Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen | Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla

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Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier MärzenAecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen
2,381 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

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 2,381 |  Reviews: 1,153
Photo of byrd
4.4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I had this along with a mild smoked sausage for dinner. What a great pairing! Although I made sure to write my review before the dinner.

Pours out of the bottle with quit a bit of sweet malt aroma. Once in the glass, the distinctive smokiness is very apparent and backed by malt undertones. Clear dark brown in color with a nice full, light tan head the recedes to a long lasting lace. The mouthfeel is medium-full and is incredibly smooth. After reading about Rauchbiers, I thought that the smokiness would be too overwhelming for me, but I was wrong. The smoke flavors meld wonderfully with the malt sweetness of this brew making it go down so much more easily then I would have imagined. And to balance out the smoke and malt flavors, there’s a nice mild hop bitterness in the finish to close things out. The hops linger along with a lot of the smokiness in the aftertaste.

What a pleasant surprise this brew was. Very drinkable brew. Probably not a session beer, but a great change of pace that I’ll definitely look for again in the future. With this review, I've now made it half way through the BA list of official beer styles.

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

It poured a thick creamy very dark brown with no foam and lace. The smell of smoky roasted malts fill the nose, with spices that I couldn't place. The taste was of a thick. creamy and smoky bacon flavor that was very different than any other Rauchbier that I have ever had. Another pleasant surprise for my palate!

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

Appearance – Dark brown and thin/clear in the body with a nice, working head that laced the glass.

Smell – When I lived in Germany I knew a pig farmer, and one day we slow roasted a pig on a spicket for nine hours for a family reunion. That’s about the only time I’ve ever smelled anything as smoky and meaty as this ale.

This stuff embedded itself in my walls. Don’t dip your nose into it; smell it from a distance. It smells like fried bacon.

Taste – Light malts and with a little bit of sweetness, almost like a good Oktoberfest ale, with smoke for days. Think beef jerky or fried bacon.

Mouthfeel - This one’s a lightweight, as expected, and very flat.

Drinkability – I doubt most people could finish this bottle, but if you’re a fan of the smoke (rauch) flavor, this is a must try.

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Photo of grynder33
3.4/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

What you hear is what you get.Nice big head, aroma reminds me of smoked summer sausage, nice smooth mouthfeel initialy an extreme smoked taste, but it does seem to recede. The only place I would think this beer apropriate would be if I were on on a camping trip, and the boys were resolved to have beer early in the morning, and they were frying a breakfast of eggs and whatever.

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Photo of ManekiNeko
4.47/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

1 pt. 9 oz bottle served chilled in a pint glass.

Appearance: Clear dark crimson topped by a frothy offwhite head. Not very long lasting, either, it recedes to a film in about a minute, then goes away completely about 10 minutes later. Little blobs of lacing are left on the glass, but they are short lived as well.

Smell: Intense smoked meat aroma, ham I'd say. Mmm.. ham. There are some caramelized sugar smells in the background.

Taste: Carbonated jerky!!! Nuff said.

Ok, actually there is a great marzen lurking beneath the surface of this beer. Definitely a darker style then a plain marzen. Toasted malts are in greater proportion than the caramelized.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with surprisingly little aftertaste.

Drinkability: Get some jerky and have a festival of smoked flavors!! I couldn't see myself drinking too many bottles in one sitting, but I can definitely see me having this again and again. Betcha this would make a kick ass marinade.

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Photo of Globetrotter
3.79/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I should note that I am not a big fan of Rauchbier. As a rather militant non-smoker, the thought of smokey beer is not exactly appealling. When I saw this in a Moscow grocery store, however, the Märzen appeal overcame the smoke turn-off. Glad I tried it.

