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Samichlaus Classic Bier | Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg

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BA SCORE
89
very good
1,081 Reviews
Samichlaus Classic BierSamichlaus Classic Bier
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg
Austria
schloss-eggenberg.at

Style: Doppelbock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 14.00%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
The once strongest beer in the world is back! Brewed only once a year on December 6. Samichlaus is aged for 10 months before bottling. This beer is perhaps the rarest in the world. Samichlaus may be aged for many years to come. Older vintages become more complex with a creamy warming finish. Serve with hardy robust dishes and desserts, particulary with chocolates, or as an after dinner drink by itself. Brewed under the exclusive licence of Feldschlösschen-Hürlimann-Holding, Switzerland.

Added by UncleJimbo on 02-25-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
1,081
Ratings:
2,000
Avg:
3.99
pDev:
22.31%
 
 
Wants:
181
Gots:
389
For Trade:
20
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Reviews: 1,081 | Ratings: 2,000
Photo of LiquidAmber
4.11/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured into a Fremont small snifter. Pours a medium to dark orange amber with very light carbonation, just a few light patches and a thin ring around the glass. Aroma of sweet caramel and bready malt, toffee and light cardboardy oxidation. Flavor is very sweet with concentrated cherry, dark stone fruit, toffee and caramel malt. Finishes with spicy fruit, caramel malt, a bit boozy, but plenty of flavor to back up the alcohol. Heavy bodied, nearly syrupy, which is enhanced by the low ABV. Quite a remarkable ale, the doppelbock is there, but on steroids. So sweet and syrupy it seems like it should be cloying, but the sweetness and alchohol are melded into the great malt and fruit flavors. Almost like the apertif version of a bock. Not for the sweet adverse, but a great dessert beer and pleasant late evening drink. Deserves its classic name and reputation.

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Photo of Mora2000
4.32/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to thirdeye11 for sharing this bottle.

2006 vintage. Pours orangish-yellow with a white head. Very clear. The aroma is a mix of honey and brown sugar. The flavor is lots of honey with some alcohol. Very sweet. Lots of fruit in there as well. Medium mouthfeel.

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Photo of Wasatch
4.8/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2008 Vintage
Reviewed: 4 Aug 10

Poured into a chalice a very nice clean/clear amberish/grape color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy/fast off-white head, with some oil slicks left behind. The nose is malty, sweet, grapey, with some slight caramel. The taste is malty, very sweet, grapey note. Medium body, ABV is hidden very well. Very drinkable, WOW! What a brew. Holds up very well. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

2006 Vintage

Been sitting on this bottle for about close to 3 years. Also my last bottle of this vintage. Have a bottle of 2008 that I've been sitting on for close to 2 years.

Poured into a chalice a very nice clean/clear amberish/grape color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy/fast off-white head, with some oil slicks left behind. The nose is malty, sweet, grapey, with some slight caramel. The taste is malty, very sweet, grapey note. Medium body, ABV is hidden very well with this vintage (for this age). Very drinkable, WOW! What a brew. Holds up very well. Got to pick-up some more of the current vintage, which I suppose is 2008, but we'll see. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!

2004 Vintage

I don't know why this is considered a doppelbock, it's nothing like Celebrator or Aventius. Pours a orangy/golden color, nice carbonation, real nice head. Lacing was like a small head thorough out the whole drink. This brew is very sweet, it's nothing like a doppelbock, nothing. Medium body. Alcohol was present through out the whole session. Very drinkable, but at 14% watch out.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.72/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Samichlaus Bier, a 14% behemoth.

Appearance: Served in a brandy snifter at celler temperature. Pours a rich dark copper in color. No head.

Smell: Strong malty aroma. Sweet malt and some maple.

Taste: Rich and malty, sparse hop bitterness around the edges. Warming bourbon notes. Vanilla and chocolate. Increasingly boozy as it warms, but not overwhelmingly so. Finishes malty.

Mouthfeel: Syrupy, chewey. Warming finish. Carbonated decently.

