Aecht Schlenkerla Kräusen
Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla

Aecht Schlenkerla KräusenAecht Schlenkerla Kräusen
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Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla
Ranked #30
Ranked #11,668
4 | pDev: 13.25%
Dec 06, 2022
Sep 24, 2011
Very Good
Aecht Schlenkerla KräusenAecht Schlenkerla Kräusen
Notes: Also known as Helles Märzen Kräusen Blend.

In the world of German brewing, Kräusen refers to the intense proliferation of bubbles and foam formed during fermentation of a young or “green” beer. And Aufkräusen (literally to kräusen it up), refers to a historic brewing technique in which some green beer is added to a fully-matured lager. This is a very old and very typically German tradition, and today even English-speaking brewers refer to this technique as krausening. Krausening brings the vibrant freshness of young beer to the more refined, austere flavors of a fully-matured lager.

Aecht Schlenkerla Kräusen starts out as normal Helles Schlenkerla Lager and matures for months in the old rock cellars underneath the brewery. Just before filling it is blended using the before mentioned "Kräusen" technique with classic Märzen Rauchbier. The result is an unfiltered, bottom fermented and amber color Märzen Lager hybrid with a vibrant and slightly smoky flavor.

IBU: 30
Recent ratings and reviews. | Log in to view more ratings + sorting options.
Rated: 3.74 by SayBoom from Ukraine

Dec 06, 2022
Rated: 3.88 by TwiggyCZ from Czech Republic

Sep 28, 2021
Rated: 4.25 by steverx8 from England

Aug 15, 2021
Photo of aleigator
Reviewed by aleigator from Germany

5/5  rDev +25%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
Pours a lighter, hazelnut brown color with a creamy, beige giant head.

Aromas are of rock sugar sweetened easter fire smoke, a light herbaceous tartness and wooden stairs among spelt grains and old flowers.

Drinks soft and creamy with a well nuanced, sparkling carbonation, resulting in a well balanced, easy drinking Lager.

Tastes of old, dusty wood among sweeter caramel and subtle, sour yeast, which establishes a unique, intriguing balance. Brings a little more toffee to the palate then, as well as a whiff of stale ground coffee and dried tobacco leaves. Finishes effervescent, smoky with just a hint of lingering salt, grain cookies and soft, yet noteable dry hops, which manage to stay on the palate for quite a while.

This is intense, not only for its rich smoke profile, but also for its world class depth of flavors, balance and soft mouthfeel. The beer leaves nothing to desire and adds a crisp tartness, which is just lovely.
Jul 25, 2021
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Reviewed by JonnoWillsteed from England

3.88/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75
Blind-tasted except for the beer's name and brewery/country, zero reviews below read (yet!)...
L- Pours clear mid-amber with a nice looking 5Cm pillowy cream coloured head. [email protected]+10mins, the head looks like it will last forever...
S- A very fine smoke facet, fine as in much less bonfire, and more the refined smoke of a Bavarian smoked deli meat.
T- The smoke is clear and yet restrained, it leads into a toasty-dry middle and a little hoppy-dry lilt into the finish. Overall it's modestly to the dry side.
F- It feels quite light and for a beer with a smokey aspect is surprisingly refreshing. If new to the style and in any doubt about whether a smoked beer might work for you you might start it with a solid chill on it and as you slow-sip away note how it progressively opens up. Either way this is a notably easy-going example of the style.
O- A restrained and subtle smoked beer. I can imagine this going well with a plate of charcuterie + cheese.
Review1971/scoring all done, now the reveal, I get to read the lables to see what I missed!
500ml bottle BB: 02/2022 £2.85 Bought from TremblingMadness, York/UK as part of a large pick-your own consignment to London.
ps. Unusually the bottle is labelled in English as well as German. It's interesting how this is made. As a regular lager with the addition of portion of fresh or 'green' rauchbier prior to bottling. Hence it's mildly smokey and bottle-refermented.
Jul 22, 2021
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Reviewed by StJamesGate from New York

3.85/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
Pale bright amber with clingy white legs; apple, honey + light smoke nose; slight toast + toffee, big phenolic hit, granola, yellow apples, spicy end; lively.

