He'Brew Messiah Bold | Shmaltz Brewing Company

358 Reviews
Read the review
He'Brew Messiah BoldHe'Brew Messiah Bold

Brewed by:
Shmaltz Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: American Brown Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by WVbeergeek on 09-13-2003

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 358 | Ratings: 499
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.5/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine June 2007.

There aren't too many KSA (Kosher Certified) beers on the market today--it's definitely a niche within a niche. We dropped in a bit of Matisyahu to listen to while we consumed this beverage. We're not sure if it helped.

Pours out as a brown-colored, amber-tinged brew, with fine clarity. Decent head retention with a spatter of clinging lace. Malty aromas of chocolate and coffee meet with a faint brown sugar center. Solid medium body with a sufficient carbonation for a brown ale. A stodgy maltiness to start, reminiscent of a light roast coffee, featuring a hint of carob and a quick flash of caramel on the taste buds. Mild on the hops with a clean floral and citric bitterness. Clean all around with a mild roasted character in the semi-dry finish.

This brown was around before brown was in, and it's a rich and delicious one at that. We did not go running to the market for gefilte fish to pair with this beer, but a slow-cooked beef brisket, potato salad and red cabbage did the trick. Cheers to Jeremy Cowan for keeping it real.

 1,084 characters

Photo of Daniellobo
3.03/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Dull brown ale, drinkable but with little to remember it for.

Presentation: 12 oz brown capped bottle. He'Brew label, with all the repetitive nods to the Jewish heritage of the ale, name of the branding presiding with a small illustration of the iconic character over a drawing of the Northern hemisphere. Side narrative offers an overview of the brew, intent, and best wishes. Notes Kosher certification. Served in a nonic glass.

A - Dark brown pour with an early generous head, medium to low retention, poor surface memory and lacing.

S - Lightly malty nose, faint roasted sense in the back, very subdued.

T - Lightly malty, nothing bold here as the brew brags, tiny hoppy touch over a light caramel and roasted sense.

M - Medium-ligh body and carbonation a tad watery in the feel.

D - Hmmm, not as terrible as it may sound, and not an awful choice but quite forgettable.

Notes: Hmmm, best value is in the Kosher certification and the play with Jewish identity and pride, which can be entertaining and handy socially, but other than that there is much better out there to chose from.

 1,094 characters

Photo of biboergosum
3.76/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It's Yom Kippur...as good a time as any to crack one of the Chosen Beers...and a purportedly 'Bold' one at that...

This beer pours a very dark chestnut brown hue, with slight mahogany highlights, and one finger of foamy light beige head, which leaves a few hanging layers of lace around the glass in its wake. Ok, it has a Boldly dark appearance. It smells of brown, nutty bread, and earthy, musty hops. Nice, but not quite Bold. The taste is softly roasted malt, buttery nuts, a bit of mocha, and mild earthy hops. Like the aroma, appealing, but not really in the realm of the Bold. The carbonation is moderate, the body medium weight, smooth, and solid. I'll give it a Mulligan for Boldness in mouthfeel. It finishes fairly dry, the nutty malt giving way to a dry musty, floral nuttiness. Nothing too Bold going on there.

Ok, so it seems that we have a less than Bold offering here, if we are to judge against the marketing shtick. But since it's He'Brew, we know to largely ignore their riffs on Jewish culture, and stick to the beer - and that said, this is just one pleasant, easy to drink brown ale. Not bold, but also certainly neither schlock nor dreck...

 1,165 characters

Photo of philbertk
3.65/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Shmaltz Brewing Company--Messiah Bold--He'Brew The Chosen Beer--2005 12 oz. Bottle. 5.50% ABV. 30 IBU's? (4.25 / 5.0) Brown Ale Foamy mild lace head. Clear dark bronze brown color. Tangy roasted mild cocoa hop front. Creamy smooth rich doughy burnt biscuit caramel mild sweet cocoa fruit nut body. Clean balanced mild hop end. Sampled 7/26/2005.

