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

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Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue)Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue)

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95
world-class

859 Reviews
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Reviews: 859
Hads: 1,688
rAvg: 4.28
pDev: 10.28%
Wants: 224
Gots: 278 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Het Anker visit their website
Belgium

Style | ABV
Belgian Strong Dark Ale |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-03-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 859 | Hads: 1,688
Photo of allengarvin
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is a gorgeous beer, dark, reddish-tinted, with a colossal head of smooth, creamy foam on top, and excellent lacing. The nose is delicious, with a soft buttery caramel, ripe fruit, subtle yeasty spiciness, and a light tartness. The flavor is a delight of Belgianness: a near-perfect blend of sweet milky maltiness that's never over-heavy, lightly raisiny, lightly caramelized pear fruitiness, maybe a hint of cherries in the slightly tart finish. The body is smooth and creamy, but the alcohol is almost undetectable, except perhaps as it warms up a bit.

An amazing piece of beer craftsmanship, and one of the best beers I've had in months. Every part blends together perfectly, each component delectable, but it's the beer as a whole that's truly wonderful. (764 characters)

Photo of montecristo2
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This IS the stuff reserved for the emperor.

A 2007 vintage poured from a 22 oz. bottle into a chalice.

Aromas of malts, fruity esters, and extremely faint banana yeast.

Dark chestnut color, cloudy and small head, maybe one finger max.

First sip...malts and fruits-candy sugars, grapes and raisins.

Bottom of the bottle tastes more of candied sugars, cinnamon, spiced plums.

This is awesome stuff.

Cheers! (412 characters)

Photo of Blindpigbiz
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

VAN DE KEIZER BLEAUW '09; consumed in 2011

PLEASE AGE THIS BEER FOR A TWO YEAR MINIMUM

Smell: neutral

Taste: barley-wine, dark-ripened plums, cognac, black licorice, maraschino cherries, candied sugar and warm scotch

Pair this beer with smoked goose, a rare filet minion, a truffle wagyu burger with blue cheese, or a funnel cake with Madagascar vanilla bean ice cream with a dark-fruit syrup

This beer is fantastic! Normally for beer, or any kind of liquor, one has to search for flavor and have an immensely discerning palette in order to extract all of the flavors; not this time. This beer aged is probably the BEST DARK BEER EVER MADE, or at least that I've tried. This beer brazenly smacks you in the face and tells you what it tastes like; it's like hunting in a forest with no trees and large game animals at a stand still; the flavors are immensely dominant. (872 characters)

Photo of VncentLIFE
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

For Belgian Independance Day Week.

Body is more brown than black, but its dark for sure. The light produces a few translucent brown hues. Initial white head fades into big bubbles and a ring around the glass.

Booze laden smell. Lots of prunes and sweet dark cherries. Thick booze smell still dominates. Slightly sweet, kind of like sweet cherry syrup.

Not overly complex, but exactly what you want from a Belgian Dark. The booze is all but gone. Yeast comes out straight away, blitzkrieging away. It fades, and you get the underlying sweet dark fruits that are just great. Then comes this insanely smooth sweet monster. It finishes out just so smooth. Just sweet enough to be great, but not overly sweet. Notes of black cherries, plums, and sweet, sweet blackberries. Finishes light and slightly sweet.

Yeast is perfect here. Only enough of it to make a Belgian ale, but adds a nice presence. Low carbonation also helps the drinkability.

Feels light (way too light for 11%). Slick from the dark fruits, but still enough body to make it great.

What a gem and a lucky find on my part. Now I have to try to find a better BSDA (which is going to be tough). (1,159 characters)

Photo of Matteox3
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Consumed from a 25oz Bottle purchased over 6 months prior at Wine and More, Delaware. Tulip glass.

Poured with a 1/4 inch head, slightly malty aroma. Taste matched the aroma spot on, but with surprising dryness at the end.

Very impressive beer. My girlfriend is a huge fan of tripels and I am more into the dubbel and strong dark ale. However, this beer caused her to re-evaluate her attitude towards the darker belgians.

