North Brewing Co Herzog
North Brewing Co: Herzog (HRZG) (England: Kolsch: 5% ABV)

Visual: Very pale yellow to grain. Small white head and small levels of carbonation.

Nose; Boiled eggs. Creamy. Coriander.

Body: Sugar icing. Boiled eggs. Toffee malt character. Slight palma violets. Sulphur. Slight buttery popcorn. Slight steam beer character.

Finish: Toffee malt character. Butterscotch. Light bitter hop character. Bran flakes. Steam beer notes.

Conclusion: Kolsch is a fairly odd style, half ale, half lager. I have to admit I also associate it with a higher than average bitterness and hop character, that is then combined with a smooth lager style easy drinking. So, tad surprised here.

This is toffee sweet, with a slight steam beer like hazy mouthfeel. That last one is not that unexpected considering both the relevant beer styles heritage that mix ale and lager stylings. What is unexpected is the night notal lack of bitterness, barring a mild run in the finish. Now that is not necessarily bad, but the lack of a major presence of the hop character means I need to step back and re-examine it.

So, erm like that it is, well, ok. Easy drinking but without much to recommend it. There is a slight eggy character and a misplaced buttery set of notes that feel like brewing mistakes rather than intentional notes. Again, it is still drinkable, while admittedly feeling closer to a Californian Common, aka steam beer, rather than the intended Kolsch. It just really doesn’t have any stand out elements to recommend it and a few against it. It is smoother and easier to drink that the over fizzy soda-stream styled lagers that are very common, but it doesn’t beat much else.

Background: People not from the UK may wonder why the can says HRZG, when the name is Herzog. The answer is simple, this beer is from Leeds, and thus suffers from the 2016 vowel famine. Due to recent political issues the vast majority of the vowels in the country have been taken by London, leaving the rest of the country, especially the north, to make do. Now you know. Also I looked up Herzog, apparently it is a German hereditary title. So now I know. See, beer helps you learn. Anyway, this was grabbed from Independent Spirit as part of my ongoing effort to drink more quote unquote “normal” beer. Haven’t tried anything from North Brewing before. Kolsch is an odd style as it is initially warm fermented like an ale, then lagered like a, well, lager. This was drunk while listening to Pulp: Different Class. Such a good album – pop sensibilities music with real bitter angry class conscious lyrics. Very good stuff.