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Altfränkisches Klosterbier | Klosterbrauerei Weissenohe / Klosterbrauerei Weißenohe Wirtshaus

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Altfränkisches KlosterbierAltfränkisches Klosterbier
31 Ratings
Altfränkisches KlosterbierAltfränkisches Klosterbier

Brewed by:
Klosterbrauerei Weissenohe / Klosterbrauerei Weißenohe Wirtshaus

Style: Kellerbier / Zwickelbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by HappyHourHero on 07-29-2007

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 31 |  Reviews: 17
Photo of Beerman1977
3.63/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of WillieThreebiers
3.67/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of kojevergas
2.89/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

500ml brown glass bottle with a faux-traditional label design and a branded pry-off crown cap purchased at Ambrosetti in Berlin. Best before: 09.04.2016. 5.10% ABV. The label offers only "Traditional Franconian beer," with no overt indication of style. I guess I'll decide the style as I go along, which is always fun, but it seems the internet has already decided this is a kellerbier - with no sources provided to back that up.

Reviewed live. Served chilled into a pils glass in Berlin.

APPEARANCE: Pours a beer indicative of low carbonation (with a present but not full or thick head) - which would be consistent with a keller or zwickel - if not for the pale copper body, which is clearly clarified/filtered, has no cloudiness, turbidity, or haze to it. Its clarity and transparency alone rule out its classification as a keller or zwickel, so I'm not sure what to consider it as I press on. Some mild lace does stick to the sides of the glass as the thin head recedes, which takes maybe 3 minutes.

AROMA: Caramalt/copper malt, barley, buttery character, vitaminy yeast. I don't get any of the bung-y damp basement character you'd expect in a keller or zwickel. Hop character is herbal (if anything), but muted and minimal in presence. Usage of CaraMunich and/or crystal malt(s) wouldn't surprise me. Aromatic intensity is average.

I detect no off-notes (unless you're willing to make the leap that the faint buttery note alone is indicative of actual diacetyl), nor booze. Yeast profile is consistent with a keller or zwickel, seeing as it's quite present but also quite plain, pointing to rich vitaminy biscuity character but unclean attenuation. Given the lack of obvious wheat in the malt aromatics, I'm willing to contend that if it is somehow a keller or zwickel that it's not a top-fermented one (as per my understanding, top fermented expressions of the style always use wheat in the malt bill).

TASTE & TEXTURE: Sweeter and more caraMunich/caramalt-forward than any keller or zwickel I've ever had, though there is a hint of that classic keller damp taste, and the yeast presence is consistent with the style. Having sampled it's taste finally, I'd accept it as a keller, if only because it isn't consistent with any other style I'm aware of.

Hop presence is higher than anticipated, with some faint herbal character coming through. The indication is that this is more keller than zwickel - a contention supported also by its merely weak carbonation (where a zwickel would have hardly any at all).

Unbunged basement dampness strengthens in intensity as it warms - or, it could be merely that since I've accepted it as a keller, my brain's tricking me and really I'm just full of shit talking about this beer (maybe both, who knows?).

In any case, for whatever reason, I can imagine its wort having sat in a cellar exposed to the air for 40ish days, so I guess I'm on the right track. It's not a clean beer (except in appearance), but I do suspect lager yeast was used, especially given the low attenuation. I also detect no overt esters, so ale yeast is unsuspected.

I wouldn't call it imbalanced, but it's unbalanced. Certainly simplistic, but it's to style.

Texture-wise, I find it soft, weak, somewhat thin yet medium-bodied, and well-carbonated. Smooth and wet, but unrefreshing. Has the mouthfeel you'd expect in a Middle Ages version of the style, so I suppose that makes this somehow authentic?

OVERALL: A seeming attempt at a traditional kellerbier, Altfränkisches Klosterbier is a drinkable enjoyable brew with plenty of elements of the intended style.

Its clarity and obvious filtration remain a mystery to me, and from the faux-Franconian font on the label to its dubious classification as a klosterbier (after all, when was the last time this brewery was genuinely monastic?) to the strangely irony-unaware quotation from an ostensible beer authority regarding this beer on Weissenohe's website ("Your Altfränkisch has just that taste I remember from 50 years ago"), I find it ultimately a rather disingenuously marketed brew. Weissenohe really wants us to buy that this is authentic and organic and made by monks or at least in a (formerly) monastic brewery and so on.

Really, though, it's just subpar fare in a misunderstood (and vaguely defined) style that isn't all that unique or special, and comes from a brewery at least commercial enough to have negotiated prominent product placement in organic grocery stores across Germany. Americans: imagine Buckfast being sold at Whole Foods stores across the U.S., and you start to get an understanding of the tacit lie at the heart of how this beer (and this brewery) is presented.

In short, it's fine.

C (2.89) / AVERAGE

 4,714 characters

Photo of aleigator
3.15/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

Pours an amber-bright brown, filtered color, with a medium sized, pillowy white head.

Smells of wood bark and whole-grain bread, wrapped up by toffee and a whiff of hay. Features a convincing bread impression, due to its profound maltiness.

Drinks very easy, staying focused on the malts, together with a medium, slightly metallic carbonation.

Tastes of a soft aqueous quality, immediately accompanied by toffee sweet malts. Malts grow more profound, while getting breadier at the same time. Finishes with a bubbly carbonation, revealing a caramel sweetness, among the beers mellow breadiness.

Perfectly well put together, with a great bread profile to it, while it drinks very easy.

