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Hövels Original - Hövels Hausbrauerei

Not Rated.
Hövels OriginalHövels Original

Educational use only; do not reuse.

44 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 44
Hads: 124
Avg: 3.69
pDev: 21.95%
Wants: 11
Gots: 11 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hövels Hausbrauerei visit their website

Style | ABV
Altbier |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: revdrjbob on 02-13-2005

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Hövels Original Alström Bros
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Reviews: 44 | Hads: 124
Photo of metter98
3.58/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is clear amber in color and has a moderate to high amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin off white head that never faded away and left some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: There are aromas of caramel and bready malts in the nose along with some hints of fruity yeast.
T: Like the smell, the taste has light flavors of caramel and bready malts but there is no sweetness because this is contrasted by a light amount of hop bitterness. There are some notes of skunkiness and metallic flavors but these seem to diminish as the beer warms up.
M: It feels a bit shy of medium-bodied and somewhat smooth on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is very easy to drink but the taste might have suffered a bit as a result of the long trip across the pond and the green bottle.

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Photo of emerge077
2.94/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Oddball beer sampled during the 8th annual German pub crawl. Quick review from written notes. Served in a small pilsner flute at Resi's Bierstube, on special for $3.00. Although it was a recent arrival to the bar, unfortunately it was already out of code, BBD: 12.11.12.

Darker color, reddish orange brown with some clarity and rapid carbonation visible. It maintains a small head for the duration of the glass.

Smells a little like iced tea, and tastes like vaguely malty unsweetened iced tea, with some cardboard notes of oxidation. Simultaneously watery and effervescent. Sort of bland and uninspired. Would be nice to try a fresher sample, but I haven't seen this beer anywhere else before.

2014: on draft at Radler, a little better and not as oxidized. Would give it a 3.25.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.9/5  rDev +5.7%

Hövels Original
On tap at Die Stammkneipe / Der Schwarze Kölner, Brooklyn, NY, 23 August 2014

Notes: Bready/biscuity malt. Golden caramel. Dry apple & minor pear notes from the yeast. Some spicy/floral hop flavors. Really nicely balanced. Firm bitterness. Finishes dry with some residual leafy caramel.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.89/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Served on-tap at Pilsener Haus in Hoboken, NJ

A: Pours a clear medium to dark amber in color with some moderate to heavy amounts of visible carbonation and some ruby red highlights. The beer has a two finger tall dense foamy light tan head that slowly reduces to a thin film covering the majority of the surface of the beer with a thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate to heavy amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of bready malts with some notes of caramel sweetness as well as some fruity yeasts.

T: Light to moderate flavors of bready and caramel malts but without the expected sweetness from the aroma. Light amounts of earthy hops that impart some light bitterness which does not linger for too long.

M: Medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Relatively smooth.

O: Easy to drink and enjoyable - reminds me of a visit to Dortmund a couple of years ago where I enjoyed quite a few of these. Nice flavors and aromas, pretty true to the style in my opinion. Nice complexity and balance.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
3.7/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Flip-top half-litre bottle: best before Apr 2013, poured into three stemmed Pilsner glasses @ home during a random tasting evening on 23 Nov 2012.

Lovely looking beer: bright amber, clear and healthy, on top a snow white crown.

Malty nose: caramel being the main aroma. That caramel front carries on into the taste and although not really a sweet brew it certainly has a maltier flavour than a hop one. Actually the beer is well balanced because it has a crisp, sharp hop feel within the maltiness from start to finish.

I used to drink this on a regular basis years ago: I still like it.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
3.41/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a clear, dark amber with a dirty white head

S: Some sweetness, hint at roastiness, caramel

T: Roasted notes, a bit of Earthiness, toffee, caramel, grassy hops

M: Medium body, easy to drink, sweet and Earthy

O: Worth a try if you see it around

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Photo of wl0307
3.71/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased at the fantastic "Archer Road Beer Shop" in Sheffield. BB 02/08, served lightly chilled in a pint-size weizen glass.

