Karnival Kolsch - Stoudts Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Karnival KolschKarnival Kolsch

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BA SCORE
85
very good

344 Ratings
THE BROS
87
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 344
Reviews: 162
rAvg: 3.78
pDev: 12.96%
Wants: 22
Gots: 15 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Stoudts Brewing Co. visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Kölsch |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Spring

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: bbeane on 02-27-2010

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 344 | Reviews: 162
Photo of Reagan1984
4.38/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a style that does not get enough respect. Amongst all the barrel aged imperial stouts, it's hard for the subtle refreshing flavor of a nice Kolsch to shine through. Despite the fact that each beer is supposed to be scored based on the style, there is certainly a bias towards bigger/more bold beers. As much as I enjoy each of those bold styles, I do love a crisp and refreshing Kolsch. I saw this on the shelf and had to grab one to see if I enjoyed this version. Not only did this not disappoint, I think I am going to make this my spring beer of choice. This is the type that I keep a six pack in the fridge for neighbors and the wife.

The beer poured with a fluffy/light white head that showed nice retention. Copious amounts of lacing cling to the inside of the glass. The beer is a nice bright straw color with some gold tones. Some light visible carbonation.

Aroma is nice and reveals a higher hop presence than I imagined. Plenty of bread dough aroma along with some light grain and a whiff of floral hops.

Excellent balance here and a great combination of fresh bready flavor along with a nice hop bitterness. Continue to taste some bread dough and a light biscuity malt. The subtle sweetness is balanced perfectly with a nice hop bitterness. Great session beer in the making.

Carbonation is light and mouth feel is very smooth. Crisp finish due to the nice hop bitterness and the wonderful bread like flavor.

This is a very nice beer and one the fits the style spot on, in my opinion. As mentioned above, I'll have a six pack in the fridge for the next several months.

Photo of KTCamm
4.37/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a twelve ounce bottle into a pint glass. Another mix a six pickup.

Pours a very clear golden color. See through. German pils-y smell. Firm. Taste is clean, flavorful, delicious. Mild hop runs throughout. Light lemony touch. Not much to describe, but perfect for the style.

Great summer beer.

Photo of redzone3120
4.34/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Clear golden yellow with a slight shade of amber. Very clear with a good amount of carbonation visible. Has a white head, about 1 finger high that dissipates to a light ring around the edge.

S - Great smell, I cannot put my finger on the aromas but its not too bitter and not fruity like other summer styles. Glad it kept the Kolsch style!

T - Great taste, just like it smells. Not bitter at all and doesn't have any odd extras like lemon and stuff. Just a true to form, great tasting beer.

M - Good mounthfeel, the bubble dissipate quickly but it washes down with little aftertaste.

D - Totally drinkable, could have more than one in a sitting. Would go great with a lot of foods and isn't too heavy. Great summer time brew.

Photo of Gavage
4.34/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: clear golden yellow in color with a thick and fluffy 3" head. Moderate lacing paints the glass.

Smell: light malt sweetness and a bit of lemon zest create a faint but nice aroma.

Taste: mild malt base is nicely muted with lemon zest, dry grass, green grapes, and a mild bitterness.

Mouthfeel: light in body. Crisp and dry throughout. Refreshingly clean aftertaste.

Drinkability: this is a clear session beer for me. For the style this one hits the mark.

Photo of fx20736
4.33/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Pilsener glass. Pour yields a snow white 3/4 head which recedes slowly and leaves a shroud of white lace down the entire side of the glass. Beer is a pure gold with steady tiny bubbles. Aroma is muted, some maltiness and a touch of fruit. Mouthfeel is silky smooth. Taste is a restrained duet of hoppiness and pale mailtiness in perfect harmony. Finish is clean with a slight bitterness.

Great drinking experience. TBH, it doesn't seem too different from a lager, sort of like a dry Pilsener but more subdued and less grassy. It seems like balance and restraint are real hallmarks of this beer and I applaud Stoudts for making a fine version of a lesser known and hard to imitate style.

Photo of billshmeinke
4.31/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a pint glass.

