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Samael's Ale - Avery Brewing Company

Samael's AleSamael's Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

983 Ratings
THE BROS
78
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 983
Reviews: 568
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 14.95%


Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  16.90% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
A super-caramelly, oak-aged strong English-style ale, brewed with Columbus, Fuggels hops and two-row barley, caramel 150L malt.

2007: 14.50% (Batch #3)
2008: 15.53% (Batch #4)
2009: 16.45% (Batch #5)
2010: 15.82% (Batch #6)
2011: 15.31% (Batch #7)
2012: 15.47% (Batch #8)
2013: 16.90% (Batch #9)

(Beer added by: ommegangpbr on 06-24-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 983 | Reviews: 568 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of rudzud
rudzud

Massachusetts

3.96/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 batch 4, thanks to someone for sharing.

A - Poured into a tulip cloudy copper hue with a thin had that fades quickly.

S - Aromas of caramel, toffee, alcohol, malts, faint cardboard.

T - Taste is light almost quiet malt heavy, very sweet and caramel. nicer toffee.

M - Mouthfeel is lightly carbonated, not syrupy.

O - Overall this beer was pretty good considering that age. Very glad to try!

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2014 02:51:37 | More by rudzud
Photo of pkalix
pkalix

California

3.91/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

wow. what a smell! pours a sediment-y golden honey with no head.
smell is like a wine-y banana bread, lighter and sweeter fruits, lots of malt, toffee and alcohol. other aromas in there too, with an almost synthetic flair on top.
taste is sweet with the expected alcohol burn. no bitterness, except for the alcohol, and a bit syrup-y. reading lots of different adjectives from everyone here and applying them to my experience. seems, though, the higher ratings are for bottles which have aged awhile. this one was produced only 9 months ago. I was wondering if it would mellow a bit sitting in the bottle for awhile?? otherwise, this is how I felt about it: appearance was standard without head but a pretty golden color. the aroma was fantastic but difficult to describe. the taste was not as fantastic, and was also difficult to describe aside from the alcohol. in a nutshell, this is a blast of alcohol and considering the taste of this young version, better to blast ya into buzzdom than to appreciate as a refined source of leisure. it definitely beats 4loco and I don't think there is a hangover associated with it like the 4loco...

Serving type: bottle

02-10-2014 00:10:59 | More by pkalix
Photo of superspak
superspak

Michigan

4.28/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle into tulip glass; batch 1, bottled in 2005. Pours moderately hazy/cloudy dark ruby red color with a minimal wisp of a head that reduces to nothing. Aromas of big raisin, prune, fig, plum, apple, pear, molasses, toffee, caramel, toast, brown bread, oak, light chocolate, vanilla, light clove, and yeast earthiness. Damn nice aromas with big complexity and great balance of malt, oak, and yeast ester notes; with big strength. Taste of huge raisin, fig, plum, prune, apple, pear, molasses, brown sugar, brown bread, caramel, toffee, vanilla, oak, light clove, toast, chocolate, herbal, and yeast earthiness. Lingering notes of raisin, prune, plum, fig, pear, apple, molasses, brown sugar, brown bread, caramel, toffee, chocolate, toast, oak, vanilla, and yeast earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity and balance of big dense malt, fruity yeast, and oak flavors; with zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Light carbonation and very full bodied; with a very creamy, slick, and moderately syrupy mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with only a slight warming present after the finish. Overall this is an awesome English barleywine. Big complexity and great balance of malt, yeast ester, and oak flavors; and quite smooth sip on slowly with no booziness. A highly enjoyable offering.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2014 22:48:36 | More by superspak
Photo of ricknelson
ricknelson

Vermont

4.5/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Our group of 4 Beer Advocate members did a recent small bottle tasting of high alcohol brews.
Among the 12 brews tasted was; 120 Minute IPA from Dogfish Head. The 120 Minute IPA received
our 3rd highest average score of the 12 brews tasted at 4.38. At 16.5% its was a very smooth beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2014 17:14:15 | More by ricknelson
Photo of charlzm
charlzm

California

4.05/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Consumed January 25th, 2014 from a 2012 bottle.