Shmaltz Brewing Company--HE'BREW The Chosen Beer--Messiah Bold--A Rich and Robust Dark Brown Ale--2007 12 oz. Bottle. 5.60% ABV. 21 IBU's. (4.0 / 5.0) Porter. Beer of the Month Club Selection October, 2007. Big dense lacy tan head. Opaque dark ruby edged black color. Light tight sediment. Roasted mild cocoa hop front. Burnt biscuit toast crusty mild sweet cocoa coffee hint Robust Porter body. Clean cloying creamy crusty mild hop end. Aged very well! Sampled 8/24/2010.

 819 characters

Photo of rpardon7
3.08/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poure from a 12 oz bottle with little head or retention. Dark reddish brown color very little lacing that did not last.Smell is not complex mostly roasted malt. This beer mainly taste of roasted malt maybe a hint of biscuit but not a complex beer by any means. Mouthfeel was very flat and unneventful more chance to be fuller like a brown ale. Drinkabilty its an easy beer to drink no hops not much abv but for me just didn't want to have more.

 444 characters

Photo of jporf911
3.76/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a standard glass. No freshness date provided.

Appearance- 4 out of 5. "The Chosen Beer" is a very dark, translucent brown that borders on black. It pours with a two finger tan head that fizzes away within a minute to leave fairly thick sheets of lacing on the sides of the glass and atop the beer itself.

Smell- 3 out of 5. There's not much going on in the nose. Of course, there are hints of roasted malt, brown bread, and a nutty scent, all of which are to be expected from a Brown Ale; however, nothing really stands out. For a beer that calls itself bold, it's a bit of a let-down.

Taste- 4 out of 5. Aha! So the boldness wasn't merely an exaggeration after all. The taste makes up for what the smell lacks, with a dominant flavor of roasted barley backed up by black coffee and nuts. There is an undertone of caramel malt and a slightly chocolaty taste as well. As is common with brown ales, the hops are weak and hardly bitter at all, leaving more of a tingle than a bite. The aftertaste has a smokey character than mingles with hints of coffee. I like this beer's balance. It's bold without being bombastically brazen, like some heavier beers that mercilessly batter your mouth. It's like a slightly lighter, easier-to-drink Porter.

Mouthfeel- 4 out of 5. Light to medium with moderate carbonation and a creamy texture.

Drinkability- 4 out of 5. I would take this over a Newcastle any day. It has more depth without sacrificing drinkability. I doubt this beer would inspire another diaspora to the local liquor stores, but it's a solid brown ale that would be great as a gag gift for any Jewish friends or family members.

 1,665 characters

Photo of Gyle41386
3.76/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

The pour is a pretty dark reddish-brown one. Dark enough that I can't see a whole lot from simply holding my glass up to the monitor. Two fingers of creamy tan foam fizz away quickly, yet a small layer of foam retains throughout. There's a fair amount of lacing stuck to the glass in pretty solid sheets.

Nose is somewhat boring, especially for a beer with "Bold" in its name. Lightly roast-y, lightly chocolate-y, lightly nutty...you get the picture. It's sweet and bready, with just a dash of spicy hops. I'd probably say this is more of an English Brown than an American Brown, but it's middle of the road, nonetheless.

Flavor is a bit better than the aroma would indicate, showing some signs of possibly living up to its "Bold" promise. Again, it's got your standard brown ale elements, only they've been intensified a bit from the aroma. More chocolate, more coffee/roast, more spicy hops, more toffee/caramel, more nuts. Covers enough bases to remain interesting. Good flavor.

Body falls just shy of being medium, with appropriate carbonation. Lightly tingly, yet still smooth. Nice, easy drinker. This one exceeded expectations.

 1,179 characters

Photo of gford217
3.49/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a deep chestnut with a thick creamy beige head that shows excellent retention and lacing. Gorgeous beer.

The aroma is understated and, in fact, fairly weak. There is a sweet caramel malts and lightly toasted nuts. There is a hop presence but it's very faint.

The taste is light as well with a watery caramel malt backbone. The nuts are there in the background. The hops are pretty much non-existent and the finish is very sweet.

The mouthfeel is light to medium bodied and a little watery.

This is not a bad brown ale but there's not much complexity and nothing exceptional on any one dimension. A decent brown ale.

 625 characters

Photo of brewerburgundy
3.38/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle, Sam Adams glass, given to me by a good friend, there is no freshness date.

Held up to natural light the body is on the browner and lighter side of ruby. The head is a surprisingly softer brown for how much roast I'm detecting and its quality is good, streaky lace and retention.

A pretty good nose; cocoa powder, metal, roast, sourness, and even a vinous quality.

This has definitely got some sourness. All the chocolate, coffee, berry, metallic play behind the sour. It is even a little acidic and the roast and hop bitterness barely do enough to counter it. I think this is rather Porter-like, with the sourness making me think of what I know of the historic style. More flavor hopping would make it an American Porter.

Mouthfeel is thin but carbonation is good.

The sourness keeps drinkability down for me.

 831 characters

Photo of EgadBananas
4.02/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

After reading the Alstrom Bros. review, I got a little worried. But, they must have gotten a bad batch...

Pours very very dark brown, as expected, with ruby brown around the edges in light. Big cream colored head sits on top, nearing two fingers. Laces sporadically a bit. Overall, a nice looking brown ale.

I actually found a lot to be going on with the smell. Definitely a deep malt character, very roasted and rich. There is some citrus hops toward the end, balancing it out a bit. There appears to be a bit of toffee in the there. I do find it to be robust...and well, a bit bold.

Taste is fairly on par with the smell. Lots of roasted malts are kicking. The balancing act with the hops isn't so noticeable in the taste as with the nose. Theres a smokiness to it, though faint. Theres also sort of this slight caramel sweetness on the back end. It definitely has a little bit of a porter-esque character to it. All in all rather good.

The feel was good, but a bit lighter than I'd have imagined or hoped for.

This is an easy drinker in my opinion. A double Newcastle of sorts, it's nice and rich and definitely not too heavy. I'll be enjoying this 6er.

 1,162 characters

Photo of Vengeance526
3.63/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark reddish brown color with a small tan head that quickly fades to a light ring and leaves a medium amount of lacing.

Aroma mostly of roasted malt with a touch of coffee and nuts in the background. Perhaps a little chocolate in there as well as it warms.

Like the smell, the taste is very roasty and nutty with sporadic hints of coffee. Lightly sweet towards the end with some caramel and just the slightest hint of chocolate in the finish.

Medium body and medium carbonation, somewhat creamy mouthfeel. Nothing over the top here, just a straight and simple brown, great for what it is. This isn't all that exciting but it is a solid brown ale, might make for a decent session.

 690 characters

Photo of matjack85
3.68/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I found this 12oz brown bottle in the discount bin at the Binny's in Plainfield, IL for $1.29. There was no freshness date that I could see.

The beer poured out a deep, dark, brown color that gave off ruby highlights when held to the light. The beer made a 2 finger creamy looking beige head that lasted about 2 minutes, leaving behind lots of nice lacing.

The smell was all dark roasted malt - not overpowering but not weak either.

The taste started out with a strong roasted malt and coffee-like flavor, almost over roasted so as to taste burnt, with just a bit of caramel added for sweetness. As the beer swished around in my mouth it became a bit hoppy and bitter. Not my favorite mix of flavors, but not a bad tasting beer at all. The more you like your coffee on the strong side, the more you will probably like this beer.

The mouthfeel was smooth and creamy, yet not what you would call full bodied. If anything it was more light to medium in body with only medium carbonation to match.

Drinkability I suppose comes back to whether or not you like rich roasted coffee beers or not. The fact that they used the word "bold" in the name is your clue as to what to expect.

 1,180 characters

Photo of chickenflea
3.68/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Cute marketing.

A - Clear dark brown color with a medium foamy head. Good lacing on the glass.

S - Aroma is like a baby porter. Sweet malts with some dark fruit tinges. A mild roasty and pleasant aroma.

T - Taste was sweet and creamy. Delicious in the front of the mouth. Tiny sour notes on the finish. Finished clean and relatively quick.

