Samichlaus Classic Bier | Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg

very good
2,041 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: 2,041 |  Reviews: 1,094
Photo of JimTeal
4.7/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Complex way beyond complex. All the things said about this really special brew are probably true, and few of us are really qualified to review such a rare example of brewing arts. It is almost syrupy, sweet, sugary and oh, did I mention it packs a major league wallop of 14%ABV, careful. And yes, the alcohol is up front, but give it a few seconds to settle on the tongue and combined with tons of absurdly good flavors this brew is astounding, and I am glad to add a 4 pack (3 remaining) to my cave under the steps. I tried a 2010 vintage, it is newly 2013 so if it got better over the last few years, look out, this one is dangerously beautiful.

 647 characters

Photo of honestlyno
5/5  rDev +25.3%

Photo of kvnstfrd
4.6/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Stored for one year. Poured from a 330 ml bottle into a 12 oz. snifter.
Dark brown, slightly red and crystal clear. No head to speak of. Oaky smell of a good tawny port, fruit cake and alcohol. The taste tells me my nose was right. This is very much like a tawny port or creamed sherry. Also a similar warming alcohol sensation after the swallow. There are some hops in there, but they’re dominated by a wonderful sweetness. Mouth-feel is thick and almost oily with little detectable carbonation. I’m not sure this fits into the Doppelbock category, but this is one unique and awesome brew!

 594 characters

Photo of arash1000
1.5/5  rDev -62.4%

Photo of OregonGrown7
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of Twig2848
5/5  rDev +25.3%

Photo of Sipchue
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

Photo of AmitC
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

Photo of claaark13
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of Morey
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

Photo of JeffTheJuice
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of emyers
3.84/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle. Bottled in 2010.

Appearance: Pours a clear golden-amber color with essentially no head, just a hint of white lacing on the edges. This beer looks incredibly viscous in the glass - carbonation bubbles seem to be suspended as opposed to rising to the surface. Actually, it looks like a glass full of maple syrup.

Smell: Big sweet caramel up front with sweet dark fruit and a little solvent alcohol. Smells like it's going to be one sweet, strong beer.

Taste: Yep, it's sweet alright. The dark fruit comes out a little more here. Tastes like figs and sweet cherries covered in caramel and then another dusting of sugar, with the solvent-like alcohol coming through in the finish. The alcohol presence is expected, and frankly I don't think I would enjoy the beer as much without it there.

Mouthfeel: Thick and syrupy with virtually no carbonation. Really coats the inside of the mouth as it goes down.

Overall: This is a big, sweet, complex sipper. And when all is said and done it's a damn good one. While I would definitely prefer it with more bittering hops, it's a great beer to sip by the fireplace on a winter night.

 1,141 characters

Photo of BedetheVenerable
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 11.2oz brown pop top, beautifully foiled, with an elegant label. The last of my 2006 4-pk, so I figured I'd give this a review on Christmas night after a wonderful holiday with my family. Poured into my Founders snifter. From my parents for Christmas, several years ago. Cheers to you, guys!

Appearance: Pours a beautiful deep red/amber, a bright hue reminding me of well-aged rum or whiskey. A firm pour produces a half-finger head, but it fades quickly to a thin whisp of a ring around the glass. However, there are TINY but lively bubbles of carbonation rising around the edges of the glass, even after six years in the bottle. Elegant.

Smell: Rich, creamy caramel, dark fruits (rum-raisin, maybe?) and the slightest hint of apple as well I think. A hint of sugary candy sweetness and light notes of toasted nuts. It smells boozy (like a spirit) but without the sharp burn. Powerful, warm, inviting.

Taste: I've had this several years younger and, I can now unequivocally say, this is, at six years of age, by far the best I've seen this beer. Powerful and boozy, but not hot at all, and with a softly prickly level of carbonation that matches with a viscous, heavy mouthfeel. Sweet dark caramel, sugary, candy-like sweetness, light notes of dark fruit, and a hint of apple here and there. It shares some characteristics in common with a good Belgian Quadrupel, but this is definitely its own beast. Just a hint of a sort of earthy/mushroom note that I've found in poorly-aged English old ales (Gale's Prize Old, for example, from 10-12 years ago) but here they're quite light and add just another layer of complexity. Stunning.

Mouthfeel: Rich, full, and with a perfect (light) level of peppery carbonation.

