Pivo Pils | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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Pivo PilsPivo Pils

Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style: German Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by UCLABrewN84 on 07-22-2012

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Reviews: 282 | Ratings: 1,865
Photo of CA_brewster
3.73/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pale yellow color, crystal clear, thin white head, good carbonation, light lacing. This beer has a sweet malty aroma with a lot of hop presence. Taste is malty but the saphir hops really come through nicely in the taste as well. Nice crisp mouthfeel and quite refreshing. Overall a damn tasty beer.

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Photo of Siriusfisherman
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Crystal clear, straw yellow with a large bubbled white head. Great lacing. Bright hoppy aroma, notes of lemon zest, dill, and grass. Nice clean malt in the aroma as well. Taste starts with a firm bitterness up front, moves into a spicy and juicy hop flavor, surprising for a pilsner. Light bready and candy malt flavors move in as well, slight acidity to the finish, gives the malt a nice 'twang'. Mouthfeel is light, beer is well carbonated, gives it a nice bite. Overall, this is a spectacular beer, I am not to sure about this being a very authentic german pilsner, but it is certainly delicious.

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Photo of eclaycamp
4.82/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Really excited to try this one. Firestone Walker is one of my favorite breweries on the planet, and I absolutely love a great pilsner. I have high expectations for this one.

Pouring the 12 ounce bottle poured into my neo-classical pilsen glass the first thing I noticed was that this is the definition of brilliantly clear, with a frothy small head. You can literally read through this beer. Bubble formation is small and tight. Color is extremely light – 2 to 3 SRM – think light straw and you’re on the right track.

The first thing you’ll notice when drinking this beer is that there is a pronounced Noble hop presence up front. The hop profile seems somewhat flowery, herbal, and spicy in nature. That’s backed up with malt sweetness. If you take the time to rouse the beer a bit brings out a light sulfur lager characteristic that isn’t unpleasant or unwelcome.

You don’t care about any of that though. What’s important is how the beer tastes. I’m pleased to report that this beer is just as delicious as I had hoped that it would be. The flavor is amped up all over the place. Typical pilsners have some hops; this beer has more. Typical pilsners emphasize malt sweetness, this one is sweeter. Some folks are going to complain about the fact that this is “too hoppy” – something I think is a little bit ridiculous, given the beer’s name and all. I personally really like the amped-up hop profile, as it’s something that could easily be overdone but here it’s restrained and works beautifully. The hops are difficult to discern – I get some lemon characteristics, for sure, but also earth and herbal, like fresh tarragon. The malt backing this up reminds me a bit of a lavosh bread – cracker-like but substantive.

As you finish taking a drink, you’ll notice that there is a slight bitterness that lingers on the tongue a little bit, though not as much as an IPA. I find that the beer can easily be described as “clean, crisp, and super dry”, which to me would indicate a deft touch in regards to fermentation and appropriate lagering time. There’s very little in terms of alcohol presence, and the light body of the beer seems to encourage volume drinking.

An unparalleled home run from the folks at Paso Robles, this is a beer that crosses off all the boxes for me. Pretty much a flawless beverage in my opinion. The hop profile may chase some folks away, but that just means there’s more for me. Awesome.

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Photo of anarchia
3.75/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours light yellow, lots of bubbles, small and sudsy head. Crystal clear. Aroma is all hops, very flowery with a dash of citrus. Taste is lemon, then pine with a bitter hop finish. Sparkly mouthfeel. Crisp and refreshing. Nice left coast interpretation of a German style.

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Photo of mactrail
4.26/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pale golden in the Ommegang chalice with a modest foam. Spritzy mouthfeel. The effusive perfumey aroma sends clouds of glory from the first snootful. This is such a simple yet distinctive flavor and aroma, but it's so nice when well done. I think it's worth noting the hops, which are more complex than typical. They say Magnum provides the bittering with Spalter Select hops for the aromatics, and dry hopped with German Saphir.

Clear and crisp. You wouldn't call the body "thin," since there's a surprising malty foundation, but it's appropriately light and tangy as you sip (or gulp). Lovely flowery nose with a more resiny tang than typical for the style. Just bitter enough, and doesn't call attention to that aspect. The right balance, overall.

