EKU 28 - Kulmbacher Brauerei AG

Not Rated.
EKU 28EKU 28

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very good

636 Ratings

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Ratings: 636
Reviews: 439
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 15.48%
Wants: 43
Gots: 31 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Kulmbacher Brauerei AG visit their website

Style | ABV
Doppelbock |  11.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
A super-strong Bock, but not an Eisbock.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-16-2001)
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Ratings: 636 | Reviews: 439 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of UncleFlip
4.53/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Now playing: Phil Lawrence "The Sheik of Araby" (S9 Radio)

Pours into the glass a deep honey-ruby color, with an off-white tight two finger head that quickly disapates to a head that just covers the brew, but doesn't break.

Now Playng: The Talking Heads "City of Dreams" (S9 Radio)

As I go to smell it, the head breaks...pour a little more to kick it up and.... Strong alcohol nose- almost a pungent licorice aroma, with some papaya and orange, and a spicy undertone.

The flavour has some of the licorice notes, but thinnner and flatter- and not unpleasantly so. This change in the quality is good for the flavour. It's a bit woody on the end, with some alcohol rising just at the end. Veyr nice. Not a beer that attacks your mouth- but rather, one that feels like it was designed to fit inside.

The carbonation rises quickly at the front (a medium carbonation), then falls quickly, revealing a slightly thick but not syrupy liquid.

Now Playing: The Asylum Street Spankers "I Don't Wanna" (S9 Radio)

I give this one top numbers on drinkability. It just FEELS right to me. 11% be damned...I'd still drink it all night. Just be kind to me, and take my car keys from me.

Be well

Photo of silver0rlead
3.4/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear, deep amber with copper hues and a thin off-white head that dissapates almost immediately, typical strong lager appearance. Aroma is intensely sweet with caramel, brown sugar and molasses scents, as well as some toffee and a light floral and mineraly hops accent plus a nice alcohol punch. Flavor is similar with a cloying sweetness that distracts from other characteristics, with notes of honey, molasses and caramel and some toasted bread, floral and mineraly hops, some oaky and vanilla flavors, some slight fruity esters and a moderate alcohol burn in the finish. Extremely sweet and one dimensional, but interesting nonetheless, more like a carbonated liquor than a beer but thats ok. Mouthfeel is thick and chewy, with moderate carbonation and a sweet finish with a big alcohol punch.

Photo of RedDiamond
3.5/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Unexpectedly sweet – almost mead-like – but with a light and busy body. The name sounds like an oil additive, but I enjoyed this beer for its spry carbonation and golden grain color. The smell was cidery and sweet.

I don’t think I could drink too many of these, as it runs a bit too sweet for my tastes, though the toasted graininess is very kind. Surprised to see no yeasts in the bottle.

Photo of Beertracker
4.93/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I must admit that EKU 28 is one of my favorite nightcaps. This strong lager starts beckoning the drinker as soon as the bottle cap is cracked [Hiss!]. The initial release of carbonation unleashes an array of intoxicating aromas that are truly devine. This one is best served cool (45-48F) in a logo cognac snifter. The deep orangish-copper color is contrasted nicely by a cream colored head that dissappears rather quickly. The intense ripe fruitiness of dried apricots & orange zest lead the wonderfully intoxicating nose out of the glass.

The first sip reveals a nectar richness with some creamy "butter brickle" & "Grand Marnier" notes. 28 is very full-bodied with an extended sweet; almost syrupy finish that lingers. The rich creamy sweetness is underscored slightly by an unobtrusive bitterness and clean "cognac" laced finish. The last sip is even better than the first.

Take special care to serve this V.S.O.P. lager in its appropriate glass (a cognac snifter), so as to properly enjoy all of the wonderful nuances. Pair 28 with a hearty marinated beefsteak, wild game stew, or even enjoy it after a piece of rich marbled chocolate-cheesecake. Definitely worth seeking out and cellaring a few bottles for, "Whenever something good and strong is needed."

PROST! Beertracker

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.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.88/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Rich O's Gravity Head '08

Sweet and malty as a Dopple, but light in color, with fewer melanoidins and less 'meaty'. Drinkable and pleasurable as sweet beers get.

