Fearful Symmetries

Witness a machine turn coffee into pointless ramblings...

22 June, 2012

Radlers and Grätzers

While it's nice to see the shandy/radler being resurrected on this side of the Atlantic, it's sad to see the beer and lemonade/soda combination mangled by American brewers. I had some Stiegl grapefruit radler last weekend and it was extremely refreshing. Great taste with a bit of malt behind some tart citrus but no buzz/dehydration. The domestic versions I've tried (Leinenkugel, Sam Adams, Potosi) and read about (Shock Top, et al) basically take a lighter beer such as a helles or golden ale and dump lemon flavor in it which misses the point of the style, i.e. – low alcohol, beer-based cocktail. That Stiegl radler was 2.5% while American varieties tend to be 4-4.5%, i.e. – fruit-flavored beer.

And now Leinenkugel's is combining two of their worst beers to make what will surely be yet another syrupy sweet piece of dreck: Lemon Berry Shandy. This stuff should be out in late summer.

On the plus side, Leine's is brewing a Baltic porter as the next entry in their Big Eddy series.

Chris Drosner, the Wisconsin State Journal's beer baron, did an interview with O'so's Marc Buttera and some highlights can be found here. Amongst them is the news that the brewery will be brewing a Czech-style pilsner called Memory Lane for release in November with some of the proceeds going to Alzheimer's research. Also they are doing an Oktoberfest this year. Of course it will be on shelves starting in August when it's 90 degrees out. So let me get this straight. When it feels like we're living in the Amazon River basin, we'll get an Oktoberfest, but when it's chilly out we get the light, crisp lager. Harumph.

Last week I mentioned that Vintage's Scott Manning was kind enough to take my desire to taste a Grodziskie seriously and today he started brewing it. He reports, "So far so good. 100% smoked wheat malt smells nice in the mash." I bet it does.

Speaking of the Grodziskie, I have discovered that it is apparently the latest entry in Professor Fritz Briem's Historic Signature Series.

"Grätzer" is the German name for the bier. It's apparently on tap at one establishment in Chicago. It must be pretty rare as only 2 Binny's in the Chicagoland area have it. Road trip?

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|| Palmer, 1:35 PM


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