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Köstritzer Schwarzbier - Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co.

Köstritzer SchwarzbierKöstritzer Schwarzbier

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

1,275 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1275
Reviews: 733
rAvg: 3.92
pDev: 11.73%


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)
View: Beers (7) |  Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,275 | Reviews: 733 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

3.33/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

500 mL bottle,

A: Pours black with a medium off-white head. Solid retention, mild lacing.

S: Roasted malt, dark fruit.

T: Light chocolate and roasted malt. Dark fruit clearly evident as well, I found it quite figgy. Too sweet overall for me, but not a bad beer.

M: Smooth, relatively light-bodied, cloying at times.

D: A nice black beer, but there are others I would certainly choose over this one. Good price though, under $2, makes this a beer I plan to repurchase some day.

Serving type: bottle

02-25-2009 18:17:33 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

California

3.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Slightly sweet with a great warm taste of dark caramel. A nice brownish black with fine off-white head. Decent carbonation. Tang of hops with a nice touch of bitterness, more that some other Schwarzbiers. A very modest biergarten kind of brew, but an excellent example of the style. Just the thing for meat loaf and mashed potatoes.

Enjoyed at the Kasierhof restaurant in OB, San Diego, which BTW has a good selection of draft German beers.

Serving type: on-tap

09-10-2011 05:28:20 | More by mactrail
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin

Colorado

3.61/5  rDev -7.9%
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.

Serving type: can

03-27-2013 01:41:27 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of barleywinefiend
barleywinefiend

Washington

3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a smooth black color with good carbonaton and a dirty white head. Nose is grains, caramel, and roasted malts. Black and opaque with lots of malt and roasted qualities. Very drinkable and full of vibrant malt, low ABV keeps it very drinkable and can't belive the alcohol is low for such full flavor. .

Serving type: bottle

01-29-2010 20:48:09 | More by barleywinefiend
Photo of tempest
tempest

Pennsylvania

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

This beer seems a little light at first, but the flavor expands as it warms. Not bad for a sub-5% beer. Rich chocolate malt aromas mixed with a sort of carmelized fruit and licorice. The taste is much of the same, but with a touch more bitter chocolate flavor and light, dry lasting roasted bitterness. Definately more authentic than some of the Amercan counterparts, but not necessarily better.

Serving type: bottle

01-04-2007 02:47:53 | More by tempest
Photo of mdfb79
mdfb79

New York

3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 07/22/11 notes. Had on tap at Standard, a beer garden about 3 blocks North of Churchkey in DC at 14th and S. Served in what appears to be a large Stange with a handle.

a - Pours a dark mahogany brown color with a reddish tint, one finger of off white head, and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of roasted malts, toasted malts, caramel, bread, and biscuit. Very malty, and pretty nice.

t - Tasted of roasted malts, light chocolate, bready malts, caramel malts.

m - Medium body and low carbonation, pretty smooth.

o - Overall a pretty good schwarzbier. Lots of malts, and very easy to drink. Would give it another shot.

Serving type: on-tap

07-25-2011 20:45:27 | More by mdfb79
Photo of kojevergas
kojevergas

Texas

3.13/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Served on draught into a .3L Köstriszer Schwarzbier glass in Berlin. Labelled on the beer menu as Magische Biere.

A: Black; stout style tan head of poor retention.

Sm: Chocolate, coffee, hops. Delightful.

T: Coffee, chocolate, toffee, caramel hint body. Open is bland; finish would do well some bitterness. Well built and balanced if you ignore the open and finish, though in fairness some of the body does bleed into the finish, which is a nice effect.

Mf: In dire need of dryness, especially at the climax. Could also use more coarseness to help the many notes of the body linger.

Dr: It's nice for what it is and what it costs. I wouldn't reach for it again, but it's not too bad in fairness. Worth giving a go for lovers of the style.

Serving type: on-tap

03-10-2011 21:41:48 | More by kojevergas
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium

Pennsylvania

4.43/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

First had: on tap at Brauhaus Schmitz, Philly, PA

A tasty, dark, creamy, foamy, malty, black lager. Best served on tap in a proper signature glass. One of my favorites.

Pours an opaque dark brown-black with a healthy finger of light tan head that retains very well. Epic roasty malts in the aroma, with hints of cocoa and raisins. Big malty taste, dark chocolate, hop bitterness just barely detectable. Medium-to-heavy body, incredibly smooth and satisfying. Not the best or most complex brew by far (it is German after all), but I could easily drink it all night long.

