Genesee Brew House Altbier

Genesee Brew House’s Altbier

Genesee is notoriously tight with info on the labels or cartons, with the exception of these GBH brews, all labeled “pilot batch” and all bearing the signature of a fellow named Dean Jones. And here’s the latest entry: altbier. Apparently it’s German for “old beer”, not as in this beer needs a walker and somewhere to dump its colostomy bag, but old as in this is the way they used to make beer.

Begs the question: why did they stop making beer this way? But let’s not get too deep over a Genny product. Label calls it Dusseldorf Style, and that’s a place in Germany so we’re on the right track. And the blurb on the label’s neck says this is copper colored, and i’ll toss in a nod there, it’s not an ale and not quite dark enough to be in porterland.

Claims to use Munich malt and Hallertrau Noble hops, and these are all German place names, so in theory this should taste just like fine German beer, right? Well, no. But it’s nice and close, for an American beer anyway. It hasn’t got that back-throat tang that real German beers getcha with, and at 5.5% alk this isn’t going to waste you like, ahem, a real German beer might.

So it doesn’t have that tang, but it has a nip of bite, a nod towards Germany from little ole New York, the malt body and hops are balanced quite well, although still a little too sweet for my tastebuddoes, but nearly all Genny beers have that fault, so no big deal here.

What this beer does have is a refreshing gulpability, i could easily see this as a great way to wash down some dumplings which were birthed wet on top of a kettle of boiling sauerkraut and knockwurst. Note the date this is posted, the recipe mentioned above just so happens to be a traditional German New Years Day dinner. Crazy coincidence, since i wrote this review in October, and now i have to make it tomorrow!

So count me as a fan, all of the GBH line are head-n-shoulders above Genny’s Dundee line, and this one is just as nice. Really don’t have any altbier peers to rate this against, so let’s consider it a generic “crafty beer” and rate from there. The color and weight are good, the taste is not hoppily refreshing but maltily refreshing, that’s not a word, but it is now. Slap a 7.7 rating on it’s ass and send it to the kitchen for another platter of wursts.