Schell's Schmaltz's Alt - August Schell Brewing Company
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Ratings: 157 | Reviews: 105 | Display Reviews Only:
3.68/5 rDev -1.6%
Toasted pecan brown with orange accents. When backlit with bright sunshine, the beer is dark garnet with scarlet highlights. The chocolate milkshake colored head is whipped frothy and is sticky enough to grace the glass with quite a bit of sudsy lace. Schmaltz's (is a good looking) Alt.
Unfortuanately, the aroma is metallic more than anything else. Patience is rewarded with a hint of cocoa powder and a certain earthiness. Here's hoping the flavor is better or this will be a long 12 ounces. Note: a significant improvement by the bottom of the glass has been duly rewarded.
Nice comeback on the taste buds. As far as I can determine (given my less than abundant altbier experience) Schmaltz's Alt fits the style guidelines to a 'T'. It tastes like a brown ale in some respects, yet it has a certain altbier quality that I'm at a loss to nail down precisely.
Cocoa and less-than-sweet caramel lead the way, with overripe apples and figs following close behind. I'm surprised at the fruitiness and not a bit surprised at the earthy-herbal hoppiness. This is pretty good beer, but it doesn't quite deserve the next highest flavor score. It's very close, though.
Although the mouthfeel is no more than light-medium in heft, it's impressively, expansively creamy. What more could one ask for in a relatively low gravity ale?
It's great that August Schell decided to bring back Schmaltz's Alt as part of their Brewer's Select series because it's one of their best beers. Too bad more craft brewers don't try their hand at this style. A sixer every winter isn't out of the question at all.
02-15-2008 13:57:39 | More by BuckeyeNation
4/5 rDev +7%
Poured a very clear copper amber with some small visible carbonation and a decent two finger high head of white fomay lace. Decent retention left behind some nice side glass lace and a decent film across the top. The aroma was really packed with tons of bready malts. Cereal grains taking over as it warms up with a decent musty sort of smell. Very much full of malt hear with a touch of barley.
Very sort of muted. A quick clean taste that really did not have much of a follow though to it. It really kinda was dominated by the cereal grains and earthy bread like malts that drown out anything else that might have been trying to make a run at coming forward. Very smooth with a crisp clean finish. Not a ton of carbnation and the body itself was very light Very nice actually as there was nothing really holding you back from having multiples of this. Low abv and a very smooth flavor with a crisp finish lend itself well tothis.
Overall this was a decent beer, nothing really spectaculat just a decent beer, I would go to it in a pinch for sure. But faced with other options I would probably not.
04-23-2011 01:28:32 | More by mikesgroove
3.9/5 rDev +4.3%
I seemed to like this beer more than many others who also reviewed this beer,pours a nice medium/dark brown with a decent slightly off white head.Aroma is buttery with some light malty fruitiness,taste is very buttery with some big toffee notes and as it warmed it turned into a raisin like flavor.I think a real nice beer if drank at a good temp a nice find.
03-20-2004 20:08:16 | More by oberon
3.9/5 rDev +4.3%
Single bottle from a mixed Winter 12 pack.
A - A very clear brew with a burgundy color. Its cappuccino-like head was bubbly and foam lasted fairly long and left some wisps of lace on the glass.
S - Aroma was rich and malty sweet. There was a very mild floral presence.
T - A very good alt. Malty with caramel and sweet bread flavors. It had enough grassy hop bite to add bitterness and balance.
M - A very smooth lager with a crisp dry finish. It is light to medium-bodied.
D - This is another solid brew from August Schell that really nails the style.
01-10-2011 00:40:37 | More by zeff80
3.5/5 rDev -6.4%
Presentation: 12 oz brown long neck bottle with no freshness date.
Appearance: Deep tawny brown with reddish hues, thick and sticky light tan lace that foams up well and leaves a decent lace in its wake.
Smell: Clean dark malt aroma of unsweetened chocolate, caramel and a mild husk in the nose. Very little hop in the smell though some alcohol in noticeable.
Taste: Creamy and smooth on the palate, shows off lots of malt character right away. Full in body with a moderate carbonation. Big splashes of unsweetened chocolate and lightly roasted coffee take control of the flavour threshold. Hop bitterness is right on the cusp of keeping things balanced, nice chewy middle of malt sweetness, mellow alcohol and caramel. A bite both from the hops and dark malts jump out of the carbonation to bring on the finish. There is somewhat of a carob-like finish, quite clean and does not dry up that much at all.
Notes: One of the more robust altbiers out there, perhaps a bit too much in the roasted malt flavours. This could easily be confused with a brown porter. None the less a tasty brew that should be tried by all.
