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Samuel Adams Black Lager - Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

Not Rated.
Samuel Adams Black LagerSamuel Adams Black Lager

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1,434 Reviews

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Reviews: 1,434
Hads: 2,537
Avg: 3.74
pDev: 17.11%
Wants: 66
Gots: 139 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams) visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: TheJudge on 12-27-2004

No notes at this time.
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Reviews: 1,434 | Hads: 2,537
Photo of HockeytownBrew
4.57/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured into my Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass.

A: Deep black with a touch of amber color. Good sized fluffy head, leaves a bit of lace on the glass. I'm intrigued.

S: Wonderful scent of coffee, chocolate, toffee, and hints of nuts.

T: Excellent distinctive flavors of toffee and caramel as well as chocolate. Very easy to taste the roasted malt.

M: Smooth and creamy. Pretty light bodied, with light to moderate carbonation. Finishes very smooth.

D: Very good drinkability. This isn't the kind of beer that's meant to be thrown back, but it will definitely leave you wanting another.

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Photo of Riccymon
4.55/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours from the bottle a dark black with a finger and a half of tan head that took some coaxing to show up and quickly fades. Smell is a little on the weak side--lightly roasted malt with a touch of hops, and a cream/buttermilk note. Taste has similar flavors, but here the lightness is delicious; there's no burnt flavor, which I sort of expected, and in its place is a pleasant sweetness. As good as Black Lager tastes, however, its creamy, soft body is wonderful and something I've not found in any other beer. As light and pleasant as this beer, I could drink several of them.

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Photo of auxiliary
4.55/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a dark beer and I am always saying I do not like the dark stuff. For some reason I love this stuf. Has a caramel and chocolate taste to it, with a bit of a smoked or roasted flavor, but it is nice. This is one of m top beers now.

It comes in a 6 pack, but I bought it in a mixed pack.

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Photo of casualbeerman
4.55/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a real find. Since I'm not real familiar with which Boston Beer Co offerings are permenant and which are one-offs I can only say I hope they keep this one. This was one tasty brew. The color is, as you might expect, a pretty solid black. The head wasn't especially substantial compared to the Boston Lager, but it was still fair sized and on the creamy side. I've always liked the looks of black beers anyway, so I rate the appearance of this one pretty high. Smell is pleasant. Dark roasted carmel malt, a slight hint of coffee, and alcohol. Not very hoppy. Taste was great. Its smooth and rich with a little sweet, and a little bitter, with some coffee in the background again. Hop presence is not strong here either. Mouthfeel was also pleasant. Unlike a stout, this is a medium bodied beer. The drinkability is pretty good for the same reason. Its not very heavy and the bitterness doesn't weigh you down. This is a real winner here. Sort of like the Yuengling "Porter" (to which this is actually quite comparable since Yuengling uses a lager yeast for that beer) taken up a notch. This will be a regular so for me so long as the Boston Beer Co is kind enough to keep brewing it.

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Photo of IntriqKen
4.53/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep black beer with a thick cream colored head that stays the length of the drink. Rich chocolate, coffee scents. Mouthfeel is rich an creamy with nice carbonation and slight alcohol warmth in the back of the throat as it goes down. Very smooth coffee, chocolate taste with no hops bitterness.
Wonderful winter brew....one of my favorites. I wish I could find it year round in sixers rather than only two bottles in the holiday Sam Adams 12 pack.
In March I have found this beer to be available in 6 packs...at the local Ralph's grocery store, of all places. Woo - Hoo!
I hope they keep carrying it.

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Photo of waughbrew
4.53/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Dark brown mahogany nearing black. Tan head is impressive. Lingers and laces. Aroma of cookie-dough with hints of roasted malt, sweet and toasty. Aroma actually reminds me of Kalamazoo stout. Flavor begins with an awesome light caramel, cocoa, leather, and chocolate all perfectly rounded and balanced. Slightly roasty. Lager yeast leaves a small gap in the flavor profile. Medium-bodied and rediculously smooth. Cocoaish finish makes me want more.

One hell of a beer.

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Photo of dbalsock
4.52/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: Pours black with a 1 1/2 finger light vanilla head. It has a reddish hue that looks quite nice in candlelight. The only drawback is poor head retention, which counts for a lot in my book.

Smell: A sweet malty character consisting of molasses and caramel is present, and very enticing.

Taste: This is a smokey beer... my first schwarzbier, and it lives up to the name. The molasses also play a role here, along with a more noticeable caramel presence. Moreover, a bit of bakers chocolate is added to the mix. Wonderful.

Mouthfeel: Quite light, considering the flavors, there is again the sense of smokeyness along with a light bitter character.

Drinkability: I find this beer quite sessionable, and easily consumable. I'm almost through my first six pack, and will be buying more. I can't wait to go back and visit Boston this winter (hopefully finding this on tap at Doyles...)

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Photo of Gavage
4.51/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: clear black in color with a thick 2" tan head that nicely lasts. Decent lacing develops throught the drink.

Smell: the aroma is of roasted malts, licorice, and slighty earthy.

Taste: the flavor is superb, as roasted malts are nicely balanced with other components such as bitter chocolate, coffee, and soft licorice. Nice bitterness levels. One of the more flavorful schwarzbiers I have encountered.

Mouthfeel: crisp at the start. The finish is relatively clean, as the roasted tones fall off the tongue quickly. Light to medium in body.

Drinkability: great as this can be quaffed all night long. One of Sam's better brews.

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Photo of tugdriver7
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked this up on a whim, being a fan of the Saranac offering of the same type. Since then, I've bought a few 6'ers and found each bottle consistently high quality, smooth, drinkable with a very rich taste. This is definitely a beer to be savored. Smell is rich and malty. Taste is rich, with hints of carmel, but much more carefully balanced than some. Full mouth feel with just the right carbonation to be refreshing. What can I say? It's great! I hadn't always been a huge Sam Adams fan until this came along. Those Boston Beer guys (and gals) know what they're doing!

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Photo of FlatRabbitRed
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Good beer, straight forward simple black malted beer, nothing like a Guiness, or even like theyre "Holiday Porter".

Coffee notes, dark but not heavy! Easy to drink and very smooth for a dark beer, does not come around often, so grab some if you see them.

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Photo of steveh
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this a lot when it first came out, but never reviewed it -- remedy now.

A -- Very dark brown with ruby highlights and a dense, long-lasting, light tan head.

S -- Roasted malts with a light coffee character and light breadiness back.

T -- Mellow roasted malts up front that blend lightly into bready malts, but finishes with that dry, nearly bitter roasted flavor. There is the lightest of hop bitterness throughout, but it blends with the roasted malts. Also a mellow sweetness in an underlying backbone.

M -- Smooth body with a dry finish with a medium body.

O -- Overall, Sam Adams nails the style pretty handily. Smooth and roasty like you'd expect from the style and just what you'd be looking for if you asked for a Schwarzbier. Yet another 4.9% beer with a ton of character.

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Photo of dabarton
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%

This rating is of the limited release Black and Gold swarzbier that Sam Adams released on tap only during the 2013-14 Bruins season.

Excellent example of a black lager or schwartzbier. Probably my favorite beer from Sam Adams.

I will have to check out the bottled schwartzbier and speak to the brewers to see if it is the same beer. I doubt it though, as they claimed black and gold was specifically brewed for the occasion.

No listing for black and gold.

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Photo of MetroOhio
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

What a fantastic pick up! Got a sixer of this today, and boy was I surprised.

Poured strong with a fantastic head--it did, however, disappear fairly quick for me, but maybe my pour was off or the glass may have been off.

The body was deep reddish brown with a nice tan head. Smells of grain, roasted malt/barley, with cocoa-ish scents up front (but not lingering). Taste was very nicely rounded with some roasted and burnt (in a good way) malt sweetness up front, and it's rounded out with a sort of limey taste afterwards--maybe black cherry as well?

Mouthfeel, for me, was a little thin, could've used a little more heft in it.

This beer was fantastic, and it's one of those beers you can have a ton of and still feel good about having another. I have found my new Sam Adams favorite...move over Winter Lager. You have been replaced, and I'll never return...Black Lager is my new favorite brew from the Boston Beer Company.

Song Listened to Whilst Enjoying this Beer: "Such a Little Thing Makes Such A Big Difference", Morrissey, off the Bona Drag LP(1990).

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Photo of mrsoul12
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer is dominated by roast. There may be a bit too much for style but it is hard to argue with the end result. Black in color with ruby highlights. Good persistent head. Nice mouthfeel. Again lots of roast in this beer. Roast in the front and the back. Good beer.

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Photo of arboristfish
4.5/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a dark black, but has an amber hue to it. The head is a frothy white, and seemed to last for awhile. The smell of this beer is of roasted malts. The taste is of burnt roasted malts, hint of coffee. There is a well balanced hop flavor with it. The mouthfeel is medium light. I would say this is a drinkable beer.

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Photo of deanwilson
4.48/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Very dark, stout/porter-like. It pours with a nice thick creamty tan head that slowly dissapates while you drink it.

S: Slightly sweet and malty

T: Hints of the caramel and chocolate malts, very smoothe and with a mild but noticeable hop and malt finish. A nice amopunt of complexity. Perfectly blended for this type of beer.

M: Smoothe and soft on the palate.

D. Very drinkable. Not overly carbonated.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.47/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The Boston Beer Company has done it again, delivering an accessible and quite authentic rendition of another classic style! There's a little bit more caramel flavor and sweetness here than most German examples exhibit, but gosh darn it, it works!

It pours an almost opaque black body that only lets a glimmer of dark ruby-mahogany through beneath its creamy head of khaki colored foam. The head retention is very good, and it initially leaves some nice lace at the outset of the glass.

