Schnitzlbaumer Lagerbier Hell
Review Date 12/6/2022 By John Staradumsky
For Christmas of 2015, my wife bought me a really cool present: BeerAdvent Calendar 2015 from Kalea. In truth, my wife got me a lot of nice presents (sheís the best wife ever), but the nice thing about the Beer Advent Calendar is you get it early. You have to, since itís comprised of 24 different imported German beers in a box with little doors that you open, one per day from December 1st through December 24th. All of the beers are listed on the side of the carton, however, so be careful not to look and spoil the daily surprises!
I love German beer more than beer from any other country on Earth, so this was definitely right up my alley. My one criticism of the calendar is there are not enough bocks and doppelbocks (not fair!), but otherwise itís just an amazing way to sample 24 German beers Iíve never seen before. I get mine at Costco here in Georgia and pay on average $59.95 for the box. That might sound steep, but when you distribute that price over 24 different half liter cans, it only works out to $2.50 per can. Not a bad deal at all looked at that way.
Except that this year, the calendars were a bit more expensive. I found them at Costco earlier than I ever had before, in the first week of September. The prices had gone up by $10, and I shelled out $69.95 for the 2022 edition. That did not phase me in the least, first of all because just about everything has gotten more expensive this year. Then too, the calendars really have not had a price increase in the 7 years I have been buying them (this is my 8th calendar). This year's price of $2.92 per can is still a bargain for beers from small German brewers I might never otherwise get to enjoy.
December 1st arrived, I opened my Day One door to reveal a can of Schnitzlbaumer Lagerbier Hell by Privatbrauerei Schnitzlbaumer of Traunstein in southeastern Bavaria. This is the first beer I have tried from this brewery, always an exciting prospect. The beer is, of course, a Munich Helles in style. I love the style, but I do believe that it has been overrepresented in the calendar over the years, You can see that in the breakdown below of all the beers I have received in each calendar, going back to 2015 and counting the first beer of the 2022 edition.
Dortmunder 7 4%
Munich Helles 39 23%
Oktoberfest 28 17%
Munich Dunkles 11 7%
Hefeweizen 10 6%
Dunkelweizen 11 7%
Zwickl/Kellerbier 9 5%
Kristalweizen 3 2%
Pilsner 16 10%
Bock 1 1%
IPA 5 3%
Doppelbock 5 3%
Maibock 3 2%
Pale Ale 6 4%
Weizenbock 3 2%
Vienna Lager 3 2%
Imperial Pilsner 3 2%
Steinbier 1 1%
Stout 2 1%
Rauchbier 3 2%
As to the brewery, Schnitzlbaumer, their logo contains the words "seit 1575", meaning since 1575, the official date they cite for the beginning of their history, although you can read a full account on their webpage that goes back even further.
Schnitzlbaumer Lagerbier Hell has an alcohol content of 4.9% by volume according to the brewery website, but my can is marked 5% by volum. Ingredients on the can are listed as water, barley malt, and hops. My can is stamped EXP 2024/03. The can label says the beer is brewed in Traunstein, the City of Beer.
Schnitzlbaumer Lagerbier Hell pours to a pale golden color with a thick fluffy white head and a fresh bready malt nose. Taking a sip, the beer is again fresh bready malty, biscuity too, and recalls memories of chewing fresh pilsner malt. It finishes gently balanced with herbal hops and is very refreshing indeed.
A very nice example of the style, I think, and one I would drink lots of if I lived in Germany.
Iím greatly enjoying my 8th annual Beer Advent Calendar with the day 1 beer. Hereís looking forward to the remaining 23, and another assortment of 24 in 2023. Weíll be on the lookout next year at Costco, and following the beers on their Facebook page.
The beers of the 2022 Beer Advent Calendar:
Day 1 Schnitzlbaumer Lagerbier Hell
Day 2 Kuchlbauer Turmweisse
Glad I tried it? T
Would I rebuy it??
*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.