Year of the Beer Day 25: Jever Pilsener


Day 25 and we head north to the Frisan region of Lower Saxony and the town of Jever, home of this beer. While the brewery, founded by Diedrich König in 1848, is one of many in the region, it did accomplish many feats for a brewery in the northern half of Germany. König found something special about the Jever beer and established his family business and marketed the beer in the region, before he died in 1867. His son Theodor Fetköter took over and converted the family-business into a large brewery, where he was innovative in his craftery. The brewery build a water supply system providing quality water for brewing. Furthermore, he developed special bottles, like this one, to fill with pilseners. And lastly, he spearheaded efforts to advertise the beer, making Jever one of the first beers to do that.  After World War I, the brewery was sold to the St. Pauli-Bavaria Brewing company based in Hamburg, which later allowed the brewery to sell beer under the name, Jever Pilsener. That beer has become very popular in the supermarkets and can still be found today. The brewery itself still operates in Jever but under the umbrella of the Radeberger Group.

I was told that the beer was really good and a great example of a northern pilsener. Therefore, I decided to give it a try. The beer’s appearance was impressive with a clear gold color and a near persistant head. It’s carbination was lively. The aroma was really strong, one of the strongest I’ve seen in a beer so far, with a smell of grain and nut malt as well as herbal malt. While the balance is towards the sharp end, the impression was quite nice because the aroma was typical of a pilsener.

As far as flavor is concerned, this was typical of a northern pilsener with grain malt, earth and herbal hops and some citrus. While the balance was bitter and the intensity of the flavor was strong, the lemony flavor made the pils taste rather nice. Yet if one has not tried a German pilsener and tries this beer, the first sensation can be a combination of bitter, sweet and sour at once, resulting in the taste being spicy and prickly. But it gets better after two or three more sips, and the beer will be one to use for consumption.

Grade: 1,7/ A-  The Jever pilsener is a classic example of a northern pilsener but brewed using innovative methods established by Theodor Fetköter. Because of the special characteristics of the pils, the Jever has continued to craft beer from the Frisan region, thus reinforcing the stereotype that having a local homebase from the beginning produces a good beer. It is not a local beer per se, as it can be found in Germany and other countries, but it is one beer that has a taste that is typical of the region. As northern pils require citrus to make the beer drinkable and not so hard and bitter because of the hard water, the Jever has a bit of a twist that makes it a herbal beer to drink. A pilsner with a twist always makes for a good drink. 🙂

FLFI 500 beer