Tag Archives: World beers

Ayinger Celebrator Doppelbock

Ayinger Celebrator Doppelbock

Ayinger Celebrator Doppelbock


Brewed by Brauerei Aying
Style: Doppelbock
Aying, Germany

The Ayinger brewery, founded in 1877, is located in Aying, Bavaria, Germany, and not too far from the city of Munich. The independently owned brewery has a number of beers that it produces but it is mainly its well known Celebrator Doppelbock that is their big seller. 

Peter Liebhard had taken over from his father the family farm and estate. He, and his son Johann, figured that their servants, maids, and guests were bound to get thirsty now and again so they decided to establish their own brewery to cater for them.  So, in 1876, Johann Liebhard took over the farm from his father and put into action their plan to open a brewery. The brewery was built the next year in 1877, and with technical developments in brewing and also the addition of a railway, the brewery expanded tenfold. 

Ayinger Celebrator DoppelbockAs Liebhard had no male heirs, he handed over the reigns to his eldest daughter, Maria and, her husband and his son-in-law, August Zehentmair, who continued the operation of the brewery and of the estate. Coming out of the First World War, was difficult for the brewery, but they managed it, with August having to take out heavy loans to keep up with the day to day running of the estate, the farms and, of course, the brewery. 

After all the many setbacks, they progressed again in no small part to the technical developments of the brewery in the 1920’s. Bottle washing and a filling plant were purchased, a cooling vessel was added to their fermentation cellar, a beer truck would make transportation easier and with the popularity of beer in Munich, and with all the breweries in and around the city, yes it was a good time to be in the beer industry. 

But of course then came Hitler and the Nazi’s. But it wasn’t only that. In 1936, August Zehentmair died quite unexpectedly at the age of 56, also without any male heirs. The eldest daughter, Maria Kreszenz, and her husband, Franz Inselkammer were next on the Ayinger throne. However, just like the first World War, the brewery under Franz Inselkammer, rebounded stronger, and with the post war boom, once again prospered. 

Ayinger Celebrator DoppelbockFranz and Maria Kreszenz managed to have three sons Franz, August and Peter. In 1963, the oldest, Franz, took control, but he was also helped by his two brothers, a period which saw further expansion and modernization within the company.

Even today, the new brewery in Aying is still one of the most technically advanced breweries in Europe. Where we are at the present is that Franz Inselkammer III, a son, is in control of the company, the sixth generation.  

Ayinger’s Celebrator, using purely local ingredients from Aying and the surrounding area, is considered to be one of the better doppelbocks on the market, having won a gold medal at the World Beer Awards in 2017 in “the Strong Lager” category, and also a gold medal at the World Beer Awards in 2015 in the category- “Germany’s Best Doppelbock”
For the internet geeks it was rated as the “Best beer from Germany,” on the beer rating site Ratebeer.com in 2014 and 2015 and the “World’s Top Strong Lager,” on the same site in 2015.
And if that wasn’t enough, the beer hunter and all round expert on all things related to beer, the one and only Michael Jackson called it a “World classic.”. With all those accolades, I just know that this beer is going to be a disappointment!!! 

Just to refresh: a doppelbock (“a double bock”) is a strong lager originating from Germany, primarily consumed during the spring months to celebrate the end of winter. Bock means “billy-goat” in German, hence the goats that you will always see on the bottles. Doppelbocks are usually very malty, dark in colour, and and have a stronger ABV than an average lager. 

Review: 0,33l. Bottle of Ayinger Celebrator Doppelbock: ABV: 6.7% vol 

Ayinger Celebrator DoppelbockAyinger Celebrator is little changed from the doppelbock first brewed at Ayinger way back in 1878, using the same old recipe in today’s brews. 

Nice brown bottle with a lovely old fashioned design and striking label, very nice. Also have a cheapish looking ornament, in the form of a plastic white goat, with it tied around the neck, which is a bit silly, but there you go. A goat of course representing the fact that it is a doppelbock. 

On pour got a darkish brown coloured beer, almost black in fact with purple/reddish looking highlights, with a nice decent sized tan head, some good carbonation going on too, and overall the appearance looks pretty damn good. It all looks very appetizing, nice n frothy. 

