Löwenbräu Original | Löwenbräu AG

849 Ratings
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Löwenbräu OriginalLöwenbräu Original

Brewed by:
Löwenbräu AG

Style: Munich Helles Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 01-28-2001

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Ratings: 849 |  Reviews: 395
Photo of thierrynantes
3.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beer bottle (50 cl.), tasted in 2002.

Appearance : pale yellow color, with white foam head.
Smell : grassy and hoppy aromas.
Taste and mouthfeel : dry hoppy flavour with a good malty finish.
Drinkabililty : an average beer in the style Munich Helles lager.

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Photo of secondtooth
3.33/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The legendary Lowenbrau name was tarnished a bit in the 70's as corporate American brewers changed the 'recipe' for American tastes. This, however, is the real thing. This lager pours crystal-clear and foamy, and the taste has a subtly sour finish. A typically Munich-style lager, this one's not at all bad, but nor is it outstanding.

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Photo of KenC411
3.19/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: A thin straw colored beer with a few bubbles floating to a weak head that briskly disappeared.

Smell: A faint hint of corn and a bit of malt can be detected.

Taste: Surprisingly faint, a bit of a raw cereal aftertaste. There is no hop balance, as would be expected with this type of lager.

Mouthfeel: Simple and clean, very crisp, with just enough carbonation. However, I expected a bit more.

Drinkability: This feels like a beer that could be drank after mowing the lawn, as a substitute for a bud. Its thin and easy to go down, not off putting or chewy. However, in my opinion, I feel that a beer should offer more than to quench thirst.

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Photo of MillRat
3.67/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light straw color with a pure white head, starts our pretty fine-bubbled, but the carbonation below coarsens it and it fades away pretty quickly. Aroma of light malt and grain, not more than a hint of clean, spicy hops. Flavor is crisp, slight sweet maltiness, and just enough hop bitterness to keep the mild sweetness in check.

As this beer warmed up it stayed true to character, even opening up a bit more malt complexity. None of the tart grassiness that plagues American light lagers as they get close to cellar tempertures.

Finished clean, even the slightest bit of astringency. Keeps you thirsty for the next one. Certainly an easy-drinking quaffer, and one that can sit for a little while without losing its appeal. A quality brew with more of a minimalist appeal. A tribute to careful brewing, as there's no where to hide faults.

Put this beer side-by-side with an American light adjunct lager, and you'll see how 6-row barley, adjuncts, and accountants designing recipes coarsened an otherwise fine product.

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Photo of endovelico
2.18/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Best before date: 08/09. taken from notes. Poured into Pokal.

Appearance: Poured the beer at a 90º inclination creating a one thinger white head that eventually faded into thin cap. High effervescence. Golden color. Nothing overly attractive. Almost non existent lacing.

Smell: Skunkiness and slight floral hops on the nose. Subdued maltiness. Medium intensity.

Taste: Malty, slight skunkiness and floral /spicy hop flavour.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium light body. Watery and slightly oily. Medium low bitterness. Finishes clean.

Drinkability: Cheap and a decent representation of a heller. The slickness makes it harder to classify this as a session beer and the Lack of flavor makes it a very uninteresting one.

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Photo of thekanna
2.88/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear yellow with 3 fingers of appreciable white head. Effervescence actively rises to the top.

S: Mostly strong yeasts with a very faint sweetness. Slight bit of cooked vegetable smell.

T: Mostly smooth malts and yeast flavor with a very strong, almost out of place hop bite at the end.

M: Crisp, almost tart; with a smooth, slide down easy finish.

D: Too much like the typical macro lager. Easily drinkable, but nothing memorable to discern it from the others.

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Photo of GodOfBeer
3.8/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500ml can, nice gold colour with lots of carbonation and a fluffy white head that turns into a thin lacing.

Smells grainy, malty, sort of grassy and sweet, not too strong on the hops.

Nice and malty, pretty sweet and grassy, kind of citrusy as well. This is a very refreshing beer and proabably one of my favourite european lagers.

