Deschutes / Bell's - Schwarzbier (Pilot Brewhouse)
Deschutes Brewery

Deschutes / Bell's - Schwarzbier (Pilot Brewhouse)Deschutes / Bell's - Schwarzbier (Pilot Brewhouse)
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German Schwarzbier
4.06 | pDev: 8.13%
Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Deschutes / Bell's - Schwarzbier (Pilot Brewhouse)Deschutes / Bell's - Schwarzbier (Pilot Brewhouse)
Notes: In celebration of our 30th anniversary we're honoring our brewing family tree. This full-flavored dark lager with roasty, nutty, and chocolate notes was brewed with our former head brewer, Tim Gossack, now at Bell's.
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Reviews: 30 | Ratings: 72
Photo of bubseymour
4.61/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Such an outstanding beer for this style. Best I've personally ever had.

Ironically I am drinking this beer 5-6 months AFTER the best by date of March 2019 and it is amazing.

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Photo of rypkr
3.78/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Rating this is tough. It's a piss poor example of a schwarzbier, but even a piss poor schwarzbier is better drinking than 950/1000 ipas released every week.

This is poor per style but still an OKAY beer compared to the majority of the shit put that clouds the shelves today.

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Photo of IronLover
3.96/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Black in color. Poured with a moderate, light beige foam with medium retention. Light roasted malt aromas with dark malty and dark chocolate notes. Medium light bodied with medium high carbonation and light, smooth feel. Sweet dark malt and light roasted coffee flavors. Medium light roasty bitterness in the middle. Finished dryly with dark malt flavors followed by light roasted coffee notes. Light and tasty. A pretty damn good black lager.

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Photo of brentk56
3.92/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours fudge brown with a bubble show; the beige head rises to three fingers, leaving splashy lacing behind

Smell: Roast, mocha, caramel and pecan

Taste: Roast and mocha forward, with the caramel and pecan building; a slight degree of smoke, in the middle, but the finish leans toward the sweet side

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Certainly not your father's Schwarzbier, this one leans toward the sweeter side; still, rather enjoyable

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Photo of DefenCorps
4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Can from ABV.

Black with brown highlights and a light brown head with excellent retention and lacing, this looks great. The nose is excellent. Tons of roast with toasted bread, cocoa, chicory, coffee grounds, a touch of coffee liqueur, this is excellent. The palate opens bitter and roasty with a blend of cocoa, coffee and roasted grain. Bitterness is fairly aggressive with a little bit of earthy hop bitterness pairing well with the grainy bitterness. Roast flavors are present throughout the palate, lingering on into the finish with a cocoa note present along with a touch of ash. Medium light in body and creamy in carbonation, this feels fantastic on the palate. The initial sips felt a little watery, but that dissipated quick. Alcohol, while a little higher than ideal for the style, works with the roast and creamy flavors. Excellent stuff.

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Photo of arizcards
3.96/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Picked up a single at TW Arrowhead 11-13-19 for $2.79. Best by 3-16-19; consumed 3-4-19. Cold stored since purchase.

Beer poured black with a decent off white head that dissipated quickly.

Nose has some roasted malt, coffee, and chocolate.

Taste follows the nose, mild roast and chocolate. Some coffee is in the background. Finish is sweet but balanced.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and pretty smooth.

Overall an enjoyable beer that i would seek again since this style is pretty rare.

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Photo of beersampler6
3.86/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Very nice beer that I enjoyed despite this not being my typical style of brew. Pours a dark brown with some nice fluffy tan head and just a very small amount of spotty lingering lacing. Smells faintly of malt, caramel, nuttiness and some roast coffee. Tastes similarly, along with some faint milk chocolate, vanilla, roasted nuttiness and some grain. Smooth, mild, ever-so-slightly creamy mouthfeel and good carbonation. Very enjoyable!

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Photo of kojevergas
2.85/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Brief impressions from a can:

30 IBUs. 6.0% ABV. "Best by: 03/16/19."

APPEARANCE: Dark khaki-tan colour head, creamy and frothy. Head retention is excellent - ~8-10 minutes.

Body colour is an opaque ruby black. No yeast/lees are visible within.

AROMA: Cola nut, dark malts, bready German yeast, raisin, hints of licorice, black bread, earthiness.

No roasted barley or hop aromatics appear.

TASTE & TEXTURE: A bit thin for my tastes, and lacking in terms of any roasty flavours. Black bread, bitter licorice, raisin, dark malts. I'm not a big fan of its flavour profile, which could do with some piney hop notes, further breadiness, and some overt roast and/or chocolate.

Balance isn't quite dialed in. A bit shallow and simple in comparison to traditional German expressions of the style.

Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, harsh, rough, or scratchy. Medium-bodied, a little coarse, a little dry.

OVERALL: A decent stab at a schwarzbier, but not an impressive beer all things considered. Bell's and Deschutes are two breweries I've long thought highly of, but this is far from either's strongest work.


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Photo of Mdog
4.17/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

From a 12oz can:

Appearance: Very dark brown, huge head.

Smell: Mild roasted aroma.

Taste: Creamy, combination of mild sweetness and roastiness. Very smooth and easy drinking.

Overall: Great to see and try a schwarzbier from a couple of great breweries. Schwarzbiers were one of the first styles I tried when I got into craft beer, and I'm still a fan. Very good flavor and drinkability here.

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Photo of beertunes
3.64/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

12oz can poured into 14oz teku. Poured a solid black color, with less than a quarter-inch of tan head that had low retention and left very light lacing.

The aroma was full of rich roast notes and just hints of floral hops.

Pretty much the same on the tongue; lots of nice roast and maybe just a hint of smoke.

The body was crisp, smooth, and had a dry finish.

Drinkability was very good, I could easily put back a couple of these. overall, a very nice, more than worthy of your time if you see it.

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Photo of ZAP
4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Impressions of bakers chocolate, roasty coffee..and a touch of smoke.

It has a creamy medium body..

Nice and flavorful. The roasty notes are pretty strong. Finishes slightly dry. Well made Schwartzy.

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Photo of vette2006c5r
4.49/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Schwarzbier pours a black color, with a small, tan lacing head. Big malty aroma, creamy chocolate notes. Flavor is complex, big, rich, creamy, sharp malts, hints of chocolate and smoke. Great perfect body. Overall, this is an amazing schwarzbier, very flavorful, great perfect feel.

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Picked this up on a whim at the Waterworks Giant Eagle for a couple bucks.
A - Quite dark beer slight ruby hues at the base. Head is a pretty shade of mocha tint.
S - Roasty smokey chalky and slight chocolate it smells like a good take on the style.
T - Sweet roasty then smokey with just a hint of dry chalky finish it's quite good. Have had better takes on the style mostly adding more smoke flavors but this is still tasty stuff.
M - Smooth creamy medium bodied brew

Overall it's a great take on the style. Not quite a porter and semi sweet like a stout. Very good!

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Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The craft beer community is so incestuous. That brewer was here, but now he's there, and now we're making beautiful beer together leads the brewers of Deschutes and Bell's to collaborate on a classic German-styled roasty, dark lager that drinks like a porter but with a softer side that celebrates the intangibles that's hard to place.

Dark brown and a hair's shade from black, the bark stained beer crowns with a creamy soft mocha froth. Roaming the nose with toast, roast and a pep of char, a nearly smoky chocolate scent joins the bold roast coffee notes for a scent that sides with the roast. Gentle sweetness of caramel, honey and candied pecans greet the tongue with a malty sweet introduction.

The roast wins out on the middle palate as the sweetness begins to fade and the roast character nearly of authentic Irish dry stout takes shape. Dark roast coffee, baker's chocolate, roasted pecans and a hint of burnt cream extends into a broad, spicy and woodsy balance to close.

Medium bodied, this collaboration has a creamier texture and fuller mouthfeel than the typical Kostritzer Schwarzbier. A medium long linger of char, campfire and roast extends into a bold coffee-like aftertaste.

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Photo of JimboBrews54
5/5  rDev +23.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Nice and balanced. This one is not too chalky like some of its other competitors, this is a cozy beer that has a very nice warm tone to it. Not bitter or chalky at all, definitely some coffee and nutty notes. Like a light version of a porter or a stout. Once again feeling the Scwarz! I now have a beer to compare others in this category!

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Photo of twage04
4.29/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours black with some dark clear ruby around the edges, medium carbonation. Smell is chocolate, coffee, toasted malt and taste is much of the same. Very smooth, easy'ish to drink but rich in flavor.

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Photo of owenlift
4.28/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Found this at Old Town Liquors, and being a huge fan of Deschutes and Bell's picking it up was a no brainer. It does not disappoint. Great looking and great tasting, especially on a cold night. Not sure how long it will be around, so I am going to try to find some to squirrel away. Excellent job. IMHO Brewer Tim made more of a lateral move to Bell's. ; )

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Photo of Superheatnsubcool
4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Straight from a 12 oz. can. Rich aromas and flavors of chocolate, dark toasted bread, toffee, and a hint of smoke. I’ve never had a beer from Bell’s, but this beer seems to take the best attributes of Deschutes core dark ales and Smith them out in a lager. Really digging it.

