Dismiss Notice
Save $5 when you subscribe to 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine and select auto-renew.

Subscribe now →
Dismiss Notice
Join Our Email List →

And we'll send you the latest updates and offers from BeerAdvocate, because knowing is half the battle.
Dismiss Notice

Pre-order your Respect Beer "Hipster" Hoodie today!

Plus: Free shipping (US only) on orders of $25 or more until 12/18/15. Just select "Free Shipping" at checkout.

Shop now →

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

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

Educational use only; do not reuse.

865 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 865
Hads: 1,722
Avg: 4.29
pDev: 14.69%
Wants: 233
Gots: 300 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Brouwerij Het Anker visit their website

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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 865 | Hads: 1,722
Photo of TripelJ
3.93/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Now Quaffing: Gouden Carolus D'or 750 ML

Pours a ruddy reddish-brown with a dense tan head that recedes after a few minutes. Aroma is simply sweet, with a hint of spicy alcohol. Taste is much more mellow than I remember, although I have only previously had this beer in the smaller, 12 oz. bottle. Mostly sweet apple and light caramel with just a hint of acidic bitterness. A small piece of "Red Delicious" Apple with the peel, dipped in caramel... Mouthfeel is medium-bodied and drinkability is very good, when considering the 8% abv.

 538 characters

Photo of ricke
3.92/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle. 2009 vintage.

The pour is dark reddish brown with a big off-white head that leaves nice lacings.

The smell is big an spot on. Lots of malty aromas of caramel, brown sugar and toffee. Pleasant heavy fruit aromas, yeast and alcohol.

The flavor is really sweet. From start to finish this one is all about sweetness - toasty malts, caramel, brown sugar, toffee. Notes of vinous fruits, wood, yeast and grass. The finish has some bitterness to it, more sweetness and notes of alcohol, hops and spices.

It has a full body and quite a lot of carbonation, which is welcome here since it lightens the heavy character, if only just a bit.

All in all, a complex, balanced and tasty beer. Due to the sweetness, it gets quite demanding after a while.

 751 characters

Photo of crwills
3.92/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Part of a tasting with northyorksammy, biegaman, grub, and derek. Thanks guys!

This is the second bottle of this I've reviewed, a vintage 2002 (the other was 2005, I think).

Poured a cloudy, brownish gold into the sample glass. Aroma is boozy candy sugar.

Mouthfeel is surprisingly thick and oily. Dominant flavours are toffee/caramel malts with a lot of sherry or port flavour showing up at it warms. Alcohol also becomes more and more obvious at room temperature.

Very nice, not sure which I liked better.

 520 characters

Photo of firemedic1343
3.92/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

A: Beautiful appearance, almost opaque. Lovely dark brown color.

S: Not really much smell here. The only real smell was a little bit of malt, but mainly fruit.

T: Very complex. Malty. Very sweet, actually much to sweet for an standalone drink. It may be best accompanied by something that goes well with something that goes well with this sweet and fruity beer.

M: Nice thick mouthfeel. Feels like you're getting your monies worth!

D: Couldn't drink more than 5 ounces due to it's sweetness. Dessert beverage.

 513 characters

Photo of tmoneyba
3.92/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Corked Bottle from Party Source, KY.

Poured a clear brown color with an average creamy off-white head that mostly lasted with good lacing.

Moderate to heavy caramel yeasty aroma.

Medium body with a smooth tingly texture.

Medium sweet malt flavor with a medium sweet finish of moderate duration.

Nice beer to have with spicy food.

