Pilsner | Southern Tier Brewing Company

BA SCORE
86
very good
88 Ratings
PilsnerPilsner
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company
New York, United States
southerntierbrewing.com

Style: German Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
When we set forth to brew a Pilsner, we wanted to pay homage to a region that is legendary in its brewing tradition. This beer is brewed the German way, and you can taste the difference. We even sourced the hops and malts from Germany! It’s light, easy to drink, and it goes just as good in a boot as it does in a stein. We use German Pils malt, 2-Row malt and wheat to create a firm malty character with a crisp finish. This traditional Pilsner malt bill is complimented by German Lager yeast and German noble hops. Pilsner’s 40 IBUs help it finish dry, the way a German Pilsner should.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-08-2003

BEER STATS
Ratings:
88
Reviews:
41
Avg:
3.84
pDev:
9.38%
 
 
Wants:
4
Gots:
10
For Trade:
0
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 88 |  Reviews: 41
Photo of kojevergas
2.77/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

"Pilsner." "German style lager." "Brewed with hops and malts imported from Germany." DOB 03/09/17.

5.0% ABV. "INGREDIENTS: German Pils malt, 2-Row malt & wheat, Spalter Select, Magnum & German Hallertauer Mittelfrüh hops and German Lager Yeast"

CAN: Standard pull-tab. 12 fl oz format. Uninteresting label design. Acquired as part of a Southern Tier 14 pack for ~$25 after tax and deposit in NYC.

APPEARANCE: Pours a typical thin white head atop a vibrant pale copper body. Not the bright yellow of many pilsners, to its detriment. But it's clean, obviously filtered, and the body is aptly devoid of any yeast/lees. Head retention is poor (~30 seconds). No lacing adheres to the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

AROMA: Helles malts/pilsner malts, a blip of syrupy malt extract sweetness, generic grassiness from Noble hops. A bit sweet judging by the aroma for the intended style.

Aromatic intensity is average. Betrays no off-notes or overt booze, but the slight syrupy aromatics do have me a bit concerned.

TASTE & TEXTURE: A bit fuller bodied than most pilsners, lacking a light-bodied refreshing feel on the palate. Smooth and wet, but a little to thick, flirting with a syrupy feel. Well-carbonated, with a nice prickly crispness that plays well with its subtle softness. Softer water and a lighter body would help this along.

It's indeed syrupy in taste, hinting at malt extract. Pilsner malt gives this the bulk of its neutral malt backbone, but it isn't a horribly fresh tasting brew malt-wise. Southern Tier's use of wheat malt doesn't seem to have helped this any. Magnum gives this a subtle fruitiness which is unwelcome in a traditional pils; of course, if Southern Tier was as interested in doing a traditional German style pilsner as their marketing wants us to believe, they wouldn't have used a bittering hop released in 1993 (or wheat malt, for that matter).

The balance isn't quite dialed in, and the mouthfeel needs lightening up. Simple fare, but there's some subtlety to it.

OVERALL: A great pilsner is effortlessly drinkable - the kind of beer one could easily handle five of in a single sitting. Unlike world class expressions of the style, Southern Tier's attempt doesn't make me demand a second after having the first.

Nontraditional to its detriment, but not a bad brew. It's an approachable pale lager but I wouldn't go out of my way to get it again. Very hum-ho work with some odd ingredient choices.

Low C (2.82) / AVERAGE

***
05/07/17: 2nd impression from another can.

A: Ugly dull yellow-copper colour. Looks a bit watery. Head is off-white and frothy enough, albeit thin and weak. Lasts a good 5 minutes after a vigorous pour.

Sm: Pilsner malt. Grassy hops. Unwelcome malt sweetness.

T & Mf: Slightly syrupy, and definitely too thick - unrefreshingly so. They went too heavy on the malts. Attenuation is off for the style. I suspect hard water was used given the mouthfeel's weight and heft on the palate; this ain't soft.

O: Another subpar American attempt at the style. Lacks the delicate and subtle features of the best European-brewed expressions of the style. Save your money and go with Rothaus Tannenzapfle or Pilsner Urquell instead. Hell, even Warsteiner or Bitburger.

C- / BELOW AVERAGE

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Photo of TheBigBoy
3/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of ejimhof
3/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of njbusa
3.25/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of Icemann383
3.25/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of AndrewMichael
3.25/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12 oz can, drank straight from. A grainy aroma, with only a hint of hops. A bit of bitterness on the taste, as expected for a German style pilsner, but at the same time, was just a touch underwhelming and wanted a bit more.

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Photo of duvel1979
3.25/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.32/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a hazy golden tone not unfiltered by any means just has a sort of screen over the bright golden tone, very nice two finger sized white creamy head forms beautifully. Aroma: Citric floral tones a zesty hop aroma with an undertow of biscuit malt, mildly bready tones. Taste: Well, it's heading in the right direction the bready sweetness blended with the snappy hop profile is there just a bit misblended, I am getting a lot of lingering bitterness a bit dry and just doesn't haronize the malt and hops like most amazing pilsners do. Moutheel: Medium to light bodied carbonation seems a bit mild but it is smooth going down. Drinkability: Don't know how much I could drink just want a better pils, but this is a solid all around one just not great looking for more balance but our friends at Southern Tier are doing a fine job.

