I was following a discussion the other day on beer twitter about which beer styles seemed to be fading away due to lack of popularity. The conversation centered on usual suspects that used to be very popular with craft brewers but have lost steam in the hop-centric age of modern craft, styles like brown ale, altbier and vienna lager. In fairness, these aren’t my favorite styles either, I like my hoppy beers, crisp lighter lagers and fully roasty dark ales/lagers, but find I lose interest on some of the in-between styles. There are obviously exceptions to those rules, and there are some breweries I implicitly trust to make quality versions of even beer styles that aren’t usually my first choice. Notch Brewing has never been afraid to go against the grain, starting a brewery focused on low-ABV session beers with a flagship pilsner when the craft beer world was consumed with high-test bold and boozy ales. Notch changed my opinion on what pilsner could be with session pils, so I am willing to keep an open mind and try any of their beers. A good example is Polotmavy, a Czech amber lager, not usually a style I jump to try. Notch Polotmavy is available on a rotating basis in 16 oz cans (and on draft under normal circumstances).
Notch Polotmavy pours clear amber red with a small white head. The aroma features some rich malt and noble hops. The malts lead the flavor, notes of caramel, bread crust, and honey. This is balanced by some mild hop flavor, hints of grass and herbs. Polotmavy is light and easy-drinking, like every other Notch beer it’s sessionable at 4.5% ABV. The finish is crisp and clean with just the slightest hint of residual malt flavor. This is a really nice beer, it will never be my favorite style but I enjoyed drinking this and will again. Hoppy Boston score: 4.25/5.
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