S J Klein's picture

Pine Mountain Pilsner

January, 2016
Judges Rating: 
16 / 24
6 / 6
34 / 40
9 / 10
Overall Impression: 
16 / 20

The nose has a sharp matchstick and corn quality. There's a light spice to the hop aroma, as well as light malt sweetness. It's dark gold with a rocky white head and big bubbles that leave nice lacing in the glass. There is a clean, sharp bite to this beer, accentuated by a sharp, sulfidic pilsner character and a sharp, clean, spicy hop profile. It has an almost caramel sweetness in the background, and it finishes sweet with a lingering corn flavor. With lots of bubbles, big hops, and characteristic pilsner sharpness, it's very bright in the mouth, and refreshing all the way down. A nice example of a pilsner with a sharp refreshing bite.

This beer was stewarded by Pete Devaris, a dear friend and one of the most accomplished brewers I know. In discussion afterward, Pete thought it featured hops over bitterness, to its detriment, and wondered "why are all American beers over-hopped?" I disagreed. I thought the bitterness worked in the beer along with the matchstick sharpness and effervescence to lighten up the body despite a very high final gravity. It's a deceptively big beer, and quite nice, even if a bit unusual for a Pilsner.