Utterly gorgeous appearance, from the deep clear bronze hue to the big, thick, contoured tan head that stuck around for a long time and left magnificent lace. The nose smelled a bit like smoked salty fish - not an unpleasant thing, but a bit odd for a beer. The mouth was heavy and mildly carbonated, with a definite charcoal undercurrent. The taste is smokey, but reasonably mild. It has little in common with other Märzens, but is pretty darn enjoyable, as the malt contends with the smoke leaving a pleasant aftertaste generated from the mixture. No hops taste. A good, unique experience, this is not a brew I'd like to have every night.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.8/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep ruby tone with a very appeasing tan foaming fluffy head, exquisite lacing surrounding the pint. Aroma: Well, I know this sounds weird but this beer smells of a tender smoked bacon with semi sweet roasted tones barely creeping through, oh so unique just straight up different and the orginator of smoked bier. Taste: It's so strange drinking a mildly sweet liquid that has a big kick of smoked meat in the flavor doesn't seem like it should be drinkable or even blend together but it does. Mouthfeel: Medium body decent carbonation not a bad brew at all, definitely a new definition of smoked bier. Drinkability: Suprisingly goes down pretty well I think it's damn good such a complex flavor picking out smoked flavors still brewed in the same tradition this is pretty amazing stuff be ready for something new if you try it.

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Photo of canadianbarman
2.33/5  rDev -42.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

--Regular 1 pint brown bottle, no freshness date to be found.
--Poured a dark ruby like in color. Started out with a nice head that quickly dissipated to almost nothing.
--Smelled a smell I have never had before. Obviously a smoky smell that was comparable to smoked salmon.

This was my first foray into a rauchbier and, as one of the brothers stated, either you like it or you don't. Unfortunataly I am not quite ready for this taste yet. It tasted like it smelled and was almost overpowering to me. Maybe I am naive but I have tried smoked beers and that is the taste that I expected. This was just too much for me as the smell and taste still lingered long after I had finished the beer. Later on, as my skills progress, I would like to try another one.

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Photo of nixhecks
4.67/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had the store order this special as I have been aching to try a real rauchbier. Poured a dark soda brown color with a very large head with medium retention. The aroma was unlike any brew I have tried before this - so strong and pungent I can smell it while it sits on the desk in front of me. Aroma consisted of a chalky mesquite smoke, reminded me of smoked salmon. Taste was really something else. The smoke flavors were immense, the same smoked fish, with a sweetness like smoked sausage. Also a slight hoppiness, and roasted coffee. I am glad to have tried this, I would have to say this was one of my favorite beers so far to sit down and review.

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Photo of chaduvel
4.8/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Deep dark brownish red with a creamy tan head. Smell is overwhelmingly smoky. Woodsy campfire aromas, smoked meats, fish and cheese, everything smoky and wonderful. Seems as though my glass should be smoldering. Taste is smoky as well. A sweet malt Marzen flavor underlies the smoked pecan or apple wood. Touch of smoked hops, but mostly malt complexities. Smooth full smoky mouthfeel. Halfway through the glass I had some smoked cheese and sausage, and this beer went with them perfectly. Eating some smoked foods actually brought out more of the sweet flavors in the beer. Goes down very easy. I'd go back to this beer again and again. An amazing style.

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Photo of bmacaskill
4.4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

OK. I've had smoked sausage. I've had beer.

Now I can have both in a single swallow. This beer's smoky aroma has to be experienced to be believed. While I know it has been around for a while ;-), this has been my first smoked-malt beer, and it's about time!

The quaff was smooth, dry... and then very smoky. If you've never had a smoked-malt beer, you have to try this one. Very long finish that leaves you hungering for a sausage. And I mean that very positively!

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.88/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very dark beer for a Marzen, a dark amber in color. This one is quite dry tasting, with a very pronounced smokiness to it. The dryness seems to accentuate and focus your tastebuds upon the smoke flavor. This beer has quite a good amount of Body, a certain fullness that comes through even though it is quite dry tasting. There is not much in the way of hop flavor, which is good, as it allows the subdued malt and, of course, the smoke to come through.

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Photo of steelreign
4.27/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

I agree with LongBeachBum's review below... this is a wonderful example of a Rauchbier, and if you love smoky tastes and creamy mouthfeel, this one will please you. If you don't appreciate a little experimentation in your beers, stay away.

