Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen | Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla

2,299 Ratings
Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier MärzenAecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen

Brewed by:
Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla

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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Ratings: 2,299 |  Reviews: 1,123
Photo of cooch69
4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours into the mini Schlenkerla glass a medium semi transparent brown. It pours with a nice compact fluffy off white head that slowly fades as it clings to the glass.
This beers smoke is pretty aparent in the nose. It is unmistakably smoky without risking being overly smoky. I also detect a bit a caramel notes in the nose.
The taste is predominantly smoke but I also taste the hops kick in. Just a little but they're there. Could'nt really tell it was an Octoberfest at first because of the other flavours covering the base beer. I think the easiest one to detect the style is the Weizen.
I must say that if your in the mood for smoke nothing hits the spot like a Schlenkerla.

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Photo of charliedvrs
3.86/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Pours a dark copper amber with a small, bubbling white head.

S - Smells not just of smoked malts, but of smoked meat. Think smoked bacon or salmon.

T - Comes pretty close to drinking a nice, well done strip of bacon. A bit of a charred taste, almost like the burnt skin of a ham roast. There's an oak element, as well as some caramel flavor coming through in a more traditional marzen sense.

M - Medium bodied and very smooth drinking. A dry finish which goes well the the flavor.

D - Goes down pretty easy, but the flavor is so overpowering and strong that I can't see myself wanting a second. Not a bad thing, just don't let the 5% ABV make you think you're going to session this. A great example of the style and an enjoyable beer all around.

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Photo of Franz4
3.66/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A- dark walnut color with a creamy 3 finger head that hung around for a bit. Looked the part of an excellent beer.

S- smoked flavoring comes out strong, not so much like bacon, more like a smoked almond. In this one I noticed a touch of rawness that wasn't present in Schlenkerlas's weizen

T- Taste followed the smell nicely, although the rawness left something a little off, raw bacon sitting out for a couple hours is what comes to mind, but that sounds worse than what it tasted like.

M- lightly carbonated, the taste stayed with you, and it paired great with a pretzel and cheese combination I had going.

D- I definitely want to try this one again, as I previously tried their weizen and I was a big fan. Not sure I'd do multiple smoked beers in an evening as the flavor profile is pretty strong and I'd be satisfied with 1.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
4.09/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500 ml bottle split and poured into a Duvel tulip. 5.1% ABV, no date.

A - Clear dark mahogany brown, almost black in the glass with a tall light tan head. Low retention but good lace left over on the glass.

S - Smokey campfire and cooked apple wood bacon comes from the peet-smoked malts that are powerful but don't overwhelm the nose. It's really one-dimensional but still fantastic smelling.

T - The smoke is nowhere near as potent as the aroma lets on but would you even want it stronger? Probably not. I really like the smoke accent to the Märzen malts.

M - Medium-light bodied and smokey obviously, with a dry finish and moderate carbonation level.

D - Really not that hard to drink, it makes for a great marinade as well as pairing with grilled food. I like it a lot for what it is but again, it's pretty one-dimensional.

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Photo of MrHassellYaHurd
3.85/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an excellently clear garnet with a thin beige head. Visible carbonation fairy vigorous.

The smell is very reminiscent of smoke/chimneys/even bacon. Sweet grainy note.

The sweet malty backbone and clean finish make this a very pleasant-tasting brew.

Medium-bodied and very drinkable.

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Photo of ThreeDimesDown
3.48/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

Hold the bacon with my eggs, I'll have a Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Marzen!!!

Pours a deep brown with ruby highlights and a thick tan head that leaves nice lacing.

Aromas of a Slim Jim over campfire with background hints of berries.

Taste has a frontal assault of smokiness, but has a lot of nice subtle notes, including sweet caramel, berry sweet and light malts. Campfire smokiness lingers and lingers...

Mouthfeel is medium with nice carbonation, with a dry finish.

