Black Bavarian Style Lager | Sprecher Brewing Company

BA SCORE
90
outstanding
920 Ratings
Black Bavarian Style LagerBlack Bavarian Style Lager
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Sprecher Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States
sprecherbrewery.com

Style: Schwarzbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.86%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Bronze Medal Winner in the European Darks category at the 1988 Great American Beer Festival (GABF).

Added by xlperro on 04-23-1998

BEER STATS
Ratings:
920
Reviews:
483
Avg:
4.06
pDev:
10.59%
 
 
Wants:
141
Gots:
99
For Trade:
1
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 920 |  Reviews: 483
Photo of WJVII
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice dark brown, held to the light is slightly opaque. Nice light brown head leaving decent lacing on the glass. This brew has a nice deep aroma with hints of finely roasted malt with hints of chocolate, coffee, and caramel. The taste is bold, but smooth. Chocolate malts with roasted caramel hit the palate with nice balance and a smooth taste. This is a nice brew near my home town in Milwaukee...drink up!

 416 characters

Photo of jdkitchi
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of jabo134
3.5/5  rDev -13.8%

Photo of MSchae1017
4.35/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer was poured from the 16oz glass into a Pilsner glass.

The beer is black laced with hints of amber. Nested on top is a creamy tan head that does not leave much lace. The aroma is full of chocolate, toffee, and caramel. The flavor is much of the same, full of smooth chocolate, toffee and amber. The beer is medium-full bodied, slightly less than your average porter with an incredible creaminess and smooth carbonation. Overall, a great Schwarzbier, very nice.

 469 characters

Photo of I3eer
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of inebrius
4.88/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Whoa...wait a second. Is this for real? Wow!! Poured a sticky, thick and chunky khaki head. Wonderful nose of sweet malt and toasty bear claws. Mildly tart, but full and clean and little astringency to get in the way. Profoundly balanced and a drinker for sure. Top notch!

Cheers to Jon for the sample!

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Photo of Viciousknishs
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours dark brown with a finger of tan head. Very good retention.

S- big bready malt with chocolate overtones. Smells like chocolate cake! Slight toasty aromas on the finish.

T- smooth milk chocolate up front with bready malts intertwined. Chocolate cake abounds! Finishes with a balancing hop character that gives it an amazing balance with a toasty quality on the finish.

MF- smooth creamy mouthfeel with a medium body and light carbonation.

D- incredibly drinkable

overall one of the best schwarzbiers I've had to date!

 529 characters

Photo of DissentFatsquirrel
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Pauly2X
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Jet black color supported a full finger tan head with typical staying power.

S- A pleathora of complex malts, somewhat reminiscent of an Imperial stout.

T- Just the right amount of sweetness to balance out the typical dark malt bitterness. This sets the stage to let the hops do the bittering work, and quite nicely at that.

M- Smooth, decent carbonation.

D- Good thing theres two of these in the "Beers of Old Bavaria" variety park I picked up.

Very good example of the style, better yet its brewed less than 15 minutes from my house!

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Photo of aubzachsyd
4/5  rDev -1.5%

Photo of opwog
4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Now listening to: Joe Walsh - Life's Been Good

A- The color lives up to the name; black as night with a tan dark chocolaty head
S- Toasted malts, toffee...very appealing!
T- Just like the nose, only add black coffee to the taste. Really killer!
M- This is medium bodied, which is surprising for the depth of the taste and aroma. Normally I might say too thin for the taste profile, but in this case it all comes together perfectly!
D- I could sit back with these all night, except that I have a plane to catch in the morning :(

 528 characters

Photo of jmalex
4.01/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On a slightly chilly, crisp evening, a schwarzbier seems like a nice beer to sit down with while watching the Phillies. Luckily I've got one of the most highly regarded schwarzbiers there is.

APPEARANCE: Pours into my Sly Fox becker a dark, dark brown with a slight reddish amber highlight. The head is light tan, fine-bubbled, and tight and holds at about a finger high. A few spots of lace even make an appearance.

