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Notch Session Pils - Notch Brewing

Not Rated.
Notch Session PilsNotch Session Pils

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

47 Reviews
THE BROS
71
okay

(Read More)
Reviews: 47
Hads: 189
Avg: 3.56
pDev: 26.69%
Wants: 11
Gots: 32 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Notch Brewing
Massachusetts, United States | website

Style | ABV
Czech Pilsener | 4.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: PEBKAC on 03-17-2011

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (15) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Notch Session Pils Alström Bros
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Reviews: 47 | Hads: 189
Photo of jneiswender
2.16/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

had this beer at the Bacon and Beer festival in Boston. Served cool, on tap, in a small tasting glass.

Fairly run of the mill appearance to this brew. Clear gold body , nice white head.

Scent and flavors were not hoppy some vegetable was detected.

Light mouthfeel.

Not clean enough of a beer for the style. I will pass on this the next time I see it.

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Photo of smcolw
2.33/5  rDev -34.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Clear and golden, this beer has the right look. Huge head for the style which settles quite slowly leaving behind ample amount of chunky lace.

Unusually earthy in smell, definitely not true to style. Almost smell if the wort became infected with a stray bacteria.

The taste is an improvement but this is still off from a Czech Pils. There's no creaminess in the body with the crisp floral bitterness from the noble hops. Instead, this tastes like a poorly made APA: Thin but chewy body with a marginal level of pale malt flavor, moderate hop bite that dies quickly in the aftertaste.

A clear miss on this batch. Perhaps I'll try this again and see if I happened upon a mistake this time.

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Photo of tigg924
2.53/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: 1/3 inch head, gold in color, clear, high carbonation

Smell: faint pine and grass

Taste: sweet grass, lime, citrus hops, and a bit of sugar at the end

Mouthfeel: moderate carbonation, sweet start then the hops kick in to make it slightly bitter, the after taste is odd and almost sugary, light bodied

Overall: I wanted to like this beer, but the flavors just did not come together for me. There is an odd sweetness that I associate with Leinenkugels. While it works there in some instances, the sweetness here is a bit out of place. I want to drink this and with some small modifications, I could see this being a regular beer in my rotation...but for now a pass.

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Photo of amphion1065
2.89/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

16 oz. draft into a pint glass. Enjoyed while sitting outside at the newly-opened Area Four.

Body is pale yellow, translucent. A one-finger pure white head doesn't last for too long, but leaves some nice soapy lacing on my glass.

The aroma is very understated, and a little underwhelming. There is some grain, a little bit of biscuit malts, and a touch of hops, but I really had to stick my nose in the glass to get anything out of the aroma.

Taste is surprisingly bitter given the low ABV and the lackluster aroma. The bitterness really comes into pla in the back end. Some lemons, too.

Mouthfeel is the strongest component of this beer for me. It's not at all watery, and surprisingly robust for how sessionable this is.

This is a very easy-drinking summer beer, but I could never see myself picking up a sixer given the number of better beers at this ABV and price point. A fine, if unremarkable, pils.

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Photo of jdhilt
2.93/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a five+ finger white head that fades quickly to a ring leaving some lace. Almost clear pale amber color. Good carbonation and light bodied. Light grassy nose and flavor is hoppy, grassy with a bitterness that lingers in the aftertaste. Good lawnmower beer. $1.99 for a 12oz bottle from Julio's Liquors Westborough, Ma.

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Photo of horshack7
2.98/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Appearance: It's golden and hazy with a bright white foamy head a good two fingers thick but it thins out rather quick.

Aroma: Lemon zest, peppery notes, biscuit, grainy. Hops are there but in the background There is a light dryness in the nose.

Taste: Biscuit, light buttery texture, lemon zest, grainy with a light crispness on the palate and a decently smooth finish.

Notes: A decent Czech pilsner but it could use some work a little more in the hop department and a little bit of crispness to round it out. Cheers.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
2.99/5  rDev -16%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

@ Legal Test Kitchen, Boston

Dark gold with a fizzy white head. Thin collar of retention and a glass sans lace. Pauvre glass.

