Gose in Goslar

Crystal clear gose hell in Goslar
Crys­tal clear gose hell in Goslar

We’d bare­ly been in Goslar an hour before we had our first glass­es of Gose in front of us. It’s one of those leg­endary region­al styles that fas­ci­nates beer geeks – salt, corian­der and sour­ness? About as far from the bor­ing “pre­mi­um pil­sners” that are the norm in Ger­many as it is pos­si­ble to get.

We tried the big brand first, Brauhaus Goslar Gose. Lars Mar­ius had sug­gest­ed the Goslar gose was dumb­ed down and, sure enough, its only dis­tin­guish­ing fea­ture was a dis­tinct salti­ness. It wasn’t cloudy, either. Odd and pleas­ant enough, but not Earth-shat­ter­ing.

That night, we tried our sec­ond gose, about which we can find very lit­tle infor­ma­tion. It’s appar­ent­ly micro-brewed and served, as far as we can tell, only at the Worth­muehle restau­rant. It was much more inter­est­ing – a dead ringer for a Bel­gian wit, and very unlike any­thing we’d had in Ger­many before. There was a lit­tle more sour­ness, less salt and a lot more corian­der than in Brauhaus Goslar Gose.

We liked it so much, we came back for more the next night.

Lit­tle did we realise how much more inter­est­ing things were going to get when we tried the two gos­es avail­able in Leipzig. More on that in our next post. Inci­den­tal­ly, there were dark ver­sions avail­able of both the Goslar intepre­ta­tions, but they were not par­tic­u­lar­ly note­wor­thy.  They were sim­i­lar to the pale ver­sions but tast­ed a lot more like home­brew.

Restau­rant Worth­muehle also does excel­lent food, mak­ing a real point about sourc­ing its meat local­ly and eth­i­cal­ly. Which got us won­der­ing… why do you nev­er ever see a pig? Pigs must out­num­ber humans in order to deliv­er that much Schnitzel and Schwein­haxe…

Also, Goslar is a real­ly inter­est­ing and pret­ty place, and def­i­nite­ly worth a vis­it even if you’re not intrigued by the Gose thing.

18 thoughts on “Gose in Goslar”

  1. Are you sure the Worth­müh­le gos­es are dif­fer­ent from the oth­er ones? The Worth­müh­le web pages don’t make any claims in that direc­tion, they just say they have draft gose. http://www.worthmuehle.de/worthmuehle/gosebier.htm
    We tried to have din­ner at that place, but it was full when we were there, so we nev­er got the chance.

    If there real­ly is anoth­er gose I guess I’ll have to go back to Goslar. 🙂

    Look­ing for­ward to read­ing your Leipzig post­ing!

  2. The com­pa­ny I work for has an office in Leipzig and I’ve been try­ing to get some­one to bring some Gose back for me. I was told they weren’t avail­able in bot­tled form, but I’m pret­ty sure some are at least.

    I’ve been won­der­ing about that pig ques­tion myself! I shall inves­ti­gate 😀

  3. It is a sad but true thing that most Ger­man farm ani­mals are kept firm­ly indoors, even in sum­mer. We used to be gob­s­macked if we saw some cows when we were cycling, except in the high Alpine pas­tures. Poor old pig­gy. Guess he is in a shed some­where!

  4. Adep­tus: both of the Leipzig gos­es are avail­able in bot­tle. You can buy the Bayrisch­er Bahn­hof one at the brew­pub, and the Döll­nitzer Rit­terguts at Ohne Bedenken. I’m 100% cer­tain of this, since I’ve bought bot­tles with me from both places, last time in mid-Octo­ber this year. Unfor­tu­nate­ly, nei­ther is in the city cen­tre.

    This place has a sign in the win­dow say­ing the sell gose, so it might be that they’ll sell you a bot­tle. It’s at Reich­strasse 13, which is very cen­tral.

  5. You ras­cals use the term “tastes like home­brew” from time to time like it’s a bad thing. I’ve had some tru­ly great home­brews in my day (and not nec­es­sar­i­ly my own). I could see if you said, “tastes like mediocre home­brew,” or “tastes like extract home­brew.” Can you expound? Or throw out spe­cif­ic faults that made you draw that con­clu­sion or decide on that term?

    Just pes­ter­ing ya. Cheers!


  6. Tan­dle­man, I see cows and sheep around here, just no pigs. But then I guess pigs are gen­er­al­ly kept indoors. At least in Ire­land they seem to be too.

    Thanks for the con­fir­ma­tion Lars! I’ll have to tell my col­league that he has been ill informed and to make sure to get me some on his next trip.

