Schlafly Sessions Black Lager Schwarzbier - The Schlafly Tap Room
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Ratings: 80 | Reviews: 38 | Display Reviews Only:
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
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
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
3.76/5 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
3.9/5 rDev +7.1%
Poured into a shaker pint glass.
The body is a ruby black, not quite brown. An off white head recedes to a light wisp, with very light lacing staying around.
The aroma is very faint on sweetness, but brings out roasted malts, grains, and a very sly grassy note.
The taste is very smooth. Roasted malts, faint coffee and chocolate, and a very slight hop finish.
Mouthfeel is medium to light.
Overall, a very drinkable brew. No wonder they canned it and made it part of their Can Sessions lineup.
10-05-2013 21:59:02 | More by JuicesFlowing
4/5 rDev +9.9%
Schlafly's Schwarzbier is a sentimental favorite, and my favorite lager.
That is to say it's one of the only lagers i would regularly drink if it wasn't a seasonal product.
The black lager introduces a strong roasted and smokey flavor to the wheat taste of a basic lager. It can best be described as an alcoholic iced coffee with a little wheat to it. I personally love it, but it wasn't released in 2012. In 2013 Schlafly released a canned version which i'll review separately after i've given it a try.
09-22-2013 12:35:22 | More by Pyramid_Head
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
3.5/5 rDev -3.8%
Bottling date of 10/27/11:
A - Body is dark brown with amber and ruby highlights. No hint of cloudiness. A finger of tan head forms. Retention is decent. No lacing.
S - Lightly toasted sweet malt aroma. Herbal spicy hops. Some fruity smell is present as well characteristic of caramel malts.
T - Lightly sweet and earthy up front. Flavoring hops are definitely prominent here. Not too bitter though. A bit more of the chocolate and caramel flavor from the dark malts come in toward the middle. Finish is hop-spiced with bitter cocoa and lemongrass. An interesting combo.
M - Thin mouthfeel. Well carbonated. Feels for the most part like a lager, but the hops were a little aggressive and took away some of the smoothness that I normally look for in a good lager.
05-04-2012 02:33:24 | More by rundocrun
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
3.93/5 rDev +8%
12 oz. bottle tried 10 Dec 2011. Served in the 0.4 L Eder Pils mug.
Large brown head. Well carbonated. Clear dark molasses brown in color. Light aroma, earthy, light roastiness, moderately sweet. Starts sweet and malty. Some roastiness. Medium body, moderate ethanol. Earthy, malty, finishes lightly sweet. A slight bit of mineral in the finish and aftertaste.
Not a complex beer but tasty.
03-21-2012 02:16:26 | More by htomsirveaux
3.58/5 rDev -1.6%
Presentation: 12oz brown pop top with nice label; bottled with love on 10-20-11.
Appearance: Poured into my Schlafly Kolsch (stange) glass to show off the color a bit, this pours nearly black, but shows deep chestnut/walnut brown when held up to the light. Light beige cap with good stick and a bit of lace.
Smell: Light roast, but much cleaner than your average porter or stout. A light bit of fruity German hop presence as well as some mild, bready malt from the combination of pale, European pilsener, and Munich malts.
Taste: Overall fairly mild. A bit of fruity, German hops, clean, lager-yeast finish, and a touch of mild roast and toasted malt on the finish. Remarkably easy-drinking. Not a huge depth of flavor, but I'm not sure that the style necessarily needs to be particularly 'big'. I have heard some people refer to Scharzbiers as 'black pilseners', but this one isn't that crisp or sharp. It's more like a slightly roastier dunkel, with significantly less emphasis on the fat, bready Munich-malt middle. Overall, a nice, simple quaffer.
Mouthfeel: Light side of medium
Overall: Great to see Schlafly branching out and trying some new things with the Brewer's Choice series. Their weissbier was quite tasty, and this brew follows suit. Not something I'd get all the time, but if it came out once a year, in the autumn, perhaps, I'd likely pick up a sixer.
02-26-2012 02:10:15 | More by BedetheVenerable
Schlafly Sessions Black Lager Schwarzbier from The Schlafly Tap Room
83 out of 100 based on 80 ratings.