Schlafly Sessions Black Lager Schwarzbier - The Schlafly Tap Room
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Ratings: 80 | Reviews: 38 | Display Reviews Only:
3.76/5 rDev +3.3%
Where Lagers are generally assumed to be pale straw, the face lift of schwarz gives it the opposite appearance. In juxtaposition, dark beers are assumed rich or bold where this Lager is lighter bodied and even crisp! What the hell's going on!
Its dark appearance strikes the eye as black ...at first. Upon further examination, the beer is dark ruby instead and is only noticeable because of its brilliant clarity as is seen through its ribbons of low light. A creamy colored and semi-firm foam stance holds its structure well and laces randomly as the beer fades.
Fresh-ground coffee, burnt caramel and dark fruit rise to greet the nose with the first whiff. A slight cola-like note provides its caramel-like sweet scent that ties together the charred grain, herbal hops and dark chocolate notes. Its tangy and earthy- like chicory or licorice but in the most friendly way.
Its bittersweet taste is due to its dominant char flavor, that shies away from burnt notes, and its supporting kettle caramelization of pilsner malt. Its balance battles out over the early taste while the middle palate separates the charred toast flavor from the sweetness and links up harmoneously with spicy hops that trail in finish. Easily seen as coffee-type or cocoa bitterness, the finish is delicately earthen with that chicory-licorice blend that was picked up by the nose.
The beer's delicate texture is light even though its taste is more robust. Drinking like Pilsner, the beer's early creaminess separates into trailing bubbles and a linger of malt. Cola-like lightness persists across the middle and lands the beer into a slight watery impression until the hop dryness and light alcohol warmth crispens things up to close the session.
With the likeness of stout-like char upon a body of Lager, Schlafly's Black Lager is easy drinking and characterful but without the challenge of highly complex flavors or high alcohol rates. It's ideal for barbecue and chocolate desserts.
11-22-2013 05:40:01 | More by BEERchitect
3.98/5 rDev +9.3%
A - Poured out an opaque, jet black color with a one-finger head of foam. It left thin rings of sticky lace on the glass.
S - It smelled very roasty with some floral notes. Nice chocolate aromas.
T - It tasted of chocolate, toffee and caramel. Some subtle bitterness adds balance.
M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A medium bodied brew with a dry finish.
O - This is a very solid schwarzbier. Schlafly is so consistently good with everything they brew.
11-05-2011 20:36:30 | More by zeff80
3.9/5 rDev +7.1%
Freshness date of 10-24-11
Pours an effervescent mahogany with 3 fingers of tan head. Good head retention & lacing
S: Dark fruit, charred grain & choclate notes
T: Charred grain, stone fruit & some dark chcolate up front.Dark choclate, dryness & a touch of herbal hop spice as this warms, maybe even a touch of vanilla on the edges. Finishes sweet with a touch of caramel & a nice roastyness
MFL Creamy, medium bodied, nice balance
Good take on the style, easy to drink. As usual these guys do a good beer at a nice price
12-22-2011 03:37:05 | More by russpowell
4.05/5 rDev +11.3%
I scored this on my most recent visit to Max's in Baltimore and passed one on to my local CAN Trader, tone77 for his inclusion in his own CANQuest (TM).
It is a gorgeous CAN, employing metallic brick red, golden yellow and stark black in its coloring. From the CAN: "Bold Flavor"; "Seasonal".
The Crack was loud and inspiring, so I employed an inverted Glug into my Schlafly CAN Sessions CAN-shaped glass. I had two fingers of dense, light-tan head with good retention. Color was garnet (?)/ruby (?) (SRM = > 34, < 44) with NE-quality clarity. Nose smelled very chocolaty and I was ready for some beer to hit me. Mouthfeel was big and full and the taste was both caramel and chocolate and I was really digging it. I ate some spicy curried chicken for lunch and this was a welcome respite from the heat. Finish was smoky, chocolaty and caramel. This was more in line with what I expect from Schlafly and I wish that I had another for the upcoming Hula in the Coola Day (01 Feb, annually). Man, I really dig drinking well-made lagers when there are so many crappy ones on the market.
12-22-2013 18:26:39 | More by woodychandler
4.1/5 rDev +12.6%
Pours a clear, dark brown color. 1/3 inch head of an off-tan color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of sweet malt, slight roasted malt, yeast, pale malt, slight chocolate, and a hint of hop. Fits the style of a Schwarzbier. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, slight roasted malt, slight hops, slight chocolate, hint of pale malt, and a hint of yeast. Overall, great appearance, good blend, body, and aroma.
06-22-2011 21:14:11 | More by Tone
3.88/5 rDev +6.6%
12 ounce bottle, bottled on 12/9/2011. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a mahogany brown color with about a half inch off-white head. Both the head retention and lacing are decent enough. The brew smells like roasted and bready malt, coffee, nuts and some chocolate. Taste is similar to the aroma, but there's the addition of some caramel and a bit of an earthy flavor. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it's a bit creamy and goes down easy. I think it's a solid brew overall. I'd buy this one again, hopefully a fresher bottle next time around. Still, even now it's worth a try at $1.75 for a single bottle. Purchased at Party Town, Florence, KY.
