Bathbeer | Klosterbrauerei Neuzelle GmbH

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63 Ratings

Brewed by:
Klosterbrauerei Neuzelle GmbH

Style: German Schwarzbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Also known as Original Badebier

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-12-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Ratings: 63 |  Reviews: 52
Reviews by mjohn27603:
Photo of mjohn27603
3.51/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

They Americanized the name of this bottle calling it "Bathbeer" instead of the German. "Monastery Fun" is also printed on the label. Pours a dark brown. Head initially took up 3/4 of the glass. Taste is of roasted character. The most noticeable characteristic of this beer is it's mouthfeel and body. It is very soft in character and light on the tongue. $2.99 bottle. This is very drinkable but not leaving me with much of an impression other than the subdued roasted character. Carbonation is very slight. Made with soft water? I can think of more adjectives for the mouthfeel than the taste.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of merlin48
3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16.9 oz bottle purchased for $3.49 at the Dilly Deli in Cincinnati. "Monastery Fun" pours a deep, opaque, brown with a skimpy beige head that disappears in five seconds. Barely a few beads of lace are left behind.
Aroma is muted, but has notes of chocolate, coffee, wood smoke, and some florals.
Mouthfeel has low carbonation and enough oddities to wind up pretty good. Body is deceptive, beginning medium and finishing light. Seems to feature some mineral water characteristics that I like. Kinda strange, but likeable.
Taste is dominated by dark roasted, sweet malts. Oreo cookies dominate the palate, but this also has a smoky note similar to the Bamberg smoke beers, but not nearly as prominent. Brown sugar flavors and a hint of fruity Concord grapes(or maybe grape jelly) mingle well with the restrained coffee and noble hop bitterness to produce a tasty finish. There is an overall sweetness here, but not cloying like the brewery's Black Abbot(ycchh!).
Very enjoyable, overall, and a good example of a style that I like quite a bit. The label is amusing, to say the least. Wish I could afford to bathe in this as suggested.

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Photo of ADR
4.37/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Ah, Schwarzbiers...a really charged bottle, lots of pillowy foam that holds rocky shapes well. Cloudy and very dark brown, a few chunks. Smell is sweet with a touch of cranberry, pretty nice. Taste is unusual, a hard-to-describe malt and a touch of berry but with good hops too. Medium-bodied to me, but surprisingly light on the tongue. Malts taste "roastier" as it warms up...very nice beer here, finishes well in the swallow, too...

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4.27/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

(Served in a Weizen glass)

A- This beer has an opaque dark brown body with a light creamy tan head that last and last.

S- The smell of faint sweet honey starts the dark toasted malt aroma followed by a faint tart alder smoke finish.

T- This beer has a nice dark roasted malt flavor that is dry and crisp with a faint coffee bean note. There is a slight note of brown sugar and maple that is note sweet but pretty dry itself. There is a faint finish of tart smoke.

M- This beer has a medium-full mouthfeel with a creamy texture and a slight watery finish.

D- This beer has a nice smooth dark complexity with a nice finish flavor that balances the malt flavors and enhances them aswell. Very good session beer.

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Photo of cokes
4.07/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The closest shade mahogany can be to black. Only shadowy light is emitted through. Tan cap above.
Big smoky nose. Rauchschwarzbier? Woody, grilled and smoked sausage and black malt.
Begins with more of this smokiness. Meaty and woody at first, settling quickly into a burnt brown sugar and sub caramel sweetness. Black malt twangs its way through the middle. Still smoky come late, with just the tiniest addition of drying hops.
Light bodied and quite drinkable. Not all that complex. Just dark and smoky. But tasty!
This was purchased on a whim. It was not at all as expected. But I'll gladly take it.
Ignore the advise on the label and don't bathe in it.

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Photo of Golden2wenty1
3.78/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single at Woodman's East here in Madison. This "bathbeer" was apparently added to the bathwater by old-timey german-type dudes back in the day. Boy were they dumb back then. "15 07 04" printed on the label seems to be one of those backwards-type european dates. Over a year old...hopefully she holds up.

