MALZBIER

AKA:
Malztrunk ("malt drink"), Kraftbier ("strength bier"), Nährbier ("nourishment beer")

Pronunciation guide for English-speakers:
"mull-ts-beer"

Definition:
Malzbier (literally "malt beer") is generally not imported into the United States. However, unlike the similar-sounding American "malt liquor," which is a high-alcohol brew, Malzbier falls into the category of alcohol-free brews, which means, by law, it has an alcohol-by-volume content of no more than 0.5%.

Malzbier is generally dark and sweet. It is produced by brewing a regular, low-hopped, dark beer that could have evolved into a normal dark beer with about 4.8% alcohol. More often than not its is brewed as an an ale instead of a lager. It becomes a Malzbier simply because the brewer chills the brew down to the freezing point before adding the yeast. At this temperature, the yeast remains virtually dormant and fermentation is very slow and sparse, even though there is plenty of sugar for the yeast to metabolize.

Fermentation is the conversion of malt sugars by the yeast into alcohol and carbon dioxyde gas, but in Malzbier, the sugars remain largely unfermented because of the low temperature—hence the brew's incredibly malty sweetness. Before bottling, Malzbier needs to be filtered or pasteurized to remove or kill all the yeast. This arrests all fermentation. For efferevescence, Malzbier then needs to be artificially carbonated.

Malzbier is usually made from malted barley, but it may also be brewed like a wheat beer from a combination of malted wheat and barley, in which case it is called Weizenmalzbier ("wheat malt beer").

Malzbier is usually the first beer children drink as they grow up. The brerw is also popular as an energy drink with pregnant and nursing mothers for its high carbohydrate content. For these reasons, Malzbier is also called Kraftbier ("strength bier") or Nährbier ("nourishment beer"). Malzbier is best served chilled. It is also often mixed with regular pale ales or lagers, or flavored with a slice of lemon, the tartness of which counteracts the beer's sweet finish.

Related beer style:
Alkoholfreies Bier

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