Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen | Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla

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Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier MärzenAecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen

Brewed by:
Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla
Germany | website

Style: Rauchbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
ABV may vary slightly year to year.

Bamberg's speciality, a dark, bottom fermented smokebeer, brewed with Original Schlenkerla Smokemalt from the Schlenkerla maltings and tapped according to old tradition directly from the gravity-fed oakwood cask in the historical brewery tavern.

Added by taez555 on 07-11-2001

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Reviews: 1,096 | Ratings: 2,231
Photo of admiral
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow - what a beer! Like drinking an artisanal smoky cheese - delicious.

aroma: rich smoked creamy cheese with slight seafood

taste: rich smoked creamy cheese with caramel, seafood and bacon with slight smoked wood

beautiful flavours, great and lingering mouthfeel and a tradition that I hope stays for good. The definition of craft/artisanal beer

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Photo of loubar
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

16.9 oz. bottle from Cost Plus. Big white head on a ruby brown body. Nose of yeast with a hint of smoke. Mellow smoked wood flavor supported by a pleasant caramel malt body. Flavorful. Incredibly smooth and drinkable - no astringency despite the smoke. The almost dry finish is somewhat crisp and leaves a touch of biscuit like sweetness and a lingering smokiness. Excellent!

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Photo of mick303
4.43/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

500 ml bottle at 5.1%. Into a tulip pours a dark burnt brown colour with a creamy tan film and a good lacing on it.

S - smoky beechwood chips emanate from the glass, a rich bbq roast meat that is really caramelized, some black pepper, a touch of earthy spices. It is reminiscent of the best and richest bbq-ed meat in the best possible way - salivate.

T - a creamy smokiness, bacon, then lighter woodier aspects, a bit of a salty tang to it. A full waft of sweet woodsmoke, and some dry citrus lemon, burning pine/cedar, and a restrained caramel sweetness that is there throughout but not at the forefront, meaty and rich. Drying out to a dry finish, leather. So flavourful.

M - creamy and full start. Moderate body with a full refreshing feel. A prickle of carbonation balances the rich smoke flavour and provides a full coating feel to the beer. Waves of rich smoked malt that gently caress the palate before it dries out on the finish. Balance is excellent, with a pleasant meaty malt sweetness that backs up the smoke, little bitterness.

This beer still impresses me. Rich meaty smokiness that to me palate never gets overwhelming. The only thing I could hope for would be a bit more bitterness on the finish. But otherwise this is a standout, waves of flavour and still really good drinkability, probably not for everyone. I'm a fan of smoked things in general, but the offerings by Schlenkerla take it to a new level. Excellent Rauchbier.

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Photo of Todd
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: 1pint 6oz fat brown bottle. No freshness date. Poured into the proper German glassware. Let stand to warm before serving.

Appearance: Dark caramel beer with a patchy, creamy, off-white foam head. Keeps a respectable lace with some gentle stick.

Smell: Wonderful smoke aroma of meat and spices -- yes, very jerky-like. Aroma isn't overpowering at all, just very unique and pleasant ... and amazing.

Taste: Full-bodied, creamy and smooth on the palate. A dry beer, overall, with a low level of malt sweetness, well-attenuated -- it's ample and helps to balance. A nice rounded smoke character allows small amounts of chocolate, light fruit and grain to peak out. Crisp with a snappy carbonation melds nicely with a brief and very thin peaking citrus hop twang and defining smoke twang. Mineral feel and flavour, touch of metallic. Lingering smoke in the dry finish.

Notes: You either like Rauchbiers or you don't. Me? I love them! Can't beat that old-school beer character where all malts were dried over wood fires, and as a result imparted a smoke character to the beer. Wish we had more of this style, but thanks to the Germans for keeping it alive.

In my opinion, Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Marzen is probably the better out of the bunch. Pairs nicely with any grilled or cured meats.

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Photo of Rutager
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance. Pours a very deep amber-brown with a small, bubbly, off white head.

Smell. Smells like freshly smoked bacon the best possible way, with a little toasty malt.

Taste. First sip has plenty of nice woody smoke, but not too overpowering. The smoke becomes a little more mellow as I continue drinking. There's a bit of caramel and malt in there and even a little bit of earthy hops. Small amount of bitterness in the finish. Very nice.

Mouthfeel. Below medium body with medium carbonation.

Overall. This is quite a mild and refreshing beer. Not what I was expecting based on previous smoked beer experiences. Everything seems so ballanced and besides the smoke, other sublte flavours come through. Best of the style so far for this guy.

