Whole Hog Imperial Pilsner - Stevens Point Brewery

Not Rated.
Whole Hog Imperial PilsnerWhole Hog Imperial Pilsner

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BA SCORE
82
good

54 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 54
Reviews: 42
rAvg: 3.6
pDev: 16.11%
Wants: 0
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Stevens Point Brewery visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial Pilsner |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: madtowndmb1 on 05-04-2009)
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Ratings: 54 | Reviews: 42 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of al3
4.47/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A - golden orange, good lacing

S - faint citrus, bread and butter.

T&M- sweet malt, slight grapefruit, finishes with a mild hop flavor. Medium feel, with a buttery characteristic.

D - All night....or day..

Overall a very well balanced beer, not very complex, but an easy drinker that is worth seeking out. One I'd like to try on tap.

Photo of garymuchow
3.9/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Acquired as a special from Big Top liquors.
Presents as in impressively big American-style lager. Strong malt character of American lager style and actually fairly subdued hops.
Appears heavy in the glass and is mostly clear with some rising bubbles. Dense white head settles with a few big bubbles in a small thin layer of white small bubbles. Also leaves considerable lacing as the drink proceeds downward.
Taste is heavy on malt flavor although there is a prominent bitterness which is fairly short-lived as a green hop flavor and contributes a small dry finish. Hops are more noted in taste and then in aroma and blend nicely with the malt characteristics.
A heavy body for a lager with carbonation that blends nicely.
This beer drinks nicely. As noted previously it's a big old American-style lager that is hopped up with some significance.

Photo of homebrew311
3.93/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: pours a pale straw yellow color with a 1 finger head, leaves plenty of sticky lacing, clear

S: nose consists of lemon, grassy hops, toasted bread, caramel, and flowers

T: the flavor begins with a pretty big malt presence in the form of bready grains and follows up with grassy and lemony hops, very well balanced and well hidden alcohol

MF: suprisingly smooth and creamy, medium body, nice

D: this one sure beats the Whole Hog 6-ipa...overall a well constructed brew and a good representation of a pils

Photo of CPeterson
3/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A -- A bright clear golden beer pours and produces a nice head that calms quickly leaving light bits of lacing on the glass.

S -- Sweet grain, detectable hop aromas of citrus and flora.

T -- Sweet graininess, grapefruit, dry and hoppy.

M -- Medium bodied with a residual stickiness that is punctuated with a dry note.

D -- I can't see sitting and drinking several, but very nicely done in the style. Unassuming yet bold, worth the $ (I paid $3.49 / 4 pk), but not amazing.

Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.63/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a 5 (or so) oz taster glass at the Saukville Beer and Wine Tasting.

A - The bottle pours out a lightly hazy golden yellow with a dense off-white head. Bits of lace left on the glass with moderate retention.

S - The aroma starts with a light pale malt backbone with a fair blend of noble and other hops that impart pine and citrus with a low level alcohol kiss.

T - Big pale and pilsner malt backbone with a crispness and overlapping hop flavor that's noble it seems. A thin dry and bitter finish.

M - Highly carbonated and smooth with a dry and bitter finish to this medium-bodied pilsner.

D - This pilsner falls darn close to a sessionable brew. The medium body and "imperial" boost in flavor knock the drinkability down slightly, but not by a whole lot.

Photo of Vancer
3.38/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This big bad boy starts off with a semi-hazy amber in the Corsendonk tulip, eggshell marshmallow 2'inches thick, even with such a big brew. Nice lace on the way down, but then...

Aroma is a strange pilsner bird, sweet citrus malt is the key ingredient. Quaff does not match it; unfortunately, a sour and raspy wood dominates the malt backbone. I know it's a strong brew, and the alcohol does not burn through, but the taste is just not right

Four pack for $8 ain't a bad deal, too bad the brews just don't make a better showing.

Photo of Chaz
3.93/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours an amber-golden ("dark straw") in color, topped with a puffy one-fingered off white head which recedes very gradually, leaving behind a good bit of lace. Coarsely-filtered, but otherwise quite clear.

