Welcome to BeerAdvocate!

Looking to talk, rate or trade beer? Join today by creating your free account.

Dismiss Notice
Curious about recent updates to the site and app? Check the Announcements forum for updates.
Dismiss Notice
Love Belgian Beer?

Join us Sep 17 in Portland, Maine for Return of the Belgian Beer Fest, featuring hundreds of authentic Belgian beers and Belgian-inspired offerings.

Tickets + more: beeradvocate.com/belgian

Germany Went to Italy on vacation, had epiphany on German beer

Discussion in 'Europe' started by boddhitree, Aug 3, 2012.

  1. Gutes_Bier

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2011
    Posts:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    3,158
    Location:
    Germany
    Yuengling and some of the other well known, widely available beers did not get a review. In fairness, though, the 13 Rebels review consisted of exactly two letters.
     
  2. JackHorzempa

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2005
    Posts:
    18,827
    Likes Received:
    22,442
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    I was just kidding with you. I live in the midst of Yuengling country (SEPA) and while I will drink a Yuengling from time to time (but frankly infrequently) I understand why this beer was not review worthy for you.

    Prost!
     
    Gutes_Bier likes this.
  3. Gutes_Bier

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2011
    Posts:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    3,158
    Location:
    Germany
    I grew up in South Jersey and have fond memories of Yuengling! I had a feeling you were joking around but nevertheless I wanted to defend myself. I wouldn't say it's not review worthy...it's a good beer to share with your brothers. There's my Yuengling review. :D
     
  4. JackHorzempa

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2005
    Posts:
    18,827
    Likes Received:
    22,442
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    “ ..it's a good beer to share with your brothers.”

    Thanks for that! Scott and I will have to share some Yuengling beers someday. I will take a picture of the face he makes when he sips a beer brewed with American 6 row malt and corn.;)

    Cheers!
     
    Gutes_Bier likes this.
  5. herrburgess

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Posts:
    6,393
    Likes Received:
    10,344
    Location:
    South Carolina
    All smiles from me, brother Jack. As long as no one tries to pass it off as being brewed in an "authentic/traditional German" style. ;)
     
  6. JackHorzempa

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2005
    Posts:
    18,827
    Likes Received:
    22,442
    Location:
    Pennsylvania

    “All smiles from me, brother Jack.”

    You are a trooper brother Scott! I was concerned that the ‘harsh graininess’ would be off-putting to you.;)

    Cheers!

    P.S. Although the Yuenglings are 5th generation Germans. That isn’t authentic/traditional!?!:confused:
     
  7. Stahlsturm

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Posts:
    1,196
    Likes Received:
    904
    Location:
    Germany
    They may be, their Lager sure as Hell isn't. I've had it while passing through PA and I thought it was rather crappy. Come to think of it, the only Lager in North America I found acceptable (Not that I've tried them all of course) is Moosehead. All the rest I've tried (and I've tried a few, mostly in the New England and Mid-Atlantic regions though) were bland and would've been dumped in the gutter (after drowning the brewmaster in it) be every reputable Bavarian brewery. The beers I usually end up drinking more than one bottle from when in the US are Red and Amber Ales with an occasional Stout tossed in the mix.
     
  8. herrburgess

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Posts:
    6,393
    Likes Received:
    10,344
    Location:
    South Carolina
    About as authentic as the Busch family. American brewers are well-known for putting their own "twists" on German styles. :)
     
    steveh likes this.
  9. Stahlsturm

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Posts:
    1,196
    Likes Received:
    904
    Location:
    Germany
    I didn't know "twist" was synonymous with "perversion"... :)
     
  10. Gutes_Bier

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2011
    Posts:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    3,158
    Location:
    Germany
    Comparing apples to apples (or pears if you're German), I'd drink Yuengling Lager any day of the week instead of Oettinger's Kellerbier. And the only thing the people who own Oettinger are drowning in is money near as I can tell. :)
     
    JackHorzempa and herrburgess like this.
  11. herrburgess

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Posts:
    6,393
    Likes Received:
    10,344
    Location:
    South Carolina
    You're right, Yuengling does have a kind of tart apple taste...and Oettinger has more harsh graininess. Is that a fair comparison?
     
  12. Domingo

    Subscriber Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2005
    Posts:
    6,339
    Likes Received:
    8,698
    Location:
    Colorado
    If anything, to me Yeungling is more like the best (or at least top 3) of the American Macro lagers rather than making any kind of German beer comparison.
     
    Gutes_Bier likes this.
  13. JackHorzempa

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2005
    Posts:
    18,827
    Likes Received:
    22,442
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    I am glad to get some conversation going on Yuengling.

    “There is only one thing in life worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.” - Oscar Wilde

    Prost!
     
