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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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BA SCORE
96
world-class

1,627 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,627
Reviews: 852
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 10.47%
Wants: 195
Gots: 262 | 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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,627 | Reviews: 852 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of poundboy
4.31/5  rDev +0.2%
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.

Photo of ahommell
4.31/5  rDev +0.2%
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.

Photo of jbphoto88
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 2008 bottle that is corked and caged. Once opened the beer pours dull mahogany brown. It's opaque on the fringe of clear and leathery looking with a very poor head. There is a constant stream of bubbles that feeds a collar and a light layer of tan suds.

The nose is fantastically diverse. It's an assortment of raisin, breads, caramel and molasses. As it warms some spices become even more evident.

The taste is even better then the nose which frankly doesn't do the beer justice. The spices are subdued and end up being a little peppery and really shines in the finish. Dark fruits like plum and raisins mix with caramel and molasses. Each sip is a slightly different combination of flavors and all of them are pleasing.

The mouthfeel is pleasing. The soft smooth texture is complimented by a peppery spice, slight sizzle of carbonation and healthy warmth of ABV. Quite drinkable. Good thing it was a $10 bottle or I would have bought them all and drank to a problem because it's so easy and good. Great find.

Photo of plfahey
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 mL bottle poured into a tulip glass. 2009 vintage.

Appearance-deep garnet brown with ruby highlights. Clear. Moderate light tan head with good retention, fine bead, and some lacing.

Aroma-Enormous overpowering aroma, huge dark/dried fruit esters (prunes, plums, grapes, raisins) with some licorice and belgian dark candi sugar. Perfumy, rose-like and slightly peppery alcohols are background to the fruit. No hops.

Flavor-Very sweet, just shy of cloying. Rich and fruity, like biting into a plum, with flavors of raisins and prunes as well. Lighter flavors of dark belgian candi sugar fade to rose-water, peppery alcohols. The sweetness lingers just a bit longer than it should before being dried out by the alcohol. Still, quite good.

Mouthfeel-Moderately full, moderate carbonation. Smooth, despite high alcohol, though with definite alcohol warmth.

I probably wouldn't want to drink a whole bottle of this by myself, but due to the high alcohol content, that's not really an issue. I find this beer extremely delicious, and have loved it everytime I've had it.

Photo of largadeer
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
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.

Photo of Axic10
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
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.

Photo of AZbelgian
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
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.

Photo of Thorpe429
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
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.

Photo of PGVG
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%

Photo of hopdog
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
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.

Photo of WesWes
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a very dark brown color with a 1/4" tan head that fades to lacing. The aroma is great. It has a warm and spicey scent that boasts of a complex crystal malt arrangement and fruity Belgian yeast. The taste is great as well. It has a very smooth and sweet crystal malt flavor that goes down easy and warms a little on the finish. It is sweet with malts and a fruity on the aftertaste; very mellow and flavorful. The mouthfeel is good. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn fine brew and an excellent drinker. It has everything that I look for in a beer: good aroma, complexity, and mouthfeel.

Photo of jdubjacket
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is the definition of dessert beer at its best. Pours a deep brown - nearly black. Moderate carbonation in this one. Smells like sugar, prunes, dried fruit, and a lot of yeast. Taste is brown sugar, alcohol, caramel, and sweet fruit. VERY tasty. One of the better Grand Crus I've had in a while. The moderate carbonation makes this one go down easy without making it feel flat. A little strong to drink more than one, but this is one outstanding brew.

Photo of number1bum
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 vintage. Pours a dark mahogany color with a scarlet tint to it when held to the light. About two inches of tan head settle to a thin lace, although it does leave some nice webbing on the sides of the glass as it falls.

Smells of rich candied fruits, brown sugar, caramel, candi sugar, raisins, black cherry and other dark fruits. Some alcohol wafts over the nose as well, which gives it a sort of brandy-like quality. Very nice.

Taste is also very rich and robust, with lots of dark malts - caramel, brown sugar, candi sugar - and dark fruits as well. Raisin, in particular, is a strong flavor, as is plum and fig. Like the nose there is some booze here, although it doesn't remind me quite as much of a brandy as the nose did. It's sweet yet pretty clean in the finish, and not cloying.

