For those who have a hankering for the incredibly tantalizing beer of Bamberg, Germany, then this is the place to be! Take a stroll with the newly completed Brewery Trail, courtesy of the Bamberg tourist bureau who have designed a trail taking you through east and west sides of the Regnitz River, sampling the best German beer in the process. Enjoy the wide range of tastes and flavours guaranteed to excite even the most experimental of palates. So, what are you waiting for? Get ready to explore The Beers of Bamberg, Germany!
Bamberg is an ancient city lying in the heart of Bavaria - renowned for its medieval architecture, market squares and the beautiful rolling countryside of Franconia. Founded in the 10th century, it was an important cultural and religious center, and the city has survived wars, plagues and the Reformation, remaining almost unchanged over 1000 years.
Today this city of 70,000 attracts visitors who appreciate Bavarian history and culture, as well as those who are attracted by some of the best beers created in this region. Locals and visitors alike enjoy the “Bamberg Nine” breweries – each with their own distinct character and flavor – that provide a unique experience for beer-lovers and those who want to experience what Munich has to offer in a more relaxed atmosphere.
In Bamberg, beer production dates as far back as the 11th century, and the city’s small-brewery culture has survived over the centuries. The traditional Bamberg beer, a dark, malty beverage called “Rauchbier” (literally “smoke beer”) owes its distinctive smoky flavor to malted barley dried over open fires of burning beechwood. Regional breweries in downtown Bamberg are known as “The Bamberg Nine”, each producing beers unique to this region of Bavaria. The most popular beers typically include the Keesmann brewery’s feisty Schlenkerla and Heller-Trum, as well as Fässla brewery’s Hofbräu Lager, which has been continuously brewed since 1649.
The Bamberg Nine breweries have their own distinct character and flavor, each producing beers specific to this region of Southern Germany. The styles range from smoked dark ales to blonde lagers, with a variety of wheat beers, including the classic Weißbier brewed with wheat, rye, and spices. Among the popular types of beers produced in Bamberg are Helles and Pilseners, Dunkels, Landbiers, and Schwarzbiers.
At one time, Bamberg was home to as many as fifteen breweries, although now only nine remain. While the breweries are still family-run, some of the newer breweries have their beers brewed outside the city; however, their locally made beers still reflect the traditional brewing techniques of the region. So popular is the local beer, it can be found throughout the region, including Cologne, Mainz and Bavaria.
In addition to being famous for its beer production, Bamberg is also famous for its festivals. The largest beer festival in the city is held on the first Sunday in November and is called “Bamberg Bierfest”. This festival attracts thousands of people from all over the world and is typically held in the main market square of the city. Other festivals include the Beerblume held in October, the Trappist Beer Festival in June and the BeerPong Festival in December.
In May 2010, a modern tourist structure was completed in the center of Bamberg, and they launched “Brewery Trail” walking tours that have been designed by the tourist bureau on the east and west sides of the Regnitz River. The tour begins at the brewery Von Schleinitz and includes stops at some of the most well-known breweries in the city, including Keesmann and Fässla, but also visits some of the lesser known breweries, such as the Spezial brewery, which dates back to 1640.
These tours provide a wonderful opportunity to learn about the beer-brewing process and its history, as well as allowing beer-lovers to taste some of the delicious handmade specialties of the region. Visitors can sample a variety of beers from each brewery, and can also have a meal in the traditional Bavarian restaurants scattered throughout the region.
In addition to the brewery tours, the breweries will often offer visitors a guided tour of their premises and explain the brewing process, as well as answer any questions about the process or the different beers. Visitors can also purchase bottles of beer to take home, enjoy a sample of the brewery's specialties in the brewery's bar and often purchase souvenirs as well.
Moreover, some of the breweries host special beer festivals and “Bier