Saturday, February 19, 2011

Two Pennsylvania beers: Yuengling and Lionshead

I decided to do a comparison tasting of these two beers because (1) they're both from my native state and (2) they're both available at Key Food, a block from my apartment, at $6.99 a sixer, plus tax. I'm not unfamiliar with either. I first had Yuengling several years ago at a local bar, and was delighted, in October 0f 2009, to find that its popularity had spread from the Northeast to the Tapper Pub in Tampa. I spotted Lionshead a few months ago at Key Food, and had to give it a try because (1) it has a name similar (one word instead of two) to that of one of the two greatest bars that ever existed, and (2) the price was right.

So, here are my tasting notes:

Yuengling Traditional Lager:

Color: rich amber (I later found that it's described just so on the brewery's website, but, I swear, this was my description without any prompting).

Head: ample and long-lasting.

Aroma: floral, with yeast undertones.

Flavor: crisp start, toasty finish with some lingering hop bitterness; good hop/malt balance.

Summary: A satisfying, well-made lager with good body and flavor.

Lionshead Deluxe Pilsner Beer:

Color: deep gold.

Head: modest; collapsed quickly.

Aroma: sweet, with malt and yeast undertones.

Flavor: hops and malt both subdued; overtones of honeydew melon.

Summary: As we say in Brooklyn: meh! (This is a step above feh!) Not bad, but nothing special. According to the brewery's website, corn is used along with barley in making this beer, as in many mass-market American pilsners.