Thursday, April 12, 2012

Reissdorf Kölsch

Brewery: Brauerei Heinrich Reissdorf
Location: Köln, Germany
Style: Kölsch
Brewery Website
Rating: A

With spring at our doorstep, I generally start to reach for Pilsners as my go-to springtime beer. This year I am broadening my reach a bit and bringing some Kölsch to my springtime mix. Much like good craft and European pilsners, these light ales from Cologne serve as excellent reminders that not all crisp, light beers are intended to be bland and flavorless.

The Reissdorf Kolsch (umlaut rule in effect) pours up a clear golden-straw color with a big, foamy white head. The nose is easily tricked into thinking that this ale is a lager, as all the telltale pilsner notes are here. There is the classic German lager malt aroma, something I often relate to pasta dough, as well as a hint of floral and herbal hops.

On the palate there us a smooth, slight juiciness up front that moves quickly to dry, doughy malt notes. There are some mild herbal noble hops notes. There is a touch of yeasty fruit here as well. The Reissdorf Kolsch has a medium-light body. It is crisp and refreshing without being overcarbonated. The finish is fairly quick. Clean malt notes fade with some undertones of herbal hops.

To me, the Reissdorf Kolsch stands for everything that everything the typical American commercial lager should be. There is a fuller mouthfeel and much less aggressive carbonation than typical Bud/Miller/Coors fare, but this beer is still very crisp and refreshing with loads of flavor. The Reissdorf Kolsch is sold in a brown bottle, and has none of the skunky “off” flavors as many of its more widely available “Eurolager” brethren possess. If you have ever tasted a mass-market American lager and said “something’s missing”, well this beer has everything that is missing.

The Reissdorf Kolsch is a textbook example of the Kolsch style. It is very similar in flavor and color to a Pilsner. The main differences are that the hoppiness is much more restrained and the ale yeast used provides a touch of fruitiness. I recommend this beer highly to everyone, as there is something here for Bud/Miller/Coors fans, Heineken/Amstel fans and for the craft beer crowd as well.

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