 334 characters

Photo of JackRWatkins
3.91/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

750 ml bottle in snifter glass at 1 year and 4 months
A: sudsy subtle 1 finger head, deep brown almost opaque with subtle hints of ruby
S: instant pilsner malt, some thick chocolate richness and dark fruit, full and sweet
T: wow this beer is sweet, I mean not even a hint of hoppy bitterness, caramel malts and a lighter bodied chocolate dominate this beer, but there's a bit of that pilsner malt that hangs around and is odd but not off putting, some cherry notes come in and marry with the caramel malts and add a tartness to the sweet
M: a bit dry but not too dry, pleasant, the sweetness in the taste distracts from the dryness in a way that I wish it did not
O: quite pleasant, but too sweet for me, I think the prominence of the pilsner malts is a nice and interesting touch, would be a great introduction to belgian strong dark ales, very accessible, but suitably complex, not my favorite, but not bad, will age some in hopes that the sweetness will dissipate some

 971 characters

Photo of PatronWizard
3.91/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 release - patiently aged. 750ml to glass....

Dark caramel to light ruby. Ridiculously bountiful head that is contantly replenished by steady streams of fine bubbles. The head is eternal. In fact, I spilled a drop on my desk and it had a five minute head.

Lot of alcohol in the nose. Maybe something else like dates, prunes, or figs.

Taste of molasses, caramel, dark fruits, dates. The alcohol is less apparent on the tongue than in the nose.

Feel is champagney. Light, dry, fine bubbles. Each swallow disappears like a phantom, leaving only a sweet taste on the lips.

I'll be carefully gauging the drinkability of this 11% over the next hour.

Preceding was from notes. Here it is actually a little over two hours later and I'm on the final glass. Warming has brought out the 11%, but I'm hanging in there like a champ. This glassful will die.

Overall: worth a try

 876 characters

Photo of Osiris9588
3.9/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured this out of a brown 11.2 oz bottle, ABV 8%. This ale has a great color, a dark copper accented with a cranberry glow. A rather weak, though lacey, head disspated quickly in a large tulip glass. The pleasing bouquet was filled with notes of chocolate, plum, and rich malt. The taste offered malt and various spices on the front palate, moving to a candy coated and stong alcohol finish. Mouthfeel was lively and full, yet the candy-alcohol finish was overpowering and almost deadened my tongue for future sips. However, I grew used to the finish and it compared nicely with other ales of its ilk.

 602 characters

Photo of GilGarp
3.9/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

2007 vintage. Dated good though November 2017 but I just couldn't wait.

Pops softly but soon starts gushing out of the bottle. Luckily, I have a glass in hand and pour it in carefully. Color is a dark redish brown with lots of sediment in suspension despite careful handing. The head settles quickly to a thin layer on top.

Aroma is rich, malty, and full of fruity esters. There also seems to be a hint of sherry or bourbon but that may just be the alcohol.

The taste is surprisingly sweet with cherries, plum, apricot, and fig. The Belgian yeast is very pleasant adding dark bread, nuts, and spice. Although there is a wide variety of flavors at work here, it's the sweet dark fruits that really dominate.

Mouthfeel is good, nice level of carbonation and good body. All appropriate for the style.

Drinkability is alright for the style but it's intense, sweet, and strong so a little goes a long way.

All in all a good BSD but the lumpy appearance and overly sweet flavor hinder this one.

 995 characters

Photo of Bung
3.88/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

11.2oz. 2011. Rootbeer or prune juice type brown pour, frothy thin layer of off white head. Some lacing.

Aroma, a lot of raisin and brown sugar. Some winey white grape.

Taste, Raisin, yellow and otherwise. Brown sugar, caramel. Caramel covered white grape. Some vanilla and sugar cookie.

A lower level of carbonation and nicely coating. The body is not real heavy so this is ok, not cloying. The big abv is non-existent.
Very good, but I think the uber high score is due to the plethora of average Belgian Darks that are considered better than they are.

 556 characters

Photo of BMoney575
3.88/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sampled on 1-25-08
Bottled on 2-24-06

Pours a foamy translucent brown, with glass-covering off white lacing. Little bubbles rise from the bottom to the surface.

Smell is very sweet, caramel, lots of chocolate and a little cinnamon, with dark fruit buried beneath. No real alcohol smell, and surprisingly non-Belgian.

Taste is very tart and fruity. Not like the smell, much more subtle, and a bit more boring. A pleasant floral flavor comes in next, leaving a hoppy balance near the end.

