EINSTÖK BEER COMPANY
“The Einstök Brewery is located just 60 miles from the Arctic Circle in the fishing port of Akureyri, Iceland. There, water flows from rain and prehistoric glaciers down the Hliðarjall Mountain and through ancient lava fields, delivering the purest water on Earth and the perfect foundation for brewing deliciously refreshing craft ales.”
ICELANDIC PALE ALE: 78 Points
This Pale Ale is available year-round in 11.2 oz. bottles.
Brewer’s Description: “American and Bavarian craft come together with the finest Icelandic water to create the Viking version of the Pale Ale, where robust hoppiness meets smooth malty undertones. Cascade hops give it the American character, while Northern Brewer hops add just enough bitterness to make this Ale refreshingly Icelandic.”
My Description: This beer is clean, probably that Icelandic water, too bad that is the only good thing. It begins with a decent, off-white colored head that fades to a thin film and leaves behind some lacing. The aroma is nice enough with notes of pale malts, grapefruit hops, honey, and a hint of fruit. Icelandic Pale Ale is medium bodied with a moderate carbonation level and a dry finish. A solid caramel malt backbone holds up notes of earthy hops, but the hop flavors seem minimal and faint. In fact, this whole beer seems to lack depth. It is nicely balanced and makes for a solid session beer but it does nothing to stand out and it doesn’t leave you feeling satisfied. It is best served around 40°F and pairs nicely with burgers, pizza, or skirt steak.
ABV: 5.6% Color: Amber/Red Sweetness: 2.5/10 Bitterness: 3/10
ICELANDIC TOASTED PORTER: 87 Points
This Porter is available year-round in 11.2 oz. bottles.
Brewer’s Description: “With clear notes of toffee and dark chocolate, this Porter is roasty and rich, offering a medium body that is robust, yet smooth on the palate. Toasted and chocolate malts give it a sinister black color, but its easy-to-drink taste will have you believing that there’s no need to be afraid of the dark anymore.”
My Description: This Ale begins with a decent sized, beige colored head that fades quick to a thin film and leaves behind a minor amount of lacing. The aroma is welcoming with notes of chocolate, caramel, and freshly ground coffee beans. Toasted Porter is light/medium bodied with a moderate carbonation level and a dry finish. The flavor profile is tasty and clean, but not as robust as I thought it would be considering the brewer’s description. There are notes of chocolate, some minor roasted notes, toffee, and a hint of caramel malt. This transitions smoothly into an aftertaste that is slightly bitter with lingering caramel notes. Overall, this beer is really good and makes for a great session porter, even though it is 6% ABV it drinks like a 4.5% beer. It is best served around 50°F and pairs nicely with ribs, chocolate cheesecake, or grilled pork chops.
ABV: 6% Color: Black Sweetness: 2/10 Bitterness: 3/10
ICELANDIC WHITE ALE: 90 Points
This Witbier is available year-round in 11.2 oz. bottles.
Brewer’s Description: “Brewed in the centuries-old Belgian tradition, our White Ale features the complex flavors of the classic witbier, including orange peel and coriander – all brewed with pure Icelandic water that delivers a cool smoothness that is flavorful and refreshingly drinkable.”
My Description: This beer is a really good example of the style and is delightfully refreshing. It lacks some potency but perhaps the brewer wanted a more easy drinking experience. I think it makes for a great Summer ale. It begins with a good sized, bright white colored head with a decent retention level that holds for a few minutes leaving behind a minimal amount of lacing. The aroma is dominated by citrus notes along with wheat malt notes. White Ale is medium bodied with a slightly higher carbonation level and a dry finish. Bright citrus notes also dominate the flavor profile with some yeast spice undertones, herbal notes, and a hint of coriander. Wheat male is also detected, but this is mostly about the orange peel. The aftertaste is clean with lingering citrus notes. It’s not a problem putting down a few of these. It is best served around 45°F and pairs nicely with grilled shrimp, bread pudding, or jerk chicken.
ABV: 5.2% Color: Yellow/Light Gold Sweetness: 1.5/10 Bitterness: 1.5/10