1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Löwenbräu Original - Löwenbräu AG

Not Rated.
Löwenbräu OriginalLöwenbräu Original

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
76
okay

737 Ratings
THE BROS
79
okay

(view ratings)
Ratings: 737
Reviews: 376
rAvg: 3.28
pDev: 17.07%
Wants: 28
Gots: 39 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Löwenbräu AG visit their website
Germany

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-28-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Löwenbräu Original Alström Bros
Ratings: 737 | Reviews: 376 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of pvsob
3.6/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a lovely pale gold color with a good two inch head that fades slowly, leaving a fair amount of lacing. Main aromas are light sweet malt, bready/grassy aromas, and just enough nobel hops to keep the sweetness in check. Flavor profile resembles the aroma characteristics. Nothing earth shattering here, but all in all this is a well balanced Helles with a light crisp mouthfeel and above average drinkability. If it's hot as hell and there's nothing but Macros available; grab a Lowenbrau or two. Prost!

Photo of 1fastz28
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a light golden color with a nice white head, smell is pretty good, has a nice malt sweetness to it and a decent hop aroma as well. taste is average, doesn't have anything extraordinary to it but it is a solid munich helles, which is quickly becoming one of my favorite summer beers, lowenbrau, spaten, hofbrau are all becoming some of my go to summer beers. mouthfeel and drinkability are pretty good too

Photo of sevopie
2.98/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Golden straw in color with a quick-to-leave white head.

Some grains and a faint grassiness.

A mild hint of grassy hops and some slightly musty grains.

Light and heavily carbonated.

Finishes very crisp and dry, but the mustiness threw me off a bit. Its not offensive though, and not a bad choice for the style.

Photo of TheTrevor
3.33/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

After declining to review a bottle of this that was skunked as hell I managed to get my hands on a fresher one. The beer poured a light gold with a two-finger head. The smell was mostly sweet malt with just a bit of grassy hops. The taste starts off with some sweet malt that is quickly cut by the grassy hops that makes for a nice balance. The mouthfeel was a bit watery but with enough carbonation to make it crisp. A pretty drinkable little beer that's a good six-pack to grab if you happen to be going somewhere a bit more upscale than Macrobrew territory.

Photo of EagleTalon
3.13/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours to a thick white head that falls to a thin layer and makes moderate lacing. Clear, pale yellow color. Aroma is sweet and has a bit of spicy noble hops in it. Flavor is rather bland (maybe this one is old?) with a faint graininess and weak hop bitterness. Thin and watery and not very inviting as a session beer.

Photo of TheSarge
3.4/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Löwenbräu Original is the beer that converted me from a BMC drinker. After almost 5 years, I'm surprised I've never reviewd this brew.

Here in its homeland, they use brown glass vice green, which I believe makes for a fresher beer.

When poured, Original produced about a 2.5 thick head. Retention is great! The body is a light golden color, and is very clear.

The aroma is a little faint, but lemony hops, and a slightly sweet cereal grain fragrance is detectable too.

This is a well balanced beer. It leans a little to the boring side, and lacks a little depth in the hops department, as compared to other helles brands.

Still, this beer is more than on par for refreshment, and makes for a decent semisessionable beer.

Photo of NightINgale
3.4/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Pale yellow-gold colour, with some white head that dissipates in a short time. Loads of carbonation initially and no lacing whatsoever.

S- Not very appealing. Very grainy, with some dry malts and minimal hops.

T- Dry malts, with some lemon notes and very subtle apple undertones, which come out a bit later. The sweetness is balanced. The finish is moderately dry and very bready. Quite crisp overall.

M- Light body, with moderate carbonation. Smooth enough for a lager.

D- Very drinkable. A decent lager, overall. There's nothing off-putting in the taste and nothing extraordinary either.

Photo of ShogoKawada
3.65/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured 3 12oz beers into my Lowenbrau 1L beer mug. Why? I because I've got to, mister!

A- very light, pale yellow. Little carbonation. Not very impressive coloration.

S- Ugh. Nothing good coming from a deep smell off this beer. Smells like 'beer', and not in a good way. Thankfully, tastes much better than it smells.

