Köstritzer Schwarzbier | Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co.

BA SCORE
87
very good
830 Reviews
Köstritzer SchwarzbierKöstritzer Schwarzbier
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co.
Germany
koestritzer.de

Style: Schwarzbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by stirgy on 10-17-2001

BEER STATS
Reviews:
830
Ratings:
1,880
Avg:
3.88
pDev:
12.11%
 
 
Wants:
117
Gots:
281
For Trade:
1
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Reviews: 830 | Ratings: 1,880
Photo of mikesgroove
4.5/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Another goodies that my mother brought back from Germany for me. I was thrilled to get to try this one as it really is one of my favorite styles. I opened this one yesterday afternoon before I got the grill going to sip on while I cleaned. Poured into a tall pilsner glass right out of the fridge. The pour was beautiful Rich dark chocolate color, with only a touch of light peaking through on the sides and bottom. A huge, towering, three inch layer of off white froth came up over the top and dropped layer upon layer of thick side glass lace. Kept at least an inch worth of froth on top throughout the entire session.

The aroma was rich and smoky. Loaded down with peat and earthy malts, it was simple and yet defined with a great balance to it and just enough of a hop nose to push its way up front. The flavor followed suit as well. Great balance here as it started out with some nice notes of caramel and smoky peat, and this quickly transformed into an earthen malt show. Nice grains and bready flavor, with a crisp, quick, and very clean cutoff, which had just the right amount of hop bite to it. Great finish left a long lingering hop driven profile that gradually turned over to your classic German lager finish. Really nice medium bodied ale, the carbonation profile on this one was brilliant. Virtually no alcohol made this a beer that could be sessioned even in the hottest of weather. It is a rare day when I can stomach a smoked lager on a 100 degree day, and that is a testament to just how good this one was.

Overall I thought this was outstanding. Easily one of the best I have ever had in the style and something that I would never turn away. A classic representation, I would have to say that anyone who is a fan should try this and it dare I say might even be a nice gateway to someone who is not well initiated. Top notch beer here.

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Photo of smcolw
3.87/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Deep brown color where light shines through along the edge. Modest head, but it leaves a wonderfull web of lace.

Smells lightly dark, like watered down coffee. In the background are some neutral malted grains.

Lighter than one might expect for a beer so dark. It isn't watery as I expected. It also is very mild in the smoke department. The hop is actually dominant along with some deeply toasted malt. The body is "eh". It really is quite neutral all around.

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Photo of Slatetank
4.62/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - A deep brown bordering on black with reddish highlights and a tan head that leaves almost no lace behind

S - A nutty, malty almost creamy espresso and bittersweet chocolate odor that floats lightly over a yeast and herbal mushroom like odor.

M - Prickly carbonation followed by dry dark slightly chalky textures that relax into a mix of salty and sweet with milky smoothness.

T - A dark brown maltiness and crisp nutty dry toasty malt flavor with lightly spiced woody hops and hazelnut. Gentle date notes in the middle adds to the complexity. Salty overtakes sweet subtly and leads to a clean crisp finish.

D - A wonderful session bier, full of flavor and quaffable. A delightful blend of dark malt and lager smoothnes. Worth a taste for almost any occasion - malty, sweet and smooth. Excellent in the drinkability category

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Photo of Jason
4.23/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz brown long neck bottle, no freshness date but there is a description of the beer at the neck of the bottle.

Appearance: A bit rocky in the head department with a lovely lacing effect down the glass. A couple of shades lighter than pitch black.

Smell: Slight roasted and sweet malty aroma, smells of creamed coffee in a faintly sweet way. Quite clean also.

Taste: High smoothness with a deep medium level carbonation, hints of dark bread like a pumpernickel or whole grain is layered thick on the taste buds. Hop bitterness is mild with a bitterness that holds its own for balancing the beer. Mild roasted malt character with hints of carob, chicory and bread crust. Malt sweetness is there but stay to a minimum and does not go to a cloying level at all. Alcohol is meek and barely noticeable, slightly dry finish is doused with a clean graininess and hints of spicy hop.

