Pilsner beer

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Pils (e) ner beer , also called Pils or Pilsner brewed beer , specialty beer in Switzerland , is a bottom-fermented beer named after the Bohemian city ​​of Pilsen with a higher hop content than other types of beer (and also a strong hop aroma) and a maximum of 12.5 ° P Original wort content . Beers made according to the Pilsner brewing method now make up the majority of the beers produced and sold in Germany.


The beer became very popular as a lager and export beer and also spread outside of Bohemia. Soon many beers called themselves Pilsner , Pilsener or just Pils, not only in Germany . The Pilsner type of brewing arose from the Bavarian type of brewing , which was already famous at the time , and which was based primarily on the gently hardened and therefore very light malt . This malt, known today as Pilsner malt , slow, cold fermentation and long storage in cold caves and deep cellars are typical characteristics of beer brewed according to the Pilsner method.

Since the beer previously brewed in Pilsen - a dark, cloudy, warm fermented beer - had such a bad reputation that several barrels of beer were even poured out in public on the Town Hall Square in protest, the Pilsner master brewer of the civil brewery Martin Stelzer in Pilsen summoned the in 1842 Bavarian master brewer Josef Groll from Vilshofen to Pilsen to brew a good beer for the Bohemians in Pilsen.

Portrait of a gentleman with dogs and a beer glass, 19th century
Four examples of bottle labels for pils beers and pils-like beers in the former GDR

Josef Groll brewed on October 5, 1842 the first South after Pilsner kind of brewing. This was first served publicly on November 11, 1842. Today this beer is sold under the Pilsner Urquell brand . Only the availability of efficient refrigeration machines from the 1870s onwards made it possible to brew using the Pilsen method across the board, even where there were no natural cave systems for cooling.

Initially, the term Nach Bayerischer Brauart even prevailed for bottom-fermented beers , which was later changed to Pilsner Brauart . There are labels for the Heineken brewery, which brews in the Pilsner style, with the name “According to Bavarian brewing style”. The Fürth brewery Geismann , which was the first brewery to brew Pils in what is now Bavaria, christened this "Bavarian Pilsener".

The main difference between a beer brewed in the Pilsner style and other full beers - such as the Hellen  - is that it is more hopped and therefore more bitter. In particular, the Pilsner Urquell uses hops from the famous hop growing region around the North Bohemian city of Saaz .

In the Czech city of Pilsen , visitors can find out more about the history of Pils in the city brewery museum. It houses, among other things, earlier malting costumes, antique cork machines and rare beer mugs.

Denomination of origin in Switzerland

Due to an agreement dating back to 1927 and renewed in 1976 "on the protection of indications of origin, designations of origin and other geographical designations" with Czechoslovakia at that time , designations such as "Pils" or "Pilsner beer" may only be used in Switzerland if the beer is from Czech origin. In return, the Czech Republic, for example , does not use the name Emmentaler for cheese that was not made in Switzerland. Pilsner-style beers are therefore called “Spezialbier” (“Spezial” or “Spezli” for short) in Switzerland or they are given names that are made up.


Web links

Wiktionary: Pilsner beer  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations
Commons : Pilsner  - collection of pictures, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. Jaroslav Rudiš : The last beer. Pilsner was born on Martin's Day 175 years ago. The event still has an impact today. In: Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung of November 11, 2017, p. 13.
  2. Pilsen Brewery Museum . ( Memento of the original from March 14, 2014 in the Internet Archive ) Info: The archive link was inserted automatically and has not yet been checked. Please check the original and archive link according to the instructions and then remove this notice. @1@ 2Template: Webachiv / IABot / www.prazdrojvisit.cz
  3. Appendix 1 of the Treaty between the Swiss Confederation and the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic on the Protection of Indications of Origin, Appellations of Origin and other Geographical Names, accessed on October 17, 2016.
  4. Annex 2 of the Treaty between the Swiss Confederation and the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic on the Protection of Indications of Origin, Designations of Origin and other geographical names, accessed on October 17, 2016.
  5. ^ Matthias Müller: The battle for beer: "Hopfenperle" instead of "Pils". In: Neue Zürcher Zeitung. July 29, 2014, accessed on September 15, 2018 (Swiss Standard German).
  6. Spezial and Pilsner in Switzerland. Swiss Brewery Association, accessed on September 15, 2018 (Swiss Standard German).