Big Rock Saaz Republic Pilz | Big Rock Brewery

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Big Rock Saaz Republic PilzBig Rock Saaz Republic Pilz

Brewed by:
Big Rock Brewery
Alberta, Canada | website

Style: Czech Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by wordemupg on 09-08-2012

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Reviews: 19 | Ratings: 64
Photo of CAMRAhardliner
2.98/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Pours pale straw with a flash in the pan head. Quite pale for the style. Floral, herbal hops and some fresh bread in the nose, bit of vegetal character too. The taste is pleasantly hoppy with the classic grassy Saaz character. Some slight diacetyl in the mix, but not too much. A residual sweetness is quite prominent in the back and builds into an off dry, sweetish finish. The mouthfeel is light and a bit lacking in carbonation.

This is a mediocre Pilsner. Too sweet and lacking malt and hop depth. I'd pass on this.

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Photo of mintjellie
2.38/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Pale gold. Extremely slight haze. Voluminous fluffy white head has no staying power. No lace. Inoffensive "beery" aroma, less like a traditional pilsner and more like a standard American lager. There is a light, almost imperceptible floral scent. Malty, doughy flavour up front with gentle honey sweetness. A touch grassy in the finish with light bitterness. Not bad, but a little bit neutered in comparison to Urquell, Czechvar, Golden Pheasant, or any other traditional Bohemian pils. Moderate carbonation, light body. Light and quenching, but not watery. Middling in quality, and frustratingly so. To be better, it only needs to be bolder.

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Photo of DaveBar
2.5/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Purchased at The Beer Store for just under $3.00 for a 473ml can. Served at 5deg C in a draught glass.

A- Opens well and pours a white head that is gone in no time. Light gold clear beer. Like a Bud

S- Not much here. Like a Bud

T- Thin, watery and like a Bud

M- Dry and metallic, like a Bud

O- Hey Bud rebranded another one! Yuk

Food Pairing

Yup! You guessed it.... Pairs with anything you would pair a...... get ready for it.... Bud with!!


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Photo of biegaman
3.15/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Though these golden beers are conventionally thought of as sparklingly clear, I'm always to happy to see a little haziness in my Pilsner - I can only assume it bodes well for a lager of rich malt character. Ditto for a dense, long-lasting head which Saaz Republic Pilz, unlike the former, does not have. So far, appearance wise, it's a mixed bag.

The aroma, however, doesn't just tip the scale in a negative direction - it downright body-slams it right into the ground. So much for hopes of an honest, traditional Czech pilsner. The sweet and cloying features of this offering are not remotely close to the notoriously fresh, floral, and spicy aromatics of the Saaz hops mentioned right in this beer's name.

A proper pilsner has a wholesome, flavourful maltiness that can sometimes taste reminiscent of graham crackers - this one tastes like honey flavour teddy grahams. There is way too much sweetness present for a style supposed to be crisp and characterized by spicy, grassy bitterness.

Notes of corn syrup and Billy Bee honey are never acceptable - especially not in a pilsner. It dumbfounds me why anyone would name a beer after an ingredient and then use an imperceptible amount of it in the recipe. The presence of hops is limited to the front of the can only.

Saaz Republic Pilz teaches us what a traditional pilsner is by expertly demonstrating all the things it shouldn't be. This recipe wonderfully emulates the bastardized offerings of large-scale, commercial North American breweries but resembles little the clean, wholesome, zesty, well-rounded pilsners of Europe. I think that fact speaks clearly to Big Rock's integrity and intentions.

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Photo of Bunman3
3.25/5  rDev +1.6%

Overall, a decent take on the style. The requisite Saaz hops, floral nose and dry finish certainly fit the style. I don't mind picking up a can of this from time to time, but it would have to be a discount day to pick up a full sixer of this ber. Like so many Big Rock offerings, it tries hard, but bloops out a single instead of hitting the fences.

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Photo of thehyperduck
3.46/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

473 mL can picked up at The Beer Store. Early on during my craft beer conversion, this brewery was the source of many of my favourite staples, including Trad and Grasshopper. Their lagers, on the other hand, never really managed to grab my attention - but I'm always willing to try a new pilsener. Served well chilled.

Pours a pale straw yellow colour, topped with one finger of soapy, sparkling white head that rapidly seeps away, leaving a dense, fairly short-lived cap. Decent lacing. The aroma is very mild and not very interesting; grainy malts, a faint hint of lemon and floral hops. Not far from what I expected at this point, really.

Very clean, simple straightforward flavour profile that adheres to the style. The malt backbone is grainy and a little bready; its light sweetness remains the dominant presence until the tail end, where grassy notes of wet hay with a somewhat floral quality begin to come through. Dry finish; only a touch of lemon and then a clean aftertaste. Light-bodied, with moderate carbonation that gives this one an appropriate bite for the style. Easy to drink quickly, and tasty enough for that to be a realistic prospect.

