1. Extreme Beer Fest tickets go on sale Sat, Sep 27 @ Noon EDT.
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Zagorka Special - Zagorka Brewery / Pivovaren Zavod Zagorka

Not Rated.
Zagorka SpecialZagorka Special

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
68
poor

60 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 60
Reviews: 47
rAvg: 2.79
pDev: 21.51%
Wants: 0
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Zagorka Brewery / Pivovaren Zavod Zagorka
Bulgaria

Style | ABV
American Adjunct Lager |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-22-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Ratings: 60 | Reviews: 47 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Dzajka
4.5/5  rDev +61.3%

Dzajka, May 14, 2014
Photo of mynie
3.75/5  rDev +34.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours dark gold, very bubbly with an insane head. Very nice.

Smells okay. A little skunky, a little grainy.

Tastes great. Czech pilsner grains upfront, bitter, moving into coffee in the middle and a very nice bittersweet finish. Surpisingly complicated.

Goes down smooth, crisp body. This is a prime European lager and one hell of a session beer.

mynie, May 06, 2005
Photo of BeerResearcher
3.65/5  rDev +30.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16.9oz old fashioned-style green bottle.
RUN!!...Zagorka is coming!!! I don't know, the name just sounds like a Tokyo eating monster.
That said, it pours a clear, light gold color with a medium-sized white head and a few spotty dots of lace.
The aroma is hard to pick up on. A light whiff of crusty bread with a faint smell of lemon basil and isopropyl alcohol.
A lightly roasted grainy malt body has a taste of salt-free crackers and a hint of a herbal quality.
The hops have a lime-like bitterness with a metallic edge.
This lager is a bit raw and unrefined for the style. It's not a bad thing,
Just more ale-like in character.

BeerResearcher, Mar 16, 2004
Photo of bditty187
3.5/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear, pale yellow in hue; the liquid was that typical sickly color. Yuck. There wasn’t much animation; however the head was still two fingers tall. Head retention was very good; it slowly faded to a thin cap. I’m surprised. The subsequent lacing was very widespread and clumpy in an attractive disheveled kind of way. Overall, this is a good looking beer sans the blanched liquid.

The nose is sweet and bready. As soon as I popped the cap a light undercurrent of skunkiness leaked out. After a moment the green bottle affects were negligible. Back the beer; I really like the crisp hoppy notes, lightly earthy and grainy with a kiss of spice. Saaz hop are lovely. The potency is sensible. While the nose is not chatty I do like what I smell. It is not offensive; while not truly inviting I do what to take a sip. I’ll call the aromas better than typical for the style; that is always welcoming.

The palate is agreeable. Like the nose it lives on the simple side of life. Sweet, bready malts with a light grainy vibe; the hops are moderately bitter, earthy with a suggestion of spice and fruit. There isn’t much palate development from start to finish; I detect the same favors throughout. The finish is a perfect blend of breadiness, grain, and earth. This is a very nice beer. It is one of the better Pale Euro Lager I have had. I would drink this over Heineken/Beck’s/St. Pauli Girl 100 out of 100 times.

Medium/medium-light in body, moderately low carbonation but it feels natural on the tongue. The mouthfeel is fitting for the flavor profile; not too thin or watery. It is respectable.

I’ve had this beer twice since it enter the greater Omaha market. I don’t know why I would buy more. I could drink this during the summer and such but PEL is not a style I flock to. No matter, this beer is tasty and refreshing. It is well-made. My first beer from Bulgaria was pleasant. I purchased my bottle in Council Bluffs, IA. Try one.

bditty187, Dec 28, 2005
Photo of BamaScholar
3.5/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A Bulgarian co-worker said this was one of his mainstays and wanted me to give it a try.

This green, 500-mL can poured the usual pale straw color, but carbonation is excellent!

Most characteristics are exactly above average...this is a very clean and crisp lager with good hop/malt balance (for a lager).

This is a better offering than most Russian / Eastern-Europe brews than I have tried, although admittedly it is not an extensive list.

BamaScholar, May 18, 2006
Photo of Drew966
3.43/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Zagorka Special pours a pale golden color with a thick, fluffy, white head from a green sixteen ounce bottle. The aroma is grainy with perhaps some hops. Taste isn't bad, much better than many Euro lagers. It's hoppy but not skunky, and decently balanced. Not a bad call.

Drew966, Nov 13, 2006
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.43/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Rich amber with miniscule flecks that aren't big enough to be called flakes. Several vigorous streams of bubbles zoom upward and lose themselves in the large, richly creamy cap that is currently occupying the upper half of the glass. An impressive amount of Swiss cheesy lace seals the deal on a very nice appearance.

The green bottle skunkiness that greeted my nose on crown cracking is now gone. I'm fairly sure the muskiness that I now smell is due almost entirely to noble hops. Why this beer isn't classified as a Euro pale lager is beyond me. It isn't offensive, but it's no great shakes either.