I would buy again next time I make a trip to Delaware. (482 characters)

Photo of Ljunkan
4.63/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep red/brown color with a nice white head.

Smells excellent, vinous, notes of berries, some nuttiness. Nice.

The taste is very complex and good; lots of bitter berries, liquorice, caramel, brown sugar, fruityness. Sweet, but not too sweet. Some warming alcohol in a good way.

It's very filling in the mouth. Also very smooth and nice.

Drinkability is rather hig for such a high abv beer, but of course you cannot drink a lot of it...

One of the best belgian beers I've had. Amazing! (498 characters)

Photo of John_M
4.64/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Max's (have not seen this on tap at too many places).

The beer pours a reddish amber color that is just a bit murky. On the nose... this is what Belgian beers are all about. I get a huge aroma of sugar daddy, cherry, chocolate, orange citrus, and a hint of root beer. This smells just incredible. Flavors on the palate replicate the nose almost exactly and are just as impressive. There's a bit more anise then there is on the nose, but that only helps to buoy the moderate sweetness a bit more. This beer is just incredibly delicious. Mouthfeel is good, with decent length and a full, fairly long finish. Alcohol is fairly well disguised, but lets not kid ourselves. This is clearly a rich, heady, no holds barred Belgain strong ale. Unless you're a masochist, you're not going to be pounding down pints of these bad boys.

Fabulous stuff. If you don't like this, then you probably don't like beer. Yummm.... (921 characters)

Photo of alpinebryant
4.64/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dark mahogany brown with massive head that leaves heavy lacing

S: aroma of biscotti, dark overripened plums, caramelized sugars, and light malt

T: dark purple plum overripened to the point where you can taste the fruit has completely finished ripening and is completely sugar / no starch remaining. The biscuit aromas carry through for the true Belgian strong dark ale flavors mixing with yeast and stale brown bread dough.

M: Very light in carbonation, and relatively thick in mouthfeel.

O: Overall this is a very smooth beer. This beer has been crafted carefully over time and it is a mature and very well crafted brew. Strongly recommended if you have never tried this before. I had seen this for years and passed it by, probably due to its labeling which for whatever reason did not appeal to me. (822 characters)

Photo of coreyfmcdonald
4.64/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

750ml bottle into a snifter

A: Pours a very dark amber color with two fingers of extremely dense foam. Amazing retention. Even better lacing. It couldn't look better.

S: Strong prunes and raisins upfront in this beer - I get dried apricots behind it. Lots of orange bitters and light clove keep this beer from smelling too sweet. Actually extremely well balanced and fairly dry smelling for the style.

T: Prunes are still quite strong in this beer, but I get some caramel sweetness as well. The beer tastes sweeter than it smells. Orange bitters and cloves are still there to balance, but not nearly as strong as in the aroma. Aftertaste has some nutmeg and a bit of booze.

M: Medium thickness with fairly high, but very creamy carbonation.

O: Simply amazing. This is one of the most complex beers I've ever had, but it's so balanced. The taste is maybe a tad sweet, but I'm splitting hairs. An array of dark fruits, spice, a bit of caramel, what more do you want in a BSDA? (979 characters)

Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2005 vintage.

I cannot beleive this beer does not have more reviews! This is by far one of my favorite belgians. This beer pours a deep dark brown with little head ( this varies by vintage). The mouthfeel is incredibly smooth and creamy, by far the smoothest beer i have ever drunk at 10% abv. taste is typical of the het anker brewery, similar to the classic but much richer and warmer. impressively almost no alcohol on the finish. tastes of dark fruit and a tasty version of a strong french or belgian amber. This beer only improves with age and should be appreciated slowly ( as hard as that may be) in front of a warm fire on a cold night alone or with a very good friend. Zalig Genieten! (694 characters)

Photo of Filosoof
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a great great beer. An excentric style. There are dessert wines; this looks like a dessert beer. So powerful. It is very sweet, but functionally sweet.

