffee.

M: Very smooth with a light, airy overall feel.

O: It is so incredibly difficult to match what the Belgians do so easily with their big beers. In an era when sub 300 bottle counts are king and the readily available is oft avoided, this is a reminder to pick up these traditional beers off the shelf more often.

Sarlacc83, Sep 16, 2012
Photo of tjkinate
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Second time having this brew, as good as I remembered.

A: Murky brown bodied brew topped with a 1+ fingered head composed of small bubbles that are slightly off white and dissipate very slowly.

S: Dark fruits, along with apple, coriander, and loads of malts.

T: Very similar to the smell, raisons, herbs and spices with loads of sweet caramel malts. ABV was slightly detectable, but not unpleasant.

M: Medium bodied, light burn from the alcohol in a good way.

O: This was the first "expensive" beer I bought when getting into craft beer. Really opened my eyes back then and was just as enjoyable the second time around.

tjkinate, Nov 08, 2011
Photo of dblinkhorn
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a corked and caged 750ml bottle into a goblet.

Appearance - Pours a very murk dark orange/brown. The head is about one finger and somewhat soapy and tan at first. It quickly settles at a thin but very creamy light-tan head that leaves good lacing on the way down.

Smell - Rich dark ripe fruits, mainly fig and cherry. Some slight smokey character, and some peppery spiciness with just a hint of clove. A huge bread pudding-like malt character that acts as a foundation for the rest of the aroma. Some background sweetness of rich caramel and molasses. Slight warmnth on the nose from the alcohol.

Taste - Lots of ripe cherry and fig right away, with some moderate alcohol warmnth. Some earthy notes right away, though they are mild. Floral and herbal hops mixed with some caramel and candied fruit sweetness. Again a huge bready malt with more earthiness mixed in. The finish mellows from the fruits and transforms into a mild sweetness with a full and rich malt character which tasts slightly toasted (but only toward the finish). Alcohol warmnth all the way through, but mainly at the beginning of a taste.

Mouthfeel - Luxuriously smooth mouthfeel with a medium body. Would have been a perfect mouthfeel (it really is heavenly), but the beer turns completely to foam toward the finish. Extremely smooth, though, and no unpleasantness at all from the carbonation.

Drinkability - Very strong flavors and at 11% ABV and noticeable, this beer takes a hit in this category.

A wonderfully full-flavored Belgian strong dark ale. The flavors are fantastic and complex, and it has a sublime mouthfeel. A must have!

dblinkhorn, Oct 17, 2006
Photo of drseamus
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Nice dark mahogany body with a thick off white head. There is a bunch of visible carbonation rising from the glass.

S: Dark fruits like raisins dominate. The malt provides a very rich caramel aroma with a good amount of sweetness.

T: Very good flavor even if it is a bit on the sweet side for me. Incredibly smooth throughout the entire sip. Great raisiny caramely flavor. It finishes very nicely.

M: Medium to heavy bodied with good carbonation.

D: Pretty damn good beer all around. A bit high in the ABV for drinking too much.

drseamus, Feb 06, 2008
Photo of Phigg1102
4.3/5  rDev 0%

Poured a deep black with the slightest hints of deep amber. Bananas come through in the aroma predominately with hints of oak,plum, raisin, and vanilla. A lot of the same flavors come through in the taste with some cherry, chocolate, and red wine on the finish. Thick body with little carbonation. Alcohol is hidden fairly well. Great pickup! I can see how aging would make this golden!

Phigg1102, Sep 04, 2014
Photo of BierReise
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750cl Corked bottle dated 2002. Label has a blue banner reading "Grand Cru of the Emperor". Poured a hazy firey reddish amber color with a thick head which reduced in size quickly. Aroma is a malty fruity one with notes of caramel and vanilla. Has a sugary brandy like quality as well in the nose. Mouthfeel is full and velvety smooth with a crisp finish that couldn't be better. Flavor is fruity and delicious with sweet candy sugar and yeast creating a complex and flavorful ale. The 2 years of aging has served this ale well. Alcohol is unnoticible and flavors are pronounced and soft. Nice Belgian!

