Sunday, June 21, 2009

Beer Review: Licher Pilsner

Licher Private Brewery Licher Pilsner Lager

Another very generous gift beer.  This is a very authentic German pilsner, I can tell from the untranslated website.  Which has a surprising amount of content for a beer website and if you feel comfortable navigating it you can find some unique stuff  The pilsner pours a light golden color with a very long lasting and fluffy white head.  Lacing is in force here.  Aroma is rich in sweet golden malt and sharp hop spice.  I also want to point out that they use the superior amber bottle rather than the green so often found with imported German brews.  

The flavor is exactly as it should be.  Uncomplicated lager goodness.  I love a good pilsner, the drinkability combined with the sharp spicy hop flavors and smooth malt really can hit the spot. I drink a ton of these in the summer, especially when it's incredibly hot or humid out.  You will find this to be one of the more balanced pilsners with a very noticeable hop flavor.   Definitely on the spicier Saaz hops side of things.  

This is a very high quality classic pilsner and one that I don't think will disappoint.  If I was to pick an area where this brew differed from other pilsners I would again say the hop profile is deeper than most, you really get some bitterness and flavor.  I am not sure how much this retails for but if you happen to find it (not that common yet) it is worth a shot.  

Final Score: 85% (Sharp Spicy Hop Flavor, Rich Malt, High Drinkability.)

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Beer Review: Simpler Times Lager

Minhas Craft Brewery Simpler Times Lager

This is a beer that I have yet to find in stores and the only reason I possess it is due to the generosity of a very beer friendly individual who is often feeding me interesting malted beverages. Nice to see more cans, I like the preservative and lightweight quality of cans. If you are poring the beer into a glass why go with a bottle? The lager pours a slightly hazy yellow color with a quickly receding head. Aroma is interesting with a full full malt profile with a sharp alcohol kick. The surprisingly high 6.2% ABV is noted.

The malt flavor in this brew is one of a kind. I have never tasted anything quite like this. It has almost a fruity malt flavor with possibly a little bit of corn (or corn like) flavors swirling around. Very hard to describe. I wonder if this was brewed intentionally with any "off" flavors to create this unique quality. Almost has the same diacetyl taste you can pick out of a good ESB. I don't taste a large hop presence but I also don't think that would be keeping with the retro lager (real category?) style.

The most ironic thing I find about this beer is that while it describe simple times, the malt flavor is nothing close to simple. If this is just some basic all barley malt lager then I will bow my head and admit I was reading too much into this but I really feel that this is something unique. It is definitely a drinkable lager and one that I would certainly consider getting if I can make it to Trader Joe's. This brew really makes me wish I could taste the extinct brews of yesteryear, Rheingold being near the top of the list followed by Ballantine's IPA.

Final Score: 82% (Great For The Style. Drinkable but Not Boring.)