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B3K Black Lager - Wynkoop Brewing Company

Not Rated.
B3K Black LagerB3K Black Lager

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BA SCORE
80
good

109 Ratings
THE BROS
80
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 109
Reviews: 37
rAvg: 3.51
pDev: 15.95%
Wants: 0
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Wynkoop Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: smcolw on 06-06-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 109 | Reviews: 37
Reviews by tone77:
Photo of tone77
3.41/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to woodychandler for yet another canned beer. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a cola like color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is mild, some notes of coffee. Taste is a much stronger coffee, some malts, very easy drinking. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a decent beer.

More User Reviews:
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.5/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From BeerAdvocate Magazine #81 (Oct 2013):

Wynkoop’s take on the German Schwarzbier style. While it’s certainly good and highly drinkable, and offers can fans a dark beer option, it lacks some of the depth, complex malt characters and clean finish found in authentic examples.

STYLE: Schwarzbier
ABV: 5.1%
AVAILABILITY: Year-round

LOOK: Near black, opaque, brown edges, beige lacing

SMELL: Bread crusts, chocolate, spent coffee grounds

TASTE: Very creamy, light chocolate, bready, roasty, mild acidity, faint smoke, flash of sweetness, dark grapes, blood, coin; dry, bready finish

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.41/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

So what's the deal? Is this beer name inspired by a serial killer?

First beer of the day yesterday at the Dayton Disc Golf Course (and it wasn't this beer's fault I fell behind 7-0 in skins to start). Nice black color without the viscosity, you can see some hints of brown and red through the beer at the edge when you apply sunlight to it. The head was a sturdy beige, small bubbles.

Aroma, fairly standard, a little bit of roast in the nose, lager aroma stays in check, neither offensive nor obtrusive.

Taste, good black spritz going, adequate hopping for style, light body, roast still discernable in taste, good carbonation, whatever the yeast offers, it isn't oppressive. A faint sweet malt remnant in the mouthfeel that is otherwise dry and clean.

A decent beer that I found mildly enjoyable on a crisp fall morning.

Photo of beatenbyjacks
3.13/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Appearance - pours with a rich white head the quickly goes away. Dark brown cola color and hue.

Smell - lots of malts with a hint of smoky flavor

Taste - front has lots of malts followed by that subtle smoky tint in the smell.

Mouthfeel - easy drinking for sure, but lacking a punch

Overall - maybe I'm not a huge fan of the style, but other than easy drinking just an ok beer.

Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a dark black body with a medium sized creamy tan head. The body is to dense to see any sign of carbonation.

S- This beer has a soft smooth roasted black malt note with a hint of cream. There are graham notes that increase as the beer warms.

T- This beer has as smooth roasted malt flavor with hints of coffee malt and chocolate malt notes. There is a soft dry pine note to the finish with a light chalk flavor in the finish. As the beer warms there are some notes of cream in the malt.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a dry finish.

D- This beer has nice big malt flavors with some fruity ale qualities but it still has a very smooth quality to it. Nice session beer.

Photo of biboergosum
3.83/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz can, from the King Soopers across from my hotel in the Glendale area of Denver a few weeks ago.

This beer pours a fairly dark brown hue, bordering on the eponymous black, with rampant cola highlights, and three fingers of foamy, spongy, and dense beige head, which leaves some decent stormy, run for cover cloudy lace around the glass as it gently seeps away.

It smells of lightly roasted, somewhat mealy pale, grainy malt, dry cocoa nibs, faintly buttered toast, a hint of brown sugar, and rather vegetal earthy, leafy hops. The taste is more roasted malt, with stronger caramel twinges to go along with the doddering pale malt, bittersweet chocolate, a touch of day-old coffee, ashy burning embers, a suggestion of peppery umami, and weak earthy, leafy hops.

The carbonation is generally on the down low - nothing really sticking its head up from its plebeian toil, the body an adequate medium weight, and fairly smooth, but for a niggling pithy clamminess. It finishes on the dry side, the roast, toast, ash, spice, and hop all too much for the other party to get a grip on.

An enjoyable and approachable schwarzbier, the roasted character doing well to branch out, spread itself around. My experience thus far with this style has unfortunately mostly been with thin, overly lagery versions, so this is a nice surprise - fuller, but still a lager, the smoky essences not totally overriding that.

Photo of GilGarp
3.78/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served on tap at the brewery.

