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Samael's Ale - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Samael's AleSamael's Ale

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

1,090 Ratings
THE BROS
78
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,090
Reviews: 579
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 14.69%
Wants: 63
Gots: 263 | FT: 17
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
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samael's Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,090 | Reviews: 579 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of nflmvp
nflmvp

Wisconsin

3.85/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a copper/ruby color building almost no head. Just a light foam formed on the surface and it was gone almost immediately, leaving the faintest ring around the edge of the glass.

Smell was VERY sweet and somewhat fruity with a hint of alcohol on the nose.

Taste was also very sweet with dark sweet cherry and raisin.

Mouthfeel was heavy and thick. Sipable, but not much more than that.

Drinkability is nice but certainly not anything other than a snifter type beer. One in a sitting is all I'd want but I will certainly visit this one again.

Serving type: bottle

10-10-2006 23:13:59 | More by nflmvp
Photo of Bierguy5
Bierguy5

Ohio

3.35/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz. foil wrapped bottle. Brewed in 2005. 14.5% ABV, OG 1.146. Pours a very clear copper/amber color. Thin tan foamy head disappears immediately. The aroma hits you from across the room. Vanilla, orange, wood, some fusal alcohol, and rock candy. Very thick and syrupy, with almost no carbonation. Flavors are woody, very sweet, orange whisky marmalade, and other fruity. Thick and tongue coating, overly sweet with no bitterness to balance this one out. Very warming as well. This was interesting to try, but I could have split a bottle with someone.

Serving type: bottle

10-07-2006 13:40:48 | More by Bierguy5
Photo of aforbes10
aforbes10

Iowa

4.68/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

i am proud as all hell about finding this bottle. we were in Spec's in Houston and i was perusing the Avery shelf when i saw a little red foil topped bottle with no label. but on the shelf there was a tag that said avery oak aged ale. so i hassled a storekeep to put a UPC on it so i could buy it. no idea how old it was but i suspect fairly old because of how DELICIOUS it was. Poured red like a dark wine. very small flimsy head and not any ral carbonation. Stinky grape/musk/oak smell. very pungent. very sweet oak/grape/cherry/malt flavor. very complex and hard to parse apart the flavors. there was a lot more in there that im not able to identify. somewhat sour. very mellow overall and super delicious. maybe the best barleywine i've had.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2006 15:49:30 | More by aforbes10
Photo of kdmorse
kdmorse

California

3.8/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

A: Two fingers of creamy tiny bubbles top the beer. The slightly cloudy burnt-orange body sits under the shadow of the head. Spotted lacing left as the glass is drained.

S: Sweet fruit. Dates and raisins. Scent of warm, baking bread. Lots of alcohol in the nose. Hints of oak at the end.

T: Fruit! Like a produce section. Raisins, dates, some peach and other sweet, sweet malts. Lots of alcohol warmth. Not a lot of hops noticed, but fairly clean finish for this big of a beer.

M: Syrupy and sticky. Perfect amount of carbonation (which isn't much).

D: Hard to drink the 12oz by myself. Tastes and smells great, but I can't handle all the flavors and alcohol. May be better after a year or two in the cellar.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2006 02:31:38 | More by kdmorse
Photo of Zorro
Zorro

California

3.45/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Poured in the glass this is a clear copper colored ale with basically no head formation.

Smell is sweet and really rich. Very strong scent of vanilla is the first thing I notice. Very spicy and fruity to the nose. Berries, rum and black pepper are the strongest scents. Cherry and menthol are also quite strong and give this a cherry cough drop smell.

Taste is sweet and full of vanilla at the beginning. The next thing I notice is the berry flavor that mixes with the vanilla to give a berries and cream flavor. A decent amount of bitterness arrives in the after taste but this is a sweet beer. This is a beer that can be described as over flavored. The taste is so intense it shocks the taste buds. Like Avery the Beast this is simply too much.

Mouthfeel is good.

