The following is how Wikipedia (accurately) describes the Carlsberg Group, the company that brews Carlsberg Beer:
The Carlsberg Group is a Danish brewing company founded in 1847 by J. C. Jacobsen with headquarters located in Copenhagen, Denmark. The company’s flagship brand is Carlsberg Beer (named after Jacobsen’s son Carl) but it also brews Tuborg, Kronenbourg, Somersby cider, Russia’s best selling beer Baltika, Belgian Grimbergen abbey beers as well more than 500 local beers.
After merging with the brewery assets of Norwegian conglomerate Orkla ASA in January 2001, Carlsberg became the 5th largest brewery group in the world. It is the leading beer seller in Russia with about 40 percent market share. In 2009 Carlsberg ranked 4th and employed around 45,000 people.
Thus, there is no doubt that Carlsberg is brewed by a giant, mega-conglomerate beer company. Usually (but not always), this ends in mass-produced, bad beer. Carlsberg Pilsner (5% ABV) has always been, in my experience, the choice beer for when the only other option is something like Coors Light. In other words, I think Carlsberg beer is crap, but slightly better crap than the absolute worst crap. However, in the spirit of fairness and objectivity, I decided to try a Carlsberg again after many years, and write a review of it based on my tasting experience. The following is that review.
Everything On Tap Review: Carlsberg Pilsner:
Bottle: The Carlsberg bottle is iconic. It is instantly recognizable anywhere in the world. It is made of green glass, which I personally do not like, because the ultraviolet radiation from the sun negatively affects beer: this is why most brewers use dark glass. The label is oval and dark green, with the iconic Carlsberg lettering in white, below the image of a red crown.
Pour: The color is golden with extreme clarity: it looks like urine but with even more clarity. The head is about one finger thick, and very foamy and fizzy. It dissipates at a medium pace, leaving behind light lacing.
Aroma: This is where the beer really falls apart. There is a very faint hint of golden roasted grains and some low-quality, hoppy bitterness. But there is also a decidedly funky, yeasty, barnyard sourness on the nose. A yeasty aroma an be really nice in a beer, but this one is not. And sourness is a great quality in a sour beer, but this beer is not supposed to be sour, and it simply smells like something has gone bad in the pantry.
Flavor: The dimmest possible flavor of lightly-roasted malts and a wisp of grassy but sour hops offend the palate. The finish is nothing but a return of that barnyard sourness. This is a dismal beer in terms of flavor, and while it is one step up from Coors Light, that is like saying that cancer is one step up from HIV.
Mouthfeel: The body is thin and watery. The carbonation is decent, however, making it the single, lone positive quality about this beer.
Structure: There is no real structure to speak of: it is weak and imbalanced.
Food Pairing: Enjoy a greasy, processed burger from McDonald’s with this beer.
Overall Rating Out Of 5 Possible Beer Mugs: