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RATINGS: 1818   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 Their first challenge was deciphering antiquated script and outdated units of measurement, but trial and error (and many months of in-house sampling) culminated in 1554, a highly quaffable dark beer with a moderate body and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 7/10   APPEARANCE 5/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
Aurelius (4576) - Tallahassee, Florida, USA - JUN 27, 2003
A very interesting beer. After sampling a Coopers Extra Stout, this had a distinct peanut aroma and flavor to me. Dry malt, nutty flavor. Great cola appearance, bottle and label, light filmy head. Finishes ale-y and tart. Sufficient bittering of some sort, but not very hoppy. An unusual brew, with a session-weight body. 1554 is cruising for food.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
harlequinn (2744) - Tacoma, Washington, USA - JUN 25, 2003
Extremely yummy. The perfect mixture of a cream stout and a porter. A mellow roasted malty flavor with hints of vanilla and fruity sweetness, all the way through.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 18/20
Smacky (71) - San Clemente, California, USA - JUN 23, 2003
A new style for me. A stout-colored ale that tastes nothing like a stout. Good body - though the color throws you off until you convince yourself it's not a porter or stout. Very roasty with an almost sweet flavor. Esters are pleasant and kind of fruity. A must try.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
dirtymike (2016) - Manchester, New Hampshire, USA - JUN 22, 2003
Belgian Steam Beer! At first I was thinking Schwarzbier, but boy was I wrong.Roasty,fruity with a clean finish.Lots of malt with a touch of sweetness.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
BeerLimey (2154) - California, USA - JUN 15, 2003
Roasted aroma, espresso with hints of sweetness. Very dry and roasty on the palate with a light balancing vanilla and banana fruitness towards the end.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
iwantalambic (1478) - St. Louis, Missouri, USA - JUN 14, 2003
Dark brown, very close to black, light brown head. . . huge nutty malt aroma. Good flavour, slightly smokey, lots of nuts, good bitter hops on the back of the tongue and a roasted finish.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
stefanberggren (135) - Madison, Wisconsin, USA - JUN 10, 2003
This is a beer that I thought was so so when I first bought a six pack and nothing really too amazing. I was cleaning the brew closet and found a bottle (maybe 3 years old?) and thought I would check it out... Wow really different from the first time I tried. Very malty and smooth, with hints of coffee and chocolate. It almost reminded me of a malty schwarzbier or Dopple. Its finish was clean and smooth. Try this experiment and see what you think...lay it down...

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
dberger624 (1028) - Phila, Pennsylvania, USA - JUN 9, 2003
Bottle. Looked like a Coke. Nice head to it. Had a nice rosty flavor to it. Almost a porter taste.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
gwfrankpsu (231) - McKinleyville, California, USA - JUN 6, 2003
Ruby color, slight aroma of fruit and coffee. Coffee, slight carmel and malt. Nice throw back, though not one of my favorite New Belgium brews.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
krisbierjaeger (844) - dolores, Colorado, USA - MAY 26, 2003
a pour of black crimson, blood on the tracks; head was the color of unbleached flour. i was gasping for a cool beer and admit that i manhandled this one, choking down perhaps unduly some nuance and delicacy in the carnal pleasure of feeling it slip over my tongue-- which in great thirsty gusto was bucking like a bee-stung bronco. the effect was quite pleasing. even subject to more gulping than finessing, i picked up the moderately roasty coffee malts miming a natural history of grapes from adolescent plump concords to gummy raisins in noble rot. throw in a cherry too, please, a slightly sour bing. it's not hugely bodied, however. remember now, in 1554-- i recall that they had a double dip recession, economies were sluggish, the euro was down, consumer confidence was the pits,so it's not surprising that copying recipes from an era known for hardship and deprivation would yield a parsimonious product. rather thin, with rough carbonation, but no one twisted my arm to make me guzzle it after all. sweet, with minimal hop and bitterness.

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