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Saranac Pilsener - Matt Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Saranac PilsenerSaranac Pilsener

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

98 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 98
Reviews: 77
rAvg: 3.4
pDev: 15%
Wants: 2
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
German Pilsener |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 11-28-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 98 | Reviews: 77 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by jermar:
Photo of jermar
4.33/5  rDev +27.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Deceptively named but delicious! I prefer their pale ale but those who prefer lighter-bodied styles will enjoy this beer's crisp, quenching flavor which is at the hoppy end of the hops-malt spectrum. They should serve this beer exclusively at every MLB ballpark this summer!!

jermar, Jan 22, 2002
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.5/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single yesterday after work,pours a medium gold color with a nice big blooming head.Thea aroma is bread-like and a little metallic.The taste is firmly malty with an ever so slight hop bitterness.A good drinker after a long day at work.Have had better but not to bad.

oberon, Jul 12, 2003
Photo of Todd
3.38/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The whole "Pilsener" labeling is confusing, but whatever. Loads of character. Ultra-clean aroma. Smooth and creamy on the palate, and very fresh tasting. What I really love is the snap that this beer has with its use of crisp wheat and dry-hopping. Light, mellow fruit with some dextrin sweetness and a flash of lime/citric hop bitterness. Goes dry in the end.

A very unique American twist of a style, and a solid, okay beer.

Todd, May 26, 2002
Photo of sponberg
3.45/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bright gold with a white head - looks like a Pils. The smell is a green apple sort of malt, with some hops. Starts out with that same sweet green apple maltiness, with a wheaty, grainy flavor coming through to dry things out and enough hop to balance it. Finishes drier than it starts.

Tastes more like an American Wheat ale than a Pilsner - this would be better with a final hit of Saaz. OK, not bad, not huge.

sponberg, Nov 22, 2002
Photo of generallee
3.5/5  rDev +2.9%

generallee, Aug 29, 2012
Photo of Jason
2.55/5  rDev -25%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

12oz brown with no freshness date.

Appearance: Bright pale golden in colour with a faint patchy white lace that dissipates.

Smell: Herbal and slight citrus in the nose from the hops, mild hint of bready grain also.

Taste: Husky pale malt is awry, hop bitterness only enhances it. Dry palate with an odd dextrin flavour throughout. Citric herbal hop is quick and lets in some astringent flavours, more huskiness comes through and is quite bothersome.

Mouthfeel: Slight crispness and medium bodied, I’d want more crispness out of this brew and it seems to have a bitty mouth feel in the end.

Drinkability & Notes: Real tough to put down 12 oz. This brew used to be a damn good lager, did this batch crap the bed or is this what Saranac is starting taste like? I’ll pass next time this is in my crosshairs during my next beer hunt.

Jason, Dec 02, 2002
Photo of Rifrafboy
2.9/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I finally tried this after all I heard of it. This is good stuff. Poured average American. The taste is of malt with good hoppiness. A little taste of grain and grass. Very floral. Clean and crisp finish. I will try this again. I would sort of compare this to Point Special.

Rifrafboy, Feb 20, 2003
Photo of Janeinma
3/5  rDev -11.8%

Janeinma, Jan 20, 2013
Photo of Thrasher
4/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another tasty beer from Saranac. In the NYC area these are cheaper than other craft brews but they are always equal or superior to their peers. I got a real Bohemian pilsener feel from this one and didn't get so stuck on the wheat. Soft, crisp, delectably white puffy head; surprisingly full in the mouth for the style. Solid malty backbone, expertly buttressed by intimate hop flavor. A refreshing way to spend an evening.

Thrasher, Mar 12, 2002
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
2.44/5  rDev -28.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Nothing special to look at or drink. Gold looking beer, typical head retention of a yellow beer.

Has some decent hop zest, I'm probably guessing its around 30ibus. Some of the zip might be from the carbonation, which seems on the high end.

Its not a bad beer, its a good beer to have around yourself to give to other people who don't like their beer to be too adventurous. But you're kidding yourself if you think this is an een average representation of a pilsner.

Beerandraiderfan, Nov 27, 2009
Photo of ADR
3.2/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A Pilsner that's an American Wheat...hmm...

Nice frothy head, straw color but not a trace of haze. Very lemony with some dry hop tang. I guess now I know more about its category from reading its style here, its easier to classify -- but at the time, I didn't know what I was drinking. Aggressive lemon is my major problem with Wheat beers but this was at least OK to me...

ADR, Mar 01, 2002
Photo of WVbeergeek
3.75/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I picked up the trail mix the other night, and I had the pilsener with some Chinese food. They went really well together, and I am going to say when I popped the cap there was an explosion of Czech Saaz hops that filled up my senses. As I poured this golden beauty a nice white foamy head formed, and my mouth began to salivate due to the first whiff of the aroma I got. When I took a closer smell, there was also a nice sweetness to the aroma. As I began to sip, I realized what Saranac had done was create a classic style with that is a little toned down, but nontheless an excellent well balanced beer. There was great lemony grassy sweetness that paired well with Saaz bitterness. A definitely well constructed beer that is medium to light bodied, that gets a very high drinkability rate in my eyes. One because of the fact that it is so refreshing, and the other because the flavors leave my tase buds wanting more enjoyment.