L: need I say more? A great top, Deep dark.
S: this is a complete fruit garden and candy shop in one. Candy rock/stick. Orange, prunes, figes and many more.
T: in line with the smell; great combination with Stilton;
M: lovely.
O: top of the bill.

A bit too heavy and sweet to drink it very often, but great as a finish of a wonderful dinner. (504 characters)

Photo of jsh420
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2008

pours muddy amber brown with a 2 finger tanish head with tight bubbles - great lacing and retention

smells very strong of rich dark fruit malt but also has lighter fruit (apples and pears)

taste is up there with some of the best BSD's - nutty sugary spiced fruit - very complex

mouthfeel is so smooth but still has plenty of carbonation

drinkability is crazy good for a brew @ 11% abv - drinking this beer makes me happy to know that there are still plenty of beers still out there that will amaze me (510 characters)

Photo of tonytuffnuts
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Somehow this 2008 sat in my cabinet for 4 months, something I suppose is ultimately for the better.

A rich, brown, opaque body trimmed w red hues cascades from a beautiful, classy bomber. Huge, rocky head leaves a sticky lace and a full ceiling that tells stories about the yeast.

From the second the cork loudly popped off, I caught a whiff of berry, prune, dried fig, dark cherry, and boozy rum. A rich toffee malt and finest quality Belgian yeast complete the scent.

Tastes very rich: 2-1 ratio of dark to caramel malts, plus some unmalted barley. Dark, dried fruits start front and center, then the spiced-rum/booze sweeps front of my tongue, vanilla & toffee the back, and fine carbonation massages all over.

Especially after airing out for 5 minutes, the dark, dried fruit character hides beneath the alcohol.

I'm a strong dark ale fan, and this is just heaven... esp a $12 bottle bought at $5 on clearance! I had no idea what a gem this was when I came across it at Charles St Liquors, Beacon Hill. (1,010 characters)

Photo of hoser
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My local store still has 3 cases of the 2006, have revisted this beer twice in the last two weeks and tonight I followed it up with a Rochefort 10. Let just say not even close. Guess I am going to buy a case of the 2006 for my cellar.My local store still has 3 cases of the 2006, have revisted this beer twice in the last two weeks and tonight I followed it up with a Rochefort 10. Let just say not even close. Guess I am going to buy a case of the 2006 for my cellar. (468 characters)

Photo of cbutova
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Finally got around to this one at a tasting with Chico1985 and Atremains. 2007 vintage been sitting around in my closet/basement and now fridge forever. Reviewed from notes.

A- Aging certainly had a huge impact here. The typical head from an aged beer builds up with huge bubbles and fizzes out like champagne or soda eve. Shows its age.

S- Lots of molasses and dark fruit going on. The strength is something to be admired. Malt, brown sugar and fruit in an excellent balance.

T- Age has done this very well. Amazing balance of dark red fruit, molasses, brown nutty malt, cherry and even vinous notes. I even get caramel, vanilla, smoky and spice notes. A dark fruit forefront with all of those great flavors going on behind, splendid.

MF- Moderate body that is very creamy and smooth. Warmth hits the tongue but not too badly. Great coat of dark fruit and molasses.

DB- Great price for such an amazing vintage. Love the taste and balance, age has really improved this ale. Hard to explain the flavors at one point but I know one beer that I will age for 3.25 years. (1,071 characters)

Photo of BenConnery
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

I'm not sure about this vintage as this was shared with me from a friend of a friend's aging shelf.
One sip and I really liked the guy!!!!
Deep deep red with a light tan head, the aroma was that lovely dark brown sugar, spicey, fruity belgian style that could almost be a liquer.
The first mouthfull blew me away. I suspect this had been sitting for a while as it had really smoothed out and presented all the flavours in a great balance.
You could taste the malt that gave this beer it's strength but in no way did it overpower the brew.
There where so many flavours competing I don't have the knowledge or palate to name them all. Lovely caramel sugar taste, spices and christmas pudding fruits or something similar.
This was a truly exceptional beer for me, even from a country that has produced so many.
The only bad thing about this beer was the fact that there where other people who had to share it... (very selfish I know but it was really tasty...) At 11% or whatever it is you couldn't get through too many but all the better to let it age I suppose... (1,072 characters)

Photo of Kuaff
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

In my tulip at cellar temperature. A bottle from 2013!

