Schell's Chimney Sweep - August Schell Brewing Company

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Schell's Chimney SweepSchell's Chimney Sweep

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BA SCORE
84
good

166 Ratings
THE BROS
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Ratings: 166
Reviews: 49
rAvg: 3.71
pDev: 13.75%
Wants: 1
Gots: 20 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
August Schell Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jera1350 on 11-16-2012

Dark and mysterious, with an intriguing wisp of smoke, a chimney sweep has long been considered a source of good luck. Schell’s Chimney Sweep draws its inspiration from these lucky individuals and the rich dark lagers of Upper Franconia in Germany. Expect a black lager with a roasty maltiness, sturdy hop bitterness and an underlying subtle smokiness.

31 IBU
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 166 | Reviews: 49
Reviews by SD-Alefan:
More User Reviews:
Photo of Pintofbrown
3.8/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Chimney Sweep was swept into a nonic pint. Chim-chim-chi-roo!

A fluffy mass of ecru foam billows to about two-fingers in width, atop a dark brown body with solid streaks of crimson.

The nose softly expresses some wheat, milk chocolate, and barely there roastiness. Some estery notes swirl in and out as well, different. This nose just needs to be bold!

Oh, so much better! Nice to meet you smoked dark lager! The palate is engulfed by smoked ham straight away, revealing the smoked quality that the beer drinker was so hopefully expecting in the aroma profile. The finish expresses a roasted quality with some caramel malt sweetness. That sweetness contributes a milk chocolate note kiss that hangs long after the swallow.

Chimney Sweep feels heavier where medium bodied beers are concerned, creaminess providing a nice lift off the tongue. A crisp lager that goes down smooth.

Chimney Sweep mucks about on the nose for sure, too soft and not smokey at all. The palate finally introduces the smokiness and roasted qualities, with a pleasant splash of sweetness. Again, the flavors could be more bold, but try to drink this and not enjoy it!

Photo of bsp77
4.18/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into Pint.

Appearance: Very dark reddish-brown with moderate tan head.

Smell: Quite roasty, with coffee and bitter chocolate. Some dark fruit and smoke.

Taste: Mix of coffee, dark chocolate and dark fruit upfront. Lingering smokiness on the finish that is light but noticeable.

Feel: Crisp and clean like a lager but with additional smoothness. Semi-dry finish.

Overall: Fantastic Schwarzbier with some Rauchbier thrown in for shits and giggles. This is the fifth new beer I have had from Schell's this year, and it is the best.

Photo of NilocRellim
3.45/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle.

Dark, reddish-black in colour with a tan head. Smells like a standard black-ale. Subtle hop nose with a fair bit of smokiness. The taste was much more mellow than expected. It was malty and smokey with a clean finish.

Would I buy it again? Probably.

Photo of MattyG85
4.33/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams "Perfect Pint" glass.

Appearance: Pours a very dark brownish black with a hint of ruby. Lots of rising bubbles and a huge five finger light tan head with good retention. Leaves a lot of creamy lacing around the glass.

Smell: A roasty malt driven aroma that is smokey and fairly sweet. Roasted malts with good hints of chocolate, burnt caramel, toffee, biscuit, cream, coffee, and smoke with a subtle beef jerky like scent. Decent hints of earthy and grassy hops that provide a nice balancing bitterness to the dark sweetness. A pretty good dark lager aroma.

Taste: Like the aroma hints, a roasty and smokey taste that is well balanced. Dark roasted malts with a taste of dark and milk chocolate, burnt caramel, toffee, cream, biscuit, coffee, and a nice kick of smoke.A little bit of nuts and burnt sugars also is tasted. A fairly earthy background with a decent amount of earthy hop bitterness providing some dryness. A really nice balanced taste with some smoke lingering throughout.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Very creamy and silky. Finishes somewhat dry.

Overall: A really good version of a dark Germain style lager. Good dark roasty taste while still keeping it fairly light and balanced.

Photo of LXIXME
4.12/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Small light brown head settles into a lice lacing above a clear reddish brown colored beer.

Sweet roasted toffee, caramel, dark almost burnt chocolate, a french liqueur aroma and more.

Dark roasted malts with toffee, a bit of dark bakers chocolates, caramelized sugars come through in the taste.

