Journal of the Institute of Brewing vol:115 issue:1 pages:49-63
Although currently light beers have a high market share in the US, this beer style is still not accepted oil the European continent because light beers are considered watery, mainly on account of lack of mouthfeel. In this paper, the flavour quality, including flavour stability, of five commercial light beers was evaluated in comparison with their corresponding pilsner beers derived from the same breweries. Through detailed physicochemical and sensory evaluation, followed by multivariate data analysis, the fresh beers could be differentiated according to their origin (US or European) and beer style (light or pilsner). Potential flavour deficiencies of fresh light beers were determined as too much sweetness, lack of bitterness, and especially reduced fullness. As a result, the fresh light beers were less preferred than their corresponding pilsner. Upon ageing, the light beers were generally less flavour stable than their pilsner counterparts. This is mainly ascribed to increased sensory perception of cardboard and ribes staling flavours in most aged light beers. Nevertheless, based oil detailed analytical/sensory investigation, it was clearly demonstrated that one of the light beers involved in this study showed enhanced flavour stability with respect to all other beers, including the pilsner beers.