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Boulevard Smokestack Series: Reverb Imperial Pilsner



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RATINGS: 414   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.59/5   SEASONAL: Summer   IBU: 32   EST. CALORIES: 231   ABV: 7.7%
How can a style as elegant and refined as pilsner be "amped up" to imperial status? The answer, as Spinal Tap guitarist Nigel Tufnel might say, is simple: you go to eleven. With its classic recipe and impeccable craftsmanship, Reverb Imperial Pilsner echoes our Collaboration No. 1 Imperial Pilsner, produced in 2009 with esteemed Belgian brewmaster Jean-Marie Rock. Like its predecessor, this summer seasonal is a study in delicately balanced contrasts. Up front, Pilsner malt makes a clear yet restrained statement, answered by the steady, harmonious hum of Saaz hops, traces of which linger in the dry, crisp finish. Rock on.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
allendodd (116) - Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA - APR 21, 2010
Pours a creamy head over a pale yellow beer. Nose is light hops - just like a Pils should be - and light maltiness. Taste is a subtle hops and light sweetness of the malt. The palate is smooth and creamy, and the finish is light. Surprisingly clean for an Impy of any style and doesnít offend the Pils style in particular. Iíd do this again, but not 25.4 ozs on an empty stomach. Whew.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 5/5   OVERALL 17/20
slimchill (1044) - Austin, Texas, USA - APR 17, 2010
Bottle. Pours cloudy bright yellow with a hazy but elegant white head. Aroma is hay, grain, fruit esters, and a note that is distinctly reminiscent of Orval, almost brettanomyces-inspired. Flavor is soft, sweet, and spicy with a clean finish, lingering grain notes. Hugely balanced and drinkable. Smooth palate.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
beerchugger (716) - North Canton, Ohio, USA - APR 16, 2010
UPDATED: MAY 16, 2010 Pours a pale yellow wih a full thick head but dimi ishes quickly. Smells of grass, hay, is a bit earthy, even musty. As it sits, it takes on nuances of lemon citrus fruits. Lively carbonation on the mouthfeel. Very hoppy, bright flavors of lemon and citrus, a bit of grass, and the finish lingers with bitterness.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Beerlando (3342) - Orlando, Florida, USA - APR 14, 2010
750ml bottle, batch 2-2009. Pours mostly clear at first, with an increasing amount of haze after each glass. The golden hued body is crowed by a gorgeous head of eggshell colored foam that settles slowly to a thin, swirly film. A soapy wash leaves minimal spotting behind on the glass. The nose is just about as clean as it gets, showing beautifully crisp, cracker-like pils malt base that is accompanied by notes of dry, peppery grass and dried lemon esters. Hardly an inkling of alcohol is detectable, something I was worried about going in. Flavors continue the dry, clean theme, as bready, crackery yeast and pristine pils malts set the tone. Perfect balance is achieved with the influx of peppery citrus peel and dried, grassy hops. Dryness is intensified on the palate, which is substantial and lively, yet simultaneously creamy and soft. This beer is all about subtlety, contrast, and congruence. A fantastic interpretation of a seemingly simple style that so few can do well. Excellent stuff.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
jumpjet2k (314) - Houston, Texas, USA - APR 12, 2010
750, batch 2-2009. After I finally wrestle the cork out with the aid of a corkscrew, it pours a very clear light-gold, with an airy white head. Nose is definitely bready and doughy, with some tones of freshly-cut grass, herbal hops, mild citrus. Flavor starts out rather sweet, with cereal tones, pepper, and lemon, then finishes quite dry. At the finish thereís definitely a grassy/funky note reminiscent of brett, although Iím not certain if any brett was used in the brewing process. The ingredients in this beer are extremely simple - 100% pilsner malt and, presumably, 100% Saaz hops. I think itís a nice example of the cleanliness and clarity that can be found with such a simple bill, and the brewing process seems to have been spot-on. If I were a pilsner purist, Iím sure I would be very happy with it. Still, though, itís almost a little too simple for me - there arenít many layers to peel back and explore in this one. WYSIWYG. It would be very enjoyable with a meal, I think.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 9/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
jefcon (1642) - Arlington, Virginia, USA - APR 12, 2010
Quite a good imperial pils -- enough to stand up to an imperial anything in my book. Very dry, save a juicy plummy center that also introduces the bitterness of good hops. Aromas like a champagne, very dry, with sweat and floral yeast.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
cmonster (1000) - Portland, Oregon, USA - APR 11, 2010
Bottle served in a lager glass. Pours watery yellow with a slight haze and a massive white head. Decent lacing and retention. Aroma is bready and pilsner-esque though you can detect a higher abv. Also a little bit of belgian funk. Light-medium body, good carbonation, oily texture, and a long, doughy, dry finish with a hint of bitterness.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 17/20
Gregis (1281) - Stilwell, Kansas, USA - APR 11, 2010
Pours a pale straw/gold with a large, pillowy, white head that leaves a patchy web of lace upon the glass. The nose is probably the purest, cleanest example of a perfect marriage of Pilsner malt and Saaz hops that Iíve ever encountered. Simple yet incredibly pleasant, the aroma is like putting on a warm, cozy sweatshirt on a cool fall day. It just makes me smile. Soft and silky on-the-tongue, it features uber-soft carbonation at the swallow and concludes somewhat dry; nice. The flavor more-or-less follows the nose: solid, doughy pils malt up front with soft, complimentary notes of grass, hay and slight herbal earthiness. Simple and simply sublime.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
durhambeer (2500) - Durham, North Carolina, USA - APR 11, 2010
Bottle thanks to beeronmypants and CanIHave4Beers. Thanks, kids! Pours and attractive pale golden with a lovely active white head. Nice, crisp pilsner hops on the nose, with hints of pepper and grass/grain, but a nice fullness and malt balance as well. Herbal and bready notes really come out more on the taste an a slight bit of citrus. Quite good.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 15/20
beerguy101 (5359) - Newark, California, USA - APR 10, 2010
Sampled on 3/5/2010. This Imperial Pilsner/European Strong Ale pours a slightly hazy orange gold color from a 750ml bottle. Medium to large sized white foamy head. The aroma is fruity, cereal and sweet, orange and orange peel. A medium to full bodied Imperial Pilsner. The malts are fruity and sweet, some cereal and some orange peel. The hops are spicy and herbal. Nice carbonation. Good balance. Kind of fruity for an Imperial Pilsner, might be the yeast. Did they use an Orval Yeast? Hides the alcohol well. Mouthfeel is full. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter.

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