Schwarzbier | Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.

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40 Ratings

Brewed by:
Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: Schwarzbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by watermelonman on 10-04-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 40 |  Reviews: 28
Reviews by jale:
Photo of jale
3.06/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had on tap at Crunchy's in East Lansing.

A: Pours dark brown with two fingers of tan head.

S: Smells more like a hefe with banana,clove and some tartness. Light roasted malt.

T: There's that hefe banana and clove upfront with a tart edge. Light roasted malt and a piney hot bitterness in the finish.

M: Medium body with good carbonation.

O: Does'nt fit the style.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of magictrokini
3.25/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tap @ SD Brewing. Pours opaque brown with a short off-white head. Caramel, smoke, and nuts in the aroma. Nice, smooth smoked malt and toffee flavor up front, but gets really watery and falls apart towards the back. Its worth trying, but not buying a 6-pack.

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Photo of williamjbauer
3.03/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap served in a sampler glass

A - Dark brown with 1 finger tan head with minimal lacing and moderate head retention.

S - A hint of pine hops dominated by toasted wheat and caramel, pretty light scent.

T - Very light flavor with caramel sweetness at the front and a little hop bitter finish. Not very impressive.

M - Light body, moderate carbonation.

O - It was average and I would not get it again.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears a cola like dark ruby hue forms a thicket of light tan head and leaves behind speckled lacing evenly around my pint glass. Aromatics come up front with roated malts mild coffee and a touch of cream soda and dry roasted nuttiness. Flavors glide with an even malt sweetness and dark roasted dryness to forms a nice balance. Herbal qualities noted in the finishing hops, dark roasted coffee or mild cocoa kicks in with soothing caramel bread notes. Flavor is medium bodied lively carbonation a touch of prickly fizziness, signature Sierra Nevada edge here. Drinkability, this is quality stuff all around I'm a big fan of Sierra Nevada so it's great to get to try their other offerings.

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Photo of watermelonman
3.68/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This arrived in a nice black color. It had just a ring of head and left a line or two of lace.

Flavors contained within are good. The smell was a little subdued, with a pinch of chocolate on top of malt. The taste brings more, with light hop content cleaning up the finish. Mouthfeel has a nice light effect, while the stuff is very easy to drink.

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Photo of IntriqKen
4.42/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled at the Sierra Nevada Brewery.
Pours a deep amber black with a thickish tan head that melts to hazy lacing.
Aroma is sweet toasted malt with a hint of chocolate that finishes clean from a light citrus hop.
Taste is similiar to the aroma...sweet toasted, almost burnt malt with a hint of chocolate finishing to a lightly orange hop drying.
Mouthfeel is as rich and creamy as a Schwarzbier should be...meaning you can feel the substantial malts and sugars but it is still thinner than a porter or stout.
An easy drinker of one of my favorite styles.

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Photo of tempest
3.51/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Bocktown Beer and Grill

I got big minerals in the aroma and flavor at first. Sort of like they over did it while trying to emulate hard German brewing water.. There was also a chocolate grain aroma, as this beer warmed, that also started to come through in the flavor with a sweet lager yeast character. It finished with dry, roasted grains and a touch of espresso. Overall, this seemed too clean for the style. Don't get me wrong, this was a nice beer. I suppose it might just be an American adaptation.

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Photo of brewmaster411
3.95/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

As a dark lager, this beer is a very nice example. It is clean, very flavorful and balanced.

The appearance is a dark mahogany with a tan head that lasts a long time. There is a pronounced roast flavor in the finish, but the hops are restrained and appropriate for the style. Very well crafted. Compared to Xinghu, this had too much roast in the finish.

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Photo of afrokaze
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%

Photo of plaid75
4.35/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a deep black hue with some ruby highlights and a one finger creamy off white head. There was very good retention and lacing.

The smell featured some burnt grain, caramel malt and aromatic noble hop.

The taste consisted of a solid doughy burnt grain with a light milky sweetness with an excellent NOBLE hop finish.

The mouthfeel was clean yet full, with an excellent toasty finish.

Overall - excellent, superb, etc.

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Photo of pathman
4.25/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

3/28/18 draft @ Sierra Nevada, NC

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Photo of BradBLR
4.23/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was poured a dark chocolate brown with a thin white head that lasted about half the beer. The was a ton of lacing considering the head did not last long. The smell was that of toffee and chocolate with a hint coffee and a slight fruity sweetness to it.

The taste was very good, with the toffee flavor coming out as been very toasted and there was also a nice amount of hops at the end. There was also a trace of fruit, but I could never put my finger on exactly what kind of fruit it was, possibly a cherry flavor???? The mouthfeel was good with the CO2 being perfect and the thickness being just right.

A really nice beer from Sierra Nevada and I'm glad I got to try it, it was on special at my local BJ's. Give it a try if you get a chance.

