The Old German Premium Lager is one of Pittsburgh Brewing Company’s (the old Iron City Brewing Company) line of brews. The Old German Premium Lager had been produced by the Queen City Brewing Company out of Maryland, but Queen City Brewing was one of the many American breweries that shut down in the 1970s. A few years later the brand was resurrected by Pittsburgh Brewing Company, which has had its ups and downs over the years and while the beer in no longer brewed in Pittsburgh, they use the old Rolling Rock Brewery in Latrobe, Pa. The Old German Lager is still produced with the same family recipe and has a can that would not look out of place on the liquor store shelves in 1963. The alcohol content for 12oz can is 4.2%, 95 calories per can and 2.8 carbs for those who are counting.
I can’t tell you the color, because I drank it out of the can, which I believe is the proper way to down an Old German Lager. The nose is crisp and clean, slightly hoppy with a touch of spice. This is a proper, drinking beer and watching a baseball game kind of lager. It is real easy to drink and nice and light on the palate, it has faint flavors of citrus, pepper and malt with an orange zest and soft caramel finish. Just enough taste to have you reaching for another sip.
In this age of extraordinarily excellent micro-brews and mad scientists masquerading as brew masters, lager beer has become the 2 Buck Chuck of the beer world, something reasonably close to actual beer that a real beer drinker would avoid. But there is more to lager beer than that, lager beer has the weight of American history behind it. The men who worked in steel mills, endured the Depression and fought wars drank lager beer. The vast majority of the American population had a lager as their first beer experience. Watching a ballgame on a 90 degree day and a couple of cold lagers will keep you comfortable till the last out, after a couple of stouts you will probably be looking for an air conditioner. Lager is what your grandfather and your uncles drank and they were some of the toughest men you ever saw, those were guys who set the bar high. Just because today, there are great macro and import brews available, does mean that lager beer does not still deserve your respect.