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Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Urbock - Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla

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Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier UrbockAecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Urbock

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1,137 Ratings

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Ratings: 1,137
Reviews: 645
rAvg: 4.13
pDev: 13.08%
Wants: 81
Gots: 60 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla visit their website

Style | ABV
Rauchbier |  6.60% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes/Commercial Description:
First tapping every first Thursday of October. A bitter Smokebock for the strongbeer-season (October through December). Matured for weeks in the deep rock-cellar and tapped freshly from the oakwood cask.

(Beer added by: taez555 on 08-23-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,137 | Reviews: 645 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of RBorsato
4.55/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Clear dark brown with a nice full creamy tan/light brown head; nice carbonation and lace but a bit less active than the Marzen version. Very pronounced burnt wood smoked aroma. A taste comparable to licking a stick out of a campfire or eating a burnt marshmallow. Very similar to the ASR - Marzen to the point that I would have a hard time telling them apart side by side other than color. Medium-full bodied and very creamy with a dry smoky burnt finish and aftertaste.

Very smoky ! A classic example ! Very good but not far off the original ASR - Marzen so don't sweat it if you can't find this seasonal - grab an original.

Per bottle: 6.5% ABV

Per BH website: Oct-Dec, OG: 17.5%, Alcohol: 6.5%, Bitterness: 40

($3.59 / 16.9 oz. wider brown Euro style bottle)

Photo of JMD71
2.48/5  rDev -40%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Deep, rich, dark brown. Very little head apparent when poured. Slight light penetrates the galss & gives a reddish apearance. Medium carbonation.

Aroma: Very smoky with slight hints of malt. More smoky than I was expecting. You can smell it from a few feet away like your glass was just on fire! Slightly sweet smell detected too...

Taste: Very sweet with slight smokiness. The smoky flavor is not as apparent in the flavor as in the aroma. Very solid malt palette. Rich caramel & burnt toast. Clean finish with ever so slight hop balance.

Mouthfeel: Full bodied with low carbonation (although looked more carbonated when poured). Slightly cloying but finishes fairly clean. Quite thick....

Drinkability: Medium-low. A bit thick for more than 1 small serving. A good experience, but not overly drinakable after one.

Photo of soulgrowl
3.3/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Dark cola-brown. Fine bubbles form a fine off-white head. Retention isn't great.

Smell: Beef jerky or grilled hot dogs. Peat. Toasted marshmallows. Faint coffee grounds. Reminds me of a campfire.

Taste: Heavy smoky flavor with a sweet foundation. Acidic hop-like bitterness, although I am not certain hops are even used in this style.

Mouthfeel: Fairly light bodied, but creamy enough. Moderately chewable.

Drinkability: I don't like this quite as much as I liked the Aecht Schlenkerla Marzen, which I feel was a little bit more complex. Still, this isn't bad and is great for cooking (thanks to pixel for the awesome barbecue sauce recipe!).

Photo of GCBrewingCo
4.45/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured into the glass clear deep brownish amber with a tan and long lasting head which laced the glass.

The aroma was smoky with a strong smoked meat inspiration. The smoke was prevalent and led the charge with a summer sausage aromatic. Behind that was some malt complexity but it was difficult to dicern and more difficult to describe.

The flavor was malty with a light tinny and metallic flavor. The hops were present and were a bit grassy and lightly spicy. The flavor was once again smoke, but not at an overdone level. The malt could shine through and the flavor was definitely that of a bock with some dark fruits pulling their weight.

The finish was dry with a lasting hop impression and smoke long into the aftertaste. The body was medium and the carbonation level was moderate with an awesome creamy texture. A great beer!

16.9 ounce bottle. Bottle says 6.5% ABV.

Photo of ryanms3030
4.55/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I've had this beer many, many times on tap and in the bottle. The only way to really describe it is as an "aquired taste". I've heard the bouquet and taste be described as a distanct bacon aroma and flavor. I don't get many pork undertones from it but it's definately smoky.

From what I understand, most American breweries that attempt rauchbiers smoke the barley they use to brew the beer with but Aecht Schlenkerla actually drop burning ambers into the beer while it's fermenting to give it that very strong and distinct smoky flavor. I would say that the flavor is closer to burnt wood then bacon so that makes sense.