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Photo of Aexoonge
3.75/5  rDev -1.3%

Photo of MirkoCroCough
4.18/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pint appeared very black. First sip brought a somewhat charred, smoky flavor, with a hint of bitterness. Very smooth feel, with just a right amount of carbonation. Goes down very, very easy. Sierra Nevada delivers the goods again. Try it and see. Very nice.

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Photo of MattSlem
4/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of AngusOg
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of chefduff2
2.75/5  rDev -27.6%

Photo of Stoneman78
3.46/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On draft at O'Brien's

Appearance is a pitch black hue (hence the name), thin layer of off-white sudsy foam sustains, minimal lacing

Smell is muted, mostly clean crisp malts, touch of breads and grains, very light hops in the background

Taste is mostly crisp bready malts and grains in the lager style, grassy and earthy hops near the end

Mouthfeel is light to medium-bodied, watery texture, mild carbonation

Drinkability is high and well in the session range, smooth and crisp lager with little flare or complexity other than the dark hue

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Photo of MisterClean
4.58/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Sorry kids, this one is only available on tap at SN and at some brewfests. The brewery has 0, I repeat 0 intentions of bottling this beer. :(

On tap, yes, at the SN brewery.

A - Pours dark-chocolate brown, semi-unfiltered, with a creamy mocha head. Head is fairly resilient and leaves a nice lacing of head.

S - Deep roasted colombian coffee, roasted pecans, and slightly earthy hops.

T - Did someone spike this beer with coffee? Pure colombian roast, light creamy taste, and light earthy hops.

M - Exquisite. Very creamy with a hint of dryness at the end to let you know you are done with your sip. The earthy hop flavors did not dry out this beer, very surprising.

D - Wish they had it bottled or on tap. Better yet, wish they'd put it on nitro or gasex (not sure if that is what is called, but is 70% CO2 and 30% NO2).

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Photo of Moose90
3.32/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served On-Tap, 16 oz Becher

A — Pours a clear but dark brown color, almost black but not quite. A puffy khaki colored head forms and sits on top, leaving behind some nice rings of lacing with each sip.

S — Smell is mildly roasted with notes of toasted grain and bread, some light bitter bakers chocolate and coffee as well, but not a whole lot, a little bit of a yeasty twang as well.

T — Taste is much like the nose, very nice lightly roasted malt notes of coffee, chocolate, charcoal, burnt toast, very well balanced with a simple dry finish.

M — Clean and crisp, a little bit of residual sweetness but not much.

O — Nice overall, a solid dark lager that hits all the right notes, not overly complex.

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Photo of nasty15108
3.8/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a tap into a pint glass at the Lazy Boy Saloon in White Plains, NY.

A - Poured black with ruby hues. Thin tan head with good lace work throughout.

S - Slightly malty and smokey.

T - Malty with sweet hints of smoke and coffee. Finished slightly bitter.

MF&D - I would have liked more body and perhaps a little more flavor in this beer. The dark deep color may be a little misleading, but all in all this is a pretty good beer. I'd drink it again.

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Photo of hyland24
4.03/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a tap into a pint glass at the Lazy Boy Saloon in White Plains, NY.

Poured black with ruby hue's near the bottom when the light shined through. 1/4 inch tan head with light lacing. Poured thinner than I expected.

Smelled malty and a little bitter with very slight hint of smoke. Not very strong smells. It took a few heavy inhales to pick them out.

The taste was impressive. Malty and bready. Faint hints of coffee, mild chocolate and a slightly bitter finish. Tasted thicker than it appeared, full of flavor.

The beer is light to medium bodied with a minimal aftertaste. Lighter than the pour and appearance would lead you to believe. Its not creamy enough to coat the mouth and stay there after the swallow but it does leave a nice aftertaste. More carbonated than I expected. Very good beer. One of the few dark beers I would pound, due to the light body. Definitely worth trying if you get the chance.

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Photo of Brad007
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Color: Dark brown with a decent head of foam (despite the glassware).

Aroma: Sweet and lager-like. Not very roasty or anything. Definitely seems like a schwarzbier.

Taste: Smooth and delicious. Some roasted character but not much. Sweet. Very much like a dark lager could/should be.

Mouthfeel: Sweet, malty and smooth. Decent for the style.

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Photo of jeezie
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.5/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at The Surly Goat in West Hollywood, CA.

Pours a clear dark orange-brown with a khaki head that settles to a film on top of the beer. Thin streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of roasty malt and some caramel aromas. Taste is also of roasty malt and some burnt caramel flavors. There is a mild roasty bitterness after each sip. This beer has a pretty good level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is very easy drinking.

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Schwarzbier from Sierra Nevada Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.8 out of 5 with 40 ratings