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Photo of zeff80
3.75/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap. Poured an opaque, jet-black color with a small, tan head of foam. It smelled of chocolate, toffee and smokiness. Nice smokey taste with chocolate and roasted malt.

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Photo of Tsar_Riga
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - Pours in dark brown, mostly opaque with dark brown transparent edges, light tan head, moderate lacing.

S - A malty joy, caramel and rich bread notes, a hit of grassy hops.

T - Front full of dark bread and molasses, chocolate with a mild caramel sweetness, a bit of spicy hops, and a moderate acidic bitterness of coffee in the close.

M - A moderate weight, easy to drink, with a dry finish that scrubs the weight away.

O - This a mighty fine beer, and one I would love to see again. Delicious.

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Photo of AdmiralOzone
3.95/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours very dark brown with a thick dark tan head that falls away quickly but leaves a good amount of lacing. Aroma is dark roasted malt, coffee and a whiff of smoke. Flavor is mocha, coffee, dark malts and the touch of smoke. Feel is medium bodied. Overall a nice beer but nothing special.

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Photo of BB1313
4.04/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Best by 3/16/18. 12oz can poured into a tulip. Pours almost black with a big khaki head that falls leaving great retention and nice lacing. The aromas have some cocoa powder leading the way along with some subtle hints of smoke. Malts are there. The flavors basically follow the nose. More cocoa leading the way. Mild smoke. Hints of milk. Roasted characteristics are there. Malts do their thing. Alcohol goes unnoticed. Mouthfeel is on the fuller side of light-bodied with active carbonation. It's sharp, smooth and easy to drink.

This is a very nice collaboration. The craftsmanship is on point, which is what you would expect from both breweries. It's clean, crisp, sharp and refreshing. Well done.

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Photo of MonDak_Joe1953
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz can into glass. Best by date stamped on can bottom as '03/15/19'.
Very dark cola brown body. Tan colored head settles down to thin cap and ring. Some layers of lacing left behind.
Aroma is dark roasted malts, dark chocolate, burnt coffee, brown sugar, and earthy hops.
Taste is quite similar to aroma, but arrives in stages. First up is dark roasted malts with bitter sweet chocolate, then the burnt coffee and brown sugar, and then a nutty/woody tail end. The earthy hops mix in throughout but are rather faint.
Thin to medium mouth feel. Good carbonation. The taste lingers for quite some time.
Has quite a swirl of blended flavors that step in and step out during the taste profile. Very tasty dark lager.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Best by March 15th 2019.

Pitch black pour with a 1 finger head of tan foam, lots of sticky lacing.

Smells of chocolate, light roasted malt, chocolate being more sweet than bitter, little bit of nuttiness.

Exceptionally smooth flavours of chocolate, roasted malt, fine nutty flavour. Great balance between the sweet and bitter and again, smooth as silk flavours and mouthfeel.

A most excellent collaboration!

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Photo of superspak
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce can into lager glass, best before 3/16/2019. Pours crystal clear very dark brown color with a 1 finger dense and rocky khaki head with great retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Aromas of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, brown sugar, toasted biscuit, nuttiness, and dark/brown bread/crust; with lighter notes of smoke, char, wood, pepper, herbal, grass, and roast/toasted earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of roast/bready malts and light-moderate earthy hop notes; with great strength. Taste of big dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, brown sugar, toasted biscuit, nuttiness, and dark/brown bread/crust; with lighter notes of smoke, char, wood, pepper, herbal, grass, and roast/toasted earthiness. Light-moderate herbal/grassy/spicy hop, and roast/char bitterness on the finish. Lingering notes of dark chocolate, cocoa, coffee, caramel, brown sugar, toasted biscuit, nuttiness, dark/brown bread/crust, light smoke/char, wood, pepper, herbal, grass, and roast/toasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Incredible complexity, robustness, and balance of roast/bready malts and light-moderate earthy hop flavors; with an awesome roast/hop bitter/sweet balance; and no acrid/astringent flavors after the finish. Perfectly clean on lager flavors, with zero yeast notes present. Light-moderate increasing dryness from lingering hop/roast bitterness. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately creamy/bready/grainy, and fairly crisp/sticky/chalky balanced mouthfeel that is fantastic. Zero warming alcohol for 6%. Overall this is a fantastic schwarzbier! All around outstanding complexity, robustness, and balance of roast/bready malts and light-moderate earthy hop flavors; very smooth, crisp, and pretty refreshing to drink with the modestly bitter/drying finish. Very clean and rich roasted/Munich malts, with nice earthy hop presence/balance. A highly enjoyable offering, and spot on style example as expected. One of the best I have had.

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Deschutes / Bell's - Schwarzbier (Pilot Brewhouse) from Deschutes Brewery
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 72 ratings