Beer pours a very deep and very clear amber with minimal carbonation. Tiny crown encircles glass and leaves no sheeting or lace.

Aroma is boozy and strong: sherry, cherry, wood and very, very sweet.

Flavor is intense; same as nose but so, so strong and alcoholic.

Mouthfeel is slightly thick and prickly, despite the lack of carbonation. Did I mention it's warming? No? That's because it's not warming; it's HOT! The ABV is right in your face.

Similar to drinking a very nice bourbon in many ways, this beer pushes the envelope of drinkability. A small bottle like this is appropriate and even then may be too much for some.

___

May 2006, batch 2, consumed 11/7/07.

Pours a deep amber with very little carbonation. No head in trappist glass, just thin ring of white bubbles clinging to the sides for dear life.

Nose is massive, with oak and sherry aromas with a hint of spice (cinnamon?) and sweet candy.

Oddly, most of the flavor doesn't hit until the beer slides down the tongue, no matter how long it is held in the mouth. The powerful body is primarily sweet (cane sugar) with warming alcohol and smoothly bitter wood aftertatse. Ghostly flavor of white grapes lingers on the palate as well.

Good lord, this is a big beer.

APP - 3
SM - 4.5
T - 4
MF - 4
OVERALL - 4.5

4.15 SCORE

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2014 04:50:55 | More by charlzm
Photo of Florida9
Florida9

Illinois

3.55/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch 6 (2010)

A: Dark grayish-brown in color. Dark, but still somewhat translucent. Forms a minimal light tan colored head, but it goes as quickly as it comes. No lacing. Appears flat.

S: Aroma is interesting. Lightly sweet, caramel malts, tobacco, vanilla, and oak.

T: Taste is very sweet. Too sweet. Lots of sweet caramel and toffee, followed by a strong vanilla component that just adds to the sweetness. Oak, earth and an aggressive alcohol note finishes the beer.

M: Full bodied. Lower carbonation. Aggressively alcoholic. More tannic than bitter.

O: A decent brew. Nothing too exciting and not something I'd be willing to purchase again.

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2014 01:42:24 | More by Florida9
Photo of argock
argock

Virginia

3.71/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a clear glass snifter. Bottled April 2007 (Batch #3) on label. Purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Not too appealing with dishwater brown hue and millions of floaties and no head.

S: Delicious sweet brown sugar, maple, and vanilla aroma with some tobacco and oak barrel notes. Good but not really far above many other barrel aged beers in any way, and behind many.

T: Flavor is very English and oaky with a lot of maple syrup and vanilla notes, dark caramel malt flavors like raisin and burnt sugar, with tobacco and earthy hops notes. A nice beer but it misses something, and maybe I should have drunk this sooner.

M: Very smooth and silky overall. Low carbonation and full-bodied for sure.

O: A nice beer but not really worth the price tag. I would actually rather try a fresher version near bottling to see if there is more zip -- this one seems on the way down and a little dead.

Serving type: bottle

01-11-2014 04:56:43 | More by argock
Photo of minterro
minterro

Colorado

4.25/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A quick rating from a shared a 12oz with my buddy Brendan (I was feeling a little light headed after 6oz, so I would highly recommend splitting), poured into two snifters. Bought from Colorado Liquor Mart a few months ago. I believe it was from the May 2012 release, making it about 7/8 months aged.

A&S: I was surprised by the head on this beer considering the extremely high ABV. Murky dark orange colored beer. Initially oak was a major component of the aroma. Some other aromas as it develops are cherries, sugar candies, and maple syrup.

T&M: apple cider, dark rum alcohol tones (that aren't as strong as you would expect, very warming throughout your body), marshmallows like an old ale. Not much bitterness. Not very heavy on the palate in the finish. Heavy body and on the lower side of carbonation.

