Steam Whistle Pilsner - Steam Whistle Brewing

Not Rated.
Steam Whistle PilsnerSteam Whistle Pilsner

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362 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 362
Reviews: 138
rAvg: 3.45
pDev: 15.65%
Wants: 5
Gots: 35 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Steam Whistle Brewing visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
American Pale Lager |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-28-2002

We believe that world-class results require focus and dedication, so we developed a distinctive recipe for our single brand based on Europe's renowned brewing standards yet is brewed fresh locally at our independent, Canadian Brewery.

We use traditional brewing techniques and only four natural ingredients including spring water, malted barley, hops and yeast - all GMO-free. There is a fifth ingredient in every refreshing bottle, and that is the passion of our dedicated Brewmaster and staff.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 362 | Reviews: 138
Reviews by pootz:
Photo of pootz
3.6/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I'm a pils head! I had to try this beer because I try every North American pilsner hoping to find something better/ more interesting than the 3 Euro and 1 Canadian pilsners that I drink on a regular basis.

The 50s tinted glass, painted label, nostalgic crown caped bottle was NOT the eye catcher that got a 6 of this off the brewer's shelves and into my fridge. It was the recommendation of a friend. I'm glad for the heads up. I like this beer, it just wasn't what I consider a proper Euro pilsner. Also, the batch that produced the bottles I got had a distinct yeasty taste (filtering?). It hasn't got the flowery nose of say Beck's by a long shot but it does start out like a crisp pils until you swallow. Then the lack of hopping leaves that frigging yeast to culture on your tonsils until the next swig.

Very pale straw color, slight pils hopping and grain smell, a small head the quickly disappears to a lace, mild start, pleasnt slightly familiar pilsner taste to the mouth, mild tart finish then a strange yeasty-sour after taste.

I'm sure that the yeast thing is related to start up quality control issues and with the absense of that bug it would pass as a standard,Canadian style quaffing pils with a little character. Needs work to be called a real pilsner though.

REVISED: 5/02/05

Revisted this beer as a new brewmaster was brought on line at SW. This is now a very nive malt biased pilsner...I love the tart biscuit finish now....smutty yeast taste is gone and the maly body is significantly improved....this is a micro pils for those who like a malt accent to this style

More User Reviews:
Photo of DaftCaskBC
2/5  rDev -42%

If you like DMS, grab a bottle of this for its buttery taste.

Photo of Popsinc
3.2/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: attractice heavy green bottle with retro printing. a pale golden pour, very clear, little carbonation, average looking head. looks the part of an average pils.

Smell: mild hops, sublte malts, and some floral notes.

Taste/Mouthfeel: sweeter than i would have expected. a weird sweetness. maybe a little bit corn-like but there seems to be a bubblegum sweetness in there as well. a smooth mouthfeel with a rich cream finish. minimal hop bitterness.

Drinkability: hmm, not really a traditional Pils as it claims to be but on the other hand, it's not half bad. i admit this isn't a world class pils but it is drinkable and less offensive than most generic macros.

Photo of EsoxLucius
3.28/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: looks like a standard, like warsteiner. golden yellow, with a fast fading head, low carbonation.

S: a bit skunky on first crack, after that, it's doughy with some hop coming through.

T: not bad, like a hyrbrid of Warsteiner and Lowenbrau. it's hopsy for sure.

M: about average, it's pretty flat and thin for being 'premium'.

D: it's smooth with minimal bitterness, much enjoyed!

Photo of niangelo
3.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served in a glass from a green Steam Whistle bottle. Love the shape and lettering, it has an old-timey feel to it.

Poured a light gold with a foamy, loose half-inch think head. Faint on the nose, a touch of airy hops and some malt. The head dissipates quickly, leaving little lacing and a ring of foam on the beer as I drink it.

Not much here when it's cold, but gains some character as it warms up. Initially, there's some straightforward malt, but lacks some body. Piney, woodsy notes show up, with a grassy character hiding in the back. The malt had a likeable, straightforwad feel, and hops kick in with a slight bitterness on the finish.

Overall, it's lacking some of that crisp, hoppy character that I like about the Pilsener style, but it's still enjoyable, and would be excellent on a warmer day.

Photo of merlin48
3.42/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Green bottle pours a crystal clear golden body with a small white head. The head quickly falls to a ring and leaves only a few spots of lace. Aroma has a hint of spicy noble hops and some wet grain. Light medium body has plenty of carbonation. Taste has a dominant sweet bready maltiness that is balanced by a nice hop presence that is spicy, slightly floral, and has a hint of skunk. Drys out at the finish which saves drinkability.

Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale gold, with a thin white head.

Nose is of hops, bread and grains. Fairly standard for a pilsner of this type.