Serving type: on-tap

05-12-2011 17:03:21 | More by Rifugium
Photo of rhoadsrage
rhoadsrage

Illinois

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

(Served in an Imperial Pokal)

A- This beer has an opaque dense black body with a sandy tan head of cream that sticks to the glass with each sip. There are a few random tiny bubbles seen gliding to the surface.

S- The dry fresh roasted grain note has a dry caramel note and a dry chocolate grain note it.

T- The smooth clean roasted malt flavor has some dry pale malt flavors with just a bit of sweetness. There is a soft earthy note to the roasted bitterness finish that also has a light cream and tang qualities to it.

M- This beer has a light mouthfeel with crisp fizz finish the blends the slight sweetness of the malt.

D- This beer has a nice roasted malt flavor which has a good depth but still remains smoothly lagered.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2009 20:51:12 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of jdhilt
jdhilt

New Hampshire

3.38/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a two finger cream head that vanishes without a trace of lace (in 9/2006 it left a good lace). Black color no highlights. Light carbonation and light-medium bodied. Roasted malt nose. Flavor is roasted malt and hints of caramel (no metallic aftertaste this time). $1.95 for a 12oz bottle from Colonial Spirits, Acton, MA.

Serving type: bottle

06-30-2010 21:59:10 | More by jdhilt
Photo of Jason
Jason

Massachusetts

4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz brown long neck bottle, no freshness date but there is a description of the beer at the neck of the bottle.

Appearance: A bit rocky in the head department with a lovely lacing effect down the glass. A couple of shades lighter than pitch black.

Smell: Slight roasted and sweet malty aroma, smells of creamed coffee in a faintly sweet way. Quite clean also.

Taste: High smoothness with a deep medium level carbonation, hints of dark bread like a pumpernickel or whole grain is layered thick on the taste buds. Hop bitterness is mild with a bitterness that holds its own for balancing the beer. Mild roasted malt character with hints of carob, chicory and bread crust. Malt sweetness is there but stay to a minimum and does not go to a cloying level at all. Alcohol is meek and barely noticeable, slightly dry finish is doused with a clean graininess and hints of spicy hop.

Notes: I like this beer a lot, not just because this is one of my favourite style but because it keeps it real with flavours that are a bit complex yet not to the point of taking away from actually putting one down if not a few. A damn good pick for the style.

Serving type: bottle

07-19-2002 12:07:17 | More by Jason
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 Wasatch
Wasatch

Utah

3.48/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark black, nice carbonation, small head. little lacing afterwards. Scents of toasted caramel, and malts. Nice sweet taste, medium body. This is a very drinkable brew at this ABV, would recommend. I like the Samuel Adams version alot better, there's just more going on with the SA.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2005 01:37:37 | More by Wasatch
Photo of corby112
corby112

Pennsylvania

2.5/5  rDev -36.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Serving type: bottle.

Pours a dark brown color with touches of amber at the edges and a thin foamy beige head. Bland aroma and flavor. Malty with a slightly hopped dry finish. Nothing to exciting. I find that a lot of these German styles are watered down and bland.

Serving type: bottle

11-28-2008 07:40:04 | More by corby112
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler

Pennsylvania

4.48/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

You've probably heard the one about the guy who walks into a bar. No? He says, "Ouch!" Bro. Woody went to Ardmore last Saturday to see what he could see and walked into a bottle shop. He said, "Yay! Look at all of these new CANs in furtherance of The CANQuest (TM)!" It is called The Beer Shoppe in Ardmore Plaza and for those that do not live in PA, you have no idea what a rare bird it is to find a quality bottle shop, especially one that provided me with no less than five (5) new CANned beers on my first visit. This is one of those beers.

From the CAN: "Brewed according to the German purity law (translated)"; "Germany's No. 1 Black Lager Beer"; "Bier, Beer, Biere, Birra, Cerveza, Cerveja" Man, this CAN caters to nearly the whole EU!

