Those of you who read All About Beer magazine may have noted in the latest issue my less-than-entirely-enthusiastic review of the most recent Oskar Blues offering, Mama’s Little Yella Pils. I concluded that it might be tasty pulled out of a cold stream when camping, but that I, personally, don’t camp, which in retrospect left me wondering if I had been a little too harsh. (Although as with all of my AAB “Beer Talk” reviews, I tasted the beer on a couple of occasions before I filed.)
So fast forward to this evening, when I open my beer fridge to find my last can of Little Yella alongside a can of Granville Island Brewing‘s Island Lager, brewed in BC and available in the 12 ounce can for years. Recalling the character of the Granville brew, which dates to the brewery’s opening in 1984, I decided to match the two lagers head to head and see which emerged triumphant.
Turns out, I wasn’t overly judgemental to Oskar Blues – whose other beers, I should add, I enjoy quite a bit – because although it has a profile similar to that of the Granville, when I pressed myself to decide which had the better balance, character and finish, I had to pick the west coast Canadian. True, the Oskar Blues beer has just a bit more hoppiness than the Granville – hoppiness which I have been told should be bumped up a bit in the second run – but the flavours of the Granville are simply more harmonious, balanced and what my late colleague Michael Jackson would have called “more-ish.”
Mind you, I also have cans of Pilsner Urquell in my fridge, and I dare say I’ll pick one of those over either of these relative newcomers almost any day.