Another excellent brew from Firestone Walker. With all the interesting competition from crazy new breweries in southern California, I'm glad to see these guys continuing to set standards for quality. From the 12 oz bottle purchased at Bottlecraft in San Diego.

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Photo of McStagger
3.67/5  rDev -8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Re review. I originally hated on this beer, but have drank it a few times since my original review and decided to try it again. Bottled on 9/26/13

A: Poured into a pilsner glass. Light straw, two fingers of bleached white head. Lively carbonation. Large bubbles appear at the edge of the foam. Crystal clear. Head retention is fairly high, as is carbonation.

S: Light straw, grassiness, a bit of toasted biscuit in this. Hops are of the noble variety. Floral and herbal, with a bit of sulfur peaking through.

T: Front is a bit of baked goods. Toasted cracker malt that carries through to the finish. Light fruitiness, some stone, but mainly apple and a bit of lemon. Aftertaste is saltine cracker with a bit of bitter lemon peel peaking through. The finish is fairly dry and crisp, but lacks the "clean" feeling.

M: Light bodied without being thin. The carbonation, while vigorous, only adds to the refreshment and doesn't distract like it so easily can.

O: A nice American take on a German pils. Dry finish, but not very clean. There is a big, toasted biscuit aftertaste that is a bit distracting.

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Photo of tzieser
4.33/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

it's clear to me that firestone-walker has perfected the ale. i have yet to try one of their lagers, the most difficult style to brew, in my opinion. can firestone-walker perfect the lager as well?

A: crystal clear, bright golden in color with a whispy white head that slowly settles into a thin lacing. strong carbonation.

S: lots of lemon and pine hop aroma with notes of grass. subtle malt sweetness is there. saphir dry hopping helps. one of the best smelling pilsners ever.

T: crisp and flavorful. lots of pine and a bit of lemon hop flavor with a cracker like malt sweetness. beer is light, crisp and dry throughout. finishes clean and dry with a light mineral aftertaste. pretty sure i could drink these all day every day until the end of time. what a beer.

M: nails the crispy mouthfeel. not many brewers can do that right.

hats off to Firestone-Walker again. this might have dethroned Victory Prima Pils as my favorite US made pilsner. glad to see a good lager come from the west. well done!!

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Photo of augustgarage
4.13/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Harriet pils glass. Brilliantly clear pale straw liquid with three fingers of pearling dove-white cream up top. Dense lacing, superior retention.

Sweet floral aroma suggests honey, wildflowers, graham crackers, and a touch of citrus - dry-hopping with Saphir brings out their best qualities, though I don't find them as grassy/herbal as more traditional noble hop varieties.

Very pale but clean malt base is a gentle foil to support the delicate intricacies of the hop - rosewater, kumquat, and a moderate drying bitterness lead into a slightly crackery, almost salty finish. Super crisp and fresh - a simple but well crafted lager here.

Light, soft, yet zippy mouth-feel.

Very good, if slightly bland German pils here...could use a bit more malt character or tweaking of the water to bring forward qualities other than a perception of cleanliness maybe, but I'm nit-picking now.

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Photo of Beaver13
3.11/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle. Pours clear straw yellow with a big frothy white head that retains well and laces the glass.

The aroma is sweet bready malts and noble hops with a little fruit.

The flavor is sweet toasted malts with a good size grassy noble hop finish. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with smooth carbonation.

Overall, a solid hoppy pils.

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Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
4.11/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottled 8/26/13
OMG, it looks like a Pilsner. From a bottle into a pilsner glass. Crystal clear straw/gold, TV commercial carbonation, inch of head, thick lace. Looks like a quality brew.

Pale malts, agressive grassy and citrus hops dominate the smell. Slight mineral and saltine note in the background.

Grainy pale malts and citrus to start, lawn clippings (grass) follows. Very smooth finish. Wonderful going down.

This goes beyond being a solid pilsner. I grabbed a single 12oz and wish I had picked up the full sixer. I'm pretty sure this will be my Hardly Strictly Bluegrass brew this year.

