OK SPRING 1516 BAVARIAN LAGER—Fantasy beer for the shackled

I spent the afternoon somewhat compromised.

Abandoned like a piece of prey to be carved up later, I had only positive thoughts to sustain me.

At first I tried to remember the most sublime alcoholic product I’d ever had, but then it occurred to me that I wouldn’t want to create a permanent association between my pre-K torture and say, some fantastically mind-blowing whisky. Plus I was thirsty. So I focused my thoughts on something refreshing but average.

A couple of months ago we bought an Okanagan Spring sampler pack. Of the four beers it included I forgot to review one, which came raging back into memory as I lay shackled by a hair bauble: 1516 BAVARIAN LAGER, brewed to commemorate Duke Wilmhelm IV’s 1516 declaration of the Bavarian Purity Law, or Reinheitsgebot.

Okanagan Spring’s 1516 BAVARIAN LAGER conforms to this historic law, being constituted of nothing but barley, hops, yeast, and water. (Which makes me wonder what the other beers in the OK Spring line-up contain.) Clear straw-yellow with a full paw of foam, it gives off a hayfield aroma—slightly malty and lightly hoppy without any attention-grabbing characteristics.

On the palate 1516 BAVARIAN LAGER follows through with uncomplicated hoppiness and malt plus snappy carbonation. Crisp and light, it’s definitely a summer player—a beer you’d pound quickly from a paper bag at the beach, for instance, before it warmed up and became less palatable (or before the cops arrived and seized your cooler). 1516 BAVARIAN LAGER is a decent, serviceable lager, but not particularly memorable, although it could be if you were in an extended hostage situation and overwhelmed by thirst.

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