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Photo of everetends
3.45/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle I found in my fridge. Think my buddy who is living with me must have picked up a sixer so I pilfered a couple of them. Thought I had reviewed this already but I guess I just tend to drink these in bulk and move on in social atmospheres. Served up in a weizen glass after a quick rinse because I just used it and didn't want to dirty another.

A: Well it comes out a pretty bright, light yellow color. Straw colored if you will. Gave off about half a finger of head but it really didn't have any lasting power. The thinnest of white rings sat around the top til the last pull but it didn't produce any lacing. Pretty damn clear and it has some nice carbonation activity in there. Overall, the look is pretty damned average.

S: Smell is of a lot of grainy earthiness to tell you the truth. Lots of barley comes out in this one and it has a bit of sweetness to it. The hops are very light compared to the malts that come out. Hops are mostly just a light herbal/spicy hop aroma. There is also a touch of saltiness coming out as well. There is no skunkiness to report so that makes me happy for a bottle that has the dreaded green bottle reputation.

T: Taste is much like the nose. Lots of barley brings out that rustic earthiness that a lot of german lagers tend to bring to the table. The hops are light and just sit on the outside adding to the flavor conversation occassionally. Herbal and floral flavors come out of the hops profile, but they truly are minimal. Still getting an ever so slight taste of salt in here as well, but it doesn't take anything away from the beer. Not bad at all for a light lager.

M: Light bodied brew that does a pretty good job of covering up its wateriness. The carbonation level is pretty high, making it pretty crisp on the palate. The beer is a bit on the dry side and doesn't quench that well, making you drink more (could be good or bad, depends on the person). ABV is a bit higher for such a lager but it isn't noticable on the palate or in the flavor. Aftertaste is pretty light to nonexistant.

D: Well this beer and style is built for drinkability and I think it pulls it off. Its not anywhere near heavy and it sits fine and easy. It is a bit dry but that just aids in the drinking of more of the beer. The flavors and aromas are light but I rarely expect crazy complexity from my Helles Lagers. They are meant to be simple, easy drinkers and this is a pretty good example of such a lager. Have and will continue to drink this beer.

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Photo of Schwarzwald
4/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A really great German Lager. An easy to drink beer with some depth and flavor even though it is mass produced and shipped everywhere. Keep this in the fridge and serve very cold. I like to drink this when I am looking for a lighter beer to have with dinner. Works great with most foods and is easy to find at any store. Keep in mind that this beer is 5.2%, much better than the 4.somethings that we get in the US for mass produced beer.

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Photo of droomyster
3.41/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden yellow with a white head with pretty good retention. Lazy bubbles slowly coasting their way up from the bottom. Smells skunky, with grainy, honeylike malts. If there are any hop aromas here, I'm just not smelling them. Taste is good, pretty straightforward sweet malts with zesty lemon hops. Finish is not quite crisp and lingers a bit sweet. Overall, this is a solid beer. There are definitely better ones but there are far more worse ones.

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Photo of babaracas
3.45/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From old notes: Pours a yellow gold with short lived white head. Smell: grassy, grainy, that's about it. Taste: balanced is the theme here, sweet malts with a crisp spicy hop bitterness. Mouthfeel: fairly light, smooth, finishes clean. Not amazing, but very refreshing.

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Photo of pokesbeerdude
3.85/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a 12oz single at the State Liquor Store in Vernal, UT, about $1.

A: Light straw gold color with a white head, reduced to a film almost immediately. Not a whole lot of active carbonation rising in this one. Excellent lacing.

S: Initially a little skunk, after that subsides there is a big pale malt character, and a faint hint at spicy hops, way in the background, slightly grainy.

T: Initial sweetness, almost honey like, a bit of hop spice in there too. Almost peppery. Not a lot going on, but it is balanced and clean tasting all the way around. Really nice.

M: Dry and lightly carbonated, really smooth, and a really clean finish. Spot on.

D: I could very easily drink a lot of this. This is one of the more flavorful lagers I've had. I will definitely be buying this again.

