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EKU 28 - Kulmbacher Brauerei AG

Not Rated.
EKU 28EKU 28

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

645 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 645
Reviews: 442
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 15.23%
Wants: 50
Gots: 38 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Kulmbacher Brauerei AG visit their website

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-16-2001

A super-strong Bock, but not an Eisbock.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 645 | Reviews: 442
Reviews by the Alström Bros:
Photo of Todd
4.57/5  rDev +16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 11.2oz brown bottle. No bottled on date; don't really need one for a beer with this strenth, but for vintage purposes it might be nice.

Appearance: Light copper in colour with an active level of medium sized carbonation bubbles. Head is thin, white and creamy with a slight syrupy stick to the glass.

Smell: Mega malts (mostly caramel), deep, rich fruity esters and a strong alcohol nose.

Taste: Thick, full-bodied, syrupy and luscious on the palate. Luckily this is broken up by the lively carbonation for some balance. First flavour to emerge is a rather spicy (and warming) alcohol that delivers one hell of a kick to the palate, then the head. Malt comes next, and it's massive, rich and sweet with a caramel, milky chocolate and candied backbone. Strong oak and vanilla flavours are also present, along with a sort of date / fig sweetness. Juicy fruit flavours (all kinds: apple, pineapple, mango, honeydew mellon, etc) follow, then a buttery bicuity malt character soothes the palate into the finish. Bitterness is there, but it seems to smooth in with all of the other flavours, offering a much needed flavour balance to counter the sweet and strong malts.

Notes: This is a beer to be sipped, savoured and respected. For the style, it's also very well balanced and perhaps one of the best eisbocks I've ever tasted. Powerful. Complex. Balanced. Tasty. Hell yeah!

Photo of Jason
4.36/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz slender brown bottle with a foiled top, a freshness date is printed on the front label. On the back label is a somewhat disturbing picture of a drunk German man pointing at his stein.

Deep copper hue, very clear with a head that disappears quickly, I guess the more this ages the more the head takes a hit. As I poured it the carbonation struggles to reach the top.

Straight up clean alcohol with a huge ripe fruit aroma, rum raisin comes to mind as well as over ripe apples. An underlying caramel note show that there is a huge maltiness within.

Mouth feel is creamy beyond belief, carbonation is still intact with a viscous rolling feeling as it caresses the palate. Thick on malt, big on sweetness but not out of balance at all. The alcohol rips through the mouth with a big fruity ester and solvent character that does not go overboard. Hops are there but very faint. Fruitiness is really ripe with slight banana and apple sweetness. Malt comes back with a thick syrup caramel flavour as the alcohol bursts again in a spicy kind of way. Finishes sweet with waves of alcohol fumes leaving the mouth and warming the body.

I gauged the head retention to be that way knowing it would be like that so I was not too disappointed, the aroma is simply amazing and the flavour crushed my palate for the rest of the night. As for the alcohol, this is a night cap brew. I’ll save the other bottle to have around the winter holidays.

More User Reviews:
Photo of RochefortChris
5/5  rDev +26.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a light copper color with very little off white head that clings to side of glass

Smell of alcohol but not over powering. Some melanoiden malt, slight fruitiness and no hop presence.

Taste of fruity, melanoiden malt, can tell the alcohol is there but definitely well masked. Almost no hop flavor

Very chewy beer. Medium low carbonation with some warming from the alchoho. Pleasant aftertaste.

I absolutely love this beer. An epitome of the style and the high alcohol is so well masked which is what I love in high gravity brews like this one. Fantastic job on this one.

Photo of oberon
3.68/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Wow what a beautiful beer,poured with a huge head great color.Felt like I needed a cigar and a brandy snifter,alcoholic smell with a slight fruit tinge.Tasted alcohol soon as it hit taste buds,a little syrupy but thats to be expected.Only a little fruity tast was apparent other than alcohol.As it warmed alcohol taste creeped up even more,nice to drink before bed.

Photo of RoyalT
4.12/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – Very clear and florescent orange in color with no head, which is typical of the style.

Smell – Alcohol-soaked malt and apples first come to mind, followed by a deeper sense of toasted malts and some other fruits, such as prunes and dates.

Taste – This is the original, “Ice Beer,” having water removed by first freezing the ale.

The flavors are very intense to this one. The malty apple has a huge dose of alcohol and is perfectly blended, although I’m sure the booze will be too much for most except true Eisbock fans (and gin-drinking alcoholics). The flavors are just as complex as the nose insinuates, making this one a joy to sip.

Mouthfeel – Extremely smooth as is customary of the style through the freezing process. The body is a little bigger than medium, and the alcohol sting will keep you from drinking too fast.

Drinkability – Well, if you don’t like the style than you won’t like this bottle. But, if you can appreciate the high alcohol and incredible smoothness that results from icing a bock beer, this is one of the better offerings.

Photo of DaPeculierDane
3.54/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Picked up a little bottle of this last night at the Essen Haus. A bargain at $4 if you ask me. This is quite a beer.

Pours that dark orange-copper color that screams so quintessentially that this is a German Doppelbock or Eisbock. Head is initially thick and tan but it doesn’t have much of a life span and before to long descends to just a very thin clinging lace. Not much carbonation. Seems to be an old bottle.

Aroma is quite pungent, primarily of boozy dark fruit…tons, and tons of prunes/rum raison but also some cherries. Very boozy but it does manage to give one the idea that they might find a heck of a lot of malt in this brew from the hints of caramel that rise with the alcohol notes.

Thick, soothing, chewy feel. Highly viscous. Somewhat sweet. Primary flavor is booze soaked dark fruit but the caramel malts are also quite nice. Reminds me a little bit of Optimator. Also, many beers are described a vinous but this one seems more like Cognac then wine.

Not very drinkable for me. If I want a lot of dark fruit boozy flavors I’ll probably go the Baltic porter route. This is a nice beer but it just doesn’t stand up to the eisbocks I’m used to drinking from New Glarus, Capital, The Dane, and Aventinus.

Photo of t2grogan
2.5/5  rDev -36.5%

Photo of Spaten454
3.75/5  rDev -4.8%

Photo of tbryan5
4.75/5  rDev +20.6%

Photo of dieBlume
4.75/5  rDev +20.6%

Photo of generallee
4.44/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 11.2oz bottle into a small mug. The label lists the abv at 11% and there is a short description on the back.

Appearance: The body has a rich deep amber colored body with good clarity. On top, the head is small and fades quickly. It leaves only a small patch of thin lacy bubbles. This is all very slick and no lace sticks to the glass at all.

Smell: The aroma is interesting and not exactly what I had expected, in a good way. I get a slightly buttery note with some candy like (grape sucker) sweetness backing it up. There is only a very slight hop note way off in the background.

Taste/Palate: The flavor reminds me somewhat of a fortified wine. There is a mild alcoholic warmth throughout with notes of wine grapes and grape candy sweetness within a big malty body. Again as in the aroma, the hops are distant and offer very little bitterness. The palate is what I would expect with its carbonation and mouth feel are right on for the style.

Notes: I am defiantly a fan of this beer.

Photo of merlin48
3.72/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

11.2 oz bottle served slightly chilled. Pours a clear orange/red color with no head and no lacing. A very pretty color, but looks more like a sherry than a beer.
Aroma is powerful, with vinous alcohol very obvious. Caramel, molasses, and all kinds of dark fruits front a huge malt profile.
Mouthfeel is silky smooth, but awash with alcohol presence.
Taste reveals little, or no carbonation, alcohol warming, and all kinds of big malty flavors. This is one to be sipped slowly, at room temperature, in order to enjoy the complexity of the layers of malt swirling through this enormously powerful brew. It has the delicate feel of a fine, oak aged bourbon, only much sweeter. Not at all cloying, but not a beverage you're going to be able to finish in less than 25 minutes.
A very interesting Eisbock, with a superior and highly complex taste. Low drinkability, as this is much more like a liquore than a beer. Ideal for sipping in front of the fireplace on a cold, winter night, out of a brandy snifter.

Photo of Billolick
3.85/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Collins bar in NYC. This strong brew pours a glowing/shimmering shade of dark leather. Clear, with an off white minimal head, well developed and thick/frothy lacing. Nose is buttery malt and alcohol, sweet alcohol. This is a pleasingly bracing beer. Nice smooth mouthfeel. Alcohol is quite evident. Notes of juniper, smoke, more butter and alcohol. Warming, heady stuff, cant say the 11% is "well hidden" but for the strong livered, this is a fine sipper

Photo of warriorsoul
3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to deBeers for this one...solid trader.
Pours a beautiful bright mahogany with two full fingers of off-white head which fizzles away to just a fine layer within minutes.
The smell is terrific...a boatload of cherries, some raisins, and sweet red grapes.
Taste is enjoyable...heavily malted to sweeten this one up, but not too much. A nice dose of hops to add a slight bitterness and the alcohol does show up in the flavor.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied and the carbonation could be a bit lower...either way, this is a sipper and perfect for this time of year. This one warms you up nicely and lets you know to respect the abv. Another solid offering from Kulmbacher.

Photo of GarrettB714
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%

Photo of magictrokini
2.26/5  rDev -42.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours clear mahogany with a tiny off-white head. Soapy, prune and raisins aroma, with heavy ethyl. Unusually viscous feeling in the mouth, which only makes the beer taste heavier. It tastes like overripe apples and raisins. Second and third swigs did not improve my feelings. Very disappointed. I let the drain sample the rest.

Photo of DaveStewartBrown
5/5  rDev +26.9%

EKU 28 has really become one of my new favorites. I enjoy a strong, challenging beer at times but not something that will give me a headache.

If you see an EKU 28 grab 1 or 2. It will put you DOWN! It's a really tranquilizing beer, but clean, so no headaches or other unwanted side effects. It can be a little pricey but worth every penny. It has so many rich flavors. Dark, earthy fruit notes seem to push forward the most, but this is not a sweet beer necessarily. The flavor intensifies as it warms in the glass, and the last sip tends to be divine in my opinion. Drink from a chalice or even wine glass for sure. The color is a decadent rouge/ molasses.