4 4 3.75 4 3.75

Phenols come across big on the nose - there’s ham but there’s also Band-Aids. With Helles for the base (and only krasuened with Marzen) there’s not the malt richness to balance the smoke, which ends up like German apple sauce. Gets smoother as it chills (in our sub-zero January weather.) Expiry in 10 weeks time may not be helping.

Well executed, and I love this brewery, but this is not their best.

*from notes
May 26, 2021
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Reviewed by stcules from Italy

3.62/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
Beautiful reddish color, with a good ivory colored foam.
Smell: the smoked noted, quite definite, is less intense than her sister marzen.
Taste: light smoed, like smodek chestnut.
More easy drinkable.
Still, a pleasant beer, without a strong characterization.
Mar 04, 2021
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Reviewed by Sigmund from Norway

3.28/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25
500 ml bottle, from Vaaland, Bryne. ABV is 4.5%. Golden brown colour, large white head. Aroma of beech-smoked malts, notes of smoked sausages and burnt-out bonfires. The flavour is quite dry, moderate notes of smoked malts and sausages, moderate hops.
Jan 20, 2021
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Reviewed by shambeano from Australia

3.76/5  rDev -6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
500ml bottle, best before 06/2021. Poured into a tulip.
Look: a bright coppery amber. About 3-4 cm of fluffy bubbly head that sticks around for a while, leaving some lacing as it subsided. Looks great.
Smell: there’s a pretty obvious smokiness throughout. Reminds me of smoky tea, deep heat and ham. A little caramel malt in there too.
Taste: malty, a little caramel, the smoke is less pronounced but there throughout and a still a main flavour, there is a little green/herbal hop at the end.
Feel: lighter than I was expecting, the carbonation is a little prickly.
Overall: quite enjoyable if a little restrained offering from Schlenkerla
Nov 20, 2020
Rated: 1.75 by koolkitty from England

Oct 24, 2020
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Reviewed by TooManyGlasses from Canada (AB)

4.34/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
500 ml bottle from Keg n Cork in Edmonton.
Bright slightly hazy caramel bronze pour with two fingers creamy cream coloured head (double creamy!).
Nose is smokey, ham note with underlying caramel malt and notes of rye bread.
Taste is malty, definitely smokey - smoked meat, caramel with a subtle but present hop bitterness.
Smooth and easy drinking - one drink a day limit for me, else I could certainly put a few of these back - medium bodied (fuller than expected) with nice carbonation, leaving with a lingering smokey smooth hop bite. Not sure Schlenkerla would know how to make a bad beer. (Unless you don't like smoked beer of course).
Aug 23, 2020
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Reviewed by josanguapo from Spain

3.5/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
De Decervecitas. En copa hefe de Bavaria. Cenando (filetes de pavo) y luego jugando a Roblox con los niños (mega boob simulador) Ahumado menos agresivo de lo habitual en Schlenkerla, cosa que se agradece, no tapando el agradable fondo maltoso de la birra
Jul 29, 2020
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Reviewed by Phyl21ca from Canada (QC)

4.41/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Bottle: Poured a light brown color beer with a large off-white foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of light caramelized malt notes with some smoked notes is pretty enticing. Taste is a mix of smoked malt notes with some light caramel malt and dry finish. Body is about average with good carbonation. Smoked is not as dominant as other beers for this brewery but the overall mix is great and highly drinkable.
Feb 01, 2020
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Reviewed by drmeto from Germany

3.8/5  rDev -5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75
-pours a hazy amber with a big,frothy,offwhite head
-medium to high carbonation visible
-sweet BBQ,bacon,nutty,malty
-bready,spicy,smoky,malty,herbs with a clean finish
-medium carbonation
-light to medium body
Less smokey than the Märzen with a cleaner finish.
Really good stuff, as usual from Schlenkerla
Dec 10, 2019
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Reviewed by emerge077 from Illinois

4.09/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
Last can on the random shelf, labeled Helles Märzen.
Saturated golden orange with suspended floaties, frothy foam.
Soft woodsmoke aroma, mellow maltiness.
Full bodied initially but light on the finish, mild lingering smoke and low level bitterness. Smoked malt is present but not overwhelming. Slightly chewy.

Overall this was interesting to try, i’ll try to catch it fresher next time.
Oct 21, 2019
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Reviewed by jonb5 from England

3.84/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Half litre bottle, poured into pint shaker. Beer number 200 from Bavaria.

