The Kaiser | Avery Brewing Company

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BA SCORE
86
very good
649 Reviews
The KaiserThe Kaiser
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States | website

Style: Märzen / Oktoberfest

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 10.20%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
The Kaiser once said, “Give me a woman who loves beer and I will conquer the world.” If the Kaiser and his significant other had tipped this bottle, we’d all be “sprechenden Deutsch!” We took all that is good in a traditional Oktoberfest – gorgeous, deep copper sheen, massive malty backbone and spicy, floral, pungent Noble hops – then intensified each into this, an Imperial Oktoberfest.

Added by maxpower on 08-28-2004

BEER STATS
Reviews:
649
Ratings:
1,300
Avg:
3.84
pDev:
18.75%
 
 
Wants:
88
Gots:
102
For Trade:
1
User Reviews
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Reviews: 649 | Ratings: 1,300
Photo of smcolw
4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Nice thick-bubbled head. Ring lace on the glass with each subsequent sip. Orange-amber in color, clear.

Strangely, I smell oats. Perhaps it's the very high level of alcohol. This is, after all, an "imperial" Oktoberfest. Light levels of hop and dry malts.

Lots of alcohol warmth. This is a potent beer that loses a lot of the characteristics of a typical marzen. Nice hop finish. Predictably oily, relatively thick, but nicely balanced with a slightly high level of carbonation.

I love interesting beers. This one is like blending a barley wine with an Oktoberfest. I balked at buying this one because of the price ($7.49 for 22oz), but this was worth it for the experience of a truly different type of beer.

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Photo of billab914
3.54/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 22oz bottle into my Dogfish snifter glass. Pours a dark amber, slightly red color with a thin white covering on top. The head clung to the sides of the glass and left a little lacing as I drank it.

Aroma is sweet and malty with notes of caramel and toffee. There is a little alcohol present as well. The taste is similar to the nose in that it is big on the sweet bready malt with caramel and toffee.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is OK, it's a little strong and sweet for my tastes and I'm glad i shared this bomber. I can't say that I enjoy the Oktoberfest style being imperialized, it becomes a little too sweet for me.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.3/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appears a copper bodied slightly hazed hue, imperial Oktoberfest lager there's something not right about that. Large tawny white head forms thick and dwindles pretty quickly. Leaves behind speckled lacing with each sip.

Aroma has big malty layers of mild caramel and a rounded nutty edge. Almost a simple syrupy like sweetness about very dessert like decadent sweetness. A touch of herbal noble hops in there but this one is focused on well hidden notes of alcohol and big malt layers. Spicy graham cracker drizzled with caramel and brown sugar sweetness.

Flavor a bit sweet and booze ridden in the flavor it really hits as it warms with the big malt caramel train wreck wrapped in alcohol flavor. A mild nutty and herbal finish but this one pretty much relies on alcohol and caramel malt sweetness for it's flavor profile.

Mouthfeel can become cloying with the thick bodied lager weighing heavily with sweetness again texture is like a reduced simple syrup, big malty beer leaves behind massive amounts of residual sugars. Malt heaviness without much balance leaves me thinking this is just rediculous.

Drinkability is alright not something I would cellar, trade for, buy again, or really like to drink anytime soon. It wasn't as bad as I was expecting but an Imperial O fest does nothing for me other than a quicker buzz. Somebody had to do it and I guess it's appropriate for Avery to be the one.

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Photo of stakem
3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big thanks to BdubleEdubleRUN for hooking me up with this generous extra in our most recent trade. Batch 8, Aug 2011 poured into a matching Avery cervoise. This brew appears a perfectly clear color of copper. Around the edges it shows more of a golden coloring and nearing amber through the body. A finger of creamy off-white head sits atop with pretty decent retention. As the cap slowly fades, it leaves thick patches of lace sticking to the glass.

The smell of this brew includes a sweetness almost like orange marmalade. Hops show a bit of citrus character mixed with oranges, some other fruity quality and a bit of floral aspect. The malt is caramel sweetness that gets increasingly more toffee-like. The faintest touch of butter and alcohol comes forward as the brew warms up. A faint amount of cheese character evolves towards the back along with some sulfur.

The taste includes toffee and caramel malt sweetness. A little bit of butter, some floral hops and a mild amount of herbal bitterness. As more sips are taken, a bit of alcohol warmth creeps up the back of the throat as expected for the 10% abv. As the brew gets warmer, it has a greater focus on some buttery diacetyl which initially was almost completely hidden behind the hops and toffee sweetness. More sips reveal a bit of fresh grainy character mixed with some cheese and sulfur.