M - Body is light to medium. Texture is watery.

D - Very drinkable. A nice brown ale.

 430 characters

Photo of BeerGodz
2.83/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Look: Brown color, medium tan head with good retention & lacing

Smell: Chocolate, sweet malt

Taste: Up Front: Bland, chocolate. Finish: Same, with a strange lingering bitterness

Mouthfeel: Medium body, low carbonation

Drinkability: Average at best

Overall Impression: It looked great, smelled ok, but it was flat out boring after that. The flavor that was present was good, but there was not nearly enough of it. This reminds me of a beer that one of the Evil 2 would put out.

 481 characters

Photo of taigor
3.43/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a regular 8oz glass.

A - Poured dark brown, almost black with small tan head that quickly dissipated leaving slight lacing around the glass.

S - Malts, chocolate and dark roasted coffee.

T - Mostly malts with dark bitter chocolate and coffee. Slight hints of caramel and toffee are present too.

M - Medium bodied with medium carbonation.

D - Ok, would like to have more in the future. Overall found this beer closer to be a stout than a brown ale.

 464 characters

Photo of nickfl
3.34/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Pours with two fingers of light brown head on top of a dark brown body with amber highlights and good clarity. The foam settles slowly and leaves good lace on the glass.

S - A light, malty aroma of brown sugar and little else. No noticeable hops, yeast, or roasted grain.

T - Brown, malt flavor up front with notes of caramel and cola. Some light, herbal hops in the middle with darker malt notes of toffee and molasses. Finishes with a sweet malt caramel note and mild hop bitterness.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - Reasonably drinkable, this is a slightly dark, malty brown ale. The flavor is decent, though there is nothing particularly interesting going on. The aroma is oddly flat, with almost none of the malt characteristics that I get in the flavor. Not bad, not particularly good either, I wouldn't go out of my way to drink this beer.

 893 characters

Photo of tone77
3.78/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a very dark brown color with a small head. Smell is of malts and chocolate. Taste is good, malts, chocolate, maybe a hint of coffee. Feels full bodied in the mouth and has decent drinkability. Overall this is a fine quality beer.

 268 characters

Photo of Zekezilla
3.09/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Just ordered this based on a waiter's recommendation. He thought it had hints of a raisin flavor. I did not pick that up at all. It's a decent flavor...slightly sweet and malty but I did not pick up any dark fruity flavor. Beautiful color but taste/feel were a little lackluster for me. Also more carbonated than I prefer. I just keep have to reminding myself that this is a brown ale, not a stout--that being said, I can rate the taste as a 3.5, rather than a 3.0.

 465 characters

Photo of sitarist
3.05/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A- Pours a deep brown with hints of purple when held to the light. Weak loose tan head with hardly any lacing.

S- Hints of chocolate, and fruit jelly's. Not bad just a little lack-luster.

T- The flavor is wine like. Fruity, sour, with a hint of alcohol. Nothing bold!

M- Thin and lacking carbonation. Wine like.

D- Might be better with food. Doesn't entice. I wont throw it away but I wont grab a 2nd. Maybe if I were in the mood for wine, but I want beer. The thing that hurts it the most is the word "bold" in its title.

 526 characters

Photo of kegger22
3.84/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

He'Brew Messiah Bold ale was dark brown in color with a fragile beige head that didn't have a chance.

The aroma was very rich and sweet with roasted chocolate. Smells almost like an old ale.

The taste? Ah, that's where to similarity to old ale ends. I wasn't disappointed though, because Messiah only claims to be an American brown ale, and not a bad one. The flavor is somewhat sweet, no chocolate, and a bitter/sour after taste. The biggest drawback to taste was that flavor is a little weak, unlike the name implies.

The mouth feel was light to medium bodied, oily and modestly carbonated.

Drinkability was not bad, a reasonably low ABV and an acceptable taste contrive to survive.