Mouthfeel is good for the style, not too thick.

Drinkability is very good, considering the abv.

Overall, a standard strong dark ale. Good, but I've had much better.

 657 characters

Photo of clvand0
3.88/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a dark brown color with a large tan head that died off quickly and left very little lacing on the glass. The aroma was fruity, with orange being the most upfront and there was a yeasty spice as well. The flavor had a nice Belgian spice character and an orange citrus flavor. Caramel and other malts give it a nice body and flavor. Seems just a tad thin, but very enjoyable.

 390 characters

Photo of Brabander
3.88/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I got this beer in a trade with Apophis666 a week ago, together with the blond version. I drank them both yesterday with a buddy.

Let's start with this one although we drank it after the blond. Poured in the Struise glass the beer looks good, darkdarkred to brown fluid with a very nice two finger head, bubbly and creamy. The hed disappears after a while and a small ring of foam sticks to the glass.

Sweet smell. The taste is good, not complex, rather simple but good. Dark candysugar and some spices but the spices they added could have been a bit more to give the beer a complexer taste.

Mouthfeel is good, simple and drinkable.

 635 characters

Photo of bwyker
3.88/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

On tap, poured into a pint glass, around cellaring temperature.

Appearance: Very dark mahogany. Nearly opaque from the dark hue of the body; however, when put up to light, it appears to be a clear, haze-free deep-red brew. A very thin ochre tinted head dangles in the middle and sticks to the sides of the glass. Lacing completely coats the side of the glass forming a slightly discolored screen.

Smell: Immediately notice toffee and molasses, with an alcohol backbone.

Taste: Similar to the nose. Smokey, roasted malts with hints of cherry at the start, followed by a slight maple syrup flavor and a splash of alcohol in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Although this one is heavy in the malts, the mouthfeel is surprisingly smooth, with only a slight stickyness in the finish. The first few sips are a bit dry from the alcohol, but this soon fades to a nice silkiness once your palate adjusts.

Drinkability: This is a big one that will demand some slow sipping. It gets easier with each sip, but I can’t imagine having more than one or two of these in a sitting. Overall, a well-crafted beer that was very much enjoyed.

 1,131 characters

Photo of mrasskicktastic
3.88/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - A very hazy tea colored large head. Tons of lacing.

S - Slightly fruity with caramel malt and faint toffee, dates, dried figs. Some alcohol.

T - Sweet dark fruits with a very sweet caramel that evolves to a slightly boozy presence with a complex sweetness. Aftertaste is a slightly boozy, lingering caramel sweetness with a mild bitterness.

M - High carbonation, thick, pretty refreshing.

D - Delicious worth having, I'll definitely have this again (if I ever come across another oppurtunity to have it). A little too sweet perhaps.

 548 characters

Photo of frank4sail
3.87/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark ruby color light biege outer ring of a head. Sweet candi sugar and malt sweetness in the nose. Taste of sweet port, raisens, plum, and corriander, and a finish that has a dry touch of white pepper. Lively mouth upfront mellows to a coating thinner but smooth mouth. A nice sippin beer and one to drink with a good steak.

 325 characters

Photo of Mrappinin
3.87/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A review of the 2013 batch:-) possibly the best looking brew I have seen in a while. Pours a dark ruby held up to the light it almost glows. A rocky head that persists all the way threw, sticking to the glass as you drink. Not the best smelling brew. Not a foul smell just not much to it. Heavy booze not with the slight fruity esters of Belgium yeast and not much else. Fortunately this does not translate over to taste. A taste of booze fruity esters, darkfruits , candy sugers . the mouth feel is smooth and velvety like an imperial stout. The carbonation seams to only add to head retention and does not dull the flavor at all. Trying to broaden my Belgium horizons, not a dad addition

 689 characters

Photo of Vladimiriuz
3.87/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Got the bottle of the year 2000, brewed at February the 24th of 2000.

