Piercing Pils - Dogfish Head Brewery

Not Rated.
Piercing PilsPiercing Pils

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

232 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 232
Hads: 1,337
rAvg: 3.79
pDev: 10.29%
Wants: 61
Gots: 218 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Brewery visit their website
Delaware, United States

Style | ABV
Czech Pilsener |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Slatetank on 08-19-2013

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 232 | Hads: 1,337
Photo of E-McFarden
3.92/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Decent retention and lace, fruity and caramelly scent. Bittering hops shine through with fruity tones, deep caramel undertones with a dry finish. Somewhat drinkable even with the ABV. (183 characters)

Photo of Mdg222
4.11/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

To be transparent, had to look up what a "Czech style Pilsner was". This was my first. This one holds true to definition: golden, high foaminess & lighter flavor. I was a little worried about the pear flavor but the pear is subtle. Slightly tart, but virtually no aftertaste. Very smooth. Good but not overly flavored (317 characters)

Photo of Tsar_Riga
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Orange, clear, white head, very quick to fade, but with a curtain of bubbly lacing.

S - Grain and grass. Not much of interest, but not bad.

T - Very crisp snap, with spicy hops in the middle, and bitter bite to close. Don't pick up much pear until the close, where a hint lingers long after.

M - Very bright and brisk, with a touch of drying.

O - This is a pretty decent version of a pils, and I find it a bit spiky, so the name fits. I wonder if more pear flavor or nose would tip this into fruit beer territory, but as it stands the pear is backgrounded by the punchy hops. (586 characters)

Photo of G_Z_a
4.06/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap.

Color was a little darker than most pilsners. Looked flat as there was almost no head and didn't appear to be much carbonation. Little carbonation was confirmed with the first few sips, but it didn't taste flat. Tasted more tropical than most pilsners. Went down smooth. Not what I was expecting, but I enjoyed it. (323 characters)

Photo of BigBry
3.83/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

On Tap at the Yard House at LA Live.
From Dogfish Head website: A Perry-Pils hybrid, Piercing Pils is a Czech Style Pilsner brewed with a White Pear Tea and Pear juice. Both the juice and the tea were added in the kettle during the whirlpool (after the boil) for maximum flavor and aroma contribution. The Pear fruit complexity pierces right through the spicy Czech Saaz hops beautifully, adding a gentle acidity to this pale lager that makes for a crisp refreshing sipper. Amarillo hops add nuanced citrus notes that meld perfectly with the fruit.

Clear, light gold color. No real head or lace.
Smell is refreshing and light. Sweet fruits, a bit grainy.
Bready malt taste, slightly sweet like grape juice, or pear juice. Nice hop kick at the end keeps it balanced.
Clean crisp finish, well balanced.
A pleasant surprise, glad I was able to find this seasonal draft. (873 characters)

Photo of DagenhamDavis
2.28/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I think I must have gotten a bad bottle. This was just awful. Starts off skunky, and finished with a overpowering metallic and bitter (not hoppy, but acrid) taste. I wanted to like this, but that finish will haunt me for a long time. (233 characters)

Photo of jasonpeckins32
3.62/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Very good for a pilsner. I tried it at the Columbus Winter Beer Fest, and didnt realize it was brewed with pear juice until looking online afterwards. That explains why it seemed a bit different than a normal pilsner I was expecting at the time. (247 characters)

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.91/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Pours slightly hazy and golden yellow in color with a shallow white head that fizzes away before I'm even done putting down the bottle. Very little left on the surface, with a tiny island of suds in the center and a razor thin ring around the edge of the glass. Virtually no lacing.

Smell - Pilsner skunk is the first thing to hit the nostrils, but is quickly met and overtaken by a mellow pear fruitiness. Light hints of floral hoppiness and spice.

Taste - Starts with flavors of grain and a mellow but steady pear fruitness. Hops do little to add any upfront bitterness, but do deliver a formidable spice bite thanks to the saaz, particularly as it warms. Earthy flavors peak through in the finish, delivering a bittersweet aftertaste... and am I detecting a hint of mint?

Mouthfeel - Light to medium in body with lively, bitey carbonation. Smooth texture before a crisp, semi-dry finish.

Overall - An oddity, but frankly one that works quite well. A unique take on a style that's steeped in singular-minded approaches, Piercing Pils is proof positive that old dogs can learn new tricks, particularly when it's learning new tricks from a Dogfish! In honesty I didn't expect much from this one, and even in the first few sips I thought it was just decent, but it grew on me as the layers began to unfold. This is one pilsner you won't mind warming to room temp. Prost, DFH! (1,391 characters)

Photo of UPMD_Bill
3.94/5  rDev +4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: light golden
S: Pear is readily apparent on the nose. smells great. Doesn't have the skunky smell/aftertaste that I often associate with pilsner.
T: bready light malt, a little sweetness, balanced by some astringency from the pear tea.
M: light and lively
O: Not a huge fan of the pilsner style but have to give credit for an interesting idea, well-executed. (366 characters)

