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Köstritzer Schwarzbier - Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co.

Not Rated.
Köstritzer SchwarzbierKöstritzer Schwarzbier

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BA SCORE
88
very good

1,372 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,372
Reviews: 742
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 11.48%
Wants: 62
Gots: 53 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co. visit their website
Germany

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: pezoids on 10-17-2001)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,372 | Reviews: 742 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Zorro
Zorro

California

3.63/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a black colored brew with a tan head.

Smell is grain and a little fruity with a faint smoky scent. Scent of crackers in the malt and raisins in the fruit.

Taste is on the dry side with lots of grain flavor and a touch of chocolate and coffee flavor from the dark roasted malt. Mild herbal hop flavor. Slight trace of acid flavor from the dark malts.

Mouthfeel is OK.

Quite good drinkability here. This is a good session beer, tasty, not too heavy low in alcohol. Not a world class brew, but absolutely a good beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2005 23:50:20 | More by Zorro
Photo of Frozensoul327
Frozensoul327

Michigan

3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Not a bad Schwartzbier. Poured out to a (gasp) dark brown/black appearance with a large head the color of heavily creamed coffee. Medium low carbonation. Not much of an aroma, but some mild malt was detected. Taste was very smooth and enjoyable. Flavors of roasted malts and hops with a black pepper note toward the finish. Seemed to go together very well. Well balanced mouthfeel was not too full, but adequate enough to make one note that some craft has gone into this brew. This could be a good crossover beer for those looking to expand their experience of German beers. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

09-03-2005 02:30:04 | More by Frozensoul327
Photo of BrinkyBeerBoy
BrinkyBeerBoy

Pennsylvania

4.4/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle with a great 16th century oil painting on the label with nice comment on the neck saying "The Black Beer with the Blonde Soul" very nice.

My flawless pour has a perfect inch and a half sticky, thick tan foam head, and almost black with dark ruby glow all over.

Sweet caramelly, molasses(reminds me of amish shoefly pie in a way), and a little german chocalate on the nose. Smells very clean too.
Well balanced, incredible toasty, creamy(meal in a glass) sweet malt with a perfect touch of hop bitterness that longs the hearty mouthfull. Good lacing going down. Toasty finish, and a great medium creamy mouthfeel with perfect carbonation. I'm glad at this time I have 22 more in the fridge!

A great Schwartzbier for only 24.99 a case. May this Schwartz be with you. Great German dark lager!!

Serving type: bottle

08-25-2005 05:56:08 | More by BrinkyBeerBoy
Photo of SkeeterHawk
SkeeterHawk

Texas

4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Very dark beer that is actually very clear with deep garnet highlights when held to a bright light. There was a thick half inch of head at first pour that retained pretty well over a few minutes. Small amount of lacing on the glass.

Aroma: Lots of toasty Munich malts mixed with some generous chocolate and a tad of caramel. Very clean!

Taste: Extremely mild flavor for a beer so dark. There is some serious malt in this beer, but the roast and hops seem to almost completely cancel it out. The flavor profile starts out balanced toward the toastiness of the malt, and this slowly fades to a slightly bitter finish. The Chocolate malts only become apparent late in the aftertaste.

Opinion: I really enjoy this world-class beer. Some other beers in this style, like Sapporo, are balanced by using lighter flavored ingredients. Kostritzer is remarkably easy on the palate because it is well brewed. This is a good beer to prove those guys wrong who say "I don't like that dark beer stuff because it is too heavy" We all know some of those...and this one will show that there is more to beer than color.

Serving type: bottle

07-31-2005 01:42:02 | More by SkeeterHawk
Photo of BuckSpin
BuckSpin

Maine

3.63/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tried this on a recommendation of a fellow BA during our weekly get together. This is certainly one of the oddest, most unique beers I have tried. Poured a very dark, ruddy, almost opaque ebony with a active, downright alive 1" head of loose bubbles, like a soda, that faded quickly. Nose was interesting, hard to pin. Ahhh, licorice, maybe sassafras...crisp, very unique.

While most beers start soft and finish sharp, this one is the opposite. What a crisp and epervescent taste. The licorice and sassafras carry to the tongue, sharp, alive, mildly peppered. A lull on the pallete gives way to a very soft, malted, even, smooth finish with an echo of an lighly bitter & dry aftertaste.