Color is a dark cola brown with red highlights. Thin white head leaves behind nice lacing.

Aroma is mild toasted malts but nothing particularly striking.

Flavor has good balance between between sweetness and bitterness. Nice roasted malt, carmel, subtle dark fruits and spice.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and average carbonation.

This falls somewhere between a pilsner and a porter, if that makes any sense. Somewhat similar to 1554 but with a more assertive spicy hop character.

Photo of russpowell
4.35/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap when it was 100+ & it went down too easy!!

Pours black,black with a 1/2' white lead. Some lacing & good head retention

S: Roasted malts, choclate & slight licorice

T: Choclate & toasty grains, fruitness, licorice pepper & grainy notes. Finish with choc & fruit

MF: Semi-silky but still refreshes. Near perfect carbonation

Flavor makes this super drinkable, a really nice schwartz!

Photo of PhillyStyle
3.3/5  rDev -6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap in a 12 oz pint glass:

Served up a decent brown, reminded me of cola really, with an off white head that was not well retained. No lacing to mention. The head was light and fluffy. I would have expected this beer to be blacker that it was.

The aroma was light, a nice roasted barley but not much else to it.

The taste is good, follows the nose, but a little stronger. Roasted barley with some sweetness, not really sure what it was, and it also had some spice to it, but again, not really sure what it was. I didn't really find much hoppiness/bitterness to it, which I expected some of.

The beer feeling light, which is what was expected from the style, and it was smooth and easy to drink with a good carbonation feel to it. The beer finished with a dry aftertaste. Overall, not bad beer but not a great one either.

Photo of Jredner
2.18/5  rDev -37.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

You ever have a beer at a brewpub and think to yourself, "The brewer wouldn't know a [insert beer style] if it bit him in the ass?"

Me either until I had this Black Beer. It's just damn un-Schwarz...the schwarz is very not with this beer.

Has a porterish roast coffe aroma with mild stewed raisin notes that are more baltic porter than Schwarz....but hey maybe that suggests it is actually a lager. Red tinted black body with a pinky thin tan head. Light roasty flavor in the fore. Amazingly narrow flavor range and not much real taste concentration or or presence ont he tongue...a watery weak porter really. Shameful.

Photo of minterro
3.8/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Decided to give it a shot, no real expectations for this one. Got it for free at Morgans Liquor store as part of a promotion.

A&S: Pours about a finger of creamy tan head, not a ton of retention, but not awful. The beer has a medium black coloration. Light grains and bitter hop components, with some smokiness thrown in there.

T&M: Really not bad. Pretty large hop component. Smokey, lightly malted, milk chocolate also present in the taste. Light body, but not super crisp, more smooth than I expected. Medium high carbonation, but not sharp.

Overall: I'm not too familiar with this style (Schwarzbier), however this beer seems to fit for the most part. Pretty refreshing and not completely flavorless. Opposed to the season suggestions for this style (winter), I think this beer goes great on a warm early summer night.

Photo of Dithyramb
3.63/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled as a fresh drawn pint at the brewery in Denver. They get added points for keeping a swarz on all year long. Pours a ruby hinted dark brown that was amazingly clear. Had a light tan ring for a head due to the pour, but had decent lacing.

Deep roasted/chocolatey malt aromas, but no smokiness as I would have expected. Flavor was pretty deeply malty, but not cloying, having a light and airy mouthfeel. The aroma comes through in the flavor. A good hankering of bitterness is there, but only present as bitterness in and of itself and not really "hoppy" in any sense.

Complex malts with a light mouthfeel made this one appear quite drinkable.

Photo of BigBry
3.63/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled a fresh draft pint at the brewpub in Denver.
Pours a clear, dark brown color, not quite black. It had a light brown ring of foam (not really any head), did leave thin lacing.
Malt aromas, some roasted grain smell, but not the smokiness I was expecting. Flavor was malty, somewhat complex, but not overly powerful. No real hop taste or finish in this one. Thin mouthfeel kept it light and quite drinkable. Good, but not great.

Photo of ZoomanCru
3.84/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

App: Very dark, more so than say a bock. As dark as a stout without that black hole characteristic. One finger, dark tan head that dissipates quickly leaving very little lacing.

Smell: Chocolatey nose very present and predominant. Medium bouquet, and a nose that is very true to style. Hops disguised under significant malt presence, but not absent entirely. Pretty mellow smell.

