Friday, August 13, 2010

Pilsner Urquell, pint can, poured into plastic stadium cup

It's not that my brother Paul and I are cheap. Quite generous, in fact. We just don't like getting fleeced. So paying for stadium beer is usually hard to reconcile with our principles.

But tonight, we were at the Sox game gratis courtesy of the hospital where Paul works; we'd parked for free on the street; I'd even smuggled in a pita pocket full of Paul's red pepper and feta scramble for my ballpark dinner. Free, free, free--I figured we'd earned the right to splurge on a beer. A beer. Pint split halfsies.

Even though the Sox played depressingly, eight ounces of Pilsner Urquell was enough to satisfy my beer tongue for the few hours, and I was driving anyway.

It's been a while since I'd last had the Urq, and in that time, I've grown accustomed to some of the sweeter, hopier, more opaque craft pilsners. By comparison, the Urquell tastes maltier and yeastier and finishes with more of a radish bitterness than citrus bitterness. Next to the bottled pilsner, the taste didn't seem to suffer from being canned, at least by my recollection.

There's just no beating a good pilsner for the hot, sticky environs of an August baseball game. And eight ounces of Pilsner Urquell beats sixteen of MGD on my rubric.

Grade: C, for can't go wrong. What can you say--it's the prototype. I like the newfangled stuff, but the classic still does it for me too. As a general rule, popular imports are a swindle, but Urquell is one of the few that's appropriately priced, whether at bar, store, or ballgame.

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