11-05-2001 23:14:37 | More by Jason
2.95/5 rDev -21.1%
It's says on the label a dark German style ale, I was expecting a deep copper due to the alt style, but this one takes on a similar appearance as a Schwarzbier. deep ruby with a tan head leaves efficient lacing nice full rings at that. Aroma contains some fruity tones based from the malt but there is an astringent metallic offness in the background. Taste conists of darker roasts subtle fruit notes and a standoftish hop character, overall quite nice rolling toasted malts. Mouthfeel conists of soft chewy texture medium bodied ale not bad at all. Drinkability I am fine with just one nice beer but I prefer more pronounced flavors nothing from the August Schell Brewing is of Shock and Awe nature.
09-18-2003 00:44:38 | More by WVbeergeek
3.48/5 rDev -7%
Cheers to mothman for this one, thanks Ben! I remember this beer from the mid 90s & thought I had it back then, but not sure if Schell was brewing it then...
Pours an effervescent ebony tinged chestnut with a pinky of tan head. Head drops away quickly
, zero head retention & lacing
S: Jammy fruit & a touch of herbal hops
T: Jammy fruit, a touch of molasses & leafy hops & dryness up front. More fruittyness & leafy hops as this warms. Apricot & raisin mingle in the finish along with some woody hops
MF: Light/medium bodied, moderate carbonation & okay balance
Drinks pretty easy, not a classic alt IMO, but sessionable enough
07-10-2009 02:57:32 | More by russpowell
3.9/5 rDev +4.3%
I've enjoyed this brew many times over the years, but never truly stopped to consider it. There's something irresistible about the rhymy name and the label photo of sour Old Schmaltz sitting on a keg, stein in hand.
Color is a dark brown, almost black, with a fine, 1" creamy tan head. Aroma is largely clean and airy, but there are traces of cocoa and nuts. Hops are there, too, but laying low. On the palate, though, they reveal themselves in all their might. Big burst of fruitiness (bananas,and citrus, primarily!), that soon smooths out bigtime. The malt contingent is firm and swiftly becomes large and in charge. That doesn't stop an overriding fruitiness to continue to ride throughout the flavor and the finish. The rest of the drink is a well-rounded, and fruity flavor, with a slightly coppery edge. I'm no expert on alts, but I know what I like, and this is that.
04-18-2003 01:57:00 | More by feloniousmonk
3.58/5 rDev -4.3%
Thanks to swalden28 for sharing this bottle.
The beer pours a dark, clear brown color with a tan head. The aroma, as expected, is very malty. I get a lot of bread and toffee, with not too much else going on. The flavor is also very malty. There is a lot of toffee and caramel, with a little bit of chocolate thrown in. There is also a touch of grass from the hops. Overall, the beer is very dry. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.
06-03-2012 03:09:10 | More by Mora2000
3.83/5 rDev +2.4%
Bottle Code 051509, I'm guessing that a drink before date.
Pours a clear brown with a short off-white head. Smells of darkly toasted toasted bread. The hops come out in the aftertaste with a spicy blend of herb and citrus behind dry bready cocoa and nuts. Overall, very tasty and drinkable. Worth picking up for a different sort of alt.
12-28-2008 04:22:43 | More by tempest
3.83/5 rDev +2.4%
(Served in an American pint glass)
A-Light creamy white head sits on tops of a dark opaque body that lets a tint of light through.
S- caramel malt notes with a pretty clean smell
T- Light chocolate malt with some notes of caramel malt and a definite hint of dark burnt malt in the background. The hops finish is very light and a nice balance
M- this beer has a medium mouthfeel with no fizz or astringency
D-This sample was a bit smoother than last time but it still has a strange dark burnt malt to the taste. It taste much different that when I used to drink 10 plus years ago. I remember a very nice rounded malt but this one just doesn't have that character.
07-16-2005 18:50:22 | More by rhoadsrage
3.63/5 rDev -2.9%
Pours a five finger, light brown head that fades to a shallow layer leaving traces of lace. Deep mahogeny color. Light carbonation and medium bodied. Strong malty nose. Starts as sweet molasses becoming balanced at finish, slight burnt molasses aftertaste. New label has ABV at 5.1%. $1.29 for a 12oz bottle from John's Grocery Iowa City, IA.
12-18-2006 23:30:43 | More by jdhilt
United Kingdom (Wales)
3.7/5 rDev -1.1%
Color is a dark mocha brown. Thin light tan head the fizzles down quickly.
Smell is of dry roasted malts and slight hints of chocolate. Taste is very similiar, very malty. Hints of dark chocolate also.
Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy. Goes down nice.
This is an easy to drink beer for it being dark. Also, it only has 5.1% so you can enjoy a few of these.
12-23-2008 05:09:37 | More by mothman
3.83/5 rDev +2.4%
Small to medium sized light tan head stays a bit at a quarter inch frothy layer covering a clear darker brown with some deep wine reddish hints colored beer.
