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James Squire Original Pilsener - Malt Shovel Brewery

Not Rated.
James Squire Original PilsenerJames Squire Original Pilsener

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

49 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 49
Reviews: 31
rAvg: 3.48
pDev: 16.95%
Wants: 2
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Malt Shovel Brewery visit their website
Australia

Style | ABV
Czech Pilsener |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-18-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 49 | Reviews: 31 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.73/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Dark amber hue, lots of carbonation. Decent head, which creates some lacing. Not a bad looking beer.

Not a great deal on the nose. A bit of fragrance. Hoppiness and grassiness, it's an organic smell. It's got quite a good pils profile, but it's a bit subdued.

Taste is rather better. Nice fragrant bitterness, based on hoppy notes. A touch of fruitiness, but predominated by the bitterness of the hops. Finishes quite yeasty, and leaves a little bit of distaste in your mouth.

Mouthfeel is quite tingly and almost puckering with the bitter hops and dry finish.

Certainly a drinkable beer. I think it's far superior on tap than in its bottled form.

lacqueredmouse, Jan 11, 2006
Photo of dmorgan310
3/5  rDev -13.8%

dmorgan310, Feb 05, 2012
Photo of GraduatedCashew
3.5/5  rDev +0.6%

GraduatedCashew, Aug 29, 2013
Photo of dgilks
3.6/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This pours a light amber which is perfectly clear. A nice, bubbly white head is also present with decent head retention.

Light spicy hops on the nose backed up with a touch of sweetness. Tasty.

Spicy Saaz hops are there from the start. Caramel notes indicate the presence of a malt backbone which holds the beer up well. A slight toastiness is present for a split second and hop bitterness lingers for a short time.

A light but not watery body is nice in this beer. There is a fair amount of carbonation as well which makes the beer fairly gassy.

A decent pils which is tasty and doesn't knock you out. It's the kind of beer which doesn't excite you but makes a pleasant easy drinking beer.

dgilks, Jun 30, 2009
Photo of tbeckett
2.58/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bottle from Woolworth's. From notes.

A - Poured golden, bright, and effervescent. Film of white head on top leaving spotty lace and no retention.

S - Corny, lagery, light noble

T - Mild noble hop, sweet grain.

M - Strong carbonation, light to medium body and a crisp finish.

O/D - Plain. Not a great lager. Slightly better than a regular lager. Pretty ordinary.

tbeckett, Mar 06, 2012
Photo of laituegonflable
3.33/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a dark orange-gold with effervescent bubbling, continues with a thick, steady bead up to a snowy head of medium-sized bubbles that sinks with the sound of steaks barbecuing, but still retaining pretty well. Doesn't leave a whole lotta lacing, which is a shame because otherwise it looks damned nice and refreshing.

Has a slightly subdued nose, although all the characters are there. Light caramel, slight grassy hop, almost a eucalyptus aroma, that's about it. Thinking it may still be a bit cold, but waiting and warming doesn't produce much more character. I think it's just a bit weak. Otherwise good elements.

Taste is far more robust and dispels that "Mummy, it's too cold" myth. Strong, flavourful hops throughout the palate - herbal mostly with a kind of sage (the herb, not meaning 'wizened') acidity to it. In fact, I think it's definitely just the Saaz hops - it tastes a lot like Saaz pellets smell. There is a slightly gummy base to the palate which gives evidence of malt but flavour-wise there is only a slight hint on the front, not very complex. Mouthfeel though IS full and complex with a good carbonated sensation, and because of the bitterness of the hop, goes down very crisply and easily.

A flavoursome drop, absolutely. In this case it sadly doesn't translate to complexity. I enjoy it though, maybe a bit too strong to be a cleanser or sessioner. Too big for its boots, I think.

laituegonflable, May 29, 2009
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.25/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

After trying the James Squire Porter, which style anomalies aside, I quite enjoyed, I was really interested in trying some other offerings from this Brewery if the chance ever presented itself. So when I saw 3 other styles tonight, I figured they were worth a try, and I picked up the Amber, IPA and Pilsener from these Aussie Zymurgists tonight.

Comes in a 345ml, 11.65 fl.oz bottle (err, yeah alright) and states that it contains “1.4 Standard Drinks” – for whom – Midgets??? 5.0%ABV.

Appearance: Clear golden body, large white frothy masses above the body give the beer a solid Pilsner-Lager look. Typically Pilsner in shade and looks. The head breaks after a while to form a broken scum like head.

Nose: Lacking a bit, grain malt and Saaz hops are evident.

Taste: Malts lead the way; hops are there but tend to take a back seat until 2/3rds of the way through. The end accentuates with a slightly sweet toffee butterscotch aspect. I checked the bottle date, packed 07 April 03, so maybe this is intentional.

Mouthfeel: Average, the malt aspects appear to dominate though, and the beer is a little sickly at times, with a cloying toffee aspect at the end that lingers.

