Kellerbier Pale Kellerbier

7C. Kellerbier: Pale Kellerbier
A very common seasonal summer beer brewed by many of the Munich area breweries and served in the beer gardens, where they are very popular.

Overall Impression:
A young, fresh Helles, so while still a malty, fully-attenuated Pils malt showcase, the hop character (aroma, flavor and bitterness) is more pronounced, and the
beer is cloudy, often with some level of diacetyl, and possibly has some green apple and/or other yeast-derived notes. As with the traditional Helles, the Keller version is still a beer intended to be drunk by the liter, so overall it should remain a light, refreshing, easy drinking golden lager.

Aroma:
Moderately-low to moderately-high spicy, floral, or herbal hop aroma. Very low to moderate diacetyl, possible very low green apple or other yeast derived notes. Pleasantly grainy-sweet, clean malt aroma, with possible low background note of DMS.

Appearance:
Slight haze to moderately cloudy, but never extremely cloudy or murky. Medium yellow to pale gold color. Creamy white head with good persistence. When served on cask, can have low carbonation and very low head.

Flavor:
Moderately malty with a rounded, grainy-sweet profile. Low to moderately-high spicy, floral, or herbal hop flavor, with a moderate hop bitterness that can linger. Finish is crisp and dry, but the aftertaste remains malty. Very low to moderate diacetyl, which should always remain at a pleasant, drinkable level that balances somewhat with the other characteristics of the beer; overwhelming diacetyl is not appropriate. Possible very low green apple or other yeast derived notes, and possible low background note of DMS.

Mouthfeel:
Medium body. Low to medium carbonation. Depending on the level of yeast in suspension, it may assist in creating a slightly creamy texture. A slight slickness on the tongue may be present from the diacetyl.

Comments:
Most Pale Kellerbiers are young, unfiltered, unpasteurized versions of Munich Helles beer, although Pils or a different, custom golden lager beer designed specifically for serving young could also be used. The best examples are served only on tap at many of the Munich area breweries. Bottled versions are not likely to have the freshness, hop character and young beer notes exhibited by the draft versions.

History:
Modern adaptation from the traditional Franconian style, using Helles instead of Märzen. Today, a popular summer seasonal beer.

Characteristic Ingredients:
Pilsner malt, German hops, German lager yeast; same as a Munich Helles.

Style Comparison:
Most commonly, a young, unfiltered and unpasteurized version of a Munich Helles, though it can be a young, unfiltered and unpasteurized version of other golden German lagers, such as a Pilsner or a seasonal golden lager made specifically for serving young.

Vital Statistics:
OG: 1.045–1.05
IBUs: 20–35
FG: 1.008–1.012
SRM: 3–7
ABV: 4.7–5.4%

Commercial Examples:
(local) Paulaner, Paulaner Brauhaus, Hofbrau, Tegernseer Tal. (bottled) Ayinger Kellerbier, Hacker-Pschorr Munchner Kellerbier Anno 1417, Hofbrau Munchner Sommer Naturtrub, Wolnzacher Hell Naturtrüb

Kellerbier

7C. Kellerbier
Aroma:
Reflects base style. Typically has additional yeast character, with byproducts not frequently found in well-lagered German beers (such as diacetyl, sulfur, and acetaldehyde).

Appearance:
Reflects base style. Typically can be somewhat hazy or cloudy, and likely a little darker in appearance than the base style.

Flavor:
Reflects base style. Typically has additional yeast character, with some byproducts not frequently found in well-lagered German beers (such as diacetyl, sulfur, and acetaldehyde), although not at objectionable levels.

Mouthfeel:
Reflects base style. Has a bit more body and creamy texture due to yeast in suspension, and may have a slight slickness if diacetyl is present. May have a lower carbonation than the base style.

Comments:
Young, unfiltered, unpasteurized versions of the traditional German beer styles, traditionally served on tap from the lagering vessel. The name literally means “cellar beer” – implying a beer served straight from the lagering cellar. Since this serving method can be applied to a wide range of beers, the style is somewhat hard to pin down. However, there are several common variants that can be described and used as templates for other versions. Sometimes described as Naturtrüb or naturally cloudy. Also sometimes called Zwickelbier, after the name of the tap used to sample from a lagering tank.

