Gaffel Kölsch | Privatbrauerei Gaffel Becker & Co.

BA SCORE
83
good
844 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score
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Gaffel KölschGaffel Kölsch
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Privatbrauerei Gaffel Becker & Co.
Germany
gaffel.de

Style: Kölsch

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 06-13-2002

BEER STATS
Ratings:
844
Reviews:
376
Avg:
3.66
pDev:
12.84%
 
 
Wants:
28
Gots:
117
For Trade:
0
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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 844 |  Reviews: 376
Photo of BeerDocT
3.87/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

So, a Kölsch from Cologne, (or Köln), birthplace of the style? Heck yes, I'll buy it!

-Appearance 3.5: Typical lager golden in color, but with many, many more bubbles. I'm talking champagne level of visible bubbles. Small white head that quickly disappeared. The bubbles make it a unique looking beer.

-Smell 4.0: Very nice bouquet. Strong notes of barley and grass and a slight hop aroma. Miles away from your typical lager snifting notes.

-Taste 4.0: Front is very mild grains, middle is very interesting: a subdued yeastiness tempered by very slight barley flavor. Finish is nice: lots of barley and a subtle sweetness. Very refreshing. Aftertaste is where all the hops come out and actually presents a slightly sweet, grappa flavor. It is a pleasant ending.

-Mouthfeel 3.0: Standard lager carbonation.

-Overall 4.0: This is a very nuanced beer. If I did not know that this beer was not brewed with lager yeast, I could not tell you from the taste that it was different than a lager. To me, this beer just tastes like an excellent lager. Taste levels are all balanced and well established at every level. Definitely recommended if you have never had a kölsch, as this is an excellent example of the style.

 1,217 characters

Photo of harpus
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of mdfb79
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 07/11/12 notes. Had from the bottle at Idle Hands in NYC on the LES. 8 oz. pour at one of their Wednesday tastings.

a - Pours a hazy, pale yellow color with one inch of white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of citrus, lemon, floral hops, spices, Belgian style yeast, and light pepper. Nose is very nice with a lot of citrus.

t - Tastes of citrus hops, lemons, spices, Belgian yeast, floral hops, fruity malts, and, pepper. Again, lots of citrus which I like a lot.

m - Light body and moderate carbonation. Very easy to drink.

o - Overall I liked this one quite a bit; it reminded me a lot of Allagash White and seemed more like a witbier. Lots of citrus and very easy to drink; a great summer beer.

 726 characters

Photo of brez8791
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

Photo of curasowa
3.76/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear, golden yellow with one finger of head that fades to a thin cap.

Aroma: Grainy, but not unpleasant, malt aroma with a fair amount of lemon notes. Overall, a pleasing, clean aroma.

Taste: Medium bodied and almost creamy, with a dry, slightly grainy malt base up front followed by a fairly assertive, crisp hop presence that becomes slightly harsh towards the end. The finish is pretty fast with a touch of lingering bitterness.

The Rest: A solid Kolsch. Well balanced with a nice body and fairly assertive bitterness.

 537 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.52/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy light orange with a 1/2 inch foamy off-white head that quickly fades to an oily film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. The first smell that is honestly overpowering is skunk and this isn't even a green bottle so that is weird. Eventually this fades away and I get some malt/grain, grass/hay, and some light fruity aromas. Taste is much the same (thankfully no skunk flavors) and is fairly sweet. There is a mild hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is pretty easy to drink after the skunk smell fades away.

 682 characters

Photo of Infamous7100
3.7/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a crystal clear gold. Minimal head, no lacing.
S: bready, slightly floral. Nothing over the top, solid.
T: biscuity notes at the front with sweet malt, toward the middle to back, the hops blend nicely for a citrusy, floral, sweet balance.
M: Medium to high carbonation. Finishes with a crisp bite that has a pleasant aftertaste.
O: very straightforward brew. No frills, sessionable. It's quite tasty.

 409 characters

Photo of Brenden
4.02/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Gaffel looks the part: a clear, pale but bright gold in color with continuous effervescent activity. The head that develops is nearly a finger tall and kept alive in a fairly thick foam after it fades. Lacing is left in a creamy ring near the middle with some spottier lace following behind.
I get a sulfuric smell from the bottle right upon opening it, very much like what I'd expect from a pils. Otherwise it's lightly floral, fruity and vinous as expected, lots of green grape skin and tart green apple. Grains are underneath but work well, and an almost chalky yeast presence lies underneath. While light, it remains reasonably complex, a benchmark of good brewing for a difficult style. I get a bit of grassiness all the way with a mix of dry cracker and biscuit dough from the malts.
This one has the feel: it's light, extremely crisp without being bracingly so, and riding on a constant moderate but not overwhelming carbonation. It's how a Kolsch should feel.

