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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

1,176 Ratings
THE BROS
78
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,176
Reviews: 586
rAvg: 3.88
pDev: 14.69%
Wants: 71
Gots: 284 | FT: 15
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: 1,176 | Reviews: 586 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of EStreet20
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.

EStreet20, Aug 06, 2006
Photo of BeerRun13
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.

BeerRun13, Aug 04, 2006
Photo of mattpetti
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.

mattpetti, Jul 31, 2006
Photo of Boto
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.

Boto, Jul 22, 2006
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
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.

TheLongBeachBum, Jul 18, 2006
Photo of ADR
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.

ADR, Jul 16, 2006
Photo of briman
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.

briman, Jun 25, 2006
Photo of Pegasus
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.

Pegasus, Jun 21, 2006
Photo of silver0rlead
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.

silver0rlead, Jun 19, 2006
Photo of meathookjones
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.

meathookjones, Jun 01, 2006
Photo of AlesRTasty
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.

AlesRTasty, May 30, 2006
Photo of orbitalr0x
3.73/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I've been waiting some time to try this big boy from Avery. Sweet angel of death label. The Samael's pours from the 12oz bottle a slick reddish orange hue with a small taught bubbly off white head. Slow moving active carbonation appears to have to work its way against the brew. Aromas begins intensly with sweet caramel and a huge array of fruits. Plum, raisin, black cherry and more. Wisps of vanilla, alcohol and a well integrated oaky note. A sweet, decadant brew with resinous hops lurking in the background. Draws me into the beer, which is always a good thing.

First sip brings an intense blast of incredibly sweet viscous caramel maltiness with brown sugar. Fruity flavors spread out all over the palate, notes of cherry, grape, plum and raisin. A bit hit of toffee and vanilla moves in midway through each sip. Flows down with a good dose of oak and a touch of hops. There are so many flavors going on here! Alcohol is evident but not overpowering. Overall, tasty stuff, but it ends up being too damn sickly sweet for me and that takes away from the experience.

Mouthfeel is big, thick and dense. This is a sipper for sure. Goes down smooth without too much alcohol bite. Drinkability is definetly hindered due to the abv and the sweetness here. One bottle is more than enough. A very tasty brew, just needs to have the sweetness dialed down IMHO. I'm looking forward to the Mephistopheles in my cellar, as I sampled it at the EBF and enjoyed it quite a bit.

orbitalr0x, May 20, 2006
Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.55/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A quick web search tells me that Samael is the true name of Satan meaning “venom of god”. I’m not sure what’s worse off for me, Satan, trusting Wikipedia or drinking a 14.5% beer at two in the afternoon. Oh well. Only time will tell.

This beer poured the color of slightly tarnished copper and cherries with a few bubbles sluggishly making their way up from the bottom to sustain the little film of off white head. I’m guessing this one’s thick, folks.

Smells strongly of oak with a sour sting of alcohol cleverly blended into it tied in with some fresh cut grass. Behind these dryer elements lies a huge gooey malt consisting of golden raisins, plumbs and sticky caramelized sugar that suggests a trace of coffee. The alcohol really takes center stage as this one warms, but isn’t too over bearing.

The flavor reflects the big malt base with again the raisins and plumbs, but there’s also some figs and darker prunes there as well along with some momentary hints of citrus. The oak is pleasantly subdued, which was a surprise based on its dominance in the smell. This oak sinuously works its way through the flavor with a mild earthy hops, brining with it little nips of appropriately tasting alcohol. Finishes with a pleasant citrus sourness and oaky dryness that gives my mouth a break from the powerful sweetness. Also, as it warmed the flavor shifted more towards the fruity side, and away from the sticky sweetness, so it just gets better as it warms.

The mouth feel is huge and viscous with just a little touch of carbonation to keep this lively. Also, for such a sweet beer, it wasn’t overly syrupy or all that sticky.

Damn. What can I say? I’m a sucker for big beers and this one hangs with the best of them. I’m reminded a lot of DFH’s Raison D‘extra by Samael, except obviously with more oak. This is a very tasty sipper and one that I look forward to both cellaring and trying again.

DarkerTheBetter, May 17, 2006
Photo of Oxymoron
4.65/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Do you think his friends call him Sam? Poured a semi clear most mostly cloudy darker amber color with good head for a oak aged beer and decent lacing. When swirled there is some stickiness but nothing like a wine.