Drinkability: A nice sipper, and seemingly, a worthy adversary.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.54/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottled 2003, Sampled March 2004
Pours a clear red-copper color. The head is a tan color, but it quickly dissipates. There is a heady malty aroma that is interspersed by notes of alcohol, and a hint of cherry as well. The beer is sweet, and seems to have some nice spicy hop notes still perceptible in this young example. Notes of spice cake, alcohol, and sweet malt are interspersed. This beer again surprised me in its relatively light body. The flavors are still quite fresh in this young example, there are no notes of oxidation, and the fresh hop character is quite outstanding.

Vintage 2001, Sampled 18th of December 2003

Pours a deep reddish copper color, it is very clear as well. A thin tan head forms when the beer is roused in my glass

Thick beastly malt aromas emanate from my glass. Alcoholic notes underlie the malt in the aroma.

The taste is actually surprisingly light for a beer of this size. The taste is sweet and ends with a bit of spice (notes of allspice perhaps). There seems to be a hint of acidity here as I take my first sip. Very drinkable actually. It lacks the complexity of the aged Hurlimann Samichlaus that I had recently, but it is eminently more quaffable. Fairly clean lager profile, but the strain of fermenting this beer has allowed for a positive yeast flavor contribution. The beer is slightly hot in the finish from the alcohol. Deep fruit flavors are here; notes of raisins that have been soaked in rum, brandy-ish with subtle notes of vanilla. The spiciness of this beer seems to be perhaps a hop contribution, it is lightly bitter in the finish as well, but it is fairly subtle in this massive malty brew.

I was just imagining how incredible this would be if it was lightly aged in oak, wow that would be good. While not as complex as the Hurlimann version, it is much more drinkable, softer and I enjoy this just a bit more. I don't know that it is better though.

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Photo of biegaman
3.91/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2008 Vintage - enjoyed Christmas Day 2010.

You'd have to agree Santa Claus looks pretty good for his old age and, likewise, you'd have to agree that this Samichlaus (2 years old) looks surprisingly fit for its age as well. Its colour, although quite deep, still maintains a brassy shine and its clarity is yet unimpeded by coagulated proteins or yeasts and its head (almost miraculously) still stands tall.

To the average drinker a 14% beer wouldn't still be considered beer and, although they'd technically be wrong, on the matter of aroma they definitely have a point. This would strike many as a liquor. And understandably so: there's a smorgasbord of esters and alcohol vapors that hover over what is a sweet (and admittedly rich) maltiness.

Keep this holiday seasonal away from your Christmas trees - it is a fire hazard! Let's face facts: any 14% beer is going to taste strong. There's no avoiding that. The question is whether that alcoholic strength contributes or distracts overall. In this case, it does a little of both but I find, in the end, it adds rich complexity and formidable character.

Not the least for its great aging potential and uniqueness, Samichlaus makes a great gift for any beer drinker. There's also enough spicy esters, macerated fruitiness, scorched toffee and a light peat-y undertone that would suggest it'd be appreciated by whiskey drinkers even more. Indeed, I'm starting to think a rock glass would have been more suitable.

It can be difficult to reflect on a beer that seems to scorch your palate with every sip. But like the cough medicine that burns your throat on the way down, there is instant gratification that comes with it: the fruity esters flourish like shrubs in a vacated garden of rich honey, festering fruits, alpine herbs and a lingering gooey butterscotch sweetness.

It's probably for the better that Samichlaus is brewed only one day a year. That, and the fact that it's brewed in a castle and virtually everything else about the beer, is entirely enchanting. It is indeed a special beer for a special time of year. And, like St. Nikolaus himself, it's sure to have you saying: "Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!"

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Photo of JohnGalt1
4.02/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed: 3/17/10 I've been sitting on this '06 for a while... I've had Samichlaus numerous times over the years, but haven't had one since I joined BA more than 4 years ago. Here we go... poured into my Delirium goblet... thin tan head... very clear amber brew.

Nose is malty yet surprisingly muted... some brown sugar essence and golden raisins come to mind... still pretty boozy, but lesser than I remember the fresh bottles I've had.

Apple cider... with some plummy sweetness.. hints of cherries combine with a rich maltiness.. there is lite yet present booze burn.. hints of cigar wrapper... lite caramel.... pleasant ... drinkable and but more "sippable" ... a brew to be enjoyed over a couple hours while contemplating today and thinking and planning for tomorrow...

