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Pilsner Urquell - Plzensky Prazdroj, a. s.

Not Rated.
Pilsner UrquellPilsner Urquell

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,823 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,823
Reviews: 1,266
rAvg: 3.56
pDev: 16.57%
Wants: 51
Gots: 191 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Plzensky Prazdroj, a. s. visit their website
Czech Republic

Style | ABV
Czech Pilsener |  4.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Bitterbill on 09-10-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,823 | Reviews: 1,266 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by magictacosinus:
Photo of magictacosinus
3.7/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

To be honest, I really should be reviewing this on tap, because I know from past experience that any Czech pilsner - including macro takes on the style such as this one - taste blissful when served as such. But for now, here's my first Pilsner Urquell ever! Poured into a pilsner glass out of a 12oz bottle. It even has an freshness date, which is labeled as April 30/2013. Pretty impressive yet questionable that a sessionable beer could last that long if you ask me... But it is a pioneering recipe, so I'll go easy on it.

Produces a bright-yellow classic pilsner color with a generous 2 finger head, which dissipates over a slower amount of time than expected. Carbonation shoots to the top of the glass in a festive, active manner. Contains a rather watery and very filtered presentation, but nevertheless is pretty much what I'd expect from this style.

Aroma is surprisingly "skunked" - a good way though - and filled crisp, sugar cane pilsner malts as well as grassy and slightly yeasty smells. There's a strong hop backbone present here, which is delightful and offsets those strong malts that would otherwise be predominant. Can't smell too much alcohol here, but if it's there, it lightly compliments the sweetened body. Smells pretty inviting overall, which is definitely a motivation for drinking this as fresh as possible.

It's definitely as malty as I expected it to be, but the initial hoppiness and funk present in the aroma does release itself as strongly as it did in the flavor as well. Both aspects especially come in full force during the aftertaste. I recommend drinking this colder for fans of such flavors, however - as it warms up the malts become pretty strong and bitter, and its slight thinness reveals itself as the carbonation dies down. The hops are slightly floral and grassy, and lemon tart finish is pretty satisfying. As a session beer, this is easy to drink, and doesn't seem to fill you up too much even after two or three.

When I need a to-go beer of the Czech pilsner style, I will pick this up, even though other beers I've had in this style have excited me more in the past, such as Staropraman. I paired this with a pretty typical Eastern-European meal, consisting of roasted beef with baked carrots, potatoes, and onions and strong broth. The chances of me having this on its own, indeed, are slim. It is supposedly a legendary beer, but, just like Guinness, I really wish I could have tried it years ago before it went super-macro.

magictacosinus, Dec 02, 2012
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.53/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice straw color with a nice wellretained head (looks great in a pilsner glass), high carbonation.Aroma in light and a little iron-like with some sofy bread notes.Some rather sharp hop notes in the finish of this beer it starts out a little malty sweet,a very crip and easy drinking beer.Real nice on tap as well.

oberon, Aug 26, 2003
Photo of mojohawk21
3/5  rDev -15.7%

mojohawk21, May 24, 2014
Photo of RoyalT
4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance – This one poured a clear but heavy orange in color with a good, strong, stubborn white head.

Smell – The hops are light and delicate and mate well with the smallest of grain influence. The nose here is well-balanced and nicely put together.

Taste – The delicate but firm grain mixes nicely with the traditional hops. The balance is what really makes this Pils, IMHO.

Mouthfeel – This is big, I’d say a solid medium-bodied, with some light carbonation and an incredibly smooth mouthfeel.

Drinkability – This really is the standard for accessible Czech Pils here in the US. It went down wonderfully. I can’t believe I’m not getting a review up on the site for this guy until Jan 2005.

RoyalT, Jan 11, 2005
Photo of cam477
3.5/5  rDev -1.7%

cam477, Sep 29, 2013
Photo of tectactoe
3.5/5  rDev -1.7%

tectactoe, Sep 09, 2012
Photo of DavyJones
4/5  rDev +12.4%

DavyJones, Jun 04, 2012
Photo of t2grogan
2.5/5  rDev -29.8%

t2grogan, Oct 06, 2014
Photo of MadScientist
4.2/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Straw colored with brilliant clarity and a persistent, low white head of cream bubbles.

S: A moderate grainy pils malt aroma and a light spicy noble hop aroma dominate the aroma. There is a very slight metalic aroma in the background. There is also a light bready malt aroma. No diacetyl and no esters.

T: A refreshing balance grain pils malt and moderate hops bitterness with a moderately-low noble hops flavor. The balance is somewhat bitter. There is a light pils sweetness mid palate but it resolves into a dry finish with a lingering bitterness.

M: Moderately-light bodied with a moderately-high carbonation. There is no warmth and a slight creaminess.

O: This is a good beer but a great example of the style. I wish this beer was served in abundance at the NYS Fair on a sunny, warm day like today. This is about as crisp and refreshing as a beer get while still having a great taste.

