Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen | Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla

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Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier MärzenAecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen
2,376 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: 2,376 |  Reviews: 1,152
Photo of rembrant
3.87/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours dark drown with ruby highlights and a 1 finger head

Aroma- Bacon and toast. Only is missing a fried egg

Taste Bacon

There's some lurking grain and malt but a VERY forward smokiness that's got a bacon quality...perhaps you could say sausage. Pretty over the top...yet it's tasty. Would go well with a lettuce and tomato sandwich Would be great on a campout where a campfire is not allowed. I can detect some bittering hops in the finish but that's minor.

Bacon in a bottle is what the main impression is,and the marvel is that it's really quite good though so much of it's basic beer qualities are left in the shadows.

Mouthfeel....I think my mouth is confused,thinks this is thick,oily,like a hunk of heavily smoked pork,rather than beer. I can't figure the viscosity and density in this...which strangely works. Drinkability....Maybe with enough eggs and hashbrowns I could do a long brunch,but as intense as this,I doubt many folks drink 2 a day unless they are from Bamberg and were weaned on it.

I am fond of Smoked beers. This one is a treat as a once in a while thing but too Bacon heavy for regular drinking....that and I like to find the BEER in my glass so going TOO Bacon or Coffee,or Grapefruit, or Bourbon,and losing the beerness,is not ideal

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Photo of jera1350
4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark copper color with a creamy tan head adorning.

Smokey, meaty goodness. Bacon and smoked brisket fill the nose. There is a banana/fruit presence in the background.

Huge smoked bacon presence up front to go with the pleasant marzen bready malt taste in the background. It's like having a marzen with a smoked bacon sandwich. The smoke is not so overwhelming though, which is awesome.

Medium bodied, slightly chewy and very smooth with fluffy soft carbonation.

I am utterly shocked at how well this drinks. I will have zero problem finishing this bottle alone. The flavor is perfect and the smoke does not overwhelm at all. This is top notch for the style and easy to drink to boot. Great beer that everyone needs to try at least once.

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

I first had this in 2009 when I started to get into beer. I thought the smoke way way too much for me. I had split this bottle with a friend and I had issues getting through half the bottle. Now that I've had a ton more smokey beers, plus gotten into Islay scotches, I'll give this another go.

Pours a murky brown colour with hints of amber. Thick white head, with some nice lacing. Really nice head retention. Smells quite smokey, almost similar to the smoke from bacon, so any beer that reminds me of bacon is a plus. I believe the other stuff I'm smelling is similar to salty caramel. Flavour has some sweetness, but the aftertaste is quite smokey. Smooth carbonation level. I'm really enjoying this beer now.

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Photo of HalfFull
4/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

With a touch of trepidation I dive into this beer, yet it's an experience I've long known would come. Let's go I say, and with some ribs straight from the smoker for a backup plan.

Poured into a shaker glass from a half liter bottle, this brew pours a reddish brown in color, nice and clear, and with a half inch of off white soapy foam. Looks like any other Märzen and better than most given a solid head retention which keeps until the bottom of the glass.

Nose is smoky, and meaty, though surely not in a bacon sense. More like a salty stick of jerky as the smoked malts mix with other underlying malt notes to confuse the nose a bit. Some caramel is there as well. Letting the glass rest a bit mellows things out substantially until I stir it up again because I miss the smoke.

Flavor is less of a smack in the face with some caramel notes up front and some less dominant(vs. the smell) smoky notes sweeping across and lingering for some time, allowing you to savor(or not) this long after it's gone.

Malts, carbonation and smoky notes actually balance quite well on the finish, lending a solid feel. The sweet caramel of a Märzen seems like a good candidate for a Rauchbier, particularly for one who doesn't prefer the sweeter and thicker versions of the style.

Like a Chile Beer it seems to be all about the base beer used. This one is pretty good and it all works well. My trepidation was uncalled for. And with smoke notes on the nose diminishing with exposure, some hops emerge to keep things interesting.

Note: 5.1%

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Photo of Lev
4.75/5  rDev +17%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Amazing beer, I have been dreaming of it for days... imagine if some gouda cheese got it on with a beer and had its love child, THIS would be that love child and i would want to drink it and wait for the cheese and beer to get it on again....

