Sometimes, the planets are just aligned! What’s that mean? Well, its Summer, and I’m still into beers that are great for summer, and I happened to have a bottle of Brooklyn Lager and Brooklyn Pilsner in my fridge at the same time! Woooo!
OK, its not a BIG deal, but it seemed like the right thing to do – compare two Brooklyn Brewery lagers to one another.
Pilsners and Lagers are also not beers that I usually gravitate toward, and so I know there’s a huge hole in my understanding and familiarity of these beers (which I assume will be revealed to the world in the text that follows). BUT – that’s why The Brew Club is so cool! I get to try beers that I would probably never buy for myself!
Now, just so we’re on the same page, (and correct me if I’m wrong), lagers, if you recall, are a style of beer that is determined by how it is fermented. (Ales are the other main beer category). So, you have lagers, and you have ales. Within the lager family, you have beers that are brewed in the same general way, but use different ingredients. So, a Pilsner is a type of lager like porters and stouts are a types of Ales. Dig?
The Brooklyn Lager surprised me quite a bit actually. You can see it in the picture that is is noticeably darker in color than the Brooklyn Pilsner is. Its an almost amber color, and even a little cloudy in my glass. The Brooklyn Pilsner on the other hand, is what I expected both beers to look like actually. Clear and golden, similar to other more famous pilsners that you see on TV like Bud, Miller, or Rolling Rock.
Brooklyn Lager is labeled as “Pre-Prohibition Style” and perhaps this explains things? The smell is very malty and floral, and it threw me for a loop! I didn’t expect this at all from a ‘regular’ lager. It reminds me just a little bit in the aroma and flavor departments of some Marzens I’ve tried (also lagers). Very malty, and even bready tasting. Quite a nice beer that finishes nice and clean with a surprisingly complex flavor. This is a good brew.
The Brooklyn Pilsner, while not bad, doesn’t really offer me anything that is too interesting to my untrained palette. It was crisp, and certainly more hoppy than the lager was, and it was more bitter and even just slightly metallic tasting and the Brooklyn Pils had a lingering sweetness to it as well. I know that must sound ‘blah’, but actually the more I tried of this beer, the more I liked it! Brooklyn Pilsner really comes together as a nice, simple, clean tasting beer. I like it. Did I say that already?
So, what’s the verdict? I’m not sure really. All I can say is that I really should try more lagers so that I can learn more about the differences in the styles, and the differences between the brands. I will say that the Brooklyn Pilsner is a really tasty beer and would rock for Summer, but the Brooklyn Lager was a nice surprise to me. Malty – bready eaven, its a good beer that earns its place as Brooklyn Brewing’s best-selling beer. Its liketly that I’ll but this one for myself in the future which says a lot. You just don’t see Scott on the checkout line with Lagers in hand.
So, if you’re looking for decent domestic craft lagers, check out what Brooklyn offers! They are both quality beers that would even make great intro-beers for people just trying craft brands. Both beers are familiar enough to not shock anyone, but both beers demonstrate good flavor, aroma, body and looks.
I’m giving them both 3 stars!