A: Very dark shade of amber, slightly hazy, small head which stayed for a bit, left some lacing.

S: Obviously it was a bit smokey but it wasn't as pronounced as with other Schlenkerla beers.

T: Not bursting with meat, finished with charcoal.

M: Heavy body for the lower abv, low carbonation.

O: Well made, lower alcohol alternative to other Frankonian smoked beers.
Sep 27, 2019
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Reviewed by cbutova from Massachusetts

4.2/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
A- Tallboy pour into a snifter with a deep golden-copper body that is just slightly hazy. The cap rises to a finger high with a creamy and frothy consistency and decent retention. Not much in the way of lacing.

S- That smoke that Schlenkerla is well known for penetrates the nostrils immediately upon opening the can. Roasted brown sugar coated ham, caramel, firewood smoke and grains of the amber toasted variety come to mind. Simple but effective with a ton of depth and massive strength to that smokiness.

T- The smoke and the burnt wood opens things up and as expected the smoked grains dominate the flavor profile up front. With more time some yeast character and other malty notes come out. Slight pale fruits from the fermentation as well as hints of toast, caramel, brown sugar, roast ham, bread and cereal. Just a ton of wood and smoke from those grains.

MF- Light-medium bodied with a high level of carbonation. The texture is puffy and crisp with some foamy consistency when agitated. Ends with smoke coating the entire mouth.

It is hard to turn down any beer from this brewery. The last beer I have to review from them is the Fastenbier and I hope I get the pleasure to someday. This one is chock full of wood smoke with notes of ham, toast and caramel to compliment that.
Jun 17, 2019
Rated: 4.01 by desint from Belgium

Apr 11, 2019
Rated: 3.83 by heerboth from Pennsylvania

Apr 01, 2019
Rated: 4.19 by trevorpost from Pennsylvania

Mar 03, 2019
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Reviewed by unlikelyspiderperson from California

4.31/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25
Pours a classic beauty, rich amber hue, crystal clear, healthy white head persisting on top. Quite lovely
Nose is lightly cracker-y with a nice bite of hardwood smoke. Very smooth.
Taste has a bit of smoke around behind the whole thing. The bulk of the flavor is a vaguely caramely, malty, apple ish flavor with a light hop bite near the back end. Very well put together, very smooth. Also notice that the smoke bite I got when the cans were very fresh is greatly reduced.
Mouthfeel is super light and smooth. In what appears to be the german traditions this is a beer that would likely go down easily liter and liter, especially in warm weather or at night or in the winter or while riding a bike or in a box with a fox in socks. Smooth and crisp to the bone.
Quite an amazing beer if you ask me, definitely one to lend credence to the notion of german brewing superiority. Wish we got them at a more affordable rate around here (6$ a can for a pint of 4.5% beer isn't sustainable for me) but will definitely keep my eyes out for it and slip it into the rotation every now and again.
Feb 13, 2019
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Reviewed by GreesyFizeek from New York

4.78/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75
On tap at Deep Ellum in Boston, MA.

This one pours a slightly hazy golden orange color, with a small head, and lots of lacing.

This smells like warm woodsy smoke, smoked ham, caramel, and crusty bread.

This is easily more smokey than the Helles alone. These guys do the best smoked beers in the world, it never diverges into pure BBQ or pure bandaid. There's smoky and fruity bitterness here, slightly woody, with a great dark bready backbone, and a touch of sweet caramel. It's so well composed. I could drink this all day.

This is light bodied, crisp and very clean, despite the smoke. I'm a big rauchbier fan, so it's very drinkable for me.

I love the idea and execution behind this beer. It was so well done.
Feb 04, 2019
Rated: 4 by shelby415 from Oregon

Feb 03, 2019
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Reviewed by keithmurray from Connecticut

4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Appearance - hazy orange/amber colour with white head

Smell - ham, burnt firewood

Taste - ham, burnt firewood, baked bread, hint of caramel

Mouthfeel - medium bodied, medium plus carbonation, baked bread upfront, ham and smoke dominate, dry finish

Overall - tasty beer here, slightly more aggressive than the Helles in terms of smokiness, but still enjoyable

Price Point - $4.99/16.9 oz can
Jan 24, 2019
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Reviewed by Jacobier10 from New Jersey

4.31/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25
Pint can @ Würstbar in Jersey City, NJ.