 687 characters

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

Photo of duceswild
3.09/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Texasfan549
3.4/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of tykechandler
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of MLDucky
3.77/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Photo of drmeto
3.87/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

-pours a clear deep amber with a medium frothy white head
-medium carbonation visible
earthy,grassy,big caramel,bready,licorish,roasted malt
-caramel,substantial grassy hop note,bready,spicy,clean finish
-medium body,medium carbonation
This is a Vienna Lager,not a Kellerbier.
And its a good one

 310 characters

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

on tap at jakes in littleton. this one is a classic, and its nice to see it coming around a little bit. this is a traditional german style we hardly see any of in american craft brewing, so its nice to have something like this periodically. it sort of has the malt build of a maibock, lighter bodied and less caramelized, but still in that mid crystal malt range, very german in the nose, and quite clean, less residual sugar than others. its got some haze to it, but still appears rather bright. bready fresh baked aromatic, with a cool old world yeast strain that is not all the way familiar to me. ancient i assume. there is some sweetness here, a breakfasty sweetness, maple or honey, lighter than other german malt driven brews, but pleasantly distinct too, not so heavy. medium body and fine carbonation, this is a refined and subtle beer, unlike anything available made here in the usa. you have to appreciate stuff like this when it shows up.

 950 characters

Photo of DOCRW
4.09/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of dcmchew
3.6/5  rDev -2.4%

Photo of DrBier
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of metter98
3.44/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Brew Dock, Dublin, Ireland

A: The beer is slightly hazy yellowish amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a half finger high off white head that died down, leaving a thick collar around the edge of the glass and lots of lacing down the sides.
S: Light aromas of fruity yeast are present in the nose—apples and bananas seem to stand out in particular.
T: Much like the smell, the taste has fruity flavors of yeast, with apples seeming to stand out in particular. Hints of bready malts are also perceptible.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and slightly chewy on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer didn't seem to have all of the raw yeast flavors that you normally get from a Kellerbier or a Zwickelbier, but the fruity notes from the yeast were pleasant.

 834 characters

Photo of Jwale73
3.37/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Thirstybird for the opportunity to try this one. 500ml bottle served in a willibecker. 09.10.14 indicated on the label. Pours a translucent caramel-colored hue with a rocky, 2.5 inch, bright white head that eventually disperses into a consistent 1/8th inch cap. Delicate curlycues of lacing are revealed during the tasting. Nose expresses grains and caramel with a hint of Marzen skunk. Taste consistent with nose; however, it all comes off a bit watery and there is also a faint metallic character at the finish. There's also a slight breadiness to the flavor profile. Mouthfeel is light in body with an average level of carbonation. Overall, just an okay Marzen - nothing to write home about, but I'm glad to have had the opportunity to try it fresh.

 762 characters

Photo of clarknova
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%

Photo of samEBC
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%

Photo of grahamboudreaux
4.75/5  rDev +28.7%

Photo of Evil_Pidde
3.98/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Clear golden pour with a tall beige airy, but still rather compact head. Rich lacings.

S: Rich maltyness and bitter hops - bready and somewhat sweet.

T: Rich malt and rich bitter hops - well balanced. Semi-sweet and very bready. Creamy and some citric notes.

M: Smooth creamy full bodied beer with low carbonation and medium-long botter aftertaste.

O: This is a nice Keller with everything that should be there.

 418 characters

Photo of duff247
3.5/5  rDev -5.1%

Photo of Mebuzzard
3.7/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Haven't had too many of this style.

Pours a rich copper color capped with a nice white head. It foams up a bit, rocky, then fades to a collar, then to nothing. This beer is does not resemble the style listed here. It is clear and clean

Aroma is a bit nutty, toffee, caramel, green grass, some smoke and sweet bread.

Flavor leans more to the toffee and caramel side. The nuttiness isn't all there, but the green grass and spice from the hops (I'm assuming Noble) prevail quite nicely. While they do bite and offer some bitter dryness, the sweetness isn't nullified.
This is quite a nice beer

 594 characters

Photo of jonb5
2.36/5  rDev -36%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Half litre bottle, copper colour, clear, big thick head. Initially it had a nice grassy hoppy aroma but this faded quickly. First mouthfull was nice and had notes of malt but it went downhill fast and by the end was close to being undrinkable. Mouthfull was ok, only thing acceptable about this beer. Overall poor, not impressed by the brewery, also its a Dunkel.

 363 characters

Photo of stevoj
3.21/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle purchased in Nuremburg area. Poured roughly into german .5 l glass. Beautiful orange, copper color, ample carbonation. Minimal head fades to skin quickly. In the mouth, feels like it will have some bite or bitterness, but none to be found. Taste is very smooth, almost pilsener like, unexpected for such a dark beer.Much lighter in taste than expected, just a hint of bitterness on the back of the tongue. Caught off guard with this one, not bad, but different from expectations.

 500 characters

Photo of jlindros
3.8/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Firkin at Max's Taphouse in Baltimore.

Creamy head, hazy orange color.

Nose has hints of creamy malts, slight sweetness and hint of lager like aroma, bit of decoction like softness.

Taste slight sour from being in the Firkin I believe, creamy light toasty malts, light lager fruit, light bitterness, pretty light overall which it should be but just a bit light on the overall malty taste.

Mouth is lighter bodied, just a bit of carbonation due to firkin.

Overall not bad, a bit lighter than it should have been in taste profile.

 533 characters

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Altfränkisches Klosterbier from Klosterbrauerei Weissenohe / Klosterbrauerei Weißenohe Wirtshaus
Beer rating: 3.69 out of 5 with 31 ratings
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