Viru | AS Tartu Õlletehas

BA SCORE
68
poor
152 Ratings
THE BROS
70
okay
Read the review
ViruViru
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
AS Tartu Õlletehas
Estonia
alecoq.ee

Style: Euro Pale Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Suds on 03-31-2006

BEER STATS
Ratings:
152
Reviews:
86
Avg:
2.72
pDev:
22.79%
 
 
Wants:
2
Gots:
16
For Trade:
0
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Ratings: 152 |  Reviews: 86
Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.07/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear gold with a foamy beige head that settles to wisps of film on top of the beer. Tiny dots of lace slowly drip into the remaining beer on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, corn flake, and sugar aromas. Taste is much the same with sweet grain, corn flake, white grape juice, and grass flavors on the finish. There is a very mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an average beer that has a cool bottle, but the beer inside is nothing I would ever seek out again.

Serving type: bottle.

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Photo of djrn2
2/5  rDev -26.5%

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.5/5  rDev +28.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

underrated, this has all the traits of a baltic region lager, super cold fermented feeling, patient beer, fuller bodied, well carbonated, and drinkable forever. maybe some reviewers have had dated bottles, but when fresh, this is really nice, not a trace of off flavors for a pale lager type, and pretty clean finishing despite all the body. fun beer, awesome bottle obviously, aside from the fact it only hold 10 or so ounces of beer, feeling a little cheated there, but the beer tastes fresh to me, cleanses the palate but still has flavor, and i think its my first beer from the land of estonia, so thats always fun. not sure i would buy it again, but in a restaurant context of macro brews, its a fun bottle to drink. definitely a league above most of its peers.

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Photo of t0rin0
2.75/5  rDev +1.1%

Photo of BEERchitect
3.5/5  rDev +28.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presented in an oddly charming six-sided obelique looking bottle- slender and elegant, Viru takes on bohemian proportions and weight for a fuller flavor than what's expected from adjunct ridden beers.

Medium gold in color and with a medium haze, the beer carries a visual weight that is more formitble than expected. A foamy white head forms and sits on the beer with solid persistence. Low lacing leads to the lack of character for adjuncts.

Medium apple and pear esters are a nice complement to the hop aroma that borrow notes of lemongrass and floral compounds. All backed by a malty/grainy blend for a well balanced nose. Bready/doughy and yeasty spice tell me that this is better beer than I expected.

Flavors also represent a sturdy malt backbone with raw barley sweetness and starchiness and a non-descript sweetness from cereal grains. Mild ester flavors of apples, pears, along with a light lemon acidity seem to surpress the sulfur taste and allow for a seamless bridge to herbal and grassy bitterness in finish. All in all, a nice but not over stated taste.

Again, a more robust or starchy body gives added creaminess and weight to the beer that never waivers- fuller and more robust than ususal, the beer seems very Maibock-like. But the sweetness lingers in the finish to rival the crisp and bitter dryness that the minty alcohol and hops provide.

Fans of bohemian pilsners and German Maibocks may want to give this beer a shot- robust for a lager and surprisingly flavorful and textured for any beer that includes adjunct grains.

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Photo of biboergosum
2.85/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Funky, 8-sided pyramidal bottle, like something out of Star Trek or Star Wars, with the actual brewery and beer name (A. Le Coq) embossed near the base, and a much less interesting paper label on the neck, obviously slapped on for overseas treatment.

This beer pours a clear pale straw colour, with a half finger of blink-and-you-miss-it fizzy white head, which is just as spare in its lace rendering. It smells of sweet corn malt, and farmer's field grassiness - wet hay and weeds. The taste is mildly sweet adjunct grains, some buttery alcohol, and grassy, weedy hops. The carbonation is pretty sedate, the body light, buy not overly so, with nothing else of note. It finishes off-dry, warm, and more-or-less clean.

As neat as the bottles is, the beer runs in entirely the opposite direction. Bland, inoffensive, I suppose, and just not worth the novelty.

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Photo of dmorgan310
3.5/5  rDev +28.7%

Photo of Boone757
3/5  rDev +10.3%

Photo of wethorseblanket
2.56/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Unusual eight sided lighthouse bottle. 300ml, best before date of 7/30/14. Oh dear.

A: Pours a clear pale yellow with a solid one-finger thick white head which fades slowly and leaves semi-rings and splotches of lace.

