Yeovil Kellerbier (500ml bottle, 4.3% ABV, vegan)
A kellerbier (‘cellar beer’) is a style of German lager that hasn’t been pasteurised or filtered.
Those expecting the usual characteristics of a lager (a clear, golden colour with a thick, foamy head) might be disturbed to see how murky a kellerbier is. This example also has almost no head. This is not the sign of a beer that’s gone off!
Traditionally it was served in an earthenware mug to hide its shameful lack of clarity, so I decide to drink mine in this time-honoured manner. Prost!
The aroma is an enticing mix of honey and yeasty white bread. The taste also delivers on those two flavours, and is joined by a herbal bitterness that starts out subtle, but grows as you take more sips.
It’s more bubbly than that flat surface might suggest, with a smooth texture that makes it eminently drinkable. The finish is as crisp as you’d expect from a lager, that herby bitterness lingering, deliciously, on the tongue.
When it tastes like this, you have to wonder why anyone bothers to clarify their beer. After all, that’s more important – how it looks or how it tastes?
Written by Richard Salsbury