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Photo of tatterdash
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with a coppery red in the light. The head is thick and light tan, with ample lacing. Smell... Whoa! Smells like smoked sausage! I'm on a diet right now, and to smell something like this right now is wonderful. Very strong, could smell it from a foot away at least. Taste was definitely smokey, but lighter than expected. Some malts and quite a bit of hoppy bitterness as well, the finish is primarily smoked sausage... :) It's like I ate a plate of sausages, but I didn't... Mouthfeel was surprisely light and quite refreshing. I would drink this again... but not all day as long as this diet is going... :(

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Photo of chaunur
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pour from a bottle into a pint glass, A dark brown clear beer with a slight reddish tint. Not a frothy beer only developing a small 1 finger head. Not much lacing but I finished it off fairly quickly. A lovely beer to the eye.

A nice smokey aroma, like a campfire in the fall.

Great flavor, smokey yet light on the palate, nice balance, has an almost peaty flavor.Very smooth lightly carbonation. Just enough bitterness on the end to prevent sweetness.

I had never seen a smoked marzen before finding this. I brew my own smoked marzen on that account. I would highly recommend this beer. I will still beer my own-having one right now to compare the flavor-as it is more cost effective.

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Photo of brewtal
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Found this WAY back the fridge in a Haweskbury LCBO. My bro saw that classy, vintage-looking bottle and we took the two last ones with us.

Pours great, tough the head diminishes fairly quiclky. Great lace. Very dark brown, hues akin to some thick, thick maple syrup.

I have trouble with Rauchbiers and smoked beers in general for that matter. But this just might be it! Smells yummy. Smoky maple-flavored bacon and bbq ribs. Some charcoal and lots of caramelised malts to go around.

I love the burnt/charcoal slap. Very malty and somewhat fruity, with rasperry and elderberry flavors. Finishes bitter. Almost astringent, like the more burnt pieces off a grilled steak.

Chewy with a shy, but appropriate carbonation.

From my experience (about half a dozen different smoked beers), i could barely finish a glass of Rauchbier. But i'll have no problem going trough this 500ml bottle. Amazing.

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Photo of WilliamD
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass. Clear copper color. Small head that fades quickly.
The smell of this beer is absolutely exquisite. Like Barbie Q ribs over a camp fire. Sure, Camp Leader S. Johannson might be tutoring Kenny J. With the Lisp out in the woods, but I can't worry about that right now. I'm smelling something wonderful.
Taste is smokey, wonderful, BBQ ribs. Campfire smoke up my nose, and onto my tongue. This beer is lovely.
The mouthfeel is good- smooth and crisp.
I could drink this all night, so long as I was hungry, and in the mood for an exceptionally tasty beer.

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Photo of Intrinsic
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

You can almost hear the creaminess of this beer as it pours into your glass. The slightly dark one inch head bravely mimics the dark copper hue, and the large hexagonal bubbles lingering in the bottle are a sight to behold. This beer looks very appetizing.

One smell of this rauchbier and you­´ll understand why they call it that. The smell of smoked meats immediately brought me back to the corner Metzgerei in Germany.

My nose has not let me down. The sweet aroma of smoked meats easily translates into welcome flavours, with a perfect balance of malt and hops. A very well-rounded taste.

Contrary to what you would expect from the taste, the beer is slightly dry and light bodied with a nice level of carbonation.

Overall this is a wonderful beer on every level. The look, smell and taste all come together to make you feel right at home in Bavaria - even when you´re thousands of miles away.

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Photo of Pintofbrown
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: The khaki head is about two fingers in width and slowly receded to a pencil wide cap. There is a little bit of soapy lace on the side of the glass. It is a beautiful dark umber color. Almost not able to see through the glass, some toffee highlights.

Smell: Wow! What a fantastic smell! The smoke isn’t like charcoal, more like sauna or campfire wood. The smell is mingled with that of smoked meats. I get bacon, ribs, and some roast, absolutely fantastic all around. What makes the beer so good is that it is not overwhelming at all. The Maerzen is just savory. The hops are just barely noticeable behind all the other flavors, but they smell slightly bitter and grassy. I could eat this. I WANT to eat this.

Taste: The palate is almost exactly the same as the nose. There are additions of leather and a little more char, but the fantastic smoked meat flavor is still there. Albeit not quite as strong as it was on the nose. There is also more hop character in the drink, which is noticeable in the semi-bitter finish. It also makes the drink a little dry.

Mouth feel: It is a lighter mouth feel, and there is something about the smoke that gives the beer an almost watered-down finish. It is not that the flavors aren’t big enough, it just effects the finish of the drink. Maybe it is because the malts are so smoked and not “thicker” tasting. Hard to say, but it doesn’t detract from the drink overall.