Smells like a dinner roll. Subtle green hops in there and maybe some apricot/orchardy fruit.

Tin-y mineral fruit and butter up front followed by a very pleasing pepper hop finish. Buttery aftertaste that comes back after the swallow like a boomerang.

Eh.

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Photo of u2carew
3.06/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz longneck.
A) Pours with a big white head that keeps its retention quite well. Clear body, golden to straw in color.
S) Musky grains. Subtle hints of citrus fruit.
T) Sweet yet bitter grains. Some fruity notes - apples. Some astringent notes. Bitter dry finish.
M) Light body. Dry finish.
O) Overall an average pilsner, just a bit more bitter than the norm.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.08/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #52 (May 2011):

Aiming for the Old World rustic version of the Czech lager. Mild haze, but golden color still shines bright in the light. Enough froth for a Pils to be proud of. Fresh-cut crabgrass, wild herbal hop and a dusting of biscuity malt in the nose. Smooth, with a snap of crispness on the backside of the light body. Malt comes forth on the light side with a sticky, biscuity, almost husky flavor throughout. Hops are slightly oily with spicy, herbal undertones; bitterness balances. Biscuity, husky tone lingers. Finish lands dry. Some fine tuning and softening would do this lager great. Hard pressed to put back more than one.

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Photo of brentk56
3.15/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: The hazy honey colored liquid is topped by an inch of foam; the retention was reasonable and a few shards of lace hang around

Smell: Slightly bready, with just a hint of grass

Taste: Golden-syrup malt flavors buttress the herbal, grassy hop bill; very rustic flavors

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with relatively crisp carbonation

Overall: Well, they got the mouthfeel right, but I am afraid the unusual malt and hop flavors here make this beer rather hard to enjoy

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Photo of VelvetExtract
3.18/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a clear honey color. Frothy white head forms. The head is small but retains. Leaves random lacing.

S-Soft nose. Barely any noble hops. Sweet, a bit grainy. Just not very attractive. Boring.

T-Started off with a rather odd flavor that caught me off guard. After the confusing beginning, As it settles on my palate, a more conventional Pils flavor sets in. More noble hops than in the nose. Still sweet and somewhat grainy.

M-Light bodied and lively cartbonation. A tad bit watered down. But no big negatives.

O/D-Just bland. I can see why they named it Session Pils, but I'd prefer both my session beer and my Pilsener to have a bit more personality.

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Photo of Maxwell
3.28/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours like crisp watery gold, and sits in the mug like light grapefruit juice and piss with a slight ambering. This beer is only slightly hazy and opaque due to it being unfiltered, and has a great torrent of bubbles rushing to the surface to replenish the head which is a pure white, eggshell made of nice little smooth bubbles that settle at about a fingers width and seem like their staying for a drink. The beer smells wet and spicy with a juicy linger of the almost-apple that I’ve come to associate with pilsners. The hops are nicely spicy though, with hints of fluffy, buttered biscuit pulling through in the back and edges of the glass. The beer tastes much like any other pilsner. There is the slightly-stale-bread taste of the malts that runs strongly through the sip and lingers in the mouth for awhile, and there are nice slight spices from the hops and fruity juicy feel reminiscent of apples as the beer initially crosses the tip of the tongue. Mouthfeel is quite tart with a little too much carbonation assaulting the tongue and leaving it tingling with a slight sheen of saliva and dry bread feel in the rest of the mouth. The beer is very crisp and watery, making it very drinkable, and it does not sit heavy in the stomach, but I suspect that the pilsner style is just not my favorite, as I am just not impressed with this beer. Overall I call this beer a meh.

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Photo of silentjay
3.33/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

mildly hazy gold with a huge pure cloud white head that quickly recedes to a thin film and laces decently.

aroma of herbal and floral hops on top of biscuity malts, pretty much what I'd expect for the style.

black tea, slight musk, floral hops, biscuity malts, a bit bitter, but not overly flavorful. a bitter aftertaste lingers.

light bodied and slightly oily feel with subtle prickly carbonation.

its not bad, but not something I could drink all day, either, which was the intent, so it misses its mark. though its a decent beer, it misses its intent.