Final Grade: 3.46, a B-. I haven't had a new beer from Big Rock in years, but their Saaz Republic Pilz is a great way to break that black streak. While I wouldn't consider this quite on par with my favourite Czech-made examples, it's still a quality, easy-drinking lager that I'd consider returning to again. If you aren't already a lager enthusiast then this isn't going to convert you, but it's still miles ahead of that XO Lager garbage they took off the market a few years ago, as well as the passable but similarly-fated Gopher Lager. Give this one a shot.

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Photo of tbeckett
3.51/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Had this on tap at King's Head in Winnipeg. From notes.

A - Poured light-ish golden with a two finger white head. Bright. Good carbonation. No lace and a film of retention.

S - Grainy, lemon. A bit weak.

T - Grainy, lemon, noble hop. Better than the aroma and fairly pleasant.

M - Decent carbonation, light-ish body, lemony snappy bitterness.

O/D - Not a bad beer for Big Rock. Lacks a bit of stronger flavour, but it's good for the most part. Wouldn't have a session on it, but it was nice to try.

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Photo of Olek4374
3.36/5  rDev +5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

we had a broken case of the "swinger's pack" at my store, so I swiped up almost one of each variety that was inside. This was one of them. I've had it at beer festivals before, but I guess it's time to take a proper look at it.

Big Rock's products are really hit or miss for me - some are excellent like the Scottish heavy ale, and some are huge letdowns like the lime beer. This one is really not too bad.

The beer pours pale yellow, and certainly more pale than a pilsner, which I think is what they were going for here. "Saaz" undoubtebly refers to saaz hops that were used in the brewing process, making a proper pilsner the obvious comparison. The aroma is not very potent, although it certainly is a bit more potent than their regular fare.

The taste is surprising - it's actually very good. Considering the pale colour and quick dissipating head I hadn't expected a whole lot from this beer, but it's really nice. It's very smooth in my mouth and smooth going down, but there is a really nice hoppiness on my tongue. This is certainly no pilsner - it's way too weak for that kind of label, although as a slightly more potent pale lager it's pretty good.

It's hard to expect Big Rock to be pulling off a top quality pilsner, but this is all right for the occasional sip.

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Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.44/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours pale gold with moderate head. Aroma is green and biscuit malts with floral Saaz notes. Taste is standard macrobrew pils malt with some spicy floral hops. There is a pleasant lingering sweetness like shortbread but the beer is underhopped on the palate and needs more spice and bitterness. Body is thin and finish is clean and crisp. Some grass and hay notes. Better than the macro lagers but underwhelming. Needs more hop presence and a bit more body, although the aroma isn't too bad. There are better craft pilseners in western Canada.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.47/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Can: Poured a light yellow color lager with a medium size white foamy head with OK retention. Aroma consists of lightly sweet malt base with light dry floral notes. Taste is also dominated lightly sweet malt notes with some dry floral hoppy notes. Body is light with good carbonation. This is not a bad beer overall but would have benefited from additional hops presence.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.8/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

A fellow CANMan, BigBry, sent me a bunch of CANned beers from CANada and I always look forward to opening one of his boxes. The spent CAN will be passed on to a CAN collector in York Haven, PA who I visited today for the first time. He has built a two-story, five-bedroom house specifically for the storage of his CAN collection and I was still able to impress him with my donations!

From the CAN: Saaz Republic Pilz [-] A distinct but mild bitterness on the front end followed by a slight hop middle and a clean, refreshing finish. Poured in a glass, Saaz Republic Pilz is a thing of beauty, sporting a dense, white head atop a golden yellow body. [undersigned] Brewmaster Paul Gautreau (sp?)"; "Simple ingredients. Extraordinary taste. Truly C[AN]adian."; Big Rock Brewery [-] Brewing real beer since 1985".

The Crack revealed another brimful CAN and I was jonesing, so I went directly to an inverted Glug. The pseudo-cascade was amusing and I watched as two-plus fingers of dense, rocky, foamy French Vanilla-colored head formed. Color was a deep-gold with NE-quality clarity and King Midas and Croesus began to argue over who would get the first sip. Nose had the beautiful scent of freshly-mown grass that Saaz imparts. I looked over at the two jagovs across from me who were still arguing and I took the first sip. Mouthfeel was thin-to-medium and the taste, while grassy, did not measure up to the nose. Finish was dry with a light grassiness that lingered well after the swallow. I liked it, but having had better examples of the style from a CAN, I CANnot recommend it (unless you live in western CANada, in which case it will be more readily available than what I would otherwise put you onto).

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Photo of Noxious26
3.55/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

341ml brown bottle with twist off cap and gold foil over the cap poured in a pilsener glass.

Clear, pale gold in colour. White head is minimal, about 1/8 inch on the pour and recedes to just a thin ring with no lace to speak of.

Light grain sweetness with the unmistakable czech hops in the aroma. Fairly straight forward, but promising.

