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Archive for the ‘Brewer: Schneider’ Category

Aventinus Weizen-Eisbock (2008)

April 28th, 2009 by Aaron Goldfarb | 4 Comments | Filed in Brewer: Schneider, Country: Germany, Grade: A plus, Style: Wheat (Hefeweizen)

12% ABV bottled (#28600)

Last year a friend introduced me to Aventinus and I quickly fell in love with it, making the German brew one of those beers that I must have frequently.  I’m a man that gets off on novelty in all aspects of life and that is especially true of beer.  Even the beers I love I don’t drink more than a few times a year, much rather preferring to roll the dice with something new, yet I still manage to have Aventinus at least once a month.  Which shows how very much I like that beer.

Thus, I was quite intrigued when I found this semi-special bottling of Aventinus on the shelf at Whole Foods.  It looked pretty similar to the original with its iconic purple label.  The only difference seemed to be the limited edition numbering on the back.  As I’ve mentioned once before, I’m a huge sucker for gimmicks, so there was zero chance I wouldn’t pick up a specially numbered bottle, no matter what was inside.

When I got home, I did my research to discover just exactly how this bottling differed.  And, straight from the brewer’s website it’s story-tellin’ time:

Aventinus, the Wheat Doppelbock of Bavaria, has always been known to be the most intense and complex wheat beer in the world. This was the case for the past sixty years, but not anymore…

Up until the 1940’s, Aventinus was shipped all over Bavaria in containers lacking temperature control. Consequently, the precious drink partially froze during transportation. Unaware that the brew was concentrated by the separation of water from the liquid. People were baffled by this unique version of Aventinus. By chance, the first Aventinus Eisbock was created.  Well aware of this story, Hans Peter Drexler, brewmaster of the Schneider brewery, decided to recreate this classic “mistake” in a modern controlled facility. Thus, the Aventinus Eisbock is reborn sixty years later… Prost!

Certainly sounded intriguing.  And, with 8% “normal” Aventinus a top 100 beer, “supersized” Aventinus might bring me to orgasm.  Or at least make me Prost! in my pants.

My first sip of supersized Aventinus punched me in the back of the throat and I started coughing and snorting like some junior high kid taking his first hit from a bong.  After I composed myself, I greedily went back to the teet for more.  Goddamn was this good.  Packed with banana flavors, like liquized bubble gum and, oh so freaking boozy.  The smell, consistancy, and taste of a port wine, perhaps a Belgian dubbel, or we could just say a wheat barleywine, with hints of dark fruits and spices.  Phenomenal.

I am so glad an act of kismet–or marketing gimmickry–caused me to grab this beer because it is one of the best I’ve had this year.  Hell, it may be in my top ten of all time.  I’m gonna be stocking up on it while it is still around.  If you love Aventinus, you’ll be floored by this.  Hard to believe Aventinus can get even better but with this it has and it is.

A+

Aventinus

December 16th, 2008 by Aaron Goldfarb | No Comments | Filed in Brewer: Schneider, Country: Germany, Grade: A-, Style: Wheat (Hefeweizen)

8% ABV bottled

A friend who I trust said this was a world class beer, and with a top 100 Beer Advocate rating to back his lofty claim up, several bottles were procured.

This beer unexpectedly taught me a lot about beer connoisseurship.  But not in the way you might expect.  The first time I sampled this weizenbock–essentially a mix between a wheat beer and a dopplebock in the murky world of style classifications–was at the tail-end of a night of heavy drinking.  I was not impressed.  I thought it was bland, flavorless, uninspired.  Another one of the many boring Reinheitsgebot purity law beers from out of Germany, I snickered to myself.  I detected nothing noteworthy as I sipped it and was barely interested enough to even take notes.  I jotted a few down in between doing whatever it is drunk people do at 2:00 AM, ultimately deciding to score this beer a C+.

Luckily, I was so backed up in beer reviews I never officially got to enter that into my blog.  Let me stop for a second to answer the real beer geeks’–the ones that are sanctimoniously aghast right now–questions.  No, I typically do not “officially” review quality beers when I am shitfaced.  It’s not fair to myself, my blog, my millions of readers, or the brewery.  I usually only review a beer if it is one of the first three or maybe four of my night.  (Or morning if I’ve decided to say, “Fuck the world” and get snockered at 8:00 AM.) But as with many things, we humans are not exactly good at judging how drunk we are.

“I ain’t tha’ drunk, I can drive us.”

“Whadaya talkin’ bout?  I’m not tipsy, I can totally work that chainsaw.”

“I’s a barely had any beers, a cours’ my dick still works.”

Likewise, I didn’t think I was that drunk at all when I first tried Aventinus.  But the fact is, I must have been, and my beer-drinking senses must have likewise been totally FUBAR, for me to think this beer shitty upon our initial introduction.

Sometime later, with nothing else to drink in the house, I begrudgingly had to drink another bottle of Aventinus still sitting around in the back of the fridge with some healthy salad dressings everyone buys but no one ever uses.  I was totally disinterested in the beer now, only drinking it to get the necessary proteins into my system.  And by proteins I mean alcohol.

With the first sip I was floored.  Whoa!  Where was that shitty beer I’d had weeks ago?!  This thing was amazing!  I was sober and I was blown away.  Smells of banana, cloves, and boozy alcohol.  In addition to those flavors, an incredibly creamy and smooth wheat and yeast taste.  Almost like a tripel with its primordial ooze of unfiltered and unfermented yeast.   A glorious beer, unquestionably.

Perhaps I should become one of those nerds I so hate that lock themselves in a sensory deprivation chamber when sampling a new brew.  Hmmm…wonder where I can find a guy to build a sensory deprivation chamber in Manhattan?

A-

Schneider Weiss Hopfen Weiss (Schneider & Brooklyner)

June 4th, 2008 by Aaron Goldfarb | No Comments | Filed in Brewer: Brooklyn Brewery, Brewer: Schneider, Country: America, Country: Germany, Grade: A-, Style: Wheat (Hefeweizen)

8.2% ABV from a bomber

This brew is the result of the long friendship of Brooklyn brewmaster Garrett Oliver and Schneider brewmaster Hans-Peter Drexler. Garrett had always admired the delicate balance of flavors in Schneider Weisse, while Hans-Peter had long enjoyed the effusive hop character of Brooklyn East India Pale Ale and BLAST! Garrett’s concept for the collaboration was that each brewmaster would brew essentially the same pale, hoppy weissbock in the other’s brewery, but with different hopping to reflect the local hop flavor.

Was excited to see this one on the shelf. Had loved the Brooklyn version of this bottling a few months back and this was the first time I’d seen the German version on the shelf. The Brooklyn version was a near masterpiece but I don’t recall it having this high of ABV. Looking through my notes though, I see that indeed it did.

This beer pours a huge head. Or maybe I’m just a drunk asshole who doesn’t know how to transfer from bottle to pint glass. Smells about as good as a beer can smell to me. Very malty.

I feel like I might like this one a tad less than I enjoyed the Brooklyn version, but mind you I’m not doing a side-by-side test and only recall my thoughts from months ago. I will admit that I like the smell of hefes often better than I like the taste. Although this is a great beer, no bones about it. I think from now on I will exclusively drink wheat beers during the hot weather instead of those thin, lemony crap beers most brewery releases under their “summer” line. This brew has a nice amount of hops, especially for a wheat.

This is how you do a hefe, other beermakers take note.

A-