Eichenblatt bitte from the Oakleaf Brewing Company

eichenblatt.jpgTan­dle­man’s not the only one to feel a bit let down by micro­brews recent­ly. How­ev­er, after try­ing a num­ber of rather dis­ap­point­ing British micros in the last cou­ple of weeks, we final­ly hit a good one worth writ­ing about.

Eichen­blatt Bitte is pro­duced by the Oak­leaf Brew­ing com­pa­ny in Hamp­shire. It is, as you can see from the label, a Bavar­i­an smoked wheat­beer, some­thing you might expect from our wilder Amer­i­can micro­brew cousins but is dan­ger­ous­ly rad­i­cal for the real ale mar­ket.

It didn’t look inspir­ing at first; the label could best be described as charm­ing­ly ama­teur, and when it poured, it had almost no head and resem­bled dirty dish­wa­ter.

BUT… it tast­ed love­ly. I’ve nev­er had any kind of smoked wheat­beer, and wasn’t sure how it would work, let alone what a bot­tle-con­di­tioned Eng­lish take on it would be like. It had the banana flavour you would expect from a Ger­man wheat­beer, with a sub­tle smok­i­ness that took away the excess sweet­ness.

Very inter­est­ing. Nice to see a British micro exper­i­ment­ing (and more to the point, suc­ceed­ing) with unusu­al styles, and I’d cer­tain­ly like to try more from this brew­ery. It looks like they have a huge range (not always a good sign!) but I don’t think I’ve ever come across them before. You can find out all about them on their web­site, here.

Boak

4 thoughts on “Eichenblatt bitte from the Oakleaf Brewing Company”

  1. Appar­ent­ly you have missed the already quite some time exist­ing Rauch-Weizen (smoke wheat) beers in Bam­berg: Schlenker­la and Spezial have these styles in their port­fo­lio for some years. Both brew­eries are land­mark Rauch­bier (smoke beer) brew­eries.
    Apart from that: per­son­al­ly I have nev­er been a great fan of Smoked Wheat – smoke and wheat don’t go very well togeth­er IMHO. And yes, I do like Rauch­beer and I do like Weissbier/Weizenbier. But sep­a­rate please.

  2. JosB – thanks for stop­ping by. I think I’ve had the smoked wheat beer from Schlenker­la, but Boak might not have been with me at the time. We tend to get the marzen ver­sios over here in the UK.

  3. I’ve had this twice on both times I think I had a dodgy bot­tle – very lit­tle car­bon­a­tion and a dis­tinct­ly unpleas­ant taste. QC issues.

  4. Our was under car­bon­at­ed, too, but tast­ed pret­ty good despite that, we thought. I think we’re get­ting quite tol­er­ant of little/no car­bon­a­tion through tast­ing batch­es of home­brew before they’re bot­tled.

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