This is basically a rebranded version of the "Kräusen" that it is being imported to the US by B. United as part of their Tank Container Project under the name "Helles Märzen Kräusen Blend."

Deep amber color with great clarity. Moderate rocky white head. Patchy lacing left behind on the glass.

Pure bacon aroma and flavor. Smokier than the Helles (both the filtered bottles/draught and unfiltered cans) but less than all of the other Schlenkerla offerings. Definitely noticed a good amount of bitterness in the finish. Very clean but the bitterness prevents it from being as smooth as something like the Helles.

The best way I can describe this beer is if you take the crisp/refreshing quality of the Helles and combine it with some of the smokiness from the Märzen and some of the bitterness of the Fastenbier. Lovely stuff.
Jan 23, 2019
Rated: 3.5 by Hayley_86 from Netherlands

Dec 30, 2018
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Reviewed by DefenCorps from Oregon

4.13/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4
Can from The Beermongers.

A clear copper with a thin beige head that falls off rapidly leaving little lacing this looks solid. The nose is reminiscent of the helles lager with a delicate smoke note, wet, earthy, mildly grassy, but also with some of the bread and toast notes from the Marzen. Moderately hoppy as well. The palate opens with a smoky bitterness, a blend of earth, wet mint, smoldering wood and wet smoke. The mid palate has a mild but distinctive sweetness with wheat toast and pumpernickel bread. Mild smoked meat notes are present. Drying on the finish with a long, smoky and mildly bitter flavor, this beer is light in body and moderately carbonated. Smokier than the Helles but significantly less so than the Marzen, this beer is a good stepping stone to the Schlenkerla core lineup.
Dec 25, 2018
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Reviewed by Snowcrash000 from Germany

4.1/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Pours a slightly cloudy, deep golden coloration with a large, foamy/creamy head. Smell has a noteable smoke aroma to it, but also notes of sweet'ish malts and herbal hops. Taste does have that typical Schlenkerla campfire/smoked bacon smokiness to it, although it is a lot more mellow than with most of their other brews, backed up by sweet, doughy malts and grassy, herbal, almost spicy hops. Finishes with a light bitterness and some herbal, smokey notes lingering in the aftertaste. Smooth mouthfeel with a medium body and carbonation.

I'm not sure if I enjoy this or the Märzen better, but I really don't know why anyone would prefer the Lager over this unless they really don't like Rauchbiers anyway. This does have a certain mellow balance going on that is rather enjoyable for sure.
Dec 09, 2018
Rated: 4.02 by HopBelT from Belgium

Dec 02, 2018
Rated: 4.15 by mizx from England

Oct 16, 2018
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Reviewed by Ciocanelu from Romania

3.6/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5
From bottle. Almost clear golden color with off-white head. Aroma has light smoked notes, toasted malts and dark bread crust. Taste has toasted malt, earthy background bitterness from start to finish and some light smoked ham notes. Medium body and carbonation. Easy drinking with a good kick of bitterness.
Oct 06, 2018
Rated: 4 by safaricook from Netherlands

Sep 21, 2018
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Reviewed by tigg924 from Massachusetts

5/5  rDev +25%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5
Had on tap at the brewery in Bamberg. Pours hazy, golden copper in color with one inch head. Taste is big smoke, wheat, and toasted malt. Light bodied, smoky, sweet with moderate carbonation. Amazing. Best beer all trip. Please send this to the states.
Aug 10, 2018
Rated: 4 by Mattias from Sweden

Jun 30, 2018
Rated: 4.42 by Silke_Neryn from Sweden

Jun 18, 2018
Rated: 3.87 by dgilks from Australia

Jun 08, 2015
Rated: 3.64 by WillieThreebiers from Connecticut

Mar 14, 2015
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Reviewed by BeerAndGasMasks from Virginia

4/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Try it at the brewery, in the hallway, sitting quietly and watching the tourists. .....heaven!... Smokey to the nose, smokey to mouth and a bit like bacon as well. Yum!

2022 update: Got some bottles while in Germany in Jun 22! Yum!
Mar 08, 2015
Rated: 3.7 by Durge from Connecticut

Mar 03, 2015
Rated: 4 by birdsellam from Indiana

Aug 15, 2014
Aecht Schlenkerla Kräusen from Brauerei Heller-Trum / Schlenkerla
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 64 ratings