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Photo of Duhast500
3.41/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a Sam Adams pint glass.

The color is a gold/yellow with some cloudy orange tint. There is about two fingers of foamy white head white a slight bit of lacing left on the glass.

The color is a little hoppy at first with slightly dry malt straightening the edges out. There is a small grassy flavor toward the end that puts a final signature to the end flavor of this beer.

The feel of this beer is highly drinkable with no alcohol detectable. There is a smooth but light feel that makes this beer go down quicker then it seams at first. A really good session beer.

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Photo of jbertsch
3.41/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Foggy yellow in color. Good sized white frothy head. Laced fairly well.

Aroma gives off a little malt husk, hop notes, and yeastiness.

Taste follows the aroma. Noble hops I assume, and the malt almost seems like corn at times, but I think it's deceiving. There's a faint lemon zest found in there, and a little grass. Not bad.

Mouthfeel is a little slick. Drinks smooth rather than crisp, which I didn't expect.

Drinkability is high of course because of the ABV, BUT, the taste plays into the drinkability well too. Just because a beer sports a low ABV doesn't mean it's tasty enough to warrant a few. This satisfies both needs and is worth picking up again for the right occasion...though there are better pilsners...especially if you prefer yours with some snappy crispness.

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Photo of Andrew041180
3.44/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A - served on tap at Legal Seafood at Logan Airport. Glass came with a substantial head that lingered for a good amount of time. Light lacing on the glass. The beer was blonde in color and fairly clear.

S - very little detectable. What is there is nice.

T - as someone else mentioned it didn't really taste pilsnery. Its good, in a sort of bland way. Seemed more like a light pale ale.

M - body that I expected with pleasant carbonation.

O - I don't see myself having this one again, but elements of this brew encourage me to try other offerings from Notch.

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Photo of cbutova
3.53/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Fresh into MA, gotta give it a shot.

A- Poured into a Weizen glass with a hazy yellow orange body. Big white head forms with nice size and a creamy texture. Nice thick rings of lace.

S- Some yeast bread, clove, grains, sugary light malt. Also a bit of noble spicy, herbal hops.

T- A decent bit of yeast bread and spice as well as some light slightly sugary malt. Banana and clove. Hops round it out with herbal, spicy and floral hints. General grains as well.

MF- Light body with high foamy carbonation. Slight residual sweets and bitterness.

Solid light Pils. Nice hops but I would like it to be a bit more hoppy instead of grainy.

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Photo of Arbitrator
3.64/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Chilled bottle into a glass. Courtesy of goblinmunkey7. Thanks!

A: Pours a murky, glowing sunset-orange capped by a pinky finger's worth of off-white head. Retention is moderate, with a few drabs of lace down the sides of the glass. A thin film is left for the duration of the drink.

S: Crisp pilsner grain, biscuit malt, and Noble hops: grass and a floral / herbal bent.

T: The taste falls a bit short, with a watery back end that doesn't deliver the same crispness of the nose. A nice biscuit backbone with good hop flavors of grass, mild spice (like white pepper), and a touch of lemon zest.

M: Light-bodied, with a slightly watery finish. Bitterness is mild, with some hop oils lingering into the aftertaste. I'd love it if it were cleaner.

O: With work, this could be excellent. I wish we had easy-drinking session ales like this in CA.

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Photo of Florida9
3.64/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pale yellow in color. Slightly hazy. Forms a large, fluffy white head that falls rather quickly, but leaves quite a bit of lacing on the way down. Aroma is standard pils: some pilsener malts and a bit of green, grassy hops. Taste is a bit light though, in fairness, this is labeled as a "session" beer. Light pilsener malts, a hint of biscuit, and some light grassy hops. Light bodied. Appreciable, prickly carbonation. Low bitterness.
Not the absolute best example of the style, but not at all a bad beer.

