Köstritzer Schwarzbier - Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co.

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Köstritzer SchwarzbierKöstritzer Schwarzbier

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BA SCORE
88
very good

1,643 Ratings
THE BROS
94
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,643
Reviews: 791
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 11.73%
Wants: 88
Gots: 140 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co. visit their website
Germany

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: pezoids on 10-17-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (8) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,643 | Reviews: 791
Photo of Lemke10
3.97/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This pours a very dark brown/black color with a thin, off-white head. The aroma is a little malty with hints of toasted grains. The taste neither is a decent texture that isn’t too thin nor thin the delivers a bold black lager taste. The taste has a lot of roasted and toasted flavors without being as bold or thick as a stout. Pretty decent brew for its style.

Photo of Hoptometrist
4.17/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Served from the bottle into a pilsner glass

A- Poured black with big soapy khaki colored head that left dense and splashy lace.

S- BIg roasted barley, coffee, vanilla, cracker malt, biscuit malt, cocoa notes.

T- Big grainy notes, roasted barley, cracker malt, roasted coffee, and a hint of vanilla, smokey, floral, and grassy notes.

M- Very smooth and pretty creamy, medium carbonation, and crisp finish.

O- A highly drinkable black lager with a very balanced flavor profile and very nice malt bill.

Photo of Lowseph
4.31/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.75

one of my favorite German beers.

very smooth with a delicious flavor that does not
stick to your palate.

great for football games and goes great with Chinese food,
just nothing too salty.

best of all it tastes a lot more expensive than actually is.

and of course serve it ice cold in a pint glass if possible.

Photo of admiral
3.69/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

a nicely balanced schwarzbier that would be nice to drink with friends outside in warm weather.

aroma: sweetish/spicy malt

Taste: Malty with spice and slight sweetness with some nice hop bitterness to balance it out

Nice beer, well balanced and easy to drink

Photo of puboflyons
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the 330 ml. embossed bottle dated 11-14-2013. Sampled on July 12, 2013.

It pours nearly black but it is really a deep mahogany brown when held to the light with a long-lasting, soft tan head.

The nose is mostly sweet with characteristics of roasted malts, molasses, yeast, and a hint of vanilla even.

The body falls into the medium range although the accompanying creamy texture is a nice touch.
The taste is much like the aroma with a forward malty sweetness but a low bitterness that just tickles the palate at the end and fades. Nice beer.

Photo of DenisKolkin
4.01/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle from LCB0 for $2.80 CDN into a pint glass.

Appearance - Nearly black as night, however just less than a finger of head was yielded despite a fairly aggressive pour. Nonetheless the beer looks promising and imposing at the same time. The 3/4 finger of off tan head leaves significant lacing around the glass.

Smell- Dark roasted malts, specifically coffee and biscuity goodness is picked up.

Taste - Similar to the smell, dark roasted malts are again the hero, maybe some lighter malts touches like caramel or toffee in the background. A bit sweeter than expected given the ominous black pour.

Mouthfeel - Smooth again much lighter than one would expect from a beer that shade of black. Carbonation is moderate and would harmoniously with the beer to an even greater extent than would be expected.

Overall - This is one of those beers that is enjoyable, not too pretentious in what it is trying to be, and is just a really solid, delicious beer.

Photo of KYGunner
3.71/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Called a black lager for a reason because it's...black. Poured a nice thick and creamy head but it disappeared like it had committed a crime.

Subtle smoke over a creamy malt aroma the scent is very appealing. Maybe roasted pecan as well the scent is very subtle, which is somewhat detrimental.

Kind of Smokey, kind of ashey there is some charred malt flavor. Very clean but somewhat palate drying, this beer is certainly easy on the system. Holds some taste principles of a Rauchbier but the feel of a lager, it's a good mix.

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

Appearance: Very dark, coffee-like body; medium-sized head

Aroma: Sweet malts; lingering coffee notes

Taste: Sweet malt on the start; quickly followed by bitter grain flavors; creamy throughout; not bad overall.