This is a medium to full bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. For an imperialized version of an oktoberfest brew, this was done fairly clean and without much fault. However, as it warmed up it got to be a bit of a chore. If I could re-do the experience I would have served it colder as warming it up did not help it. However, it is to be noted how well this brew was done. My only gripe is the buttery aspect and along with the imperialization, it really lost that crispness I look for in the finish. Instead, it had a long drawn out toffee-sweetness and lacked that crispness which would have increased it's overall drinkability. Regardless, this was a nice change of pace and was an interesting experience. I would recommend giving it a try if you have the chance. Thanks again Brett!

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Photo of jwc215
3.42/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

2008 bottling-

Pours orange amber with a thin white head that becomes a wide fading patch.

The smell is of an O-fest on steroids - big caramel with an earthy, floral touch and plenty of alcohol.

The taste is of sweet malt and sweet, raw alcohol. Caramel candy is balanced by earthy, floral, leafy spicing, that, along with raw alcohol lends a dry finish despite sweetness. Alcohol and spiciness almost mask the maltiness.

The feel is thick and a bit sticky, though not too syrupy. Burning hot, especially as it progresses, the alcohol has a cleansing affect on the palate.

This bottle claims abv to be a hair over 10% abv, so I was expecting some heat - but this was too sharp, even for that. And, didn't seem to add much to it, but to slow it down. After this bottle, I'm not convinced that this is a style to be "imperialized". A 12 (or even 11.2) oz. bottle would have been plenty. This is one is interesting to a point (interesting floral touch to the caramel), but better to be shared (IMO).

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Photo of feloniousmonk
4.28/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Clear, copper-y appearance, lush head, cream-toned and rocky. Quite attractive in the glass.

Aroma speaks initially of caramel and nuts, then spices and dark fruits, malt is on top with a whisper of hops. Finishes it's display still full of character, before mellowing out.

Taste: Massive presence in the mouth, chewy and gooey maltiness, a well-rounded sweetness. Almost ponderously thick on the palate. Primary actors from the nose step onto the tongue and please the senses there. The fruitiness, the herbal/ nutty thing, but mostly the caramel malt. Full bodied, with a long, spicy, dry finish. Loving it!

This is a fresh 2005 edition, and the abv listed is 8.9%. The alcohol comes to the fore after 1/3 through the bottle, and begins a slight burn, but the taste is terrific, so it only adds to the excitement.

A real acheivement by Avery, this big, ballsy brew. I'm pointing all my thumbs upward in it's honor, and will now lay back and luxuriate with the remainder of the bottle.

Malty lager lovers, and Oktoberfest freaks, this is your commander, bow down before him!

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Photo of smakawhat
4.37/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A very surprising inexpensive beer for Fall.

Copper like in apperance not so much opaque, keeps a good head. Bready smell, but mostly has a big giant smell of banana bread on taste and finish.

Good body, some slight sweet toffee taste on the finish also. Sort of a strange lingering finish of sweet and bitter.

Good price point also highly recommended. If you love banana bread you will not be dissapointed.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a mug, the beer is a bright, vibrant, slightly hazed, copper-amber coloring, with a tall, frothy, foamy, dense, off-white head. Aromas of caramel, sugar sweetness, tuber veggies, earthy highlights, hints of toffee, earthy notes, and an overlaying highlight of roast. Very rich and sweet. Flavors are rich and roasted forward, with a blast of caramel and toffee sweetness, a subtle bitterness in the backbone, char highlights, earthy and woody notes, and hints of booze. Malt bomb for sure, but with a balance and drinkability that is impressive. The body is smooth and robust, but light enough to quaff. Roasted sweet, rich, heavy aftertaste with a building warmth as you work your way through the bottle. The finish is smooth and slick, with a slightly sweet, cloying linger that makes you want more. Solid brew!

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Photo of Billolick
4.23/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Blind tiger Ale House in NYC. This is a monster of an Octoberfest beer, but somehow Avery pulls this one off. I'm sure some O'fest purists will not be pleased, but as a lover of "Imperial" takes on various styles this one was very pleasing to me. Pours super clear, light mahogony, with some reddish highlights. Nose is malt, sweet malt. The pour leftt only a minor, tiny bubble head, but the lacing was top notch, fine, extensive and sticky. This is a very smooth, strong and tasty uber octoberfest. malt o'pleanty, but somehow quite drinkable, with the alcohol well in the background and the sugars not cloying. Just solid octoberfest flavors and fun. One of my favorites from Avery and I like Avery...

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Photo of drabmuh
3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Been wanting to try this one for a long time, served in a shaker pint, beer is amber and clear with a lazy white head, low retention, moderate to low carbonation, no lacing.

Aroma is malty and sweet with a yeasty finish.

