Samichlaus Classic Bier | Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg

Samichlaus Classic BierSamichlaus Classic Bier
2,058 Ratings
Samichlaus Classic BierSamichlaus Classic Bier

Brewed by:
Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg

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

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Ratings: 2,058 |  Reviews: 1,101
Photo of KajII
3.32/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

[Best served in a Dimpled Mug]

Poured a medium brown with a slight red hue around the edges and a small white fizzy head with no lacing to speak of. The aroma was heavy with the scent of toasted malts, a mild resin hop and a soapy yeast with notes of dried fruit (raisins and plums) and a strong does of alcohol. It tasted very sweet and a little acidic with almost a wine characteristic from the dried fruit from start to finish with a real warming sensation from the high alcohol content at the end. Mouthfeel was light to medium in body and dry in texture with a medium carbonation. Overall a very boozy brew, a little more than I would have liked.

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Photo of AmericanGothic
4.17/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 330 ml bottle into a Unibroue tulip. Bottled in 2010.

A: Pours a dark but clear copper color. Thin layer of pale tan head with little retention and some lace.

S: No hops, all malt, sweet and vinous, dark candied fruits.

T: Sweet dark fruit and melon nectar with a bit of peppery spice in the mix. Very port-like. Surprisingly, the alcohol is well integrated. The taste borders on cloying, but I think the spice saves it.

M: A very full body, but the carbonation adds some soda-like lightness that helps to accent the spicy notes in the flavor.

O: A nice, big beer. I think this one would improve with some age-- will pick up some more to cellar for another year or two. When you're ready to try it, give yourself ample time-- one bottle can easily last a couple of hours or more.

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Photo of DrinkingDrake
3.8/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured out a dark/burnt brown with a ruby coloring. Almost no head. Just some traces of bubbles. The nose is very strong with a big amount of caramel malty sweetness that is balanced with the alcohol well. A lot of darker fruit flavors. Some deep red grapes and candied plums. The taste is very sweet and malty but also with a big amount of alcohol on the finish. Thick boozy body so it takes a while to drink.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.02/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Served from a bottle into an An Brainblasta goblet in the Porterhouse Dublin. Reviewed from notes. Cost me 7.20 quid for feck's sake.

A: 2.5 finger head of fair thickness, lacking cream. Non-transparent hazy light brown colour. Nice bubble show.

Sm: Pineapple! Fermented brown sugar pineapple, a scent very similar to tepache. Alcohol.

T: Delayed pineapple and yeast body. Either unrefined or brown sugar fermentables come through. Complex, yet subtle hoppy notes. Strong taste. Built uniquely. Warms the chest. Evocative of tepache.

Mf: Nice dryness on the climax, though too coarse, holding the alcohol on the tongue, an unpleasant effect.

Dr: 7.20 is far too much for this high ABV beer. It's a sipper, and doesn't conceal its ABV well, though it's not meant to. I'd have it again in Austria if the price were right and I wanted a sipper.


02.06.15: Rereviewed.

BOTTLE: 1 pint 9.4 fl oz brown glass. Great label art. Branded silver pry-off cap. Served cold into a pilsner glass at low altitude in Austin, TX and allowed to warm over the course of consumption.

14% ABV. Reviewed live. Imported by Wetten Importers, Inc.

No bubble show forms as it's poured.

HEAD: 1.5-2.0 fingers wide. Off-white colour. Decent thickness/fullness/creaminess. Retention is well above average - ~3 minutes. No lacing.

BODY: Clear translucent copper-amber of average vibrance. Clean; no yeast or sediment is visible.

Appears aptly carbonated. Not unique or special, but generally appealing.

AROMA: Biscuit malt, faint spice, graham cracker, graininess, sugarcane, heavy syrupy malt, some faint buttery notes. Vague indistinct fruit. A kiss of maple and/or birch syrup. It's a beast in terms of its malt weight, but it's not unappealing - just a lot to handle.