August 17, 2005: Bottle:

Drank at the local German bar. The locals thought I was crazy for ordering it. Briliantly clear copper-orange color with golden highlights thrown in. Low carbonation and lacing, but nice legging on the glass. Smells sharply sweet, alcoholic, and estery. Flavors are sweetly malty and fruity. Not a lot of different flavors, but the ones that are present are very powerful. Pruits of peaches and apricots. Syrup and caramel flavors share the remaining characters. Low on spices, hops, and robustness. Smooth and silky to the mouth. Full and round. Alcohol warming in the finish. Just slight of becoming cloying and dry. A good beer, If you like them sweet.

Photo of SwillBilly
3.65/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served from a 12 oz bottle.

Pours a deep amber, almost red like the color of a light cranberry juice. Head was minimal and retension was short lived.

Very sweet, malty aroma. Hints of fresh fruit, possibly apricots.

Taste is very sweet and alcoholic with a think, syrupy mouthfeel. Leaves a fairly strong alcohol finish.

Not bad, but too sweet for me. The high abv % and sweetness would make this an ideal apertif beer. Not a beer that I could drink more than one.

Photo of karst
4.65/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The initials E K U indicate in German the First United Brewery of Kulmbach which was once labled as the "strongest beer in the world" with an OG of 28 (in German degrees). EKU 28 pours crystal-clear, orange-amber with a brief white head that leaves some lace. Aromas of malt and alcohol. Flavor is rich, slightly toasty and caramel-kissed (likely from the decoction of Munich malts ) and remind one of fine dopplebocks like Celebrator. The full body and almost syrupy mouthfeel are balanced by its fine bubbled carbonation, high ABV and buried hops. Flavors are fairly complex and evolve with warming.

Photo of SkeeterHawk
4.2/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Super clear Orangish-Yellow color that poured with a thin head that disappeared very quickly.

Aroma: Clean slightly caramel aroma with the alcohol evident as it tickles the nose a bit.

Taste: It is very smooth for a beer this strong! In fact, it tastes like I imagine a Salvator would with only the volume turned up. It starts out with some rich maltiness that slowly gives way to a warm feeling left in the throat among some caramel slickness.

Opinion: This is a really nice beer! It is really clean with a lot of flavor. Rich Melanoidins and caramel malts really give this beer backbone. I believe that this beer will really age well, and would be accentuated by the esters gained with age.

Photo of jasonpeckins32
2.33/5  rDev -40.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

This one is a beautiful bright bronze color, but it lacks head retention and contains almost no visible carbonation at all. The nose is of sweet caramel malts. Very caramelly, very malty. The taste is slick and smooth, heavy on the liquid caramel, finishing with something a little sour. This one is incredibly oily and slick. Way overly oil. A lot more carbonation and a lot less canola oil would be wonderful. The label says 11% abv, but I would have never guessed it to be more than 6 or 7.

Photo of charlesw
4.05/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Obtained in a trade (thanks Mike!)...

Poured a very crisp and clean light copper. Head? What's that? None to speak of. Like, none. Whoa.

Smells of freshly pressed granny smith apple juice. It's really quite amazing how much this smells of apples... Even after having a few sips (which do not taste a bit like apples!) all that I can smell is apples...

Very strong caramel malt flavor - are there any other malts in this? Whoa.

Actually, the caramel flavor is strong enough that it's a bit difficult to separate out a mouthfeel, if that makes sense. Still, it's silky smooth with that tiny-bubble feel of maybe a Belgian... Verra nice...

It's a bit difficult to give it a high drinkability - you'd really have to be in just the right mood to drink this much caramel. And, well, at 11+% you probably couldn't have too many, anyway!

Still, it makes for a very interesting counter-point to the smutty b'wines that I've been drinking lately - they are a little more balanced on the malts and way hoppy. Well, the eku is low on the hop flavor. Um. Actually, well, I can't even say that I taste any at all! So, really, it makes for an interesting counter-point to a lot of different b'wines I've been drinking lately - some with more hops and some with less. This could, maybe, be considered like one that was very very light on the hops...


Photo of HogHill
3.28/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Finally a somewhat cool day after a week of muggy 85 degree weather, now I can enjoy this eisbock under more appropriate conditions.

I poured this into a snifter, the body was a deep amber with a red tone. There was very little head, it soon faded to a tan lacing.

The aroma of this one is powerful with a very sweet smell of dark fruits and some cherry. Similar to a cordial chocolate in smell.

The taste is very sweet and rich. Againa lot of dark fruits like figs and prunes and some cherry cordial. This EKU 28 has a very warm taste from the high ABV. Much more suited for a dessert beverage.

