Sean Coughlin's picture

Judge's Review: 94 Rating- Sprezzatura by Arches Brewing

July, 2021
Judges Rating: 
23 / 24
5 / 6
38 / 40
9 / 10
Overall Impression: 
19 / 20

Sprezzatura by Arches Brewing is being evaluated as an International Light Lager (BJCP 2015 Guidelines Category 2A).

The aroma is that of a well-crafted Pilsner – bread dough is front and center with a splash of herbal/floral hops that are bright and fresh. There is a low sulfur note that dissipates quickly as the beer is roused in the glass. The beer is blonde with good clarity but a bit short of being brilliant. An impressively dense mousse-like white head rests atop the beer with excellent retention.

There is notable hop flavor with the first sip – grassy (in a good way) with spicy peppercorn and a hint of red berry. The hop presence is complex enough to keep you intrigued with every sip. The malt of this beer is somewhere between bread dough and white bread with browned crust and is just as enjoyable as the hop profile. Moderate bitterness balances this beer to a fairly neutral interplay between hops and malt. This beer is well-attenuated and helps accentuate the crispness of carbonation without having carbonic bite.

This beer is different than the prototypical examples of the style – it simply is more flavorful than most. It drinks like an all-malt beer and the hop profile is exceptional. This will appeal more to fans of North German Pilsner than it will to American Lager drinkers. Truth be told, it probably is not a perfect match for International Light Lager and would be a better fit to be evaluated as a German Pils. This is the kind of beer that beer drinkers gravitate towards once they have made the jump from beer enthusiast to beer connoisseur.