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Herold Bohemian Black Lager - Pivovar Herold Březnice A.s.

Not Rated.
Herold Bohemian Black LagerHerold Bohemian Black Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
89
very good

94 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 94
Reviews: 83
rAvg: 3.98
pDev: 11.56%
Wants: 10
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Pivovar Herold Březnice A.s. visit their website
Czech Republic

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-01-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 94 | Reviews: 83 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jdhilt
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a three finger light brown head that fades slowly to a shallow layer leaving a good lace. Black color. Light carbonation and medium-heavy bodied. Caramel nose. Starts malty with a sweet caramel flavor not cloying, finish has hints of hops. Nice black lager. $2.49 for a 500ml bottle from John's Grocery Iowa City, Ia.

jdhilt, Nov 03, 2006
Photo of MuddyFeet
4.33/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a smooth, but thin looking near-black in color. Lots of foamy head that was slightly tinted khaki. Not much light could pierce through the glass. Nose is malty and just a hint of smoke and ash rise to the nostrils. Nice mild beer. Superbly drinkable. No particular sulphuric tones which has been the downfall of many schwarzbiers in my experience. Lots of toasted malts. Thin feeling but appropriately so.

MuddyFeet, Oct 15, 2006
Photo of Byeast
4.35/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: Poured a dark , opaque black , with a half inch of tan foam.

Smell: roasty malts , ghost smoke , some dark fruits , and a bit of floral hops poking through.

Taste: Very pleasant roasted character , rich , yet light bodied maltiness , smoky , some caramel sweetness , chocolate, a bit of flowery hops and a tinge of cedar in the finish.

Mouthfeel : medium body , for a dark beer: very refreshing and quaffable with a mildly dry finish.

Drinkability: An exellent Schwarzbier. Very flavorful and drinkable. Of the ones ive had , this schwarzbier has more of a pleasant smoky charater. Very good.

Byeast, Oct 13, 2006
Photo of emerge077
4.35/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is my favorite schwarzbier. Strange that it's not german, but true to style and then some.

Pours a nearly opaque black, some fizzy carbonation and tan foam. Not much to note in the aroma, some roasty malt as it warms.

Taste is rich and roasty malt, light efferescent carb at first. Develops a mildly sour fruity note later, which is pretty subdued. Freshness is key for optimal taste, i've had old bottles that were lackluster. Supremely easy to drink, and pure velvet on the palate. Give me about six of these and i'l call you next week...

emerge077, Sep 16, 2006
Photo of haz77
3.68/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours black with a mahogany hue. An inch of light tan head takes a couple of minutes to fall and leaves some lacing.

S - Chocolate, coffee, caramel, a little dark fruit.

T - Initial mouthful of chocolate and roast malts. Coffee comes through and leads towards a dry/slightly bitter finish.

M - Light-medium body and moderate carbonation.

D - Solid beer. Recommended.

haz77, Jul 30, 2006
Photo of PitPivo
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I was fortunate enough to find this beer at a local gourmet supermarket called Harry's, just down the street from me. A dark brown-to-blackish hue when poured, this lager offers a generous head at first, settling quickly. I must have sat there for a minute just smelling the beer. Nothing quite like Saaz hops to get the mouth watering. The sweet, dark malts come through, with a bitter aftertaste that's enjoyable.

If I were to single out a beer I would buy perpetually, this would be it. Unfortunately, finding enough to buy perpetually is the more difficult task. I haven't found another place that carries it here, and Harry's carries it in small quantities.

PitPivo, Jun 21, 2006
Photo of wl0307
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

(Transcribed from notes) Tasted on cask at two JDW pubs in London, Nov. 2005, during the Spoon's Holloween Beer Festival. The pump-clip says its imported exclusively for JDW, and to serve a Czech beer on cask-conditioned form really is quite interesting.

A: pours an ebony hue with brownish glows when seen against light, coming with a thick and tightly frothy tan head with great retention. Looking just amazing on the handpull~~
S: colourful~~ caramely sweet and dark chocolatey note of black malts with light roastiness and leather, against a background of sour-sweet plum juice, cherry jam, bread-doughy sour note, sour edge of raw nuts, soaked red-grape skins... the combo. is almost like the liquid form of rum-raisin and nut buttery cookies... ensued by a refreshing, floating aroma of spicy+grassy Saaz hops... Complex and very pleasant indeed.
T: a mouthful of sour-sweet dark fruitiness (plummy and a bit vinous) prevails upfront, along with soft-textured but profound roasted maltiness (plus a tinge of leather) and cherry-flavoured chocolates... leading to a mild aftertone full of clove+licorice, caramelised sugar, herbal bitterness, and more darkest chocolates' sour-bitter edge, going deeper and deeper down the throat...
M&D: a touch too smooth for this fantastic lager, but the cask-interpretation is not bad at all! The low fizziness makes this beer slightly watery at the back, but this remains a medium-bodied and fullsome Czech dark lager, which is less rich and positively smoother. A nice experiment that I feel so happy to bump into twice at JDW pubs, and feel even more lucky that it's on form on both visits!!

