Weinachten in German speaking countries is Christmas Eve and a Weinachtsbier would be a beer to drink on Christmas Eve These are generally bigger, spiced beers. Waldmann Brewery Weinachtsbier (7.2% alcohol by volume) is not a Christmas beer. It is closer in style to an altbier but it is bigger and more flavorful. Altbiers run from 4.3% to 5.5% alcohol by volume and this beer is bigger than that. Altbiers are meant to be drunk young and many imports are way past their prime by the time they reach store shelves in the US. This beer is fresh - it was packaged a month ago - so you capture the malt complexity and flavor. The aroma has a well developed range of melanoidins and a pleasant dose of malt and hop spice. The fermentation character is mild but does suggest traces of fruit. It pours bright brown with the slightest hint of haze under a 3" light tan cap with good persistence and medium lace. The palate is rich and offers up a full range of grainy malt flavors with suggestions of dark sugars, nuts, bread crust and light toast but there is nothing burnt or harsh. Fermentation character is moderate and lingers mostly in the background. Hop flavors are low but a moderate spicy bitterness balances the malt flavors. Malt flavors and darker sugars linger along with the hop bitterness. The body is slightly above medium and smooth wit a medium very creamy carbonation. If I see a crowler of this beer in the cooler at the store, I buy it. I rate the beer 90 and I enjoy it immensely.
Go to Altbier for a brief introduction to the style, food pairing information, recommended glassware, and links to reviews of similar beer.