Tucher Bräu - Helles Hefe Weizen
- ABV: 5.2%
- Bottle Size: 500-ml
- Serving Temperature: 42-47° F
- Suggested Glassware: Weizen Glass, Pilsner Glass
This beer is an old Bavarian beer specialty. Helles Hefe Weizen, literally translated, means "light wheat with yeast." You may be familiar with the term "dunkel," (pronounced dune-kuhl) which means "dark"—the counterpoint to light, helles beers. To fully enjoy the flavors of this beer, we encourage you to pour about 2/3 into the appropriate weizen glass, then vigorously swirl the remainder to rouse and collect the yeasty sedimentary layer at the bottom of the bottle, then finish your pour. Look for notes of melon, tangy wheat, and banana on the nose, with just a touch of clove spiciness and a hint of peach skins. Expect a firm wheat twang upfront on the palate with muted apple and nearly-ripe banana notes, and a late-breaking, very subtle bitter melon-character (like biting too deeply into a watermelon wedge and getting a nibble of the inside rind), moving to a remarkably thirst-quenching, slightly spicy, mildly bitter, dry finish with a little nuttiness. For the perfect weekend breakfast treat, pair with weissewurst. Also works well with wiener schnitzel, pork sausages, grilled whitefish, or mild Indian dishes. Prost!
Germany's Franconia region, which lies primarily in Bavaria, has a well known winemaking history, but the region around Nuremberg has dry soil not suitable to the growing of grapes. Consequently, the German vintner's industry never really gained solid footing there. Wheat-growing fields, on the other hand, have traditionally been abundant, as has a local thirst for sustaining, liquid refreshment. Thus was born a great tradition of regional wheat beer brewing. In fact, the region is home to one of Germany's oldest and most prolific brewing heritages.
You're probably already familiar with the fundamental Bavarian beer purity law known as the Reinheitsgebot of 1516, which mandates that all beer be made with only water, malt, hops and yeast. It's an edict that has guided not only German brewers, but many of the craft brewers in the American microbrew revolution. Fascinatingly, Nuremberg had its own pure-beer law established in 1303, more than 200 years before Bavaria's more well-known Reinheitsgebot!
Tucher Bräu (Tucher is pronounced "took'er") was founded in Nuremberg three and a half centuries ago. It began as an integral member of the wheat beer brewing force in 1672 and for part of its history was owned by Bavaria's royal family. An ancient patrician family who settled in Nuremberg in the 11th century, the Tucher family (or "Freiherrlich von Tucher'schen Familie" for you German purists out there) took over in 1855. Though the brewery has had several owners in the many years since, the Tucher family name has been preserved. The Tucher Bräu brewery actually straddles the border between the cities of Nuremberg and Fürth, and they celebrate their odd “2-Städte-Sudhaus” (2-city brewhouse) by marking the border line throughout the brewhouse.
The brewery produces several different beers including kellerbier and pilsner, but their specialty is hefeweizen, which we’re proud to bring you this month. We hope you enjoy this Franconian specialty as much as we did!
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