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Smoked Beer
May 26, 2005 2:23 PM   Subscribe

Anybody into smoked beer? It's called Rauchbier and it's a new one on me, but it's been around since the 1500s. (I'm apparently a little behind the curve). Here's a recipe if you are into homebrewing. (Which reminds me, did you see the article: How to Brew Beer in a Coffee Pot ???)
posted by spock (33 comments total)

 
The SF bar mentioned in the first link, Suppenkuche, is the best German beer-and-food place I've been to in the States.

Rauchbier is very uncommon in restaurants and bars (though not impossible to find, but not hard to find in your better beer stores.

A word of caution: if you're new to the style, start with a small taste. And if it tastes like smoked meat or cheese to you, know that that's just fine.
posted by gurple at 2:29 PM on May 26, 2005


argh, missed a ) in there. Too much smoked malt.
posted by gurple at 2:30 PM on May 26, 2005


Here are a few more beer/home-brewing sites (via Wikipedia):
Tastybrew.com
brewcommune
Beertools.com
Bodensatz Brewing, The Beer Site

(all I need is ANOTHER hobby)
posted by spock at 2:34 PM on May 26, 2005


I tried (I think it was) Rogue's Smoked ale/beer/whatever. I liked it but my father-in-law, who is as much of a beer fan as I, did not. An acquired taste I guess.

Rogue is a very extreme brewery. Their beers are full of flavor because they put way more hops and malt in their brews. Try their IPA. Really tasty.
posted by Tacodog at 2:36 PM on May 26, 2005


love beers of many sorts. love rogue. rauchbier ist aber faul. but as a theory I find it very interesting.
posted by dorian at 2:40 PM on May 26, 2005


I've had a couple sips of Rogue's rauchbier. It's not something I'd really go out of my way for, but it's very good for cooking or as part of a marinade.

My favorite brewing site is The Brewery, but Skotrat's is good, too.
posted by cog_nate at 2:42 PM on May 26, 2005


I used to keep up with The Burgundian Babble Belt, when I first got into Belgian beers. Not sure what the community is like now, but a few years ago it was a great place for an introduction to Belgian brews.
posted by gurple at 2:45 PM on May 26, 2005


(all I need is ANOTHER hobby)

c'mon, spock, what else're you going to do in kearney?

that coffee pot thing is pretty damn cool, too.
posted by dersins at 2:47 PM on May 26, 2005


This post couldn't have come at a better time since I'm moving to San Francisco next week. Suppenk├╝che is now on my list of places to visit :)
posted by starscream at 2:49 PM on May 26, 2005


The coffee pot thing is damn cool, but it seems like a lot of effort for a tiny amount of beer -- in terms of person-hours per gallon it must be the most expensive beer you can make.

Cool that someone did it, though.

Starscream, be sure to check out Toronado, too. And Amnesia, in the Mission, and Beach Chalet, and 21st Amendment, and The Plough and Stars, and Lucky 13, and Zeitgeist....

(as a 5-year SF good-beer junkie, I miss the old haunts....)
posted by gurple at 2:53 PM on May 26, 2005


If you live in Boston/Cambridge, rauchbier is on the menu at Bukowski's (both Inman and Back Bay) , though surprisingly it isn't offered at the beertastic Publick House in Washington Square.

It is a very specific taste -- the kind of thing that I can enjoy as a sample, but couldn't consume in pint volumes. I like smoky teas like Lapsang Souchong, and my usual taste in beer tends towards the heavier, darker stuff anyway, but I just couldn't get down to more than half a glass of it before wanting to dump the rest in the sink.

cog_nate, If I wanted to impart smoke into a marinade, I'd rather add powdered chipotle chiles or a tablespoon of souchong tea leaves to the liquid. Either ingredient is easier to find, and probably cheaper for the purpose.
posted by bl1nk at 2:58 PM on May 26, 2005


Thanks gurple! I already know & love Toronado, but I'm unfamiliar with the rest. If I grow a beer belly and my girlfriend complains, can I blame it on you? ;)
posted by starscream at 3:11 PM on May 26, 2005


c'mon, spock, what else're you going to do in kearney?

