The Specs: Hoyne Brewing Co. (Victoria, B.C.) Hoyner Pilsner
5.5 per cent ABV, 650mL, regular series
This pilsner’s got a pedigree.
At least, it has a good advertising campaign — its own little flag on the shelf, proclaiming “best in class Okanagan Fest of Ale 2014!”
Being kitty-corner to the Okanagan here in Kamloops, I figured if it’s good enough for my fellow regional beer snobs, it’s probably good enough for me.
If the way I’m backing into this review hasn’t tipped you off already, I’m not sure that turned out to be true.
It’s not that Hoyner Pilsner is bad. Certainly, it’s not in the same league as my last review, which I still think about with baffled head shakes.
In a lot of ways Hoyner’s a great pilsner.
It’s nice and light on the tongue, with just enough of an acid feel to keep it bright. It’s a beautiful colour, foamy enough that it still had a few millimetres of head by the time I was nearing the bottom of the glass, and the sort of beer that pairs spectacularly with a sweet potato veggie burger (I got hungry with about 1/4 of the bottle left).
I think I’d like it a lot, if it didn’t taste so damn much like Corn Pops.
I checked into this, and I’m not the only person to identify a “cereal” taste to Hoyner, but here at Bad Rider we like to dig deep, which is why I spent much of my drinking session trying to come up with the best possible breakfast analog.
Bright, corny, slightly sweeter than you really want it to be — buy me a mini cereal box and transport me back to Grade 5. Corn Pops.
If you like your beer a bit sweet, this might really do it for you. But in my case, there are only a few scenarios where sugary beer is a winner. I found myself wishing for a bit of bitterness on the back end, something to break up the corn flavour.
As I mentioned earlier, the veggie burger did a bang-up job of diluting the cereal taste, and I suspect carnivores would enjoy it with burgers or some sort of sandwich.
So, if you’re looking for something with some industry cred to serve at your final barbecues of the year, Hoyner’s worth a try. But for straight drinking I’ve got other pilsners closer to my heart.