T- Good. Suprisingly good for smell/appearance. Crisp and smooth lager. Light grains and faint sweet fruit. Bit of grassiness/earthiness, hops are all but absent.

M- Goes down easy. Well-balanced, if simple.

D- Extremely high. A good beer that you can drink a lot of and still feel pretty good. The 1L of Lowenbrau is a pleasant buzz. This beer is nice, drinkable, and good with some pretzels. Nothing special, but every once and a while I'll get a sixer and don't regret it.

Photo of biegaman
3.3/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Light straw infused with a splash of lemon juice. The beer's golden complexion and faultless clarity are justly displayed when held into the light, where its edges become bright and resplendent and its transparency magnified. Despite the consistent disbursement of bubbles no head ever forms. Some froth would of bumped the score even higher.

I don't even want to guess how many chemicals are in this beer. Humans developed a sense of smell to help us avoid potentially poisonous foods; my sense of smell is telling me to avoid taking a sip. (Turns out that off-putting smell can't entirely be attributed to the green bottles after all.) This reeks of ethanol-spiked corn syrup.

If my German is correct, Lowenbrau is claiming this to be a traditional Munich-style beer brewed in accordance with the Reinheitsgebot purity law. If that were really case then what I should be tasting is a clean, slightly sweet malty profile with a grainy, bready flavour and an assertive noble hop presence that adds a crisp, spicy bitterness. Am I tasting this? Well, not exactly. Although in truth I'm not really tasting any chemicals or adjuncts either.

There's isn't much corn - where any - and the flavour is considerably cleaner than most North American examples. Perhaps I was wrong in assuming this would be laden with cheap synthetic fermentables? Perhaps this really is brewed according to the Reinheitsgebot? Maybe, but that still doesn't explain why I'm not sensing much malt (nor would it make sense of this beer's 12 month shelf life!)

Lowenbrau Original drinks quite well relative to other mass-produced lagers (whether exported or domestically made) but fares poorly as a true Munich Helles. Some of this may be the distance traveled; I'm sure this would taste better at the Lowenbrau beer hall in Munich, where, if the reviews on this site are any indication, Lowenbrau continues to make some considerably good beers in many of the traditional German styles.

Why would a talented brewery with a clear sense of place and tradition compromise their reputation (and their flagship beer) by exporting such a diminished, inferior imitation? Unlike most canned, mass-produced lagers, Lowenbrau is drinkable but it would take the right conditions for it to be honestly enjoyable. Anyone craving an authentic tasting Munich Helles might as well invest in a homebrewing kit or a plane ticket.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.68/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass at Jersey's in Barrington, IL. No date on bottle.

A - A very light, adjunct lager color with a decent white lumpy head that went down fast but left lacing.

S - Skunky like Heineken with a dry wheat smell. Very much Heineken in smell and adjunct lager aspects like corn and cheap smelling sweeter malts.

T - Light and crisp but almost exactly like Heineken in flavor. Wheaty and dry with the slight skunk flavor.

M - Crisp and light with a very light body and decent carbonation bite on the finish.

D - Light and easy drinking. Not too much more than a light lawnmower lager in my opinion.

Photo of elniko
3.68/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass.

A: Golden lager coloring with half finger of head and a small amount of lacing. Pretty standard looking for a helles lager.

S: Clean nose with tones of malt and grass. Very nice.

T & M: The word I think of when drinking this beer is crisp. The finish has a bite to it. The malt sweetness is not as apparent in this beer as I've encountered in other helles lagers.

D: Quite drinkable but not my favorite German lager.

Photo of bsend
3.48/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured this 11.2 oz. bottle into a standard pint glass.

The beer pours a light straw yellow. The golden color has a nice appearance however it is nothing too special. It does pour a nice white head that is retained for about a 1/4 of the beer. It allows light to shine freely through the glass.

The smell was surprisingly sweet. Small amounts of barley followed.

The taste was not as good as I would have hoped but never the less tasted decent. It reminded me to Stella Artois. A crisp beer with small but noticeably barley and hops.

The mouthfeel was average. On par with most european lagers. Light carbonation.

The drinkability was good on this one. At $12 a 12 pack while it was on sale, it made a nice sessionable brew that went down easy.