 843 characters

Photo of utopiajane
3.34/5  rDev -13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours pale and golden. very light color and very clear. Head is white and clingy. Nose is breaddy and hops are powerful on the nose with woody spice. Dried grass. Somewhat lemony. No diacetyl. No dms, no fruity esters from yeast. So clean you can almost smell a bit of the water in it. the floral from hallertau is somewhat muted. The pils malt is just enough to give you a sense of golden bread crust but it has a whiter nose rather than golden and more complex scent. Hops are earthy and show some light herbal. Taste is fairly light and clean with a brisk hoppy middle. The spice takes the palate first then a breaddy texture and some cool herbal. Has a bit of lemony crispness form the bittering hop that is perfect for the style. Finishes with a breaddy texture and a smooth hop. Bitterness lingers a little long just like it should. This beer finishes crisp and dry with a light tingle from carbonation. It finishes a little hoppy for the pilsner because of the style of malt but I gave it a high score for mouthfeel becuse it is breaddy enough feeling to meet the style.

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Photo of tone77
3.35/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. can. And yes, that can came from the commander of the canquest, woodychandler. Has a light yellow color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of grains, malts. Taste is grains, lemons, malts, light hops at the finish. Feels medium/light bodied in the mouth and overall is a decent beer.

 300 characters

Photo of grue_soda
3.36/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Photo of crookedhalo
3.42/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Chill-hazed golden straw color with a creamy white head. Spicy hops and dulled bready malt aromas with further notes of grassiness. Initially sweet and then the drier hops kick in, finishing with an astringent huskiness that leads me to believe this pils was oversparged or possibly a lot of carapils malt was used to thicken the body. Maybe that's where the serious chill-haze came from. It doesn't even go away when the beer warms. Don't get me wrong, this is a decent US pils, but it has its flaws. Nice and effervescent, with a moderate drinkability.

7.2.2004
Tried again on tap in Southern Tier-land/ Lake Chautauqua area. What I'd mentioned as chill haze is simply the beer being filtered with coarser diatomacious earth than usual, thus leaving a cloudier pilsener behind. Quality nonetheless.

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Photo of fscottkey
3.46/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: [3.75] The can lists the ABV (5.0%) and there is a brewed date on the bottom (08/04/2016). The beer is a transparent pale straw color. It forms a minimal 1/2 finger of white head.

S: [3.25] Malts that come across like 9 grain bread. A hint of fruit - like raspberry.

T: [3.50] I think the fruit hint was grape skins. That is the flavor I got immediately. It is the dominant flavor. There is also some sweet malts and something tart on the finish.

M: [3.50] Crisp and light. Carbonation is good. This has a really dry finish with a tart sensation.

O: [3.50] This is a decent beer. Distinct for a pilsner. The flavor profile is fruity with a real presense of grape skin. The beer is refreshing and enjoyable and I'd drink more.

 745 characters

Photo of jaxon53
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of mletten
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of Nichols33
3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of ppoitras
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle obtained via trade with Shippos. Thanks for the opportunity...

First imperial pint glass pours with a 1/2" bright white head, which laces well. Slightly cloudy dark straw/light amber brew, with a balanced pale malt and hops aroma. Taste is smooth pale malt body carrying some citrus and a crisp hops bite. Mouthfeel is a bit above average, the citrus flavor tends towards sour a bit much for me. Drinkability is about the same, but I could see session written all over this one.

 494 characters

Photo of HappyHourHero
3.53/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Big froathy white head leaves a nice coat of lace. Light aroma, a bit doughy and a little grainy. Clear golden beer with a stream of small bubbles rising up the side. Light flavor, a bit husky/grainy and an almost flowery flavor starts to kick in only to be beat down by the the lightly bitter finish. Mouthfeel is light and smooth, a light bodied beer but solid enough. Not much to this beer, and I'm not really leaning one way or the other. I bet it would be good really fresh on draft, but what do I know.

 508 characters

Photo of dacrza1
3.56/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

DATE: May 25, 2017... OCCASION: Cavs/Celtics Game 5--get in and get out with a win!... GLASSWARE: Penn State pilsner... pours a clear-as-crystal light golden body with copious amounts of bubbles... surprisingly, the off-white dissipates into a murky muddle and variable coral lacing... an aromatic lemon-citrus hit pleasantly introduces flowers and a light, buttery biscuit... secondary hints of subtle spice--pepper, mainly), lively, biting hoppiness early, with a dry release... fruitiness (apple, pear), crisp lemon and sweet biscuit... a refreshing beer whose profile is solid, maybe greater than the sum of its parts... not outstanding, but a nice case mate for the Overpack'd I bought last week...

 705 characters

Photo of mojohawk21
3.57/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Photo of longpondbeerman
3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a rich gold with a thin white head. Only a wisp of lacing as the head recedes. Almonds, some floral, and ginger are most distinct to the nose, and the initial taste I found rather tart. However, it mellows to a certain nuttiness as it moves along the palate, and the hoppy finish is overlayed with bread and yeast. The mouthfeel is right on: medium body, sparkling, and just a touch of syrupy texture. A good pilsner.

 423 characters

Photo of nodder
3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Squire123
3.59/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Cook82
3.6/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of The_Beer_Guru
3.6/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

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Pilsner from Southern Tier Brewing Company
3.84 out of 5 based on 88 ratings.
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