Photo of USAF77
4.49/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

An excellent, somewhat different , Pils. Very rich head, dry hoppy aroma with floral, good carbonation, and a light gold color. The taste is both dry and refreshing leaving a good slightly bitter after taste. Somehow, someway, this works as a Pilsner. There is no doubt its crafted with love. I bought it while in one of my "slightly different" moods and when you get a little bored with the $14 a 12 pack Lagers try a 4 back of this and just hang out and enjoy. (462 characters)

Photo of Mikus
3.67/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This poured (12oz) a relatively clear, golden hue into my tulip... minimal head present. Aromas were a bit funky/dank (at first), note of yeast as well... and also some pear coming through, especially as it warmed in the glass. Pear presence and interesting, slightly spicy hop profile on the tongue. Nice and balanced, as well as unique flavors. The mouthfeel was light to medium and some of the notes (like the spicy one) really stuck around for a bit. This was a unique and really enjoyable take on a simple style. (517 characters)

Photo of mchegash
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - 4/5
A darker golden-orange-yellow color. An ample amount of head. Very clear. An average amount of carbonation can be seen rising up the beer.

Smell - 4/5
A fruity (pear) twist on the classic pilsner aroma.

Taste - 4/5
Sweet classic pilsner taste, with a very detectable pear flavor to it. The pear is prominent, yet not overpowering. I really like what they did with this beer. To me, most pilsners taste basically the same (thus my vague descriptions of "classic pilsner taste"), but this one stands out as something unique, with the pear aspect to it. Some sweet malt taste as well.

Mouthfeel - 4/5
Medium bodied, crisp, with a medium-light amount of medium-intensity carbonation.

Overall - 4/5
A very solid pilsner, that I would definitely drink again. (773 characters)

Photo of mikeg67
3.44/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle. Pours pale golden with tall, long lasting, fluffy, white head and nice lacing. Aroma is of grassy hops and biscuit malt. Body is medium and slightly crisp. Herbal hops, pale malt and sweet fruit fill the mouth. Finish is medium lasting, herbal. Nice brew. (274 characters)

Photo of Nickcal
3.06/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Disappointed once again by this style of beer. I cannot give a truly good opinion because I just am not a fan of pilseners. For me they lack depth and character with smell and taste. Sorry Dogfish Head love you guys, nothing personal, just not a fan of the style. (263 characters)

Photo of DaverCS
4.39/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured with 2 finger head with tiny white bubbles. Nice head retention.

Aroma is clean and crisp. Some grain, some malt, some piney hop.

Taste is enjoyable. Not worth the cost, but still good beer. I get a grainy flavor upfront, followed by a slight funkiness. End of the sip brings a cane sugar sweetness and a pear juice flavor. Not much in terms of actual malt flavor, more of a sweet grain and pear with a slight herbatious quality.

Overall, very drinkable beer. Nothing overly complex or worth over analyzing.however, beer is extremely drinkable... I would say that it's like the craft beer version of a light beer (even at the 6 percent ABV). I would pair this with a poached pear with a caramel drizzle and vanilla bean ice cream.Gets an 88/100 from me. (763 characters)

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
2.33/5  rDev -38.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Hazy copper yellow. Some malt sweetness and barley on the aroma. There is something very wrong with the aftertaste. Muddled copper or metallic flavor and almost a skunky finish (makes no sense considering it's on tap): stay away. (229 characters)

Photo of JohnnyI
3.41/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I snagged a 4-pack of this at a Sunoco Craft Beer Exchange, and it's been a tale of two beers. The first was poured at near room temp, and it did little to inspire. The second was chilled, and what a difference that made. Both beers poured with a mottled, white head that popped and fizzed away in short order. The more aggressive pour produced a towering foam crest that left beautiful lacing on my Modelo Especial pint glass. The appearance is consistent with a classic golden pilsener. Great clarity. Perhaps a touch more concentrated in color. More like the beer I recycle after a night of drinking-related dehydration. There's a bright, crisp, floral hop aroma with underlying white grape juice sweetness. A little bit of Apple Jacks cereal in the nose. The first impression is simply too sweet for my liking, but at a cooler temperature it's less pronounced. No discernible pear flavor, save the sugar. Unbalanced. The Saaz hops tend to dominate, competing only with a cloying sweetness. The cracker-like malt flavors get a little lost in a sea of refined sugar. The finish is mildly bitter, and leaves a somewhat muddled impression. The moderate mouthfeel and tame carbonation are a bit light. Not as spritzy or crisp as I had hoped. In the end, if you're not opposed to sugary libations, it's truly a non-offensive beer that does little to push the flavor envelope. A passable pilsener nonetheless. There's a marked difference between the warm and cool variations that I tried. At cooler temps it was much more refreshing and masked some of the imperfections. The warmer variety had me focused on all of the wrong things. The same can be said for any number of macro-lagers, so that can't be a good thing. Either way, I had hoped for more with the addition of pear and pear tea. Ultimately it's a crafty example of Saaz hops in an overly-sweetened Czech Pilsener. (1,872 characters)

Photo of microbrewlover
3.51/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours a clear straw color with a two finger white fluffy head, some of which lasts until the end as a collar. Good carbonation and good lacing.

