Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99! (Limited time offer, US delivery only)

Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) | Brouwerij Het Anker

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue)Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue)
BA SCORE
4.3/5
Outstanding
1,862 Ratings
Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue)Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Het Anker
Belgium
hetanker.be

Style: Belgian Strong Dark Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-03-2002

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#554
Reviews:
898
Ratings:
1,862
pDev:
10.23%
Bros Score:
0
 
 
Wants:
263
Gots:
349
Trade:
13
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,862 |  Reviews: 898
Photo of philbe311
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Three fingers worth of chunky light khaki colored rapidly fizzes away in a slightly mesmerizing fashion leaving a thick rich creamy lacing... A murky caramel coloring with a faint crimson colored hue... A modest bit of small bubbled slow paced carbonation can be detected when back lit...

S - An absolutely stellar aroma... Sweet and fruity without becoming cloying... Fig... Rum soaked raisins... Cherries... Touches of toffee and brown sugar... Apple... A modest bit of booze... Wonderful complexity...

T - The complexity alluded to by the nose continues through to the palette... First is the fruit in the form of fig, raisins, and cherries... Next is the increasing sweetness of brown sugar and buttery toffee... Then the alcoholic warmth rises on the finish... Simply this one is yummy...

M - Medium to full bodied... Sleek and slightly sticky... Hearty... A bit chewy... Just a the slightest carbonated bite... Some serious alcoholic heat on the finish...

D - This is a big time offering... Enjoyable all the way around... Memorable... A stellar BSDA that is bursting with complexity... Sophisticated and worldly... A sipper that is terrific to relax with...

 1,176 characters

Photo of Proteus93
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I chose this beer to ring in the New Year (which, at time of the start of this post is still 8 minutes away). A 2009 bottle.

A: Deep brown, to the point of being almost black. A creamy, pale brown / light sandy coloured head tops it off and maintains a nice retention forever.

S + T: The nose isn't wildly robust and overpowering... rather, a number of pleasant scents are a bit modest, but once they blend together, complementing one another, it becomes a wonderful aroma to take in a few times over. I find a sweet breadiness to be very presents - like a fruitbread or the like. Something darker, sweet, and fresh. Dark fruits are a part of that fruitiness... date and fig, in particular. They are far more apparent in the taste of the beer, and it's a great flavour. Some hints of toffee and vanilla slip in, as well. It almost has the flavour of a quad, in many ways.

M + D: Full bodied and almost creamy... there's not a great amount of carbonation, and it doesn't have that bottle conditioned sparkling feel or any sorts of force carbonation feelings. It is almost perfect when taken in small sips... were it to be maybe a little crisper, I'd be feeling it more.

... and with the last words written, it is 12:03 AM! Happy New Year, 2010, and prost!

 1,262 characters

Photo of OutlawJoseyWales
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

appearance was dark brown with 1 finger of head. great lacing, and head retention.

smell- very complex, sweet raisin bread, hints of cinnamon

taste - sweet bread, raisins, dates, figs, spice. very complex and pleasing malt sweetness. dark chocolate showed up as well. a great dessert beer.

mouthfeel - nice and viscous, just like i would expect from a beer like this.

drinkability: very easy to drink almost like a dessert. went great with carrot cake. however, alcohol became present about 2/3 of the way through, and i would recommend sharing it with someone if you get a 750ML.

 592 characters

Photo of ritzkiss
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750 corked and caged, 2008 vintage, shared courtesy of Bobsy - thanks for bringing this gem over! Pours a murky purple-brown with a finger of eggshell head which dies down fairly quickly.

Initial burst of bready malt which scares me a bit but settles down to a smooth, complex brew worthy of a Top 100 spot. Rich raisiny fruit, hints of orange, cloves, caramel malt, cocoa powder, figs, hint of nuttiness, almost a hint of port. Ridiculously smooth drinking, light carb, not hint of alcohol aside from a slight warming as you progress. A sipper but only because you want to take it all in, I could probably guzzle it if need be.

