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Samichlaus Classic Bier - Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg

Not Rated.
Samichlaus Classic BierSamichlaus Classic Bier

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1,772 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,772
Reviews: 1,034
rAvg: 4
pDev: 16.75%
Wants: 137
Gots: 278 | FT: 16
Brewed by:
Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg visit their website

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  14.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: UncleJimbo on 02-25-2001

The once strongest beer in the world is back! Brewed only once a year on December 6. Samichlaus is aged for 10 months before bottling. This beer is perhaps the rarest in the world. Samichlaus may be aged for many years to come. Older vintages become more complex with a creamy warming finish. Serve with hardy robust dishes and desserts, particulary with chocolates, or as an after dinner drink by itself. Brewed under the exclusive licence of Feldschlösschen-Hürlimann-Holding, Switzerland.
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Ratings: 1,772 | Reviews: 1,034 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
4.47/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2000 Edition

Appearance - pours a red hazy amber, very little in the way of head formation. A brief covering of bubbles forms after the pour is finished and is but a wispy ring of bubbles a minute later.

Aroma - the whiff is a heady mix of sweetness, chocolate, and alcohol, a side of soy sauce. This is a potent brew, that much is easy to report.

Taste - sweet, like brown sugar, cocoa and dark fruit make a bold statement. Seriously warm but time has mellowed this considerably, making the flavors soft and intense at the same time. A long finish, ends with a powerful hit of Kahlua-like dark chocolate.

Mouthfeel - heavy, velvety and smooth, mildly carbonated, fantastic.

Drinkability - a delicious dessert beer, aged 5 years is just about perfect I'd say.

Photo of nlmartin
4.23/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer was served in a beer stein. This beer was the 2003 version.

Appearance: The beer has a clear coppery to cola coloration. The head was about an inch thick white in coloration.

Smell: The beer was a sea of supper strong malty fruity cherries dipped in whiskey spicy alcohol.

Taste: The beer is definately high nitro goodness. The beer is supper malty with a whiskey type alcohol spicyness. The sweetness is almost to much but the boisterous spicy alcohol and hops bring the beer in check.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: This beer is a very high nitro alcohol beer. The beer is full bodied. The beer is a sipping beer owing to high nitro alcohol and thick sweetness. This beer would be good for sharing with others.

Photo of nflmvp
4.35/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Listed as a Dopplebock but the bottle says Malt Liquor. Malt liquor seems closer to reality. This isn't like any other Doppelbock I've tried.

2005 Vintage, enjoyed on 3/17/06 out of a flute (sorry, wasn't in the mood for Guiness this St. Patty's Day).

Poured a dark golden amber with a hint of ruby. A wispy head of less than a 1/4 inch was gone in seconds, followed by a few tiny bubbles, that continued to rise until the glass was empty, reminiscent of champagne.

Smell was sweet, followed by alcohol. Taste was similar but not too sweet. Alcohol was evident but not overbearing. Mouthfeel was thick but pleasurable. Overall, very drinkable but certainly a better desert beer than a session beer.

Very warming. It would be the kind of beer to sit around the fire after a day of skiing but I'll enjoy it again, just sitting around a campfire.

Photo of jongillin
4.08/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2002 bottle served in 2006
Serving: from bottle to whine glass. This being my attempt to really lock in the aroma.

The appearance is really smooth. It pours well but has virtually no head. The Samchilaus gives off a nice deep red/brown color and is not at all cloudy or murky.

The smell is initially a bit over powering at first with alcohol smell. This due to the high malt content. However, if you let it breath a bit you can definitely catch more of a balanced aroma. I think it best to treat this much like a red whine in that sense. There are hints of chocolate as well a sort of earthy aroma.

Taste: I had this with a piece of German chocolate cake called Doboch. It helps in a lot of ways to take off the alcoholic edge and really bring out some of the very robust flavors of the beer. It also enhances the chocolate. It is very well balanced on the whole and lends nicely to sipping. Don't chug this beer you'll miss it ( also given the price of the beer starting around $4-5 per bottle).

