by Bill Reddy
Brew House Pilsner
If you're not familiar with Brew House beer kits here's the concept. Brew House is made by RJ Spagnols in their own German style brew house. It's made entirely from grains and fresh hops. No sugar or syrups are added. In essence you're getting a professionally designed micro style beer kit. Detailed information is available on the Brew House web site.
I've already reviewed the Brew House Red Ale and given basic information about the packaging and contents so I'll just stick to my impressions of the finished product in this article.
I've always been a lover of good hoppy beers which are usually ales but if you're a fan of Pilsner Urquell then you know that this is one lager that doesn't shy away from hops.
The Brew House Pilsner is fashioned after the famous Czech pilsner and comes pretty close to what it's trying to achieve. The hops bitterness is there and seems right for the style. The Brew House web site describes this beer as a medium bodied, clean, satisfying beer. While I agree with the descriptions of medium bodied and satisfying I can't agree with "clean". This beer tastes like an ale and will not develop the clean profile one expects from a true pilsner unless it is fermented with a lager yeast and cold conditioned.
I would recommend replacing the included Coopers Beer Yeast with 2001 Wyeast Urquell liquid yeast. You should pitch the yeast at about 18º Celsius and once signs of fermentation are apparent you can move it to a cooler place to continue and finish. Fermenting temperature should be between 8º - 14º Celsius. After the fermentation is complete you should then lager or condition your beer at a temperature close to freezing—between 0º - 3º Celsius. This conditioning should continue for at least two weeks but preferably for a month or longer.
As you can see crafting a true pilsner is more involved than ale making. Most people will need a temperature controlled refrigerator to do the job properly but it's well worth the effort if you're a pilsner fan.
The Pilsner is maybe my favourite beer made from a Brew House kit. I'll give it 4 stars just like it is but if it was fermented with a lager yeast and cold conditioned this beer would easily earn all 5 stars.