Pennsylvania Brewing Company Kaiser Pils – 5% ABV
The hills are alive with the sound of flowing beer! For all of you non-German speakers (like myself) the title of this review simply translates to “That is good.” This is what I thought of when I had this selection from the Pennsylvania Brewing Company, aka Penn Brewery. The Kaiser Pils is their take on a German Pilsner beer. I did a review on their Overlook IPA not long ago when I received them in my beer of the month delivery. I will admit I was somewhat impressed, so my expectations were already pretty high on this one. It would be a shame if you get all hyped up on a brewery because of one fine selection only to be disappointed with everything else that follows. Consistency is key in my book. Let’s hope this one shines.
The bottle is adorned with a label depicting a city skyline, and this one appears to be Pittsburgh (as that is where the brewery is based), and up in the sky above is a large crown. This obviously is there for a reason. The etymology of the word Kaiser means “emperor,” which explains the presence of a crown floating above a cityscape on the label. It is very closely related to the word Caesar, its latin counterpart. I’m sure everyone is much more familiar with that word. But we’re not here for a lesson on linguistics, we’re talking about beer. Let’s get to it.
When popping the bottle cap off of Kaiser Pils and pouring it into a standard beer glass (I opted out of a tall pilsner glass, it was in with the dirty dishes) I get a clear light/pale golden hue with a nice white head of suds that had pretty decent retention. Those white suds also leave a nice foamy trail behind as the beer is consumed. The aromas that immediately came were of grains, faint lemon aromas and hops. The more I smell it, the more I get the hops. Turns out there are actually four kinds of Hallertau hops in this thing. Ouch. I can already anticipate this one having some bite to it. With that in my mind, let’s dive in for a taste. But cautiously…
Right off the bat, the cool crisp pilsner rushes down my throat, giving me plenty of effervescent bubbly action from the relatively high amount of carbonation. The bubbles seem to dance on my tongue while a faint w0oodiness from the 2-row barley malt gives way before the hops come in for a bitter gut-punch. It’s not overly hoppy and only slightly bitter and fruity, but it makes a statement for all to hear. It definitely made the earthy characteristic take a back seat. This is pretty light-bodied and fairly easy to drink. I will admit there is a sort of metallic tinny flavor left in my mouth at the end of the first pull or two, but it soon fades into obscurity as I continue to drink this and get more hop goodness.
This one finishes kind of dry, but not so much that you look like a parched drifter stranded in the desert for days on end. Overall Kaiser Pils is rather tasty, even if I’m not a huge fan of hoppy bitterness. Like I said, the bitterness is fairly minimal and a zesty fruit character is in there somewhere. I hear that they serve this stuff on tap at or around the home of the Pittsburgh Pirates, PNC Park. If you’re in the area, go give this one a try. You just might bust out the lederhosen and start singing Edelweiss like Julie Andrews and Christopher Plummer. Give yourself a chance to try this one. Cheers!