Mouthfeel: I've seen some people say syrupy. I'm not sure I entirely agree with this. It is a bit thicker than a normal beer, but also is still carbonated and not like a liquor. Not chuncky as one might think but really rather smooth.

Always great to let this one age a bit if you can.

Photo of scruffwhor
4.02/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured an 11.2oz bottle into a wine glass. Bottled in 2004.

Appearance- Pours a deep amber, reminds me of old fashioned apple juice. Only a quickly vanishing ring of foam should up. To my surprise, there was some lacing. Nit like a tripel, but it was there stollidly climbing skyward to freedom.

Smell- The alchol smell was not overpowering, just a nice mix with all the other sweet aromas. Alcohols warmth mixed with toasty malts, apricots, candied apples, carrots and brown sugar, and raisins.

Taste- Starts out as some sweet fruits covered in a brown sugar sauce. The sweet fruits is nicely met with a warming alcohol and some carbonation tickle the flavors on down.

Mouthfeel- a semi-syrupy yet over warming and sweet palate that makes a good driven balance down the throat.

Photo of Lnedrive14
3.03/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

I let a lot of my non-beer snob friends try some of this and the responses were hysterical:

"Cough syrup!"

"Alcoholic apple cider!"

"Carbonated fruity weirdness."

"That is not beer."

In any case, I guess it is beer. Doesn't look, taste, smell, or act like a dopplebock, however. Pours a strong gold with powerful carbonation going nuts throughout the glass. THe beer really is a bit too sweet - it could use a stronger malt presence to balance it out. An interesting experience, but not one that I would want to have every day.

Photo of Jredner
2.46/5  rDev -38.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

2002 Bottling. Strong malt notes with a big alcohol smell and a touch of sweetness. Amber colored. Headless. I even busted out some chocolate cake for this. Isn’t helping the flavor any. I had the old version in high school and while it was long ago it was an important moment in my life and I remember it being more rich and darker. Still some interesting flavors here: fruits (apple, pear), nuts and of course alcohol. Kinda a sugary liquor when you get down to it. Nowadays there are many beers with this level of alcohol that handle it a LOT better.

Photo of snilsen13
4.32/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2003 bottle, 2006 drinking. Poured into a goblet. OOOH AH! This is an outstanding drink . Don't let the size and tag fool you, it's worth the money of a conventional 6 pack, that is, if youlike the following:

Looks dark, nutbrown, teh reputation gets in my head and I'm sucked into saying this is good enough of a look to merit a smelling... rich, thick malty smell with a hint of spice. Taste like a super strong Belgian (mimics smell, huge warming feeling, lacks bitterness), only the mouthfeel is more like port. Fairly drinkable, between a port-like beer (Sam Adams Utopia) and a strong Belgian, you'll finish the bottle, no sweat.

Photo of acrawf6
4.09/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Pours out a nice reddish copper. Few bubbles like pouring a coke, but no head. not a single bubble on top. Color is on the lighter side for doppelbocks.

Smell. The 14% is very present; dominates the aroma. Under that is sweet and spiced cherries and apples. alcohol gives an extra spice, and also warms my nose as i sniff the glass.

Taste. more alcohol presence (i know, captain obvious here). Aged cherry in alcohol is what i first get, along with some apple skin flavors. peppery. Quite sweet. aftertaste is an alcohol warming affect with more sweetness and a straw-like malty aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is pretty full. This beer is doing a number on my tongue, like sprinkling pepper on it (or alcohol). well balanced.

Overall not for the faint of heart. This one used to scare the bajesus, but now i can handle it with quite an enjoyment. Not my favorite of the style, but still a great and appreciated beer.

Photo of bashiba
3.6/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a very nice crystal mahogonay color with a creamy tan head.