Remarks: Did not score A, T, S, M at that time; disregard those scores

Photo of dwren89
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: can't see because in bottle (sadly had to drink from the bottle because on a train and didn't have a glass

Aroma: malty sweetness, slight roasty quality to it

Taste: lager like crispness, roasty flavor, very little noticeable noble hopping

Mouthfeel: definitely the biggest thing that screams lager about this beer and not stout or black ale style, clean, attenuated, and crisp

Overall Impression: Nice change of pace from standard Munich helles or dunkel, the roasty flavor shines in this distinctive German lager style.

Photo of steveh
4.31/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Found covered six-packs of this old import favorite at a local grocer. Six-pack box (and bottle label) says I have 12 days to drink these (06.18.2013) -- let's get at it!

An old favorite import from the pre Microboom® days -- haven't sampled it in a while.

A -- Inky black in color with a dense tan head that holds up well, slowly settling to a firm cap. A flash shined thru my .33L Willi Becker shows ruby highlights, but very opaque.

S -- Aroma is fresh DMS and mild roasted malt with a vague hint of caramel. Pretty light in this category.

T -- Roasted malt character with dark, baking chocolate undertones. Some mild bready notes try to balance the roasted malts with some very light hop spiciness. The finish is all roasted malt, though the bitterness in the finish and aftertaste isn't easy to dissect between hops and highly kilned malts.

M -- Smooth, soft mouthfeel with a dry finish. Light medium body.

O -- This is the king of Schwarzbier. A lager to present to the naysayers who think lagers have no character -- and at such a mild ABV too. As roasty as some Porters and Stouts, but with the clean finish that can only be the result of bottom fermentation and long, cool storage.

Photo of IdeaSpeeder
3.45/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Serving Type - 500ml bottle poured into a pilsner glass.

Appearance - Pours black ad night. When held up to the light light the edges of the beer show that it is in fact a dark, dark brown colour. Despite my best efforts to get a good pour, the beer poured with less than a finger of thin caramel coloured head.

Smell - Very faint smelling. What is there smells of roasted malts and some light grains. Pretty underwhelming.

Taste - Chocolate right away, followed by toasted malts and very light coffee. There are also some light grains.

Mouthfeel - Medium to high carbonation. Body is on the lighter side, making for a surprisingly crisp finish.

Overall - 3.5/5 First beer of this style, and not quite use to beers this dark being so 'light' on the palate

Photo of jlindros
3.98/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Tap at Doner pub in Leesburg, VA.

Big creamy head fades semi slowly with nice lacing, super dark black hint of light.

Nose dark creamy malts, hint of dark malt, nice crisp lager, hint of coffee like dark,

Taste starts with toasty malts, brown light biscuit and caramel, some creaminess and slightest touch of a cocoa, then the fruity lager, crisp and a little soft, mild gassy bitterness. Finish is dry and crisp, more of the grassy bitterness, slight sticky sweet caramel malt.

Mouth is med to lighter bod, nice carb, little creamy.

Overall fairly nice, very drinkable tasty schwarzbier but missing something.

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

330 ml bottle into lager glass, best before 3/6/2013. Pours crystal clear deep reddish brown color with a 1 finger dense light khaki head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty soapy lacing clings down the glass, with moderate streaming carbonation retaining the head. Aromas of caramel, raisin, fig, toast, molasses, brown bread, light roast, light floral, and earthiness. Very nice aromas with good balance and complexity of malt and fruity esters. Taste of caramel, raisin, fig, toast, molasses, brown bread, light roast, light pepper, light floral, and earthiness. Lingering notes of caramel, dark fruit, toast, molasses, brown bread, light roast, light pepper, and earthiness on the finish for a bit. Very nice balance and complexity of malt and fruity ester flavors; with good robustness and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a moderately creamy and smooth mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with hardly any warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a damn nice schwarzbier style. All around nice balance and complexity of flavors with good robustness; and very smooth to drink. A very enjoyable offering.

