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Samael's Ale | Avery Brewing Company

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Samael's AleSamael's Ale
Very Good
1,475 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: 1,475 |  Reviews: 648
Photo of drjman
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of WynnO
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of Mister_Joshy
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of neenerzig
4.82/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

A bottle of Batch # 3 (2007) at 14.9% ABV. Poured into my snifter. I bought this beer from the Party Source in Bellevue, Kentucky when I was in Cincinnati at Jungle Jim's for The Weekend Of Fire in early August 2010, and my good buddy Passow and I had to make the trip across the river to this fine establishment to get fine beers like this we can't buy here in Ohio due to totally bullshit laws and asshole politicians. I had been storing it in my cellar until earlier tonight. This beer pours a cloudy, hazy medium copper brown color. Has lots of floaties in it, as man does this beer have a shitload of yeast sediment in it! The most I've seen in any beer in awhile, that's for sure. Also has a tan head that is about 1/3 inch thick when poured that quickly settles to a nice thick ring lining the inside of the glass pretty after first being poured. Not much lacing here either, and only a very slight bit of spotty surface foam. Sweet aromas of caramel, dark fruit, oak goodness, brown sugar, maple syrup, and alcohol are fill the nostrils nicely upon taking some nice deep whiffs. Elegantly sweet yet lightly salted caramel, brown sugar, dark fruit (raisins, plums, cherries, bananas), slightly roasted nuttiness, maple syrup, a hint of butterscotch, and it is all rounded out with a slight taste of alcohol. No discernible hop presence here whatsoever, but I guess that comes as no surprise when a beer has been aging for 5 + years, right?! Fairly boozy tasting for a beer with this high ABV. I've had other beers in the same ABV range where the alcohol taste was masked or blended into the beer as a whole better than it is here, but this beer is still absolutely amazing! Has a smooth, creamy, sticky, slightly chewy, medium to full bodied mouthfeel with light carbonation. This one really coats the inside of the mouth and the tongue with a thick layer of syrupy, boozy goodness! Dangerously drinkable for a beer of this caliber. And to quote my good friend Passow "This is a beer that is so good that you can drink it in bed and it will lull you to sleep."


 2,073 characters

Photo of BostonHops
4.27/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle served in a snifter.

bottled april '08 (batch 4)
15.53% ABV

pours a murky brown tone with some ruddy hues to it; a half finger of beige/tan head quickly lapses into a collar around the glass - not surprising given how big this beer is. body clears after settling.

aroma is outstanding, probably one of the better barleywines i've smelled in some time. sweet and toasted malts, dark fruits, oak, and booze dominate a fragrant nose. just smells yummy. flavor isn't far behind, from the malts to the oak to the dark fruits. nice buttery quality to it... a touch of molasses in the finish... complex and well-balanced. the alcohol is there but not as overpowering as i assumed it would be.

creamy, medium-full bodied mouth feel with just the right carbonation level; dangerously drinkable for a brew this potent.

originally reviewed: 01-05-2011

 857 characters

Photo of Havion383
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of jriggins6
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of TimH
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of Thickfreakness
4.7/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2011 15.31%

A- Cherry/Copper color poured into my DFH glass. A two finger tinted head that drags a bunch of decently sticky lacing down with it. Carbonation at first... but settles down to a quiet murmur.

S- Caramel, toffee, fresh mission figs wrapped in proscuitto... tons of brown sugar, oatmeal raisin cereal, vanilla, maple syrup, over-ripe banana's, and some alcohol that brings out, and enhances all the flavors.

T- WOW! Cinnamon buns drowned in vanilla/maple/brown sugar/caramel!!! This tastes just as the nose implies! This is friggin' brilliant! Some notes of marshmallow, salted caramel, macadamia nuts, dried cherries, fresh figs, and a really nice burst of alcohol!

M- Sweet, thick and syrupy!!! A wonderful, warming touch of alcohol that opens up the nose and tastebuds. Sugary sweet and full of dark dried fruit!

O- An amazing blend of vanilla/oatmeal raisin cookies/dried fruit/maple syrup/brown sugar/and booze!!! This is absolutely rediculous! Other than GI KH... this is the best BW I've ever had!