Drinkability is just not really in this. Flavor level is like a Bass Sub-woofer that nearly shakes a car apart; some is good but too much can destroy. Too powerful for regular consumption.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2006 06:25:44 | More by Zorro
Photo of ThirdCoast
ThirdCoast

Texas

4.7/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Serving Type:12 floz Bottled in May of 06, making it 4.5 months old
Poured into a glass

A: Beautiful Orange with a nice head and many bubbles.

S: Sweet fruits, alcohol, oak...very nice.

T: ... ... ... Oh i have to stop drinking it. This is awsome. At first you get a sweet taste, oranges, sugar. Then the woody oak after taste to finish it off... Very Nice.

M: Feels nice on the tounge, easy to handle, but the lips are a bit numb.

D: I could drink 1 or 2 of these, but i am sure the 14.5% would make me pay for any more that that....

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2006 00:46:48 | More by ThirdCoast
Photo of Hap
Hap

Illinois

3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

At a conference in Collinsville with my boss and picked this up from a nearby liquor store. Unfortunately, had no glassware, so had to resort to a plastic cup in the room so I won't be talking about the head or appearance too much. This was a pleasant suprise - smell alternated between a sweet, malty beer to a jack and coke. Wasn't sure what to expect, but taste was delicious - complex, molasses with hints of plums, cherries and raisins - subtly arriving at the back of the tongue and warming quickly with the alcohol. Yes, the alcohol is present but it really didn't seem to be overpowering even at 14.5abv. Finishes a bit too sweet for my tastes - I usually expect more hops from a barleywine - but it was still delicious! Daddy recommends!

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2006 01:51:15 | More by Hap
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

3.3/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: dark copper in color with a 1" head that immediately falls to a surface foam. No lacing develops.

Smell: alcohol dominates, but some sweet tones linger in the background.

Taste: caramel, prunes, green grapes, pepper spice, and vanilla make a interesting flavor combination, but it is partially masked by the strong burning alcohol tones.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body with a smooth and almost syrupy consistancy. Aftertaste is long on the alcohol and flavor components, and it never seems to end.

Drinkability: so-so. This may be better with some aging, but the alcohol bite just becomes overwhelming and tiring here.

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2006 12:37:20 | More by Gavage
Photo of Foxman
Foxman

New Jersey

3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

It pours a slightly hazy coppery amber, like rich honey. A finger-plus of soft beige head deflates gradually to fuzzy froth. Slopes of lacing scale the inside of the glass.

The aroma offers up a thick malt sweetness shot through with caramel, tart cherry, prunes, and a light woody earthiness. An underlying layer of alcohol stomps on a muted hop spiciness.

Upon tasting, there's a quick glimpse of caramel malt before a dense, cloying candy sugar sweetness takes command. The middle opens to cherry and raisin, along with a vapory eddy of alcohol. Grain and sugar come through again, this time with a hint of oak. The finish remains sugary and earty, with the merest hint of bitter dryness. It's huge, and hugely sweet, making it tasty, but a bit of a challenge.

Full bodied, the viscous sweet syrup lays like lip-smacking napalm on the palate.

You can't sip this small enough to keep the sweetness and size in check. It's reasonably complex, with various elements daring to brave the profound sweetness. The ABV is obvious at every stop, and only a fool would ignore it. Perhaps it's a bit too big, and too sweet, but each lip-coating sip was easy enough, at least at the start. It's the end of the pint that presents the dilemma.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2006 17:24:05 | More by Foxman
Photo of mnapier
mnapier

Washington

3.55/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Batch 2 (12oz) May 2006 in an Authentic German style Luettich Balloon glass -

Burgundy, & a slight haze in appearance. A mild reminder stays on the glass, of the recently pour that was started a few minutes earlier.
Taking the glass and swirling it around I notice an air of caramel, but the overwhelming scent of alcohol almost, erodes the oak aroma that is supposed to be present.
A few seconds of reflecting on the aroma and I take my sip, taking in an initial spiciness, followed up by a slight tartness, and a little hint of wood. Pausing for only a second, I take another sip and notice subtle smokiness, followed by vanilla, with the bully of alcohol rearing its head.
Overall mouth feel, lingers in various parts of my throat & tongue.