Perhaps not as rich or complex as a few other examples I've tried but those few would be hard pressed to match the smooth drinkability of this one - well put together, everything blends seamlessly.

 828 characters

Photo of FtownThrowDown
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2000 Vintage.

Served in a St.B chalice.
Pours a brown color with a rose tint to it. Slight off white head that quickly recedes to nothing.
Smell is belgian candy sugar with some fruits and a bit of underlying alcohol. This bottle has held up incredibly well for being 7 years old.
Taste is incredible! This is a very good beer. You get more of the fruits in the taste. Especially what seems to be plums, and rum soaked raisins.
The mouthfeel is smooth and velvety. This beer goes down a little too easy. This is a very good candidate for cellaring. One of the best, highly recommended.

 592 characters

Photo of Rudgers73
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a foil top glass bottle. 11.2 oz.

A- Rich, dark brown. Milky head that settles to a ring of tiny foam.

S- Smooth buttery, caramel, coffee, pecans.

T- Incredible. Sweet, like caramel with notes of coffee towards the end. Almost like a milk stout but much lighter and smooth. Sweet like pure cane sugar or maple syrup.

M- Sweet and luxurious. Leaves a slight residue as the simple sugars begin to break down on your tongue. Very little carbonation but so well balanced it doesn't need it.

D- Very sweet, but it would go great with something sweet and sour I think. This is luxury in a glass.

 606 characters

Photo of dbrauneis
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2011 Vintage

A: Pours a clear dark amber to brown in color with a half finger tall beige head. The head reduces to some extremely thin patches and a slightly thicker ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate lacing is observed.

S: A very sweet yet inviting aroma to this beer with some sweet malts as well as lots of dark fruits (fig) and just a hint of spice.

T: Dark toasted/charred and sweet malts including some bready and caramel notes as well, followed by some serious amounts of dark fruits (primarily figs), and just a hint of the yeast spices in the finish. There is also a light hint of oak or wood.

M: Medium to full bodied with moderate to high amounts of carbonation. Very creamy.

O: Very enjoyable, the taste and the smell of the alcohol are very well hidden. A really great beer though I would recommend more sipping (considering the ABV) than as a session beer. I will get this one again.

 908 characters

Photo of cgrunin
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Photo of crookedhalo
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep ruby highlighted brown with a very minimal beige head in an authentic little Gouden Carolus "Cuvee of the Emperor" 5.5 oz. chalice. Pruney like fruit smells; medicinal and dark roasted malt and candi sugar aromas, too. The taste is equally pruney and medicinal, how I'd like my Geritol to be when and if I get to that stage in life :). Light chocolate reminiscence as it warms. Slight sweet/sour finish. Lower carbonation level is perfect for a "nightcap" type of beer that this is. Mouthfeel is nice, slick on the tongue. I'm glad this beer was only served 5.5 oz. at a time, because 12 oz. would have taken me too long to drink.

 643 characters

Photo of taez555
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2004 edition, 750ml

This beer poured a thick white/tan head with a ruby and brown body.

The nose was a mix of raisins, phenols, dark fruits, sugar, alcohol, caramel, brown sugar, dark pears, dark cooked fruits and faint chocolate. This is one of those noses you could just sit and smell for hours without even taking a sip. Really quite something.

The taste was medium to full bodied. Alcohol, ripe fruits, raisins, plums, some pear, caramel, brown sugar and phenols. Very mellow and well balanced from start to finish. It already has mellowed touch. Very sugary with a non-spicy black pepper sort of taste. The carbonation level is very light and fine.

What a rich rich beer. Reminded me of eating a rich chocolate cake. Very yummy and a beer I wouldn’t hesitate substituting for or including with a rich dessert.

 827 characters

Photo of Jeffo
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this one at Bert's Bierhuis in Utrecht.