Beautiful burgundy color with a small, frothy tan head. Lively carbonation bubbles.

The aroma is an enticing mix of sweet and yeasty bread, raisins, dates, currents, cherries, citrus, molasses, and vanilla. Smells quite similar to a dark fruitcake I made just today, in fact.

What a stunning flavor profile... the initial onset of those dark fruits followed by a downright velvety breadiness as notes of molasses, chocolate, earth, and toasted nuts unfold throughout the finish.

It's got a nice full body with sprightly effervescence, just like a Belgian ale should.

I'm really fond of this one. It has potency of flavors, and also balance. Not too sweet, nor too bitter. A quintessential example of a dark Belgian ale, if I do say so. (796 characters)

Photo of Sixpack595
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Wow, this must be the smallest 750ml bottle ever. It seems like I just cracked it and now its gone! Good sized cap of off white head and a dark burgundy body with good lacing. Sweet fruity aroma with just a touch of alcohol sneaking in. Flavor is sweet with dark fruits and little bitterness. Alcohol is noticable in effect, but not taste. Amazing. If it wasn't $9.50 a bottle I could drink this all night! (406 characters)

Photo of wordemupg
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2008 750ml corked and caged bottle poured into Unibroue chalice oct22 2009

A clear brownish amber with two finger tan head that has average retention and leaves decent lace

S lots of brown sugar and toffee with some dark fruits

T very nice indeed, the dark fruit becomes focused on cherries, lots of toffee, a bit of rum, molasses, and some booze but not even close to the 11% I read on the bottle. I'm loving this beer it's one of the best beers I've tasted recently. I pick up on some spice that I could not smell too, If your not opposed to a sweet beer this one is a winner.

M thick but no knife and fork needed, good carbonation makes it feel quite creamy.

D this beer is dangerously drinkable, you could tell me it has half the booze it dose and I would not doubt it, well maybe not half but not the listed 11% that's for sure. I could see this beer causing problems If I had more then the single bottle I have, it's just that smooth

drink this beer whenever you get the chance, it is worth looking for if not available at your local beer store. I'm so pleased with this beer I'm wondering if it's worth aging (1,122 characters)

Photo of hardy008
4.65/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2010 Vintage.

Pours a dark brown color, much like the color of raisins. The beer has a 3 finger light beige head with nice retention and lacing. Looks like a classic BSDA.

The aroma is quite nice, and has dates, plums, caramel, brown sugar, and green apple.This smells like it should be quite sweet. This beer tastes exactly like it smells. Dates, plums, caramel, brown sugar, and green apple combine beautifully too make a beer which is sweet, smooth, and delicious.

Medium to full bodied and well carbonated. This beer is unbelievably smooth and easy to drink. The alcohol is noticeable, but not in the way at all. The mouthfeel on this beer is incredible. I need to buy several bottles of this to cellar. (710 characters)

Photo of rand
4.66/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

From 750 mL bottle to Mikasa tulip glass

2009 batch...been looking forward to this.

A: The brew appears deep mahogany in color, cloudy and completely opaque. It seems effervescent, but the beers own weight prevents any real chance of a head. Tiny patches of lacing speckle the glass.

S: The bouquet is rich and sweet and layered, with prominent notes of ripe fruit and butter-rum. Drying notes of oak attempt to contain the big, yeasty aspects and banana esters. Distinct buttery notes linger.

T/M: Ripe fruit hits the palate first, more prominently than the nose led to expect. The butter-rum notes are there, but they're tucked under a layer of sweet, chewy bread and oak. You can parse subtleties all day with this, but it seems age has formed a singular experience on the palate, as none of the nuances overlap the others. Booze is noted, especially toward the finish, which helps dry and cleans, leading to a medium and slightly sweet close.