If you enjoy beers that offer unique taste experiences, give this one a try. It could take a few times to really understand it. Not spectacular, but interesting enough to warrant recommendation and further tries.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2005 01:01:47 | More by BuckSpin
Photo of battlekow
battlekow

Wisconsin

3.93/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at Von Triers on Farwell. Poured a beautiful silky black with a small, brown head. Smelled and tasted malty, very little hop presence. I had this at a bar before dinner, and it suits that role well, almost an appetizer: tasty and full-bodied, yet light and easily drinkable. My first black beer--I will definitely be trying others.

Serving type: on-tap

06-27-2005 06:01:35 | More by battlekow
Photo of lackenhauser
lackenhauser

Maryland

3.58/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very deep brown in color. Quite a nice tan head that fades all too quickly. Low aroma-very slight trace of roasted malt. Malty flavor dominates. Low hop and roasted bitterness. A tad metallic. Faint biscuit flavor. Very nice body-holds up well. Not thin or watery-helps the slight lack of flavor. Overall a good beer. Well worth trying on a regular basis.

Serving type: bottle

06-10-2005 21:46:59 | More by lackenhauser
Photo of mmmbeer
mmmbeer

Massachusetts

4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. with no freshness date - served slightly chilled in a flute. Pours a black that is deep red through the light and it's topped with a 1 inch tan head that leaves nice lacing. Smells earthy with some spicy hops and traces of chocolate, coffee, and soap. Lots of earthy malts with a noticeable hop bitterness and hints of dark fruits, coffee, and smoke. It's kinda tingly with a medium to light body. Not too complicated and easy to drink. The glass held less that 12 ounces and I noticed the second pour was much more flavorful and left sediment at the bottom of the glass - didn't know it was unfiltered, not that I'm complaining.

Serving type: bottle

06-10-2005 01:25:43 | More by mmmbeer
Photo of jimbotrost
jimbotrost

Michigan

3.78/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ML can purchased at LCBO in Sarnia. Pours a deep dark black with a nice light brown head. Aroma jumps out at you like a malthouse. Very dry, somewhat bitter not roasted but big and chocolately. Body is dry as is the finish. Malty flavor shine through in this style Great beer.

Serving type: can

06-01-2005 14:07:29 | More by jimbotrost
Photo of MUSHROOMCLOUD
MUSHROOMCLOUD

Texas

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This 12 oz. bottle of schwarzbier pours out dark brown/red with a nice 3/4" head that fades to about 1/4" and then hangs around awhile. Decent lacing.
The aroma is of sweet roasted malt. There is a little bitter coffee in there too.
The flavor follows along the lines of the aroma. There are nice roasted flavors with a little hint of sweetness and a slight bitter coffee in the finish. The flavor disappears rather quickly once swallowed.
The mouthfeel is a little on the thin side. I guess whenever I see something dark I expect it to be a litle chewy and full.
This is a good beer and the only real German schwarzbier I have had.

Serving type: bottle

05-26-2005 23:19:19 | More by MUSHROOMCLOUD
Photo of DrJay
DrJay

Massachusetts

3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very dark brown/black, nearly opaque, very clear, with deep ruby highlights. Thin tan, slightly rocky head, with moderate retention. Light roast malt aroma with a light lager yeast character. Subdued malty sweet smell.

Roasted malt flavour kicks things off. A little sweetness as well, which disappears part way through. Bitterness is moderate and comes through more towards the finish. Very light nobel hop flavour that gets lost halfway through. The finish is on the dry side, but not astringent. Very clean taste, no fruitiness. Medium body and medium/light carbonation. Not a bad session. Nothing extraordinary, but a solid beer.

500 mL can, best before date stamped on bottom of can.

Serving type: can

04-12-2005 00:45:15 | More by DrJay
Photo of rowew
rowew

Colorado

4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz longneck bottle. Description of the beer on the neck, no freshness date. Claims to be "The Best Kept Micro Beer Secret."

Appearance: Pours a dark black color with a little bit of red arond the edges. Medium sized head that fades slowly.

Smell: Clean, sweet malty aroma with slight roasted notes.

Taste: Medium bodied with a nice smooth mouthfeel. Very drinkable. Tastes are well balanced with lots of malts and a slightly bitter finish.

Overall impression: A very enjoyable style, and a great example of it. This is a very enjoyable beer, and I would highly recommend some brauts to go along with it!