The smell is equally as good. Got a wide variety of smells, was very malty, got some fruity smells of raisins and prunes, and with strong hints of alcohol.

Loved the smell which was strong and pleasant on the nose.

Ayinger Celebrator DoppelbockTaste, got some nice creamy tastes and very filling mouthfuls. Nice hoppy aftertaste which can be felt at the back end, nice and manageable. 

Can taste the fruits, and, of course, the sweet malts and caramel.

Nice enough, a slow burner and definitely one to relax with and sup.

If there was one negative is that I did get a little bit of dryness in the mouth.
The alcohol is also well hidden, very well hidden.

It’s alright, is very tasty for sure and I got a fulsome feeling.  A nicely balanced beer with a lot of flavours to be had.

On the second pint the alcohol was finally hitting me, got the beery taste. It is 6.7% after all, but it is manageable and not overpowering.

Over all yeah its a good beer, not bad and a nice and tasty brew, very drinkable and not very sour or bitter. 
Was a bit tipsy after the second pint, but it was easy enough to drink overall.

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Saverne 8,8 Premium

Saverne 8,8 Premium

Saverne 8,8 Premium


Brewed by Karlsbräu (Karlsberg)
Style: Euro Strong Lager
Saverne, France 

Saverne 8,8 PremiumBrasserie de Saverne, as part of the Brasserie Licorne group, but all distributed and controlled by Karlsbräu (Karlsberg) and not to be confused with Carlsberg!! 

The Brasserie Licorne, established in 1845, is located in Saverne, in the Alsace region of France. The Licorne brewery is a family run company whose know-how has been passed down from generation to generation. It was owned by a succession of families, the Ebeners who were the original family, and then the Schweickhardts, Gerbers, Beckers and Webers.

In 1989 the brewery was taken over by German brewing group Karlsberg, one of the largest breweries in Germany. It is called Karlsbräu outside of Germany to differentiate it from the Danish brewing company Carlsberg.

Review: 500ml Can of Saverne 8,8 Premium: ABV: 8.8% vol 

Saverne 8,8 PremiumComing in a black can with a large “8,8”  ringed by a double yellow circle and with the words “strong beer” in English, French, German and Italian. Yes that would work if you want to catch the eye of the beer drinker whose ambition is to get fucked on cheap beer!!

On pour I got a dark golden orange beer that produced a very big frothy white head which settled well, with a very good bit of carbonation, can hear it whizzing around. Altogether this beer looks good and looks very appetizing and filling. Get a lot in the can.

No lacing. 

Colour does go a little murky after a while.

The smell was quite strong, a beery aroma, was yeasty and malty, and hoppy. 

Can definitely smell the alcohol that’s for sure. 

On taste, fuck me, there is a very strong initial taste, grainy with a very sweet flavour, but it is actually ok. Not great, but ok.

Saverne 8,8 PremiumNice big mouthfuls. Creamy and Tasty.

After you take a taste you get to appreciate it afterwards as it leaves a nice lasting affect in your mouth.

Very bitter and acidic taste, but afterwards it sinks in.

This is a very strong tasting beer, where you get the taste lightning up afterwards, a little while later, weird!! A bit of a slow burner.

A very tasty beer, bitter, hoppy, but manageable, but just about.

Needs to be served cold to be fully appreciated.

Overall it is very tasty. Yeah in the end not bad. Liked it in the end. Strong too.

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Black Forest Michel

Black Forest Michel

Schwarzwald Michel 


Brewed by Alpirsbacher Klosterbräu
Style: Helles/Pale Lager
Alpirsbach, Baden-Wuerttemberg, Germany

Black Forest MichelAlpirsbacher Klosterbräu is a brewing company in a small town called Alpirsbach in the Black Forest region of Germany.

The company was founded in 1877 by Johann Gottfried Glauner who reactivated the former monastery brewery. In 1880 the company was passed onto his son, Carl Albert Glauner and in 1906 the company was renamed to Alpirsbacher Klosterbräu. The company was, and is,  continuously held by the Glauner family that is now in its fourth generation of ownership.

