Sometimes We Just Stay Home and Drink #17: Einbecker Ainpöckisch Bier 1378, Unfiltered Heller Bock, Einbeck, Germany
Date: June 16 , 2019 —
The Story— Einbeck, with good reason, claims to be the origin of the bock beer style. Supposedly the term “bock” is a Bavarian corruption of “Einbeck,” which, if you’re familiar with heavy Bavarian accents, is entirely credible. There are other alternative explanations, but they’re more entertaining than believable. You can visit Einbeck’s brewery and get a good tour, but you won’t see much left from the 14th century. Today they produce a range of bock beers and most of them are clean and easy to drink. They’re brewed in pretty big batches, but for these styles a key component is aging tanks and Einbeck appears to us to give their beers the time they need.
The brewery claims that “When Duke Erich handed Martin Luther a mug of Einbecker Beer at the Worms Reichstag in the year 1521 Martin Luther called out “the best drink known to man is called Ainpöckisch Beer.” We’re pretty sure that the beer that Luther celebrated was a good deal different from this modern version, but it’s a great story. In the 16th century most beers were dark and cloudy.
The truth is that we’d actually prefer the modern cleanliness even in an unfiltered beer, and we’d guess Luther would as well. In the 16th century it might well have been the best one could find, but today we’re grateful for this clean and easy drinking strong beer.
The Beer– A golden hazy strong lager with chewy malt and a somewhat predictable salty-metal taste from the 6.7% alcohol. The yeast is evident and presents as bread and fruit. It’s chalky and malty and sweet at its core, but the metalish hops manage to create a decent balance as it drinks. The original bock beer was almost certainly dark, but in some ways this may be a bit closer to the original than the very filtered Einbecker Bock that’s more commonly available.
Value — good to very good. You’d pay more for a beer of this quality from a small brewery– if you could find a small brewery that produced it.
Values: “fair” is a good beer at an above market price, “good” is worth the money, “very good” is a bargain, and “excellent” is a steal.
Sometimes we just stay home and drink beer — hundreds of them over the course of the year as we hunt for a new favorite. The searching for the beer of the day never stops, so for a while, there will be fewer travel-oriented posts and just some to-the-point descriptions of beers we’ve enjoyed.
We’re often asked to share our tasting notes on over 33,000 beers; this blog is in answer to those requests. Not all our notes, though. The great beer writer Michael Jackson admirably followed the Thumper Rule, and we’ll try to do the same. (“If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nuthin’ at all.”) All the beers we post are from the top half of our ratings and most are from the top quarter. Of greater value, we think, are the stories behind the beers, and we try to give you enough about the brewery, the style and the places to find great beer to help you on your own beer journeys. At CulturAle Press we try to write books and publish posts that will help you “Drink Well and Travel Safely.”