Brewing Company: Schilling Beer Company
Location: Littleton, NH
Style: Lager – Dark /Czech-Style Dark Lager
A delicious dark lager from the Granite State brewery that hits the style notes elegantly.
From Schilling Beer’s landing page for the beer:
Modernism is inspired by the Czech black lager tradition. It features a deep complexity from the decoction process and a hop schedule typical of Bohemian beers. Notes of dark malts, bittersweet chocolate and caramel dominate. The finish is dry.
Prior to this review, no beer from the Granite State (New Hampshire) has been reviewed here at The Tap Takeover. When Schilling Beer Company began distributing their Lagers and European-inspired ales to New Jersey, I had an inkling that would change. I knew of the brewery and their well-regarded lagers so I was eager to try one. I made an impulse decision to stop in a liquor store on my way home from work, that decision paid off when I saw a four pack of this Czech Dark Lager in the beer cooler, especially as the style (as pointed out when I reviewed the Icarus/Hackensack Brewing collaboration) has become a favorite lager.
Well after that, what do we have in Modernism?
From the can, the beer pours a deep brown, although the photo above the beer looks closer to black than brown. I suspect if the color were lighter, the beer would be translucent so there’s a nice clarity to the beer. The aroma gives off a little bit of breadiness and dark chocolate, maybe? But nothing out of the ordinary.
I like what I’m tasting in that first sip. The expected breadiness comes through thanks to the malt, but I’m also getting notes of bittersweet chocolate, very pleasant bittersweet chocolate at that which also gives a hint of caramel. A nice element that comes across from the malt is a toasted bread flavor, obviously I’m leaning towards pumpernickel, or maybe even rye-pumpernickel marble because of the color. In other words, lots of pleasant flavors coming together.
Other flavors come up in the profile as well. There’s a sharp taste that likely comes from the hops, which is a welcome element of the beer. That sharpness reminds me of coffee and maybe even menthol? Not that the beer has a menthol flavor, but it has the same feel, if only slightly. The body on this one is fairly light, which lends to my earlier statement that if this beer were lighter colored, It would likely be translucent.
The stamp on the bottom indicates the beer was canned 05/12/22, which lands this beer still in a fairly fresh status at five months old. That said, I’d love to give this beer a try from a batch and/or can closer to the canning date.
While Modernism is the first beer I’ve had from Schilling, I hope it won’t be the last beer I drink from the New Hampshire brewery and I hope to see more of their beers appearing on the shelves of liquor stores in my area. In the end, Modernism is a damned good example of the Czech-Style Dark Lager.
Recommended, link to 4.25 bottle cap untappd rating check in.