  7. Was in Goslar last month. As far as I under­stood, all Gose there is brewed in one brew­ery: Brauhaus Goslar, An der Abzucht 1a (Kas­par Schulz 10 hl Bräuhaus).
    I had the blonde and “dark” (more like amber) ver­sion at the But­ter­hanne and they were okay, but not much sour­ness. But in the evening I drank the amber ver­sion at Wort­müh­le and there it tast­ed bet­ter: spici­er and a bit more sour.
    I have had the Rit­terguts Gose in Berlin, and then a day lat­er in Leipzig, and they were quite dif­fer­ent, so even just anoth­er bar­rel can prob­a­bly make the dif­fer­ence.

  8. Iron­ic that the Goslar gose should be brewed at that address (An der Abzucht), since the same stream (the Abzucht) is called Gose a lit­tle bit high­er upstream, and there is even a street called An der Gose. Much bet­ter address for the brew­ery, if you ask me.

  9. Some his­to­ry here. Nowa­days the “Abzucht” is a nice lit­tle stream, and indeed it is the same riv­er all the way. But when the ore-min­ing pol­lut­ed the riv­er, the town built a pipeline to get good qual­i­ty water from upstream and the riv­er itself became in fact a sew­er, hence the name Abzucht.

  10. Wil­son – I think we mean “tastes like our home­brew” – imper­fect, and not in an inter­est­ing, excit­ing way…

  11. Lars – on the Eng­lish page, which is linked above, they say the beer “is spe­cial­ly fab­ri­catet for the „ Worth­müh­le „”, although that could be a trans­la­tion error. The beer was extreme­ly dif­fer­ent and there was none of the main gose brewery’s brand­ing around at all.

  12. Plus we asked the barstaff at Worth­muehle, because it tast­ed so dif­fer­ent. They said that it was “dif­fer­ent” to the stuff in the mar­ket place / But­ter­hanne although I didn’t get where it was brewed. Just to real­ly con­fuse things, the menu in Worth­muehle gives a long his­to­ry of where their gose is brewed – which ends in 2004!

    Of course it is pos­si­ble that there is big vari­a­tion in between batch­es, and that they are brewed by the same peo­ple, and that the bar­maid didn’t under­stand me / where the Gose is from. In that case our point would be that it’s def­i­nite­ly worth going to both, to taste the vari­a­tion. But if any­one with bet­ter Ger­man than us can clear it up, then do let us know.

    Tan­dle­man / Adep­tus – we caught a few min­utes of “Bauer sucht Frau” on Ger­man tel­ly, and even then, where they had a pig-farmer, they didn’t show the pigs…

    Wil­son – we usu­al­ly have a spe­cif­ic home­brew in mind when we say that. It’s nor­mal­ly our first few attempts at a nor­mal Eng­lish bit­ter, where what we end up with is too much resid­ual sweet­ness from dark malts / lack of hop flavour / lack of decent fin­ish. We are a bit lazy about our descrip­tions some­times!

  13. The Brauhaus Goslar web­site says there was a Gose-brew­ery in Oker (between Goslar and Bad Harzburg) from 1993–2004, Braumeis­ter Andreas Wagen­führer. Then in 2004 Braumeis­ter Paul Odin took over with the new brew­ery in Goslar itself.
    (On the same page they also make a dis­tinc­tion between Goslar­er Gose and Leipziger Gose) See:

    The Ger­man pages of the Worth­müh­le are not so spe­cif­ic about their Gose, I would con­clude that it is spe­cial­ly brewed for them, so maybe a some­what dif­fer­ent ver­sion.
    Col­or-wise it looked exact­ly like the dark­er ver­sion in the But­ter­hanne, but tast­ed quite dif­fer­ent.

    Any­how, I’m plan­ning of more or less repeat­ing my trip next year, first the Harz Region (prob. stay­ing in Wernigerode for the steam trains), then onto Leipzig, then Fran­co­nia and/or Oberp­falz. But that is still months away.

  14. Back in 2004 I vis­it­ed the Leipzig bars, but have yet to go to Goslar. On the same trip I also vis­it­ed the Wöll­nitzer Talschänke in the small vil­lage of Wöll­nitz, just out­side and sub­stan­tial­ly uphill from Jena. Here I tried the Wöll­nitzer Weiss­bier, this being a sharply sour, salty and cloudy wheat beer brewed on the premis­es. The best Gose I tried, to my taste. But is it a Gose? Nobody ever seems to men­tion it. Per­haps it’s a Berlin­er Weiss?

  15. Hmmm. Inter­est­ing, Stephen. Sounds like a gose to me, giv­en the salti­ness. We’re going to put our “beers we’d like to try in 2009” post up soon, and that might now go on the list…

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