Final Thoughts - If you are a fan of Stella Artois, consider giving this one a try. Decent lager with a similar flavor and feel.

Photo of mjurney
3.43/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

[Appearance]: Pale straw color with a decent foamy head.
[Smell]: Grainy and hint of grassy.
[Taste]: Biscuity malts, hint of herbal spiciness.
[Mouthfeel]: Very clean and crisp finish. Light bodied.
[Drinkability]: Pretty good session beer. Very drinkable. I would buy this beer again.

Photo of thierrynantes
3.5/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer bottle (50 cl.), tasted in 2002.

Appearance : pale yellow color, with white foam head.
Smell : grassy and hoppy aromas.
Taste and mouthfeel : dry hoppy flavour with a good malty finish.
Drinkabililty : an average beer in the style Munich Helles lager.

Photo of secondtooth
3.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The legendary Lowenbrau name was tarnished a bit in the 70's as corporate American brewers changed the 'recipe' for American tastes. This, however, is the real thing. This lager pours crystal-clear and foamy, and the taste has a subtly sour finish. A typically Munich-style lager, this one's not at all bad, but nor is it outstanding.

Photo of KenC411
3.2/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: A thin straw colored beer with a few bubbles floating to a weak head that briskly disappeared.

Smell: A faint hint of corn and a bit of malt can be detected.

Taste: Surprisingly faint, a bit of a raw cereal aftertaste. There is no hop balance, as would be expected with this type of lager.

Mouthfeel: Simple and clean, very crisp, with just enough carbonation. However, I expected a bit more.

Drinkability: This feels like a beer that could be drank after mowing the lawn, as a substitute for a bud. Its thin and easy to go down, not off putting or chewy. However, in my opinion, I feel that a beer should offer more than to quench thirst.

Photo of MillRat
3.68/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light straw color with a pure white head, starts our pretty fine-bubbled, but the carbonation below coarsens it and it fades away pretty quickly. Aroma of light malt and grain, not more than a hint of clean, spicy hops. Flavor is crisp, slight sweet maltiness, and just enough hop bitterness to keep the mild sweetness in check.

As this beer warmed up it stayed true to character, even opening up a bit more malt complexity. None of the tart grassiness that plagues American light lagers as they get close to cellar tempertures.

Finished clean, even the slightest bit of astringency. Keeps you thirsty for the next one. Certainly an easy-drinking quaffer, and one that can sit for a little while without losing its appeal. A quality brew with more of a minimalist appeal. A tribute to careful brewing, as there's no where to hide faults.

Put this beer side-by-side with an American light adjunct lager, and you'll see how 6-row barley, adjuncts, and accountants designing recipes coarsened an otherwise fine product.

Photo of endovelico
2.17/5  rDev -33.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Best before date: 08/09. taken from notes. Poured into Pokal.

Appearance: Poured the beer at a 90º inclination creating a one thinger white head that eventually faded into thin cap. High effervescence. Golden color. Nothing overly attractive. Almost non existent lacing.

Smell: Skunkiness and slight floral hops on the nose. Subdued maltiness. Medium intensity.

Taste: Malty, slight skunkiness and floral /spicy hop flavour.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium light body. Watery and slightly oily. Medium low bitterness. Finishes clean.

Drinkability: Cheap and a decent representation of a heller. The slickness makes it harder to classify this as a session beer and the Lack of flavor makes it a very uninteresting one.

Photo of thekanna
2.93/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear yellow with 3 fingers of appreciable white head. Effervescence actively rises to the top.

S: Mostly strong yeasts with a very faint sweetness. Slight bit of cooked vegetable smell.

T: Mostly smooth malts and yeast flavor with a very strong, almost out of place hop bite at the end.

M: Crisp, almost tart; with a smooth, slide down easy finish.

D: Too much like the typical macro lager. Easily drinkable, but nothing memorable to discern it from the others.

Photo of GodOfBeer
3.83/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500ml can, nice gold colour with lots of carbonation and a fluffy white head that turns into a thin lacing.

Smells grainy, malty, sort of grassy and sweet, not too strong on the hops.

Nice and malty, pretty sweet and grassy, kind of citrusy as well. This is a very refreshing beer and proabably one of my favourite european lagers.

