German-Style Koelsch – German Origin Ale Styles

German-Style Koelsch Style

  • Color: Straw to gold
  • Clarity: Chill haze should not be present
  • Perceived Malt Aroma & Flavor: Malt character is very low to low with soft sweetness. Caramel character should not be present.
  • Perceived Hop Aroma & Flavor: Low, and if present, should express noble hop character.
  • Perceived Bitterness: Medium to medium-high
  • Fermentation Characteristics: Fruity esters are absent to low, expressed as pear, apple or wine-like attributes when present. Diacetyl should not be present.
  • Body: Low to medium-low. Dry and crisp.
  • Additional notes: Traditional examples often display persistent head retention. Small amounts of wheat can be used in brewing beers of this style. Koelsch-style beers are fermented at warmer temperatures than is typical for lagers, but at lower temperatures than most English and Belgian-style ales. They are aged cold. Ale yeast is used for fermentation. Lager yeast is sometimes used for bottle conditioning or final cold conditioning.

German-Style Koelsch Vital Statistics

  • Original Gravity (°Plato) 1.042-1.048 (10.5-11.9 °Plato)
  • Apparent Extract/Final Gravity (°Plato) 1.006-1.010 (1.5-2.6 °Plato)
  • Alcohol by Weight (Volume) 3.8%-4.2% (4.8%-5.3%)
  • Bitterness (IBU) 22-30
  • Color SRM (EBC) 3-6(6-12 EBC)

2020 Brewers Association Beer Style Guidelines used with permission of Brewers Association.

Credit: 2020 Brewers Association Beer Style Guidelines – Ale Styles – German Origin Ale Styles – German-Style Koelsch