Are You Tasting the Pith? - 14th August 05
So, after revelling for months and months and months in the knowledge that Krakus Zywiec (pronounced "zivee-itch") (5.7% abv) is a wonderful Polish lager, possessing as it does a good weight of malt in the body, a quality that I can only describe as oiliness (much to the chagrin of customers who are about to buy it, but who are delighted by it and concurr with my description), and a clean but lingering grainy finish, we find a couple of new kids on the block. Lech (5.2% abv, presumably to sound like the Scottish "loch"), and Tyskie (5.7% abv, presumably rhyming with "piskie", but that is self-explanatory)
Both of these beers (Tyskie and Lech) are really good examples of what they should be - well made, full-bodied, malt-driven (Northern Europe, you see) pilsner-style lagers. However, straight from the fridge, there is precious little to choose between them, so we wait 20 minutes while they thaw a little.
Sometime later, we have another bash at them. I say we, as I call in the expertise of my partner, who despite denying it, has a great palate (a recent example: I furnished here with a glass of Morgon, and without seeing the bottle, she commented that this reminded her of the last meal we had in France TWO YEARS AGO!! Of course, we had a half bottle of Morgon there too - you see, she's good). Sure enough, they have changed character a little, the Tyskie giving a little more grain character, the Lech giving a little more hoppy dryness.
These are good beers, but not great, and are different, but not particularly distinctive. I'm sure legions of people will disagree, but that's life.
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