Are you guys ready for a another beer review?!?! I know I am. Today’s craft beer review is going to be of the Schlafly No. 20 Vol. 1 Imperial Pilsner produced by the St. Louis Brewery located in, none other than, St. Louis, Missouri.
I didn’t realize when I picked this up that it was released in very limited quantities at the beginning of the year 2011, so I was very fortunate to be able to obtain a bottle.
Here’s the description from the website, schlafly.com.
Our Imperial Pilsner is designed and brewed by co-founder Dan Kopman and our first brewing team, Dave Miller and Stephen Hale. This Pilsner is a tribute to both the original Head Brewer Dave Miller, author of Continental Pilsner, and to Schlafly Beer’s commitment to brewing classic beer styles.
A wallop of malt and hops in the classic style of the world’s most famous beer, our Imperial Pilsner is meant for savoring, sharing and enjoying anytime. Cheers!
Well, I have no one to share this with, so I guess I’m going to have to drink this ALL BY MYSELF!!! (poor me.).
This brew comes in a 25.4 oz. (750 ml) bottle and has an ABV of 9.0%.
The beer poured a very nice orange to honey color with a slightly off white head. It was mostly creamy looking with a few large bubbles showing at the spot of the final pour. It was of excellent size, had more than adequate retention and the lacing was very appealing. The cap settled nicely and produced a film on top when aided by several aggressive swirls. As the beer warmed it cleared up superbly. I could see right through it.
The aroma brought about a light fruity note of peaches and white grapes. A distinguished floral note tickled the nostrils along with an “earthy”, “herbal” hint. It started with a moderate “bready” note that became increasingly more prominent as the beer warmed. It began to remind me of toasted bread crusts or crouton crumbles. Very nice. A very light caramel sweetness seemed to underline the entire aroma. No real discernible hints of alcohol were ever noted.
The taste revealed more of the bready malt combined with a doughy biscuit savor. “Earthy” and “grassy” embellishments along with a minuscule fruitiness from the white grapes generated a decent little hop bite with a moderate to low sourness. A tolerable alcohol tone was noticed in the flavor, but it was harmonized very well with the overall profile. Like the aroma, as the brew warmed it became much more malty with tones of bread and caramel sweetness. Again, very nice.
The mouthfeel was a very sturdy medium. Smooth, crisp, clean, fresh, and refreshing. A suitable “softness” and excellent carbonation to boot. It left a significant amount of flavor behind on the palate. Not bad at all. In fact, quite good.
I’ll tell ya. I thought this beer was very good. It got better and better as it developed and warmed. More malt forward, which softened and rounded out the profile. Fairly easy to drink even at 9.0% ABV. One would probably be all I could handle during a sitting, but with a bottle this big, that would be all I would need. Give it a try for sure. It’s kind of rare, so I hope you (and I) can find a(nother) bottle. To me, Schlafly is one of the most underrated brewers on the market, so don’t overlook them. Give ’em a shot.
Has anyone out there ever tried the Schlafly No. 20 Vol. 1 Imperial Pilsner? What did you think of it? Feel free to leave a comment.
Thanks for reading everyone. Have a great day!!!!
Score: 4.1 out of 5