Mainly grainy at the start. Hops come into play after the middle, towards the end. Finish is mildly hoppy and pretty crisp.

Light bodied with moderate carbonation.

Nothing special for a Czech Pilsener, but that being said, this might be my new favourite Big Rock beer. Here's hoping their offerings improve!

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Photo of BigBry
3.25/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A new style, in the new 473 ml can format. Had seen this on the Big Rock website, and got to sample it a Beerfest. Finally found a can for myself, sold as singles.

Yellow, straw color. Clear with a short, bright white head. Foam fades quickly but leaves a thin lacing ring. Some smell of sweet malt, hint of hoppiness. Tastes quite clean with some more malt sweetness and light, slightly spicy hops.
Mouthfeel is thin, not a lot of body, but that does keep it drinkable and not heavy or bloating.
Decent offering, but I was hoping for more crispness, and hop bite.

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Photo of kitsgrad84
2.57/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I try and try to support big rock brewery but continue to be let down by below average brews.
I was so looking forward to a good local pilz in czech tradition , but was let down yet again by a very, very, overrated brewery. I cannot wait to revisit Praha again and sample all the local beverages.

mild bitterness
very mild hop
bitter end not clean like it should be
semi dirty head that was short lived
i agree with others as a faux craft pilz : (

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Photo of mattsander
2.58/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Another phony 'craft' offering from faux craft brewer big rock.

A: Remarkable clarity, no head, big carb.

S: Cereals, cheap skunky lager beer and sweet corn.

T: Entirely unoffensive, nearly flavorless.

M: Thin, drinkable, blehhh.

Little to no hop character, especially pathetic considering this beer is named after the worlds most popular aroma hop.

Just another pile of swill from big rock.

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Photo of kjyost
3.61/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

355 mL bottle acquired at the MLCC for just over $2. Poured ~5C into a Perfect Pint glass.

A: Straw yellow, crystal clear. 1 finger of white head that drops quickly but leaves a ring and some lacing through the drink.
S: Clean nose with a bit of sweet malt and perhaps a hint of hop aroma. Really wished for more hop aroma to come through.
T: Clean body with a hint of fruity at the end. Some sweet malt came through with a hint of bitterness keeping it down. A fair dose of spicy (black pepper?) hops comes through the middle of the sip.
M: No buildup up of bitterness, nice fluffy carbonation that bites back very slightly.
O: Came in expecting nothing though someone else had said it was "nice". Pilsners are nice, but not normally my bag. Quite well done for what it was.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.35/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle. Thanks to Melanie, the local Big Rock rep, for the samples.

This beer pours a crystal clear, pale golden yellow hue, with one fat finger of foamy, bubbly ecru head, which leaves but a few lingering upshots of tendril lace around the glass as it quickly settles.

It smells of bready, doughy malt, overcooked cereal at times, and grassy, teetering on skunky, weedy hops. The taste is more bready, retarded (you know how I mean it) sourdough malt, a very slight bit of indistinct fruitiness, and grassy (but more and more of the dead, out of season variety), fallow farmers' field hops. At least that initial aromatic skank has wafted off, I gotta say.

The bubbles are generally quite soft and unobtrusive, the body a decent medium weight, and smooth without reservation. It finishes off-dry, the tepid cereal malt happy to have the focus shifted by the lingering musty, dead grass hops.

While a far sight better than their previous 'Czech-style Pils' (how I so derisively remember those pandering billboards from a few years ago - buh-bye, XO Lager), this offering still has a way to go to properly align with the greats of the style, or at the very least those available here in Alberta, where Big Rock should have no trouble standing tall, ahem.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
3.08/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - straw golden, very bubbly with a thumb of head that retains due to the endless stream of carbonation, no significant lacing
S - there is a hint of the grassy and metallic hops but aroma is mostly adjunct dominated with some grain
T - the grassy clean hop notes are there but just not enough, much like the nose grainy malt and adjunct flavours are equally present
M - crisp and clean, slightly thin, finishes dry and mildly bitter
O - potential is not quite reached, i agree with the previous comment that they need to beef up the saaz hops to get this more into the true czech pils realm, not a bad effort though

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Photo of wordemupg
2.96/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

341ml bottle poured into pint glass 7/9/12

A looks the part with some bright yellow liquid with several streams of big bubbles with a thumbs width of foam that leaves a few patches of lace

S mostly just dry cereals with very faint noble hops, not really much going on here

T some grass and hay but the noble hops are faint, there's some compared too the nose but its more grains then anything

M bubbles give it some life and you know there's a clean finish because there wasn't much flavor to begin with, at least its not watery

O pretty basic stuff, not offensive other then the dead nose, but again the smell was far from offensive there was just too little too offend

I can see potential here but they need too double the Saaz, there's just not enough for the style.
At least Big Rocks trying new styles but this one didn't really do it for me

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Big Rock Saaz Republic Pilz from Big Rock Brewery
77 out of 100 based on 19 ratings.
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