Piercing Pils | Dogfish Head Craft Brewery

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Piercing PilsPiercing Pils

Brewed by:
Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
Delaware, United States

Style: Czech Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A Perry-Pils hybrid, Piercing Pils is a Czech Style Pilsner brewed with a White Pear Tea and Pear juice. Both the juice and the tea were added in the kettle during the whirlpool (after the boil) for maximum flavor and aroma contribution. The Pear fruit complexity pierces right through the spicy Czech Saaz hops beautifully, adding a gentle acidity to this pale lager that makes for a crisp refreshing sipper. Amarillo hops add nuanced citrus notes that meld perfectly with the fruit.

Added by Slatetank on 08-19-2013

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Reviews: 267 | Ratings: 1,495
Photo of tastybeer
3.86/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Fantastic cakey white head floating over a clean gold beer. Many rising carbonation bubbles mainly along the center of my glass. Aroma is clean pilsner with a little something extra. I don't eat pears that frequently however I do recognize it in the smell. Also fleshy golden apples come to mind. Nice crackery grains and spicy with Pilsner hops. The fruit goes really well with the pilsner aromas. Taste is sweet, crackery, lemony, spicy. The pear is less noticeable however it is there. A nice pilsner overall. Good old forgotten pear is solidly integrated.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.74/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Pours a lightly hazy pale to medium yellow in color with light to moderate amounts of active visible carbonation rising slowly from the bottom of the glass and hints of golden yellow highlights. The beer has a half finger tall sudsy foamy off-white head that reduces to a couple of small patches of large bubbles along with a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass and a thin film covering the majority of the remainder of the surface of the beer. Light to moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Moderate aromas of bready malts with light to moderate amounts of herbal + floral hops as well as some light hints of green tea.

T: Upfront there is a moderate flavor of bready malts with light to moderate flavors of pear and green tea. That is followed by light flavors of herbal + floral hops. Slightly more than light amounts of bitterness are present but do not linger for too long.

M: Light to medium bodied with slightly more than moderate amounts of carbonation. Crisp.

O: Definitely an interesting brew with a nice combination of herbal/floral hops, green tea, and classic pilsener flavors + aromas. No single aspect overwhelms and everything seems in balance but not a beer that I could see myself drinking with any regularity.

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Photo of gorbos
4.61/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

One of the best pilsners I've had in a while. Who knew?

64 oz at local Duane Reade, $10. Ideal golden pils appearance with good head and lacing. Smells like plenty of slightly funky noble hops and maltiness. Until it warms, the subtle pear just makes the Euro-pilsener nose seem "fresher." Maybe that pear/hop combo is the reason why a lot of people have offered a tea-like description.

This is not a fruit beer by any means: it's a Pilsener-plus. That extra sweet/sour element fills a place on the palate that I didn't even know was missing, lightly sharpening the familiar grassy foreground. A little pear is great in a sandwich or salad -- and marvelous in this beer.

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Photo of Rhf9120
4.16/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Picked this up looking for a good pils and this did not disappoint. The beer pours a hazy gold color with a two finer head that lingers and leaves a good amount of lacing. The smell is of pear, tea, hops, and some malt. The taste mirrors this with the pear and tea flavors up front and finishes with a nice crisp bitterness. The mouth feel of this beer is medium bodied with just the right amount of carbonation. Over all a really good pils and I would most definitely drink this one again.

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Photo of bluejacket74
4.03/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, stamp on bottle says bottled on 2013B 1221. Served in a pilsener glass, the beer pours a hazy gold color with an inch white head that stayed around for a very long time. There's also a lot of lacing. Aroma is nice, the brew smells like pears, spicy and floral hops, and some bready malt. I think the taste is similar to the aroma, but there's some white grape and green tea flavors noticeable too. Mouthfeel/body is light/medium, it's crisp and easy to drink. I think this would be a really good spring/summer beer. I like this and would certainly buy it again. $8.99 a 4-pack.

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Photo of smcolw
3.56/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Moderate head but it lasts. Good blanket of lace. The liquid is cloudy with a gold color.

Earthy aroma, not soft pale malt. The hop is quite muted. From the smell, I would never guess pilsner.

The taste is closer to the norm but it is still quite earthy on the tongue. The bitterness is not soft, but I expected that given the name. Smooth body but with an elevated carbonated level. The aftertaste is bitter with a bit of sourness.

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Photo of Oliver_Twist
2.71/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

A: Semi-clear light yellowish color with moderate head, quickly fades to a thin cap.

S: Pilsner malt, very slight pear, slightly skunky, grassy, dish soap.

T: Pilsner with pear juice.

M: Light bodied with moderate to low carbonation.

