To my dismay I’ve not covered this beer on this blog yet. I have done the export version here, but not the regular cooking piss. A true shame as this is one of the best cooking lagers in the country. 3.8% British brewed attempt at Danish grog that is cold, fizzy and quaffable without troubling the taste buds. On a bizarre note this stuff is 4.2% when on draught in a pub.
This type of stuff gets slightly on my tits. A standard product ought to be reliable enough to be standard, with variants clearly branded as extensions. Not a fan of the notion of different ABV’s for the same brands depending on where you drink it. It is piss poor.
I remember a while back, when I was in short pants, this beer marketed as a discerning choice. Of a TV commercial involving a modern chap of the day with smart clothes, job and apartment coming home and cracking a tin. What today would be referred to as a metro sexual. Not these days, Carlsberg is firmly in cooking lager territory. It’s the cheap lout of choice in the Spoons, it’s the £1.99 lager in the Greene King estate, and it’s 40p a can to those of us sensible enough to do our boozing in the comfort of our own home where you can sit in warmth and not have to rub shoulders with the type of undesirables that hang out in pubs.
I’m not sure whether over the years the taste of this grog has changed or whether my own taste has changed. Years of cooking lager enthusiasm as enabled me to develop a taste for the subtle tastes of beer. The blandness of cooking lager enables the connoisseur to identify the delicate notes not apparent in nasty pongy robust full flavoured beer, which ruins your palate. I remember it used to have a more prominent flavour of the carlsbergensis yeast it is brewed with, giving the beer a crispness not apparent in other mass market lagers. Like the crispness of a Pilsner Urquell but milder, a beer also brewed with this yeast. None of that was apparent in the can I swigged. Nicely bland is how I’d put it. My memory could be faulty, though. Maybe Carlsberg was never like an Urquell and I’m mad to think it was.
The beer is an all malt beer (no wheat, rice or maize), with a hint of caramel added to darken the colour slightly. Back when I was in short pants, lager wasn’t as popular as it is today, but the past is a foreign country. Carlsberg was and remains brewed to the standard ABV of a standard UK lager and was darkened slightly to appeal to the British drinker unwilling to drink something the colour of piss. The same reason, so it goes, Budweiser was introduced to the UK as a bottled beer, rather than draught, was a decision that they would have to darken it to sell it on draught. Instead they opted for drinking it from a bottle where the punter doesn’t see the beer.
I have to say this about Carlsberg. It’s been a while old friend. I’ve flirted with other cooking lagers and had a romance with Foster’s, but Carlsberg will always be a love of mine, from the first swig to the final belch. Cooking lager heaven.