Valor Brewpub’s Two Tank Vienna Lager is a real treat and Greg Maddrey’s take on the style—born in the 1800s—is artfully done.
Vienna Lager is a style with great variety. It ranges from light copper to deep amber. Even strength can vary as some are closer to 5% ABV (Heavy Seas Cutlass Amber Lager is 5.25%) and some are over 6% ABV (Great Lakes Eliot Ness is 6.1%). It can be a cloyingly sweet malt bomb whose crystal and Munich malts overwhelm, or it can be too bitter, a clash of sweet malts and hoppy bitterness blowing out the beer.
Valor’s Vienna Lager walks the delicate line between malt and hop. Not too sweet and not too bitter–Two Tank is the Goldilocks of Valor’s lineup. It’s mildly carbonated and surprisingly light on the finish despite what tastes like high-quality German malts. A nice Munich malt bite provides a bready, biscuity, chewiness up front. However, there’s a good geschmack of Czech hops halfway through and a medium body that makes this beer easy to take down. This was the third batch on offer as the brewpub is having the fantastic problem of needing to make enough beer to meet demand. This appears to be the best batch yet and we look forward to sampling more of this over the years.
For $6 at Union Market, this can’t be beaten for a local, malt-lovers dream. The pop up will be there until July 1, so if you’re on 8th Street or Barracks Row you can visit the brewpub and hit happy hour for an even better deal with $5 beers.