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Köstritzer Schwarzbier - Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co.

Not Rated.
Köstritzer SchwarzbierKöstritzer Schwarzbier

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

1,479 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,479
Reviews: 758
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 11.73%
Wants: 65
Gots: 86 | 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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Köstritzer Schwarzbier Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,479 | Reviews: 758 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ChrisBowers
4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer has quickly moved into my top 15 since I had it on tap at Sean Bolans in Baltimore. Searved in a long stemmed Kostritzer glass, beer was dark almost blackberry color. Smell was of annisette/black licorice and roasted malt. Taste... wow, what a smooth yet complex beer. Hints of roasted malt, chocolate and a nice subdued black licorice finish. Overall probably my favorite of the style. Ken better get this back in soon!

ChrisBowers, May 26, 2004
Photo of PopeJonPaul
3.75/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Black (of course) with a thin, creamy brown head with good lacing. Almost no nose to speak of, just a whiff of roasted malt. The beer itself tasted pretty good though, a roasted smoky malt flavor with a hint of chocolate and a bit of sweet hop flavor. A little thin for me but goes down smooth, a good drinkable beer.

I had never seen nor heard of this stuff before (had it on tap at the Silver Swan in Manhattan,) had to scour the net for info and it looks like Bitburger bought this brewery in Bad Kostritz awhile back, apparently because the mother of one of the principal owners of Bitburger drank this while nursing him. Gotta love those Germans.

PopeJonPaul, May 17, 2004
Photo of WVbeergeek
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A dollar off at D's plus it's an old favorite of the style. Appearance: Dark coc-cola like caramel dark brown amber with a full tan head that quickly dwindles in my pint leaves nice rings of lacing. Aroma: Herbal grassy hop note with mild dark chocolate and hints of coffee not bad at all. Taste: Great mix of darker malts and herbal toned noble hops clean finish after the cold conditioning with hints of chocolate and coffee very quaffable. Mouthfeel: Medium to light bodied great stuff smooth as all hell. Drinkability: Definitely gets a thumbs up great appetising brew that is a staple for the style, mass produced yes good hell yes.

WVbeergeek, May 15, 2004
Photo of JISurfer
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I thought this beer was good. It had a nice dark amber color to it, almost black. The head was a tan color and started out big and thick, but then died out to a semi-thick laceing. The smell was super malty and had tinges of alcohol in it, with dark fruits. The taste was similar, but had a little bit of a smoke thing going on. Mouthfeel was nothing special, just the average. All in all a drinkable beer.

JISurfer, May 05, 2004
Photo of Globetrotter
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Comes in a 33cl brown bottle with a black and gold label featuring a coat of arms. Purity law applies. Best before 4/30/04, I opened it on 5/3/04 - just missed.

Pours a clear deep burgundy under a two finger beige head with some contour, good retention and streaks of lace about half way down the glass. The nose is very mild, with just a hint of caramel. The mouth is medium carbonated and light in body. The taste is mild, with a touch of burnt malt. The finish features a good if mild hoppy bite. The bitterness lingers long into the aftertaste, where a bit of sweetish malt rejoins the party. This is a good refreshing drink.

Globetrotter, May 03, 2004
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.6/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Unclouded near-mahogany brown with quite a bit of red when backlit. The head is light 'toast brown' and appears to be fairly sticky. It falls unevenly over several minutes time and leaves disappointingly little lace. The nose is of lightly roasted black malt with some earthiness, some nuttiness and the unmistakable, but faint aroma of chocolate.

I've never had a schwarzbier before, but this one reminds me of a weak porter. It's malt-dominant with flavors similar to what I described for the nose, although the chocolatiness seems to have vanished. The finish isn't all that different from what came before; the flavor simply fades away, leaving the mouth clean. The mouthfeel is lager appropriate so I can't be too critical. I prefer a bigger body, but I recognize that that wouldn't fit the style.

Interesting that Kostritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei has named themselves after a specific style even though they brew others. Despite my love for bigger beer, I found this one to be enjoyable and a nice change of pace.

