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Schwartz Bier - Devils Backbone Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Schwartz BierSchwartz Bier

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BA SCORE
86
very good

242 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 242
Reviews: 42
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 10.76%
Wants: 9
Gots: 44 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Devils Backbone Brewing Company visit their website
Virginia, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: on 07-24-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 242 | Reviews: 42
Photo of beerrat
4.88/5  rDev +28.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Another great beer from devils backbone.

Photo of chinchill
3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle with a 22 Sept. 2014 date stamp.

Pours clear, dark red-brown with a decent head, but the head soon reduces to a ring.

True to style, this is a very well crafted Schwarzbier. Plenty of sweet toffee in the aroma; caramel, coffee and black bread in the flavor. Lightly sweet.

O: Nearly as good as Sprecher's, this is highly recommended for style

Photo of Austin_Hull
4.86/5  rDev +27.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Easily my favorite beer of all time. Drinks smoothly, and finishes with an excellent aftertaste. Highly recommend

Photo of Huhzubendah
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown, near black, body with a half inch of khaki head. Chocolate, nutty, earthy, aroma. Chocolate and caramel malt with a hint of yeast and afterthoughts of coffee. Dark and rich. Light to medium bodied with soft carbonation and a mild hop note in the back end. Solid.

Photo of tigg924
4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Really good schwarzbier that is better than most domestic attempts at this style that I have had. Flavor is a nice mix of coffee, roasted malt, and a bit of cream. Stout like, but much lighter in body. I would reach for this if I was looking for this style.

Photo of KWrightVT
3.87/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I had never had a black lager before, but was pleasantly surprised. This was poured into a half pint glass from the tap at Devil's Backbone Outpost. Very nice dark brown to black color, with very little head. Aroma was nice and toasty, with slight coffee and chocolate hints. Mouthfeel was light. Excellent stout-like flavor, without being overly powerful. A great drinkable beer with good flavor and balance.

Photo of Noahtrumble
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Not bad, but not great. More like a stout then a lager

Photo of rjs246
3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I'm not a lager fan in general but this is some very good beer and I love the way it looks.

Photo of TheLibertyFlamesTaster
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%

Very dark in color.
Very little light shines trough the berr.
Smell-A sweet almost licorice smell.
Taste- Lots of carbonation up front. smoky sweetness is the taste,
Pretty good beer.

Photo of delta490
3.85/5  rDev +1%

Pours an almost black dark brown. Moderate light tan head melts away quickly. The aroma is dark caramel sweetness, a light roasted malt note and a little earthy hops. It's also very light. The taste is very similar with an interesting vanilla note in the middle. The body is lighter and there is a little carbonation on the finish.

Photo of RonaldTheriot
3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Devil’s Backbone Schwartz Bier has a thin-to-medium, cream-colored head, a very dark brown (lighter around the edges) appearance, some visible stray bubbles, and moderate lacing left behind. The aroma is of toasted, dark bread crust, some cream, and general malt. Taste is of sweet malt, bread crust, and just a kiss of the hops. Mouthfeel is light to medium, and Devil’s Backbone Schwartz Bier finishes semi-wet and highly drinkable.

RJT

Photo of neenerzig
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

So, I am currently on vacation with my wife and her family in Virginia for a few days visiting her mother's family. Today we are at Busch Gardens for the day, as we are all fans of amusement parks in general and most of us are fans of roller coasters. So we are in the Deutschland area of the park for lunch and I see this beer here on tap. Never heard of this brewery before so I decided to take a chance. Serves to me in a plastic pint glass, this beer draws a very dark brown color that isn't letting in any light. Has a nice, slightly tan head that is about 1/2 of an inch when first poured, eventually setting to a thick ring lining the inside of the cup and a decent surface film coating of foam. Barely any lacing though. Aromas of roasted caramel Malts and not much else which is probably just the way this beer should smell. Flavored of dark, roasted caramel malts with perhaps a hint or chocolate and coffee that is rounded out with a slight touch of hops. Again not very complex, but spot on I think. Has a nice smooth, frothy, slightly creamy, somewhat crisp mouthfeel with light to moderate carbonation. Easy toto drink in the manner a tasty beer should be!

Eric

Photo of ThisWangsChung
3.46/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a dark brown color. The head is a finger high, mocha in shade, and VERY creamy-looking. Retention is fine enough for the style, while a nice ring of lacing is left on the glass.

S: Some solid brown sugar notes are coming through quite well. There are also lighter aromas of coffee and chocolate. This is a pleasant nose in general - mild, but pleasant.

T: Fairly roasty for the style. While there's an initial and lesser finishing note of brown sugar, in the middle lies a good amount of roasted coffee. A combination of sweet caramel and gentle noble hopping builds up slightly after a few sips. I'm glad it isn't overly cola-esque, too.

M: This one feels rather sharp-edged, light, and coarse on the palate. Those who aren't bothered by the 'bite' will find a dry (not bone-dry), drinkable offering. The intense carbonation should be toned down about 10%, though.

O: This is the first beer from these guys that I didn't find utterly average. It's very easy to drink, yet with a decent coffee flavor. I'd definitely drink this again.

Photo of cyclonece09
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a 14 oz "pint" glass. Pours reddish black with a small off white head. Smells of coffee. Tastes of dark roasted grain and coffee. Beer is light bodied and good carbonation, nice finish. Overall a very good beer.

