Monday, April 20, 2015

He'Brew Slingshot American Craft Lager

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 15/20
Chad9976 (1330) - Albany, New York, USA - APR 20, 2015
Shmaltz is a brewery known for making beers that defy style categories, but usually those are big, multifaceted brews. In the case of their newly re-branded “Slingshot American Craft Lager” (formerly known as “David’s Slingshot”), they’re blurring the line between premium lager and IPL. I suppose if there were a lager equivalent of a pale ale that’s how you’d classify this. Disirregardless, this is a more-than-solid lager with a fairly complex palette, a good dosing of hops, and easy drinkability.

I poured a 12oz bottle into the official Shmaltz tasting room sampler glass. It was bottled on 3/30/15 and a six-pack cost $10 ($1.67 per bottle or $0.14 per ounce).

Appearance: Pure golden color, slightly pale. Near crystal clarity with visible carbonation. Pours to a small, white, soapy head which laces and retains fairly well.

Smell: Clean, light citrusy aroma (especially lemon); slightly spicy or herbal. No lager scent; all hops.

Taste: If you were drinking this blind it’d be easy to mistake it for a session IPA or a pale ale. Hops are at the center of attention here: citrusy and fruity at first (lemon, grapefruit, and tangerine) but quickly take on a spicy/herbal sensation. It’s reminiscent of an Old World-style pilsner. There’s mild malty sweetness but it’s not a malty lager by any means. I do enjoy the spicy flavor imparted by the rye and Noble hops with the wheat giving it a slightly starchy, cracker-like character. A faint bitter bite as it goes down, but it’s also accompanied by even more genuine hop flavor. A well-balanced brew to be sure and impressive palette for a lager. Probably an ideal transition beer for craft beer newbies, too.

Drinkability: The thing about lagers is that they should be crisp and quaffable and that’s what He’Brew Slingshot American Craft Lager is. The body is light-to-medium with a refreshing quality while in the mouth. It finishes quite clean with just a slightly dry aftertaste. At 5.3% ABV (formerly 5.5%) it’s certainly tempting to session this brew (especially in the summer). Now if only this beer were available in cans! 
Score: 8/10