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RATINGS: 1825   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.52   IBU: 21   EST. CALORIES: 168   ABV: 5.6%
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Born of a flood and centuries-old Belgian text, 1554 Black Lager uses a lager yeast strain and dark chocolaty malts to redefine what dark beer can be. In 1997, a Fort Collins flood destroyed the original recipe our researcher, Phil Benstein, found in the library. So Phil and brewmaster, Peter Bouckaert, traveled to Belgium to retrieve this unique style lost to the ages. Their first challenge was deciphering antiquated script and outdated units of measurement, but trial and error (and many months of in-house sampling) culminated in 1554, a highly quaffable dark beer with a moderate body and mouthfeel.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
daniela (9) - Berkeley, California, USA - DEC 15, 2004 does not count
mmmm.. dark-roasted malt. smoked walnuts. burnt caramel. the thick dark bread my german momma sends me. substantial and sweet but not cloying. a mouthful of warm flavor that is still refreshing. relies on the roasted malts rather than the hops for the bitter character. pleasant. cheers!

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
jgentgesdo (681) - Tulsa, Oklahoma, USA - DEC 15, 2004
Pours brownish-black with a nice tan head. Interesting smoky note to the nose that reminds me of nothing more than maple syrup, pancakes, and sausage. Fine chewy malts at the beginning give way to roasted malts later and a charcoal finish. The overall character reminds me of old style black bread. Very tasty.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 18/20
Kinz (3507) - Glen Allen, Virginia, USA - DEC 12, 2004
Thanks to SS for this one! Poured a dark, dark brown, light barely getting through. Small but persistent head. Aroma of baker’s chocolate. Flavor was also of bitter chocolate, hint of coffee, with a nice acidity as described. Highly enjoyable, very schwarzbier like in character. Perhaps not the most complex beer ever made, but it really hit the spot.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
Doppelganger (1388) - Dry County, Arkansas, USA - DEC 6, 2004
Pours reddish black with tan head. Soapy clean hop aroma, with some smokey malt undertones. Body is smooth, but thinner than what the color leads you too expect. Some astringency in the finish. Tastes of malt and fruity metalic esters. Burned toast. This seems pretty much like New Belgium’s Abbey Ale, with burned toast dunked in it. Not bad, but better sans toast.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Vac (2445) - San Diego, California, USA - DEC 5, 2004
This brew pours with a dark reddish-brown body topped by a medium thick head with some lacing. The aroma is sweet and malty with a very slight woody note and a touch of candy sugar. The flavor is sweet and malty with a nice caramel/candy sugar note and a touch of wood. Medium to full bodied and smooth.

   AROMA 4/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
turbo (1271) - Arizona, USA - DEC 3, 2004
Very good! Bottle poured black with a smallish head and a light aroma of roasty chocolate. Flavor of smoke and roasty nuts, sweet chocolate.good lacing..Very, very good and easy to drink ,should get better as it warms up.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
igel (196) - New Mexico, USA - DEC 1, 2004
A deep mahogany/red color with low co2, and a light brown rocky head. Lacing is sticky and head retention is low. Aroma is acerbic and malty with a metallic background. Tastes lightly sweet at the start, with dark fruits, caramel with a metallic dry finish. Palate is medium bodied, creamy and lightly effervescent. An enjoyable Belgian style ale. One of the better New Belgium brews.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Crosling (1864) - Fort Collins, Colorado, USA - NOV 30, 2004
Yet another beer that I have sampled numerous times but have never bothered to rate. Dark Rubyt. Deep aroma of black malt, giving tons of coffee along with chocolate, fruit, nuts and a delicate bitter hoppiness. Thin, yet somewhat creamy texture. Edgy, somewhat astringent and sharp. Malt driven. An ok beer.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
johno (185) - Galveston, Texas, USA - NOV 30, 2004
Bottle. Pours dark brown with little head. Strong roasty coffee aroma, smells great. Smooth, a little light-bodied.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
MrBunn (2561) - The Wet Side of a Dry Town, Pennsylvania, USA - NOV 29, 2004
Ahh, like a stout that is not a stout. Smells of something roasted, which you should pick up from its dark coloration. Once sipped, it becomes even mysterious, as it mingles flavors of coffee and malt without becoming overly heavy. Strangly brisk in spite of all of its darkness.

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