Aromatic intensity is moderate.

Suggests a syrupy sweet beer that needs some serious mellowing. Alcohol is definitely present, but it's not fusel or extraordinarily boozy.

TASTE/TEXTURE: Graham cracker, heavy syrupy malts, a light touch of caramel, sugarcane, indistinct vague fruit, light buttery notes, some faint maple and birch syrup...this is heavy and syrupy, with huge weight and heft on the palate. Butterscotch. It's not as honeyed as it tastes, but boy is there sweetness. Its boozy smoothness is fair for what it is, but why is it so damned thick? More complexity and nuance is needed to justify the viscosity of this brew. It's overcarbonated to boot.

Can I reiterate that this is fucking syrupy?

It's fairly shallow, and lacks enough duration and intensity of flavour. By no means a subtle brew; make no mistake, this is quite overt.

Not oily, gushed, scratchy, rough, or astringent. But it does have ample booziness.

Overall its fundamental lack of balance and relative simplicity really hold it back. I can think of many doppelbocks I prefer to this one. The fruitiness is interesting, but I can't put my finger on what exactly it is...sugarplum? Grape? What is that? It's so faint...

OVERALL: Not a chuggable brew by any stretch. I respect its place in history, and would like to one day try an original Hürlimann bottle, but the Eggenberg iteration is wanting. A boozy syrupy brew I could only justify trying again if it was bolstered by serious cellar aging. Maybe this would mellow out with age, but as is I'm struggling to enjoy it even as I give it little sips.

Probably best as an after-dinner digestif; a small shotglass size amount would be ideal.


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

Brewed in 2007. Poured into my Duvel tulip a garnet amber. Zero head, only a bubble or two willing to fight against the alcohol. A doppelbock? Definitely. A whopperbock? Looks like it.

Nose is huge - dark fruits; plums, cherries, raisins and figs, burnt caramel, sweet bread.

Wow, this is impressive. Super sweet but not overwhelming, delicate and syrupy but doesn't linger unpleasantly. Caramel, rich dark berries, honey, some earthy clove spiciness. Ever so light carbonation builds a really nice texture tumbling across the tongue. A little bit of heat at the end, but I was really taken by just how hidden it was throughout the sip. Letting it warm just brings out a lightly burnt heat and the flavors just continue to pop.

I think it lived up to its own hype. It's big and sweet but so easy to sip. It reminds me of port, it's better than dessert, it's an evening's companion and a night ender otherwise. I will endow this beer to my son upon his birth, then reclaim them from him on his 5th, 8th and 10th birthdays. Can't call it just a doppelbock in good conscience. Truly a treat.

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Photo of Brenden
4.09/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Matt at the Beer and Wine Cave was kind enough to pull this off the shelf (given to him by a distributor) to sample, so many thanks to him. Notes aren't too recent but they're good.

The color is a dark mahagony red-brown. An aged, high-alcohol brew...I'm not surprised that the light orange-tan head is so small or that retention isn't very good. That it exists as it does and leaves anything behind is something, and the head isn't all that weak anyway.
This beer is a kick in the face. It hits right off the bat, alcohol and huge malt and basketsful of plums and figs and raisins. This smells like someone put rum cakes and a basket of fruit in a full rum barrel and let it sit, but malts are cetainly not neglected. This is peculiar for a doppelbock, but then I've never had a 14% ABV doppelbock.
This beer is more like a gigantic American barleywine in character, but I do get a bit of the common doppel notes, if just. I'd like it all to work together to give me a bit more blended, well-conglomerated complexity of flavor, but it is tasty. It must, of course, be sipped. Anything else risks death.
The body is full and fairly slick with some wmoothness to it. There's obviously not much carbonation, but it comes together nicely anyway.
This is a crazy huge beer. I would seek this one out.

