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Destihl Bela Imperial Pilsner



on tap

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RATINGS: 24   MEAN: 3.3/5.0   WEIGHTED AVG: 3.25/5   IBU: 85   EST. CALORIES: 291   ABV: 9.7%
Bela may sound like a sweet name, but she’s actually quite bitter. A beer style that does not technically exist, the addition of over 25 pounds of Czech Saaz hops in this small-batch beer results in high hop bitterness and quite obvious Noble hop aroma and flavor. It is also a high alcohol beer with a nice warming effect, medium-body and some malty residual sweetness to remind you that Bela might still have a sweet side after all.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
onceblind (7470) - Denver, Colorado, USA - JUN 4, 2016
Slightly hazy golden with a thin, sticky Rocky white head. The aroma is full of toast and oak, and some weird level of semi-stale vanilla cake. Bready flavor with a bit of booziness, some grassy hop undertone, and a mellow earthy oak undertone. Boozy and bready and pilsner isn.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 4/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 13/20
djd07 (10483) - Houston, Texas, USA - FEB 25, 2016
On tap at Cottonwood. Pours a hazy gold with small frothy white head that lasts. The aroma is grass and honey. Medium mouth, grass, wheat, light bitterness, ok.

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
drfabulous (6657) - Lexington, Kentucky, USA - JAN 27, 2016
Draught at brewpub Champaign. This one had a lot of buttery fruit notes. Not much of the pilsner to it. Golden in color.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 12/20
madmitch76 (22309) - , Essex, ENGLAND - JAN 10, 2016
4th January 2016
Hazy orange - amber beer, tidy white head. Palate si smooth and mildly viscous. Decent fine carbonation. A startling and slight sour orange. Orange peel and a squirt of lemon. Light finish. Doesn’t seeem to have much in common with a pils but it’s fine and it hides the abv quite well.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 2/5   OVERALL 10/20
b3shine (8175) - Indiana, USA - AUG 31, 2015
Draft to taster at the Champaign brewpub. Looks solid; a completely transparent lighter gold with foamy white head that steadily dissipates into lacing. Smells buttery with mild notes of hops in the background. Tastes like it smells, but worse, with an unpleasant mouthfeel that’s medium-full bodied. Slightly warming from the abv. A diacetyl bomb.

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 14/20
zoucrew102 (1411) - - AUG 9, 2015
500ml bottle. Grassy malt aroma with hints of caramel, floral hops and a touch of oak. Pours clear golden colored with one finger of soapy white head with good retention and some lacing. Starts with grassy malt flavors and a bit of caramel sweetness. Finishes dry with slight floral hoppiness and oak as well as a bit of alcohol at the very end. Solid Pilsner!

   AROMA 5/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 5/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 9/20
Braudog (6377) - Yorktown, Virginia, USA - JUL 1, 2015
Bottle. Pours like a nice meaty pils, frothy and golden. From there, I seem to lose any pilsner connection. The aroma is exceedingly sweet and the beer drinks with a sugary bit, bordering on a golden sour beer. (#5999, 7/1/2015)

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 15/20
wlajwl (5829) - Quad Cities, Iowa, USA - JUN 20, 2015
Aroma is fruit, citrus, mild spiciness and a hint of oak. The flavor is fruit/berries, malts, mild spicy notes and a bit of alcohol fire in the finish.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 16/20
kaser (5681) - Chicago, Illinois, USA - JUN 20, 2015
Orange with white head. Super bitter. Malts and grapefruit. Strong. Poured from 16oz bottle on dock at lake. Decent beer. Wasn't what I expected

   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 17/20
Brigadier (3550) - Chagrin Falls, Ohio, USA - JUN 8, 2015
500 ml bottle
A solid imperial pilsener strikes me as Destihl branching out in new directions (at least for me). While I’d love to try all the Reserve sours at $20 each they’ll remain a special treat. In the meantime stuff like this will more than tide me over until I can visit the brewery again. There’s a reason that Bloomington, IL remains a must stop destination on any drive north towards Wisconsin.

Aroma / Appearance - A caramel carbonated base supports a heady looking chunky thick foam. Sweet caramel and hops surge upwards along with dusty books. The total package is dense like a morning fog.

Flavor / Palate - A cidery texture gives some booziness from the first sip. Almonds drizzled in caramel continue the thickness through to the strong finish. Paired with the right meal this would make a perfect pint if I could find another fresh bottle.

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