This column reviews a beer based on aroma, appearance, taste and palate (mouthfeel). At the end of each review, we score the beer based on a five-star system (one star meaning you will likely regret ever drinking such a horrible concoction, five stars meaning it’s your new favorite beer, and two, three, and four stars falling somewhere in between).
Brooklyn Brewery started back in 1988 by neighbors Steve Hindy and Tom Potter, who actually quit their jobs in order to found the brewery. Originally their beer was brewed through contract brewing with a company called Matt Brewing Company, but since 1996 they’ve brewed their own beer in the neighborhood of Williamsburg. The founders haven’t limited themselves to simply producing beer, either. In 2005, they published “Beer School: Bottling Success At The Brooklyn Brewery,” which is both a guide to entrepreneurship and brewing as well as a memoir of their time together during the early days of Brooklyn Brewing Company.
Although they have a number of different year-round and seasonal offerings, Brooklyn Brewery is probably best known for its Brooklyn Lager. As you may have noticed, I haven’t reviewed many lagers in this column, mostly because I’m just not a fan. I find that (usually) lagers don’t have much flavor and, because of this, I normally steer clear of them. Maybe, though, Brooklyn Lager will be different.
The beer is brewed year-round and has a 5.2 percent ABV. The nose is light, but you do get floral notes from the hops along with a grainy malt smell. It pours a light amber color and has a long-lasting head.
Although there’s nothing all that special about the nose, the taste scores this beer some major points. The flavor is clean and has a nice balance between the malt and the bitterness from the hops. Unlike in some beers where the bitterness from the hops can prove overpowering, Brooklyn Lager’s bitterness is refreshing rather than overwhelming. The mouthfeel is medium-bodied with a decent amount of carbonation, giving this beer a crisp finish.
Overall, this is easily one of the best lagers I’ve ever had. Although some have noted a watered-down quality to the beer, I didn’t get that at all. Even though I’m still not entirely sold on lagers, Brooklyn Lager will definitely lead me to give a few more a shot in the future.
Little Utopia Rating: Four out of Five
Charlie Crespo (@Little_Utopia) is the editor-in-chief of Little Utopia.
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Good breakdown sir, had one of these at the pizza shop I work at the other night, cause they fly off the rack. Shortly after I had another. Great compliment with food and though I’ll always grab my seasonal Sam Adams over anything this is a lager that definitely calls to me. Great choice.