This beer arrived in the mail about a month after the Gordon Biersch Wiezeneisbock I received. I really appreciate it when breweries send me beers – especially limited edition beers I can’t usually get here in central Illinois – to try.
The bottle says, “This is an intensely hopped, robust Pilsner that emphasizes the noble hops from Central Europe including Hallertau, Tettnang, Spalt, and Saaz. It has been brewed in accordance with the German Purity Law of 1516. Our IPB is naturally carbonated and unfiltered.”
Location: Poured into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass from the 750ml German-made flip top bottle at my home in Bloomington, IL.
Numbers: 6.5% ABV, 50 IBU, 190 Calories
Appearance & Aroma: It’s golden in color and pretty clear. It’s got quite a bit of carbonation in it, giving it an inch (or more) tall, thick, foamy, white head. The aroma is a bready, cracker-like pilsner smell.
Taste & Feel: It’s got a light-medium body and a crisp mouth feel. The crispness masks a slightly bready, cracker-like maltiness up front. In the middle, a noble hop flavor and bitterness enters with earthy, spicy, resiny hoppiness. The spicy hop bitterness steps forward in the finish, leaving the earthy and resin hop flavors in the background. All of the hop flavors balance back out in the hoppy aftertaste, which sticks around for a couple minutes.
Food Pairing: This had a good amount hop bitterness and flavor, and given the German heritage and hops of this style, I’d certainly pair it with German food. The beer is light enough that it wouldn’t fill you up, and would help to wash down some hearty, flavorful German food.
Overall Impression: This was a fairly light, crisp, drinkable beer with some solid noble hop bitterness. For a hophead like me, I really enjoyed the balance of hop flavor and bitterness, as well as the blend of hop flavors. If you prefer hoppiness over maltiness, this is a very solid Fall/Oktoberfest beer for you. I’m glad I got this big bottle, but I could easily drink a liter of it, while thinking about sitting in a beer garden in Germany. Overall, I really enjoyed this beer and would recommend it to other hopheads looking for a drinkable lager beer with a German or noble hop flair.