Mar 21, 2013

Aecht Schlenkerla Eiche

Any time I see the name “Schlenkerla,” thoughts of their aggressively smoked Rauchbier come to mind. I love that brew, but have to be in the right frame of mind for it, otherwise my brain just isn’t quite prepared to handle its smoked meat quality.

Luckily, the company also brews a doppelbock that’s also been smoked with oak, but with much less of an in-your-face character. Aecht Schlenkerla Eiche still retains that smoked meat quality about it, but is much smoother and accessible than it’s darker, char-tinged sibling. This 8% ABV is mor potent with its elevated level of alcohol, but drinks oh so much better — and without having to mentally prepare myself days in advance.


Aecht Schlenkerla Eiche pours a brilliant copper in color with an off-white head that left behind wispy lace as it fell.


The nose is immediately filled with a large amount of smoke, but not as much campfire char as the rauchbier. Grains, distant woody notes and a touch of alcohol are also present, but take a back seat to the smoked malt.


Obviously, the smoked malt dominates the flavor profile, but it’s not as overbearing or as sharp as I was expecting. It’s still got a nice and welcome meatiness to it, but also an appropriate amount of sweetness as well as caramel, toffee and grains. The smoke gives the malt a drying quality in the finish along with hints of distant fruits and a light tingle of hop bitterness. The alcohol level brings a nice amount of warmth.


I was glad to find that this doppelbock wasn’t nearly as a strongly smoked as the rauchbier. The Eiche isn’t nearly as intimidating or as palate-altering which makes for a more drinkable, yet still quite smokey experience. I’ll be purchasing this one again in the near future.

Rating: 4/5

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