Wakefield CAMRA Homepage                                              Ale on DVD Index                                           Bob Wallis (reviewer)

The Official German Beer Guide (allegedly)

That front cover with the pneumatic bosoms has absolutely nothing to do with this dvd, and you'd hardly call it official, either. It begins with some pretty naff titles and some of that copyright-free music you get on CDs given away with home video magazines. 

Your commentary can be Deutsch or English done by a German in translation-ese. The section on the history of beer is pretty much the same as most US microbreweries put on their websites, although there are some nice medieval etchings. The grammatical structures and word order tend to be German and the guy has obviously been relying on his dictionary too much. "The monks sent a probe of beer to the Pope", or "the mid 19th Century genial invention of a cooling machine" and the word "cook" being used for boil. There's often fast music for slow action, too. 

It's poor on the malting process--plenty of dials pipes and knobs but no sign of sprouted grains - nothing of the Bamberger Mälzerei but a lorry, a building and a man lifting sacks. At the world famous Mahr's brewery you just get the head brewery droning in an embarrassed monotone - a skilled interviewer would have brought out the passion that such a guy must surely have. 

Next there's an excruciating and sadly unedited beertasting session. How can one do proper beertasting whilst smoking an enormous cigar, too?

It's barely the stuff of local tv, and I kept thinking that my own amateur video was often better. There are a few interesting bits, and it's usually only priced between £7 and £8.

  ©RKW  from the Autumn 2009 edition of O-to-K