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Beer and Food | American Pilsner

Beer and Food | American Pilsner

Welcome back to the delicious world of beer and food. Mother Nature may have tried to throw a little curve ball at us, but we’re not deterred from welcoming in the outdoor season with open arms. The soft, subtle notes of the True Blonde allow to continue featuring more sessionable beers while still building in intensity.

One of the few truly American styles, the Classic American Pilsner dates back to Pre-Prohibition days. The modern versions are lighter-bodied than the Pre-Prohibition versions with more conservative hop counts as well. Thought to have been brought over by German immigrants, the American version as the BJCP defines it, “Can stand up to the classic European Pilsners, but exhibiting the native American grains and hops available to German brewers who initially brewed it in the USA. Refreshing, but with the underlying malt and hops that stand out when compared to other modern American light lagers.”

Having already decided on using the Avery Joe’s Pils for this style based on the story behind the beer, we ended up with a story of our own on the way to finding a can. Joe is Adam Avery’s Grandfather and the beer was a tribute to him, and a way to put Avery Brewing Co. flavor in a lighter style.

The trouble finding a can of Joe’s was due to the fact the Avery is in the process of building a new, larger facility and due to a number of factors isn’t producing Joe’s for a while. The story in finding it stems from a trip to the Avery Taphouse where it would have to be the only place in town to have it if anyone did. Upon asking about the availability of Joe’s we were greeted with laughter at first, but after explaining the need we were gifted the only can at the brewery, the one on display in the taproom (the empty position in the image above). Because the Joe’s will be M.I.A. for about a year we recommend a dry-hopped, of more hop forward version of the style in it’s absence.

The Joe’s is a golden-colored, sessionable beer with a prevalent hop profile that finishes clean. The American Pilsner style pairs well with many applications of shellfish as the buttery sweet nature of the meat is a great contrast to the snappy bite of the hops. We decided to feature a creamy Lobster salad to provide some additional richness to counteract the more hop forward (50 IBU) version of an American Pilsner.


To make the Lobster Salad mix the following ingredients together:

  • 1 lb. cooked, chopped Lobster meat
  • 1/4 C Mayonnaise
  • 2 T Dijon
  • 1 T Lemon zest
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1 pinch of sugar
  • 1/8 C minced Italian parsley
  • 1/4 C chopped Celery
  • 1/8 C finely chopped Green Onion
  • 1/8 C Red Bell Pepper 

The two pair deliciously together as the Lemon zest and Onions both highlight citrus and earth in the hops. The sharp but not aggressive hop profile of the beer is the perfect counterpoint to the rich, buttery, creamy base of the dish.


Just the same as with the Lobster salad, a salty/buttery richness would be the target for the trip to Cured in Boulder for the pairing with Joe’s.



Spenwood is a hard, nutty, Alpine Sheep’s cheese made from unpasteurized milk. The salty umami nature of the cheese was a match with the earthy bite of the Joe’s. There was an interesting balancing act between the two as the differences showcased the opposing in each other without any flavors getting lost in the fray.

We thank you for staying active with us, getting dirty, and connecting with Mother Earth. As a reminder American Craft Beer Week is being celebrated this week (May 12-18) so as if you needed any added incentive, enjoy some local craft beer to celebrate.


Alewise is a Cicerone and Beer Education Co-op founded by Eric Linder and David Bird in Boulder, CO. Our goal is to strengthen the beer community by fueling the knowledge and passion of those involved or interested in joining it by making things more accessible and fun. When in Boulder ask for David in the taproom at Avery brewing Co. and Eric at Backcounty Pizza and Taphouse.

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