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EKU 28 | Kulmbacher Brauerei AG

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EKU 28EKU 28
Very Good
706 Ratings
EKU 28EKU 28

Brewed by:
Kulmbacher Brauerei AG

Style: Doppelbock

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 11.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A super-strong Bock, but not an Eisbock.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 08-16-2001

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Ratings: 706 |  Reviews: 463
Photo of MrFitgers
4.83/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

All you need to know is that this lager is the benchmark of doppelbock’s. When judging other doppelbock’s... just base their rating on how close they come to EKU 28

 168 characters

Photo of mmmbeer89
3.28/5  rDev -17%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Ozzylizard
3.56/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Four Euros/0.331 L at Maisel and Friends, a bier garten/ beer store in Kulmbach, DE. A suitcase beer.
Bottle dated 28.05.18, stored at 42 degrees. Served at 57 degrees in a hand washed and dried Jester King Snifter.
Aroma – initially caramel malt but it fades with the head until it’s nearly odorless.
Head – large (Maximum 4.8 cm, aggressive pour), light tan, fizzy, gone in less than sixty seconds leaving neither ring nor layer.
Lacing – none.
Body – medium amber, clear.
Flavor – sweet and caramel. No hops, no alcohol, no diacetyl. The alcohol doesn’t show up until the post swallow gastric burn. Considering that this is made with both hops and hops extract, it’s a little surprising that the hops are undetectable.
Palate – full, syrupy, flat.

Worth trying once to see how the 11.2% ABV is hidden. One and done.

Appearance 3.5, Aroma 3.75, Flavor 3.5, Palate 3.5, Overall 3.5.

 910 characters

Photo of r-m-kaylor
4.19/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Nice Dopplebock!
Aggressive pour into generic tulip with 3/4" head which quickly dissipated to a white foam ring (abv perhaps?).

On the eyes, a very nice deep brown clear color with no sediment or floaties.

On the nose, sweet sugars and malt coupled with slight heat from the 11% abv, which is more of an afterthought from the sugars and malty goodness.

Mouthfeel is full with sweetness and maltiness up front through the middle and back, with an ever so subtle palatte cleansing hoppiness...

Overall a fine example of the style - but keep in mind I use Samiclaus as the "standard" of the style.

Thanks for reading!

 624 characters

Photo of psmith161
3.5/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of chebode2
3.97/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of BobbyOlson
3.88/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Giggy
4.4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Photo of Satorn
3.84/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Duff27
4.04/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Davedrinkinbeer
4.23/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bought one to try, I finally found a place that sells this beer, so I figured I better get it. Opening the beer and drinking straight from the bottle, 2 scents jump out-- sweet fruit and alcohol. With 11% alcohol content, the 2nd is not a big surprise. The alcohol scent is not overpowering however.

Tasting the beer is a pleasant surprise, it is very balanced and sweet overall. Alcohol, while the scent is present initially, is well masked until the very end. Plum, sugar, apples, and hops are definitely present. Beer finishes a little dry, sticky, yet has an overall light feel which is surprising.

A very good doppelbock, and also a very strong one too. Surprisingly to me this is not an eisbock, but the sweet taste help mask the alcohol in this beer making it very drinkable. I will get more of this beer in the future.

 838 characters

Photo of Alupin
3.69/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Premo88
3.99/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

11.2 oz. bottle poured into pilsener

L: brown-amber, orange, crystal clear, a bit light compared to other dopplebocks but an absolute beauty -- the color and clarity are stunning; pushes up big head, almost 1 1/2-inches tall, beige/tan foam that looks thick and sticky but dissipates rapidly and doesn't stick; good activity in the glass, mainly a tight column of bubbles in the middle of the column; keeps a thin collar of beige foam

S: fruity sweet ... plums, dates ... just a bit of dust, clean abbey ale dust (nothing barnyardesque or from the farmhouse); fig fruitcake

T: a bit hot from the alcohol is the first note, can't get around it, like a port wine; dusty fig and prune, some spicy hops, way more black pepper/spicy hop flavor than you can detect in the nose; smoothed out on the back end with a layer of brown sugar, molasses -- those notes are light compared to the dark fruit flavors; as it warms, has a slight peat/earthy flavor; the second half of the glass takes on a dominate earthy flavor ... not fruity or sweet but also not bitter or peaty

F: crispy and light for 11% ABV; carbonation tickles the tongue and may be enhancing the alcohol heat; I normally like a lot of carbonation, but for some reason the carbonation here might be a bit much

O: the alcohol heat can throw you at first, but all in all a great brew; the fruity sweet nose is the highlight for me, and the bubble activity inside the beautiful burnt orange-colored brew is quite a show