Smell has a strong sweet malt smell with hints of cedar and alcohol.

Taste is a very malty, strong flavors of raisons, dates, brown sugar, and some hints of woodyness mixing in with the strong alcohol taste.

Mouthfeel is thick, oily, and very warm. Almost syrupy.

Drinkability isn't bad, but cleary affected by the huge ABV.

Photo of Vipsanius
4.32/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The color is a fairly transparent amber. Poured straight, and fairly vigoursly, into a chalice, which produced very little head and absolutely no lacing...although, it did tend to stick to the glass a bit like you'd expect in a high abv beer.

The smell had a strong malt profile, very sweet dark sugary like smell, banana bread, raisins, plums...fairly similar to many dark belgian ales, which is pretty surprising in a lager.

The taste was fairly malty, had a very pleasant alcohol presence, caramel, dark cherries, plums...is this aged the 10 months in oak barrels? ...because it sure tastes like it.

It lets you know it's a 14% beer...definitely not one of those beers that's going to blind side you. Syrupy and slightly warm going down...not a whole lot of carbonation, which you'd expect.

Overall, I'm pretty impressed. It's unlike any lager I've ever had before. The bottle says malt liquor and honestly it kind of reminds me of a bourbon or scotch...and I'd much prefer this over any of those. It's up in the air whether I'd order anymore of these online or not but it's definitely a beer I would buy again given a better opportunity to do so.

Photo of ashleyshalyn
3.1/5  rDev -22.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served out of a 330 ml glass bottle into a pint glass.

A: Deep rusted honey/maple color with slight visible carbonation. Quickly vanishing head.

S: Sweet smell of grain and brandy... the 14% alcohol is evident.

M: Syrupy and smooth. Very creamy. The finish is very long due to this consistency.

T: Reminds me of toffee in the beginning and fades to a maple like taste with a bit of spice from the hops leading in a peppery finish that lingers and lingers.

Way way way too sweat for my taste, but I rather enjoyed drinking it simply for what it is. Brewed only one day a year, December 6, with a secondary fermentation of 10 months+, this beer is something that should be respected and appreciated for what it is.

Photo of Tupperwolf
4.09/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep, rich golden red into my tulip - don't expect to get any head out of this one, the alcohol content is too prohibitive for that. i forced a small tan head which dissappeared in the time it took me to walk to my chair and sit down. The color of the beer is rich, like mahogany, with amber highlights as the light strikes its corners.

Smells very bready, like rye bread or oatmeal, followed up with swirling antifreeze fumes of alcohol.

The taste, on the other hand, is not bready at all, but takes a sweet and fruity turn instead; My first impression was that this tastes like the juice canned peaches come packed in, only fermented and aged for 10 months before bottling. That's a bit unfair; This is definitely a syrupy, syrupy beer, but there's actually more to it than that sickly-sweet-syrup peaches flavor. It's got some subdued spicy flavors that round it out, and the alcohol content packs a big tart punch on the back of the tongue. The alcohol reminds me very strongly of peach schnapps, or Southern Comfort. The first few sips are kind of frightening, because it takes a little while for your tongue to get used to the combination of syrupy sweetness followed by harsh alcohol - but once your taste buds settle down, the flavor actually becomes rather enjoyable. I understand the reason this particular beer has rated so high for some, and so extremely poorly for others. Individual people are going to like this or absolutely hate it.

Zero carbonation, but this beer is rich and packed with alcohol, and the mouthfeel is zippy enough because of it (mm, tingly.) I'd venture to call it chewy, actually, and upon swallowing only a very small bit of lingering slick sweetness hangs around, which helps.

Overall, I'm definitely glad I tried this; I had heard that it is extremely rare, but I stumbled across around 20 bottles on the lower shelf of BevMo in San Diego, hiding behind a few stacked cases of Wersteiner. If you think your palate is capable, give this a try.