Serving type: bottle

08-24-2006 02:26:14 | More by mnapier
Photo of instrumentality
instrumentality

California

3.23/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I poured this brew into my Stone Imperial Russian Stout tulip glass and was quite impressed with the results. A transparent amber body sat beneath a finger of tan head with medium sized bubbles scattered across its surface, resembling raw pancake batter slowly cooking. The head descended to a thin layer, but held up nicely against a good swirling and maintained a solid thick halo that clung to the edges of the glass.

The scent was powerful, but appetizing; a mixture of the sweetness of plums and caramel, the tartness of cherries, and the warmth of alcohol.

One sip and I knew this beer was a force to be reckoned with. It started off sweet (caramel/plum), then the alcohol crept up on me quickly until the back of my tongue and my throat were practically on fire. After a few seconds, this burning sensation mellowed out and I was left with a coating of alcoholic sweetness reminiscent of a mild cough medicine but much more appealing.

Mouthfeel was unusually tingly, a combination of the burning of the alcohol and a clove-like spiciness that rippled over my tongue. The consistency felt almost syrupy, again like cough medicine, coating the palate and tongue long after its descent down my throat.

The sweetness, while initially enjoyable as it offset the intensity of the alcohol, became cloying after a few gulps. I found myself having to back off, to wait until the syrupy coating wore off a bit before replenishing it with another sip. But the more I drank and the warmer it got, the more the cough syrup sensation grew and the more annoying it became, until I found myself forcing myself to swallow the last few gulps. Good thing this wasn't a bomber.

An interesting change of pace, but not one I'm planning to try again.

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2006 06:42:51 | More by instrumentality
Photo of tavernjef
tavernjef

Minnesota

3.75/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Orange tinted crimson with a soft, unlasting capping of dulled, light tan foam. Keeps a decent skim and collar always present. Lacing coats softly and drippy leaving deposits of thick stringy fingers and some big blots.

Aroma is light and berry-like with a tinge of cognac warmth and some malty fruityness. Not any where near what I partake to be an American style BW. As it warms, it becomes more heated and ethonal linked.

Taste is mild and tender with a gripping warmth of alcohol amidst a malty fruityness of berries, dark orange oils, light toffee, white grape, and a well rounded malt loaded oakyness as it glides into the finish. Nice warmth, nothing overbearing, quite big and bold in the regards to its flavor structure from front to back. Just not overly complex and missing a hop profile other then some oilyness and a small spike of bittering bite within its caronation and textured, rounded crispness.

Feel is moderately placed within a medium body with alot of solid warming effects and a small snappy texture of carbonation, yet lacking a bit of bigger body. Smooth and malty. The finish is hugely built and warming. By far the best part of the entire beers' character. Well handled yet dominately forward.

A slow sipper for sure. The slippery front is just that. Making for a seemingly innocent session at first, but then it begins to sink its teeth into you and the 14.5% makes its way through for a slower session. It has good character, but somehow lacks the power, complexity, and the beefy hops I tend to like out of a Barleywine. Especially if its to be of the American style.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2006 01:05:05 | More by tavernjef
Photo of hoppymeal
hoppymeal

Michigan

4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2005 vintage. Pours dark copper to amber in color with an almost non-existant cream head that is faint and brief. A very rich prune and raisin aroma mix with a boozy aroma. There is also some fruit aromas, cherry-apple cider like qualities. Taste shows incredibly sweet maltiness, caramel and toffee flavors, prunes and grapes, and a nice spicy alcohol finish that is nice and warming. Medium to heavy in body, there is some serious alcohol in this one and it is pretty assertive in the aroma and taste but in a good way imo. The sweetness can also be fairly cloying, but I enjoy sipping this one. It is one of my favorite beers to drink with chinese food, esp a rich mandarin sauce.