 692 characters

Photo of berserker256
2.73/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Dark brown... And ruby colored when held to the light. Head dissipates leaving nothing stuck to the side of the glass. The smell is the substandard sweet musty aroma that reminds me of my attempts to make porter with my Mr. Beer kit. Musty toffee and carmel and maybe a hint of smoke. The taste reminds me of when the syrup is running out in a soda fountain machine. The color is there but it's empty of taste. This is the weakest flavored brown ale I've ever tasted. It's like diet ale. The taste isn't neccessarily bad it's just seriously diluted. What's there is sweet toffee smokey toasted malted barley with an absence of bittering hops. Not bad, just weak. Kind of dry, too. Thin creamy texture but good carbonation. This is an odd beer. A paper tiger of a beer. Tastes nothing like what you would expect it to taste like.

 828 characters

Photo of gordavidson
4.04/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- A very deep leathery brown liquid with a thick and creamy mocha head that has excellent retention and leaves lacing as it works down the glass.

S- Very faint aroma of malted milk balls and caramel. Smells fine, just very very faint.

T- Roasted malt and caramel with some chocolate flavors. Roasty with a hint of sweetness.

M- Very clean and smooth with a nice level of carbonation. The finish is rather dry and keeps me coming back for more.

D- A very drinkable brown ale that is very nicely balanced and unique. One of the best brown ales I have come across.

 566 characters

Photo of Reagan1984
2.88/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Thick fizzy light beige head sits atop a surprisingly dark brown/amber color with some burgundy highlights. Nice retention and quite a bit of lacing.

Aroma is of dark roasted malt and some light coffee.. instant coffee perhaps.

Flavor is interesting yet really disappointing. Starts off well, with a burst off dark roasted malt and a bit of coffee, but then it just fades to an empty finish. Strange. Can't say it finishes crisply... but rather dull. No off flavors, just half flavors. A bit grainy..

Prickly carbonation almost seems to mute the flavor at the end.

Not really enjoyable. Could use some more sweetness to balance the grain and roast malt flavors

 664 characters

Photo of ArrogantHopHead
3.45/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured in to a tulip glass...

Poured smooth, with 1 cm of head, with moderate carbonation arising after pour. Head is a off-white with brown hues, and takes several minutes to fully settle. Color is a coffee brown with copper-red undertones, moderately opaque, but able to see through to other side.

Earthy-sweet aroma arose, with minute smells of chocolate, caramel, with a minute touch of prune. Aroma dissipates soon after pour, not very pungent in nature.

Mouth feel is mildly sticky, with a nice smooth, almost satiny feel. Carbonation wafts through near the end before swallowing.

As progressing through, lacing is well noted to last a while. Legs aren't well noted, and run down glass soon after tilting glass to evaluate.

Overall flavors are demure, almost subsided to the mouthfeel. Malt comes through first, with a mixture of chocolate, brown sugar, and nutty flavors. As it progresses, hops follow through and there is a flavor of a mild tartness of apple, where the alcohol peaks, but doesn't standout alone. Transitions to finish with caramel undertones accompanying that tartness.

Overall wonderful beer. Would have on everyday occasion.

 1,170 characters

Photo of feelmefoam
3.73/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The Messiah pours a dark mahogany color with lighter birch highlights when held up to the light. A finger of light cream-colored head pushed itself up, but didn't last long; it did leave some pretty nice lacing around the glass.

A woody, nutty aspect comes through in the aroma, as well as some bready malt and a bit of earthiness. Not extremely fragrant, but it's good stuff.

Messiah is a pretty solid brown ale. A nice toasty, bready maltiness greets you on the first sip, followed by a hint of caramel, some light chocolate, then finished up by a slightly spicy/earthy hop presence. More assertive than the nose.

A pretty nice mouthfeel, body on the lighter side of medium but still pretty full, has a nice bit of carbonation that works well with the slight hop character to provide a bit of a dry finish.

Overall, this is a pretty good brown ale. Easy to drink, low ABV, and a solid flavor are the highlights here. Not the best I've had of the style, but it's definitely not too shabby.

 996 characters

He'Brew Messiah Bold from Shmaltz Brewing Company
3.43 out of 5 based on 499 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

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