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Mönchsambacher Lager - Brauerei Zehendner GmbH

Not Rated.
Mönchsambacher LagerMönchsambacher Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
94
outstanding

41 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 41
Reviews: 24
rAvg: 4.3
pDev: 11.16%
Wants: 73
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Brauerei Zehendner GmbH
Germany

Style | ABV
Kellerbier / Zwickelbier |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: UncleJimbo on 01-18-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 41 | Reviews: 24 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by sponberg:
Photo of sponberg
4.45/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Half liter bottle, from Halftime, mindestens haltbar bis (best before) 4/21. Pours a cloudy yellow gold with a white head that fades pretty quickly to a fine lace. Smells like beer - as in "walk into a small south German village and get a mass of their local beer" beer.Grainy malt, slightly estery yeast, and spicy noble hops.

Man, this takes me back 20 or so years to when I was sitting in a gasthaus outside of Coburg, on vacation with my family, watching soccer and drinking the local kellerbier. Earthy, sweet-grainy malt dominates with a fine, subtle hop spiciness - the bitterness just rests on the tongue rather than landing thud on it like a pig's knuckle. Slightly yeast-estery, sort of a slight Bit O' Honey flavor. Very aromatic on the palate, if that makes sense. Finishes clean, almost lemony in its cleanness. Slightly tingly, very refreshing mouthfeel. I could sit around a gasthof all day long drinking these with an occasional meal - wurst, schnitzel, it'd all be good.

Aside: I raise my glass in a toast to my mom's sister, Tante Hanni, who was one of our hosts in Germany and who passed away this morning at 87. Prost!

More User Reviews:
Photo of Leftofthedial
5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of Lnedrive14
3.58/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thankfully I noticed all of the floaties in the bottle so i was able to pour to leave most of them in the bottle.

Pours a hazy pale gold, with a hint of orange. Modest white head - perhaps a bit more color than your traditional lager. Tiniest bit of head sticks with the beer with a touch of lacing.

Refreshing nose - lots of yeast and freshness. Taste has a hint of apple juice. More malts than I'm used to in the style. Very minimal hops.

I don't know why, but the combination of the flavors did not mesh for me. I thought the beer was complex, unique, interesting, and a great experience, i just didn't like the taste!

Photo of gillagorilla
4/5  rDev -7%

Photo of CRJMellor
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Gift from trbeer.
Poured a hazy golden yellow with waht seemed liked thousands of little yeasties struggling to swim in the current of effervescence. Big, puffy slightly off-white head that could lay a bottle cap on.
Aroma is light and airy with basic pale malt and grassy and hay aromas eminating from the glass.
Flavor was delicious, great balance of moderate malt sweet notes and crisp refreshing hop balance. Slightly vegetal notes but only accentuated the wonderful crispness of the beer. Hint of green apple as it warmed just a bit.
Mouthfeel was exquisite, just the right balance of sweet and bitter produces a delightful quaff. Each swig got better and produced a crescendo of well-balanced malt goodness.
Drinkability was absolutely world class and top notch. Amazingly thirst quenching and left me wanting many, many more. I can think of no flaws from a balance standpoint and the flavor really rounds out well as you work through the bottle. If you love lager, find this beer.

Photo of Amalak
4.35/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had at d.b.a. in Williamsburg, Brooklyn out of a gravity dispense cask. It's gold with lots of sediment yet see through. Great head and lacing and a pure pilsner scent.

It's a perfectly balanced lager/pilsner. Though it's listed as a lager, it taste like a pilsner, to me anyway. Has a slight fruitiness that's dominated by hops.

Photo of miguellunarusso
4.68/5  rDev +8.8%

Photo of DrinkSlurm
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of DirkNachbar
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of geexploitation
4.05/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Very foamy bottle -- I had to pour it in my glass quickly before it foamed over the top of the bottle. Once in the glass, it was a very pretty beaten gold color, cloudy, with a collar of head and sticky lacing on the glass. Sharp, earthy hop aromas and a touch of citrus (lemon) comprise the aroma, along with a graininess that reminds me of zweiback crackers. On the palate, immensely smooth and a touch sweet at first, with some funky/musty hop bitterness providing definition. The finish is full of banana flavors, and then dries out in a flash. All of these elements play well together. This is quite a nice keller bier, although not my favorite. Hard to find, but worth seeking out.