The body is thick with a lite carbonation.. the finish is long and lingering...

Overall... I need to start buying these more often so I can leave them in the cellar for years.... This is at least 3 years old, and I think it will hold for another decade easily... no oxidation or hints of age... decadent, yet still too boozy and needs a bit more time to meld well.

3.5/4/4/4.5/4

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Photo of Zorro
5/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2003 Vintage here.

Pours a clear flat dark gold or brown color.

Smells like Olives and a bit of malt. Sweet and fruity like the really good olive oil they have in Italy! The stuff we get in the USA isn't even close. Smells like heaven!

Sweet malty almost syrupy! This is PURE CONCENTRATED DOPPELBOCK! More flavors than I can name. Vanilla, fruit, caramel, dates, and even some hops! This is possibly the ultimate Doppelbock.

Mouthfeel is super rich.

I could drink much more of this!

Only 5 X 5 beer I have ever tasted!

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.32/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

11.2 oz. bottle, 2006 edition,

A: Pours a reddish, amber, brown, with a small tan to white head, the high viscosity of the brew gives it a spiritous quality in the look, not unlike a brandy.

S: Very malty, but at 14%, the alcohol comes into play here and gives a big solvent character to the smell, very appealing though, it is not overdone, very smooth.

T: Taste is exceptional, malt complexities abound, caramel and dark fruits mix with the spiritous alcohol, to create a jovial riot of flavour on your taste buds. It's hard to explain, it is very unique to this beer. The huge amount of malt creates a multitude of sweet raisin taste that I throughly enjoyed. It's hard to create a high alcohol brew without the ethanol being overbearing, but this one has it just about picture perfect, a little bit ethanol and phenol, as to be expected, but there was no burn and it perfectly complemented the other flavours in the beer.

M: Thick and viscous, but a didn't find it cloying, very smooth, similar to a brandy definitely, really no alcohol burn.

D: It's a high alcohol brew and quite expensive, so I can't see having more than one of these at a time, it is a sipper definitely, I find that it is a great occassional treat, one that I thoroughly enjoyed.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
3.94/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottled in 2007: poured (twice) into my La Chouffe stemmed tulip (25 cl glass). Had this beer for over three years, for some reason decided this was the night to broach it (4 Nov 2011).

The beer was a lovely autumnal red colour, but what happened to the head, was there one before I turned away and started writing this review?

The smell was simular to a good Greek sweet red wine, meaning rich and alcohol drenched. Almost Port like in the sweetness of the esters: you could get drunk just by smelling this beer.

The taste follows the aromas, very sweet and alcoholic in nature, lovely for me: as I prefer the sweeter, stronger brews (in small amounts). One small bottle is enough for me though. This beer is far to easy on the palate for those with a sweet tooth, hop fans will struggle to enjoy its pleasures, tough.

Can't believe it has an alcoholic content of only 14% ABV, seems stronger to me: but I'm not used to such strong brews, I live in Shropshire!

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Photo of tobelerone
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had this beer numerous times over the past 20 years, since it first knocked my socks off in the early 1990's as an impressionable young beer fanatic. The bottle I'm reviewing here has been cellared for 10 years (2005 vintage).

An aggressive pour yields only a small, sudsy head that dissipates quickly. No lacing. Nearly clear red/amber body. Aroma still shows alcohol in a pleasant way, reminiscent of a decent brandy, plus tons of caramel, dark fruits like prunes and raisins, vanilla, massive maltiness.

There is a complexity here but there could be more. Again you are assailed with caramel and brown sugar sweetness and fruity esters showing raisin, date, fig, prune. Nice vanilla notes, subtle woodiness, hints of umami style mushroom notes, burnt sugar.

Medium body with low carbonation, slick and a little sticky but not really all that pronounced considering the abv and overall sugar levels. I just had a high ABV DIPA that was miles stickier and fuller bodied than this. Slight warming from the alcohol after the finish but nothing too untoward.