Pours black with garnet highlights and a tall creamy tan head. Smells of toasted bread, cocoa powder, and other toasted, roasted things. It's toasty, ok? Taste, is also of toasted malts, less chocolate, more burnt coffee. Mouthfeel is on the thin side, but well-carbonated. Quite drinkable. I don't know about all that bath business, but it seems like a good session brew, if you're into the dark lager thing that is.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.27/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very dark brown/black robe capped by a thin & creamy light tan head that holds OK, and then drops to a thin collar and surface covering. The aroma offers a very nice ceral-like maltiness with notes of light caramel, toffee and some very soft background roastiness. The body is light/medium with an exceptionally fine and mild carbonation that's smooth and creamy in the mouth. The flavor reflects the maltiness found in the aroma: mild and softly caramel/cocoa-ish with a cereal-like character. There's also some very light apple-like fruitiness but it's generally masked by the maltiness. It's very well balanced considering the delicate nature of the malt. The bitterness is barely noticeable up-front, and appears only minimally in the finish along with some residual maltiness and a touch of roasted character (clearly no roasted barley is used, but rather deeply kilned malts as there is no acrid character). This beer is quite one-sided, but the malt flavor that's there is very nice and although it has some dark malt character it's actually quite light and refreshing. Very well done.

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Photo of Imbiber
3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I found this bottle at Eagle Provisions, Brooklyn; the label is in English ('Original Bathbeer - Monastery Fun'). Very dark but not quite black with a tan head that tires out quickly. Malty, faintly herbal aroma. Smooth on the palate as the carbonation levels are low, the predominant flavour is malt with some roast and caramel notes; more bitterness comes out later on, the finish is quite dry. A bit 'chewy', and quite slick to make an easy quaffer.

Too good for putting in the bathwater as the bottle suggests, my suggestion is to do that with a macro light lager instead!

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Photo of Gmann
3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured near black, would rival the darkest stouts, a small tan head that doesn't leave much lacing on the side of the glass. Has a mild roasted nut aroma, sweet coffee. The taste is of caramel and roasted malt, more sweet than bitter. Moderate feel, low carbonation, goes down silky smooth. A good brew and fairly easy to drink, definitely worth the $3 I paid. Not sure I would take a bath in it and I hope nobody took a bath in the batch that I am drinking.

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Photo of Bung
4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

500ml. Pretty much a solid black pour, whitish head and not much of it. Does lace the glass fairly well though.

Aroma, toasted malt and lighter chocolates, milk chocolate.

Taste matches nicely. Along with that is some herbal hops. Finishes with almost a lactose and chocolate.

Lighter bodied, but coats the mouth well. Extreamely easy to drink.

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Photo of gillagorilla
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of beerthulhu
3.33/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a dark reddish chocolate color with a tan head that retained rather nicely.

S: very light, caramel and soft toffee notes and not much else.

T: makes up for the lack of nose. Fruity with lots fresh cherries followed by a nice roasted malt lacing. Light roasted grains and dark caramel sweetness along with a touch of dry chocolate and subtle molasses rounds things out.

M: thin, and slick, but big on flavor.

D: Nice relaxing brew with a pleasant smooth maltiness. Good for a try but wouldn't buy in multiples.

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Photo of emerge077
3.2/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Jredner
4.12/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma is heavily of high quality coffee (un -schwarzbier like in my experience) and roasted malts, toasted breads. Deep black with a firm, index finger thick, lasting head. Flavor is very raisiny in the fore followed by a relaxed maltiness that carries the riasin flavors into the finish. Extremely and delightfully one dimensional. Excellent lacing marks the sippers progress like the rings of a tree track the years.

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Photo of Dukeofearl
4.15/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

0.5 liter bottle purchased at La Bodega in Riverside CA for $2.69 in fall of 2005. There's a spot on the label for a printed best-by date, but it's left blank.

Pours a stunningly deep dark black, moreso than the darkest stouts, completely opaque, with a nice tan head that doesn't last very long at all. No carbonation I can find.

Aroma is very distinctive, but is really hard to describe. My first thought is smoke, although completely unlike rauchbier smokiness. Maybe it's unburned charcoal insead of smoke. Some breadiness (burned toast?), but there is also a touch of sweetness. Not much else I can find. This main aroma is bothering me- why can't I put a finger on it?

Flavor reminds me of good German black bread (like my grandmother used to bake, not the store-bought stuff) and a slight milk-based sweetness. The burned aroma shows up very distinctly at the end of the swallow.

Mouthfeel- much thinner than expected from its look, but to me this is a huge positive, rich but not heavy. Helps with drinkability.

I had read about taking a bath in this beer, and after I enjoyed the humor of the idea, I didn't expect much from this beer. I'm pleasantly surprised. I like it!

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Photo of matjack85
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of DrBier
3.75/5  rDev -2.3%

Photo of Brent
3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer set itself up to overcome a serious case of creepyness before my first sip. On the front of the bottle there is a designation "Monastery fun." In my mind "fun" and "monastery" don't go together, unless someone has twisted ideas about fun. On the back of the bottle: "sip one while you take a bath, or, like we do in Germany, add it directly to your bathwater." Is this a beer or bath salts? Just plain weird.