Photo of ohmybock
4.48/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I'm updating my previous review because my recent bottles of EKU 28 are better than what I described in my previous rating...

Big malty/toffee aroma you pretty much only get from a true German bock brew. Very, VERY nice! Actually, there's also a strong fruitiness which you don't get all that often in a German lager. Even so, it's a "clean" fruitiness so you know it's still a lager. Beautiful amber color with a slight head, but one that seems to stick around. After pouring it into a glass, the appearance and aroma of this brew just make me want to immediately take a sip! Carbonation is decent and appropriate for the style, but some previous bottles have been too low. Flavor is a malt assault on the tongue combined with some heat from the alcohol. The flavor improves on the aroma with a huge malty/toffee explosion on the tongue. I get ripe fruits...perhaps some apple, but even more I'm getting some beautiful ripe pear flavors. Have you ever forked over the money to buy some Harry and David's Royal Riviera pears? They're expensive, but ohhh so good...nature's candy! Anyway, I definitely get some of that great, ripe, Oregon pear character in this brew. When I first tasted this beer ten years ago, I wasn't crazy about it. Now, it's one of my (occasional) favorites. It's not something I would drink often, but I love to keep some on hand for the times when I'm in the mood...and it seems to hold up incredibly well in my fridge for long periods of time. There's no denying EKU 28 is a malty brew...even for German standards, yet it still has a nice, clean-fermented lager taste. Even though the malt character is strong, I don't think this brew goes too far with its maltiness. Take Vetter 33 on tap in Heidelberg for comparison. Vetter 33 is too over-the-top malty, and has way too much of an unfermented malt-syrup taste. EKU 28 on the other hand, is much more drinkable and thoroughly fermented. I really enjoy this brew, but I can imagine that some don't because it's a bit extreme. EKU 28 has definitely become a brew I've come to love over the years. If you disagree that's okay, that just leaves more for me!

Photo of ADR
4.14/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Some classify this brew as an "Eisbock" (6/14/02 now, it is, style categories changed at this site)...poured it in a Pilsner glass, pretty dark amber, but clear. Head is just a spidery trace after 20 seconds. Raisiny, clovey, sweet aromas, hints of alcohol. Prune, cinnamon, and sugar flavors, a coating mouthfeel in the extreme. Alcohol has most kick on the swallow. Lots of spice and subtle flavor alterations. The brew is just too sticky for me, just saved from cloying by some slight citrus hints. Heavy duty stuff, I'll take it over a sherry, but wouldn't call it drinkable in quantity unless you have the next day off.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.87/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Copper amber with a thin bubbly head cream in color not much lacing the alcohol prettty much kills everything here. Aroma: Strong alcohol layered with sugary syupy and mild plum brandy notes, this is definitely kicked up a few notches in the alcohol department. If AB only knew how to make an ice beer. Taste: Is basically like sipping down some liquor, doesn't burn but the alcohol flavor is so rich and complex with the sugar malts this beer is crazy. Wow, this is a beer I will bring to my next cold football game I go to damn it's very warming going down the alcohol doesn't even try to hide itself here it's in your face competely. Mouthfeel: Medium to full with syrupy like texture wow. Drinkability: Becareful not a beer to be chugged or drank fast take your time let it warm up along the way what a beer another brew acquired from beergeek279 gracias.

Photo of valkyre65
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%

Photo of stereosforgeeks
4/5  rDev +1.5%

Photo of rastaman
1.5/5  rDev -61.9%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

i know everyone has given this good comments, but this beer just wasn't for me, reminded me to much of thick cough syrup, maybe i'll have to try it again.

Photo of JohnW
3.7/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

This is an amazing beer, though not to my taste! The aroma nearly knocks your head off - very rich, alcoholic and sweet - like a brandy liquor. The taste reflects this, very sweet, fruity with sultanas, plums and a very powerful malty taste as it goes down, making the alcohol content very obvious - almost burns the throat! Only the slightest hint of hops in the aftertaste, more like a barley wine but even stronger. I enjoyed the few sips of this that I had, but would consider it a slow sipping beer as you would a fine cognac or whisky, definately NOT a session beer, and for that reason marked down the drinkability. A classic of the style, but not one I would drink often.

Bham UK

Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a tall chalice)

A-This beer pours a reddish brown color with a clear body and a thin white head that fades quickly

S- The roasted malt nose is blended with a hint of oak and raisins with a faint hint of dates. No hops noted.

T- This beer has a slight sweetness to the roasted malt flavor. Some dark raisin notes at the finish

M- This has a pretty full body with some alcohol warmth in the finish.

D- This has good complexity for a high alcohol lager. The dried fruit and dark malt could be a bit more complex. It is very smooth and it doesn't taste like an 11% ABV but the malts add a nice balance to what alcohol you do taste.

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EKU 28 from Kulmbacher Brauerei AG
88 out of 100 based on 645 ratings.