Ever since moving to Vermont last spring, we have enjoyed the distinct luxury of drinking consistently excellent beer courtesy of our master-homebrewer friend, Pete. His wonderful, often hoppy, offerings have become the stuff of local legend; so much so that he currently has a brewery in the works, Red Clover Ale Company. In a recent letter from the convent, our sister even wrote how happy she is that we live in "Homebrew Heaven." So as a fledgling homebrewer, when you get a chance to brew with Pete—you do!
Local beer has a unique place in the cultural makeup of Vermont. Many of the state's finest beers can only be found & consumed within a few miles of where they are brewed. Freshness and dedication to craft are taken seriously around here! Some would even say a bit too seriously. But a wonderful result of this rich brewing & consuming culture is the (quite accurate) view of beer as an agricultural product. Brewers are often proud to share information on their ingredients— be it malted grains and hops sourced from neighboring farms, or a wild yeast strain harvested afield—as well as their methods. In many ways, it is quite reflective of Vermont's agricultural heritage. Ours is a tight-knit community of producers, and we are better off that way!
The crossover between farming and brewing is natural and tangible, as evidenced by all the talk of yeast starters and dry-hopping that takes place in and around the barn at Consider Bardwell Farm. This particular "Vermont Farm Beer" is a take on the classic pale lagers of the Czech Republic, intended as a refreshing & light post-work beverage, best enjoyed in the good company of your neighbors. We decided to call it "Prefresh Pils," as it was brewed during the month preceding kidding season, when the goats have yet to "freshen" (or, give birth). Cheers!
Style: Czech Pilsner
Overall: Fresh, balanced, and quite drinkable; reminiscent of kellerbier, the unfiltered sister style to pilsner. The low alcohol content allows for more nuanced hop, malt, and lager yeast character. A nice, refreshing post-work beverage!
Appearance: Pours a pale, golden straw color; a bit cloudy, with a fluffy white head.
Aroma: Subtle cracker and grain notes with herbal hop overtones.
Taste: Malt-forward and ever so slightly sweet, balanced by grassy Czech hop profile.
Mouthfeel: Light bodied with mild carbonation and a clean finish.