Pungent, rich blend of malts and plenty of Noble hop presence. Musty/yeasty, and rather Bock-like; this one very much reminds me of certain strong European lagers (Hevelius Caper from Poland, to name just one).

Insistent malts and a light booziness on the first sip, this initial impression fades to a blend of grainy malt character and lingering bitterness after a minute or so.

Not-quite soft on the palate, there's a depth and complexity to this one which is due in no small part to the malts used in the grain bill; hop use is obviously consistent as per the 'Imperial' aspect if the style, and yet there's less and less of them (aside from the bitterness alone) throughout the drink.

I'm not big on the idea of an unfiltered imperial pilsner, but I've enjoyed a handful of zwickels and Landbiers with plenty of character due to the fact that thy were unfiltered, and as such this beer hews close to these stylistic characteristics while also being based on an American stylistic invention: mouthfeel is better than average, to say the least, and the drinkability is very nearly exceptional.

---End Note---
I first tried Whole Hog Imperial Pilsner at the brewery, and shortly after its initial release. It was a real eye-opener at the time! The bottled version (and this sample in particular) has held up quite nicely considering the time it has spent in the bottle. This is especially poignant considering the fact (or my opinion, rather) that the Six Hop IPA did not hold up as well. Of course, we all know that the hop profile of Imperial or Double IPAs diminishes with the consequence being that the overall flavor profile diminishes, too, but these were interesting beers from a heritage brewery, and make me wonder whether you can't teach an old dog new tricks!

Photo of dstc
3.68/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep gold color with a big white head. Head falls slow to a small one. Fairly decent lace.

Not bad aroma with sweet grainy malts and mild hops if you get your nose in it.

Decent taste. Rather full malts that are pleasant. Ends with the hops and a lingering bitter mild aftertaste.

Thin to medium bodied and rather smooth.

Nice beer. By far not the best imperial pilsner I've had (thinking of Golden Revolution) but nice for an old brewery like Point. I can see having several of these although deep down you can tell it's another WI lager.

Photo of stephens101
3.03/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours reddish-orange with a flurry of bubble activity that results in a diminutive off-white head which fades quickly leaving little to no lace behind. Smells malty and grassy with a little fruitiness in the very back. The palate is nearly overwhelmed by a huge spicy alcohol heat, but a few notes of malt and citrus emerge just before a nice little hop bite shows itself. After a while some sour notes emerge as well. Goes down crisp with more alcohol brutality on the throat, and felt immediately in the stomach. Don't get me wrong. I like to taste the alcohol a bit in my big beers, but this one really doesn't have much going on in the balance department. That being said, as it warms up, and I get used to it, it doesn't seem as harsh. The Imperial Pilsner, as a style, doesn't seem to be doing it for me, and this one doesn't help the cause.

Photo of steveh
4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Imperial Pilsner doesn't have much of a benchmark, and isn't a recognized style (per se), so I can only go by the Bros' guidelines here. Only had one other, Sam Adams, and found that almost too harsh to enjoy.

Point has long been known as a bland regional in the Midwest, though it has a loyal following. Since trying their Maibock last year and finding a darn good interpretation of the style, I thought I'd throw 8 bucks at a 4 pack of the Imperial Pils.

A -- Very nice, clear golden color with a substantial, long-lasting, off-white head.

S -- Mildly fruity nose with bready malts and some hop spiciness and vague DMS back. Would be good for a straight Pils. Alcohol aromas with warming.

T -- First hit is mild, sweet and bready malt. Hot, peppery, alcohol spiciness follows and finishes. The vaguest of citrus fruit back. It's difficult to tell if the bitterness in the middle is from hops of the alcohol. The Point website says cascades (among others) are used in this -- difficult to tell. To the style and the clean, lager-like flavor, I have to vote high on this.

Others have mentioned metallic, and I can see the spicy alcohol being misinterpreted that way, or maybe an older bottle might get harsh, but there was no off character in my bottles.

M -- Soft to syrupy mouth-feel that finishes very dry. Light medium to medium body.