Taste: Very deep and interesting taste. Lots of malt flavors battling one another without a decisive victor. Chocolate malts dominate with some roastiness bringing up the rear. Caramelized flavors intertwined with a mild woodiness. Tastes a lot like a porter without the heavy bodied lingering flavors. Very clean with a slight lingering sweetness. Mild hops bite that is noted but subtle enough to let the malts perform center stage. Slight lingering sourness that harmonizes with the brews sweetness.

Mouth: Carbonation light for a lager which really allows the creaminess of the malts to bloom on your tongue. Light bodied considering its strong malt presence.

Photo of woodychandler
4.06/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Another of the Blargimus trade haul in support of The CANQuest (TM)! I experienced a backlog and then realized that no picture existed or was pending of this one and so that added to the lead time as a basic tenet of The CANQuest (TM) states that "No CAN shall be Cracked open unless a picture already exists or one CAN be approved. Cracked CANs are unsightly and should NOT be used for photographic purposes except in extreme cases."

From the CAN: "Pack It In, Pack It Out."; "Our acclaimed German-style schwartzbier features roasted flavors, understated hops and a hint of smoke. An uncanny, all-season version of dark beer, it's spectacular and sessionable."; "2011 Great Ameri[CAN] Beer Festival Bronze Medal - Kellerbier or Zwickelbier *** 2008 Great Ameri[CAN] Beer Festival Gold Medal - German-Style Schwartzbier"; "Brewed & CANned at Wynkoop Brewing Company Est. 1988 Denver, Colorado"; "Please Keep Refrigerated".

No explanation of the name, which is too bad, as it puts me in mind of Dennis Rader, the BTK killer. That is just how my twisted brain works.

The Crack was followed closely by an inverted Glug which produced two fingers of thick, deep-tan head with great retention. Color was a deep, dark-brown allowing light penetration only near the top of the glass. It was as deeply dark as Rader's heart must have been to commit such atrocities. Nose was rich with a smoky chocolate scent, like a liquid dark chocolate bar. Mouthfeel was medium and the chocolate taste even more pronounced on the tongue than it had been on the nose! Understated hops? More like unspoken. This was very sweet, especially on the finish and between that and its > 4% ABV, I would not find it "sessionable". Hey, that was their claim, not mine. Stylistically, I have no problem with it, but the style is just not my cuppa meat, dig?

Photo of Rifugium
3.83/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First had: on tap at their brewpub

Good schwarzbier. Poured brownish-black with a moderate tan head. Dark roasted malts in the nose, caramel and dark chocolate. Similar taste, with big roasty malts, licorice, and some cocoa bitterness. Smooth and silky, not quite full-bodied, and very drinkable.

Photo of smcolw
3.83/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Awesome beige head with great lace. This beer is surprisingly clear.

Strong chocolate malt aromas (no smokiness). The flavor is very much like a brown ale, although this one is maltier than their Brown Artillery Ale. Very low hop, rich and highly carbonated.

This is a smooth beer with lots of chocolate. It's tasty and easily consumed.

Photo of Tone
3.75/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a black color. 1/4 inch head of a tan color. Great retention and decent lacing. Smells of roasted malt, coffee, sweet malt, and slight oatmeal. Fits the style of a Schwarzbier. Mouth feel is smooth and clean, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of slight earthy malt, roasted malt, slight coffee, and a hint of sweet malt. Overall, decent appearance, good body, and good feel.

Photo of champ103
4.27/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Cherry Cricket in Denver, CO

A: Pours a dark brown, nearly black color. A small beige head forms and sticks around as a tiny cap. Some light lace.
S: Toasted malts, bread and biscuit. Light chocolate and coffee. I like it.
T: Very simple, but I love it. Toasted malts that are great. Bread and biscuit with some great complimentary chocolate and coffee. Everything works together perfectly.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. Very crisp and clean. So easy to drink. All day with this one, and went perfectly with my burger.

A great Schwarzbier IMO. Full of malty goodness. Well done and something I would highly recommend.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.55/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

They may be simple and reserved in taste, but the making of Schwarzbier is anything but. They are difficult, fussy, and elegant. There's a lot of coddling that goes into making a proper Schwarz. Does Wynkoop have it in them to give the proper attention to detail?

While dark, dark brown in color, the saturated beer comes with ominous ruby highlights that cast against a brilliantly clear beer. Its short-statured, off white head caps the beer and laces with random broken rings and restrained retention- all on par with classic German versions.

