Josephs Brau PLZNR Czech-Style Lager | Trader Joe's Brewing Company

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Josephs Brau PLZNR Czech-Style LagerJosephs Brau PLZNR Czech-Style Lager
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Trader Joe's Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: Czech Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by notchucknorris on 12-21-2011

BEER STATS
Reviews:
70
Ratings:
209
Avg:
3.33
pDev:
12.61%
 
 
Wants:
1
Gots:
19
For Trade:
0
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Reviews: 70 | Ratings: 209
Photo of NastyNorseman
3.44/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Straw colored with thin white head that dissipates inline with the style. Smells grassy, not detecting malt notes. Taste is pretty good, straight-forward and simple pilsner style for Trader Joe's. Nothing super complex, faint grassy, peppery hops, pale malt, a smidgin of yeast.

 278 characters

Photo of jkblr
3.76/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle BB 6/5/17 poured into a pils glass at fridge temp 5% ABV. The beer is bright straw yellow in color with a fluffy white head that never totally goes away. Smell is grass and floral notes but not robust in nature. Taste starts with malt and then transitions to noble hop flavor. Bitterness is pleasant and to style. Mouthfeel is a bit too soft and lacks strong lager crispness. Overall, an enjoyable beer faulted only to style. It feels like a few short cuts were taken with malt and lagering time in the interest of low cost. Still a strong contender @ 6.99/6pk when better seasonal options aren't available.

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Photo of descobar
3.34/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

12 oz from TJs
pours pale gold, with a half inch white head with decent retention. just about perfect clarity and some lacing as the beer is drunk in the tall glass. aroma is of light bready, biscuity malts, herbal, spicy Noble hops. the taste is light malt sweetness balanced somewhat by significant bitterness with some hop spices. body is medium, with crisp carbonation, and creamy texture. there is a mild astringency there. the beer finishes dry and short although I notice an uncomfortable astringency that almost turns harsh after the fact.

 547 characters

Photo of Gavage
3.33/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: light orange in color with a short 1/4" head that falls apart quickly.

Smell: some grassy tones is all you can detect.

Taste: grainy malt base with some grass, lemon zest, and a bit of a bready flavor to it. Bitterness is mild.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Lightly crisp from start to finish. Relatively clean aftertaste.

Overall: a so-so pilsener that was a bit too mild in flavor.

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Photo of BloodSoakedAleMug
3.98/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

L: Pours a golden yellow hue with a two finger, off white head.

A: Gentle notes of baked bread, apple tarts and crisp, floral hops.

T: Taste is well balanced but slightly more sweet than dry with a creamy, red apple taste upfront that finishes clean with a gentle bitter/grassy flavor. A light, sugary, bready, malty note plays a supporting role in the background. Slightly smokey with notes of vanilla.

F: Body is medium-light with low carbonation. Points off here on drinkability, as this is rather sweet and sugary after awhile for a pilsener, but it's really not a huge deal.

O: Maltier than most other pilseners (which my tongue says it likes but my mind says is wrong for the style) but for $6.99 for a 6 pack, it's pretty good.

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Photo of Guppy314
3.35/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

From a bottle, pours a clear yellow almost straw with a thin white head. Aroma is subtle, but malty. Flavor is malt-forward with grain and grassiness. There's a hops bitterness on the back end. Refreshingly carbonated, better than (and cheaper than) a PBA so, YES!, very drinkable.

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Photo of MeanMotaScootah
2.56/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

For the style this is a bit too malty and darkish - a pilsner should be clear and clean with a light hops finish - this beer tastes more like a pale ale than a true pilsner. That being said it's a nice tasting hoppy lager but IMO it's not a very good pilsner. But as everyone says, you can't beat the price so it's not a bad beer if you're on a budget.

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Photo of TwoTrees
3.24/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Like most Trader Joe's brews, PLZNR is going to give you a beer that is straight down the fairway. Neither shockingly bad, nor rapturously good.

Solid malt backing, some dry bitterness in the aftertaste. It was enjoyable with spicy food, and is a beer that won't require contemplation.

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Photo of Vestlake
3.85/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle pour. Nice Pilsner aroma but not much of a head. I thought the taste was great, better than most American pilsners I've tried. Great price too.

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Photo of PhilHeinricke
4.03/5  rDev +21%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good Beer

Precious wanted to buy a house. We live in a townhouse, and I had planned it out to pay it off within the next ten years. Then it was easy living and traveling all over the world. But Precious wants to live in a single-family home, and she picked one out, and I'm embarrassed to say how much it costs, but $375k is a lot of money. I needed some beer to cry in, but anticipating the payments, I didn't want to spend a lot.