This is a great beer to go along with stews, chilis, BBQ and cigars. Whenever I'm at a good beer bar, I can't leave without having one.

Photo of mmmbeer
4.38/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big half liter German bottle with no freshness date. It pours an amber/copper color with some hefty carbonation that builds up to a finger of tan head that is creamy and leaves a nice thin layer of foam. The aromas are beechwood smoke, smoked salmon and bacon, along with some pale malts and faint hops. It leaves lots of smoke on the palate, along with a big malt sweetness, sweet smoke, toasted malts, and faint spicy/leafy/green hops that contribute a mild bitterness. The body is medium to full and quite smooth, with the taste leaving a long finish. My second offering from this brewery and I must say I prefer their Märzen over this one. However, any rauchbier is a welcome change of pace, especially from Heller-Trum.

Photo of oberon
3.8/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a clear deep rich amber with a fluffy quite sticky two finger white head,whoo the smoke is huge on the nose like black forest ham smokey with hints of brown sugar but man Iam tellin ya its like smoked ham unbelievable.Now Iam the first one to say Iam not a big fan of smoked beers....yet they still intrigue me,drinking this was like drinking a smoked ham hock with an underlying brown sugar-like sweetness but not overly sweet a nice almost salty finish.This woud have to be the perfect pair with hickory smoked pork I mean what could be better I could see basting a shoulder with this,unique and I enjoyed this beer....somewhat.

Photo of TongoRad
5/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Into a .25l Schlenkerla tulip it poured a crystal clear ruby-brown with ebony undertones and a dense tan long-lasting two-finger head. The reflected light in the bottom of the glass really shows off this beer's color beautifully.

Aroma is amazing- very straightforward and taughtly composed at first glance yet underneath is a sumptuous complexity. The smoke hits you first and it is definitely omnipresent but that soon gives way to spicy elements (black pepper, nutmeg), creamy malt, dark caramel, figs, sawdust, cheese and stone ground mustard. So complex and multi-faceted at its core. This aroma is both wonderfully evocative and timeless .

Now, take the palate of the perfect bock beer- residual maltiness, alcohol, bitterness, and toasted malt all in perfect harmony- and add that evocative smokiness and spiciness to add up to this experience. It is almost too good to be true. The finish is long lasting smoke and malt, gently fading away.

I could drink a ton of these.

Photo of Suds
4.1/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I wouldn’t say that I’ve become obsessed with smoked beers, but I have recently become utterly fascinated with them. I’ve had the Schlenkerla Marzen dozens of times, but this was my first taste of the Urbock. The aroma is welcomingly smoky. Fresh and intense (my wife said that she could smell it from several feet away when I opened the bottle). Wonderful. The intensity, however, isn’t great enough to overwhelm a rich malty aroma that’s hidden underneath. The color is a deep amber-brown with a sticky tan head. Similar to the aroma, there’s smoke at the center of the taste (it’s got a peppery tingle on the tongue), but it doesn’t completely eclipse the malt. Good sweetness and a notable malt flavor. Bitterness is in the finish, but you can’t really taste the hops through the smoke. I love these beers.

Photo of Brian700
4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

These smoke beers simply amaze me. This one pours a deep brown with a light tan head. Great lacing going on.

The aroma is heavy smoke but there are hints of scotch here as well.

The flavor has a mysterious relation to fine single malt scotch with heavy smoke flavor. Very delicous. This beer will satisfy those who are after big flavors. I firmly believe that these smoke beers would go great with the right cigar. The flavor is big enough to hold its own for sure.

The mouthfeel is full bodied with medium carbonation.

This is a beer with good drinkability especially if you are into this style of beer. Truly a treat.

Photo of HardTarget
4.03/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Aroma: Fatty bacon smoke and a truck load of it. Some sweet malt serves as a silent partner to the wonderful, rich smoke.

Appearance: No head at the pour, so no lace. Deep brown glass with good clarity.

Flavor: Smoke, but not as intense as the aroma would lead me to believe. More of the sweet, fairly light malt flavor comes through, well balanced but no hops noted.

