1554 Enlightened Black Ale - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
1554 Enlightened Black Ale1554 Enlightened Black Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

3,140 Ratings
THE BROS
82
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,140
Reviews: 1,260
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 12.27%
Wants: 82
Gots: 249 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Belgian Dark Ale |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-02-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,140 | Reviews: 1,260
Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had several time on tap at the Bryant lake bowl and from a bottle.
L: Pours from the bottle bright black with a 1” tan head and good lacing.
S: Yeast, bread and fruit aromas.
T: Caramel and toffee with traces of roast. Light, prune, vanilla chocolate on the after taste. Moderate hop biter accent on the finish.
F: Medium body and carbonation.
O: A fairly light, easy to drink, flavorful dark beer.

Photo of Jeffreysan
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, completely opaque, pitch-black color with a quarter of a finger of white-colored head that quickly dissolved away into a thin lacing of foam that partially covered the top of the beer.

Aroma: Nice aromas of bready, earthy, rich, toasted, roasted malt, imparting notes of freshly toasted dark bread and maybe a hint of smoke. There are also aromas of caramel and brown sugar, black pepper, a hint of licorice and dark chocolate, and a hint of roasted chestnuts. Quite nice and inviting.

Taste: Delicious flavors of bready, toasted, roasted malt up front, imparting flavors of smoke and toasted dark bread, followed by some dark molasses and caramel-like sweetness, some hits of dark chocolate, licorice and roasted nuts. At the finish there’s a touch of floral, piney, hops. This beer gives of a delicious slight-rauchbier vibe. I really, really like it!

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and pretty smooth as there is very little in the way of carbonation. With an ABV of 5.6%, there is no alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is another excellent, delicious, beer from New Belgium. Very malty and roasty, slightly sweet and nutty and smoky. As I said earlier, this beer gives of a delicious slight-rauchbier vibe. I really, really like it, and I highly recommend it!

Photo of jaimenavarrog
3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

E fina, persistente, encaje
C cafe negro
A tostado, levadura
S levadura, cuerpo ligero, equilibrada
BH

Photo of nebill
4.75/5  rDev +24%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Very good full flavor, just short of a stout.

Photo of WckdVbz
2.36/5  rDev -38.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

Not much going on here at all.

Photo of Jasonm2
3.64/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A good beer reminiscent of the olden dark-ale days, 1554 will make any night into a classic. Not too strong in terms of ABV, you could drink 1554 through a night, guilt-free. This Belgian style dark ale provides a classic European taste with fine malt and a toned-down presence of hops. Creamy, smooth, and more dulled than its hoppy neighbours, 1554 is the social drinker's answer to one well planned night. Bringing in the expert craft of New Belgian brewers, this beer offers a night full of relaxation and comfort with its earthier tones and inviting warmth, and is well worth the adventure.

Photo of Csikic93
4.43/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark and smooth. Chocolate and coffee on the nose as well as the palate. Always have this one stocked.

Photo of h8r
3.64/5  rDev -5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Nice look and smell. very thin in the mouth. good with a burger

Photo of JoeH51
4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This is my everyday go to that won't break the bank. Smooth going down and lots of flavor. Not overpowering

Photo of onedogtwodog
3/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Ok dark ale had it in in can then poured ino glass durin super Bowl...

Photo of SirBrandonofMaltANDHops
3.72/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Very nice dark ale with some chocolate.

Photo of jarheadduk
2.5/5  rDev -34.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Working off old notes. Will update with more details if/when I have another.

Photo of Phocion
3.92/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's probably been eight years since I've had this beer, but here goes. 12 oz. can with an EB date of 22 Feb, 2015 left over from a Folly Pack my girlfriend's dad brought over a couple weeks ago. Because this review would be useless without a back-story of how it came into my possession, naturally. Poured into a footed pilsner glass an estremely dark mahogony color with a rocky beige head of about two fingers. Big, sticky lacing. and moderate retention.

Aroma is very porterish. Big, roasty malts with bitter chocolate and coffee. A little bit of toffee and lightly spicy phenols. Nutty and a bit earthy/herbal. Much more complex than I remember in my ~2007 palate.

Flavor follows the nose. A little more dark fruit and a little less bitterness. Roasted chocolate and caramel. Slightly spicy with a dry, herbal finish. Fairly well balanced and no astringency.

Medium bodied and moderate carbonation. Clean, dry mouthfeel.

Overall this is much better than I remember from years ago. Quite complex if not mind-blowing. Interesting hybrid style. Hopefully I won't go as long before drinking my next one.

Photo of DanielMB
4.86/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I think this is an underrated beer. It has an incredibly dessert-like flavor. Delicious.

Photo of infinitebruner
3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

December 18, 2014

Draft, pint glass

A – Deep brown with some garnet highlights. Clear. A small amount of tan head that mostly dissipated before the glass arrived to the table.

S – Milk chocolate and light caramel. Some mild noble hop aroma. Roasted but not bitter malt.

