Avery Anniversary Ale - Seventeen (Dry Hopped Black Lager) | Avery Brewing Company

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Avery Anniversary Ale - Seventeen (Dry Hopped Black Lager)Avery Anniversary Ale - Seventeen (Dry Hopped Black Lager)
Very Good
287 Ratings
Avery Anniversary Ale - Seventeen (Dry Hopped Black Lager)Avery Anniversary Ale - Seventeen (Dry Hopped Black Lager)

Brewed by:
Avery Brewing Company
Colorado, United States

Style: German Schwarzbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.69%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by WhatsNewinBooze on 05-20-2010

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 287 |  Reviews: 211
Reviews by hawkmage:
Photo of hawkmage
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
4.22/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What an awesome concept for their seventeeth ann. beer,a hopped up schwarzbier!Poured into a Monchshof schwarzbier glass a deep cola color,a bit of ruby hue,a large fluffy tannish colored head atop.Great German hop aromas,very leafy and "green",there is that black malt, bitter chocolate,along with some dark bread aromas.Starts out mildly sweet on the palate with some molasses flavors along with bitter chocolate,a healthy dose of leafy hops come thru into the finish.A great mix of "dark" sweetness and a healthy dose of German hops,my German friends may not like this but my American palate freaking loves it!

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Photo of RoyalT
4.53/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - This came out a gorgeous dark brown in color, almost black, with one of the most beautiful heads that I've ever seen. It was brownish-white in color, very leaning towards brown so that you'd almost call it a light creamy brown, and besides showing great retention when it finally did subside it left thick globs of foam all around the inside of the glass and a bubbly island in the middle. This really is one of the best-looking heads that I've ever seen in my life.

Smell - This is almost evenly weighted between malts and hops. First you have the dark, rich, roasty malts that show some light coffee grounds and a nice, dark cocoa. The raw sugars rightly set off the more bitter notes and so the malt portion of this bouquet is well-balanced all by itself.

Then comes the hops. They didn't make the mistake of overkill with giant PacNW monsters and instead, and some would say surprisingly for this brewer, did an intense take on rather mild hops. This has the effect of producing a strong European hop aroma but staying in tandem with the wonderful malt base. Brilliant!

Taste - This is medium-bodied IAW the style with some refreshing bitterness throughout but nothing overdone. It is quite filling yet waters the lips. The carbs are very mild indeed, again keeping with the style.

Drinkability - I had low hopes for this Avery effort with Kaiser flashbacks meaning another overdone effort at a classic, easy-drinking German style but for everything they did wrong with Kaiser they nailed exactly right here. This took a lot of finesse and indeed a ton of restraint and they managed to pull this off quite well.

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Photo of weatherdog
3.67/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured into an oversized wine glass

It pours a deep deep brown with transparent mahogany highlight at the edge of the glass. A generous mocha head lasts an adequate amount of time before tapering off.

The aroma is starts off with a nice grassy hop nose and then goes into a medium level of coffee roastiness. The hopping is actually reminds me of grass much more than anything I've smelled before. They compliment each other in an unexpected way.

The taste starts with some roasty coffee undertones with maybe just a little bit of chocolate. Then the dry-hopping kicks in and the strong grass flavors masks the roastiness for a bit and it ends with a great lager crispness. An interesting beer for sure. It's different than Black IPAs because the bitterness isn't as high and more roastiness, and then the lager characteristics add such a cleanliness. Unique and enjoyable for sure.

Carbonation level is medium, mouthfeel is crisp and dry as it should be. The hoppyness and roastiness covered up the ABV very well as it showed no hint that this was a high gravity lager.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.5/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #43 (Aug 2010):

Hah! This hoppy Black Lager is throwing it in the face of Black IPAs! It has an epic head and is pretty damn dark. There's a big, soft resin smack of hops in the nose, with jasmine, black tea, burnt sugar malt and faint mandarin orange in the mix. This beer has a sublimely smooth, full-ish body with a hefty malt base and a faint, roasty sweetness. The hops are very complex yet inviting with a soft spice resin within the oiliness. It's hard to tell this beer's real strength. It has a light, roasty and big hoppy finish. Killer ... yes, this beer is sessionable (as we could not stop sipping it).

