von Trapp Brewing

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Ranked #20
Ranked #13,770
3.94 | pDev: 7.11%
von Trapp Brewing
Vermont, United States
Very Good
Notes: Kölsch Style Ale famously originated in Cologne, Germany and is fermented with German ale yeast, yet finished with time to lager. Our Kölsch continues this tradition, true to style, crisp, and refreshing. Brewed with natural Vermont spring water, the resulting beer is a perfect balance of German malts, hops, and Vermont craftsmanship.

28 IBU
Reviews: 28 | Ratings: 88 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of mikeinportc
mikeinportc from New York

4.07/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

From a can, poured into a (Black Bear Winery) stange .

Slightly hazy, pale gold, with substantial white head, that leaves 1 1/2" of streaky lacing, and a 5/16" ring of foam.

Smell is bread dough, wet straw, and a spicy herbal aroma . (Coriander+sage?) A slight sweet fruitiness is also present , in the aroma from the open can.

Taste is lightly sweet grain (Crust of a toasted muffin , with a touch of honey) , white grape juice, though less sweet , spicy/herbal Noble hops, though leaning more sage than in the aroma, with moderate pleasant bitterness.

Feel medium-light, with relatively soft carbonation , that gives a little bite at the end, on the tip of the tongue. Carbonation + bitterness gives a drying finish.

Overall , pleasant & easy-drinking. A nice end-of-a-warm-summer-day beer. :)

Jul 02, 2020
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57md from Pennsylvania

3.64/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a pale straw color with two big fingers of head. The nose is a tad soapy. The flavor is crisp and clean.

This offering does not light the world on fire but it is very drinkable and would make for a good summer picnic beer.

Jun 13, 2020
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CTHomer from Connecticut

3.97/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: crystal clear; pale gold in color; 1 finger white head that receded to a thin collar; light lacing;

S: grass and apple; a little spice;

T: follows the nose from start to finish; mild bitterness at the end;

M: light bodied; moderate carbonation; moderately dry finish; crisp;

O: refreshing; esay drinking;

May 26, 2019
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drtth from Pennsylvania

4.08/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

The pale yellow colored beer pours out into a Duvel glass with a foamy 3/4” white head that soon recedes to a cap and then a thin irregular island of foam with a ring around the glass while leaving a scattered web of lacing on the sides of the glass. Sipping creates

The aromas have a nice biscuity malt character that is backed up by some light grassy herbal hops.

The flavors are much as expected from the nose but with some interesting additions. The biscuity malt and it’s sweetness are supported by the grassy herbal hops but there’s also a bit of spicy, fruity character and a bit of bitterness.

The mouthfeel is on the light side of medium bodied, clean and fairly crisp with the moderate finely bubbled and active carbonation. The finish is semi dry, lightly grassy and herbal with some restrained light bitterness that persists quite a while before it ends in the back of the palate.

Overall this is a very nice Kolsch that is both easy to drink and enjoyable. This would be a light crips refreshing choice as a nice summer refresher. I could see having a few of these over the course of an evening.

May 19, 2019
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BEERMILER12 from Maine

4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a golden yellow color with 2 fingers of head that fades down to a thin cap

S: Fruity esters up front along with some light bready maltiness. Some light spicy hops in there as well

T: Follows the nose. Starts off with the fruity esters and spicy hop notes and then goes into some bready malt and floral hops. Finishes with Lingering hop character

M: Light-medium bodied with moderate carbonation

O: A very nice kölsch that is super easy to drink. Definitely one of the better American-brewed ones out there

Apr 19, 2019
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woodychandler from Pennsylvania

4.17/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A Kölsch on Happy Loads of New (Mainly) Lager Beers Sunday (Week 718)?!? I know that Kölsch is an Ale, but I wanted to include it anyway. I purchased several bottles from von Trapp Brewing at Hunger-n-Thirst & as the eradication of the Bottle Backlog here at Chez Woody rolls on, these are next in line.

From the Bottle: "'A little of Austria[,] a lot of Vermont'"; "A true summer session ale providing a crisp, hoppy explosion"; "By the family that inspired 'The Sound of Music'"; "Brewed on the grounds of Trapp Family Lodge in Stowe, Vermont, this lager is crafted with the finest traditional ingredients and our pure Vermont spring water."; "IBU: 28".

