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

BA SCORE
95
world-class
1,830 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
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
Ratings:
1,830
Reviews:
889
Avg:
4.29
pDev:
10.26%
 
 
Wants:
257
Gots:
332
For Trade:
15
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,830 |  Reviews: 889
Photo of Huhzubendah
4.45/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A long time favorite of mine. Bottle shared by Paul during an impromptu session.

2009 vintage

The beer appears sunburst brown with a half inch of thick, tan head. As the head slowly recedes, it leaves a sheet of thick, heavy lacing behind.

The aroma is delectable, with scents of sweet malt, Belgian yeast, and dark fruits.

The flavor brings more of the same, with an awesome bouquet of Belgian yeast and dark fruit. The beer is still a bit sweet, and could easily sit in the cellar for a few more years. Alcohol presence is noticeable throughout, particularly in the finish. Overall, a terrific beer and a great addition to one's cellar.

 642 characters

Photo of beerpirates
4.12/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml vintage 2010
Poured into my tulip glas

A: Pours a dark brown mahogany with a decent light brown head.

S: Lots of dark fruits, cherries, and some more earthy dried fruits as well. Plenty of yeasty goodness.

T: Much luck the smell with a little bit of extra candy sugar sweetness thrown in, raisin , dried fruit

M: Fairly full-bodied and creamy. Not too much alcohol taste.

D: Quite drinkable. Split this one with my wife

 436 characters

Photo of BEERMILER12
4.72/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2010 bottle

A: Pours a dark ruby red/mahogany color with almost no head

S: Dark fruits, sugar, oak, and yeast all come together for an extremely complex nose

T: Big on the dark fruits and sugar as well as caramel, followed by hints of oak. This one is definitely complex, and the alcohol is hidden extremely well

M: Full bodied with medium carbonation. Surprisingly doesn't coat the mouth or throat going down

D: One bottle is definitely enough, but this brew is extremely deceptive because the 11% is nowhere to be found in the taste or nose

 547 characters

Photo of Hojaminbag
4.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2010 Vintage.

Grand Cru of the Emperor has a dark brown body with ruby highlights. The tan colored head is fairly solid looking, and it manages nice retention and lacing.

The yeast provides a pretty spicy nose, with hints of fruit also. The malt has a lot going on, adding caramel, molasses, a hint of cocoa and a bit of tobacco.

Grand Cru of the Emperor smelled pretty good, but it tastes even better. There is a lot going on in the flavor department, but it is all balanced pretty well. The flavor remains fairly spicy as the nose portends, but less than I would have expected. I think this a good thing, because the medicinal qualities of the nose were too powerful for my tastes. A good bit of fruit flavor comes through in the form of a port-like grape flavor, a bit of banana and some dates. The malt profile is fantastically varied in and of itself, with all kinds of molasses, caramel, toasted flavors, cocoa and tobacco. The finish shows off just enough alcohol to provide a bit of warming, which was just enough to be pleasant without being hot.

The mouthfeel is great, but tough to describe. Although the body isn't full (more medium), the beer is substantial and smooth on the tongue; I guess this should lead me to think that the carbonation has been expertly crafted.

I've been passing this beer by at local stores for years. I finally decided to grab one, and I am sure it will not be years until I buy another. Complex, balanced, and strong without being unpleasant, this beer is a classic.

 1,511 characters

Photo of DaveBlack
2.95/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

2010 vintage, poured into a Chimay chalice

A: Dark brown with almost a rose color at the edges of the glass. The light tan head is pretty small, maybe 1/2 a finger's width, and does not have much retention, though it leaves some nice lacing and keeps a patchy covering on the surface of the beer.

S: Some sweet malts and a heavy dose of grapes, mixed with some bready yeast. Really interesting and lovely aroma.

T: Wow. I was sold on this beer until I actually tasted it. Up front, the taste is lovely and matches the aroma: some malts, a nice hit of yeast and the grape flavor. Unfortunately, after that flavor there is nothing but sweetness. Overt, cloying unbalanced sweetness. That flavor lingers in the back of the throat for a while, and is actually pretty nice once the majority of the flavor fades. Alcohol gently warms the throat, though it is well hidden in the actual flavor profile. I am pretty sure that there is a good beer here, just hidden behind a disgusting amount of sweetness.

M: Pretty heavy body, lots of carbonation and slightly sticky.

D: Honestly, I do not find this beer drinkable at all. It is way too sweet, and I don't even know if I can finish a single glass, let alone an entire 750 bottle. So unbalanced, and if I wanted something that tasted like this I would buy some grape syrup.

 1,320 characters

Photo of zaphodchak
4.47/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured (vintage 2010) into a tulip with a half-finger head despite my best efforts and very faint, but clingy and pleasant lacing. Dark garnet body for an understated, elegant beer.

Nose has classic Gouden Carolus banana, toffee, and sweet fruit.

Taste is phenomenal, super-rich banana and caramel but with a dry enough finish to keep going. Traces of cherry as it warms. Impressively, almost cloyingly sweet. Not a trace of hops. Basically liquid candy.

Mouthfeel has a very fine-grained texture, and the carbonation is necessary to complement and balance the sweetness.

So incredibly rich that it might be difficult to finish. This is absolutely one to share, so while tasty, this begs for moderation.

 707 characters

Photo of Casey10
4.18/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a fantastic brew.

After a round or two this gives off a great smell of cherry.

Smell is of cherry and wood like.

Taste Again with with the cherry and woodlike taste.

The mouthfeel is almost dry.

D - While this is a bit expensive for a bottle you get a lot so is very drinkable.

 289 characters

Photo of kingcrowing
4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

750ml corked & caged bottle poured into a Duvel tulip. 2009 vintage, and it's brewed on February 24th so it's 2 years old today, Happy Birthday to Charles V!

Pours a deep hazy and ruddy brown color with a small but silky tan head, very little lacing and lightly visible carbonation. Nose is sweet, full of dark fruits and caramel, a slightly vegetal and earthy aroma from the hops but they're all taking a back seat to the bready Belgian yeast.

First off, the mouthfeel is perfect. My last homebrew was a BSDA and the carbonation was extremely inconsistent from bottle to bottle, so having a BSDA done right is even more impressive right now. The body is fairly light and smooth with a sharp carbonation that rounds it out nicely.

Dark brown sugar, and dark fruits like raisins and plums are here, it's sweet buy neither cloyingly so nor is it syrupy which is hard to do. The hops provide a nice subtle bite that's very subdued by American standards but spot on for the style, leaving you wanting just a bit more after every sip.

Overall, this really is an outstanding beer. It's been sitting on the shelves at my beer store for years and I've always overlooked it, well I'm glad I finally jumped on this as it's a fantastic brew.

 1,235 characters

Photo of ehammond1
4.72/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottle (2010)

Holiday Wine Cellar
Escondido, CA

(Aged 1 year)

A deep, dark, rich and ruby mahogany with a very small head. Leaves little lacing but the color is breathtaking.

The initial nose is of muted candied figs and alcohol-soaked grapes. The nose grows exponentially as the beer warms however; I wasn't getting much scent upon initial cork-popping, but now I smell sweet cherries, vine-ripe grapes, sugary toffee candy, alcohol, and some floral hoppy notes.

Sweet toffee, raisins, warm baking bread, spicy tobacco, and brandy-soaked cherries on the palette. A cornucopia of flavor. Truly terrific.

Chewy, bubbly and relatively thick mouthfeel. A sipper.

Beers like this are what make me a beer enthusiast. So much aroma, character, and flavor packed inside one, inexpensive bottle.

Truly terrific!

 815 characters

Photo of eric5bellies
4/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 Vintage

A - Pours a dark Mahogany colour, with a hint of Ruby. Head is off white that does not retain that well.

S - Plenty of dark fruit malts and spice.

T - Quite sweet flavours of brown sugar a nd raisins and dark fruits. Perhaps a little burnt toffee as well. Finishes in a spicey way with a little booze.

M - Medium body and carbonation.

D - A very solid quad but will get better with age, at least five ye4ars on this one. Good job I bought two !

 463 characters

Photo of dbmernin83
4.18/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The 2009

Pours a very dark, burnt brown with a one inch head.

Rich dark fruits in the nose, light booze. Very Port-like.

Huge dark fruits, very sweet. A slight earthiness.

Creamy, thick mouthfeel. This is a big one. Light carbonation and heavy booze and all the flavors coat your mouth and stay for long after a sip.

Thick, syrupy, and delicious. A nightcap sipper and should be shared with a friend.

 405 characters

Photo of FosterJM
4.16/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

247th review on BA
bottle to tulip
2010 C/C 750 ML

App- A brown cola looking brew with amber/red highlights running throught it. Giant 3 finger head, lasted a good solid 5 minutes before it fizzled out.

Smell- I get yeast, some bread and a fruit note. (Not wood or plums as bottle suggests)

Taste- I don't think I have ever had a bottle so spot on with what is inside it. Very apple forward and sweet at the same time but retained a dark ale quality and no sign of 11%

Mouth- Medium bodied bordering on full with a medium carbonation and a sweet after taste. For some reason it had a gentle spice note.

Drink- After it's done the 11% really hits you. Big Flavor, Big Beer. This was really good. Couldn't do two in sitting. One and done.