Seriously, if you ever have the opportunity to try this beer do not hesitate. Extremely tasty, amazing smell, and it even looks good to boot!

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Photo of VWBuggirl
4.54/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This pours a very dark brown with a thick head and lots of lacing. The first thing I noticed was the heavy smoked scent. I immediately got excited because I love that smell and I couldn't wait to taste how it would translate into a beer. I was not let down! There was a heavy, yet not overpowering (in my opinion) taste of smokiness. It blended well with the maltiness of the underlying beer and the hit of hops in the background. It isn't something I would drink every day, but I have had a couple since my first taste.

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Photo of JaredWolgemuth
4.84/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Among the 6 other taste testers on the beer in my group, I was the only one that enjoyed it: and boy did I ever- ranked as one of my all time favorites it has an outstanding smell, the initial taste is an earth shaker. If you like smoky flavor- please don't die before you sample this. Outstanding from start to finish- I can't rain enough accolades on this gem.

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Photo of robertfulwiler
4.87/5  rDev +20%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This is one of the first rauchbiers that I tasted, and remains one of my favorite. Pours a dark ruby with low head retention. Smells like campfire with a subtle malt background. Tastes like bacon! Mouthfeel is perfectly smooth. Really one of my favorite German beers.

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Photo of Fatehunter
4.18/5  rDev +3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured into a tulip glass. Copper color, almost opaque. Nice inch and half of dirty-white head.

S - Well, as I poured it I could smell the smoke. It is like being at a campfire as only the embers are glowing with no flames. Amazing.

T - Smoky grain taste, light hop bitterness at the end. Very smooth flavor.

M - Soft, medium body, moderate carbonation. A little less carbonation would be nicer for me, but it does not hold the beer back at all.

D - Excellent. Easy to drink and hits the Rauchbier notes perfectly (it is the original apparently).

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Photo of rhollman
3.84/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Dark red amber

Smell - Wonderful beech wood smoke

Taste - Wonderful smoke flavor

Mouth Feel - Smooth malt mouth feel

Drinkability - Wow - the beech wood smoke is absolutely awesome. Unfortunately, the Marzen beer style is too bland for me personally. I guess that is what makes this beer so awesome - wonderful beech wood smoke in a beer style that let's the smoke be the highlight.

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Photo of harrymel
3.3/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed 07/01/10
Poured from bottle to new belgium tulip.

A: Dark brown and deep ruby. No head. No visible bubbles. Excellent clarity.

S: Smells like a campfire. Very comforting and embodying of outdoors experience. I would argue, for the style, over smoked.

T: Super smokey. Great for pairing with sausage lunch. Would pair well with sauerkraut or other acidic foods. Mostly like liquid smoke.

M: When chilled, a bit awkward as the body is medium light with quite a dry finish. Much more enjoyable as the beer warms - the smoke is more appropriate as it warms.

D: Good beer for times when longing for the outdoors, childhood memories and for occassional novelty beer. Nice, nice beer. Not among the top of the smoke beers IMO. Although, having been to Geramany, the rauchbier's are much better there.

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Photo of alcstradamus
3.13/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Tasted alongside the urbock. Pours a deep brown with a finger of quickly dying head and wisps of lacing.

The aroma is pure campfire smoke. Waking up at 7 am after a night of drinking by the fire hair smell. Some coffee grinds in there as well.

The flavor is a bit lighter on the smokiness. Somewhat watery actually underneath the initial layer of smoke. Not as deep as the urbock and truthfully not really noteworthy. No "off" flavors at all which is a positive, but not really many "on" flavors either.

The body is medium and a bit watery. Carbonation is high but not stinging.

Overall this is a decent enough beer, but not one that I would really feel the desire to drink again.