D -- At 8.5%, the drinkability of this beer isn't bad, though I think the hotness of the alcohol could become hard to get past after a couple. Otherwise, a mighty fine precision lager.

Photo of alexgash
3.48/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle.

Very clear, clean, medium brass body. Small, short-lived, cottony white head. Fruity malt on the nose, with spearmint, pine, floral, and resinous hop notes. A little alcohol burn as well. Honey and toasted malt up front. Becomes fruitier and sweet, with notes of hay and cooked vegetables. Solid hop bitterness comes in midway through. Herbal, floral, and mildly citrus. Honey sweet finish with lingering herbal hops. Medium body with a slightly slick, oily feel. Not bad, but not the best imperial pilsner I've had.

Photo of sholland119
3.8/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a clear copper gold with a very thin white head that leaves a small ring of lacing.

S-Sweet caramel and biscuit malt with a light hop background.

T-Sweet in the front with a nice floral hop bite in the finish.

M-Medium bodied with crisp carbonation.

D-Very tasty and delicious. I would gladly have another.

HV

Photo of dmamiano
3.9/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bright golden color with a small white head that fades quickly to some "wispy" lace.
Highly carbonated as I watch the bubbles shoot to the top of the glass.
Nose of grainy malts, faint grassiness with some floral essence.
Taste is nice and smooth on the palate. Almost Belgianesque in nature. Pears, apple come to mind. Fruity with a nice hoppy snap to it.
Bitterness lingers...

Photo of rhoadsrage
2.9/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

(Served in a strange)
A- The crystal clear orange body has a sea of microbubbles launching to the surface that is a thin soapy white head that soon fades.
S- This beer has a soft clean green noble hop hint.
T- This beer has a soft sweet malt flavor with a dry green finish and a faint pungent hint.
M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel and a tight fizz with no alcohol heat.
D- This beer has a very soft hop profile and no pilsner qualities. It is easy to drink but a bit lack luster.

Photo of Mdog
3.43/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Gold, lots of particles, good head.

Smell: Bready, tea-like aroma.

Taste: Similar to the smell, bready, with an interesting bitterness that I can't quite describe. Not really what I'd expect from a big pilsner.

Drinkability: More of a sipper or nightcap style beer.

There aren't a lot of imperial pilsners around, and every one I've had has been different from the rest. This one was interesting, but maybe a little old as I don't get the flavors other reviewers note. Let the experimentation continue!

Photo of paco1029384756
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a golden orange color with one finger of foamy white head.

Scent of fading hops, light caramel, earth, sugar, some fruit and sharp alcohol. Not bad, but not great.

Taste of strong grain, caramel, light fruit, and some alcohol. A bit boozy, the other flavors fail to hide that, it isn't an unpleasant taste though.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a good bite of carbonation, very enjoyable.

Photo of rabsten
4.33/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle to East End pint glass. Good head that goes away but there's still lacing opportunities. Clear golden with solid carbonation. Workable.

Good floral pils aroma, somewhat amp'd up. Quite nice.

Clean, crisp flavor, with nice hoppy bite. Very similar to Rogue Morimoto Imperial, which I love, but at a steep, steep discount. Alcohol finish. Nice.

Somewhat dry finish. Drinkability is high but alcohol creeps, so it takes a hit.

Stevens Point - so far, so good. Looking forward to what else you're gonna bring to the Mountain State.

Photo of Jae27
1.7/5  rDev -52.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

My friend bought a 4 pack of this while we were in Baraboo Wisconsin for a Geology Field trip. Let me start by saying I do not like pilsners, especially floral pilsners.

A. It was dark around the fire, but it was light yellow to orange.

S. It smelled pretty good actually. Nice floral and fruity aromas. I got excited at first.

T. When I took a drink it was almost more than I could handle. No malts. Just flowers. I thought that any minute a swarm of bees were going to come attack me.

M. It is a crisp moderately carbonated light beer. There wasn't much to this one.

D. This is one of the first beers I have ever had to pour out. It was miserable from start to finish. For some reason I couldn't stop belching while I was drinking this. It was like I ate a bowl of potpourri. I will say that the name was appealing but I could not handle the "Whole Hog" half of it was dumped onto the campfire. It was sad day.