Notes: I like this beer a lot, not just because this is one of my favourite style but because it keeps it real with flavours that are a bit complex yet not to the point of taking away from actually putting one down if not a few. A damn good pick for the style.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: The pour is a dark brown color with a bit of an amber note to it as well as a tan head.

S: Much fruitier than I was anticipating. Lots of cherries, plums, and raisins. Certainly a lot of roasted malt with a bit of a coffee note to it. There's some nice toffee and caramel character underneath it all.

T: Sweet dark fruits really give this beer a nice balance. Cherries and plums are prominent and work nicely with the bitterness and roasted malts. There's a decent enough sweetness from the malt, but not super pronounced.

M: The body is medium with a moderate level of carbonation.

D: Quite a nice black beer that is not overdone on the roasted malt and bitterness which often gives and astringency and acidity that is unpleasant.

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Photo of mdfb79
3.68/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 07/22/11 notes. Had on tap at Standard, a beer garden about 3 blocks North of Churchkey in DC at 14th and S. Served in what appears to be a large Stange with a handle.

a - Pours a dark mahogany brown color with a reddish tint, one finger of off white head, and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of roasted malts, toasted malts, caramel, bread, and biscuit. Very malty, and pretty nice.

t - Tasted of roasted malts, light chocolate, bready malts, caramel malts.

m - Medium body and low carbonation, pretty smooth.

o - Overall a pretty good schwarzbier. Lots of malts, and very easy to drink. Would give it another shot.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
3.95/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Color is a very dark brown, almost black. A medium-sized head is creamy and light brown. Aroma is of rich dark breads with an edge of cocoa sweetness. Taste is a rich, dark bready malt with plenty of mildly roasted malt flavor. Sweetness is moderate and suits this beer perfectly. All in all, this is a very tasty schwarzbier that I highly recommend.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.48/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

You've probably heard the one about the guy who walks into a bar. No? He says, "Ouch!" Bro. Woody went to Ardmore last Saturday to see what he could see and walked into a bottle shop. He said, "Yay! Look at all of these new CANs in furtherance of The CANQuest (TM)!" It is called The Beer Shoppe in Ardmore Plaza and for those that do not live in PA, you have no idea what a rare bird it is to find a quality bottle shop, especially one that provided me with no less than five (5) new CANned beers on my first visit. This is one of those beers.

From the CAN: "Brewed according to the German purity law (translated)"; "Germany's No. 1 Black Lager Beer"; "Bier, Beer, Biere, Birra, Cerveza, Cerveja" Man, this CAN caters to nearly the whole EU!

The loud Crack was music to mine ears and the Glug was a pleasant accompaniment. I achieved a finger of dense, foamy, mocha-brown head with good retention. Color was a deep, dark-brown with mahogany highlights at the edges. The visual is why one should always deCANt from the CAN into a glass. I had to hold it to the light to get the full effect. Nose was filled with grassy hops, just like in the Bros.' description on this site. I was ready to swoon. I CAN honestly say that I had no appreciation for lagers until I embarked on The CANQuest (TM) and found out that not all lagers are created equal. Mouthfeel was medium, approaching fullness, but not quite achieving it. The taste married the grassiness of the hops with the bitterness of anise and molasses, undoubtedly from the malt. Finish was semi-dry and quite refreshing. The low ABV makes it a good CANdidate for the cooler and I would recommend it to those who say, "I don't like dark beers." Sheesh. Get off of your high Lovibond horse and join the party!

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.87/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A dollar off at D's plus it's an old favorite of the style. Appearance: Dark coc-cola like caramel dark brown amber with a full tan head that quickly dwindles in my pint leaves nice rings of lacing. Aroma: Herbal grassy hop note with mild dark chocolate and hints of coffee not bad at all. Taste: Great mix of darker malts and herbal toned noble hops clean finish after the cold conditioning with hints of chocolate and coffee very quaffable. Mouthfeel: Medium to light bodied great stuff smooth as all hell. Drinkability: Definitely gets a thumbs up great appetising brew that is a staple for the style, mass produced yes good hell yes.

