Shiner Smokehaus | Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner

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Shiner SmokehausShiner Smokehaus

Brewed by:
Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner
Texas, United States

Style: Munich Helles Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.89%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
Helles-style lager made with Texas mesquite wood-smoked pale malts. 16 IBU

Added by drunkboxer1 on 06-04-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 153 | Ratings: 250
Photo of lanechaffin
5/5  rDev +52%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is great beer. I wasn't sure what to expect, but I really like it. I had said previously that Shiner's Black beer was the best they turn out, but this Smokehaus gives the black a run for it's money.
I bought a 12 pack for $11.99 @heb LIFE IS GOOD

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Photo of JMiculka
4.62/5  rDev +40.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

By far, my favourire Shiner product thus far. I am hoping that it returns next summer. It was a great porch drinking beer at the end of the day. Was great with jalapeno cheese and dry sausage.

The smoke taste, was faint but eventually came out. The mouthfeel was about average but still very nice.

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Photo of grg001
4.25/5  rDev +29.2%

OHHHHH, I MISS THIS BEER! This was Texas all the way. Smooth and smoky. Perfect for summer cook outs or autumn nights by an open fire. I drool thinking of it. Original and fantastic in every way for my taste buds. SHINER - PLEASE BRING IT BACK!!! I will buy all your inventory.

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Photo of JDK
4.25/5  rDev +29.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a very pale honey color with a 1/4" head that quickly disappeared.
Couldn't smell as much smoke as I had anticipated, not much smell at all.I picked up more malt and hops than smoke.
Nice carbonation
Very nice smokey taste, much better than I expected. I was hoping that this wouldn't be over-the-top, just right.
This would go very well with any meat, especially if it was from the grill

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Photo of tigg924
4.2/5  rDev +27.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: gold in color, 1/2 inch head, clear, medium carbonation

Smell: campfire smoke and bacon

Taste: sweet toasted malt with smokiness at the end. A light bacon flavor.

Mouthfeel: This one is a bit too highly carbonated. It is light and sweet.

Drinkability: This one was a pleasant surprise. It is good for how light it is. This is a smoke beer that is crisp and refreshing. I could have six and wish I picked up more of this.

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Photo of Squelch
4.15/5  rDev +26.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Light Tan colored with a slightly off white head. Very effervescent. Crystal clear.

Smell: Slight mesquite aroma that blents well with the malt. No hop aroma presnet which is good bcause I think it would compete with the smoke.

Taste: Smoker is evident but not overpowering. This is my first of the style so I don't know what to compare it with but it seems a little undersmoked. A little almond or woodsey in the finish. Very nice.

Mouthfeel: Nice. don't know if it fits to style but fits to this beer.

Drinkability: I could drink a few of these.

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Photo of Moontang
4.13/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in my usual highball.

Appearance: Very pleasant deep golden colour, and a large, slightly cream-coloured head, which dissipates pretty slowly into sparse lacing.

Smell: A rather complex smell, more or less equal parts smoke and malt, and a little bit of hops.

Mouthfeel: Slightly thick, and very low carbonation, the way I like it

Taste: One of the more unique beers I've had, and in a very pleasant way. Quite smoky, with a strong doughy grain flavour, and a little bit acidic. Quite nice.

Drinkability: Very nice beer, I'd definitely buy it in future and have a drink whenever I was inclined to enjoy an experience like this.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.12/5  rDev +25.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I think that optimator17 sent this to me for a Smoked Beer Night that did not come off. Today, I am having a smoked turkey breast with my uncle and this seemed an appropriate time to break out some smoked beer. Merry Christmas, everybody!

From the bottle: "The Perfect Sommer Bier"; "Good for grillin' and for chillin'"; "Every Drop of Shiner Is Brewed in Shiner"; "Mesquite Smoked Beer, Helles Style"; "It's Smokin' Good"; "Smoked to Perfection - Brewed with pale malt that's been smoked with native mesquite in the backyard of our little brewery in Shiner, Texas (pop. 2,070), this refreshing Helles-style beer has a smoky flavor that goes great with all the flavors of summer. Prosit!"; From our backyard to yours."