Drinkability: Above average, but slightly cloying after a while. This is also an aspect of other Pils that I have tried, even in the Czech Republic though. A little too much butterscotch for me.

Overall: Average, certainly not a bad beer. But for me, it is too malty which overshadows the Hops. It lacks a bit in the clean-crisp department that usually comes from the Saaz hop-bite.

It’s worth a try, but also worth noting that for the same price, and on the self-same shelf at Trader Joes-Long Beach, I can pick up the real thing; a 6-pack of StaroBrno. I guess the stiff Import competition in the US will just be too much in the end; but in DownUnderland, I can see this being a winner when set against other bland Antipodean “Pilsners”, Mate!

TheLongBeachBum, Jun 22, 2003
Photo of CrazyDavros
3.53/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Golden pour with a good-sized head but lacking in persistence.
Green nobles hops on the nose, grassy and spicy. Quite clean with some biscuity and bready malt.
Flavours are very hoppy, again quite green. Bready malts come through, but are slightly grainy. The bitterness is bold but makes for a somewhat boring finish.
Good carbonation (moderately high) with a nice light body.
Excellent example of the style.

CrazyDavros, Jul 14, 2009
Photo of beerguy101
4.22/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Medium gold color. Medium head. Aroma is malty and fruity. A medium bodied pilsner. WOW a pilsner with some substantial flavor to it. Malts are nutty and sweet. Hops are spicy and grapefruity. Nice balanced between the fruitiness, spiciness and bitterness. It is a little out of style for a pilsner, but I think I might have found a pilsner I really like. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and crisp. Aftertaste is slightly bitter.

beerguy101, Aug 25, 2003
Photo of DIM
3.6/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a: This was a slightly cloudy pale goldne color. It was served to me with a white, whispy head.

s: Light biscuity malts and some herbal hop notes.

t: Clean overall, with a slight mineral finish. Maybe a bit sweet.

m: Crisp and refreshing.

d: Pretty standard pils, very nice after a tiring day of hiking.

DIM, Nov 03, 2009
Photo of rastaman
4.15/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Very good example of a czech pils, but i think it suffers from bad batches, coz it ain't always good, this stuff kicks arse on tap, so give it a go.

rastaman, Feb 18, 2002
Photo of pin
1.5/5  rDev -56.9%

pin, May 21, 2013
Photo of brendan13
3.65/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice golden colour with a medium head that falls away leaving a thin layer on top. Scattered lacing.
Spicy aroma from the hops. I found the taste to be a bit maltier than I expected but this probably made it better for me.
Quite a full body, lingering bitterness.
I prefer more hops or more malt but if I have to pick a session beer for a hot summers day then you can't go too wrong with this.

brendan13, May 19, 2007
Photo of heygeebee
3.63/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a three ivory finger head from only a moderate pour - coarse bubbles fade after a while. Some lace. Golden straw body. Nice.

Aromas of grassy hops, malt and a hint of lemon.

Taste is malt driven, not too sweet, some bread/dough. Hop bitterness catches up as the bottle goes down.

Mouthfeel sharp and on the money.

Overall - good drinking beer. Whole more than the sum of the parts

heygeebee, Jan 25, 2012
Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.55/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Hero of Waterloo in Sydney after a long day of sightseeing.

Poured into a branded schooner glass. Pale golden, good crispy head, some lacing. Not bad looking.

Nose is floral hops, a bit of citrus hops as well, with a strong whiff of grain, bread and cracker.

A bready, malty pilsner with some soft hopping to start, but finishes quite bitter. A bit sweet and grainy for my taste, but certainly quite enjoyable on a hot afternoon. Would make for a great evening drinker.

JohnnyBarman, May 05, 2011
Photo of drtth
3.53/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review based on notes taken during a recent visit to Sydney.

Poured into a wine glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: As poured the beer is a bright clear golden yellow with a 1" white head. The head recedes slowly leaving some patches of lacing. Sipping leaves some scattered lacing for much of the beer.

Smell: The aromas are light but pleasant and include both pale biscuity malt and some grassy herbal hops (Saaz?).

Taste: The flavors are dominated by the pale malt and its light sweetness but the grassy herbal hops do show in the background.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium to light bodied with adequate carbonation. The finish is medium length and begins sweet with the hops eventually showing through at the end as the finish turns lightly dry.

