Golden Era vs. Hallertau Imperial Pilsner

Posted on 02.04.08 1:17PM under Alcohol, Hops, IPA, Lager, Pilsner, Tasting

I had the Dogfish Head Golden Era a while back. I liked it, I recalled it as big and hoppy. Then more recently, I had the Sam Adams Hallertau Imperial Pilsner. This thing is practically an Imperial IPA, it is cloudy and mega hoppy. In my head, the Golden Era was basically the same thing.

Last night during the Super Bowl, I dug out a Golden Era from earlier in the year. Maybe it was the few months spent in my fridge that mellowed it a bit, but I doubt it. It was a lot more like a pilnser, right down to the grainy smell and taste. It did a remarkable job of hiding its alcohol, but it was not absurdly hopped.

So who would have throught that the Dogfish Head Imperial Pilsner would be less extreme than the Sam Adams Imperial Pilsner. It seems funny to think, first of all, that there could be a less extreme Imperial Pilsner, since in some ways the whole notion of an Imperial Pilsner is silly. But the DFH is more recognizable as a Pilsner, whereas the Sam Adams is completely over the top.

Kudos to Jim Koch and the crew at Boston Beer Co. for coming up with a risky beer like that.

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