Zagorka Special is decent beer. Like the nose, the flavor is confident, whether you like what it delivers or not. I'm on the fence at the moment, but I definitely appreciate the bud busting boldness. There's a nice balance between pale malt and floral, grassy hops. The flavor takes a slight detour midway through when a pleasant, peppery spiciness appears and lasts until the bitter end. The mouthfeel is on the light side of medium and contains a generous, yet far from hyperkinetic, amount of carbonation.

Prior to tasting, I was willing to scoff at the words 'quality product' and the five gold medals displayed on the label. Even though this is far from great beer, I'm not scoffing anymore. My advice to any Eastern European brewers who might be reading this (yeah, right) is the following: when brewing in this general style, let 'bold' be your watchword and let Zagorka Special be your guide.

BuckeyeNation, Sep 17, 2005
Photo of seanyfo
3.4/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml serving on tap into tankard while on holiday in Bulgaria.

A- Golden pilsner clarity with a 3 finger head, that has good to moderate retention and lacing, lively beading.

S- Not much, faint biscuit and bitter hops, but these are found after lots of concentration!

T- Subtle hop bitterness, fading to a malty sweet backbone, hops are faint in the finish.

M- Moderate carbonation, clean and refreshing.

D- I must admit amongst the wasteland of beer in Bulgaria, this was rather pleasant. More like a munich helles to me that a typical macro lager, due to the sweet malt content in the flavour.
Not bad!

seanyfo, Sep 25, 2008
Photo of NeroFiddled
3.38/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A crystal clear golden body is capped by a frothy bright white head. Hundreds of tiny bubbles stream quickly upwards, adding to the head and helping to maintain a thin surface covering throughout most of the glass. Lacing around the glass is limited, but far from non-existant. The nose delivers some gently sweet grainy malt and a good dose of herbal and spicy hop. The body is medium, and the tight carbonation gently caresses the tongue. As it warms it becomes mildly creamy in the mouth. The flavor delivers exactly what the nose promised with a grainy malt that has just the right touch of sweetness juxtaposed against a bracing bitterness and spicy/herbal hop flavor. Wow! It's nice to find a Euro-style lager from the Balkan region with some real hop character. It finishes drying with a dollop of sweet malt that's immediately enveloped and overcome by an herbal and spicy hop flavor, and a gentle, lingering bitterness. Very nicely done. This is kind of like the rough-edged and angry older brother of Heineken. It's certainly not a great beer, but it's refreshing and a nice change of pace.

NeroFiddled, Jun 01, 2003
Photo of livingregret
3.33/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Serving type was a 16.9fl.oz

Appearance: Poured a golden yellow w/ a slight white head that dissipated fairly quickly only leaving a light ring along the outside

Smell: A grainy smell w/ some hops...slight metallic

Taste: There isn't a whole lot of flavour here to talk about. Slight grainy and hop flavour that is quickly washed away. That being said it is a very crisp and clean lager w/ out trying to do to many things. The flavours you taste at the begin are what you taste throughout the drinking experience

Mouthfeel: this is a very wispy drink. It goes down very smooth. It's what you expect from the smell of it

Drinkability: While not my favorite drink i've had, I do find it more enjoyable than some other Lagers I've tried.

livingregret, Aug 15, 2007
Photo of ernie
3.33/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Interesting beer - rich golden color, big head, herbal aroma and good hoppy character. Taste is grainy, bitterness grows towards the end. Aftertaste is herbal, almost medicinal. Very drinkable as a thirst-quencher, properly chilled, much less drinkable as a long drink or at the dinner table. Altogether not bad, not bad at all...

ernie, Jun 12, 2006
Photo of claytri
3.25/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The beer poured a bright light gold with a big rocky head, and a decent amount of carbonation showing. The aroma was pretty much a standard lager aroma: malt and hops mixed. The taste was malty with a decent hop finish. The feel was clean and dry. A decent export style lager. I'd take it over a heinekin.

claytri, Mar 31, 2006
Photo of Rayek
3.23/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: This is the beer's strong suit. Brilliant brass with great clarity and lively carbonation. A dense white head has very nice retention and leaves a generous lace.

S: Light and fluffy lemongrass and honey, plus a bit of straw.

T: Pretty standard EPL fare. Very light and very balanced. Malts bring a honey sweetness. Bitterness is light and has a touch of lemon and earth to it. Finishes clean.

M: The medium-light body is slightly syrupy. The carbonation feels about right.

D: This is an above average beer that is light and easy to down. There's not much flavor going on, but the execution is good due the absence of any off flavors. Should I ever find myself in Bulgaria, I'll know this is a safe choice.

Rayek, Dec 11, 2010
Photo of mactrail
3.2/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Standard eastern European lager with a kiss of hops.

Definite skunky aroma with the pop of the bottle cap. Half litre bottle bought in a small town in Bulgaria. Cheerful yellow gold color, clear, and a decent head. Beery flavor, just the hint of malt and a bit metallic. The hops are slightly interesting with a wee bite and the odd aromatic flavors. Long aftertaste of hoppy funkiness. Then the next sip isn't too bad. It's quaffable and certainly a cut above the endless swill produced in Hungary, Serbia, Romania, and Bulgaria.

mactrail, May 08, 2010
Photo of jackndan
3.1/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Zagorka: A euro-lager from Bulgaria, sold in a thick green half liter bottle. This beer was a pale golden color, with a thick white very long lasting head. The beer had a very strong skunked (sulphur) aroma. The taste was a pleasant surprise, as the skunked aroma did carry through to the taste. The beer was sweet, and had a creamy mouthfeel that is unusual for a euro-style lager. Very nice for the price.

jackndan, Jul 22, 2002
Photo of RoyalT
3.05/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – This one is a nice yellow in color with some orangish tints but little head.