Photo of everetends
3.48/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle I found in my fridge. Think my buddy who is living with me must have picked up a sixer so I pilfered a couple of them. Thought I had reviewed this already but I guess I just tend to drink these in bulk and move on in social atmospheres. Served up in a weizen glass after a quick rinse because I just used it and didn't want to dirty another.

A: Well it comes out a pretty bright, light yellow color. Straw colored if you will. Gave off about half a finger of head but it really didn't have any lasting power. The thinnest of white rings sat around the top til the last pull but it didn't produce any lacing. Pretty damn clear and it has some nice carbonation activity in there. Overall, the look is pretty damned average.

S: Smell is of a lot of grainy earthiness to tell you the truth. Lots of barley comes out in this one and it has a bit of sweetness to it. The hops are very light compared to the malts that come out. Hops are mostly just a light herbal/spicy hop aroma. There is also a touch of saltiness coming out as well. There is no skunkiness to report so that makes me happy for a bottle that has the dreaded green bottle reputation.

T: Taste is much like the nose. Lots of barley brings out that rustic earthiness that a lot of german lagers tend to bring to the table. The hops are light and just sit on the outside adding to the flavor conversation occassionally. Herbal and floral flavors come out of the hops profile, but they truly are minimal. Still getting an ever so slight taste of salt in here as well, but it doesn't take anything away from the beer. Not bad at all for a light lager.

M: Light bodied brew that does a pretty good job of covering up its wateriness. The carbonation level is pretty high, making it pretty crisp on the palate. The beer is a bit on the dry side and doesn't quench that well, making you drink more (could be good or bad, depends on the person). ABV is a bit higher for such a lager but it isn't noticable on the palate or in the flavor. Aftertaste is pretty light to nonexistant.

D: Well this beer and style is built for drinkability and I think it pulls it off. Its not anywhere near heavy and it sits fine and easy. It is a bit dry but that just aids in the drinking of more of the beer. The flavors and aromas are light but I rarely expect crazy complexity from my Helles Lagers. They are meant to be simple, easy drinkers and this is a pretty good example of such a lager. Have and will continue to drink this beer.

Photo of Schwarzwald
4/5  rDev +22%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A really great German Lager. An easy to drink beer with some depth and flavor even though it is mass produced and shipped everywhere. Keep this in the fridge and serve very cold. I like to drink this when I am looking for a lighter beer to have with dinner. Works great with most foods and is easy to find at any store. Keep in mind that this beer is 5.2%, much better than the 4.somethings that we get in the US for mass produced beer.

Photo of droomyster
3.43/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden yellow with a white head with pretty good retention. Lazy bubbles slowly coasting their way up from the bottom. Smells skunky, with grainy, honeylike malts. If there are any hop aromas here, I'm just not smelling them. Taste is good, pretty straightforward sweet malts with zesty lemon hops. Finish is not quite crisp and lingers a bit sweet. Overall, this is a solid beer. There are definitely better ones but there are far more worse ones.

Photo of babaracas
3.48/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From old notes: Pours a yellow gold with short lived white head. Smell: grassy, grainy, that's about it. Taste: balanced is the theme here, sweet malts with a crisp spicy hop bitterness. Mouthfeel: fairly light, smooth, finishes clean. Not amazing, but very refreshing.

Photo of pokesbeerdude
3.88/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a 12oz single at the State Liquor Store in Vernal, UT, about $1.

A: Light straw gold color with a white head, reduced to a film almost immediately. Not a whole lot of active carbonation rising in this one. Excellent lacing.

S: Initially a little skunk, after that subsides there is a big pale malt character, and a faint hint at spicy hops, way in the background, slightly grainy.

T: Initial sweetness, almost honey like, a bit of hop spice in there too. Almost peppery. Not a lot going on, but it is balanced and clean tasting all the way around. Really nice.

M: Dry and lightly carbonated, really smooth, and a really clean finish. Spot on.

D: I could very easily drink a lot of this. This is one of the more flavorful lagers I've had. I will definitely be buying this again.

Löwenbräu Original from Löwenbräu AG
76 out of 100 based on 737 ratings.