Mouthfeel is a little cloying and medium body with a low to medium amount of carbonation.

Drinkability is not very good for this one with it's very intense flavors and high alcohol content. It's really best drank infrequently over time and one glass is plenty for me.

Overall, this eisbock was a little too unbalanced for me and it had aged for 9 months. I much prefer Kulmbacher Eisbock and Aventinus to this one.

Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.47/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer poured into the glass crystal clear amber golden with a white low head which barely wisped at the surface of the liquid in in hopes it might touch the glass and leave it's mark.

The aroma was nicely nutty with a Munich malt character and a strong caramel impression of maltiness. Raisins and plums, but not quite prunes, were present in the aroma with just a bit of spicy phenolics from the higher alcohols.

The flavor was very well done indeed. The beer contaced the palate with malty flavors of caramel and fruits. The fruits were most prevalent as raisins and plums. The alcohol in the flavor only enhanced the malty complexity and the bitttering in the beer was only enough to balance the scale. Munich and other malts comprise the flavor lending an excellent flavor with pefect sweetness that was not overdone.

The finish was nicely just dry leaving the impression of malt and fruits with hints of alcohol so you might grasp the glass and yearn for more. The body was medium full and well done. Alcohols were present thoughout, but only as an enhancement, not to the detriment. The beer was complex and interesting and made me wonder why I had left this gem in the back of the fridge so long to await my consumption.

11.2 ounce bottle. $2.50 at Lee & Edwards in Roanoke, VA. Code date 1318615 (whatever that means). This had probably been in the fridge two years.

Photo of Noelito76
4.08/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

They boast that it can stand in for shery. That's pretty bold, but what I can say that this stuff is good. Color is almost burgandy and pouring it into a glass produces a little head which hung around for a bit. The taste of malt along with the spices pleasures your mouth, making mouthfeel and taste very good and unique. Drinkability is good too, even though this stuff is 11% strong, because while you drink you enjoy it's unique taste.

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

The beer pours a dark amber/brown color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a dry, yet sweet and malty scent that boasts of pale and crystal malts. It seems rich and warm. The taste is good as well. It has a smooth and rich, malty flavor that goes down easy and finishes warm on the way down. It has a very sweet crystal malt flavor with little hop characteristics present. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn tastey brew. It has excellent malt character and drinkability.

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 Gagnonsux
4.22/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

EKU 28 is dark caramel copper in color with a quickly disappearing head. The overall strength of the aroma is very intense. Character of the aroma is of rich dark fruits and rich bready malts. No alcohol smell is noted. The taste is also very rich. Dark fruity tastes and intense dark malt flavor come together to create an interesting concoction. A slight alcohol taste is noted throughout. The finish is probably the sweetest part of the sip, which is interesting because it is also where the fruity tastes are most prominent. This brew is so rich and alcoholic that drinkability suffers some, but one or two in an evening sounds great.

Photo of MrSeth
4.25/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The 28 is one of my favorite nightcaps. It's just perfect to mellow out with one of these on one of those nasty New England winter nights.

It forms a vigorously bubbly white when first poured, but now it's almost completely gone. The nose isn't as attractive this time around. I'm all the way in the glass and it is still faint.. but that is not always the case. Maybe a bit of grape syrup (fruity-medicinal) tones in the aroma. It tastes great though, heavy alcohol overtones and sweet malt. There is some degree of bitterness, but it is alot different from other flavor profiles.. there is much to be appreciated about the bitter end of EKU 28. It finishes short and tart.

I would suggest, and I personally do, pair this with a Highland Park 18 Y.O. (single malt)

Photo of horndecker
4.33/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

I characterize the appearance of this eisbock as good, solely on the beautiful deep woody orange hue. There is little or no head to speak of, not unexpected, yet it has what I call "stealth" carbonation. I'll get back to that later.
The aromas are powerful and complicated. Vanilla and oranges make the first impression, followed by something candy-like: toasted marshmallows or caramel. A clean and toasty malt underlies it all.
The taste is at first sweet and intense malt. Raisins and tangerines explode right after, along with a spicy alcohol burn at the back of the throat. What bitterness there is (perhaps the only indication that any hops came near this brew) is just an intermittent shadow.
It has a fabulous creamy mouthfeel. Despite the apparent lack of carbonation, with each sip a roiling ball of fizz blossoms on your tongue. That's why I call it "stealth".
A tasty cousin of barleywine, this can fill a similiar role, a late nightcap with some stinky cheese, mmm. Call it Malt Liqueur.