A: pours an elegant dark amber hue, coming with an ever-so-creamy light beige froth that very slowly settles and leaves tight sheets of lacing behind, on top of constantly semi-lively yet fine carbonation.
S: a lightly sour-bitter edge of dried lemon peels underlines a mild flow of caramel malts with a even-milder bready hint, while a rather subdued note of caramelised nuts hides in the back. The label specifies that it's brewed with "vier Edelmalzen", so a mixture of four different malts result in such a a pleasant smell? It's quite fruity actually.
T: the flavour comes nutty right from the beginning with a tinge of caramel, yet a pleasant flow of sprig and tea-stem like hop-bitterness (with a dried grassy aroma) also prevails at the same time, leading towards a semi-dry, herbal bitter finish underlined by a mild tinge of sourness as in a well-lagered beer brewed with either ale- or lager-yeasts.
M&D: I tend to agree with the last reviewer (paterlodie) that this beer tastes more like a well-lagered, filtered Altbier than a naturally murky Kellerbier, while Sigmund's comment also hits the bull's eye that the moderate level of hop bitterness seems to well balance the mixed maltiness. The finish is slightly sticky rather than consistently clean, but overall this medium-bodied and lightly fizzy bitter amber beer is definitely a thirst-quencher; if only the brewery used real hops rather than hop extract!

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.72/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Celebrator pokal. Pours a clear coppery amber with a thin, persistent light tan head with some lacing. Mellow aroma of caramel malt with light wheat. Fortunately the skunky whiff I got when opening the bottle was not present in the aroma from the glass. Green bottle, why do they do this? Flavor of caramel and bready malt, finishes with light grassy hops and a long hop and malt aftertaste. Starts slightly sweet and finishes slightly dry. Guess I got a bottle of this soon enough that the skunk had not affected taste. All flavors are pleasant, but very low key and unmemorable. Light to medium bodied. Definitely would consider this as a pleasant dinner beer, but would never buy it again if it is in a green bottle. Not worth taking the chance.

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
3.68/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours mahogony with a small tan head. Dissipation leaves rich lacings.

S: Grass, grain and nettles. A metallic tone in the back (I find that in every Altbier I drink). Sweet malts. Bitterhops balances the malt.

T: Dry and bready. Grass, grain and nettles is what this one is all about. Bitter hops.

M: Aftertaste is quite bready and bitter. Body is medium while carbonation is mild.

O: An interesting Altbier, with the dryness and the nettles.

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Photo of scruffwhor
3.36/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Never seen this German brew before, until I walked into my local Costco and bought a mixed case (18 bottles) of German beer. This was one of them.

Clear, yet darker amber color. Quick head, super thin foam that recedes to nothing quickly. Only one column of bubbles.

Toasted cracker and dry bread crust aroma. Maybe a little earthy hop aroma for some balance.

Crisp like a lager for sure. Nice, crisp bite on the front of the tongue with each sip. Toasted bread crust with an earthy, bitter bite from the earthy hops.

Pretty crisp, easy drinkin Altbier. Not bad, but not worth buying again.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.97/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pretty enjoyable beer.
Amber color with a medium-sized tan head.
Caramel aroma, a bit hoppy.
Sweet malt taste, with a late hit of hops'
Mouthfeel felt like an altbier at the onset, but the hops were a bit of a surprise. Not unpleasant, just a little unexpected.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.83/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

From BeerAdvocate magazine Issue #66 (July 2012):

Very happy to see a true Altbier grace our presence in the US. The style clearly does not get enough attention or even respect. Liquid bread is the first thing that comes to mind, obviously drinkable and with just enough complexity to keep us thinking.

LOOK: Clear, brassy amber; impressive lacing

SMELL: Malty, loaf of bread, faint caramel, grape skin, herbal, clean

TASTE: Crisp, toasted grain, dark bread, dried grass, slightly biscuity, mineral, balancing hop bitterness, mealy apple skin, leafy, slight alcoholic warmth, dry-ish finish

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Photo of UncleJimbo
4.18/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this Hövels Original Rotgoldbier on-tap at Stilbruch in Bamberg, Germany.

