Wolters Fest-Bier pours a light coppery-amber color with a nice looking foamy head from an aggressive pour. On the nose, the very distinctive aroma of German noble hops offer a prominent herbal/grassy character. Underlying the hops you’ll find a mildly sweet-smelling pale malt base with lightly toasty notes of crackers and biscuits. These crackery notes carry through on the palate, with hints of paper, bread, a somewhat dusty and earthy lager yeast quality, and a very mild tart note in the finish. This is a perfect beer for a beer festival; some versions of the style lean more toward a fuller-bodied caramel malt character, but Wolters brews their Fest-Bier a bit lighter with a moderate noble hop profile of grassy, herbal, spiciness that is emblematic of so many great German beers, and a great change of pace from the citric and piney hop varietals that we are so used to with American craft beer. Enjoy!
The origins of Hofbrauhaus Wolters can be traced back as far as 1627, when Zaccharis Boiling received the rights to begin brewing and selling his beer in Brunswick, Germany. The Wolters name came into the picture in 1734 when Heinrich Levin Wolters took over control of the brewery, beginning a family dynasty that would continue for six generations. The brewery has been a fixture of the city for literally hundreds of years, with the Duke of Brunswick even appointing Wolters as official beer supplier to his court (in fact, Wolters adopted the Dukedom of Brunswick’s coat-of-arms as their logo which you can see on their beers’ labels).
As was the case for so many breweries throughout Europe, World War II proved a very dark time for Wolters. Much of the city of Brunwick was destroyed by Allied air bombardment, including the brewery which suffered significant damage. Luckily for the brewery, Brunswick was located in West Germany after the war, and as such it was able to not only get back on its feet, but grow and modernize significantly. 1947 saw the reconstruction of the brewery, and a significant renovation and modernization occurred in 1976 to make Wolters a world-class brewing facility.
A long-established regional brewer and supporter of local beer festivals, Wolters has traditionally focused their growth and marketing within the area around Brunswick and within the greater Lower Saxony area. However, they’ve recently begun exporting, and in just two short years they’ve established export markets in diverse countries around the world including U.S., China, Lithuania, Ireland, Romania, and Mexico. Their success is testament to the quality of traditional, all-malt, German beer, and proves there’s a thirsty public out there that demands the good stuff. Prost!
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