I have tried their products before, their big seller and award winning beer, the “spezial” lager, which was fine, and their Märzenbier which I liked. 

Other beers they produce have also won prestigious awards. Its Pils getting a silver in the World Beer Cup in 2014, and its Wheat crystal, Monastery Starkbier and Monastic Substance all picking up awards in the World Beer Awards

Review: 0,5l Bottle of Schwarzwald Michel: ABV: 4.8% vol 

Black Forest MichelSchwarzwald Michel translates as Black Forest Michel in English!

This beer is exclusively brewed for Edeka, a German supermarket giant, as a special thanks for all their years of cooperation with the company. 

Has an interesting label of what looks like a blond, blue eyed (“Aryan” cough!) German woodcutter.

On appearance got a very light golden colour, and a nice soft white head.

A good bit of carbonation, beer buzzing along, a lively beer.

Looks lovely as it has a nice colour and a decent sized head, good start.

Black Forest MichelHas a very nice aroma, it smells of malts and hops all light but fresh and fine on the nose.

The taste is nice and soft, and very easy to drink, really smooth and refreshing with its subtle flavours and light tastes. Can detect citrus, wheat, malt notes, and it is also a little creamy.

Nice and malty. The barley malts hitting the spot. 

Got lovely mouthfuls. Very nice to drink. Tastes like a decent lager. Nice, I like it. 

Citrus notes are quite apparent in this beer. 

Was tasty and very easy to drink. Excellent, loved it. Recommended


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1906 Reserva Especial

1906 Reserva Especial

1906 Reserva Especial


Brewed by Hijos De Rivera, S.A. 
Style: Amber Lager
LA Coruña, Galicia, Spain

1906 Reserva EspecialMy second beer from the Hijos De Rivera brewery, having tried their Estrella Galicia pale lager a while back and which I generally liked. That was a good session beer so I had highish hopes for this brew from their collection. 

In the year of 1906 a Mr. José María Rivera Corral, who had just returned from his trip to Mexico and full of enthusiasm and bright ideas, decided to start his own brewery in the city of La Coruña, in the North West of Spain and called it the “La Estrella de Galicia” factory whose main products would be beers and soft drinks.The Rivera brewery is still owned and operated by the same family, by his great grandson and namesake. 

In the 90’s the company diversified and expanded into new markets such as for mineral water, juices, ciders and vinegars. But the main brand of the brewery is Estrella Galicia, a 5.5% abv pale lager brewed since the beginning of the brewery, and a brand that is found all over Spain and also exported to the UK, Germany, Switzerland, Portugal, Brazil, Mexico and the United States, amongst others.

Review: 33cl Bottle of 1906 Reserva Especial: ABV: 6.5% vol 

1906 Reserva EspecialThe beer has won a stack of international awards….at the Monde Selection and the World Beer Challenge amongst the many. 

The bottle caught my eye…..the design of the label was quirky enough, looked more like a bottle of wine with its age printed……1906…..looked intriguing, so I snapped it up. The 1906 refers, of course, to the date the brewery was founded. 

A pretty good looking beer in appearance, with a lovely decent sized frothy white head and a nice golden colour.

Very good lacing with a head that maintains throughout. 

Good carbonation.

Lovely smell, very beery, very malty, very good smell…… 

1906 Reserva EspecialSmell is very strong on nose, grains, malty. Yeah liked the aroma.

Taste is very sweet initially, front taste is hoppy and too sweet, not a great start.

Horrible! Typical, always the way….good smell n good looking but always a shitty beer, why is that?

On taste got a creamy mouthful.

Very hoppy. Not great, not smooth.

Ok, there are some tastes, mainly malt and sweet grains, but overall it is tough to drink. Not nice at all, what a pity. 

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Denner Lager Hell

Denner Lager Hell

Denner Lager Hell


Brewed by Ramseier Suisse 
Style: Pale Lager
Hochdorf, Switzerland

Denner Lager HellManufactured for Denner AG / Zurich. Denner is Switzerland’s third largest supermarket chain after Migros and Coop, a discount chain considered to be the poor man of Swiss supermarkets as its cheaper than most, and where you can buy wine and beer at very low cost prices. You do have to give ity some respect though as it has been going since 1860, way back, so it has some history to it. Its motto is “One for all” (“Einer für Alle”) as the company describes itself as the “Retail’s Robin Hood”, who is fighting for cheaper prices for the customers. 