History:
Originally, Kellerbier referred to any Lager beer being matured in the caves or cellars under the brewery. In the 19th century, Kellerbier was a strong, aged beer meant to last the summer (Sommerbier), stored in rock cellars and served straight from them. But when refrigeration began to be used, the term shifted to describing special beers that were served young, directly from the cellar or lagering vessel. Today some breweries use the term purely for marketing purposes to make their beers appear special. While a kellerbier is sometimes considered more of a serving style than a beer style, the serving technique is still predominately used with certain styles in certain regions (such as Helles around the Munich area, or a Märzen in the Franconia region).

Pale Kellerbier

Amber Kellerbier

German Helles Exportbier

5C. German Helles Exportbier
Overall Impression:
A pale, well-balanced, smooth German lager that is slightly stronger than the average beer with a moderate body and a mild, aromatic hop and malt character.

Aroma:
Low to medium hop aroma, typically floral, spicy, or herbal in character. Moderate grainy-sweet malt aroma. Clean fermentation profile. A slight sulfury note at the start that dissipates is not a fault, neither is a low background note of DMS.

Appearance:
Light gold to deep gold. Clear. Persistent white head.

Flavor:
Neither grainy-sweet malt nor floral, spicy, or herbal hops dominate, but both are in good balance with a touch of malty sweetness, providing a smooth yet crisply refreshing beer. Balance continues through the finish and the hop bitterness lingers in aftertaste (although some examples may finish slightly sweet). Clean fermentation character. Some mineral character might be noted from the water, although it usually does not come across as an overt minerally flavor.

Mouthfeel:
Medium body, medium carbonation. Smooth but crisp.

Comments:
Sometimes known as Dortmunder or Dortmunder Export. Brewed to a slightly higher starting gravity than other light lagers, providing a firm malty body and underlying maltiness to complement the sulfate-accentuated hop bitterness. The term “Export” is a beer strength descriptor under German brewing tradition, and is not strictly synonymous with the “Dortmunder” style; beer from other cities or regions can be brewed to Export strength, and labeled as such (even if not necessarily exported).

History:
The Dortmunder style developed in the Dortmund industrial region in the 1870s in response to pale Pilsner-type beers, it became very popular after World War II but declined in the 1970s. Other Export-class beers developed independently, and reflected a slightly stronger version of existing beers. The modern German style is typically 12-13 °P.

Characteristic Ingredients:
Minerally water with high levels of sulfates, carbonates and chlorides, German or Czech noble hops, Pilsner malt, German lager yeast. Newer commercial versions can contain adjuncts and hop extract.

Style Comparison: Less finishing hops and more body than a Pils but more bitter than a Helles.

Vital Statistics:
OG: 1.048 – 1.056
IBUs: 20 – 30 FG: 1.010 – 1.015
SRM: 4 – 7 ABV: 4.8 – 6.0%

Commercial Examples:
DAB Original, Dortmunder Kronen, Dortmunder Union Export, Flensburger Gold, Gordon Biersch Golden Export, Great Lakes Dortmunder Gold

German Leichtbier

5A. German Leichtbier
Overall Impression:
A pale, highly-attenuated, light-bodied German lager with lower alcohol and calories than normal-strength beers. Moderately bitter with noticeable malt and hop flavors, the beer is still interesting to drink.

Aroma:
Low to medium hop aroma, with a spicy, herbal, or floral character. Low to medium-low grainy-sweet or slightly crackery malt aroma. Clean fermentation profile.

Appearance: 
Straw to pale gold in color. Brilliant clarity. Moderate white head with average to below average persistence.

Flavor:
Low to medium grainy-sweet malt flavor initially. Medium hop bitterness. Low to medium hop flavor, with a spicy, herbal, or floral quality. Clean fermentation character, well-lagered. Dry finish with a light malty and hoppy aftertaste.

Mouthfeel:
Light to very light body. Medium to high carbonation. Smooth, well-attenuated.
Comments: Marketed primarily as a diet-oriented beer with lower carbohydrates, alcohol, and calories. Pronounced “LYESHT-beer.” May also be known as a Diat Pils or Helles, this style is in the schankbier gravity class. Other variations of Leicht class beers can be made from Weissbier, Kölsch, and Altbier; those beersare best entered in the Mixed-Style Beer category.

