Baltika #7 Export

Purchased at Beverage Resort in Kennesaw, GA, USA (the home of Eastern European adjunct, macro lager!). 1 pint .9 fl oz green bottle, blue and silver labels on body and neck. It's a sweet, adjunct lager that is very reminiscent of all of the other Baltika's. It looks a little better than many of a similar ilk - good, pale straw color, nice carbonation and a decent head (even a little lace), but outside of that nothing to report. Residual sweetness upfront and lingering. On its side it is...

Baltika #2 Svetloye

Poured into the Tucher Weizen glass which can make almost any beer look good. Single from Beverage Resort in Kennesaw, GA, USA. Light gold pour, not much head or lace. Pretty sweet and grainy, but no skunk, fairly smooth and a decent balance. Macro characteristics (obviously) but at the same time a refreshing beer and a good combo of simple malt and regular hops. Finish is clean. I would call this a decent, sumertime, macro replacement. Don't expect too much and you probably won't be...

Baltika #5 Gold

Part of what appears to be a renewed marketing drive on the Baltika products in Georgia, this appeared with a large range of Baltika beers, that from memory, have been slightly repackaged and spruced up. 500 mL clear glass bottle (sensitive folks can start to panic) it really has a very attractive bright golden hue. Unfortunately - and utterly predictably - this is where the attraction largely ends! Head is short lived and lacing is virtually non-existent. Aromas and tastes are exactly in line...

Baltika #9 Extra (Strong)

500 mL bottle with repackaged labelling for a new assault on the US market I guess. Arbor Place, Douglasville, GA, USA, approx. $2.99. Clean pour, aroma and look, with, as expected, some initial strong lacing and head that fades to nothing very quickly. A lot of corny alcohol in the nose with (happily) no skunk. Alcohol is definitely the main player in the taste too. Cloying sweetness that is close to too much, but is bearable as long as you don't mind really sweet beers. Drinkability is not...

Baltika #8 Wheat

Good color and cloudiness in the pour, but way too much coagulation and large protein/yeasty floaties for my liking. I like my Hefe's without MASSIVE clumps! Decent head with some retention, not much lacing. Lack of cloves in the nose and taste, but lots and lots of bananas. Bananas and alcohol in the nose, slightly watery mouthfeel. Bananas continue to dominate. Aftertaste is slightly acidic, a little tartness in the beer all the way through, but it carries it well. Not bad at all.

Baltika #3 Classic

Sweet (over and) undertones to this malt-based lager, with only very little dry hoppy bitterness. Not a very special beer to look at, thin, pale and yellow with no significant head beyond the first few seconds of the aggressive pour. Just about fufills my (low expectation) criteria for these beers, i.e. no skunk, drinkable, refreshing and no unpleasant aftertaste. Outside of that nothing to report. Baltika makes several other, better beers. Don't be put off by this pretty average...

Baltika #6 Porter

$1.99, Greens Beverage, Ponce de Leon. Atlanta, GA, USA. The fact of the matter is, Baltika does another solid job of providing a nice quality, value for money beer. Pours jet black, with the usual large head that receedes to yield the typically spotty, creamy head with some nice lacing. Very large mouthfeel, creamy satisfying beginning and end, with a little unexpected bitter bite in the finish. 7% ABV is very, very well disguised in thick, sweet malts with some lovely balance. Very filling...

Baltika #1 Light

$2.19, Arbor Place Beverage Depot, Douglasville, GA. Incredibly light colored beer, with the standard macro smell, head and appearance. Although this beer has a macro feel to it it gets a slightly higher rating from me because it is a little smoother and more drinkable. When cooled to very low temperatures this provides a better and more refreshing alternative with non-offensive malts and a bitterness that is very mild. Enjoyable, but nothing to write home about.

Baltika #4 Original (Dark)

$2.19 Arbor Place Beverage, Douglasville, GA. I must admit I was getting ready to be disappointed by this, thinking that it would be simply a poor quality import designed to con the locals by making them think it was something exotic. In the end I was very happily surprised. Poured a beautiful deep red/brown color with some decent head and retention and some good lacing. Delightfully malty aroma that is replicated in the taste. The sweet malts really come through strong with no hint of...