Fortunately, the beer turned out to be rather good. Rich, unsweetened cocoa aroma. The mouthfeel was a bit odd - at first it felt quite rich and creamy, but quickly went thin, rather like a nitro dry Irish stout. Likewise, the impression up front was pretty malty, with chocolate malt, but then a surprising acidic dryness took over, with a tart undercurrent. The finish was clean in a rather astringent way, with little aftertaste. I enjoyed the rich-to-thin, malty-to-tart joyride.

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Photo of Gusler
3.45/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A beer on the pour a very deep garnet with a modest light chocolate head that is frothy in texture and the lace a fine and clinging sheet to coat the glass. Nose malt, caramel, lightly toasted grains, front is malt and ambrosial the top is skinny. Finish is purposefully carbonated, minor league on the hops, dry aftertaste, overall the flavors improve a bit after resting, but all in all just an average beer.

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Photo of Globetrotter
4.45/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Tall brown long neck half liter bottle with a black and tan label featuring a monk holding a mug in one hand and a finger of the other hand to his lips in the "shhhh" motion. Back of the label proclaims this beer good for you both inside and out. Purity law applies. No freshness info.

What a beautiful pour! Deep burgundy brown that is clear as best I can make out in the darkness. The head is light brown, very thick and well contoured, 1.5 fingers deep and in absolutely no hurry to fade. I came close to giving it a 5 for appearance, but the lacing was a little lace than I would have hoped. Still, an utterly beautiful pour - I didn't really want to destroy it by drinking it. Well, yes I did. The nose is smokey, like burning hickory, with coffee aspects. The mouth is very prickly, and surprisingly light. There are lots of flavors here: hickory, barley, rye to open, with a bit of crisp hops to finish. As it warms, the caramel and sweet fruitiness - plum - emerge from the shadows. The aftertaste combines the smokey and the sweet. Very, very nice.

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Photo of marc77
4.15/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Near black, with a pelucid deep crimson fringe when held to light. Lofty, steadfast beige head leaves dense lace. Mellow baker's chocolate and cookie dough notes dominate the aroma. Trace darkly roasted grain derived coffee hint. Simple, subtle and inviting aromawise. In flavor, intially prevalent is a bittersweet, somewhat parching combination of lightly toasted malt, stately residual caramalt sweetness and drying hop bitterness. Roasted malt presence augments significantly as it warms, lending agreeably smoky and slightly burnt hints. Understated herbal Hallertauer hints add depth. Trace prune like acidity adds to the thirst quenching nature. Moderately dextrinous in mouthfeel and very well carbonated. Almost spritzy. Finishes soft and airy, with fleeting rounded mocha brownie and cracker hints. A quintessential Schwarzbier. Perhaps thinner than some, but well rounded overall. Well crafted and superbly drinkable.

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Photo of twelvsies
4.42/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Split this one with a friend who picked it up on a whim. Appears a dark brown with ruby highlights, decent tan head floating atop. Smells nice and malty - toasty and chocolaty up front, with a dusty character. Also, a real funky wet sock smell to add to the mix. Taste is even a bit more complex. A nice milky backdrop compliments the sweet roastyness for this beer. Coffee and cream qualities, with the already mentioned dustyness doing it's part. Excellent medium bodied mouthfeel, but light on the palate in a way for a darker beer. Sort of reminds me of a schwarzbier/dopplebock hybrid. Maybe it's just because I haven't really explored the style, but this beer really impressed me. Nice and complex, lots to keep me interested, but not overdone and highly drinkable. Plus, thinking about some German dude pouring this into his bath is just a pretty funny image and a good conversation starter.

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Photo of aracauna
3.57/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Very dark beer. Big bubbled tan head quickly dissipates to almost nothing. Big roasty sweet aroma. Falvor is toffee, burnt malt and a hint of smoke. Some raisin flavor as it warms. There's that lager taste to it, but it's almost completely covered up by the strong malty flavors. Hops are very low in the profile.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.97/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours with a one-finger tan head that fades to nothing leaving no lace. Almost black. Medium carbonation and medium bodied. Nose is roasted coffee. Starts like a mild porter with some roasted coffee at the finish. $3.04 for a 500ml bottle from Oliver's Beverages Albany, NY.

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Photo of kimcgolf
3.16/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

Poured to a dark brown with a thin tan head that dissipated quickly and left little lacing. Aroma was mlaty roasted nuts, with some chocolate. Unfortunately, the flavor was bland, body very watery, and the palate somewhat metallic. I swore I could taste a little soapiness in finish. Not bad for a novelty, but if I buy another one, it will be for bathing vs. drinking.

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Bathbeer from Klosterbrauerei Neuzelle GmbH
Beer rating: 3.84 out of 5 with 63 ratings