We went to Trader Joe's to get some humus or something. And as usual wherever I am I always check out the beer isle. They carry a lot of beers some name brands like Sierra Nevada and some things that I'd never heard of. I embrace experimentation. I'm always the first one in the pool. I noticed some TJ's brand beers that are low priced so I grabbed a six-pack of this and something else. As they are not kept cold at TJ's I put them in the fridge looking forward to trying them in the evening.

It comes in 12 ounce bottles. It pours out an attractive golden color a little darker than your regular lager. It has a healthy fluffy head even though I'm always careful pouring. It has a pleasant smell. It's strong but not too strong. I feel that smell is an important ingredient and don't drink right out of the bottle. I like to pour it out and look at that great golden color and smell the aroma.

It's got a strong lager taste accompanied by a hint of bitterness almost like an ale. It goes down smooth after a workout on a hot summer Saturday afternoon. I'm in Heaven right now.

 1,533 characters

Photo of bluejacket74
3.3/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

12 ounce bottle, label says best before 11/25/15. Served in a pilsener glass, the beer pours a mostly clear gold color with about an inch and a half frothy white head that stayed around for a while. There's a decent amount of lacing. Not much to the aroma, it smells like floral/grassy hops and some grainy malt. The taste is similar to the aroma, but luckily the flavor seems stronger in comparison. Also, there's some citrus noticeable. Mouthfeel/body is light, it's a bit crisp with moderate carbonation. Not too bad, for the price it's worth picking up once. $1.08 for a single bottle from Trader Joe's, of course.

 626 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.78/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Josephsbrau "PLZNR"
12 oz. brown glass bottle, "BEST CONSUMED BEFORE: 10/20/15"
$1.17 @ Trader Joe's #766, Tampa, FL

Hedonistically this is a decent enough beer at a decent price, displaying a firm maltiness and some herbal and grassy hops. As a Czech-style Pils however, it lacks finesse. The clarity, head retention and lacing are not quite up to snuff, but it's really in its malt and hop character that it drops the ball. Czech-style Pilsners really need to display a bright pilsner malt off-set by spicy, noble Saaz hops but this one is a bit muddy. The bitterness should act as a stiff backbone to the malt, but this one is a bit flabby and introduces itself within the beer in a wider way.

All of the Trader Joe's beers deliver a good game, but for such a delicate and precise style I think I'll have to pass on this one in the future.

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Photo of fx20736
3.66/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pellucid clear Old Goldwith towering, craggy white head. Gorgeous lacing.Hop aroma lacking, some sour according to style. Lacking spiciness of Noble Hops but drinkable. Mouthfeel is decent. Ho hum

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Photo of secondtooth
3.71/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Pours a clean gold, with a full head of clean white suds. Attractive and thick lacing.

Aroma: Creamy, malty grains and some sweetness. Typical (and faithful) for style, and certainly not bad.

Taste: Malty, clean, bready, and with a sharp zing of hops. A highly drinkable and enjoyable pilsner, and one I could easily enjoy again. As well, a nice price $1.25/bottle at Trader Joe’s.

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Photo of Davidstan
3.7/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Excellent economy craft choice! I really liked this one. Peppery with grass notes and some bready cracker notes with dry finish. Not much for aroma as expected. Not as good as PU or Nooner but good way to drink craft on the cheap 6.00 a sixer.

 243 characters

Photo of KYGunner
3.01/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This starts with a classic Pilsner malt flavor that's quite alluring but holds on for a corny sweet mid palate. It ends with a bit of barley malt that's stale. It drinks plenty easy but I'm not a fan of the adjunct flavor.

 222 characters

Photo of Prefabu
3.35/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

I thought this beer was quite drinkable, and it had a bit more up-front flavor than some Pilsners I've had. I tried a few different Josephsbraus since you can make your own six-pack at Trader Joe's. I didn't care for a couple of the others, so my expectations were probably pretty low. Not sure if I'll buy it again, but I would certainly grab one from a cooler at a barbecue or picnic.

 386 characters

Photo of Milchad
3.34/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

For a Pilsner I'm pretty impressed. Is has more flavor than your typical mass produced Pilsner. If you want to step up to more taste without taking the plunge on a heavier darker beer or IPA, this is a great start. Overall a solid beer.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.47/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a clear golden yellow color with a white, finger's worth of head. Fair retention, resulting in a broken layer of surface suds. Virtually no lacing.

Smell - Predominant grain aroma, along with light touches of bready sweetness and a faint grassy character.

Taste - grainy, bready malt sweetness to start. Grassy hop character comes on stronger in the flavor, though the balance still tilts slightly in favor of the malt. Fairly clean finish.

Mouthfeel - Light in body with moderate carbonation. Smooth, but not quite as crisp as the style demands.

