Kloster Andechs Weissbier Hell


Review Date 1/29/2016  By John Staradumsky

Itís amazing to me how fickle the business of business in America is. Most businesses donít last long, although craft breweries seem to be remarkably successful these days. With all of the new breweries popping up, the average age of American breweries is remarkably spry. Iím sure German breweries come and go as well, but one thing is certainly true: the Germans have many, many breweries that can measure their longevity in centuries rather than decades.

Take Klosterbrau Andechs for example. This Bavarian brewer dates back to 1455, some 61 years before even the now-famous Bavarian beer purity law came to be in 1516. That law, the Reinheitsgebot, turns 500 this year, and here at Bruguru.com weíre celebrating by drinking as much German beer as we can. One of those is the beer under consideration today, Andechs Weissbier Hell.

Hereís what the brewery says about the beer on the label:

Located just outside of Munich, Bavaria, this famous brewery, part of equally famous Benedictine Monastery, is located right at the feet of the Holy Mountain of Andechs. A destination for Pilgrims since the 15th century, it is known for its spectacular beers and hospitality.

Kloster Andechs is not considered a trappist brewery since most of the 85,000 barrels of beer it produces each year are not brewed by monks in the brewery walls, but under their supervision in the newly constructed facility described above. Andechs exports several beers to the United States including a doppelbock and a dunkelweizen, though so far the Weissbier Hell, a traditional hefeweizen is the first that I have seen.

Andechs Weissbier Hell has an alcohol content of 5.5% by volume and I paid $3.79 for a half liter bottle. The motto on the label, Genuss fur lieb und seele roughly translates as drink for heart and soul.

Kloster Andechs Weissbier Hell pours to a pale golden yellow color with a thick head of tightly packed bubbles and a heady nose of clove, banana and tart wheat. I allow the last third of the beer to remain in the bottle and swirl the liquid vigorously to rouse some of the yeast, which adds a nutty component to the beer Iím about to drink and adds depth of color to an almost amber parfait layered hue.

Taking a sip, the beer has a crackery bready wheat character at the fore followed by hints of clove and strong banana notes. The nuttiness of the yeast combined with the former gives an impression of fresh baked banana bread, and the tart wheat finish compels you to another sip (or is that slice?).

Folks, this is an amazing German hefeweizen, well deserving of the full 5 stars Iím doling out. Itís not to be missed, and as I rarely see it, Itís wise for you to buy it when you see it.

TAnd remember, try a new beer today, and drink outside the box.

*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.