Photo of JamieDuncan
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Picked this up as part of a mixed 6 from Ye Ole. I have only had one Devils Backbone beer to date so did not really have any expectations. Also have not had much of this style so not sure what to expect or compare it to. Love the look of the beer, dark and clean. Very easy to drink with some nice flavor. Very interesting style and beer. A lot of the aspects of a stout but very drinkable which would make it a session beer. Overall a very good beer that I enjoyed very much and would not mind having again. No idea what a six goes for but an interesting beer to keep in the fridge to share with others.

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.34/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

my first beer from these guys is a bit of a let down. it tastes a bit stale, like a crummy euro dark lager all extracty and weird. dark in color, more like a porter in looks than a dark ale, rather dense and not super heady after the initial gush fades down. a nose of tale dark roasted grain and lager yeast, nothing seems alive or fresh about it, flavors are all muted, and the yeast is just weird. i have heard these guys make some great stuff, but this is a pretty uninspiring introduction to this brewery. lacking the nice carbonation and quick finish of the better schwarz types, and not really giving me much grain character at all. it makes me thirsty for a good one. it also seems a bit thick and under carbonated, not the feel i am really after in the style. all up, there is nothing particularly bad about it, but it just never really comes together, something with the yeast i think, but this one is forgettable for me.

Photo of rdilauro
2.75/5  rDev -27.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

My first Schwartz Bier... Just when you think you have tried so many different beers.
This one poured jet black like a stout except you could tell it was much thinner and lighter.
There wasnt a pronounce nose except for a faint hint of European hops which I normally find in German and Czech Pilsners.
This beer went do very easy, almost too easy. I could see why sitting around a table it would be very easy to drink a number of these

Photo of Minkybut
3.53/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

I poured this beer into my tumbler at 45 degrees. The beer was really black and it poured a nice head. The beer smelled like beer, sorry! The beer had a malty taste and was very pleasant to drink. I would certainly buy this beer again. This seems to be a good beer company.

Photo of oberon
3.81/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours into my schwarbier glass a deep cola color with a light beige head sitting perfectly atop,just a great pour.Aromas of chocolate and earth with light roast...not overpowering,smells like a great dessert beer.Chocolaty sweet flavors but not overly so,some more brown sugar comes into play giving more sweetness but a big earthy backbone keeps the sweetness from taking over,roast is bigger as I drink more but the lager smoothness holds thr to the finish.I like this rendition of the style,it's alot better than most American versions in my opinion.

Photo of arizcards
3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Picked up a single from Downtown Wine & Gourmet while visiting in Harrisonburg back in late September for $1.79. "Boned On" 3-8-13. Been residing in my beer fridge since late September.

Beer poured black with a decent tan head that is hanging around.

Nose is roasted malts and a hint of cocoa.

Taste is roasty with some cocoa.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied with lager smoothness in the end.

Overall this is a well done Schwartz style. This must be very good when fresh. Give it a shot if you come across it!

Photo of Cyrion
2.97/5  rDev -22%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a standard shaker pint.

Appearance: Very dark, basically black. Sports a 2 inch tan head. A great deal of carbonation on the sides. Leaves attractive concentric rings around the glass.

Smell: Sweet toffee. I'd even say it has a sugary pastry smell, like a hot cross bun. Chocolate is there, as well as a slight amount of coffee.

Taste: Chocolate malt, with very little coffee bitterness. There's a bit of toast here and dark fruit, but frankly, these are being drowned out. A strong metallic flavor appears quickly, and when combined with the heavy carbonation, it's tasting a bit like a cola soda. Very unappealing, and it's leaving a citric acid aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Very thin.

Overall: Not sure if the metallic cola taste is an undesired element or not, but the end result is a brackish lager that has limited appeal.

Photo of jtierney89
4.3/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle says 5.1% ABV. Deep brown almost black in color. Off white head that thins out rather quickly. Black chocolate and coffee on the nose. No astringency, rather clean nose.

Very interesting. Very savory beer while being rather light bodied. Toasted grain, some burnt coffee and chocolate, savory on the mid-palate, Faint bitterness cleans up remaining flavors. Beer finishes clean and balanced. Subtle but with some great flavors that go together really well. Faint burnt ends that add to the flavor rather then take away from it. A really nice schwarzbier.

Photo of ckollias
3.94/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed this 12 oz bottle of a large snifter glass.

A: Pours a dark blackish hue with a tan head that slowly dissipates into a solid persistent lace leaving a semi trail down the glass.

S: Malty aroma with deep chocolate overtones.

T: Smooth malty flavor with coffee and chocolate background that finishes on the dry side.

M: Medium body and medium carbonation.

O: Excellent brew – solid flavors and aromas.

Photo of Joe0031
3.93/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice dark pour, very little head. Smell is good has a nice coffee flavor. Tastes exactly what I expected it to after the smell but the strong bitter after taste got me. To me it has an almost coffee taste. I can't pinpoint the mix with coffee it has but overall I can't complain and would probably buy again.

Photo of IPhantom
3.76/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Pours an awesome brown-black, like an extremely well-foamed cup of French pressed coffee. Thick head with copious lacing looks like the foam on top of a great root beer float. Smell is roasty malts, a little toffee, a little coffee, and maybe just the slightest hint of vinous dark fruit. Taste is sweet coffee malt, pleasantly burnt flavors, and some crisp hops. Finish cleans up nicely with some tannic, almost tobacco-like notes. Mouthfeel is surprisingly crisp and not cloying, with the hop finish rounding out nicely.

Although I would have preferred a little more sweetness, this is nonetheless a fine alternative beer for summers, especially if you like to spend yours eating charred meats and sitting around campfires until all hours of the night.

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Schwartz Bier from Devils Backbone Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 242 ratings.