Thursday, 26 November 2009

The World's Strongest Beer? (not Brewdog...)

...or at least not for long.

I know there's a huge media/blogging frenzy about the latest BrewDog announcement, and I don't usually like to hop on a band wagon, but when BrewDog announced their new Tactical Nuclear Penguin beer this morning , they mentioned the previous record holder, Schorschbräu, who had an Eisbock at 31% ABV; the aptly, if functionally named Schorschbräu Schorschbock 31% (here on Ratebeer).

Living in Germany, my interest was of course piqued, so I popped them a mail to see if it was still available (the usual stores stocking their beers didn't have any), also mentioning the BrewDog announcement. I got a quick reply that told me they were about to release another beer, even stronger, weighing in at 39.44% ABV. And the proof? The image on the right, which is a screen-shot of the lab report they sent me. I believe it will be released in the next month, so I'm looking forward to trying to get some.

I see ratebeer has an entry for this already (it wasn't there this morning), and it's also usefully named Schorschbräu Schorschbock 40%. Mysteriously, another entry has appeared for another beer at 32%.

Schorschbräu looks like a pretty small brewery, and is based in the brewing heartland of Franken. They claim to make Germany's strongest beers, and some of the world's strongest, such as the Schorsch Bock 16 and Schorsch Franconian Wheat 16. I haven't tried any of these yet, but I'm planning to!

I'm sure it's a very different beast to the BrewDog Tactical Nuclear Penguin on many levels, but it'd be nice to compare.


BeerReviewsAndy said...

Intresting stuff mate, i hope you get your hands on some as i cant wait to hear your thoughts!

Eddie said...

Quite a scoop Barry, if you'll forgive the pun.

Mark Dredge said...

40% now that's got me interested! 32% is so this morning, it's all about the 40 now!! :D

I can't wait to try the Penguin. I love Tokyo* so if it takes those qualities and gives more oomph then brilliant!

Barry M said...

I think it's out in December, Andy, so will certainly be looking for it! Their 31% one seems ot have been quite expensive (not sure if it's still available actually), but it seems there were only 250 bottles made. Pretty limited edition!

Eddie, punnage is welcome! :D And thanks!

Mark, yeah, it's like politics, isn't it? :D I have six bottles of Tokyo* in my cellar, waiting on the right moment to open the first. I might even share it! I had thought to leave the rest for a few years, or one a year. And fair play on ordering a Nuclear Penguin (I love typing that). Between the price and the shipping, I can't do it. Looking forward to tasting it vicariously through your blog!

James, BrewDog said...

This beer is not bottled, released or for sale until January. For the moment Tactical Nuclear Penguin is the strongest. This is all we have claimed.

We also had some tested way above 35%, but not enough to bottle.

Barry M said...

Hi James,

This is exactly why I put the words "...or at least not for long" at the top of this piece. I was aware that the beer is not commercially available just yet, but was told next month.

I acknowledge TNP as the world's strongest commercially available beer at this time. :) The other one does exist though.

For the sake of my own honour, I'll repeat here what I said to you earlier. I had no intention of publishing this until the beer was commercially available, but as it suddenly appeared on ratebeer I thought my scoop (as Eddie put it) was gone, and thought to give the context to what had already appeared in public domain.

Still an amazing sounding beer you have there, James!

Stefan - Beer Drivel said...

40%?!? Damn! I really have to get my hands on one of these bad boys.

Barry M said...

It's not going to be cheap. I found their 31% beer on-line (on a site that only ships within Germany, although I think you can order it direct from the brewery) and it was about €55 for 330ml. Proportionally I guess it's about the same as the Penguin, as I believe they only made 250 bottles, compared to BrewDog's 500 at 35GBP each. I'm sure it's a lot of work put into producing beers like this, plus they're of very limited production!

No idea how many of the 40% one they will bottle (probably also 330ml swingtops though).

Erlangernick said...

Huh, looks like it's an hour's drive for me. I shall have to enquire...

I've had one or two of their other beers--I think the "Donner" ones--from a local bottle shop, and I don't recall having paid a shockingly extraordinary price for them. I also don't recall them being that great, just way over the top.

Barry M said...

It looks like their regular lineup (up to the 16% beers) are reasonably priced. Well, I think you can get three bottles in a little Holzkiste for about 20 Euro from

Barry M said...

Well, ratebeer has added and removed the entry for this 40%er twice, so I assume the admins are waiting till it's released (sensible :)). Hence the broken link above.