Friday, July 26, 2013
United Breweries Taj Mahal Premium Lager (7/10)
Before I get into the substance of this review, I want to put it in context. My rating will reflect the qualities and drinkability of the beer itself, but in context with the Indian food experience in which I drank it. Thus, the rating is higher than I would probably give it in context with other food or against other beers getting the same rating. You could safely subtract two points from the rating if you pull this beer out of an Indian restaurant context.
Taj Mahal lager pours a clear, pale gold color with a finger-thick head that dissipates fairly quickly and completely. The picture at the left was taken about a second after it was poured. Five seconds later you'd see no head at all. It left behind little or no lacing.
The aroma is fairly non-descript. My nose says simply "beer" when sniffing this, with no hint of any particular variety or any hint at unique flavors or complexity.
The flavor follows the nose on this. It's a pleasant beer, and very easily drinkable. I'd rate it higher than a macro-brew like Bud Light or Coors Light, but not dramatically higher.
The flavor has a slight bitterness to it, which somehow matches well with the Indian food you typically eat with it.
Beer Advocate reviewers give Taj Majal a 53-61 or "poor" rating. RateBeer reviewers are even tougher on it, giving it a 4 overall or 39 for the style.
I had this particular beer at the Tadka Indian restaurant on Dublin-Granville Road near The Andersons General Store. I've seen it at Kenny Road Market and possibly other retailers, though it's not a very commonly-stocked beer.
IBU: unknown, but certainly below 25
My rating: 7/10 with Indian food, 5/10 without