How Is Prost Brewing’s Dunkel Made?
Since 2011, Prost has used a German-engineered copper brewing system initially built for a brewery in Grafenau, Bavaria in 1963. Purchasing the setup and shipping it to Colorado was an expensive and complicated process. Why not just get brand new equipment made in the United States? The answer to that question relates to what the machines can do for dark lager beers.
Prost wanted a system that could carry out the process of decoction mashing, which gives the Dunkel a unique flavor. Prost’s beers all go through at least stage of decoction, and some go through two or even three cycles. During the decoction process, part of the mash is taken out temporarily, heated to a boil, and then returned to the rest. This longer and more complicated process result in a better-tasting product with full body.
The other critical component of brewing is the ingredients. All Prost elements come from Germany at a significantly higher cost than domestic products. However, this is another indication of the company’s commitment to an authentic German experience. Even the water is unique, as the original Denver location of the brewery sits on top of an aquifer. The water is so clean that it requires very little treatment, though a staff chemist monitors it from start to finish.
How Does Prost Brewing’s Dunkel Taste?
Dunkel is one of several types of dark beers from Bamberg, Germany area. This Franconian version is slightly stronger and drier than the dark lagers of Bavaria. The word Dunkel means “dark,” and the flavor of this Franconian lager delivers on the theme. The color is dark of course and approaching opaque but still transparent. The ABV is 5.6%.
Deep rich roasted chocolate and nutty flavors evolve from the brewing process, and the darker imported Munich grain gives you a smooth malty finish. The moderate bitterness is sufficient to balance out any sweetness you may taste. Minimal hop aroma comes through. Instead, notes of bread and nuts dominate the nose. For the maximum flavor experience, serve Prost’s Dunkel in a becher glass or a stein as a second choice.
What Pairs Well with Prost Brewing’s Dunkel?
Prost’s Dunkel is an excellent choice to serve with a meat and cheese assortment. A slice of aged Gruyere cheese has a buttery flavor that goes well with the roasted flavor of the Dunkel, alongside a protein like pulled pork or game meat.
The character of the dark brew enhances the taste of a sweet or savory BBQ sauce, but a fruit-based sauce is an ideal complement as well. For a casual meal, try pairing the Prost Dunkel with a French Dip sandwich. Steak with a bright horseradish sauce is also a delicious choice, and for something sweet that works well with the Dunkel, try a recipe with a dark chocolate base.
Where Can I Try Prost Brewing’s Dunkel?
Based in Denver, Colorado, the Prost Brewing company is independently owned. Fort Collins is home to a second facility, about an hour north of Denver. Stop in at the Denver location to try the Dunkel along with other flavors that appeal to you. The Biergarten offers many varieties on tap, including the Dunkel.
Monday through Thursday you can visit between noon and 10:00 p.m. The brewery is open until midnight on Friday and Saturday. On Sundays, you can visit from 11:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. Free tours are available at 2:00 p.m. on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. You don’t need a reservation as all tours are first-come, first served.
Hang with your friends and debate such important topics as lager vs. pilsner or make some new pals at the long wooden tables. Special events happen almost every night, so even if you’ve visited before, your next trip may be completely different.