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Photo of bulldogg915
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of Beaver13
3.85/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle. Pours brown-black with a big creamy light tan head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is roasted chocolate malts, some dark fruits, and a touch of coffee and some hops.

The flavor is roasted chocolate malts, coffee, and black licorice with a big burnt bitterness in the finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and slightly watery.

Overall, a nice beer. I like the ark hoppiness and the lager aspects add something different than the black IPAs.

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Photo of Billolick
3.95/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bomber, $8.99 at DeCicco's in Ardsley, NY, bottled in May 2010. Pours quite black, with a large light mocha head, that stays and is quite loose. Leaves loose and scattered webs of sheeting and lace. Softly flowing hoppy notes and peppery hops sooth the nose. Light milk chocolate, slightly peppered up hops dominate the palate. Interesting, flavorful, sneakily complex, and thoroughly enjoyable offering. Nice job here by Avery and here's to way more then 17 more years of quality brewing.

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Photo of Mora2000
4/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark brown color with an off-white head. The aroma is roasted malt with some piney and earthy hop notes. The flavor is grassy hops with some darker malts. The flavor is darker malts, but not the roasted malts you get in a stout or porter. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of olradetbalder
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.94/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amazing super dark brown and black pour. Big thick beige head, massive lace, perfect around the glass. Didn't really detect anything that I would equate with dry hopping. More dark fruit than anything.

Taste, very sweet, chocolate malts, does finish each sip very dry, crisp. Not really bitter, this beer looks much more menacing that it really is, it plays nice, this is my first beer of the day, and I was leery with the near 9% abv, but it doesn't come across that way on the palate. I think this beer is one of the best in the black lager type of styles you get. I don't really get the hops that many write about on this one, but it isn't lacking, its just right.

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Photo of glid02
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle purchased from Green's on Ponce in Atlanta.

Pours a sneakily dark brown color with a two-finger tan head. The head recedes slowly into a thin layer on top leaving thick lacing.

Smells of dark malts with hints of roasted undertones. Also present are earthy and somewhat leafy hops with hints of anise.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Sweet dark malt flavors kick things off and are joined quickly by earthy hops. Midway through the sip the sweet malt flavors are lightly tempered by mild amounts of anise and toasted malt flavors. The ending is equally bitter and sweet.

Mouthfeel is very good. It's got a nice thickness with grainy carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I finished my glass without any problems and could have another.

Overall I was expecting more hops after looking at the label but the hop selection was subtle as was the general hop influence. Definitely more of a schwarzbier than an American adjunct lager but even the former may not be the best classification. Either way, it's an interesting beer that's worth a shot. I feel like the use of traditional European ingredients will supply the next wave of American beers.

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Photo of jbphoto88
4.08/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer pours a dark walnut with touches of ruby highlights. The head is thick, sand colored and cappuccino bubbly. As it fades it leaves a lacy residue.

The nose is subtle but well defined. Deep roasted malts with notes of coffee and chocolate. Licking the malt's heels is a nice touch of hop crispness.

The taste is fantastic. There is a great mix of malt and hops. Sweet grains with hinted molasses and coffee followed by a nice bitterness and hop pinch. Off in the distance is a piney, tropical fruit flavor. Interesting, dynamic and different (in a good way) every sip as it warms.

The body is medium approaching full with mild yet firm carbonation. The finish is sweet and a little dry but still very appealing. This is a great beer for the style and an amazing taster. Great find.

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Photo of Brenden
4.08/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

With Black IPAs (or whatever you want to call them) becoming increasingly popular, I'm glad Avery decided to do this. Notes are from September, but thorough as always.