Bold aromas of roasted grains, light burnt sugars, cocoa-rich chocolates and heavy toast provide the framework for the bulk of the beer's aromas. But a backing of malty yougurt-like tartness, toasted breads and light cream provide support for the supple roaste. With no real fruit notes, a light woodish hop note, slight peppercorn and smoke, the beer is more complex than the original scent reveals.

Creamy sweet to taste initially, the beer quickly takes on chocolaty, deep caramelly, toasty character. A sprinkle of light coffee, wood cinders and very light campfire notes come through at middle palate. And then finishing with a peppercorn note as alcohol taste links dark grains- the mild earthen soil-like notes weave into the taste of heavy whipping cream for a dry marshmallowy taste to close.

Both creamy and powdery to start, the beer favors sweetness more so than do most classic Schwarzbiers. But a slow and steady development towards powdery roast, fleeting sweetness and escaping carbonation makes the beer somewhat lumbered in its development but it does extend the enjoyment of taste before the beer completely dries out.

Where Wynkoop's Schwarzbier favors boldness and ale-like roughness, its a bit more assertive for the classic taste and texture of Schwarz. But its taste is firm and favorable throughout and is sure to appease the fans of dark lagers throughout.

Photo of ndekke39
3.21/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Ordered this on-tap at the Wynkoop Brewery in downtown Denver. Poured a dark black (hence the schwarz = German for "black") color. Nearly opaque. Little off-white head to it. Not a complex flavor or aroma - mostly hops in there. Flavors of hops linger just a bit, then fade. Light carbonation, good for sipping. Amongst the beers I tried at Wynkoop, this one wasn't exceptional, although it wasn't bad by any means. I would definitely try another pint of it.

Photo of SamN
3.33/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Sampled from a growler, fresh from the brewery tap.

Nice dark lager, not opaque but certainly quite dark. Not too much lasting head. Dark brown amber highlights to light. Smell is clean, dark malts, coffee notes, hint of spice, like caraway or cinnamon. Taste is of smokey charcoal, slightly sweet dark malts, some balancing hops. Clean finish. Thin in tastes, a little metallic. Not great, but certainly drinkable.

Photo of Dmart1223
3.73/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

It's flavorful and fresh! Ohhhh yeahhh.

It pours a dark, thin black with a cocoa head that fades to nothing.

The smell is mostly sweet, with some toffee and roasted malt.

It tastes almost as sweet as its smell, but it also incorporates some of that dry roasty flavor through the middle and end. Nothing too strong, though. It's light in body, and there's no bitter to be had.

Overall Wynkoop's created a great session beer. It's light, slick, flavorful and refreshing. The biggest problem I see is that I really had to search for any substances in the first swig. Though all of the characteristics of something great are here, they're so subtle that the beer might teeter on the edge of blandness.

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.1/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had this with a tuna melt and bacon-potato salad. OK, not the best pairing, but hey I was craving tuna.

Light coffee color pour, black but kinda brown. Soapy head that was off white and stuck around a bit.

I smelled almond and toffee. Sweet a bit, but nothing overpowering or even noticeable. Taste follows, but the almond is gone and sweet malt comes up. I'm not a malt guy, yet this one had just enough to become noticed, and then died at the end, which for me is good. Clean finish, good with food as it won't dominate.

Would have again, but not my first pick at Wynkoop.

Photo of Domingo
3.66/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is in cans now, which is always convenient. I can’t think of any other canned dark lagers.
Pours a brown/black color with a lot of foam. It’s sticky and lines the walls of a glass pretty well.
Semi-sweet chocolate, dark bread, and some smoke are on the nose.
The flavor profile essentially mirrors the nose, although the smoke is a hair heavier than I prefer. It adds a little bit of heartiness that takes away from the drinkability slightly. Still, this is tasty stuff.
The dark malts are never overtly bitter or acidic, which is the sign of a better schwarz.
I wish the smoke were toned down ever so slightly (I’ll be a traditionalist here), but this is otherwise very solid.
Good stuff and a nice new canned brew from the ‘Koop. It’ll be in my rotation for the summer without a doubt.

It might be worth mentioning that in my experience bottled/canned beers with smoked malts tend to have that come on a bit stronger than a draft version. On tap I'd say that the smokiness in B3K is barely perceptible.

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B3K Black Lager from Wynkoop Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 109 ratings.