Photo of elNopalero
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a tall-boy can, purchased for a dollar at my local Trader Joe’s.

This pours a ruddy toasty near black-slash-ruby red (when backlit) with rapidly dissipating foam. It has a rounded toasty aroma, roasty enough for me with some toffee and a touch of caramel to the coffee-bean quality aroma. I found it light and pleasing.

The flavor is smooth with enough sharpness to keep it defined, while not getting bogged down by being cloying or overly sweet. The roast profile gives it enough of an edge to keep its definition. Being what it was I liked this beer. It's approachable, interesting, and I'm looking forward to another.

Photo of BeerAficionadoMCMXC
4.38/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer appears a dark black with red hues when looking carefully. The head is retained for a moment. This beer smelled of stinky cereal when it was first poured, but once it settled, I get some smoky, nutty, and some spiciness to it. For all my apprehensiveness, this beer hits it out of the park. The malty flavor takes over the palate. The hop character is downplayed, but I enjoyed the malty backbone on top of the unmistakable Germain crispness that their lagers tend to have. The body is light, and very lager-like. Overall, I'd definitely drink it again. I'd say this is a perfect Fall beer for all you porter and stout fans. A great buy.

Photo of dar482
4.22/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

My first schwarzbier since having Krusovice Cerne, one of my favorite beers from years back.

It comes in a dark, dark brown color with a tan head.

The aroma has a sweet roasted malt and some dark fruits.

The taste has caramel sweet roasted malt and a clean wonderful finish. There's a good hop bitterness in there as well and makes it really exceptional. I compare it to the Erdinger Weissbier Dunkel and obviously Krusovice Cerne.

Wonderful flavor, drinkability, and finish.

Photo of WissBrauSean
4.82/5  rDev +23%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

This beer pours clear black with a nice one finger head that fades to a nice full ring and a cap in the center with delicate lacing. Very attractive!

The aroma comes across to me as straightforwardly caramel malty and some fruity notes like raisins and some light floral hops. Gorgeous!

The beer tastes pretty much the same. It starts off lightly caramel malty sweet and stays that way through the sip with some very mild raisin or prune notes along for the ride and finally it finishes with only the tiniest of hop bitterness, dryness and black pepperiness. LOL It's well balanced. A little roastiness comes through just as you are about to take another sip. WOW!

The mouthfeel is creamy and smoothly sweet with light body and moderate to light carbonation making this beer very easy to drink! It has a slightly dry finish.

Overall, I am going to have to concur with the BA guys and conclude that this is world class. It was a pleasure to drink and I really can't find any fault with it at all! It's light enough that the sweetness is not annoying and it serves to balance it also. 5 out of 5! Highly recommended!

Photo of sgwagner
4.69/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

When it comes to German Schwarzbier, Koestritzer sets the standard. The color is a deep black, with a dark brown, thick head. The body is lighter than the color would suggest, with light caramel and smokey flavors, well balanced by just the right amount of hop bitterness.

This is often my go-to lager when I'm in the mood for something dark.

Photo of micromaniac129
3.98/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark like cola dark with a thin off white head.
Aroma is very light and sutle with a mild roastedness
Taste is very good mildly roasted and perhaps a suggestion of fruits.
Drinks smooth baby
One of the better black lagers in my opinion. Probably would be much better on tap as the age of this bottle is unknown and probably quite old.

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.63/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

500ml can for a tasty price of a buck seventynine. the pour is the best part of this beer, dark like a stout but thinner, darker than most schwarzbiers made in the usa, with a gorgeous white head, maybe just off white, rising several inches high before slowly relaxing. the nose is medium roast malts and some spent lager yeast. I don't know why, but the yeast just isn't doing it for me here, adding too much flavor for a lager, and there is enough sweetness from the malts that it just doesn't crisp up, sort of a weird mix. maybe more hops would fix this problem, but things are just out of balance for me. long funny finish. im sure this is far superior on tap at the source, but in the imported can context, it just doesn't stack up. thin medium body and comfortingly brisk carbonation, but this was a miss for me in many ways.