History:
Traditional versions existed as drinks for physical laborers in factories or fields, but modern versions are more based on popular American products in the same class.

Characteristic Ingredients:
Similar to a German Pils or Helles, continental Pils malt, German lager yeast, Saazer-type hops.

Style Comparison:
Like a lower-alcohol, lighter-bodied, slightly less aggressive German Pils or Helles.

Vital Statistics:
OG: 1.026 – 1.034
IBUs: 15 – 28 FG: 1.006 – 1.010
SRM: 2 – 5 ABV: 2.4 – 3.6%

Commercial Examples:
Beck’s Light, Bitburger Light, Mahr’s Leicht, Paulaner Münchner Hell Leicht, Paulaner Premium Leicht

Festbier

4B. Festbier
Overall Impression:
A smooth, clean, pale German lager with a moderately strong malty flavor and a light hop character. Deftly balances strength and drinkability, with a palate impression and finish that encourages drinking. Showcases elegant German malt flavors without becoming too heavy or filling.

Aroma:
Moderate malty richness, with an emphasis on toasty-doughy aromatics and an impression of sweetness. Low to medium-low floral, herbal, or spicy hops. The malt should not have a deeply toasted, caramel, or biscuity quality. Clean lager fermentation character.

Appearance: 
Deep yellow to deep gold color; should not have amber hues. Bright clarity. Persistent white to off-white foam stand. Most commercial examples are medium gold in color.

Flavor:
Medium to medium-high malty flavor initially, with a lightly toasty, bread dough quality and an impression of soft sweetness. Medium to medium-low bitterness, definitely malty in the balance. Well-attenuated and crisp, but not dry. Medium-low to medium floral, herbal, or spicy hop flavor. Clean lager fermentation character. The taste is mostly of Pils malt, but with slightly toasty hints. The bitterness is supportive, but still should yield a malty, flavorful finish.

Mouthfeel:
Medium body, with a smooth, somewhat creamy texture. Medium carbonation. Alcohol strength barely noticeable as warming, if at all.
Comments: This style represents the modern German beer served at Oktoberfest (although it is not solely reserved for Oktoberfest; it can be found at many other ‘fests’), and is sometimes called Wiesn (“the meadow” or local name for the Oktoberfest festival). We chose to call this style Festbier since by German and EU regulations, Oktoberfestbier is a protected appellation for beer produced at large breweries within the Munich city limits for consumption at Oktoberfest. Other countries are not bound by these rules, so many craft breweries in the US produce beer called Oktoberfest, but based on the traditional style described in these guidelines as Märzen.

History:
Since 1990, the majority of beer served at Oktoberfest in Munich has been this style. Export beer specifically made for the United States is still mainly of the traditional amber style, as are US-produced interpretations. Paulaner first created the golden version in the mid-1970s because they thought the traditional Oktoberfest was too filling. So they developed a lighter, more drinkable but still malty version that they wanted to be “more poundable” (according to the head brewer at Paulaner). But the actual type of beer served at Oktoberfest is set by a Munich city committee.

Characteristic Ingredients:
Majority Pils malt, but with some Vienna and/or Munich malt to increase maltiness. Differences in commercial examples are mostly due to different maltsters and yeast, not major grist differences.

Style Comparison:
Less intense and less richly toasted than a Märzen. More rich-heavy in body than a Helles, with more hop flavor and higher alcohol. Less rich in malt intensity than a Maibock. The malt complexity is similar to a higher-gravity Czech Premium Pale Lager, although without the associated hops.

Vital Statistics:
OG: 1.054 – 1.057
IBUs: 18 – 25 FG: 1.010 – 1.012
SRM: 4 – 7 ABV: 5.8 – 6.3%

Commercial Examples:
Augustiner Oktoberfest, Hacker-Pschorr Superior Festbier, Hofbräu Festbier, Löwenbräu Oktoberfestbier, Paulaner Wiesn, Schönramer Gold, Weihenstephaner Festbier