From a 75cl bottle into a chalice
Vintage: 2011

APPEARANCE: A careful pour yields a 2 finger, medium looking, off-white head with great retention. Rosewood red or seal brown in color with very little carbonation evident. Head fades very slowly and eventually settles into a thick foam cap that clings to the sides of the glass. A good foam cap remains until the end and leaves some good lacing down the glass. Good looking brew.

SMELL: A big, enticing nose on this one. Dark and caramel malts with lots of fruits and spicy yeast notes. Plumbs, dates, grapes and some red cherries in there. Some sweet brown sugar and spicy yeast notes with pepper, coriander and even oregano is worked in there really well. Great stuff.

TASTE: Caramel and toffee sweetness up front with lots of fruits and spices. Raisins, dates and plumbs, with a noticeable dose of red cherries again, brown sugary sweetness, moving into a spicy yeast finish. Coriander, pepper and oregano make an appearance once more, as well as some light, bitter dark chocolate that tries to balance out the fruity and sugary sweetness. Aftertaste is bold and lingers nicely on the palate. Really enjoyable, and just a touch more bitterness after the swallow would give it the perfect score it otherwise deserves.

PALATE: Medium body and medium, soft carbonation. Creamy on the palate, lighter as well, goes down smooth and finishes slightly dry. A bit of a bite at the swallow and some heat lingers. Perhaps a little more weight in the feel would have given the support to push the flavors over the edge.

OVERALL: Really flavorful and enjoyable, but could have used a touch more bitterness after the swallow. A slightly heavier feel would have added a touch as well. Still, these are minor points, as this is a world-class brew for sure and I’m not surprised it gets such high scores on this site. Worth drinking lots of, and worth tracking down if it isn’t distributed to your area, especially if you’re a fan of the style. Highly recommended.

 2,061 characters

Photo of goschool
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I first tried this beer at Bohemian Caverns in Washington, D.C. when I was getting into craft after my 21st birthday. One of the regulars gave me a chalice full of the bottle he was drinking from (I don't know why he drank it from the bottle), which I loved for the taste and for the novelty of a $20 beer brewed once a year. I never saw, or noticed (I had forgotten what it was until semi-recently), this beer around LA until tonight when I was checking out the Belgian section of Whole Foods.

2005 edition. Pours a dark brown with ruby highlights. The off-white to tan head starts off at about two fingers and fades to a small ring of lace. The nose has dark fruit, toffee, brown sugar, fig, liquorice, mocha, yeast, and booze. The taste starts with sweet malts, brown sugar, dark fruit, liquorice, and mocha with the 10% ABV constantly looming. I'm glad to revisit this gem now that I've have the palate and experience to truly appreciate it.

 949 characters

Photo of Darkmagus82
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from bottle into a chalice glass

Appearance – The beer pours a chestnut-mahogany color with some red highlights shining through. Upon pouring there is a small tannish colored head that forms on the surface of the brew. The head fades very slowly over time, leaving a great level of lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma is sweet of dark fruits, with a big dose of prune and raisin as well as a small amount of cherry. Mixed with the sweet fruit is a caramel and candied sugar aroma as well. While heaviest in the sweeter aromas there are other nice aromas present as well. An oaky and woody aroma as well as a nutty aroma meld well with the fruit sweet aromas. When all are mixed with a nice boozy rum like smell, a very pleasingly sweet and warming smell is put forth.

Taste – The taste begins with the big dark fruit aromas detected in the nose. Raisin, prune, cherry and fig all show up big at the start and are mixed with a bit of a roasted malt and vanilla. Some light yeasty notes bring with them a light banana and spice flavor more toward the middle of the taste. Along with the yeasty tastes so too comes a light caramel sweetness as well as a little bit of a woody taste. More toward the end a light booziness, much lighter then what would be expected from the nose, is sensed by the tongue. Overall a nice sweet and robust lightly warming flavor is left to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the average to slightly thinner side for a Belgian strong dark of 11% abv with a carbonation level that is on the average side. Both are nice for the sweeter dark fruit flavors of the brew and make this one a little too easy to drink even though it is at 11 % abv.