Photo of clvand0
4.18/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A fellow brewclub member had me try this at a festival over the weekend. Pours an amber color with a small head and leaves a little lacing on the glass. The aroma is slightly sweet with a very strong caramel malt character. I like the heavy malt thing. The flavor is much the same. Lots of great malty goodness with a caramel character. Also some slight fruity notes and a kick of alcohol. The alcohol takes away from the drinkability a bit, but not too much. Thick body makes it very enjoyable.

Photo of aaj1002
3.9/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This clear amber hued beer has surprisingly subtle nose, just tints of vanilla and malt. The mouth feel is a blast of activity, which then transforms in to a big malt sweetness with undertones of spices. The finish is wonderfully simple - a nice little hop hit with no lingering finish. The final "finish" is a warming alcohol feel in the chest... Although it's very drinkable, you will feel its heat.
Note: if you do drink this beer on tap - let it sit a minute...a slightly warm EKU 28 is a happy EKU 28.

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.65/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

EKU's rich, very subtly toasty, just caramel-kissed, and honey-sweet malt warms to fill the mouth with a lush wash of stickiness that's peppered by alcohol and spicy hops just as its fine-bubbled carbonation breaks on the tongue with a light zest. It's surprisingly drinkable given its full body and high alcohol content. And although the alcohol is noticeable, it helps to thin the malt sweetness, ultimately helping the beer more than it hinders it. Unfortunately, it does limit the head retention, and it's short cap of white quickly dissipates above its crystal-clear, orange-amber body. The nose is not particularly complex, revealing its rich maltiness and a waft of alcohol, but its flavor becomes a bit more complex as it warms with notes of vanilla and almonds as well as some floral hoppiness in addition to its concentrated Munich-malt-like graininess. At the very least, it's quite unique among beers and deserves a try.

Photo of neonbrown82
4.38/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

For as high an ABV as this beer boasts, it is siiiilky smooth. I was quite proud of my friend (who I've been advocating better beer to) when he decided to try this at the bar earlier. I of course couldn't resist from trying it myself.

The appearance was a clear amber color with little to no head. The smell was somewhat malty with a hint of vanilla or something. Tasted almost like a spiced Puerto Rican rum for some odd reason. Like I said, it was extremely smooth for as high of an alcohol content as it has. I would highly recommend it.

Photo of Citadel82
4.1/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Serving Size 11.2 oz. Dark Brown Bottle . 11% Alcohol by volume , on the reverse a quote from Michael Jackson, beer writer and connoisseur (not the Pedophile) " This world famous brew has the character and the richness to stand in for for a fine sherry or port. Just the right degree of sweetness, never cloying; wonderfully aromatic and warming. EKU 28 is the one whenever something good and hardy is needed."

Humph we'll see about that:

Poured into a regimental snifter glass from the 1st New Jersey Cavalry - My old regiment. Pours a bright copper with one finger of tightly bubbled creamy white head. Head fades quickly leaving some sparse lacing on the freshly rinsed and cleaned glass.

Aroma of bread yeast wafts from the glass, a swirl or two and a deep breath detects ripe fruit, mostly apples, green figs and a whisper of alcohol.

First sip is sweet caramel, sweet apple some alcohol, drying to a balanced hop sweet malt finish. No taste of alcohol in the finish. This is a rich beer. Faint dryness clings to the tongue and the mouth. Faint effervescence is detected with each sip despite the short lived head.

This is a very drinkable brew, best savored on an evening such as this in front of a fire, a good movie or with a nice novel.

Food pairings Walnuts, Almonds, Pecans, Bleu Cheese or Stilton.

World Class. Share this with a good friend or two.

Photo of santoslhalper
3.7/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Appearence: Pours a nice copper color that almost glows red.

Smell: Smells strong as all hell, way too overpowering. The alcohol is all I can detect.

Taste and Mouthfeel: The alcohol is again strong in the taste, but it balances very well with the hops and malts. This wonderful, almost brandy-like fusion creates something that is an absolute joy to drink. The mouthfeel is thick and chewy.

Drinkability and Overall: The of style of this beer is very unique. I've never quite had anything that was comparable to this. There are some downsides to it, mainly the strong alcohol taste makes it hard to drink a few of. Other than that, phenomenal. Definitly a sipping beer, and one that has to be tried.

EKU 28 from Kulmbacher Brauerei AG
88 out of 100 based on 636 ratings.