SMELL: Very distinctly a lager, this one has a slight aroma of roasted grains but not much else. What I smell is great, but it could be stronger.

TASTE: Very crisp and clean. It's got a sharp jolt of toasted and roasted malt, especially on the back end. A bit of hop flavor melds nicely with the bitterness of burnt grains. It's mostly devoid of any sweetness, and in it's place is a huge bready quality. Quite nice.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium bodied, maybe leaning towards the lighter side with a slight slickness to it. Carbonation is on the high side which seems appropriate.

DRINKABILITY: Major points here. Just incredibly smooth and easy drinking. It's like the flavor of a porter or doppelbock with the easy drinking of a helles lager or English bitter. What a combo.

I heard a lot of good things about Specher and Black Bavarian delivers on those. And I think I picked the perfect day for it. This is exactly what I wanted.

 1,345 characters

Photo of foghornleghorn22
4.89/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Photo of JohnnyDuvel
3.93/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is better than I remember Kostrizter(sp.) being, certainly seems to have more body and bitterness. Overall, acts like a thin porter. Real good, but not very substantial. Definitely a quality brew, but this style has yet to totally impress me, as it is so thin. Chocolate and coffee notes (although subtle), very good balance overall. Real cool bottle, though. Thanks for the sample, Monk.

 393 characters

Photo of spoonhawk
3/5  rDev -26.1%

Photo of Phocion
4.26/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 oz. bottle poured into a Young's Imperial pint glass. This beer is black as night with only slight ruby highlights when held to the light. Huge, light-brown, rocky head with decent staying power and thick lacing all around.

Dark roasted malts, caramel, and chocolate fill the nose. Faint spices and herbal hoppiness in the background.

The flavor is that of a classic schwarzbier. Chocolate, coffee, and a burnt woody smokiness. Somewhat nutty and with a hint of molasses. Light bitterness.

Medium-bodied and with moderate levels of carbonation. Smooth but just a bit sticky. I remember having this on tap a few weeks back and wasn't impressed; I am glad the bottled version is much better.

 695 characters

Photo of bigbeerfan
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of zerk
3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep brown with hints of ruby and a thin tan head. Aroma is full of molasses, caramel, and some cocoa. Flavor is not terribly complex, but very nicely blended, with sweet caramel malt upfront, and some chocolate and coffee in the finish... has just enough spicy hops to show through as well. Has a medium to full body, and a rough mouthfeel.

This is a very nice American Schwarzbier... nice to see someone doing such a good job with this all-to-neglected style.

 473 characters

Photo of yankeej13
3.45/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I enjoyed their scottish ale so I wanted to pick up more stuff from Sprecher.

A- Dark as night with a nice mild lace of a chocolate color foam. Mild amount of carbonation.

S- Has a nice sweet smell. Decently bold smell get hints of chocolate or maybe a coffee malts.

T- Was a little disappointed with the taste not as robust as I thought it would be. A nice mild palette. Has a really nice finish to it, I got more of a bold finish than right from the start.

M- Good drinkability, really smooth good flavor at theh finish.

Overall- I did enjoy it alot, was not disappointed overall and would try again to see if it grows on me even more. Cheers!

 651 characters

Photo of chris1919
5/5  rDev +23.2%

Photo of boudreaux
4/5  rDev -1.5%

Photo of jreitman
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Rich dark cherry in color with a rather good sized dark brown head. Roasted malts dominate the nose. Flavors range from a subtle chocolate to a moderate roastedness. Observed a light-moderate nuttiness that seemed to fade as it warmed. Smokey flavors underscore everything and hurt the drinkability for me. A fine brew that I wouldn't have had the opportunity to try if it weren't for cokes.