wl0307, Jun 15, 2006
Photo of BeerIsland
3.85/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours av ery deep brown with a thick, bubbly head. Rich, sweet, malty smells abound and are carried through to similar flavors with chocolatey fruity notes. It's a little toasty on the finsh. Very smooth and drinkable. It would make a very good winter beer but isn't a load for all the flavor you get. I like it!

BeerIsland, Jun 15, 2006
Photo of SaCkErZ9
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a pint glass. A nice, one finger sized head forms on the beer. Dissolves at a fairly slow pace and leaves a white sheet of lace on top. Nice lacing as well. Almost opaque but a purple/brown hue is visible in the bottom of the glass.

Smell is ordinary. Doesnt hint toward anything. Caramel malts is about all.

Taste is quite hearty. Toasty and bready flavor. Not a whole lot of chocolate or coffee which seems odd. Tastes nice alltogether.

Mouthfeel is pretty dry. Clean on the palate as well. Medium bodied I would say. A decent all around beer.

SaCkErZ9, Apr 06, 2006
Photo of JudgeRoughneck
4.4/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

This is a deep ruby colored beer with a thick, foamy, malted-milk color head. Aroma is overpoweringly of sweet green apple, kind of like some of Sam Smith's beers, but even stronger. Hey, I like it.

Flavor is that same green apple along with a chocolatey malt base and a slightly roasted bitterness. It all comes together exceptionally smoothly with a suprisingly crisp finish. Mouthfeel is thick and creamy, which is nice, but something lighter would really make this brew heavenly. I don't know much about Schwarzbier but I know this is a new favorite of mine no matter what you call it.

JudgeRoughneck, Mar 24, 2006
Photo of Chadbrew
3.55/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am pretty new to this style doesn't seem to be many examples available. The pour is OK, dark beer but not so dark you can't see light through it. There is a creamy tan head and adequate amount of very fine bubbles of carbonation. The smell is malty and caramel, there does seem to be a hint of roast. Tastes the way it smells. Malty and caramel and enough hops bitterness to almost balance it out. I do like the mouthfeel of this; it is rich and full, kind of chewy.
Overall the drinkability is pretty good.

Chadbrew, Mar 11, 2006
Photo of zjungleist
4.28/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Dark brown/black in appearance with a light tan head which bubbled high and fell fast. The smell is mainly malt with a fair amount of yeast. Nice black malt flavors with some sugary notes somewhere between chocolate and vanilla. Not to say this beer is very sweet, but there is some residual sweetness countered with plenty of bitterness. Yet, that is not to say this beer is hoppy, because there is not much hop that I noticed, but mainly malty bitterness. The mouthfeel is spot on for the style, with a lager-like crispness and velvety richness. This brew is nice and complex, yet is not overpowering in any one way.

zjungleist, Feb 16, 2006
Photo of ncbrewerbun
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a brown 500 ml bottle. No expiration date.

This beer is a clear very dark mahogany with ruby hightlights. It has a tan head and lasts well into the beer, but not for the time to drink all 500 ml. A very good looking pint.

Nutty, toasty, malty aroma....Initially a very nice smell; but as the beer warms, some slightly undesireable vegetal components come out. (I let this one sit around longer than usual, or I likely would not have picked up on this.)

A well done schwarzbeer. Nice malt -- chocolate, a hint of molasses, good complexity. Sweetness of the malts comes through making a nice "schwarzbeer" statement.

I'd recommend this one.

ncbrewerbun, Dec 30, 2005
Photo of anders36
4.18/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a black colour with a long lasting tan head. Lots of roasted malt in the aroma, some some caramel too. Sweet malty flavour some roasted notes too. A little thin in the mouthfeel. But it is very soft and easy drinking. One of the best schwartzbier i have ever tasted.

anders36, Dec 04, 2005
Photo of merlin48
4.05/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

500 ml bottle with label that says this was lagered 70 days in the cellars of their 500 year old castle brewery. Nice label. Disembarks from the bottle with a very dark, but clear, pour into the glass, where it sits with a nearly opaque dark body. A small, light brown head retains well enough and leaves some spotty patch on the glass. Body is a radiant red mahogany when held to light.

