Samael's Ale | Avery Brewing Company

very good
1,469 Ratings
Read the review
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.

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,469 |  Reviews: 648
Photo of brotherloco
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of RKLIII
1.75/5  rDev -54.9%

Photo of rodlavers
4.07/5  rDev +4.9%
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.

 804 characters

Photo of Caskaway
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of tlazaroff
3.55/5  rDev -8.5%
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 +9.5%

Photo of beerpadawan
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of duff247
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of MidtowneMarket
4.5/5  rDev +16%

Photo of ObiWanKushnobi
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of SirIPAalot
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of MarkyMOD
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of beergoot
3.76/5  rDev -3.1%
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...

 667 characters

Photo of WaydeRafnel
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of danthehopslamman
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of pmarlowe
3.75/5  rDev -3.4%

Photo of zac16125
4.25/5  rDev +9.5%

Photo of Darkmagus82
4.59/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap in a 10 oz chalice glass - 2012 vintage

Appearance – The beer is served an amber color with a thin-just off white head that fades fast to leave only a small amount of lacing. While leaving little lacing, the beer clings to the side of the glass upon swirling giving it a “thick” look.

Smell – The aroma is heaviest to of sweet smells. Aromas of toffee, caramel, fruit (some dark and tropical) as well as aromas of vanilla and oak. These aroma overall, when mixed with some lighter biscuit, yeasty and boozy aromas make for one nice smelling brew.

Taste – The taste hits sweet and hard. There is a huge taste of caramel and toffee with a lighter bready flavor upfront. Some flavors of vanilla and oak are present at the beginning. As time advances the oak and vanilla get stronger. The caramel and toffee that were huge in the beginning decline some with a up-surgence of some of the fruit flavors. More to toward the end a lighter yeasty flavor with a moderate boozy flavor come to the tongue. While there is a boozy flavor that does warm the tongue, it is less then would be expected for a 15 % abv + brew. Overall a sweet warming feel is left on the tongue. Delicious.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is thick and creamy with the carbonation level being on the lower side. Both are fantastic for accentuating the sweet, oaky and boozy flavors of the brew.

Overall – Overall, it is sweet, flavorful, warming and delicious. This is definitely one to sit back and sip over a long conversation with a friend (or a stranger at a bar that can become a friend). Give it a go if you have the chance.

 1,627 characters

Photo of BaconBandit
5/5  rDev +28.9%

Photo of LotsofLupulin
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of Danobold
4.5/5  rDev +16%

Photo of jwat
4.5/5  rDev +16%

Photo of st9647v3
4/5  rDev +3.1%

Photo of retreminy
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%

Photo of cindyjeffsmith
4.84/5  rDev +24.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Batch 3. April 2007. Picked this up in late 07' as I recall. Have several samael's in the cellar.
Appearance: murky brown especially close to the end of the bottle.
Smell: huge and awesome! I must be a weirdo cause this brew gets little love on ba, and I consistently am floored every time I open one. Dark and bright fruits. Redolent and buttery with caramel.
Taste: all the promise of the nose delivered in a port like magic.
Overall: a transcendent creation. Avery take a bow.

August 2015 Edit. Drinking a Batch 5 from 2009. Holy shit this is good. No alcohol present at all.

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Samael's Ale from Avery Brewing Company
3.88 out of 5 based on 1,469 ratings.
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