I used an aggro pour to create two fingers of fluffy bone-white head with good retention. Color was a deep-gold with NE-quality clarity that would have led to a fistfight between Croesus and King Midas. Nose had a beautiful lager sweetness with a light, underlying smokiness. Oooh. Christmas dinner was perfect for this! Mouthfeel was much fuller than I would have expected from the style and the smokiness was very pleasant. I wonder if it was smokier in its youth, but regardless, it was a perfect accompaniment to smoked turkey.

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Photo of dfillius
4.1/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint
A: Aggressive pour yields 1 finger of white head with great retention. Crystal clear pale gold liquid.
S: Slight smoke over nice breadiness and herbal hop. Great marriage!
T: Smoke is pronounced but restrained. Bready in a white sandwich bread way. Slight metallic. Well balanced hopping. All flavors work together well. I wish it ahd slightly more hop character.
M: A bit fizzy, a bit thin, and otherwise pleasant.
D: "The Perfect Sommer Bier" Not quite, but pretty good. I'd order a second and probably buy a six pack.

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Photo of hosehead83
4.1/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a standard pint glass
Clear, bright gold in color,with a fluffy, two-inch head of white foam
Aroma-Off-in-the-distance woodsmoke, biscuit notes
Taste-Subtle mesquite, buttered biscuit, a bit of a dry finish, inviting another sip. Smoke flavor is not overdone by any means, but very subtle and almost teasing your tastebuds into having another sip of the ghost-like smokiness.
Overall, an interesting, subtle brew that would pair well with smoked salmon or homemade beef jerky. If nothing else, sure to be a conversation starter at your next cookout.

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Photo of drunkboxer1
4.1/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Paired with pulled pork BBQ. Pours a straw yellow color with a thin white head that sticks around for a while. Leaves a good amount of lacing. Smells of clean, grassy grains and faintly of cured meat (I guess). When I take a tiny sip I mostly get clean pale malt flavors, and a tiny bit of hop flavor rounding it out. However, if you take a big gulp the smoky, bacony, flavor comes out. It's definitely not as pronounced as the only other rauch I've had (Southern Star's offering), but its definitely there. The beer is highly carbonated, and not too heavy. A pretty good summer seasonal, and a nice change of pace from the wits and wheats that a lot of breweries put out this time of year.

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Photo of smares2
4.07/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer bills itself as a perfect addition for a summer barbeque, which is very appropriate. What I mean is it's distinct taste relies a lot on what you're having with it. The first couple times I had it was with some hot wings, bbq meat and then with a big ol' burger. It was great, the smoky taste complemented the meaty, saucy items well.

I've since had it other times both with other types of food and not having eaten in a couple of hours and it just didn't compare. It those had been my first experiences I may not have come back to it.

But when matched with the right food, it's a very smooth drinking flavorful beer. Intense but not overpowering.

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Photo of bcgpete
4.02/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Light straw color with a finger and a half of white head which went away quickly leaving a very light film.

The smell is a bit smokey, not as much as I was expecting though.
Taste is typical for a lager, fairly well balanced. I'm still not getting the smokey flavor that I have heard so much about. This reminds me a lot of Shiner's 99th anniversary Helles lager, but more balanced.
The mouthfeel is great, a very good summer beer. Fairly light in the mouth but with enough flavor so that it's not watery in the least.
I will definitely buy this beer again if I'm in the mood for a lager, I only wish that Shiner would convert all of their beers to pop-tops.

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Photo of utah44
4/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a golden color with a small foamy head with minimal retention. Aroma of light smoke. Taste of heavy, overwhelming, burnt smoke with hints of mesquite. Enhances and complements the flavor of smokeless tobacco. Mouthfeel is superb. Great brew for a smoke-filled room.

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Photo of elniko
3.97/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up 6 pack at CM in Dallas. Poured into Stella glass.

A: Nice amber coloring, half finger head that dissipated very quickly. Decent level of lacing and carbonation. Solid looking brew.

S: The smokiness is definitely apparent but is not overwhelming. I pick up just a touch of what I would expect from a Helles as well.

T & M: Wow, kudos to Spoetzl as I am very impressed with this brew. I give them a lot a credit for trying something different and pulling it off. The main taste apparent is the smokiness but again just like in the smell it does not overwhelm. The solid characteristics of the 99 come out as well. The one thing that stood out was the almost creamy finish that I did not expect from the smoke.