  14. steveh

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2003
    Posts:
    7,127
    Likes Received:
    5,817
    Location:
    Illinois
    Must - refrain - from - comment -- must - not - turn - on - sarcasm...

    :D
     
  15. steveh

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2003
    Posts:
    7,127
    Likes Received:
    5,817
    Location:
    Illinois
    It is when you add the "quotation marks." :D
     
  16. Stahlsturm

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Posts:
    1,196
    Likes Received:
    904
    Location:
    Germany
    Bring it on Stephan :D
     
  17. steveh

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2003
    Posts:
    7,127
    Likes Received:
    5,817
    Location:
    Illinois
    My name is spelled with a "V." No woosie, girl-like spelling. :mad: (;))

    Only Stephans drink macro-brewed Canadian beer. :D
     
    Stahlsturm likes this.
  18. Stahlsturm

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Posts:
    1,196
    Likes Received:
    904
    Location:
    Germany
    Actually, unless something changed since I last inquired, Moosehead is an independent regional brewery in New Brunswick, much like Yuengling in PA.

    Yep, my info is still valid :) No Makro crap here.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Moosehead_Brewery
     
  19. steveh

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2003
    Posts:
    7,127
    Likes Received:
    5,817
    Location:
    Illinois
    I'm basing my opinion more on quality and flavor (not to mention size)... along with such wonderful variety as:Moosehead Light Ginger.

    Then again, there's: St-Ambroise Oatmeal Stout, which isn't too bad... but that gets trumped pretty quickly by: St-Ambroise Apricot Wheat Ale. :confused:


    To be honest, I haven't had a Moose in a few years, but it wasn't much different than Molsen or LaBatt's at that time.

    I might have to take one for the team and let you know if anything's changed... but I doubt it stands up well to any Bavarian Lager, let alone some of the great examples we have here in the Midwest.
     
  20. Domingo

    Subscriber Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2005
    Posts:
    6,339
    Likes Received:
    8,698
    Location:
    Colorado
    I haven't had a Moose in forever, but when I was young (and my references were macro/light lagers and the Miller version of Lowenbrau) I recall thinking Moosehead was awfully bitter. I might have to try one again if a Bavarian didn't hate it :p
     
  21. JackHorzempa

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2005
    Posts:
    18,827
    Likes Received:
    22,442
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    Fascinating, we are now discussing Moosehead Lager!?!:confused:

    Below is something I found via a web search:

    According to David Kenning in Beers of the World, “Since then, the firm has survived a succession of disasters, including the explosion that wrecked Halifax in 1917, to produce one of the finest premium lagers in North America.”

    “Moosehead Lager is a smooth, clean-tasting lager, balanced well between malt sweetness and hop bitterness. It is brewed from a blend of Canadian Barley malt, two types of hops to balance aroma and bitterness, and fresh water from nearby Spruce Lake. The lager is then aged a full 28 days.” — Beers of the World

    So, can anybody confirm that Moosehead Lager is an all malt beer? It has been a looooooong time since I had a Moosehead but it tasted like a run of the mill AAL to me.

    Prost!
     
  22. steveh

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2003
    Posts:
    7,127
    Likes Received:
    5,817
    Location:
    Illinois
    Sounds more like he liked it. I can't wait for the next time Spaten comes up in discussion! :D
     
  23. einhorn

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2005
    Posts:
    1,293
    Likes Received:
    1,374
    Location:
    California
    I think this is where I should post this - saw this article online

    http://www.focus.de/finanzen/news/r...n-ihre-brauereien-in-den-ruin_aid_967480.html

    "Bereits jetzt habe jede zehnte mittelgroße Brauerei (5000 bis 100 000 Hektoliter pro Jahr.) die Entwicklung nicht verkraftet. Seit 2006 haben demnach 36 von ursprünglich 317 Herstellern in diesem Segment geschlossen. „Zahlreiche weitere werden folgen.“"

    But, as the article states, smaller places are popping up, but similar to the US craft segment, it will remain a drop in the bucket (volume-wise) for a long time.
     
    boddhitree likes this.
  24. Stahlsturm

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Posts:
    1,196
    Likes Received:
    904
    Location:
    Germany
    Yes, I like Moosehead. They didn't need a revival, they've always been there and especially in a place like North America where sticking to the same thing for 5 years is already considered traditional and sticking to it for a decade means you're old and sad and should go the way of the dinosaurs, sticking to what they do fover 150 years is almost biblical. Along with staying independent for all that time and not making tasteless crap commands the highest respect.

    Spaten are just a bunch of money grabbing opportunists who (despite the taste of their beer) should be shunned because they embody everything that is wrong, has been wrong and will be wrong.
     
