Beer: Aecht Schlenkerla Eiche
Serving Style: Bottle
Glassware: Pilsner glass
Drinking Establishment: Kerensa’s kitchen
Primary Consumer(s): Ally & Kerensa
Sight: Cloudy light amber/deep golden body. Two finger off-white fluffy head, with some tiny carbonation bubbles near the bottom of the glass.
Scent: Bright floral for half a second, then…bacon! Well, actually, Ally, the resident vegetarian, thought it was more like smoked tempeh–or, at least, like liquid smoke. But then it began to remind us not of bacon (or bacon-like products), but of kielbasa…so, we asked resident expert Pole, Kerensa’s roommate Kat, and she confirmed: smoked kielbasa! Or, in general, it smells like a Polish deli.
Flavor: The taste is less of kielbasa and meat, and more like hickory. Very sweet like a Doppelbock would be, with a bit of hops, and an endnote of smoked wood–like food grilled over hickory. This smokiness disappears as you drink more–it ends up blending together with the sweetness.
Feel: Crisp, thin-to-medium mouthfeel, with moderate carbonation.
Concluding remarks: This German brew–the Schlenkerla “Oak Smoke”–is, simply put, a good Doppelbock + smoke. It has what Kerensa refers to as “shock value”: if you tell a friend you’re going to buy them a good German beer, he or she will definitely be surprised by this smoky wonder. But the smoked flavor isn’t artificial or off-putting in the least. It’s a beer made for a summer barbecue (maybe because it tastes like a summer barbecue?) and would pair well with some hearty German bread and meat. Drink it nice and cold.