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Photo of DoubleJ
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

There was a time not long ago where Firestone had a bottled dunkel lager as part of their year round lineup. Pivo is the first bottled lager that I've seen out of the brewery since that time, however my expectations of Firestone are higher now than they were then. Here comes 12 ounces of hoppy lager. On to the beer:

Strings of visible bubbles race from bottom to top of this pale yellow colored beer. Topping it is a head of ½ inch, holding some of its retention. Lots of little strings of lace cling around the glass. The aroma does justice for the beer's name. It's clean and crisp with a zippy hoppiness, honeysuckle, and grass.

Just a few sips in and I'm already experiencing one heck of a pilsner experience. The hops are bright and clean with their flavor. Bitterness registers as moderate and appealing. Just a clean and crisp experience that's very easy to drink.

One of the better American-made pilsners to come across my palate. At three months old, there's still a lot of life in this beer. Not only a quality beer, but one of the biggest surprises of 2013.

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Photo of jzeilinger
3.89/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - Pours a bright yellow/gold color with a nice, frothy white head and tons of great pilsner carbonation.

S - Lemon, lemon peel, grass, lightly musty, and some citrus.

T - Assertive bitterness from start to finish, a little malt sweetness up front before being buried with a wall of citrus, grassy pine bitterness. Coats the mouth with bitter lemon peel and lingers for a long while after.

M - Medium body.

O - A nicely brewed pils and very enjoyable.

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Photo of GuinnessAtRogerWilco
3.27/5  rDev -18%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

12oz bottle given to me by one of my good beer customers when he was out in the area. Supposedly, FW is going to start sending their full core lineup out to NJ in October, so I've been told, though right now we can't get Union Jack, so we'll see. Poured into a Weizen glass because I don't have any Pilsner glasses, so this is my best improv.

AP: Like coloured water with a light gold/yellow tinge. Can see right through this. Constant stream of bubbles flowing from bottom to top with a 1" foamy white head that settles down a 1/4" with a good amount of lacing on the side of the glass.
AR: Very bready and yeasty with cereal grains and dry grass. Very light floral/herbal notes in the background. Honestly thought I'd get more hops in the aroma, but mostly this smells like a typical Pilsner.
T: Much like the aroma, but a bit more doughy. A faint bitterness on the aftertaste, again only with very light floral/herbal notes and maybe a trace of some spice like coriander and white pepper. This is decent, but I was hoping for more in the taste in the way of the Saphir hops. I've had German beers with Saphir hops in them before that were more assertive than this.
M: The visual would make you think this would be very carbonated, but it's only moderately so, though enough to make for a creamy mouthfeel and a dry cleansing finish.
OV: A bit underwhelming, TBH. A decent Pilsner, but not as hoppy as advertised, IMO. I just didn't get enough of the Saphir hop flavour nor much spiciness.

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Photo of mfnmbvp
3.38/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle, with bottled on date 07/17/2013 printed on the label. Got a single of this in a mixed six pack from the local Binny's. My second review of a Firestone Walker beer on BeerAdvocate.

Poured into a Firestone Walker pint glass.

A - Pours a brilliant clear lager golden yellow with two fingers of soft fluffy bubbly bone white head. Some scattered lacing, but not much.

S - Smell is bland: dusty malt, grain, corn, earth, some light citrus, and a bitter type of smell that I can only describe as oily and "fishy".

T - Taste is a bit more impressive than the nose. Crisp carbonation, bready malt, grains, some pine, and the very apparent presence of earthy German hops. Has some of that same crisp bitter German hop presence that I tasted in the Stone 17th Anniversary Götterdämmerung IPA.

M - Feel ends quick, clean, and dry.

Overall, a smooth, clean, easy drinking beer, but it was less than memorable. It suits the style, but I guess it just wasn't for me. There was something here I didn't enjoy very much. A simple classic pilsner, worth trying at least once.

Firestone Walker Pivo Hoppy Pils ---3.5/5

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Photo of schleprock
4.13/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This beer pours a golden straw color with a nice thick head. The head quickly escapes but as you drink it, the lacing on the glass is perfect.

