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Special Brew | Carlsberg Danmark A/S

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Special BrewSpecial Brew
43 Ratings
Special BrewSpecial Brew

Brewed by:
Carlsberg Danmark A/S

Style: Euro Strong Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 9.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by brewdlyhooked13 on 06-15-2002

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Ratings: 43 |  Reviews: 25
Reviews by Bouleboubier:
Photo of Bouleboubier
2.47/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

This is a truly "special" brew. I don't think I will ever forget its taste and how it cleared my sinuses and opened my pores.

It almost resembles a spicy Belgian strong golden ale upon first glance - dull, street-light, off-yellowish glow with a misty haze that slowly rises up over a few minutes, absorbing into the rather pleasant-looking, cottony tuft of white foam perched tall above its decadent nether-nectar... Looks like a good time, that is, until you hoist the glass to your nose.... This is where the real fun begins...

A not entirely disenchanting industrial paint-stripper aroma... but I couldn't help dipping my snout again and again into the fumes resting atop the liquor... there is a certain intoxicating quality, like super-glue, and a hint of peligro.

I use the word "spicy" all too often to describe the hot, aromatic phenols in Belgians, but SB takes it to an all new level. They call this "pilsner - very strong" on the website. Not getting pils here. Closest thing is American malt liquor with the treble and mids jacked up, buzzing the speakers a little. Surprisingly, there is a honey-cookie-ish malt(?) undercurrent which enables at least that second sip.... I have to admit, there are plenty of other beers out there with a more off-putting flavor than this for different reasons entirely... I wouldn't call this sessionable.

The Carlsberg website claims this goes great with salty blue cheeses and "cleans the tongue with alcohol". I don't know about the first part. Eyes watering, face bright red, vision temporarily blurred with each sip - not out of the question.

I can't even remember if I finished it all. Started to feel dizzy.

 1,666 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of TheHangover4
1.99/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 1.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2.5

I awoke face down, somewhere. Struggling to breathe and feeling uncomfortably restricted by my own mass pressing down on my lungs, I panicked and started wriggling around trying to turn around but the movement was making me feel quite ill. Eventually I managed to flip on to my back.

I attempted to open my eyes but the blazing afternoon sun bored in to them like a terrible laser. They'd have to stay closed for now.

I panicked once again as I suddenly realised that I couldn't feel my face. In fact, I couldn't feel anything at all. I would have laughed when I noticed that this was due to the fact that my hands were stuck in my trouser pockets but was too ill to fully appreciate the humour.

I had no idea where I was or what was happening. My tongue felt like a sanding block in my mouth. A sanding block which had been sanding dried sewage off of the inside of an old metal pipe, perhaps; the taste was absolutely foul.

My racing heart was working double time as my body tried to come to terms with whatever had happened to me.

At last I managed to tilt my head to the side and, as my eyelids unstuck, my pupils slowly came to life. I caught a glimpse of several empty cans.

As the blurred image started to come in to focus I made out the words "Carlsberg : Special Brew".

"Ahhhh, that explains it", I thought to myself. At that moment I knew everything would be okay and I started to slowly drift back off to sleep.

"I must remember to pick up more later" was my final thought before full unconsciousness took hold.

I still hadn't worked out where I was.

 1,581 characters

Photo of BeerSingh
1.78/5  rDev -29.6%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Carlsberg Special Brew...what was I expecting ? Let me be concise - this was shit smelling cabbage water carbonated with farts, aged in camel balls and coloured with fly squash. This vile liquid exists in its Asian avatar mostly in Malaysia, so unless you are on your death bed because of dehydration and have nothing else around - stay away !

 343 characters

Photo of mickcov1
1.43/5  rDev -43.5%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

inspire beer tasting night coventry u.k
park bench rating 5 stars
taste----like licking a balloon
smell----rafa nadels jockstrap
look---shelley winters in a bikini

please try if recently divored/seperated the world will look a better place!!!
please try any chimay trappist beer or any thing not based on euro strong beer

 322 characters

Photo of wjimson
3.35/5  rDev +32.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A friend of my brought this beer back to Canada from Hong Kong. The can says 8.6% ABV. A few of us split this into our whiskey tumblers. The appear is flat and unflattering.

