Following our interview with Lerwick Brewery, they sent us a few tasters of their flagship beers. Today I am getting my lips around a bottle of 60° North – a pilsner style lager only six degrees less north than Einstök and their Icelandic White Ale. From experiencing the Icelandic smoothness, I must confess – I’m looking forward to what is described as a beer that goes well with Thai and Indian (I have incidentally just finished a curry).
Fresh Air of the North Sea
The brewery boasts of its perfect brewing location – consistent temperatures and beautiful water – and if the smell of this beer is anything to go by (and the added craftmanship of the brewers) this lager takes full advantage. One of the more striking (and good) things is that this smells not like a lager. It’s quite an earthy, spicy scent, but with peaking freshness… Likely from the noble Saaz hops (hence the Pilsner style). It’s bittered with Perle, which is where that minty freshness rolls in.
It pours a touch darker than your standard pisswater, with a thin film-like head. The carbonation and lacing drops down quite rapidly (which is, in my opinion, great) to a lazy rising of the occasional bubble, none of that artificial hyperbubble rubbish.
That. That right there, that is everything lager should be. If I’m completely honest, I don’t always look forward to trying lagers, I’ve been tinted for too long with the terrible offerings. It makes me a little nervous, I apologise to my mouth in advance. I have retracted that apology, I have swilled several hearty gulps, I am utterly flabbergasted (but still drinking).
You can tell it’s a lager from the favour, there’s that low-level bitterness, that lightly toasted barley – but wow. It’s fully flavoured, a touch of dryness on the finish (definitely goes well with curry), and it’s very appeasing. If this was on tap in my local instead of that other rubbish – I would opt for this, often. It’s unfortunate that distribution is still quite small geographically, I hope to be seeing this locally very soon – if not, I’m going to have to head up to Scotland.
Prior to this, I was not much of a lager drinker. But if this is actual lager, I will proudly stand amongst the ranks.