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Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Weizen by Brauerei Heller-Trum/Schlenkerla

It was so cold here today in NJ that all I wanted to do was sit in front of a nice fire.  Who doesn’t love a fire?  The hypnotizing flames, the intense heat, the smoke…oh the smoke.  Speaking of smoke…how about sitting in front of a fire and drinking a Rauchbier.  A what you may ask?  Why a Rauchbier, which breaks down in German to rauch (smoke) and bier (beer), hence Rauchbier.

Beer #57 is Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier Weizen by Brauerei Heller-Trum/Schlenkerla.  Hailing from Germany, this Rauchbier has an ABV of 5.2%.

A reddish brown liquid with no head whatsoever stared back at me from the pint glass.  I took a smell and it smelled like a campfire.  Campfire, liquid smoke (if you cook you may know what this is), the smell of the charred pepper skin when you roast it on the grill, ashes, smoked sausage, a building after it has burned down, I think you get the picture, or aromas in this case.  I was a bit reluctant to taste this but I know better than to judge a beer by it’s smell alone.  Surprisingly, the smokiness was not nearly as strong in the taste.  I was reminded of smoked meats and bacon and sausage and kielbasa in the taste, not overpowering at all, just there along with a nice malt backbone.  This was a medium bodied drink that was nice and smooth.  As far as being drinkable, for me, once I got past the unusual aromas, it was very drinkable.  I found myself wanting another after consuming the 17 oz. that the bottle provided.

Wow…this beer or should I say bier was very unique.  I have never had anything like it before.  To be honest, I really enjoyed it, although I do enjoy my smoked meats, sausages, bacon, kielbasa, etc.  I need to try other Rauchbiers as I have heard this is one of the more milder versions smoke-wise.  I urge you to give this one a shot, after all, the Germans know a thing or two about brewing beer.  As the Germans say…Prost!

Rating: A

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