Blind tasting review
New Belgium 1554 Enlightened Black Ale
New Belgium 1554 Enlightened Black Ale

Family Belgian Ale
Country USA (CO) ABV 5.5%
Price $$ Packaging 12oz/355ml, 22oz/650ml bottle
Characteristics Malty, roasty, unusual

Overview NB’s website claims that this “enlightened black ale” is brewed with a “light lager yeast,” so we’re unsure why it’s called an ale. It’s based on an antiquated recipe, and it’s worth remembering that most of what we think of today as Belgian-beer character is the product of the last century of brewing.

Flavors and aromas This beer has “black” character in the form of bright roast coffee, but low esters and minimal hop character mean there’s little balance for an intense sweetness akin to a milk stout. At lower temperatures, the sweet character is probably less pronounced, giving this beer a good shot at seeming full-bodied and flavorful even at refrigerator temperatures.
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