Birrificio Antoniano - Birra Antoniana Marechiaro
- ABV: 5.2%
- Int’l Bittering Units (IBUs): 19
- Serving Temperature: 40-45° F
- Suggested Glassware: Pilsner Glass or Stange
This pale lager is part of Birrificio Antoniano's Panorama line, and takes its inspiration from Naples; in fact, it was designed as a celebration of the city and its gustatory delights. Specifically, the beer was developed in collaboration with the "Associazione Verace Pizza Napoletana" to be the perfect pairing for authentic Neapolitan pizza. Marechiaro presents a bright golden color with crystal clarity and a crisp, white cap of foam. The nose offers subtle undercurrents of pale malts, overlaid with delicate hop aromas offering touches of earth, grass, and herbal spice, along with a certain perfumed floral note. We found this beer as crisp and bright on the palate as it is in appearance. A sturdy core of pale malts offers a crackery impression, while a kiss of hop bitterness adds an acidic zing and palate-cleansing dryness that lingers, beckoning another sip. Hops also deliver an herbal spiciness and subtle floral tones, while the effervescent carbonation adds lift and augments this brew's satisfying bite. Marechiaro is one of the easiest to drink lagers we've encountered in a while, and it is, indeed, a perfect match for pizza of almost any kind, as well as fried and fattier foods – the crisp bite easily cuts through fat and cleanses the palate. In addition to pizza, the brewery also recommends Neapolitan fried salted codfish with tomato, as well as spaghetti with mussels and squid. Cheers!
Italian craft beer? Why, yes indeed! Years ago, the notion of Italy having a brewing renaissance would have seemed exotic and far-fetched. But, even though the country still has a long way to go before its beer industry achieves the same recognition as its wine industry among consumers (both Italian and foreign), there has in recent years been a groundswell of new Italian craft brewers determined to grow their industry while gaining respect at home and abroad. Breweries like Brùton, Baladin, del Borgo, and Panil, to name just a few, are steadily increasing Italy's stature in the craft beer world. Birrificio Antoniano is another such enterprise and we're very excited to bring our members a taste of their beers, which have just started coming to our shores in limited amounts.
Birrificio Antoniano was founded in 2011 by two brothers, Sandro and Michele Vecchiato. The duo was not new to the beer industry; in fact, for years they have owned Interbrau, one of the most important specialty beer distribution companies in Italy. Regarding their new brewing endeavor, the brothers explained their over-arching philosophy: "Italy has a long, proud history of fine craftsmanship. In keeping with our Italian roots, we wanted to create a beer that represented the best of Italian agribusiness, and communicated Italian culture and values to the rest of the world."
In order to ensure their Birra Antoniana brand reflects the unique local terroir, the brothers have adopted a sort of "farm to table" model for the production of their beer. They grow their own barley and hops locally on approximately 250 acres of Padovan farmland, and they source renewable energy to power the brewery. Antoniano currently produces about a dozen beers across three different lines: Classic, Panorama, and Heritage. The Classic line features brews inspired by traditional styles such as witbier, pale ale, and Vienna lager. The Panorama beers are crafted creatively, inspired by the local culture and environment. The Heritage line features heirloom grain varieties local to Padua, and is produced in collaboration with Slow Food Presidia, an organization dedicated to preserving "our world’s heritage of agricultural biodiversity and gastronomic traditions."
At this year's World Beer Challenge competition in Portugal, Birrificio Antoniano took home 10 medals, including Gold and Bronze for this month's featured Marechiaro and Vienna Style, respectively. We're excited to be at the vanguard of the brewery's introduction to America's craft beer lovers and are excited to watch where Sandro and Michele go from here. We hope you enjoy these Italian brews as much as we did. Salute!
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