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Samael's Ale | Avery Brewing Company

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Samael's AleSamael's Ale
Very Good
1,476 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: 1,476 |  Reviews: 648
Photo of ncworster
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%

Photo of sennin
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass. Batch #18, bottled April 2012.

The "Demons of Ale", Avery Brewing Company's tribute to all things brutal and awesome is one series of brews that I have been enjoying my time a great deal with. These beers are BIG, and are some of the best I have tasted and with "Samael", Avery has done it again.

A- Maybe it has something to do with the name, but this beer looks almost like it is billowing out of the depths of something. Pours an amber color with a small amount of off-white head lasting through the whole session. There is very spotty lacing, but its there in small amounts. Particulate matter can be seen in the glass, slowly rising to the top and falling back down again, almost resembles what I would imagine the river Styx would look like. Very cool look.

S- Wow. Molasses, caramel, maple syrup, some burnt brown sugar, and something like an aged cheese like smell. There is A LOT going on in this and its never overpowering or unpleasant. Alcohol smell is non-existent. Very interesting smelling beer, one of my favorites that I have yet to come across.

T- Molasses and syrup hit hard at first- sweet, but not overly so. Alcohol then becomes evident but serves more to give it that very oak barrel, bourbon like taste. On the swallow, you get tastes like butterscotch that go along with the continuous molasses and syrup backbone. Bitterness and sweetness perfectly act in unison, giving the beer a very balanced and incredible taste. Sweetness can get a bit overpowering as the session goes on though. But still, I can't see myself tiring of this, it's a slow drinker after all. Good stuff.

M- Silky smooth at first, but later evolves into a slightly dry chalkiness. Even still, the dryness at the end is almost nice, serves as a great way to finish off the brew. Its rather flat too, but to me this works very well with the style. Heavy carbonation would have ruined this brew. Its a very nice balancing act, to an already very well-balanced brew. Excellent.

Avery Brewing Company continues to impress. I have liked nearly every single one of their beers that I have tried, but their Demons of Ale series is the top of the pack and "Samael" is certainly a worthy addition to the pleasant brutality of that series. Find it, buy it, drink it and revel in the brutality. Cheers.

 2,319 characters

Photo of imscotty
4.7/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Thank you Bobbie for this 2005 Samael. I never would have had the patience to age this beauty for seven years, but I am glad that you do.

A: Lovely deep amber orange color, almost no head, no lacing, little carbonation apparent.

S: The smell of malt caramel is overwhelming. It smells boozy too, some vanilla. I see that others with more sophisticated noses smell other subtle fragrances, but for me this is one big malt bomb.

T: Caramel malt, caramel malt, caramel malt and vanilla, maple syrup, and molasses. This beer explodes in the mouth with oily sweetness. There was no carbonation apparent, yet it still tingles on the tongue. The alcohol is hidden until you feel the after burn as it slides down your throat and warms your stomach. I am not kidding I feel it radiating to the extremities. This beer is a monster. It is still too sweet. It could age for years more. I love it.

M: I drank mine from a champagne glass believe it or not. I think a whiskey glass would have been better. It does not matter much; this is not a subtle beer. It will explode in your mouth whatever the delivery system. This beer is liquid candy.

O: Let me start by saying that I love big English barleywines. I think there is no better way to finish the day than sipping an old Thomas Hardy's. This beer is great for the style. It is sweet caramel candy, maybe too sweet; you can age this monster for years. It is a sipper, but I was not willing to share, I wanted every drop for myself. If you are lucky enough to find a Samael put it away for a decade and count yourself lucky. Save it for a cold winters night and enjoy.

 1,613 characters

Photo of DCocco86
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of gshak
4.52/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Bottled April 2011, sampled May 2016.
5 years in the cellar, aka my beer closet at room temperature seems to have worked wonders on this beer. The last I had, this beer was still very hot at around 2 years of age. Now, it is simply sublime. Without going into the details, I just want to add that this beer didn't have any harsh alcohol feel to it, and tasted like an intense port wine. I might even be compelled to say, a bourbon barrel-aged barley wine. Extremely sweet, and very complex. Concentrated flavors of dark fruit, oak, vanilla, sugar syrup, some chocolate even. This is a fantastic sipper.

 602 characters

Photo of Devonben07
5/5  rDev +28.5%

Photo of marct
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of tswater
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of Huhzubendah
3.62/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

2008 vintage

The beer appears sunburst orange, perhaps a touch of ruby, with very little head. The aroma offers booze, malt, oak, tannic citrus. The flavor is definitely smoother than the fresh bottle I had a few years ago. Lots of oak, very sweet. Fine for sipping, but an ounce or two is plenty. Eh...

 304 characters

Photo of Bluestar
3.24/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Batch #8 (2012) poured from the bottle into a DFH signature pint glass.

Initial pour has small off-white head that dissipates quickly - little to no lacing left on the glass.

Appearance - colour is orange tinted mahogany (as others has said), with plenty of little, transparent floaties suspended in the glass. Not sure if this is yeast, protiens or what... (the glass was definitely clean and it was not from that).... The floaties are a little unappealing...

Smell - sweet toffee and caramels, boozy.

Taste - sweet toffee and caramels, slight hint of dark, overripe fruit, very boozy and very warming. After the first two sips I could certainly feel it in the stomach and the warming sensation of alcohol ran through my body from head to toe.

Mouthfeel - syrupy, sticky... clings to the mouth and throat as I swish it around to to bring out all the little neuances...

Overall - almost sickly sweet. This is definitely a very young beer that needs to spend another 2-3 years in the bottle at least to be more enjoyable. I am disappointed that I drank one of my bottles now, as I feel it will have been a waste compared to how this will taste further down the road. Hopefully it turns out to be worth the $9/bottle price tag in 2-3 years.

 1,244 characters

Photo of sendbeer
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%

Photo of DreamsOfMarshallWharf
4.75/5  rDev +22.1%

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of polishkaz
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of harpus
3.5/5  rDev -10%

Photo of RandyKemka
4.75/5  rDev +22.1%

Photo of thegerm87
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of Weebsjak
5/5  rDev +28.5%

Photo of PlasteredRogue2
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

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

Samael's Ale from Avery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.89 out of 5 with 1,476 ratings
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