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EKU 28 - Kulmbacher Brauerei AG

Not Rated.
EKU 28EKU 28

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

643 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 643
Reviews: 441
rAvg: 3.94
pDev: 15.23%
Wants: 46
Gots: 36 | 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: 643 | Reviews: 441 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of horndecker
4.32/5  rDev +9.6%
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
4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
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
3.88/5  rDev -1.5%
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
4.6/5  rDev +16.8%
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
4.35/5  rDev +10.4%
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
3.6/5  rDev -8.6%
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.

Photo of Bierguy5
3.93/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

11.2 oz bottle. Clear reddish golden liquid. Thin white head that disappeared very quickly. Lots of bubbles coming from the bottom. Smells like someone is baking wheat bread. Big bready malt flavors here. Very sweet. Slight hop bitterness at the end, but not much in comparison to the malt. Warming and thick like syrup. Seemed to be pretty well carbonated. Sipping beer, with a wonderful aroma.

Photo of Tballz420
4.12/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew is a clear dark-orange colored drink, with a small white head that fades quickly. Scent has some caramel, fruit, and alcohol elements. Big alcohol taste, some cherry, other fruit, caramel malt. Tastes remniscent of a booze. Sticky mouth. This brew has some zip.

Photo of rajendra82
3.7/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The pour is orange gold like a Belgian Trippel, but does not possess the signature foamy head of that style. The carbonation is lively and fizzy, but not a head to be seen anywhere. The aroma is perfumey alcohol with a floral hop hint. The taste is sweet and spicy with up front alcohol and an assertive hop bitterness. The mouthfeel is very drying with a strong burn at the back of the throat. Nice and drinkable beer, but lacks the roasty complexity of a good dopplebock, or the subtle hidden punch packed by a Belgian Trippel.

Photo of dauss
3.81/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear golden orange. A small white head that forms and quickly disappears after a fairly hard pour. Nose is a little fuity. Probably apples, and extremely malty. This beer is very thick and clings to the palate like you wouldn't believe. Its almost syrupy. A spilled a small amount and trickled down the glass when I was pouring. My fingers are sticky now. A strong sweetness hits the palate with a gentle bitterness at the back of the tongue. When it warms up in the mouth and then there is a burst of different fruits. I think this beer is very sweet, but I like it. Alcohol is hidden well, just barely noticeable when you breathe out, but it warms the stomach. This is one of the few eisebocks I've had, probably fitting
for dessert, not something to drink everyday.

Photo of TastyTaste
4.27/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark carmel color, with excellent head retention for a brew this strong. Smell is sharp with alcohol and a little bit of cereal malts. Flavor is off the wall with alcohol. This is definitely a warming sipper of a beer, which feels a little off in air conditioning. I had to edit my review, because this was a little bit off to me at first, but by about halfway through the glass, it was very good.

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

Pours an amber colored clear brew.

Smell is sweet and very malty lots of fruit smell with a strong cherry scent.

Taste is very sweet and fruity, intense fruit flavor. Hard to breakout individual fruit flavors it tastes like juicy fruit.

Mouthfeel is thick.

An intense Eisenbock probably too much for most but those that seek this stuff out know to expect a powerful brew. Based on that I give a high Drinkability score.

Photo of edchicma
4.17/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mmm...this is a good brew...Appearance is average...medium gold with no head. Smell is a beautiful bouquet of fruity scents which are rich and invite you to drink more. Taste is mallty, fruity and lets you know it has an alcohol kick. Mouthfeel is thick as expected, but rich in feel. For an 11 abv, this is very drinkable, but remember to sip! Highly recommended.

Photo of dave750
2.79/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Clear red-gold in color with a low, thin white head that dissipates very quickly. Aroma is quite nice. Bananas and chocolate at first with fresh herbs and hops a little later.
Strong toasted malt and chocolate flavors remain throughout. Sweet honey and a hop presence join in at mid-taste. Mint, black pepper and spice emerge as the flavor fades. Thick body good carbonation and balace bias heavily towards malt.
Overall, somewhat cloying, that, coupled with the thick body, kept this beer from going down smoothly.

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

Has a clean slightly dark orange color with a small light brown head which dissapears quickly. A fruity yeasty aroma mixes with a strong alcohol presence. The flavor was fruity with a hint of cherry followed by a strong alcohol warmth and finishes with a light nutty (hazelnut) touch at the back of your tongue. This lager has barlywine like characteristics ..a: Little or no carbonation, which also leaves you with no head....b: A very serious alcohol presence. This one is for sipping Not gulping. It says on the bottle "the one whenever something good and strong is needed. It certainly lives up to that billing.

Photo of granger10
4.19/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I love this Eisbock style, I only wish more American brewers would give it a chance. Lots of malty sweetness here with flavors of caramel, estery fruityness, oak, licorice, and toffee. Slight cherry tartness offsets the sweetness for about a second but it doesn't really do much. The most noticeable flavor is the fussel alcohol that comes through in the finish. It's strong but I like it! The sweetness meshes well with the alcohol. Give me another!

Photo of tjd25
2.8/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

The head disappeared immediately; the body is like strawberry syrup: transparent and red, with a few bubbles inthe middle, which reminded me of a vulcano. The smell is ok, hard to describe, maybe fruity with some caramel. The first impression in the taste is good, sweet and fruity, but then the alcool comes, and it's kind of nasty. It tastes like Martini, with the same plain bitterness, and also like some fruit liquors. Too strong. The mouthfeel is winy, and boring. I didn't finish my glass.

