A few days ago was the 500th anniversary of the Reinheitsgebot or German Beer Purity Law. The law was first introduced in 1487 in Munich, and everyone else in Bavaria on April 23rd 1516. The law stated that only certain ingredients could be used in beer in Bavaria, which resulted in only water, barley and hops being allowed. This law continues in Germany today to some extent, but other ingredients are allowed so long as the finished product is not called beer. The Hofbräu Original is a lager that keeps to the Reinheitsgebot, from a brewery that can trace its origin back to 1589.
Now, on to the beer. The nose is light and slightly malty, with a distinct smell of hops. The taste is relatively rich for the style, being thick and malty. The finish is quite light, slightly bitter, and ever so slightly sweet.
I found the sweet element to the beer a bit surprising, it isn’t too much but was defiantly a part of it I didn’t anticipate. The beer in itself is relatively light, but with flavors that give it a distinctive taste. When I was going through Germany, at the end of a hot day all I could think of was a cold lager, light, refreshing, and slightly flavorsome. Germany does lagers very well, and this is could be considered one of the prime examples of the style. Nothing complex, but sometimes, exactly what you need.
Who: Staatliches Hofbräuhaus München, Germany
Nose: Light malts, hops
Look: Clear light gold
Taste: Rich malts
Finish: Light, bitter hops, sweet
Form Tried: 500ml bottle