Photo of alalvarez75
5/5  rDev +16.3%

Photo of ppoitras
4.4/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle obtained via trade with CRJMellor. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" bright white head over the almost clear yellow gold brew. Head holds steady, with plentiful bubbly white lacing. Aroma is pale malts and crisp hops. Taste is sweet pale malt with a crisp, lightly spicy hoppiness. Mouthfeel is soft throughout the mouth, and drinkability is excellent. Could see this one in a big old stein, for sure.

Photo of twelvsies
4.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I've really been digging the German biers recently. I got a hold of this one from a friend who raved about it, and I must agree that it is in fact raveworthy. Pours a bright gold color, though it doesn't have the usual clearness of a typical German lager. There are literally bits of yeast or grain suspended in the murky straw colored beer. Some might view this as a flaw, I just think it's interesting. Didn't have a grainy mouthfeel at all by the way, it was silky smooth and light on the palate. Smell and taste have a distinct, almost mead-like honey characteristic up front. Lots of peppery spices and a bit of funkyness to this one, really bizarre. Excellent spicy hops. Hallertau? Saaz? Just a guess. All of this is backed by an awesomely light German maltyness. Almost wheaty. Like I said before this one is ultra smooth and nice and light on the palate and uber drinkable. I doubt if I'll ever come across this beer again, but I'll definately be on the lookout, and I'll be exploring this style a little more.

Photo of Thorpe429
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a gravity cask at Churchkey during an event yesterday.

Pours a cloudy light yellow color with a pretty good-sized white head and nearly all-encompassing lacing as it went down. Nose brought good scents of light grain, hints of lemon citrus, and a bit of bread dough. The taste adds in some light fruity notes. Altogether, everything melds together quite well and while the flavors are very delicate, they are quite tasty. Feel is light with good carbonation; super crisp.

Drinkability was incredible. Prior to this, I hadn't had much experience with the style, so I thought I might have been overrating this at first. However, after quite a few other pours from different casks, it became clear that this was the best of the bunch and a great, great beer in its own right.

Photo of kmo1030
4.18/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

golden yellow in the glass with a nice white head. lots of yeast particles floating around.
lots of german hops in the aroma. i detect some grain, some honey, and a little bit of a farmhouse funk for good measure.
the taste has a nice clean pilsner -like grainy quality, sort of surprisingly. honey-like sweetness with some wheat-y yeasty characterisitcs. fruity in a faint banana citrusy kind of way, but that description does not do it justice. it has a nice balanced herbal hop bitterness.
nice tingly carbonation in a fullish medim body.
real nice drinkability in this beer. nothing harsh or off about it, just a well crafted beer with some nice complexities. probably one of the most impressive lagers i've had (no that thats been many).

Photo of zrab11
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%

Photo of bigred89
3.75/5  rDev -12.8%

Photo of Frozensoul327
4.08/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Solid all round. Pours out to a neon like yellow color with a sea-foam like head. Some notes of lacing, medium to medium high level of carbonation. Lotsa sediment in the bottom. Aromas of fresh hay and malts, with some sweet corn nuances and light fruits. Taste is fresh and crisp, very refreshing; flavors of malts and minor bitter hops in the forefront, with elements of grain, sweet herbs and grass intermixed in the background. Nice. Mouthfeel was bubbly and had a thicker than expected consistancy. Nice. Good drinkability. I hope that I can find this in the summertime, as this is what I have in mind after mowing the lawn. When reminded that this is a "Lager", it exemplifies what should be the standard when discussing lager beers. Recommended drinking.

