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date: 15 August 2020


The Oxford Companion to Beer
Garrett OliverGarrett Oliver

is the dark lager style that for many years was the everyday beer of Bavaria. Although it has now been dethroned by helles, dunkel can boast a reign that lasted centuries. The German word “dunkel” simply means “dark,” and most dunkels have colors that range from a deep reddish mahogany to full, rich brown. The flavor profile is malt-forward, often showing notes of nuts, toffee, freshly baked bread, chocolate, and even licorice, but never veering off into heavily roasted coffee-like accents. Hop bitterness is moderate, with international bitterness units usually in the low 20s, and hop aromatics are subtle. Lager yeasts lend these beers clean flavor profiles; they are round and brisk, with a hint of malty sweetness, but devoid of spice or fruit. They are average in strength and rarely exceed 5.5% alcohol by volume. The best of them are wonderfully direct, deeply satisfying, and a great accompaniment to hearty Bavarian food.... ...

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