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Looking for Lighter-Drinking Beers


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I love good full-bodied lagers. But I'm almost ashamed to say that to real beer lovers, because the majority of lagers are pretty insipid, and I'm inevitably dismissed as a lightweight.

Hacker-Pschorr Munich Edelhell is right up my alley - subtle, refreshing, medium-bodied, but also with a malty intensity you don't often find. Given that I enjoy this style, what else out there is comparable? I tried an Eku Pils last night, and don't like it as much.

The Smuttynose Lager is one of the few that I like.

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I love good full-bodied lagers. But I'm almost ashamed to say that to real beer lovers, because the majority of lagers are pretty insipid, and I'm inevitably dismissed as a lightweight.

Hacker-Pschorr Munich Edelhell is right up my alley - subtle, refreshing, medium-bodied, but also with a malty intensity you don't often find. Given that I enjoy this style, what else out there is comparable? I tried an Eku Pils last night, and don't like it as much.

There are some really great Pilsners out there; sad to say, the Macros give them a piss pour (ha!) reputation. If you like the Hacker-Pschorr, have you tried the Eggenberg Hopfenkonig Pils? It sounds similar, with just a bit less malt, a tad more hops and a whiff of that skunkiness that I actually kind of enjoy. It is widely available in bottle and on draft. The Bavik Pils also sounds quite similar given its smooth texture, lightly hopped nose, light carbonation and ample (for a pils) maltiness-- we've got this one by the sixer, and Brasserie Beck has it on draft. Victory's Prima Pils is awesome, too. Its got a texture like a more sturdy Stella Artois, but with a beautiful golden color, more balanced carbonation, and a perfectly balanced (but decidedly American) hoppy kick! One of my favorite day to day beers, easily.

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have you tried the Eggenberg Hopfenkonig Pils? It sounds similar, with just a bit less malt, a tad more hops and a whiff of that skunkiness that I actually kind of enjoy. It is widely available in bottle and on draft.

Yeah, it's the combo of "less malt," "more hops," and a "whiff of skunkiness" that makes it not what I'm looking for. I drink it in bars sometimes, but in terms of The SearchLager Project, it's not Hacker-Pschorr. Sigh...

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Lagunitas does a pilsner that I like. I am not sure if it is distributed on the East Coast. There's a couple other West Coast pilsners that I like that I am certain aren't distributed on the East Coast. Sorry, I know that's not very helpful...

Yea, good call on the Lagunitas, it comes east, but only sporadically. I have also sporadically recommended the Bavik and the Efes as international pils, but the earlier caveat about not knowing what they really taste like applies.

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Yea, good call on the Lagunitas, it comes east, but only sporadically. I have also sporadically recommended the Bavik and the Efes as international pils, but the earlier caveat about not knowing what they really taste like applies.
The Bavik's lovely on draft - nice flavor and body, and not dead hoppy like the Hopfenkonig (although with a name like "King of Hops", you'd kind of expect it to be on the hoppy side). The Blusser at Central isn't bad either, although it doesn't have as much character as the Bavik.
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Yeah, it's the combo of "less malt," "more hops," and a "whiff of skunkiness" that makes it not what I'm looking for. I drink it in bars, when there's nothing else to drink, but in terms of The SearchLager Project, it's not Hacker-Pschorr. Sigh...

Really, the big names do well in this style, I think--Weihenstephaner Original (NOT the ubiquitous hefe); Spaten Premium, Paulaner Original Munich (again, not THEIR ubiquitous hefe), Ayinger JahrhundertBier. Augustiner too, can't remember what theirs is called.

I think that it's the Spaten Helles thats usually on tap wherever you see a Spaten tap handle. Except during Oktoberfest.

Locally, in a sort of loose sense, i.e. Pennsylvania, Victory Lager--not the Prima Pils, just labeled Victory Lager-- is a really nice Helles I think. But I like that Hacker Pschorr too.

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Really, the big names do well in this style, I think--Weihenstephaner Original (NOT the ubiquitous hefe); Spaten Premium, Paulaner Original Munich (again, not THEIR ubiquitous hefe), Ayinger JahrhundertBier. Augustiner too, can't remember what theirs is called.

I think the Augustiner is just their helles lager, but I don't think they call it anything but Augustinerbrau.

Paulaner also makes a pils. Might have to sit them down and do a side-by-side with the Munich v the Pils. And maybe try some of the others in the list. A german lager-off. Interesting.

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I think you should throw in a Pilsner Urquell just so everyone can see how BAD that beer has gotten. I'm telling you youngsters ... it used to be fantastic.

My old boss used to go on about how good it was when the communists were in charge and they didn't have to worry about ingredient cost, and how it turned to shit the minute they had to make a profit. I don't know if thats true but I always thought the idea of a communist non-profit brewery was pretty awesome. I wonder if there is any great Cuban beer we can't get.

