Saranac Bohemian Pilsener | Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

147 Reviews
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Saranac Bohemian PilsenerSaranac Bohemian Pilsener

Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
New York, United States

Style: Czech Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.80%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by generallee on 10-15-2008

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Reviews: 147 | Ratings: 238
Photo of mikesgroove
3.03/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

i have been assembling full lineups from breweries and randomly doin these horizontal tastings with my family. The saranac one from a couple weeks ago was more then epic as it took months to gather all of these, but it was a hell of a fun night! Big thanks to Alex for pulling through on the bulk of these

very light golden pour with loads of carbonation and a little head of white that seems to stick on top for just the slighest bit of time. aroma is light biscuit, hints of grain, touches of light banana an spice. taste is about the same but seems to be just a touch off for me. not the way it is supposed to work for sure. light finish leaves almost no aftertaste and it is over before it began.

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Photo of Dmoore07
3.57/5  rDev +5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours gold. quickly dissipating, white head.

S- Malty and sweet with a tinge of citrus.

T- Crisp, smooth malt character. Finishes with a refreshing hop bitterness. Overall, well balanced.

M- Nice, refreshing carbonation. Leaves the palate clean and refreshed.

D- Very drinkable. Refreshing with just enough flavor.

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Photo of jsprain1
3.24/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Pale golden with a thick white head. Decent lacing as well. A very nice looking pilsner.
S- Bready, much like a cracker, a bit sweet. Light floral hop character. There was a musty character to it that did not seem right.
T- Bready, grassy, with a sweet finish.
M- Light bodied. Fizzy carbonation.
D- An easy drinking beer that has enough flavor to be decent, but it tastes somewhat uninspired.

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Photo of stakem
3.15/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz brown bottle with no indication of freshness poured into a pub glass. Thanks to Eric for sharing the variety of saranac winter brews with me.

This offering appears a clear light yellow color with a finger of white head that quickly dissolves back to a thin film across the top. The film is supported across the top by constantly rising bubbles. Each sip leaves patches of lace around the glass. A light swirl revives the cap back to a finger's strength that quickly fades.

The aroma of this brew includes an aroma of cereal grains. A tiny bit of grassy and citrus hoppiness. Very faint fruit indication minorly reminiscent of pear. There is an overall sweetness about this brew's aroma. Other than the grainy character the aroma doesn't offer up much until it warms and it has a light floral aspect that meshes well with the cereal grain character.

The taste of this brew includes the cereal grain flavor upfront that doesn't last beyond the first sip or two. It gets overtaken by an herbal and grassy bitterness mid palate which is a little more bold than expected and not that enjoyable. It has a slight mineral or sulfur indication which does no bode well with the other flavors that emerge as this brew warms. Instead of the smooth blending flavors I expect in a pils, this brew is a contrasting mess with the bitterness being a little excessive and unbalanced.

This is a light bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation that is prickly on the tongue. It finishes crisp but leaves an uncharacteristic off flavor inside the mouth taste like minerals and suflur which is not enjoyable. The sub 5% abv allows it to be easy drinking but I couldn't finish the glass let alone go for another. Perhaps if this was served mouth numbingly cold I might have enjoyed it a bit more. I would not try this one again.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.53/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Part of the beers of winter 12 pack.
In a pilsner glass the beer was a gold color with a thick white head that left a good deal of lace.
It had a fresh, outdoors aroma. Floral. A little peppery in my nose.
Sweet bready taste, herbal hops.
Crisp mouthfeel.
Decent beer. Not the greatest Czech pilsner, but also not the worst.

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Photo of Jason
3.21/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz brown bottle no freshness date though it was part of their winter 12-pack 10'-11'.

Substantial amount of foam from a firm decanting, crystal clear pale golden color. Oily hop nose; herbal and spicy with a dried grass maltiness in the back. Some crispness in the lighter bitty mouth feel. Spicy hops meet a dried grassiness that comes off a little sweet. Oily hop is pretty interesting, the malt I expect to be more crisp and all the way dry.

While this brew might be clean and lager-like it does not resemble the pilseners I have had over the years ... decent but one bottle was more than enough.

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Photo of mjrod2142
3.25/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a standard pint glass

The beer poured out a clean golden yellow color with a thick white head that dissipated quickly. A "classic pilsner" aroma, and by that I mean it smelled like a Stella tastes.

I was expecting a lighter mouthfeel, but this had a good weight. It tastes a lot like the Victory Pils and less hoppy than Sam Adams Noble Pils. This beer isn't really my style, but I didn't mind it. If you like this old pilsner style, go with Victory.