The smell was big with complexity in the malt and a port like feel. Some fruity and somewhat musty notes of purple grapes, plums and raisins. A smoky and somewhat peaty aroma are detectable as well.

The taste is very good especially noting it sits at 14.5%. A thick taste but not too syrupy. The malt is the strongest character with some sweetness. Some rather warming flavors and a lighter toasted oak presence. A good alcoholic taste but without the really negative ester flavors. Fruit notes are apparent throughout. Cherry and plums mix with lighter notes of apples and a touch of vanilla at the end.

The body is rich and done well. Very impressive for such a large alcohol and this easy to drink. A velvety taste and limited esters. I guess I am a Sam I am drinker.

Oxymoron, May 16, 2006
Photo of weeare138
4.13/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appears a red toned amber with a creamy off white head that fades into a soapy thin collar. Little drops of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of toasted oak, caramel, prunes, raisins, vanilla, champagne, and perhaps a touch of mild amaretto.
Taste is of cherries, raspberries, oaky, vinous, sweet candy, doughy funnel cake that's been sprinkled with confectioners sugar.
Mouthfeel evokes one of the other Demons of Ale brew, Mephistopholes, due to the Turbinado sweetness and sweet finish with alcohol and berries lasting.
This one is a sipper only with the ABV evident. Better with age? Maybe. This Demons of Ale Series was a great idea though. I'd love to see more stuff like this from Avery.

weeare138, Apr 22, 2006
Photo of phisig137
4.4/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bottle was cellared for one year. Pours a medium amber color, with a thin, 1/2 finger head that dissolves immediately. No ring, and no lacing. Not surprising considering the ABV.

Aroma is redily apparent as soon as you pour it though. Huge amounts of cheeries, bright ripe fruit, vanilla, caramel and alcohol. You know from the start, that this beer is HUGE.

Flavor is simply incredible. Vanilla and oak shine through, with cherries, pears, apricot, and plums filling in nicely in the mid-palate. The finish is very sweet and alcoholic. If imperial beer and port wine were to every have a bastard love child, this would be it.

Mouthfeel is slick and coating. The flavor lingers for a loooong time. Drinkability is a bit low though, because of the sweetness and burning alcohol.

I truly wish that Avery would release this beer agian. I think it could have used another year (or 4) in the cellar, but it is incredible right now. Quite possibly the single most complex beer that I have ever drank. Stunning.

phisig137, Apr 14, 2006
Photo of GnomeKing
4.45/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Lots of cherries and a handful of strawberries soaked for a week in brandy, then sprinkled with chocolate before being servered. Yawzah! This is a flavor smack upside the head. The alcohol screams through, burning a path behind it. Yet it's also a sugary sweet beer, candy and cake and all that. Serve cold and sip slowly, with respect. This is a wonderful beer, but also one that will knock you on your ass.

GnomeKing, Apr 12, 2006
Photo of CRJMellor
3.9/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours sort of mixture of black, maroon, orange and amber hues with thick off-white head that deposits loads of lace on the glass. alcholic tannins eveident.
Aroma is extremely alcoholic and acidic, another Avery monster ?Dark cherry and citrus fruits emanations make it through the jet fuel.
Flavor is very sweet, almost cloying but just in the nick of time some bitter alcoholic punch knocks the sweetness down a notch or two. As it warms some dark citrus fruit and maybe a vanilla hint come out.
Mouthfeel is a very thick and viscous feel, very syrupy feel. Alcoholic punch is very strong but actually well placed
Drinkability is solid but the strength of this brew kind of eliminates the taste buds for the rest of the night. Worth trying but be warned.

CRJMellor, Apr 06, 2006
Photo of sulldaddy
4.83/5  rDev +24.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I first found this beer on a trip to Philly at Monks and decided I needed to track it down for another visit to my belly! I am pouring at room temp into a tulip snifter.
The beer pours a clear chestnut with bright red highlights. A small 1 cm off white creamy head foams up and fades gradually to an edge layer with a few small islands remaining on the surface of the beer. The aroma is great! I get oak, bourbon, brown sugar, some bitey alcohol and a bit of molassess as well. Seems to be on the sweeter end as no hops are really present but that is just fine I like the big sweet brews!
First sip reveals a fairly thick body with very mild and spacious carbonation. Slightly syrupy texture that adds to the thickness. Flavor starts sweet with brown sugar and molassess and some dark fruit, plums and red grape mostly. A sweet sugary film coats my lips after each sip. The beer stays sweet from start to finish and doesnt get cloying IMO. No hint of the 14.5% until the beer hits my belly and gets warm.
I really enjoy this beer and would buy it almost anytime I see a bottle. This is a malt lovers brew and a sipper. Two of these and I am sure I would be all set for the nite. This is by far the best beer I have had from Avery and the best I have sampled in a while overall. Buy it if you see it and send me a few!!

