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Professor Fritz Briem 13th Century Grut Bier - Professor Fritz Briem

Professor Fritz Briem 13th Century Grut BierProfessor Fritz Briem 13th Century Grut Bier

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

226 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 226
Reviews: 150
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 14.58%

Brewed by:
Professor Fritz Briem

Style | ABV
Scottish Gruit / Ancient Herbed Ale |  4.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Created by Dr. Fritz Briem of Doemens Institute (  http://www.doemens.org  ), brewed by Weihenstephan & Doemens.

(Beer added by: Slatetank on 07-29-2008)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 226 | Reviews: 150 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of jsprain1


4.3/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Looks like a witbier. Hazy pale golden with a big white head. Settles down to a quarter finger. Some lacing.
S- Wow the nose is a big kick. Ginger gets all up and powerful. There is a light floral aroma. I am picking a bit of the advertised anise too.
T- Very spicy on the tongue. The ginger hits big here. There is a bit of a lemon juice note. A fairly present wheat base.
M- Quite light body. Fairly crisp carb.
O- This is fun. This isn't an every kind of night of beverage, but this is just a fun and different kind of drink.

Serving type: bottle

06-14-2012 02:33:16 | More by jsprain1
Photo of DaveBlack


4.18/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Much lighter than I was actually expecting, but still a nice looking beer. Very pale, light straw color. Quite a lot of head and no lacing, with a fair amount of carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass. The beer is hazy, with some very VERY loose sediment.

S: Intensely spicy smelling. Lots of floral notes and yeast.

T: Very light and crisp, with lots of ginger, nutmeg, some slight rosemary. This almost tastes like a spice cake in a glass, but with a really crisp and light body. It is surprisingly dry on the finish.

M: Light and crisp with a lot of carbonation. Maybe too light.

O: A very good beer. Interesting to say the least, and full of great flavors. I would definitely drink this again.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2012 21:56:22 | More by DaveBlack
Photo of Domingo


4.03/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

An oddball style that I really enjoy, although there aren't very many examples of it.
Pours a hazy eggshell color. Doesn't look all that different from a weissbier or witbier, although the foam isn't as thick or voluminous.
Ginger is the first thing that hits my nose. That's definitely one of the stars of the show. Bay leaves would be next. Then a citric sourness from the beer itself and a little liquorice. Short of some unusual lactic sour beers, you're not going to mistake this for anything else in Germany.
The beer isn't nearly as spicy as the nose might have you expecting, but it is DEFINITELY spicy. A little acidity up front bleeds into ginger. the bay leaves give it a certain savoriness that offers just a hint of rosemary character, too. The finish has a little bit of bitterness from wild hops.
Fans of witbiers and other unusually spice brews would probably love this. One really nice thing about it is that the spices blend together almost perfectly. The ginger seems strong at first, but it seamlessly carries over into other flavors, too.
Good stuff, and quite the quencher if you wanted, too.
I'm glad to be getting this after hoping to see it for a while.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2012 01:15:29 | More by Domingo
Photo of ThePorterSorter


4.33/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Super excited to try this after reading the herbs that went into it.

The beer is a pale, dull yellow with a thin white head and huge chunks of yeast. This beer is obviously a living organism and smells incredible. There are strong herbal notes without anything distinct in particular along with a sour tartness that screams zesty lemons. Absolutely divine drinking with a thin watery, but zingy mouthfeel...which is rather unexpected. It's highly drinkable and reminds me of a mild ginger beer that would cool off the hottest of summer days. I would definitely recommend giving this beer a shot if you've never tried a gruit before, it puts DFH's ta hen ket to shame (and yes I know THK isn't technically a gruit...but it's full of funky herbs from the egyptian market nonetheless).

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2012 03:16:54 | More by ThePorterSorter
Photo of UCLABrewN84


3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a murky light orange with a 1/2 inch foamy bone colored head that settles to an oily film on top of the beer. Small dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of grain, herbs, spices, and some interesting sour/tart aromas. Taste is of grain, leafs/herbs, spices, and a sourness on the finish. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a good beer with an interesting history behind it but it's definitely weird in a good way.

