Bamberg's smoke beer: A passenger on the "Ark of Taste"
The taste of "Bamberg smoked beer of traditional production" is determined by the production of the smoked malt, which has a long and consistent tradition in the city of Bamberg. The so-called green, i.e. still moist, malt is not dried in the smoke-free drying facilities commonly used today, the kilns, but by the hot smoke of an open wood fire in the brewery’s own smoke kilns. Without exception, the beer of earlier times – and not only in Bamberg – had a distinct smoky taste, because the malt could not be dried smoke-free. Only since the introduction of smoke-free drying technology in the first half of the 19th century has smoked beer become a speciality, which has only been able to retain a loyal following in Bamberg. From around 1935, the Bamberg breweries Schlenkerla and Spezial were the only ones who remained true to the traditional way of producing smoked beer, modernized their smoke kilns and each developed them further in their own way. They made a local specialty out of the traditional beer.
There are now a number of breweries worldwide and of course also in Bamberg and in the Bamberg region that have turned back to smoked beer and, thanks to the corresponding special malts, have included it in their portfolio again, attracting quite some international attention.
However, because of their unbroken tradition in production, only the two breweries Schlenkerla and Spezial are passengers on the "Ark of Taste" of the slow food movement.
In any case, the beer is exceptional and always a good reason to exchange ideas about goodness, tradition and craftsmanship. And if the taste of the beer still seems unusual after the first glass, you can rely on this Bamberg wisdom: "The second Seidla tastes better than the first, and the third already tastes better than the second."
Just five minutes walk from the pedestrian zone, the Spezial brewery is an old inn, boasting a cosy atmosphere. It brings you to the source of our well-known smoked beer specialities. Franconian cuisine. Cosy accommodation.
The time-honoured brewery pub pampers you with Bamberg's historical speciality "Aecht Schlenkerla Rauchbier" still tapped from oak wood barrels. Bamberg and its Schlenkerla "smoke beer" have been linked for centuries.