Week 2 of the Beer List saw another wide range of styles and breweries. It started off where week 1 left off – testing out some pilsners. Pilsners are a style of light lagers, which get their name from their town of origin: Pilsen, Bohemia. The first batch of modern pilsners were created by Josef Groll on October 5, 1842, and incorporated pale malts, Saaz noble hops, and Pilsen’s exceptionally soft water. Sunday’s Pilsner Urquell comes from the same town as Groll’s first experiment. A Czech Pilsner, it’s lighter and less bitter than its German counterparts. I didn’t find the Dolomiti to be noticeably more intense than the Pilsner Urquell, nor did I find either to be especially compelling.
On Wednesday, I had one of my favorite beers out their – Southern Tier’s Imperial Pumking Ale. I’ve made it a point to try as many pumpkin ales as I can get my hands on, and this is by far my favorite. It’s visually beautiful, has probably the most delicious nose of any beer on the market, and has a terrific flavor of vanilla and nutmeg without seeming overly sweetened. It’s a hearty, cool-weathered beer and absolutely the real deal. They’re a little hard to come by, but I definitely recommend going to Whole Foods (or Dive 75, says my roommate) to try some while its still in season.
The week ended with a trip up to Ithaca to visit the Cornell campus and interview for the MMH program. I had always seen beers from the Ithaca Beer Co, but never felt compelled to try them out. That changed when I was in the neighborhood, taking in the beautiful sights of the Fingerlakes region (“foliaging” is the new term, I believe), and I’m very glad it did. The Nut Brown Ale, which capped off week 2, was delicious and a much-appreciated change of pace from what I’d been drinking so far, and the Ithaca beers coming up in week 3 were just as tasty.
Let me know if there’s anything out there I should be trying!