Photo of RenoZymurgist
3.41/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a clear orange color with no head to speak of and very little carbonation.
Aroma is of alcohol and that is it.
Light bodied yet carmelly sweet like a barley wine this beer is surprisingly drinkable yet high in alcohol. Smooth flavor but little else to comment on, no off flavors just smooth and sweet.

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

It pours a crisp, poignantly clear true amber. One finger of off-white head bumps up then right back down to virtually nothing.

The aroma delivers a thick, cherry sweet swirl of toasted malt. A buttery toast warmth is augmented by a sneaky sniff of alcohol.

A sip brings a veritable tidal wave of dense, cloying toasted malt sweetness, joining together caramel, brown sugar, and light molasses for a syrupy convention. A hint of butterscotch comes through in the middle before a sinus-singing twist of alcohol stands tall and strong. A rounder sweetness lingers briefly at the finish. The flavor is malt, but with a few interesting dimensions.

A bit more than medium bodied, it coats and clings cough syrup-style, laying like sugary napalm on the palate.

Everything has its purpose, and this beer's is to deliver thick, well-conceived malt sweetness to those who crave it. Now, that means just what it says, but if that's your goal, then this beer will rise to the occasion. It's not about balance, but then, it never pretends to be. The high-octane ABV will put a serious hurt on one's unguarded sobriety, and fast, so it's not something you'd want to lose track of, in spite of how nicely warming it is. But if you're in the mood for what this offers, it'll give you the malted fix you're looking for.

Photo of cbl2
3.77/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3


A light pale brown with little head even though given a hard pour. In its defense, I am serving this a tad cold.


Crisp, clean, with hints of sugar, and a slight herbal bouquet at the end.


A smoky sweetness envelops the mouth at first, followed by a tropical fruit sweetness that lingers into a finish that gives just the hint of hops. Alcohol is masked nicely, and beer is very smooth.

Photo of Globetrotter
3.62/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

33cl brown bottle with a gold and red label featuring nothing but writing. Purity law applies. Best before 11/14/04, I opened it on 5/2/04.

Pours a clear reddish orange hue under a two finger off white head that settles fairly quickly, producing an amazingly loud popping bubbles sound. The head has some body at first, but produces no lace. When cold, the nose is very, very subdued, but it blossoms incredibly as the beer warms, resulting in a strong caramel and maple syrup scent. The mouth is very prickly and quite heavy. The taste is sweet caramel, and lots of it, with a barley background and significant alcohol. There's no hoppy bitterness at all, with the bite coming completely from the alcohol. The aftertaste is sweet, like supercharged candy. This is an interesting brew, but it would be in my regular repertoire.

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

Sampled from a 11.2oz bottle into an imperial pint glass.

I poured this one hard to see if I could get a head, and it just barely came to 1 fingerbreath and then faded to something resembling the milky way galaxy in the browness of beer space. Gorgeous orange red clear brew.

This beer has a strong smell of sugar and caramel. And some earthy fruit. Maybe fig or raisin. Somewhat musty. No hop aroma, c/w style.

The cool beer hits the tongue and after the initial wave of soft carbonation, you get the hint of malt before a wave of alcohol and warmth crashes down. The malt makes its way and the bitterness from the alcohol recedes but lingers. Hops are not evident. Rum taste. Earthy fruit taste. Thick and chewy. Surprisingly not too cloying. Sweet aftertaste.

Full bodied. High alcohol. Wow, using alcohol to balance the malt -- now I understand bocks.

All bocks I've had in the past were just pale ales/bitters in disguise. However, while it may be true to style, the alcoholic bitterness is a bit harsh on my tongue, in a way different from hop bitterness. I can't imagine drinking much of this.

Incidentally, Michael Jackson calls this a strong lager/double bock.

Photo of abcsofbeer
2.8/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pale to medium amber color. Head is small. Smell is of strong alcohol, like wine. Taste follows the high abv of 11%, strong alchohol. At first, I took large tastes, but realized it is better sipped, given the fruity, wine flavor. I finished the bottle, but don't think I will be buying another. This was my first try at a really strong ale and I think I will stick to others.

Photo of 99bottles
3.43/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours an impressive red-copper color. It has a wimpy little head of effervescence that departs shortly thereafter.

Smell: Whoa. Alcohol. Fruity esters and malts. Faint charcoal.

Taste: Very thick malt at first and then....BAM!!!! Burned lumber. It really tastes like the bark of a tree and smoke. The fruit taste in the viscous malts is covered by a very strong wooden aftertaste. I can feel the small hop contribution to this, but I expected more of the sweetness to come through. It's very different. Alcohol comes right at you, but not in a puckering or cloying way. Very unique.

Mouthfeel: This beer has almost no carbonation. It probably doesn't need it, but whew. It's a pint glassed shot of brandy in terms of mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Ummm, I'm almost curious to see what might happen. This beer is serious. It's as if no attempt is made to cover the large ABV in this beer. I like that, and it adds to the character, but in all honesty, I couldn't have another even if I wanted to. This would be the best nightcap ever if you could find a chap willing to split it with you. It's a bruiser for sure.

EKU 28 from Kulmbacher Brauerei AG
88 out of 100 based on 643 ratings.