O: Complex would be a good description if you like the mix of pilsner malt, pear juice, Saaz hops and dish soap. Lawnmower beer? ...not at this price. I won't be having this beer again.

I gave it a 2.75 only because I like DF90, DF60 and Burton Baton so much and because everyone (including Sam) makes mistakes every now and then.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of jlindros
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I loved the good Czech pils when I was in Prague, but I don't think this will be anywhere near those in taste or quality, but this could be interesting, or could be bad. bottled 2013A, not sure when in 2013 but I've had it maybe a month at most.

Pours a nice creamy slight fizzy almost 1 finger head that fades at a slow to med pace, nice lacing everywhere, very clear golden pilsner straw colored beer.

Nose is actually surprisingly close to a good Czech pilsner! Nice hops to start, grassy, little leafy herbal, nice noble like hop, actually gets a bit more leafy as it goes, and mild toasty slight grainy malt, I also get a mild pear juice actually, touch of a honey malt like aroma too, and touch of herbal tea like.

Taste starts with juicy fruit juice, pear juice right away, mild grainy toasty malt, and little sweetness. then hops, herbal and leafy hops mostly, little grassy and spicy with a fair bitterness, some herbal tea as well. Finish gets drier but still a bit sticky and sweet, the hops turn a bit spicy and chewy but still quite herbal and leafy grassy, as well as big herbal tea flavor.

Mouth is med bod, decent carb.

Overall not bad, not what I expected, at least the nose mostly. The aroma was quite nice, a good Czech pilsner with hint of the pear. the flavor was a little too campy like and typical Dogfish head experimental beer, but still a pretty good beer.

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Photo of stuppy
3.49/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: golden color, low white head, clear

Aroma: fruit aroma (pears/apples), spicy hop aroma, some florals, high malt pils aroma

Flavor: rich malt pils character, high hop character (peppery-saaz). Dry finish, a little unbalanced to hop bitterness for style, pears

Mouthfeel: high carbonation, med-light body

Overall: nice twist on bohemian pils. Pear goes well with the style.

Comments: bottled on 2013c 1057

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Photo of AgentMunky
3.14/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a Dogfish Head signature glass. "Bottled on 2013C 1655."

A: Light head fades fast and tops a (very lightly) hazy pale gold beer.

S: Skunk. Hint of grain. Lightly sweet.

T/M: Oh yum. It's fruity-sweet, likely from all the pears. I guess maybe the tea adds an interesting complexity to the bitter finish (or maybe that's the bourbon by). Full and impressively lush-bodied. Well-carbonated. Lagery yeast still creeps through, and I still don't care for it.

O: A good effort, but still not for me. There's plenty of people I'd recommend it to, but I wouldn't have another. Continued props to DFH.

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Photo of bierdeflanders
3.41/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

S: Sweet pear aroma with floral notes
A: golden with 1 finger head
T: fruity (pear), Spicy (Saaz), floral notes
O: nice variation of czech style pils. the pear tea adds some interesting bitter notes, but still leaves a nice refreshing finish. good for a summer day.

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Photo of metter98
3.78/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear light yellow in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high bright white head that died down relatively quickly, leaving a patch of bubbles in the center, a collar around the edge, a film of bubbles in between and lots of lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of floral hops and green tea are present in the nose along with notes of pears.
T: The taste mostly follows the smell, except that the flavors of green tea and pears are stronger and stand out in front of underlying notes of floral hops. A light amount of bitterness is perceptible.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer has an interesting mélange of pilsner, green tea and pears in both the smell and taste. The accentuating flavors didn't seem to overpower the beer and made it interesting to drink.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
4.15/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle poured into a pilsner glass.

A: Golden in color with a bit of a brassy hue. Great clarity. Rocky white head retains at two fingers for the duration.man impressive amount of foamy lacing cements itself to the glass.

S: The old familiar smell of bready and grainy pilsner malt greets the nose first. Doughy. Herbal noble hops. Pear juice and a floral orchard blossom sort of aroma. Tea leaves reinforce the hops, and would easily be overlooked if not for knowing they were there.

T: Grainy and bready pilsner malt. Some doughy yeast. Herbal hops with a slight hint of lemon. Pear juice comes on softly and then backs out of focus. Subtle hints of tea leaves. Hints of sulfur. Herbal bitterness spikes just before the finish. Dry finish of doughy malt, bitter herbal hops, and hints of tea.

M: Light bodied. Slight firm and doughy malt feel. Crisp carbonation.