 1,024 characters

Photo of Dizzle32
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of yamar68
4.14/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

2011 vintage poured from the 12oz bottle to tulip:

Pours a deep, ruby mahogany with a fizzy, short-lived suggestion of foam. Minimal beading and lacing with lovely legs. Nice looking big beer.

The nose is stuffed with little dark fruits - raisins, figs, plum. Some solid caramel malts, toffee, brown sugar, the booze is pretty balanced for what it is.

Even on the tongue, the 15.31% abv is pretty tame. A lot of the dense fruits are apparent in the flavor. The booze doesn't burn as much as it warms. There's a ton going on here - a great beer to sip and relax on... the body is rather thin and carbonation fades real quick.

Of the demon series, I place this one just behind The Beast. They all take a similar direction, and this one really only suffers in its mouthfeel and appearance. Everything else is pretty well executed. Real good brew.


2007 vintage - batch 3:

Swampy copper brown body capped with a surprising amount of light khaki head that leaves loads of sticky lacing and oily booze legs.

No detectable alcohol character... moldy caramel and toffee dominate the nose, just barely resisting oxidation, coffee cake, nutmeg, smells pretty damn syrupy.

Dull, smooth, fruit cake, dry, the finish leaves me asking for more... not enough booze but also not enough complexity... I can't imagine that this one will improve at this point. Certainly smooth but less than impressive.

Drink 'em if you got 'em.

4 / 3.5 / 4 / 4 / 3.5

 1,447 characters

Photo of Badbobx
4.05/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. There was a faint lacing following a pleasant faint reddish brown pour.

S - the aroma was an inital hit of oak with a following hint of ripe fruity sweetness.

T - the taste is pleasant. This is a very sweet brew requiring a lenghty tasting. Sit back and appreciate the sweetness, the slightly caramel, spicy,raisin, apple flavor. There is a rather raw element to the favor that is rather jolting at first, but mellows as the brew warms.

M - there is a nice mild carbonation to this brew that balances with the carbonation.

O - This is a drinkable beer. This would be enjoyable on a long winter's night by the fire with a good book. The beer has a slightly raw taste that might be bellowed by a bit of aging.

 757 characters

Photo of Thiago
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of Swervine44
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of drewone
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of Etan
3.6/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a brandy snifter. Batch 3 (2007).

A: Pours a dark reddish brown with a small tan head. Lots of sediment falls out at the end of the pour.

S: Intense dark fruits in the nose. Sweet prune, molasses, brown sugar, raisin.

T: More intensely sweet, slightly-oxidized dark fruit: grape and raisin, plum, mushy prune, noticeable oak, very subtle vanilla, cooked sugar, caramel, mild cocoa, a bit of musty sweet oxidation, hot alcohol underneath.

M: Slight tingle of carbonation, thick body.

O: This is surprisingly drinkable for an almost-15% beer, with the alcohol relatively smoothed out and hidden, so the age has done its job there. Other than that, it's very sweet, cloyingly so.

 712 characters

3.75/5  rDev -3.6%

Photo of Aschap
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Photo of coz
4.5/5  rDev +15.7%

Photo of DovaliHops
4.12/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Batch 5, April 2009. Pours an almost-clear, reddish amber color with a very small off-white head that disappears quickly. Scent is initially heavy with an inviting oak aroma. A little bit of booze with a ton of dark fruits and a very sweet, candy-like aroma. Tons of malt with some sweet caramel and wood. Taste is initially VERY sweet...this beer tastes like creme-brule... very sweet and desert-like. Sweet dark fruits with some candy-like flavors. A ton of caramel and malt flavors with a nice warming sensation from the high ABV. For how high the ABV is, the booze is nowhere near overwhelming. Solid beer. Mouthfeel is full bodied and a bit on the syrupy side. Drinkability is scary for how high the ABV is. Overall, this is a very solid beer. Glad I held onto it for so long, as I amagine this not being as good when fresh.

 829 characters

Photo of Hopstout
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of Trexter103
1/5  rDev -74.3%

Photo of Balvenie
4.25/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of cashmier
3.25/5  rDev -16.5%

Photo of EfilsGod
4.75/5  rDev +22.1%

Samael's Ale from Avery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.89 out of 5 with 1,475 ratings
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