BuckeyeNation, May 03, 2004
Photo of sulldaddy
3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this brew at RFD in Washington DC. The beer came chilled in a pint glass. The brew is very dark brown almost black in color. Some deep ruby tints when the glass is held to the light. Only a fine edge layer of tan head is left when the pint arrives. Aroma is mild but roasted malt and faint smoky scents are present. First sip reveals a slightly bitey carbonation that is more than I expected and a thicker than average body. Flavor is malt and malt with some roasted hints and also a mild coffee hit. Finish is some toffee and a little grainy. Overall a tasty brew but the finish is a little lighter than I would have thought.

sulldaddy, Apr 25, 2004
Photo of tjd25
4.4/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Great-looking dark opaque color. The head’s pretty too, and doesn’t want to disappear. Fine and foamy. Dark malts and grapes in the smell. Complex and refined. The smell is very enjoyable. Dark, almost roasted malts, woody. Some refreshing winy grapes aspects. Some chestnut maybe. The mouthfeel is great and full, no bitterness, a floral hoppiness. The complexity of this beer doesn’t make it less drinkable. A good pick.

tjd25, Apr 24, 2004
Photo of soper2000
3.25/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had on-tap at Chumley's in Lafayette. Pours a pitch black with a miniscule tan head that quickly disappears. Smell is syrupy sweet with some hints of roasted malt. Taste backs up that sweetness. Very sweet malty taste, this would definately be a dessert beer for me. Mouthfeel is very light and thin for me. I don't know how much of this I could have without that flavor overwhelming me. Worth the try, i just won't be coming back that often.

soper2000, Apr 15, 2004
Photo of watermelonman
3.95/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This poured darker than any other lager I've had myself. It looks good in the glass, with minor head and lacing.

It smells almost like it has a touch of bitter chocolate. The taste is similar, dark and thin with that crisp lager finish. Smooth and slick in the mouth, this has a surprisingly light but satisfying feel. Quite nice, if you ask me.

watermelonman, Apr 01, 2004
Photo of woemad
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ml bottle purchased at The Viking in Spokane for $4.50.

Poured a very dark brown with a huge tan head.

Smell reminded me of a brown ale. Sweet malt, with a hint of caramel. No hop aroma was detected.

Taste was like a lager version of a brown ale. Caramelish sweetness, with a very mild backdrop similar to coffee. Not a terribly complex brew. Also a slightly alcoholish taste, surprising given the relatively low alcohol content indicated here on BA (there's no abv listed on the label).

I thought the mouthfeel was a bit thin, but I freely admit I'm more of an ale drinker.

This is a perfectly good dark lager. Is it great? I don't think so. But it's certainly good. In any event, it was cool to find a schwarzbier in a bar outside of Germany - the only place I'd previously had one.

woemad, Mar 30, 2004
Photo of jimdkc
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown with mahogany highlights when held up to the light which also reveals very fine carbonation bubbles. A tan head, about 1 and a half fingers to start, leaves patchy rings of lace down the glass. Smell is a mixture of dark bread and malty notes. Flavor is similar to the smell with the addition of coffee tones and hops which add a slightly sour aftertaste. Mouthfeel was very smooth but a bit thin. Pretty drinkable... I could drink a few of these! Not very familiar with the style, but I liked this a lot!

jimdkc, Mar 20, 2004
Photo of yeagerbm
3.73/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a pint glass. Appears to be black but upon closer examination is actually a very deep mahogany color.
Smell is malty and lightly roasted.
Taste is very light bodied mouthfeel and depth of flavor compared to the appearance, with only a hint of roasted malt and hops. Similar in style to AB Amber Bock, but better. Easily drinkable. It may be the style of beer but it left me wanting more complexity to the flavor of the beer.

yeagerbm, Mar 14, 2004
Photo of alexgash
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is the first schwarzbier I have ever reviewed so bear with me. Pours a dark cola brown with a soft tan head. Smells of sweet plum wine over hearty, buttered, tobacco bread. Taste is mellow, lightly roasty, with buttered toast malt, a little cardboard, and some faint sweetness. Finish is roasty and slightly bitter. I think I like this style (so far).

alexgash, Mar 11, 2004
Photo of PatandDavid
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this in the basement of the local Kaufhof in Wiesbaden, they have a beer booth in their grocery store. Pour was a dark rootbeer color with a thick creamy tan head made up of fine bubbles. Rich malty dark bread aroma. Taste is light but full, slightly malty. There's a bit of hop astringency in the finish. Aftertaste is of slightly bitter hops. This beer had a great flavor but a thin to medium mouthfeel. Would make a good session beer.

PatandDavid, Feb 26, 2004
Photo of JustinBathurst
3.08/5  rDev -21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a dark black with dark tan head. Thick foam.

Smells malty and sweet, A spice aroma, clove-ish. Some grains and cut grass.

Thick mouthfeel, slightly creamy. Dense carbonation without being overdone.

Somewhat bitter chocolate taste. Subdued roasted malt sweet with a hint of molasses. Interesting, but not very exciting.