 1,479 characters

Photo of ajdemma
4.34/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of smithj4
4.08/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of VoxRationis
4.32/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Decanted from an 11.2 oz (330 ml) bottle into a conical pint; serial number 2658681, but no clear production or best by date.
A: Pours a questionably hazy, copper color with very limited and brief head formation and no lacing.
S: Floral bouquet with apple, pear, and citrus notes. Aroma of caramel malt present and predominates as warms. .
T: Sweet up front with caramel and raisin predominating. Nutty. Bitterness present throughout, but light and in excellent balance.
M: Full bodied with light to moderate carbonation. Alcohol perceptible mostly as a feeling in the throat after consumption.
O: A very enjoyable, if somewhat high alcohol, Doppelbock. Have had it before and will do so again.

 698 characters

Photo of sjccmd
3.9/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Robust malty aroma. Rich butterscotch, toffee, grapeskins, raisins. Toast, graham cracker, and cinnamon. Biscuits. I feel like I can sit with this for a while and just smell it.

Pours rich ruby/amber with a thin wispy off-white head. No lacing.

Rich juicy caramel. Baked apples and pears. Burnt sugar. Subtle roast creeps in at the finish. Spicy, sweet alcohol. Seems sweet initially but dries out in the finish.

Medium full body with low carbonation. Feels "sticky" on the palate, but not cloying.

Much stronger and sweeter than a typical doppelbock, but easier drinking than, say, Samiclaus.

 597 characters

Photo of BenBreeg
3.81/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Macamah
2.54/5  rDev -35.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Photo of BB1313
4.35/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

11.2oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a transparent auburn with a fluffy light khaki head that falls leaving nice retention and okay lacing. Great color. The aromas are awesome. Lots of rich caramel along with some toffee notes. Dark fruits are present. Lots of malty goodness. The flavors follow the nose perfectly. The malts shine. More caramel and toffee. Hints of raisins and black cherries. Solid malt backbone. It's sweet, but not cloying or over the top at all. Not too bitter. There's a very subtle spiciness in the finish. Alcohol is well hidden. Mouthfeel is very nice. It's on the lighter side of full-bodied with moderate carbonation. It's very smooth and easy to drink. It's dangerously drinkable.

This is a great brew. Great aromas and flavors. Highly enjoyable and fun to drink. Definitely worth checking out. Highly recommended.

 849 characters

Photo of Spaceman_Jer
4.19/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Photo of dmorgan310
3.91/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of KonigObHops
4.3/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

When this beer was poured it looked more like an Irish red ale than a Dopplebock. It also had a thin beige head which disapated quickly.

The beer had a very sweet, malty aroma.

The initial taste is quite sweet, but the toasted malty tones that you would expect from a Dopplebock are also present. In the middle the maltiness and caramel notes fade and a nutty flavor appears and lingers until the sheer sweetness of the beer overpowers it. At the end the sugary sweetness begins to worm on the tongue and is joined by the strong, but not overpowering presence of the alcohol tingling the tongue.

The mouthfeel is smooth, but not as substantial as you would expect from a Dopplebock. There is also the recurring tingling sensation as the alcohol seems to evaporate on the tongue.

Overall, this is an interesting Dopplebock. It is not as complex or substantial as a Celebrator, and not as straightforward as a Spaten. It is extremely sweet, which is not to be interpreted as bad... Just different for this style. Be careful with this one because it could go down fast, and it packs 11% abv.

 1,097 characters

Photo of Lukebell15
4.24/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of Beginner2
4.22/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Are we dealing with a classic or a great beer here ?
Given that classics (like Anchor's Liberty) inspire a movement, then EKU 28 is just a great beer because no other brewer seems to get how EKU 28 was made because nothing in my experience comes close.
The only thing that is average about EKU 28 is its looks. Even then, it looks like sherry... but alas, beer has suds.
As for the smell, never has there been so much fruit and sweet malt produced in a lager process. And the taste delivers.
Amazingly, the mouth is neither cloying nor alcoholic... which defies expectations.
Overall, if you have never Had EKU 28 twice... then you have not lived.

MJ is quoted on the bottle as calling this a "world classic." Judge that accolade as I quote here his 1999 "Guide" that gave EKU 3 of 4 stars "the nose and palate are intensely malty with some estery notes and a strongly alcoholic finish."
EKU also was selected and received an extensive review in Roger Protz' "300 Beers To Try Before You Die!"
Listed in the "1001 Beers To Taste Before You Die", EKU 28 deserves to be on the list for all of the reasons above.

 1,110 characters

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EKU 28 from Kulmbacher Brauerei AG
Beer rating: 3.95 out of 5 with 706 ratings
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