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Photo of johnnnniee
2.95/5  rDev -24%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a solid dark brown with brilliant ruby highlights when held to light. smallish creamy off white head musters but slowly recedes in my glass. Smells of prunes and raisins with a solid shot of caramel and burnt sugars. Very sweet aroma with little to no hop presence. The flavor is more burnt sugar than anything else. A light bit of dark fruits and a hint of ash round out the flavor. Medium to light body with a moderate level of carbonation and a burnt sweet watery mouthfeel. I didn't enjoy this one very much. There aren't really any flaws here, but I felt it was a bit boring.

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Photo of BeerForMuscle
4.15/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap into a tall glass at Brauhaus Schmitz, Phil

A - Almost black with a smaller beige head.

S - This beer smell ssweet and roasted. Scents of coffea and sugar come through.

T - The taste is sweet as well. Roasted coffee, chocolate, sweet earthy malt, and honey are detected. Reminds me of having honey on a toasted piece of dark bread.

M - This beer is super smooth. Lightly carbonated and light-medium bodied, it is very easy to drink this one. I can see myself getting a six pack of this beer.

Notes - I love schwarzbier and this is one of my favorites. It has a great pairing of flavors and is very smooth and drinkable.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.88/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear dark brown with a brownish head. Earthy flavor, but a bit thin in a way. Even though it's dark, it's not carrying a huge amount of flavor. A noticed bready sweetness is there. The carbonation is full and slightly biting. Carries a good liquid feel. A nice drinker. Not overly complex, but bringing some nice flavors on the profile and not too bad. Worth the shot.

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Photo of smakawhat
3.97/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured on tap at Biergarten Haus in DC into a mug.

A very black carbonated body, with walnut like hues of brown. A light tan very together head that is foamy is present also, some good lacing while drinking.

Smell? What Smell? This has next to nothing other than it seems sort of clean and a mild malt grain.

Taste is a big flavor punch luckily. A great chewy grain comes through of delicious malt. Hints of roast coffee, and mild chocolate in the palate. Sweetness brings more roast on the swallow, it's almost like a really good light porter. Good mouthfeel for this style a little wet but actually pretty bold considering the low abv.

Overall this is a great tasting sessionable brew, it's so far probably the best Schwarzbier I've had. Too bad it doesn't have much going for it on the nose.

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Photo of jwc215
4.4/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I have had several schwarzbiers and, so far, this is my favorite. It is a very good example of this type.
It has a very black, creamy off-white head that is fairly well-retained.
The smell is of sweet, honey molassass blended with fruity hops in the background.
The taste is flavorful sweet malty flavors of toffee and caramel with hints of bitter hops in the background. It is well-balanced and simply delicious. It's flavor is quite complex, and a very good example of this type.
The mouthfeel was a bit too sweet, but clean. It was refreshing (though I don't know about the summer, but for any other time of the year, as it should be for this style).
The moderate abv and delicious taste makes this a very drinkable brew.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.7/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, the one that features Goethe reclining with a glass of this same beer in his legendary, literary hands.
Appearance: nearly black in color, though transparent in spots, and reddish brown at bottom, with a fat, fuzzy, creamy tan head.
Aroma: soft, sweet, cocoa-y, hints of gentle spices, nutty, earthy, with further notes of espresso & chocolate.
Taste: thick malt dominates the profile here, with a soft texture, after some initial play on the palate. Very creamy, nice taste.
But alas, the good bits don't last terribly long. It thins out, becomes tinny, metallic, feels altogether too light.
A very nice schwarzbier, very smooth mellow, but I've had better. Or more to the point, "bigger." Good for what it is, though.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.76/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a mug as part of our "German Night" dinner. The beer is opaque black, with a thin, filmy yellow head. The aroma is light, with only hints of barley. The beer has a complex balance of malts and barley, and is very well balanced. A nice, smooth feel in mouth, with a clean, crisp finish. Extremely easy to drink, with minimal aftertaste.

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Photo of Tone
3.5/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a black color. 1/3 inch head of a tan color. Great retention and slight lacing. Smells of pale malt, slight grain, slight sweet malt, and hint of yeast. Fits the style of Schwarzbier. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. There is a slight bitterness level. Tastes of pale malt, slight sweet malt, grain, and hint of dry hops.