The taste is initially clean. A corn syrup like taste is evident, but hides the alcohol quite well. Not much else to speak of, but its quite drinkable.

I will drink the "special" beer again if I ever do get a chance. Its not bad, but not that "special" really. There are much better beers in Hong Kong than this though, so I would call this a "gimmick" beer.

 534 characters

Photo of rastaman
2.3/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Horribly sweet and boring, i can't dig this at all, nothing that special about it really, too much alcohol for the beer, give this a miss.

138 characters

Photo of robotiks
2/5  rDev -20.9%

Photo of Tagger24
2.95/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 4

Had this in a restaurant stall in Kuala Lumpur. Served cool (almost at a good tasting temperature) in an hourglass-shaped Carlsberg mug.

Appearance - Darkish yellow pushing on orange colour. Little head or lacing (no matter how much I agitated it) thanks to the ABV.

Smell - Err... not a lot. Sweetish malt in there along with a faint bit of alcohol. Nearly no hop fragrance.

Taste - I think having it warmer certaintly helped after reading some of these reviews. The alcohol was hardly noticeable and, when compared to what little else was in this beer, actually added to the flavour. That slightly sweet malt character was the dominant flavour though. I'm not sure what happened to the hops (perhaps a tad in the aftertaste).

Mouthfeel - Very low carbonation made this beer a similar consistency to water. Not enjoyable.

Drinkability - For a 8.8% ABV it was a bit bland. No real complexity that a beer of that strength can have. Didn't have that nice hoppy bite or crispness a good lager can have either. Not brilliant but when compared to other macrolagers, this isn't too bad and I found it easy to knock back.

 1,120 characters

Photo of tone77
2.9/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

Back in my room in Hong Kong and enjoying some beer. Poured from an 11.2 oz. can. Has a dark golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is mild, some malts and grains. Taste is strong of alcohol, some malts, mot paticularly pleasant or enjoyable. Feels light in e mouth and overall there is nothing special about this beer.

 321 characters

Photo of UniversitateaDeBere
2.92/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Photo of BlackHaddock
3.26/5  rDev +28.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This much maligned beer is being reviewed from a brown 275ml bottle which should have been drunk before mid August, it was drunk three months too late, 1st Nov 2007.

Poured into my one remaining Corsendonk tulip glass.

It looked fine, a bright golden yellow, very slight haze if you are being picky. Good solid white foaming head.

My normal lager score of 3 for aroma, can't find much as usual. At 9.0% I thought there may be some trace of alcohol, but there is very little for my nose to find.

The alcohol does come out in the taste, whatever else is in there gets overpowered by it though. It has that bitter-sweet feel that strong lagers often do. The sweetness hits you first, then a metalic bitterness stays in the mouthfeel, slowly the alcohol takes over again and the metalic flavours evaporate.

Difficult to score, it is not as bad as some claim, but it isn't a world beater either.

 895 characters

Photo of joecast
1.51/5  rDev -40.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

uh, wish i had read rastamans' review before picking this one up, and taken his advice. but, this is a bargain when comparing $/abv. at $5.50 for 500ml, is this the beer for when a malt liquor just wont do?
pours very light in color with a huge foamy white head.
sickly sweet aroma, and the taste is just about the same. the alcohol is really overpowering and doesnt leave much room for anything else. almost like someone slipped a shot of whiskey in the can when packaged.
seems to have a similair philosophy on delivering that alcoholic kick in the teeth as rogue i2pa or old crustacean (though not in the same league as those beers have more to offer). straight and brutal.
after about half a can, this really warms the mouth and dizzys the head.
honestly, the alcohol makes it difficult for me to judge this on any other criteria, but you see the numbers.

 867 characters

Photo of patre_tim
3.04/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Straw gold with tonnes of carbonation, topped with 3 fingers of off white head.

Malt, grains, biscuit, a little alcohol.