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2005 22:00:24 | More by rowew
Photo of jjflash20
jjflash20

Minnesota

4.35/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was fortunate enough to be able to have this on tap when I was in Berlin. I had it in the States in the bottle and it is much better on tap when available. It was really smooth and did not have an aftertaste like other Schwartzbiers that I have had. Of all the Schwartzbiers that I had in Berlin, this one was my favorite.

Serving type: on-tap

03-19-2005 03:38:58 | More by jjflash20
Photo of santoslhalper
santoslhalper

Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearence: Pours a nice dark brown, with a creamy, well sustained dark beige head.

Smell: The nose consists of smells I'm used to sniffing in a darker style beer, but they're some how much lighter. An odd earthy smell mixes with some chocolate. Odd.

Taste and Mouthfeel: The taste starts really smooth and rich, and then finishes rather quickly, only leaving a slight hop bitterness lingering. It's quite thirst quenching. The flavors aren't as balanced as they could be, but still it's doing the trick. The mouthfeel is medium-bodied.

Drinkability and Overall: I like Shwarzbiers (the few I've had anyways), and this one wasn't all that impressive. It's good, but it's not as balanced or fulfilling as it could be. I'd have another, but wouldn't buy a bunch. Try Sprecher's Black Bavarian instead.

Serving type: bottle

03-11-2005 04:45:56 | More by santoslhalper
Photo of brewQ
brewQ

Missouri

3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours opaque black with a twinkle of ruby. Looks like a Porter without the viscosity.

A malty aroma- not quite licorice or chocolate but very full.

Delicious full taste without being overbearing. Leaves a finish on the roof of the mouth.

I'll be looking for occasions to have another of these beers.
Was surprised to see the ties to Bitburger imports.

Serving type: bottle

03-05-2005 14:47:35 | More by brewQ
Photo of redmosquito
redmosquito

Michigan

3.63/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful deep brown with a light brown head. The beer shines garnet around the edges of the glass. A malty aroma of toasted bread and light roast then a little floral hop. The flavor is clean, not overly bitter and no astringency. The malt flavor is roasted but still sweet. The beer is surprisingly refreshing on the palate. This is a well made beer.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2005 19:25:07 | More by redmosquito
Photo of droomyster
droomyster

Virginia

3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a one finger head of light brown froth that recedes after a few minutes. Sits blackly in the glass, brown edges are only betrayed with backlighting. Malty aroma of prunes and toast. Hints of dark chocolate, brown sugar. Medium bodied mouth filler, lightly carbonated, creamy texture. Surprisingly not very bitter. Long, slippery finish of roasted plums. Becomes breadier as it warms. Wish it was heavier. Overall pretty good, a pleasant drinker.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2005 01:05:57 | More by droomyster
Photo of paterlodie
paterlodie

Belgium

3.3/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Best before 07-05. Poors in very fine with nice brown head and black color. Nose is malty and clean but all together quiet empty. Same way for taste; malty, no body and probably lots of farbebier used. Mouthfeel is ok but misses body. Aftertaste is almost like aftertaste for miniral water. Hardly any bitterness& litle salty. No off tastes though so quiet decent. Drinkability is good but do I want to drink more?

Serving type: bottle

03-02-2005 15:29:55 | More by paterlodie
Photo of plaztikjezuz
plaztikjezuz

Michigan

3.6/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

this poured a deep black, with a light head.
my boss boight a sixer and we split a bottle (glad my boss is a beer geek) the aroma was malt with some noble hops (i thought they were hallertau, but he said perle). decieving black, if your a stout or porter drinker, this beer is very light body for its color. the malt come through strong some pils,munich, carared, and carafa were our deductions. the hop flavor is nice but not over powering. it was a very well balanced beer malt, hops and aroma, mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2005 03:15:06 | More by plaztikjezuz
Photo of oggg
oggg

California

3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

HiTime Cellars

This style is very intriguing. So used to thick stouts and porters...

This beer pours black with brown tints at the edges. Off white head recedes quickly. Aroma of chocolate more dominant than the roast. On the tongue, the roast/smoke is pretty strong, gets a touch astringent. Chocolate is present. Very clean and light underneath. Finishes a little oily.

Overall: seems like maybe a nice session ale. Not exactly a light refreshing pale lager, though.. Wonder what food would go well here.

