Following century old recipes all malts made at the Schlenkerla brewery are dried by wood fire. While for the classic “Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier” traditionally beech has been – and still is – used, the malt for “Schlenkerla Oak Smoke” is kilned with oak wood. The resulting Oak Smoke Malt has a smoother and more multi layered smoky note than the intensely aromatic Beech Smoke Malt. The hence complex smokiness in “Schlenkerla Oak Smoke” is paired with the multifaceted bitterness of finest Hallertau aroma hops. With 8% alcohol and amber color it matures for months in the deep brewery cellars underneath Bamberg into a special treat for smoke beer lovers for Christmas.
Since ancient times beech has been the common fuel for fire-drying food in central Europe, e.g. for the malt of “Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier”. Beech was and is abundant in German forests, it has a high energy yield and a pleasantly intense smoky aroma. Oak however, with a smoother and more complex smoky note, was seldom used as fire wood. Different than beech, oak is very pest- and wheather-resistant and hence was valuable timber. Apart from buildings, mainly ships used to be made out of oak wood. The acorns were important animal fodder and during times of hardship necessary for feeding humans as well. Being so precious, kilning with oak was a rare specialty and its fine and multi layered smokiness a unique treat. “Schlenkerla Oak Smoke” is being brewed following this tradition, to present smoke beer lovers that special taste experience today.
Schlenkerla Oak Smoke will be available during Christmas time 2009 at our historic brewery tavern in Bamberg (first tapping Dec. 15th), and on draft as special import in the USA - please contact our US importer for availability.