Bohemian Black Lager | Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner

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Bohemian Black LagerBohemian Black Lager
1,485 Ratings
Bohemian Black LagerBohemian Black Lager

Brewed by:
Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner
Texas, United States

Style: Schwarzbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 09-02-2006

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Ratings: 1,485 |  Reviews: 538
Photo of Exiled
4/5  rDev +15.9%

Photo of KC9LDB
4/5  rDev +15.9%

Photo of RobJTejas
4/5  rDev +15.9%

Photo of imbibehour
3.19/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

A nice large foamy light tan cocoa colored head, but extremely large bubbled in appearance and falling fast. Body color is cola looking like with a classic dark walnut appearance, and actually just see through enough to look at.

Nose is not really that exciting. Strange stinkiness to this, which is hard to describe. For the most part the nose is closed but there is a weird almost acrid grain smell to this.

Taste is much better. A light classic dark malt roast in the mid palate, aftertaste brings small roast simple coffee. Texture is solid, with a good body.

Overall, not a bad take on the style, taste hints at the right notes, but the smell on this is not quite jiving with me. There is much better Schwarzbier out there for sure than this.

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Photo of dacrza1
3.05/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Situation: Another week, another pipe burst in thee house...literally...
Glassware: pilsner...
Appearance: wnderfully dense purple-black body; brown head cools to a generous half-finger height....
Aroma: lager yeasts are undeniable with a fresh breath of mellow malts--appealing....
Palate: mellow, stoutlike body that flies through the teeth and dips down the throat--evasive, and subtle, if not a bit oily...
Taste: the least hint of smoke ushers in a flattened soda...
Overall: A conflicting experience--the beer is an easy drinker but leaves an unimpressive profile; presents well, but can best be filed under mediocre...

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Photo of Gatordaddy
3/5  rDev -13%

Photo of dehjosh
4/5  rDev +15.9%

Photo of mikeg67
3.62/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Pours dark brown with beige, creamy, short-lived head. Aroma is of grassy hops and toasted, nutty malt. Medium, smooth body. Toasted nutty malt and roasted grain balanced on the palate by grassy hops, some hints of caramel. This is a nice brew for Shiner.

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Photo of ROGUE16
3/5  rDev -13%

Photo of martyl1000
4/5  rDev +15.9%

Photo of ColSanders123
4/5  rDev +15.9%

Photo of randomdanger
4/5  rDev +15.9%

Photo of videofrog
4/5  rDev +15.9%

4/5  rDev +15.9%

Photo of waldoiverson
2.91/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz into nonic

A: dark reddish brown, massive sudsy head of very light tan color, minimal lacing

S: slightly metallic, light hint of toasted malt, the carbonation hits strong in this, blasting most of the aromatics away

T: tootsie roll pop sweetness, a bit of a sour note and ends with some of the same toasty flavor, leaning toward burnt sugar, in the finish

M: No body to speak of, carbonation is strong but doesn't bite, which was a worry based on the appearance and smell, clean finish.

O: I was hoping for more dark notes and some complexity but really it is mostly just a fizzy dark beer which isn't the worse but doesn't have much to recommend it.

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Photo of DerekP
3.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Shiner Black Lager appears black to the naked eye, but a closer look exposes mahogany corners. A slim rim remains on top after a nougat colored head drops down. The color of the head indicates roasted barley was used in the brewing process (also germane to the style).

Smells roasty & malt forward. Yeasty, wet bread, fruity. A touch of spicy hops in the nose.

Hop bitters, burnt brown sugar, smoke & charcoal in the taste. Metallic notes.

Medium bodied. Washes away nicely with a gentle lingering of the smoky flavor. A little watery as it warms up. Still, damn drinkable.

Notes: Shiner continues to impress me when dealing with their catalog outside of the flagship bock.

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Photo of drpimento
2.95/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I let this warm a bit out of the fridge before trying. Poured with an average sized tan head that quickly subsided to a few islands, a ring, and a tiny bit of lace. Color is a clear, dark cherry red. Aroma is fairly mild and is of roast, malt, fruit, toffee, caramel. Flavor is similar to nose with carbonic tang standing out along with some roast malt and a little cocoa. Body is thin and carbonation is fizzy. Finish is like flavor and has some length.

 454 characters

Photo of deaconoflove
3.15/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: dark, but not black with a course, one finger head that disapates quickly. some lacing remains
S: Odd, pungeant, can't identify other than kind of cheap/beer/old tavern, not really pleasant.
T: Not bad, sort of strange, chemical, coke?
Mf: Good, a little foamy.
Dr: ok, I've had better.
10/21/11 Update:Big head. Milk chocolate aroma. Tastes of roasted coffee/chocolate with sudden sharp grassy/cheap beer flavor. The roasted-ness is all gone. So, not much change, just a much nicer initial aroma.

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Photo of AmberMan22
2.99/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

I enjoy a good black lager, so despite previously disappointing run-ins with Shiner, I was looking forward to this 'Bohemian Black Lager' from my variety six-pack. (Kudos to Shiner for putting their own mix-a-six on the shelves).