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2006 22:49:27 | More by hoppymeal
Photo of dfried
dfried

Minnesota

3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Slightly hazy, amber orange in color. Small head died to a film rather quickly, but hey, it's 14.5%. The aroma is very sweet and malty, with plenty of deep dark fruits, cherries and plums. The taste is thick and syrupy sweet. A sherry-like sting from the smokey, oak aged alcohol. Even some lighter, sweeter fruity flavors as it warms, reminded me a bit of white grapes. Eventhough it's at 14.5% alcohol, it really isn't more noticable than other beers that are around 8 or 9%. The mouthfeel is definitely sticky and a bit cloying, but not too bad for how sweet the beer is. This beer would probably benefit from a year or two of cellaring. This is a sipping beer, not something to enjoy a couple of when out with the boys.

Serving type: bottle

08-07-2006 19:40:14 | More by dfried
Photo of EStreet20
EStreet20

New Jersey

3.48/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle oured into a snifter glass.

A - A reddish translucent golden color with nearly two fingers of almost pure white head. The head stays around nicely. Very nice look.

S - Very oaky smell. A lot of butter and vanilla.

T - Wow. A huge hit on the initial sip with a TON of sweetness and fruity flavors. The oak falls to the background. The flavor here is huge but I've got to say (even though I'm generally a big fan of big beers) that this is overdone.

M - Nice and full bodied.

D - Not one for me. Still not too bad as a sipper after dinner split among a few people.

Notes: Could be beter could be worse, but not worth 8 bucks for 12 ounces with so many better barleywines out there.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2006 06:29:39 | More by EStreet20
Photo of BeerRun13
BeerRun13

California

4.08/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Found this one in the corner of a cooler at Lone Hill Liquor.
Pours a deep, rich, amber color. Bubbles rise up from below. Thin off white head gives a hint of lace.
Quite sweet in the nose. kind of a raisin like quality to it. Also Alcohol.
Flavor steps away from the raisins and more towards a vanilla extract and fruity flavor. A slightly hoppy bitterness shows up as it warms a bit. Mostly noted is the Bourban/Burgandy flavor and the kick to match it.
Full bodied. A little syruppy. Good carbonation. The alcohol is warming all the way down.
This is a wonderful beer, but most definately a sipper to accompany dinner or to have as a desert itself.

Serving type: bottle

08-03-2006 23:47:51 | More by BeerRun13
Photo of mattpetti
mattpetti

New Jersey

3.98/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an brownish amber color with a small semi white head that dissapears fast to a thin ring around my glass. The smell is of lots of vanilla, some oak, caramel, brown sugar, maybe a hint of dried fruit, and oh yeah, alcohol. The taste was of mostly sweet caramel malt and vanilla, with more whiskey like qualaties than in the smell. There is only a light amount of carbonation which makes this beer seem very thick. The oak only comes into play a tiny bit as it is drowned out by the heavy dose of alcohol. The flavors seem to be rough around the edges with some of the sweetness needing just as much mellowing as the whiskey. All in all this is one to sit on for a few years. If the whiskey like flavors develop well this will be a whopper of a beer.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2006 03:41:28 | More by mattpetti
Photo of Boto
Boto

Connecticut

3.6/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2005 bottling: This pours into the glass a clear, amber color. There was just a bit of an off-white head that was gone almost instantly. The aroma is quite potent. There is a big sweetness to it. Vanilla is the main component, with some caramel and alcohol also. The taste is a bit syrupy and sweet. Alcohol is evident. I’m not sure where the oak chips come into this one. I think that this needs to sit for quite awhile. It should be good in a few years.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2006 21:12:34 | More by Boto
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
TheLongBeachBum

California

3.58/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottled in May 2006 - Batch 2
[OG 1.1.35, 14.5% ABV]

Presentation: 12 fluid ounce brown glass bottle, sealed with silver backed red foil on the neck which in turn hides a black and gold Avery logo crown cap. Dark black satanic label looks the business and certainly adds a “Death Metal” feel to this Demonic beer. Cost $6.99. Ouch!

