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

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Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue)Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue)
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brouwerij Het Anker
Belgium | website

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
Reviews:
878
Ratings:
1,790
Avg:
4.29
pDev:
14.69%
 
 
Wants:
249
Gots:
325
For Trade:
18
User Reviews
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Reviews: 878 | Ratings: 1,790
Photo of Mess
4.17/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2006 vintage, cellar temp. Poured into a wine glass.

(A) Pours deep reddish-brown with cappuccino head. Tight bubbles clinging to top of the glass.

(S) Smells of rich, sweet rum and raisin-carrot cake. Waft of fine, sweet port.

(T) First taste is of sweet dried plums/prunes, rich red wine - really does have a tremendous port character. Sweet caramel, raisins. Chocolate. Plum wine. Toward the end of the bottle the likeness to a port was very strong.

(M) Coats the tongue with a silky smoothness. Not overly viscous, but lingers a bit on the tongue.

(D) Rich, but what a treat. A great sipper to share after dinner or in my case during a movie and snow storm. Novices may find it too sweet.

Probably best to cellar for a year though I believe 2 years to be ideal. I have an '07 I plan to pop soon.

 808 characters

Photo of REDAMI
4.22/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from 750ml bottle into Chimay goblet.

A - Pour is a muddy, copper-brown topped with a paper-thin ivory foam.

S - Sharp alcohol on the nose. Buttered bread, raisins, toffee sugar.

T - Moderately sweet, metallic, raisins or plums, with a cereal aftertaste.

M - Fine, light carbonation, moderate to thin mouthfeel, not overly hot from the alcohol.

Has a sharp alcohol nose but the sweetness and mouthfeel hide the alcohol well. Slightly warming with a distinct raisin-like quality. Lacked the yeast candy of a bottle conditioned beer, it would be better with this extra yeast.

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Photo of Ljunkan
4.63/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep red/brown color with a nice white head.

Smells excellent, vinous, notes of berries, some nuttiness. Nice.

The taste is very complex and good; lots of bitter berries, liquorice, caramel, brown sugar, fruityness. Sweet, but not too sweet. Some warming alcohol in a good way.

It's very filling in the mouth. Also very smooth and nice.

Drinkability is rather hig for such a high abv beer, but of course you cannot drink a lot of it...

One of the best belgian beers I've had. Amazing!

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Photo of hoser
4.65/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My local store still has 3 cases of the 2006, have revisted this beer twice in the last two weeks and tonight I followed it up with a Rochefort 10. Let just say not even close. Guess I am going to buy a case of the 2006 for my cellar.My local store still has 3 cases of the 2006, have revisted this beer twice in the last two weeks and tonight I followed it up with a Rochefort 10. Let just say not even close. Guess I am going to buy a case of the 2006 for my cellar.

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Photo of DPFRD
3.76/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

750 ml, poured into chimay chalice.

A- Dark and ominous... just what I want. Coffee hued head that dissapates quickly.

S- Sweet, with some biscuit. Toffee, Rasin, Booze.

T- Sweetness and Alcohol dominate on this for me... It seem like they hit first, with some raisin and other spices peering through. Very complex, reminds of a port.

M- Full bodied, kind of syrupy imo.

D- Very fine brew. Very strong flavor wise and booze wise, so it isn't the best session selection. I'd drink it again.

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Photo of silverblaze540
4.94/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Dark brown, minimal light seeping through. Small cream colored head, dissipates quickly. Active bubbles.

S - Malt, dates, prunes, rains, cherry, sweetness.

T - Very sweet and malty. All the fruity smells come through in the taste. Minimal alcohol taste and almost no bitterness.

M - Some carbonation burn, very smooth.

O - Wonderfully tasty beer. Even non-beer drinkers could enjoy this one.

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Photo of mbrasi
3.67/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Vintage 2007 drank 9/11/9. Cork pops off nicely and aromas of dark fruit and yeast fill the air. Pouring brings out some sweet carmalized malt and bannana. Pours brownish-red with a head that dissipates fast to an off white lace around the glass. Flavor is sweet, there is some bannana that hits you up front and a nice caramel and fig finish. A little alcohol burn in the finish but not too bad for a big beer. Mouthfeel is oily with low carbonation. Overall this brew hits you with strong fruit flavors and a shot of alcohol in the finish. This brew had 2 years on it, I think it can go easily 2-4 more years possibly up to 10 years.

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Photo of sessycuban
2.89/5  rDev -32.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

2006 vintage. Purchased at Whole Foods.