Overall: I was impressed and surprised to find that it was pretty low rated. It could be due to people not sitting on it for a little while causing it to be too hot. I think it could have benefited from another few months of aging. Hopefully there are some left somewhere from the May release because I would like to grab another, so I don't have to wait another 5 months and lose out on that aging time. Very unique. Brendan liked it more than me and would put it in his top 5, I would say its worth a try and would buy again, but not often due to the price.

Serving type: bottle

01-10-2014 20:10:16 | More by minterro
Photo of BeerDawgs
BeerDawgs

Georgia

4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A 12oz bottle dated April 2008, so aged almost 6 years.

A - Thick brown, cloudy, with no clarity. A touch of head and lace, but looks murky and thick!

S - Oak and booze!

T - Sweeter than sugar and boozy. Malty. Wow, sugar just keeps on keeping on in the aftertaste. Lots of oak, a touch of bourbon, and booze.

M - Thick and oily.

O - A good brew, but really too strong. A 12oz bottle ought to be split and slowly sipped.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2013 04:27:31 | More by BeerDawgs
Photo of Wompus
Wompus

New York

2.9/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Bottled on May 2006

This is pretty disgusting. Don't drink one that's 6 and a half years old. Smells like sugar-cane husks, salt, and soy sauce. Tastes kinda medicinal and annoyingly sweet. Don't do it. Please. Just don't. Stop. Now. Don't. Please. Please. Please. Please. Please. Please. Please. Please. Please. Don't.

Serving type: bottle

12-21-2013 23:11:10 | More by Wompus
Photo of DrinkNewport
DrinkNewport

Rhode Island

4.06/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is from Batch 5, bottled in April 2009.

The pour reveals a brown and cloudy beverage with a moderate off-white head.

Unsurprisingly, this barrel-aged beer has a strong aroma...and that aroma is of bourbon. That's it. A whole ton of booze to the nostrils.

WOW! That feeling when you take a sip is...this is an intense beer. Like, "Why don't I invite 4 close friends by to split this 12 oz bottle" intense. I'm getting the sense that it's a beer that changes with every sip. There's a lot of heat from the alcohol.

Overall, this is the type of beer that pushes the envelope. It will probably take you out of your comfort zone. It's a quality experience, but know what you're getting yourself into.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2013 01:53:28 | More by DrinkNewport
Photo of Bitterbill
Bitterbill

Wyoming

3.79/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

$9.99 for the 12 oz bottle bought at Star Liquor in Sheridan WY. May 2013 batch 9, 632 cases? Cool addition t the info on the label.

A deep golden brew with almost a one finger head of foam, nice lacing, I do see some floaties.

Caramel malt heavily soaked in booze is what I get from the smell. I'm almost getting tipsy from just taking some whiffs.

Beautiful flavour of caramel malt, one of the best I've had, and when the big woody notes move in, surprisingly to me, I think it enhances the flavour. Yes indeed..it is hot as heck, hotter than even the abv implies, but slow sips pay off, like what I experience with Sam Adams Utopias.

On the high end of medium bodied, low level of carbonation, this is going to take me some time to finish but when I do, I'll be satisfied, I'm sure. Nice.

Serving type: bottle

12-01-2013 15:06:44 | More by Bitterbill
Photo of Jjski
Jjski

New York

4.59/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

fresh, vintage 2013

a-copper, transparent, short fizzy head. beautiful, inviting

s- candied orange rind, grand marnier

t- carmel booze, grand marnier, booze and booze

m- syrupy

o- I'm as fan of huge beers. This bordering on a liqueur. It is not overly complex at the moment, but the potential for serious aging is there. Potent, one and you are done. Total sipper, bordering on leaving the realm of beer- sorta ice wine character. Very concentrated flavors. The ant-quaffable malt beverage.

in the category- as good as Olde School, I like Insanity a bit better due to the barrel flavor.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2013 00:46:34 | More by Jjski
Photo of JohnBender
JohnBender

Texas

4.16/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

$6.99 for 12 oz at Central Market in Austin. Batch 9. May, 2013 Release.

A- Dark ruby red. White head, dissipates quickly.

S- Booze and booze. A little Caramel. Oak. Booze. Booze.

