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Knappstein Reserve Lager - Enterprise Brewery (Knappstein Wines)

Not Rated.
Knappstein Reserve LagerKnappstein Reserve Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

58 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 58
Hads: 81
Avg: 3.94
pDev: 15.23%
Wants: 8
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Enterprise Brewery (Knappstein Wines) visit their website

Style | ABV
German Pilsener |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: lacqueredmouse on 11-05-2006

A Bavarian-style Lager.
View: Beers (1) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Knappstein Reserve Lager Alström Bros
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Reviews: 58 | Hads: 81
Photo of joecast
4.87/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

hey!! KRL finally makes it down to the south island.
330ml bottle 5.6%abv. best before 12/07

seriously classy looking bottle. almost to the point of being sexy. pours wonderfully into my waterford crystal pilsner glass (courtesy of the wife on christmas). light golden color with a good inch thick white tightly packed head. good retention. light lacing.
the interesting part is the carbonation. two nucleation sites (thats the term right?) spewing forth different sized bubbles. some very small, the other, rather large.

aroma. the most talked about aspect of the beer. poured cold so it didnt come across as strong as i expected. sharp spiciness and the hoppy wine-like fruits. not really citrus, more passion fruit. really good.
as it warms the sharpness dulls a bit allowing the passion fruit to become more rounded if that makes sense.

great hop presence in the taste. full bitterness and a balance between the hop and malt flavor. this just doesnt quit right through the palate. raw hop spiciness lasts on the tongue.
non-hop heads might find the bitterness a bit much.
they're wrong. it should be celebrated. a public holiday should be named. there should be marching bands and school children should be singing.

smooth substantial mouthfeel. and it needs it. a hearty beer like this should to be felt as it passes into the stomach.

lets be honest. this isnt a beer to be sculled out of the bottle in a race to get pissed. its a beer to be savoured, enjoyed, contemplated.
too philosophical? maybe.
anyway, these wine folk are showing they know how to make a good beer. my only mistake, not getting the four pack.

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Photo of baumaxx1
4.85/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottled beer served in a pint glass.

Appearance -
A very clear, light champagne colour. 1cm head forms, dissipating quickly after a minute or two. Did not leave much lacing. Lively effervescence. Looks clean, sparkling and refreshing. A longer lasting head would have made it look perfect.

Smell -
Immediately upon opening the bottle I got a strong whiff of yeasty Sav Blanc. There was a sweet, wine aroma, with floral and fruity notes. It had fruit cake-like qualities, and was very enticing.

Taste -
As per the smell, there are white wine qualities to this beer and more than a hint of white grapes in the overall flavour. Citrus and toffee notes are also present. There's predominantly a malty sweetness on the first sip, but it finishes with a bitterness and hop dryness in the after-taste. A bit more of an alcohol taste is also present compared to the usual largers on offer locally, reflected by the higher alcohol content. Most definitely a beer, but it's vineyard heritage is evident. Very refreshing, with enough character and flavour to keep you coming back.

Mouthfeel -
A lively effervescence produces a sharp, tingling sensation on the tongue. A clean feeling beer, that froths slightly when chewed. Moderate-light body. Easy to drink.

Overall -
A beer lovingly crafted in one of the premier wine-making regions of Australia. It definitely is a unique drop that gives a nod to it's vineyard links. A very sweet, fruity larger with Sav Blanc - like qualities. Looks great, smells great, and tastes great.
A stand-out for me, being refreshing and easy to drink along with having a unique, wine-inspired flavour to enjoy.

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Photo of ykncornelius
4.58/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This is a funny one. I was reading about Knappstein in the Tiger AIrways in-flight magazine en route to Melbourne, and so when I spotted this the following night in a Dan Murphy's, I simply had to pick up a 4-pack.

I'll be frank...I really don't feel like doing a standard review divided up into little sections. Just going to mash it all together. Sorry and/or you're welcome.

This thing is phenomenal. I mean seriously, truly good. It's got literally everything you could want from a pilsener--which, at the end of the day, it is--plus HEAPS of aroma and flavor from the grapes that went into this thing. There's bitterness, there's some hop dryness, there's a crisp and refreshing quality, there's effervescent mouthfeel (extremely fine and bubbly, actually)...but damn, did I mention the vino? Poured into a glass, this beer literally smells like wine. If somebody blind aroma tested me and told me I was sniffing wine, I'd call it a gewurztraminer and feel pretty confident in my answer. The beautiful thing is how delicately-asserted that flavor is on the palate. It tastes like beer. There's citrus and green apple and a peppery bite the moment it splashes on your tongue. Just plain UNIQUE!