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

11.2 oz bottle poured into the PROPER glass (ie. a Kostritzer pilsner glass).

A: Pours a dark ruby red color. The head is a two finger mocha shade that fades rather quickly, befitting a lager. A decent amount of lacing is left on the glass.

S: I notice some roasted nuts, chocolate, roasted barley, lager yeast, and coffee. It does a good job of

T: Drier than the aroma suggested. The initial flavor is mainly roasted barley and coffee. Some lager fruitiness enters the palate in the middle, and the finish is more roasted barley, imparting a very dry feel devoid of significant sweetness. Not complex or exciting, but pleasant.

M: Most pilsners wish they had this level of crisp dryness. Nothing really stays on the palate flavor-wise; I could see the argument for this being 'watery' in terms of feel. Also thin, airy, and well carbonated.

O: While it is a bit meh flavor-wise, the drinkability factor is superb, as it should be in a good lager. I won't rush out to the store to buy more, but this really does hit the spot for me.

Photo of DerAtomsmasher
4.35/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Blew my mind when I first had it - still does today.

The feat here, is in how light & balanced it is for how dark it is. Just the right amount of malty sweetness, the right amount of roasted malts, the right amount of hops edging out the malts.

& unlike say, a doppelbock, it's got a surprisingly clean finish for as dark & as German as it is. It's a gem.

Photo of karait95
3.92/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A very dark beer with rich carbonation, head is not very large but is well formed for a creamy consistency and slow dissipation, retention on the glass is good, a lot of traces still on the glass after time, permanent layer is always on top and it is a little thinker than usual.

S: Toasted malts are clearly noticed strong malty backbone forms the aroma of this beer.

T: Intense flavor with lots of toasted malts, barley is totally present and also hops can be detected.

M: Sensation is well balanced starting neutral and ending with little bitterness, sensation also lasts on the mouth after ending.

Photo of delta490
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500ml can into an imperial pint glass. Pours a very deep brown (almost black), with a nice, but short-lived cappuccino colored head that leaves a little lacing on the glass. Has a nice aroma with notes of molasses and coffee. The taste is more coffee and roast notes, with the molasses/malt sweetness in the background and just a hint of hop bitterness on the finish, with more roast notes. It's a little thin with almost no carbonation noted, but given the flavors, I think a thicker beer would be overwhelming after a while. As it is, this is a great dark lager that doesn't disappoint.

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

Appearance: Dark mahogany but looks black when not held up to the light. Semi-translucent near the bottom and edges as brown shaded light will pour through. One finger sudsy light tan head. Left a bit of lacing.

Aroma: Some sweet caramel and hints of darker malt. Slightly roasty but pretty restrained. A bit of earth as well. Very clean.

Taste: A very pleasant palate. No bells or whistles, just straight forward amber malts with a little roasted malt but not enough to add bitterness. Reminiscent of Guinness Draught in flavor but with a more definite punch to the palate due to carbonation and a bit of grassy hop presence right at the beginning. Finish is smooth and crisp with a cream flavor for a moment. 4.8% ABV sounds about right but I wouldn't have been surprised if it was even lighter than that. Almost a hybrid lager/ale.

Mouthfeel: Thin but not watery. Lots of carbonation and easy drinkability. Probably sessionable.

Final Thoughts: "Germany's No. 1 Black Lager Beer" is pretty good. Light on body and flavor but not light on enjoyability. Would I drink it again? Yes, if I'm in the mood for an import.

Köstritzer Schwarzbier from Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co.
88 out of 100 based on 1,643 ratings.