Review: King Brewery - Vienna Lager

I had the opportunity to chat with the rep from King Brewery (and by extension, Beer Barons) at the recent Craft Beer festival here in Ottawa.  We again bumped into each other over the weekend at Beau's Oktoberfest, as he was there representing BB's Thornbury division (producers of a gluten-free cider.)  This gentleman was open, honest and a real pleasure to speak with.  He knew his product, and he knew how to explain it in a way that the average beer drinker would understand.   Furthermore, you really get the sense that he's into the "PR" aspect of his job.  We had chatted for maybe five minutes back in August during the Craft Beer fest, and as soon as my friend Matt and I walked up to the Thornbury booth at Beau's he recognized us and started talking shop right away.  It was a great feeling.  Like so many brewery representatives, this man probably meets dozens - if not hundreds - of beer enthusiasts a week at various events he attends.  The fact that he remembered us - and was just as happy to chat with us again - made for nothing short of a great experience, and helped create brand loyalty with this customer.  Murray, you represent your company beautifully. Cheers!

The reason for this story is simple.  I had the pleasure of sampling King Brewery's Vienna Lager back in August, and it's had me buying their product since.  It's fast becoming my favorite lager, and I wanted to share why.  

Transient

So what is King Brewery?  They're a German-style brewery located in Nobleton, Ontario.  Just over 10 years ago they opened their doors, starting up in July of 2002.  They bring an interesting approach to craft brewing in Ontario: authentic German-style brewing.  From the ingredients to the brewing process, they pride themselves on creating a true-to-style German brew.  Ingredients such as Czech Saaz hops and Vienna malts are imported from their countries of origin.

King Vienna Lager - Gold award winner for Amber Lager at the 2011 Canadian Brewing Awards. Rightfully so!

King Vienna Lager - Gold award winner for Amber Lager at the 2011 Canadian Brewing Awards. Rightfully so!

And now on to the review!  This 4.8% lager is available at the LCBO in 6 packs of standard 341mL bottles.  The price point is reasonable for a premium beer, sitting at about $13.

It pours a nice golden brown with a thin off-white head and almost no lacing.  The nose gives off grassy hop notes and toasted grain with a strong caramel malt undertone.   That caramel malt becomes very apparent in the taste and blends well with a touch of nut and grain.  It finishes with a slightly sweet and hoppy bitterness and no mentionable aftertaste.  The mouthfeel is rather smooth and crisp with low carbonation and a light coating of the mouth.

This lager would pair well with just about anything.  I've enjoyed it with a light lunch of grilled chicken and garden salad or a heavier dinner in the form of steak and potatoes.  It's a lager that I simply love the taste and smoothness of, making it a highly sessionable brew.

If you're looking for a beer that is smooth, refreshing, slightly sweet, and pairs well with most meals: this may be the brew for you.  Give it a try! 

As always, thanks for reading! 

-James