Brauhaus Nittenau have a brewing tradition dating back to 1762, when I was a mere teenager. Starting as a communal brewery in a wooden hut in Nittenau, Bavaria, it was soon replaced with a stone building after burning down in 1779 – possibly the result of someone attempting to brew something stronger than usual! From 1808 the brewery building came to be known as ‘braune Communbrauhaus’ and was owned by a number of shareholders. These shareholders dwindled over the years while the brewery continued to grow and find success in the region. Fast-forward to 2006 and the company, now under the ownership of the Jakob family, moves into a new custom built brewery facility with modern technology, just a short distance from where it all started. This enabled the brewer to optimise and tweak it’s traditional processes, and bring every part of their business into the modern age. They also embrace the future, using their own photovoltaic system to produce up to 94% of the energy the brewery uses via the Bavarian sunshine.
Brauhaus Nittenau produces a number of alkoholfrei (alcohol-free) beers as part of their ‘Kreativbiere’ range. Lola Coffee Porter is only the third non-alcoholic porter on the market I’ve tried so far, the others being Braxzz (once my favourite, unfortunately the brewer has ceased trading) and Big Drop’s Hazelnut Porter (lacking in both taste and body last time I tried it). So with little competition, Lola has the chance to become Queen of the AF porters. We’ve seen coffee being used effectively in a number of coffee stouts, and I expect it to be similarly at home here, mixing in with the deep roasted grain flavours we expect from such a brew. Time to pop off the bottle’s top and get it in my glass.
The beer pours a deep dark orange, almost black colour, producing a dense caramel-coloured head as the glass fills. This head is pretty stable and hangs around for a good portion of the drink. On the nose we of course get freshly brewed black coffee, but along with this there’s a pleasant amount of sweet malt, with some slight cocoa aromas and even a hint of orange citrus cutting through it all.
On tasting, guess what, we get coffee bitterness up front, mingling well with roasted grains, giving some more cocoa flavours. A touch of dark fruit is discernible in there too, dates and prunes offering some sweetness. The body is smooth and creamy, though it may be on the thinner side of things when it comes to the mouthfeel. We’re left with a slight bitterness at the end of the drink.
Lola Coffee Porter certainly offers up coffee flavours and aromas, as well as the roasted malts we expect from a porter. I can’t really find fault with it, and it’ll be a worthy replacement for my beloved Braxzz porter. On with the coronation, and arise Lola, Queen of the non-alcoholic porters. Long may she reign!
Buy Lola Coffee Porter
Hailing from Germany, you might find Brauhaus Nittenau’s beers harder to find in a local pub or off licence. The internet to the rescue! You should be able to get your hands on Lola Coffee Porter via the following suppliers:
|Nutritional Information (per 100ml, taken from the side of the bottle)
|Water, Barley Malt, Coffee Beans, Hops, Yeast
|Country of Production
|Brauhaus Nittenau – https://www.nittenauer-bier.de/
Lola Alcohol-Free Coffee Porter Review
Coffee and roasted malts mix to make something special. It’s gonna be hard to top this alcohol-free porter.