Lenten Fasting

Friday, April 06, 2007

During the 17th and 18th century, Monks relied on beer to fulfill basic needs. Beer was more than a pleasant drink; it was an important source of potable water and nutrients. Followers of St. Francis of Paula (hence, the Paulaner line of monks and the Paulaner brewery, which brews Salvator) came to Munich from Italy help maintain Catholicism in Bavaria. The calendar played an important part in daily monastic life, dictating what was brewed. Twice annually Paulaners fasted for extended periods: the four weeks of Advent preceding Christmas, and the forty days of Lent leading up to Easter.

During these fasts, no solid food was allowed. However, liquids were not restricted, including beer. The often repeated nickname “liquid bread” was literally true in this case; as the Monks worked hard to brew the most nutritious beer they could for these times.

Double Bocks, or, Doppelbocks are huge beers with enough malt packed in them to consider them a meal in its self. Generally having a very full-bodied flavor and darker than other bocks with a higher level of alcohol also. The range in color from dark amber to nearly black. Dark versions may have slight chocolate or roasted characters

Ayiner means that the brewery comes from the town of Aying in Germany. Most doppelbocks, especially the true German doppelbocks usually end in "tor"; hence, SalvaTOR, CelebraTOR, etc. So from the brewery in Aying, Germany, we are treated with the finest of doppelbocks, Celebrator:

This brown bottle comes with a plastic trinket goat tied around the neck (goats were associated with bock beers, not Satanism). No freshness date on the bottle, not to worry though as this brew has a longer shelf life that normal beers due to the sugar and the higher alcohol content.

Appearance: Dark and intense, a deep mahogany, with a big, frothy, tan head that lays on top andliterally sticks around as long as the beer is there. Huge, thick, Guinness-like lacing

Scent: Molasses and faint caramel mix with a dark bready, toasty aroma. Slight spicy alcohol, with a barely-detectable herbal hop aroma. It ends with a chocolaty note.

Taste: Huge chewy malt of molasses and toasted bread with a smooth milk-chocolate finish. Spicy alcohol warms the tongue. Not too dry at all. There are tons of residual sugars, lingering dark sugars (like a brown sugar) and fading grain in the end.

Mouthfeel: Incredibly smooth and creamy. Light carbonation lends to a smooth teture. Chewy; syrupy.

OIverall: This is the mother of all Doppelbocks. This is what a doppelbock should strive to be. This is what that shit from Michelob (Amber Bock) wishes it was, but it's not even the same family. This beer is why monks were so happy. Trust me: I'd forego food too if I got to drink this for 40 days straight.


steves 2:02 PM  

You do realize that monks take vows of celibacy and poverty?

Is there any way you could include some guide as to where to get these beers from. I couldn't find the last stuff anywhere.

Smitty 5:22 PM  

The last stuff, the Maibock, the particular Maiboc I showed you, is not available here. I had to trade someone for it. I can't and won't post details of how to do a beer trade on this public blog. Email me, or steves, since we hang out at least once a week, ask me next time we're together.

What you can get here, at the Oades Big 10 on Clippert and Kalamazoo, less than a block from the US 127 overpass, is Stoudt's Blonde Double Maibock. Good stuff.

Ayinger Celebrator is also available there. You should be able to get Celebrator at World Market.

Mike 8:26 AM  

I've always liked Celebrator (plus, I could drink it with a date, because she'd think the goat was cute, as I got soused).

But your implication that any doppelbock is superior to Salvator will not stand. No way, dude, I won't allow it!

They call it The Savior for a reason.

(Meanwhile, the stores in my beer-barren neighborhood haven't stocked a single doppelbock, except for one place that has Celebrator for $4.95 a bottle (!), and another putting last year's Optimator back on the shelf.)

Pissing. Me. Off.

Smitty 8:52 AM  


I'll concede. If Celebrator is the Mother of all doppelbocks, the Salvator is the Father.

We do live in a Patriarchical society...

steves 9:36 AM  

Hell, I'd settle for weird, second cousin of dopplebocks. I'll check out Oades Big 10, but I am not usually in that area.

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