#233 Independent Liquor – Carlsberg

CarlsbergName: Carlsberg
Brewery: Independent Brewery (Auckland, NZ)
Style: Pale Lager
ABV: 4.6%
Source:  Flatmate

I know my descriptions of pale lagers are nearly all the same, but I’m pretty sure this was noticeably more boring than the rest.

My tastebuds barely registered anything other than a slight change in temperature when I drank this. To say there was a weak aroma of hay, grass, or grain would have been generous, to call it bland an understatement.

Why is this so popular? Is it because it’s from Europe and therefore seems posh? Actually, if we’re drinking it NZ it doesn’t come from Copenhagen at all – but rather Independent Liquor which is based in Papakura (or when they’re calling themselves Boundary Rd – “nestled in the foothills of the Hunua Ranges”.)

Sorry if I sound a little grumpy. I haven’t had my morning coffee and a crick neck kept me awake all night. But rather than go off on a big rant about why we need to have a gazillion choices of lagers in NZ that all taste the same, I have a more productive – a shit beer showdown.

What I mean is, I want to have a blind tasting of commercial pale lagers to determine which is the best, with a few craft lagers thrown in to see if I can actually tell the difference (I have this nagging fear that I couldn’t.) If anyone else is interested in partaking in (and by partaking in I do mean organising, hosting etc) the SBS, get in touch!

Published in: on April 2, 2012 at 9:36 am  Comments (16)  

#197 Independent Liquor – Kingfisher

Kingfisher BeerName: Kingfisher Lager
Brewery: United Breweries Groub (Bangalore, India)
Style: Pale Lager
ABV: 4.8%
Source: Satya restaurant

Last night I went out to eat the second best Indian in New Zealand, Satya (ohhh, but where is the best one? Not telling!), and washed my Masala Dosa and Bhel Puri down with a Kingfisher.

And you know what? It wasn’t that bad. Kingfisher is a boring macro lager and all that, but for some reason I don’t despise it. I think there are three reasons for this:

1) I only ever drink it with really spicy Indian food, so whatever cold thing is relieving me from the burning hellfires of beef vindaloo is always going to seem amazing.

2) I drank it every day for 9 weeks in India. I wasn’t too happy about that at the time – it tasted even worse over there than it does here and I got b l o o d y sick of it, but now I look back with nostalgia at those nights spent playing Gin Rummy and sipping on dusty bottles of Kingfisher Strong.

3) As a teenager we’d go to Little India often, and I remember the Kingfisher ads on the table had the tagline “Most Thrilling Chilled!” which amused me. A lot.

All that aside, it’s a decidedly average beer. A bit too sweet, light in the mouth, fizzy, with a taste of hay and a wee bit of bitterness at the end. It does the trick (if the ‘trick’ is relieving you from burning curry), but sadly it will never be thrilling, even chilled.

Published in: on February 22, 2012 at 5:09 pm  Comments (5)