D: Pretty drinkable, I could see the smoke getting old after several but I could definitely put a few of these back with no problem. Again, kudos Spoetzl!

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Photo of matjack85
3.95/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I got this as part of an 8 pack set called "Beers Around the World". 12oz brown bottle with no freshness date, only a blurb on the back label that tells you that the beer is brewed with smoked Texas mesquite wood.

The beer poured a clear bright amber color that made a 1½ finger white head. Retention was decent and so was the lacing it left on the glass.

This actually smells more malty sweet than smokey, but the smoke is definitely there. It almost like you're standing in front of the deli case in the supermarket with the bakery just a few feet away.

It's a nice mix of pale malt sweetness with a touch of smokiness. The smoke flavor is on the subtle side and I think that was a good choice by the brewmaster. With an IBU of just 16, there isn't much hop presence to speak of, but there does seem to be a bit of spiciness working with the mesquite smoke to keep the maltiness in check.

Thin to medium mouthfeel with only moderate carbonation which works well with this style.

With an abv of under 5%, this stuff is easy to down. I'd have another one but there was oinly one of these in the gift pack.

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Photo of TheKingofWichita
3.95/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep banana yellow color with a thick off white head and a fair amount of lacing. Smells of smoke, fallen leaves, and a little bit of yeast. Tastes fairly malty with some well balanced hops to even it out. Smoke is very apparent and the mesquite is very nice. A very dry finish and aftertaste. Mouthfeel is medium with a very light carbonation. Drinkability is very high.

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Photo of teamhex
3.94/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Im not going to in depth on this one, its a decent beer. People should read the style before trashing it.
"...a unique smokiness ("rauch" is German for smoke), the usage of which produces beers of an acquired taste"
This beer isn't bad, but it reminds me of a 99 mixed with a bock. Its not as flavorable as I think it should be, but isn't bad.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.92/5  rDev +19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pale pumpkin with lemon peel borders and sheets of sparkling bubbles that keep things looking lively. A thick slice of aged ivory colored foam doesn't have the world's greatest texture and isn't sticky enough to lay down much lace.

Shiner beer has never impressed me, but they got the nose right on this one. Mesquite-smoked pale malt is neither overpowering nor subtle. Each sniff (and eventually, each upending of the glass) results a pleasant whiff of smokiness that is just right if you like beer of this sort.

Keeping in mind that it was brewed to be a low-ABV, summertime, backyard barbeque kind of quencher, Smokehaus gets it done. The base beer tastes a little macro lagerish, but the smoke easily covers up most of its sins. Please don't drink it 'ice cold' as the label suggests.

In terms of both amount and character, the smokiness passes the all-important Goldilocks test (not too much... not too little... but juuust right). There aren't too many other flavors present, which is par for the course when the malt is so boldly flavored from the mesquite. A hint of corny sweetness doesn't offend.

The mouthfeel isn't bad at all. In fact, it has slightly more heft than expected (given the ABV and the brewery) and the bubbles are within the wide range of acceptable. There's certainly nothing here that would prevent multiple bottle consumption on a hot July day.

Smokehaus might be my favorite Spoetzl Brewery offering of them all. It doesn't seriously compete with the brews from Germany's Brauerei Heller-Trum/Schlenkerla, but it's a more than competent beer that would be fantastic alongside a pulled pork sandwich and some spicy baked beans.

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Photo of Fitzgerald
3.91/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Golden straw color, very clear, lots of effervescence with a white foamy two inch head, has almost sheet like lacing.

S- Not real aromatic, some malts not really picking up a smoke scent.

T- Malty, bready with a nice smoky taste not overpowering real smooth no bitterness.

MF- Chewy, full bodied not real carbonated smooth finish.

D- Love Shiners beers this Smokehaus is a very drinkable beer the clear light color surprises you with the smoky malt taste a great beer to have while grilling outdoors.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.9/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a solid gold in color, with a wispy white head that leaves some lacing on the glass.

Smell: Smells of crystal malt and a hint of smoke.

Taste: Pretty good lager flavor, soft grains, a bit of sweet corn bread and a hint of mesquite smoke on the back end. At first the smoke was almost un-noticable, but then became a bit more developed later on. This would be a great gateway beer for non-craft drinkers. A well crafted lager with a hint of mesquite in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, crisp carbonation.

