Siebens Real Lager
by Matt Morgan
(Beer Delegate, IL, USA)
Siebens Real Lager is a product of Sieben's Brewery
Siebens Real Lager
Sieben's Brewery, Chicago, IL, USA
I first encountered Siebens Real Lager beer during the recent Beer on the Pier festival in Chicago. It was the best new beer I tried on the day and worthy of its own page. So here you go!
Sieben's is an ideal session beer. It's a pilsner style that pours a light golden color, good carbonation but not too gassy, a perfect mouthfeel.
It has good body, a medium head and a flavor that just makes you look at the beer for a minute in wonder.
Not only was it just right without all the razzle-dazzle, the table at Beer on the Pier was run by the Sieben's family and friends, including Brewmaster Richard Sieben.
He even invited my wife and I to dinner! All right, he didn't, but that's how the Sieben's brand made you feel. We spent the final 20 minutes or so of our day there lingering at this table and listening to the Sieben's saga.
The Sieben's brewery was a Chicago original; narrowly escaping the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. Sieben's brewery got sucked into gangster politics by prohibition laws in the 1920s.
With little choice between brewing near beer and selling the brewery, Sieben's leased their property to Dion O'Banion and Johnny Torrio, who operated a bootlegging outfit under the guise of George Frank Brewery, distributors of near beer.
The tale weaves a tangled web of crooked cops, pay-offs and sell-outs, flapper girls, Tommy guns, Capone, Elliot Ness and ultimately leads to the St. Valentine's day massacre.
Sieben's Real Lager beer is refreshing enough on its own and doesn't need the back story to be a great beer, but the back story makes Sieben's taste that much better.
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