The Lager Binge Continues

We've been on a lager binge for the past few weeks, a bender I hope to continue well into the summer. It's easy to adopt a “go-with-the-flow” attitude with lagers. These beers are created by a lazy yeast that live on the bottom of the beer as it ferments. After a slow fermentation, lagers are stored in a cold room for an extended period ('lager' means storeroom or cellar in German) so this lazy yeast can finish its work. The long wait is worth it if you prefer a beer with a mellow, understated flavor profile. Lagers aren't spectacular beers, but their understated simplicity makes them ideal for the summer season. Hot weather can mean drinking in quantity, and the low ABVs many lagers exhibit permit drinkers to remain vertical during an extended sipping session. The lower levels of hops typically used in lagers prevent palate fatigue, and don't clash with the hot, spicy foods typically consumed during the summer. Is the lager the ideal summer beer? I don't know, loyal reader, but I'm committed to finding out.


Moat Mountain Czechmate Czech Pilsner

Format Sampled:16 oz can

ABV: 4.9%

Availability: Purchased at Rosemont Market and Bakery.
Tasting Notes: Pours a crystal clear pale yellow with a rapidly dissipating white head. Aroma has apple blossom, and faint sweetness. The initial flavor is nicely balanced. There's a sour-citrus nip of some  hop blossom, subtle, playful, but still punchy. There's a pleasant malt middle that's introduced by the hops, sweet like a bed of fresh straw, and crisp like a fall apple. After the malt dissipates, there's a refreshing snap of acidity – zing! The body is moderate, and the aftertaste is clean, clipped and pleasant. Perhaps a 16 oz can is too small?


Jacks Abbey Craft Lager

Format Sampled: 16 oz can

ABV: 5.2%

Availability: Purchased at Joe’s Super Variety
Tasting Notes: Pours a clear pale gold with an enduring, though thin, white head. Aroma has delicate floral notes, and a distinct white grape character. The initial sip is so smooth and unctuous, I'm concerned this beer will drink itself. The predominate flavor is a mellow malty sweetness. It's sweeter than a cracker, and approaches fresh cornbread – sweet, but in a “grainy” way. The hops are quite faint, and take some swirling and warming to reveal themselves as mildly herbal and lemony. The body is on the upper end of moderate, lending a warming, substantial feeling to this beer. The aftertaste is slightly thicker and sweeter than I prefer, but overall, this is a very quenching, classic lager.


Two Roads Ol'Factory Pils

Format Sampled: 12 oz can

ABV: 5.0%

Availability: Purchased at Joe’s Super Variety
Tasting Notes: Pours a clear, greenish yellow and raises a thin, rocky white head. The aroma is slightly sour and lemon-like, with a faint piney undertone. The initial flavor is bright and snappy, combining a refreshingly sour flavor with subtle hops. It's as if this beer had been dusted with lemon zest! Under the citrus, there's a little explosion of hop bitterness, redolent of pine. The malt is understated, lending some substance to the overall flavor without adding sweetness. The body is light, thin and fluid – lending this a dangerous score on the “chug-ability” index. The aftertaste is faintly, lingeringly bitter. I crave a salty pretzel with the Ol' Factory, just to make me thirstier!

Last modified onWednesday, 12 July 2017 10:32