This is a situational brew to the tee! Very nice if you are ready for it but I could see a terrible review if you popped this at the wrong time. The immense smokiness in the nose and flavor leaves this as a situational brew at best.

This one needs a second review!

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Photo of xrdsci
4.32/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 1pt 0.9oz bottle.

A: Deep brown color with a light tan head.

S: Smells like smoked pork.

T: The strong smokey flavor dominates here, although it's not overwhelming. A fair amount of sweetness up front. It's hard to pick up through the smoke, but I can taste some faint caramel and dark fruits.

M: Moderate mouthfeel, not as thick as expected. Very smooth. Light carbonation

D: Thoroughly enjoyed this, but it isn't something I could drink in any situation.

This is probably the most interesting beer I've ever had. To be honest, I didn't care for it much the first time around (mostly because of poor food-pairing). The second and subsequent tastings have been more rewarding. Give it a chance.

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Photo of bsp77
4.15/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into dimpled mug.

Appearance: Very dark mahogany-brown with frothy grayish-tan head.

Smell: Smoke, ash and grilled meat. Interesting.

Taste: Very, very smoky with char-grilled meat, burnt toast, molasses and some semi-sweet fruitiness.

Feel: Moderate carbonation, lighter body than expected (but fits the beer), very smooth.

Drinkability: Strangely alluring. Wasn't completely sure about this beer for the first half, but then I just wanted more and more.

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Photo of StephenRich
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Six generations of the Trum family have run the Schlenkerla Brewery Tavern in Bamberg Germany since 1405. Something very special lives here, and has done so epically since day one; the Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen is a smokebeer of unparalleled quality and distinction. Banberg is the original home of the rich and powerful smokebeer, and Schlenkerla may be the most visited and traditional brewer of them all.

Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier translates to English as Original Schlenkerla Smokebeer, and since I first tried it, it has held a special place in my heart. It is undeniably unique with flavors that would drive some mad, and others mad with utter pleasure. The rich and penetrating smoky flavor is achieved by exposing barley to the intense aromatic smoke of burning beech wood during malting. Before kilning was mastered, this was really common practice, and most beers at one time were somewhat 'smoked'.

Really, the Schlenkerla is definitely not everyones bag, and as you read on you will see why. But those who do like this beer love it!

The Marzen comes in a 500ml bottle at 5.1% abv and is widely available at the LCBO. It is actually a lager, not an ale, contrary to what you may first perceive. But Schlenkerla does used bottom fermenting yeasts and ages it in oak in 700 year old cellars. The power of this beer comes not from its yeasts, but rather from the smoke, as you will soon find out.

In fact, you will find out the second you open this bottle. Immediately, before you even pour it, smoky bacon and charred wood will pour into the air engulfing your senses. While you could serve this beer at cellar, or even room temperature, I think it is best cool around 12C (54F). All the rich aromas and flavors are extremely potent when closer to warm, but it is still a lager and shows great refreshing characteristics and smooth crispness when cooler. Also, this way you get the best of both worlds; but pour at your own discretion.

Poured into a tall deep pint glass similar to Schlenkerla's own, it builds a richly brown mahogany beer with deep reds, amber and a golden haze. Carbonation is noticeable in the beer but not out of the ordinary. The head stood fluffy and dense a good two inches above the beer - creamy and off white in color, it is filled with air and also much power. Retention is excellent, and even by the end of the beer I was accompanied by a reasonable foam - not film, foam.

The nose is just crazy. The name Smoke Beer almost doesn't do it justice, it should be called crazy smoky sausage beer! But this is also what will ruin it for some people right away. But don't be timid. Forget about any prior conceptions of what beer can or should be. Just let your self go and focus solely on your senses, they will guide you to the light. The nose is wide and open with huge smoke flavors, hickory, smoked sausage, bacon and toffee. It is supremely rich, but absorb it and you will find caramel malts, biscuit, more toffee, a touch of earth and hayfield, then always the reminicent scent of campfire.