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Photo of GClarkage
3.7/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

03/30/09- Purchased at Bevmo in San Mateo, CA.

Presentation- 500ml bottle with a date notch on the side of the label. Poured into my Kostritzer glass.

Appearance- Dark malty colored. Not quite black, but deeper than brown. About a one inch head that subsides over a few minutes. Light watery lace remains.

Smell- Deep roasted malts, a touch of burnt caramel. Kind of earthy and bready.

Taste- Different than most per style I have had. Not as sweet, but very dark and malty. Beyond caramel flavor. A slight hoppy and definite bready flavor.

Mouthfeel- A touch too much carbonation and not as creamy or smooth as others I have had.

Drinkability- Good beer overall. Have had others that are better, but they were also a bit different.

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Photo of drabmuh
4.24/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I've had this beer in both the bottle and on draft, this review will be from my notes and most recent encounter, in a bottle. Served in a nonic pint glass (instead of a Kostriker mug?!?! -- Horrible). This is also one of my favorite session beers and for sure my favorite Schwarzbier I've had so far.

Beer is brown and cloudy. Carbonation low to moderate and the head is brown and diffuse.

Beer does not have much of a smell to it. Maybe a mild roast, some malt, not much at all.

Beer is super smooth, beautiful full bodied beer. I don't taste much roast at all, mild malt character no hops or bitterness to speak of. A perfectly balanced, simple tasting good beer. For some reason the first time I ordered it I expected some smoke but was pleasantly surprised by the lack of it. Mouthfeel great, drinkability as high as it gets.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.83/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Review from 6/2011 notes. Poured into a Gulden Draak tulip. Pours a dark red-orange brown amber, one finger light tan head and slight lacing. Dark malts and light suggestion of toasted malts and dark fruit aroma. Flavor is malty, dark, sweet and faint toasted malts. Finish somewhat dry and malty. Pleasant and light to moderate flavored. Quite good for such a low ABV. Worth a revisit.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
3.54/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle purchased at Beers of the World in Henrietta, NY.

Pours a fairly dark black, with a half inch head, and not much lacing.

The smell and taste is fairly similar. A smaller than hoped for amount of roasted malt, some chocolate, a clean lager taste and finish, slight bite from the carbonation, some smokiness, and a piney aftertaste. Other than the pine-like aftertaste, the hops don't really play much of a part here.

Light to medium bodied, slightly watery and weak mouthfeel. Still pretty drinkable.

This one was ok, but not really a world beater. Would like to have tried it a bit fresher as it was probably better.

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Photo of stevoj
3.46/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

As black as the ace of spades....coffee bitterness comes through in the taste, along with the dark roasted grains. Smell is also hints at burnt toast and coffee. Oily mouth feel and silky, creamy head.

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Photo of Gavage
4.1/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a style I don't get enough of. The beer arrived looking as black as can be with a barely noticeble caramel colored head. To me this is a very drinkable lager, with nice roasted malts that are not overpowering. The aroma was mellow, sporting some roasted malt with some sweetness. The malt gently lingered and disappeared rather quickly. Overall a pleasantly good beer that satisfies the need for a flavorful beer that doesn't fill you up.

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Photo of Wasatch
3.48/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very dark black, nice carbonation, small head. little lacing afterwards. Scents of toasted caramel, and malts. Nice sweet taste, medium body. This is a very drinkable brew at this ABV, would recommend. I like the Samuel Adams version alot better, there's just more going on with the SA.

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Photo of liamt07
3.82/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle from the LCBO, first time they've offered in in these 500ml bottles as opposed to the cans. Poured into a tulip.

Appeared essentially black in the glass, with a healthy light tan/eggshell head that looks quite creamy. Mild retention and moderate lace. Plesant nose of roasted grain, chocolate, caramel (like straight off a caramel apple, distinctly) and molasses. Taste has more of the grain upfront, some noble hops bitterness and mild chocolate in the finish. Good creamy mouthfeel, and lingers for a bit too. Decent drinkability, good beer overall.

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Köstritzer Schwarzbier from Köstritzer Schwarzbierbrauerei GmbH & Co.
3.88 out of 5 based on 1,880 ratings.
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