Germany: Three leading wheat beer brewers present new seal

Three of Germany’s most established wheat beer breweries presented today a new seal to differentiate their products which are brewed in a traditional two-step fermentation process without further pasteurization from beers which are brewed conventionally.

Beers made by ‘Bavarian precious fermentation’ are refined after the first main fermentation and maturation a second time with fresh yeast and brewing wort before the beers are bottled. The bottling is done without pasteurizing the product. By waiving the heat treatment which often has a detrimental effect on the beer taste, the final beers stay fresher and “can develop their full flavor by maturing a second time with living yeast,” the three breweries state in a press release.

“Instead of sending out the wheat beers immediately after the fermentation process, the beers are stored in the bottle or barrel for up to three weeks. In this way, the wheat beers have time for their second maturation and can develop their distinctive taste and fine sparkling carbon dioxide,” says the statement.

The three Bavarian breweries are all family owned and operated, most of them over several generations. Georg Schneider, managing partner of Schneider Weisse from Kelheim is now running the brewery in its sixth generation. Jeff Maisel, managing partner of Brauerei Gebrüder Maisel represents the fourth generation, and Privatbrauerei Erdinger Weißbräu, largest brewery of the three,  is led by Werner Brombach in the second generation.

When asked, why the brewers expend so much effort, Jeff Maisel says: “Because we can not help it - the love of wheat beer is something we are born with. With our high quality standard and the ‘Bavarian precious fermentation’ we are able to differentiate ourselves also in the future.”

Georg Schneider explains it this way: "We are passionate brewers, already in the sixth generation, and my great-great-great-grandfather has given me the experience and expertise in wheat beer brewing - together with the determination to preserve a part of Bavarian culture with the ‘Bavarian precious fermentation’.”

Werner Brombach adds: "Why we expend so much effort? Because we are uncompromising in quality. For the pleasure of wheat beer. And because everyone should taste: This is a precious wheat beer!"

The seal is open to other brewers who share the same processing methods, origin and values like the three initiators.

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