Hard pour yields a finger and a half white pillowy head. Extremely clear with lots of bubbles rushing to the top. Straw yellow in color. Head has good retention and nice lacing left behind.

Smells of perfume-y floral hop scent. Grainy bread.

Taste is light with subtle sweet malts. Grain and bread. Floral hops, some resin bitterness.

Mouthfeel is soft and creamy, light bodied with a crisp hop bite at the end.

Such a perfect session beer. Light and subtle. Easy to drink.

Photo of jwc215
4.3/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours golden with a creamy white head that leaves small sheets of lacing down the glass.

The smell is floral/grassy with grainy, slightly almondy notes.

The taste is sweet grain, almond, a touch of lemon, with a dry, grassy finish.

It has a crisp, light body. Smooth.

This is a great Kolsch! Nicely balanced...a great "sessionable" brew!

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.3/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle served in a stange-type glass.

L - clear golden yellow color with a fluffy white head that left good lacing.
S - grassy hops smell is very much like a German pilsner.
T - very good balance of bitter hops and sweet malt with a slightly sweet yet dry finish.
F - lighter bodied, crisp and refreshing.
D - goes down very easy.

Photo of bbeane
4.27/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Poured into a snifter... starts with a decent white head, maybe 1/4" thick that eventually disappears leaving a tiny bit of lacing. Beer is crisp golden straw color with medium activity

S- Smells nice. Citrus, maybe a hint of banana, blended with bread and grains

T- The medium bitterness mixes with some sweet cirtusy notes to create a very nicely balanced and delicious beer

M- Light/medium body with medium carbonation... leaves a hint of bitter aftertaste

D- Very. A great session beer IMO. This might be my new favorite from Stoudts excluding the BIG BEERS

CHEERS!!

Photo of drtth
4.26/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Duvel glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: As poured the beer is a bright clear golden yellow color with a ½" fluffy white head that recedes to lave a ring, some sheets of foam on the glass and a thin layer of foam on the surface. Sipping leaves foam sticking to the glass and lots of fine speckles of lacing, some of which cling and some of which slide back into the liquid. Throughout most of the beer there is still a very thin layer of foam and sipping leaves scattered patterns of speckles with rings and patches of foam clinging to the glass.

Smell: The aroma is filled with bisquity malt combined with floral grassy hops.

Taste: The flavor is clean and fresh and a nicely balanced combination of the bisquity malt, the floral grassy hops, and a touch of citrus. The sweetness and bitterness balance each other nicely so that neither dominates the flavor but both are present.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is light to medium bodied with just enough prickly carbonation to give it a smooth silky feeling. The finish is medium to long in length and begins in the malt and floral grassy character of the beer but then fades into a clean dry slightly citric slightly bittered ending.

Drinkability: This is a definite plus for drinkability. Not only does each sip follow naturally after then other, but even before finishing the beer I'm thinking about opening a second and I'd have no trouble at all spending an entire evening with multiple bottles of this beer. No question I'll be having this one again.

Photo of erosier
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

L: Pours a nice clear golden yellow color with a medium sized and medium bodied white colored head that laces the glass nicely on the way down.
S: Smells of sweet toasted malts, hints of lemony citrus and a nice citrus-y and grassy hop characteristic at the end of the nose.
T: Tastes of a nice blend of lightly toasted malts, nice lemony citrus flavors mixed with citrus-y hops and grassy earthy hops.
M: Very crisp, fresh, refreshing, perfect amount of carbonation, lighter bodied but certainly not lacking on anything.
D: Very drinkable, this has extremely sessionable qualities and a really nice feel to it.

Photo of ColdPoncho
4.23/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm pretty sure the date said to enjoy by july, but now I can't find it.

A - brilliant yellow golden body with a decent white head.

S - zesty and spicy lemon, pale malt.

T - Crisp and clean with a lightly bitter bite. Nice malt finish, very refreshing.

M - light, but not thin, lively carbonation.

O (D) - a fine summer beer for sure!

Photo of glid02
4.22/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Closed for Business in Charleston, SC.

Pours a clear golden color with a one-finger white head. The head recedes into a thin layer on top leaving solid lacing.