This is an intriguing beer and one that everyone should try at least once. I wish I could have done a vertical because honestly, I think this would be better with a little more alcohol heat. This is so mellow at this stage in the game it's too one-dimensional. Samichlaus was revolutionary two decades ago in America but at this point we have surpassed it by strides. Drink this next to something like Sucaba and you will probably agree. I get that one is a high gravity lager and the other an American take on an English barleywine but the flavor profiles are pretty similar. This even looks like a barleywine. I can't believe how much I flipped my lid over this all those years ago!

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Photo of John_M
4.12/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap during Max's X-mas in July celebration.

The beer pours a red brown color, with minimal lacing and head. On the nose I get cherry and cola, and the beer smells as if it will be pretty sweet (which of course it is). The beer does not smell as if it will be extremely high in alcohol, though of course I know that it is. The beer is very rich and sweet, with flavors of cherry cough drop and vanilla initially, but later ranier cherry and citrus. The beer has a very distinct initial taste and mid palate, and seems to lighten up considerably on the finish. The citrus finish keeps the beer from tasting too heavy and is quite refreshing (relatively). The beer ends with a long, lingering, sweet finish. This is a fine beer, but it's also a bit cloying and is not the most drinkable of beers. The abv. is pretty noticeable, and I'm wondering if a bit of aging would help to smooth out and calm down some of the sweetness.

Still a very fine beer.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.62/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Pours a perfectly clear dark amber. The aromas are of heavy sweet malt and honey. A note of cinammon at the end. The taste is of sweet alcohol up front followed by an explosion of spices underpinned by a rich warmth of alcohol and a touch of soy. The mouthfeel is like the nectar of the gods- very sweet but pure and light, not sticky at all. Very good drinkability, but the sweet intensity and alcohol merit stopping at one. Really a delicious beer that really hasn't lost much by its transfer across the alps.

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
4.45/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: Pours clear dark amber with a rather small white fast-dissipating head.

S: Roasted malt, lots of dark dried fruits and a bit alcohol. Some sweetness to it as well.

T: Sweet rich light roasted malt, lots of dark dried fruits. Dark syrup and chocolate. A bit alcohol in the taste as well.

M: Full bodied and light carbonated. A nice pretty long aftertaste that holds some dry bitterness but a very rich sweetness. Creamy and alcoholic feel in the mouth.

D: I had the 2009 version, but I guess that the other bottles I bought and cellered will improve over the years. A very, very intersting and nice beer that probably will be greater for each year I'll manage to keep my hands off.

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Photo of Derek
2.87/5  rDev -28.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Bottled in 2004.

By definition, the dopplebock only goes to 9%, and this is nothing like other Dopplebocks. Closer to an Eisbock... but obviously brewed differently. More of a high-end malt liqour! Also, it's Austrian... the Germans haven't occupied them for quite some time.

I think this should definitely be a "Euro Strong Lager".
Difficult to compare within style.

A: Copper in colour, very clear. Poors with a little head, but it quickly dissipates, without leaving any lace.

S: Malty, sherry-like, sweet candy. Unlike anything else.

T: Alcohol is quite assertive. Some sweet, caramel-like flavour. It's like candy (like artificial, strawberry cotton-candy), with LOTS of alcohol. Truly unique, but it'd be a little more pleasurable if it was a little less harsh.

<Ralph Wiggum Voice> It tastes like burning! </Ralph Wiggum Voice>

M: Moderate body, light carbonation, dry finish.

D: Approachable, but its strength is inhibitive.

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Photo of AngusOg
4.14/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Vintage 2010. This is my first go at this one. Have heard some mixed reviews, but I really enjoyed. A bit boozy, sweet (but not overly so), feel is smooth and creamy, light carbonation. Reminds me a lot of eggnog for some reason, which is a holiday favorite of mine. Really enjoyed sipping this one as a nightcap on Christmas eve.

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Photo of weeare138
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at The Flying Pig...
Appears a dark brown with mahogany and red hues when held to the light. A small, light tan head of foam dies out into a mild cap and collar.
Smell is extremely malty with rich molasses, cherries, cocoa, cream, toffee, caramel, and tobacco.
Taste is a smooth but warming version of the mentioned aromas. I used to really love this beer aged in the bottle. I'm unsure of the vintage date on the keg but I'm assuming it's fairly new.
Mouthfeel is smooth, warming, sitcky sweet of syrup, along with over ripe fruit and cocoa infused caramel bouncing along the palate with a gentle alcahol burn.

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Photo of rudzud
3.4/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From notes taken at the Armsby Abbey's yearly Belgian Christmas on 12/15.

*2008 Vintage*

A - Nice light mahogany pour with a one finger head that left thick lacing along the sides of the glass.

S - Some nice light chocolate and light funk mix nicely together. The 14% is not too strong on the nose.

T - Too sweet, far too sweet. The sweet malts overpower the typical dopplebock notes for me leaving something very sticky along the tongue.

M - Medium carbonation. Not heavy at all with a very light syrupy feel.

D - ABV aside, this is a very drinkable but heavy beer. The sticky sweet flavour really ruins it for me though.

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Photo of jdhilt
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours with a two-finger, bubbly white head that fades quickly leaving no lace. Crystal ruby/amber color. Light carbonation and light - medium bodied. Nose is sweet raisins and alcohol, flavor is smooth and sweet dark fruit and honey. NOT a session beer - the 14% ABV is quite noticeable . . . savor this beer. $5.10 for a 330ml bottle, from Tully's Beer & Wine Wells, Me. Bottled in 2010 - cellars well.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
2.76/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle purchased from Slowbeer. I decided to crack this one open of all the beer in my fridge because I wanted to test out the equation that allows you to determine ABV from Brix and FG. It told me this beer was 12.5% alcohol. Interesting.

Pours a flat toasted amber colour, quite deep and tending to brown. Remarkably clear body, with a very fine ring of insubstantial film forming the head. Definitely weight to the body, giving it a hefty fluidity. Minimal carbonation. It looks very heavy, I'll give it that.

Nose is sweet but brusque with alcohol, lending it an almost phenolic intensity. Sharpness on the back, that smells like a cross between hops and kerosene. Booze has been taken to too high a level, and there isn't enough else to compensate.

Taste is a little better, as there's a big sweetness that sticks throughout, lending an intense toffee character to the slight boozy solvent-like astringency. Still that brandy burn on the back really doesn't allow you to forget how strong it is. Feel is surprisingly liquid and light. And, let's face it, flat.

Nope, this doesn't do it for me. In some senses I respect it for what it is. This was, at one point, the strongest beer in the world, but I've had beers that exceed it in both alcohol and balance. This feels like an outlier, an anomaly, and a beer brewed for the wrong reasons.

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Photo of clayrock81
4.47/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

NOTE: Had this at a one-time only keg tapping party at The Bier Garden in Portsmouth, VA. The keg that was tapped was from 2005, so this review is of Samichlaus at three years aged.

Served to me in a brandy snifter with two-finger head that died quickly but left minor lace ring around glass. An intensely, almost overpowering sweet malt/sugary smell along with dark fruits.
Full-bodied and thick, almost milkshake thick; a definite sipper. Smooth, somewhat creamy, and bubblegum sweet while warming w/ a minor alcohol burn to coat a beer that is silky smooth. Caramel, honey, gum, dark fruits, raisin, grape or black cherry, seemed to be all tucked into this beer. Hops are very minor and completely overshadowed by the malts but are there. I couldn't session this as the ABV and the fullness of the beer hit me with one 8 oz. glass. Other than that "complaint", this had to be one of, if not the, greatest beer I've had. Guess I'll wait another three years for it again.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured a dark sunset red/orange color with a thin, dirty beige head.

S: The nose yielded some spiciness of green apples and alcohol.

T: thick and malty, very sweet, with caramel, raisins and toffee. Some bread notes, molasses and sweet alcohol fusels were detected.

M: light-medium, with a light carbonation and a good warming sensation.

D: Drinkable for 14.0 abv and very smooth going down, but your gonna feel it later. Very warming caramelized sweetness. Definitely a one and done beer that will warm the soul for the winter months.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a cloudy, dark honey color with good carbonation with a nice tan cap

S: Sweet brown sugar, dark fruits, booze

T: Immediate sugar blast and booze. Toffee, caramel, brown sugar, candy and faded dark fruits, hint at wheat and overly ripened bananas

M: Medium to big body with nice carbonation.