Serving type: bottle

04-06-2012 05:29:51 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of Knapp85


3.75/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This poured out as a bright hazy looking yellow color with a big fizzy white head with lots of chunky sediment. The head fades but the carbonation spits from the top of the beer similar to how soda does. The smell of the beer is lemony with some herbal qualities to it. It smells refreshing. The taste of the beer is herbal with some citrus hints in the distance. The mouthfeel of the beer is light, very carbonated and a little on the watery side. Overall I enjoyed trying the beer, I can't say I'd buy it again but it was nice to have once.

Serving type: bottle

03-07-2012 04:41:41 | More by Knapp85
Photo of dbrauneis

North Carolina

3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a hazy golden yellow with a fair amount of sediment/yeast. The head is about a half finger white head that reduces to nothing but a tiny pool of bubbles in the middle of the top almost instantly. Very little lacing is observed. Also, there is a light amount of visible carbonation as well.

S: Floral aromas with hints of spices/herbs - anise, ginger, rosemary and bay leaf.

T: Again there are a lot of flavors of spices/herbs - bay leaf, rosemary, ginger, anise, and caraway. Also, there is a slight amount of sourness and some lemon. Very complex but not a huge flavor, slightly more subtle.

M: Light to medium bodied with high amounts of carbonation. Very crisp.

O: Very interesting style and a pretty good example of it. I have had a couple of others and this is probably my favorite of them - though not a style that I have frequently. I really enjoy the savory aspects of the smell and taste. Not a real sessionable beer but definitely good.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2012 00:27:49 | More by dbrauneis
Photo of CuriousMonk


3.08/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle into a tulip glass. Pours a blonde haze with a fizzy white head. Aroma is unique of some ginger, peppery notes, herbs, and spices. Taste is more sweet than spicy. The ginger comes forth but not as prominently. The herbs are there but lean heavier on the rosemary. The peppery spices seem tamed as well. Sweet malt and wheat come through towards the back end. Body is light and refreshing with the carbonation being creamier than expected. Ends with more ginger and peppery flavors, light rosemary, sweet malt and grains. Definitely an unique beer from old Germany!

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2012 21:18:10 | More by CuriousMonk
Photo of smcolw


3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pale, almost translucent color. Lots of chunky yeast that settles at the bottom of the glass quickly. Long lasting thin head that leaves a slippery blanket of lace (doesn't last on the glass).

Strong licorice, white pepper and juniper berries. Attractively spicy.

Pale malt and very watery up front. The spices kick in quickly and dominate the taste from this point onward. Mildly sour. Lots of effervescence. Surprisingly short aftertaste. Nicely warming in the throat and tummy.

Serving type: bottle

02-12-2012 01:32:46 | More by smcolw
Photo of BrewerB


3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This arrived courtesy of a Healthy Spirits Beer of the Month. This is a new style for me and I'm interested to try it.

Poured into a 3 floyds pint glass. This is a medium gold with a thin white head and little retention. Great clarity.

Intriguing aroma includes a moderately intense anise and ginger. Floral and sweet.

Quick flash of bay leave in the front followed quickly ginger in the middle and an anise finish. Herbal remnants linger briefly after the dry end.

Medium-light in body with a moderate level of carbonation.

Overall, a lot going on the herbal/spice department but not enough to make me keep drinking. Good example of the style, perhaps just not something I want more of.

Serving type: bottle

01-20-2012 02:57:25 | More by BrewerB
Photo of mj001jk


4.2/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy and light-yellow. Very little head remains after a couple of minutes.

The aromas are decidedly herbal with ginger, lemon and an earthy mineral character. I could have sworn heather was a component in this gruit but alas it is not present. Instead it is made with bayleaf, ginger, caraway, anise, rosemary and gentian.

The flavors and mouthfeel are refreshing with zingy lemon, ginger and a slight sourness that lingers. None of the flavors are overpowering but instead blend in a complex yet vivacious harmony.

