Mönchsambacher Lager
Brauerei Zehendner GmbH

Mönchsambacher LagerMönchsambacher Lager
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Brauerei Zehendner GmbH
Kellerbier / Zwickelbier
Ranked #1
Ranked #3,005
4.25 | pDev: 10.82%
Mar 25, 2023
Jan 18, 2005
Mönchsambacher LagerMönchsambacher Lager
Notes: None
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Photo of Gatch
Reviewed by Gatch from Massachusetts

4.67/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5
0,5l on tap at HopDog in Munich. Stellar draft list. So pumped to see this so I ordered it immediately. Clearer than I expected for the style. Absolutely massive flavor with a great body and feel to match. Wow. Drinks well for the full flavor. Has a barny earthy finish with a perfect hop character. Amazing bier.

Update: enjoyed a half liter out of a ceramic mug at the damn brewery! Poured slowly out of a barrel. No words. Insane.
Mar 25, 2023
Rated: 4.1 by HopBelT from Belgium

Jul 03, 2022
Rated: 3.53 by stephenlee93 from England

May 24, 2022
Photo of JonnoWillsteed
Reviewed by JonnoWillsteed from England

3.36/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25
#1819 - Blind-tasted except for the beer's name and brewery/country, zero reviews below read (yet!)...
L- Mid-gold, slightly hazy, pours with a 1mm white foam cap that soon dwindles. 'Not a thing of beauty'.
S- Just some bready notes for me.
T- Quite hoppy dry on the front and into the finish, with bready malts in between. The malts are punchy enough to be satisfying on the palate.
F- As^, bready middle yet quite notable trad hops keep it bright/refreshing.
O- Nothing objectionable but unexciting. I struggle to understand how this is rated as 'Outstanding' here; it seems altogether pedestrian to me. I lived for 3 years in Germany and weekly bought far better beers than this for E1-1.2/500ml. Nothing here (like it's missing detail/unique character) to jade the palate, so in fact this would be sessionable, if it weren't so $ as a foreign import. Shame to sound negative, especially as for a German private brewery trad lager but expectations were much higher.
500ml bottle £3.80 Bought from TremblingMadness, York/UK as part of a large pick-your own consignment to London.
May 15, 2021
Rated: 4.5 by steverx8 from England

May 03, 2020
Rated: 4.59 by MrDarcy from Massachusetts

Nov 02, 2019
Rated: 3.85 by MTKATL from Georgia

Oct 09, 2019
Photo of REVZEB
Reviewed by REVZEB from Illinois

4.59/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5
I have found for so many breweries the zwickelbier seems like a throw away part of the portfolio that lacks vision. Not so here! Cloudy golden body that slowly clear up, with two fingers of white foam and tons of lacing on the glass. Aromas of honey, bread, wheat, lemon zest, botanicals, and pale malts. Taste is really nicely balanced, capturing creamy breadiness met with zesty, floral, and wheaty flavors, which together make a highly drinkable but subtly flavorful beer. Honestly the feel is perfect for the style, where so many have jagged edgework with the grains or booze, here it is smooth yet textured, highly drinkable and satisfying.
Jul 10, 2019
Rated: 3.96 by serapheus from Australia

Jan 27, 2019
Photo of mothman
Reviewed by mothman from Minnesota

4.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25
On tap in Rome. White head. Lace. Pale golden orange.

Great Keller. Fresh and refreshing. Earthy, floral, light fruity zest. Bready malts. Very clean. Light bodied. All around great.
Jan 02, 2018
Rated: 4.69 by Silke_Neryn from Sweden

Nov 01, 2017
Rated: 4.05 by DispyDnb from England

Aug 06, 2017
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Reviewed by DJ-Hophead from England

4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Tap @ Moor, Bristol - Pours hazy golden with a large white foamy head. Nice lacing. Medium carbonation. Aroma - grassy notes over light malts, light cloves. Taste - Sweetish, light malt feel, spicy notes as aroma, light crisp bitter finish. This was unexpected but really nice for it. Great easy drinking lightly malted, spicy well balanced German beer.
Jun 25, 2017
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Reviewed by aleigator from Germany

4.12/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Pours a slightly clouded golden color with a huge, fluffy head.

Smells is quite unusual for a lager since the nose does not carry any detectable malts. Instead the aromas are defined by dried, damp herbs and wet grass, together with a bright straw quality.

Drinks soft and refreshing, light and balanced with a unique, spicy yeast finish.