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Photo of wiseguy142
3.65/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly dulled yellow into a flute glass with about 3 cm of head and a little rounding out the top. Lacing is already apparent after a minute when the head settles down a bit. Lots of visible carbonation. Good amount of frothy head stays on top of the beer. Head dies down to almost nothing after a couple sips.

Aroma is sweet of metal and apple juice. Maybe a little tart smelling. Whisps of pure grain aroma.

Taste is really rich with malt/apple juice. A lot like Bitburer. There's a faint hop tartness to it that accompanies a general bittering presence. Most of the "apple juice" flavors are in the first part of the sip, which are followed by a pretty clean, slightly soapy (not in mouthfeel) taste.

Mouthfeel is pretty spot on. Just like I had at Bier Gardens in Germany. Could even be a little lighter at warmer temps just to really make it that much more drinkable.

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Photo of theboozecruise
3.57/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a typical green bottle into a pint glass... pours a clear golden color, a small white head to it. Smells of definite graininess... like it comes straight off the fields.

You can taste the malts and grains within the texture of the beer... it's not bad, quite refreshing.

A nice carbonation to it... definite brings out a few belches during a session!

Overall an above average, but not particularly great beer.

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Photo of giblet
3.68/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

another of those summer bbq beers. pours a light color with about a half inch of head. steady carbonation. smells grassy and tastes light. a good thirst quencher. not a great beer that i was expecting but i think most of the commercial brands have been lightened and cheapened over the past decade or two.

suckem up and movem out.


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Photo of pseudo
3.15/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

poured into a pilsner
looks like your average lager, bright yellowish color, head retention wasn't very good.
First thing you notice after you open the bottle is the skunkiness. maybe i got an old bottle but who knows. Once poured more citrus and some maltiness. Skunk still apparent. Not offensive though.
Tastes like your average eurolager citrusy, some sweet maltiness, not much hops. Skunkiness not apparent int eh taste really.
Feels very watery, but i guess it works for the clean refreshing nature of the beer. Quite drinkable.

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Photo of DmanGTR
3.78/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Review from notes.

A - poured golden straw yellow with 1/2" white head that disappeared to leave a thin white cap.

S - hops, grass, malt to balance it, light whiff of sulfur.

T - herbal hoppiness, light malts, bitter hoppy aftertaste. Very slightly watered down but still flavorful.

M - light bodied, medium carbonation, slightly watery

D - very drinkable. Sessionable

Overall - A very good pilsener for one sold at Wegmans. Good price, decent flavor, great sessioning. Will buy again if I want something light, cheap and tasty.

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Photo of rabsten
3.2/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Way back in the eighties Lowenbrau was high class. Honest. Maybe it was the umulat or the green bottle with foil on the neck or...well, I was in junior high so I don't really know. I do know that I had one or two sometime around the Iran-Contra hearings and then it pretty much disappeared from the face of the earth. Or from the shelves at Kroger. Same difference. So, imagine my surprise to see a case's worth of bottles show up on the shelves of the one local "good beer" store. I was intrigued and, accordingly, took the plunge and bought a six.

Bottom line: Enh.

Pours bright yellow with fluffy white head that pretty much evaporates in two minutes. Light, sweet aroma with small hop presence (but at least there is one). Mild, pilsener flavor leaning towards the sweet side. Average, nondescript mouthfeel. All that said, it was still quite drinkable. And it's the cheapest import I've ever seen in this area.

You could do worse. And there's that neat umulat in the name. So there.

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Photo of LordofTime25
3.24/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours to a straw yellowwith a thin head that quickly disappeared to a tin pool in top. Good carbonation! LAcing on glass.

Smells like corn and a little skunky could be a little old.

Tastes a little skunky up front, after you are through that it is a nice clean taste of corn malts with slight bitterness.

Smooth and well balanced in the mouth!

A ok beer if it was the only thing avabile other than the US macro lager I would drink this.