The carbonation is subtle on the palate and noticeable in the glass. There is a good amount of hop bitterness to this, but not overpowering.

The aroma has grassy and citrus notes with a little bit of pils malt coming through.

This beer has a light body to it and is very easy to drink. It has a dry slightly bitter finish remaining on the palate.

This beer is worth a try and worthy of purchasing over and again.

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Photo of homebrew311
3.72/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle poured into Sam Adams perfect pint. Appearance is extremely light with a yellow tint. White head forms and leaves considerable amount of lacing. The smell presents a heavy presence of bready grain paired with earthy and piney hops. The hops provide a significant pine and lemon quality towards the end. The taste starts with a smooth light malt profile and then followed by a heavy wave of citrusy hops which present lemon zest, grass, and toast. Mouthfeel is light and well carbonated. Overall, this is exactly as advertised: a hoppy pils. The bite at the end is strong which detracts from the refreshing qualities of this brew, but a nice pilsner nonetheless.

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Photo of beergoot
3.92/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottled on date: 07/17/13 11:37

Pale gold body; thick, creamy white head. Resinous, grassy hop aroma. Light, bready malt body with a nicely complementary hop bitterness. Light bodied, crisp, clean, dry finish.

A smooth tasting, clean and refreshing classic pilsner. This one will definitely have a spot in my go-to lager/pilsner purchases.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.93/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured two and a half fingers of head on a clear, light straw colored body. The head was short-lived though.
Nice aroma with the characteristic dry grain but with the added spicy pine.
The taste nails the pilsener. A big dry bitterness with a touch of honey and pine.
The texture is crisp with moderate carbonation.
Excellent all around pils.

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Photo of falloutsnow
3.97/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From: Binny's, Schaumburg, IL
Date: Bottled 2013-06-26
Glass: Standard US pint glass

Taking a page from others' books, Firestone Walker brews a hop-forward pilsner that rivals Victory's Prima Pils for German-style hop forwardness. The result is a solid, hoppy pilsner with accents on herbs, lemon citrus, biscuit, and grain, ultimately being one that I could see myself enjoying with some regularity if it were regularly available in my area.

Pours a 1.25cm head of white foam, with average retention time of slightly over one minute. The head fades to a thick ring around the perimeter of the glass and a very thin residual lace covering the rest of the body. Lacing is fairly good, a strong collection of dots clinging to the inside of the glass. Body is a golden yellow color, with light bringing out brighter yellow hues. Carbonation is visible through the transparent body, moderate in number but fairly active.

Aroma of spicy herbal (oregano, thyme) and light floral hops with a bit of grassiness and lemon citrus. The malt backbone is surprisingly present as well, despite the intense hoppiness and dry-hopping of this beer, the pilsner sweetness discernible, along with a slight white grape character I find in most pilsners and hints of biscuits.

Front of palate experiences general pilsner malt sweetness, bringing some white bread and biscuit flavors in line with gentle floral, herbal, and lemon oil notes from hops. Mid-palate of spicy herbal notes from German hops along with some lemon citrus, and bitterness of medium to medium-high intensity, paired well with pilsner malt sweetness, a bit of graininess, and biscuit-like characters (probably from some biscuit malt). Back of palate picks up mild sweetness from pilsner malt with slightly white grape flavors, biscuit notes, strong and clean bitterness from hops, as well as notable characters of herbs and lemon citrus. Aftertaste primarily of potent German hops that contribute fairly strong bitterness as well as mild grassy and herbal flavors; there is also a pleasant graininess from pilsner and (probably) biscuit malt.

Beer is medium to medium-light in body, with carbonation of medium intensity, which results in this foaming up modestly on the palate quite quickly, yielding a soft, smooth mouthfeel that fits the beer and style well. Closes quite dry, with little stickiness remaining on the palate or lips.

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Photo of hrbuchanan
3.08/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle, poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: The label is sharp-looking, definitely stands out in a store. The beer's color once poured into the glass is slightly darker than your average pilsner, in my opinion (maybe a slight green tinge?) The head stuck around for a little while as well.