04-27-2012 23:11:40 | More by bluejacket74
2.95/5 rDev -19%
Another canned beer from the creator of the canquest, woodychandler. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a cola color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is damn near non existent. The faintest notes of malts. Taste is light, mild, some roasted malts, really not much going on. Feels light in the mouth and overall nothing special about this beer, mediocre at best.
11-29-2013 17:36:22 | More by tone77
3.9/5 rDev +7.1%
A: Pours a seriously attractive mahogany with a thick, puffy khaki head.
S: Very clean on the nose with hints of mocha, roasted grain, and heavy cream.
T: Notes of heavy cream, molasses, dark chocolate, coffee, roasted grain, and grassy, herbal hops wash across the palate. The finish is balanced and flavorful with a pleasant mixture of grassy hop and toasty, chocolatey malt flavors.
M: Light to medium in body and very creamy. Carbonation is subtle, but just firm enough to keep this lager from feeling watery.
O: This is a quality schwarzbier. Schlafly continues to impress me.
12-29-2011 20:51:20 | More by mrfrancis
3.73/5 rDev +2.5%
Guess I sampled the late 2004 batch. I liked the pour, deep brown with good lite brown head that left small laces. It had that black beer aroma to it, earthy, grainy just a hint of malt. Taste was very good, low carbonation with almost no hop kick. Nice lite to medium texture thoughout the pint. Could drink many of these if the Taproom didnt offer so many other enticing libations.
02-14-2005 14:25:23 | More by Vancer
3.5/5 rDev -3.8%
12 oz can, Aug 07 2013 stamped on the bottom of the can.
just short of black, extremely dark brown. very white creamy thick head. great retention and lacing. not much aroma. nice smooth flavors in the taste - just a touch of roast and some sweetness, some faint mild chocolate. thicker mouthfeel, slick, moderate carbonation. Easy drinkin' .
12-07-2013 05:15:10 | More by jmdrpi
3.59/5 rDev -1.4%
Nice, light, sessionable lager, I'm sure just what Schlafly was aiming for. Pours a dark brown color into a pint glass. Lots of light coming through on the sides and bottom of the glass. A hard pour gives a big light tan head with somewhat less than average retention, just fades to a ring around the glass. Small patches of spotty lacing.
Aroma is very light, some roasted malt.
Flavor is good, mostly roasted malt and a little coffee. Mouthfeel is light and crisp, just the right amount of carbonation.
Overall this is a good, refreshing summertime/session lager.
06-13-2014 00:54:37 | More by JayQue
3.2/5 rDev -12.1%
Pours an opaque deep brown color with amber highlights and a solid one inch khaki head that dissipates into a layer of foam across the surface.
Nutty, toasted malt and a bit of roast character comprise the aroma, with a bit of caramel sweetness and toffee surfacing late.
Flavor is fairly sweet, almost cola-like, with background notes of tobacco and a touch of roast malt at the finish. There's an underlying chocolate note leading into a fair amount of toasted breadcrust. Fruity esters emerge as it warms, along with a bit of acrid flavor.
Body is moderate to light, with fairly high carbonation and a slight astringency.
Overall, not as roasty as I had hoped. It's pretty sweet for the style and lacks complexity of the malt character.
06-16-2012 06:43:18 | More by barczar
3.9/5 rDev +7.1%
Pretty dark, brown to almost black and clear, with a nice two finger head that lasted, leaving nice lace.
Roasty and chocolatey in both smell and taste. Great light smokiness too. A bit of toffee and just a touch of hops too. Quite tasty and easy to drink.
Medium body with a lightly roasty aftertaste. I'm glad I bought a sixer of this one.
11-06-2011 18:53:03 | More by AlCaponeJunior
3.9/5 rDev +7.1%
A: Pours a very deep mahogany color with a nice tan head that fades slowly to lacing.
S: Aroma of roasted malt, some nuts, and a bit of chocolate.
T: Flavor of roasted malt and some nuttiness with a bit of chocolate sweetness. A nice bitterness throughout and a dry finish.
F: Fairly medium body, smooth with a somewhat creamy texture. Very nice balance.
O: Very enjoyable offering. Not an overpowering beer, but still a beer with lots of character compared to other of this style I have tried. Well worth checking out.
01-07-2012 22:45:07 | More by soju6
3.95/5 rDev +8.5%
Enjoyed on-tap @ Bailey's Range in St. Louis, MO for $5 ("DINNER" size). Tapped from the Black Schlafly Handle w/ a Tan "Schwarzbier" label into a 16oz Pint Glass.
Aroma- Good amount of malt included with some a nice yeasty character. Everything easy going, clean, and nothing big jumps out at me.
Appearance- Received with a 1 finger head that stays for the average amount of time. Has a dark brown colored body but clear within. Leaves a bit of lacing behind.
Flavor- Malty, clean, and sweet. Can tell there is Munich-malt used and has a good amount of noble hops. Light-Medium bitterness but mostly smooth and clean.
Mouthfeel- Light-Medium Bodied, Light-Medium Carbonation, Smooth, and leaves awesome roastiness on the palate!
Overall Impression- While having this many times before, once again, great! Would enjoy many more to come! This is one of my favorites from Schlafly this month and will be going back to this. Would recommend grabbing a 6-pack of this because your friends will also enjoy this smooth, easy going black bier. Enjoy!
12-22-2011 23:53:25 | More by DCon
Schlafly Sessions Black Lager Schwarzbier from The Schlafly Tap Room
83 out of 100 based on 80 ratings.