The loud Crack was music to mine ears and the Glug was a pleasant accompaniment. I achieved a finger of dense, foamy, mocha-brown head with good retention. Color was a deep, dark-brown with mahogany highlights at the edges. The visual is why one should always deCANt from the CAN into a glass. I had to hold it to the light to get the full effect. Nose was filled with grassy hops, just like in the Bros.' description on this site. I was ready to swoon. I CAN honestly say that I had no appreciation for lagers until I embarked on The CANQuest (TM) and found out that not all lagers are created equal. Mouthfeel was medium, approaching fullness, but not quite achieving it. The taste married the grassiness of the hops with the bitterness of anise and molasses, undoubtedly from the malt. Finish was semi-dry and quite refreshing. The low ABV makes it a good CANdidate for the cooler and I would recommend it to those who say, "I don't like dark beers." Sheesh. Get off of your high Lovibond horse and join the party!

Serving type: can

10-14-2012 16:21:10 | More by woodychandler
Photo of DoubleJ
DoubleJ

California

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

I like how they call thier brewing company a "schwarzbierbrauerei". It looks like the only large scale prodcut they make too, so i guess they have a point. On to the beer:

You know what this beer reminded me of? One of those Irish nitro-stouts, without the creamy feel. The flavors are light, mellow, and interesting. They intensify as it warms, releasing molasses and burnt sugar, ended in a slight roasted finish. Pretty good beer at a pretty good price, cost me $6.99 for a sixer at the Wine Exchange.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2007 22:30:55 | More by DoubleJ
Photo of wl0307
wl0307

United Kingdom (England)

3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A kind gift from my flatmate's father who brought this bottle along with three other beers all the way from hometown Stuttgart. 500ml brown bottle, BB 06/07, served chilled in a pint-sized weizen glass.

A: very dark brown colour with mahogany shades; coming with a very tight and creamy layer of tan froth that sustains very well and leaves even sheets of lacing behind; gentle fizziness for a lager.
S: very refreshing doughy yeasts and lager malts upfront, balanced by an understated but enticing touch of burned sugar on top of faint touches of dark chocolates and roast-nuts... Overall the nose is surprisingly clean and straight forward, but a nose this neat hard to obtain, I presume?
T: a mouthful of richer roasted-nuttiness and muter bitter chocolates hand in hand with a crisp and acidic pale lager flavour... soon followed by light, powdery-textured hop-bitterness, leaving a lingering aroma and bitter flavour of black sugar, caramel, and some burned nutty aroma and bitter-sweet aftertaste. The finish also shows some dryish hops and a healthy dose of acid, balancing with the chewy roastiness quite well.
M&D: this is a softly-fizzy and medium-bodied black lager that in my opinion tastes slightly more simplistic than ideal. But the cleanliness on the nose and palate, and the neat structure make this a very quaffable alternative to Munich Dunkel, a lot of which more often than not show too much sweet and thin aftertaste (for me). All in all, I'm happy that finally I get to taste this much-talked-about beer, and it doesn't disappoint at all~~

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2007 21:53:23 | More by wl0307
Photo of biegaman
biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

For those whose German needs a little brushing up, "schwarz" means black and thus "schwarzbier" translates, literally, to 'black beer'. Of course, that's nothing you couldn't have figured out on your own just from looking at the thing! It's body is decidedly black, despite slipping up the occasional highlight, and even its head looks like slate.

The aroma is curiously distinct, offering a particular and enticing bouquet that, although humming a subtle tune of dark fruit, is not noticeably fruity and, although there is an inkling of caramel, could hardly be considered sweet. And while its maltiness is toasty, it lacks even a trace of harsh roast or coffee-like qualities.It smells like the Greek dessert __.

In fact, the smell makes it hard to point the finger at any one particular flavour, or the ingredient responsible for it. The actual taste doesn't make things much easier. While its tremendously grainy, dark maltiness is distinctive and substantial, it doesn't sit at all heavily on the palate and refuses to linger even momentarily in an aftertaste of any kind.

Likewise, while there must be some hops at play considering how virtually all sweetness is restrained, there is no prevalent bitterness and the beer drinks with the clean, complaisant, almost nondescript character of any pale lager. And there is not a drop of roast, astringency or porter-like flavour despite the obvious use of a little dark malt.

Köstritzer, and schwarzbier in general, is a lesson in how you shouldn't judge a book by its cover. Despite the blackish colour, this beer is every bit as smooth, lightly-flavoured, drying and refreshing as any yellow lager worth drinking. And it's also an obvious testament to the Germans' love and skill for brewing super agreeable, drinkable lagers.