Smells of equal parts robust light malts and grassy/leafy hops. As the beer warms the malt aromas gain hints of bread.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Smooth light malt flavors that have just the right levels of sweetness kick things off. Midway through the sip leafy hop flavors make an appearance and carry through to a crisp and mildly bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness with smooth carbonation.

Drinkability is very good. I finished my glass quickly and could easily have another.

Overall this was a very well done example of the style, all the elements are there and in good working order. Well worth a shot.

Photo of Hopdaemon39
4.21/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pilsener- pours a clear golden straw color with one inch of creamy white head; great retention and nice rows of beautiful lacing. Pours with more foam/retention the warmer it is.

Smell is nice and light- smells a little herby and a little grassy. Nice light German hops. Light earthy yeast scent as well.

Taste is consistent but more fleshed out- nice pale malt sweetness coupled with grassy hops, slightly dry finish.

Great mouthfeel- light bodied and well carbonated (I do love the prickly ones). Not a must have in my book but certainly a delicious and refreshing session beer.

Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.2/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Stoudts Karnival Kolsch has a very thick, white head and a clear, bubbly, straw appearance, with a good amount of lacing left on the glass. The aroma is of sugary sweetness, grass, and lightly toasted barley malt. Taste is of sweet, light barley and pale cracker, with a nice hop bitterness in the middle-to-end of the sip. Mouthfeel is light, watery, and lager-like, and Stoudts Karnival Kolsch finishes crisp, clean, refreshing, dry, and highly drinkable. I rate this one excellent. Get some!

RJT

Photo of jwjon1
4.2/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Great interpretation of a classic German style. But would you expect anything less from Stoudts? Crisp, well balanced, and enough going on flavor wise to keep it interesting. Perfect clarity and hue for the style, with a modest head. Some may find Kolsch beers boring, but I find them to be excellent daily drinkers for those warm summer days. And Stoudts did a fine job on their's!

Photo of DefenCorps
4.18/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a single of this yesterday, the first time I'd seen it.

Pouring a light straw yellow with a dense, frothy, white head that lasts forever, leaving sheets of lace, this is near perfection for a Kolsch. The nose is excellent as well. Light and bready with a little cracker-like malt character, there's also a gentle, suffuse, hop character,lightly lemony. Not as grassy the way a pilsner is, this is a subtle classic. There's a touch of fruitiness as well. Ridiculously clean, this is a great lager.
The palate opens light with a little pils malt character and a very delicate hop character. Beautifully balanced, the light fruitiness marries perfectly with the hop and the malt character. Moderate lemon hop character is present, this beer dries out on the finish with an astounding finish, light, delicate and lingering. The last beer that impressed me this much was the Aktien Hell, this is a fabulously crafted beer

**Edit 23 April 2012**
I finally found this again. Best by July 2012. I only have to add that there's a faint sulfur note on the nose, and the lemon hop character on the nose comes into the palate as well. Excellent stuff, though I'm dropping my overall from 5 (I'd given it a 5 for drinkability) to 4.5

Photo of david18
4.17/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

They had this on draft at the Amsterdam Ale house in Manhattan yesterday when it was sweltering and hot. What a perfect beer for a hot day. Refreshing and light while having some interesting ale-like character that allows you enjoy the yeast as well. Light orange color and very cloudy in look. Very enjoyable and I look forward to having one today, and tomorrow, and...

Photo of jlindros
4.16/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The first nice hot spring day, time to try a nice koslch.

A: Pours a huge fizzy 2.5 finger head that is full of large bubbles and pasty white colored, supplemented by many bubbles floating to the top. It's a brilliantly clear golden yellow color. The head leaves a very slight lacing on the sides.

N: A nice toasty slightly malty sweet lager aroma. Very much so lager, and nice smelling too. Some light wheat and even a touch of banana.

T: Starts with a really nice crisp lager taste. Some light toasty malts, slightly sweet lager malts and definite nice lager flavor. Light, crisp and refreshing. SOme light wheat, very light citrus and banana. A little juicy and fruity too. A nice fresh grassy and slight citrus fresh hop flavor and slight bitterness comes through. A nice one too.

M: Medium body and it feels like it has some viscosity to it. Good carbonation.