Tastes of straw, dried pepper, clove and old garden herbs. Turns a tad sweeter during midpalate with a well pronounced straw presence. Finishes light, yet spicy with a belgian saison yeast appearance and a soft layer of old hops.

Wow, this is quite unexpected - the yeast changes the flavors fundamentally. The beer is far away from being malty and boring, instead it packs a Saison punch, bringing a spicy peak to the palate, which mingles marvelously well into the noble hop defined foundation of the beer.
Jun 03, 2017
Photo of Ciocanelu
Reviewed by Ciocanelu from Romania

3.8/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
Hazy golden color with white head. Aroma has honey malt and bread crust. Taste starts slightly sweet and bready, continues with a really clean malt profile and finishes more hoppy with a nice, earthy bitterness. Light to medium bodied, well carbonated. Overall this is a very tasty lager that showcases the solid malt backbone as well as the earthy hop character.
Nov 06, 2016
Photo of drmeto
Reviewed by drmeto from Germany

3.82/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4
-pours a hazy golden-orange with a medium to big,foamy, white head
-high carbonation visible
-spicy,bready,honey,dough,onions,apples,blood orange,white grapes,orange zest,sweaty
-bready,spicy,grassy,honey,apple,slight lemon,herbal,orange zest
-finishes dry
-medium carbonation
-light to medium body
Very good Kellerbier aside from the sweaty off-smell.Surprisingly light for a franconian Keller.

-medium,lingering bitterniss for the style
Jul 03, 2016
Photo of BeerAndGasMasks
Reviewed by BeerAndGasMasks from Virginia

4.02/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4
Pours a ever so slightly hazy golden amber with a largish head (as I poured it just a bit warm). The head stays a while as I enjoy the beer. Taste, ah! This beer tastes as I expect a lagerbier to taste! Recommended!
Jun 15, 2015
Rated: 4 by cbnz from Canada (BC)

Nov 30, 2014
Rated: 4.28 by unimatrix1 from Indiana

Oct 31, 2014
Rated: 4 by gillagorilla from Maryland

Oct 29, 2014
Rated: 4 by icemanls4 from Switzerland

Oct 12, 2014
Rated: 3.75 by oriolesfan4 from Maryland

Sep 27, 2014
Rated: 4.68 by miguellunarusso from Mississippi

Sep 20, 2014
Rated: 2.36 by iksi

Aug 28, 2014
Rated: 3.75 by MattSweatshirt from Texas

Aug 10, 2014
Rated: 5 by Leftofthedial from California

May 25, 2014
Rated: 3.75 by bigred89 from Maryland

Nov 10, 2013
Rated: 4.5 by DrinkSlurm from New York

Nov 07, 2013
Rated: 4.25 by DirkNachbar from England

Oct 30, 2013
Rated: 4.5 by GeoffreyM from Pennsylvania

Sep 22, 2013
Rated: 4.5 by herrburgess from South Carolina

May 28, 2013
Rated: 5 by alalvarez75 from New York

Nov 13, 2012
Rated: 4.25 by zrab11 from Indiana

Jun 03, 2012
Rated: 5 by nas5755 from Massachusetts

Mar 28, 2012
Photo of woosterbill
Reviewed by woosterbill from Kentucky

4.67/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5
Cask into a pint glass at the Blackback Pub. #1 ranked Kellerbier here we go!

A: Nearly clear yellow body with just a bit of unfiltered haziness to it. One inch head of pillowy white foam. Decent retention and lacing. Solid.

S: Mmm. Doughy, bready malt and plenty of fresh noble hops. Grassiness is huge, with a bit of citrus fruitiness to it as well. Incredibly clean, fresh, and balanced.

T: Follows the nose precisely: delicious grassy hops up front, substantial malt body in the middle, and some fruity hop bitterness on the clean, crisp finish. Very simple, balanced, and refreshing.

M: Substantial medium body with plenty of lively carbonation - probably the highest carbonation I've ever experienced from a cask, to the point of being a tough too prickly. Still, amazing.

O: What a lager. If I could get this fresh, cheap, and abundantly, it would be my go-to summer beer. Refreshing and yet still flavorful, hoppy but not overly bitter, sessionable but not watery. Terrific stuff.

Oct 09, 2011
Photo of ummswimmin
Reviewed by ummswimmin from New Jersey

3.86/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4
I was lucky to find out about this beer from my friend (Naugros, see review below). I have never had a Keller, and Naugros told me about this offering at a local bar on a special night.

The Keller was served from a firkin. In the pint glass I had about three fingers of foam. The foam resided at about a 1/4 inch for a while.

