JoTheO (290) - Stockholm, SWEDEN - MAR 12, 2018 TheBeerLover (1027) - DC Metro Area, USA - JAN 28, 2006
5 AROMA 10/10 APPEARANCE 5/5 TASTE 10/10 PALATE 5/5 OVERALL 20/20
Like altbier in Dusseldorf, kolsch is a special style of beer unique to Cologne, and different than most German beers in the fact that it is an ale, not a lager, though it is cold conditioned like a lager. Kolsch is a very delicate, golden ale, with light aromas and flavors of hops, crisp pale malt, and "jammy" fruit. It is a style that has been copied here in the United States by a number of brewpub/breweries, but one that is rarely done right. Precious few drops of real kolsch make it to the US market, as this beer is so delicate, and does not travel well. The most available exported version of kolsch to be found in the US is Reissdorf Kolsch, and I have also seen and enjoyed Gaffel Kolsch. Gaffel is a better example of the two available, but to really understand what kolsch is all about, a trip to Cologne is in order.
Again, like in Dusseldorf, the beer drinking traditions and culture of Cologne is alive and well. Cologne also have Kobes or waiters who will continue to pour you 0.25L glass after glass of kolsch poured by gravity vom fass. As you might already know from my reviews of altbier, that means it is coming from a freshly tapped wooden or metal barrel. The Kobes here wear white or blue jackets and aprons, and they are as impressive as the blue clad waiters of Dusseldorf. There is in fact a great rivalry that exists between these two cities when it comes to their local specialty beers. I’m happy to enjoy both, and kolsch is a beer you will want to try.
The glasses they pour kolsh in are interesting, they are long tube shaped glasses, that the Kobes serve from a tray that has cylinders like that of a revolver. It really is a site to see these guy serving up fresh, delicious kolsch, and it will amaze you how many glasses you will go through in a blink of an eye. Like in Dusseldorf, the Kobes will continue to tick off the number of beers you drink with a pencil on your coaster, and you might get a little shock when the bill comes. You will find literally dozens of places serving up kolsch, and Fruh is a bench mark example of the style. This beer has a wonderful balance of hop aroma, paired with nice pale malt and fruit character, and a nice dry finish.
Fruh Kolsch pours to a beautiful, bright, pale golden color with a tall white head, and a moderate amount of carbonation. The nose on this beer is wonderful with pleasing aromas of light peppery and herbal hop aromas. This leads into a delicate malt palate with good pale malt flavor paired with light flavors of pear. Fruh Kolsch finishes with a slight herbal hop bitterness that rounds this beer out to perfection.
Many beer geeks just don’t get kolsch as a style. They find it too light and too delicate. The simplicity and delicate nature of this beer really is its soul. It is so fresh tasting and so, so drinkable, you literally inhale this beer, and you will be happy to have the Kobes fill your never ending glass of beer.
Bottle 330 ml. Completely clear golden straw, very frothy white head. Aroma of hay and a bit doughy. Taste is a bit zesty and also has some surprising sweet fruits in there together with malty cereals. The bitterness is rather well-balanced but the beer as such is actually a bit boring. OK as a refreshment on a hot day, but then most light beers are... SaintMatty (7707) - Uppsala, SWEDEN - MAR 12, 2018
330ml Bottle - Golden with a white head. Lime leaves, lemon peel and grain in the aroma. Lemon, sultanas, grass and some slightly biscuity notes in the taste. Lilja (3621) - Malmö, SWEDEN - MAR 8, 2018
Flaska från SB. Smak och doft av humle, malt, citrus, bröd med toner av houng. Krispig, frisk, lätt kropp, fin maltsötma, bra beska. psilosophy (840) - vitry en artois, FRANCE - MAR 2, 2018
Bouteille de 50cl. Couleur dorée limpide, mousse moyenne, tenue moyenne. Une blonde légère avec un très subtil côté floral. Rien de renversant mais elle se laisse boire. Trouvée à v' n B. ChrisOfstad (503) - Hamar, NORWAY - FEB 23, 2018
UPDATED: FEB 23, 2018 0,3 litre Bottle from Systembolaget Charlottenberg. Clear light Golden with white head. Malty, a bit sour aroma. Sweet taste.
CraftHowl (555) - Bridgwater, Somerset, ENGLAND - FEB 17, 2018
On keg at Beer Emporium, Bristol. Pours clear pale yellow golden with a loose white head. Aroma: biscuit malts, grassy, floral hop. Taste: light sweet, crisp, grassy, lightly floral. Light bodied, light carb, soft finish melush (5221) - SPAIN - JAN 29, 2018
33cl Bottle @ Bodecall, Malaga, Spain. Golden colour with a thin white head. Aroma is malt, sweet, honey. Taste is malt, sweet, wheat, slightly bitter. Medium body, average to soft carbonation. spiffero (70) - Camelford, Cornwall, ENGLAND - JAN 26, 2018
Pours treacle gold, with a good froth that eventually settles to a solid rim plus lacing. Smells sweet, with some malty depth. The taste begins very sweet, filling the mouth with honeyish overtones. Then follow malty flavours in the mid part of the mouth, with slight hints of hops around the edges. Finally, a dull metallic taste familiar from lagers completes the picture somewhat anticlimactically. So I'd say this Kölsch becomes less interesting the further it progresses along the taste buds. But it's a decent drink, which, for its sweetness I'd prefer to most Pilsners, not to mention crap macro lagers. Roger60 (280) - - JAN 20, 2018
UPDATED: JAN 20, 2018 SB Oskarshamn flaska. Ljusbrun med dragning åt gul. Frisk bakåtlutad arom. Svagt humlad, inte bitter eller maltig. Mer helles lager än kölsch. Behaglig men i mitten av allt. tgrtnr (464) - Augsburg, Bavaria, GERMANY - JAN 1, 2018
330 ml bottle. Pours light golden with decent foamy head. Grass, metal, hay. Medium to low bitterness. Light bodied, watery texture, dry metallic finish, lively carbonated. Easy going beer.