Maybe I ought to try a few more winey beers before I laud this as the king of 'em all, but I'm massively impressed. This is going to occupy a permanent place in my fridge for the rest of my time in Australia. Hugely recommended.

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Photo of Bobby12many
4.57/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - Simple and Classy looking bottle. Pours a pale yellow hue with a thin retaining head that sticks around. Spotty lacing is apparent.

S - Slight smell of yeast mixed with a tart citrus note. A good dollop of hops come through as well.

T - Smooth hoppy character with a zesty hint of lemon and grapes possibly. Quite complex for the style. Very unique blend of hops and refined yeast in the finish.

M - Lively, well carbonated with a perfect dryness in the finish.

D - An incredibly sessionable lager. Very tasty, refreshing, and complex enough for the ABV. I hope I have a chance to try some again in the future. ....if I could be so lucky.

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Photo of Decko
4.54/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A - extremely pale clear yellow in the glass. S - beautiful floral and fruity Sauvignon Blanc scent. T- perfectly balanced lager with fruity yeast notes but with a great hoppy finish that lingers. M - good crisp larger with good level of carbonation. O - one of by favourite beers and far and away my favourite lager, whatever exact style thereof it is. Pity it's a bit on the pricey because it's a corker. Could drink it all night as a quality session beer.

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Photo of bhb
4.51/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - The beer pours much like any lager - a gentle crisp white head that persists for a little while, not too long though, and pale yellow, somewhat like a typical macro, but actually deceptive as the rest is quite impressive.

Smell - The Sauvin hops give this a very floral aroma, with grape notes, leaving no doubt as to its origins from the South Australian wine regions. Probably one of the more amazing lager aromas, it's truly crisp and fresh, I could smell it all day.

Taste - A light crisp flavour, with no harsh undertones at all, which still remains even as the beer warms. The flavours in the beer put it in the same category as a white wine - crisp , fresh and I feel this beer would go very well served with foods that would traditionally be served a white wine. Not complex, but the simple flavours are delicious, and make it the best lager I've tasted in this country.

Mouthfeel - Slightly dry, but not overly so. Some carbonation comes off the tongue, giving a little added tingle.

Overall, this is a fine beer, and probably the best Australian lager I've come across. The flavours are light, but the aromas quite amazing. Indeed overall this beer is much better than even most European lagers.

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Photo of Knapp85
4.5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A massive thanks to MrKennedy for sending me a bottle of this! I had been trying to find this online for well over a year and thanks to Owen I am able to finally try this brew!

The look of the beer is very much like a pilsner with a clear yellow color body. The head is very fluffy and actually has a good retention too! The lacing is also impressive for a pilsner. The smell is refreshing and light, with a really subtle sweet fruit aroma. The taste is very refreshing, light fruity flavors with a slight hop bitterness. The mouthfeel is super smooth and very drinkable. I find this beer to be very good all around. It's not like your typical pilsner. I may be looking to get more of this sometime soon.

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Photo of Finite
4.5/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Golden colour. Pours a good almost 1 inch head, disipates over a few minutes to very little of the rocky head with small amounts of lacing on the glass, no head whatsoever after a few minutes. Very very small amount of carbonation visible only a few bubbles. Beautifull Label and one of the nicest bottles ive seen. Like a little bottle of $500 red.

S - Aroma has a hint of white wine smell in it. Label says beer uses Sauvin Hops which are known for thier Sauvignon Blanc flavour which present a wonderfull lemony tone and allow the sweetness of the malt to balance. Floral tones are also strong. Truly one of the best smelling beers that has graced my nose in some time if only it was a little stronger. This really is clever in its use of a hop which relates to the breweries winemaking history.

T - Very powerfull hop tones are up front straight away. Wonderfull and powerfull hop bitterness. My reserch tells me that this Nelson Sauvin hop has a 12-13% alpha acid values. Thats very high and it shows through this beer. Im a bit of a hop head so I really enjoy this kick and the malt balance is fantastic. Label says Bavarian Style Lager, hop growing capital of the world and as such this beer is a wonderfull compliment. My only very small nit pick would be that the malt really takes over from the hops as it warms and the beer really looses its hoppy bitterness in comparision to when straight out of the fridge but I doubt it will last that long.