This seems like a beer that could grow on you, but it hasn't really been able to present anything 'defining' to me. I wouldn't turn another down, but I wouldn't go out of my way to buy it. Decent schwarzbier, just not amazing.

JustinBathurst, Feb 07, 2004
Photo of SheepNutz
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap poured into a tumbler glass. It pours a deep black color with two fingers of light tan head. It looks almost like a stout or porter when poured. There is a little bit of lacing left behind. The smell is full of rich roasted malt with some caramel sweetness. The taste is also full of burnt malt, toffee, and molasses. A bit of hops on the finish. The body is a little light and oily, but very smooth. The drinkability is very good. A classic example of the style.

SheepNutz, Feb 05, 2004
Photo of Boilermaker88
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The first time I had a Köstritzer was at a restaurant in Ginowan City, Okinawa back in 1998. I even bought a Köstritzer glass, my first piece of glassware that wasn't a pint glass, to commemorate the occasion. Now, nearly six years later, I decided it was time to reacquainte myself with this schwarzbier.
Poured from a 12oz bottle, it had a color of dark chocolate with some ruby highlights, a lumpy brownish-tan head, and nice streaky lacing. It had a nice roasted malt aroma tinged with coffee and cocoa and hints of caramel and nuts. The taste had a mild chocolatey flavor and some caramel sweetness up front. A more earthy grain flavor came across mid-range before a lightly spicy hops note finished things up. The feel was medium/light, clean and dry.
Drinkability was really pretty good. It's got a nice balance and no one flavor seems badly out of place. Worth giving a try if you see it.

Boilermaker88, Feb 03, 2004
Photo of Sammy
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

An honour to review first. I do not buy beers in cans, but it was graciously given to me to review by Michael Meinardus, the brewery's North American rep. Firstly, it was very fresh - it had a pleasant surprising on-tap taste. Second, I fortunately drank it out of a suitable beer mug displaying its pretty dark brown colour. It's very creamy initial pour settled in a moment. Very pleasant with understated roasted malt and hint of coffee. Stands by itself and certainly works with food. Had it on tap in May 2005, didn't stand up as good, maybe the way they had it on at Ludwig's.

Sammy, Jan 23, 2004
Photo of anders36
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A dark burgundy almost black brew with a grey head that disappear quickly. Has a very roasted malty smell. The taste is also roasted, but not not as roasted as in a stout. The mouthfeel is a little thin. I expect a little more mouthfeel from a dark beer. It is not a bad beer, but i had expected a little more out of it.

anders36, Jan 19, 2004
Photo of Beersignal
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Very deep dark brown with burgundy highlights. Clear liquid with a tan (crème brûlée) colored head that faded rather quickly. Cereal, malt and licorice along with chocolate, roast coffee, cola notes and dark fruits (currants, blackberries...) highlighted the aromas. VERY COMPLEX. Thin to medium body with tastes of malted cereal, light residual sugar followed by roasted and hoppy bitterness. Finishes in a swirl of the above flavors dominated by mineral and hops bitterness. I am still amazed by the complexity of smells in this brew.

Beersignal, Jan 10, 2004
Photo of DrunkMcDermott
3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served on draft at the Map Room, Chicago. Hmm... a good black bread taste. Brown body, spicy nose. Nicely roasted body, and a slightly smoky taste to boot. Haven't had enough schwartzbiers yet to be sure of my rankings, so far they don't toally grab me.

DrunkMcDermott, Dec 29, 2003
Photo of daledeee
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice medium head with good lace. This is as black as a stout. Somewhat malty nose. Not that much to say about the nose. Taste is a little chocolate bitter with malt and caramel more prominent. Hops finish this up. A little bitter. Dark chocolate aftertaste. Overall, a tasty dark beer. Very clean and fresh tasting.

daledeee, Dec 29, 2003
Photo of Phyl21ca
3.45/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Can - Pourred a black brew with a nice foamy head with good retention. Sweet beginning with roastiness and dry finish. I found some similarities with some english stout. Overall, a very decent brew from a style that is more or less known in North America. Will be looking for other product from this brewery

Phyl21ca, Dec 15, 2003
Photo of TastyTaste
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

'Black Beer" isn't just a clever name. It is not opaque, as a stout, but it still appears at least very dark brown in the glass (a Hacker-Pschorr pilsner glass), with a light brown head. Smells grainy and toasted, and almost a little alcohol flavor. Tastes of citrus and coffee with a little hops finish. Pretty good beer, this is my first schwarzbier, that I know of. I'd definitely try more of this style again.

TastyTaste, Dec 12, 2003
Köstritzer Schwarzbier from Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co.
88 out of 100 based on 1,479 ratings.