Mouthfeel: Thin, but again, compared to what the smell prepares you for. Low carbonation, makes me think I might have gotten an off bottle but no flavor errors noted.

Overall Impression: Wow, what a smell! I just wish it translated over to taste. Maybe it does in a fresh local beer. Almost worth the plane ride to find out. Recommended.

Thanks to Rick for popping the bottle.

Photo of Domingo
3.63/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Solid brew that's more flavorful than their Marzen...but still one of those beers that I can't handle much of.
Pours a dark brown color. Just looking at it, there's not a huge difference between this and a porter or stout, however the head is solid white and doesn't retain the color of the beer.
Smell is very complex. Smoke is the immediate and strongest smell, but you can pick out some maltiness and yeast flavor.
Flavor is solid. Because of the extra malt (I'm making a comparison to the Marzen, which I tried earlier) the body is more in-depth. Initially you'll just be thinking..."I'm drinking BBQ sauce," but if you let it linger a little in your mouth, other flavors emerge. Smokiness is still the predominant flavor, but you can taste the beer beneath the smoke. Malty sweetness definfitely helps create a stronger backbone. AS the beer warmed, I was able to pick out oak, cherry, alcohol, and even what I'd describe as worcestershire. Hops are a no-show, but I think it's just because of the overwhealming smokiness.
Mouthfeel actually feels thinner than I'd imagine. I think it's just because with such a bold smokiness, I'd expect something akin to an irish stout.
Drinkability for me is unfortunately low. I like the beer very much, but it's just one of those items I'd like 10oz of, rather than 20oz. It's one of those beers that would make a good one to split at the end of the night, but this is the opposite of a session beer, IMO.

Photo of silver0rlead
4.33/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a translucent brown with a nice tan head. The aroma is intense, with big roasted malt, smoked bacon, floral hops and some slight sweetness. The flavor is also initially roasty, followed by some big smoked meats (bacon, beef jerky), some coffee, caramel, floral hops and some alcohol. The mouthfeel is on the light side but appropriate for the style, with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good for a beer with a huge malt profile. This is my first rauchbier, but it was excellent...nothing gimmicky about this beer.

Photo of mcallister
3.63/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

If Jesus were a ham or piece of bacon he'd want to be as far away as possible from this brew.

Pours a delectable deep brown with very little head and what is there laces slightly. Smells of liquid smoke, bacon, black pepper, and cured meats. This beers nose can really take you aghast if your first time trying.

Taste is quite smokey in the mouth although less than the nose, but very smooth and drinkable. A liquid burnt bacon per sey. Actually quite satisfying with complex flavors of cured meat, grilled fruits and vegetables, caramelized molasses, and did I mention smoke.

Probably could not drink more than one of these in a night but what a great ingredient for many dishes. I've used this in chili with huge success and made a homeade barbecue sauce tonight with this that was fabulous.

All of these Rauchbier's by Schlenkerla are worth trying, yes similar in taste in style but very pecuilar in their own right.

Photo of afordney
4/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep reddish brown with an thick off-white head, a pleasure to look at.

Smells, like bacon and campfire.

First sip is malty, salty bacon finishing with smoky bitterness. Good balance between the smoke and bitterness.

A good beer, almost tastes like a stout but feels alot lighter and looks like a brown ale. I'd love to drink this beer again.

Photo of goochpunch
4.25/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle overflowing with foam into my New Belgium globe glass. It is a ruby/almost black and started off with a tan, creamy head that just didn't last very long, although leaving a chunky lacing. Could have fooled me into believing that this was a stout. My first whiff of this hit me as if I had a glass full of bacon. The more my nose gets acclimated, the more I smell the dark, sweet malts and some herbal hops. Tastes like a campfire with a sweet, malty backbone and good bittering hops in the finish. Kind of hard to pick out complexities in this as the smoke is so forceful, although the malt is sturdy enough not to let the smoke completely take over. Alcohol becomes a bit apparent as it warms. Still, this is tasty. Mouthfeel is creamy and does not weigh the tongue down. Delicious and unique beer.