Overall: Adds up to slightly more than the sum of its parts. It's a $20-24 four-pack, depending on where you get it, and it's not easy to find. When young-ish, it's not particularly palatable, either. However, when aged for six years (even in decidedly sub-par conditions), it's really something special. If you find it, and you have the cash (and patience) it's definitely worth the price to lay some down long-term. After all, $12 for a bomber doesn't seem that unreasonable these days (even if such prices are becoming more of a hindrance as funds run tighter), so double that for a four-pack of 14% beer doesn't seem too bad. This is the perfect and (dare I say, despite my love of English barleywines) almost quintessential night-cap for a cold winter's evening. Especially Christmas.

93% A

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Photo of ejimhof
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

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

Huge thanks to my Dad who got this for me for Christmas two years ago. Drinking it with him now, 2 years later. 2009 bottle.

Beer pours a dark reddish-brown with a thin white head. Smell is of caramel malt, candied sugar, dark fruit and a good amount of nuttiness. It honestly smells like an aged Belgian quad and is rather impressive. Flavor follows the nose - it's sweet up front, but not overwhelmingly so, then it finishes with an awesome malty nuttiness, again, just like a quad. It hides its 14% incredibly well and is certainly unlike any doppelbock I've ever had. Mouthfeel is medium-full bodied with moderate carbonation, nothing particularly positive or negative here. Overall, I'm really quite impressed with this beer. I've never had it fresh, but I can certainly imagine that it's sweeter and boozier, and thus some age does this one some serious good. This is an impressive beer that ages as well as any quad out there and has a similar flavor profile. Go buy a 2012 now and stash it in the cellar for 3+ years.

 1,026 characters

Photo of KalanM
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of Holmes698
4.87/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a 11.2oz bottle into a Bruery Tulip glass.

A: Like a burnt orange with an amber tint. Perfectly clear with some faint bubbles coming up from the bottom of the glass. 1/2 finger of head that dissipates quickly to a fine ring. Nice alcohol legs.

S: Slightly boozy, but not too much so. Little bit of butterscotch, malts, sweet dark fruits.

T: Simply amazing. follows the nose to a point. Very complex with toffee, caramel, butterscotch, hard candy and a nice host of malty sweetness. There is a very mild alcohol burn, but for 14% this is well hidden. As this beer warms the depth of character really come out.

M: Slick and coating. Very low carbonation, but its there.

Overall: One of the best beers I've had. I got 3 bottles if this and will have a very hard time not drinking them all very soon.

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Photo of beerFool28607
4.25/5  rDev +6.5%

Photo of YamagamiTravis
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of StuffedCabbage
4.75/5  rDev +19%

Photo of Travcofarms
1/5  rDev -74.9%

Photo of Hopheadjeffery
4/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of beergoot
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Assuming my bottle -- labeled "Samichlaus Classic" is the same beer the other reviews are about. Bottled in 2012.

Very nice copper color but the thin, fizzy head nearly completely disappeared within a few minutes. There's a classic doppelbock sweetness in the aroma along with a plum and slight citrus-like fruit scent. Heavy, vinous feel; syrupy. Powerful sweetness and alcohol meld with the taste: raisins and apricots, lots of alcohol heat to balance out the immense sweetness; hard to differentiate between the alcohol burn and hop bitterness, but they're both present in the mix.

A somewhat underwhelming appearance and smell will surprise you once the taste and mouthfeel come in to play. For a 14% ABV doppelbock, though, I'd say this one is pretty decent. Plenty of doppelbock character abound in this heavy hitter. A must-try for doppelbock and big beer fans. Heck, I may spring for a four-pack and let 'em age for a year or so and see how this beer plays out with some time.

 986 characters

Photo of astidad
5/5  rDev +25.3%

Photo of ianjsullivan
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

ST: 11.2oz poured into a snifter. Bottle in 2010.

A: A surprisingly red tinted brown (in the light it looks sunset red) that is very clear. The carbonation seems to struggle in its climb. A thin circle clinging to the glass is the only head.

S: Sweet dark fruit, cake, caramel, strong alcohol esters (sightly medicinal).

T: Sweet dark fruit and bread with a bit of smokey finish from the alcohol.

M: Heavy and coating

O: This beer is one always brought up when discussing the best beers in the world, and I figured it was time I tried it. Is Samichlaus hype rather than content?

While sweet, Sami offers an excellent portfolio of flavors from fruit to dough to alcohol. It is a sipper, and it would be perfect for cold winter nights. It is an experience to try.

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Samichlaus Classic Bier from Brauerei Schloss Eggenberg
3.99 out of 5 based on 2,041 ratings.
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