Malty, grainy, sweet, strong alcohol presence and burn in the throat.

Syrupy body, lots of soda like carbonation.

Got in Penang, drinking it here tonight in Malaysia. Really a better rep for this kind of brew than many. Maintains a malty quality on the nose, and somewhat on the taste. 8.18.2016

 422 characters

Photo of JohnW58
3.75/5  rDev +48.2%

Photo of EmperorBevis
3.05/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Bought to drink to my mother who always loved this
and it is a guilty pleasure classic
theres a malty & syrupy taste that okay isn't great but stops it being flavourless

 180 characters

Photo of the-undercover-builder
5/5  rDev +97.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

The first few cans slipped down beautifully.
The next half dozen were like ambrosia to a demigod.
I awoke several hours later, nestled in a bed of full bin bags, enjoying the company of sea gulls with my beard stuck fast to my overcoat.
A superb afternoon in all respects.

 273 characters

Photo of Phoodcritic
3.3/5  rDev +30.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of MyKroberts237
2.5/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of GreenCard
2.6/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Appearance: deep gold, great clarity, thinnish layer of off-white foam that quickly flattens and eventually fades out

Aroma: whiff of alcohol, euro hops, pineapple, honey

Flavor: flat initial sweetness gripped firmly by a strong alcohol zest and grassy bitterness; dusty lageryness; finishes semi-dry with a lingering alcoholic pepperiness

Mouthfeel: medium-full body, terse carbonation, alcohol warmth

Other comments: The bottle advises that it be served "extra chilled". Gee, can't imagine why. There's even a color-changing thermometer on the label to be doubly sure that you get it cold enough. So, that's what I did. Not sure I would want to try it at the warmer temps that I usually prefer when reviewing a beer.

 730 characters

Photo of Oakenator
2.25/5  rDev -11.1%

Photo of likeemdark
2.5/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of warmstorage
2.16/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

~320ml can at a Singapore gas station, and similar at numerous supermarkets in Singapore and Malaysia, SGD$2.90 (approx USD$1.92.) Can states 8.8% ABV.

Pours a light gold with a big white head that dissipates rapidly, leaving light lacing. Noticeable carbonation (both visibly and in the mouth.)

Much like Maximator, it's basically somewhat quality strong malt liquor. It has a strong adjunct twang, strong alcohol nose, is somewhat sour, and has a distinct bready finish. It's honestly difficult to take this beer seriously enough to take serious notes.

It's much better than Maximator and many other "Euro strong lagers," but still really a beer best suited to soccer hooligans, and frat boys working on majors in alcohol poisoning. Most self-respecting winos I've talked to are smarter about bang for their buck and go straight for vodka or other grain liquor.

I'm actually slightly torn about this beer, since it often provided a respite in 95*F heat and 95% humidity in Singapore and Malaysia from the solid but thick Guinness Export (8%) and the less thick and less solid Danish Royal Stout (8%.) In Malaysia, on duty-free Langkawi island, it's a mere USD$0.50 per can, and the standard swill in these countries truly isn't worth paying for, including normal Carlsberg; Tiger isn't fit to wash sidewalks with.

 1,331 characters

Photo of hoegaardenhero
2.73/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

a: better than i thought it would be; fluffy white head on top of copper/straw body w. hints of red

s: sweet appley malts w/ just a hint of alcohol

t: a lot less flavorful than the smell would suggest; hints of dryer sweet malts at the beginning of the sip followed by pretty strong alcohol

m: not ridiculously carbonated like other carlsberg beers and pretty thick although a little on the syrupy side

d: overall not so good but still better than i thought it would be; the only upside is that it is a shitty beer that you would only need to chug a few of to be pretty far gone; i think that people slammed tis beer an inappropriate amount probably because it is from terrible carlsberg

 692 characters

Photo of bh123
2.25/5  rDev -11.1%

Photo of BigCheese
3.5/5  rDev +38.3%

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Special Brew from Carlsberg Danmark A/S
Beer rating: 2.53 out of 5 with 43 ratings
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