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Viru - AS Tartu Õlletehas

Not Rated.
ViruViru

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
66
poor

82 Reviews
THE BROS
70
okay

(Read More)
Reviews: 82
Hads: 144
rAvg: 2.69
pDev: 15.99%
Wants: 2
Gots: 12 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
AS Tartu Õlletehas visit their website
Estonia

Style | ABV
Euro Pale Lager |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Suds on 03-31-2006

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 82 | Hads: 144
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.07/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear gold with a foamy beige head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Tiny dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, corn flake, and sugar aromas. Taste is much the same with sweet grain, corn flake, white grape juice, and grass flavors on the finish. There is a very mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an average beer that has a cool bottle, but the beer inside is nothing I would ever seek out again.

Serving type: bottle. (616 characters)

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.5/5  rDev +30.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

underrated, this has all the traits of a baltic region lager, super cold fermented feeling, patient beer, fuller bodied, well carbonated, and drinkable forever. maybe some reviewers have had dated bottles, but when fresh, this is really nice, not a trace of off flavors for a pale lager type, and pretty clean finishing despite all the body. fun beer, awesome bottle obviously, aside from the fact it only hold 10 or so ounces of beer, feeling a little cheated there, but the beer tastes fresh to me, cleanses the palate but still has flavor, and i think its my first beer from the land of estonia, so thats always fun. not sure i would buy it again, but in a restaurant context of macro brews, its a fun bottle to drink. definitely a league above most of its peers. (766 characters)

Photo of BEERchitect
3.5/5  rDev +30.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presented in an oddly charming six-sided obelique looking bottle- slender and elegant, Viru takes on bohemian proportions and weight for a fuller flavor than what's expected from adjunct ridden beers.

Medium gold in color and with a medium haze, the beer carries a visual weight that is more formitble than expected. A foamy white head forms and sits on the beer with solid persistence. Low lacing leads to the lack of character for adjuncts.

Medium apple and pear esters are a nice complement to the hop aroma that borrow notes of lemongrass and floral compounds. All backed by a malty/grainy blend for a well balanced nose. Bready/doughy and yeasty spice tell me that this is better beer than I expected.

Flavors also represent a sturdy malt backbone with raw barley sweetness and starchiness and a non-descript sweetness from cereal grains. Mild ester flavors of apples, pears, along with a light lemon acidity seem to surpress the sulfur taste and allow for a seamless bridge to herbal and grassy bitterness in finish. All in all, a nice but not over stated taste.

Again, a more robust or starchy body gives added creaminess and weight to the beer that never waivers- fuller and more robust than ususal, the beer seems very Maibock-like. But the sweetness lingers in the finish to rival the crisp and bitter dryness that the minty alcohol and hops provide.

Fans of bohemian pilsners and German Maibocks may want to give this beer a shot- robust for a lager and surprisingly flavorful and textured for any beer that includes adjunct grains. (1,548 characters)

Photo of biboergosum
2.85/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Funky, 8-sided pyramidal bottle, like something out of Star Trek or Star Wars, with the actual brewery and beer name (A. Le Coq) embossed near the base, and a much less interesting paper label on the neck, obviously slapped on for overseas treatment.

This beer pours a clear pale straw colour, with a half finger of blink-and-you-miss-it fizzy white head, which is just as spare in its lace rendering. It smells of sweet corn malt, and farmer's field grassiness - wet hay and weeds. The taste is mildly sweet adjunct grains, some buttery alcohol, and grassy, weedy hops. The carbonation is pretty sedate, the body light, buy not overly so, with nothing else of note. It finishes off-dry, warm, and more-or-less clean.

As neat as the bottles is, the beer runs in entirely the opposite direction. Bland, inoffensive, I suppose, and just not worth the novelty. (859 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.03/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

"Viru beer is sold in distinctive tall octahedral bottles. The design is a century old and originates from Russia. It is intended to resemble the medieval-era turrets found in Estonia. The name was changed when the beer was launched in Britain. In Estonia, it's known as A. Le Coq Premium Extra.

--random facts

Haystack gold with lemon juice accents. Few bubbles can be seen blipping up to a decent looking crown of sheep's wool white that lays down better than average lace in the end. Never have I seen a more attractive Estonian adjunct lager.

The nose is pretty much as expected: slightly sweet cereal grains and grassy-musky hops of the Saaz persuation. Not one bit of nastiness lays to rest any fears about freshness or poor quality ingredients.

