Does this label look a lot like Pilsner Urquell, or is it just me? It provoked a double take on my part when I spotted it out of the corner of my eye in the local Spar. For a moment I thought it was some manner of re-branding by the big Czech brewer, but soon realised it was a lookalike attempting to piggy back on hard won marketing of Pilsner Urquell. Interestingly this beer is brewed in Slovakia by a no doubt once proud independent brewer that is now owned by Heineken. I wonder if Slovak brewers are at all jealous of the huge success enjoyed by their once countrymen in the Czech Republic? Zlaty Bazant isn't quite as enjoyable as Pilsner Urquell; it is harsher without the effortless mellow character that I like in latter, but the nose is similar with wonder floral hops and the body has the same satisfying and distinctive malt found in lager from around those parts. Overall it's a heavier, boozier affair with a bit more DMS too, giving a slight veggie note that I don't particularly care for.
I suppose I have fallen into an inevitable comparison with Pilsner Urquell, but that's what you get when you market your beer in a perilously similar way to one of the most enjoyable lagers in the world. Sadly it was also inevitable that the comparison would be unfavourable.