A light dryish aftertaste that brings with it some of the darker aspects of the taste with this medium bodied drink.

Surprisingly good, I had a few Schell's beers that really weren't that good.

Photo of tempest
3.97/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle at Four Firkins and paired it with a piece of Thanksgiving pecan pie. The aroma has a clean mix of caramel and cocoa malts, with a mild roasted edge. The flavor mixes in a touch of smoke to the dry chocolate and toffee to make a tasty black lager that's not too thick, but by no means simple. Give it a try.

Photo of Serick507
3.55/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.75

Enjoyed from a bottle into a silo glass

A: Black right away, deep ruby/ amber in the light with one finger of a cream colored head and a small amount of bubbles

S: Roasted malts with a smokey charcoal grill tone

T: Classic Schell's malt forwardness,roasted malts, little bit of chocolate, and a nice smokiness like camp fire or cook outs.

M: light with less carbonation.

O: It's a good black lager, nice balance, not to smokey for my taste, would go great with a burger or brat. It's warm smokey, clean and dry. The mouth could be a little more for me and the flavor isn't so bold. But it's another solid well crafted beer from Schell's.

Photo of morimech
4.13/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark brown with an attractive two finger head that caps the glass off nicely. The head settles to a thick cap. Moderate amount of sticky lacing is left down the glass.

Interesting aroma that consists of chocolate and caramel with a pleasant smoke component. Maybe a little noble hops as well.

In the flavor there are notes of chocolate, caramel, a touch of roast, and smoke. The smoke flavor is just like what you get from rauchbiers from Bamberg but just not as strong. Solid bitterness with some grassy hop flavor.

Light body with adequate carbonation. Feels just like almost all August Schell lagers. Good but nothing spectacular.

A combination of a schwarzbier and a rauchbier. Not as refreshing and easy to drink as other schwarzbiers because of the smoke and roast, but this is unique and should definately pique the interest of smokey beer lovers.

Photo of mcrow24
3.79/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Dark nearly black, with a finger's worth brown tinted head.

S: Light smells of malty bread and roasted grain.

T: Roasted malt, charred flavors with a caramel hint an a nice hit of bitterness.

M: Medium bodied, slight creamy feel with low to medium carbonation.

Overall: Good dark beer, with a good bitterness but not overly strong in comparison to other styles.

Photo of emerge077
3.93/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black in the glass though some light gets through around the edges, rendering a slightly brownish clear highlight. Thin layer of soft offwhite foam across the surface, that parts fairly soon without much lacing to speak of. MInor sudsy spots after a swirl and sip.

Softly roasty aroma, sweet fruity plum, carob or cocoa. Dry taste, less sweet than the aroma lets on, though there is a slight amount. Dry cocoa, light unsweetened chocolate, dried dark fruit. Light and drinkable, though not without substantial flavor. Drinks like a nice porter more than a schwarzbier, and that's a good thing.

Photo of CraigP83
3.98/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Dark dark dark crimson.Smell is roasted malts. Taste is very smoky, dry, slight bitterness. Has a little cigarette ash taste to it

Photo of Slim_720
1.6/5  rDev -56.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Carbonated liquid smoke. Absolutely awful....

Photo of bmike86
4.38/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a 12 pack of Schell’s Chimney Sweep from South Lyndale Liquors in Minneapolis, MN.

Appearance --- a dark black color, when lifted towards the light it appears to be more of a very dark brownish red/clear light golden yellow color. Two to three finger cream-ish head, a nice looking lace left trailing down the glass

Smell --- roasted malts, with some subtle smokiness to it

Taste --- roasted malts and an enjoyable smoke to it, background appears to have some chocolate and caramel to it

Mouth feel --- nice medium body with all around smoothness to it, carbonation up front and dry finish

Overall --- I did not know what to expect from this, but figured I would give it a chance. I was initially curious about it, and the description on the packaging sold me on the purchase. Smoked beers are generally hit or miss for me, but this one I genuinely enjoyed. It is easily my new favorite winter seasonal. A very well done offering by Schell’s. If anyone is on the fence when coming across this one, I definitely recommend a try. Prost!

