Tag Archive: Schneider and Sohn


aged-aventinus

Schneider and Sohn: Aventinus: 2013 Vintage Release (Germany: Weizen Bock: 8.2% ABV)

Visual: Deep brown, with overripe banana colour at the edges. Creamy browned head. Lots of carbonation.

Nose: Madeira. Raisins. Cloves. Liquorice. Spiced red wine. Fruitcake. Vanilla caramel. Smooth. Cream.

Body: Massive raisins, brandy cream, bananas and Madeira. Smooth. Lemon sherbet. Orange zest. Cloves. Glacier cherries. Caramel.

Finish: Brandy cream. Orange liqueur. Baileys touch. Port.

Conclusion: An excuse to drink Aventinus again! Like I need an excuse. Still, despite not needing one it is still nice to have one. So – since I’m guessing most of you are aware I have already done notes on the standard, young, Aventinus, then I might as well concentrate on the changes that have happened with age.

So – the first and most obvious difference is the mouthfeel. This is much smoother, feels less carbonated, and a touch lighter. This is a mixed blessing for me – it makes it super easy to drink, especially for an over 8% abv beer, but with that it loses some of the cool, rough, wheaty texture of a young Aventinus.

Then again, I am a fan of my rough edges – which the most of the world seems to disagree with me on – so that may be an issue only for me. However, the increase in intensity and clarity of the flavours and aroma is by far worth it. They are so much clearer and more evident – every one defined perfectly now. The various spirit and wine notes that were always there are now expanded and refined. The banana, raisins and spice that is the core of the beer is added to with slight lemon and sherbet notes. The sweetness has been heightened with vanilla and caramel now used subtly against the forceful front flavours. Everything that existed before has been polished up by the years.

So – flaws? Well, as referenced before it has a lighter body – which can be a touch thin by my tastes at times. From my experience with ageing beers this is nigh always the case with older beers and part of the trade off. They get smoother, but lighter feeling in general. Is it worth it? Well, I wouldn’t want to lose the younger Aventinus for this permanently, but, since I can have both – yes it is well worth either trying to age one yourself, or grabbing one of these as long as it isn’t on a silly mark up over the younger version. Definitely recognisably Aventinus in flavour, but with a different feel and a different experience.

Still the classic. Bulletproof to the years quality wise – different but still awesome.

Background: Yes, I have done notes on Aventinus before. Yes, technically this is just an aged Aventinus so should be under the “Old Beer, Good Beer?” section. However, this is an official release, deliberately held back for three years, then released in paper wrapping. Paper wrapping! Surely that deserves a second set of notes. Anyway, drunk 2016 this is a three year aged bottle of one of my favourite beers of all time. It was grabbed from Corks of Cotham. I was mildly disappointed that under the wrapping it was not the old school purple Aventinus label underneath, but I guess you can’t have everything.

Schneider and Sohn Marie's Rendezvous Tap X

Schneider and Sohn: Marie’s Rendezvous: Tap X (Germany: Weizen Bock: 10% ABV)

Visual: Deep cloudy apricot. Thin off white dash of bubbles instead of a head.

Nose: Stewed apricot. Cloves. Honey. Ginger biscuits. Peppermint. Bready. Iced tea.

Body: Honey to mead. Quite dry. Light peppermint. Stewed apricots. Custard slices and icing notes. Raisins.

Finish: Dry honey. Light custard notes. Cloves. Stewed apricots. Raisins.

Conclusion: I have to admit I was expecting more from this. Schneider and Sohn have a long and proud brewing heritage, and this is a beer dedicated to the memory of that, doing their WeizenBock style. Their best in this style can be complex, subtle and yet still huge in what they provide in flavours.

Now this has the huge part down pat, unfortunately it is less so on the complex and subtle sides of things. Ok, that is overly harsh, there is complexity to it, but it has such a big honey sweet front that it can be hard to detect any of the rest of it. It is very booming sweet mead like at the front, dry mead at the back. The sweetness emphasis is so big that it can make it hard to make out the more traditional weizen characteristics.

If you let it warm, take your time with it then it does reward you by bringing out other notes. You get raisins and cloves that call subtly to the amazing Aventinus, beside that you get a peppermint freshness and a wodge of stewed fruit notes. In the end however, it all comes back to the honey. It feels like a mead beer, but needs to do more with the beer side of that to take advantage of it.

As a thick, sweet, honey touched beer it ok, but for a beer from Schneider and Sohn and a beer that is moderately costly, is a bit of a let down. It has a touch of spiciness that calls to its Weizenbock background, but it feels like it needs more. Something that you couldn’t get from mulling mead. Do people mull mead? Never looked into it…

Anyway, an ok experience but that feels like a let down when you look at what it could be.

Background: I do like like both Schneider and Sohn’s Weizen Bocks, and their Tap X range, so this is right up my alley. It is pretty well known that Aventinus is one of my all time favourite beers, so I wanted to see how this stacked up. Grabbed from Independent Spirit this was drunk with a bit of punk – Bad Religion: Generator to be specific, a fun album from a long time loved band of mine.

Schneider and Sohn Tap X 2015 Mathilda Soleil

Schneider and Sohn: Tap X 2015: Mathilda Soleil (Germany: Weizenbock: 7% ABV)

Visual: Cloudy – hazy ripe banana skin. Massive yellowed rock solid head that leaves lace. Lots of carbonation to the body.

Nose: Wheaty. Dried apricot. Cloves. banoffee pie. Coriander.

Body: Custard and apricot. Wheaty and moderate bitterness. Caramel. Raspberry pavlova. Bubblegum. Madeira oranges. Blackpool rock.

Finish: Lemon. Wheaty bitterness and hop character. Slightly clean air. Bubblegum. Malt drinks. Lemongrass. Dried apricot. Orange. Blackpool rock.

Conclusion: Schneider and Sohn seem to be slowly getting more comfortable with upping the hop levels of their beers. This ones comes in with a huge dried apricot kick over a custard styled malt load while still mixing in the wheat character and the new bitter hop style. All remarkably bright and sunny, though there is a slight malt drink touch that doesn’t quite match the other imagery.

The bright fruit is well done, though feels slightly cloying at times – Also a mix of the thicker texture and occasional higher level sweetness can interact oddly resulting in a nice but slightly sickly mandarin orange notes.

It’s a curious one, with a lot of the artificial feeling sweet notes coming out this – naturally brewed- beer can feel filled with processed sugar sweetness, especially near the end. It is bright and fresh but sugar shock sweet as well. It feels kind of like the beer equivalent of that bright bubbly friend who annoys you before your first coffee, but they are so nice it is hard to hold it against them.

A pleasant, bright experience but not particularly polished. Their hopfenweisse does take some beating on the hopped wheat beer front, and this does not manage it, but this is an interesting change.

Background: Went a bit further afield to grab this one from Corks Of Cotham. They are a bit of a hike away, but have a nice range. It is brewed with a new variety of hops that they had been growing in 2015 and is a tribute to a former head of the brewery. Schneider and Sohn have done excellent weizenbocks in the past so grabbing this was a no brainer. The pour was done in quite a hurry as shortly after I popped the lid the froth started billowing up out of the neck – resulting in just a slightly large head on this thing. Drunk while listening to Ulver: Shadows Of The Sun – that album is beautiful and makes anything near it better.

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