This is by far one of my favorite gruits so far and a nice contrast to the often darker siblings.

Serving type: bottle

12-31-2011 05:00:28 | More by mj001jk
Photo of brentk56

North Carolina

4.05/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a cloudy lemon juice color with what turns out to be a modest head (although it foamed out of the bottle initially); a few dots of lace

Smell: Lemon juice and fresh ginger, with coriander, rosemary and bay leaf elements

Taste: Puckery lemon juice and ginger, up front, with the coriander, rosemary and bay leaf elements developing by mid-palate; all of the flavors come together, in the finish, with the aftertaste being as puckery as the beginning

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with high carbonation

Overall: A very interesting concoction; I appreciated it much more than I liked it

Serving type: bottle

12-25-2011 20:12:42 | More by brentk56
Photo of BeardedBoffin

New Mexico

4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another vintage style from the Professor Fritz Briem series. A gruit is today's specimen. The beer pours a clear yellow straw color with a touch of white foam. The strong aroma is packed full of interesting herbs and spices. Bay leaves, sage, ginger, coriander and allspice berries. Very light and nimble on the palate. The flow is laced with similar components to the aroma. This an unusual and tantalizing brew. I would definitely drink again.

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2011 00:14:49 | More by BeardedBoffin
Photo of falloutsnow


4.43/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bottle purchased at Friar Tuck's in Savoy, IL.
No bottled on date.
Poured into a standard US pint glass.

Amazing aroma, definitely herbal in character, with notable rosemary, ginger, sage mint, and vague flowers. There's a mild wheat malt base that adds a bit of sweetness and acts as the glue between this wild variety of scents.

Tasting opens with slight sweetness and mild lemon flavor, which quickly fades into herbs. Of particular note are ginger, mint, rosemary, sage. Finishes with a bit of sweetness, then, tartness, probably from the wheat malt and yeast used.

Enjoyably light on the palate (not sure a heavier version of this would be appealing) with sparkling levels of carbonation, similar to champagne. Crisp, refreshing, and very drinkable with a dry finish.

At first I thought this might be like drinking soup base, but I was pleasantly surprised by the aromatic and gustatory aspects of this beer. I repeatedly thought how easily drinkable this was, and what an excellent apertif or dinner beer this would make. So it's not an over-the-top RIS or IPA; this is still delicious and a pleasure.

Serving type: bottle

12-08-2011 05:24:16 | More by falloutsnow
Photo of Brent


4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

While this isn't something I see myself purchasing on any sort of regular basis, it was a fantastically interesting beer and unlike anything I've had before. First few sips were floral and called to mind rosewater and coriander. As the beer warmed, a distinct spearmint flavor emerged. Mouthfeel was a bit thin with some wheat-like notes. Some ginger and other aromatics lurk. Final pour decanted a fair bit of unattractive brown sediment.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2011 13:48:05 | More by Brent
Photo of JizackFH

New York

3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - This beer pours a hazy light golden yellow color. It has a big fluffy 2-finger head on it. The head has pretty good retention, and it leaves some lace behind on the glass. There is some carbonation bubbles and a few bits of floating sediment. The appearance reminds me of wittier.

S - Big spice aromas in the nose. There is a lot of ginger, rosemary, mint, floral notes, and some sweetness. The nose is strong on this, and it's very interesting as well. Never had a beer that smelled quite like this.

T - The taste, wow, there is a lot going on here. It starts off with some initial sweetness and some lemon citrus flavor. That is immedietly followed by a slew of evolving spice flavors. There are flavors of ginger, mint, rosemary, black pepper, and more. There are also some light fruit flavors as well. The finish leaves a lot of lingering spice flavor and a bit of sweetness.

M - This has a medium body and average carbonation. It goes down pretty easy and has a lot of spice tingle. There is a refreshing citrus quality here as well. This is a very interesting feel, I haven't come across anything like it until now.