Add the nice dark, ruby like in a Gouden Carolus chalice. There was no thick foam, the beer went complete dead when I poor it in the glass. Cause of there was no foam in it it have to do cause this is a 13 years old aged bottle. I heard that than the foam complete fades away when you pour it in the chalice.

Nice colour, and the nose gives a very warm and a red fruits appearance. Also some dark chocolate is there.

For a alcohol of 8,5% (not 11%, on this bottle what I have stands 8,5%), it is a very delicate and good to drink. The strongest of the alcohol is not there. The sparklings is a little on the background, not so much on this great fantastic beer.

The taste is very warm, delicate have some sweetness in it. Red fruits, some caramel, some chocolate. Very pleasant. One of my favourites and highly recommended for those who like warm and strong dark ales.

The 2000 years bottles are quite rare to get. Hopefully if you will find one! Than you have a very special and a fantastic collector's item.

 1,086 characters

Photo of kirkmichel
3.86/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 1PT9.4FL.OZ. bottle purchased at Green's, Atlanta, GA
2006 vintage
Used a pint glass - no chalice, which I would have liked

appearance - Opaque, rust-brown, lacy lasting foam

Poured a somewhat dark, semi-opaque, rusty brown with decent caramel-tinted dense foam head.
The foam stayed for a long time, which was nice, and clung to the periphery of the glass. Foam lacing actually stuck to the glass even when the liquid was gone. The miracles of beer science.

smell - Kind of subtle and malty and yeast-y.

When I could get I smelled spice, prunes/fgs and maybe some brown sugar and molasses, though I can't be sure that the color of it didn't influence me on this last bit.

taste - Sweet on the front, strong alchol on the way down.

The tase was a sweet malt with dried fruits like golden and brown raisins and that sugary finish. Super raisiny. the taste lasts and seems fairly complex, making this a nice sipping beer.

mouthfeel - Medium body, but smooth.
The mouthfeel was medium bodied. Not too much carbonation, despite the thick head.

drinkability - This beer is nice as what I like to call "an appetizer". Can't drink a bunch, and really who would want to? It would spoil the treat of having just one.
Considering that strong, dark ales are not my "thing" and I actually really like this, I think that those who love this style would be missing out if they didn't give it a try. Plus, I suppose because of the ABV, it stores well - mine was labelled 1996 and here I am drinking it in 2008 and it is outstanding! If you see it, pick it up...

 1,570 characters

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.85/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1.5 Litre bottle: 2011 version. Shared at home with the wife, daughter and son-in-law during a random tasting night on 23 Nov 2012.

Every had Dandelion and Burdock? This reminded me of that old staple from my youth: more body and less fizz than the old pop bottles but still very simular in smell, taste and look.

Demerara sugar and raisins also came to mind in this fairly sweet yet very drinkable brew. The alcohol is detectable but it adds to the enjoyment rather than hindering as some weaker/watery beers often suffer with because their flavours are not strong enough: these flavours certainly are hefty enough to take the alcohol and help it to enhance the brew.

I had the lions share of the bottle and knew I'd had enough when I stopped drinking and started making my notes: just about readable!

 805 characters

Photo of deadliest
3.85/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From 2010 vintage.

A - Dark brown with red edges against the light. Fair head with light lacing from modest retention.
S - Mild alcohol hides behind dark fruit and Belgian spiciness and a little caramel.
T - Raisins > Brown sugar > Caramel > Alcohol > Belgian spiciness.
M - Medium+ body, fairly dry.
D - This is good, but considering it's ranking and style, I expected to love it. Maybe this needs some age on it before I try another one.

 453 characters

Photo of kojevergas
3.85/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2007 vintage! 1 pint 9.4 fl oz brown glass bottle with hood and wire cap over a cork served into a Uinta brewing pilsner glass (it was all that was available) in me gaff in low altitude Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are very high given the brewery and style. I'm hoping it beats Chimay Blue.

Served after a rest period from the refrigerator. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a 1.5 finger khaki colour head of nice cream, good thickness, and excellent retention for the high ABV. Colour is a very dark yet vibrant and evocative brown. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show. Nontransparent. Opaque.

