Specialty beer speaks to specialty brands, specialty beers list and specialty beers for sale.
Here are a few of the more popular specialty beers. Most of these types can be faithfully reproduced in your own home.
Weizenbier (Weissbier) – Weizen is the German word for wheat. Weizenbier is an ale made wheat. The German word weiss means white. This ale, is a golden color but is cloudy and sometimes casts a whitish appearance. Don’t worry about it being cloudy, it won’t hurt you!
A Weizenbier is a very refreshing, effervescent beer. The taste has hints of cloves and banana. If when bottling, a little yeast is added, the Weizenbier is referred to as a Hefeweizen. “Hefe” means yeast. A Weizenbier has to have at least 50% wheat malt to be considered a Weizenbier. Many times, a Weizenbier is enjoy with a twist of lemon. Try this light bodied, spicy beer in the summertime.
Smoked Beer – One of the more unusual beers is the smoked beer. In Bamberg Germany this style is very popular and referred to as Rauchbier. In this style, a brewer will fires his malt over a wood fire and lets the smoke absorb into the grains. This imbues a smoky character in the taste of the brew. Many homebrew recipes call for duplicating this smoky taste with liquid smoke. A Porter is a good beer for making a smoked beer because of its high malt, low hop ratio.
Fruit/Vegetable Beer – Adding fruit to beer is a relatively new concept in America. However, in Belgium this has been done for centuries. Just about any beer can have fruit extracts or syrups added and they are readily available at homebrew supply shops. With fruit or vegetable beers, there’s no telling what you might find because the different recipes are so varied.
Herb/Spice Beer – Herb or Spiced Beer is very similar to Fruit Beers in that it’s a fairly new trend for American brewers. With the amount of spices available, there are a myriad of recipes to satisfy any urge. As in Fruit Beer, any type of beer can be used as a base for selected herbs or spices. With these types of beers, you can really let you imagination run wild.
One Final Note: There are many other ingredients typically used in specialty beers ranging from coffee to nuts to chocolate and just about anything else you can think of. Sure it’s good to have true beer styles consisting of only malt, hops, yeast and water, but it’s OK to experiment and try something new from time to time.