A: The beer pours a dark amber, leaving a thin head that quickly dissolves. Very minimal lacing.

S: The beer is overwhelmingly dominated by the smell of bananas and caramel; also, lots of spices which I can't quite distinguish.

T: I'm experiencing a very strong maple taste that I don't particularly enjoy. The high alcohol content is very evident and the spices are overwhelming any other taste in this beer. I have to admit, this is probably the sweetest beer I've ever had.

M: The beer is medium bodied and coats the mouth well, but because I didn't particularly enjoy the taste, it's not really a beer I plan to sip.

D: I'll probably never try this beer again. In my estimation, the beer is overspiced and way too sweet. Some, however, may enjoy these qualities and would appreciate the beer more than do I.

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Photo of SoonerNY
4.83/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

750ml bottle from 2008

This was suggested to me by careful placement on the checkout counter. Like a kid staring at eye level candy I grabbed it and I'm so glad I did.

It pours a purple brown opaque color with excellent lacing and a 2 finger head that hung around for a while.

You definitely smell the spicy alcohol but the fruity plum-raisins shine through.

Although present, the alcohol isn't nearly as pronounced in the taste as it is in the smell. A superb balance makes this brew dangerously drinkable. Sweet and spicy plums are present with delicious Belgian candy and a gentle alcohol warming. I plan to grab a few to cellar for later if I have the patience.

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Photo of jnezda
4.2/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tried the large format bottle poured into my favorite snifter. Pour a dark brown almost mahogany color with a course tan full head. The head had good retention but ended with little lacing. The smells at first hinted of yeast and some dark full fruit perhaps blackberries with a strong sweet edge. The taste was full with hints of caramel, dates, apricot and plum. The carbonation was low but appropriate for the style. The bottle I enjoyed was a 2008 and could stand up to another year or so of aging. Overall this was a good beer and I would try it again soon.

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Photo of KingG
4.67/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2006 edition

Served at cellar temp and poured into a Weizen glass.

Appearance is good. Dark copper colored brew with many tiny bubbles racing up toward the tan, thick, crater-like head. Not as murky as I assumed.

Smell is very good. A lot going on here. Sweet sugary malts, honey-glazed raisins, sweet ripe plums, and a small amount of bubblegum and alcohol. Very nice indeed.

Taste exceptional. Much like the smell yet more pronounced on the dark fruits and alcohol. Brown sugar and a green apple sweetness rounds things out. As complex a flavor that you can find for the style. Absolutely delicious.

Mouthfeel is very good. Medium bodied yet very much a presence on the palet. Carbonation level is very good for the style.

Drinkability is very good. Killing this 750ML bottle won't be a problem. Once again, if it wasn't for the slight alcohol burn I would have given a 5.

Overall:
Everytime I drink this brew I get amazed how complex it is. One of the best Dark Strong Belgium Ale's you can find. Highly recommended.

 1,026 characters

Photo of Greenfloyd
4.7/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

It's a liquid fig newton, and it rocks...

Poured into a chalice with an impressive unfiltered raisin hue. A gentle dark tan head dissipated into a foam-like halo halfway down the glass. This beer had wonderful smells of sweet malt, brown sugar, and mild trailing yeasty tones. The taste was fairly close, warm banana bread, sweet figs, and subtle appearances of malt. This medium to heavy bodied dark ale finished with semi sweet, fresh wheat bread-like notes. This beer paired great with Port Salut cheese, double cream brie, and tart green apple wedges...Enjoy

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Photo of antilogic
4.4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had it on tap @ beachwood BBQ. Good head, swirls nicely releasing aroma of raisin and brown sugar. Lighter bodied than I imagined it would be. Dark, good head, slightly carbonated. Better as it warms up, the tastes of fruits, possibly citrus and sugars really come out.

Tasty, but not a session beer.

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Photo of Wanne
3.8/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice brown beer, with a beige head. Malty aroma, combined with plum and raisin accent. The alcohol is remarkably present in the taste which causes for a port- or sherry-like taste. There is also a taste of spices to detect. Unfortunately the bottle was already opened a while before I drank of it, which compromised the taste a bit, especially the aftertaste. Will rate this again in the right circumstances.