Serving type: can

12-20-2010 19:14:17 | More by biegaman
Photo of Viggo
Viggo

Ontario (Canada)

3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Can from LCBO. I've had this a ton of times, always forget to review it.

Pours a very dark brown, some ruby in the edges, super thick light brown head forms, drops some decent lacing, great retention, keeps a solid layer the whole glass. Smell is nice, on the sweet side, caramel and toast, some chocolate milk, light roastiness, nuts, grainy, fresh biscuits, touch of dark fruit but very clean, nice roasty character. Taste is solid, very toasty and biscuity at first, nuts, chocolate milk, light raisin, almost an oxidized sort of sherry character, grains, oats, very toasty and dry in the finish. Mouthfeel is light bodied with medium carbonation, very smooth and drinkable. A real nice and easy to drink schwarzbier, cheap too. Hard to beat this value.

Serving type: can

03-18-2009 22:34:39 | More by Viggo
Photo of Bighuge
Bighuge

Minnesota

2.6/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Even though this is a "black beer", the beer isn't black. Rather dark ruby. A full rocky beige head. Some slight caramel tones and milk chocolate on the nose. There's a soapy taste in this beer. It has a light to medium body. I perceive some bitterness, albeit not a pleasurable one. There are some very slight roasted and chocolate tones. Very uniteresting beer. Compared to one of the only other Schwarzbiers I've had, Sprecher Black Bavarian, this beer is not even in the same universe.

Serving type: bottle

05-16-2002 22:28:07 | More by Bighuge
Photo of beerthulhu
beerthulhu

New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a very dark cherry red color, wiht a slight fizzy tan head.

S: Liqour, and licorice on nose along with some rum raisin, dried cherries, and dark caramel.

T: Very smooth flavor, dark maltiness but light on tongue with some earthy dry bittering hop presence. Theres some chocolate notes as well that really stand out. Good per style.

M: oily texture on tongue, dry bitterness with a light mouthful and dry finish.

D: decent drinkability. overall average going down.

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2008 23:06:29 | More by beerthulhu
Photo of Stinkypuss
Stinkypuss

Pennsylvania

4.15/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

a. 12 oz bottle into a mug. Dark blackish brown brew pours with a small off white head.

s. Smell is of roasted malt and peat, some cracker like yeast.

t. Taste is quite solid and follows the nose. Roasted malted barley plays a dominant role, with some smoke and bready notes on the back end and just a slight bitterness.

m. Medium bodied and semi-smooth.

D. Dangerously drinkable, and a really fine beverage indeed. Reccommended.

Serving type: bottle

01-21-2009 19:03:43 | More by Stinkypuss
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 Slatetank
Slatetank

Pennsylvania

4.6/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - A deep brown bordering on black with reddish highlights and a tan head that leaves almost no lace behind

S - A nutty, malty almost creamy espresso and bittersweet chocolate odor that floats lightly over a yeast and herbal mushroom like odor.

M - Prickly carbonation followed by dry dark slightly chalky textures that relax into a mix of salty and sweet with milky smoothness.

T - A dark brown maltiness and crisp nutty dry toasty malt flavor with lightly spiced woody hops and hazelnut. Gentle date notes in the middle adds to the complexity. Salty overtakes sweet subtly and leads to a clean crisp finish.

D - A wonderful session bier, full of flavor and quaffable. A delightful blend of dark malt and lager smoothnes. Worth a taste for almost any occasion - malty, sweet and smooth. Excellent in the drinkability category

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2007 02:05:23 | More by Slatetank
Photo of JohnGalt1
JohnGalt1

Idaho

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

12oz picked up a few days ago at the Coop for about $1.50.. poured into my smaller weizen glass.

2" lite tan head drops leaving a little lacing.. Deeep brown beer that reveals crystal clear dark ruby highlites when held to a light.

Aroma is like a Dunkel on steroids... very clean toasted malts and hints of caramel, coffee, and dark dried fruits.

Flavor is all about balance .. middle of the road maltiness with an abundant toasted element .. some lite chocolate roastiness .. lite spicy hop flavor helps balance everything very well.

Very drinkable for sure.. lite medium body... I've had this beer numerous times over the year, but this is the first time I've taken the time to write notes.. maybe not the best schwarzbier in the world, but a pretty high benchmark for the style.

Serving type: bottle

02-02-2008 03:36:52 | More by JohnGalt1
Köstritzer Schwarzbier from Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co.
88 out of 100 based on 1,275 ratings.