Aroma is dominated by scorched dark malts, with notes of burnt coffee and bitter chocolate. Some figs and licorice add an interesting dimension to the rather restrained nose. Some spicy Saaz hops are also apparent.

Slightly creamy mouthfeel is medium bodied and the carbonation seems a bit overdone.

Taste is well balanced with a soothing complexity. Dark chocolate, a hint of coffee, and some molasses sweetness are immediately noticed. Some toasted rye bread notes add some intrigue. Saaz hops add a spicy and floral bitterness that balances the sweetness very well. Finishes clean and leaves an even aftertaste.

This is a very nice Schwarzbier, one of my favorite lager styles. Complex and well balanced, this one is an excellent example of the style. A must try if you enjoy dark lagers.

merlin48, Nov 17, 2005
Photo of Enola
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This beer is similar in color to a good porter. Just a bit of light gets through. Very little head, only a small ring around the edge. The smell is pretty faint. Maybe a little hint of roasted grains. The taste is of roasted grains with a slight cola-like taste thrown in. The mouthfeel and drinkability lift this beer up high. There is absolutly no negative aftertase. A very smooth beer. Slight bitterness is noted. As for drinkabilty, this is one of the best that I've had. I was somewhat relunctant to try this one but now I'm sorry I waited so long. This beer will be on my list to try often. This was my first from this brewer. It makes me want to try their other selections. A good beer worthy of much praise.

Enola, Nov 17, 2005
Photo of neonbrown82
4.22/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The beer pours to a nearly opaque black with ruby highlights. Has a nice fluffy tan head that doesn't leave much of a lacing.

The smell isn't too great, what little there is. When inhaling deeply I manage to smell a lavender soap aroma with some malt and spicy hop.

This is one of the best tasting schwarzbiers I've had. It doesn't seem to make direct contact with the palate. I could chug this beer like water and not know the difference until I stopped drinking and tasted the residual roastiness and smoke in the finish. Has a light caramelized chocolate malt flavor to it, but the hops are more or less completely indetectable.

This beer is very light bodied, like water, but it finishes crisp and smooth. Leaves a very light and pleasant finish.

This is probably the best beer I can think of for converting BMC drinkers who think Guinness is too "dark." It has that full flavored yet light taste, and its more chuggable than BMC could ever dream of being.

neonbrown82, Nov 15, 2005
Photo of mmmbeer
4.4/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle with no freshness date - served chilled in a pilsner glass. Pours black - between that of a porter and a stout - with ruby highlights and a 1 finger brown head that leaves some lacing. Smells of sweet chocolate, roasted malts, figs, apples, and a hint of metal right as I opened the bottle. There is both sweet and bitter chocolate on the palate, along with toasted malts, coffee, figs, a bit of raisins, apples, and green/spicy hops. Kinda like an imperial stout - quite nice. It has a medium to light body that is tingly like a lager yet smooth. A delicious lager that's better than Köstritzer in my opinion.

mmmbeer, Nov 01, 2005
Photo of rhoadsrage
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a dimple mug)

A- This beer pours a dense black body with a gentle carbonation sticking to the glass and a nice creamy light brown head. The body is pretty opaque but you can see the bubbles close to the edge.

S- I can smell the aroma even as I pour it out of the bottle. The smell of deep roasted grain and a clean slightly sulfur smell fill the air. There is a note of German hops that is in the background. There is a faint coffee quality to the roast as it warms a little.

T- The taste of roasted grain and a slightly dry cocoa note to it are the first tastes. A bit of coffee and toasted grains come through also. A good complexity to the dark malts but not sweet or astringent. The finish is dry with a faint hop bitterness.

M- This beer has a smooth medium body that is a bit creamy. There is no astringency or alcohol warmth.

D- This is a good solid schwarzbier that has a nice complexity to the dark malts and a smoothness to the finish. It would be nice to see a hint more hops for balance or some alcohol warmth (I know that is not to style).

rhoadsrage, Oct 15, 2005
Photo of lackenhauser
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very black in color with a nice chestnut hue when held to the light. Small tan head. Decent aroma-malty with some roasted notes. Good malty, bold flavor with a blend of roasted and chocolate notes. Theres a tad hashness I cant place my finger on it almost seems as it might be a freshness issue. Overall the flavor is well done just this one element of it. Good body for style. A very drinkable beer. More roasted flavor then a lot of schwarzbiers I have had. Tends to be a bit more upfront and pronounced overall.

lackenhauser, Oct 13, 2005
Photo of GnomeKing
4.33/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

There's a really nice mix of chocolate, nut, and grain flavors in this one. As you drink more, the sweet tastes, while not disappearing, yield some ground to a hops bite and a general spiceness. Everything is well-blended and tuned to the right levels, making this beer highly drinkable.