No lingering aftertaste. This beer is "ok".

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Photo of Justin23060
4.2/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A little nervous at first because I've been liking pilsners less and less (many brands are skunky or lean toward what I call lawn mowing beers).

However, this was really great (in my minds eye this is what an old world beer would taste like). After taste was oily at begining but quickly righted itself for a great rich bready pilsner with a bit of caraway smell. Not a fan of dry finishes, but it really works and I wouldn't want this too sweet anyway. Carbination goes from sharp to creamy. I actually think its better that Pilsen Urquel. I have a feeling this would be awesome with Brats and hope this becomes an annual offering.

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Photo of JayQue
3.63/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A pretty good Pils. Pours a clear bright gold color with a big fluffy white head and impressive lacing on the glass.

Mild grassy hoppy aroma. Just right for a Pilsner.

Taste is understated but nice. Grassy hops and balancing bready malt. Both are understated but still there.

Mouthfeel is crisp and rich enough for the style.

Drinkability is pretty good. Crisp, flavorful (for a Pils) and looking good. Would work fine as a session beer or lawnmower beer. This is what "Tripple Hops" beer should taste like.

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Photo of ZeroSignal
4.02/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle

A - Golden yellow, crystal clear pour with a thin, tight white head. Decent retention with a slippery lace

S - A nice malty smell with a bit of a floral hop edge; pretty much what I expect a Pils to smell like

T&M - Very crisp with a nice hoppy bite with a spicy quality right from the get go. Flavor settles into what the nose detects; a good dose of malt with a bit of a floral touch. Just a hint of grassiness in the otherwise clean finish.

D - I wouldn't say that this is a "world class" pils, but it's pretty darn good. This is the second beer in a row from Saranac that I was pleasantly surprised by. A large amount of flavor with a reasonable ABV. If you're a pils fan, give this a go.

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Photo of happy4hoppybeer
3.8/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

A=Pale yellow with thin to medium head that fades quickly, leaving a trace of thin lacing to the glass. Average, to-be-expected for any pilsener.

S&T= Good traces of malt,barley with a small hop bite kicking in. Good job.

M=Average medium body, with medium, maybe heavy carbonation.

D= An excellent session, all day all night brew, with the substance and malt/hop kick intact. As always with any Saranac brew, it is a good fallback brew if nothing better is available, short on cash or not looking for anything knock-your-socks-off.

Real beer lovers would love any beer meeting the standard of any beer style. Exceeding is not necessary, but a treat.

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Photo of ism
3.51/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Light yellow hue, as clear as a consommé (you can read the letters on a dime at the bottom of the glass), with a thin, very white head. Nose is crisp and dry with distinct Saaz notes (bit of lemon peel, and hint of spice), but on the faint side. Medium-thin body, thick for the style, with a moderate carbonation. Mild, sweet, dry, bready malt, weak hop character. Dry finish, slight hop bitterness emerging, but mostly bread. Very easygoing but somewhat boring.

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Photo of Kooz
2.82/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle poured into special Sam Adams beer-drinkin' glass. No head, no lacing, light-colored golden-yellow. Good-looking pils.

No assertive smell. Faint, faint hint of light hops.

Bites a bit, and has a nice bitter aftertaste. A bit too much alcohol flavor.

Decent mouthfeel, a bit creamy. not bad.

A perfectly drinkable pilsener.

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Photo of OWSLEY069
3.05/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clean, straw yellow with a white head. In the aroma, dry malt and saaz hops. In the taste, dry malt and a small hop presence, but quite malty for a pils. A small bite and medium to light bodied mouthfeel, with a dry malty aftertaste. OK, decent pils, but nothing too exciting.

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Photo of e11iott
2.57/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A: Bottle was 12oz, light straw color enough you could see through. 1 finger head, some lacing.

S: Citrus smell that isn't offending almost spicy.

T: Was almost tart.

M: Carbonation is stong for my liking.

D: Was hoping for more, did get better as it warmed up.

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Photo of beerphan
3.76/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle -> tulip
2010 12 beers of winter pack

Pours a clear golden straw yellow with a wispy bone white head that quickly settles to a layer of dish suds Sheets of screen door lace. Carbonation is steady.

Nose: Corn, sweet touch of caramel

Clean and crisp. Thick doughy malts with a shake of caramel sweetness and some corn. A refreshing spicy hop bite. Doughy flavors linger and call for another swig.

A nice easy drinker to start off the 1/1/11. I've really become smitten with the Saaz hop and the pilsner style lately, and this one surely did not disappoint.