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Photo of albern
3.59/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

If you are looking for a lighter Helles Lager, than you can't go wrong with an original recipe Lowenbrau. I do remember the bad old days when Lowenbrau was just macro crap, being made by some large brewhouse in the US under contract. The brand has been revived. The beer pours a fairly straw pale color with a white, thin head. Just a tad bit of lacing, not much though. This is a fairly crisp beer with a slightly lemony, slightly vinous quality. There is a bit of graininess to the beer, and it has all the characteristics of the style. It is a little bit more substantial than most macro/adjunct lagers, and it does have a nicer spiciness to it, and less blandness than its close relatives. The nose has that wonderful hay like grassiness. This is a light bodied, lightish Helles Lager, and will satisfy those seeking out a representative beer of the style.

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Photo of CAMRAhardliner
3.18/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale gold with a crackly, tiny head. It does manage to muster up a lot of lace patches on the glass. The aroma is grainy and slightly sulfury. The taste is malty and grainy with a dry body. Hops are spicey and herbal and definitely lie obsequiously behind the malts. The mouthfeel is full with lots of carbonation. The finish is sweetish and off dry with a bit of hop bitterness in there.

An OK lager, not offensive, but pretty insipid.

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Photo of Domingo
3.82/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Not a bad helles at all. Remember that this is the "real" Löwenbräu and not the Beck's wannabe brewed by Miller for years.
This review is based on the bottled version...which also happens to be in a sealed paper case and relatively fresh. I've had this on tap in Munich, but I didn't really make any notes or remember it standing out from the other helles offerings.
Pours a pretty light straw yellow color. Probably the lightest one from Munich, but still well within the style.
Smells crisp and malty. Definitely a beer that's focusing on the malt over the hops.
Taste is refreshing and definitely sweeter than the others. Hops are there and they keep things partially in-check, but they probably could benefit from a bigger presence.
Mouthfeel's spot-on and drinking a bunch of these would be no problem.
It's definitely no Augustiner or Hofbrau, but it's still pretty good for what it is. A dash more hops and color are really all it needs. If you're wanting a sweeter helles, this it probably the leader. Because it's a pretty subtle style, details matter. Take my score as a comparison to other helles beers moreso than a statement. It's good and it's stylistically solid, but you just can't have much room for error when compared to the other helles beers in Munich. I'd say this is the "worst" of the bunch, but it's still pretty solid.

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Photo of nighthawk
3.42/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500mL can poured into pokal. Date stamped on bottom of can might be best before, or production date. Hard to tell.

Pours crystal-clear yellow, two fingers of bone white head with tons of carbonation visible. Head dissipates to a thin haze fairly quickly. Some lacing left on glass, for the first few sips, but the little head that was left is quickly gone.

Nice mix of earthy, grassy, wet hay hops with bready and caramel malts. It's all a little muted though.

Taste is grassy, with some mild bread malts and a lemony twang finish. Smooth but crisp on the palate. Clean finish.

It's light and clean, so it's very easy drinking.

This is a delicate beer that borders on the uninspired. Still worth getting from time to time, its light taste and clean palate is a nice change from many bigger beers and styles.

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Photo of DoctorStrangiato
3.89/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 500-ml can into a glass beer stein.

Appearance - golden straw yellow, head quickly diappeared to a minimal thin level. Good carbonation, and a little lacing around the edges.

Smell - I smell corn. There's a fresh aroma.

Taste - pretty decent malty flavour, with the typical Euro lager bitterness, albeit slight, on the end.

Mouthfeel - pretty smooth - this is very well-balanced.

Drinkability - I wouldn't sit down and pound back too many of these in a row... a good tasting beer but not a one after another after another after another beer for me.

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Photo of magictrokini
3.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Imagine my surpise to see this still on a menu somehwere. Had a bottle at Marino's Italian in Pacific Beach. Not bad. Sweet, hoppy flavor with a light mouthfeel. Probably doesn't travel well, given the slight skunkiness. Good enough that I had several.

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Löwenbräu Original from Löwenbräu AG
3.33 out of 5 based on 849 ratings.
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