Brew In Town: Schneider Weisse TapX Meine Porter Weisse

BrewInTown_34Schneider Weisse TapX Meine Porter Weisse

Where in Town: Connecticut Avenue Wine & Liquor, 1529 Connecticut Ave. NW

Price: $12.99 / 750 ml

Beer and Far

Stuck at home this August, I’ve had to settle for the next best thing to a vacation: a beer that took me back to Kelheim, a small German town on the Danube. Schneider Weisse, a well-known Bavarian wheat beer producer, is located in the historic city center, housed in 400-year-old stone buildings adorned with wrought-iron signs, ivy-covered turrets, and flower-boxed windows. The cozy Bräustüberl, or brewery restaurant, has low, domed ceilings and rustic wooden booths. Behind it, over a creek traversed by a narrow pedestrian bridge, sits a beer garden watched over by imposing statues of medieval Bavarian rulers. It is a magical place on its own, but the highlight of my visit was a private tasting with Schneider Weisse’s brewmaster, Hans-Peter Drexler. Among the beers he shared were two from his TapX series of experimental brews.

Dark and Foamy

Schneider Weisse’s latest TapX release is the fruit of an idea that sixth-generation brewery owner Georg Schneider had while in London: a hybrid of a dark, roasty British porter and strong Bavarian wheat bock. Porter Weisse’s frothy cream head is identical to the foam hand-paddled off the tops of the brewery’s massive open-fermenting vats. Aromas of nuts, raisins, and semisweet chocolate chips echo the trail mix I had packed for a long hike along the nearby Danube Gorge. Seven percent alcohol, the brew is full-bodied and complex with layers of rich flavors: dark cherry, fig, molasses, and bitter, almost spicy cocoa. And the finish? Dry with a roast aftertaste that summons the next sip. Like my visit to Kelheim, it was an experience I wished hadn’t ended.

Photo by Tammy Tuck