Ooh, a Kölsch! I know that I should drink this style more often, but they are not generally readily available, except as spendy imports. I am kinda excited to Pop! the cap, give it a slow, gentle C-Line pour & tell yinz all about it. 8=) I watched in rapt fascination as it puffed up to form just under two fingers of dense, foamy, rocky, bone-white head with good retention, leaving behind nice acing as it fell. Color was Pale-Straw (SRM = 1 - 2) with NE-quality clarity. Nose had a toasty, biscuit maltiness and a light, grassy Noble hoppiness. Mmm. Mouthfeel was thin-to-medium, about on par for the style. The taste was really interesting with a grape-y and minty flavor to go with the grassy biscuit tastes as noted on the nose. I have gotten grape flavors in other commercial Kölsches, so it is not a revelation, just a bit of a surprise. Whoops! It is actually a part of the style's description so it shouldn't even be a surprise. 8=( Whoops! It was very clean and smooth, quite easy-drinking as evidenced by the way that I was running through it. They mention its being intended as a "summer session ale" & I would agree, as long as they put into CANs. Finish was clean, crisp, semi-dry to dry & very refreshing. Today is shaping up nicely!

Nov 25, 2018
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RozzieBoy from Rhode Island

3.86/5  rDev -2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Molson stange.
L - Poured a near clear golden with three fingers white carbonated head. Good lacing and the carbonation lasts all the way through.
S - Lemony, grassy and pear.
T - Follows the nose very closely.
F - Crisp and tingly with a light mouthfeel. Slight dry finish.
O - A nice refreshing beer.

Oct 11, 2018
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cjgiant from District of Columbia

3.81/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours to a straw yellow body, though the white cap shies away from building up and ends up as a medium collar fairly quickly. White bubbles easily reform briefly on each sip, but there's only a spot or two of lace that fade fast, as well.

Nose is a floral hop-leading slightly malty scent. There's a slight hint of honeydew melon as a fruity aspect to join with a dry white bread like base.

The taste is a bit more distinguishable and basically follows the nose. There's a clean, slightly bready sweet malt upon which a honeysuckle-like note is joined by a weak strawberry/honeydew fruit note. The floral/fruit note is so intertwined, the fruits aren't that distinct, but something along the line of a neutral to slightly sweet fruit is involved. A neutral to earthy spice to maybe even slightly grassy bitterness finally pokes its head out by the end.

A very smooth and easy drinking beer, I would like the bitterness to assert itself a little sooner or a little stronger. Not much, though, as it would likely disrupt the feel too much otherwise. Definitely a summer day thirst quencher.

Sep 23, 2018
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edward_boumil from New York

4.01/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Sunner stange.
L: Pale golden colored, originally pours a small head but with minimal retention. Slightly turbid, carbonation brisk within the glass
S: Pretty subdued. Get notes of grass and cracker-like malt. Slight yeast notes, touches of bread that you'd expect to find in a wheat ale, although this is rather faint to me. And a bit of that kolsch pear fruitiness, some peach and sweet apple.
T: Spot on for the style. These guys continue to amaze, reminds me a lot of Gaffel. Fruitiness is readily apparent, notes of pear, apple, maybe a touch of peach. Earth notes and light honeyed grain finish things out, some grassiness. Dry/lightly bitter hop notes, present herbal and lightly peppery.
F: Upfront this is very crisp, bubbly carbonation. Body is very light. Despite a dryness it is very refreshing and easy to drink. Well balanced.
O: Gotta love a nice kolsch, and this one certainly is brewed as per the style. Much better than a lot of the more gimmicky domestic versions which are essentially just fruited lagers. This one truly presents the proper ale fruity character that denotes the style. Another great beer by the Trapp family.

Aug 15, 2018
Photo of mikeg67
mikeg67 from New Jersey

3.79/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle. Pours golden with tall, long lasting, fluffy, white head. Aroma is of grassy hops, some citrus fruit and biscuit malt. Body is medium and slightly crisp. Noble hops, biscuit malt and some citrus nicely balanced on the palate. Finish is long and dry. Good summer brew.

Aug 10, 2018
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StonedTrippin from Colorado

3.99/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

ah the summer kolsch, tis the season for crisp blonde german beers like this, and as usual, these guys have nailed a traditional style. this is a little more rugged and raw than a lot of them that we see, too cleaned up to have any character, this for me is somehow more rustic, more an expression of the season, classic in its overall complexion and vibe, but a bit more layered than many, a treat. not quite all the way clear from the tap, and with a shorter head than i generally look for in the style, but its light and appealing visually. aroma shows the classic kolsch yeast right away, at least as forward as the pale malt, some minerals are evident, a cold conditioned crispness too, along with a somewhat generous hopping for the style, but remaining light and balanced. the flavor matches the smell, the yeast seems to drive this one, but not in a forced way, more of a controlled glide, still delicate, just more assertive than is often the case. the grain has a light body but a classic european sort of flavor to it, and the hops never really turn bitter, so this stays real drinkable. crisp like a lager, and even with a little lager yeast flavor here with the kolsch, a little crackery but clean at the end. nicely done overall, this is excellent for summer sessioning.