Appearance: Surprised me with a nice thick cotton head on the initial pour. Chestnut brown body is perfectly lucid. Slowly settles to a thin covering, but it never quite breaks up and the longevity is very good. Nice lacing on the walls stays around too. Average but lazy conditioning seems a little retarded on the gentle swirl, no doubt given partly to the viscous alcoholic nature of this brew.

Smell: Served chilled, the initial aromas were depleted in strength but it came alive as it warmed. Heavy on the sweet vanilla though, right from the cold start, but some temperature in this also reveals a strong background of soiled woods. At room temperature this one had me recalling my childhood. For in between moments of enjoying the dark berry fruits, I seem to be cast back to a time when I am reminded of the strong odors of the Airfix® cement/glue that I used when making model plastic aircraft, as well as the strong whiff of the high octane wax laden wood polish that my Mum used to use on her best sideboard. All this mixes with hints of cheap Nail Polish and Pear Drops (of Yorkshire Mixture fame!!!)boiled candies. Strange? Sure! But not that off-putting really. Dare I say half addictive……like the model aircraft glue!?!!

Taste: Slick feel to the start, soft oily vanilla entrances the malts with the mildest of dark berries. Sweetness has hints of soaked oak wood and brown sugar soaked in dark fruits. Cellulose dope finish is high in the glue-sniffing stakes. Finish is warming but not hot but reminds me of something I think I should be using to thin paint with. Overall the dark fruits rescue this one, but the finish flashes with a heavy introduction of volatile organic compounds which is a little off-putting and no doubt a trait of this youngster that will last some time into the future.

Mouthfeel: Big, but oily with a sliding vanilla bean feel. Smooth, and to a certain extent even creamy! The alcohol warms in the swallow. Sweetness reveals a syrup aspect which is sickly at worst and an overdose of that dark brown doughnut glaze at best.

Drinkability: Interestingly, easy to get along with, and not quite the cocky noisy boisterous twat that I expected. The 12 ounce is a sipper, and it leaves a warning throat warmth and slick viscous mouth coating that reminds you that this is Big Boy albeit in short trousers. Could have been worse!

Overall: Not as harsh as I was led to believe by others, or for that matter even expected, especially given that this is a 14.5% ABV brew……and…erm….well, not to be too shy…..or to put too fine a point it…..an Avery brew. Maybe the Batch #2 is not as harsh as the Batch 1; but it could still do with some time in the bottle I think. Like most of the Avery brews, a big hitter and an interesting detour into über-beer-geek land, but not one I would buy again. Worth trying though, if you have the money to splash….cuz at 50+ cents a fluid ounce, it ain’t cheap.

Serving type: bottle

07-18-2006 04:05:51 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of ADR
ADR

Pennsylvania

3.78/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Mainly clear bright polished copper appearance. Does generate a head, yellowish and of average duration. Laces in simple dripping rings. Aroma works, lots of wood and a strong vanilla presence. Mouthfeel is thick with average carbonation, not too syrupy but slightly sticky -- but more bubbles than I expected. Flavor has a distracting alcoholic bite, not as much raw kerosene as the Beast, but a little heavy-going. Vanilla continues in the taste, charred on-a-grill fruits (nectarines, golden delicious apples), lots of residual sugars. Hops don't come into play. I never really think these types of beer are close to bourbon, but the alcohol is very apparent in the finish and in the stomach, taking away from the next sip and the second half of the flavor profile.

Serving type: bottle

07-16-2006 00:21:57 | More by ADR
Photo of briman
briman

Texas

4.45/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served from bottle into standard pint glass.

Pours a crystal clear amber. Relatively thin off white head, dissipates pretty quickly. Some lacing.

Smell is strong, sweet caramel malt, touch of vanilla, and what's a bit like a bourbony alcohol presence.