M - High carbonation which only adds to this hoppy kick. Flavours of the hop aftertaste stay long after the last sip. Very crisp, fresh and sharp.

D - A plesure to drink and a very enjoyable flavour profile. Its a shame this was the last pack because I would go back for more. My favourite Australian beer to date!

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Photo of vancurly
4.45/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What presentation, what a beer !!

No expense spared in the design & labelling. One can definitely see a wine marketer's influence here.

Can a winemaker brew a beer ? You betcha...

A: Pale yellow, tinge of green. White, rocky head, nice lace, bubbles, and good persistence.

S: Fresh, hoppy nose. The variety is "Sauvin", and gives a real fresh, green fruit note. Malt is also evident.

F: Wonderful balance of hop & malt. Good length & bitterness. Stonefruit, touch of grapefruit, lychee, "wild herbs"..

M: Excellent balance, full palate, and bitter length.

O: This beer made me drop everything and SMS my beer mates to head down to Vintage Cellars and get some.

Fantastic....and a part of the Lion Nathan stable too...

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Photo of JohnnyBarman
4.42/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330mL bottle acquired in Canberra in a trade with dgilks - cheers David! - and sampled back on Canadian soil. Despite being in one of the world's largest wine producing nations, I didn't really try a whole lot of Australian wines, as I was all about the beer. But a beer designed by a winery? Sounds amazing.

Pours a light hazy golden, clear and effervescent, sturdy inch of frothy head. Not much lacing, but excellent retention.

The nose is simply fantastic - sweet white wine, fruit (apple, passionfruit, melon, orange, grape), honey, mild grain, a bit of light hops. The sweet alcohol smell reminded me a great deal of mead.

An excellent lager, fresh and fruity, but with a clean hop finish to maintain its "beeriness." The wine flavors are terrific, nice and sweet, complimenting the malt quite nicely. Finishes with a dry white wine kick, slightly astringent.

Mildly under-carbonated, but that was probably my fault. Nice and light, refreshing, dryness lingers on the tongue.

Brilliant stuff, among my favorites of the entire trip. I've usually had good luck with brews from places that are primarily wineries, and this was no exception. Takes the best parts of a German Pils and an Aussie Cab-Sauv and the end product is greater than its sum. A must try.

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Photo of wordemupg
4.36/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

330ml bottle poured into pint glass 15/8/12 thanks Mikey for lugging this one across the Pacific
-from notes

A clear pale yellow with lots of tiny suspended particles being moved around by lots of big bubbles, not much for head or lace though just a thin film and a few random patches of lace

S passion fruit and guava come out right away, floral and tropical notes blend beautifully with the Sauv Blanc notes from the hops, not quite cat piss and gooseberries but I can relate to the grape

T much like the smell with just some faint sweet grains and maybe some papaya, very well done, not sure if this ones would pass for a pilsner in Germany like its listed but its passing for one of the better lagers I've had recently

M light and airy but the bubbles seem too push the beer all around the mouth bringing out the flavor, the finish is the only place where the grains are stronger then the hops and the flavor lingers for ages

O its been a while since I've had a a light lager this good, I'm loving the hop profile and could drink this one all day

I can't say I'm rating this as a German Pilsner because the hop profiles way off, that being said the hop profile is whats making this beer kick so much ass.
thanks again Mikey for this gem, drink this if you ever get the chance

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Photo of pagriley
4.35/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

v. pale with minimal to no head retention
crisp light stone fruit on the nose
Light and fruity again on the palate with an almost wine like quality - you could convince me this was a carbonated aged Riesling - stone fruit, a hint of tropical, with a clean slightly off dry finish
light mouth feel, quite carbonated, with a refreshing spritz

Quaff-able, light and fruity, and very refreshing. hard to justify the price, but it is extremely well made

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Photo of juju7
4.32/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Definitely one of my favourite pale lagers. If more pale lagers were like this the world would be a better place. Quite pale in colour, tight, persistent head. The nose is a lot of fun - grape, lychee and melon with some definite hints of sauvignon blanc. Forunately, flavour-wise not as one-dimensional as sauv blanc. Fresh, dry and again a little grapey on the palate with some sturdy bitterness along for the ride. I just wish these guys would make another beer!

