Friday, April 12, 2013

Kulmbacher Eisbock (2013 original review)

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Chad9976 (851) - Albany, New York, USA - APR 12, 2013
I poured an 11.2oz bottle into a snifter. There was no decipherable freshness date.

Appearance: Pours out a dark brown shade, but appears to be opaque black in the glass with ruby red highlights. Forms a relatively large, eggshell, foamy head which retains and laces well.

Smell: Strong alcohol presence, but distinct fruit as well. Similar to a flavored liqueur.

Taste: The eisbock is a style that’s hard to come by, but if you’re lucky enough to find one you’re usually in for a treat. Kulmbacher Eisbock definitely was for me as it’s comparable to a traditional barleywine as far as flavor goes, but with a thinner, slightly crisp body because it’s a lager. Dark fruits like red apple, cherry, fig and plum as well as toffee are all quite prominent. The alcohol is as well, but it’s not distracting and makes the beer drink like the true sipper it should be.

It’s a well balanced palette all around, too. Though definitely on the sweeter, maltier side, Kulmbacher Eisbock is not a sticky, syrupy mess. There is some residual flavor on the tongue, but it is not cloying or drying, but rather just "there." The taste is quite delicious, though not what I would consider among the best of the best. Still, you’re in for a treat if you drink this beer.

Drinkability: For a strong beer, Kulmbacher Eisbock is no challenge to drink at all. Though the 9.2% ABV potency is noticeable in the nose and in the taste, there’s no raw heat or burn in the drinking process. The mouthfeel is on the thicker side for sure, but soft and slightly crisp. Probably best enjoyed as a dessert or special occasion beverage, though. 
Grade: 9/10

NOTE: Read and watch my 2017 re-review to BJCP specs here: