15 November 2006

An Enigmatic Teuton

It's an odd one, is Radeberger. On the surface this Saxon lager appears to be as good as any other German beer: clear, fizzy, unchallenging but totally delicious. The foretaste has a prodigious smoothness, reminiscent of some very fine German lagers, but after that there's a weird musty bitterness that spoils the experience. The date on the bottle suggests that this isn't a freshness issue, and I've encountered it more than once. What I suspect is that this beer is not meant to be bottled. It is such a delicate flower that anything stronger than the caress of a bar tap upsets the flavour. Strange, then, that the manufacturers flag themselves as an exportbierbrauerei.

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