Serving type: bottle

01-27-2005 19:21:59 | More by oggg
Photo of pootz
pootz

Ontario (Canada)

4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I like this style of beer so I had to try this one as it’s touted as the standard for schwarzbier. The pour revealed a very dark but clear cola color beer with a great fluffy tan head that reduced to a 1CM cap that rode out the drink..left remarkable lacing. Aroma of sweet roasted caramel- malt with an earthy tone. The start is sharp put then the palate fills with a smooth mild roasty sweetness balanced with an understated hop dryness that prevents any cloying effect…hints of charred rye bread, dry but not overly so…the hops come in the dry roasty finish. A nice beer…very smooth and drinkable…its availability has made it my standard session drink.

Serving type: bottle

01-24-2005 01:37:10 | More by pootz
Photo of altctrlsdelete
altctrlsdelete

North Carolina

3.58/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

On tap at CAH downtown.

Served in a small dimpled mug, a dark brown, nearly black liquid with a notable coffee-colored head. The description I'd read, which included a "WOW", led me to expect a lot from this beer. However, when I took my first sip, I was underwhelmed.

Not much smell to speak of, with light roasted notes reminding me of your run-of-the-mill porter. The taste, as well, is understated.

However, this would be my session of choice, at under 5% abv, and possessing enough chocolate and roasted flavor to keep me interested. Goes down easy, and grows on you as it warms.

Though it's nothing that blew me away, it does what it does well, and I wouldn't hesitate to order it again in the future.

Serving type: on-tap

01-09-2005 04:45:25 | More by altctrlsdelete
Photo of crookedhalo
crookedhalo

Pennsylvania

4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep cola brown color with a fluffy khaki colored head. Roasty, toasty Munich malt character and suggestions of pumpernickel bread with a slight bit of low-alpha hops nearer the end of the whiff, which can come across as being vegetal at times. Very roasty in flavor without being over-the-top, thin but not too thin. Clean tasting and effervescent, a thoroughly drinkable black lager. It has been years since I had one, now I remember why I used to buy this by the case. A simple beer with a lot of flavor and a delicate balance. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

01-08-2005 05:22:59 | More by crookedhalo
Photo of mynie
mynie

Indiana

4.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

God damn I was not expecting a beer this black. It's darker than a dark, dark stout, and its head is perfect white.

Smells hardy, almost like a beery V8 or, as was mentioned before, Tomato soup. Seriously. This is gonna be healthy, I'll bet. More importantly, this is like nothing else I've ever smelled in a beer. Fruits and veggies mixed with roasted malt.

Tastes like Raisins. That's just about it. Raisisn upfront, malt and more dull fruit in the back, and a hint of something smoked. A little bit of juicy aftertaste. Nice. Very different.

This is my first Schwarzbier. I was seriously expecting something akin to Heinekin Dark. What a nice surprise.

To be fair, now that I think about it, this actually tastes like a dark, more complex Bitburger.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2005 07:18:02 | More by mynie
Photo of bditty187
bditty187

Nebraska

3.63/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark ruby brown in hue, it is almost black but not quite. When held to a light the ruby influences are more discernable. Still, it is too dark to see any effervesces. The head was beige in color, almost two fingers in height before slowly fading to a half finger cap that sat there, very sturdy. Very good head retention. Subsequent lacing was clumpy in spots but naked in others. Excellent appearance. The nose is very soft but articulate. Faint notes of licorice, milk chocolate, toasted sugar, earthy espresso and just a kiss of char. The potency is low; even though I have to sniff hard I like what I smell in the bouquet. It is well organized. Overall the aromas are very pleasant in a soft, gracefully kind of way. Nice. The palate is not as thoughtful as the nose indicated. Still there is good flavor here, dry, roasted malts with not much sweetness, not much caramel (but there is some). Vague earthiness. Espresso. Cocoa. Hints of licorice. The palate isn’t as “put-together” as I’d like, there isn’t anything wrong with it. Hell, it is quite good really but it seems to be missing something. Maybe I’m looking for just a little more assertiveness… maybe this is as loud as I can expect from a Schwarzbier. Tasty. Medium-light in body, it’s a tickle too thin, the carbonation is a bit low and the mouthfeel comes across too slick. The mouthfeel isn’t an issue but it could be improved, IMO. Very drinkable, this beer is a lovely quaff especially when the modest abv is factored in. I’d certainly drink a few at a bar if I want to keep the alcohol intake low. I think this beer is available in Omaha but I purchased this bottle in West Des Moines. I should have tried this beer sooner but I guess I’m just a moron. Oh well. Good stuff. Worthy of a try, IMO.

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2004 23:04:11 | More by bditty187
Köstritzer Schwarzbier from Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co.
88 out of 100 based on 1,372 ratings.