Fighting the Glut of Inferiority
A Review of Frankenmuth Pilsener by Frankenmuth Brewery
Posted on 11/10/2011 by Chops
Pilsners can be problematic beers to review. Not because they are complex or mysterious, but more because of market saturation. It's unfortunate that the big beer companies have latched onto the pilsner style because it has resulted in the beer drinking public having absolutely no idea what it is supposed to taste like. For a beer enthusiast, it's annoying having to sift through the glut of inferior products in search of something decent, let alone special. And for breweries, it's doubly annoying having to struggle against the corporate giants who have reduced what should be a tasty style into nothing more than tinny tap water. So going into pilsner reviews, I tend to sigh and hope that the beer I'm about to taste isn't a complete waste of my time and money. Fortunately that's not the case for the Frankenmuth Pilsener.

In the glass, this beer has that classic straw coloration with a slightly deeper hue. I would like crap beer drinkers to pay attention to this beer because this is the hue you are looking for. It should look more like a mid-bodied apple juice rather than yellowish tinted water. On the nose, there is a lovely lemongrass note that consumes the entire aroma. It's direct and simple, exactly what a good pilsner should be.

The taste is also pretty straight forward. That lemongrass smell also translates into a dominant flavor note. There really isn't much more to the beer other than a muted complimentary hop note. The hops make their presence known more on the finish, which leaves a modestly bitter aftertaste. There is also a slight metallic aspect to the flavor train that is more noticeable on the exit, but is not significant. This undesirable trait is more common with the mass-produced variety, but even great pilsners can have it. An absence of mineral type flavors is ideal, but rare. At the very least, muted is desirable.

Overall, the Frankenmuth Pilsener is a tasty brew and a good example of the pilsner style. It's easily drinkable and can be enjoyed by all levels of beer fan. While I wouldn't categorize it as a great pilsner, it's certainly better than the vast majority on the market. In all honesty, it's exceedingly difficult to find a truly great pilsner in the United States. The Czechs and the Germans will always have a clear advantage, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't keep trying. Frankenmuth has crafted a great baseline for quality American pilsners. My recommendation would be to pick some up and enjoy what this style is supposed to taste like.

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Frankenmuth Pilsener by Frankenmuth Brewery
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