Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Avery Review #7 - Joe's Premium American Pilsner

Posted by: Tyler Rippeteau

Feb. 28, 2012

I have taken a few months off from posting, so thanks for coming back to check out the latest here at 20 Beers in 20 Nights.  Since my last post in December Beer Advocate has changed its rating system and that, to this point has been the system I have used to rate the beers on this blog.  I will attempt to keep that system intact, at least throughout the remainder of The Avery Project and The Barleywine Project.  When the time comes to move on to the next project I'll reassess at that point.

Anyhow, since I am a bit out of practice in reviewing, I thought I'd restart with an easy one, one of Avery's standards, Joe's Premium American Pilsner.  Avery calls it a “session beer for hop heads”.  Let’s get into this one and see if I agree.

Location: Boulder Liquor Mart
Cost: About $1.75 per can in a 6-pack
ABV: 4.7%
IBUs: 42
Brewery Location: Boulder, Colorado
Style: American Pale Lager
Average Beer Advocate Rating: B+/3.77 – Very Good
My Beer Advocate Rating: B-/3.38 - Worthy
Current Number of Reviews on Beer Advocate: 166
Bottled On: December 2011

APPEARANCE:  (3 out of 5) As the picture indicates, I poured this 12 oz. can into my tall Trumer Pils glass and it foamed up right away.  The initial pour was about 8 oz. and it ended up splitting the glass in half, one half now has beer, the other has a loosely organized and fluffy head that isn’t in a hurry to fade away.  The beer itself is a crystal clear and very pale yellow with a several streams of different sized bubbles popping up from the bottom.

SMELL:  (3.5 out of 5) The nose is not overwhelmingly strong, but it isn’t weak either.  A light lemon flavor and some grassiness come through strongest. 

TASTE:  (3.5 out of 5) Joe’s Pils is quite a bit hoppier than most of its competitors.  Citrus is noticeable, particularly lemon and a touch of grapefruit, but a bitter, earthy grassiness dominates the flavor.  This is certainly a hoppy beer for a pilsner and it provides a bitter bite on the finish that many IPAs cannot even match.

MOUTHFEEL:  (2.5 out of 5) This is a fuller bodied pilsner than I am used to.  It is dry and crisp, yet it sits a little heavier than a typical dry, crisp pilsner should.  The finish also provides a slight puckering sensation that tends to linger on the palate due to a lack of carbonation.

OVERALL:  (3.5 out of 5) To be fair, whenever I taste this beer, I put it up against a true classic in its field – Mama’s Little Yella Pils from Oskar Blues.  7 times out of 10 I think Avery beats OB, but in the pilsner arena, it is all Oskar Blues.  Joe’s, however, is a good example of the style and is nicely hopped for an IPA lover like myself.  It comes up short in the citrus department though, and the mouthfeel isn’t quite what I am looking for in a pilsner.