It’s hot out and I’ve been on a huge pilsner kick recently which will be very obvious as I review a bunch of craft pilsners over the next couple weeks. I love the interesting adaptations on the style made by many American craft brewers. While traditional German/Czech pilsners have more hop flavor than many of the bland American macro-lagers, they aren’t really “hoppy” beers, especially by US standards. It is not a surprise that brewers in the US saw the light malt body and crisp finish of a traditional pilsner and thought it would be complemented perfectly by a liberal, late dose of American hops. The most successful of these beers keep the subtle flavors of traditional pilsner in tact and meld in enough hop flavors to complement the beer without overwhelming the palate. One of the most popular local hoppy pilsners is Fresh Cut Pilsner, brewed by Peak Organic Brewing in Portland, ME. Peak Organic takes a traditional pilsner beer and dry-hops it with Chinook, Citra and Centennial hops. Dry hoppping adds a lot of the hoppy aroma and some flavor without adding bitterness to the beer. Peak Organic Fresh Cut is available on draft in 12 oz. bottles and now in cans.
Peak Organic Fresh Cut Pilsner pours a straw yellow, slightly hazy with a massive white head. The first scent hits your nose with a huge burst of hops, fruity with some undertones of pine. The hops are present in the flavor too, but more mild, with touches of lemon, resin and grass. This is what you’d expect from a dry hopped pilsner, tons of hop aroma but more subtle flavor along with subtle bitterness. There are touches of malt in the backbone, cereal and a hint of fresh baked bread. This beer is extremely drinkable – the perfect beer for summer. The finish is crisp and clean with just a touch of hoppy bite on the tongue. Peak Organic Fresh Cut is one of my favorite pilsners! The hops add so much to the beer without overwhelming it. This is a creative and unique take on a classic style. Hoppy Boston score: 4.75/5.
Previous Peak Organic Reviews: