New Belgium Brewing Company

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New Belgium Brewing Company
Colorado, United States
European Dark Lager
Ranked #10
Ranked #19,689
3.83 | pDev: 12.01%
Tuesday at 08:10 PM
Jan 02, 2002
Very Good
Notes: With a surprisingly bright taste and dry, chocolatey finish, it's not a porter, not a stout—it's 1554.

1554 defies the style guidelines of modern beer. Although dark in color, 1554 is not a porter, stout, schwarzbier or bock. Rather, it is a rebirth of a lost beer style called zwert (Flemish for black), which uses gruit for bittering. The oldest reference to zwert beer comes from 1285. However, our brewing inspiration came from a book published in 1554, which was the height of popularity for zwertbeer. First released in 1998, our whimsical improvisation includes a variety of specialty dark malts, a dash of licorice root, and a European lager yeast that's fermented at ale temperatures.

21 IBU
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Rated: 4 by chrishiker1409 from New York

Tuesday at 08:10 PM
Rated: 2.7 by headfullofacid from Maryland

May 01, 2023
Rated: 3.94 by Beergod420 from Michigan

Jan 30, 2023
Rated: 3.77 by carolinabeerguy from North Carolina

Jan 04, 2023
Rated: 3.25 by trevorpost from Pennsylvania

Dec 28, 2022
Rated: 4.1 by Mwt from New Hampshire

Dec 07, 2022
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Rated by Manta200 from Kentucky

3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
Thanksgiving at John's
Nov 25, 2022
Rated: 4.15 by nsarris

Nov 17, 2022
Rated: 3.82 by BrewSTL from Missouri

Oct 30, 2022
Rated: 3.77 by Rainintheface from Florida

Oct 14, 2022
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Reviewed by randalo from Idaho

3.87/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4
Oh man, I've got to admit I am actually pretty dumb about beers but when I picked up this bottle in the store I totally expected it to be an amber colored beer in a brown bottle... I didn't realize what it was until I poured it, and upon pouring it I found it was dark and sparkling and it produced a nice thick head which ...didn't seem to last as long as I thought it should but the flavor is great, and in a few sippes I was sent me back 40 years to the first taste of a dark beer. I wonder how this would be at cellar temp?
Sep 25, 2022
Rated: 3.85 by liquorpig from Massachusetts

Sep 25, 2022
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Reviewed by MaltsOfGlory from Oregon

3.97/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
12oz bottle

Pours two massive fingers of tan head into my snifter. Retention is average, and the head fades within a few minutes. Lacing is pretty nice. Body is pitch black with some ruby hues when held to the light. Looks pretty good.

Nose is dry and roasty. Touch of spice to it / woody. Smells decent enough.

Flavor is just slightly roasty, but not much. Has some fruity esters in the finish. Some chocolate comes out as it warms. Tastes alright, somewhat underwhelming until it warms up though.

Carbonation is pretty high. Body is medium. Bitterness is medium-low. Has a touch of dryness, but pretty modest there, finishes with some sweetness - well balanced. A nice mouthfeel, the sweetness and carbonation help add some character where the flavor is lacking.

Drinkability is very good.

Once this warms up it's pretty tasty. Overall an enjoyable brew.
Sep 13, 2022
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Reviewed by Hooded from Texas

3.64/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Tulip glass.
The color is dark brown with 1/2 fingers of tan head. Retention is poor.
The intensity of aroma is low. The aroma has caramel, toffee, a slight chocolate aroma and a slight coffee aroma with a hint of hops at the end.
The intensity of taste is closer to medium than high. The flavor follows the aroma with the addition of a ashy and pipe tobaco flavor. The bitterness is low.
The feel is somewhat above medium in thickness. Carbonation is a little below medium which tamps down the ashy pipe tobaco flavor. The astringency is closer to high than medium making it a quite dry beer.
Overall, it's very good. It's a beer that I waited until one bottle out of the Six-Pack was left to review it. I expected to give it a higher rating, but this often happens as I have more experience with rating and reviewing beers.
Aug 27, 2022
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Reviewed by Beeristhebest from Wisconsin

4.49/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
First time trying this beer, did not know what to expect but was pleasantly surprised. A great 6% that is tasty and very smooth. The very good rating fits this to a tee.
Aug 24, 2022
Rated: 3.81 by Pro_Magnon from Texas

Jul 15, 2022
Rated: 3.5 by Fettpopps from Massachusetts

Jun 27, 2022
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Reviewed by RamseyHeadrick from Canada (QC)

4.38/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Really nice beer. Like a coffee/chocolaty stout but light and easy. Dark amber color, soft head that quickly dissipates. I love a creamier stout, but this is good for the unique style it fits into.
Jun 26, 2022
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Reviewed by Perioddicals from Texas

4.01/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
L - Poured from a bottle into a Sam Adams Perfect Glass. Pours very dark brown with a nice red color in direct sunlight. One finger light brown head that dissipates to a film with a constant ring through the drink. Half finger head returns with agitation half-way through the drink. Minor-to-medium lacing.