This is up there with the best of the Belgian Strongs I've had. YOu could use this for a clinic...the esters, the oak-y dryness, the body and balance. I'd like to see what this tastes like after a few more years in the cellar. (1,178 characters)

Photo of MuddyFeet
4.66/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2005: Grand Cru of the Emperor. Thanks to the li'l bro for this Christmas gift (and to BeerPanther for suggesting it to him). Such a better beer than I was expecting--even though I knew not what to expect.

Poured a dark amber in color. This would be a great colorfor a gem stone. Slight head that was not much more than a thin layer of carbonation. Some layering lace and some spotty lace--very different throughout the glass. Nose is wonderfully sweet with loads of sugars and hard candies. How I would love to be in the brewery on brewing day.

Flavor is thick and syrupy in feel. Very sweet with hardly a hint of hops (I think I ma have noticed them towards the finish of the finish. Extremely sweet. Would make a wondeful dessert beer like a glass of port in Porto. Also got a bit of spiciness... some pepper and just a slight hint of coriander. Thick and full mouthfeel that was a bit cloying. Such a nice dessert wine. (929 characters)

Photo of cjgiant
4.66/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Bottle (7/2014) :
Beer pours what I am guessing is a ruby-brown (dark bar). Head is foamy and lasts, although there are some rather large bubbles produced as well. Lacing is medium light, some alcohol lines present.

The nose almost makes me think brandy or port, dark cherry, raisin, caramel, toffee, maybe a hint of orange zest. There's also a weird almost musty scent in there as well, but it seems to fit so well to me.

Taste is similar to nose, muted, with raisin and date coming through a bit more than any cherry from the smell. Sweetness is more cola or even birch beer in nature, and again, subdued. Finish is actually a bit carbonated.

The beer has a strange "flatness" to it, which is not representative of the level of carbonation. It's actually rather light despite the darker flavors. The alcohol does come through in some sips, but is mostly well hidden.

I really enjoyed this beer tonight. Maybe it's a situational thing, as I had some salty food earlier, and the dark sweetness of this beer may have balanced that perfectly. Definitely gonna grab this to make sure.

Follow up (4/2015): a little older (but constantly refrigerated) beer showed a little more alcohol in the feel. Still a lovely brew, but with a little more fruit tartness (apricot, peach maybe). (1,291 characters)

Photo of Lnedrive14
4.67/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Rochefort chalice from a 750ml bottle. 2005.

The bottle says it gets better with age, but I couldn't wait. It pours a rich mahagony with a small head. Reminds me of the St. Bernadus. Beautiful beautiful.

Fruity smell is mellowed by the maltiness. Figs, cloves, and maybe even a little banana really come out in this brew. Very complex and delicious.

It tastes a bit sweeter than I had anticipated. Definitely malty, but slightly more subdued than other beers of similar style. It's an amazing brew, but I do think it will become more complex with age. Wish I had another bottle to cellar.

I don't think I've ever enjoyed having a beer in my mouth more than this. I almost wanted to drink faster just so I could get an explosion of it all at once, but at the same time I didn't want the experience to be over so fast. I didn't even taste the alcohol.

This is one of the best brews I've ever had. I think I enjoyed the St. Bernadus 12 a bit more, but this one might have had even more complexity to it.

Go grab one. Now! (1,054 characters)

Photo of KickbacksSteve
4.67/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

On tap at Kickbacks in Jax. Poured into a snifter. 1/2009 vintage. Light tan head, moderate retention on a hazy, murky greyish, tudor brown body. Aroma includes notes of vanilla, cherry, some alcohol still, fig, raisin, molasses. Taste follows suit, actually no alcohol noted on tasting and the syrupy/molasses dominates with some sherry and port notes added in. Amazing beer, highly drinkable with such a high abv. Extra layers of complexity added with the 4 years of age. (473 characters)

Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) from Brouwerij Het Anker
95 out of 100 based on 859 ratings.