MadScientist, Aug 27, 2012
Photo of ArrogantDeadGuy
3.38/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This pils poured a straw yellow with no head nor lace in my pint glass. The aromas of grain, grass, and yeast were all there with strong notions of malt. THe drink was smooth and crisp with a bit of hop finish that lingers way too long. There is a little bit of metal/rusty water in the background that is offensive, but the maltiness does keep the offensive notes in the background. Overall a bit above average and not nearly as good as it used to be when I was drinking it ten years ago.

ArrogantDeadGuy, Aug 26, 2009
Photo of tbryan5
2.75/5  rDev -22.8%

tbryan5, Jan 05, 2013
Photo of theParish
3.75/5  rDev +5.3%

theParish, Dec 07, 2012
Photo of sgoodship
3.58/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Haven't had any quality lagers in years and I wanted to try this one because my brother in-law lived in Russia for a while and developed a taste for it.

A: Nice white finger head. Quickly dissipated to a thin ring and a dusting. Clear with a straw yellow gold color. Nice columns of carbonation rising. Lagers are always so inviting to look at aren't they?

S: Pretty clean. A little skunk, a little malt and a little hop. Not very bold and not that impressive. Smelled more malty during the last half of the drink.

T: Malt is a little lost. Hop seems to come through strongly. Some citrus. You are left with a very grassy sour hop finish. From half way to the end, it felt more balanced. I felt more of the malt up front and the finish seemed to simmer down.

M: Light body, crisp and well carbonated.

D: My main complaint with this beer was how aggressive the aftertaste was for the first half of the drink. I like hops but this was too much of the wrong type of acidic bitterness. Apart from that, I had no problems downing it and found it enjoyable.

sgoodship, Nov 14, 2008
Photo of SkiBum22
3/5  rDev -15.7%

SkiBum22, Oct 23, 2013
Photo of JMD71
3.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

When poured, this had a nice, smallish head with a slightly fruity, malty aroma. It had a nice crisp mouthfeel, smooth malty flavor with a slightly hoppy finish. I found this to be very easy drinking & thirst quenching for a warm day or after long day's work.

JMD71, Mar 06, 2006
Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.23/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From BeerAdvocate Magazine Volume II, Issue I:

This beer went from cult status to mass-produced over the past couple of decades. Even without a recipe change, many have noted a difference.

Clear and deep golden, filtered and pasteurized for extended shelf life. The lacing and head retention of this lager is quite amazing as it leaves a massive crowning ring on the glass and several rings further down. Clean, spicy herbal hop aroma with a graininess that is of fresh cut grass. Very smooth and crisp with a moderately-sized body. Sweet maltiness with biscuity and dried hay flavors. Bitterness from the hops helps to balance the small amount of malt sweetness that is present and goes a bit further with a pleasant spicy herbal note. Finishes dry with a faint metallic taste which is no doubt a by-product of the pasteurization.

A shell of its former self: globalization, growth and popularity all have their drawbacks, and you can see it in today's PU. Processed and overly clean compared to years past, yet still worth a try if you have not tried it before.

BeerAdvocate, Nov 13, 2009
Photo of markallmon
3.25/5  rDev -8.7%

markallmon, Mar 02, 2013
Photo of FadetoBock
3.5/5  rDev -1.7%

FadetoBock, Aug 18, 2013
Photo of danthehopslamman
3/5  rDev -15.7%

danthehopslamman, Aug 10, 2013
Photo of DaftPatrick
3.75/5  rDev +5.3%

DaftPatrick, Aug 17, 2014
Photo of Lazaro
3.75/5  rDev +5.3%

Lazaro, Feb 24, 2013
Photo of BK2084
4.5/5  rDev +26.4%

BK2084, Aug 25, 2012
Photo of Todd
3.25/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12oz green bottle with a foil neck wrap. No freshness date, but there is a batch number.

Appearance: Golden and clear with a lot of C02 activity. The heads stays as a thin creamy lace with bubbles.

Smell: Mild sulfur notes, with aromatic medly of light hop and malt.

Taste: Crisp and refreshing straight from the begining. A nice amount of dextrin sweetness, followed by a lemony tea-like hop flavour. Finishes with a strong aftertaste.

Notes: Claiming to be "The First Pilsner On Earth," this brew is by far the grandfather of the Pilsner style.

Update 12/29/2001 ...

This beer has definitely been altered/modernized, along with its packaging. This is not the same Pilsner Urquell your daddy used to drink. Softer on the palate now with less hop character and its "skunk" character has been smoothed out a lot.

Once the defining Pilsner, now not much different than any other mediocre to average Czech Pils. And, although the beer is brewed at the same location, all of the brewing equipment has been replaced by modern equipment and the hops are now 75% hop extract!! -- no wonder it tastes different now.

Todd, Sep 10, 2000
Photo of twi1609372
3.4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

well this stuff is worth a try. It has an actually good flavor. i wouldent say unique, i still perfer becks for this type of beer, but this is by no means bad. Goes down easy and is all around pretty good. The main sore spot i found was this beer has a lingering aftertaste, more so than most other beers, it isnt horrable but it is noticeable.

twi1609372, May 05, 2005
Photo of SunDevilBeer
3.75/5  rDev +5.3%

SunDevilBeer, Apr 05, 2014
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Pilsner Urquell from Plzensky Prazdroj, a. s.
81 out of 100 based on 2,823 ratings.