Lookin' Good at 58

Monday, June 8, 2009

My Beer Tasting

During the bartending course I like to do a Wine and Beer tasting for the students so that they can try something different than just learn about cocktails.

Here is the beer sampling I give them that gives them some idea of how different beers taste and why they taste that way. I prefer to give beers that few like or have tried and I have to say it is one of my most fun classes. Beginning with the first beer right through to the 5th and last beer.

Kriek Beer - Unlike other beers that are cultivated by special brewers' yeast , this lambic beer comes about through a spontaneous fermentation of wild yeasts native to the Senne Valley and a bacteria near Brussels where the beer is made. This type of fermentation gives the beer a cidery , dry , vinous quality to it. Kriek beer has sour morello cherries with pits added during the fermentation to give it the distinctive taste and through a second fermentation rids the beer of all the additionnal sugar. Although , some brewers now have started to add some sugar to suit the tastes of today.

Pilsner Urquell - A bottom fermented beer and the father of lagers this beer was first produced in 1842 in Bohemia in which is now the Czech Republic. More strongly hopped than most beers and possessing an ale like fruitiness , it is the world's original pilsner first made in the town of Pilsen. As most lagers have been take their cue from this beer when someone asks for a Pilsener they mean a lager. A lot of people are not fond of this beer just because the hops are so dominant in the beer it gives off some bitterness with a strong aftertaste.

Hops by the way comes from a flower shaped like a pine cone and is added to the fermentation in the way of a pellet or natural fresh form.

Hoegarden - This beer comes from Belgium and is a wheat beer. It is a cloudy beer with a second fermentation going on in the bottle after the addition of some white yeast to it. Usually always served with an orange wheel this is one of the most popular wheat beers in Belgium and you can always get the distinctive taste of coriander upon tasting it.

Boddington's Pale Ale - Brewed in Manchester England since 1778 this is an English cream pale ale that pours cloudy at first and then clears to produce a thick creamy head and pale golden colour. When you buy this in the can you have a CO2 widget inside it so it keeps the beer lively right up to the time you pour. When you buy this on tap at your local pub you will see the bartender use the pump method when pouring it into the glass especially in England where I consumed a fair bit of it. Here it is sold in cans of 4-packs.

Hockley Stout Ale - this is a local brewery that makes an ale with a strong roasted barley flavour patterned after that of a traditional Irish Stout Ale like your Guiness. The roasted malts , some slight acidity on the finish , and a hint of bitter chocolate is perceptive on the nose with the frothy tan head finishing off the beer.

Within the next couple of days I will talk about some beer terminology. But here I feel the class gets well rounded in tasting how 5 different kinds of beers made in their own way taste like.

Glad to share with you some of what I teach the class.



SkippyMom said...

Very informative. I do have one question, maybe you can answer, please?

I love beer with crabs - our crabs are steamed with Old Bay Seasoning and are incredibly spicy - but the seafood taste is there too. [plus we like to swish them in vinegar too]

What type of ice cold beer would you suggest with our type of crabs?

We do the usual Bud - but I would like to kick it up and have something better - any suggestions?


Waiter Extraordinaire said...

SkippyMom...try a spicy Mexican beer to match the spiciness of the crabs. A Wiezen beer from Germany with it's citrusy taste or wine wise try a Cava from Spain. Hope this helps.

dave said...

If you can ever get ahold of Jever Pils, brewed in Friesen in Northern Germany (tight up against the North Sea), you should. It's considered the most bitter of all German Pilsners. It's bracing while maintaining that light body and crisp flavor that German pilsners are known for. Very very dry and laced with a dry hoppy and herbally flavor, it's a great beer when you want something to cut through either the heat or a heavy Germanic meal. I really miss it from my days living just north of Bremen.

"So You Want To Be A Waiter"

Waiter Extraordinaire said...

Dave...that sounds like a real neat beer to try. I will keep an eye out for it next time I am at the beer store.There are so many cool beers out there.Those German lagers out of the tap I remember were real light and frothy when I was there a few times in Bavaria. Great country to try beers for sure.

bulletholes said...

When I worked at the keg here in Fort Worth we had 110 kinds of beer. I fell in love with Macewans Edinborough Ale.

Waiter Extraordinaire said...

Bulletholes...I have heard of that one. Will have to check it out here if it is available.