It is majority owned by the Federation of Migros Cooperatives since 2007.

Denner was able to establish its own brewery in Switzerland, which now brews the “Denner Lager” into two bottlings (5 and 3.3 dl) and cans with 4.8% and the “Spezial” into 3.3 dl bottles with 5.2% alcohol.

Review: 50cl can of Denner Lager Hell: ABV: 4.8% vol 

Denner Lager HellCheap supermarket fare that comes in a distinct red can, with a small Swiss flag for the patriotic drinker. 

Not much smell, very faint on the nose, but can detect malts and a lagery sort of aroma, all light on the nose but ok.

On pour got a big frothy head, some small bit of carbonation and a light golden yellow colour.

Head did die, a flat looking beer by the end. Not a looker.

On initial taste, unfortunately got a very soapy, cheapish taste, not nice at all, certainly no nice flavours. Was a bit too sweet especially initially. 

Denner Lager HellCompletely flat in taste and in look.

Tastes that I managed to find were some malts but that was generally it. 

I guess considering it is a very cheap beer, you could argue it is ok considering it is smooth enough I guess, but its a little too metallic for me.

Not a bad session beer if desperate, Its ok to be fair.

Did get some nice enough mouthfuls and overall it is an ok beer I guess.

Not bad for a discount beer, does the business, but there are better discount options available and I dont think I will be buying it again.

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Chopfab Draft. Quite popular and always recommended

Chopfab Draft. Quite popular and always recommended

Chopfab Draft 


Brewed by Doppelleu Brauwerkstatt
Style: Premium Lager
Winterthur, Switzerland

Chopfab Draft is a very popular beer brewed by Doppelleu in the small Swiss city of Winterthur, not far from Zurich. 

Not too long on the market, the beer can be found all over Switzerland and from what I find from my Swiss friends here it is a beer that is quite popular and always recommended. 

Review: 50cl can of Chopfab Draft: ABV: 4.7% vol 

Chopfab Draft. Quite popular and always recommended Love the all black distinctive can with clear white lettering, stands out. Have read in a Swiss tabloid, that some have complained that it is to similar to the ISIS flag! That and the fact that Chopfab means “Head off”, a reference to downing the beer more than anything else!

On pour get a very clear beer that has a light golden yellow colour, with a small sized head.

Not much carbonation resulting in a head that dies quickly,  all goes very flat.

Not much of a looker. Got a lot in the can, perhaps due to fuck all carbonation.

Chopfab Draft. Quite popular and always recommended Has a real lager smell, also very lemony, crisp and malty.

Nice smell actually, like it, lovely in fact. The yeast and lager smell is refreshing, nice.

On taste, I can feel the alcohol, and it is very sweet but in a nice way. Sweet malts, nice.

It is very drinkable, with a nice creamy back end, not strong to be horrible, light enough to enjoy.

Very easy to drink, very smooth, tasty, get a lot of nice light tastes, creamy, very malty, yeasty, a bit of fruit, all in all a good balance of clean and fresh tastes that go down easy and well.

Very good, smooth and refreshing. Liked it a lot, wonder if it can be got on tap…

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Müller Bräu Dry Stout, Swiss Premium Beer

Müller Bräu Dry Stout, Swiss Premium Beer

Müller Bräu Dry Stout


Brewed by Müller Bräu
Style: Dry Stout
Baden, Switzerland

Müller Bräu Dry Stout, Swiss Premium BeerFounded in 1897 by the brewer Hans Müller, Müller Bräu is a small fourth generation family run brewery located in the town of Baden in North Switzerland. The brewery is still located in its original location, in fact the industrial town has more or less developed around the brewery which is handy as it always has newer thirsty customers to cater for!

Innovative, while at the same time traditional, the brewery uses old style recipes of yesteryear and gets its water from its own spring.

