Showing posts with label bohemian brewery. Show all posts
Showing posts with label bohemian brewery. Show all posts

Friday, July 20, 2012

Hope for Pilsner

If you have gleaned anything from the more than 700 posts on Fuggled, it should be, at least, that I love lager. In particular I love Czech lagers, hence Mrs V and I started our annual trip to Florida with a six pack of Budvar last night, at the half way point of our journey, her home town of Columbia, South Carolina.

When I swung by Greens Discount Beverage last night (I wonder if this country has a Trades Description Act, because I couldn't work out where the "discount" came in to it) in the hopes of picking up some cans of lager from the Bohemian Brewery, I made a point to see what Czech lagers they had available, Budvar, Pilsner Urquell and B.B. Burgerbrau Tmave were there but sadly nothing from Bohemian Brewery.

Anyway, recently the people from Pilsner Urquell announced that they are doing something new for the American market - they have started shipping their beer from the Czech Republic in refridgerated containers, and it will apparently be "express shipped". Hopefully this will see an improvement in the overall quality of Pilsner Urquell available in bottles in the States. I also hope that if the freshness of Pilsner Urquell improves we'll see an end to this ridiculous notion that Pilsner style lagers from Europe are supposed to be "skunky", and there are several pro-brewers I have in mind with that comment as well as muppets making uninformed comments on websites that advocate the rating of beer.

In other fairly recent news relating to beer from the Czech Republic, Budvar is cancelling its contract with AB-InBev to import and distribute its quality lager, thankfully there is another importer taking up the contract - and if I may be blunt, I hope they do a damned sight better job at getting the beer into shops and bars.

As I said, we are on holiday for the coming week, so here's to a week of beach and beer!

Monday, December 19, 2011

Fuggled Review of the Year - Pale

For the 2011 iteration of my Fuggled Review, I have decided to stick with the nice, simple approach that I adopted last year. Rather than trawling through the various categories accepted by the Brewers Association for the Great American Beer Festival, I will have 3 beer awards, one each for pale, amber and dark, as well as a blog of the year selection. I will choose a "best of" from Virginia, the rest of the US and then the rest of the world for each category. So without further ado, let's see the nominations for the Fuggled Pale Beer of the Year:
The St George IPA is that most rare of beasts, an American made, British style IPA. It is hopped exclusively with Fuggles and boasting a solid malty backbone, the combination of which reminds me a Seville orange marmalade. Unfortunately there are some who think Fuggles is a "boring" hop, personally I think they have just jumped on the grapefruit/pine resin bandwagon and fail to appreciate the flavours Fuggles brings to the table. Of the various pale beers from Virginia I have drunk this year, the St George IPA has been the most consistently enjoyable, and really what else is important?

Unless you have been cowering under a cyber rock at some dim and distant IP address, you will know that I love pilsner and will go out of my way to try beers availing themselves of that appellation. When a friend of Mrs V and I came to visit us from South Carolina, I asked her to bring me some beers that we couldn't get in Virginia, including the Bohemian Brewery 1842 Pilsener. Simply put, I was in heaven as I drank it. It very definitely hit the spot and ticked all the right boxes for a Czech style lager, decoction mash, Saaz hops, 5 weeks of lagering and easy drinking. Please, please, please would someone distribute them in Virginia!

Each summer, Mrs V and I buy season tickets to either Busch Gardens or Water Country USA in Williamsburg. This year we chose Busch Gardens, and when we went down for the day we stumbled across Sünner K?lsch in their Bavarian part of the park. We sat on a bench with a bratwurst wrapped in pretzel dough and shared the cold, clean, crisp beer between us - it was perfection.

I can choose but one of these three fine libations, and so the Fuggled Pale Beer of the Year is:
  • Bohemian Brewery 1842 Pilsener
So, for the second year in a row a Czech style pilsner beer take the award, still unburdened by financial value though with a modicum of history I guess! As I said in the title of my post about the beer, Americans CAN make good pilsners, it is just a damned shame so few of them bother to do it properly.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Americans CAN Make Pilsner (can't spell it mind)!

Today is a very special day, it is now 3 years since the then Soon To Be Mrs Velkyal became Mrs Velkyal in a wonderful Czech civil ceremony in the New Town Hall in Prague. Of course "new" in Prague is an entirely relative term as it dates from 1419 and was the site of the first of the three defenestrations for which Prague is famed (minor political aside - the sooner the Czechs defenestrate Vaclav Klaus, the better). Tomorrow is then Mrs V's birthday - no chance of ever forgetting either event really - and so her best friend came up for the weekend from Greenville and being a top human being all round, she agreed to bring me a selection of brews which as far as I know are not available in Virginia, or at least not in Charlottesville.

The eagle eyed among you will see a can in that selection. The can is a Czech Pilsener from the Bohemian Brewery in Utah.

I was very much looking forward to continuing my search for the perfect American made Bohemian style pilsner, especially when I read through the information on their website. The website says that they do a double decoction mash, lager their beers for 5 weeks and don't pasteurise their beers. The details on the Pilsener (sorry, using their nomenclature) were also encouraging, just 4% abv, so I am assuming desítka territory, using only Saaz hops and fermented with the same yeast as the old Braník beers.

So how was it?
  • Sight - golden, topped with the firm white head, looks the part
  • Smell - floral, orange blossom, touch of hay
  • Taste - lightly grainy, biscuity and with a good dose of bitterness, tastes the part
  • Sweet - 3/5
  • Bitter - 4/5
The body was medium, perhaps being ever so slightly thin in the finish, otherwise I really, really enjoyed this. That is pretty much my only issue with the beer, but given my experience of American pilsners, I really want to try this on tap as opposed to in the can.

Unfortunately it isn't available in Virginia yet, so when Mrs V and I head down to South Carolina, I will be buying more to put in the fridge, and when we go to Florida in a couple of weeks, taking plenty of cans for the beach. An excellent beer, and I will now have to try the rest of their range!

Beyond January

Dry January is over, but my beer fast continues. Well, it continues until Friday. As a general rule I only drink at the weekend, thus my win...