Just before the holidays I got a package from Kraft Brewery in Orenburg. I was not able to try all the beers at once, so I will divide the tasting into two posts.
Orenburg Kraft Brewery opened in 2014. In terms of volume production is not too small, but it does not reach the famous regional brewers (rather like Gletcher). In spite of the name, the main line of the brewery is a regular beer. It is understandable, where in Orenburg there is so much Craft beer?
But there is a “Kraft” and “Kraft” line, called “Experimental variety” and distinguished by numbers. With these experimental stuff I started the tasting.
Experimental variety #1. Kölsch (Russia, Orenburg) – 5.5/12.8 Color is too dark for Kölsch. Aroma malty, weak. No those soft floral tones, which are inherent in the kölsch. Malt body. The bitterness is slight, but it’s somehow on its own. If this beer was hybrid fermented like a kölsch, it still ended up being a different beer, not a kölsch. C grade.
Experimental brew #2. Irish red ale (Russia, Orenburg) – 5.5/13.6 Well, what without it! Probably the best-selling dark beer in the regions. Aroma of caramel. Taste sweet, but moderately. The aftertaste adds toffee and some bread to the caramel. Clean, overall beerable, but dull. C+ grade.
Experimental variety № 3 German Pilsner (Russia, Orenburg) – 4.5/11.1 Bitterness 23 IBU. The aroma of malty, mild. The taste is clean, also malty, but not sweet. In the aftertaste noticeable and hops in the grass and flowers. In my opinion, this beer is still in the Czech style than in the German one (especially if you take the northern pilsner). The line here is thin, so it’s not worth picking on. Overall, the beer is very enjoyable and drinkable. Rated B-.
Experimental brew #4. Belgian ale (Orenburg, Russia) – 8,3/16,8 Let’s consider that the blond was meant, as the style “Belgian ale” covers almost all beers produced in Belgium too much. :)
The aroma is caramel. The taste is moderately sweet, caramel-candy. In the aftertaste, sweet flowers and some sweet citrus. Yes, it looks like Leffe Blond or Grimbergen. Quite in the style of the Belgian Blond. Rated “B-“.
Experimental variety #8. Krim El (Russia, Orenburg) – 5.6/13.3 Quite interesting. Beer in this style we have almost no one brews, and the style itself is interpreted very loosely. Cream ale is one of the “pre-drinking” styles in America, which disappeared and found its second birth with the craft revolution.
Like stambier, like kölsch, it is a hybrid style. The main difference is that it is brewed with cornflakes and “high curls,” that is, yeast from the fermentation tank, are added to the fermentation. The result is a beer that is full-bodied on one side and very carbonated on the other, giving a sort of “creamy” flavor.
There is a version with cornflakes and sugar, which also provides a high degree of fermentation and high carbonation. According to some sources, modern American interpretations of crème ale are not like what was brewed before Prohibition.
I haven’t tasted many crème ales myself, but I did note a certain creaminess or rather “cream soda” in the ones I drank. The Orenburg version has that, although there are no cornflakes in it. There is a bit of “extra-citro,” but not sweet. A bit of butterscotch and citrus in the aftertaste. At the very least, it is interesting. Grade “B”.
So far, the impressions are positive. There are no obvious defects in the beer. Everything is clean and smooth. In the second part I try the standard line.