Photo of Dukeofearl
4.47/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500 ml bottle purchased at HiTime Wine in Costa Mesa, CA in Feb 2006 for $4.19.

Pours a slightly dark root beer with a slight off-white head that quickly drops to not much of anything. Not a fair description, I've seen much worse heads than this, but there's still not much to it.

Aroma definetely has a smoke to it, but it's much gentler than the Marzen I had a few months ago. There's definitely meat in here, but it's also got a slight sweetness to go with. Much more subtle, but still very good.

The flavor is the same way. Definite smoke, definite smoked salami/smoked ham, smoky wood, but much more subtle than in the Marzen.

Mouthfeel is quite pleasant- I could see sitting around doing some serious rauchbier drinking with friends, or having this as a great compliment to a really good steak or a Christmas ham. Much easier to drink than the Marzen- they are each highly recommended in their own way.

Photo of arguemaniac
4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The aroma of this classic brew features a rich, peaty smokiness. The smokiness of the flavor is more intense and offers a greater degree of complexity: while there certainly is that peat smoke flavor, there is also a nice charcoal quality, a great burnt bitterness and a number of other roasted flavors. Some very slight hop flavor in finish. Silky mouthfeel with a mild carbonation tang.

Great brew, one of the best smoked beers out there. Very drinkable (even with an intense, but smooth smokiness) and damn tasty. Highly recommended. I think I’ll have to pick up their Marzen Rauchbier tomorrow…

Photo of Higravity
3.93/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

First Rauchbier since I quit smoking. Still didn't make a difference this was powerful smoke. Nice brown-red white a sticky white head and some lace. A smell of campfire clothes and malty sweetness that has plenty of presence. Wild and phenolic it is like a fire racing across my touch burning out any other tastes. Nice sweetness in the aftertaste balances the smoke rising from my tongue. A body like a good bock no complaint. A little challenging in the first few sips but rewarding and pleasing the rest of the way through.

Photo of AltBock
3.9/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

1pt .09 fl oz. bottle. The label isn't as thing really special, but to me it's somewhat classy. The label looks like it's printed on a scroll and with a ribbon on the side. It has German on it, but any beer lover would know what the label is trying to say. It's brewed according to the Reinheitsgebot. It does have a back label, but it's just filled the usual bottle info (product of blank country, bottle deposit numbers, and Govt. warning). No date on the bottle either.

Appearance: I decided that I would pour it into my Samuel Smith pint glass instead of the BA suggestive glassware options. When I poured it, it was this dark brown color with ruby highlights through out it. I just got a little skim of white foam and that just dissipated into some small rings around the glass. Not too many rings, just maybe a couple though.

Smell: Smells like a Rauchbier should smell like. Up front was the smoky aroma, then the smoked meats (tons of the smoked meats), then at the end, a sweet malty aroma.

Taste: The best way I can describe the taste is that it tasted like it smelled. It was smoky and malty with a huge helping of smoked meats. The one thing that seperates the taste from the smell is that I got some bitter hops at the end. I didn't smell any hops but I sure got alot of them in the taste.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and thick with a smoked meats/hops aftertaste. I didn't detect much carbonation in this.

Drinkability: Overall this made for a very nice beer, but only a beer that would be only good once in a while. No way I could drink this on a regular basis. It's too thick with smoked meats.

Photo of mjc410
4.22/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Spaten becker glass from a 50 cL bottle with no freshness date. Paired with Penn State Creamery smoked cheddar.

A: Pours a deep garnet with a rocky 3 finger head. Lots of lacing before I even take a sip as the head recedes a bit. The head eventually settles to less than half a finger. The garnet color is quite striking.

S: Actually, this doesn't smell nearly as "meaty" as other Aecht beers I've had. It smells like a mildly smoky, very malty bock. Grows smokier as the beer warms.

T: Wow! The smokiness comes along with a very sweet malt flavor, no traces of bitterness to be found. The smoke really builds in the aftertaste. Alcohol is in no way a standout, just shows up soon in belly warming.

M: Very smooth with a medium body - I'll attribute the smoothness to the very low carbonation. Fits well with the taste characteristics.

