Tag Archives: Germany

Day 2 – Camba Bavaria – Bavarian Winter IPA

day-2-camba-bavaria-bavarian-winter

The craft beer advent calendar is a tradition for me now. It is my third year writing about each of the beers contained within and it’s also a reminder of how far I’ve managed to come with my beer education and this blog. I am a long stretch from where I was when I first began.

It was really fun trying yesterday’s beer from Italy. I found myself reminiscing of searching for craft breweries while I was there. Today I opened the second tab to see what might be in store. From one of my favorite places to visit, Bavaria (Germany) was their Bavarian Winter IPA from Camba Bavaria Brewery.

Camba Bavaria has only been brewing since 2008 and already they have produced over 50 beers ranging from Pale ales, to Helles, to Russian Imperial Stouts aged in cognac barrels. Making use of a large variety of raw materials, they are always working to be innovative. This young brewery has been working to introduce new beers practically every week.

Located in an old mill in Truchtlaching on the river Alz, Camba was originally built as a brewery pilot plant by the brewing plant manufacturer BrauKon GmbH, regarded worldwide as one of the top suppliers of brewery equipment for small- and medium-sized breweries. This means that when Camba started they were already beginning with the ideal conditions for brewing beer giving them a head start in their journey. Currently Camba employs 3 master brewers, 5 brewers, and 5 beer sommeliers and work hard to communicate and exchange with other brewers around the world.

The name Camba Bavaria is actually pretty interesting as well. Truchtlaching was originally a celtic settlement in Bavaria. The word “Camba” means “brew kettle” in old Celtic language and thus pays tribute to that heritage. The second part, obviously, comes from the region in which they are located. The village of Truchtlaching is located in Chiemgau, one of the most beautiful holiday destinations in Bavaria.

IPAs or India Pale Ale, have a storied history. The first known use of the term comes from the Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser in 1829.  At this time, they were also referred to as a “pale ale as prepared for India”, “East India pale ale”, and “Export India Pale Ale”.  These types of IPAs were widely popular amongst the East India company and, while considered very hoppy, they were not much stronger than other beers brewed at this time. If you’re curious about IPAs check out Wikipedia, the BJCP Guidelines (Page 37) or IPA Beer.

While these beers are part of the pale ale family, they are strongly hopped and often showcase the variety of flavours and complexities that can come from the simple ingredients used to brew beer.  Many will say the IPAs are an acquired taste, and they are rather unique, the bitterness brought by the use of a large quantity of hops is not for everyone. Whether there is anything special about this in being a “Bavarian Winter” IPA is unknown, but I’m certainly excited to see. Now, onto this specific beer.

Appearance – Pale golden, almost amber with a good 3” of head that retains well and leaves lacing as it fades.
Smell –  Resinous hop notes that come through strong. Grapefruit citrus and a sweet tropical fruit note that is likely the lychee (I’ve never had one but my wife says that’s what it smells like.)
Taste –  Good bitterness on the front, not overpowering, with a sweet candy like taste and some grapefruit tartness. Finishes with a subtle lingering bitterness and citrus notes.
Mouth feel
– Medium body with an upfront resinous bitterness, candy sweetness in the middle and a subtle lingering bitterness on finish.
Overall – A well hopped, but not overpowering, IPA that offers a good combinations of resinous hop notes combined with subtle citrus and candy sweetness.
Do I like it?
– I found it to be fine. With the plethora of IPAs out there and the number that I’ve had, I find myself craving different beers than IPAs these days. I wasn’t a huge fan of the candied sweetness, but other than that I found it to be enjoyable.

 

Craft Beer Advent Calendar – Day 21

Beer 21

Well, today wasn’t a bad day, although one of the beers in my advent calendar had gone bad as it had not sealed properly.  I opened it, poured it and right away could tell it had turned.  No carbonation at all and a sour smell.  I did taste it and the taste had turned also.  I will not include a rating of this beer only details about the brewery as I did not feel it was fair to rate a beer that had turned.

The beer today is from Fürst Wallerstein Brauhaus in Wallersten, Germany.  Founded in 1999, it is a large scale operation that produces malt based beverages including beer.  The beer that we had in the advent calendar today was their Winter Bock.  We have seen a bock before, they are a strong lager made in Germany with a variety of subtypes.  In this instance a winter bock is a bock that has been spiced, in this case with molasses and a bit of pepper, to give it a more winter warmer/ale style flavor.

There are not many details that I could find on the brewery, so I apologize for the curtness of this post.  As I said, the beer had gone bad, so I moved on to the next one!

Craft Beer Advent Calendar – Day 8

Beer 8

Today’s beer is a special one.  It comes to us from the Weltenburg MonasteryBrewery in German and is called “Weltenburger Kloster Anno 1050.” For those who may not know, the Weltenburg Monastery is the oldest monastery brewery in the world and the second oldest brewery.  The main reason for the popularity of the Weltenburg Abbey Beer is due to the high art of brewing: they follow the brewing tradition of the Benedictine monks and also must follow the Bavarian purity laws.

Bavarian Purity Laws were established in 1487 when Albert IV, Duke of Bavaria promulgated it.  The law specifies three ingredients – water, malt (barley) and hops – for brewing beer. The law was established to make eliminate competition between brewers and bakers for rye and wheat.  Limited the grain to barley they made certain that there would be affordable bread for citizens.

The law was replaced by the provisional German beer law in 1993 which allowed other ingredients such as yeast, wheat malt and cane sugar, but would no long allow unmalted barley. One of the reasons yeast was never included in the original text is it wasn’t until the 19th century that Louis Pasteur discovered the role of microorganisms in fermentation.  While the change from the original law allowed for brewers to use different ingredients, many German breweries still follow the original law and brew using the strict method laid out within it. Weltenburger Kloster (Weltenburg Monastery) is one of those breweries.

Before refrigeration it was nearly impossible to brew beer in the summer due to the hot weather.  Brewing ended with the coming of spring and most beers were brewed in March (Märzen).  These brews were kept in storage until the end of summer where they’d be brought out and served with the remaining bottles served at Oktoberfest.  Because of this tradition, it has become a beer associated with the Oktoberfest.

The beer we are trying today is called a Märzen beer. This style of beer originates in Bavaria around the 16th century and is also known as an Otoberfest beer. The style is characterized by a medium to full body, malty flavor, and clean dry finish.  I’m excited to try this one. Let’s get to the beer!

Rating: 80/100

Appearance: Clear, medium copper amber colour that pours with about two fingers of head which dissipates leaving a thin cap.
Smell: caramel malt, floral notes from the hops.
Taste: Honey sweetness with hint of lemon and just a hint of bitterness on the finish. Different than other similar style beers but still very tasty.
Mouth feel:.Coarse mouth feel, medium body, perfect carbonation.
Overall: A very tasty brew overall.  Excellent flavors that meld perfectly together to give you a really fresh, crisp and refreshing beer.  This would be the perfect summer beer.
Do I like it: I very much liked this beer.  It is different than what I would normally seek out, one of the reasons I love this calendar.  The flavor profile of this beer is just fantastic. It is sweet and smooth while at the same time being crisp and refreshing.  The sweetness is not overwhelming but rather a good compliment.  Very good beer from this, the second oldest brewery in the world!