Drinkability: This is ok for drinkability but I'm learning I definitely prefer the crisp and hoppier profile of the German style Pils to that of the Czech style. I'd be willing to have this one again, but won't go out of my way to find it.

drtth, Dec 29, 2010
Photo of joecast
3.95/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

re-review 11/05
wow. two years on. dont think i have had this since then as i wasnt so impressed.
darker in color than most in the style. might be a good thing.
aroma is still faint, but what is there is good.
crisp flavor with a balanced amount of bitterness. much better than i remember.


crystal clear golden color. fluffy head with the finest bubbles i have yet seen. makes for an inviting appearance.
decent aroma but not as good as i was expecting.
has a malty, lightly sweet flavor to it. the munich malts (it says so on the bottle), are pretty obvious if you have tried their IPA.
overall it didnt leave much of an impression. in the JS range it is overshadowed by the amber ale and IPA.

joecast, Nov 02, 2003
Photo of vancurly
3.9/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Medium gold colour, nice tight frothy off-white head. Attractive lace as the drink goes down.
Good, healthy "green" hoppy nose. Touch of sulfur and a little tropical fruit.
Spicy hop flavour, touch of pale malt.
Lingering, metallic bitterness at the back.
It has more body than your average pilsener, but is matched by the bitter length. Well balanced, and very drinkable.

vancurly, Aug 09, 2006
Photo of LittleCreature
3.9/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance - 3.5
A finger and a half of barely off-white head that reduced steadily in patches. The colour is a orange-amber, a little darker than average for the style.

Smell - 3.5
Some skunkiness at first, but this reduced to almost nothing. Not a great deal of smell upfront, apart from a general "beeriness" as well as some grassy hops.

Taste - 3.5
Not as tasty as many of James Squire's other offerings, but far from bad. Quite smooth, moderate hop bitterness, a decent amount of malt sweetness and lots of grainy, bready flavours.

Mouthfeel - 3.0
Disapointingly, the carbonation reduced rather quickly, from moderate to a low that in my opinion is too low for the style. Moderately weighted in the mouth.

Drinkability - 4.5
Like most pilseners, this will go down pretty easily and is definitely sessionable. Personally, I'd rather something with a bit more taste (or a more interesting taste).

OVERALL - 3.55
This is a slightly better than average pilsener. My comments may seem a little derogatory, but that is mostly because I let the beer warm a little too much before drinking, which reduced my enjoyment. Perhaps a re-review one day. Like the rest of the James Squire beers, this is good quality stuff for a very reasonable price.

Re-review - I have recently sampled this pilsener for a second time, and found that it is clearly better than my first review indicates (either it has improved, or because of the better temperature).

Re-re-review - I am thinking that the quality of this beer varies from time to time. The most recent bottle I drank was quite delicious, so I have changed my scores to indicate this.

LittleCreature, Sep 11, 2007
Photo of jcalabre
3.68/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: creamy white head with a clear golden body. Yup, looks like a pilsener.
Flavor: This pilsener is actually medium bodied. Amazing. It has a flavor that's pretty well balanced between hoppiness & fruitiness. Why can't other brewers make pilseners with some cojones like this one? The only other pilisener w/ this much character is Victory's Prima Pils

jcalabre, Jun 15, 2003
Photo of magpieken
3.25/5  rDev -6.6%

magpieken, Apr 08, 2013
Photo of jarmby1711
3.3/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Dark gold and crystal clear the bead was active feeding a persistant cloud like white head.
The most disappointing aspect of this brew was its innocous aroma .I failoed to get anything other than a bland "beer" smell.
The taste however defied the smell It integrated hops and malts wonderfullythat extended a rounded bitterness as along after taste.
In the mouth the bitterness overpowered and fruitiness they may have been there ,but perhaps there shouldnt be much there to detect.It became one dimensional .
I think this isa pleasant enough beer but really best in the warmer months

jarmby1711, Jul 09, 2005
Photo of Bobhoya
3.25/5  rDev -6.6%

Bobhoya, Feb 20, 2014
Photo of doktorhops
3.6/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Time for a Pilsner face-off! Two decent Australian (and one Kiwi!) Pilsner's battle head to head for my admiration, who will win? Let's see! Second brew to test it's due: James Squire Original Pilsener.

Poured from a 345ml bottle into a 500ml Stein glass.

A: Amber body with cascading bubbles leading to a 2cm almond white head, which slowly dissipated to 1cm. I'm liking the colour however it's not as clear or pale as the classic Czech pilsners.

S: Toasted biscuit malts provide a base for floral hops and some cut grass. From the aroma you could almost mistake it for an American pale ale style... almost.

T: What?! This is a pale ale surely; toasted malts with a big grapefruit/citrus hop finish (not to mention the mouthfeel of an ale). The Malt Shovel boys could have called it an ale and I doubt anyone would have been the wiser. The hops leave a bitterness that feels characteristically out of proportion for Saaz hops (which aren't nearly as bitter as most other hops).

M: Creamy and light on fizz, a medium-heavy body.

D: I like it! Don't know if it really is what it says it is on the bottle (a classic Czech styled Pilsner) but I still like it. If you're looking for a Pilsner in the classic sense I would look elsewhere, but if (like me) you love a good ale well I think James Squires Pilsener will be a pleasant surprise for you (I can certainly go for a few more of these!).

Food match: Thai, or Chinese, it's got that "It-would-go-great-with-Asian-food" feel to it.

doktorhops, Mar 04, 2011
Photo of Vanz
3.25/5  rDev -6.6%

Vanz, Feb 28, 2014
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James Squire Original Pilsener from Malt Shovel Brewery
80 out of 100 based on 49 ratings.