D: Eminently drinkable, more because of the smokey smoothness than in spite of it. I'd very much like to make this a regular with smoked foods and grilled meats.

Photo of GuinnessSmurf
2.78/5  rDev -32.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: This beer has a nice, rich brown color. The head on it is pretty low, with small watery bubbles. There is little to no carbonation.

Smell: This beer has a strange combination of smoked and sweet - the urbock's sweetness is really coming through more than I thought from a smoked beer. Still the nose of smoked cheese is present.

Taste: This is a strange beer on the palette. It seems to really focus a ton of its flavor on alcohol and smoke - even though the ABV is not that high. It is almost a bit curious how this beer can showcase this much alcohol. Still, the flavor seems a little one dimensional - needs more to round it off.

Mouthfeel: This is a very thick beer - like combining a barley wine with flour. Its definately for sipping. One taste does fine to fill up the mouth.

Drinkability: I'm going to say that this is not one I'll often return to. It doesn't work as a session beer, and I don't think that is its aim.

Photo of ColoradoBobs
4.13/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Well here goes . . .
500ml (16.9 ounce) bottle purchased at Wilbur's in Fort Collins for $4.49. I've been strongly urged to try this and strongly warned not to ("tastes like an ashtray" someone told me.) The beer guy at Wilburs said he loves it.

Lovely deep mahogany with a smallish fully lasting head. Clear liquid, no bubbles rising.

Smell -- the smoke is there, but not like I thought. Reminds me of smoked Edam cheese, or smoked salami. Very pleasant. Not a lot of hops, but nice maltiness. Smells salty and sweet at the same time. Fascinating. Am I gonna like this? I like the smell.

The taste is not so smoky up front. Wow. Bitey, more than smokey. The smoke flavor comes up in the aftertaste. Really nice. Very deep and complex. A lot is going on here. Fig and prune malty sweetness up front, followed by a mellow hop pine note and smoked ham. It's like a meal.

Mouthfeel is what you might expect from a bock: nice and thick, round and not quite chewy. Nice.

Drinkability -- well, I can't tell. I only have one -- wasn't gonna spend $4.49 on more than one, in case I hated it! -- so I'm not sure. I think the limiting factor here is the cost more than the alcohol or the intensity of flavor.

Overall -- this is a whole lot of beer. Intensely flavorful, rich, and complex. Not an every day beer, but it might be great for special occasions. Next time I have one of these, I will have it with smoked ham on dark rye with some nutty swiss and good spicey German mustard. Mmmm. I was pleasantly surpised.

Photo of whynot44
4.45/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rich deep mahogany color with a decent creamy tan head that persists through the glass.

The aroma is fantastic, like concentrated smoked ham and sausage.

The taste is similar. A nice sweet malt base with a tremendous smoked sausage taste that lingers. Smooth and easy to drink in spite of the smoke. Great with smoky barbecued pork or beef.

Should be a great addition to a marinade. If this is beechwood flavor, i need to get some to grill with.

Photo of nickss
3.93/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A deep rich ruby red in color with a monumental (I'm talking 2 inches at least) head that is raucously loud with its activity.

Smells strongly of smoke.... almost like a smoked meat (ham perhaps?)... almost a peat-like fragrance.... little else is discernable.

Huge smokey flavour. This is my first rauchbier, so I thought it would take some getting used to... however, while I do not find it to be my favorite style, I find it enjoyable.... paired with BBQ or some smoked cheddar, this would be perfect. Quite interesting to say the least. Unfortunately (and perhaps this is due to my inexperience with the style), there's simply not much complexity in the flavour. The underlying smokiness crushes anything else that might be in there.

Moderately thick mouthfeel.... much less carbonation than I thought would be present, which is good in my opinion.

The drinkability is really my only complaint with this beer. However, once again, let me state that I am not entirely used to this style, and would most likely rank it higher after I have had a few more of these under my belt.

All in all, far and away the most interesting beer I have ever tasted... the style is utterly unique and a distinct slap to the palate. I will endeavour to seek out more of this style.

Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Urbock from Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla
92 out of 100 based on 1,137 ratings.