Tuesday, March 2, 2010

245. Weihenstephan Dr. Fritz Briem 1809 Berliner Weisse

Our first beer from Brauerei Weihenstephan in Freising, Germany. 1809 pours a crystal clear pale gold with a crisp white head; it has a nose strongly reminiscent of low-grade apple juice, with graininess and slight sourness most prominent. 1809 opens with a light fruit apple sweetness followed quickly by a lactic sourness that continues on well into the middle of the beer, along with some of the graininess from the nose. The finish is marked by a return of the apple-flavored sweetness that opened the beer, as well as some lingering funkiness. Light, sharp, and dry on the palate, 1809 has effervescent carbonation that helps brighten the beer. There is a bit of a sour twang in the middle third and back of the tongue, and some tang in the flavor and mouthfeel that is reminiscent of the finish of a brut champagne—a combination of sourness and sharpness that strikes as bitter and tannic. An interesting and well crafted beer, although the apple/fruit flavors detract from some of the crispness and freshness of the beer—1809 is not as bright and refreshing as other Berliner Weisse beers we’ve had in the past.

There’s nothing we could find on the Weihenstephan website, and I’m tired of combing the internet looking for obscure beer information. This from RateBeer: “Created by Dr. Fritz Briem of Doemens Institute, brewed by Weihenstephan & Doemens, 1809 is a very traditional interpretation of the Berliner Style Weisse with an intense blend of lactic tartness and complex fruitiness. It is bottle-conditioned, unfiltered and unpasteurized. 1809 will age beautifully in a dark and cool location. Its complex fruitiness and tartness will most likely develop in quite astonishing ways. 1809 is fermented in traditional open fermenters and horizontal lager tanks. The applied mashing regime is a single step decoction mash with 50 % wheat malt.The total amount of hops is added to the mash so that isomerisation takes place in the decocotion part of the mash. The wort is not boiled but only heated up to boiling temperature and then transferred to the open fermenters and pitched with yeast and lactic acid bacteria (isolated from malt) at 18 °C (64°F).” Damn, I just should have started there...

ABV: 5.0%


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