BierReise, Jan 09, 2004
Photo of nickss
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

My 100th review. I figured if it's good enough for Charles V, its good enough for my 100th.

Pours a murky brown hue with a definite orange tint. The carbonation is visible, as a constant stream of bubbles struggle their way to the surface. Monstrous head... 3" or so... cream in color, rocky in consistency. Gargantuan chunks of lace cling to the side. Very pretty.

Significant alcohol smell.... very bourbon-esque... reminds alot of some of the Brit Barleywines out there. A certain wine quality to it as well... of the red varietals of course... lots of distinct plum and grape and dark fruit. This is a slap to your nostrils.. I dig it.

Flavour is highly correlated to the taste... huge bourbon flavour. Not quite as strong as I was expecting, much more subtle and refined... once again... alot of plum in the flavour. Some oak and malt in the background. Barely perceptible licorice and maybe a bit of molasses. Very warming.

This is interesting... as it hits the tongue, the brew originally seems very active (as the appearance would suggest), however, it quickly dies away to a smooth, thick, mouth-filling concoction. Wonderful.

While this brew is thoroughly enjoyable, and not offensive at all for the abv, I couldn't drink more than a couple of these. That being said...this is a very unique brew.. unlike any other brew I have ever had of this style. If I was Charles V, I think I may have been a lush =D.

nickss, Feb 05, 2006
Photo of ElGuapo
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

As the cork shoots across the room, I am hit with a massive nose of alcohol. Thankfully as I watch a murky dark brown brew fill my glass, the alcohol disappears into the air. This brew is at first topped in a healthy topping of tannish foam, but it dies to almost nothing in no time at all. Lots of sweet fruits and spicy cloves in the aroma. There is also a lot of alcohol, too much. A big whiff of molasses tunes down the alcohol a bit to make it a bit nicer on the old whiffer.

Pretty rich in body, I would say full, but not really full, just full. You are started off with a nice rich helping of fruits (cherries for the most part). Molasses comes in a bit to keep the sweetness in check. It is then joined by a very nice portion of spices. Alcohol comes in very big at times, but it stays hidden for a few swigs here and there. The aftertaste lets the alcohol slip away, and you are left with a delicious mouthful of dark grains with a very nice roasty flavor. The complexity of this beer is certainly top shelf. The drinkability is pretty good. It is very smooth with light carbonation, and the finish is very rich and creamy. This one has a nice warming character as well.

This is an excellent beer on those gulps where the alcohol is kept in check. The flavor, aroma, and drinkability would be better if it were hidden more. I found that once it sit in my glass a bit, the alcohol spice died down a bit. Very nice.

ElGuapo, Dec 02, 2003
Photo of Nowhereman529
4.3/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This poured a nice dark dark amber color into a wine chalice with a good bit of white bubbly head.

Smell is very heavy on the alcohol combined with a good bit of fruit, something along the lines of apples, pears.

Taste does not disappoint. I didn't know what to expect exactly, but this beer tastes of fall fruit, a good bit of sweetness with a bit of a honey aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is what I would expect from a good ale, a good bit of bubbliness, but it's not overwhelming.

I would for sure drink this again, but wait until winter time. It's definitely not a summer time beer at all. Flavor, alcohol content, even bottling suggests a solid cold weather beer.

Nowhereman529, Aug 10, 2008
Photo of Tone
4.31/5  rDev +0.2%
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.

Tone, Apr 18, 2013
Photo of KingSlayer
4.31/5  rDev +0.2%
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.

KingSlayer, Jan 15, 2013
Photo of PGVG
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%

PGVG, Nov 16, 2014
Photo of magictrokini
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got a 2003 bottle from Old Town Liquor. Pours thick, clear, orange-brown, with very little head. Aroma is heavily candied fruits, sugars, and raisins. Taste is caramel and candied fruits, with strong malt and holiday spice. Syrupy feel with a slight alcohol burn. Very enjoyable beer, but only a bottle at a time.
---
2007, on tap at Pizza Port, Solana Beach. Much better this time. hazy mahogany pour with a short white head. More sherry and plum aroma and taste. More vinuous. Lighter mouthfeel. Less syrupy sweetness. All around an excellent beer.

magictrokini, Dec 05, 2008
Photo of cjacobsen
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to sweemzander for sharing this one.