Beer is medium to big in body, much bigger than I expected, with a mildly bitter finish on the back end, a strong flavor, really malty, mildly sweet, minimal yeast. I did enjoy it and would have it again on draft.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is ruby amber with a large and creamy head. The aroma is dominated by caramel malt aroma, not really any stronger than a standard marzen. A touch of spice adds a bit to the aroma. The taste is of strong caramel malt, the malt flavor is very similar to standard o-fests, just a little thicker. A mild minty hop and a touch of alcohol flavor are really what sets this apart from the style. My overall impression is that this is a very good beer, but not nearly as over-the-top or strong-flavored as expected. I will probably be sticking with the more sessionable German marzens in the future.

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

A: poured a murky redish brown with a thin white head and a little sticky lacing on the glass.

S: molasses brown sugar aromas up front with hints of booze and sweet malts.

T: sweet malts molasses and booze combine for the punch and hints of brown sugar as well in the mixture.

M: medium body with a very light amount of carbonation and a sweet finish.

D: drinks good and a pretty good oktoberfest beer from avery.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Got the bomber and couldn't wait to try this one. Poured a clean mahogany with nice fluffy white head. I could smell the malt and spices as I poured. Some citrus and biscuit also appeared in the nose.
Taste was less than I expected. It was very malty, little hops and I couldn't detect any spices in it at all. Heavy on the yeast.
The lack of flavor lead to lack of mouthfeel. It was almost too smooth, like water with a hint of malt.
Disappointed in this beer. Perhaps it was the bottle I got.

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Photo of WesWes
4.17/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark gold/orange color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great. It has a rich, malty scent that is breadlike and toastey. It boasts of pale, light crystal, bisquit, and roasted malts. The taste is good. It has a warm, malty flavor that boasts of pale, light crystal, and roasted malts. It is toastey with a nice hop balance. The mouthfeel is great. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn fine beer. I love the concept. It is smooth and flavorful; a good drinker.

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Photo of Tone
4.29/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy, amber/brown color. 1/2 inch head of an off-white color. Good retention and decent lacing. Smells of hops, sweet malt, slight tart malt, citrus, and yeast, slight earthy malt. Fits the style of a Marzen / Oktoberfest. Mouth feel is smooth and thick with an average carbonation level. Tastes of roasted malt, sweet malt, hops, yeast, alcohol, slight citrus, and brown sugar. Overall, a very good body, blend, and complexity.

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Photo of Gavage
3.96/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a clear amber color with a thick 2" fluffy head that lasts quite a while.

Smell: the nose picks up caramel, brown sugar, and some hop bitterness.

Taste: this is almost a meal in a bottle. Many flavors in this one as strong caramel, graham crackers, prunes, toasted nuts, honey, mild alcohol, and a decent piney bitterness are all easily detectable.

Mouthfeel: crisp on the tongue, and long on the caramel, bitterness, and fruit tones in the aftertaste. Medium-heavy in body.

Drinkability: For a higher alcohol oktoberfest, this one is quite drinkable. Worth seeking this one out for an over-the-top flavorful version in the style.

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a clear dark amber color with a white head. The aroma is full of toffee and biscuit malt, as well as a lot of grapes and brown sugar. A very malty, fruity beer. The flavor is more of the same. I get a lot of grapes and flowers as well as a ton of caramel and biscuit malt. The alcohol is also very apparent. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. This tastes like an Oktoberfest on steroids, just like the brewer intended.

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This 2009 Vintage may have 9.73% ABV, but it's an O-Fest, right? Bring out the one liter German mug! On to the beer:

Lovely autumn amber color with hues heading off to pale orange. Thick head on top, and good retention. There a good whiff of red grapes with a punch of booze. Very malty and fruity too.

So this is what an Imperial Oktoberfest is about; strong, malty, and boozy. The alcohol tastes like white grapes and solvent. Strong sweet bread and hints of bubblegum and yams, yet it's not overly sweet. It's also spicy from the hops. The body feels medium, but I'd like just a little more meat for this size.

This is a crazy, yet yummy twist of an Oktoberfest. Don't be afraid to fill up your favorite one liter mug with this stuff during the O-Fest season,

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.97/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a reddish copper amber with a thin off white head that dissipated to a heavy ring around the glass. Aroma of caramel and bready malt and a surprisingly intense alcohol component. Flavor is dominated by caramel and toffee flavors, bready malt and pumpkin bread. Interesting. The alcohol in the aroma is not noticeable in the taste. Medium bodied with nice carbonation for a pleasant mouth feel. I usually find marzens to be somewhat understated, but this is quite flavorful and fun to drink. Doubt anyone could drink this all day at Oktoberfest because it packs a punch, but a glass or two are great!