All in all, I thought the nice hickory aroma was very appetizing, and it followed that the taste may be predominantly smoky. But, after a few sips, I could definitely make out the roasted malts as well as a bit of hop character. A very well balanced brew that is great for a few pints, but after that, you will probably want to move on to something else. That's not a knock, but rather, this is a specialty beer which really isn't intended for sessioning. :)

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

A deep lightish brown colored brew with a large covering of off-white foam that will sit around for quite a while leaving you with a glass covered in lace. Before even putting my nose to the glass, deep smoky aromas hit my nose like a fire on a winter's night. Yes it is late august, but what the hell. Hidden behind the deep wall of smoke, there are some sweet malts.

Oooh! This one is deliciously smoky. I have always been a bit hesitant with rauchbiers, but I really enjoy them, so maybe I will drop that fear. I will admit that it may be an acquired taste, but that smoke is excellent. It is not overpowering, but it is definitely in full effect. There is a pretty good balance with some sweet malts and grains in there. The carbonation is light, but enough to be crisp. The body is medium to full. It is smooth and very drinkable. I don't know if I would sit down to a bunch of pints, but a couple would be just fine.

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Photo of clvand0
1.41/5  rDev -65.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

This beer pours a brown color with minimal head and lacing. The aroma is the weirdest that I've noticed - smells like honey hickory smoke barbecue sauce - wonderful aroma. The taste wasn't very good though. It tasted just like it smelled, but for some reason the taste wasn't good at all. Can't say much more, but the taste was terrible.

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


Aromas of liquid smoke, campfire smoke, shirt-from-the-night-before-while-standing-around-a-campfire... also smoked cheese and smoked meats. Smoke.
There are clean, elfen, slatey flavors, fresh-scone-textured, whisperingly light, mildly sweet, even dry, that return to fairly mild smoke notes. The balance is really nice.
I strongly urge you to explore your connoisseurship of prepared mustards in the presence of this beer. Rake thick layers of any mustard over deli rye bread and place anything else upon it you want to. Eat. Drink.
See what I mean?

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

Pours deep mahogany in color. Smokey aroma hits me already. I went in for a closer inspection. Yup, it's smoke. There's no getting past that, if you don't like smokey aromas and tastes you might want to stay clear of rauchbiers. The taste is also smokey with a hint of malt sweetness underneath it all. This is a beer to drink with a big slab of meat. The smokey flavor is very intense and is better accompanying something rather than by itself. And if you don't like to drink this, it's a wonderful cooking beer. Try cooking some bratwurst in it.

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

This isn't as good as it's brother, the Urbock, but it holds it's own. It's main differences were the taste and smell, which are two very important things. The smell wasn't as strong and had a bit more of a hoppiness to it. It still had the great smell of bacon, but just not as strong. The taste was similar to the smell. It had a definate hoppiness to it, but nothing way too overpowering. It's definately a great beer to try, but if you have the chance, go with the Urbock.

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

Deep smoky aroma, like smoked sausage or bologna or other fatty smoked meats. Brown to darkish red in color with small off-white head. Medium carb with medium oily palate. Sweetish start (like a light maerzen) with medium hops character. Sweet smoky fatty finish and after. One of the best smoked beers I've tried (though I haven't tried many yet).

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Photo of granger10
4.37/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I don't know what to think of this beer. It is different than anything I have ever tried. I've had some smoked beers in the past, but these Rauchbiers are on another level. Personally, I can't handle this beer! Too strong of a smoked flavor for me. It is hard for me to rate this beer so low because it seems to be a high quality crafted beer. But this is my first Rauchbier so I can't compare it to others. Tastes like smoked salmon, esp. in the aftertaste. Malts are there at the beginning and middle but dissapear after that leaving only a strong smoked flavor. I might try this again later when my palate is more advanced, but for now the rating stays.

Ok, that first review was a few years ago and since then I have tried the Marzen numerous times and I really do love it. I have come to embrace the smokiness and almost crave it when smoking meats on the grill. I like the sweetness of the malts and how they balance the smoke flavors a bit. I would love to try this or the Urbock from the cask at the brewery.

