Finally, the last selection from Fort Collins Brewery’s Brewer’s Lunchbox sampler pack. The Kidd Black Lager is a schwarzbier, a style of dark or black lager originating in Germany.
Schwarzbier gets the color from dark malts, in this case, chocolate malt. Kidd also contains a light hopping of Tettnang hops. FCB puts another twist on this style by adding some of the smoked malt from Z Lager, giving this beer a light, but very noticeable, smoke flavor.
I find it interesting that the two lagers that Fort Collins makes are both dark and are both smoked. Most breweries that make lagers do a light style, like a Pilsener, as at least one of their offerings.
The Kidd is a fine drinker, and the smoke is definitely there, but not as in-your-face as with the Z Lager. It would probably pair with food well, particularly smoked meats and the wide variety of excellent barbecue we have here in Kansas City. As I was drinking this beer I was looking forward to finishing it for some reason, but this was my 3rd smoked beer in as many days and I am not a huge fan of smoked beers to begin with, so I think I was just getting tired of that particular flavor.
Again, this is a good gateway beer for people who are unsure about smoked beers. If you like this, go for the Kidd’s big brother, Z Lager, and also try O’Fallon’s Smoked, which I believe is a porter. I’m still waiting for a bottle of Alaskan Brewing Company’s Alaskan Smoked Porter, which is supposed to be the flagship beer for the smoked styles.