S - Wonderful bread and caramel malt scents. Dark fruits scents appear part way through. Light toasty scents as well.

T - Taste presents a solid chocolate bitterness up front. Nice nutty flavors too. Dark fruits in there as well. Some smokiness comes up as it warms up. No bitterness at all.

F - Medium-to-full mouthfeel with decent carbonation. Smooth drinking all the way through.

O - This was a very enjoyable beer. I drank in the hot summer in 99 degree weather, but this would be fantastic in the winter months. It might not beat my favored winter beers at higher ABV than this, but I have thoroughly enjoyed the handful of beers I’ve tried from New Belgium Brewing Co. I’d recommend you try this one if you like the sound of the flavor profile. As a fan of malt-forward beers, this beer was a joy to drink.
Jun 24, 2022
Rated: 3.79 by buzzedup from Pennsylvania

Jun 13, 2022
Rated: 3.66 by vickersspitfire from Texas

Jun 04, 2022
Rated: 3.77 by Mcb99d from Massachusetts

May 22, 2022
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Reviewed by Whyteboar from Michigan

3.94/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Poured dark mahogany with a light brown head that dissipated but left lots of lacing.
The aroma was very mild for me, damaged sniffer, but I did get some coffee, both rich and bitter. Good, perplexed but impressed.
The taste was really different. Gruit makes a noticeable difference in the dark lager genre. Almost nutty along with the chocolate and coffee centric malts.
The feel is ideal for the style, and the carbonation never quite ends.
Good beer!
May 16, 2022
Rated: 3.15 by alexvhrk from Wisconsin

May 10, 2022
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Reviewed by Bluerabbitbell from Pennsylvania

3.79/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
4/25/22 On tap at New Belgium, Asheville. The brewer notes on the history beyond this offering is really cool.

Color is dark mahogany, lacy.

Smell is malty and stoney at the same time.

Low carbonation. Smooth. Nice offering!
Apr 25, 2022
Rated: 3.66 by blissfulNemo from Michigan

Apr 17, 2022
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Reviewed by Sigmund from Norway

3.18/5  rDev -17%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25
355 ml bottle, from Vinmonopolet, Nettbutikken. ABV is 6%. Very dark ruby to mahogany colour, nearly black. Small and shortlived beige head. Weak and uninteresting aroma, a little malts, a hint of chocolate and dust. The dry flavour is not very exciting either, but fairly refreshing. Moderate malts, a hint of chocolate again, also a hint of prunes and liquorice, very mild spices.
Apr 16, 2022
Rated: 4 by Beecham from California

Apr 09, 2022
Rated: 3.59 by benjaminsa from Vermont

Mar 30, 2022
Rated: 1.41 by thehermgod

Mar 25, 2022
Rated: 3.83 by EdFed from Illinois

Mar 23, 2022
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Reviewed by JZH1000 from Colorado

3.58/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5
Poured from a 12oz bottle.

On the pour it's dark but not black indoor lighting reveals a dark brown that let's a small amount of light through, held up to light it's a dark reddish brown with no haze. Less than one finger head that dissipates immediately to a ring around the glass.

Aroma is definitely influenced by licorice but very subtly and it blends into the dark malt sweetness quite well. The new Belgium website says there is in fact some nugget hops but they aren't very present in the aroma. Beyond the licorice it's similar to a belgian trippel/Dunkel in aroma if you were to combine the two traditional styles.

Taste is quite dry and yeasty but with some chocolate roasty malt notes. Some herbal bitterness but this beer is quite easy to drink and not the heaviest in flavor. I'd say this is pretty similar to the Baltic porter style. Lagery porter like beer but they don't call it either of those things. Some bitterness does creep up as you drink, dissimilar to hops, that seem to get less bitter as you drink. Definitely a dark malty beer

Feel is creamy but drinkable. Similar to a Baltic porter once again. Not light but not too heavy either. Big beer relative to a lot of what's out there but smaller than the trippel by these guys.

Overall an interesting beer that's not super traditional to any style it seems other than dark lager inspired by a mideavil beer recipe. It's good, not necessarily something that's sticking out to me though.
Mar 19, 2022
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Reviewed by shu from Georgia

4.42/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5
Very crisp and light. Initial taste borders on sweet with bitter aftertaste. But that's good! Carbonation is disappointing but overall excellent dark brew.
Feb 26, 2022
Rated: 3.77 by mothmanscott from Georgia

Jan 23, 2022
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Reviewed by NCBrewstreamer from North Carolina

4.31/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25
Great appearance
Caramel and malt flavor with chocolate
Mouthfeel was nothing like I expected, instead it was very drinkable and crisp for such a dark lager
Light finish that leaves you wanting more
Jan 15, 2022
Rated: 3.98 by Highlonesome1 from Texas

Jan 13, 2022
Rated: 4.03 by Zigzach from Florida

Jan 08, 2022
1554 from New Belgium Brewing Company
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 4372 ratings