Viru is pretty good beer considering its area of origin. It makes no major missteps and has the most popular lagers in this country beat by a country mile. Having said that, it still delivers nothing more than the bare bones where flavor is concerned.

What greets the taste buds is pretty much what greeted the nose. The beer is grain-like without being grainy. The grassy-musky-spicy hops give a slight edge to bitterness over sweetness and provide a fair amount of flavor. This is a solid version of the style in all respects.

The mouthfeel grabs the lowest rung of the average ladder as well. It never becomes watery, even on the finish, and is properly carbonated. That's pretty much what pale lagers need to do.

If it wasn't for the distinctive tall octahedral bottle, Viru probably wouldn't have found its way into my cart. If that's what it takes to sell more beer, more power to the brewery. Bottom line: too bad the contents of the bottle don't match the distinctiveness of the bottle itself. (1,760 characters)

Photo of wethorseblanket
2.56/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Unusual eight sided lighthouse bottle. 300ml, best before date of 7/30/14. Oh dear.

A: Pours a clear pale yellow with a solid one-finger thick white head which fades slowly and leaves semi-rings and splotches of lace.

N: Adjunt city - corny, estery yeast, herbal, grassy, faint lemon citrus.

T: Corn based, slightly metallic, yeasty, faint wheat and lemon.

M: Light body and medium carbonation. Semi-dry and semi-bitter yeasty finish.

O: Basic Euro lager. A "premium" Estonian beer. Thank goodness it's premium, cause I don't what to try anything otherwise. (562 characters)

Photo of womencantsail
2.11/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Thanks for sharing this obscure beer, Greg.

A: The pour is a clear golden yellow color with a short lived white head.

S: Smells of chile peppers more than anything. A very green, spicy aroma which is quite strange. Skunk, yeast, and water make up a decent amount of the aroma, too.

T: Sweet and sugary with a definite corn and vegetable flavor. The odd spiciness and chile pepper character is also present. Other than the bad and strange, this is pretty watery.

M: Light in body with a medium carbonation.

O: This was one of the strangest beers I've ever had. And not a very good one. (589 characters)

Photo of TMoney2591
2.73/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Budweiser pokal.

I admit it, I picked this beer up because of the unique bottle. That being said, it pours a clear jaundice topped by a cute finger of bright white foam. The nose comprises light wheat, light corn syrup, and miscellaneous vegetable matter (kinda like sniffing a used in-sink disposal after cleaning a salad bowl). The taste does away with the veggies (thankfully), leaving some watered-down corn syrup, wheat, rice, and a slightly metallic wannabe-bitterness. The body is light, with a light moderate carbonation and a fairly crisp finish. I've had many better from this particular Baltic state. Nice bottle, though. (645 characters)

Photo of BlackHaddock
2.36/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Weird shaped brown bottle, looks like an old style vinager bottle. 5% Alcohol, 300ml in the container.

Poured into one of my Hoegaarden Grand Cru stemmed tulip shaped glasses.

Looks like a lager, light, clear and golden. Plenty of bubbles rising towards a firm white head. Nothing wrong with its looks at all.

As with almost all lager/pilsners, there is not an aroma to write about. Some wheat esters maybe, but not a lot of anything. So my average 3 score goes down.

Dry and cardbord flavour, some dirty laundry with a hint of corrugated iron and rusting barbed wire in the finish.

Why do these beers come to my country? We have enough tat of our own without having to import it. The dryness turns into a metallic nasty, scummy, unpleasantness, that is hard to put into words while bile is forming in your throat.

Not a beer I'll be having again. Only bought it because of the bottle shape. Conned again, I'll never learn! (929 characters)

Photo of tempest
2.91/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was searching for Carolina beers at Chip's Wine and Beer in Kill Devil Hills, NC and found this. I figured I'd never has Estonian beer and gave it a shot. It's basically just another clean continental lager. The aroma has very mild vegetable off-notes, but otherwise it's a simple and refreshing beer. It's no big surprise, but Estonians can make a macro lager as well as any one else. (387 characters)

Photo of HopHead84
2.31/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

6/26/2011

Bottle shared by Greg (stoad) at Sour Fest, thanks! I think I've been subconsciously longing to try an Estonian adjunct lager.

A: An unremarkable but not unsurprising transparent yellow gold with a fleeting white head.

S: Bread and cereal grain with some doughy notes. These pleasant elements are obliterated by a pervasive skunkiness accompanied by corn and a little vegetal character.

