One of the greater things about watching football in America is that most matches, especially those of the EPL, are early in the morning American time, giving people an excuse to daydrink. This is part of our series discussing exactly what to drink when you’re at the pub, presented by our resident homebrewer, Keith
The Beer: Arcobrau Zwickelbier, Arcobräu Gräfliches Brauhaus, Moos, Germany
The Pub: Bridgewater’s Pub, 30th Street Station, Philadelphia, PA
What You Need to Know: Arcobrau in its current incarnation was founded in 1789, from the foundations of the von Preysing castle brewery in Moos, which burned down (with the rest of the castle) in 1619. The von Preysing family finally consolidated their beers under the Arcobrau name in 1960.
Zwickelbier is the lighter cousin of Kellerbier, an unfiltered, unpasteruized light lager that stretches back to the Middle Ages. Kellerbier (quite literally translated as “cellar beer”) is the forerunner to hefewiezen (as the German Purity Law forbade anything but barley, hops, water and yeast going into beer until special dispensation was given to wheat), using open fermentation vessels to acquire the banana and clove esters usually prevalent in a wheat yeast. Nowadays, American brewers will usually roll out a Keller as a summer offering, while the German breweries that specialize in it offer it year-round.
So, About this Beer: Pours a cloudy yellow gold, with a thin white head that quickly dissipates. Minerals heavy in the aroma. Mouthfeel is thin to medium with a scrubbing carbonation that’s quite nice. Citrus and banana flavors dominate the palate, with a very light amount of hop snap to finish off the flavor.
The Verdict: A very refreshing beer indeed. The citrus notes combine quite nicely with the carbonation, and the lightness of the beer makes it perfect for an outdoor barbecue (or waiting for the train when you’re 45 minutes early). Also, the very effervescent carbonation would make this an excellent beer to pair with a thick barbecue sauce. Bring this to your next cookout is what I’m saying.