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Photo of Chico1985
3.51/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours translucent dark yellow, sudsy white head stays at about a half finger. Leaves good lacing.

Big pilsner malt, lagery scent from this one. Not much hops noticeable, some lemon and herbal.

Taste is much more hop forward, pretty bitter actually. Hops are spicy and grassy, lemon and herbal notes still around too. Bready on the finish but malt feels weak otherwise. Becomes more sweet as it warms.

Mouthfeel at first was really thin, really low carbonation, but seems to improve over time; has a bit more of a body to it. Also very prickly and bitter at first but that also improves over time. Clean and crisp. Warming does seem to help this beer.

Definitely take your time with this one, warming helps just about every aspect of the beer (except for the smell which got worse.)

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Photo of FickleBeast
3.83/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a light golden color with a finger of foam that fizzes away quickly. Aroma has a kiss of spicy hop flavor.

First sip is... refreshing. Nice crisp finish with a detectable spicy hop bitterness. Malt sweetness is present but mild. There is a bit of a bite on the end. There is a little bit of fruity flavor in the middle that isn't quite appropriate for the style - but that is a relatively minor criticism. Overall a very nice beer.

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Photo of ToddT
3.56/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Golden straw topped with a large fluffy off white head. Head falls slowly and leaves some nice lace on the glass

S- Malt, yeast, and a little twang of hops. Aroma is crisp and clean, but mild.

T- Nice malt start, then a hint of hops at the middle, finish is clean and crisp slightly medicinal notes at the end as well.

M- Light in body and high in carbonation, lots of bubbles in the mouth.

D- Easy drinker, 4.8% ABV, and refreshing make this an excellent candidate for a session beer.

Good summer lawnmower beer.

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Photo of Wamesit
3.89/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a golden straw color with a thick white head which gives way to moderate lacing.

S - Malt sweetness but mainly a subtle aroma.

T - Light and crisp, as one wants in a good pilsner. A biscuity, but not bready, flavor moves to a Saaz hops grassy bitter finish.

M - Light, perfect amount of carbonation.

D - This is a true Pilsner. Highly drinkable. Great session beer.

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Photo of projectflam86
2.86/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A- Pours a crystal clear golden color with a thick white foam head that leaves nice lacing.

S- A bit of toasted grain and cooked corn in the nose. Not picking up much hop aroma.

T- Somewhat soapy initially with some sweetness and cereal grain flavor in the finish. Nothing particularly offensive but certainly not a great flavor.

M- Light bodied with ok carbonation.

D- This one was ok but it really lacked in flavor and aroma.

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Photo of bubseymour
4.03/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was a very unique beer from an American Craftbrewer Saranac. It as a wonderful appearance for a pilsner with a 2 finger head and nice retention. It surprisingly tastes very much like a German/Czech pilsner and if I were given a blind taste test would have not guessed it as American. With that said the taste left somewhat bland and could use some bolder flavoring.

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Photo of Dodt
3.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

picked this up from a mix six
poured from bottle into a stange glass
appearance straw yellow with a fluffy head
smell grainy with a faint malt
taste a bit of a watered down citrus
mouthfeel crisp with a dry mouthfeel
for me this is a middle of the road beer

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Photo of Haybeerman
3.4/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Bright clear yellow color. Poured a 2 finger pillowy white head that dissipated to a bubbly skim. Decanted continually. Lased in inconsistent wavy rings.

S: Wet grain and bread. Cut grass, hay and earth.

T: Wet grain mostly. Fizzy and a little weak. Light bitter in the finish. Nothing wrong, just a little shy in character (malt or hop).

M: Light body. Ample carbonation. Crisp and clean.

D: Easy to drink for sure, but nothing special.

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Photo of Gmann
3.26/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pour into a pils glass, the pils is a fairly pale straw color with some lazy bubbles floating to the top. Pure white head that left a wall of lacing around the glass.

The aroma is not very strong. Some light cracker like malt. Don't really pick up any saaz hops.

The flavor is of a cracker like malt which is correct for the style but is seems a touch light. The hops are pretty much nowhere to be found and that is a disappointment. Perhaps a touch of lime citrus that can be found in nobel hops, but I am reaching.

The feel is light but not watery, well carbonated, quite crisp. It is very light on the palate with a subtle bitterness that makes the beer very balanced and easy to drink.

The flavor is a disappointment but the feel and drinkability is spot on. I would never seek this beer out but I have no issues drinking it.

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Saranac Bohemian Pilsener from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
3.4 out of 5 based on 238 ratings.
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