Smell – The light rice and corn does indeed remind one of the classic American macro stinker. I can also pick up a hint of Budweiser and maybe a splash of MGD.

Taste – The flavors here are different from the nose. It’s like pure European grain with maybe a hint of hops. Maybe the nose was skunked from the green bottle. It’s not THAT bad.

Mouthfeel – This is actually a shade bigger than light-bodied with an easy carbonation and a surprising amount of dryness throughout.

Drinkability – This is a nice, even lager that won’t disappoint as long as you keep your expectations low.

RoyalT, Jul 01, 2005
Photo of rvdoorn
3.05/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Look: pours a clear yellow color with a white head.
Smell: Malts and some hints of grain, grass and some spicy hops
Taste: Malts and grain again, with some nice spicy alcohol and lemon in the aftertaste. Not too sweet.
Mouthfeel: Medium carbonation and medium body
Overall: Not great, but not bad either

rvdoorn, Jul 12, 2011
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.03/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear golden yellow with a 2 inch puffy white head that settles to a small cap. Random streaks and splotches of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of grains, grassy notes, and some honey aromas. Taste is of grains, grass/hay, and some cooked vegetable flavors. There is also a metallic taste I am getting as well. A lower level of carbonation with a slightly flat mouthfeel on this one. Overall, this is a pretty average beer but I am glad I got to try one from Bulgaria.

UCLABrewN84, Aug 13, 2011
Photo of LXIXME
3/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer pours a clear golden colored with a medium to big white head when you pour it from an inch or so above the glass, giving it the standard lager look, IE Bud, Bud light, Coors, etc.

This light bodied beer has a sour lemon citrus with an added grain to grain malt aroma.

he taste is quite similar to the aroma with maybe a more hops bite and less of the grains coming through.

A light dry aftertaste is left behind making this beer pretty much the basic drink for the style, nothing special but then again nothing really bad either. Basically, same ol'

LXIXME, Sep 11, 2011
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Presentation: 500ml [1 Pint 0.9 fl.oz] green glass bottle. My sample resembles the BA Avatar. Listed strength is 5% ABV, but there is no freshness date.

Appearance: Golden pellucid body that sits cleanly underneath a solid ½” thick white uniform cap that has excellent staying power. Average levels of finely dissolved carbonation. Light speckled lacing.

Nose: Fresh aromas that have exceptionally clean lines. Saaz like hops are detectable, but retrained, some pilsner malts and a light lemon citric bite. Average strength but sanitary – no horrendous odors.

Taste: Lager like…..and erm……well lager like. Reasonably clean with a slightly annoying sweet spicy hoppy feel in the finish that somehow tastes rather strange. Far from awful, nothing special….more like anonymous.

Mouthfeel: Medium body that has some finely dissolved conditioning which really bolsters the feel in the mouth. After the swallow the feeling soon goes though.

Drinkability: Average attraction for a reasonably average lager. Erm…Average.

Overall: Earlier tonight I tried brews from Namibia, Lebanon and now Bulgaria, so I guess I have a solid grasp for odd-offerings tonight. Actually its not that bad, it has no high profile detractions, but neither does it have much to entice me to get another bottle. The Bulgarian Bud no doubt.

TheLongBeachBum, Dec 29, 2004
Photo of TwiggyCZ
3/5  rDev +7.5%

TwiggyCZ, Mar 09, 2014
Photo of xxxxxxxxxxxxx
3/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Zagorka Special had very light foam.
Smell: Zagorka Special had the aroma of metal.
Taste: Zagorka Special had a lightly sweet taste mixed with metal.
Mouthfeel: Zagorka Special had light carbonation.
Overall: Zagorka Special tastes sweet with hints of metal flavour. The aroma of metal is also present within Zagorka Special. Light carbonation mixed with sweetness and metal. People who seek a sweet beer that both smells and tastes like metal should try Zagorka Special.

I am the person who posted the photo of Zagorka Special.

xxxxxxxxxxxxx, Dec 26, 2012
Photo of Latarnik
3/5  rDev +7.5%

Latarnik, May 25, 2014
Photo of hansavijaticar
3/5  rDev +7.5%

hansavijaticar, Jul 20, 2014
Photo of drpimento
3/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

ok. Decent light east European lager. Drinkable. Not remarkable, but drinkable. Poured with some nice head and lace. Bittersweet. Easy beer. Session beer. Clean with an interesting interaction between bitter and sweet. Fairly fresh tasting especially given its voyage.

drpimento, Sep 05, 2008
« first ‹ prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | next › last »
Zagorka Special from Zagorka Brewery / Pivovaren Zavod Zagorka
68 out of 100 based on 60 ratings.