From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Lager (German: storage) is a type of beer that is fermented and conditioned at low temperatures.[1] Pale lager is the most widely consumed and commercially available style of beer in the world. Bock, Pilsner and Mrzen are all styles of lager. There are also dark lagers, such as Dunkel and Schwarzbier.

History of lager brewing

While cold storage of beer, "lagering", in caves for example, was a common practice throughout the medieval period, bottom-fermenting yeast seems to have emerged as a hybridization in the early fifteenth century. However, in 2011 an international team of researchers writing in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences claimed to have discovered that Saccharomyces eubayanus, a yeast native to Patagonia, is responsible for creating the hybrid yeast used to make lager.[2][3]

Based on the numbers of breweries, lager brewing displaced ale brewing in Bohemia in the period from 1860 to 1870, as shown in the following table:[4]

The rise of lager was entwined with the development of refrigeration, as refrigeration made it possible to brew lager year-round (brewing in the summer had previously been banned in many locations across Germany), and efficient refrigeration also made it possible to brew lager in more places and keep it cold until serving; the first large-scale refrigerated lagering tanks were developed for Gabriel Sedlmayr's Munich brewery by Carl von Linde in 1870. [5]


Gulpener Dortmunder

The average lager in worldwide production is a pale lager in the Dortmunder or Pilsner styles. The flavor of these lighter lagers is usually mild, and the producers often recommend that the beers be served refrigerated. However, the examples of lager beers produced worldwide vary greatly in flavour, colour, and composition.

In colour, helles represent the lightest lager, rating as low as 6 EBC. Darker German lagers are often referred to as Dunkels.

The organism most often associated with lager brewing is Saccharomyces pastorianus, a close relative of Saccharomyces cerevisiae.

In strength, lagers represent some of the world's most alcoholic beers. The very strongest lagers often fall into the German-originated doppelbock style, with the strongest of these, the commercially produced Samichlaus, reaching 14% ABV.