The beer poured a clear, red amber color, with tall, very creamy, off-white foam that persisted and clung to the glass. The smell was very nice, with some sweet malt and a hint of noble hops. The taste was richly malty with a touch of sweetness. The hoppiness was modest up front, but became stronger toward the finish. The mouthfeel was very smooth and creamy with medium body and moderate carbonation. It was malty with a good hoppy finish. This was a very drinkable beer.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hovels has a thick, fluffy, very light beige head and a mostly clear (but, with tiny floating specks throughout), copper-colored appearance, with some streaming bubbles and a fair amount of lacing left behind. The aroma is of sweet & sour sauce, faint grain, and a little sting in the nose. Taste is of brown bread (Roman Meal brand), molasses, lightly-toasted malt, and a shot of hop bitterness showing itself in mid sip. Also, a shade of paperiness is detected in the undertaste. Mouthfeel is mostly watery, and Hovels finishes refreshing, mild, and highly drinkable. This is a very good light beer.


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Photo of Metalmonk
3.68/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks like a darker Oktoberfest, leafy golden-brown in color, very autumnal, and the superbly creamy head really sells it. Good clarity in the liquid, good head retention and great lace stick.

Super-clean earthy/grainy smell, nothing too sweet or bitter emerging, just a nose that recalls cracked wheat, plus a little bit of a coppery/penny smell, but hardly enough to detract.

Pretty much same deal on the tongue. Grainy element out front, like a good, clean, simple wheat cracker, husky/nutty vibes, and a lightly metallic character, which also carries into the finish. Actually kind of hard to determine whether it's actually a mineral/metal thing, or a hard bitterness from the hops. Light hit of cooked vegetable too.

Mouth is nicely slick and buttery round, although the dryness comes on quick and gives the illusion of puckering, although I think that's just that bitter hop/metallic twang from the flavor and finish.

A good beer, with a kind of hardcore old-school vibe. It's easy to imagine this beer being just like this in 1893, you know? Untouched by time and trend and all that...

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Photo of Offa
4.35/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is an excellent altbier and session beer overall.

Golden brown, it has a big pale tan head steadily shrinking to rich frothy ring and thin veneer of foam.

Aroma is wonderful caramlised toasty grain, bread crust herbs, leaves, pretty full-bodied overall.

Taste is nice, lightly toasty, faintly caramelly bread crust sweetness, a nice, gently dominant toasty-woody-grassy bitterness. It's dryish but with noticeable sweetness and bitterness, and an excellent, characterful session beer as a good alt should be.

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Photo of woemad
3.73/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

11.2oz bottle purchased at the Spokane Valley Total Wine for $1.79. My first genuine German Alt in quite a while. The label on the back includes a freshness date – 12.03.14. Once again, it becomes apparent Total Wine either does not look at freshness dates or does not care how old something is. Fortunately, this is a pretty malty style so it may turn out all right. According to the label, this is brewed with wheat malt as well as barley malt, which may be a distinctive feature of this beer.

Poured a dark copper color, with a good-sized off-white head that hung around for a few minutes before receding to a quarter-inch skiff that managed to endure.

Big, bready and toffee-like malt aroma to this, which isn’t much of a surprise. There’s also a slight, herbal hop scent, but this is the malts’ show.

Toffee and caramel sweetness start off the taste. There’s also a bit of dark fruit in the background. A slight mineralish taste hovers there as well. An herbal hop bitterness keeps the sweetness from becoming cloying. Finishes slightly dry.

The body is somewhere between light and medium, with a soft mouthfeel.

Not great, but not a bad Alt at all. Certainly it’s a somewhat rare style in my neck of the woods, which is a shame. I drank the hell out of all the Alts I could find when I was going to school in Germany in the late ‘90s, and wish I could find more of the real thing (yeah, I’m glaring at you, Alaskan Amber). Not terribly expensive, and seemingly no worse for wear despite being nearly 5 months past it’s best-by, I might take a chance on this again.

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Photo of crossovert
2.82/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

330ml green bottle. BB16.11.12. Claims no additives on the US label.

It opens with a bit of skunk (idiots). Smell is faintly caramally and grainy.

The flavor isn't horrible. Definitely thin for the style. A bit of diacetyl, breadlike malts, caramel, and some noble hop bitterness. It doesn't taste spectacularly fresh but it isn't awful.