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Photo of bobhits
2.45/5  rDev -39.1%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours an uneventful nearly void of carbonation in the body, that at the very end of the pour suddenly plops in a bit of head that quickly runs away. OK it’s 14% so to be expected. The beer is amazingly clear and oddly bottled in 2009 so no yeast as separated yet? I’m not sure if I should be Impressed or worried. Sort of an orange amber color that I don’t really dig.

Smells like apples juice with a bit of dark fruits and beer malt. There is simply no noticeable alcohol which is rather surprising given the 14%.

Ah there’s that alcohol. This reminds me more of a fresh English barely wine. So I’m not sure what to think of it as a dopplebock. It doesn’t have the thick mouth feel of most let alone the taste of one. Fruity, sweet, brown sugar, dates, figs, spicy almost burning hops at the finish, candy, and well the sink. The problem is the alcohol and hops don’t balance or fix anything but instead just battle with the other flavors. Clearly a few more years to mellow this are a good idea.

I’m not thrilled with this “rarest and most extraordinary beverage” by any means. This is making for a less than enjoyable beer in the mouth. Too hot and hard to put to words but a watery thick syrup mouth feel.

This beer seems out of style a bit, but at 14% I suppose it is going to be a bit odd. It does have a nice flavor, it has plenty going for it, but too much here isn’t working for me. I would consider trying an older vintage though. I’m fairly certain many of these flaws will mellow and improve.

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

Extremely loosely knit and delicate head, gets close to two fingers during the pour but dissipates explosively, gone rapidly into a thin layer across the surface,as one would expect the lacing is likewise haphazard and short-lived. Quite clear amber red in color, light enough that you get yellow aside the orange hues at the glass bottom and rims, a few lazy bubbles visible here and there. The nose is incredibly sweet and fruity, oodles of raisin, fig, date, prune along with plum, cherry scents, no lack of ginger, cinnamon spice, syrupy canned orange slices, lilac air spray, molasses and honey, milk chocolate, lighter raw cookie dough, nothing distinctly opposes the sweetness yet does not seem out of balance. Medium-bodied, hard to believe that it’s actually sweeter and more syrupy here in the mouth. This even with fairly sharp-edged carbonation and a peppery kick. Molasses, maple syrup, honey coat the tongue, then chocolate, ginger, juicily sour orange to lemon citrus help it retain a credible energy level. The cherry, apricot, fig, golden raisin, banana fruit thus avoids a darker fruit complexion while staying concentrated and sugary. More scone, croissant, pastry flakiness here. Not sure how they categorize this as a “Doppelbock,” it’s much more intense than most. No alcoholic burn and, again, stays balanced, absolutely a “dessert beer” and understandable why it’s released during the winter. (Bottled in 2009)

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Photo of haazer
3.34/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a hefeweizen glass.

A- A hard pour yields an initial 2 fingers of offwhite head, that lasts a bit longer than you'd expect for a high abv. The brew itself is a mohagony red, filtered clear. Good carbonation with bubbles constantly racing to the surface.

S- Smells of thick caramel, and roasted nuts upfront. A dominant bready lager yeast, pumperknickel, and a little bit of cough syrup. Suprisingly I don't detect much alcohol in the nose.

T- Initial flavors is berries dripped with caramel. Then it takes a turn for the make that CLOYING taste. Very, very sweet. Alcohol is then felt in a burn with the aftertaste. There are some doppelbock attributes to the flavor, but the sweetness just dominates. Would've liked to have tried the retired doppelbock version.

M- Mouthfeel is thick and very syrupy. Some heat from the booze is felt. So thick that this is definitely a sipper.

O- My dad used to give me whiskey in hot tea when I had a sore throat as a kid, I could see this as a substitute. I can imagine this becoming much better with age though, if the sweetness would die down. I didnt' taste the booze as much as others had which I suppose is a plus.

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Photo of ascrivens
3.96/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Apr 2011.
Bottled 2007 - 4 year aged

Having never tried this brew before I am very pleasantly surprised.

It would have been good to find an unaged bottle to compare but as is, here it goes.

The liquid appearance is outstanding. The reddish hues make for a very attractive beer. The head was very weak on this particular pour (using a weizen glass). The pour was centered nearly the whole bottle yet only a 5mm (1/8" ?) of head was able to be obtained. This could be due to aging.

The smell is quite mild. There are sweet aromatics, perhaps a little like caramel. The alcohol, while present in the nose, is very subtle at this age. This is probably really beneficial considering the 14% abv.

Taste, well, to put it mildly, sweet. It is very sweet. Almost overpoweringly sweet. The sugars mask much of what flavour there may be and it is difficult to delve deeper. There are molasses and caramel notes. There is a mild maple and even milder raisin note. That said, It has none of the sharpness I expected of a beer of this alcohol content (clearly masked by the sugars)

Mouthfeel is beyond good. It is so smooth it is hard to believe. The beer coats the mouth like a smooth rum, and does resemble it in its molasses and sugar feel. It is a heavier feel like a distilled alcohol as well. There is little to no bite from the alcohol; and no burn from the alcohol.

Overall, the pros - mouthfeel. simply amazing. It truly makes up for many shortcomings. The major downfall... plainly too sweet (for me at least). But that level often comes with really high abv's. Less importantly, not enough aromatics.

Would i drink again? probably. Probably shared amongst friends, and certainly as an aperitif or desert drink. It is best in small amounts.

I would like to try one of less age to compare and see what changes.

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Photo of swierczt
4.47/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in 2008. Poured into a snifter to fully enjoy aromas. This is the first bottle from a four pack that I purchased.

A: Pours mahogany and still – similar in color to a bourbon. Absolutely no head develops. No carbonation is visible.

S: Sweet honey and figs. The smell of alcohol is very apparent – which actually burns the nose a bit.

T: A nice balance between sweetness and warmth. Honey, brown sugar, amaretto. A hint of pepper, but perhaps this flavor is due to the warmth of the alcohol.

M: Crisp, light carbonation. Some warming and tingling on my tongue and in my throat.

D: This is definitely a sipper. The 14% ABV was obvious for me about half way through the beer. If given the opportunity – give it a try. Looking forward to cellaring the remaining three bottles for a bit longer to see how it changes.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.82/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The first time I had this beer I was just starting to dabble in strong beers. At the time this power house was the strongest I had ever tried. This beer poured out as a deep copper color brownish red. The head was non existent. The carbonation was good though. The smell was sweet and boozie, the taste was also semi sweet and rather bitey. Lots of dark berries and malt creating a very complex brew. Overall this beer is pretty damn tasty and rather good for the winter season.

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Photo of falloutsnow
3.93/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 2009, aged about 1.5 years.

Golden amber in color. Head retention is fairly poor: froth disappears in a few minutes after a hard pour and no lacing or remaining bubbles afterwards.

Slightly weak in the scent area, additional aromatics would be highly appreciated! I pick up caramel, light breadiness, amaretto sweetness, and a strong rush of alcohol if inhaled too deeply. I don't pick up the raisins or figs that others detect, but those fruits themselves don't give up a deep, rich scent.

I really enjoy the taste of this beer. It's a sweet, ultra-malty, super-rich doppelbock that knocks open every door. Opening tastes of malt sugars and caramel, perhaps even a slight maple tinge to things. This mellows into some continued sweetness alongside some faint raisin and dried fig tastes. A bit of spiciness from unknown phenolic compounds. Finish is sweet, slightly alcoholic (amaretto) and warming.

The body is medium-heavy, with carbonation at a good level beside this thickness. This is suitable for a sipper like this, I wouldn't want to rush things along with a higher level of carbonation.

Overall, I really enjoy taking this beer in over an evening, though I would truly appreciate a more commanding olfactory presence

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Photo of prototypic
3.85/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Huge thanks to csmiley for this beast.