 967 characters

Photo of Lovely85
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

Photo of nickfl
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of BigJiMo
2.5/5  rDev -31.7%

Photo of smcolw
3.65/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Watching the pour, there was a decent head, but when it was delivered it had settled completely. Still, it left some streaky lace. Gold color and clear.

Mild aroma of raw, pale grain. No notable hop.

It has a light berry sweetness. There's a good hop bite in the swallow. Short aftertaste. Refreshing and light.

UPDATED with new ratings:
Tasting in Cologne
Straw coloe and crystal clear. Frothy headthat leaves several streaks for lace.

Grainy unmalted aroma. No notable hop presence.

The flavor mimics the smell and is a bit too grainy for me. Rich body for the stylebut with an elevated level of carbonation. Surprisingly long aftertaste with just enough hop bitterness to make it interesting.

 705 characters

Photo of thehyperduck
3.78/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle from the LCBO; best before June 30th 2012 so this is slightly past its prime. This is one of those styles that I don't get around to trying very often (I've only had one other kölsch), largely because there just aren't a lot of readily-available examples in these parts.

Pours a translucent, bright golden-yellow colour, topped with about one finger of foamy white head. It fizzles away after a few minutes, leaving behind a creamy, even cap and a ring of lacing smudged along the sides of the glass. Decent aroma, but nothing particularly special - it's mostly grainy malt sweetness with some grass and light, white grape fruitiness. There's also some skunkiness, but given the age of the bottle I'll cut it some slack.

Very clean-tasting. The flavour is mostly grainy pale malts, with some light cracker sweetness and notes of appleskin, white grapes. A bit of sulfur. The grassy, floral noble hoppage comes forth toward the finish, providing some pleasant dryness that lingers very briefly in the mostly-clean finish. Light-bodied, with relatively high carbonation that gives it a very crisp, refreshing mouthfeel. Like any well-made pale lager-esque brew, throwing this back quickly is not a challenge at all.

There are a lot of fizzy yellow German beers on the shelves of the LCBO. While a lot of them are not worth trying, a select few of them are - and I have no problem arguing that Gaffel Kölsch falls firmly into the latter category. If only the domestic brewing giants could use their ample expertise and bottomless capital to put out a brew of this quality! Definitely worth a try for any fan of German lagers.

[Updated Apr 27 2017]

500 mL pint cans are now available in Ontario - I picked one up to see how it compares to the multitude of domestic kölsch-style beers which have been sprouting up across the province over the last 12 months (how the times change). Gaffel's is a respectable, technically-sound kölsch, but it's not really the best that this style has to offer - more like the "high jump qualifying bar" that other brewers need to match (or surpass) in order to do this style adequate justice. This brew has never been available locally, but I'd probably buy it occasionally if it were.

Final Grade: 3.78, a B+

 2,262 characters

Photo of rolltide8425
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of Barleycorn
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of jdt
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

Photo of Seamus7
4.5/5  rDev +23%

Photo of pogoowner
4.25/5  rDev +16.1%

Photo of KTCamm
4.5/5  rDev +23%

Photo of goodonezach
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of kaneel
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

Photo of cbutova
3.35/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Random grab out of the cooler, haven't reviewed a ton of Kolsches.

A- Poured into a slender pint glass with a clear golden body. Foamy white head forms to about two fingers and retains well. Eventually no head or ring left and just a few small spots of lace.

S- Light malt grains, white grape skin fruit, straw and yeast bread. Light herbal floral hops.

T- Pretty much follows up on the nose. Quite a bit of fruit flavors with notes of light apples and grapes. Bread, cracker and cereal grain flavors build upon this. Floral, herbal and earthy hops.

MF- Light and creamy/silky body with moderate carbonation. Finishes with a nice clean bitterness.

Not a ton to say about this one. Light drinking beer with a variety of differing flavors.

 742 characters

Photo of Spider889
4.06/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Purchased at From the Vine.

No bottle date.

Poured into a stein. Crystal clear sunny straw color. Produces a very short but tight bone-white head. A white cap tops the glass throughout the session. Tons of visible rising carbonation. Lacing is intermittent but leaves swaths of clingy foam when it decides to make itself known.

The aroma is slightly bitter and flowery. Has a nutty wheat aroma as well. Grainy.

The flavor is the best part of the beer (though the clarity is a close second). Much softer and more deliciously floral than the aroma. slightly sweet. Again it has a nice fresh continental grain flavor going on.

Crisp is vigorous carbonation. Ryan might even call this one a "frisky critter." Has a residual bitterness that seems to border on too high for the style imo.

Overall a great beer. I still prefer my homebrew Kolsch to this though. ;-)

 865 characters

Photo of WynnO
4.5/5  rDev +23%

Photo of lampshadedude
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

Gaffel Kölsch from Privatbrauerei Gaffel Becker & Co.
3.66 out of 5 based on 844 ratings.
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