Taste is sweet caramel upfront, maybe a molasses or brown sugar contribuion, & vanilla sneaking through more towards the back. Honestly tastes a little like a smooth well-aged bourbon. Alcohol is present in the finish & aftertaste, but not overpowering at all. Very pleasing all the way through.

Medium to full body, syrupy describes it best, with low carbonation. Considering the ABV this is remarkable smooth and well balanced. Everything melds together nicely. Nice alcohol warming, and I actually find it very easy going down. Certainly not sessionable, but definately something I'll have more of in the future. My only qualm would be why is this a seasonal in the dead of summer...this would be an ideal winter beer.

Serving type: bottle

06-25-2006 01:29:00 | More by briman
Photo of Pegasus
Pegasus

Texas

4.2/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Copper-colored, with excellent clarity, a small, persistent white head, thick lacing, and slight carbonation.

Aroma: A strong waft of oak, old cognac, honey, and alcohol, quite sweet, in all.

Taste: Opens with a quite sweet and spicy note, very much like cognac, quite pronounced notes of alcohol, and a slight oak character. Little or no hop presence could be discerned. The honey note carries throughout the taste and lingers beyond. Somewhat like Samuel Adams Triple Bock, with a hint of maple syrup smokiness.

Mouth feel: Smooth, exceptionally soft, syrupy, with nothing more than hints of carbonation.

Drinkability/notes: Simply put, superb. A must try.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2006 03:46:32 | More by Pegasus
Photo of silver0rlead
silver0rlead

North Carolina

3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours an intense amber that is slightly hazy and with a nice tan head that dissapates quickly (14.5% will kill head retention). The aroma is an intense mix of whiskey and caramel notes, along with some oak and vanilla, molasses, fruits (plum, grape, apple) and alcohol. The flavor is equally intense as the aroma; notes of caramel and single malt scotch prevail, as well as dark fruits (cherries, plums, figs, grapes), oak and vanilla, slight mineraly hops, and of course alcohol. The mouthfeel is thick and syrupy, carbonation is minimal and drinkability is bad at best. A very interesting beer, reminds me of a good single malt with some maple syrup added...Avery is always pushing the limits of beer and this is no exception.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2006 06:46:53 | More by silver0rlead
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meathookjones

Virginia

2/5  rDev -48.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Dark cherry red body with a small cap of white foam. Big fruit sweetness with plenty of sugar coming through as well to the point of being cloying. Alcohol was also pretty much in your face after this warmed a bit. Taste was more sugary syrup coated fruits with not much else to provide any sort of balance. Through the syrupy sticky sweetness the strong alcohol still manages to come through and provide a burn on the way down. Too much sweetness with only boozy notes to counter it. Pretty damn thick as expected but way to sticky and too much burning warmth. Drinkability was just about non existent as I slowly drank the 12 once bottled over a few hours. Easily the sweetest beer I have ever had I don’t think I’ll touch my other bottle for 5+ years.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2006 14:47:52 | More by meathookjones
Photo of AlesRTasty
AlesRTasty

Texas

3.4/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This one is a bugger. I found it difficult to purchase because of the high price/volume ratio, but thought I needed a little adventure. After pouring it into a glass, little head forms with no lacing. I was a bit disappointed to say the least until I took a nose and POW. Intense aromas were present, filled with strong alcohol, berry and malty tones all mixed together. It was a little intimidating to sip but the nose provides ample warning as to the flavors in which you will find, all of which are very intense. It was very sweet and malty with a bit of blueberry hidden underneath I think. The mouthfeel is immense with very light carbonation to make this brew smooth and easy to swallow. This is definitely not for the novice beer consumer, although it reminds me of a port a bit. At 14.5%ABV it’s not something to mess around with; I had to sip on this guy for a while. Overall, it lives up to the American Barleywine standards, powerful and alcoholic. I am a little disappointed however in the weak oak flavor I got. It was one of the selling points on this brew and I was pressed to pick up on any of the oak flavors.

Serving type: bottle

05-30-2006 01:27:29 | More by AlesRTasty
Samael's Ale from Avery Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,090 ratings.