F: Semi crisp on the finish, not as much as I expected though. Slightly dry too, but not that much. A slight bitter hop presence comes through on the finish, a nice grassy spicy hop flavor. More lingering lager malts and slight fruit too. A nice long finish for being a crisp clean lager koslch.

Reminds me a lot of my fav lager, Pretty Thing's American Darling, just slightly less hoppy. I really liked this one and it would be delicious on a hot summer's day.

Photo of victory4me
4.16/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard shaker.

Pours a clear straw yellow with a two finger head which dissipates quickly. Floral aroma of noble hops, hints of lemon and a slightly metallic characteristic. Very typical of the style.

Washes over the tastebuds very nicely. A subtle, hop presence that is just strong enough to make itself known. Citrusy and light. Extremely refreshing and easy to drink. A nice prickly mouthfeel from the carbonation and the hops. I could drink many of these in a sitting and wouldn't have to think very hard about it.

A really nice surprise from Stoudts. A great intro beer for your BMC friends. Very refreshing and enjoyable. A perfect representation of the style.

Photo of neenerzig
4.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 12 oz bottle poured into my stange glass, this beer is a clear, medium golden color. White head was about 1/2 inch thick when poured before settling to a nice thick ring lining the inside of the glass and a nice surface film coating. Good lacing here too. Has a good floral malt and hop aroma, nothing great, but it is pleasant Mildly sweet malt flavor upfront followed by a nice hop presence with noticeable bitterness on the back end. Also a bit of a grassy citrus flavor. Very enjoyable. Has a crisp, light to medium bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Very easy to drink. Spot on for the style. Very good beer in this hot weather 75 degrees plus we are having here in Cleveland tonight.

Eric

Photo of david131
4.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- An absolutely clear yellow liquid with a thin white head that leaves some decent lacing.

S- White bread, lemon peel, and just an overall nice malt presence. Smells pretty nice.

T- Light malts with a bit of lemon twist. Clean and smooth with some tasty ingredients.

M- A surprisingly creamy mouthfeel with a pretty clean aftertaste.

D- A very nice beer that is definitely worth trying. It is nice to see a well made kolsch once in awhile.

Photo of sinistrsam
4.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at MaHafffey's. Poured a hazy straw colow, a bit darker than what I expect from a Kolsch. Medium white head.
The aroma was bread dough and grain, but not roasted agressively. Mild hop presence, not very floral, not a lot of fruit notes.
The taste was dominated by very lightly roasted malt and sweet fruits, with a minor citrus and floral hop presence.
This was a light-bodied beer but slightly heavier than most Kolsch beers I've had. Smooth and crisp with a nice clean and sweet finish.
Overlal very drinkable, refreshing and another good one from Stoudt's. Hats off.

Photo of Finn
4.15/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Karnival kolsch pours pale yellow and holds a modest, creamy head of foam. It has a crisp, clean aroma of grainy lemony grassiness. A subtle malt sweetness comes through behind subdued lemony hoppy notes. The mouthfeel is great: creamy and smooth with a little crisp bite from the moderate carbonation. Overall I like this one a lot and is a nice "light" craft beer for the warmer weather.

Photo of WissBrauSean
4.14/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

It poured a clear and pale straw colour with a nice two finger head which dissipated fairly quick to a ring around the glass that leaves a cool "puffy graffiti art" sort of lacing on the glass before settling back to the ring.

The aroma is of pale sweet malts and faint apple.

The taste is a little more complex. It starts off sweet, but it's never really sweet because of the thin nature of the body. As you sip, your nose picks up honey in the aroma and as the beer moves across your tongue the earthy hops tantalize the sides and back of your tongue. Some VERY faint white grape or apple may be present and then the beer finishes dry and mild hoppy with some peppery lingering. NICE!

The mouthfeel is thin and mildly dry with some playful carbonation.

Overall I would say that this is an excellent representation of the style AND an exceedingly good choice of a beer for the warmer weather. This would also be a great crossover beer for someone who needs be weaned off of that total crap called lager from those big breweries! 4 out of 5!

Karnival Kolsch from Stoudts Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 344 ratings.