The taste is surprisingly balanced with sweetness and hops with a touch of honey and bread. Mouthfeel is typical for a standard, medium carbonation.

A very drinkable pilsner, one that I've always enjoyed on summer afternoons. A bit sweeter on draft, but still great for a session.

Photo of Brian_Keating
4.29/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

By far the best Canadian brewed Pilsner I've tried.

Photo of biboergosum
3.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Last summer, while in downtown T.O. for work, I planned a Saturday afternoon visit to the Roundhouse, and of course arrived there just as the Blue Jays game was letting out across the street. So, massive crowds of already primed sports fans made for a less than optimal experience, and the small plastic cup of their eponymous pilsener that was proffered didn't help things much. This tourist left unimpressed. Now, in much more laid back environs, let's give it a proper shake.

341ml bottle. This beer pours a clear, bright medium golden amber colour, with two pudgy fingers of loosely foamy, soap sudsy off-white head, which leaves a few instances of isolated webbed lace around the glass as it quickly dissipates.

It smells of semi-sweet grainy, slightly biscuity cereal malt, a hint of aged lemon, and mild floral, grassy hops. The taste is grainy, gritty pale cereal malt, and earthy, leafy, and mildly grassy hops. Dead simple, and mostly the better for it.

The carbonation is generally quite laid-back, and not really all that perceptible at times, the body a fairly solid medium-light weight, and fairly smooth. It finishes on the sweet side, as the cereal malt expands a tad to include hints of corn bread.

A decent enough Canadian pilsner, if one a bit too obvious in its pandering to the BMC crowd. Easy to drink, and worthy of a go if your other options are the usual, sub-standard fare.

Photo of Bcant
4.1/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Aside form the biasing factors of the brewery's cool location (in an old locomotive repair warehouse in downtown Toronto near the CN tower and Sky dome) and the functioning steam whistle that they let you blow at the end of the brewery tour, this beer is quite good. While it is a bit sweet for a pilaster, possibly explained by its extra long barley mash, it is hopped enough to give good balance. Seam Whistle Pilsner has a lovely golden color and a nice sweetish smell, piney notes are followed by a citrus laced finish.

Photo of Sammy
3.05/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Ok beer in a retro green bottle. Enjoyed best at their brewery where there is often hoopla. Sweet floral taste with dry astringent aftertaste. Would have enough rather than a national Canadian brand but rank is weak compared to other microbrewery peers.

Photo of midweb23
3.09/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on draft at the brewery after doing a tour.

A - A golden yellow color with a thick, fluffy, 2 finger head.

S - Slight smell of malt and hops. Nothing stands out.

T - An initial taste of grain followed by a nice hops aftertaste. The hops are much more noticeable than I anticipated for this style.

M - Very crisp and smooth.

D - The beer is very smooth, and goes down easy, especially when cold.

Photo of vanrassel
3.88/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer has been referred to (a bit dismissively, I think) as a good "bridge beer" for uninitiated macro drinkers and I would agree — though I don't think that's a bad thing at all.

It poured out of the bottle a rich golden colour with a frothy, two-finger head that left nice lacing on my mug. The aroma was mostly bitter hops with some malt — and a bit of a soapy smell that I've always detected in Steam Whistle, and never really liked.

The taste, I found, is well-balanced. It starts out with a lot of hoppy bitterness, but you can taste some malt on the back end and it finishes clean.

I've also had Steam Whistle on tap, and find it's better that way.

Photo of eat
3.42/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Totally clear golden body with a thin cover of bright-white head. A fairly average looking beer.

Light, peppery Czech hops, citrus, yeast, mineral water. Decent.

Light and pretty uninteresting, though fairly well-balanced and appropriately refreshing. Tastes mostly of Czech hops and slightly too-sweet malt. A tiny bit of diacetyl shows through. The finish is a little drying. Not much to report here; a fairly plain beer.

Medium-light bodied and moderately carbonated. This feel in no way stands out.

Sure, it's drinkable. I guess it's a step up from Molson and Labatt products. As the only beer being brewed by this brewery, however, I'd expect something a bit more solid than this stuff. I bought a few of these to make pizza dough with; I think I'll stick to using it that way.

Photo of philipquarles
2.51/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

500ml can. Pours a clear gold with a fizzy white head that disappears quickly. Smells like a homebrew that was contaminated with cleaning agents--what seem to be chlorophenols dominate pils malt with a very light grassy hop aroma. A turn off. Thankfully, the taste isn't effected; all light, sweet malt with a very faint floral hop presence. Light bodied with medium carbonation. Aside from the slightly offensive smell, this isn't too bad, just uninspired and characterless.

Photo of DaveBar
3.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Purchased at The Beer Store for around O$2.80 for a 473ml can. Served at 5deg C in a draught glass

A- Opens ok and pours all right.