N: Adjunt city - corny, estery yeast, herbal, grassy, faint lemon citrus.

T: Corn based, slightly metallic, yeasty, faint wheat and lemon.

M: Light body and medium carbonation. Semi-dry and semi-bitter yeasty finish.

O: Basic Euro lager. A "premium" Estonian beer. Thank goodness it's premium, cause I don't what to try anything otherwise.

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Photo of dcmchew
3.25/5  rDev +19.5%

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.03/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

"Viru beer is sold in distinctive tall octahedral bottles. The design is a century old and originates from Russia. It is intended to resemble the medieval-era turrets found in Estonia. The name was changed when the beer was launched in Britain. In Estonia, it's known as A. Le Coq Premium Extra.

--random facts

Haystack gold with lemon juice accents. Few bubbles can be seen blipping up to a decent looking crown of sheep's wool white that lays down better than average lace in the end. Never have I seen a more attractive Estonian adjunct lager.

The nose is pretty much as expected: slightly sweet cereal grains and grassy-musky hops of the Saaz persuation. Not one bit of nastiness lays to rest any fears about freshness or poor quality ingredients.

Viru is pretty good beer considering its area of origin. It makes no major missteps and has the most popular lagers in this country beat by a country mile. Having said that, it still delivers nothing more than the bare bones where flavor is concerned.

What greets the taste buds is pretty much what greeted the nose. The beer is grain-like without being grainy. The grassy-musky-spicy hops give a slight edge to bitterness over sweetness and provide a fair amount of flavor. This is a solid version of the style in all respects.

The mouthfeel grabs the lowest rung of the average ladder as well. It never becomes watery, even on the finish, and is properly carbonated. That's pretty much what pale lagers need to do.

If it wasn't for the distinctive tall octahedral bottle, Viru probably wouldn't have found its way into my cart. If that's what it takes to sell more beer, more power to the brewery. Bottom line: too bad the contents of the bottle don't match the distinctiveness of the bottle itself.

 1,760 characters

Photo of Ciocanelu
2.75/5  rDev +1.1%

Photo of womencantsail
2.11/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Thanks for sharing this obscure beer, Greg.

A: The pour is a clear golden yellow color with a short lived white head.

S: Smells of chile peppers more than anything. A very green, spicy aroma which is quite strange. Skunk, yeast, and water make up a decent amount of the aroma, too.

T: Sweet and sugary with a definite corn and vegetable flavor. The odd spiciness and chile pepper character is also present. Other than the bad and strange, this is pretty watery.

M: Light in body with a medium carbonation.

O: This was one of the strangest beers I've ever had. And not a very good one.

 589 characters

Photo of TMoney2591
2.73/5  rDev +0.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Budweiser pokal.

I admit it, I picked this beer up because of the unique bottle. That being said, it pours a clear jaundice topped by a cute finger of bright white foam. The nose comprises light wheat, light corn syrup, and miscellaneous vegetable matter (kinda like sniffing a used in-sink disposal after cleaning a salad bowl). The taste does away with the veggies (thankfully), leaving some watered-down corn syrup, wheat, rice, and a slightly metallic wannabe-bitterness. The body is light, with a light moderate carbonation and a fairly crisp finish. I've had many better from this particular Baltic state. Nice bottle, though.

 645 characters

Photo of LiquidAmber
3.07/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a Dogfish Head pint glass. Pours a light straw yellow with a thin film of white foam with decent retention. Typical adjunct aroma of sweet malt, grain and faint hops. Flavor is light biscuit malt with a slightly harsh grain, grassy hops, faint apple juice. Light bodied with active carbonation. A decent pale lager, with a little more flavor and hops than most adjunct ales, but also a little less smooth and sweet. A satisfactory light lager for drinking with lunch but fairly average. Cool bottle.

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Photo of stevoj
3.2/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

One of the fluffiest heads I’ve seen on a pale lager. two to three fingers high, pale golden with fine carbonation. Aroma and taste are mildly malt with some citrus notes. Not much lasting flavor, but a very decent lighter beer.

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Photo of tempest
2.91/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I was searching for Carolina beers at Chip's Wine and Beer in Kill Devil Hills, NC and found this. I figured I'd never has Estonian beer and gave it a shot. It's basically just another clean continental lager. The aroma has very mild vegetable off-notes, but otherwise it's a simple and refreshing beer. It's no big surprise, but Estonians can make a macro lager as well as any one else.

