The smoked beer can be a top-fermented or bottom-fermented beer style. It has an alcohol content of around 4-6% and a color from amber to dark brown.

The name “smoked beer” has its origins in the smoky aroma that the beer exudes in the nose and on the palate. The beer style Rauchbier is, as the name suggests, brewed with smoked malt. During malt production, the still-germinating grain is smoked using beech or oak wood smoke. The wood smoke penetrates the grain and gives it its extraordinary and unmistakable taste. This type of malt is also used in other beer styles, such as porters and stouts , to give the beer a slightly smoky flavor.

The smoked beer is a malt-focused beer in which hops still play an important role. This has to be very intense in order to stand out against the smoked malt and create a contrast.

The smoked beer tastes reminiscent of liquid ham. This means that a Franconian snack platter with smoked ham and strong, intense cheeses is a perfect counterpart to a cool smoked beer

The most famous smoked beer in the world is the Aecht Schlenkerla smoked beer from the Bamberg Schlenkerla brewery .