The very first impression is not good. The bubbles come out big and fizzy, and despite a mid-pour effort of stimulate some retained head, the entire crown is gone in 20 seconds. What is left appears to the eye to be black tea. Clearly darker than a brown ale, yet still with all-around opacity.

The nose is the highlight of this brew. While unorthodox, Shiner steps out on a limb and comes up with something interesting. The smell is lightly of molasses, a rich syrup and a bit of milk-chocolatey sweetness. It looks and smells like I would enjoy this on a waffle, but that leads me to mouthfeel (we'll get back to taste once it warms up more).

It is far from syrupy. It is far from full, even medium-bodied. This carries the weight of a Euro Dark Lager. Given the Bohemian title, I might accept it, but it's not what I look for in a dark beer. The dearth of carbonation and heft leave me unimpressed.

The taste remains interesting due to the almost maple-y caramel malt, and an ever-so-faint smokiness. Realistically I want a bit more darker, roasty chocolate malt out of a schwarzbier. I could do for a skosh more smoky flavor as well.

Overall Shiner produces something slightly different. A Bohemian take on a dark beer seems to be an appropriate label for this beer. It's worth a try, but I'm not sure it's worth another with other so many other great schwarzbiers available.

 1,615 characters

Photo of ElCommodoro
4.62/5  rDev +33.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an opaque brown-black. It smells sweet, of dried fruit and of delicious barley malt. It smells a lot better than I remember. This used to be my favourite beer when I first started drinking beer.
I was really surprised at how good this beer was. I figured I'd come a long way in my taste for beer since the early days of drinking this stuff all the time, but this is really a damn good beer for the money. The sweet dried fruit flavours are perfectly balanced by the bitter roasted malt character and just enough hops. The light body is a nice touch too. I'm not sure what I think about the level of carbonation. Seems like it might be a bit high, but it doesn't really bother me. This is an excellent brew that I will be sure to buy again. I guess my first instincts as a beer drinker were right. This really is one of the best beers in its price range.

 859 characters

Photo of JohnnyChicago
2.79/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint.

A: Dark cocoa body with a mocha head. Looks promising!

S: A whole lot of nothing! There is a mild German hop presence and a tad, just a tad of roast. That's about it...

T: Not too much here either. I can hardly taste the roasted malts at all. It really just tastes like an average pilsner.

D: Drinkable, for sure, but not much complexity. I guess this would be nice on a hot day...but that's about it.

Overall: Seems to make the Sam Adams mistake of dumbing-down a style so that everybody likes it. Have some balls! I want to taste some complexity in my Schwarzbiers! Not just a pils+brown dye.

 638 characters

Photo of FickleBeast
3.83/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours pitch black, with a half finger of off-white foam that recedes without lacing. Aroma is slightly sweet, with a touch of roasty malt flavor.

First sip is... maltier that expected. Quite a bit of sweet crystal malt flavor, limited roasty flavor, and a lingering sweetness. Aftertaste is quite clean with no off flavors. I'm surprised by the amount of dark malt sweetness... this borderline resembles a porter.

Personally, I'd prefer a little more dryness in the finish, and maybe tone down the sweetness a bit. But overall, a very nice Schwarzbier.

 595 characters

Photo of Knapp85
3.88/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer was givent to me by a co-worker who did a trade with someone from Texas. I poured it out into a Sam Adams pint glass. The color was very dark brown with a light tan color head on top. The head had a good retentions which was impressive to me. The smell of the beer gives of a pretty typical roasted aroma with some lager yeast aromas. The taste is a little chocolaty and with the lager bitterness in the aftettaste. The flavors are better as the beer warms up a little. The mouthfeel is a little creamy, no bite to this one at all. Overall I found it to be a pretty nice Black Lager.

 593 characters

Photo of scratch69
2.75/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I poured a bottle into a mug.

Appearance- Very dark brown with red highlights. Tan head that disappears fast.

Smell- Roasted malt with hints of coffee and chocolate.

Taste- It tasted burnt at first, but the more I drink the more complex it becomes. I detect some coffee-like bitterness with no aftertaste.

Mouthfeel- Smooth but very little carbonation.

Overall- This is not a bad schwarbier but it definitely is not the best. If I were to want to drink more of this style I would choose another brand.

 506 characters

Photo of boutleg32
3.78/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into Pint Glass

A-Pours a dark black that when held up to the light appears a ruby red. Off color head that quickly fades.

S-Chocolate with hints of vanilla and caramel

T-Surprisingly smooth for the deep color and smell. Taste mimics the smell and has a great coffee like finish.

M-Lightly carbonated and easy. I wished it had more kick

O-Night the greatest beer but very drinkable. The fairly low ABV allows the enjoyment of several of these. It's not the best but its certainly better than a Bud Light

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Bohemian Black Lager from Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner
Beer rating: 3.45 out of 5 with 1,485 ratings