You mean besides the home coffee roasting, amateur telescope building, old tool collecting, woodworking, storm chasing, StormWiki building, web application administration crap that I don't have enough time for now? Not a thing!
**twiddles thumbs**

What is with your Kearney fixation anyway, dersins?
: )

posted by spock at 3:11 PM on May 26, 2005


I'm new to homebrewing, but an experienced friend took me through the steps on a batch of peat-smoked porter. It should be done fermenting in a day or so. I'm interested to see the results since it will be the first smoked beer I've ever tasted.
Apparently, the Alaskan Brewing Company has a smoked porter which was sampled on one of my favorite television shows; The Thirsty Traveler.
It appears that most people either really like it or really hate it. Thanks for the awesome links...they'll help prepare me for what's in the basement.
posted by Demogorgon at 3:12 PM on May 26, 2005


You can often buy this at the LCBO in Ontario. Personally I think it's genuinely terrible, I mean, really really undrinkable stuff...

As an interesting point of beer trivia, here in La Paz, Mexico, I can buy Fin Du Monde and other amazing Unibrou beers from Quebec... It's strange what gets imported and what doesn't.
posted by glider at 3:23 PM on May 26, 2005


What is with your Kearney fixation anyway, dersins?

It's not a Kearney fixation, per se.

More of a central Nebraska fixation. Maybe next time I'm back in Burwell there should be a central NE mefi meetup.
posted by dersins at 3:34 PM on May 26, 2005


If I grow a beer belly and my girlfriend complains, can I blame it on you?

Simple solution -- just make sure she gets one, too.

... and Rogue, and and Tommy's Joynt (if you can stand the smell of grilled buffalo), and Frjtz, and Chow....
posted by gurple at 3:44 PM on May 26, 2005


I've only been to San Francisco once but thought it was the most beautiful city I have ever seen. Sort of the Melbourne of the northern hemisphere (or is Melbourne the San Francisco of the southern hemisphere?) Miles from Nebraska in more ways than one (not that I'm dissin' Nebraska, y'all - plenty of that from outta-staters).
</threadjacking my own thread, sheeesh!>
posted by spock at 4:09 PM on May 26, 2005


I dislike Rauchbiers -- they just don't work for me.

If you like hoppy, malty beers, you need to try Stone Brewery's offerings, most particularly, Arrogant Bastard Ale.
posted by eriko at 4:14 PM on May 26, 2005


most particularly, Arrogant Bastard Ale

Damn! I think we've just found the Official Beer of MetaFilter!
: )
posted by spock at 4:24 PM on May 26, 2005


I used to find Arrogant Bastard practically undrinkable, due to the high hop content.

Now I'm in the Northwest, Land of the Overhop, and Arrogant Bastard is just par for the course. Decent beer, great marketing.

Stone makes a surprisingly good Belgian Dubbel style, too, called Double Bastard.
posted by gurple at 4:28 PM on May 26, 2005


I had a Rauchbier about 14 years ago in a little Biergarten outside of Nuremberg.

Quite frankly, I thought it tasted like someone had left a perfectly good beer to marinate in the bottom of a dirty Weber grill, then tapped it into a mug.

Das hat mir nicht gut geschmeckt !
posted by MrBaliHai at 4:57 PM on May 26, 2005


If I grow a beer belly and my girlfriend complains, can I blame it on you?

Simple solution -- just make sure she gets one, too.


Even simpler solution - the camera might add 10 pounds, but beer goggles subtract 15. If you're both liquored-up neither of you will ever notice the other's gut.
posted by thedevildancedlightly at 4:57 PM on May 26, 2005


A weird beer I had yesterday and loved was the stout with chocolate that Rogue makes. Delicious. Not just "chocolatey" malt but actual chocolate.

I've had a smoked porter or two and liked them, but I'll go ahead and assume that rauchbiers are intensely more smoked.
posted by TheOnlyCoolTim at 5:43 PM on May 26, 2005


Smoked beer has too much of the ashtray in it for me. I tried it ('it' being Broughton Reekit Yill) once, and never again. And I like my malts smoky, too.
posted by scruss at 6:25 PM on May 26, 2005


Starscream, be sure to check out Toronado, too. And Amnesia, in the Mission, and Beach Chalet, and 21st Amendment, and The Plough and Stars, and Lucky 13, and Zeitgeist....

All of the above are fantastic, also worth visiting is Quinns Lighthouse in Oakland and Pacific Brew also in Oakland. They both carry a variety of smaller brews, Drakes included.

I do have to say that 21st Ammendment is by far my favorite.

Thirsty Bear isn't half bad either, but prefer all of the above.
posted by iamabot at 6:35 PM on May 26, 2005


I had a (well, many) Rauchbier in Bavaria last I was there (name of the town escapes me... oddly enough). Absolute gold that stuff, though the feeling that I was really eating a smoked cheese rather than drinking a beer was a little disorientating.
posted by pompomtom at 7:40 PM on May 26, 2005


pompomtom, that was exactly my impression when I was offered some by my hosts in Nuremberg. Goes great with sausage inna bun though.

If I had my choice of Bavarian beer styles though I'd be going for Bock or Salvator style beers. Rauchbier is somewhat of a novelty, but Bock is for serious drinkers.
posted by i_am_joe's_spleen at 1:01 AM on May 27, 2005


Yeah, Arrogant Bastard is hopped to hell. But it has to be -- there so much malt flavor there that you need something to cut it back.

I agree about the PNW being home of the overhopped, but AB and DB aren't overhopped, IMHO -- they're highly hopped, but they need to be.
posted by eriko at 5:17 AM on May 27, 2005


I seriously read that as 'smoked bear' at first.
posted by oneiros at 5:17 AM on May 27, 2005


I agree about the PNW being home of the overhopped, but AB and DB aren't overhopped, IMHO -- they're highly hopped, but they need to be.

Agreed -- only in my pre-PNW days did I think that AB was overhopped. And DB is just straight-up good, and well-balanced. They make a Smoked Porter, too, which is more relevant to the thread, but I can't say as I've tried that. Anybody?


... and Pacific Coast Brewing in Oakland, and the Albatross Bar in Berkeley, and the Prince of Wales in San Mateo, and of course Burlingame station, and the Naturfreunde "Tourist Club" in Muir Woods (scroll down) ....
posted by gurple at 8:44 AM on May 27, 2005


I've had the beer pictured in the article at an out-of-the-way bar along Oakland's Embarcadero (Quinn's Lighthouse), and found the first few sips quite fascinating, but then I couldn't stand it. I won't be trying it again. Gimme a non-bottled Deschutes Black Butte Porter over this anyday.
posted by pmbuko at 3:29 PM on May 27, 2005


Starscream, be sure to check out...
Well, that's all the bars I drink at, except you left out Phone Booth, not that it's a place to find good beer, it's a good place to find me getting my ass kicked by a lipstick lesbian at pool.

My perfect Sunday is every Sunday. Noon, me at Zeitgeist with a good book and a pitcher of Racer 5 all to myself. Yes, Sunday is God's day, but the self-made man worships his creator.

Suppenkuche, is the best German beer-and-food place I've been to in the States.

Love that place, I celebrate my birthday there every year.

21st Ammendment (sic) is by far my favorite.
Food prices there are a frickin jack.

Thirsty Bear isn't half bad either, but prefer all of the above.
And they have a excellent Scotch selection.
posted by MiltonRandKalman at 3:36 PM on May 27, 2005


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