O - This has pretty good drinkability. It goes down easy and has a nice interesting flavor. I really like the lemon citrus flavor at the beginning. The spices are stronger than anything I've had before. This is not a bad thing, just something I think I have to get used to. Overall, I thought this was a really cool interesting beer. I think this is a style that a lot of breweries could really use to showcase their creativity, I'd like to see more of the style. I also, really like experiencing a beer that makes you feel like you are tasting part of history. I recommend picking this up. Even if you don't really enjoy it, although I did, it is still worth the experience.

Serving type: bottle

10-20-2011 11:27:16 | More by JizackFH
Photo of popery


3.75/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: Pours a hazy, pale yellow with a fizzy white head that dissipates pretty quickly. It's murky, and for a different beer, I'd probably give lower marks, but it sorta works here.

S: Ginger, wheat, spruce, mint, licorice, clove, lemons. There's a lot going on. It's a fun mix of refreshing spices and wheat beer notes.

T: A bit much ginger comes across but it's quite refreshing and nice for the style. Lightly tart with lemons and wheat spice. Spice is strong but not overwhelming.

M: Well-carbonated. The ginger and lemon tartness pushes the prickliness even more.

O: It's probably the best gruit that I've tried, but I still can't justify giving it a higher score. There's just too much ginger. The tartness is nice but I'll take a berliner weiss over this.

Serving type: bottle

09-28-2011 03:53:10 | More by popery
Photo of bminor7

New York

3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

16.9 from Permier Gourmet, Buffalo.

what a neat idea. It's like someone read Randy Mosher's mind! I am grateful for this potentially one dude churning these (also Berliner Weissbier) awesome creations out.

Looks cloudy, like hmm...strangely the first thing that comes to mind is, someone forgot to flush the toilet about 2 days ago. There is some whitish sediment falling out on the bottom of the glass. The color is a very light straw yellow with a hint of orange. Some fizzy bubbles form but only a whisp remains.

Smell is lemony coriander, lemongrass, no hops, more like a craft liquer or soda, actually a lot like a soda. when reading the description of all the spices added (ginger, caraway, anise, gentian, rosemary, bay leaves) I can somehow imagine that they are all in there, at the same sensory threshold, making something very unique. and isn't that one of the challenges of brewing?

Taste follows...very refreshing. Lemony, sweet, but with a savory spiciness that is so hard to place. the malts only show in the aftertaste.

this is endlessly drinkable. who wouldnt want to be crushing a 30-pack of GRUTBIER instead of some Schaefer?? Oskar Blues, are you listening?

Try it!

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2011 00:05:44 | More by bminor7
Photo of feloniousmonk


3.18/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

"13th Century Grut Bier, brewed according to recipes dating back to before the German Purity law in 1516, Historic Signature Series, Forgotten styles brewed according to their historic recipes by Dr. Fritz Briem, of the Doemens Institure, Brewed by Dr. Fritz Briem, Munich, Germany.

"Before the German Purity Law "Reinheitsgehot" of 1516 it was common practice to use any kind of different spices, herbs, fruits and other plants to provide balance to beer. Hops was not yet well known at this time.
Grut beer has roots in many cultures and each culture has it's own "special ingredients."Egyptians, NAtive Americans, Arabian Tribes, Gaulles, Germanic Tribes, and the Vikings.
This interpretation of a traditional grut bier is spiced with lobber (bay leaves), Ingwer (ginger), Kummel (caraway), Anis (anise), Rosemarin (rosemary), & Enzian (Gentian)." 4.6% ABV.

Enough of the long-winded explanations. Let's crack it open!

Cloude, pale yellow appearance. Head starts, then quits forever. Not particularly appetizing. Visually, that is.

Sniffing it: Beautiful, floral, spicy and arousing. Ginger is loudest in this, but the others play their part. Anise and rosemary…very pretty. Wonderful mix.