Vintage 2006

Samichlaus Bier pours a reddish copper color. It's mostly clear, and backlighting gives it a distinct red appearance. An off-white head collects on the surface, but barely rises above it. It falls quickly. Lacing was light and very spotty.

The nose is pretty good. More strength would be good. It's very malty and sweet. Caramel and light chocolate are front and center. The chocolate smells like cocoa. Dark fruit is in the mix, but it's a secondary component. Smells like fig and light raisin. Alcohol is definitely noticeable. It's not overpowering, but is definitely there. Tough to hide 14%. Smells a little spicy and herbal on the tail.

The flavor is interesting. It is good, but it's a novel Doppelbock to be sure. First off, it's incredibly sweet. A little too sweet to be honest. If you're averse to sugary beer, you should walk away. Caramel and chocolate malts make up the base. It does have a nice cocoa flavor. Dark fruit flavors of raisin and fig blend well with the malty flavors. Light spices and herbs are noted, but they're too subtle for me to identify. Alcohol is definitely noted in flavor and generates a good bit of heat. Finishes very sweet and very warm.

Samichlaus has a medium body. Carbonation is very light, and gives it a smooth feel. I honestly wouldn't mind a few more bubbles though. It's still quite the sipper though. It has some pretty strong brakes in the form of sweetness and alcohol.

Samichlaus has really become something of a legend over the years. It is good, but it's extremely sweet flavor and boozy character hold it back. Even after several years, it's still very warm. Having said that, it does have a nice flavor if you can tolerate the sweetness. It's definitely one of those beers that every BA should try at least once. Thanks for my opportunity, Chris.

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Photo of danbar
4.39/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottled in 2008

A: Pours a light brown, cola-like color with absolutely no head.

S: Smells of caramel, dark fruits

T: Tastes of caramel, dark fruits, toffee and port (I don't think I have had port but I imagine this is what it would taste like). Extremely flavorful. finishes with an alcohol bite that helps balance out the sweetness. Tiniest of tiny bitterness.

M: Fairly thin bodied and low carbonation.

D: I am feeling pretty good about now with the 14% ABV but the whole bottle goes down easy. I think drinking two would send me to the ER (with a smile).

A great dopplebock but definitely a sipper. Alcohol burn may be a turn off to some but does not bother me. Extremely enjoyable

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Photo of mattgreger
4.48/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3

Picked up an Aged bottle a Capones bottle shop - 2008

The pour on this brew isn't very impressive. It poured a very dark brown color, with a bit of beautiful bands of red/ruby throughout. Not a whole lot of light is coming through, though its a pretty clear brew. There was hardly and head on the brew, just a few bubbles that sat as a cap on the top of the pour.

The aroma on this brew is pretty strong. Its has some definite aromas that you can detect pretty easily. There is punch of dark fruits at the front. That is then followed by a nice raisiny aroma that feeds into some other aromas as well. I can detect a bit of sherry and licorice as well. It has a huge alcohol smell that gives this brew a sweet, yet bold aroma.

The flavor ont his brew is great. It has a first taste of sweet malts and dark fruits. Very much like the aroma. Its then leads into a very boozy sherry and licorice flavors. There is a bit of a chocolate flavor that comes into, as the brew warms a bit. And now as I taste it a bit more, I can also sense a bite of cherries as well. This brew has a nice bold alcohol punch that rounds out the sweetness of the brew. I enjoyed it a lot.

This brew doesn't have very much carbonation. It is a great fulled bodied brew. Its nice and slick, and coats the mouth oh so well. Its a great brew.

This brew is not for the rookie beer drinkers. Its monster-like ABV can kick even the best BA's Ass. It was a great brew none the less. It was super creamy. I will definitly get my hands on a few more of these. Age them some more and enjoy.

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Photo of vfgccp
4.22/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

- Special thanks to Mark for sharing an incredible, perfectly cellared, 1996 bottle of this -

A - Deep brown, black tea.

S - Toasted marshmallow, brown sugar, deep roasted almonds, light booze, chocolate chip cookies.

