Samael's Ale | Avery Brewing Company

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Samael's AleSamael's Ale
Very Good
1,481 Ratings
Samael's AleSamael's Ale

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: English Barleywine

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 16.90%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
A super-caramelly, oak-aged strong English-style ale, brewed with Columbus, Fuggels hops and two-row barley, caramel 150L malt.

2006: 14.50% (Batch #2)
2007: 14.50% (Batch #3)
2008: 15.53% (Batch #4)
2009: 16.45% (Batch #5)
2010: 15.82% (Batch #6)
2011: 15.31% (Batch #7)
2012: 15.47% (Batch #8)
2013: 16.90% (Batch #9)
2014: 14.20% (Batch #10)
2015: 14.60% (Batch #11)

Added by ommegangpbr on 06-24-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,481 |  Reviews: 650
Photo of Johnhaley1989
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of markgoodman10
3.25/5  rDev -16.5%

Photo of Dolfan907
2.75/5  rDev -29.3%

Photo of mgironta
3.67/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This brew poured with half a finger of white head that dissipated relatively quickly for the most part, but a little bit hung around, crowning the body. There wasn’t any lacing left on the glass from the head. The body was a cloudy mahogany color with a lot of active carbonation, more than I was expecting actually. The nose was insanely strong and overpowered with oak. Other things that I got on the nose were toffee and vanilla and a crapload of booze. I have a feeling that this is going to knock me on my ass. The taste started with sweet toffee, then vanilla and then literally beat me in the face with oak and finished with a serious booze burn. The body was towards the thick and syrupy side with lighter carbonation than I expected. The finish was long with a lot of heat. Honestly, all this beer was to me was just really sweet, really oakey and really boozy. This was a bit of a disappointment, especially from a brewery that I love. And, definitely not worth the hefty pricetag.

 993 characters

Photo of Supergenious
3.65/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of bigorange
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of RoryOMoore
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of Weebay
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%

Photo of Caleb
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of mychalg9
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of SineWaveFL
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%

Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.42/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

2007 bottling (Batch #3, about 5 years old) poured into a Brooklyn Brewery snifter. Pours murky brown with reddish tints and very little head. The nose has massive sweet notes of caramel, marshmallows, vanilla, oak, bread, and freshly-baked cookies. I get no boozy notes on the nose at all. Time has worked its magic.

Flavor is incredibly intense with full body and slick, oily mouthfeel. The flavor up front is like caramel, butterscotch, and vanilla beans. The candy sweetness just hits you like a bomb. As the beer moves across the palate, the flavors develop and take on strong, concentrated fruit wine flavors. In the mid and back of the mouth, this tastes like a fine ruby porto. It leaves flavors of dates, cherries, and plums on the back of your mouth and warms you with a bit of alcohol as it glides down your throat.

Five years in the bottle has performed miracles on this beer. What starts out as a hot, boozy mess develops into an incredibly refined and complex pour. If you decide to buy Samael, do yourself a favor. Don't drink it fresh. Tuck it away somewhere cool and dark and forget you have it for several years. Your patience will be rewarded.

One final note - even when aged several years this is a massive beer and is not easy to drink. A single 12oz bottle is more than enough for two people to share.

 1,326 characters

Photo of brotherloco
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of RKLIII
1.75/5  rDev -55%

Photo of rodlavers
4.07/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Batch #7, poured into a Founders snifter. Pours a reddish brown color, with a light tan head, about one finger. Head recedes to just about nothing. Minimal cling. Smell is delicious. Sweet caramel, dark fruit, slight woodiness, vanilla, and general sweetness. Smell is similar to Backwoods Bastard, minus the bourbon. Taste is similar to nose, with oak a bit more, and dark fruit a bit less, pronounced. 15.31% ABV well=hidden. Mouthfeel is just slightly burning, and this is where the ABV is most noticeable. Syrup-like texture, but not too overbearing. Overall I like this beer quite a bit. I bought it about 6 months ago and its just been sitting there. Tonight I decided was the night. I'll probably grab it again when I see it, experiment with more aging. This though is pretty good after 18 months.

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Photo of Caskaway
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of tlazaroff
3.55/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

Boozy on the nose, beyond that are bunches of summer fruit. Plums, golden raisins, and caramel - all in full force.

It pours with a half-finger tan head which disappears quickly and leaves little to no lacing. All of that is expected because of the high ABV content. The beer itself is a perfectly clear mahogany color, but has floaters in it.. it's not yeast.. maybe proteins? I have no idea, but it really detracts from the appearance.

Big big BIG caramel throughout the taste and long into the finish. The booze is like a punch in the gut.. it's high. Low on carbonation and a viscous almost syrupy body really make the mouthfeel smooth and comfortable. Its not bad overall, would be great with a cigar. I'd probably still buy it again.

 741 characters

Photo of BrentFranz
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of beerpadawan
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of duff247
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of MidtowneMarket
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%

Photo of ObiWanKushnobi
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of SirIPAalot
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of MarkyMOD
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of beergoot
3.76/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

April 2011 Batch 7 12oz bottle 15.31% ABV

Strange floaters bounce throughout the deep copper-red body. The head is fair, sticky, thin, with lacing down the glass. Strong toffee, caramel, and maple syrup aroma. Taste and mouthfeel smacks you with rich, syrupy sugars (similar in nature to the aroma), a very noticeable alcohol presence, and an all-encompassing bitterness. Definitely heavy bodied.

Except for the mystery floaters (yeast sediment?), this is pretty decent, high ABV barley wine. Bold and assertive across the board, yet pretty well-balanced overall. Complexity is almost an understatement with this beer. Worth checking out, but only in small doses...

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Samael's Ale from Avery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.89 out of 5 with 1,481 ratings
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