 741 characters

Photo of impending
4.44/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A

750ml into a tulip, nice bottle. Pours a rich dark clear walnut copper, backlit in the glass it is a royal dark ruby. Minor coffee ice cream colored head, nice lacing.

Strong vinous aromas reach me from the bottle. Once again someone has spilt port wine upon dark fruits that had begun to rot . . . this . . . is wonderful . .

Big long lasting flavor. Very rich in the dark fruits with a bit of singed caramel or maple. Sweetness is perfectly appropriate and balanced by the perfectly obvious, but not boozy, alcohol. This is a big brew. Smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Warms most excellent.

Big to the level of a quad. If you swish this around your mouth you will taste this still in ten minutes time !

the remains of a 750 at room temp morph into a belgian barleywine
cheers
jd

 785 characters

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

750ml caged and corked bottle, sashed and mounted regent image on the bottle - solid.

This beer pours a slightly hazy, dark ruddy amber hue, with a teeming tower of creamy and foamy pale beige head, which leaves some consistently abstract layered lace around the glass in its well-strewn wake.

It smells of sweet, dark bready malt, tangy black fruit, a touch of stewed apple, softly oily nuts, spicy Belgian yeast, and mildly astringent alcohol. The taste is more sweet, grainy dark caramel malt, candi sugar, zingy aged black fruit - plums and blackberries - a strange bit of cherry cough syrup warming, and sedate, but not for the lack of trying, earthy hops.

The carbonation is mostly average, but frothy in a playful manner at times, the body medium-full in weight, predominately from the dense sugary malt, and smooth by default, with a well-established attendant creaminess. It finishes still fully stuffed with fruity, malty goodness, barely tempered by a goofy, somewhat try-hard, and less-than-obvious booze edginess.

Despite the very perceptible sweetness quotient, a decent balance is deftly maintained - so no real sugar overload manifests - all amid an agreeable, and at times, locally inexplicable drying character, though booze and underground hops seem to be the prime suspects. Not so weirdly drinkable, as flavour trumps strength, until that inevitable wall is met, QED.

 1,393 characters

Photo of pmlondrigan
4.03/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A deep mahagony / garnett color sits in the glass, transparent with a thin off white head and a floating island of carb. Light lacing makes itself known. Aroma is detected from a good foot away. Raisins, thick molasses bread, doughy and dense. I enjoy this beer more as it warms becoming more smooth. Raisins, spice, plum, cherry and brown sugar are the flavors here. Dense and a bit chewy.
A sipper, but with well hidden alcohol and no burn. A nice beer I will seek out to lay down and age for later.

 502 characters

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

Gouden Carolus Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw has a cloudy dark brown colour and a cream-coloured head that starts out about 5 mm thick and fades to excellent lacing (especially considering the ABV). The smell is very malty with a hint of toffee and alcohol. The taste is very sweet, dark and fruity. The finish is extremely smooth and sweet. There may be a hint of sourness there too. The texture is thick and slightly syrupy. This is a very nice and very strong Belgian. Yum.

 473 characters

Photo of nataku00
4.28/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 2009 bottle into a shaker pint. Beer is dark brown, tinged with red on the edges. A half a finger of off white tan colored foamy head that left a lot of lacing. The head stuck around for a while, aided by the large amount of small bubble carbonation streaming up from the bottom of the glass.

Nose is mostly dark fruits (figs, cherries), bready malt, and spiciness (cloves and a bit of anise).

The taste follows the nose, dark fruit sweetness hitting the tongue, continuing into caramel and spicy bread malts. A bit of alcohol on the finish, but expected for the high ABV. Good balance of sweetness and spice though.

Medium bodied beer with ample soft carbonation that just keeps the tongue engaged in flavor. Lingering alcohol flavor on the tongue ensures that this is a bottle to share, and to savor slowly.

 829 characters

Photo of deadliest
3.85/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From 2010 vintage.

A - Dark brown with red edges against the light. Fair head with light lacing from modest retention.
S - Mild alcohol hides behind dark fruit and Belgian spiciness and a little caramel.
T - Raisins > Brown sugar > Caramel > Alcohol > Belgian spiciness.
M - Medium+ body, fairly dry.
D - This is good, but considering it's ranking and style, I expected to love it. Maybe this needs some age on it before I try another one.

 453 characters

Photo of Evil_Pidde
4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: This beer pours burgundy with a thick creamy tan head that slowly dissipates into rich lacings.

S: Rich sweet chocolate and caramell malt. Dark dried fruits; raisins and cherries. Syrupy and spicey.

