Firestone Walker: Pivo Hoppy Pilsner

From the Brewery: IMG_3183

“Everything we love about classic German Pilsner with a hoppy Bohemian twist. Pils is a bright straw colored lager beer with playful carbonation topped with beautiful white foam lace. Delicate lightly toasted malt flavors underscore noble German hop character. Hallertau-grown Magnum hops deliver the lupulin foundation while generous amounts of Spalter Select hops bring floral aromatic and spicy herbal notes. As a twist on the traditional Pils, we dry hop with German Saphir for a touch of bergamot zest and lemongrass. A refreshing, light-bodied and hop-driven Pils.” 5.3% ABV Czech Pilsner

Purchased from Das Bierhaus in Fresno, California.

The Pour: IMG_3184

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into my pilsner glass. The body is straw yellow and crystal clear, aside from some moderate visible carbonation. A mostly-white sudsy head is poured, which leaves mild lacing on the glass throughout.

The Nose: IMG_3185

I kind of expected the hop profile to be more in line with an IPA, but sweet and cracker-y pilsner malts are the first aromas I detect. The hoppiness comes in the form of light lemon, floral, and faint oily grass notes. Again, the scents of this one stay mostly true to its pilsner roots.

The Mouth: IMG_3186


Pivo Pils is medium-thin bodied and goes down relatively smooth, offering a decent dose of spastic carbonation and hop bitterness. As in the nose, the flavors are much in line with a well crafted pilsner – mainly slightly sweet, crackery malts. The lemon notes appear again as it finishes, mixed with some funky musty hops,  as well as a faint bit of spicy/peppery hop character. The carbonation wipes most of the flavor from the aftertaste, leaving just mild bitterness to linger on the palate.

Final Thoughts: IMG_3187

I’m still a pilsner “noob”, and I certainly haven’t had enough European style pilsners to know how Pivo compares. That being said, I think it may be the best of the style I’ve tried. It has a light malt base free from the adjuncts that plague mainstream American macro lagers, and the actual hop character compliments that base well. It is a great sessionable pilsner that most craft beer drinkers across a broad spectrum could find appealing. Another well done Firestone Walker beer. 7.5/10

Firestone Walker Brewery – Paso Robles, California

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