Drinkability: Shiner's Smokehouse scores an extra point higher for being a formidable BBQ companion. Would love to grill away in the sunshine drinking a few of these.

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Photo of rowew
3.9/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz longneck, screw top. Nice looking retro label. I don't see a date or ABV.

Appearance: Clear and golden in color, nice sized head that fades slowly.

Smell: A light mineral smell - similar to what I've come to expect from a good pilsner. There may be a hint of smoke in there too, but if I wasn't looking for it I don't think I'd smell it.

Taste: Theres the smoke. Very interesting .. manages to be smoky but still light and refreshing. There is a smoky flavor, but almost a fruity note as well. Light body with a medium carbonation level.

Overall impression: This one is a bit hard to pin down - but its enjoyable trying. I'm liking this much more than I expected to.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.88/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Mesquite smoked, man am I curious what they did here. Mesquite can easily get over-powering. A vigorous pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a four-finger thick, pale tan colored head. The beer is a light copper hue that shows a brilliantly clear, rich gold color with copper highlights when held up to the light. The aroma has a phenolic note to it that clearly comes from the smoke; I would describe this as a mix of mesquite smoked leather, a touch of plastic, some salty brine character, and even some smoked caramelized notes. There is not a whole lot of base beer character noticeable here; perhaps a hint of sweet grain comes through at times, and there is a touch of grassy grain to the finish. The aroma is not bad, definitely interesting, but I am not sure I really want to see a bunch of mesquite smoked beers being done.

Lightly sweet with a nice malt-grain note to it, the beer has a faint smokiness to it in the finish that adds a depth and complexity that I wasn't expecting. The smoke in the flavor is quite subdued, though substantial in many ways. While the beer is pretty light bodied and easy drinking, the smoke provides a hearty, almost savory quality to this beer. The smoke also contributes an umami-like richness, a touch of caramel-like sweetness. Perhaps a hint of spiciness and bitterness is contributed by the hops, while the malt adds some grassy grain notes. The smoke causes this beer to come off as quite dry, but there is some body to this brew; it never gets watery and even has a touch of viscousness to it that allows it to cling to the palate. The texture is actually quite nice and compliments the smoke quite well.

This beer will pair quite well with food, the soft, though pervasive smoke character is just about perfect in the flavor; if there had been more smoke here I would worry about the mesquite just getting too harsh. There is just enough smoke to keep this beer quite interesting, and despite my initial misgivings, I am finding myself quite enjoying this beer. This beer is severely under-rated, but given this breweries reputation, I can't say I am surprised.

Purchased: Plaza Liquors, Tucson AZ

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Photo of wagenvolks
3.88/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

"The Perfect Sommer Beer" -- 12oz bottle into a Foothills pint glass.

Smokehaus pours quite nicely, building 2 finger's width of eggshell white head atop a clear, pale golden body. Lots of carbonation rising up to fuel the well-retained foam. Decent aromas of pale malts, grass, and green peppers. The mesquite is a nice touch compared to the usual "liquid smoke" beefy aroma of most rauchbiers. Come to think of it, the bottle states this is a Helles Style Beer, with smoke flavor added and not a true Rauch...

Shiner did a nice job with this beer. The malts are crisp and light, dropping a solid backbone of sweet biscuit and bread crust, while the hops add a burst of grassy vegetation. Then comes the smoke, slowly enveloping the sides of the tongue and rising up to meet the roof of the mouth. No joke--I can taste the mesquite flavor with my tonsils! Crisp, refreshing mouthfeel, and the light body is nicely carbonated and drinkable as the smokiness does not overwhelm in the slightest. All in all, Smokehaus is a great summer session beer, and hopefully a sign of good things to come from a normally underwhelming Spoetzl brewery.

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Photo of thebeerdoctor
3.85/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

There is little purpose in mentioning a smoky taste since this is a smokehaus beer, using mequite wood at that.
A nice cookout, American version of a smoked beer, and a fairly easy drinking bottom fermented lager. Golden color with a "grillin'" nose. Cold, this beer will disappear quickly, unless you don't like a profile that is smoky.
I can envision making a chipotle chili using this "perfect sommer bier" as the liquid base.

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Shiner Smokehaus from Spoetzl Brewery / Shiner
3.29 out of 5 based on 250 ratings.
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