Overall: If you haven’t had a Schlenkerla Rauchbier, you need to. Period. End of sentence. Fin. That’s all folks.

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Photo of brdc
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Golden brown, with a tan head that dissipates fast living some lacing.

S: Trully unique and spectacular: woodburning fireplace, smoked meats, hints of bacon.

T: Very impressive as well: roasted malts, with pronounced smoked sausage, smoked meats. It has a somewhat dry finish, drier than their other rauchbiers.

M: Medium-bodied, pleasant.

D: Easy to drink, perfect pairing with smoked meats, I love it with sausage like all other Heller-Trum rauchbiers.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've always really liked the beer from this brewery, and I think they set the standards for Rauchbier for everyone else. These beers are international treasures and should be appreciated for what they are. Pours a slightly reddish dark brown with a very loosely beaded head that fades to a ring. Absolutely scrumptious aroma of ethereal woodsmoke and tangy malt. The taste has plenty of that same woodsmoke as well as a slightly sour graininess and a long bitter, almost tannic finish. At mid taste the malts are smooth and creamy. Quite lovely, and very firm. Great by itself, but a wonderful food beer. Try it with somke roast pork and potatos or with some sharp cheddar cheese.

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Photo of BierManVA
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brauerei Heller-Trum is of course the worlds leading Rauchbier macher. This style originates there in Bamburg Germany and is an amazing brew for those of you who have never had it.

I've heard people say "It smells like a ham!" upon their first encounter. And I must say "they're right". As bad as that sounds, one soon realizes that the smell is powerful, but the smokey taste is much smoother than one would expect.

This smoked bier is original and delicious.

Don't miss it. I highly recommend it.


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Photo of DoubleJ
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had a big feast earlier tonight which includes 'lil smokies and bacon from a local German deli. There's a faint juicy smoke flavor on my tongue as I prepare myself for a match with this famous rauchbier. Well, on to it:

The whole bottle has filled my stange glass. A ruby brown color, hues of orange a the edges. Maybe it's more of a cola-brown. Good white head on top, solid retention. Smell: it's bacon! and...sausages! There's even a hint of chocolate underneath it, but compliments the smoke flavor well. My mouth is watering and I think my new kitten wants some.

Not even close to the intensity of the urbock, but certainly more easier going down. Perfumy smoked bacon flavor mostly, there is some marzen-like sweetness which goes with the smoke. Unsweetened chocolate emergres. I liked the taste before, but now I'm liking it more.

Who needs coffee stouts for breakfast when you can drink this instead? Or have this with a coffee stout for breakfast without having any food? Downright I want more 'lil smokies and German deli bacon.

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Photo of sessycuban
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was very happy to get a hold of this beer. Let's see how this goes.

A- The beer pours a dark caramel brown. There is a very small layer of head with some mild lacing.

S- Wow. I'm not really new to the style but this beer has intense aromas. The first thing I get is smokiness. I'm also getting a faint liquor smell and mild florals scents. Smoky is really an understatement here.

T- The beer tastes much like it smells; like smoke. I'd say it's somewhat like mesquite but not quite the same. It was perhaps a bit overcarbonated. I also get a caramel flavor. The beer actually tasted a bit better as it warmed. I may have served it too cold.

M- The beer has a moderate body and feels great in the mouth. After a while, it can be a drain on your taste buds though.

D- This is the ultimate beer to enjoy with barbeque. As with the style, I think it should be enjoyed sparingly and correctly. Highly recommended.

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Photo of pennvan
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a fun beer! Rich smokey aroma and flavor. Not for the faint at heart. Makes me think of NC BBQ(Eastern). Great food beer, especially with smoked meats. Not something to quench your thirst with after mowing the lawn. Don't be a wuss, go try this beer.

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Photo of cavedave
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Pours an impressive looking clear brown with an inch of dark beige head. Beauty.

Smell is sweet grain and caramel with some light smoke and righteous tang.

What a clean blast of campfire and smoked pork that cradles the flavors of malty caramel and yeastily rounded tart. The balance here is the work of a master, heavy flavors made to float, darkest flavors made to sing.

Nicely spritzy, beautiful cling, not too much of that smoke resin to dull the palate, quite light in fact, even refreshing, though it is full of the acrid flavors sans harshness.

The work of masters, this beer is a beer opera of deep emotional taste.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours ruby brown with a tan foam head that has some retention. Some lacing, but limited.

For the style, a home run -- somewhere between bacon and a campfire -- but wait, just a hint of toasted malt. Can't ask for anything more for a smoked beer.

Balance here. Charred woodsmoke flavor, with some dry dark toasted bread, just a slight bit of sweetness, leading to some hop bitterness (just bitter) in the finish. Funny, no real heavy smoke in the finish. Near perfect.

