Czechvar (Budweiser Budvar outside of the US) is the original Budweiser beer whose demonymic name Adolphus Busch appropriated for his green apple tasting adjunct lager omni consumer product in the 19th century. Czechvar and Pilsner Urquell were the two beers the communist government of Czechoslovakia chose to export to increase foreign currency reserves. Unlike Pilsner Urquell, Czechvar‘s production was modernized after World War II despite the recipe remaining largely the same an Budějovický Budvar was not privatized after the fall and failure of communism, still remaining an asset of the Czech Ministry of Agriculture. This means that that Czechvar/Budvar remains largely the same as it was decades ago, having kept its distinctive yeast strain, exclusive use of whole-cone Saaz hops, and ninety day lagering period in in comparison to SABMiller slightly genericizing Pilsner Urquell in order to stock it on the import shelf every deli and bodega the world over to compete with the likes of Beck’s, Heineken, and St. Pauli Girl.
Czechvar smells of spicy, herbal, lemony hops and malt biscuits. The beer tastes how it smells: bready with hints of butterscotch ending with a slightly bitter, peppery but balanced finished. Mouthfeel is much superior to Pilsner Urquell being much creamier while also drier. Czechvar does lacks some of the caramel undertones of Pilsner Urquell due to only using a double decoction mash compared to Urquell’s triple but the richer mouthfeel – probably due to the lagering not being cut back – along with hopping more for aroma than a big, bitter bite make it easier to drink in quantity.