WVbeergeek, Feb 03, 2003
Photo of alesaram
3/5  rDev -11.8%

alesaram, Oct 16, 2012
Photo of QXSTER1
3.58/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

If your looking for a Prima Pils or a Pilsner Urquell here your not going to find it. This is more of an attempt at an American style pale lager. Though this pilsener may not live up to the standards of the best of the style it's still a decent beer. Pours a clear gold with a bone white head that settles but doesn't disappear. Flavor is clean with a hint of wheatiness, mostly grain and bread. Hops are not prominent, but cutting the sweetness in the background. Nice short finish. Vastly better than the other mainstream swill that put pilsener on their label.

QXSTER1, Nov 23, 2002
Photo of NeroFiddled
3.83/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A clear, yellow-gold body is capped by a short and creamy bright-white head that drops readily but maintains a decent collar and thin surface covering. It leaves some limited lace that sticks just above the level of the beer. The nose expresses a thin, wheat-like malt and some nice hops that are floral and a touch lemony. The body is thin with a very fine, median carbonation that's crisp in the mouth. The flavor delivers a delicately balanced combination of gently sweet and lightly tangy malt; citrusy and floral hop flavor; and firm bitterness. It finishes dry with some lingering malt and hops. I'm not sure why they decided to label it a "pilsener" as it's a great American wheat! It's clean, light, and delicately balanced with enough character to keep it interesting beyond a serving or two. It's very refreshing and enjoyable! A great summer beer that's worth trying.

NeroFiddled, Feb 25, 2003
Photo of beerluvr
3.15/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a large white billowy head over one of the lightest looking pale yellow liquids I've ever drank...almost like hazy water! Nice gentle carbonation with a delicate fresh flowery hop nose. Taste is light bodied, due to the percentage of wheat malt used, with a lightly malty sweetness and pleasantly hoppy character...very easy to drink quickly as it turns out. Nothing overpowering here folks, just a nice little pilsener for your quaffing pleasure, finishes sharp yet invites another sip.

beerluvr, Nov 10, 2002
Photo of Stingray5
2.68/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Sampled from the variety pack. Pours clear golden yellow with a fizzy white head that goes quickly. Slight lacing. Mild aromas of hops, but not much else. Taste is on the hoppy side. Dry, short finish.

Pilseners aren't really my thing, so I can't say I'm really enjoying this. It's not awful by any means, but nothing special either. Glad when it was over.

Stingray5, May 26, 2003
Photo of Southernbrew
3.33/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Light gold with a big head from a strong pour.

Slight hop crispness along with malt sweetness in the aroma.

Medium body and fairly smooth. Light sweetness up front moves to a weak fruitiness with a very light hop bitterness. Finishes with bread-like flavors.

An easy drinking beer suited for warm weather, but not exciting.

Southernbrew, Apr 12, 2004
Photo of bditty187
3.55/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slightly peachy-gold hue, a finger’s worth of white head, reasonable retention, some lace. Mediocre nose, light, wheaty, underwhelming floral, hints of fake-ish lemon. A busy palate that seems to contradict the flavors to a point of confusion… okay, it slightly tilts towards complexity… it is sweet but nicely done, slightly hoppy with a noticeable malt influence, phantom suggestions of mild citrus and floral. Lovely dry, sweet/hoppy finish, this is the absolute highlight of this beer, plus it is well carbonated, pleasing mouthfeel. I’ll drink it again; I bet it will work well in the summer. Yeah, I guess I liked it.

bditty187, Mar 13, 2003
Photo of EBeckett3
3/5  rDev -11.8%

EBeckett3, Aug 14, 2013
Photo of GeoffRizzo
3.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a light golden hue, with a thick and foamy head, little retention. Delicate aroma of hops and some wheat. Light bodied, yet a decent hopped body (blend of cascade and tettnang hops) combined with some underlying malts make this a pleasant, easy to drink pilsner. A finish that is dry and smooth, a tender lingering bitterness, simple yet a good thirst quencher.

GeoffRizzo, Jul 12, 2003
Photo of kmwilson76
3.5/5  rDev +2.9%

kmwilson76, Dec 26, 2011
Photo of Stubbie1
3.05/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice bright golden yellow with a white head. Decent retention and lace. There wasn’t much for the aroma. Hints of wheat and hops are present with a slight hint of lemon. Not one of the three was very overpowering. Medium carbonation that's crisp in the mouth. Taste is malt with hints of citrus and then a dry finish. Other than a week aroma, not a bad brew.

Stubbie1, Apr 20, 2003
Photo of AaronRed
3.9/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Light and crisp. Flavor is present even toward the end of the beer. Malt is noticable. This beer is very easy to drink and goes well with salty foods.

AaronRed, Jan 06, 2002
Photo of buzzy
3.25/5  rDev -4.4%

buzzy, Feb 23, 2014
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Saranac Pilsener from Matt Brewing Company
79 out of 100 based on 98 ratings.