Shiner 101 is a Czech-style pilsner from Spoetzl Brewery in Shiner, Texas. It’s a 5.5 percent alcohol anniversary beer from Texas’ oldest microbrewery. Starting with Shiner 96, the brewery tried a new anniversary beer each year leading up to their centennial anniversary last year. This pilsner is brewed with Bohemian Hana barley and Saaz hops.
It pours a beautiful golden yellow with a lively head that falls to a thin covering leaving thick lustrous lacing. Aroma is mild with the pale malt coming through but little or no hop presence. Taste is of gentle Saaz hop bite with wonderfully light malty goodness. The flavors evaporate off of the tongue leaving a clean palate for the next drink.
This is a dandy pilsner that would be dangerous on a hot afternoon while barbecuing in the back yard. If your experience with pilsners has been limited to the big three American beer producers, give this one a try. An all malt pilsner carefully brewed is a tasty treat.
Pair with barbecued chicken and mild cheese.
Rating: 4 caps
Shiner Bock remains the only beer I’ve managed to foist off on my dad beyond his normal comfort zone of Busch and Busch Light.
It happened during a camping trip more than a decade ago with the ex-wife and stepsons by a creek near where my parents lived. Dad came out to join us for the evening cookout, and not having brought any of his own barley pop, he decided one of my “fancy” beers might be worth a try.
He admitted the Shiner Bock was actually “pretty good,” if a bet heavy for him. He actually asked for a another one, though I’m not sure he made it to the bottom of the bottle on the second go-around. If it’d been a Shiner 101 though, I’m betting he would have asked for a third.
This is the perfect introductory beer for that friend who refuses to try anything new — you know, the one whose world begins and ends with Miller High Life. This light, clean, tasty pilsner is a great bet for opening up that buddy’s horizons.
For those who’ve already traveled outside the realms of Keystone and Olympia, it’s got enough hop bite and flavor to satisfy your taste buds while remaining an easy drinking experience. And, in this case, easy drinking doesn’t refer to a beer that’s essentially sex in a canoe — @#%&ing close to water.
This is a wonderful pilsner experience at an excellent, affordable price. Shiner 101 may well be the second best thing to come from Texas.
Rating: 4 caps