This was a nice color of deep yellow. The carbonation was very tiny bubbles.

Off the top I get the noble hop smell. It smells like a really good lager. This smell is very clean.

I get the noble hops in the taste as well. There is distinct grassiness in each drink.

The only short coming was bitterness in the mouthfeel. Following each drink the bitterness resided, along with the lager flavor. I also detected some metallic feel.

This was a good beer. I enjoyed my second Keller experience.
Sep 29, 2011
Photo of Naugros
Reviewed by Naugros from New Jersey

3.88/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5
The appearance is spot on with what I expected from this style, although lighter in color. It comes in as a light amber with a slight orange glow through all the yeast haze. Detritus from the yeast can be seen suspended in the beer, so you know you're getting your recommended daily allowance of B vitamins. Yay!

The smell is rife with Noble Hops, much like the hop bouquet you get from Sam Adams Boston Lager. This stands to reason since it is from Germany, but I can't tell you if they're Hallertauer or Tettnanger. I've never been able to tell the two apart since these are not my favorite hops varieties as I've always felt they smelled a bit plasticy...if that's a word. There is a slight sense of sour in the nose, but not much. The malts are there as well, no doubting the bread they bring to the party.

There is none of the hoped-for sourness in the taste, but there is a mild sweetness and a splash of citrus (orange). The malts here seem a bit musty, but that's no issue with this style. I do feel like I'm getting the slightest hint of diacetyl (butter flavor), but I can't say for certain.

The mustiness pervades and makes anything else in the mouthfeel secondary. It's on the lighter side of medium-bodied. For a relative of a lager, it's not really all that crisp.

My first keller and I have to say that I'm not fond of the style. Maybe it grows on you, so I will try it again, given the opportunity as it is hard to find these.
Sep 28, 2011
Photo of TurdFurgison
Reviewed by TurdFurgison from Ohio

4.89/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
Wow, just wow, this is a very good beer. I was lucky to find it on tap at the Dirty Truth in Northampton, served in 1/2 liter mugs, and it took me straight to Bavaria.

The beer is clear, maybe a little haze, a pale gold color, with a few fingers of foam. The aroma is just dead on, bready and grainy, rich and malty, perfect. I've had only a handful of lagers that smell quite this appealing. The flavor was the same, just like liquid bread, delicious. A little sweet upfront and only a little bitter in back, very balanced but malty, the grains come through in a great way. Heavy body for a lager but still easily chugable. Any lover of German lagers should be happy with this one.
Oct 14, 2010
Photo of Thorpe429
Reviewed by Thorpe429 from Illinois

4.48/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
Poured from a gravity cask at Churchkey during an event yesterday.

Pours a cloudy light yellow color with a pretty good-sized white head and nearly all-encompassing lacing as it went down. Nose brought good scents of light grain, hints of lemon citrus, and a bit of bread dough. The taste adds in some light fruity notes. Altogether, everything melds together quite well and while the flavors are very delicate, they are quite tasty. Feel is light with good carbonation; super crisp.

Drinkability was incredible. Prior to this, I hadn't had much experience with the style, so I thought I might have been overrating this at first. However, after quite a few other pours from different casks, it became clear that this was the best of the bunch and a great, great beer in its own right.
Oct 13, 2010
Photo of drabmuh
Reviewed by drabmuh from Maryland

4.48/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5
This has been a long time, short list, want of mine, for years. I had relegated this beer to the ether though, figuring that I would have be near the brewery in Bavaria to ever find it on draft or in the bottle, but then Churchkey cam to the rescue, yet again. Gravity cask at Churchkey in D.C. Part of their Franconia Oktoberfest special. Beer served in a 10 ounce beer flute. Beer is yellow and hazy with a thick white head of small and medium bubbles that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. Carbonation is moderate to low, head falls away eventually and breaks. Looks pretty good.

Aroma is mild, a little sweet, slight bitterness, slight graininess, smells pretty good too.

I imagine that this is the way that beers used to be, hundreds of years ago. Its light in body, creamy in the mouth, has a slight bitter edge at the back but no aftertaste. Finishes wet, some mild yeastiness and some mild graininess, its super drinkable, its "crisp", which is an adjective I usually feel people use when they don't know what to say, and that's me now. I could drink gallons of this beer, as if it were water, nonstop. It is ineffable.
Oct 11, 2010
Mönchsambacher Lager from Brauerei Zehendner GmbH
Beer rating: 93 out of 100 with 58 ratings