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Try Brooklyn Brewery's Lager.

I agree fully with this recommendation. I was so pleasantly surprised when I first tried this (at Red Rocks, I think). The Brooklyn Lager is most definitely not insipid or lightweight.

Also, Samuel Smith's Pure Brewed Lager (and the organic lager) are very good.

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Yeah, it's the combo of "less malt," "more hops," and a "whiff of skunkiness" that makes it not what I'm looking for. I drink it in bars sometimes, but in terms of The SearchLager Project, it's not Hacker-Pschorr. Sigh...

Have you tried Bell's? They tend to have fairly balanced hops.

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For pilsner I have to go with Scrimshaw. You can usually get it at Whole Foods. The Brooklyn Brewery also makes a Pilsner which is nice. I don't know if you can get it in DC but it is in ready supply up here in NJ. As far as lagers go, I am not sure if this is available anywhere out east but I brought back a sixpack of Great Lakes Brewery's Dortmunder Gold Lager from Ohio. If I had to choose one day-to-day lager this would be it. It had maltiness but still had a definite taste of hops. It was light and easy to drink but still had more body than most commercial american lagers.

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I had some Eichhof Braugold in Fribourg, Switzerland last week that was outstanding. I think they are based in Lucerne. The local brewery is Cardinale and their offering was much less rounded and a bit thin in comparison but not bad. I'm hunting for the Braugold in N. Va and if anyone knows where to find it I'd appreciate the help.

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Terrifying, I would say. What a way to ruin several ounces of Clamato :mellow:

And now we also know: Natty Boh Ice has far more flava than "regular" Natty Boh. But it's still a lot like making love in a canoe.

Yeah, that Bud Light\Clamato thing was a bit unfortunate. "I want to drink Cape Cod, but I, specifically, want to drink a roadside, novelty t-shirt stand in Cape Cod."

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By the way, I found a lager I L-O-V-E: the Bavarian Lager from Neuschwansteiner (Neuschwanstein is the castle of Mad King Ludwig, and the brewery is nearby; I've actually knocked back a few beers at the brewery.) The Wine Specialist on New Hampshire Avenue was selling these by the single bottle.

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Mad King Ludwig
Other than his high regard for the music of Richard Wagner, there is actually no reason to believe that Ludwig II of Bavaria was mad. His uncle Luitpold had Ludwig declared insane so that he could take over as regent, and then had Ludwig murdered, poor chap.
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I'm not a huge beer drinker, and I tend to go for the lighter beers (not light beer), that are refreshing and with good flavor. So let me throw this out there, are there any beers in particular I should be looking for?

I'm not into the hoppy, super alcoholic beers (I probably enjoy somewhere b/w 5-7%) and I usually just end up buying Becks or Yuengling for lack of knowing any better, but I'm sure there's better stuff out there. Any suggestions?

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I'm not a huge beer drinker, and I tend to go for the lighter beers (not light beer), that are refreshing and with good flavor. So let me throw this out there, are there any beers in particular I should be looking for?

I'm not into the hoppy, super alcoholic beers (I probably enjoy somewhere b/w 5-7%) and I usually just end up buying Becks or Yuengling for lack of knowing any better, but I'm sure there's better stuff out there. Any suggestions?

Two suggestions for you, both pilsners.

1) Victory Prima Pils

2) Oskar Blues Mama's Little Yella Pils (only in cans). I enjoyed it quite a bit, but have heard contrary opinions from others.

Both at around 5.3% abv with the Prima Pils being the more aggressively hopped of the two.

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I'm not a huge beer drinker, and I tend to go for the lighter beers (not light beer), that are refreshing and with good flavor. So let me throw this out there, are there any beers in particular I should be looking for?

I'm not into the hoppy, super alcoholic beers (I probably enjoy somewhere b/w 5-7%) and I usually just end up buying Becks or Yuengling for lack of knowing any better, but I'm sure there's better stuff out there. Any suggestions?

I usually don't drink lagers, but the best lager I have ever had was Hacker Pschoor. I think its called Munich Gold and it had a very distinct buttery taste. :rolleyes:

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The current Sierra Nevada seasonal would definitely fit the bill. Called "Glissade" it is a golden bock with a good balance between the subtle hop spiciness and a biscuitty not-too sweet malt. Of course it gets slammed over at rateeer/ beeradvocate because it isn't a million IBUs in-your-face-hoppiness, but I would think it fits the OPs requirements as a light/smooth-drinking lager whose subtle qualities shine through.

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It's coming up on Maibock season as well. Locally I like Victory's St. Boisterous, but you may be able to find German imports, too (I remember seeing Spaten around). Maibocks and Helles lagers are secretly a couple of my favorite beer styles. They are a welcome break from the hop overload that's overtaken craft brewing.

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