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Photo of MyGoodness
3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I liked it but apparently no one else I was with could really appreciate this one. Pours inky black with a tall, white head that lingers. The smell is indeed smokey. It almost seems like the smell is ridiculously strong, since my friend across our small table said he could smell smoke when I poured this brew. In reality, it was malty and smokey, and the taste was much the same. Smoke is the dominant thing here, people. If you somehow came upon this brew and were unaware that this was a large component of the beer, you would completely thrown, I think. To be honest, several hours afterward, I would "taste" the smoke smell in the back of my throat. It has a smooth mouthfeel, but due to the unusual experience with the overwhelming smoke-quality, I'd say it's not an easy beer to drink. I'd order it again, but it absolutely scared my friends off and would not recommend it to people who are not used to strong and/or odd beers.

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Photo of DKight
4.79/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5


Probably the best beer I have had so far. Would make a great grilling beer. Tastes exactly like it smells! T,he taste is like nothing I have had before. You can definitely tell that this is a smoked beer. has a meaty taste to it. A few that tried it with me thought they tasted smoked hot dogs. The smell and taste are almost exactly the same. Amazing.


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

First had: bottle at The Pour House, Westmont, NJ

A: Very dark with a foamy, off-white head.

S: Strong and smoky.

T: Strong yet smooth maltiness of a märzen that is quickly overcome by the bitter smokiness of a moderately hopped rauchbier.

M: Medium body with some carbonation.

D: Pretty easily drinkable, especially if you like smokey brews.

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Photo of mikeg67
4.16/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500 ml bottle. Pours chestnut with a big, fluffy, off-white, long lasting head. Lots of lacing. Aroma is rich smoked (lox) malt with hints of piny hops. Medium, smooth body. The flavor is initially a sweet smoky malt, brown sugar balanced by earthy, piny hops. Long lasting, balanced finish. Great beer.

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Photo of beerprovedwright
4.52/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Wow a three finger head of light brown head with lots of clinging lace. Color is a 28 on the SRM chart. Smell of smoke, chocolate, coffee, and fruit. Taste of chocolate, smoked fish, coffee, caramel, and malt. Very rich and full in my mouth, a great creamy texture. Very fine flavor and really fills my sense with pleasure, I will have to pick up more my next beer buying adventure.

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Photo of StJamesGate
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours with a loose creamy tan root beer head that rings when poured quickly (as recommended) and ruby brown body. Kabanossi nose, with some wood, spiced plum, and Band-aids - deep. Smoke but also prune, cherry and brown sugar with prickly allspice and herbal hops. Astringent smoke finish. Light, crisp, round, creamy.

Pretty big and sweet for a Marzen. For such a non-traditional (or more traditional, actually) beer, spectacularly balanced, layered and drinkable. I've forgotten the smoke by the 3rd sip. Is this the best smoked beer out there?

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Photo of SleepyMonk
3.66/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Chilled 0.5l bottle poured into a Weihenstephaner glass.

Pours with a dark coffee cola-like colored body with a ruby to mahogany glow when held to the light. From the pour the beer generates a thick and tan 3 finger collar of foam. Fine head retention with the mass falling away gradually with patches of clingy lace.

Aromatically this beer is a part masterpiece part mutant beast, either way though the aroma given off is a beautiful and definitely something to behold. If you love smokey bbq then you're going to be in love, even if you don't enjoy smoked flavors - the fact this beer can generate notes such as these - will have you amazed.

The smoked small goods and bbq flavors does come through in the taste however it is not as tightly permeated as one may expect. Driven largely by malts and supplemented with floral hops and light spices.

The body is comfortably weighted and moderately carbonated. Very smooth tastes and soft spice notes in the finish. The smokey bacon, roasted honey and fried pork fat flavors that dominate the aroma is one thing but the smooth translation from nose to the taste and the smooth finish brings this beer together very nicely.

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Photo of morebeergood
4.06/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a Spaten 0.5l mug. Served at cellar temp. Fizzy carbonation, sounds like soda, and the brown body looks like root beer. Smell is probably the most unique you'll find in a bottle. It reminds me of a smoldering campfire, or a smoked ham at Easter. Just wonderful; anything smoked is just plain better. Taste is a bit more subtle than the nose would portray. Lots of notes of bacon, wood, peat, and ash. Also, this beer is not very chewy, as it is quite smooth on the palate. It became a bit more mellow as it warmed to room temp. Granted, I like this beer a lot, but it's not one to drink several at a time. The smell and flavor could be overpowering if you are not in the right mood. But one bottle is a perfect size to enjoy. I dare you to find a better made rauchbier. There is a reason this one is called the original.