T: Very vineous; sweet malt, both chocolate and caramell. Loads of dark dried fruits; cherries, raisins, figs and plums. Complex and well balanced.

M: Long warm aftertaste with mostly sweetness. A bit alcoholic. Full syrupy body with very low carbonation.

D: A very nice beer. This a beer for connoisseurs. I guess it will take me all night to slowly enjoy this one.

 572 characters

Photo of KAP1356
4.47/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

750 ml. bottle, 2010 vintage, poured into a Weyerbacher tulip glass...

A - Pours a deep dark ruby, brown color. Nice light tan creamy head forms about 1.5 fingers thick. Nice retention and lovely lacing on this guy.

S - Caramel, raisins, figs and cherries right up front. Lots of nice sweet fruity notes. Slightly yeasty and slight with some really nice light spice to it.

T - Dark sweet fruits, cherries, and rum soaked raisins right uo front. Some brown sugar and slight spiciness coming through as well. Some apples and banana waaay in the background. Really very nice and extremely tasty.

M - Medium bodied with some nice carbination to it. Very nice and creamy on the palate.

D - Really enjoyable beer and one that I will definitely seek out again. The alcohol does make itself known as the bottle disappears. Overall a really great beer.

 848 characters

Photo of wcudwight
4.38/5  rDev +2.1%
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 depechemode1983
4.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pours a deep mahogany with reddish hues. Has a brown fluffy head with excellent retention. Plenty of lacing on this one.

S- Super sweet and winy. Lots of grape, sugars and other dark fruits. Smells like a port. Also some alcohol coming through with a bit of grains.

T- Sweet maple and caramel notes up front with grape, cherries and toasted sugars. Very malty. With a bit of alcohol warmth. Awesome.

M- Smooth soft and bordering full bodied. Carbonation is low on this but work great with all the flavors and aromas.

D/N- So drinkable and flavorful. Lots of fruit flavors in this one. Excellent beer. Im going to buy some more for sure. Try this if you get a chance.

 673 characters

Photo of rfgetz
4.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours an attractive auburn color, cap of dense khaki colored head, good retention, mild lacing. Scent is of spiced apple cider opening into notes of plum, burnt sugar and alcohol as it warms. Taste begins with the spiced cider qualities, notes of plum and sugar more forward, touches of wood, vanilla and fresh bread and only a mild kick of alcohol. Great smooth creamy body and perfect level of moderate carbonation. A pleasure to drink slow as I enjoyed the bottle over 3 hours.

 480 characters

Photo of jds1469
4.8/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fantastic beer. I thought the guy telling me about this at the store was just trying to push off some random beer. NOPE.

A - Extremely dark copper color, good amount of head right after being poured into my sniffer. There was a good amount of lacing down the inside of the glass.

S - Smells like a good dark hard cider to start with. Then the raisin, hops, sugars, and other fruits come out.

T - Tastes just like it smells. A little alcohol finish to to the taste but its just enough to balance out the sweetness.

M - A little thin on the feeling and flat.

D - Almost perfect. The flatness keeps it from getting a 5 on this one.

 635 characters

Photo of cavedave
4.55/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thought this was a recent release, but cork says 2008.

Like its brother, Rood, this beer is beautiful. Glowing, cloudy brown, tall crown of thick tan foam, and at last a lively cap, with sheets of resiny lace on the glass.

Ah, the perfume of sweet caramel, flowers, figs, raisins, with a spicy note behind, and an edge of light herbal bitter. Taking nose away from glass proves difficult.

Cellar temp. (45 deg. is my guess). Full flavored. Starts with a clean blast of sweet and fruit. Some alcohol warmth sneaks in, doesn't intrude, and the sip opens into some nice yeasty tart, very subdued, that brings out the figs and raisins, also some very earthy notes give a real boost to the light herbal bitter and floral. As it warms I think I can taste every fruit flavor known. Along the way I taste cherry, nectarine, watermelon, grape. Other flavors come in and out of the sip, mysterious underflavors beyond my palate to describe. To say this is complex gives full usage to the word. Ends juicy, a touch of alcohol vapor to it, with the complexity continuing on palate in the mouth for the entire glass, providing a smorgasbord of resiny goodness to the pleasure center of my brain.

Mouthfeel? Let me tell you, not gonna go long here, this is the poster boy for the feel of a Belgian Strong Dark Ale in terms of carb. creaminess, viscosity, and finish.

This beer is on par with the finest I've tried, fantastically drinkable.

Impression: For any lovers of this style- GET THIS. All others? GET THIS. Absolutely, stunningly delicious.

 1,540 characters

Cuvée Van De Keizer Blauw (Blue) from Brouwerij Het Anker
4.29 out of 5 based on 1,830 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.