Pours a hazy brown with a slim, tan head on it. Slight reddish hints around the edges in the light.

Smells of dark fruits, cherry, lots of raisin. Plum was suggested.

There is a lot of flavor and it hits you big right out of the gate. The blend is flawless. Very fruity with plenty of sweetness to it. Blackberries and black cherry is prevalent. The alcohol is hidden very well.

There is a slight bite up front but its smoothes out well afterward.

The Belgians really know what they are doing. This brew has a hefty percentage attached to it, but it drinks very very easily. It was pretty filling due to the sweetness.

cjacobsen, Jan 04, 2011
Photo of n2185
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2009, 2010, and 2011 bottles side-by-side.

Appearance:
2011--pours a clear ruby-mahogony with a finger of khaki head recedes into a thin ring with no lacing.
2010--pours a brown-mahogony with two fingers of khaki head that recedes into a thin ring with no lacing.
2009--slightly darker still, but other than that the same.

Smell:
2011--lots of dark, sweet fruits. Plums, raisins, dates, etc. There are also bubblegum aromas along with sweet apple notes. Slight alcohol aroma as well.
2010--similar to the 2011, lots of dark, sweet fruits along with a touch of bubblegum. There is a faint aroma of butter as well along with sweet breads and no alcohol presence.
2009--again, sweet dark fruits along with some bubblegum aromas. The sweet apple aromas return in this one as well with sweet bready aromas.

Taste:
2011--again, dark, sweet fruits. Plums, dates, raisins,etc. Sweet, bready flavors along with bubblegum follow. Slight alcohol burn.
2010--dark, sweet fruits again with only a hint of bubblegum. Sweet bready yeast flavors bring up the finish with a very slight bitterness and alcohol burn.
2009--again, dark fruits dominate with some bubblegum as well. Sweet bready and yeasty flavors on the finish with no real alcohol burn.

Mouthfeel:
2011--medium body with lowish carbonation, this beer manages to be both light and creamy
2010--medium body with higher carbonation, this beer is a lot drier than the 2011.
2009--similar to the 2010, this vintage manages to be light, crisp and creamy.

Overall:
2011--quite good. Sweet, but still light and tasty with only a slight alcohol presence to hint at its abv.
2010--very good, it actually seems less sweet than the 2011. Very tasty.
2009--also very tasty and crisp. Sweet and creamy, yet light and dry.

Ultimately, there isn't much sifference between the 3, but they're all very good. I prefer the 2009, but it's a very slight difference. It's just a bit smoother and not quite as sweet. Still, I think this beer could age well for 5+ years.

n2185, Oct 17, 2011
Photo of Immortale25
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Dogfish signature snifter. Back label says 11/07/11.

A- Pours a medium brown color with a full inch of light tan head that retains a good while before dropping down to an 1/8 head and bubbly surface foam. Soft, sticky lacing.

S- Sweet and very rich with jabs of alcohol fume coming through here and there. Notes of pecan and hazelnut.

A- Oh boy. Incredibly balanced flavors of yeast, sweet malt and alcohol. Notes of Belgian candy sugar, light butter and nuts. The sweet-to-booze ratio is nearly spot-on with the booze just barely inching ahead. Taking sip after sip to unlock the mystery only leads to a warming sensation in the stomach that's totally welcome.

M- Slick and smooth with some alcohol bite and a perfect amount of snap from the medium carbonation.

O- Now I see why this has such high acclaim. Sure, it's a bit hot but it's a perfect wintertime brew...too bad it's August but that's why I'm definitely cellaring one of these bad boys!

Immortale25, Aug 17, 2012
Photo of largadeer
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2007 vintage.

Appearance - Dark chestnut brown, nearly black. Pours with half an inch of tan-colored head, which quickly disappears. A small amount of spotty lacing is left on the glass.

Smell - Fruity esters, caramel, toasted nuts, chocolate, port, raisins and subtle spices. A bold aroma that increases in complexity as the beer warms.