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Photo of mlazzaro
4.26/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was not expecting to like this beer so much. Really delicious. I served it warm as I am currently freezing my ass off. I was anticipating liquid smoke, as in tremendously oversmoked. But actually it has delectable smoky tones to the beer. camp fire ashey wood flavors. A wonderful base beer under the rauch flavor. It would have been successful beer regardless of the smoked malt addition. Caramel dark malt character. Good germen yeast with what tastes like a perfect fermentation. would definitely have another sometime.

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Photo of soju6
3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a clear deep mahogany color, with a small off-white head.

S: Has a nice wood smoke aroma with a hint of roasted malt.

T: Has a wood smoke flavor with a nice touch of malty sweetness and a fairly dry finish.

F: medium body, smooth and very well balanced. The smoke does does not overpower but seems to enhance the character of the beer.

Great beer for the style. Easy drinker although I might tire of the smoke after a few. Well worth a try.

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Photo of bbeane
4.12/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Poured into a DFH snifter... starts with a white head aobut 1/4" thick that slowly disappears leaving some light lacing. Beer is black in color, with very little color change or light showing through when held up to the ceiling

S- Well, I don't have anything to judge this against, but it smells unbeliveably like smoked meat or campfire

T- Has a smooth caramel malty taste with a weak bittering and very distinct smokey finish... though not as pronounced as in the smell

M- Medium body with light/medium carbonation

D- I wasn't sure about this one going in, but I loved it. Not to ridiculously priced and at 5.4% it's pretty sessionable


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Photo of AleWatcher
4.22/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Was pan frying some pork schnitzel and decided this would be a perfect beer to go with dinner-- also serving German potato salad and sour kraut.

A deep red-- classic marzen color. Almost white head-- nice lacing.

Wow. This is smokey. Like bacon. I love it. This is miles ahead of a standard marzen. The taste has a light sweetness, a slight cola flavor, big roastiness, and a fried bacon/pork fat flavor. This is quite interesting.

Finish is nice and smokey. Full and robust... Good carbonation.

Wow I really like this. Awesome beer for the style. Much smokies and bacon-like than Mikeller Beer Geek Bacon.

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Photo of Phelps
3.9/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a mini-keg received from neorunner as part of the Blind Beers BIF. Poured into a weizen glass, because I assumed from the German writing on the top of the keg that it would be a wheat beer of some kind. This is also review number 300 -- a milestone!

Looks: foamy. I probably should've let sit and settle a little longer, but I just couldn't wait. The beer rockets from the opened tap, filling the glass completely with cascading light tan bubbles. The glass o'foam eventually fizzles and becomes a nice-looking drink, decorating the walls of the glass heavily with sticky webs of lace, though it remains about two-fingers thick and doesn't appear to be going anywhere soon. The beer itself is deeply hazy, the color of cherry wood, and speckled with oodles of tiny floating flecks. All in all, pretty good-looking.

Smells: salty. I was WAY off on my style guess. This may be one of the smokiest beers to ever grace my nostrils, with notes of campfire fumes amidst salty beef jerky, caramelized pork and a background of cocoa powder. It's captivating; I can't stop dipping my nose in to take huge whiffs.

Tastes: like licking a charred campfire log. The flavor follows the nose fairly well: lots of smoked malt and salty bacon paired with faint hints of cocoa and a subtle sweetness that follows through into the finish. The flavor's not quite as intense as the aroma, but considering the power of that beast, that might be a good thing.

Feels: fairly flat, though that may be the fault of the explosive pour. Regardless, it's got a smooth medium-light body and a light, pleasant finish that works well with the flavor.

Drinks: easily, despite the potent flavor and aroma. Schlenkerla has long been my favorite rauchbier for the simple fact that they do it better than anyone else. No other brewer can deliver the complexity and the pure, unadulterated liquid smokiness and drinkability I find in these.

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Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen from Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla
Beer rating: 4.06 out of 5 with 2,376 ratings