T- More of the same. Complex. I am definitely a person who loves a boozy beer, so I absolutely love it. That said, if someone told me it was 10-12%, I would believe them.

M- Easily the best part. Damn near perfect. Coats the mouth, chewy and thick. Wonderful feel.

O- Really love it, though I understand how some would not.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2013 00:14:27 | More by JohnBender
Photo of JGlitz87
JGlitz87

Texas

3.5/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

2013 Batch

A: Deep amber/copper color with little to no head. The little head that is present stays strong and leaves good amount of lacing.

S: Heavy on the booze. If you did not know by looking at the bottle, the smell is your first warning this is not a beer to be taken lightly. Smells like a very sweet bourbon cocktail.

T: First wave is very smooth caramel. Shortly after than comes the strong wood and booze flavors.

F: Warms the body going down. Medium bodied and very smooth.

O: I like strong drinks, but this is a bit too heavy on the alcohol to enjoy a full bottle solo. I can imagine sharing this with a friend and enjoying it, but taking down a whole bottle at one sitting by oneself is a daunting task.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2013 05:20:04 | More by JGlitz87
Photo of CFHMagnet
CFHMagnet

Ohio

3.53/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

"Annual Release May 2013 Batch 9" appears on the label.

My pour yields a finger of yellowy head over a tawny copper body. The head dies in a minute to a good frothy ring, and I notice a lot of "floaties" in the beer. Lace tries, but cannot seem to cling to the side.

It smells very woody, and very much like booze. Digging deeper brings deep caramel and vanilla notes, along with a rich dark fruit.

The beer tastes like caramel up front. Dark fruit and something slightly citrusy blend with vanilla, more caramel and wood, until the alcohol jumps up at the end and smacks me in the mouth.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied but this is a serious sipper.

Serving type: bottle

09-19-2013 02:22:37 | More by CFHMagnet
Photo of shleepy
shleepy

California

3.99/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

This one is a bottle of Batch #9 (May 2013), with a hefty 16.9% ABV. Possibly the strongest beer I've had to date, and certainly the strongest one I had a chance to review.

A: Dark amber, edging on red. Small but resilient off-white head.

S: Caramel, bright ("green") herbal notes, mandarin oranges, and maybe a touch of vanilla.

T: Heavy caramel maltiness, but this is honestly a fairly pleasant maltiness. I've had plenty of weaker beers that have an intolerable maltiness when paired with similar herbal, bitter notes, but this beer is actually well-balanced, which is a surprise. The secondary sensation is the aforementioned herbal bitterness, but it's not too overwhelming. Some bitterness does linger on the tongue for a while. The aftertaste is almost an after-"feeling," with the warm alcohol burn in the back of the throat backing up a light cookie/malt flavor. And that's just after the first sip. Vanilla and honey notes also become evident in the long run.

M: Very, very heavy, not surprisingly. I could be wrong, but it seems to still have some residual sugar. Had some nice, fizzy carbonation at the beginning; but given that you'll probably be sipping on this one for a while (I know I have), it will die down.

O: I am very impressed by how they made a fairly tasty, interesting beer with so much alcohol. My favorite beers are lambics, which are almost always between 4% and 6%. I usually wouldn't buy a WINE over 14% ABV (and generally prefer wine that is roughly 12.5%), so this beer is very much out of my comfort zone. The hot alcohol is fairly well hidden, and the beer is complex and very sippable. Bravo.

Serving type: bottle

08-27-2013 04:21:41 | More by shleepy
Photo of Samp01
Samp01

New Jersey

3.73/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear reddish brown with a small quickly dissipating white head. Aroma of caramel malt, oak and vanilla esters, very fruity, brown sugar, mild sweet spices and sweet alcohol brandy like aroma. Taste same as aroma. Palate is a full body, sweet spices and alcohol. The finish is sweet caramel, vanilla, yeast and fruity flavors, some oak and vanilla tones, a bit of brown sugar. The ending is mildly spiced with some sweet alcohol. This brew seems to have some a bit of bourbon and brandy notes. A bit rough at the beginning but drinkable

