One man's pursuit in bringing a passion to fruition...

We are perhaps fortunate that there are certain individuals who spend their lives in pursuit of bringing all things pleasurable to others, and one such gentleman who fits this criteria is Ian McGuinn of the Elite Beer Company. 

Ian has held a life long fascination for beer, but one area in particular has become his speciality - Germany.

Fortunately for UK consumers we are now in a position to benefit from his knowledge as he imports some of the most fascinating bottled brews the country has to offer.

This is very good news, as for far to long Germany has only offered sporadic imports to this country of its finest offerings, and often with a lack of impetus, which has led to such beers quickly disappearing off the scene once more.

Ian's experience spans some 28 years, in which time he has sourced some of the rarest brews Germany has available, and gently persuaded the brewers themselves that there is a ready appreciation to be found in the UK for such speciality products


I recently tasted eleven beers from the Elite portfolio and have rated the beers out of 6. 



ALTENMUNSTER WINTERBIER DUNKEL         5.5Alc/vol              

 A well made beer with a firm medium weighted palate and nice hop follow through on the finish.  Rating: 5/6   

ANDECHS WEISSBIER DUNKEL                         5%Alc/vol             

Heady herbal aroma, with a very nicely balanced palate of spice with notes of sweet red pepper. Not overpowering, and rewardingly complex.  Rating: 5/6 


AYINGER CELEBRATOR DUNKEL                     6.7%Alc/vol          

Warming caramel and depth of sweet malt intensity makes for the classic example of the Doppelbock style. Rating: 6/6

AUGUSTINER MAXIMATOR                                  7.5%Alc/vol          

A delicious very smooth flavour with a beguiling drinkability, which showed at it's best when not over chilled.  Rating: 6/6  

 ZWIESEL DAMPFBIER                                           5%Alc/vol         

A fascinating example of a German 'Steam' beer, with clean inviting fruit flavour combined with a firm palate.  Rating: 4/6

FAUST SCHWARZVIERTLER DUNKEL              5.25Alc/vol       

Touch of oat and caramel aromas lead on to a smooth easy drinking Dunkel.  Rating: 3/6 

HELLERS KOLSCH                                                 4.5%Alc/vol          

As with many Kolsch beers the emphasis is on harmony of flavour rather than overt characteristics, and this beer conforms to type.  Rating: 3/6

KARMELITEN KLOSTER GOLD                            5%Alc/vol          

Touch of honey on the aroma, fairly light and delicate in flavour.  Rating :3/6 

LOWENBRAU TRIUMPHATOR                              7.6%Alc/vol        

Notes of marzipan like fruit on the aroma with berry friut and figs on the palate. Not as weighty as expected, and again at its best when not over chilled.  Rating: 5/6  

THURN UND TARIS ROGGEN                              5.3%Alc.vol         

This heady aromatic rye beer leads to a hedonistic combination of flavours, with notes of cloves, cinnamon and spice. The finish is restrained and delicate.  Rating: 5/6

ZWICKEL 'NATURBIER'                                          5.5%Alc/vol         

An intriguing beer that bridges a lager an ale divide. Firm palate with good character.  Rating: 4/6




With particular thanks to Becci Lawrence

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