Australia has a growing number of boutique breweries popping up right around the country, all who create a different range of beers. I put my tastebuds to the test to see how a select few breweries from TAS, VIC, NSW, QLD & WA differ when it comes to their Pilsner.
In no way do I consider myself a beer connoisseur, so welcome to An Amateur’s Guide to Australian Pilsner.
MOO BREW PILSNER – BRIDGEWATER, TASMANIA. 5% ALCOHOL
LABEL SAYS – “This iconic Pilsner-style beer has a noble hop aroma and delicate malt flavour. Departing from tradition, this Pilsner uses only German Spalt hops to achieve its unique aroma and lingering bitterness. Moo Brew contains no additives or preservatives and is not pasteurised.”
I SAY – With a strong smell which hits you in the face, the first mouthful does exactly the same. The aroma of honey sparks an after taste of the same nature, which is funnily in no way sweet. The said bitterness of the drink definitely shines through.
This seems exactly like the type of beer you would expect to get from the renoundly wacky MONA in Hobart, where it is created.
A few mouthfuls in it really grows on you as your taste buds adjust, and turns into quite an enjoyable drop.
HAWTHORN BREWING CO. PILSNER – HAWTHORN, VICTORIA. 4.6%
LABEL SAYS – “In the tradition of the travelling merchants of old, the Flavour Merchants criss-cross the globe to bring home the secrets of the world’s best brewers. It is only by trialling and refining these techniques that we are able to create beers of such distinction. Like this Czech style lager, the perfect balance of sweet pilsner malt and refreshing hop bitterness. Another world class beer, imported from Hawthorn.”
I SAY – Lighter in flavour and taste, this pilsner goes down nearly a little too well. It has a lingering aftertaste which is almost citrus and definitely refreshing. It certainly feels like home to me, having previously lived in Hawthorn.
AUSTRALIAN BREWERY THE PILSNER – ROUSE HILL, NEW SOUTH WALES. 4.8%
LABEL SAYS – “Spicy NZ hops and citrus American hops generate an enticing aroma and a crisp peppery bitterness that balances a rounded malt profile.”
I SAY – Is this really a beer? As subtle as the flavour is, it is definitely enjoyable. It doesn’t have that kick in the face hop smell you would expect but certainly has a great balance of bitter and sweet.
I could drink this all day, and maybe I just might.
BURLEIGH BREWING CO. HEF – BURLEIGH HEADS, QUEENSLAND. 5%
LABEL SAYS – “Those in the know insist on the ‘mo’.”
I SAY – A strong smelling brew much like the Moo Brew with less honey and a murkier looking liquid. The darkness of the brew is misleading because the taste isn’t nearly as strong as you would expect.
Maybe I just really enjoy beer, but I really enjoy this Queensland brew as well.
LITTLE CREATURES ORIGINAL PILSNER – FREMANTLE, WESTERN AUSTRALIA. 4.6%
LABEL SAYS – “As much as we love ales there is something special about the classic pilsners of Europe. With that in mind, we’ve taken this classic style and made it our own. With Tasmanian Helga, New Zealand Pacifica and Saaz hops added throughout the brewing process this beer has a light, fresh flavour and a crisp bitterness.”
I SAY – To quote my housemate, “It doesn’t taste as beery as it smells”.
This is probably my pick of the crop. They say save the best until last and we certainly did that. I have always been a Little Creatures fan. Ever since I visited the brewery in Fremantle and sampled their delicious food, the beer has also been a favourite of mine.
The pale colour, subtle but delicious flavours, and everything in between is all I could ask for to whittle away a lazy Saturday afternoon.
This article first appeared in the Australia Times Australian Grown Magazine.