Sunday, September 22, 2013

Schneider Aventinus (TAP6)

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (972) - Albany, New York, USA - SEP 22, 2013
I poured a 500ml bottle into a wheat beer glass. It was bottled on May 8, 2013 and cost $4.99 ($0.30 per ounce).

Appearance: An opaque shade of brown proper. Pours to a large, eggshell, frothy head which doesn’t completely dissipate, but doesn’t leave much lacing.

Smell: Though it has the traditional banana and clove aroma, it’s more of a spicier variety - like that of a Belgian Trappist ale. Some alcohol is noticeable, too.

Taste: I haven’t had a German weizenbock in a long time. In fact, the last brews of the style I had were the collaborations between Schneider and Brooklyn Brewery. Those were pretty special beers, but what about a standard, perennial German weizenbock? After all these years, I think Schneider Aventinus (Tap 6) is my first foray into the style, so I’m definitely kicking myself for having waited so long.

While Schneider Aventinus definitely has a lot of similarities to a traditional hefeweizen, it’s not simply a hefeweizen plus more. This drinks like the bigger, stronger beer it is. It starts out sweet with a flavor akin to cinnamon bread, with a prominent wheaty character as well. It’s much different than the taste of a doppelbock. Only a hint of bitterness at the crest of swig, followed quickly by a strong combination of alcohol and spice. What traditional hefeweizen is to banana and clove juice, weizenbock is to banana and clove liqueur. Spicy, zesty, almost Trappist-like with the amount of energy here. Additional cinnamon sweetness on the finish combined with light alcohol warmth and dryness in the aftertaste.

Drinkability: While it’s pretty obvious that Schneider Aventinus is a big beer, it’s not a challenge to drink. The mouthfeel is soft and velvety, so it’s quite comfortable in the mouth and super smooth going down. While there is some spicy character, it’s not too intense. At 8.2% ABV, it’s not surprising that the alcohol is present, but at least it complements the palette so as not to be distracting. 
Grade: 8/10