S- Not much there at all

T- See above.

M- Ok at best

O- Typical mass produced beer. Frankly this rating is better than it deserves

Food Pairing

This ok pilsner goes well with any food you want to eat with Bud


Photo of ChrisCage
3.95/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A- I gave this a fairly hard pour into a mug and was slightly disappointed by the apparent lack of foamy head, of which, settles quickly into a very patchy layer. The coloring is a very slightly hazy golden and the bubbles are noticeable. There is some moderate lacing on the side of my mug. A fairly average looking brew.

S- An overall generally mild smelling beer. What aromas there are include a dominant dried bread/yeast aroma, followed by a sweet malt smell. There are faint smells of grain and floral aromas mixed in there as well. Hop presence is minor. The aroma, I find, gets better as the brew warms up a bit.

T- This is a nicely balanced beer, with those sweet malts on the front of the palate, followed by some neutral grains and finally on the finish, the floral, leafy hops come through. There is a biscuit like flavor that looms on the palate in between drinks.

M- I feel that this has a solid medium body. It is deliciously smooth, as the carbonation is almost foamy on the palate, rather than with the typical zing. Again, very smooth.

D- I think this is a very enjoyable beer. It has a nice flavor, is easy drinking due to its' smoothness and would make a perfect session beer. The alcohol is well hidden and I could see myself having a few pints of this beer at any time of the year. Well done!

Photo of Stocean1
3.03/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - poured a one finger head from a nitro can - pale yellow - head did not last long - little lacing

S - light malt - some floral notes - bready

T - light malt up front - stale biscuit - a little bitterness - nothing too complicated

M - light bodied - dry - a little tart - decent carbonation

O - a very average beer that I used to enjoy much more - to be fair I am not a huge pilsener fan

Photo of Phyl21ca
3/5  rDev -13%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tap: Clear yellow beer with small head with below average retention. Aroma is quite sweet with more or less malt. Taste was quite enjoyable with some refreshing sweetness. Lacking a bit of character and body to make this truly good but better then some other lager that I had the misfortune of drinking over the years.

Photo of Rukasu
3/5  rDev -13%

Poured from a can on a Porter flight. Big, strong, dry biscuit flavor and mildly astringent hops. Not particularly memorable, but could be refreshing in a hot day. But man, that branding really makes one think they're drinking a Rolling Rock.

Photo of smcdowell
3.63/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I don't normally go for Pilsner's, so keep that in mind when reading the review, but I happened to drop by the brewery while visiting Toronto and gave it a try.

I found it be pleasant. The appearance was pretty standard and the smell was pleasing, though my nose was probably a little over-loaded from the general smells of the brewery. Fairly refreshing, but with a little bit of a bite, which I thought was a good thing. That bite primarily affected the taste and didn't seem to affect the drinkability at all.

In general, I would say this is the type of beer that would be quite good on a hot day. Light and refreshing, but enough hops to let you know you're still drinking a beer.

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.48/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap @ Canyon. Served in pint glass.

A - Poured a light yellow colour with a lot of visible carbonation and half a finger of light bubbly white head.

S - Light bready malt nose. Not much else going on.

T - Crisp bready malts with a very subtle hop bite.

M - Light body, lots of carbonation.

D - An excellent pilsener. A little more in the palate would be nice but overall this is a very good beer that goes down very smoothly on a hot summer afternoon.

Photo of EgadBananas
3.32/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to korguy123 for the local!

Green bottle, nicely oldschool.

Pours a pale straw color, white head, didn't stay long. Aroma is crisp, malt rich, with a bit of nuttiness. That carried over pretty equally into the taste: Malt rich, nutty. Feel was slick and creamy, but crisp and light in body. A pretty standard pilsner; not bad at all, but doesn't wow any.

Photo of Mountainmanbrewing
3.92/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

I was offered this in a can as a free drink on an internal flight. Ryanair, take note.

Firstly, it had surprisingly good carbonation, even at whatever height in ft. we were in the air, which gave a good head and and lacing that sticks fairly well to the glass (yes, a real glass in an airplane).

The aroma was very grassy with a similar grassy, lemony or peppery taste balanced by a biscuity backbone. A very nice tasty beer with a bitter base and nice hop flavour.

Photo of irishkyle21
3.25/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear straw color, minimal lacing and head retention. Not the most eye catching beer but I have seen a lot worse.

Smells metallic, light hop notes, grainy malt.

Tastes like a Pilsener, but more like its a distant relative. Notes of pale malt, floral hops and a faint bitterness. Crisp and drinkable but nothing to brag about, they only make one beer and I think they could improve (IMO).

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Steam Whistle Pilsner from Steam Whistle Brewing
79 out of 100 based on 362 ratings.