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Review: Harpoon Bohemian Pilsner

Posted by Gary Dzen, Boston.com Staff  August 3, 2012 07:00 AM

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It says something when you tell a brewer you're an IPA guy and he still pours you a pilsner.

harpoon.JPGSuch was the case when Harpoon co-founder Rich Doyle poured me a sample of Harpoon Bohemian Pilsner a few weeks ago. It used to be hard to get excited about a pilsner. That's changing.

"This is a hard beer to make," said Doyle, asking me what I thought. "But it's a very good one."

I didn't know what I thought. I didn't want to be influenced by my surroundings, so I waited to review the beer. I bought a six-pack of Bohemian Pilsner a week later to test the beer on my home turf.

The beer pours a faded yellow with a big, wispy head. Tiny bubbles rapidly rise to the top of my glass. It's a pilsner, alright.

It's hard to get excited about a pilsner because often times there's nothing to one. It's not hard to get a pale lager. Like a cup of coffee, pilsners are everywhere. Harpoon brews theirs with Tettnang and Saaz hops. At 48 IBUs, you can taste the hops. That's a good start.

Extended lagering smooths out the beer. It's got as much hop flavor as some milder IPAs, but it's much dryer. I get some lemony citrus flavor. This is a clean brew, good for summer days (or nights) and good for your friends who have no idea what a pilsner is (on second thought, give them your leftover Buds). It's available in a six-pack or in Harpoon's Summer mix pack. It's not my favorite style of beer, but I respect the work that went into it. The beer is 4.7 percent ABV. A six-pack costs around $9.

Gary Dzen

About 99 Bottles

Gary Dzen writes about craft beer here and in the Globe when he's not covering the Celtics for Boston.com. He can be reached at gdzen@boston.com. Follow him on Twitter @GaryDzen.
 

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