9 Nov 2011

A quick German question

Is there anyone who can explain me what "Vollbier" and "Landbier" are supposed to indicate? Are they legal categories like Märzen, Bock or Weizen (that many people seem wrongly consider them "styles") or are they something more arbitrary? And since I'm asking, is "Rauchbier" also a legal category when it comes to German beer?

Well, more than one question, actually. Thanks in advance for your answers.

Na Zdraví!

8 comments:

  1. As far as I know, a Vollbier is a different name for a Dortmunder.
    Rauchbier an sich is not a style, just an indication of (a lot of) smoked malts used. However, you can consider RauchMarzen, rauchbock of Rauchporter being a Style.

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  2. O well, it's a tax category: http://www.germanbeerinstitute.com/Vollbier.html

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  3. "you can consider RauchMarzen, rauchbock of Rauchporter being a Style." Not for Germans, it seems. I've drunk Vollbier, Landbier, Bock and Dopplebock, etc. that were also "Rauch". I believe that if you are a German brewer you can call "rauch" to pretty much anything that has a minimum of smoked malts, but I'm not quite sure how much or if that is the case, to begin with...

    Thanks for the link. I'm quite sure the info is right, though. Ron Pattison commented some time ago that Märzen is also a legal category that refers to beers with 13-14º Plato, or so, and it is not mentioned in the article you linked.... This is getting confusing...

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  4. You can't trust anything in that German Beer Institute website - it's run by Horst Dornbusch.

    Vollbier is a very vague term meaning nothing more than a beer of at least 11º Plato.

    If you're after information on German beer, the place to go is the Deutscher Brauer-Bund website:

    www.brauer-bund.de

    Landbier means absolutely nothing at all specific.

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  5. To my knowledge Vollbier" and "Landbier can be the same as Kellerbier and do are judged within that style in the German Beer awards whilst "Rauchbier" has a style award within the scope

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  6. If Conrad Seidl is a trustworthy source you can take this to the bank: Vollbier existed as a tax classification from 1939 until 1993. Vollbier included beer with gravities ranging from 11p to 14p. The statement that Vollbier is anything above 11P is inaccurate, as starkbier (strong beer) was a tax classification for anything above 16P.

    These tax classifications are gone now and with them the exact meaning of vollbier. Vollbier now generally denotes regular beer which is different from particularly strong or light beer.

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  7. Thanks Tim and cw for the info. Do you know what the current tax categories are?

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  8. christian@cosmicart.de17 January 2012 00:34

    These tax classifications are gone now and with them the exact meaning of vollbier. Vollbier now generally denotes regular beer which is different from particularly strong or light beer.

    -> That is true! In general Vollbier has the same meaning as Lezak.

    I believe that if you are a German brewer you can call "rauch" to pretty much anything that has a minimum of smoked malts, but I'm not quite sure how much or if that is the case, to begin with...

    - True! And like you said, Märzen has 13-14º, so it can be Märzen and Rauchbier at the same time, like Schlenkerla for example.

    - Landbier: I think this term is used by smaller breweries for a beer that ist not Pilsner, and like Rauchbier it is not a legal category

    Keep up the good work!

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