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Saranac Black Forest - Matt Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Saranac Black ForestSaranac Black Forest

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

989 Ratings
THE BROS
96
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 989
Reviews: 556
rAvg: 3.72
pDev: 13.71%
Wants: 32
Gots: 43 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Schwarzbier |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-15-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 989 | Reviews: 556 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by JimbobAlonymous:
Photo of JimbobAlonymous
JimbobAlonymous

Massachusetts

4.13/5  rDev +11%

Went to college 5 minutes from the brewery...been on a few tours. first experienced from the tap at their bar.

Appearance: beautifully dark

Smell: sweet...only a hint of alcohol smell

Taste: also sweet, made me imagine drinking a stout while simultaneously eating a piece thick of chocolate cake. very good tasting beer.

Mouthfeel: thick, creamy almost.

Drinkability: The only problem I have with this beer is that I can't drink much of it at a time. For dinner, or just one or two hanging out in the pub, fantastic...but for an all nighter? not so much.

07-13-2010 17:13:40 | More by JimbobAlonymous
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
oberon

North Carolina

3.4/5  rDev -8.6%

Pours black but with a few red tints thrown in there with a light slightly off-white head,not much aroma to it slight chocolate and fruit.Taste is pretty lively and fruity with a light roasted nut flavor as well.Well a better than average brew but nothing to write home about here.

01-05-2004 23:15:55 | More by oberon
Photo of Marty
Marty

Maine

4.43/5  rDev +19.1%

This is the most flavorful lager I have ever tasted. It's dark yet very easy to drink. It's sweet, but not yucky sweet (like Saranac's Caramel Porter). It's dark but not heavy. This is my favorite Saranac beer. Lately my buddies and I have been keeping six packs of this in our refrigerator in case of emergencies.

02-26-2003 22:10:29 | More by Marty
Photo of wesbrownyeah
wesbrownyeah

Florida

3.83/5  rDev +3%

Saranac Black Forest. 5.5% alcohol. Out of a six pack mixer.

A- Pours an ultra dark amber opaque fluid that produces a small but lasting heead dropping to a thin froth leaving rings of lacing on the glass.

S- Sweet dried plums and raisins are upfront with light malts and hops in the back.

T- Taste is one of a kind. First is a toasted malt kick of vanilla beans, plums and raisins. Has a malted barley run as well. Hops are noted with light lemony hits in the flavor on the backbone. Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with a small carbonated spritz to allow a easy drinking experience.

D- 2 of 3 excellent drinking beers from Saranac so far. I'd put a bit of these in my fridge if i had a good price and availibility.

02-28-2010 22:07:34 | More by wesbrownyeah
Photo of SIRIUS2
SIRIUS2

North Carolina

4.03/5  rDev +8.3%

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: Black with short head of about 1/4" or so. Light brown in color and dissipated fast. Little to no lacing.

S: Smells malty but not overly so; there is a spicy hint of anise or something that is very vague on the nose. Whatever it is, it smells pretty good!

T&M: For a schwarzbier, I was anticipating something a little bit sweeter but was pleasantly surprised by how well balanced this one is. You still get a bit of the dark molasses notes without the cloying sweetness. I'm not sure what the bittering agent is in here, but I assume it is a well matched grouping of hops. Carbonation is light but persistent. The finish is relatively short but the linger of mild hop bitterness goes on for a while. Nice.

D: I like being surprised and this was a good one. Easy to drink and different enough that you want to keep tasting it to determine all of the flavors in the complexity. Good weight without being to heavy, great balance, and a decent ABV. I like it.

Special thanks to Steve for bringing this in for me to try!

07-01-2008 02:12:19 | More by SIRIUS2
Photo of blitz134
blitz134

California

3.78/5  rDev +1.6%

Nearly black in color with a transparent red body. Off-white head bordering on tan in color which disappeared quickly. Smell is of toasted, sweet malts with some chocolate characters. Again I pick up a common aroma I’ve detected in all of the Saranac brews that I just can’t seem to place. Its almost a bit metallic. Taste is actually pretty good on this one. Initially a bit of toasted malts coming through and a slight bitter finish. The flavor is very crisp. Mouthfeel is good as well and relatively medium to full bodied. This is the first of the sampler pack I’ve reviewed which I would say I would be glad to drink more of.

02-23-2005 03:20:14 | More by blitz134
Photo of lordofthewiens
lordofthewiens

Maine

3.33/5  rDev -10.5%

A 32 ounce growler, poured a dark brown with a fairly thick coffee-colored head. It had a sweet, roasted grain odor, and tasted the same, with some hops. Rather nondescript taste. Mouthfeel was a little thin. An OK beer, but not one that I'd want to drink a lot of

04-15-2006 12:17:31 | More by lordofthewiens
Photo of generallee
generallee

New York

4.1/5  rDev +10.2%

It pours a dark reddish brown with a big creamy tan head. The head makes nice lace that slowly slides down the sides of the glass. Its aroma is sweet with roasted malts and caramel. The flavors of the dark roasted malts and caramel dance on the tongue as nice bitter notes slide in from the sides to finish slowly with a light bitterness. It has a smooth and creamy palate with soft carbonation that sets you up for anther sip.

04-29-2008 23:32:51 | More by generallee
Photo of Doomcifer
Doomcifer

Rhode Island

3.5/5  rDev -5.9%

08-01-2014 00:15:29 | More by Doomcifer
Photo of Jason
Jason

Massachusetts

4.33/5  rDev +16.4%

Presentation: 12 oz. long neck with a dark blue label that shows a Central European forest scene. On the neck it states about using five different hop varieties and slow kilned malts." No freshness date to be found.

Appearance: Dark ruby in colour with a light tan lace that sticks in patches.

Smell: Sweet Oh sweet caramel and malt. Some fruit and a fine soft floral hop aroma follows.

Taste: Rich creamy caramel with a smooth almost syrup like mouth feel. Alcohol and hint of ripe fruit push their way to the tongue. Hop bitterness is in the back with a subdued hop leaf flavour that lingers.

Notes: Too few Schwarzbiers out on the market, this is the one to drink. Very drinkable and very enjoyable, top shelf.

03-01-2002 15:04:22 | More by Jason
Photo of merlin48
merlin48

Kentucky

3.85/5  rDev +3.5%

My 3rd bottle out of the 2003, 12 beer sampler box. Pours a rich dark mahogany with garnet hues around the edges of the pint glass. Beige head is decent enough and hangs around long enough to leave some delicate lacing. Nose is surprisingly impressive, chocolate malt, dark fruit, and some floral hops. Mouthfeel is pleasantly well balanced. Taste is complex, with hints of rye bread, chocolate malt, and currants. A likeable speciman here. Exceeded my expectations for a brewery that puts so many styles in one box.

12-04-2003 00:40:31 | More by merlin48
Photo of Billolick
Billolick

New York

3.38/5  rDev -9.1%

Sampled a 12 ouncer that came in the holiday 12 pack, no freshness dating to be found. Pours dark brown, tan head, minimal lacing and just a faint coffee nose. Cant say I'm overly impressed with this one, why do so many of the dark beers from Saranac taste so similar?? Seems they put a differant label on about 8 beers, but the contents all are so similar. Drinkable, middle of the road stuff, but nothing to seek out.

01-12-2005 02:51:41 | More by Billolick
Photo of JohnnyBarman
JohnnyBarman

Ontario (Canada)

3.58/5  rDev -3.8%

Second from my Saranac Adirondack sampler pack brought back from Syracuse.

Poured into a dimpled pint jug, and enjoyed on the first warm patio day of the spring! A nice dark chestnut brew with a little ruby hints around the edges. Leaves a thin off-white head which survives as a thin ring.

The nose is quite delectable - caramel, cream, chocolate, a bit of brown bread. Sweet, but very pleasant.

A tasty brew, sweet and malty with notes of caramel and cream, but finishes with a slight grassy hop bitterness and pumpernickel character. Tastes dark enough, but is sweet enough to work well together. I'm quite enjoying this, actually.

Thin-bodied, reminds me in colour and texture of a bottle of rootbeer that was opened about 20 minutes ago. A bit syrupy - my only real complaint with the brew.

A nice brew - I was initially unimpressed with their IPA, so this was a nice pick-me-up. Sweet, bready, but not oppressively so, meaning this would be a nice session brew for the evening (low ABV, good flavor). Quite nice.

04-09-2011 21:00:24 | More by JohnnyBarman
Photo of jakester
jakester

Pennsylvania

3.98/5  rDev +7%

This was from the Adirondack Trail Mix Sampler

Pours a beautiful clear, deep mahogany/ruby with a very short-lived tan head. Quickly drops to islands and a ring. No lacing. Carbonation evident.

Aromas of cherries and other fruits, vanilla, dark chocolatey malts, and spicy/herbal hops. Clean. These aromas are delicate.

Flavor is of dark brown sugar, chocolatey cherries, vanilla; rich and tasty. Very clean and crisp. Aftertaste is spicy, like white pepper.

This has a medium body, light sticky sweetness, pretty strong bite from carbonation across the tongue. Pleasant.

This is an easy drinking, yet tasty and interesting beer. Lots of character, lots of flavors. A good effort from Saranac. Recommended.

07-19-2005 20:14:25 | More by jakester
Photo of jcdiflorio
jcdiflorio

West Virginia

4.1/5  rDev +10.2%

Served into a nonic glass from a 12oz. brown bottle crimped on cap.

Ruby red almost brown.a very creamy tan head lacing and clinging onto the sides of the glass.
The aroma was extra clean,citrusy,fruity,nutty,caramelly a hint of chocolate.Oh so inviting.
A clean,fresh taste thats citrusy,carmelly,nutty and chocolatly. A perfect balance and very delicious ta boot.
A light to medium mouthfeel,a pleasing bitterness that glides down so very easy. The word juicy keeps coming to mind,if you drink this I think you will know what I mean.
A drinkable as a dark beer could be.So refreshing,the only bad thing about this review was that I only had 1 bottle to review.
I will buy this beer again!

11-01-2006 04:36:15 | More by jcdiflorio
Photo of wattoclone
wattoclone

Pennsylvania

3/5  rDev -19.4%

09-12-2012 14:35:56 | More by wattoclone
Photo of kingcrowing
kingcrowing

Vermont

2.85/5  rDev -23.4%

12oz bottle poured into a tumbler.

Pours a dark black/brown with some light ruby/mahogany color to it when it's up to the light, almost no head except for some light brown lacing. Nose is malty, light wheat and a bit of sweet german yeast smell.

Well, the mouthfeel is a bit light, there isn't much bitterness at all, and the flavors are a bit dull. It's not bad at all, but it's not outstanding in any way. Theres some very light roastiness and a bit iron flavor to it, but it's just 'meh' to me.

02-17-2011 22:22:42 | More by kingcrowing
Photo of mjtiernan
mjtiernan

New York

4/5  rDev +7.5%

11-15-2011 16:57:44 | More by mjtiernan
Photo of Milkysunshine
Milkysunshine

New York

4.25/5  rDev +14.2%

09-22-2012 21:16:57 | More by Milkysunshine
Photo of ChaseBacon
ChaseBacon

New York

3.5/5  rDev -5.9%

11-28-2013 03:58:40 | More by ChaseBacon
Photo of Bike2work
Bike2work


3.75/5  rDev +0.8%

04-19-2012 19:41:45 | More by Bike2work
Photo of dogfishandi
dogfishandi

New York

3.83/5  rDev +3%

12oz bottle out of the fridge poured into a pint glass. no freshness date.

pours pretty much black, but in the light reviels a ruby red/brown color. small light mocha colored head off a vigourous pour that faded to a small ring of foam after a couple mintues. no real lace.

lots of malt sweetness, slightly roasted malts, a little dark dried fruits, prunes, raisons, lager funk, ever so slight hint of floral hops.

again with the sweet sweet, slightly roasted malts. lots of dark dried fruit such as raisons and prunes. herbal, floral hops, slight hop bitterness at the finish. nothing too spectacular, but a nice tasting brew.

decent feel, you can definatly tell its a lager, light body, a little astringent at times. carbonation feels ok.

this one is definatly an easy drinker, great session beer, exspecailly for the low price. all around a pretty decent swarzbier, i wouldnt go out of my way, but if i came across this, i would drink it again.

09-28-2010 00:04:13 | More by dogfishandi
Photo of zapx
zapx

New York

4.5/5  rDev +21%

01-12-2014 15:58:50 | More by zapx
Photo of far333
far333

Connecticut

3.88/5  rDev +4.3%

Deep brown color with ruby highlights where the light sneaks through. The head rises and falls quickly, leaving a layer one bubble high with light lacing all around the glass. Smell is initially of raisin, some sweet malt, and some roasted caramel with hints of hops. Flavor is warm and rich. Roasted malt and molasses, with hints of brown sugar and caramel. Slightest hint of an alcoholic aftertaste. Smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Pretty drinkable for a darker beer.

08-06-2003 16:56:03 | More by far333
Photo of BadBadger
BadBadger

New York

3.03/5  rDev -18.5%

This beer pours a somewhat dark color out of the bottle, as is to be hoped for. The tannish head is moderate but short lasting. The smell is of sweet malt. The taste is also malty, with bitter undertones. The mouthfeel is rather watery. Not worth searching out. But if the opportunity presents, give it a try.

02-06-2006 01:17:51 | More by BadBadger
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Saranac Black Forest from Matt Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 989 ratings.