Firestone Walker Pivo Hoppy Pilsner: Before I get into describing this beer, let me tell you that it’s abundantly rare for me to buy a Pilsner beer these days. It’s not that I don’t like them, I just find that they are usually boring compared to the bigger beers I like, so it is a style I tend to avoid picking up at the liquor store. I’ll admit though, I was shocked at how good this was to the point where I had to get myself another can to review here. Firestone’s Pivo “Hoppy” Pilsner claims a mere 40 IBUs with a strength of 5.3% alcohol by volume and was acquired during a camping trip in Washington state, one amongst many canned beers that I wanted to try that week and simply picked up on a whim.
Aroma and Appearance: It pours a clear straw yellow colour with two small fingers of foam and a very bubbly center. The aroma is hay, grass, lots of herbs, lemon and some light earthy tones.
Flavour: The malts up front are mostly light hay and straw with overtones of lemon leaf and lemon peel to give it some edge. In the middle, there’s some nice flavourful cereal grains that lead into a very refreshingly crisp finish of herbs and earth that leaves you wanting more. Before that second sip however, don’t forget to appreciate the grass and lemon pepper aftertaste as it develops on your soft palate and throat as it beer descends into your stomach.
Overall Impression: Easily the best Pilsner I have ever tasted, by far superior to anything else out there. The added hop bite isn’t a gimmick, it adds enough flavour to the beer without overpowering the subtle malts. Pivo won Gold two years in a row at the Great American Beer Festival for German Style Pilsner, a reward I can completely understand and support now.
Rating: I gave it an excellent rating of 8/10, the herbs, the earthy bitterness and the crisp finish really worked wonders here.
Food Pairing: I’m going to stay with the camping theme and suggest some herbed chicken skewers over a cooked campfire or camping BBQ.
This is me rocking the red solo cup on July 4th in Washington State Park campsite.