The color is an opaque dark brown, allowing some orange-red hues and highlights to shine through a bit. A big, thick, full light brown head grows and settles to a bit higher than two fingers high. This is a fat crown of a head that sits nicely and leaves plenty of thick, sticky lacing when it eventually does fall to a big, thick foam.
This is a toasty one in the nose with a strong malt presence alongside some solid citrus and pine resin hops notes. Grains linger in the background.
Strong malts and toast with a touch of caramel and a little touch of coffee grounds balance with a bit of a citrus bitterness that's also lightly resinous. I'm getting some doppelbock-like licorice in here as well. Bittersweet chocolate comes in a bit on the finish.
The carbonation is at the perfect level, not detracting from the feel while adding liveliness to a medium-full body. This one is semi-dry, blending bitterness and sweetness very nicely in the mouthfeel. Each sip starts off crisp and gets plenty smooth, making for easy drinking.
The high ABV aside, this is very drinkable.

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Photo of Dewey0603
3.71/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a jet black with a chocolate tan foamy head with great lacing that lasts forever. The smell has roasted malt,hops,and cocoa. The taste has chocolate,roasted malt,cocoa,and some bitter hops. The m/f is light with all the flavors mixing well. A pretty good beer that everyone should try.

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Photo of GilGarp
3.68/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Gold foil topped bomber, served cool into a pint glass.

Seventeen is a very dark brown with thick head and good retention.

Aroma is slightly roasty and nicely hopped.

Flavor is intensely roasty and bitter. It's hard to tell if more of that bitterness is coming from malts or hops but it's pretty strong. Theres a bit of smokiness as well.

Mouthfeel is medium-plus with more carbonation that I prefer especially in a strong dark beer.

Overall it's good but I know Avery is capable of better.

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Photo of alamode
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of Metalmonk
3.83/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Wow, that head of faded-tan foam is seriously billowy and firm. Leaves some lace on the glass too. The color is as-advertised black, although it could be mistaken for a deep, deep dark brown. Bonus points for the styrofoam-stiff head that stays thick forever.

Okay, so this is a lager (Avery's first-ever anniversary lager to boot), but it smells like a black ale/black IPA. Quite hoppy, and those hops are shoved aside by something with a good bit of char, not all that dissimilar from Burger King's charbroiled burgers (been a loooong time since I've been to a BK, but I remember that smell). Interesting. Clearly not your typical black lager--and at 8.69% alcohol, I guess that should seem obvious.

I'm tasting burnt popcorn front and center. I like the charred/hoppy interplay in black ales, but this seems a little strained, or overly bitter. Yet as I get deeper into the glass, the hops separate and become brighter and more vibrant, while the positively scorched malt takes on a toasty, comforting flavor. And a hell of a similarity to real black licorice emerges over time. But that's about all I get...it never takes on a deeper complexity. Even the alcohol stays buried by the burnt malt and the screeching hops. But for big-hops fans and fans of black ales, this is an interesting deviation that still remains in that general family. But technically it's a lager. I'm not sure "schwarzbier" is an appropriate description, even if this is indeed literally a "black beer."

I dig the contrast between burnt/bitter flavor and creamy, round, silky body. A bit of tartness in the finish, with lingering black licorice and very green hops, rounds it all out.

Because of the astringency, burnt flavor and high alcohol, it's certainly one (bomber) and done, and one that I can only rate a "3" for drinkability. But I'm still impressed how consistently Avery offers full-flavored, creative beers with nearly every release. I don't doubt we'll be seeing lots of anniversary ales to come from these beer-savants.

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Photo of Magpie14
3.76/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: once collected in the glass it is as dark as all get, near inky in color. Pouring exposed a few different hues most notably browns and deep reds. Swift head formation and strong retention, great stuff. Lacing is pretty solid as well, noted by massively sticky globs and strings of foamy goodness

S: nose is unique and full of character. Heavy malts, chocolate, earthy hops and a pinch of licorice. Very different

T: deep roasted notes intermingle with cocoa and a slight burnt toffee nut 'n' toast thing going on. Clean tea-like grassy hops and pine rip through mid way after the swallow. The finish is definitely hoppy with the addition of spicy black licorice

M: the feel is pretty lush and slightly sticky. ABV is hidden

D: nice contrast between dark sweet malts and fresh little green cones. I dont think that I would ever drink this again, a nice change from the usual though

