Everyone has an opinion on ‘lager’, whether you’re a green bottle hero or you scoff at the thought of drinking something so boring, you’ve probably still got some room to appreciate just what makes lager, well lager.
First of all, what actually defines a lager? Lager is simply fermented using a strain of lager yeast (Saccharomyces pastorianus for the nerds) ,these yeast strains can tolerate lower fermentation temperatures, temperatures at which fewer fermentation derived flavours are produced; simply put, the cool, slow fermentation results in a crisper, cleaner beer.
“So if lager beer is just dictated by the yeast, why is lager so bland?” It simply comes down to tradition and the style guidelines that most brewers choose to follow. In fact, due to the cleaner flavour profile, lagers actually allow many of the carefully selected hops, malts, and adjuncts to really shine through and deliver a full flavoured, yet still crisp beverages.
One of our personal favourites is Hallertau #4 ‘Deception’, a Schwarzbier or dark lager style that features flavours of crusty brown bread, biscuits, and bittersweet chocolate all while being crisp enough to drink on a 30+ day in the midst of summer. Or if you don’t dig the dark stuff you ought to have a whack at Urbanaut’s Miami Brut, a super dry IPL (India Pale Lager) that certainly holds its own against any classic IPA – think peach, passionfruit, and lime out the wazoo!
There’s a hell of a lot more history and depth to lager so if you’re still not convinced come in and talk to Jack, he’ll happily challenge your preconceptions over a few tasters.