Photo of DrDemento456
3.78/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Wow is this a dark Schwarbier! Pitch black like a stout or imperial with a full inch of opaque colored head. Great sticky lacing too.

S - Smell is rather nice some mild roast and grains, yet it's much lighter than German counterparts.

T - Much more balanced with chocolate malts, some toasted grains, mild skunk (which is not that harsh) and some roasted malt giving it a mild smoky finish. Not great but not bad.

M - Much drier than I expected with a light to medium body.

Overall it's not that great but an above average take on the style. Worth picking up for a cheap Schwarbier.

Photo of GeezLynn
4.22/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark brown body with an off-white head of suds. Good retention.
S: Rich malty aroma. Chocolate, licorice and lager yeast. Smells almost as good as some of my favorite doppelbocks.
T: In contrast to the sweeter (suggesting) nose, flavor packs an assertive initial smokeyness. Not rauchbeer level, but more than a hint. A big dose of black and roasted malts follow the smoke, ending with a bit of sweetness that seems to pick up as it warms.
M: Body is on the medium to heavy side with full, fine carbonation. Works well with the flavors. Despite sweetness, it still maintains a fairly dry feel.

Enjoying how this beer packs a dense load of flavors without being a huge, highly alcoholic imperial. A great beer in a style lacking for great, widely available options in the U.S. This is up there with Black Bavarian.

Photo of PieOhMy
4.14/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

This is an old friend that I am just getting around to reviewing.

Poured into snifter.

A Black. Thick creamy tan head remains. Lacing follows down the glass.

S Sweet dark fruit. Smokey. Chocolate. Roasted malt and almonds. Nutmeg.

T Awesome! Roasted malts right up front. Sweetness (maybe some plum or cherry). Subdued spice. Smoke but not that messy in your face smoke that some beers of the style have. A hint of bitterness follows.

M Pretty full. Nice and creamy. Finish is smooth. The burnt/roastiness lingers.

O Great beer. Schell's puts out some top-notch stuff and this may be my favorite of their's. They stay true to the style but still find a way to expand and leave their personal mark.

Photo of JamesMN
3.44/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Very dark nut brown with decent clarity and visible effervescence. Pours a foamy two finger tan head.

Aroma: Smoke and charred oak. There may be other aromas here but the smoke covers them up.

Taste: Starts with a mellow mix of medium to dark malts with a bit of a bready flavor. There is some hop bitterness along with a slight grassy character. In the second half the bitterness increases and the flavor becomes very smokey. The finish is more of the same with a feeling like you've inhaled the fumes from a wet bonfire pit. It's an interesting flavor but there are other beers that achieve the same effect with more balance and a more refined smoke flavor. At 5.2% ABV it doesn't skimp on flavor, it is decently robust.

Mouthfeel: Just below medium in body with lots of carbonation that adds to the bitterness giving the palate a bit of a punch right before the finish. Average drinkability but the smokey flavor makes it a one and done scenario.

Final Thoughts: If it's offered as part of a variety six-pack or you can find one bottle it would be worth the purchase. However, I couldn't see myself drinking more than one of these in an evening. If you like smoked beers (and lagers) then this would be one to 'tick' for you. Would I drink it again? Doubtful.

Photo of Foam
3.06/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Got a couple single bottles to try . Didn't know it was a schwarzbier until I looked at b.a.
Definetly not at the level of Monchshof / Kostritzer but an ok American take on the style ...
I'd say it's a good session schwarzbier seeing as how it's just 5.2% abv .
Probably good with roasted meat and other hearty dishes . Probably a good cheddar cheese pairing, as well, something tells me .
A fairly thin consistency unlike its German counter-parts which seem to have more soul and heft to them .
A slighty caramel roasty aroma when sniffed .
Taste is roasted malt lager darkness .
Mouthfeel is perhaps its best attribute . A nice rounded slightly fruity thing going on .
I'd be in no hurry to probably ever buy this again but , oh well .

Photo of shadow1961
3.97/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

August Schell's Chimney Sweep pours a deep cola-colored brew under a cap of loose tan foam. The nose is dark malt and a bare hint of smoke- applewood, maybe? Up front is a good dark roasty/bready flavor and that note of smoke, off the back, mildly bitter herbal hops for balance. It has a medium body to my taste, off dry, and very drinkable. I'll miss Schell's Stout (which Chimney Sweep is replacing)- I imagine it was a bit out of August Schell's institutional contort zone, though their Chimney Sweep is German all the way…

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
4/5  rDev +7.8%

Poured into a fiesta ware glass.

