Tuesday, 21 October 2008

Nils Oscar

Those good people at Nils Oscar were recently kind enough to send me a couple of bottles of beer for review. Well, really it was their PR company, C Coms PR, who sent it but I was grateful all the same.

The Nils Oscar, God Lager is being given a real push in this country and has a recent listing in Waitrose at £1.49 for a 33ml bottle and the plan is to get a wider spread in bars and restaurants. It is unpasteurised and is 5.3% abv.

Described in the attached blurb as a dark lager I was expecting a dunkels rather than a helles. However this is a pilsner style lager, darker in colour than a helles but more akin to a Budvar, a rich golden colour.

The beer is craft brewed on a farm just outside Stockholm where the grain is grown and malted. The 4 hop varieties are imported as Sweden is too far north to cultivate them.

The beer pours well with a light head which faded quickly, a clear appearance and good carbonation.

The aroma is clean with malt rather than hop on the nose. Some citrus and peppery notes came through as it warmed.

I chilled it almost to death as I thought that was best for the style and the flavour lost out somewhat until it warmed slightly. It gives a good malty sweetness with a very dry finish. The light body was good for a Euro style lager and compares well to Czech and German versions. Much better than anything else I have tasted from Sweden and probably very refreshing on a hot day.

This would never be my first choice of beer to drink at home but I am grateful to have been given the chance to try it. It is a worthy addition to a growing number of good foreign brewed beers that are now available and I enjoyed it very much.

However as a wise old man of the brewing industry once said to me "the best beer is always a free beer".

Nils Oscar brews a range of 10 beers (and distills vodka and aquavit). I will certainly try any others I see.

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