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08 December, 2015

Cerveza for Gringos: Super Pils by 5 Rabbit Cervecería



5 Rabbit Cervecería opened in 2011 and has developed a reputation for creative Latin American-inspired cervezas as well as for telling Donald Trump to go f*ck himself. I jumped onto the 5 Rabbit bandwagon early with trips to Chicago being like Christmas no matter what time of year they were as long as I could bring home some of their beer. Christmas came early and unexpectedly this year when their cervecería began being distributed in Madison. From what I can tell not every one of their cervezas is available here yet. Indeed, my bottle of Super Pils was purchased on a recent venture to Chicagoland.

The beer is part of the cervecería's Gringolandia series. ("Gringolandia" is term of endearment used by some Latinos to refer to the United States.) These beers eschew the Latin American influences and instead are slightly more conventional "interpretations of some popular craft beer styles". In this case we have what is essentially an imperial pilsner although an English yeast was used as were some decidedly non-Noble hops.

Super Pils pours a lovely light gold/straw color. The beer was hazy but this is by design – it is unfiltered. And so it was unsurprising that I got a good, pillowy off-white head that was in no hurry to dissipate. There was a country ton of bubbles going up the glass. The aroma had a pronounced grain/breadiness to it which was wonderful. It also had some honey sweetness as well but this was rather mild. As for hops, there was a distinct peppery smell.

This beer is 7.2% A.B.V. so a lot of malt was used and it shows. That great bready bouquet came through in the flavor as well. The honey sweetness was there too but content in a supporting role. All those bubbles I saw added a nice sparkling dryness to counter the malt. The beer is brewed with a combination of Celeia and Saphir hops, the lupuline intricacies of which are unfamiliar to me but it seems that both of them contributed to the peppery/spicy hop flavor here. Oddly enough, I found the hops to be mild side.

A pils is best when fresh and my bottle wasn't fresh. But I don't have reason to believe it was particularly stale either. The beer did not taste oxidized. Perhaps it's just my expectations set by "imperial" and "drinks like an IPA". Probably a combination of things.

The finish saw some bready sweetness fade to a mild dryness undergirded by the carbonation and topped by peppery/herbal hop bitterness. Schaumhaftvermoegen was medium with a fair amount of webbing connecting patches littered around the glass.

While I have not had occasion to taste much of Celeia and Saphir hops, I really liked the peppery and herbal flavors they brought to the table. I suspect that a fresher bottle would have had brighter and bolder versions of these flavors but, as it is, I really enjoyed them here. Super Pils also had a strong malt flavor that was short on sweetness, which was great. With all the booze and all of the malt flavor, the beer surprised me with its medium-light body and a dangerously easy drinkability.

Junk food pairing: Pair your Super Pils with some lime-chili tortilla chips or, alternatively, some garlic plantain chips. All of these chips have flavors that can withstand the extra maltiness of the cerveza and complement the hops.

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|| Palmer, 11:32 AM

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