A Quality Pilsener South of the Equator
May 10, 2002
Written by Kaya161
The majority of beers produced in the Southern Hemisphere are lagers, loosely based on the pilsener style. These beers tend to be both light in body and flavour and are best suited as thirst quenchers in the world’s warmer climates. Of all these lagers, you would be hard pressed to find an authentic pilsener among them. There are two countries in the Southern Hemisphere, however, that brew some notable beers.
Australia and New Zealand, with more temperate climates than most countries in the global south, and brewing traditions that date back to British colonialism, produce many flavourful and unique beers, including some fine pilseners. One of the best pilseners to come from "Down Under" is made by Emerson’s Brewing Company in Dunedin, New Zealand. Emerson’s Pilsener is one of the company’s most popular brands and deservedly so. Like all of their beers, the pilsener is unfiltered and unpasteurized. It is also one of two beers in the Emerson’s line that is made with entirely organic ingredients.
Although it is brewed using ale yeast and is not lagered for any length of time, Emerson’s pilsener is surprisingly authentic tasting. The secret lies in water chemistry. According to Emerson’s brewer Tom Jones, the mineral content of Dunedin’s water is remarkably similar to the famous soft water of Pilsn. The resulting beer has a fantastic golden-yellow colour, which is crystal clear, and pours with a solid white head.
The aroma is magnificent. Having the intensity of an American pale ale, it is one of the best floral hop bouquets that you will find anywhere in the world. The beer has a huge hop flavour, which is slightly fruity. It is bitter, crisp, and ever so dry, with hops lingering on the finish. At the same time the beer retains a sense of smoothness, and has a well-rounded mouth feel.
Easily the equal of Victory’s Prima Pils and New Belgium’s Blue Paddle Pilsner, Emerson’s is one of the finest pilseners in the Southern Hemisphere, if not the world.
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The majority of beers produced in the Southern Hemisphere are lagers, loosely based on the pilsener style. Of all these lagers, you would be hard pressed to find an authentic pilsener among them
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