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Photo of Beric
3.67/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Serving: Can, from the can
Served: 12 June 2015

Appearance: Had this one at a work event, so I can't comment on how the beer actually looks. Nice looking can though.

Smell: Standard 'beer' smell with hints of noble hop herbal and grassy notes.

Taste: Light biscuity malt flavors with a subtle touch of grassy hops. Somewhat bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Light body with high carbonation; very drinkable.

Overall: A drinkable, quaffable beer for sure, and definitely sessionable at only 4%, but one that is lacking quite substantially in the flavor and aroma department. I'd reach for a Summerfest in a heartbeat if I wanted a Czech pils.

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Photo of puboflyons
3.71/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle. Sampled on January 13, 2013.

The pour is a typical pilsener looking straw or hay yellow with a long lasting tremendous white foamy head and vigorous carbonation.

The aroma is quite full compared to adjuncts and others in its class with pale malts, biscuit, yeast, sugar in the raw, and a clean hoppiness.

The body is light and smooth.

The taste tends to downplay the sweet malts and biscuit in favor of a notable clean and crisp hop feel coming up the backside. Pretty drinkable and refreshing.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.71/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Served on-tap at LTK (Legal Test Kitchen) Bar and Kitchen in Boston, MA

A: Pours a crystal clear medium to dark golden yellow in color with moderate amounts of visible carbonation and some brighter yellow highlights. The beer has a finger and a half tall bright white foamy head that slowly reduces to a thick film covering the majority of the surface of the beer and a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass. Significant amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of biscuit and bready malts with some lighter notes of grassy and herbal hops.

T: Upfront there are moderate flavors of biscuit and bready malts with little to no sweetness. That is followed by the light to moderate flavors of the grassy and herbal hops which impart a light to moderate amount of lingering bitterness.

M: Light to medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Crisp and smooth.

O: This beer was refreshing, paired great with food, and was extremely easy to drink - I think I could have literally drank this beer all day long (though I am guessing that is the point of creating these session style beers from Notch).

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.72/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured on-tap and served in a tumbler pint, the beer is a crystal-clear, pale, golden-yellow coloring with a very slow, steady stream of carbonation bubbling. Thin covering of white film that leaves a slick coating along the glass. Aromas are light and effervescent, with a floral boquet along the top of a toasted cereal backbone. Flavors are light, with the toasty backbone and a slightly sour malt highlight, with a bitter, resiny hopping to clean it all up nicely. The aftertaste is minimal, with a hint of roast and char. The finish is quick and clean, leaving the palate with only a touch of the tangy sweetness.

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Photo of Jwale73
3.72/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz. can served in an SA Perfect pint. Pours a hazy straw gold with a sizzling, 1.5 inch bright white head that settles into a sold, quarter inch cap. Nose expresses some grassy notes and noble hops. Taste consistent with nose; however, there's also an interesting trace of caramel malt in the flavor profile - just enough to impart a suggestion of something sweet. Mouthfeel is light in body with a crisp carbonation. Overall, really quite drinkable. Perhaps not as clean as I'm accustomed to for the style, but quite easy drinking and enjoyable.

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Photo of Dools9
3.76/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottle dated 9/28/12 poured into a Schlitz pilsner glass.

A: Pours a slightly hazy straw, golden color with a thick three finger, soapy white head. Impressive, patchy spider web lace.

S: Clean, crisp pilsner malt, grassy hops, little bit earth and slightly floral. Little bit of musk mixed with yeasty fruit.

T: Bright grassy, floral and lemon citrus hop flavors blend nicely with a biscuity, grainy malt backbone. There's a lingering earthy, spicy hop finish.

M: Light to medium bodied, extremely sessionable (hence the name), crisp and refreshing. Would make a good warm weather beer.

O: Went in with low expectations but found myself pleasantly surprised by this one. Would probably purchase again when looking for a low abv sessioner. Stuff goes down really easy. Based on the reviews it has, I'd say this one is a bit underrated imo.

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Notch Session Pils from Notch Brewing
81 out of 100 based on 47 ratings.