Mouthfeel is a medium-full body which at first feels a touch thin for the strength of the beer, but then as the sweetness takes over the mouth it begins to coat and feel fuller.

This is a very nice sipper, a robust, warming sort of beer that's perfect on this snowy evening. It's a little hot and I'd like to try a vintage with a couple of years on it to see how it melds together and smooths out. I'm sure it's a real treat with a couple of years on it.

Photo of aubuc1
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle dated 2008 poured in to a chimay goblet.

pours a hazy dark brown with a light tan clingy head

Smooth spicy malt an plum smell. Very nice.

Grapy malt with a biting carbonation. Some alcohol sweetness.

A great beer that is strong yet not hot.

Photo of CAMRAhardliner
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark mahogany with ample cherry glints. The smallish, crackly off white cap is pretty shortlived. The aroma is rich caramel malts, raisins, field berries. An intense wall of malt hits in the first sip. Rum soaked Christmas cake, sangria, plum, cinnamon, vanilla and a million other flavors fill the palate. Hops are scarce, as is the lofty 11% ABV. Its amazing how well the booze heat is hidden. The mouthfeel is full bodied verging on viscous with a medium carbonation level. The finish is fruity with a light hop bitterness and a bit of herbal hop character.

Overall this is a sweet but not overly so beer. Lots of malt complexity and fruityness and the very high ABV is surprisingly (and dangerously) well hidden. Try this.

Photo of StoneBrewFanatic
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 Vintage:

A - Pours a dark mahogany with a rich red hue into my goblet. Only about a finger of head with little retention or lacing.

S - Sweet caramel malts, apples, brown sugar, clove, spice, raisins and cherries with a touch of alcohol.

T - Very sweet and candy-like, caramel malts, clove, brown sugar, apple and banana, raisin and a bit of alcohol warmth.

M - Medium in body and fairly well balanced.

D - Very tasty sipper! A little on the sweet side for my personal preference, but overall really nice and very enjoyable.

Photo of gford217
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle at the Brick Store poured into a tulip.

Pours a slighly hazy dark copper with a big off-white head that shows great retention and lots of lacing. The aroma is dominated by the sweet sugary malts and dark fruits - figs, raisins, grapes. The taste is just as sweet as the aroma would indicate. Huge caramel and candy sugar sweetness with vanilla and dark fruit. The mouthfeel is sticky and the sweetness just coats the mouth from the first sip. This is a very complex and enjoyable Belgian ale.

Photo of Urbancaver
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 vintage
Thanks Carl!!

Pours a hazy brownish orange. A nice touch of yellowed head. Looks pretty decent. Smells heavily of raisin and plum. A nice touch of vanilla. Tastes boozy and sweet. Raisin and vanilla with a nice thick mouthfeel. Caramel and burnt sugars. Smooth and rich, well carbonated and very tasty.

Photo of Matty1918
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to deepsouth for allowing me to sample this.

Pours a nice dark brown color with a nice off white head. Good amount of lacing too.

Aroma was very nice....ripe, sugary fruit...plums, bananas, cherries..there was also hints of maple syrup and molases.

Taste was of molases and ripe fruit. A slight dry bitterness was there also but blendid well with the sweet malts. The alcohol is well hidden but there is a little hint of it at the end. Very nice tasting.

Mouthfeel was smooth and syrupy.

Glad I got the chance to try this. I'd buy this if I could find it. Very sippable.

Photo of armock
4.32/5  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

Photo of brewandbbq
4.32/5  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.

Photo of kawilliams81
4.32/5  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.

Photo of Gueuzedude
4.32/5  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.

Photo of tpd975
4.32/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a nice chestnut brown hue with tinges of red showing thru. No real head, basically flat looking. No lace either.

S: Nice big blast of dark fruit and sweet malt. Hints of brown sugar and booze.

T: Wow very nice. I really like this beer. Tons of ripe dark fruit. Bold charred brown sugar with hints of cinnamon, banana, and booze.

M: Medium in body, very smooth. Despite the lack of noticible carbonation this one is rather creamy.

D: Very, I really enjoyed sipping this one until the bottle was empty.

Wonderful beer, one of the best Belgian Strongs I have ever had.

Photo of Overlord
4.32/5  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.

Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) from Brouwerij Het Anker
96 out of 100 based on 1,627 ratings.