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Photo of cokes
3.98/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Basically pitch black with just a trace of ruby-brown highlights when back lit. The head is a solid column of dark tan, stays a good long while and leaves thick smears of lace.
A rotund powdered cocoa and milk chocolate maltiness hits the nostrils, with smaller flourishes of vanilla and caramel. An equally robust minty, wintergreen, pine cone bitterness makes it way in next. It's not unlike a Peppermint patty. Think: York.
The chocolate is darker and more bitter as it rolls into the mouth. A brief milky chocolate moment upfront is immediately superseded by baker's chocolate, then roastier notes of grain and espresso and smoke. There's a mellowness through the middle that suggests lager, but I wouldn't necessarily have pegged it as such had I not known. Especially as the pine cone hops rain down in the latter portions. Added touches of dried herb bitterness and mint oil. It rides out continually bitter and residually (or maybe increasingly) smoky.
It's thickish, meaty, and intense. It's not cloying but it's close, as the flavor remains in the mouth for quite some time. Alcohol is a non-factor. There's just no room for it to be perceived.
Rating this "to style" is an exercise in futility. The imperialness renders the base schwarzbier mute. There's not much finesse here, and why waste the time brewing a lager when your just going to obliterate all the lager subtleties? One is best to approach this thinking of a bludgeoningly hoppy imperial stout or porter. In that regard, I like it a good deal.

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Photo of Sammy
3.7/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Draft, just put on at Delaney's. Black with off-white head. Strong stuff. Lace sheet. Tad above average mouthfeel. Stoutish roast aromas. Rich, chocolately, roasty, and drying.Fine what what it is, but prefer something not so BIG BEER for the style.

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Photo of mhenson42
4/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of prototypic
4.1/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Avery Seventeen pours a dark, mahogany brown color. Light cuts through and reveals nice burgundy highlights all over the place. A soft, tan head covers the top. It's big and stands over two and a half fingers tall. It's slow to recede, leaving a sticky web of lace in its wake. Not bad at all.

One whiff confirms that Avery Seventeen has a German character to it. The yeast and hops give it away. The hops have to be some form of noble hops. Yeast is actually the strongest aroma in the house, and it smells pretty darn good. It's a little earthy and features some dark malt notes throughout. Smells like some ancillary licorice and light spice notes are present. Alcohol is masked well. Smells good to me. Certainly what you'd expect for the style.

The flavor tracks the nose very well. Yeast is very strong in the mix. It has an excellent flavor that is very reminiscent of all things German. I like that. Dark malts give it a nice, semi-sweet base. The hops certainly taste noble to me. They add a nice, light bitter flavor that's a very nice touch. There's an earthy flavor to it that lingers throughout. It actually works pretty well and is flavorful. Light licorice and perhaps anise are noted at the secondary level. Alcohol is not very noticeable. It finishes a little earthy and hoppy.

Seventeen has a medium body that's nice and smooth. Carbonation is dialed down nicely. It's not quite creamy, but for the style, it's pretty well done. Drinkability is good. Quite good. This is a rather tasty Schwarzbier that goes down easy. It's not too strong or intimidating. I like it. A bomber = no problem at all.

I wasn't expecting Avery to go with a Schwarzbier for its seventeenth anniversary release, but I'm glad that they did. This is a nice release. A little left of center? Sure, but it is good. There's not much here that will 'wow' you. But, it is a very solid Schwarzbier that performs nicely all-around. Easily recommended. Nice job, guys. Happy seventeenth!

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Photo of tempest
3.53/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a glass at the Muddy Pig in St. Paul. The near-black beer sounded interesting and looked promising, but I found it was dominated by a strong molasses flavor. There are chocolate and caramel notes around it, but this beer didn't seem unusually hoppy to me. Then again in all fairness, I don't typically notice big hops in imperial stouts or other strong, dark beers. Overall, it wasn't a bad beer by any measure, and I'm sure plenty of folks will enjoy it, but I'm not quite one of them.

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Photo of rufusb
4.05/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

very nice, thick, dark in appearance. Not a lot of foam when poured. Bold flavor, "peat-like"; very pleasant taste with not a lot of alcohol overtones. As the beer warmed, that changed. Still not over powering. Heavy and full of body in your mouth.Great beer.

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Avery Anniversary Ale - Seventeen (Dry Hopped Black Lager) from Avery Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.95 out of 5 with 287 ratings