  25. steveh

    Joined:
    Oct 8, 2003
    Posts:
    7,127
    Likes Received:
    5,817
    Location:
    Illinois
    Revival, tradition, stick-to-it-ness aside -- my initial shock to this discussion is that you liked Moosehead. The flavor of Moosehead is so sub-par to better lagers being brewed in North America that I'm more than a little perplexed that you think it's a good beer.
     
  26. Stahlsturm

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Posts:
    1,196
    Likes Received:
    904
    Location:
    Germany
    The only other lagers I've tried over there were significantly worse. Granted, I switched to Amber Ales and stuff much closer to my liking pretty swiftly. I like Moosehead for what it is, a pretty decent, not horribly expensive session beer. My other beer of that kind when in the US is Yuengling Black & Tan.
     
  27. einhorn

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2005
    Posts:
    1,293
    Likes Received:
    1,374
    Location:
    California
    We once touched on the demise of German brewers in this thread, saw this today, even though they are Austrian, I thought this might interest the German-spreakers

    Oldest private brewery in Austria to close

    The Fischer family (born Mitter Bucher) guides the oldest private brewery in Austria, Kellerbrauerei Ried, is closing. The Oberösterreichischen Nachrichten news reports for economic reasons.

    "The extremely negative forecast for the future forces us with the decision to close a previously economically sound family business due to ruinous price competition which would force us into negative territory" the brewery said in a press release. The Kellerbrauerei Ried (founded in 1446) has ten employees and brewed according to their own figures, about 30,000 HL annually.
     
    boddhitree and JackHorzempa like this.
  28. einhorn

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2005
    Posts:
    1,293
    Likes Received:
    1,374
    Location:
    California
    Quick numbers update

    After a big July (+11.9%) August beer sales in Germany (2012 YTY 2013) are down 8.8%, and 2013 JAN-AUG sales are down 3% (ballpark 2 million HL).
     
    boddhitree and JackHorzempa like this.
  29. herrburgess

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Posts:
    6,393
    Likes Received:
    10,344
    Location:
    South Carolina
    You have any numbers on "craft" beer sales in Germany? Would be interesting to contrast the overall decline in consumption vs. craft growth there, the way it is done here in U.S. (overall down 2.6% but craft up ???%). Prost.
     
    pixieskid, boddhitree and Gutes_Bier like this.
  30. einhorn

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2005
    Posts:
    1,293
    Likes Received:
    1,374
    Location:
    California
    I am not sure that this segment is being counted/measured differently. The stats come from the Statistiches Bundesamt and are separated by Plato measurement for tax purposes, so one might see higher ABV products being made. But again it's such a niche, plus where do the Germans draw their line between macro and craft a la Brewer's Association.
     
    boddhitree and herrburgess like this.
  31. pixieskid

    Joined:
    Jun 4, 2009
    Posts:
    939
    Likes Received:
    590
    Location:
    Germany
    I realize this thread is very old, but just wanted to share this as it was something I recently learned.

    "Italy as wine-centric has virtually no prejudices towards beer"...this couldn't be further from the truth, if you are referring to the industry side of things, as opposed to consumer side (which I have no opinion or knowledge of).

    I have spoken to several Italian brewers about the industry there and I learned that the costs of operating a brewery (regardless of scale and aside from production) are incredibly high because of being lumped into a different tax bracket than other products and/or alcoholic beverages. Wine is protected in Italy, just as in France, and as such the breweries (large mostly, but small as well) bare the brunt of taxation and as such, there are high prices on beer in both "wine countries".
     
    boddhitree and herrburgess like this.
  32. boddhitree

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2008
    Posts:
    1,238
    Likes Received:
    1,615
    Location:
    Germany
    Very very interesting. Thank you for sharing your knowledge.

    I meant only on the consumer, cultural side. What you said shows a district prejudice of French and Italians, at least tax-wise, toward wine. This shows again, that beer isn't seen as the "cultural" asset that wine does, and hence doesn't have the same political clout to gain favorable tax treatment. In other words, beer sounds like it's being treated, for tax purposes at least, as a normal commodity. This was kind of my whole Aha! moment: that without the cultural baggage beer possesses in Germany, the craft beer (in the American sense, not the Bayrische sense) side has been able to flourish; whereas in German, it's still in the gestation phase with only a few minor shoots emerging due to centuries of cultural headwinds that only really in the last year or so have begun to abate and allow growth of anything that's not the same-ol', same-old. In some cases, I've heard beer in Germany receiving similar tax favoritism, but I can't remember what it was or where I heard it.
     
    pixieskid likes this.
  33. Stahlsturm

    Joined:
    Mar 21, 2005
    Posts:
    1,196
    Likes Received:
    904
    Location:
    Germany
    Alcoholic beverages are taxed based on their alcohool content which makes most beer about the 3rd of most wine (~ 5% compared to ~ 12 - 15 % alcohol). I doubt that is intentional favouritism. There are plenty of wine yards and distilleries (who are taxed even higher based on their alcohol content) and they seem just fine.
     