Photo of Monkeyknife
4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle a clear gold with three fingers of rich off-white head.

Aroma of big floral hops, lemon, cereal grains, and bready malts.

The taste is classic pilsner. Rich floral hops, sweet lemon, and malty cracker and bread notes. Finishes clean, and the 8.5% alcohol sheds a touch of heat but is pretty well hidden.

Medium bodied, crisp and clean, with a sharp carbonation.

I really enjoyed this Imperial Pilsner from Stevens Point. So drinkable, and what I look for in a quality pilsner.

Photo of russpowell
3.33/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up in Wichita

Pour an effervescent apricot with 2+ fingers of cream colored head. Good head retention & average lacing

S: Grassy hops & orchard fruit

T: Pears, breadyness, grassy hops & honey malt up front. Some grapefruit comes through as this warms along with a touch of green banana???, weird; plus boozey warmth as this warms, starting to remind me of a weizenbock...Finishes boozey, fruitty with more green banana, & pineapple. Straying a bit off style, .5 deduction

MF: Chewy, fairly soft carbonation, fair balance

Drinks easy enough for the style & ABV, but not one I'll be seeking out

Photo of gobeer
4.9/5  rDev +36.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I should start by saying German Style Pilsner is my favorite kind of beer. This beer reminded me of what I had in Germany. It didn't let me down where other American attempts have. No defects. Clean crisp maltiness with a strong hop assertiveness. What a real pilsner is all about. Thick creamy head. Hallertau hop aroma. Taste was cracker crispness with a sharp bite. Pleasantly surprised. Other brewers should take note in this beer. How did they do this?

Photo of morimech
3.13/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear golden color with two inches of white head that had great retention. The head eventually settles to a thick cap. Heavy lacing is left on the glass. Unfortunately the appearance is the best part of this beer. Very tame aroma. Immediately after the pour I thought I smelled cooked corn but it was just briefly. Then it is just faint hop herbal/floral aromas and some cereal grains. The flavor is not that big considering it is an imperial, until you get to the finish. Then it is bitter and boozy. Not my favorite combination. Extremely dry. The body is rather modest as well considerly the ABV and bitterness. But it does have nice carbonation. I think the brewer missed the mark. Need more from the hops besides bitterness and a bigger malt bill. Nothing unpalatable about this beer, it could be so much better.

Photo of ballewblake
2.9/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle into my Duvel tulip.

No head on aggressive pour, flat, clear yellow with some carbonation bubbles around the perimeter of the glass. Malts on the nose, ethanol. Flat tasting, oxidized, fully body though. Lacking any flavor really hurts its drink ability.

Photo of Fartknocker
2.9/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle, no date

A- solid golden color with a decent white foamy head, lots of effervesence
S- fairly standard malty/lager smell
T- fairly strong malt flavor with a hint of alcohol, leaves a somewhat bitter aftertase that lingers for a short while
M- plenty of carbonation
D- Not too impressive, no more than a few for drinkability

Photo of botham
4.22/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pilsner glass. Pours a light amber color with golden highlights and one and a half fingers of tight white head. Good retention and light lacings on the glass.

Aroma is of floral hops up front (mildly rich), with a pale malt base and notes of cereal grain and a bit of bready yeast. Nicely composed in the nose with a fresh quality.

Taste follows the nose with an alcoholic tinge and a bit more of a malt presence, albeit small. Finishes on a dry floral hop note. Taste profile is true to an imperial pilsner; all that a great Pilsner should be only dialed up in intensity.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a mild bite from alcohol and a dry finish. An alcoholic tinge comes through as the brew warms a bit, but does not take away from the rest of the profile.

As already said, this brew is exactly what an Imperial Pilsner should be. Floral and lightly malty, with a satisfying quality and crisp finish. All this is present, only the brew is very flavorful and carries an 8.5% APV tag. Very well crafted and pleasant to drink. It is a wonder that more of this style has not been seen. Cheers!

Whole Hog Imperial Pilsner from Stevens Point Brewery
82 out of 100 based on 54 ratings.