O: The thing to really love about this beer is that it never strays from its identity. It is a pilsner first and foremost. The pear and tea flavors are subtle and supporting, while the base beer, an artfully crafted Czech Pilsner, remains in control. The pear and tea additions were perfectly done, and the beer remains dry overall and true to its roots. This is a fantastic beer. I have to say though, I'd much rather see it in a summer seasonal role rather than a winter one.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
3.54/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours clear gold. Big, white, puffy head. It sure looks the part. Excellent head retention. Chunky lace.

S-Musty, Pils hops and pear juice. Some apple juice as well. Crackery malt and a noticeable amount of yeast.

T-I wasn't a fan of the nose. I find the flavor to be noticeably better. Pears and other fruits brought on more by the yeast. Rather mellow hoppiness. The malt is probably the most enjoyable aspect.

M-Pilsners are usually high in drinkability in my book; this one falls short a bit. It's somewhat sticky on the palate. It's not bad but it's rather lackluster for the style.

O/D-Not as bad as I thought it would be. I don't enjoy pears all too much. This slightly exceeded my expectations. Still wouldn't buy it again and glad I only copped a single. This should not be in a four pack by the way.

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Photo of deadonhisfeet
4.02/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A Czech-style pilsner brewed with pear juice, pear tea, and saaz hops. Poured from a bottle into a DFH snifter. The beer is pale gold in color, hazy, and sports a rather thin, short-lived head for the style (admittedly, I should use a pilsner, but I prefer snifters for nosing and tasting). The nose has that characteristic, stony-dry, flowery aroma of saaz hops one looks for in this style. The nose is very clean. I get no diacetyl or fruity esters or other ``off'' aromas.

The beer has a nice firm feel, a light body, and a very refreshing flavor. There is a fine balance between the malt and the hop spice and a welcome fruity tartness from the pears that challenges the bitterness and keeps it from lingering. Very thirst-quenching beer. Maximum drinkability.

I tried this at a tasting and liked it enough to buy a bottle for review. The up-close inspection did not disappoint. I'd like this beer to be a little lighter in color and I'd definitely like it to have a denser, better sustained bloom, but the nice meld of flowery saaz hop flavors and tart, fruity pears is quite distinct. I must admit, I'm not a big fan of Czech Pilsners (I prefer American IPAs). However, I could definitely see myself throwing back a few of these on a hot summer day.

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Photo of Gavage
4.24/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: pours a crystal clear golden yellow color with a steady stream of carbonation bubbles rising to the surface. A big 2" head lasts a long time before settling to a thick surface foam. Thick lace paints the glass.

Smell: malt, sweet fruits, and a hint of earthiness rise from the glass and into the nose.

Taste: grainy malt presenece, grass, biscuit, fruit sweetness from the pear juice, and a bit of earthiness create a nice flavor. Bitterness is moderate here, with a bit of spiciness arriving late.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Very crisp to start, crisp at the finish. Super refreshing. Short lasting aftertaste.

Overall: this is a very easy to drink beer. The flavors are upfront and the fruity component adds some depth. Nice to have a flavorful, non hop-centric beer with a reasonable ABV.

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Photo of farrago
3.79/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Crests above two fingers then settles into a nice moderately thick level, good foam density, some surface dimpling, off white to eggshell color, the lacing is wispy but sticks with strength. Mild filminess to the yellow gold colored liquid, light orange tint at the glass edges, the bubbles are few but fat and move at a decent clip, looks richer than your standard pilsner. The pear fruit comes through very clearly on the nose, trace amount of florality would seem sweet were it not for the sale and pepper, dark bread and black tea leaf notes, clean kind of herbaceousness, ends with an allusion to mixed white citrus and metal shavings, not tightly woven as a fabric but nice enough to sniff. Full-bodied, would suspect the juice gives it extra heft, pulls down into the palate, the carbonation is not weak per se but in no position to do much about anything. The pear there yet gets sucked back into the whole by its overall sourness and that earthy, metallic bite. Spicy, especially peppery, herbal but not “green,” tree bark and less breadiness and citrus than might be desired. It does stay as lively as possible through the finish, dry while not excessively so. Some floral lift at the very end. An experiment worth putting into action.

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Photo of rawfish
3.82/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy gold, darker than most pilsners with a thin cap of white foam. No real sense of retention yet streaky lacing is left on the glass.

Biscuit malt with an added sweetness of pear, yeast adds a bit of funk with some peppery and straw aromas from the Saaz hops.

Nice full pilsner flavor, grainy with the addition of sweetness provided by the added pear element. Crisp, with straw and a drying spice note from the noble hops and yeast. Bitterness is lasting and I do taste some black tea on the back end.

Full bodied lager with adequate carbonation. No sensing of any alcohol and the beer finishes crisp and the bitterness gives an impression of lasting dryness.