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Photo of cro250klr
4.9/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I have a picture of myself and three other friends standing under a train depot sign in Belgium. The sign reads, 'Mechelen'. And to think that the first time I ever had this beer was, in Scranton, Pa., three months after coming home from Europe. Hopefully, I will tour Europe again this year. I have got to try this, if available, in it's home town. I had this on tap after the keg traveled 3500 miles and it was incredible. I can only imagine how good it must be in Belgium. This brew IS fit for a king! Complex, to say the least. Banana, brown sugar, vanilla, homemade bread, plum, sweet, and malty. A very light head sits on top of the lightly carbonated reddish/brown liquid and laces till the very end. As with most Belgian browns, I took my time and let it warm a bit. The taste and the aroma just explode. One sip yielding banana, the next, maybe some rum and so on, till the very end. The high abv isn't really hidden in this one but your taste buds and olfactory glands are working overtime, leaving little time to worry about alcohol. After two half liter chalices, I was ready to call myself king. Instead I called the bartender and had one more. I gave this a 4.5 on drinkability only because of it's sweet taste. (It's similar to a Kasteel Brune a far as sweetness.) That, not the 11% abv, only prevented me from having anymore than I did at one sitting. I went back a few days later only to learn that the Carolus had kicked. Since their tap stock is rotated I will have to wait some time before they have this on tap again. Maybe, until I get back to Europe. This one though, is worth the wait.

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Photo of bwyker
3.88/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

On tap, poured into a pint glass, around cellaring temperature.

Appearance: Very dark mahogany. Nearly opaque from the dark hue of the body; however, when put up to light, it appears to be a clear, haze-free deep-red brew. A very thin ochre tinted head dangles in the middle and sticks to the sides of the glass. Lacing completely coats the side of the glass forming a slightly discolored screen.

Smell: Immediately notice toffee and molasses, with an alcohol backbone.

Taste: Similar to the nose. Smokey, roasted malts with hints of cherry at the start, followed by a slight maple syrup flavor and a splash of alcohol in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Although this one is heavy in the malts, the mouthfeel is surprisingly smooth, with only a slight stickyness in the finish. The first few sips are a bit dry from the alcohol, but this soon fades to a nice silkiness once your palate adjusts.

Drinkability: This is a big one that will demand some slow sipping. It gets easier with each sip, but I can’t imagine having more than one or two of these in a sitting. Overall, a well-crafted beer that was very much enjoyed.

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Photo of dotsonjamesg
4.22/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2008 Edition

Bought this brew off of liquorama.net. Though I have become bored with the style, I took a chance based on some good reviews.

Appearance: Poured a foggy golden color with a rich white, three-finger head with good retention. Even with a gentle pour, this brew nearly overflowed with foam.

Smell: Rich scent of banana, citrus, spices, nutmeg, vanilla, and some other spices cascade my nostrils.

Taste: Definitely very rich and full-bodied; its everything I hoped it would be. I can pick up the hefty sweet malts and candied sugar and another unfamiliar flavor with Belgian Strong Ales...licorice? Yes, Licorice! Some hops and citrus were also detected. It was pretty complex and delicious but the alcohol seemed to throw off a lot of the richer flavors within. It was still very delicious and enjoyable. The brew also had a nice warming finish and after taste I enjoyed it very much.

Mouthfeel: The brew is thick and syrupy but has a nice carbonation level that stimulates my taste buds.

Drinkability: The brew can be a little overwhelming in terms of sweetness but if you enjoy a good Belgian Strong Dark Ale it is right up your alley. In a market overflowing with overly sweet and less complex BSDAs, this one definitely stands out. I have been telling myself that I am done with BSDAs, as they all seem so alike. Although this one shares similar characteristics, it definitely stands out compared to others. This brew reminded me that there still exists some good stuff from the BSDA style.

I was a little worried when I first opened my Cuvee Van De Keizer... I noticed a tiny leak-like appearance at the base of the cork, stopped only by a dried (formerly)syrupy substance. As you can see, the brew was unharmed. *Sigh!*

Cheers!

-Dotson

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Photo of tobyandgina
4.45/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed thin one in a tulip glass.

Dark brown in colour, clear. Nice tan, frothy head, diminishes a little too quick.

Great aroma. Honey, molasses, caramel, burnt sugar, alcohol, a little maltiness and yeast.

Pretty good mouthfeel - not too lasting.

Very sweet on the palate. Caramelized sugar, molasses. A little thick. Alcohol that warms your chest.

Really enjoyed this one.

Cheers!

