Door number nine is extra special because when we open it we have not one but two Christmas beers…
Both treats are dunkelweizens or dark wheat beers. The first is Bob’s Your Dunkel from Mt. Begbie Brewing Company described as a “rich, unfiltered wheat beer loaded with chocolate and Munich malts” and the second is Winter Dunkel described as “a rich beer with toffee, chocolate and orange taste” from Whistler Brewing Company.
Bob pours a deep chestnut brown with a little off-white head. There is a big fruity nose most specifically banana and some cloves. Flavour profile on this beer is a lot of the weizen but not so much on the dunkel that is to say lots of yeasty, fruity notes with just a hint of the roasted malt character typical of a dunkel. There is some sweetness to this beer notes of chocolate and a element of pink bubblegum. It is very clean drinking with a bit of body but I would probably not go so far as to call it medium bodied. At times I find the banana far too pronounced for me (given I do not like bananas this is a bit problematic for me personally). Bob is also one of those beers that while it is released at Christmas it is not the Christmas style I prefer.
Bob’s Your Dunkel scores six candy canes out of a possible ten.
At the start of this blog series I mentioned the difficulty of calling something a Christmas beer or even a winter a beer since there is so much diversity under this label and personal taste plays a huge part in expectations from a Christmas brew nonetheless we will move onto Whistler’s Winter Dunkel to do a little head-to-head ‘dunkeling’.
The Whistler Dunkel pours a very deep reddish brown with good clarity (odd for a weizen) and lots of off-white head (though the head dies down pretty quickly to a bit of lacing on the glass). Flavour wise this one is quite different from Bob. There is lots of orange and chocolate flavour, some sweetness and it is quite light bodied and very thin. On the finish the chocolate taste lingers and there is just a slight touch of bitterness. Not really sure this stacks up as a dunkelweizen since I do not get the wheat beer character like I did with Bob; however, chocolate orange is a pretty stellar combination and one that definitely makes me think of Christmas. I wish the nose on this beer translated to a bigger beer with more complexity.
Whistler Winter Dunkel scores five candy canes out of a possible ten.
It was a tough call on these dunkelweizens for me. If you want a more authentic taste that stays true to the style try Bob’s Your Dunkel but it you want a session like chocolate orange beer try Winter Dunkel and just put a piece of masking tape over the label…