Hansa PilsnerJanuary 1, 2004 Bergen, Norway
Hansa Borg Brewery
Imported by: Hansa Beer Distributing Co.
Norway’s oldest beer laws, dating from about 1000 AD, dictated when and how much beer each household should brew. Norway also enacted a purity act similar to Germany’s Reinheitsgebot, stipulating that brewers use only malt, hops, yeast and water. The law was suspended in 1994 by the EEC, but Hansa still adheres to the tradition.
Alcohol by weight: 3.7
Handsome head mixes tiny and not so tiny bubbles, leaves lasting lace as the head slowly disappears. Nice depth of color for such a light, golden-colored beer. There is a lovely blend of malt and hops on the nose that follows through on the palate. Substantial mouthfeel is complex and lasting with a clean, pleasant aftertaste. Significantly less hoppy than a classic pilsner. We enjoyed it as an aperitif with local Port Madison goat cheese, black bread and Concord grapes picked from the garden.
- Charles Finkel
Rich, vibrant and earthy personality of barley malt predominates in both aroma and flavor. Refreshingly balanced with low hop flavor, but this is a malty style of pilsener. Sweet, but not satiating. Crisp, clean and pleasantly fresh. Overall balance of this would complement nearly any main course. I like it as a no-brainer, easy drinking pils with low impact on the palate. It doesn’t sparkle, but it sure does shine.
- Charlie Papazian
A pils from Bergen in Norway, exceptionally pale, with a big corn aroma and floral hops, followed by toasted grain and bitter hops in the mouth. The finish is bitter-sweet with biscuity malt and spicy hops. A highly professional lager: a tad more hop character would make it a true pilsner.
- Roger Protz
Founder of Merchant du Vin and the Pike Brewing Co., Charles Finkel is a pioneer in the marketing of craft beers in America.
Author of the New Complete Joy of Homebrewing, founder of the Great American Beer Festival and a Beer Examiner at www.examiner.com, Papazian is a leading voice in beer and brewing.
Roger Protz is the author of Complete Guide to World Beer and 300 Beers to Try Before You Die. He is a respected beer authority and editor of the CAMRA Good Beer Guide.