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Photo of Shiloh
3.38/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Certainly an above average offering but does not suit my particular taste.
Very dark offering, almost black with dark red undertones.
Head was thick but short and tan in colour. Carbonation was light.
Aroma was lacking.
Taste was malt heavy, almost a coffee with indirect bitterness.
Non lingering and crisp....Impressive....Recomended

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Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.02/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation. A 500ml bottle that cost me $3.59. The bottle label design is very similar in presentation to the first of the Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbiers that I have tried. After having had the Urbock, at least I know what to expect with the Märzen.

Appearance: A very deep chestnut brown color, lucid with a ruby-red hue when back lit. A decent tan colored head when first poured, which soon settles down to a smooth ¼” covering, which laces the glass sides with drink rings. Good levels of carbonation when swirled.

Nose: As expected, the aromas are very intense. Immediately after I opened the bottle, and long before I poured the beer, it just screamed Smoky Bacon. Gorgeous aromas of freshly fried smoked Danish Bacon sizzle on the nose. The gentle crackling of the bacon as it occasionally spits in the frying pan are all visualized with every deep inhalation of this beer. Superb!

Tastes: Smoky introduction that has malts and smoked bacon in the middle, which finishes with salty dry smoked finish. The dry finish can beg you to take another mouthfeel to quell the salty aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Pretty solid, and above average. Creamy at time thanks to the smooth flavor profile and good carbonation. Very astringent, dry, smoky finish.

Drinkability: It’s one of those beers that you either love or hate. I love it, but even so, I cannot see me have more than a couple of these before the smoked aspect becomes extremely overpowering. Also, the astringent dry smoked finish can actually make you quite parched, and wish for a thirst-quenching Pilsner to quell the aftertaste at times. I wrestled to give it a 4, and was more happy with a 3.5 in the end. A good drinker, but not in great quantities.

Overall: Quite amazing, it would make for a great English Breakfast beer; well with some Fried Eggs, Black Pudding, Baked Beans, Grilled Tomatoes and Fried Bread (and HP Brown Sauce of course). Now there's an idea.....

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Photo of TheDM
3.94/5  rDev -3%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This brew poured a small head of fine to medium sized light brown bubbles and a very dark brown, but still somewhat transparent, body. It has a very strong aroma of smoke about it and a very smooth smoky initial flavor that builds to an even stronger smoky finish. I rather liked it. The smoke was not too more for me as it was for some.

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

Smoked bacon and other meat in the aroma... seriously, how can you go wrong with bacon? Ruby colored with a white head that fades faast. Smoked ham comes though in the flavor with the marzen characteristics coming through on the front of the tongue and initially in the profile. Very nice overall and something I would definitely consider buying again.

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Photo of taez555
4.37/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16.9 ounce bottle

Poured a very small but fine white head. The body was a reddish brown with very tiny bubbles. Surprisingly transparent which when held up to the light gave off a beautiful ruby color.

The smell of this beer is a work of art. Smoke, ham, meat, wood, charcoal, sweet malts, little to no hop at all. This beer smells like a backwoods camp fire.

The initial taste, although medium bodied, is actually very light and easy drinking. It starts off with a shot of up front bitterness, then mellows very quickly. You can taste the roasted malts, caramel, sugar and burnt molases flavors mellow in the forground but with this lovely wofting smoke and meat flavor on a sepperate plane. It almost tastes like the burnt ends of a ham. The earthy hops compliment this beer so well you almost forget there are even hops in it. A perfect balance of earthy hops and smoked malts create an impressive woodsy natural flavor to this beer.

It finishes very clean and mellow with only slight hints of the smoke flavor. Although a good burp or two minutes or hours later is guaranteed to bring hints of this beer back to you.

Overall a very unique and delicious beer. Not a beer for every occasion or every pallet. It's deffinately an aquired taste. But a beer you shouldn't miss.

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Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Märzen from Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla
Beer rating: 4.06 out of 5 with 2,381 ratings