The dark lager/schwarzbier style is really growing on me.

GnomeKing, Oct 11, 2005
Photo of yelterdow
4.43/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Purchased from the back fridge at Andy's Corner in Bogota, NJ. A big "thanks" to George & Tommy for carrying this wonderful example of a schwarzbier.

Served at a little over fridge temperature in a nonic after dinner. 16.9 oz. bottle, no freshness date.

Appearance- Pours a deep, glowing ruby-black with an amazing incandescence. Nice cookie-dough 1" head that remains for a good several minutes, leaving a slick, sticky lace down the sides of my glass. A very sexy, elegant beer for the eyes.

Smell- The first thing I got was chocolate milk, the kind that you drank real cold back in fourth grade after school... not from a box, from a huge glass that you needed two hands to manage. Then comes the lightly roasted coffee beans and the malts. Rich, masterful aroma that could only come from the hands of an artisan brewery.

Taste- Mocha, coffee, chocolate, malts, Saaz hops... in that order. Delightfully light yet full bodied, the flavors from the roasted malts enter the mouth softly and become all-encompassing, while the mildly bitter hops finish with just the right amount of dryness to prep me for the next sip. Fantastic.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- A medium slickness and moderate foamy texture feels just right for this style. Just right, serving as a backdrop for the dance of flavors parading on the tongue. This could be sessioned until the sun comes up Monday morning.

Without a doubt one of the finest black lagers I have ever had the pleasure of sampling.

yelterdow, Sep 29, 2005
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.98/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Mahogany with brilliant ruby edges that sparkle in the sun... that is just barely visible on the opposite side of the glass. Black Lager is darker than most porters and quite a few stouts. The pale caramel cap is tight-bubbled and firm, encouraging persistence. Chubby rings of lace don't stick with much force, but several of them are present at all times just above the surface of the beer. It's hard to conceive of a better looking schwarzbier.

The nose is style appropriate and is better than average. Caramel and cocoa share the stage, although it isn't as sweet as that description makes it sound. This is probably the weakest of the half dozen schwarzbier noses that I've had to date.

HBBL is intensely flavorful. I'm sure the fact that I'm drinking it at an un-lager-like 55 degrees helps. The flavor profile consists of black malt that has been generously roasted, bittersweet chocolate and crushed coffee beans. There's also a hint of Saaz spiciness that provides the yin to the black malt yang and gives the beer yet another dimension.

Black coffee becomes so prominent as the beer warms that I wouldn't be surprised to learn that this is a coffee schwarzbier. As expected, an unsweet middle leads to a dry finish. The light-medium mouthfeel could stand to be more full and more creamy to suit me.

Herold Bohemian Black Lager is an excellent schwarzbier. As noted, I've only had a handful, but I recognize a good one when I drink it. If you like incredibly flavorful, amazingly drinkable dark lagers, be sure to seek this one out.

BuckeyeNation, Sep 15, 2005
Photo of WMBierguy
3.38/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Pours a dark brown - almost black. Had a tan colored head that lasted a minute or two. The taste is very mellow, with very little evidence of hops and no bitterness. The aftertaste is reminscent of coffee. Would make a good dessert beer, and I think that it would go nicel with a piece of dark chocolate. It would be a poor choice for a heavy drinking session, as it has a somewhat cloying effect. An interesting beer, though not one that I'm likely to get again any time soon.

WMBierguy, Aug 23, 2005
Photo of blackie
3.93/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

When I pour the beer into the glass, a one finger khaki head is created. The color is a very dark shade of brown, almost black...but some brown light does filter through.

Some slight coffee aromas on the nose. An extremely small amount of esters are in there. There is an aroma that I first had trouble nailing down, but after some pondering I figure that old, stale whole grain bread is the best descriptor for the smell. Hops are very slight.

Carbonation is on the lower side of medium and the body is medium.

Again, the same coffee flavors as on the nose, but more pronounced on the tongue. Mild flavors of toasted malts. Slight hop bitterness that carries a little ways into the finish. Finishes also with some lingering roasted malt notes and a slight astringency.

blackie, Aug 10, 2005
Herold Bohemian Black Lager from Pivovar Herold Březnice A.s.
89 out of 100 based on 94 ratings.