T - Melted milk chocolate. Very light carbonation. Boozy tingle. Soft caramel, walnut, toasted brioche, buckwheat honey. Touch of light coffee and cream.

M - Mild residual alcoholic warmth. Smooth with a medium-full body.

D - Delicious, but the booze and the sweetness take a toll on your palate. Sip and enjoy.

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Photo of iLovehops23
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

shout out to John at Dennis Bros. for the hook up on this one. im about to open a vintage 2005 version.... ok right out of the gate I see a really nice carmel color, slightly cloudy for a db. Not much of head but nice lacing, kind of diffrent yet it works. smells is nice and strong like a 14% 2005 should.

taste... damn! this baby is like a regular db on hgh. must say this has a nice balace with a high sipping quality to it. half way down and it gets better with every taste, might be to the temp rising. great sipper worht giving this Austrian dp a crack sometime.

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Photo of Viciousknishs
4.2/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

A- Pours a deep coppery amber. A finger of off white/tannish head quickly recedes into a thin ring of tight bubbles. This brew produces some beautiful lacing and has legs like a fine wine. Gorgeous!

S- This is a scent of a woman that I don't want to meet. Begins with thick bready malt infused with brown sugar and raisins (so much raisin it's like diving into a ball pit full of them). The sweet inviting beginning is soon demolished with huge stinging fusel alcohol. The finish is rich tilled topsoil with mineral characteristics. Remnants of the booze linger as well.

T- Flavor is like a woman that I DO want to meet. Drink this and you instantly become irresistible to the opposite sex. Starts with huge sticky sweet burnt caramel, brown sugar and blackstrap molasses. Booze soaked raisin and doughy malts coalesce with the sugary sweetness like an alcoholic strudel. Liquor like alcohol warmth permeates the senses. A clean mineral finish with a hint of astringency gets the palate ready for the next seductive sip.

MF- Slick liquor like mouthfeel. Low almost unnoticeable carbonation. However Samichlaus would be undrinkable without it. Medium body with Port/liquor qualities.

D- This is a slow drinking contemplative beer. The drinkability is medium as to be expected of a beer of this strength. Saint Nick skip my place every year but a snifter of Samichlaus more than makes up for it.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.03/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottled in 2007. Dark ferric oxide orange with the slimmest of beige colored crowns after an increasingly high-altitude pour. With negligible hop esters and such a high ABV, a large lid and loads of sticky lace were never in the cards.

The nose is medium-dark malty and has its alcohol hidden... acceptably well. Trouble is, there isn't much power and there's even less personality. Warming helps, but we're still looking at merely average for a doppelbock.

Samichlaus Bier is so unique that it's almost its own style. This BSE beast tastes more like cloyingly sweet date-and-fig liqueur than it does beer. Can't see the monks downing too many of these bad boys during their fasts. Not unless they wanted to be constantly smashed and at risk of developing diabetes.

Although warming improves flavor intensity to some extent, there isn't much depth or complexity. Specifics include figs and dates in sugar syrup, steely caramel, leather and a few shots of Absolut. There's plenty of warmth, but no real heat this long after bottling.

The body/mouthfeel is lightly syrupy-sticky. Unfortunately, the beer doesn't expand in the mouth, but rather slides across the tongue and deflates soon thereafter. Sparkly bubbles add even more sensory dissonance. It's all rather odd.

For whatever reason, beer from this venerable Austrian brewery has never really floated my boat. Samichlaus Bier is supposed to be their flagship offering, but it too sinks under the weight of too much residual sugar and too much alcohol. A curiosity maybe, but light years away from being great beer.

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Photo of mavbrew
4.18/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at The Lazy Boy Saloon in White Plains, NY. Excellent place to go if you're ever in the area. Bartender indicated that it was a vintage 2008.

A: Poured into a tulip. Color is an amber/dark honey with a massive tan head that slowly dissipates.