Jun 25, 2018
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Jacobier10 from New Jersey

4.11/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle, best before 9/4/2018.

Pale straw color, very light, even for a Kölsch. Mostly clear but with a slight haze to it, likely due to it being unfiltered. Small white head with good retention.

Subtle cracker malt with spicy hops. Lemon citrus notes as well, which plays well with the malt and hops. Balanced flavor with a pleasant cracker/citrus/spice combo going on. Very clean with a light bitterness in the finish.

Medium-light bodied, crisp, and easy to drink. A winner from Von Trapp. I could drink this all Summer long.

Jun 21, 2018
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SmashAdams from New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

No one ever accused a kolsch of being exciting but this is a well made example of the style. Super clean, crisp, refreshing, so easy drinking. Goes down fast and easy and at a good price. yb

Jun 06, 2018
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waughbrew from Massachusetts

3.93/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I think this was $10/6pk12oz when I picked it up at Grapes and Grains in Barrington, RI.

Clear light yellow with small white head that doesn’t stick around or stick around. Pleasant aroma of minerally apples and grapes. Soft, light body carries a balanced taste that has hints of dry cider, dry white wine, and a metallic finish that is complex and pleasant. Thankfully there is less sweetness to the taste than what the aroma suggests.

Very well-made beer in a style that I don’t expect much from. I still wouldn’t call it an “explosion of hops” like the label suggests, but its balanced finish makes this one I could enjoy anytime.

May 26, 2018
Photo of lic217
lic217 from Connecticut

4.35/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Very refreshing brew. Nice light floral and light citrus hop flavors and aroma. Also some light malty flavors. Very drinkable, but also complex. Will be a repeat buy

May 26, 2018
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cavedave from New York

4.11/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle into tall pilsner glass produces three fingers of white foam atop a light straw colored beer. Head comes down pretty quick but a decent cap remains for the ride.

Aroma is mostly crackery malts with lightest lemony tart and some hay like hop aromas rounding a simple bouquet into an alluring sensation.

Full flavored for style, with the flavors of the aroma here, balanced well, plus light contribution of spicy noble hops joining the fun. Classic Kolsch style taste. Yummy.

Perfect mouthfeel for the style makes this a refreshing and interesting beer that is subltle yet full of flavor and finishes excellently.

Just right. Refreshing and delicious. Grab some if you see it and enjoy, you won't be disappointed.

May 20, 2018
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SABERG from Massachusetts

4.08/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a recently released bottle into the test glass
A - Goldenrod color, very gentle carbonation, no cap.
S - Warm fresh bread, grassy hops , a touch of lemon drop
T - Follows the nose quite well, add just a hint of yeast.
M - Easy start, a bit of semi sweet malt, then with a quick adjust nice hop wave deftly moves through, finish is delightfully dy
O - A very good summer offering from a very good lager brewer

May 17, 2018
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tekstr1der from New Hampshire

4.11/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Surprisingly enjoyable implementation of this style. Pours straw golden with a bit of white capping. Aroma is malty biscuit, light grassy notes, and just a hint of cracked pepper. For me, kolsch is everything I like about pilsner, but only hints of the aspects I dislike (mostly the peppery hop character and drier finish). Flavor follows nose very nearly, and is smooth, a hint of sweet in the finish. Very drinkable.

Dec 24, 2017
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brewandbbq from New Hampshire

4.02/5  rDev +2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz can dated 6/8/17.

Pours hazy yellow with a half inch of dense white head. Decent retention and lacing. Aromatics are are laced with honey-drizzled bread dough and a hint of cut grass. Light bodied with a creamy mouthfeel. Proofing dough with honey on the palate. Slightly sweet with a firm bitterness. Finishes with some lingering honey.

Tasty Kolsch and easy drinking.

Oct 19, 2017
Photo of LeRose
LeRose from Massachusetts

4.13/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pours straw colored, very slightly hazy, lucious head that falls to a thin layers, laces pretty nicely.

Smells very inviting. Cracker and bread, floral component is pretty strong, peppery spice, mild citrus. Citrus is more orange and very mild.

The taste more or less follows, with this stopping just short of being a pilsener. Nice, clean bready taste, a little bitter early on, then a very nice layer of floral hops that is very aromatic...almost perfume. Just a bit of orange that builds a little. There is a nice level of peppery spice, bitter comes at the beginning just a bit and stronger at the end but nicely tempered by the malts.

