As I mentioned last week, when I first started drinking craft beer, there weren’t many
available. At that time, I was drinking imported beer, exclusively, until I had that first
magical moment with a craft beer. That beer was Anchor Steam Beer, and that led me to
Sam Adams Boston Lager and, as I referenced last week, Sierra Nevada Pale Ale… and then so many more!
But there’s no doubt that the excellent quality of imported beer helped me to discover the flavor and aroma profiles I love the most. I first gravitated toward European Pilsners. Most adhered to the German Purity Law of 1516 stating that beer can only be brewed with barley malt, hops, yeast and water. Their clean, crisp appearance and flavor made them easy to go to any time I was thirsty for a cold brew. Beck’s and Pilsner Urquell were regular favorites then, and are still excellent examples of the Pilsner style. As I kept exploring, I discovered some amazing English, Scottish and Irish Ales and Stouts: Thomas Hardy Ale, McEwans Scotch Ale, and Guinness Draught, were all beers that I could… and still can…drink again and again.
With the Memorial Day Weekend now here and the unofficial start of Summer, the idea of drinking a cold, crisp Pilsner is so appealing. And if you’ve never ventured into the craft beer world, but are curious, a Pilsner is a great entry style beer. If you’re used to drinking domestic lagers, trying a craft brewed Pilsner will allow you to see how rich and interesting beer can be. And if you’ve been, like me, in an IPA zone, pick up a cold pilsner and enjoy one when you’re cutting the grass or hanging out on a deck this weekend.
Heavy Seas Beer makes Pounder Pils, a wonderful example of the Pilsner style. It’s made with German malts and four European hops and checks in at 5% ABV.
RavenBeer brews Pendulum Pilsner with Bravo and Saaz hops and 2-Row Pale, Munich and Crystal malts. Pendulum Pilsner is outstanding and is a 4.5% ABV craft beer.
Union Craft Brewing’s Skipjack Pilsner uses a German-style yeast, 3 malts, and 3 hops in this great American Pilsner and comes in at 5.1% ABV.
Enjoy an ice-cold Pilsner this weekend and have a great… and safe… Memorial Day
The Craft Beer Guy