Plzeň | Brouwerij 't IJ

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49 Ratings

Brewed by:
Brouwerij 't IJ

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Plzeň goes to show that a beer doesn’t need a lot of alcohol to be special. With its fine, hoppy flavour, this 5% blond beer can certainly hold its own against the stronger beers. Brewed only from pale barley malt, this is a floral beer with delightful, hoppy aromas of hay and fresh grass. Deliciously dry, with a long-lasting aftertaste. We named the beer after the Czech town of Plzeň, from which Pilsner beers originate. Despite that, our Plzeň is not a Pilsner; it is a refreshing, bitter, top-fermented beer.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-19-2002

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 49 |  Reviews: 19
Photo of Rastacouere
4.5/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Unpretentious black and white label. Gorgeous hazy golden, bottle-conditioned though the white head fades with regularity and eventually is but a thin cover. Charming, rustic hay-grass like aroma with a gentle bready, soft, lean sourdough reminiscent maltiness. The yeast presence adds a whasp of originality in the shape of motherly doughyness and sheer rustic, fieldish character. In mouth, the delicate yet efficiently dry lemony, floral (honeysuckle) potentially hallertauer are perfectly balanced with the rest, ensuring immense quaffability and peace of mind. Might be one of the great bottled example, both for the measure and skill at conditioning with yeast and for the plain goodness. Wow, that’s good!

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Photo of emerge077
4.43/5  rDev +24.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Insane amount of rapid carbonation. Immediately the foam built up in the bottle, and in the glass created a souffle type head, of the finest, creamiest variety. Just as nice as Duvel, if not better. Pale hazy yellow, it looked more like a Wit. Dense coating of lace. inside the glass.

Dusty grains, Orval spice (Brett), clover, signature Belgian pale character.

Earthy vegetal dried hops, citrus, thyme, sage, pepper. Soda crackers and dried flowers. A bone dry finish. Super clean and refreshing. If ever there was an import doppelgänger to Bam Biere, this would be it.

I was hooked on this stuff after finding it at Spuyten Duyvil, and finally was able to buy some to provide this review. Label notes: Rounded corner decal, looked newer that other t'IJ labels i've seen in the past. Make sure your bottle is fresh.

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Photo of ElGordo
4.33/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the 11.2oz bottle into a Stella Artois pokal glass. Body is a cloudy, turbid yellow that contains an absolute storm of carbonation that rages in the body for quite some time - a very active beer. A couple of inches of thick, foamy white head linger for the duration, forming marshmallow peaks as the beer is consumed. Aroma of funky, herby Belgian yeast, light pilsner malt, a touch of noble hops, and light spices. Palate is interesting - pilsner malt and light noble hops blend nicely into what initially appears to be a normal Euro pilsner. The nuances of the yeast jump out with force mid-palate, letting loose peppery notes and hints of rosemary and sage, along with the slightest tinge of raw vegetables on the finish. Body is lively and well-carbonated, with a touch of creaminess from the head. An intensely interesting and immensely drinkable ale from one of the strangest breweries in the world.

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Photo of kja157
4.25/5  rDev +19.4%

Photo of n2185
4.15/5  rDev +16.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of jroof1
4.14/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Photo of feloniousmonk
4.03/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ostrich stands above her egg, no head in ground, ready to guard against harsh reality...good girl...

hazed, yellowy appearance....huge bone-white froth atop...nicety-nice-nice...

Aroma doesn't suggest a Czech or German Pils, or even a bastardizes American version, no, it smells all Belgian...fat yeast, huge aromatics, zesty citrus, far-reaching spice, coriander? Cardomom? cardopop?...some'pin' like that?...yums, though...

Taste: Clean and yummy, fresh, tasty, flush with lemon and orange, crisp and delicious...again, though, much more than any typical pils, this is a step and a half beyond...doesn't even feel like a lager, so rich and full...but very memorable

Overall: delicious, truly...full of flavor and long lasting, on the palate and in the mind...not quite a "pils" as we understand them, but so dominated by the particular character of Belgian beers, well, who cares, it's good stuff! Drink 'er up!

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Photo of Elbrownbag
4/5  rDev +12.4%

Photo of andy1701
4/5  rDev +12.4%

Photo of DeanMoriarty
4/5  rDev +12.4%

Photo of francisweizen
4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a wonderfully solid pilsener. Bought and shared with me by the great Robbeer. This pilzen poured a dark golden colour with a nice white head of foam. The aromas are of czech (saaz?) hops and a bit of malt. The taste is lovely, hoppy, malty, and grand. The mouthfeel just right, and the drinkability is great as well!

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Photo of BcCraft710
3.9/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Photo of tobelerone
3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Photo of wl0307
3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle-conditioned, coming in a slim 330ml brown bottle. Served in 't IJ slim goblet.