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2013 17:27:45 | More by Samp01
Photo of TheBrewo
TheBrewo

Michigan

3.94/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

We crack a bottle labeled “April 2012, Batch No 8, 736 Cases”, and pour a brew of rich, tawny copper coloring. It holds a nicely reproducible one finger head of vanilla pudding colored bubbles, showing okay retention. This leaves spots clinging to the glass, and an aggregate over half the glass and around the edges of the liquid. A thick chill haze permeates the clarity, and large chunks of yeasty sediment are seen throughout, despite a slow pour. Carbonation appears to be moderate. The aroma starts with insane, cloying sweetness, even when cold from the fridge. As it warms, the malts are pulled more forward to match the outright syrupy sugars, taking form as toasty, bready caramels, with lighter brown malts off in the distance. Otherwise the nose fills with browned apple sweetness, thick and sweet brandy booziness, bright vanilla extract, soft oak, yeasty metallics, red cherry, milder buttery diacetyls, sweet banana esters, and black pepper spiciness. With temperatures approaching that of the room, a pseudo-smoky leathery quality came out, furthering the cause and balance against the dextrin sugars. Our first impression is that the flavoring, especially through the end, is quite hot and borders on unnatural, but remains interesting and extremely robust throughout. As we sip, the taste opens with cloying sugars, as in the nose, burning sting of booze across the tongue, stark black pepper, syrupy caramel malts, and strong phenolic plastics. Peaking is the sweetness max of the taste, with those dextrins, straight brown sugar, thickly toasted caramel malts, faint molasses, banana esters, and distant smokiness. The end comes with bite of pencil woodiness and graphite, iron, melted Army men, soft smoky char, red apple sweetness, warming Christmas spice, peppery booze, and only lighter balance at this point from those sugared caramels and cereal graininess. The aftertaste breathes of those aromatic leathers, plastics, gritty yeastiness, seriously drying oak, big moss, mineral, gravel, sweet booziness of amaretto, rice grain, metallic graphite, and tinny metallics. The body is full and thick, while carbonation is medium to high. There is wild tingle on the tongue and gooseflesh inducing pucker from the booze and the sweetness respectively. The mouth quickly burns to a definitive bone dryness, with the tongue left moving like sandpaper down the hard palate. Each sip gives nice slurp, sip, cream, froth, and finishing pop, and the lips are left a touch sticky. The abv is huge, but decently hidden, and the beer sips slowly, but nicely.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this brew was its taste. This is actually our first taste of the “Demon” series, and it certainly did not disappoint. Samael brought it hard to the palate with massive bready sweetness, nicely matched oakiness, and strong booziness through the end of the sip. While things may have not been the most balanced and concise, the more noticeable inclusions of leather, light smoke, and plastics were happily welcomed to the party, integrating pleasantly amongst the general strength and bigness of this beer. Things calm down quite a bit with warmth, through both the nose and the taste, helping to keep it much, much closer to style and approachable. This guy is monstrous, and considering the abv alone, you should definitely fight off the darkness with some friends, or you just might get swallowed up in it.

Serving type: bottle

05-08-2013 00:11:29 | More by TheBrewo
Photo of lowgear
lowgear

California

4.14/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

2005 vintage.

Opened without fanfare in the kitchen. No carbonation. Dark ruby red color.
Smell- lots of alcohol and fruitcake.
Taste-very sweet, prune, bourbon, very sazerac.
This one really warms your innards.
One more of this vintage in the cellar.

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2013 03:00:30 | More by lowgear
Photo of Alieniloquium
Alieniloquium

Florida

3.48/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into a snifter. Bottled March 2010, Batch 6, 15.82% alcohol.

Appearance - Reddish brown with a temporary khaki head. Big bubbles that burst and disappear as soon as the beer settles. The thinnest of collars remains. I pulled back the pour as soon as I saw the chunks coming. At 15.82% alcohol, I didn't really need that last ounce anyway.