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
4.32/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Very excited to get to try this on tap the the Local Taphouse in Sydney recently, as part of their feature on the top 10 beers from the Critics' Choice book. Usually, it's only ever available on tap at the brewery, so I thought it was worth a look.

Pours a very pale and very clear yellow colour, with a white, filmy and collapsing head. Carbonation doesn't seem quite as rampant as in bottles, but it's still bright and fresh looking. Lovely.

Nose is clean and fresh, perhaps slightly less pungent than in bottles, but that could be due to a whole range of things. Still that classic Sauvignon Blanc-grape gooseberry, green capsicum and passionfruit aroma making a swirling, delicious mélange. Gorgeous.

Taste is clean and fresh, with a very slight hint of pilsnery grain on the back, but mostly laced with those fresh Sauvin hop characters which give this its unique, clean and refreshing profile. Feel is light but clean, yeah, I think the carbonation level is about the only major difference I can tell in this from the bottled version.

The good news? This is almost identical to the beer we can regularly get in bottles. I held out hope that an outstanding beer like Knappstein could be even better on-tap, but I'm glad I won't be regularly crying into my bottled Knappstein: "But the draught version was so much better!"

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4.3/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine March 2007.

What happens when an Australian winemaker becomes a brewer? Let's find out.

Pours a clear, pale yellow; somewhat still and dense in appearance, with a thick white lacing. Unexpectedly fruity in the nose, with some melon, grape, and light herbal notes; clean overall though. Very smooth on the palate. Malty, fruity, medium bodied, rounded and even. Sweetness is light but present and provides some depth; something to lean on. The fruitiness emerges with suggestions of nectarine and lychee. Spicy, tingly noble hop character. Quite hoppy and playful, with complex herbal and floral notes. Perfectly balanced. Some white grapes in the creeping dryness. Lingering herbal spice, melon, and faint vegetal in the finish.

Very German Export Lager-esque, but with a unique nod to a Sauvignon Blanc, no doubt thanks to Knappstein's use of Sauvin hops. Bold, lively, and re- freshing, this is an excellent offering and a must-try beer for the Lager connois- seur. We look forward to future beers from these guys.

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Photo of Cs1987
4.27/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Light gold, with two fingers of head that reduced gradually.

Smell - Strong, quite similar to white wine.

Taste - Surprisingly hoppy, again with white wine and other fruity characteristics.

Mouthfeel - Very good all round.

Drinkability - Easy to drink and quite addictive.

Overall - For those who have no respect for Australian lagers, think again, because this one's a beauty.

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Photo of Zimbob
4.27/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a unique beer compared to the US and typical Australian markets. Truly shares features of a white wine, although clearly a beer, the aroma suggests a yeasty Chardonnay.

Color dark gold, clear and untroubled. Pours with almost no head, little/no carbonation - would think it was flat but for the explanation on the label that "wine and brewer skills combine to craft this lager bearing the imprint of the Clare Valley".

A tiny bit of cling in the mouth. Flavor full of flower, yeast, A little cheese, some notes of alcohol but much softer than a wine. A- 

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Photo of Parrotshake
4.23/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Seeing this in more and more bottle shops of late, which is definitely a good thing as it's one of a scant handful of really good Aussie lagers.

Pours clear and lightly golden. Head dissipates pretty quickly. Nothing magical going on, but in some cases it's best not to judge a book by it's cover, right? That goes for the packaging too, which could be a turn-off for folks who are only willing to drink lagers featured in commercials featuring hairy dudes lifting heavy things.

Smells amazing. Flowers, passionfruit, crushed white grapes, maybe a little pine. I was unfamiliar with Sauvin hops until just 3 days ago when I went to a Barons tasting event and tried their limited batch Hop Mother pale ale utilising Sauvins, which I also really enjoyed - my hat goes off to these guys for making good use of them too.

Tastes not dissimilar to how it smells. Perhaps a bit floral/sweet/"girly" for some, but backed up with a manly bitterness that lingers for a while, but not obtrusively so. Really well-balanced. Mouthfeel is the platonic ideal of crisp and smooth.

I had one to start and eagerly anticipated the next, but I'm not sure how much more I'd want after that. It's fantastic, there's maybe just too much going on. I'd have no problem drinking blander lagers all day & night, but perhaps this one needs to be savoured and respected. On a hotter day, I suspect I'd change my mind.

