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Samael's Ale - Avery Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Samael's AleSamael's Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

612 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 612
Hads: 1,336
Avg: 3.87
pDev: 21.71%
Wants: 81
Gots: 357 | FT: 24
Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
English Barleywine |  16.90% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: ommegangpbr on 06-24-2005

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)
2014: 14.20% (Batch #10)
2015: 14.60% (Batch #11)
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samael's Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 612 | Hads: 1,336
Photo of Florida9
3.56/5  rDev -8%
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.

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Photo of argock
3.7/5  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.

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Photo of minterro
4.26/5  rDev +10.1%
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.

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Photo of BeerDawgs
4.14/5  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.

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Photo of Wompus
2.82/5  rDev -27.1%
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.

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Photo of DrinkNewport
4.08/5  rDev +5.4%
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.

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Photo of Bitterbill
3.77/5  rDev -2.6%
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.

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Photo of Jjski
4.59/5  rDev +18.6%
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.

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Photo of JohnBender
4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
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.

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Photo of JGlitz87
3.51/5  rDev -9.3%
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.

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Photo of CFHMagnet
3.53/5  rDev -8.8%
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.

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Photo of shleepy
3.99/5  rDev +3.1%
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.

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Photo of Samp01
3.73/5  rDev -3.6%
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

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Photo of TheBrewo
3.91/5  rDev +1%
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.

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Photo of lowgear
4.12/5  rDev +6.5%
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.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
3.49/5  rDev -9.8%
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.

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Photo of AdamHart22
3.79/5  rDev -2.1%
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.

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Photo of ummswimmin
3.96/5  rDev +2.3%
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.

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Photo of duracell
3.8/5  rDev -1.8%
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.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.89/5  rDev +0.5%
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.

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Photo of BlackBelt5112203
4.23/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 oz Batch 8 bottle poured into a snifter at cellar-room temperature.

L – Deep amber color with a 1-finger bubbly, slightly rocky, cream-colored head. Pretty good retention and lacing. Clear with a good amount of bubbles and some legs on the side of the glass.

S – Lots of sweet caramel, brown sugar, and some molasses with some dry, woody oak and definitely a good dose of alcohol. This smells like it’s going to be a whopper.

T – It’s very sweet nearly all the way through with caramel, brown sugar, molasses, and maybe a bit of vanilla. There’s a touch of woody, slightly astringent oak that comes through at the finish along with some slightly bitter citrus and earthy hops.

F – Medium-to-full-bodied with pretty good carbonation, a sticky and chewy mouthfeel, and a sweet, slightly bitter, slightly dry, and hot finish. Some sweet caramel and brown sugar flavors linger, and there’s definitely a throat-warming sensation from the alcohol.

O – This is a pretty tasty English barleywine. It’s got all of the great malty sweetness that you could ask for. The hops and oak are a bit muted, possibly due to age, but I think it might also be due to the higher ABV. The heat may be masking some of the more subtle flavors at the finish. Nevertheless, it’s a tasty beer and very drinkable for one that clocks in at almost 15.5%. This is the last of the Demons of Ale that I’ve tasted, and I’m glad I had the chance to try them all. They were truly an experience.

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Photo of StaveHooks
3.88/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured in a snifter at 56 degrees
2011 vintage (Batch 7)

A - Dark amber/brown body with a small wispy off-white head that forms a solid collar.

S - Sugary oak wood, vanilla, big woody caramel, cherries, caramelized walnuts, toffee, molasses. Sublime aroma.

T - Extremely sweet caramel malts, vanilla cotton candy, scorched cherries, walnuts, the oak helps a little to round off the intense sweetness. Finishes with a slightly bitter alcohol heat, but in a good way.

M - Low carbonation, warming, thin at first but thickens up as it sets, sweet woody aftertaste.

Very little alcohol heat for such a high abv brew. Amazing aroma but the flavor was super sweet, almost to the point of cloying. The wood was bold and mellow at the same time and gave a very nice aftertaste.

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Photo of jwheeler85
4.17/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled in 2009; drank in 2013

Served in tulip glass

A- Nice deep mahogany with a ruby red tint. A fine 1cm head dissipates quickly. Was careful to decant as beers like this tend to have a good amount of sediment. Glad I was careful; kept all the sludge in the bottle! Winning!

S- First thing I get is a blast of oak. Go figure. Beneath that there's a hint of tart fruitiness. Maybe cherry or apricot. As I continue to sniff it's almost as if the aromas reverse the order in which they present themselves. Now all of a sudden I get a lot of dark fruit with some vanilla behind it. Neat.

T- This one is pretty complex. Sweet dark caramel, oak, vanilla, apricot / cherry. Then I taste the alcoholic heat. Not unpleasant. Then I get a wave of tiny bubbles. The aftertaste is slightly tangy and warming.

M- Low carbonation. Seems very appropriate for the style.

O- This one had been taunting me from the back of my fridge for a while. I generally don't really care for oak aged beers. I usually find them to be too heavy and cloying for my taste. The high ABV was also a little bit scary.

So I was wrong. Surprised at how drinkable it was. Really not much heat at all. I'm sure the 4 years of aging had a lot to do with that though. My first impression was that this reminded me a lot of Sam Adams Utopias in smell and flavor. Obviously it's got a lower ABV and is carbonated, so that's different, but in general it really did remind me of drinking Utopias. Wish I had purchased a few more of these.

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Photo of EkimGram
3.77/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Taken from my beer journal dated 2/24/12:

*Batch No. 7

Appearance: 12oz bottle poured into a large snifter. Colour is a reddish brown type of copper or rust. Very thin head fades to a thin ring. Also has a ruby quality.

Smell: Aromas are very sweet, bready, and malty. There are also hints of spice and alcohol.

Taste: Very sweet and bready. Tons of dark fruits, a slight touch of hops, and a spicy touch of alcohol all backed by some nice oak notes.

Mouthfeel: Nice, thick full body that has just a hint of carbonation to balance a syrupy, heavy, and sticky finish.

Overall: Excellent, I love the level of the bready malts and the sweetness that is as cloying as expected. The alcohol is hidden elegantly.

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Photo of BierJager89
4.96/5  rDev +28.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Batch 5 ('09) had in late 2012. Poured from a small bottle (it has to be small, this one was more than 16% abv) into a small snifter. Shared with two lucky friends.

A: Nothing special. Reddish brown, with so little head that the color of the bubbles is indiscernible (maybe the most specific notes on the head of a beer I have ever taken), but I didn't want the appearance to drag down the rating of this beer.

S: Nose is full of dark fruit and red wine.

T: Sweet vanilla (I love it already), oak, very nice bourbon character, cherry, red berries, a touch sour. Alcohol is present, but dangerously hidden.

M: Full bodied and smooth (of course it was smooth, it was more than 3 years old probably).

O: CRIMINALLY UNDERRATED!!! If you live in California, you can probably still find this beer, but it's old, and trust me, very much worth your money and time looking for it. My rating is going to be a bit higher, just because I feel it is so underrated on BA.

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Samael's Ale from Avery Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 612 ratings.