Smell - Woo that's oaky. Really nice character to the oak. Lots of vanilla. Lots of brown sugar and booze. Simply, but I'm liking it.

Taste - The oak character translates very nicely into the flavor. The vanilla flavors are amplified. It takes center stage for a moment. Then it becomes a little more monotone. Slightly fruity, slightly bitter, caramel. Nothing terribly exciting here. Could use a bit of depth. Booze and oak take over in the finish.

Mouthfeel - Pretty damn boozy, but at least it isn't overly sweet. I might reassess the sweetness halfway through the glass, but for now, it's not overpowering.

Overall - The nose was quite appealing and some of those flavors held through, but this beer might just be too big for its own good.

Serving type: bottle

03-22-2013 01:23:30 | More by Alieniloquium
Photo of AdamHart22
AdamHart22

Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 12oz bottle into a tulip.

A - Dark as the devil's soul with hints of brown color when held up to the light. Head and lacing non-existent

S - Oil, molasses, wood. Great nose and my favorite part of the beer.

T - This needs to mellow... most likely for several years. Its just too much when its fresh out of the barrel - everything gets kind of muddy and actually tastes like I'd imagine oil would.

M - Heavy, sweet, and cloying. Like a barley wine mixed with... oil. Notice a theme here?

O - I'd pass on this unless you intent to cellar it for at least a year. I can tell there is potential for something epic but you need to give this guy some time to develop.

Serving type: bottle

03-20-2013 18:49:12 | More by AdamHart22
Photo of ummswimmin
ummswimmin

New Jersey

3.94/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is from the 2012 batch. I've had it in my cellar for almost a year.

I poured this into my snifter and the very strong nose slapped me in the face. The aroma on this one has a lot of rich fruit and oakiness. It smells like a cross between very strong old ale and the english barleywine. The 15.47% ABV comes as no surprise.

The flavor is over-whelming; even as a sipper. This should be poured in small amounts among multiple people. I would say that the strength and body almost work like a brandy/bourbon. I recommend this for a cold night among friends.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2013 01:28:43 | More by ummswimmin
Photo of duracell
duracell

Quebec (Canada)

3.78/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle. 15,31% ABV.
Batch #7, April 2011. Had it on 5 Feb 2012.

A - Small off-white head disappearing quickly to leave a thin topping. Dark burgundy color. Lots of yeast settling at the bottom.

S - Candy sugar, wooden character, boozy with hoppy notes, esters (raisins, plums).

T - Raisins, dark fruits. Some spicy wooden notes. A hint of vanilla and some caramel.

M - Good balance sweetness/alcohol. Full body. Bitterness on the low side. Low carbonation. Relatively smooth. Alcohol is not overpowering.

O - Good drinkability for the style. Malt-oriented with a nice oak character. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2013 23:45:06 | More by duracell
Photo of dbrauneis
dbrauneis

North Carolina

3.89/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Batch #8 - April 2012

A: Pours a hazy to cloudy dark copper to caramel in color with some light amounts of gentle visible carbonation, moderate amounts of white yeast particles in suspension, and moderate amounts of garnet red highlights. The beer has a tow finger tall dense foamy tan head that slowly reduces to a thick layer evenly covering the entire surface of the beer with a very slightly thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate to strong aromas of sweet malts with both caramel and toffee notes. In addition, there are fairly strong aromas of oak and vanilla. Light amounts of alcohol.

T: Similar to the smell, upfront this beer is fairly sweet with strong flavors of malts with notes of caramel and toffee. Afterwards, there are some lighter flavors of brown sugar and molasses. Light amounts of bitterness but some moderate to strong flavors of alcohol towards the finish.

M: Full bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Sticky with some moderate to significant amounts of alcohol heat, especially towards the finish.

O: Though it comes in a small bottle, this bottle is really intended for sharing because this is a big beer and the alcohol is not all that well hidden. I recommend slowly sipping this one over a fairly long period of time but it was nice on a cold winter evening. Very nice amounts of complexity.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2013 00:14:32 | More by dbrauneis
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Samael's Ale from Avery Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 983 ratings.