Review: 33cl bottle of Müller Bräu Dry Stout: ABV: 6.2% vol

Bought it in a nice six bottle one way pack, which looked very enticing when I passed the beer stall in the supermarket. 

Müller Bräu Dry Stout, Swiss Premium BeerOn pour get a nice tanned head and a jet dark coloured stout, as expected.

Head does die and eventually goes flat which is a bit disappointing.

No lacing, another disappointment.

Has the expected porter smell that one expects from a good stout, strong on the nose, can smell the aromas of coffee and roasted malts. A nice aroma. 

Got lovely nice creamy mouthfuls, very nice.

Very smooth. 

No standout tastes to be fair, but it’s general smoothness is very good.

Müller Bräu Dry Stout, Swiss Premium BeerIts very bubbly on the tongue.

Dark coffee, and chocolate tastes, and light roasted malts. 

Light aftertaste, very soft with little bitterness.

Funny, no real strong discernible taste but this one is so smooth and soft its lovely, mad!

Can feel the alcohol, the 6.5%.

So overall, it is very smooth and delicious. Loved it and will be checking them out again!!

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Black Pearl Classic Porter

Black Pearl Classic Porter

Black Pearl Classic Porter


Brewed by Distelhäuser Brauerei
Style: Porter
Distelhausen, Tauberbischofsheim, Germany

Black Pearl Classic PorterThe Black Pearl Classic Porter is produced by the Distelhäuser brewery in Tauberbischofsheim, a place I am not even sure is real! According to my good friend Google, it is a southern German town, and a small town at that, in the north-east of Baden-Württemberg on the river Tauber with a population of about 12,700.

The brewery was founded in 1811 as Brewery Womann, but since 1876 it has been owned by the Bauer family.

At the moment, 21 different beer specialties are being produced in Distelhausen according to the old traditional brewing methods of the region and, of course, in accordance with the German purity law (Reinheitsgebot) of 1516.

The Distelhäuser Brewery is one of the most successful breweries in Germany, measured by the number of awards for its products. Its Pils, Wheat Beer, Hefe-Weizen, Landbier, its export, are all amongst a bevy of beers that have won Gold, silver or bronze in the World Beer Cup. Too many to list.  

Review: 0,33l Bottle of Black Pearl Classic Porter: ABV: 6.6% vol 

Black Pearl Classic PorterTo note: the Black Pearl Classic Porter hasn’t won anything in the World Beer Cup!!

Comes in a nice bottle with a lovely looking logo, black writing on a nice yellow background. 

The appearance was one of a lovely frothy tan head, as expected a very dark black beer with hints of purple.
The head does die a death and eventually goes flat near the end.

Flat. Looks all a bit shitty really.

Has a really lovely porter smell, nice. Really good smell, not faint but striking of roasted malts, coffee, dark chocolate, light caramel. 

Black Pearl Classic PorterOn the taste side of things, found it very hoppy!!

Bit dry in the mouth.

Not much to taste, just the hops in the end.

All in the back end, hoppy, no coffee, no toffee, very disappointing, this is meant to be a porter after all. Could smell them on the nose but they vanished when it came to the taste!

Relatively smooth with the roasted malts, but it is a porter and you expect some of the porter tastes and characteristics, or at least I couldn’t detect them

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Tyskie Gronie

Tyskie Gronie

Tyskie Gronie


Brewed by Tyskie Browary (Asahi)
Style: Euro Pale Lager
Poznan, Poland

Tyskie GronieTyskie is a Polish beer, coming from the the town of Tychy in Upper Silesia, in the south east of the country.  The beer has won numerous international awards and is the number one beer brand in Poland, and due to the mass exodus of the natives living and working all over Europe, the beer is pretty much available to buy anywhere there is a large population of Poles. 

Don’t mind the Polish influx this side of the world, nice looking woman, bloody hard working folk and nice of them to introduce us to some of their beers too. 

The brewery in Tychy is one of the oldest in Europe, from 1629, with beer produced continuously for almost 400 years. Originally in German control, it took a while before it was in actual Polish hands, what with the Wars and all against their neighbours, and that’s where it has remained since………..albeit In 2016 the Japanese group, Asahi Group Holdings, acquired the brand from Anheuser-Busch InBev. 

