Wednesday, August 2, 2006

NFL Draught

Although I could dedicate an entire blog to the way Tom Brady's ass looks in his uniform pants, the NFL I'm talking about here does not refer to the National Football League. I'm talking about a phrase that we women should embrace: NFL : No F*cking Lemon.

The most likely type of beer that you'll usually find a lemon perched on the edge of is a Bavarian wheat beer known as Hefeweizen (pronounced Hay-Fah-Vizen. Say it right.) Don't do this.

I know, I like the citrusy goodness of a lemon or a lime squeezed in your beer. You think it helps the beer taste better. But I'm telling you right now that if you are drinking good beer, you are most likely ruining that delicately balanced brew by adding citric acid to the beer, which kills the head and masks the flavor that was skillfully achieved by the brewer.

How the "tradition" of using citrus in beer came about is a point of contention. But the most likely reason is that many mass produced beers suffer some kind of spoilage between the brewery and the consumer, especially beers that are in clear or green bottles, which can easily allow light to "skunk" that unprotected beer.

The skunkiness is the "product of the chemical reaction that takes place in the bottle when bright light strikes the hops, creating what's technically known as "light struck" beer. The reaction is stronger with paler and hoppier beers. The resulting chemical is identical to that in a skunk's defense system, and light-struck beer puts off one of the most powerful aromas around." says that "Because many of the best known imports come in clear or green bottles consumers have come to associate a skunky aroma with imported, often more expensive beer. That doesn't mean their brewers intended them to taste that way." But that would be a reason to put a lemon in a beer: to mask the skunky poopy aroma and flavor of a light-struck beer.

Putting a lemon in a quality Hefeweizen is like putting Heinz 57 on Filet Mignon. Go ahead and do it if you like it. But, as your friend, I have to tell you that you're making a big mistake.

1 comment:

  1. I have always ordered my Hef with "no lemon" because it tastes great and doesn't need a wedge of fruit in it. Now I know the reasons why Corona tastes bad without a lime and why I stopped drinking it many years ago.
    Thanks Beer Chick!