The smell is straw and hay; a little soapy smell with lemons and fresh cut grass. There is also and apple and pear fruity smell.

The taste is musty and soapy, a little wet grass with pear. Unfortunately, everything kind of runs together and it is hard to break out the individual tastes. The finish is crisp, cracker like and kind of dry. A little bitter as well, like making you purse your lips bitter. (560 characters)

Photo of gr0g
3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Light amber in color, capped with a few fingers of foam. Good head retention and lacing. The grassy, slightly lemony characteristics of Saaz hops are evident in the aroma. There's a slight fruitiness, like white grape, that you don't usually get in a Bohemian pilsner.

Flavor is clean and dry with a cracker-like breadiness characteristic of the style. Some fruitiness that isn't characteristic, maybe the pear juice at work. Slick texture, very fine carbonation. Nothing really flashy here as DFH beers go but still pretty tasty. An interesting take on what, to me, can be a bland style. (589 characters)

Photo of Jacobob10
3.52/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Slightly hazy, yellow in color with an average sized white head that fades away quickly. Floral hops with a touch of spice and faint pear in the aroma. Kind of dull flavor and the pear makes for a bit of an odd combination but it works. Lots of fizzy carbonation resulting in a crisp, clean finish. Overall, a clean, easy drinking beer but misses the mark with a lot of the pilsner qualities that I enjoy. (405 characters)

Photo of zapahoppa
2.8/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Uneventful. Watery with light carb. Low head retention. Hardly any pear. Probably one of the most dissapointing dfh beers I've had, and I mostly love their beer. (161 characters)

Photo of LarryV
3.14/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

I always feel like I'm taking a risk when I buy a Dogfish Head beer. This sounded promising but ends up missing the mark for me. It doesn't have the crispness that I expect from a good pilsner and has an odd bitterness to the aftertaste, perhaps that's due to the pear, it doesn't seem like hop bitterness. All in all it's an okay beer but I won't be buying it again. (368 characters)

Photo of Gajo74
4.43/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

As with most pilsners, this one pours out a straw yellow. However the particular shade tone of this liquid is darker than other pilsners, making it unique and attractive to look at. A modest head dissipates into a bubbly thin lace that retains the whole way.
My first impression of the aroma is earthy tones, herbal and spicy. Next, I detect a strong scent of fruity esters, particularly pears and also green apples. Finally, I detect a hint if floral hops aroma.
The taste is so unique for a pilsner. As with other pilsners, it has a bready pilsner malt taste. However, the sweet fruitiness of this drink really makes it stand apart. If you like the taste of pear juice, then this s the one for you, because that flavor is prominent throughout. However, as I get further along in the drink, a strong hops taste becomes prominent, which creates a nearly perfect balance to the fruity goodness. The finish is dry, almost astringent, with the hops leading the way.
Great mouthfeel. Smooth, crisp, refreshing and a lively carbonation that pierces (as the name implies) the tongue. A great light bodied brew; I feel I could drink several of them in a row.
I have rated this one highly. It is certainly different from most pilsners and I could see how some purists might rate it more strictly according to the style. However, I choose to rate it highly because it's so damn delicious! (1,379 characters)

Photo of SportsandJorts
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a little dark for straw yellow but lighter than honey. a nice golden hue. an aggressive pour formed a 2 to 3 finger head that receded at a fairly decent rate and left behind a strong lacing all over the sides of the glass. constant flow of bubbles and perfect clarity and brightness.

Aroma: somewhat grassy and musty. light pilsner malt sweetness. earthy and spicy to citrusy hops.

Taste: opens with light and sweet pilsner malts. opens up with a little but of hops. mostly woodsy and spicy, some citrus to it though. some fairly fruity tastes, I assume from pear juice, and it almost comes off as ever so slightly tart. ends with some more hops and a bit of grass to wheat.

Mouthfeel: light, just off of clean. crisp and refreshing.

Overall: probably the most subtle experimental beer out there. it could easily be mistaken for a standard pilsner but the pear juice just adds a barely there twang on the style. a solid beer (946 characters)

Photo of utopiajane
3.88/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours hazed yelow. Thin head that did not last. Nose is soft pils malt, lightly breaddy. Touch of sulfur, touch of pear and cracker. There's an initial impression of something tart mid drink then a crisp dry finish. Good carbonation, light bite. Golden. Drinks with a nice dryness at the closing light cracker. The hops are herbal saaz. Crisp and not terribly fruity. I would say the pear is like a bit of crisp white sweetness sucumbing to the pils malt. Herbal in the aftertaste and in the finish. It's tea like but golden and light. It has a touch of sulfur on the palate and in the nose too. Sulfur is pungent and opens up the back palate to the dryness.

Very enjoyable. (692 characters)

Piercing Pils from Dogfish Head Brewery
85 out of 100 based on 232 ratings.