Köztritzer Pale Ale


Review Date 1/8/2021  By John Staradumsky

Welcome friends! Today we are here to talk about a decidedly different brew. A beer from a world renowned brewery with historic roots in Germany’s brewing past. The brewery is Köstitzer of Bad Kostritz, producers of the classic example of German black lager, Kostritzer Schwarzbier. The brew we are here to talk about today is Köstritzer…Pale Ale? Yes, Köstritzer Pale Ale.

In all my many decades of beer drinking, I’ve come across only a few German brewed pale ales. Most of those, it should be noted, came from the annual Kalea German beer advent calendar. Köstritzer Pale Ale is the first of these that I bought free standing from a store shelf. There’s no reason that the Germans can’t brew a pale ale. It’s easy to do and be Reinheitsgebot compliant; besides, the English have been brewing German style lagers for decades. Generally, however, German Pale Ales are brewed with German hops, though the latter are not all that dissimilar from English ones.

Köstritzer says:

A master of tradition: Köstritzer Pale Ale is pure crafted perfection and an extraordinary taste sensation. The special combination of bittering and aroma hops gives this specialty beer its powerful dry and bitter flavour, creating an intense moment of enjoyment with every sip.

Köstritzer Pale Ale has an alcohol content of 7% by volume and I got a 4-pack of pint cans for $8.49. My cans are stamped as packaged on 2020.01.15 and best by 2021.01.14. I bought them just before Christmas and popped my first can on New Year’s Day 2021. This is an authentically top fermented ale.

Köstritzer Pale Ale pours to a slightly cloudy amber color with a very thick, rocky unruly head. I poured semi-gently, and still got a vigorous head of foam. Pausing and pouring in turns, I finally got the beer fully decanted into my Köstritzer glass. Taking a sip, the beer is fresh biscuity malty but has abundant caramel malt as well. There are earthy herbal, grassy hops laced throughout, and a hint of citrus, too. The beer finishes very bitter indeed and lingers dry on the tongue.

I just love the outstanding bitterness here and the herbal grassy hop aroma, reminiscent of Unterberg’s bitters. I love the depth of malt flavor, too, and you can’t help but appreciate the price.

And 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.