Medium bodied, some carbonation -- very appropriate.

Overall, this is a beer that scares people. I was and had some preconceptions from a tasting decades ago. This smells harsher than it is, and it is a far cry from liquid bacon. Great balance allows for the drinkability. Might be tough to do more than one at a sitting, but this is very special beer. Worth the try, by far.

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Photo of blitheringidiot
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a big 1 pt. 9 oz. odd shaped bottle and plenty of cryptic German caligraphy, that stumps me cold.

A dark yet clear narrowly opaque ruby ruddy pour into me Duvel glass. There exists a razor thin head cap that settles to halo ring.

Scents are a perfection of smoky hickory and cheddar cheese plume that is unstoppable. There is no better scent than this. If you've ever cleaned out a fireplace from a night of burning pine, this is it.

Flavors of smoked salmon that make me want to quit smoking, but I never started. A stunning example of smoked turkey and fireplace goodness. Tobacco leaf, welcoming hearty hearth goodness.

At first a wee bit too cold, but as warmed, more inviting. Just an overall sipping treat. Medium bodied, easily carbonated.

Last swigs: Liquid smoked turkey all the way. A must try. M.J. ranks this as a top 500 in the world. Rauchbier is a new style to me. More smokey and meaty than Orkney Skull Splitter. 5.4 % ABV makes it a beer that is ok to bring home to Mom. Special thanks to fellow BA Shapudding for the bottle, or two!

Beer is good. Happy smokey beering.

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Photo of LuthersLager
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 2.5

Like drinking beef jerky.

So this beer pushed by beer reviewing philosophy. Does one review beers based on style or based on beer as an overarching beverage? My philosophy is to rate beers by style. In this case I'm not particularly fond of smoked beers, so I'd always rather reach for a good stout, porter or amber ale. But when comparing this beer to other smoked beers (like NABC's Cone Smoker) this beer is best in class.

I'm probably not going to add much to what others have said in their well written reviews. The smell and taste remind me of meat. Being a Michigan boy I recommend drinking this beer with venison on a cold winter day.

I have to think that drinking more than a pint of this beer in one sitting is difficult for anyone and the flavors are so powerful.

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Photo of alexgash
4.44/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear mahoganey with ruby edges and a small, light tan head. Smell...hmmm...woah! The nose is smoked bacon on a crisp Canadian morning. I reckon with a side of eggs and some strong coffee we'll be able to hunt moose and fish walleye all day. Amazingly strong smoked meat aromas. Faint caramel malt in there, but the smoke covers all else. Luckily, I like smoked meats. Smoked prosciutto flavors greet the mouth, alongside caramelized carrots and faint malt sweetness. Ham and campfire smoke throughout. More sweetness detectable in the long smoky finish. Medium-bodied with a surprisingly lively feel. Not liquid smoke, just really smoky and delicious beer!

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.45/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500 ml bottle. Served in a mug, the beer pours a clear ruby red/brown color with a couple inch frothy off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both pretty good. Aroma is mostly smoked meat/bacon, and some bready malt. Taste is pretty much the same as the aroma, it's mostly smoked meat and some roasted malt. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a little bit coating with decent carbonation. Drinkability is pretty good, it's very smooth and easy to drink. This is one of the better rauchbiers I've tried, and would definitely buy this again. I thought it was a pretty good brew, I loved the smokiness in both the taste and aroma.

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Photo of BierFan
4.45/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Short 16.9 ounce bottle poured into a small mug.

Appearance: Light khaki colored head and a brown body. Head retention and lacing is very nice.

Smell: It really reminds me of my dad's smoked chicken. Except the smoke is more intense. Lovin' it.

Taste: A little smoke caramel malts and hops at first. The malt and hops subside and the smoke really shines in the aftertaste.

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Photo of Kromes
4.45/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: A clear dark brown with nice ruby edges and a thick tan colored head that laces the tulip glass.

S: Wow, smells like smoked ham hocks. There is a touch of brown sugar and toasted malt in the background, but it is mostly a rich, sweet smokiness.

T: Rather sweet at first and then the smoke immediately kicks in. There is a bit of brown sugar sweetness, but mostly a nice clean smoke flavor. Never really smoked anything with beech wood, but the sweetness and clean flavor reminds me of mesquite or maybe even more of toasted marshmallows that got a little too close to the fire.

M: Medium body with good carbonation. Finishes sweet and leaves a little stickiness.

O: Of all the smoked beers that I've had, this one is definitely the most pure and clean tasting. It reminds me of winters at home.

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Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen from Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla
91 out of 100 based on 1,096 ratings.
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