S: The smell is very sweet, but a resemblance to soy sauce was definitely apparent. Hints of brown sugar and honey.

T: The taste is much like the smell, minus the soy sauce. It is very sweet, but not too sweet. There is a honey flavor with some caramel malts and brown sugar.

M: Medium bodied with nice carbonation. Very crisp and sweet feel throughout.

D: For being 14% ABV, there is hardly any trace of alcohol. This beer is smooth and sweet and delicious. Ages well and I will be in search for a bottle for myself.

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Photo of siradmiralnelson
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 750ml bottle into Tulip.

A. Poured 1 finger head. Moderate lacing. Ok retention. color is a amber brown.

S. Smell is pretty intense. Has a sour cherry smell. Brown sugar and maple. Raisins, plums. A little vinegar and some oak. Does have a alcohol smell as well. Very interesting malty smell.

T. Caramel, vanilla, toffee, oak, sour cherry. Very complex flavor. All kinds of malt flavors going on with this beer. Oak flavors come out all the way back on the tongue. Sweet but not overly so. 14% abv is hidden on the flavor pretty well.

M. Medium full bodied. Lingering sweetness. Medium/low carbonation.

D. Suprisingly drinkable for 14%. Very complex and interesting beer. Drinks like a barleywine/doppelbock/strong ale mix. With the complexity and alcohol this beer has it kind of pushes the boundaries of what beer can be. Very close to being a liquor.

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Photo of Sachsenfreude
4.69/5  rDev +16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Picked up a case of this for cellaring the other day but I had to drink a couple right away naturally. This particular batch was bottled in 2009.

appearance; a rough pour produces a decent off-white head. Dissipates rather quickly but a nice film remains through most of the drink. Only the slightest, if any lacing is left behind. The main body is a washed out garnet color.

smell; extreemely malty and rich. Hints of black licorice, caramelized sugar, marzipan, and pralines. Fruits such as raisins, plums, and dates also come to mind. All of this is wrapped up in an alcoholic shell.

taste; this is quite unique, like the child of a Doppelbock and a Quadrupal. Malty sweetness from start to finish, like rum soaked cherries and slightly fermented mission figs. Very sugary in a maple syrup way, almost cloying but then the alcohol kick slams the palate with a bitter burn and breathes life back to the flavor. About as extreem as a Doppelbock can be, candied walnut and honey hang in the aftertaste.

mouthfeel; a rich and robust, heavy bodied brew. Very chewy and sticky, almost syrupy as it goes down, yet also creamy. Extreemely warm and alcoholic.

drinkability; 14% abv. but easy to drink. If it wasn't for the high price I could drink a lot of this. Provides a very light and relaxing buzz of the highest quality, forget to respect this brew and one will be on thier ass in no time though.

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Photo of lionchow
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

2008 vintage.

Pours clear brown to amber. No head at all.

Aroma is of brown sugar, red wine, slight vinegar, and oak.

Flavor is vanilla, honey, caramel, candi sugar, red wine, and oak. It is nicely sweet, not overly so. It is nicely hot from the alcohol, which balances out the sweetness.

There is almost no carbonation, with a mid-level mouthfeel.

Overall an excellent beer, very unique and pleasurable.

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Photo of xodin
4.02/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Very little head with minimal retention and deep, clear oak color. Strong aromas of spice, clove, and licorice. Some burnt malts and a strong peppery alcohol flavor, very warming. Carbonated and somewhat dry in the swallow, with a malty, yet bitter aftertaste.

A bit too strong on the spice, especially to be considered a traditional doppelbock; however, after becoming accustomed to the flavors, more and more caramel begins to peek through, and it becomes very enjoyable--a trickster of a brew. A little too outrageous and unique for a top-notch pick, but it certainly has its good qualities, and a hell of a bite and ABV to boot.

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Samichlaus Classic Bier from Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg
Beer rating: 4.02 out of 5 with 2,058 ratings
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