    boddhitree likes this.
  34. Gutes_Bier

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2011
    Posts:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    3,158
    Location:
    Germany
    Drinking this right now. Was really not sure what to make of it. It had a familiar taste that I couldn't place until I read the description - uses wheat! Very drinkable, but the wheat confuses me. Is this supposed to be a wheat beer with lager yeast? It's impressions as a wheat beer would be unfavorable, as it has none of the "fun" associated with German wheat ales - banana, cloves, whatever. But as a German-style pale lager, the wheat flavor is off-putting.

    Not sure what to make of this. I've got four more left, so I have ample amounts to make up my mind.

    3/5 first impressions. Were it up to me, I'd call this an American Wheat Beer in style...and that makes me like it even less.
     
    JackHorzempa and herrburgess like this.
  35. herrburgess

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Posts:
    6,393
    Likes Received:
    10,344
    Location:
    South Carolina
    Where'd you get that? You back in the States or something (or just up drinking very late)? Or are you in (Little) Italy?
     
  36. Gutes_Bier

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2011
    Posts:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    3,158
    Location:
    Germany
    In Massachusettes right now. Several JA beers available to me, and I plan on going through as many as I can. I started with the Jabby Brau because it seemed to be most comparable to a German style lager, i.e., 20 IBU's and 4.5% ABV (both according to the bottle). Oddly enough, the description on the bottle is exactly the same as the description on BA, except for the bit about "uses [local producer] wheat", where it now says "uses locally sourced ingredients". No mention of wheat on the bottle. Not a bad beer, I'm just not sure I get it. When I finish this 6er I will move on to Lashes Lager "hopbock". Really would like to try Smoke & Dagger at some point.
     
    herrburgess likes this.
  37. herrburgess

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Posts:
    6,393
    Likes Received:
    10,344
    Location:
    South Carolina
    Cool. Welcome back! Will be very interested to follow your posts on U.S. craft lagers. This one has been very enlightening already. I am assuming that the Jabby Brau represents the stripped down "base" beer for some/many of Jack's Abby's more aggressively hopped offerings(?)

    Also, FWIW, I am not at all a fan of using wheat in pale lagers/top-fermenting Lagerbiere. I can pick up wheat in a Koelsch at proportions of 5%. Just something viscous/oily about it in such delicate styles to my palate.
     
    #557 herrburgess, Dec 16, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2013
    Gutes_Bier likes this.
  38. Gutes_Bier

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2011
    Posts:
    2,434
    Likes Received:
    3,158
    Location:
    Germany
    I have no idea. I only know that they get a lot of mentions in the Lager Lover threads and my curiosity was piqued. FWIW (as I know you are a primary-source kinda guy), the write-up on BA seems to be taken from the JA press-kit (available on their website). I didn't see wheat mentioned in their other beers, but I didn't take a long look. My guess is that it is not the base beer for the other offerings but I don't know. I will drink the final four Jabby Braus through the lens of American Wheat Lager and try to form my opinion accordingly.

    It's funny, I thought maybe it was the American hops that I had an issue with, but that wasn't it. Once I read the description on BA, it clicked. "That's it! Wheat!" As of this minute, I don't get it. Again, I don't want to say it's a bad beer, because it isn't. But I don't get the wheat, either.

    My 1st beer run was: 6x JA Jabby Brau, 6x JA Lashes Lager, 4x DFH 90 Minute, 4x Founders Breakfast Stout.

    I will report back!
     
    herrburgess likes this.
  39. herrburgess

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Posts:
    6,393
    Likes Received:
    10,344
    Location:
    South Carolina
    As you know, I'm also a big believer in drinking a beer in quantity (and as close to the source as possible) before making any final judgement. Look forward to hearing your thoughts on all of these. If you can get your hands on the JA Rauchbier, I'll be especially interested! ;)
     
    #559 herrburgess, Dec 16, 2013
    Last edited: Dec 16, 2013
    Gutes_Bier likes this.
  40. herrburgess

    Beer Trader

    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Posts:
    6,393
    Likes Received:
    10,344
    Location:
    South Carolina
    How long you there for? If you're interested, I can send you some Olde Mecklenburg beers. I think you'd be impressed by their Alt ("Copper").
     
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • Return of the Belgian Beer Fest

    BeerAdvocate Brings its All-Belgian Fest to Portland, Maine on September 17, 2016. Tickets are on sale now.

    Learn More
  • Get the Mag

    Become a BeerAdvocate magazine print subscriber today.

    Subscribe