Photo of danadeny
4.25/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Props to BeerPanther for bringing this into the store. Appearance is light cloudy yellow at the bottom of the wizen glass and turns a couple shades more orange as the glass widens at the top. And when the label says natural beer that’s exactly what you see in the body. Lots of particles swirling and swimming around. Respectable head too. For smell I get a good fresh hefe smell. Hints of orange, maybe even a little lemon, but no banana like some hefe's (yeah I know this is not a hefe). But the smell is not distinctly pilsner either. Tasted is nutty, a bit of almond, classic citrus tang on the front of the tongue, mild hops, and great balance. Mouthfeel has got to be one of the best I have ever felt. Like a lot of German fresh beers sometimes I find them over carbonated and burp after every sip. Sure the carbonation adds to the refreshing sensation but this beer does it without the excess foam on the way down. Great balance, great mouthfeel, and a refreshing flavor equals a high drinkability in my book. The one think keeping this beer from a better score is that nothing stands out to grab my attention. Almost as if this beer is lacking a distinction, lacking a character. In the car world this beer would be a Toyota Camery. Solid, reliable, hard to hate, does every technical attribute perfectly, a perfect transportation module. But where is the passion and soul?

Photo of Naugros
3.88/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The appearance is spot on with what I expected from this style, although lighter in color. It comes in as a light amber with a slight orange glow through all the yeast haze. Detritus from the yeast can be seen suspended in the beer, so you know you're getting your recommended daily allowance of B vitamins. Yay!

The smell is rife with Noble Hops, much like the hop bouquet you get from Sam Adams Boston Lager. This stands to reason since it is from Germany, but I can't tell you if they're Hallertauer or Tettnanger. I've never been able to tell the two apart since these are not my favorite hops varieties as I've always felt they smelled a bit plasticy...if that's a word. There is a slight sense of sour in the nose, but not much. The malts are there as well, no doubting the bread they bring to the party.

There is none of the hoped-for sourness in the taste, but there is a mild sweetness and a splash of citrus (orange). The malts here seem a bit musty, but that's no issue with this style. I do feel like I'm getting the slightest hint of diacetyl (butter flavor), but I can't say for certain.

The mustiness pervades and makes anything else in the mouthfeel secondary. It's on the lighter side of medium-bodied. For a relative of a lager, it's not really all that crisp.

My first keller and I have to say that I'm not fond of the style. Maybe it grows on you, so I will try it again, given the opportunity as it is hard to find these.

Photo of cichief
4.83/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I have had this beer from the barrel in Bamberg several times, but on this occasion I stopped at the brewery in Mönchsambach. The beer was so fresh and the lady of the house friendly. It was a great beer all around. The beer was amber in color and nearly clear, no sediment noticeable. This was a classic example of a German keller beer.

Photo of putnam
4.97/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Mönchsambach, the name of the town this beer is from, should translate roughly as "monks by the creek".

Was there the remotest doubt that I'd approve of this beer?

It's packed in the same Bamberger Rauchbier ten pack boxes. The bottles don't exactly fill it, so space holders were improvised from rolled up cardboard.

A thick layer of protein and yeast can be found at the bottom of the bottle so I poured it as carefully as I could to minimize the barely sunken matter in the glass.

I'm drinking it from a Riedel Vinum Syrah glass by the way. It's a bowl with a large volume, comparable to the Burgundy glass only tall and torpedo shaped. It works like a chimney, driving a warm, pungent bouquet into my sinuses.

Fruit, sweet herbs and butter. I so can't see how this could go wrong.

Of course it doesn't go wrong. Served at about 55 deg. F it's chewy and creamy with a hard spine of bitterness. The fruits are dazzling, like crushed ripe peaches and pears. It has a homemade feel only in that it tastes like fresh bread on the day it was baked (caramelized grains and yeast vigorous in presentation). I detect no sourness, not even the least amount of green apple or lemon flavored tang. Quite stony. Nobly cured herbs can be found in a sensory analysis of it, but the music is too strong for analysis at this time.

I will continue to enjoy this beer again and again as I've secured an option for 50 bottles. I hope no one else latches on to it.

Photo of icemanls4
4/5  rDev -7%

Photo of GeoffreyM
4.5/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of nas5755
5/5  rDev +16.3%

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Mönchsambacher Lager from Brauerei Zehendner GmbH
94 out of 100 based on 41 ratings.