sulldaddy, Apr 06, 2006
Photo of Padron4KM
3.2/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle. bottled in 2005.
Hazy amber, very thin head. Alcohol coats the glass.
Aroma is sweet with notes of melon, apple, honey, apricot. Wood is there but very faint.
Flavor was sweet. Port, vanilla, sugar, gooey caramel, honey. Just enough oaky tannins to keep it from becoming cloying.
Liquid desert. I think I killed my sweet-tooth for the month.

Padron4KM, Mar 30, 2006
Photo of scruffwhor
4.18/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle stating the brew was bottled in 2005.

Appearance- Pours a deep amber likened to red cedar planks and hints of blush wine in a viscous looking beer.

Smell- A mix between what a lovely blend of grapes, smokey wood, vanilla cream (???), and alcohol.

Taste- The flavor starts out like real sweet liquer and then finish with a vinous, tart and oak flavor. The middle and end are both alcohol mixed with mildly roasted malts, sugar, and light vanilla syrup.

Mouthfeel- Very syrupy yet with alittle velvet to help smooth out the heat from this high abv barley wine.

scruffwhor, Mar 30, 2006
Photo of assurbanipaul
3.93/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy chestnut with a very thin head and slow-moving chains of bubbles rising throughout. Aroma is moderately hot with alcohol, with elements of malt, caramel sweetness, scotch and a very faint dark fruit.

Taste is malty sweet, almost candy-sweet with raisins and some dark fruit and maple syrup. Base is a good bourbon or clean scotch, woody, smokey and peaty, only the slightest tartness in the finish. Alcohol elements throughout with a familiar burn as it is swallowed, but not quite enough to bowl over the other flavors. Surprisingly, very clean, no off flavors for the alcohol to attempt to cover up.

Mouthfeel is thick and viscous, sticky (I've never seen bubbles move so slowly in a beer -- that's worth at least a point). Moves past the barleywine category and is firmly in that extreme beer realm. I drank this young and it is obviously a brew meant to be cellared for years (decades?). I'm not a lightweight by far, but 12 ounces of this is work to finish.

Bottle date 2005, 14.5% ABV.

assurbanipaul, Mar 20, 2006
Photo of grub
2.58/5  rDev -33.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

pours a light red color, with a slight head that dissappears almost instantly. no lacing.

aroma is dominated by alcohol. smells like acetone or nail polish remover. slight bubblegum smell.

taste is a blast of alcohol. sticky sweetness. bubblegum again. no hops, no real "maltyness".

body is big. sweet and alcohol.

to me, this beer is not very drinkable. the sticky sweetness and high alcohol don't make for a very enjoyable combo. needs some hops or something to balance it out. interesting, but not to my taste.

grub, Mar 19, 2006
Photo of karst
4.68/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours clear rich cherry amber. A noticably viscous pour that forewarns "beyond - there be devils" Samael was said to have planted the vine in the Garden of Eden - there are many parallels with the inviting sweet fruity aroma - wine like with french oak barrel -vanilla aroma, maybe a little cloying at start (but not thin bodied) satisfying fruity finish with oak and 9+% abv drying. No fusels! ABV just high enough to "leg" the sides of the 0.4 L rastal sniffer. Trapped vapors bring water to my eyes and the awesome flavors assult the mouth and nose. I repour and watch the sweet liquor decappitate its head with a single swing of alcoholic scythe (sometime known as a "ley" - used for cutting oats or barley and symbolically for death.) I remember the Dogfish Head's Old School Barley wine and find this is more drinkable. Happy to share this one with friends - tempt one of yours with this unique barleywines from Avery.

karst, Mar 18, 2006
Photo of Crosling
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Rich cherry color. Soft fruit and caramel in the aroma, with hints of apple and cherries, light vanilla, light toasted oak and alcohol. Exreme flavor, but in a respectful and succulant manner. Initially cloying and thin, but the finish is absolutely mindblowing with a lingering flavor of raisin and plump red fruit. Really rich. I’m really impressed by this new offering from Avery. The best extreme beer I’ve had in awhile.

Crosling, Mar 18, 2006
Samael's Ale from Avery Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,176 ratings.