doubt anyone other than BJCP sticklers will care, but Smuttynose
Vunderbar! Seems to be an attempt at a German/Czech pilsner hybrid. The
name and marketing clearly indicates a German heritage, but the use of
Saaz hops is indicative of a Bohemian (Czech) style. There’s also
American malt in here as well. Whatever it is they’re going for, this is
only an okay pilsner by my measure. It’s not that I’m a style purist,
just that I don’t find a lot to enjoy here.
I poured a 12oz can into a pilsner glass. It had a best by date of 9/5/15 and cost $2.60 ($0.22 per ounce).
Appearance: Pale gold hue to bright yellow. Cloudy body but fine
carbonation is always visible. Pours to an average-sized, white, foamy
head which retains and laces fairly well.
Smell: Very faint nose with only trace amount of the usual pilsner scent. Virtually odorless, otherwise.
Taste: Pilsners and pale lagers tend to have a certain base taste to
them and that’s mostly what I’m getting here. Try as I might, I cannot
find a lot of unique characteristics. A light taste of pale malt
throughout the majority of the palette with only a bit of spicy hop
sensation on the finish. I pick up minor lemonpeel and other spicy
character as well, but again – it’s entirely too faint to appreciate. I
will say there are absolutely no off-flavors or flaws and what I do
taste is fine, I just need so much more.
Drinkability: Pilsner should be light and refreshing and Smuttynose
Vunderbar! is both. The mouthfeel is thin, but not watery; though it did
seem just a tad under carbonated to me. At 4.9% ABV it’s easily
sessionable for more drinkers as it’s refreshing on the palate and
finishes clean. A little more flavor and it would be more than just a