The nose is darkly caramelish with an almost-burnt-sugar note, and a subtle roastiness.

It's dextrinous, medium body is livened by a fine-bubbled, median carbonation that leaves it gently crisp and then smooth on the palate.

The flavor is as the nose suggests, with rich caramel notes threaded with a note of dark and roasted bittersweet chocolate. Some leafy and mildly spicy hops appear towards the swallow, and in conjunction with its lightly roasty edge, help its firm bitterness to usher in a dry finsh.

Very nicely done! And interestingly enough, the caramel character of this one reminds me very much of my other favorite Sam Adams beer, their Cream Stout. I could enjoy this beer year round, and I think it would be just as appropriate at a bachelor party, poker game, summer BBQ, ski trip, company picnic or Thanksgiving Feast. Excellent!

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Photo of ironchefchris
4.45/5  rDev +19%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

terrific beer. one of my favorite sam adams around. dark rich color matches the smell and taste. you really can't drink many of them though, definetely a beer for food and that's about it. it's heavy, malty, sweet, and a bit nutty. it's your typical dark beer...but does everything really well.

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Photo of AltBock
4.45/5  rDev +19%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice dense black color with a head of foam that disappears quickly. It has a chocolate malty smell that is very nice. It has a nice roasted chocolate taste that stays for a little bit. Overall this an excellent brew from Sam Adams that I would buy again.

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Photo of jeffthecheff
4.44/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Black in the middle of the glass with a nice red hue around the edges. Head was off white, laced really well down the side of the glass while keeping a tiny bit of head for each sip.

Aromas were very subtle. Chocolate malts and very subtle coffee notes.

I've never had this style of beer before, but the taste is very interesting. Has the "dark" flavors but they come through very light as it is a lager. I pick up some chocolate and some coffee flavors and they are excellent. Didn't detect any hops.

This beer really slides down very smoothly with great texture to it. This is a very drinkable beer as well. After each sip I looked forward to the next. Most drinkable "dark" beer I've ever had, because its light bodied enough that you can have many if you want.

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Photo of AmberMan22
4.42/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Almost totally black, with hints of red lining the glass. A solid deep hue. Head is 1/2 inch that dissipates somewhat quickly. Lacing reminds of a wine in the way it creates legs.

Smell: Smells of smoky roasted chocolate malt.

T/M: much the same as the smell, a solid medium bodied beer that when rolled over the tongue creates the wonderful sensation of having stepped into a fine chocolatier, whose owner smokes a rich pipe.

D: Not too heavy by any means, you could drink this for a while if you really wanted. The chocolaty flavor almost makes you feel like you've eaten too many sweets if drank too quickly.

I'd have to say this is quite an exceptional beer for the money, but this is one of my favorite styles in general.

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Photo of Portertime
4.42/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a beer i do not see often but when I do it is a treat for me. I very enjoy Sam Adams' version of this style of beer.

Apperance - the typical Schwarzbeir thin coffee look with a mild head.

Smell - very pleasant hints of milk chocolate, mocha, and toastiness.

Taste - very rich with a velvetyness and nice hop backing. Mocha malts and an almost milk stout quality but much milder.

One of my favorite American Schwarzbiers. I recommend this to anyone who want to try a dark beer but is not ready for a heavy roasted coffee and big hoppiness of most stouts and porters.

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Photo of Brad007
4.42/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark black color with a one finger head. Aroma is smooth and malty, with roasted characteristics that are reminiscent of a porter. Taste is very smooth and roasty, flavorful and yet, finishes clean just like a lager. I'm loving the aftertaste here. A second sip confirms more of the same. Mmm. So smooth, roasty and very much like a lager as the style dictates. I love this beer. One of Sam Adams' better efforts.

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Photo of Hoagie1973
4.42/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours not quite opaque black; slightly translucent. Good foamy tan head with average retention and nice lacing.
Smells of dark roasted malt and a little cocoa.
Flavor features hearty roasted malts up front and finishes with a mild acidic sourdough tanginess almost like a porter. Great smoky character with a touch of balancing hops.
Light to medium body and average feel.
This is one of the better (and one of the few) Schwarzbiers out there. A great dark session beer with loads of flavor but a lighter body, which makes it easy to drink even in warmer weather.

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Photo of Irishdagger
4.42/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I really enjoyed this brew. As one whose heart is black as Guinness, I tend to lean in that direction. As I was walking through my local provider of fine beer, the name Black Lager gave me goose bumps. I just had to try it...and I'm glad I did.

The head starts nice, but doesn't cling to the sides, it carries some complex smells and the taste is kind of coffee/chocolate. The color is a dark chocolate, and the appearance it bold.

I would recommend giving this a shot if your looking for a nice dark beer. Goes down well, and the tastes will have you nodding your head in agreement.

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Samuel Adams Black Lager from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
84 out of 100 based on 1,434 ratings.