Overall – A rather nice Belgian strong dark with a big sweet dark fruit flavor and a nice lighter boozy and yeasty spiced flavor that rounds out the sweet well when mixed with a lighter malty taste. It is overall quite enjoyable.

 1,957 characters

Photo of Pacioli1445
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of mickeymac
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Serious looking bottle: 750 ml brownie with a black and gold label and "Grand Cru of the Emperor" on a blue band running diagonally across the label. The cork was a bit tough to pull out (fortunately my teeth are in good shape). Pours a deep cherry that looks nice when held up to the light. The smell is a mouth-watering mix of dates, raisins, plum, toffee, and just a hint of hops. At 10%, the smell of alcohol also comes through but it just balances everything else nicely. The taste is amazingly complex. I'm probably drinking this stuff too soon, but I really don't care. It's a real knock-out. Every time it seems to be on the verge of cloyingly caking up the mouth, something new jumps in to keep things working: a bit of sour apple, hops, and just a bit of the good old barnyard funk. The mouthfeel is nice and chunky. I'm going back for more.

I just tried this again six months later and am upping my review. It has opened up a bit more. It still has an amazing array of ripe fruit, but it's not quite as overwhelming as it was at the beginning of the year. This may be one of my top 5 beers by '05.

 1,111 characters

Photo of DaftCaskBC
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2011 Vintage.

A: 1" tan coloured head that left a nice lacing over very dark mahogany cloudy liquid.

S: Yeast, alcohol esters, figs, pear, cherry, sweet brown sugar.

T: Pear and apple up front which transitions to cherry, figs and a finish which a fair amount of alcohol. Main criticism is that it does not hide the alcohol as well as it could.

M: Thick viscosity and a high level of carbonation. Some drying from the alcohol.

O: A good beer that would probably be best aged, so that the alcohol is muted. However, I believe that Unibroue's Terrible is a similar and better Belgian Strong Dark Ale.

 604 characters

Photo of Shaw
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very dark, only allowing light through around the edges. It doesn't have much of a head, just a thin ring of foam.

The smell: Wow! It's so complex. Rum mixed with raisins and grapes and sugar plus a whole lot more I can't identify.

The rum aromas carry over to the taste. This is a complex beer with lots of dried fruit notes mixed with malt sweetness and a nice warmth from the alcohol. Plus flavors of dark candy sugar.

The body is slick and substantial. It has chewy qualities but that's balanced by glassy alcohol qualities.

Overall this is an excellent beer. Especially considering its price. Highly recommended and well worth seeking out.

 648 characters

Photo of billab914
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 vintage poured into my Westvleteren chalice. Poured a deep brown color with a little bit of some ruby highlights when held to the light. It poured with a thin bubbly and fizzy covering which quickly dissipated.

Aroma has a big malty and sweet flavor to it. It has a lot of dark fruits going on with plums, figs and raisins all present. It has a rum like alcohol presence in the nose as well. It showcases the malt very nicely in the aroma overall.

The taste like the nose is not surprisingly malt focused. It has a bit more caramel and cherries then the nose suggested but it does have the dark fruit, plum and fig flavors to it. It has a little alcohol in the finish but not too bad for being 11%.

Mouthfeel is on the heavier side and carbonation is low. Drinkability is very good, the malt flavors are delicious. This is usually one of my least favorite styles but when done so well as this I really enjoy them. I love the big malty and fruity flavors this one had. One of the best of the style I've tried for sure.

 1,026 characters

Photo of mhewes
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A : Poured a dark brown with a good tan head that stuck around for a while.

S : Really sweet with a strong malt aroma. I picked up some brown sugar, caramel, and fruits.