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Photo of enelson
2.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of flagmantho
3.01/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Poured from a spectacular Ryugyong-looking 300mL brown glass pyramid into a rather bog-standard looking pint glass.

Appearance: light yellow-golden hue with a touch of haze and a pretty strong effervescence. Head is a finger of frothy white foam which subsided somewhat quickly. It's OK.

Smell: kind of a wet-grain aroma with a little sweetness and a little bit of cooked corn. That said, it doesn't smell disgusting or anything. Just a little mass-produced, maybe adjunct-y.

Taste: lightly sweet malt flavor with a bit of wet grain. Hops are at least discernible, though bitterness is low. Nothing great, but nothing terrible either.

Mouthfeel: light and fizzy; par for the course.

Overall: very drinkable and, aside from the aroma, completely inoffensive.

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Photo of BlackHaddock
2.36/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Weird shaped brown bottle, looks like an old style vinager bottle. 5% Alcohol, 300ml in the container.

Poured into one of my Hoegaarden Grand Cru stemmed tulip shaped glasses.

Looks like a lager, light, clear and golden. Plenty of bubbles rising towards a firm white head. Nothing wrong with its looks at all.

As with almost all lager/pilsners, there is not an aroma to write about. Some wheat esters maybe, but not a lot of anything. So my average 3 score goes down.

Dry and cardbord flavour, some dirty laundry with a hint of corrugated iron and rusting barbed wire in the finish.

Why do these beers come to my country? We have enough tat of our own without having to import it. The dryness turns into a metallic nasty, scummy, unpleasantness, that is hard to put into words while bile is forming in your throat.

Not a beer I'll be having again. Only bought it because of the bottle shape. Conned again, I'll never learn!

 929 characters

Photo of Latarnik
2.5/5  rDev -8.1%

Photo of lupercmda
3.75/5  rDev +37.9%

Photo of rudzud
2.38/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Purchased one of these cool looking bottles at Julio's. Poured into a Duvel tulip.

A - Poured a crystal clear straw hue with a fizzy one half a figner head that fades to leave a thin halo and light cloud in the middle.

S - Smell is heavily of corn and sweet malts.

T - Taste is very similar to the nose. Drinks more like an american adjunct. Lots of corn and malts. Not much else.

M - Mouthfeel is rather thin and watery. Nothing to it really.

O - Overall, this is quite the subpar beer. I would rather drink an american macro than another one of these.

 559 characters

Photo of HopHead84
2.31/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

6/26/2011

Bottle shared by Greg (stoad) at Sour Fest, thanks! I think I've been subconsciously longing to try an Estonian adjunct lager.

A: An unremarkable but not unsurprising transparent yellow gold with a fleeting white head.

S: Bread and cereal grain with some doughy notes. These pleasant elements are obliterated by a pervasive skunkiness accompanied by corn and a little vegetal character.

T: Lightly sweet with notes of corn, vegetal (faint), bread, skunkiness, and a little spiciness. Finish is clean and unremarkable.

M: Light in body with upper moderate carbonation. Mouthfeel is thin and watery.

Overall: Not a good first impression from Estonia. I was expecting more from this country.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
1.62/5  rDev -40.4%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

Cool bottle. I'm not ashamed to say that I bought this beer for the bottle alone, although the fact that I've never had an Estonian beer factored into the decision as well.

Pours a deep golden colour with huge bubbly carbonation. The large bubbles even stick to the outside of the glass rather than rising to the surface, giving you a good look at just how large and unseemly they are. Head froths then disappears almost immediately. Looks very worrisome.

Nose is slightly metallic and otherwise slightly skunky. If it weren't a brown bottle I'd attribute it to green bottle light strike. Otherwise very little; at its core, it's a very bland aroma.

Taste is also very, very bland. Light metallic hiss on the tongue, minimal malt, but a biting almost chemical bitterness on the back that seems thin and weak, but without any body. It's too noticeable. Really not good.

Yep, pretty appalling brew, this one. Very artificial tasting, thin, weak and unpleasant.

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Viru from AS Tartu Õlletehas
2.72 out of 5 based on 152 ratings.
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