American beers beer reviews Germany

Every beer gets a second chance

Both variants of the Brooklyn/Schneider Hopfen Weisse in their beautifully designed bottles

We hated Schneider Hopfenweisse when we tried it a couple of years ago and I almost turned my nose up when offered it on draft at the Devonshire cat, Sheffield. Nonetheless, I got my half (a mere £2.80…) and gave it another go.

It’s always a good idea to give a beer a second chance. Wowzers, Penny. I take it all back. It’s wonderful.

It’s like a turbo charged wheatbeer with crisp, almost tangible hops; bubblegum cut with grapefruit. Truly extreme and fabulous for it. Oddly, the German-American parentage gives this a very Belgian aroma (booze + spice) which really adds to the pleasure.


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Pretty wits all in a row

Our own Belgian style wheat beer

As with koelsch, if you drink one Belgian wheat beer in the middle of a session with other beers, you’d be hard pressed to tell one from another. But, drink them together for comparison, and you can really appreciate the subtle differences.

We took Bailey’s folks to the Dove a while back and, as his Mum is a fan of wheat beers, helped her work through a few from their impressive selection.

Steenbrugge wit was like a drier, more lemony version of Hoegaarden. Next to Steenbrugge, Blanche de Bruxelles seemed to taste of honey, a flavour we’d never noticed before. Florisgaarden was the most interesting of the three, with a pleasing aroma and taste of juniper, which we really liked.  Quite a surprise from the big boys. We’ll be nicking that idea for the next Belgian-style wit we brew at home.

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Regensburg again, and a new brewery

It was in Regensburg, Bavaria, in 2007, that we first decided to start blogging, so excited were we by a glass of Spital Pils. On our recent holiday, we scheduled a one night stop-over to break the long train journey back to London, and had the chance to see if our opinions of the city had stood the test of time.

In 2007, we enjoyed Kneitinger Bock. We were nervous this time — what if it wasn’t as good as we remembered? It was, although Boak found it a bit too sweet this time. This time, though, we also tried the pils, which was a revelation, and one of the best beers of the holiday (“Good enough to be Czech,” we noted).

Our plan to re-drink all the beers we tried first time round was derailed, however, when we came across a new brewpub right in the centre of town which was crammed and lively. The Regensburger Weissbrauhaus was set up around a year and a half ago (despite a cheeky “Anno 1620” claim based on the age of the building). They make a standard wheat beer, a dark wheat beer, and dark and light lagers. The light wheat beer was pretty exciting (modelled after Schneider, we thought, and really juicy) although a good part of its appeal was probably its freshness. The others were not so impressive — yeasty, sweetish, with the hops missing in action.

But, what the hey — it’s got to be good that the number of breweries in this beautiful city is increasing, right?