 391 characters

Photo of Johnny_Duck
4/5  rDev -1.5%

Photo of brewmudgeon
3.98/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

black bavarian, by sprecher. code on the bottle says 110830843, which i interpret to mean brewed the 83rd day of 2011. could be wrong but this method of reading the bottles seems to correlate pretty well with perceptions of the age of the stock. anyhow, i was so distracted by the bottling codes i didn't realize this is not a dunkelweisen as i had assumed. damn.

a 3.5-4 it's dark, real dark but translucent around the edges. big whoop. short head falls quickly to a ring. no lace noticed yet. did i mention the foam is creamed coffee colored?

s 3-3.5 definitely the worst nose on a dunkelweisen i've come across. smells like lightly charred dirty lager socks. extra points added since it's not actually supposed to be a dunkelweisen. (grrr)

t 3.5-4 as this is probably like sprecher's best beer or something, i hesitate to rag it too harshly. after resisting the urge to drain pour (due to style orientation displacement) i forced myself to try to enjoy this swill. for starters, it's a tad astringent. touch of charring, spent coffee grounds. hey i bet this would actually be good with some bavarian type food. damnit no pretzels around, no hard cheese, no salami, nothing.
went on a hunt and scared up an everything bagel, homemade pickels, feta, cashews, almonds, low qual dark chocolate, smoked turkey lunchmeat-guess this sh** will have to do. hey there's some bananas, maybe i should mush em up and slip them in to turn it more into what i originally ... nah, i'll resist.

ok, well the beer is drinking a little better now that there's some side nutrition involved, but it really needs dry, sharply flavored dancing partners. the pickles and feta do the best job of standing in for something better. hmm, some good chocolate might go pretty well since this cheap crap works reasonably.

having a full 16oz bottle at hand is mostly a good thing in a situation like this. if it was a 12er i'd have dunkled it by now. i rarely write about pairing food and beer, as i rarely do pair them. most of the time i eat my meal thinking about the beer i want to have afterward, not wanting to waste it on wash-down duty, which despite all the highfallutin talk some do it often turns into. german beers though, a lot of them at least, seem to me to be about eating as much as about drinking. and once accompanied even somewhat correctly, sprecher black bavarian is going down quite nicely--with the food smoothing out just enough of its rough edges yet not silencing it too much. do they leiderhosen (sp?) in xxxl? i might need some.

m 3.5-4 dude, i just wrote like 1000 words already. the mouthfeel is fine! really, it's maybe a touch light but i think that's the style, and the carbonation doesn't have to be buttercream. here it shouldn't be, actually. the slightly abrasive bubbles work with it, helping to keep the snacks happy.

o 4-4.5 by about the 13 oz mark this became a sentimental beer for me. it makes me wander nostalgically through distant memories of my german youth, even though i have never been to germany so far as i know. it's the first sprecher beer i've tried, but probably won't be my only. drinking this stuff is not like drinking most beers, for me at least. if i ever find myself defending it, i'll have to resort to something related to my defense of listening to the grateful dead. it's not about technical virtuosity or brilliant anything, it's about the mood created and the communion with ... now how did that defense go? ah well, peace!

 3,474 characters

Photo of jdg204
4.38/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Much appreciation to the old boss again for this gem received in the beer of the month club, the first of many Dark Lagers for me.

Appearance - Beautiful dark almost opaque color with a pinch of rub and a brown head that was just a bit thin.

Smell - Very nice caramel/ coffee odors come through.

Taste - Amazing, has a lovely roasted flavor which is balanced superbly with a sweet caramelized malt and just a hint of bite from hops.

Mouthfeel - The roasted flavor just leaves an amazing aftertaste and the consistency is practically perfect.

Drinkability - Big pimping brew here folks, this is a must-try and a gem from the midwest. It's definetly turned me on to more dark lagers and I look forward to more like this bad boy (though sadly, I only have one more of him).

 775 characters

Black Bavarian Style Lager from Sprecher Brewing Company
4.06 out of 5 based on 920 ratings.
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