1554 Black Lager | New Belgium Brewing

very good
4,058 Ratings
no score
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1554 Black Lager1554 Black Lager

Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing
Colorado, United States

Style: Euro Dark Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 01-02-2002

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,058 |  Reviews: 1,378
Photo of mactrail
3.46/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Soft and dark, a nice touch of sweetness. Watery body with plenty of foamy mouthfeel. Looks nice in the glass with the dark mahogany color. A perky touch of roast flavors and chocolate malt give it some dark zing. A little sweetness. Faint hops, more of a cooked cereal flavor.

Clean and well made, but pretty plain. A nice alternative to the dull porters. I would have called it a Schwarzbier for the light body and subdued flavors. I don't get any flavors that I'd call Belgian, but maybe it's a very self-effacing yeast.

 524 characters

Photo of industrialswill
4.35/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Looks like liquid chocolate with a rich, tan, foamy head
Smells like dark roasted malt and dark fruit
The taste is all malt, very enjoyable. Depending on my mood, this beer could rate anywhere from A- to A+.
Another winner at a very affordable price from New Belgium.

 267 characters

Photo of rjr8
4.03/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is a nice dark brownish/ black with hints of red. The head was a little thin for my liking but that could be due to my pouring.

The aroma is one I typically associate with this style, definitely malty though I would have liked to get a chocolatier vibe from it.

The taste is very interesting, not what I was expecting at all. There is definitely a dark chocolate aftertaste which I found to be quite pleasing.

Mouthfeel is smooth.

Overall I think it's a pretty decent dark Belgian. It reminds me of a black lager almost but with a far more interesting finish.

 577 characters

Photo of brewerburgundy
3.92/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, Bruery tulip, best by 29 April 2012.

Color is a lighter raisin brown, berry hues gleam in the light. The head is a rather run of the mill light brown affair, but nothing for it to be ashamed of.

Nice dose of chocolate malt, a bit dry, cocoa powder, with a steely edge. Berries or some ripe red fruit seems just around the corner, but never materializes. Simple, but attractive and almost Porter-like.

There is a playful or light raisin flavor paired well with the chocolate malt that runs right on through the whole thing. Sweetness is minimal, it stays dry, very light, and more-ish. Light fruitiness backing up chocolate, animal crackers, and a smidge of coffee.

The texture is light and the carbonation getting high. I feel it's a little too bubbly. Other than that, it really is a beer that invites you to have more than one.

This is one I'd been interested in for a long time, but hadn't tried because of the inability to just buy singles here. I can see why it sticks around in New Belgium's lineup, but it's a quiet one.

 1,049 characters

Photo of Anew
5/5  rDev +30.2%

Photo of Birdlegs
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of VaTechHopHead
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of stevecooks
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of JohneHoodlum
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of Unchi
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of paulginva
3.76/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

APPEARANCE: This beer, poured from the tap into a pint glass produced a 1/2" foamy, off-white head with good head lacing that dissipated quickly. The body was a sparkling deep black with ruby highlights around the edge when held up to the light. There was no carbonation that I could see.

AROMA: A bit roasty and boozy, but really very little smell that I could detect.

TASTE: Much better. An earthy malt taste comprised of fresh baked bread, roasted coffee, and dark chocolate, with a light taste of green leafy hops.

MOUTHFEEL: This beer had a moderately full body and a very smooth texture, no carbonation and thin body lacing that dissipates at a modest pace. The initial flavor was sweet and chocolaty, proceeding to a short finish of sweet light chocolate and coffee with a light hoppy bitterness and a very lightly bitter aftertaste.

DRINKABILITY: This is a very agreeable, appealing sipping beer and as a result of its fullness, I wouldn't have more than two at a sitting. It is easy to drink, gives excellent value for the cost and I'd definitely buy it again. I wouldn't put it in the first tier of black ales, but it's definitely high in the second tier.

 1,169 characters

Photo of deadonhisfeet
3.41/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I picked this bottle up on my recent Thanksgiving travels (you can't find NB here in Kentucky). Very dark mahogany color with a nice 2-finger head of frothy white foam. Very little light getting through, but appears to be quite clear and free of haze. The nose is very faint, but primarily offers toast and a touch of pine. The flavor is mild, malty, complex, and quite sweet. It's very reminiscent of a Scottish Ale. There are some flavors of toasted malt, caramel, and pancakes and the hops are only strong enough to balance things out just a tad. Mouthfeel is decent, but perhaps just a bit thin with all that malt present. Overall, this is a nice-tasting, easy drinking beer. It's a little mild for my tastes, but it's not bad at all.

 738 characters

Photo of eye2
3/5  rDev -21.9%

Photo of Mtnbeerman
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of kjkinsey
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of docrates
4.25/5  rDev +10.7%

Photo of NuclearDolphin
4.42/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a 12oz. Tumbler Pint Glass

Appearance - Very Dark with hints of dark amber and crimson when held up to the light. Head is about 2 fingers width with a slighty brown head. Leaves behind some good lacing

Smell - Roasted Malts and Chocolate are present as well as a slight caramel scent. The smells are there, but they're not powerful but rather quite tame yet pleasant!

Taste - Dark Chocolate and Burnt Malt are surprisingly rich and flavorful. The slight coffee flavor I expect from darker beers are absent here, but in it's place is a slight caramel and licorice flavor.

Mouthfeel - Body is pretty light for a Dark Ale, and the carbonation is moderate while adds more to the flavor. It's a pretty smooth beer overall!

Overall - It's a slightly different Dark Ale in terms of flavor, but it tastes great and it's pretty easy to drink! It's good to see New Belgium has put alot of time and effort into creating what is truly an outstanding beer!

 961 characters

Photo of ejw127
3/5  rDev -21.9%

Photo of Chopman50
3/5  rDev -21.9%

Photo of bigred89
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of chenieprudhomme
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of PhatAtUT
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of Kvltbm
4/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of kyleelton
3.31/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Dark, up to the light I see some deep ambers shining through. Beautiful, thick, foamy head. I used to think that 1554 was porter, but it's definitely not that dark.

Getting some nice roasty malts in the nose.

Lots of roast in the taste. There's an interesting sweetness that I wasn't expecting. Getting some serious bitterness in there, as well.

Good mouthfeel. Thick and chewy.

I remember thinking that I didn't really care for this beer for some reason. That was many years ago, though. Don't think I've had it since. This is a lot better than I remembered it being. I wonder what makes this a Belgian Dark, because I don't detect any Belgium yeast. Might just be overpowered by the roasted malts, which may be too prevalent, now that I think about it.

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Photo of mikeborglum
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured in a weiznen glass clear, dark mahogany with a light brown head and decent lacing. Lightly roasted malt aroma; chocolate and roasty; a bit musty. Light medium body and oily texture . Taste lightly bitter with a very long dry and lightly burned finish.

 258 characters

1554 Black Lager from New Belgium Brewing
3.84 out of 5 based on 4,058 ratings.
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