Now, let's drink it!
Wow! Very sharp on the palate, big spicy lemon citric bite! The promise of the nose is spoiled by the flavor. Harsh, sour, and bitter. Light medium body. Faint finish, the sour and trails off, leaving spice. Effervescent mouthfeel, nice carbonation, but the lack of body and absent malt profile leave me wanting.
In the end, it's all lemon, and I'm finishing it, but I'm not really liking it

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2011 09:45:09 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of zaphodchak


4.33/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sparkly, foamy white head, about 1 finger, which fizzes away. Unusually light, taux blond body, like champagne.

Powerful herbal nose, vegetal with plenty of basil plus some kind of sweetness, maybe berry.

Rosemary in the taste. Very light, but not watery. Rich with herbal flavor and would probably pair with food amazingly. Consider creamier cheeses. Faint, delightful tartness that is in no way overpowering. Light, very balanced.

Mouthfeel is bright, champagne-like carbonation, but not unpleasantly fizzy.

Quite refined, nice for toasting or as an apertif. Again, this begs to be paired. I was nervous it wouldn't justify the price. I'm still not sure it does, but I'm nonetheless impressed.

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2011 03:46:37 | More by zaphodchak
Photo of allengarvin


4.03/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pale, very cloudy yellow with bits of yeasts floating around. Moderate half-cm head, which persists well. Nose is very rich and spicy. I can identify ginger and caraway, but there are other things I cannot. The flavor is interesting... very spicy, quite tart, with no real malt presence. The ginger is pleasant. I can pick up the bay, I think, though it tastes more like curry leaves to me. There's a not-quite citrus lemoniness throughout. Surprisingly dry.

I'm not sure I'd seek this out to drink on a regular basis. It doesn't really resemble beer as we expect it. But it's not bad. Paired with the right foods it might be a great meal-accompanying beverage.

Serving type: bottle

08-08-2011 02:35:49 | More by allengarvin
Photo of Urbancaver


3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very light yellow almost pale. Amost no head .smells very interesting. Lots of caraway, anise and lot more on the nose. Very spicy. Taste light and bubbly lot of intestine spices. Carroway heavy with some other interesting flavours. Overall very tasty. Smething i would definitely have again

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2011 00:04:46 | More by Urbancaver
Photo of ColdPoncho


3.8/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - very light yellow, slightly clouded, minimal white head.

S - tart, medicinal. That's it.

T - Ginger, lots of other spices, tart. Interesting. A surprising amount going on.

M - light, dry, palatable. pretty good.

O (D) - This is pretty interesting. Not great, but a pretty good gruit, I think.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2011 00:01:30 | More by ColdPoncho
Photo of THECPJ


3.48/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes:

appearance: golden yellow with a lot of floaties with a 1 finger white head

smell: spruce, spices, herbs,

taste: lots of spruce, citrus, herb / spices

mouthfeel; mild carbonation, medium body,

overall: not a bad beer at all. you just need to understand the style of the beer to respect the flavors.


Serving type: bottle

07-16-2011 21:24:08 | More by THECPJ
Photo of mdaschaf


2.65/5  rDev -31%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Review from notes. Thanks to Shane for splitting this one with me.

A: Pours a pale yellow with a decent sized white head that had decent retention and left behind spotty lacing. There was a ton of carbonation bubbles released form the bottom for the entire time drinking. There were also massive chunks in the beer, normally they would be floaties, but the chunks were so big that they sank.

S: Strong spice aromas of spruce, spearmint, rosemary, and other herbs.

T: Tastes almost like I was having a Halls cough drop. Spicy and minty, and a bit overwhelming. The rosemary and spruce are present as well. Not a fan at all.

M: Medium bodied with very high carbonation. Sticky/dry finish.

O: The medicinal quality of the beer just threw me for a loop. I understand that spices are a part of what makes a gruit a gruit, but this beer was so hard to drink. Hopefully it was only this beer and not the style that I just don't like. Will try to get another gruit in the future.

Serving type: bottle

07-15-2011 17:27:05 | More by mdaschaf
Professor Fritz Briem 13th Century Grut Bier from Professor Fritz Briem
86 out of 100 based on 226 ratings.