Eyedrinkale (3214) - Astoria, New York, USA - DEC 7, 2008
Pours light gold from the bomber with a decent white head. Aroma is light dough and subtle hops. Flavor is more on the sweet side, as it tastes like a light tripel. A bit of lemon zest does not help and the Saaz hops are hardly noticeable. Not very good. alexanderj (3605) - Branson, Missouri, USA - DEC 4, 2008
Despite the low ratebeer score, I had high hopes for this. Bottle. Poured a ruddy yellow with a white head. Aroma of sweet malt, grass, BO, apples and bread. As I sat drinking it, I realized this was definitely the wrong time of year to enjoy this. Summer would have been more appropriate. There was a weird, lingering and appleish after taste. Decent bitterness in the finish. Flavor was a bit hit or miss overall, but I still enjoyed it, although not as much as I had hoped. cbkschubert (2901) - BFE, Arizona, USA - OCT 19, 2008
22 oz. bottle - Pours a slightly hazy light golden color with a 2/3 finger thick white head. Aroma is spicey herbal hops and grain hiding in the back. Lots of fine lacing. The flavor is very hop forward and not too sweet. The hops even linger on the palate a bit. Light to medium body. Dry finish. A nice Pils. stubby (334) - Santee, California, USA - SEP 13, 2008
I love pilsner, and this is a fine example, worthy of any German brewmaster. Nice use of lactic acid, Jim. Thank you for being so generous with this well made lager. A perfect summer session beer. wetherel (1888) - Cupertino, California, USA - AUG 16, 2008
Tasted from tap at Stone 12th Anniversary Celebration, while talking to the brewer. As much as I think I know about brewing, I am a moron compared to him. I’m on a little quest to try a great pilsener, especially after hearing about a rare great one here and there. This beer does have some lactic acid added to the wort, which I’m looking forward to. The mash itself was not soured, which I guess was done for more precise control of the acid level. Nice fluffy small bubble head. Skunky Saaz hop aroma. I still have mixed feelings about this hop. Nice sweetish wheat-like flavor, but with high clarity. Easy to drink, but the Saaz hop plus something else gives it a Bud-ish characteristic.
DarkElf (3066) - La Jolla, California, USA - AUG 12, 2008
02-Feb-08 (22-oz bottle: Purchased 01-Feb-08 for $4.79 at Holiday Wine Cellar in Escondido, CA) I’ve been trying the various Lightning beers on tap for awhile now, but this is the first one I’ve tried from the bottle. Pouring this pilsener, the appearance leaves a lot to be desired. Yes, the golden-colored body is beautifully clear, but only the occasional carbonation bubble can be seen rising upward toward the top, and the white head is thin, filmy and very short-lived, quickly dissipating to a thin ring. The beer smells grainy and honey-sweet with not a lot of hop aroma unless the glass is vigorously swirled, which then produces modest floral hop aromas that still lag behind the sweet graininess. The nose leads perfectly into the flavor. First thought: wow, this is tasting really sweet for a pilsener! Sweet, honey-almond-like graininess really dominates, and the light but very floral hops seem to only magnify the sweetness. Very light bitterness does little to balance the beer’s flavor, and the mouthfeel really suffers for it. Medium in body, cloyingly sweet, and lacking crispness, it sits on the palate like a dead weight. Consequently, after less than half the bottle, this has become a chore to keep drinking. More aggressive carbonation might help, but it’s only medium on the palate. I recall liking this beer a little more on draft, but in the bottle, I can’t say I’ve enjoyed it and it’s not worth almost $5.00. At the very least, cut back on the sweetness and add more crisp hoppiness. yespr (47037) - Copenhagen O, DENMARK - AUG 7, 2008
From tap at Stone Bistro. Pours hazy/cloudy yellow with a white head. Mild and classic pilsner aroma. This goes into the flavour with a smoothening biscuit malt base. Light fruity and hoppy finish. illidurit (2354) - San Francisco, California, USA - AUG 6, 2008
On tap at Stone Bistro during RBSG 08. Rather dark for a pilsener, clear orange-gold with a sticky white head. Some musty hops in the aroma, as well as a biscuity pils malt note. Flavor is pils malt with just a faint little zesty hoppiness. Pretty boring honestly. Easy to drink but I just don’t want to. enginaaron (73) - San Diego, California, USA - AUG 1, 2008
As far as pilsners go, I thought this was pretty good, definitely worth drinking (which is saying a lot for a pilsner.) Has that very Lightning-typical yeast flavor and and a very smooth finish. Good flavor and a decent overall impression. bhensonb (15609) - Woodland, California, USA - JUL 6, 2008
Bomber from South Bay Drug. Golden color with a multi-finger white head. Smells a bit grainy, and there’s not much bitter. Medium body with creamy, but sharp, carbonation. It’s a bit bready or yeasty. There’s a nice sensation in the mouth, but it is rather flavorless, except for the b/y. Finally in the finish there is the slightest suspicion of hop bitter. That said it drinks fairly well, but it just isn’t right as styled: "While the definition of “pilsner” is open to much debate in beer community, it generally refers to pale, hoppy lagers, ranging from 28IBUs and up. Pilsners that do not meet the specific characteristics of a German or Bohemian pils will be given this generic classification" Agreed it doesn’t meet the Czech or German style, but does it deserve the generic? Is it weak malt liquor or good pale lager? For me it didn’t improve with time and continued consumption.