The main brands are Tyskie Gronie (a 5.5% pale lager) and Książęce Tyskie (5.7% classic lager) premium beers.

Review: 500ml Bottle of Tyskie Gronie: ABV: 5.5%

Tyskie GronieNice big brown looking bottle that is a 500 ml bottle, and not the usual 300ml sized one can get, which is all good, that bit more to drink! Like the striking label, which apparently depicts the royal crown of Polish King, John III Sobieski, born in 1629, the same year the brewery was founded.

Based on the original recipe all those years ago.

Head big on pour, a huge white head. Golden clear colour.

Head reduces in size but maintains.

Tyskie GronieBit of carbonation. Not a bad looking beer. 

Get a lot in the bottle!

Lovely smell although a bit tinty and stringent, of light citrus.

Bit soapy on initial taste, a very industrial taste.

Hoppy and too sweet at start. Bit sickly. Not nice.

Creamy mouth feels. 

Ok not really enjoying this. Tasty but not nice flavours. Manageable, just about!

Gave me a bit of a head the next day which I didn’t want or need! Like an angry uncle!!

Will the Polish drink any old shit? Will pass on this in the future, disappointing………..

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Duvel Belgian Golden Ale

Duvel Belgian Golden Ale


Brewed by Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat 
Style: Belgian Strong Pale Ale
Breendonk-Puurs, Belgium

Duvel Belgian Golden AleDuvel Moortgat Brewery (Brouwerij Duvel Moortgat) is a Flemish family-controlled brewery founded in 1871 by Jan-Leonard Moortgat.

Its flagship beer, the highly rated Duvel, is a strong golden pale ale that is exported to more than forty countries. Duvel is Brabantian, Ghent and Antwerp dialect for devil! The story goes that a regular drinker of the beer described it as a real devil to drink, what with the 8.5% ABV, and so the name of the beer was changed from Victory Ale, its original name, to Duvel.  

The yeast used in Duvel is refined from the original strain of Scottish yeast that was bought back by Albert Moortgat during a business tour of the U.K. in 1918. On return he started Duvel. The brewery is still in the hands of the Moortgat family, now in its fourth generation of ownership.

The brewery also produce a variety of different hopped Duvels, some strong Abbey beers, and The Vedett which is a trendy luxury lager, but its their Duvel that is the big seller and main beer of the brewery. 

The brewery has had a successful collaboration in the past with Tulborg, the Danish beer group, which helped it with international distribution lines. 

In 2006, Duvel Moortgat bought fellow Belgian brewery the popular Brasserie d’Achouffe, and in 2010, they acquired 100 percent of the shares in the De Koninck Brewery, another Belgian favourite. 

Review: 330ml Bottle of Duvel: ABV: 8.5%

Duvel Belgian Golden AleLike the cutesy small stubby brown bottle, with the well known Duvel brand. Ideally to be drank in a tulip glass as all good Belgian ales should be, but I am not a connoisseur just a regular beer dude so an ordinary beer glass will just have to do. Sorry!

Got a massive head on pour, gee whiz a very big frothy head! 

Good bit of carbonation, nice creamy white top, took a while to settle. 

Colour was cloudy orange, doesn’t look great at all, looks shit in fact.

Head collapses and dies.

Some good lacing……..

On the nose has that usual Belgian ale smell,  wheat, the yeast, the coriander, floral hops, fruits of lemon and banana.  A very typical Belgian!

Duvel Belgian Golden AleA very strong intense smell, really powerful stuff on the nose….which is too be welcomed as I usually smell fuck all from my beers, lol!

On the taste I found it very strong, with a sour taste, very bitter aftertaste and can definitely feel the beer. Yeast and firm hop bitterness. Very strong, got a powerful kick, alright.

Didn’t initially like it at all, but in the end I liked it, took a while for my taste buds to get to enjoy this beer. Found it a slow burner and not bad overall.

Wow, I was buzzing after the two. The 8.5% definitely kicks in. 

Nice, I like it, strong to drink, but it does the business in the end. 
Have a few of these and you are off your head!!!

One of the strongest I have had in a while.

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