It is to the lighter side of medium, cabonation appropriate, a bit of a citrus and spicy aftertaste lingers pleasantly. Very slightly chalky. Not super-refreshing, but very solid and enjoyable to drink.

Overall, an enjoyable beer that would fit any occassion. I can see a bunch of cans in the cooler for a cookout, or stocking the fridge for the weekend. Recommended.

Sep 04, 2017
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keithmurray from Connecticut

3.77/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - slightly hazy straw color with white head

Smell - lemon zest, biscuit, grains, herbs

Taste - lemon zest, biscuit, herbs, grains, black pepper

Mouthfeel - medium bodied, full carbonation, hoppy/bitter upfront, lemon zest in the middle, flavors linger, crisp in the finish

Overall - I cant say that I am well versed in the Kolsch style, but this beer was reminiscent of a pilsener, but a well done one at that, I enjoyed this beer for what it is. Worth a try.

Price Point - $8.99/ 4 pk 16 oz cans.

Sep 01, 2017
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ScaryEd from New Hampshire

4.08/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16 oz can into a pint glass.

Pours a hazy golden straw color with a finger and a half of white head. The head sticks around for a while, leaving a fair bit of lace before settling into a film.

The aroma brings a healthy wave of citrus, followed by some grainy bread and sweet dough. There's plenty of peppery spice throughout.

The taste is bready and grainy up front, with a touch of orange and lemon rind not far behind. Slightly spicy. Very clean flavor.

The feel is light bodied with good carbonation. Exceptionally crisp, refreshing, and dry.

Overall, a great lager that is full of flavor and is absolutely perfect for a hot summer day.

Sep 01, 2017
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GratefulBeerGuy from New Hampshire

4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

16 oz can. Canned on 6/8/17. Opened on 7/29/17

A cloudy, white straw golden color. Some floating from no filtering is fine by me. A solid white foam cap stays for total coverage.

A classic, musty earthy and herbal nose. A varied collection of herbs and spices, dry golden wheat and an ever so light sweetness to the malt.

There are certain aspects that Von Trapp does amazingly well: The feel and flavor is always so crisp and CLEAN. Perhaps it's the Vermont spring water they use?? Crisp and clean is a major spect to this style and they have nailed it stylistically. Von Trapp also seems to execute the traditional styles perfectly. No fluff, no extra hops just....quality traditional style. In that aspect, Von Trapp is going against the grain of the beer geek world by sticking to and nailing traditional styles, but with major quality.

The mouthfeel is amazingly light, crisp and refreshing. The flavors are bold, yet in perfect balance.

Easily one of, if not the very best Kolsh versions I've had.

Jul 29, 2017
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ManapuaMan from Massachusetts

4.22/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Clean, crisp, tasty. This is at or near the top of my list of kolsch-style beers I've tried. Pours a surprisingly cloudy hue of gold with a solid white-cap of head that lingers. Aroma speaks to the crisp and clear sip that awaits - toasted grains, biscuit, cracker, dough, orange and lemon zest, grassy hops. Taste is right there with the grassy and (light) lemony hops up front followed by the cracker, biscuit and grainy malt backbone. Finishes crisp with a kiss of bitterness. I'm no traditionalist but the beer does strike me as a little more cloudy than normal (or what I expect), but even then it's a small ding to an otherwise outstanding beer. I'll drink this all summer if I can find it frequently.

Jul 21, 2017
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meefmoff from Massachusetts

4.3/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I'm going to copy my NBS post here since this one doesn't have many reviews yet.

It pours surprisingly cloudy with a very light straw color. There's a nice, tightly puffy head that leaves a lot of lacing for about the first third of the glass before tapering off. It's got a great nose with crackery, bready malts and a very spicy (almost peppery) hop aroma with some hints of orange/citrus thrown in. Taste follows suit with even more of a hop bite - this is surprisingly bitter and leaves a nice "puckery" feeling in the cheeks before finishing clean with a nice hint of more bready malt as it fades. Mouthfeel is crisp but not supercrisp with moderate carbonation. If I tasted this blind I think I'd be almost as likely to guess Pilsner as Kolsch.

A delicious beer and something I'll be buying again though in my fairly limited Kolsch experience I'd say this is a bit hoppier and not quite as crisp and clean as beers like Reissdorf, Goody Two Shoes or Sierra Nevada's kolsch.

Jul 09, 2017
Kölsch from von Trapp Brewing
Beer rating: 87 out of 100 with 88 ratings