Dark well roasted grain malts aroma that seem to have a earthy quality.
Earthy dark roasted malts taste, with traces of dark chocolates coming through. Seems like they might be a bit more prominent if the beer were to warm a bit, but I doubt that's going to happen.
A dryish almost chalky aftertaste, almost like the feel of a small taste of dark bakers chocolate, with a bit of the roasted malts tastes hanging around with this medium to medium full bodied beer.
Pretty decent tasting beer considering it's in the less than $10 six-pack range of beers.
11-28-2013 21:50:03 | More by LXIXME
3.98/5 rDev +6.4%
This beer is a deep deep copper color. Pretty dark for an alt. The slight beige head becomes only a colar in seconds. Lacing is negligible. A fairly distinct hoppy nose on this alt. The taste is very nice, but a little different than I'd expect from an alt. It doesn't have that nice mellow characteristic typical of cold lagered alts. What is does have is a nice blend of herbal hop notes and roasted malt tones. This is one of the more roasty alts I've had. Medium-full in body. Pretty tasty beer here.
10-14-2002 21:41:47 | More by Bighuge
3.88/5 rDev +3.7%
Pours a dark amber color with lighter amber along the bottom of the glass. 1/4 inch head of a pale tan color. Slight retention and slight lacing. Smells of sweet malt, yeast, slight roasted malt, and slight hops. Fits the style of an Altbier. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp with a high carbonation level. Tastes of yeast up front, sweet malt, roasted malt, and slight hop in the finish. Overall, one of the better Altbier's I've had - smooth, good blend, and a nice body.
07-07-2009 05:36:00 | More by Tone
3.6/5 rDev -3.7%
As it sets in my glass a deep mahogany, almost an opaque brown, the head is commodious, the texture is creamy and light tan in color, as it erodes the lace formed is a thick and sticky sheet upon the glass. Lots of malt in the nose, sweet caramel, a tad peatish, fresh and appealing, the start sweet, and the top lean in its feel. Finish is stinging in its acidity, the hops pleasing to the palate, dry and lingering aftertaste, a quite quaffable beer at any rate.
04-15-2003 16:54:22 | More by Gusler
3.65/5 rDev -2.4%
Color of very dark leathery brown nearly black with amber highlights, small but thickly loose tannish top that fades down and leaves minimal spotty lace. Smell is faint mild roasty malts, kinda woodish and wet dirt-like must. Taste is mild, somewhat subdued but present of roasted malts, maybe black malts as well, quite clean with a smokey softness, a bit of cocoa and a over all mineral like taste with a lingering dry finish thats a bit nutty. Feel is a light-medium body, quick thin start, quick thin finish. Nothing to overwhelming, its a very easy roasty calm beer that could be better in the taste but is still a good drinker, goes well with a grilled burger.
07-25-2003 01:02:45 | More by tavernjef
3.05/5 rDev -18.4%
The last time I had this was close to five years ago and I remember liking it even back then. My experience tonight is not so good. I get a definite fruity aroma, and sweet fruity taste with some chocolate tones. This in no-way compares to the Alaskan Alt I had a few weeks ago. I thought I may have a bad date but after checking the code thanks to a post on the forum it appears it is relatively fresh...Certainly not a horrible experience but I expected much more. One of my least favorite Schell's beers. I will try the rest and upgrade this review if it is warranted but right now this slightly above 3.0 rating may be a bit steep.
02-21-2002 02:14:18 | More by ZAP
3.18/5 rDev -15%
Poured with a huge, thick, rich, foamy, light tan, luscious, textured head and lots of lace. Odd aroma and flavor of Bavarian weisse beer. Otherwise pretty good beer.Opaque brownish black. Very soft flavors and body. Very good carbonation. Could be a session beer.
03-30-2007 03:55:18 | More by drpimento
4/5 rDev +7%
Very dark ruby in color. Probably the darkest altbier I've seen. Beige head is thin but tight and creamy.
Full malt aroma. Roasted carmel with faint chocolate. Slightly plummy. Little to no hops on the nose.
Taste is robust, with the toasted carmel leading the way. Chocolate and mocha hues are perceived. Some dark fruit sweetness (raisin and plum) make an appearance. Hops do just enough to balance the load. Needs further intergration (perhaps additional lagering) and give this one a boost in the hops dept. and it would be lovely. Still quite nice.
Medium-full bodied. Gets sticky and almost cloying at times, overwise very solid in the mouth.
A good stab at an alt, but not my favorite. I'd like to see more of these type of beers around
07-29-2002 23:21:04 | More by cokes
Schell's Schmaltz's Alt from August Schell Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 157 ratings.