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

Thanks Oxymoron

Pours a nice slightly cloudy amber color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy head which leaves quickly, but leaves some little islands and sticky lacing. The nose is kinda sweet and malty with a nice touch of spicies and caramel. the taste is malty and spicy with some caramel overtones. Medium body. Drinkable, my first Imperial Oktoberfest brew, pretty tasty.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.38/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a brilliantly clear, ruby-amber-copper color. It is topped by a frothy white head that is generated by a medium level of carbonation. The aroma is sweetly malty with notes of caramel, biscuits. It also has a low level of hop aromatics that contribute a slightly fruity note intermingled with a spicy-herbal-grassy note. This beer is quite thick bodied and sweet, but the thing that I really notice during my first sip is how hoppy this is. It is quite a bit more balanced towards the hops than even a doubling of a traditional Oktoberfest recipe would suggest. Leave it to the American brewers to hop up a traditionally malty beer, though as a pioneer of the Imperial Oktoberfest, I guess they can do what ever they want.

Given all of this, this beer would actually not be as interesting or balanced if not for the over-the-top hops. The beer is quite sweet, and would likely be sticky if not for the hop punch. The beer has a pungent, spicy, bergamot, herbal hop flavor to it, which floats on a malty backbone that is redolent of caramel, and biscuit notes. The finish is a bit astringent, with a mixture of hop bitterness and alcohol. This thing could definitely use some mellowing. If it were not for the finish this would be at it's best now. I think a couple of months of age, could really help to mellow this beer out.

The new glow / appeal of this beer has definitely faded for me, now that I have finished half a glass. The beer just seems a bit too harsh and unbalanced. I definitely recommend aging this for quite a while, I have two more bottles which I will perhaps try again in the spring.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.33/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: Deep orange bordering light brown. Soapy white head providing some lace.

SMELL: Caramel, big malts, toffee and alcohol.

TASTE: Toffee and dark breads, some leafy, citrus hops, and a little kick of alcohol. An imperial Oktoberfest by design, and certainly carries the caramelized Munich malts. If you ask me, this is a good dopplebock.

FEEL: Medium bodied, well carbonated a bit slick and chewy with loads of malt.

OVERALL: A really nice beer. 9.1% German style lager pulled off with finesse.

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Photo of biegaman
3.91/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Traditional Oktoberfest beers were more or less just stronger versions of standard Helles lagers ("helles", I'll remind you, means "light"). Nowadays, however, brewers are adding more and more dark malts. And The Kaiser - a so-called "Imperial Oktoberfest" - has certainly done so; its clear complexion is far more ruby-amber than orange (let alone golden).

And if the colour didn't tip you off, the aroma sure will - this smells far sweeter than the style should. In fact, it doesn't smell much like a Märzen at all. Wafts of mulled cider, caramel sweetness, and dried fruits are vaguely Speyside scotch-like. It seems malty, rich, dense, and warming.

Indeed. The flavour profile is strikingly Barleywine-esque. Or perhaps it's more like a Doppelbock. Here, decide for yourself: there's plenty of apple, dried cherry and fig flavours, and a rich maltiness that smacks of toffee, molasses and, very subtly, of gingerbread cookies.

The Kaiser sure conquers the palate; the mouthfeel is marked by macerated fruit esters and honeyed, sticky-sweet maltiness. I'm still reminded of a Speyside whiskey, a notion furthered by the beer's less than subtle booziness (though in fairness it does go down with blissful ease).

The Kaiser may be intended as an autumn beer but nearly everything about it - right down to its warming alcohol presence - is strongly reminiscent of Christmas. (Actually, there's a striking amount of similarity to Eggenberg's Samichlaus.) I like the beer a great deal but sure 'tis no Oktoberfest. Buy a bomber, but don't open it until the pumpkin is composting and the tree is decorated and lit.

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bomber, with an imposing picture of Kaiser Wilhelm on the cover,

A: Pours a bright, amber, orange, the thick white head lasted all the way through the 10th to 13th innings of the Rockies-Padres game, while I drank it, so very good retention, spotty lacing, the the quality of the head bumps it up to 4.5.

S: Very malty, caramel and toffee abound, has a sour quality to it, almost like a mixture of sauerkraut and pumpkin, with a mix of sweet orange oil, fragant, but very strange.

T: The immensity of the malts hit you first, there are some hops in there, but they are light and you really only notice them at the beginning of the brew before the phenolic and alcoholic character of the brew comes into effect, very sweet, can be cloying at times, but this is not much of a bother to me.

M: Thick and syrupy, phenolic, a bit of medicinal character to it as well, very sweet with a lot of residual sugar, with a bit of an alcohol burn, what I would expect from something described as an Imperial Oktoberfest.

D: Lower than its 5-6% brethen, this is a high quality strong lager beer that demands respect, it is a sipper, and a great fall seasonal, definitely something different this fall, first time I've ever found it, and I'm glad I did.

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Photo of KAF
4.2/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at the Autumn Brew Review in Minneapolis, MN. I have also had it bottled. If every Oktoberfest tasted like this I would look forward to the end of summer. A golden amber pour with a pale head. Sweet smelling. Smooth and slightly syrupy.

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The Kaiser from Avery Brewing Company
3.84 out of 5 based on 1,300 ratings.
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