Bockbieranstich at Mahrs Bräu – original beer from Bamberg
In the autumn, locals and visitors come together and celebrate the Bamberger Bockbieranstich (tapping of the Bock beer) – such as the one at the long-established Mahrs Brewery. Under the spreading chestnut trees in the brewery courtyard, a bevy of young men and women is gathered together. A DJ is playing music in the background. The youngsters stand in small groups, dancing and enjoying their freshly tapped, malty, aromatic Bockbier out of earthenware tankards. Even though the Bockbieranstich has now become a major social event, there’s still nothing artificial about it, according to Stephan Michel, owner of Mahrs Bräu: “The Bockbieranstich is not some great show, but rather as authentic as it ever was – just a little bit different.”
Mahrs Bräu is just one of eleven Bamberg breweries that celebrate the local Bockbier (strong beer) every year – as do dozens of other regional breweries in the rest of the region. In most cases, the breweries have been in the same families for generations. Many of the old buildings have an equally long history and have been a staple feature of the city landscape for centuries. In many corners of the city the sweetish aroma of malt is in the air – a tell-tale sign of the brewing process.