It's time for me to ramp up my studying for the BJCP exam in August. As with most things in my life, I have decided to wait until the last possible minute to begin this task. I suspect my encounter with Lite (their spelling!) American Lagers turned me off enough that I haven't studied for months. Today's offering won't help put me back on the road to being interested in a beer exam, but I guess if you want to get out of something, you have to get into it. Here goes. Standard American Lager.
Martin Luther once said that a true theologian calls a thing what it actually is. I will apply his logic to the task of beer judging and call Standard American Lager what it really is. It's basically liquified manure, put in a can and sold to children. Well, maybe I'm overstating my point. I don't think the people who buy Standard American Lagers are all underaged cheerleaders. (BTW, buying alcohol for underaged kids is a crime. Don't do it. And stay in school.) But I'm standing by the rest on my description.
If that language isn't techincal enough for you I'll just comment that if you take a Lite American Lager, add a bit more alcohol and a few more calories, you'll have a Standard American Lager. It's basically the difference between a Republican and a Democrat.
The appearance is predictably pale straw to medium yellow in color (sound familiar?) and you shouldn't be suprised if the head fades quickly. No hop flavor will interrupt you ability to toss these down your throat without thought to taste or substance, and the light drainkability is a result of the large amount of corn and other adjuncts added during the brewing process. They are made with 2 or 6 row barley with tons (up to 40%) of corn.
For you beer nerds, here's the numbers:
IBUs (presence of hop flavors and aroma) 8-15
SRMs (measuring color) 2-4
OG (original gravity) 1.040-1.050
FG (final gravity) 1.004-1.010
So, next time you open a PBR, Bud, or the Queen of Standard American Lager, Grainbelt Premium, hold your nose and prepare to be punished. And remember, whoever served you this beer is trying to tell you he hates you!