• Anntonette Z Alberti

A Guide to the Beers of PolishFest

Latham, NY’s PolishFest is the perfect place to sample some of Poland’s most popular beers. Use the following guide to plan and remember to drink responsibly!

Lezajsk 1525 Legendary Premium Lager is a Euro-style pale lager with a 5.5% abv. It has a golden color and aromas of fresh baled wheat with malty/hoppy nose. Lezajsk has smooth, round flavors and a hoppy finish. The Leżajsk Brewery is one of Poland's oldest breweries and belongs to the Żywiec Group. The company claims that in 1525 Polish King, Zygmunt I, the Old, granted the town Leżajsk the exclusive right to brew beer. Zygmunt I who was of the Jagiellon dynasty, reigned as King of Poland and the Grand Duke of Lithuania from 1506 until 1548. Lezajsk Beer has won several awards, among them Eurobeer 1995 and a World Championship gold medal. How do you say it? Lezh-eye-sk.

Tatra Malt Liquor is a Euro-style strong lager with a 7% abv. It has a deep old-gold color

with aromas of honeycomb and cornbread pancake follow through on entry to a frothy, fruity-yet-dry medium-full body with tangy dried peach, root vegetable and praline notes. Finishes with a long honeyed orange and lemon peel, pepper and grassy hop fade. Tatra Malt Liquor, brewed by Poland's notable Zywiec brewery, is a fine example of a flavorful "mocne" lager beer. "Mocne" is Polish for strong, and at 7 percent alcohol by volume the malty Tatra packs a wallop, so drink responsibly. Don't be put off by the "malt liquor" in the name. Unlike many malt liquors, this one actually tastes great; it's labeled that way for import reasons. How do you say it? Tat-Rah.

The Warka Radler fruity beer we have at PolishFest is a type of shandy or radler beer with a 2% abv., made from 40% Warka beer and 60% juice. It smells and tastes of strongly of fruit. The Warka Brewery is one of Poland's oldest breweries and currently belongs to the Żywiec Group. The legend says that in 1478 Bolesław V, the Mazovian Prince, reserved to Warka the exclusive right to supply beer to his court. Radler is the German term for a mixture of beer and fruit juice. Literally, “radler” means cyclist because Europeans view this type of crisp, sweet-tart beverage the way Americans think of Gatorade, essentially: a thirst-quenching sports drink. How do you say it? Varka Radler.

The Warka Strong Beer we will have at PolishFest is a 6.5% abv European-style strong lager. It is amber in color, crystal clear with a whispy white head. It has a toasted grain aroma and a sweet, malty flavor with hints of caramel, cooked grain balanced by a slight herbal hop note. It has a crisp, dry mouthfeel. Warka is well known for its distinct red logo. On the export can the label has a winged hussar knight on horseback holding a lance, along with the year 1478 emblazoned underneath. How do you say it? Varka.

The Żywiec Beer we will have at PolishFest (Żywiec Jasne Pełne) is a 5.6% abv pale lager, which has been brewed in the town of Żywiec, Poland for almost 150 years. It is brewed with the best Polish grade of hops and malt, from crystal clear mountain water, according to the traditional recipes of the Żywiec brewers. Żywiec Brewery was founded in 1856, in Żywiec, a small town in south-central Poland, which was then part of Austria-Hungary. It was originally owned by the Habsburgs (the rulers of the Austro-Hungarian Empire) and was nationalized by the Communist government after WWII. Currently, the Dutch Heineken Group owns 61% of the company. The Żywiec logo is the most famous mark and brand of beer in Poland. Żywiec Beer’s prominent front label displays a man and woman, dressed in classic Krakowiak clothes, a traditional dance of the area of Kraków. Kraków’s coat of arms is represented with the crown in the middle of the couple. How do you say it? ˈʐɨ.vʲɛt͡s or J-euh veeyeh-ts.

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