Appearance (4) : A dark plum/black body, 80% opaque, with a three fingered khaki colored head on top. Head remains steady and recedes very slowly.

Aroma (4) : Oat, blueberry, wheat, plum, and a faint dusty smell. Some grape stem, too. Bouquet is medium to strong.

Taste (4) : A rich roasted flavor with a hint of smoke at the end. In the middle are fire-roasted plums, fig, hop leaf, and barley malts. It finishes strong and robust, with the smokey character remaining on the palate.

Mouthfeel (4) : Light to medium bodied, stiff and woody, lightly carbonated with a parched finish.

Overall (4) : This beer is a double edged sword - great for easy-drinking beer nights, and great for rich and flavorful beer nights. It drinks like a lager, but tastes like a hand crafted ale. I highly recommend Schell's Chimney Sweep. Cheers!

Photo of KarlHungus
4.57/5  rDev +23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer pours a dark brown color with ruby hues along the edges of the glass. The head is one inch in height, and recedes slowly into a small cap of lacing. The aroma is of caramel, roasted malt, toast, smoke, and hints of milk chocolate. There is a lot going on in the aroma of this beer, and the taste is no exception to that. There are lots of caramel and roasted malt notes with a subtle yet apparent smokiness that permeates the palate tying everything together. Like the aroma, there are some nice backing notes of toast and chocolate. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a chewy texture, and moderate carbonation. Overall, this is a really, really well done beer in a style (Munich Dunkel/Schwarzbier) that I enjoy immensely. I can see myself drinking a lot of this over the course of a tough winter and wet spring.

Photo of herman77
3.95/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Dark brown and near black when its in the glass. Smaller off white/khaki head.

S: Carmel, chocolate and a nice mild smokiness.

T: Lots of bread, carmel and roasted malts up front. A little sweet, more sweet than I would think. Then some smoke comes and balances that out. Not smokey like a rauchbier or, but it's there for sure. Some hop bitterness in the finish balances with a lingering smokiness. Still has a bit of that nice lager crispness to it just like most of Schell's beers do.

M: Medium body. Average carbonation. Somewhat smooth.

O: Fairly solid. Decent drinkability. I'm a little bummed this replaced Schell's Stout though. Looking forward to see what they replace this with once Spring roles around since this is their extended winter seasonal.

Photo of zeff80
3.97/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an opaque, jet-black color with a one-finger, light brown colored head. It left sudsy trails of lace on the glass.

S - It smelled fairly smokey with chocolate and caramel notes.

T - It tasted of smoke, chocolate and roasted maltiness. A touch of caramel, too.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied brew with a dry finish.

O - This is a very nice schwarzbier. Another good beer from August Schell in a style that most overlook.

Photo of garymuchow
4.01/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Common Schell's lager aroma (it must be the water as it is unique and frequent). Darker malt aroma softly swirls around softly.
Attractive and classic looking lager. Brilliantly clear. Full rich dark head. Deep garnet colors. Nice.
Full malt flavor with hints of smokiness rolling through the palate. Mmmmm. Reasonably drying and holding a quite long finish (esp. for a lager). Just enough hop presence in both flavor and cutting of some of the sweetness.
Classically rich lager Schell's beer. Helps smooth this out, but does limit drinkability somewhat, although I could do two fairly easily. Soft and full carbonation.
This warms nicely too- the caramel flavors start to show through without any excess sweetness. Seems to hold some ale qualities, but clearly a lager, and an enjoyable one too.

Photo of harrymel
3.87/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Best by 14JUN13

It's near black with some nut brown hues below a fine creamy toasted sheet. Smells nice and roasty with soil, char, toast, some prunes and cocoa. Flavor follows suit with some nice roasted malts, dry soil, some hints of cocoa and leather - a really nice beer. Nice light body with a crispy carbonation and a wet finish (surprisingly). I like this beer quite a bit.

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Schell's Chimney Sweep from August Schell Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 166 ratings.