T: Lightly sweet with notes of corn, vegetal (faint), bread, skunkiness, and a little spiciness. Finish is clean and unremarkable.

M: Light in body with upper moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is thin and watery.

Overall: Not a good first impression from Estonia. I was expecting more from this country. (705 characters)

Photo of lacqueredmouse
1.62/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Cool bottle. I'm not ashamed to say that I bought this beer for the bottle alone, although the fact that I've never had an Estonian beer factored into the decision as well.

Pours a deep golden colour with huge bubbly carbonation. The large bubbles even stick to the outside of the glass rather than rising to the surface, giving you a good look at just how large and unseemly they are. Head froths then disappears almost immediately. Looks very worrisome.

Nose is slightly metallic and otherwise slightly skunky. If it weren't a brown bottle I'd attribute it to green bottle light strike. Otherwise very little; at its core, it's a very bland aroma.

Taste is also very, very bland. Light metallic hiss on the tongue, minimal malt, but a biting almost chemical bitterness on the back that seems thin and weak, but without any body. It's too noticeable. Really not good.

Yep, pretty appalling brew, this one. Very artificial tasting, thin, weak and unpleasant. (962 characters)

Photo of rhoadsrage
2.85/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

(Served in a strange)
A- This beer pours a pale yellow crystal clear body with a foamy white head that has a slight yellow hue to it. There is a sea of bubbles but that is not enough to keep the head alive for more than a sip.
S- The slightly sweet sulfury hint of an aroma has a faint field corn note when it opens up but it is still very clean and devoid of good or bad aromas.
T- The very faint sweetness fades to a carbonic acid bite in the finish. The aftertaste is also light wit a slight pungent note that is pretty nondescript. There is a dryness in the finish aswell.
M- The light mouthfeel has a big fizzy finish that scrubs the palate of any flavor that might exist.
D- The aroma was stronger than the taste but there is realy nothing to either of them good or bad. It was a bit like drinking carbonated water. (826 characters)

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.07/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a Dogfish Head pint glass. Pours a light straw yellow with a thin film of white foam with decent retention. Typical adjunct aroma of sweet malt, grain and faint hops. Flavor is light biscuit malt with a slightly harsh grain, grassy hops, faint apple juice. Light bodied with active carbonation. A decent pale lager, with a little more flavor and hops than most adjunct ales, but also a little less smooth and sweet. A satisfactory light lager for drinking with lunch but fairly average. Cool bottle. (511 characters)

Photo of flagmantho
3.01/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured from a spectacular Ryugyong-looking 300mL brown glass pyramid into a rather bog-standard looking pint glass.

Appearance: light yellow-golden hue with a touch of haze and a pretty strong effervescence. Head is a finger of frothy white foam which subsided somewhat quickly. It's OK.

Smell: kind of a wet-grain aroma with a little sweetness and a little bit of cooked corn. That said, it doesn't smell disgusting or anything. Just a little mass-produced, maybe adjunct-y.

Taste: lightly sweet malt flavor with a bit of wet grain. Hops are at least discernible, though bitterness is low. Nothing great, but nothing terrible either.

Mouthfeel: light and fizzy; par for the course.

Overall: very drinkable and, aside from the aroma, completely inoffensive. (772 characters)

Photo of wordemupg
2.16/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

300ml funky 10 sided triangular bottle poured into pint glass 1/1/12

A clear straw yellow with loads of tiny bubbles popping up from everywhere but only a short lived thin film of foam after an angry pour no lace

S sweet grains with some sour lemon, skunk and faint grassy hops

T a weird purple grape flavor to go with what I taste, not all that great

M fairly thin but with enough carbonation, bit of a skunky aftertaste

O pretty basic stuff with some off flavors I could live without

cool bottle but that's about it, I doubt I'd bother with this one again (567 characters)

Photo of bluejacket74
2.72/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

10 ounce bottle, date on bottle cap of 07.10.10. The bottle was stored in the cooler at the Party Source, but I'm pretty sure it's nowhere close to being fresh at this point. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a hazy gold color with a half inch white head. The head went away quickly, and there isn't much lacing, either. Aroma is sweet and bready malt. The taste is similar to the aroma, but there's also a weird bitter taste that I don't care for. Mouthfeel/body is light, and it's a bit slick. It's also smooth and goes down easy. For the style it's not a bad brew. Worth a try if you can get a single bottle of it like I did. I might have to try a fresher bottle of this in the future. (693 characters)

Photo of rudzud
2.38/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Purchased one of these cool looking bottles at Julio's. Poured into a Duvel tulip.

