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BeersWhat is a Pilsner

While the Pilsner is the most popular style of beer in the world, it remains one of the youngest and most specifically crafted, making it a difficult brew to master. Before the 1840s, most beers made in Bohemia were top-fermented and varied wildly in quality.  The town of Plzen became a center of Bohemian brewing after its founder, King Wenceslas II, granted its citizens the right to brew, with the first brewery opening in 1307. Fast forward a few centuries where new malting processes were making it possible to create lighter, mellower malts. With the 18th century came other advancements in brewing technology.  Despite the progress, much of the fermentation process remained a mystery. In 1838, a group of brewers deemed 36 barrels of ale undrinkable, rolled them into the street, and dumped them in front of the city hall. Sparking outrage with such waste, this atrocity led the brewers to bring in a young Bavarian brewer, Josef Groll, to teach them the more stable brewing method of lagering, which was becoming increasingly popular in Germany. Coincidentally enough, it was around this time that legend tells us a monk smuggled a coveted lager yeast out of Bavaria.

With the use of local ingredients, newer malting techniques, and a generous helping of a familiar German noble hop called Saaz, the first Pilsner was brewed in 1842. Up until this time, the world was accustomed to dark, murky ales, thus were astounded by the clear, pale, sparkling beers the bottom-fermenting lager yeast produced. This new process of brewing quickly spread across Europe, encountering the Germans who went on to create one of the two main styles of Pilsners we have today.

German Pils is lighter in body and colour than the Czech Pilsner and tends to be drier and crisper with higher bitterness and carbonation. Czech Pilsner is pale yellow with low to medium noble hop flavour. Slightly sweet with flavours of toasted biscuit, a bready aroma and low to medium carbonation. Our Allfather Pilsner is most similar to a German Pils, pouring a straw yellow with a strong white head. Crisp and refreshing with a beautiful hop character that shines throughout, this is our take on a uniquely brewed bit of German tradition brought to Canada.

 


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