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Discussion in 'Europe' started by boddhitree, Dec 15, 2012.
What Rauchbier is it?
Göller. I have never heard of it before, but Mahrun's has a "Franconia" section in their beer store, so my brain said "Franconian" aisle plus "Rauchbier" on label equals "Purchase".
That one was OK the one time I had it. Definitely worth trying, but IIRC just mildly smokey.
Schlenkerla really is the standard for these, as I'm sure you know and we all know. I've had a few brew-pub seasonal Rauchbiers that were light on the Rauch, which is just not what I expect or want in this style (once in Dresden, once in Heidelberg). However, I'll give it a fair shake and hopefully I'll enjoy it.
After trying quite a few witbiers in my days, I really asked myself why this isn't (or couldn't) be a popular "new" beer style in Germany. Like it or not, Blue Moon is a huge success, was a gateway beer for many beer and the citrus-y and refreshing style is similar to the Hefeweizen.
Never had a chance to try it myself, but isn't the Wiess (not Weiss) style of unfiltered Koelsch similar (without the spices, etc., of course)?
Traditionally there is the Belgian Wit yeast strain which is probably the strain of choice, whereas the Koelsch yeast, if fermented properly, is much cleaner.
Yes, but maybe too similar?
Started my batch off with Kesselring's Urfraenkish Landbier. I was not super impressed. In fact, considering that this is a Franconian beer (I think?), I was downright disappointed. It tasted like an Industriebier version of a dunkel. Perhaps the Eckbraeu Wilderer dunkel set too high a standard. Oh well, we can only go up from here. 2.5/5
Roger Ebert once said of Tarantino wanna-be's, "they know the words, but not the music". With that in mind I present my take on Faust's Auswanderer 1849. First I'd like to talk about the story that comes with the beer. It is about the founder(s?) of what would become Schlitz brewery in America (Georg Anton Krug and his son August). The story goes that August emigrated to the US in 1849 (hence "Auswanderer 1849") and the father brewed this sort of beer for his trip to the US. They go on to add that the recipe was taken from Georg's records. The story has got to be 90% false, if not more, but it highlights to me just what Faust thinks they have to do to sell a non-traditional beer to a German crowd (at 11 euro per 750 ml, I guess you should at least get an entertaining story). Heck, I think they're giving Germany credit for inventing the (D)IPA! (perhaps Germany is the IPA capital of the world! )
Anyway, I'm not going to give this one a number review. Why? Because I don't know what to make of it. I could give it a 4.0. I could give it a 3.0. I think it would hold up well to any American IPA. It's 7.5% with 80 IBU (according to the same paper tag that had the nice story). It looks right. It tastes right. But it's not "sueffig", to steal a word that Boddhitree likes to use, and it's not anything different from an American IPA. Perhaps I'll try it again sometime when I'm more in the mood for one. It's worth noting that this was about 9 months old if I'm guessing correctly, but their best-before date is 5 years(!!). Although I'm sure the beer would hold up for that long, US brewers seem to want you to try this sort of beer as fresh as possible. Faust knows the words, but not the music.
We're going to Miltenberg in October, but I'm not looking to drink IPA's, especially since it will be our first two days!
YMMV, don't let me discourage you from trying it. My wife really liked it FWIW.
It's not that. It's just that we're not going there to drink IPA's especially at first. If it was later in the trip and I needed a change of pace, I'd probably try it. I want Schwarzviertler!
I know we have had long discussions about non-German styles being brewed by Germans, this one just seemed to be closer to what a German already knows and what he/she might drink. A wit could be the full ABV form of a radler, or Biermischgetreanke, i.e. beer + ______________ (fill in the blank cactus juice, passionfruit, dragonfruit, grapefruit, etc).
On that note, why do we talk about heresy in German brewing when these things exist?
I don't think I've ever had a Wit that came as close to the sickly sweetness of a Radler. I like Wit, I tried Radler once in Munich because I didn't know what it was.
I've often groaned about the likes of Diesel -- I couldn't believe what I was seeing when I saw people drinking them.
Because at least the Germans don't hold such things up as "innovative" or claim that a Weizen with banana juice added is better than one without because the former has more flavor?
My in-laws live near Alpirsbach and they mix red wine with Coke in those parts. Pfui Teufel.
Not to get into a pissing contest, but that's exactly what they are doing. For the last 20 years Biermischgetraenke have been the German brewery's version of innovation and the only source of growth in a dwindling market.
Perhaps the marketing folks are doing so, but the "beer advocates" certainly aren't.
What's the German word for "yuck?"
You are probably right. In all honesty, I can't imagine the brewers enjoying having their lagered pilsner cut 50% with sugary water.
BUT, one thing I did notice: in the spirit of "increased refreshment", even the stuck up better-than-thou pilsner snobs enjoy a radler every now and again.
I thought that was Scottish for idiot?
Let's see if I can catch up a bit on my reporting. There are a few beers I've had but haven't checked in with yet. Today I'll do two quick reviews the dunkels.
First up, an old reliable, Fässla's Zwergla:
Interesting in that this website has this beer listed at 5.2% but my bottle lists 6.0%. That's a pretty big jump! Did Fässla decided to amp this one up a little? I liked this beer, and it got better towards the end IMO. One I would happily drink, but not an overwhelming beer for me. 3.25/5.00
Next up is Faust's Schwarzviertler Dunkel.
Well, this is a delicious dunkel, no question about it. I'm not sure it surpasses the Wilderer for me - in fact, it doesn't, that beer might be my dunkel standard from now on - but it does approach it. Boddhitree has already reviewed this one, and has done a more thorough and knowledgeable job. I defer to his descriptions, but for me this clocks in slightly lower on the scale. 4.00/5.00 Very glad I bought this one.
Not much going on here in the ol' Germany forum lately. Goeller's Rauchbier:
Strong smoke aroma, but it's bark is worse than it's bite. Smells like Schlenkerla, tastes like Spezial. Not that either of those is a bad thing, by the way. This beer is very good. I was a little wary for reasons listed earlier in the thread, but it delivered on many levels. It's a Franconian Rauchbier...what's the worst that could happen? Would happily buy this one again. 3.75/5.00
I had a Pyraser Rotbier the other day. Talking about introducing "new" styles like Wit to Germany, it would be nice to see old styles being reintroduced, like this very well made Vienna Lager.
Hm, not really, although I see where you’re coming from. Wit is generally much sweeter and has a quite different yeast character, as well as all that unmalted wheat and oats, and the spices.
Anyway, Wiess is rare even in Cologne, so either would be a new experience to most German drinkers.
Interesting, this is the first time I have heard of the term Wiess. Below is from Wikipedia:
Wieß ("white" in the Kölsch language) is a cloudy, unfiltered version of Kölsch. It had virtually disappeared from the market during most of the 20th century, but has seen a small resurgence in recent years.”
There is an unfiltered Kolsch beer available from Coast Brewing (South Carolina, USA):
“Unfiltered 32/50 Kolsch
January 31, 2010
So we’ve been wanting to not filter the kolsch for a long time and we’re finally doing it! Why? Not filtering out the yeast and hops gives the beer a bigger profile yet still delicate and not overbearing. So incredibly fresh tasting, pilsner like in my opinion and super clean. We did let it bright out a bit longer to help the yeast drop out so it is only slightly cloudy. This unfiltered kolsch is now my go to beer it’s that good. If everyone agrees we’ll keep it up for a while (so please agree!).”
Garrett Oliver's Brewmaster's Table has some mentions of wiess in the Koelsch section. He mentions that it's usually an unfiltered (but not too hazy) koelsch in most cases. I think that term is now common enough that it's just slang for any old koelsch, even if they don't carry an unfiltered version.
That book was published about 10 years ago.
For random historical tidbits, I love that book. The US beer section is already a bit dated, but the sections on Germany, Belgium, the UK, etc. are all wonderful.
Another one from one of my favorite Franconian breweries. At least the ones I know and have access to through my local Getränkemarkt. Festbier by Krug-Bräu. Not the Festbier (aka Märzen) you would expect, but rather a typical Franconian/Bavarian Dark Lager. Very süffig.
Looks delicious! Are you in the Franconia area, or are you just lucky to live near a good beer store?
It is delicious! The other ones I've had from this brewery were convincing as well.
No, I'm not in Franconia, I live in Wiesbaden, so Rhein-Main area. There are a couple of (mostly poor to mediocre) bottle shops, but just the one that's my favorite. It's in a part of Wiesbaden called Bierstadt, very fitting!
If I had just some money to start a business, I would start a decent real beer shop in the Frankfurt/Rhein-Main area. Definitely something that is needed round here.
Have you been to Maruhn in Darmstadt? As far as I know, he has the deepest selection in the Rhein-Main area.
Yes, I've been there. It's nice, but a bit expensive. And a bit too far just to buy some beer. Most things they have can be ordered online. But it's definitely worth a stop when I'm in the area or pass by Darmstadt.
I think I found a new favorite today! Very tasty! Nice reddish color, sweet malt aroma, but well hopped bitterness. Just very nice!
Just a quick question. I tried searching BA for Pax Bräu without success. Has it been removed? I wanted to add their beers, and now… nada?
I have to say I love Spezials' much better than Schlenkerla's. Spezi's not so overpoweringly smokey that it ruins your palate for everything else. It's use of Rauchmalz is much more judicious, making it a helluva lot more süffig.
BTW… just posted all my previous reviews of Pax Bräu as reviews on the regular beer review site here. There's nothing new to the reviews, but I was finally able to add them after finally reviewing the prerequisite 20 before being allowed to add beers. Also, I got the July beer this last week, a Best Bitter, and I'll review it later this week. It's good!
Okay, this is a strange one today. The brewer brews this every two weeks more or less naked. It's supposed to be sexually stimulating. I don't feel overly horny now. For me, it's a marketing gag and an ordinary, somewhat stronger Lager, maybe a Märzen.
Here is the link to their own website, including a few videos. And here is a newspaper article on it.
This FKK business has gone too far!
Although it could be worse. I guess they could have a picture of the brewer on the label.