It suprised me by not totally sucking.

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Photo of paterlodie
3.97/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

BB 24-10-06. Nice white head and a brown clear beercolor. Nose is very malty; bit sweetish and with that qyuiet fruity.IMO more like an Altbeer then Pils/Lager( top fermented) and with that also filtered so nowhere near a keller/zwickelbeer. Nice body also and full of taste that's a nice combination of caramel and roastmalt before a well dosed bitterness comes in and takes over. Good sweetness in it too as there is some but not to much and fitting the well dosed other components. Well balanced and enjoyable brew if you like altbeer.

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Photo of eduardolinhalis
3.8/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

500ml bottle served in a Weizen glass.

A: Pours the traditional Altbier copper color. Clear. Forms a medium and fluffy white head. Low retention but lots of thin and lingering lacings left in the glass. Thin bubbles can be seen coming from the bottom of the glass. A thin layer remains for a long time on the top

S: Strong toffee and caramel malts in the nose. Sweet and biscuity. Some notes of grapes and flowery hops

T: Slightly sweet upfront. Strong notes of toffee and caramel malts. Altbiers are most probably one of the most fruity Lagers on earth. Good notes of grapes and raisins. Good and mild bitter end. Balanced

M: Light but bit molasses body. Medium carbonation. Caramel and biscuity aftertaste

O: Good drinkability. Classic German Alterbier. Pleasant and recommended

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Photo of delta490
3.71/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A- poured into a tulip (it was either that or Shaker pint). Came out a deep, beautiful amber with a nice creamy white head. It doesn't last long but leaves nice lacing.

S- Some nice malt/bread notes. Maybe a hint of raisin.

T- Pretty straightforward. Dark bread is more forward with just a slight hint of hops on the finish.

M- Pretty smooth with a hint of carbonation on the finish.

O- Not complicated, but good all the same. There's nothing mind-blowing but one I would drink again.

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Photo of dasenebler
2.94/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

.5L swing-top, best before the end of December 2011.

Pours a highly carbonated, clear light-copper hue with a decent eggshell head. Retention is good, lacing too.

The aroma is weak. Clean, but not much there other than minerals and the slightest trace of German hops.

The flavor is also very light, though better than the aroma. Faint notes of toasted malt and biscuits, pretty solid bitterness thoughout. Bit metallic. The finish is clean and non-descript. The mouthfeel is soft and fluffy, though a touch over-carbonated.

As an Altbier, this doesn't have too much to offer. An over-marketed average beer.

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Photo of Sigmund
3.53/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500 ml heavy dark green swingtop bottle, cool. Bought in Bier Spezi, Hamburg. Amber colour, large to moderate off-white head. Lovely hoppy aroma when pouring, not equally impressive in the glass. For something from Germany called "Bitterbier" I kind of expected a hoppy explosion, but the bitterness is actually very moderate. Still, some hops are around, and they are quite well balanced with the malts. Hints of caramel and a certain herbal spiciness too. Unusual style for Germany, but not really remarkable.

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Photo of seanyfo
3.66/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

0,5ml bottle poured into an altbier glass.

A- Dark copper amber like altbier with a tan firm head, that has excellent retention and lacing.

S- Metallic, roasted malts

T- Once again very metallic, roasted malts of an altbier come through, with a caramel sweetness.

M- Moderate carbonation with firm body.

D- I really did feel i was drinking a cross between an 80 shilling and an altbier. All the roasted malt characteristics of these 2 styles with a firm body. Nice, but metallic quality puts me off wanting another

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Photo of RuudJH
3.89/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Heavy bottle of beer, bought in a german beershop recently.

The beer colour: brown, with a beige head. Not much carbonation.
Great smell of garden and farmyard: grassy, pine floral and citric hops.
Taste is more mellow: some bittersweetness, a lot of malts, some herbal and citric hops.
Mouthfeel is mellow, but the aftertaste is lingering: good balance in bitter and sweet.
Light body. The carbonation still works in the mouth, but only modestly.

Good beer to try: balanced and pleasant

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Hövels Original from Hövels Hausbrauerei
83 out of 100 based on 44 ratings.