Don't prepare yourself for drinking this beer. Don't contemplate it, don't worry about it, don't over think it. Just let your mind relax and let the Schlenkerla sooth you. It enters your palate powerfully, but at first with softly rich and warming malts. Caramel and dark toffee mix with brown sugar and molasses for a moment as waves of smoky layers begin to make their way in. They are not pounding or aggressive; the beer is 5.1%, so you should not expect to be mutilated by its strength.

The first smoke I get is smoked sausage. It is powerful, with earth, herbs and some warm spice, maybe pepper. Next comes pure smoke and charred wood with hints of oak and malt. You can almost feel the smoke; it is very smooth and elegant. Yes, elegant. Even as potent as it is, it seamlessly orchestrates its way over your palate tickling all the right senses in all the right places. Some bitterness is detectable to add a touch of balance, but this beer by definition is unbalanced, and I love it for it. It is bold and beautiful in every way; it is very deserving of its rich heritage and loyal following.

The mouthfeel is easy and Soothing. Regardless of all the smoke, it still feels fresh and quenching, especially at the cooler temperature. Maybe quenching isn't right, but it is extremely satisfying and pleasurable to drink.

It can be hard to pair this marzen with food, but it can also be easy. Richly smoked cheeses, roast beef, ribs, pulled pork sandwiches, fried potatoes, and absolutely anything barbecued is a natural match for this magnificent beer. No doubt, it is one of my favorites, and will always have a place in my fridge.

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Photo of cjgator3
4.6/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On-tap at Redlight Redlight in Orlando, FL. Pours a dark brownish color with a light tan head. The aroma is fantastic! A lot of smoked malts dominate the nose. The taste like the aroma is deliciously smokey! This beer is great in the bottle and even better on-tap!

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Photo of cpetrone84
4.3/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Big thanks to Jeremy for sharing heals all...F U La Folie 05!

A-pours a transparent dark reddish brown, fluffy creamy yellowish head with a huge lace left behind.

S-the nose has a ton of smoke and campfire to it, smoked ham is quite strong in the nose, caramel malts there to balance that malt profile and a faint grassy hop aroma in the back.

T-tons of smokey campfire in the taste, again smoked meats, lots of smokey glazed ham, sturdy malt base and notes of malt sweetness with caramel and toffee, a light earthy and grassy hop presence in the finish.

M-smooth and creamy feel to it with a medium to light body and clean soft finish, low carbonation but enough to balance.

D-very interesting beer, quite smoked and meaty but enough balance to it that is seems to work very well together and be enjoyable. Plus, after the onslought of acidity and vinegar of La Folie 05 there was a need for malt!

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Photo of TheQuietMan22
4.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Straight pour into a pint glass. I don't have a mug (the suggested beerware), which is shameful, so the pint will have to do. The color is a dark brown with a ruby red tint. It is close to opaque, but light still passes through. My pour produced three fingers of thick, cappuccino colored head, which hung around for a few minutes before dissipating to leave a foamy lacing and ring around the edge.

Smell: Bacon. Thick and peppery bacon. Even after all these years as a vegetarian, the aroma is unmistakable. It is definitely unique and stands out prominently. It also has an autumn leaf burn pile or campfire smell to it. There's really no getting past the bacon and smoked aromas. My eyes are almost burning. Yet, it is very enticing.

Taste: Follows the smell, but the smokiness is thankfully not as intense. It has a prominent smoked bacon or ham (I'm thinking smoked ham with bacon bits on it) flavor which gives way to, surprisingly, toasted coffee malts. It finishes very much like a dry stout in that sense.

Drinkability: This is damn good stuff. Very unique and very tasty. I was unsure how I would react to the smoky qualities and the bacon (and not because I'm a vegetarian), and I'm pleased to say I thoroughly enjoyed both.

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Photo of generallee
3.63/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 1 pint 0.9oz bottle into a pint glass. The label has no freshness date but it does have the abv (5.1%) and a description of the beer on the back.

Appearance: The body has a deep copper body with clear reddish highlights. On top it has a tall, light tan head that makes spotty and slick lacing on the glass.

Smell: Its aroma is very smoky, like hardwood BBQ smoke, roasted malt and those imitation bacon bits that go on salads.

Taste/Palate: There is a deep smoky wood character with grainy malt with hints of bacon. It has some mild sweetness underneath that is balanced buy some light mineral (salty metallic) notes and leafy hop bitterness. The palate has a slightly slick smooth feel with a medium body and carbonation. It finishes with a slow deep smoky fade off the tongue.

Notes: Overall it's an interesting beer but its not one that I could see myself drinking much of.

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Photo of rootbeerman
4.1/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: pours into my duvel tulip, clear brown with a hint on red in the light, a nice finger and a half head falling to thin layer.
S: as expected with style, smoky, i was expecting it to be over powering but it is not, there is a little bit of malt hiding but it is mostly smoke.
T: first taste is smoke which leads to a lightly sweet bready malt, and a strange sort of hop and smoke aftertaste that i cant exactly describe, though it is good. smoke lingers a long time
M: flavors are coating so it seem a bit thicker than it is. carbonation is medium to light.
D: overall marzen style is very drinkable, strong smoke makes for a good grilling brew

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Photo of wcintula
3.72/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This was poured into a Weihenstephan glass with about two and a half fingers of light tan head atop a black body. It smells very strongly of smoke with some malts seeping through. Upon tasting, I find the smoke very bacon-like but it's all I can taste! I nice moderate-bodied beer with low-med carbonation I can't drink one after another. Quite tasty though. I like Schlenkerla's helles lagerbier better, because of the lighter smoked flavour, I can taste other parts of the beer better.

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Photo of Seanstoppable
4.17/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A friend of mine who introduced me to smoked beers hinted that I should get him a bottle of this while I was in Ontario. Taking the hint, I got one for myself as well.

Initial pour is about 66% ruby red beer, 33% creamy tan head. Head sloooowly evaporates, leaving nice lacing on the glass.

Fantastic smoky scent. Like bacon with a little bit of fat.

Taste isn't quite as smoky as I was expecting. A more smooth smoky flavor to go along with some light roasted malts. Slightly sweet flavor rounds it out a bit.

All around really good. I think this is going on my list of things to pick up again in the future.

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Photo of Evil_Pidde
3.83/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pour is very dark with hints of red. The off-white head is really large and creamy. Dissipation is slow and uneven, but the lacings are great.

S: Smoked ham and fried bacon are what dominates.

T: Like the smell, bacon and smoked ham. A bit sweet.

M: Medium body and moderate carbonation. Aftertaste is lingering and holds obvious smoke and also some bitterness.

D: A very smoked Rauchbier. Either you'll love it or hate it. I had my first one a couple of years back - then I hated it. This time it's a lot better.

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Photo of ksimons
4.25/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-much darker than I expected with a thick foamy head that disappears slowly to leave a layer of lace

S-smells like smoked bacon and bits of malt

T-taste is similar to the smell, tastes of smoked meat with sweet malt and a very slight dry hoppy finish. Very creamy and smooth and has a surprisingly light body for such a smoky beer.

M-light to medium body, low carbonation, very smooth

D-this is one of those beers that you will either love or hate. A really great and different style to try.

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Photo of bogus564
2.9/5  rDev -28.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a pint glass.

This is one dark beer - can't see through it, to be sure. Minimal cream-colored head that last for more than two minutes.

Smells of smoke and burnt malt. Wow.

Here's how I describe the taste: Take your house and burn it down. Then take a piece of the burnt wood, add a drop of caramel to it, dunk it in a glass of water, and suck on it. This is the smokiest beer I've had to this point - holy cow!

This just did not work well in my mouth; you have to be a fan of rauchbiers to enjoy this one. If you are, this will rank pretty well with you.