T : Really sweet and malty. A lot of good fruit and spice flavor in it. A pretty complex brew

M : Syrupy, rich, and chewy

D : An awesome beer. The alcohol sneaks up on you. Definitely one I will have again.

 380 characters

Photo of SLeffler27
4.37/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark brown walnut with ruby red highlights while a slight, beige head produces little lace.

Has the full, rich aroma one would expect with spice and dark fruits. Rather sweet with plums, fresh figs, and brandy. Caramelized sugar continues to develop with warmth.

A mélange of dark fruits and spices just as the nose had suggested. This one is rich and complex and could easily be considered a benchmark for the style. The balance is slightly to the sweet side but still well in check. A lingering finish. Warms amazing well.

Full body with modest carbonation and syrupy texture. Alcohol is present but a minor player.

Perfect for contemplation of memories or reading as one sips. Enjoyed this in a tulip glass, as that is what was available, however, I would have preferred a chalice or snifter.

 806 characters

Photo of degerbah
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a light brown cloudy caramel color. Very thick with two fingers of head. For being 11% I taste no alcohol at all. I love the initial taste, but the thick caramel taste follows and stays on the tongue for an extended period of time. Pleasant to drink. More of a dessert beer, or something I'd drink with food than a beer I'd just kick back with. Fortunately doesn't get any worse as it warms up a little because there was no way I was going to finish this quickly. A solid buy but there are better belgians out there.

 523 characters

Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a big C&C bottle to a snifter the liquid is dark caramel, cloudy and has very good carbonation. The head is tan very thick and leaves some nice lace.

The smell is alcohol poured over caramel, a very nice treat.

The taste is very good lost of caramel, sweet sugars, and alcohol. Very yummy.

The mouthfeel is thicker then medium almost syrupy, and the carbonation is very good.

The drinkability is very good a very well done brew some thing I way try to cellar. Prosit, MK

 486 characters

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2012 Vintage poured in to snifter.

A -Very dark ruby, almost opaque with one finger of light brown head.

S - Caramel, toffee, raisins, spice and hints of rum.

T - Sweet caramelized sugar, rum soaked raisins, sticky toffee, figs and spice. A really nice flavour profile.

M - Medium body. Creamy. Moderate carbonation.

 322 characters

Photo of wcudwight
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark brown with a nice fluffly marshmellow light brown head. I could sit back and star at this beer the same way one admires a fine painting. Smells of maple(both the wood and syrup) and fresh pipe tobacco. Taste like raisin bread, plums, lot's of sugary sweet flavors. Overripe banannas and what sets this apart from others is the big bold grannysmith apple flavor. I love Grannysmith apples. Carbonation is spot on and the body is on the lighter side of full. This one is a sipper for sure but it's nice to just enjoy over the course of an evening. Great beer!!

 563 characters

Photo of Tdizzle
4.38/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 vintage purchased at Vendome Fullerton.

A- Poured from a 750mL corked and caged bottle into a Chimay chalice, this beer pours a slightly opaque brownish-red color with an effervescent dark-tan head that sticks around in the form of a thick layer over the beer. Each sip yields some beautiful webs of lacing.

S- Big malty sweetness is backed up by dark fruits, brown sugar, caramel, and maple syrup. The alcohol is very noticeable.

T- The taste is primarily malty and sweet, with all of the above mentioned characteristics emerging towards a warming finish that leaves a lingering flavor of dates and figs along with a mild tea-like bitterness.

M- A full-bodied and syrupy mouthfeel, but the carbonation is just a tad overly aggressive given how rich this beer is.

D- The 11% ABV isn't exactly well-hidden, but the deliciousness of the flavor offsets this minor grievance.

This is an absolutely outstanding Belgian Strong Ale.

 940 characters

Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) from Brouwerij Het Anker
Beer rating: 4.3 out of 5 with 1,862 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.