Taste - Rich caramel flavors followed by notes of dried fruit, bittersweet chocolate, toasted almonds and spices. The finish is fairly mild and clean on the palate, with no strong aftertaste and only a mild bitterness.

Mouthfeel - A very full mouthfeel. Not as carbonated as I was expecting, but it works to the beer's advantage as it really brings out the many layered flavors.

Notes - This beer has a port-like quality that makes it very unique to me. Excellent stuff.

largadeer, Jan 23, 2008
Photo of Axic10
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 Vintage split with my uncle on Christmas Eve.

Appearance: Cola colored with a finger or two of fluffy head that settles after a few minutes.

Smell: Candied fruits, yeast, sugar and an alcohol sting.

Taste: Sweet candied fruits, sugars, yeast, and an alcohol burn on the palate.

Mouthfeel: Medium to full bodied with decent carbonation.

Drinkability: I enjoyed this for the style, I've passed this up a lot in the past, but that will change after I had this.

Axic10, Dec 31, 2010
Photo of auxiliary
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

appearance - Dark amber color, white head and left some lace.

smell - Dark fruits, like cherries and berries. Has a strong sweet smell. Lots of malt.

taste - Sweet taste up front. alcohol present on the want down. Lots of dark fruit ate here. Heavy on the sweet malt.

mouthfeel - Medium body.

drinkability - This beer is good. Had it at a beer tasting event, and then had it on tap the next day! Must try, and should be great to age. Website says 10 years!

auxiliary, Jul 30, 2008
Photo of AZbelgian
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tried a 2008 and a 2010:

A - Pours a dark carmel color. Dark red if held to the light. Large tan head quickly dissipates to a thin clumpy film, like cirrus clouds.

S - Incredibly sweet smell of carmel and apple cider. Smells like a warm carmel apple.

T - Like the smell, very strong sweet tastes of carmel and apple cider. Candy sugar with some hints of dark fruit. The combination of carmel and sugar combined with fruit and hops give it a dry alcohol character similar to a scotch or TN whisky. Smooth sweet caramel aftertaste with a just a hint of bitterness.

M - Medium in mouthfeel. Sweet and dry with decent carbonation.

O - A really sweet, complex and delicious beer. Quite filling, in fact while it's sweetness and mouthfeel, make it delicious, they also make it very filling. Not one I can have more than one or two of after a meal. I always keep at least one bottle in the cabinet.

AZbelgian, Jan 29, 2012
Photo of Thorpe429
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a dark brown mahogany with a decent light brown head.

S: Lots of dark fruits, cherries, and some more earthy dried fruits as well. Plenty of yeasty goodness.

T: Much luck the smell with a little bit of extra sweetness thrown in.

M: Fairly full-bodied and creamy. Not too much alcohol taste.

D: Quite drinkable. Split this one with my wife and glad that we had a whole 750 to split.

Thorpe429, Sep 24, 2009
Photo of Rifugium
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

First had: on tap at Iron Abbey, Horsham, PA

Damn tasty beer right here. Dark chestnut brown in color, mostly translucent, with a small off-white head that receded to a tiny ringlet, but still left a bit of lacing on the glass. Aroma rich with honey and dark fruits. Taste is dominated by rich sugars--honey and molasses, mainly--and prunes, afterthoughts of bready yeast, raisins, cotton candy, earthy hops. Full of flavor, heavy-medium body, and quite a pleasant drink overall. Cheers!

Rifugium, Apr 06, 2012
Photo of hopdog
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Capones.

Poured a deeper and cloudy/muddy brownish color wih virtually no head. Aromas of dark fruits (prunes and raisins) and fruity. Tastes of the same dark fruitiness (plums and raisins), caramel, toffee, and some lighter spiciness. All around on the sweeter side. Lighter alcohol in the finish.

hopdog, Feb 20, 2009
Photo of claytri
4.33/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured a dark amber with a lovely white head. The aroma was of toasted caramel and sweet malt. The tase stared with toasted caramel malt and then closed with a fine alcohol burn. The feel was heavy and dry giving a pleasant weight to the drink. A very wonderful grand cru that I will be searching out in the future.

claytri, Jun 29, 2007
Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) from Brouwerij Het Anker
96 out of 100 based on 1,559 ratings.