Glassware: Stange
  • Germany
  • Ale
  • ABV = 4.4 – 5.2% (Normal)^
  • IBU = 18-30
  • SRM = 3.5-5
A light gold German ale with very subtle and delicately-balanced malt, yeast, and hop flavours.


  • Colour^ = Straw to light gold
  • Clarity = Brilliant

Key Aromas & Flavours:

  • Malt = Low; grainy-sweet
  • Hops = None to low; floral, spicy or herbal, if present
  • Yeast = None to low; fruity (apple, cherry or pear), if present
  • Malt = Moderate; neutral to grainy-sweet, possibly with very light bready or honey notes
  • Hops = Low to moderate; floral, spicy or herbal
  • Yeast = Low; fruity (apple, cherry or pear)
  • Perceived Bitterness^ = Moderate
  • Balance = Even; a subtle, delicate balance

Soft, dry and slightly crisp finish


  • Body = Medium-light; smooth
  • Carbonation = Medium

Characteristic Ingredients/Processes:

  • Malt = Pilsner malt; may use a small amount of wheat malt
  • Hops = German hop varietals
  • Yeast = Clean German ale yeast
  • Process = Fermented at cool ale temperatures, cold-conditioned (ie. lagered) for up to a month and served fresh

Historical Development:

Cologne, Germany (Köln) has an ale-brewing tradition dating back to the Middle Ages, but developed the beer now known as Kölsch in the late 1800s to combat the popularity of pale Pilsner-style lagers.

Kölsch is an appellation protected by the Kölsch Konvention (1986) and is restricted to breweries in and around Cologne. Traditionally served in a tall, narrow 200ml glass called a Stange.

Commercial Examples:

Früh Kölsch, Gaffel Kölsch, Sünner Kölsch

^Sourced from the Cicerone Certification Program’s International Certified Beer Server Syllabus (Version 5.0)
All other information is sourced from the BJCP 2021 Style Guidelines

Discovering Beer is not affiliated with or endorsed by the Cicerone® Certification Program.

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