T – Chocolate with mild toffee notes. Slightly bitter malt, mostly roasted and chocolatey-sweet.

M – Moderately carbonated, tends to stay on the sweet side, with just a touch of bitterness.

O – A very smooth, easy drinker, with some noticeable flavor characteristics. I’m not in love, but I would drink it again.

Photo of barczar
3.76/5  rDev -1.8%

Roast malt, dark chocolate, and a hint of Belgian yeast esters in aroma. Flavor reveals a weak Belgian yeast character of pear, muted roast notes, and a base of dark chocolate. Very drinkable, approachable beer with varied character.

Photo of gbarbee
4.5/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

For the longest time this was one of favorite dark, Belgian style beers.

Appearance: Dark brown
Smell: A hint of chocolate and toasted bread
Taste: A good quality dark bread
Mouthfeel: Smooth
Drinkability: Very enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of Redneckwine
4.07/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into tulip

Appearance - Black and opaque upon pour, but halway through the glass the edges hitting the light show hues of deep, dark mahogany brown, 1 finger tan head becomes a whispy cap and leaves a bit of lacing.

Smell - Crisp and clean grainy malts are a bit roasty but mostly earthy, hint of dark fruits and spice, whiff of sulfur...subtle but nice overall

Taste - Clean, earthy, rich, slightly roasty malts are prevalent and a little grainy sweetness tags along, notes of cocoa, toffee, and dark fruits mixed with a touch of random spice, whiff of sulfur and alcohol lends a very nice zing of peppery flavor, finishes quite dry with a drying tannic quality, minimal bitterness

Feel - Really creamy, smooth, and crisp medium body, carbonation is gentle but scrubbing enough to get the job done. Goes down extremely easily.

Overall - Is it an ale? Is it a lager? (warm fermented with lager yeast) Who cares... it's a really tasty, really drinkable dark beer. The flavor is subtle and approachable enough to not scare away rookie beer drinkers, yet ample enough to satisfy seasoned craft enthusiasts - no small feat! I can't find a whole lot wrong with this beer; it's really easy to knock a few back.

Photo of dcscientist
4.5/5  rDev +17.5%

This is probably my favorite New Belgium beer. It's a very unusual style for an American craft brew, and you should make sure to try it. Goes great in the wintertime, but is available year-round. Dark, but not bitter. Flavorful, but not high alcohol. You probably haven't had anything like it in these parts.

Photo of Brenden
4/5  rDev +4.4%

This beer looks more than anything like a Schwarzbier, completely black but with a body that isn't heavy or viscous. It grows a cream-colored head to about a finger with good retention and lacing.
This beer shows a lot of Schwarz-like qualities: the cocoa and nut, roast and dry coffee grounds, along with a dryness and very little bitterness. It does have just a bit of dark fruits behind it, and it goes sweeter in the middle with a little bit of peppery spiciness. Caramel and toffee notes come into the creamy middle before a little wood dries it a little.
The body is medium, and it's boldly but not heavily crisp while remaining extremely creamy with a semi-dry feel from start to finish.

Photo of BigRedDog
3.65/5  rDev -4.7%

Pours a black color with a slightly off white/light mocha head.

Smell is dominate of roasted malt. Slight chocolate. Not too much else. Maybe some slight spice.

Taste is big on roasted malt. Slight chocolate malt flavor that hits mid-palate. Finishes nice and clean.

Mouthfeel is light.

Photo of kkleu357
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%

From notes on 11/23/13

Dark reddish brown pour. Nice malty smell. Has a very light crispy roasted malt taste, but still has a lot of flavor. Can also taste some caramel and plum.

Photo of ANiklaus
4.57/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Poured from a bottle into a glass. 1554 is one of the better offerings from New Belgium. The appearance is incredibly dark upon pour. The smell is the worst part of this beer with a weak wheat and caramel smell. The taste and the mouthfeel are incredible though with a very smooth finish. Highly recommend, especially in the winter.

Photo of barnzy78
3.66/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle, new label and beer name "1554 Black Lager", but apparently it's the same recipe. Enjoy by 12OCT14
L - tall, frothy, beige head caps a mahogany colored body
S - dark malts, chocolate, caramel, yeast
T - roasted barley, chocolate, caramel, kind of cola-like, slight spice to the yeast, incredible balance
F - medium body, creamy, smooth, finishes clean with some ashy chocolatey roast lingering a bit
O - every time I come back to this I find it to be good, but not great. I do buy it every once in awhile as it's both fairly sessionable and enjoyable.

Photo of KRISHNABIKK
2.39/5  rDev -37.6%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

si es muey buen delirium nos sundro des elephante ma non es los ablo marino e les diamondes con da playa enime soy. e aiuto me alla frigorifero aiuto aiuto. donde a la lampadre non es desidero piutoo e amoreee se non con la sole e caliente bueno. eee -krishna

thnak you for viewing xoxoxo

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1554 Enlightened Black Ale from New Belgium Brewing
86 out of 100 based on 3,140 ratings.