Overall - Decent Pilsner. Nothing to write home about. Maybe a decent gateway beer for macro drinkers?

 673 characters

Photo of SonicAddict
4/5  rDev +20.1%

Agree with Argok, but just had a better opinion of it.

My bottle had a different label, but i'm not sure if that means I had a newer version of the beer.

 155 characters

Photo of argock
3.66/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass. Best by 10/22/14 stamped on back label. Purchased at Trader Joe's (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Crystal clear straw-gold with 2-finger stark white, frothy head with good retention and a nice strip of lacing at the top of the glass.

S: Crisp sulfur at the front followed by grainy, slightly sweet pilsner graininess and capped by a healthy dose of floral, spicy noble hops

T: Really good flavor, fairly sharply bitter, really pushing the limit for the style and quickly approaching German pilsener territory. All in all this beer is pretty high quality and a pretty clean lager with no major flaws. A little too sweet and grainy and not quite toasty enough in the malt component for a Bo/Czech pils but with a good noble hops character. Very enjoyable, especially for $5.99 a sixer.

M: Crisp and refreshing with light-medium body and a medium dry finish. Carbonation is high as you'd expect.

O: PLZNER is another high-quality, low-priced TJ beer that really delivers the value. A few little tweaks to decrease the sweetness and moderate the bitterness (which is too sharp and needs to be softer), and this would be an excellent example of the style.

 1,223 characters

Photo of RonaldTheriot
2.9/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

JosephsBrau Plznr has a thick, pureed-type off-white head, a clear, bubbly, golden appearance, and significant lacing left behind. The aroma is of sweet, biscuit grain and grassy hop oil. Taste is of those elements, with an even slightly citrus hop bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium and a touch chewy, and JosephsBrau Plznr finishes crisp, refreshing, and semi-dry.

RJT

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Photo of boddhitree
3.6/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

First, I had a Josephsbrau's Plznr Czech Style Lager. On the back label they say it's "a celebration of noble hops."

Appearance:
Looks like a Pils. Deep golden yellow? Yep. Snow white head? Yep.

Aroma:
A decent amount of Pils malt aroma, sweet as usual, and a hint of Noble hops behind it. Not bad, so far.

Flavor:
Up front: Very sweet Pils here, and some bitter, too. The bitterness is definitely a Noble hop, a heavy bitterness that's not too bitter but still enough to feel it.

Mid: Again, more bitterness, pretty much a the same as before, with some grassiness, again, classical Noble hop flavor. Though y'all won't believe me, there's a decent amount of tartness/astringency here as well. Surprised? I'm not, since it's a nice part of a good Pils.

Back: Yet again, there's lots of Noble malt bitterness and the tart/astringent flavors. There's again lots of sweet Pils malt toasty, bread.

Aftertest: Less Pils malt sweetness here and almost only Noble hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Not bad, quite thick and chewy, yum, just like a German Pils.

Overall: I hate to say this, but this beer isn't at all a Czech Pils, not at all. It's not soft enough; it's too dry and well, too GERMAN Pils like. It's also not a bad German Pils, but it's not in any way a Czech style. So, is that bad marketing? Or just a complete misunderstanding of styles?

Now, as a German Pils, it's again not bad at all. It's got lots of Noble hop bitterness and the tartness I expect, but it's lacking enough Pils malt flavors to make it keep it from being a one note wonder. It's definitely a "a celebration of noble hops." Yet it's not much more than, though. On the back label on the bottle it says it's 32 IBUs, which is again what it tastes like, which is a now what most German Pils' are. Again, it's not bad, but not up to the standards of the beer I've been drinking from Franken and from other Bayernbiere. A 3.5 of 5.

 1,912 characters

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.33/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Yellow with an ok head and lace.

Aroma and taste have grassy, dry hay, noble hops, a fair malt backbone. Body is fairly light, carbonation is a bit lower than expected. Finish is dry hay and grassy.

Overall it's refreshing enough, not TJ's best but drinkable.

 263 characters

Photo of Spikester
3.66/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear pale gold with one finger of white head that recedes rather quickly but leaves a good amount of lace.
Smells like saaz or noble hops earthy and slightly skunky. Light malts a some yeast.
Taste is hop forward with a crisp bitterness. Malts are true to the style. Just enough to smooth the flavors.
Mouthfeel is medium with adequete carbonation. Has a medium dry bitter finish.
Overall a decent if not stellar example of a Czech pilsner beer. Easy drinking and certainly a value brew. My bottle says brewed in San Jose not Monrovia.
Best before date 5/20/14 so it was pretty fresh.

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Josephs Brau PLZNR Czech-Style Lager from Trader Joe's Brewing Company
3.33 out of 5 based on 209 ratings.
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