To drinkability, this is a beer I just couldn't finish. Not even on a bet.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from 500mL bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: deep, rich brown color with a clear body and three fingers of compact tan foam. A very good looking beer.

Smell: malty aroma with a healthy dose of smoke. The smoke is not overpowering by any means, though it is pretty strong. I rather like it.

Taste: rich malt flavor with hints of caramel. Smoke is particularly big toward the end; this complements the sweetness like in a barbecue sauce. There is some bitterness toward the end, but I can't really discern much in the way of hops through all the smoke. Still, I'm enjoying this beer.

Mouthfeel: medium body with good carbonation and a pretty creamy mouthfeel. Works for me!

Drinkability: this beer is good, but it's a bit much to consume a lot of. I'm going to enjoy this bottle, but I don't think I'm likely to ever have two in a sitting.

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Photo of mintjellie
4.5/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep, intense, and dark ruby brown colour. It's large dense head looks like beige meringue and leaves behind some little patches of lace on my glass. Good head retention. It smells intensely smoky, like a campfire with smoked meat nuances. It's meaty in the sense of having that same kind of smoke aroma you get from smoked salmon or bacon. There's a bit of sweet malt underneath it all, but the aroma is ultimately all about the smoke. It's a very rich and savoury kind of aroma. It has a clean toasty malt character with a bit of sweetness, and a strong (but not overpowering) smoke flavour. Very mild hop bitterness in the finish.

Medium bodied with a fair amount of fine carbonation. Feels pillowly and soft in the mouth. The first time I had this it was a bit of a shock, but after giving it some time and a second chance knowing what I'm getting into, this is a damned good beer. This is a drinkable piece of living history, the process of malting the barley over a beechwood fire dating back to a time before someone had the idea of malting the barley in a kiln. I think I want to hunt for more rauchbiers.

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Photo of gfreed
4.89/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

There is nothing-- and I mean nothing-- like a beer from Schlenkerla. The marzen, like all other beers from this brewery, is rank with smoke from top to bottom, from beginning to end. And let us not leave out the salted ham, the salami, the tobacco, the prosciutto... the entire pig, smoked on a rod, slowly, without the apple in its mouth (which I find so silly, anyhow...). If you're careful you'll detect some light hops at the end which adds just a nip to the beer. On the whole it's softer and loftier than the urbock, but not as light as the lager (both worth your $6). An acquired taste, perhaps, but one which is worth acquiring. You cannot go wrong.

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Photo of specksnreds
2.33/5  rDev -42.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Not a fan. But it's probably me, and not the beer. Beautiful dark brown, nearly black, pour with a nice medium bubble carbonation. Smell was smokey and pleasant. I was a bit startled at the level of smoke aroma and it was all I could detect. Taste was unbearably of cough medicine. I'm talking the stuff from the 60's that made no attempt to hide its medicinal qualities. I tried to pick out other flavors, but I just couldn't. A little thin on the palate.

This is by far one of the most unique beers I've ever tried. I REALLY wanted to like it, but I couldn't. Again, "It's not you, baby, It's me."

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Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a hazy reddish brown color with a tan head. The aroma is very smokey with some meaty notes. I also get a little dark fruit in the aroma. The flavor is smoke, roasted malt, chocolate, dark fruit and ash. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. This beer was similar to the Urbock, but I feel this one was a little less smoky, but also more complex in the flavor department.

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Photo of JRed
4.03/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark, murky brownish/red swamp color in body with floating off-white fluffy head. Aroma of ham, meats, woodchips, smoke, tobacco, spice, and black pepper. More subtle in flavor than it looks: ham, meats, smokiness, slight tobacco towards the finish, bacon, hops without the bitterness towards the finish as well. Medium in body with a rather refreshing mouthfeel and taste. A tasty brew that quenches a strange thirst for a cigarette with your bacon and eggs.

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Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen from Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla
4.06 out of 5 based on 2,299 ratings.
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