Smell: As a brewer, I like that this beer smells hoppy, at least compared to something like Scrimshaw. Reminds me of a summer brew day. Very light aroma, but you've gotta give a golden lager credit when nothing smells "off".

Taste: Disappointing, as far as I'm concerned. Starts with a tiny malty flavor near the middle of the tongue, but fades into straight-up grass near the back of the mouth. 80% or so of what I taste comes from bittering hop. Unbalanced, as far as I'm concerned. Tastes better half-way through the glass then at the beginning, though. Maybe my palate is just different from the average reviewer?

Feel: Definitely saves this beer a bit. Fuller than I expected; if it was any less, I wouldn't be inclined to finish the glass.

Overall: I think Firestone will get its loyal fans hooked on the design and the hoppiness, but not me, sadly. And I'm not a Firestone hater, by any means! I just bought two bottles of their new Double DBA release and LOVED it (the first bottle, I mean; the second is for aging). I just don't feel the need to buy this one again.

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Photo of Smarty_Pints
3.48/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

A- pours a nice straw colors with a small head that leaves behind nice lacing.

S- sweet malts and grass lead the way with hints of lemon and hops.

T- follows the nose sweet malts are the brunt of the taste but the hops and some spiciness come through also.

M- very thin with a decent amount of carbonation too it with a nice slightly dry finish.

O- while better then your run of the mill pilsner it still leave a good amount to be desired in my opinion, then again I am not a huge pilsner fan. I was hoping that this would be the pilsner to change my mind about the style, maybe I'll try the Victory Prima Pils.

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Photo of Libationguy
4.31/5  rDev +8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Light straw/yellow brilliant color. Bright white fluffy head with long retention. Fine lacing in the glass.

The nose has a very crisp feel to it. Bright citrus, white flowers, acacia and crackers with soft resin notes in the background.

Very clean on the palate with the resin quality in the beer getting even softer. The cracker, light citrus and white flowers are back. The pilsner feel is strong with the hops taking an interesting counterpoint.

Medium- body with a slightly watery feel. The hops do adds a significant amount of backbone on the back end, boosting the overall feel of the beer.

Really an interesting approach to the style. Not sure that the classic pilsner drinker would appreciate this beer, but a great twist. If you are a hop head and are looking for a great summer alternative that is at the upper end of sessionable, you should give this beer a try.

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Photo of arizcards
3.91/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a sixer from BevMo at the end of June for $7.99. Bottled on 05/09/13.

Beer poured a straw yellow with a decent white head that is leaving some lacing behind.

Nose is a nice fresh toasted malt with hints of lemon.

Taste is toasted malts with a nice hop bite that finishes lemony.

Mouthfeel is crisp and clean.

Overall a very smackable beer, light and refreshing, perfect for summer. Glad FW came out with a lager that is world class!

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4.29/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a light golden-straw color with a small amount of bubbles atop, some spotty lacing on this one. I wanted and needed a bigger head and more retention for this style.

S: A little whiff of lemon zest, some grains and a bit grassy

T: Immediate light bitterness which ushers in some light citrus followed by some very light grains and a nice but subtle bitterness. A wee bit of grass is found and the finish is rather dry and clean, very clean

M: Well carbonated with a lighter body, crisp, clean and refreshing.

O: Probably my next summertime keg. Well done!

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Photo of Hoptometrist
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served from the bottle into a pilsner glass. Bottled on 5/9/13.

A- Poured a very clear light golden color with tons of streaming carbonation, big bright white fluffy head that left chunky lace

S- Huge fruity and floral aroma, lots of lemon, citrus, fragrant floral hops, and pilsner malt character

T- Very clean and fragrant hop notes. Big floral notes, lemon, orange citrus, and sweet bready pilsner malt backbone.

M- Very crisp and clean, dry, medium to high carbonation, very refreshing and drinkable.

O- A really great hopped up pilsner that is refreshing and flavorful. Definitely a beer I would get again on hot summer day like today. Right out there with Prima Pils for hoppy pilsners.

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Pivo Pils from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
89 out of 100 based on 282 ratings.
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