O: Very drinkable for a 14% ABV beer

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Photo of wl0307
4.35/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in 2007, BB 02/2013, served chilled in Hapkin's tulip-shaped bowl sniffer.

A: the colour borders mahogany and moderately infused black tea, a force-pour only results in a thin layer of creamy beige froth that settles to a rim, while the carbonation remains restrained. Looking unusual for a lager - very elegant~~
S: a super deep and dense prune-ish malty aroma dominates the nose, decorated by juicy dried berries, vinegary sour cherries and strawberries reminiscent of a Belgian red ale, with very mild caramely+herbal maltiness staying underneath. A beautiful balance b/w the sticky sweet malts and lively sour prunes+cherries is the key here, taking out the alc. edge of this 14%abv. strong lager.
T: a quiet swallow of liquidy barley syrup with a mixed taste of sweet prunes, strawberries, caramelised dried red dates and fresh sugar-cane gradually gives way to a superbly lingering dry-ish sweet, herbal+woody aftertaste that almost rings a bell of Malmsey Madeira mixed with Oloroso Sherry... The hop bitterness goes deep and renders an intensifyingly chewy, spicy-bitter, dry yet surprisingly clean palate, with just a wee bit of alc. felt deep down the throat - remarkable indeed for such a potent beer.
M&D: very smooth, almost static, on the carbonation, plus a lubricating but never cloying or sticky mouthfeel, this high-octave lager drinks more like a fruit brandy without the sharp alc. edge. Compared with my last encounter, this one is more enjoyable maybe due to the cooler serving temperature. The hidden depth is such that I haven't felt any effect until 10 minutes into sipping... A true night cap this is.

* Tasting Date: 06/09/06
Bottled in 2005, BB 07/2010. Served lightly-chilled in a large Burgundy bulb wine glass.
3.5 A: medium-infused black-teaish colour, coming with a fast disappearing foam, settling in no time to no head at all; surprisingly low in carbonation, almost no visible fizziness in the glass.
4 S: smells rather like an English barley wine~~ dense but not OTT aroma of malt candy, palm sugar, sugar-cane juice, cherry, rum-soaked raisins, a semi-sharp edge of caramel... overall very one-dimensional but quite pleasant and much lighter than the alc. suggests.
4 T: warming alcohol and syrupy maltiness caress the tongue and throat in one single wave... plenty of sweet cherry jam, raisins, and hints of dried dates to follow, plus a very soothing, bitter-sweet caramely malty and (supposedly) hop depth plus a slightly spicy/herbal tinge developing into a dryish-sweet, dried stone-fruity finish. Very interesting flavour, and very mellow for 14%abv. indeed.
4.5 M&4 D: the ever-so-fine fizziness makes a mellow mouthfeel due to long lagering as well as some maturation in the bottle, full-bodied yet tasting absolutely soothing; a reasonable amount of alc. lingers, and warming in the finish, like a shot of good quality cherry+plum liquor. In a sense it reminds me of several English barley wine I've tasted, and from that perspective this beer is unlike any other Doppelbock I've tried or am able to imagine.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.53/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This was bottled in 2000
(Poured in a standard American pint glass.)

Appearance 1/4 inch off-white head that dissipates pretty quickly. The beer is a deep mahogany and is a clear but to dense to see through. No legs when slightly swirled in the glass.

Smell light caramely/chocolate malt scent. Very clean smell with no hops or diacetyl smell.

Taste Starts off malty but quickly moves to a chocolaty flavor then a slight prune/alcohol taste comes out. Only after the alcohol taste subsides did I get a faint hint of hops.

Mouthfeel very tiny bubbles with a very hot moutheel that stays in your mouth for an extra second.

Drinkability This as a very nice warming beer for the winter but its not what I would expect from a doppelbock. It is a wonderful bier that has done very well with age. There is no one flavor that overpowers any other flavors, it just adds layer on layer of flavors.

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Samichlaus Classic Bier from Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg
3.99 out of 5 based on 2,000 ratings.
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    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.
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