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Photo of theWrkncacnter
4.3/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz corked bottle. 2006 vintage. Pours a deep mahogany brown that's very opaque. Moderate head with minimal lacing. The smell is somewhat strange. I want to say that it smells like turpentine, but in a good way, if that makes any sense. The alcohol is definitely there in the nose, but in a very nice way. It combines with citrus and other fruit scents to make a very interesting and very good nose. Taste is amazing. I loved this beer instantly. The alcohol is fairly well hidden, which makes it very easy to drink. Once the head is gone, it's very hard to tell this appart from a dessert wine. The taste is sweet with citrus and sugar and only a moderate alcohol taste. Do I taste a bit of chocolate on the aftertaste? Maybe I'm crazy but I think there's some there. Complex would be a great way to describe this beer. As the beer warms, the alcohol comes out more but only reinforces the dessert wine quality of this beer. Perhaps this is a bit too sweet, and that might push away some hop-heads like myself, but I think for this style it's not a problem.

Bottom line: this is a killer brew, pick some up now while you can; I'll definitely be picking up another bottle soon.

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Photo of gerardoluna
4.45/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

[Eyes] Wonderful deep color, excelent foamy creamy head.
[Nuse] Floral malty and hoppy flavor, with notes of caramel and alcohol.
[Mouth] Sweet malt, fruit and fresh. Strong and sweet. notes fruit of apple and bananas, a little touch of yeast. i will storage some bottles for the next year.

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Photo of KCHopHead
4.71/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

How is this beer not ranked higher? First chance I get I'm going to do some side by side comparisons with this beer. It is quite amazing.

A - Pours a dark plum, brown.
S - Tons of complexity with yeasts, fruits and not much alcohol.
T - Just as complex as the smell. I was mainly getting raisins, but there is so much going on there. Alcohol is sitting in the background.
M - Lots of carbonation but not a bomb when you open the bottle. Just enough for the effervesence.
D - I am happy this is in 750 ml and not just 12 oz. I could drink a bottle of this in a night and be quite satisfied.

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Photo of MrBen
4.35/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just finished a bottle of the 2003 vintage. This is very dark brew, full of sweetness, dried fruits, nuts, and malty goodness. This is big beer. The alcohol is obvious on the nose and tongue, which accounts for my 4.0 rating on drinkability. Otherwise, the presentation, pour, and overall experience are excellent. This is something to save for a special time.

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Photo of Blindpigbiz
4.63/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

VAN DE KEIZER BLEAUW '09; consumed in 2011

PLEASE AGE THIS BEER FOR A TWO YEAR MINIMUM

Smell: neutral

Taste: barley-wine, dark-ripened plums, cognac, black licorice, maraschino cherries, candied sugar and warm scotch

Pair this beer with smoked goose, a rare filet minion, a truffle wagyu burger with blue cheese, or a funnel cake with Madagascar vanilla bean ice cream with a dark-fruit syrup

This beer is fantastic! Normally for beer, or any kind of liquor, one has to search for flavor and have an immensely discerning palette in order to extract all of the flavors; not this time. This beer aged is probably the BEST DARK BEER EVER MADE, or at least that I've tried. This beer brazenly smacks you in the face and tells you what it tastes like; it's like hunting in a forest with no trees and large game animals at a stand still; the flavors are immensely dominant.

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Photo of NoHipTee
4.18/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bought this based solely on the reviews I read on Beeradvocate.

A: rich thick head that lasts and lingers. Significant carbonation that makes it difficult to pour this without foaming over the edges of the glass. Dark dark beer that has a redish hue when held up to the light.

S: sweet with hints at a very complex beer fruity but malty with a mere suggestion of the alcohol.

T: A very pleasing flavor but not as complex as I had hoped for based on the appearance and smell. I cannot get past the very pleasing flavor. This is what a dark belgian ale should taste like.

M: the carbonation hides any alcochol burn. It is not as thick as I would have expected based on the dark rich appearance.

D: This is a very drinkable beer.

A very good experience. I will buy more.

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Photo of Tbone
4.4/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is for the 2005 vintage with English label and 10% ABV.
They release in April, so it had a bottle age of about 18 months.

A-As per my usual, poured the entire 750 ml bottle at once into a large glass pitcher. It was highly carbonated, filling alomst the whole pitcher with foam. It has a very dark amber color.

S-Very rich and pleasing aroma of plum and molasses.

T-More of the same in the taste. Expectedly sweet, but a complex palate of flavors of plum, molasses, and a nice roasted malt.
I detect no off flavors.

M-A silky and creamy texture with just the right density (although this was in part due to releasing much carbonation through a hard pour).

I will definitely be getting more of this and will seek out other vintages.

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Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) from Brouwerij Het Anker
95 out of 100 based on 878 ratings.
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