Sm: Magnificent dark malts, biscuit malt, clean malts, dark malts, biscuity yeast, fantastic caramelization, cream, plum, and heavy wine notes (mostly red, with even a tannin-like character). Surprisingly acidic. A delightfully fruity, rather subtle aroma. Really quite remarkable. I can't wait to try it.

T: Great cream throughout, with plum, wine grape, and other indistinct fruit notes. The gentle malt backbone lends it body but doesn't intrude on the flavour. Hops are floral if present; no bitterness comes through at all. Nor does any alcohol, which is quite a feat at this ABV. Some nectar on the back end. It's nicely yeasty, which I think helps complement those fruit notes. Some raisin here and there. It's not as winey as suggested by the aroma but still maintains that distinct character, especially on the climax. Tinges of caramelization help keep it interesting. It's full of surprises, and boasts an impressive depth of flavour as well as an interesting complexity. Quite subtle. It's brought off quite well; I adore it. A touch too acidic.

Mf: Just enough cream. Smooth and wet, aiding the drinkability. Supports the flavours without intruding upon them. Good (though fairly high) thickness. It can feel a bit viscous at times, but overall it's quite alright. It could use a touch more coarseness, but I'm nitpicking. Carbonation is near perfect; it drinks well now - even after five years.

Dr: I think the age likely did it well. Maybe one more year and it'd peak. Very drinkable for its incredibly well concealed ABV. I'd definitely get this again. Worth picking up some bottles for the cellar as well. A fantastic beer in the style, giving even Chimay Blue a run for its money in my book. Indeed, I think I prefer this one. And it isn't even priced all that highly for its quality. This is something of an overlooked treasure. I'd definitely recommend it to friends. One thing that does bother me is the proliferation of grapey notes, which can tip the balance of the flavour off at times.


 2,705 characters

Photo of EPICAC
3.85/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I split a 750 mL bottle with a friend at Bierhuis Kulminator in Antwerp.

Appearance: Pours a hazy brown with a reddish tint. A thick off-white head fades to a sudsy quarter-inch layer, leaving patchy lace.

Smell: Sweet and very fruity smelling. Lots of bananas and peppery alcohol. Swirling brings out notes of cherry and raisins.

Taste: Very sweet with nice fruitiness: bananas, raisins and light tartness. There's a very mild alcoholic spice in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Thick and full-bodied with low carbonation.

Drinkability: Smooth and sweet. Neither the alcohol nor sweetness is overpowering.

 611 characters

Photo of breakingbland
3.84/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle dated 7/4/2014 with a 1/2 finger head with fine to medium-fine bubbles. The aroma was roasty sweet (candy). The taste was like the aroma but with the sweetness accentuated. There was no hops presence. The aftertaste was of caramel. This is a medium full-bodied beer with very nice carbonation.

Overall, this is a very good beer, but it was too sweet -- almost cloying. Maybe the advice on the bottle that this beer can (should?) be aged is good advice. I'd love to try a bottle that had less sweetness and a deeper flavor profile.

 552 characters

Photo of dsa7783
3.83/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

750 ML bottle purchased caged and corked from Gary's in Madison...
"2007" year on the neck...
The beer pours a deep, dark, mahogany-brown hue with a tremendous frothy head that exhibited impressie staying power...
Strong, sweet, alcohol-tinged smell, bursting with plums, figs, and candied sugars...
Equally powerful, dominating taste, spicy and pepperish on the tongue, with noticeable sweet, candied sugars... Flavor replete with dark caramel, toffee, rich malts, and a hint of vanilla... Overall, the malt profile is huge on this one...
Equally thick, spicy mouthfeel, with the hefty ABV certainly noticeable at first, and than gradually dissappearing...
Drinkability took a hit due to the ultra-rich and super-sweet flavor along with the hefty alcohol percentage which is not well-masked...
Otherwise, really good stuff...
Worth a try...

 842 characters

Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) from Brouwerij Het Anker
95 out of 100 based on 865 ratings.