It doesn't matter what kind of beer drinker you are. If you're throwing a few back on Super Bowl Sunday, you're going to want something refreshing, easy-drinking and food-friendly. Macro brewery sales will spike. But you're better than that.
Instead, consider snagging a sixer of Postcard Pils from St. Petersburg's Green Bench Brewing.
Here's the catch: It's not a classic, Bohemian-style pilsner, and it's not a German-style pils, either. It's a rare commercial example of an all-but-extinct style called the classic American pilsner, a pre-Prohibition style that's ripe for a comeback.
A century ago, German immigrants in the United States produced the beers of their homeland, often relying on the native grains available to them in place of typical German ingredients. Rice and corn played a big role in these early American beers, and that's a big part of why American macro lagers use these ingredients, as well.
Unlike those beers, the classic American pilsner exhibits robust flavor, with an excellent malt balance (as opposed to a traditional German pils, which tends to be very dry) and a crisp, earthy hop profile, usually from American-grown hops. Green Bench's version uses a generous amount of flaked maize in the mash, which contributes a subtly sweet, grainy finish to the brew.
Many beer enthusiasts will automatically pass on an unfamiliar pilsner, but I implore you to give this one a closer look. It's unlike any other pilsners on the market locally, and it's a chance to try a faithful example of a nearly forgotten style. But, more importantly, it's a deliciously crushable beer likely to be a hit during the big game.
Justin Grant, Times correspondent