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Photo of Deuane
4.22/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow...a rarity for me from down under. Thanks to nyctreal for the hook-up on this one!

Excited to see the use of Sauvin hops. The only other beer I knowingly had made with this hop was an IPA from Sly Fox during the 2007 IPA Project. It was my personal IPA pick of the year!

A-Slighty hazy golden yellow with a thin bright white head.

S-Fantastically fruity-Almost like a stainless steel aged chardonnay. Nice earthy mustiness and small notes of citrus.

T-Earthy tones blend nicely with a sharp bite from the Sauvin hops--for a "plain, old yellow" lager this one is loaded with flavour!

M-Med-light with a very nice crispness. Long lasting citrus/foral notes left behind.

D-For fizzy, yellow beer this one is wonderful. Big ups for use of the Sauvin hops. The fruitiness is great in the nose. I would love to have some of this fresh to see if it comes thru in the palate as well when fresh. Great job!

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Photo of jarmby1711
4.22/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Surprisingly pale , it is clear and my beer managed to keep a small head and laced well
Plenty of fruit , maybe kiwi fruit/melon as well as some maltiness.
It is bitingly crisp but finishes soft that reflects the malty biscuits from the nose.
Like a perfect cover drive ,this has balance grace and style, which is hard to qualify ,but you just know it is there.
Oozes class in presentation and consumption

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Photo of dwarbi
4.21/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lovely little bottle, but I will say it looks much bigger in photographs. The head fades quickly and no head retention to be seen. The colour is light, similar to a pilsner.

Beautiful nose. Here's that hop I've read about. Nelson Sauvin. Distinct but it reminds me of saaz, perhaps the poppy-ness.

Big round flavour, kicking all the way to the back of the tongue. Some lingering bitterness, but not too much. Very drinkable.

I wish this were easier to get and more affordable. It would make an excellent summer regular.

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Photo of rowey77
4.21/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours with a decent size head that quickly disappears. Leaves very little lacing. Interesting labeling with a bit about the beer and the history of the brewery.

S - This is the standout feature of this beer. The Sauvin hops gives this a very fresh fruity smell, as would be expected. I get passionfruit, a bit of lemon maybe some melon.

T - For the style, the taste is pretty good. Quite crisp and refreshing with a bit of a fruity tartness towards the end.

M - A very light feeling beer given its 5.6%ABV. I guess the hops hides the alcohol.

D - Good session beer for the sort of weather we've been having here lately (38c).

It's a pricey beer but I guess that's to be expected given that it's made by a winery as opposed to a proper brewery. Some people may criticise them for making a beer to cash in on a growing premium beer market but I think it's a good thing. Could be a good "educating" beer.

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Photo of Macca
4.2/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The reputation for Knappstein wines is well deserved and even though Tim Knappstein is long gone and Lion Nathan now own the joint, the quality continues. This quality is evident in the Reserve Lager. Made by the wine maker it is a great drop.

It pours golden with a good head which drops away.
The aromas are of hops, biscuits and tropical fruit juice.
This continues on the palate and makes for one very lovely and easy drinking brew.

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Photo of heygeebee
4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a one/two finger head, straw coloured, nice bubbles. Little lacing

Aromas of passionfruit, hint of lemon, quite sav blanc-ish actually.

Taste is full bodied, hops come through, more restrained grapefruit, quite a dry finish. Wine infulences in brewing can be noted, as label states.

Mouthfeel is just right for this lighter style.

Overall this is a real find. It really is a touch above average lagers. Hype justified

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Photo of dgilks
4.15/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a crystal clear pale straw colour. A fluffy two finger head has good retention.

Light passionfruit and mango aromas. A nice floral, slightly tart nose.

Lightly flavoured but well executed. I get passionfruit, lemon, and some nondescript fruit. A slight astringency comes through the back palate along with a hint of grain. A balancing dose of bitterness lingers but doesn't put itself in the forefront.

A little bit heavy for a pils with the lower (for style) carbonation allowing the beer to coat the mouth. On the other hand, the smooth, creamy mouthfeel works well with the flavours here.

A tasty, well crafted pilsner which is definitely in the New World mould. Very tasty and a great spring drink.

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Knappstein Reserve Lager from Enterprise Brewery (Knappstein Wines)
88 out of 100 based on 58 ratings.