Monday, December 27, 2010

Five Foreign Beers (Taking Up Space In My Fridge)

So I have a handful of foreign beers that have been sitting in my refrigerator for a while. Why? I guess it's because I'm not very excited about any of them at all. Perhaps that's unjustified. Some I purchased, some were left behind by guests, some were given to me by friends. All of that is cool, but I just decided today is the day to give a thumbs up or thumbs down on each.  Not sure if I'll drink all of any of them, but each deserves its day! Wow, I'm about to travel around about as much as Santa!

Oh, and I just got off the phone with my wife who is at the mall with her mother, just to see how long I have for this experiment. We better get started! One other comment. I took some additional pictures, but something seems to be wrong with my camera. It wont focus from any distance. So you guys are the losers. Luckily the one above came out OK. Say a prayer for 2002 antique Sony.

1. Efes Pilsener. From Turkey (BTW I cooked a 14 lb. turkey for Christmas Eve. I know you are groaning at this stupid comment, but I don't care!) The 33cL bottle is cool with EFES stamped into the glass all around the bottle. The label on the neck says I should be able to find the Best Before date there, but nope, I couldn't find it. I bought this one probably at least a year ago, so my bad on that. Golden color. Faint grainy aroma with a little sweet fruit. Sweet grain flavor start with a noticeable hoppy bitter component immediately doing a balancing act. Lemon, a little floral. Decent flavor and body, nice carbonation, refreshing. 5% alcohol.

2. Club del Gourmet Cerveza Especial. From Madrid. I'm not even sure this is the name of this beer. If I recall, this is a super local beer according to the guy who gave it to me. Again, the 33cL bottle size. Dark honey color. Grainy with pear and apple aroma. Fruity flavors, apples and pears. A little buttery though, which wasn't awesome. The 7% alcohol is apparent and drying. Lightly spicy. Manufactured and medicinal flavors toward the end, and worse by the halfway mark. A definite pass, though not absolutely horrible.

3. Radeberger Pilsner. From Germany. There is a stamp that says 19.08.11 which only can mean August 19, 2011 as a best by date. 33cL; 4.8% alcohol. Light pale golden yellow color. Faint bread, hoppy, not very strong aroma. Light toasty flavors start things off. Very nice! A pleasant little bitter bite comes in and adds some value. Hoppy with some spice comes next. Light body is an understatement, but the flavors are great and so delicate. Clean, refreshing, toasty finish. I really liked this beer. Best so far!

4. Coopers Sparkling Ale. From Australia. First, it's Kosher. Thank God! Second, it comes in a 12.7 ounce bottle which kicks ass. Finally, they use a best AFTER date of 01 SEP 09. So forever? Murky dark orange color. Quite fragrant, floral, hoppy, lemony aroma with bubbles bursting everywhere. Champagne like. Truly sparkling. Lemon and orange citrus with aggressive carbonation? Yes, please! Hoppy and floral, yet not overly bitter and actually balanced by some faint yet sweet fruity flavors. Yeasty texture. Prickly spicy carbonation bite and a pleasant nondescript aftertaste. 

5. Budějovický Budvar. Czech Republic. Somewhere online I read that this is the "Original Budweiser" though I am not very certain if this in any way affiliated with them. Considering the spelling and accent and pronunciation challenge, coupled with a bottle that doesn't have a drop of English on it, well, I'm in the dark. Except for the drinking part. Gold foil over the cap. Consume before 09.08.2011 ( I think). (good freakin' luck). 5% alcohol. Clear, medium orange color. Not much aroma, lightly malty. Smooth with orange and sweet grain flavors. Clean and way better than US Bud, bud! Enough bitter to matter. Carbonation on the high end, actually burning my lips a bit for some reason by the end. Good but I'm not in love.

I finished the Radeberger and Coopers, despite the total volume here. Those were my favorites of the five. The others were probably not dump beers except I was on a mission. Five countries 55 minutes. Took me longer to type this shit out. I hope you appreciate it!

Complete Coopers Brewery Sparkling Ale Beer Kit Package


The Beer Lover's Rating Guide: Revised Edition -- Robert Klein


Anonymous said...

I appreciate your reviews of the foreign brews. Do you cleanse your palette between tastings? 55 minutes-wowzers!!! Christina M.

Beer Drinker Rob said...

Hi Christina.

I usually stay in the domestic beer aisle, but a friend of mine frequently travels and brought me most of these.

I rinsed the glass and had a little water between each. And I drank enough of each to wipe away the flavors from the previous beer. But knowing I would be drinking five beers, I didn't drink the entire bottles (well, two I did, shhh). If they were fantastic, I wouldn't have dumped any, but that wasn't the case.