A - Poured a crystal clear straw hue with a fizzy one half a figner head that fades to leave a thin halo and light cloud in the middle.

S - Smell is heavily of corn and sweet malts.

T - Taste is very similar to the nose. Drinks more like an american adjunct. Lots of corn and malts. Not much else.

M - Mouthfeel is rather thin and watery. Nothing to it really.

O - Overall, this is quite the subpar beer. I would rather drink an american macro than another one of these. (559 characters)

Photo of avalon07
2.9/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a pale yellow color and a clear consistency. There was almost no head to speak. No real lacing either.

S: A decidedly muted aroma of hops, malt and a grassy quality.

T: Tasted of hops, a little lemon, malt, and the grassiness. Not a whole lot going on with this one. Very thin and watery, without much character.

M: This is a beer in need of some carbonation, though it does have a decently crisp and dry finish. Light-bodied.

O: This is just another bland Euro lager that just happens to come in a cool-looking bottle. (568 characters)

Photo of stcules
2.03/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A pale blond appearance, with greenish edges. A scarce white foam, not too beautiful.
In the smell a poor maltiness, with some bubble gum notes. Nothing inviting here.
Same for the taste. Poor maltiness. At least, it has some bitterness, but, afterall, a beer to avoid.
At least, a quite beautiful bottle. (305 characters)

Photo of Brenden
3.06/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Interestingly, this is the first beer I've bought since I arrived for vacation in Asheville. I got this one at Greenlife.

I was surprised by the appearance. A white head formed over this pale yellow brew and, while it seemed soft, it had some staying power and even left a little lacing behind.
The aroma is light malts and grains with a faint vegetable note. Nothing really to speak of, but not offensive.
The taste is straightforward, pretty similar but with a light malt sweetness to it and an herbal finish.
This beer was pretty smooth actually, though not as crisp as a typical adjunct. In many ways, this reminded me more of a Euro Pale than an adjunct. Just a side note.
This one really isn't undrinkable, and it went pretty well with the pasta salad and spinach cake I was eating on a hot afternoon. (808 characters)

Photo of drpimento
2/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

The best thing about this beer by far, is the bottle. There isn't anything really "bad" about the beer, unless, by bad you'd mean without any character. There are no foul characteristics, but there's not much flavor, aroma, or palate. The head is white and almost disappears quickly with no head. Color is a clear yellow. Aroma is faint world beer. Flavor is the same. Body isn't totally gone, but there isn't much. Hardly any finish. Forgettable except for the cool bottle. (474 characters)

Photo of AgentZero
2.67/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A - A pale, straw color with a hint of orange. Very clear, looks watery. Big white head, didn't stay long, little collar of lace throughout drinking.

S - Sweet grain malts, corn syrup. Actually that's about it.

T - Taste is in line with the smell. This is a pretty sweet, light tasting beer. Malts dominate, if something can be said to do that in such a watered down beer. Not much else.

M - Light, watery, not tons of carbonation.

D - It's fairly refreshing, although some hop bitterness would make it an easy summer thirst quencher. Not offensive, just not real good. Really just bought it for the kickass bottle, which the girlfriend wants to use as a vase. At two bucks, the beer (that rare Estonia tick) seemed like a bonus. (737 characters)

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #37 (Feb 2010):

Malt from Lithuania and hops from the Czech Republic, though the nontraditional-shaped bottle is really trying to set itself apart from the rest of the lagers out there. Pale yellow color and a lesser head than what a lager should have. Not much in the nose other than some dried grassiness from the grain. Massive crispness puts some force on the palate; refreshing. Watery malt body does not have much depth, though stays very clean. Hops are lemony and spicy with enough bitterness to get by. Bone-dry finish that has a virtually immaculate aftertaste.

What it is missing in complex nuances, it makes up for it by being really refreshing. Still, a no-frills lager. (725 characters)

Photo of Suds
2.33/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

After seeing this beer in the local supermarket, I bought it solely for the unique eight-sided slender bottle. The beer itself is a clear golden color. Initially, it presents a bright fizzy head, but this is extremely short-lived, and the beer quickly retreats to flatness. The aroma is of a little malt and distant grains. Not much to impress. The taste is similar, with a sharp carbonic bite and a little metallic tin-ness. Light and uninteresting. The bottle is neat, but the beer inside is completely forgettable. (517 characters)

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Viru from AS Tartu Õlletehas
66 out of 100 based on 82 ratings.