Photo of EvilKeith
3.92/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Samichlaus- 2004 11.2 ounce brown bottle.

This one pours a clear, burnt orange to amber color with a tall tan head that rapidly disappears.
While the head was still releasing the aroma my first thought was bourbon. I figured I was in trouble.

As the beer warms the scent becomes sweeter, almost toffee-like with darker toasted notes and the unrelenting presence of alcohol.
The taste is suprisingly similar to the smell. Sweet and sugary toffee fruit flavors with alcohol, that warms as it goes down.

I found this to have a medium to medium-heavy body. The amount of carbonation seems perfect for the flavor and mouthfeel.

This is a brew that I thoroughly enjoyed but, with a 14% ABV I figured caution would be in order. Would be really great as a nightcap.

Photo of whynot44
3.99/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Chestnut brown with a hint of off-white head that vanishes with hardly a trace.

The aroma is sweet malt, caramel, apple or plum, rum and a hint of alcohol.

The taste follows suit, big malt sweetness up front, caramel apples, more rum. There is only the merest hint of hops bite at the finish to soften all that sweetness but the alcohol warmth kicks in and you don't really care.

I couldn't drink much of this, but then, you don't have to! A really nice warmer for a cold winner day. (a beer for snow shovelers?) Actually this would be great after dinner either with desert or just to sip.

Photo of arguemaniac
4.17/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark but crystal-clear amber color with some copperish hues. The brief head is followed by a very slight lace, and even that doesn’t last too long. The sweet aroma features strong notes of fruit (raisins) and spicy alcohol. The powerful taste of this brew includes somewhat sugary raisins, light rum and sweet caramel. Of course, there is a fairly sharp alcohol bite, but because of the strong maltiness, it’s more subdued than one might suspect given the 14% ABV on the label. The syrupy mouthfeel is just about as full-bodied as it gets with some pretty mild carbonation.

Definitely a classic though not a typical dopplebock, more like an example of just how strong that style can get. Nevertheless, a real treat and, while far from a session beer, something every serious craft beer lover should try. Highly recommended.

Photo of sublimesipping
3.7/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

So I walk into the corner bar-Ludwigs in Philly in this case, to get the score of the Steelers game and low and behold they have this beer on tap! Pretty cool I say as this one has alluded my taste buds. Served in a goblet. Very little foam on the pour(I am later informed that I got nearly the last draw...) smells intensely of sweet- Raisenettes- yes raisenettes to the max- Drinks like a cordial. A very brandied, honeyed, almost overpowering sweetness. Not what I expected.. this would be an excellent nightcapper and not a one-of afternoon draw, which is what I found myself doing today. Carmally notes and little hop prescence that I can detect.
A complex beer that falls just a bit short for my taste, but still an excellent and special product. Could not imagine myself having more than one in a sitting. Glad to have tried it and a nice way to cap the holiday season. Cheers!

Photo of Billolick
4.3/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyable to try this classic on tap at Ludwig's Garden in Philly. Pours dark honey almond, and cloudy with a minor light tan head and fine but minimal lacing. Nose of some smoke and also a wiff of cognac/brandy. Strong, tasty and vinious brew. notes of molasas, roasted woody malts, peat, brandy, cloves and cinnamon. World class nightcapper/sipper.

Photo of masikon
4.47/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Brouwer's cafe in Seattle. Main differences I noted between the draft version and the bottle I reviewed earlier is that the mouthfeel is improved out of the tap...some of the overly syrupy texture gives way to a tiny bit of carbonation that makes this a bit more drinkable.

Photo of Byeast
3.97/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

My bottle of Samichlaus Bier was from 2004. It poured a copper color with a half inch , quickly disipating head. The aroma is definitely unique . Smells of sweet sherry and candy ,fruits, also alcohol. Very different. Very sweet , syrupy ,fruity, malty taste as well as strong alcohol burn in the throat and nostrils. Mouthfeel is of light syrup. This is one rare tasting brew. Totally unique.
Just stood up after drinking this one... Woah , you can feel the 14% ABV and im pretty sure i felt the alcohol move around in my stomach. lol.

Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.57/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a root beer brown with cherry highlights with whips of white head.

The smell is dominated by dark fruits with bits of malty banana and a smooth nip of alcohol.

The flavor begins with cane sugar and green grape sweetness, then creamy dark fruits, followed by sour and bitter coffee and dark chocolate, concluding with a splash of warming alcohol that makes my tongue tingle. This is sticky sweet, but not offensively so as the finish does release a bit of the sweetness.

The mouth feel is huge in body with a nice light carbonation.

While drinking this, my friend and I coined the phrase “self regulating sipper.” There is just no way that this beer can be taken quickly. This is an awesome beer, but I don’t think I could ever have more than one.

Photo of delicious
4.07/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottled in 2004.

Poured straight down into the snifter, and still no head can be roused. The body is brandy colored with a warm camp fire glow.
The nose is warm and sweet.
Very warm in the mouth, and an exhale through the nose ignites a certain effervescence in the nostrils. Behind the hot alcohol and sweet, thick malt, lies a slightly citrus orange.
There's a bit of a nip from the alcohol, but it's welcome at the very end of the day. As the bottle claims, it is quite an extraordinary beer.

Photo of Derek
2.87/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Bottled in 2004.

By definition, the dopplebock only goes to 9%, and this is nothing like other Dopplebocks. Closer to an Eisbock... but obviously brewed differently. More of a high-end malt liqour! Also, it's Austrian... the Germans haven't occupied them for quite some time.

I think this should definitely be a "Euro Strong Lager".
Difficult to compare within style.

A: Copper in colour, very clear. Poors with a little head, but it quickly dissipates, without leaving any lace.

S: Malty, sherry-like, sweet candy. Unlike anything else.

T: Alcohol is quite assertive. Some sweet, caramel-like flavour. It's like candy (like artificial, strawberry cotton-candy), with LOTS of alcohol. Truly unique, but it'd be a little more pleasurable if it was a little less harsh.

<Ralph Wiggum Voice> It tastes like burning! </Ralph Wiggum Voice>

M: Moderate body, light carbonation, dry finish.

D: Approachable, but its strength is inhibitive.

Photo of BamaScholar
2.29/5  rDev -42.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

this beer is the 6 december 2004 bottling.

i'm not sure i see how this beer is true to the style if general ABV is 6.5 to 9.0...it was a gorgeous pour but smell and taste are sickengly sweet, alcoholic burn, and candy fumes. one taste is one-dimensionally interesting...not balanced or full-bodied, you just want to swallow it as quickly as possible.

it was worth trying this bad boy to get an idea for it but i like a beer to exhibit some complexity or interesting notes...the world's strangest beer is tough to get down...maybe longer aging makes for a more well-rounded experience? not recommended...

Photo of shbobdb
4.31/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Wow, this beer pours a thick amber and, suprisingly, with a pretty thick head! The tiny bubbles swirl in the bottom of my glass, desperately trying to navigate through the thick malt.
I can relate. Wow, where to begin describing the smell and taste of this beer . . . It is similar to Korbinian in many ways, except for that the strong alcohol punch at the end. . . but, there is so much more. Like the bubbles, my nose and tongue twist about this beer, swishing it in my mouth in a vain attempt to understand it. Perhaps since it is merely the 2004 brew it is too young to be classified, the flavours have not matured enough to really come into their own so, instead, they gang up together and pummel your tastebuds.
Good stuff. Wow.
Not a simple beer by any means, but this guy still gets my thumbs up. Wow.
Toffee and coffee? Yeah, they're there. Figs? I can't even describe it, words don't do it justice . . .

Samichlaus Classic Bier from Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg
90 out of 100 based on 1,772 ratings.