Surprisingly the pear adds a layer of depth and appreciated sweetness to a pilsner that remains crisp and dry. The bitterness is rather pronounced. I am pleasantly surprised by this beer, shows that DFH can add fruit to a beer and make its presence felt without it being bogged down and cloying.

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Photo of BWED
3.94/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured into the DFH Spiegelau pint.

A- Crystal clear light gold. Just the faintest off white head. Retains low, but strong. Loads of lacing and active carbonation.

S- Aroma of the spicy Saaz, a bit of juicy pear. And a straw backbone.

T- Grainy malts up front and at the end. Fruity, juicy and refreshing flavor. Spicy/earthy hop character.

M- Light and crisp. Easy drinking, like any pils should be.

O- Great pils. The pear is hardly noticeable. It just sweetens it a bit.

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Photo of SierraDeuce
4.09/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Enjoyed from 12oz bottle in Bischoff Pils champagne flute styled glass, with homemade pepperoni pizza.

A- pours a deep golden color, somewhat cloudy (had to mark down for that- Pils should be crystal clear). Fantastic two inch cream-white head, diminished very slowly to thin top layer and wonderful lacing down length of glass.

S- mild hops and tea, some alcohol. could not smell the pear.

T- wonderful mild sweetness up front due to malt and probably the pear juice, but I couldn't taste the pear-- which is best I think. Too much would ruin the balance. great clean finish of hops and tea. i'm not familiar with Saaz hops, but it seems milder than what's used for IPAs. again, the master brewers at Dogfish stayed true to style.

M- light, clean-- maybe a bit more body than most in this style, but very good and not distracting.

O- I hope this remains on the shelves for summer. I would drink this regularly. unfortunately there seems to be a dearth of American craft breweries producing pilsners. and while I can understand that due to the mass produced stuff from InBev and the like, it's great to see Dogfish ride against the current and say, "watch this!" thanks for redeeming the pilsner!

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Photo of jopezu
4.5/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours a cloudy peach amber with a medium head. nose; pilsner stench, light hop and stone fruit jam. taste; pilsner malt, biscuit, floral hops and a big pear sweets middle that turns slightly puckering pear rind on the aftertaste. medium carbonation and mouthfeel. great balance of clean pilsner and pear sweetness - simple and effective!

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Photo of mactrail
3.03/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

Hazy yellow-gold in the tall Saxo tulip. Modest foam and plenty of spritz on the tongue. Pleasant fruity aroma with a whiff of apple and pear.

Some fruit taste with a little sweetness to start. Modest warm flavor of malt and more graininess. Dries out quickly. Quite bitter long before the aftertaste. It does taste like black tea, only long over-steeped. Maybe some pear skins and fruit tannin, like grape stems. Slightly tangy with some burnt biscuit taste.

This has a promising start but a bitter finish. From the 12 oz bottle bought at La Bodega Wines & Spirits in Riverside, Calif.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: lightly cloudy medium-gold hue with a big effervescence and a finger of frothy ivory foam. Pretty nice!

Smell: sweet malt with a definite pear element and a light noble hop aroma. There's a little bit of a cloying funk I usually associate with fruit juices added to beer, but in this case it isn't overwhelming.

Taste: a nice Pilsner; grainy and lightly sweet with just the right amount of hop flavor and bitterness. The pear adds an interesting touch, but I bet this is a damn good beer without it.

Mouthfeel: light body with a good level of carbonation. Not super creamy, but satisfying for the style.

Overall: quite tasty and drinkable. As I said, I'd love to try this without the pear as well.

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Photo of Johnny_Muir
4.28/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 bottle into pint glass. Super clear as expected, with a nice foamy head. Something in there flavor wise I cant put my finger on (cuz I have a terrible sense of smell and taste. Dont know why I even review beer haha). Something floral? Not sure, but I really liked it. My first Dogfishhead beer, got a 60 min IPA in the fridge to review later.

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Photo of jeonseh
3.54/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Golden pilsner color with an upwards trail of carbonation. Clean looking beer. Thumb of off white head sits on top comprised of many small bubbles

S - Straw and saaz hops that you expect in a pils are up front with a slight pear aspect to it

T - Pear and slight green grape up front before a bready malt, light straw, and slightly bitter saaz hops come thru The finish is slightly bitter and then slightly musty grape

M - Medium slightly chewy body with light carbonation that coats the tongue. Finish is slightly astringent

O - It tastes like a normal pils with a musty grape aspect to it. It also has a slight pear sweetness that is balanced with a slight bitterness from the hops

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Piercing Pils from Dogfish Head Craft Brewery
3.79 out of 5 based on 1,495 ratings.
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