A: pale straw colour, slightly cloudy due to the disturbed yeasts; coming with a nice thick, frothy beerhead with good retention.
S: lightly candyish-sugary upfront, backed by semi-sweet lager malts which is fuller than both Czech and German Pils... a cake-like maltiness stays behind along with a lemon-zesty hoppyness, coriander seeds, sour-sweet yeastiness... All in all, the nose is quite unusual for any kind of Pilsner, but very pleasant...
T: Belgian-witbier like yeasty, woody (sawdust+nutmeg), lemon-peel's dryish and sour-sweet fruitiness, and an intensifying bitterness lingering on the sides of the tongue...
M&D: subtle bitterness from hops and proper carbonation result in a light body and a lively texture; overall this beer is unlike any kind of Pilsner apart from the rich maltiness... yet it's well-made and very drinkable.

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Photo of DaveFL1976
3.84/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this nice beer at the Wildeman in Amsterdam, on the advice of the bartender.
It's a nice beer. It pours a hazy, light yellow with a bright white, attractive head, It's pretty good looking at the start, but my head fell down pretty quick and didn't leave much lacing.
Smell was pretty good. Fruity, but not what I expected. It was leaning towards the spicy side, instead of flowery. The taste is a bit spicy, too. But clean. Kolsch-like, if I had to pin it down. Medium body with a smooth finish. The mouthfeel is really nice, the taste is quite good, but somehow these parts come together to make an extremely drinkable beer that you can't help but sip (or gulp).

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Photo of ATPete
3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served at Brouwerij 't IJ in April 2008

A- Yellow color, good lasting white head, semi-hazy, good rising carbonation.

S- Some mint, hops, hay, with a good malt character.

T- light and grassy, not offensive, a touch of bitterness upon the finish gives it a nice hop note.

M- very light, no body to speak of really

D- Very good

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Photo of benfons
3.79/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: pale yellow colour, thin but dense head, lots of bubbles rising up

S: grassy hops, hints of malt

T: clean, just grassy hops, nice bitter finish

M: enough body for a lager, nice carbonation

O: clean crisp lager, nice hoppy finish, good drinkability

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Photo of merlin48
3.78/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Odd, retro looking 11.2 oz bottle pours a hazy, pale yellow color, with an enormous white, rocky, head. Lots of carbonation is apparent with hundreds of tiny bubbles apparent in the body. Excellent head retention and massive patches of lace. Some sediment is observed in the bottom of the glass.
Nose features straw, banana, vague spices, and black pepper.
The active carbonation teases the mouth and a peppery hop bite stings the tongue.
Saaz type hops are fronting the taste, and grassy hay, lemony citrus, and pale malt all are begging your attention. Finish is bitter, with an herbal, almost medicinal, hops aftertaste.
An interesting German style pilsener from the Netherlands. Worth a try, for anyone who likes the style.

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Photo of outoffocus
3.75/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of vermilcj
3.75/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of AGust82
3.75/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of page101
3.75/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of John
3.7/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Wow...interesting and bold interpretation of the pilsner style. Cloudy yellow/gold with floating yeasty chunks. Herbal, grassy, citrusy aroma. Big hop bitterness...almost to the point of sourness. Or is it the yeast? I'm not sure if this level of bitterness is unwelcome or not?? This is unlike any other beer. Heavy, slick mouthfeel. Very intriguing beer from an adventurous brewery. 5% abv.

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Photo of Absumaster
3.67/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer is being marketed as a lager/pilsener type of beer, while it is top-fermented. One could argue about the origin of these types of beers, but IMO a lager should be bottom-fermented.
Ok, let''s review, a turbid orange brown beer with a stable head. Smell of nice hops, fruity and a little sharp-edged from the hop and a mild sourness. A nice smell.
Taste was different than the smell which is a bit harsh. There was the solid hop and malt-base, but unfortunatelly there was a taste of rotten flowerwater. I tasted it after the beer warmed up and it was not very upfront, but it certainly was noticable.
I could not review this as a lager, it is more a blond beer, with some lager characteristics.

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Photo of metter98
3.6/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Brouwerij 't Ij, Amsterdam, Netherlands

A: The beer is clear light yellow in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high white head that died down, leaving a thin head covering the surface and lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of grassy and herbal hops are present in the nose.
T: Like the smell, the taste has flavors of herbal and grassy hops along with a light amount of bitterness.
M: it feels nearly medium-bodied on the palate and has a low to moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is quite hoppy for the style and the grassiness is unique but it goes down rather easily.

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Plzeň from Brouwerij 't IJ
Beer rating: 3.56 out of 5 with 49 ratings