Edinburgh Airport. Servisair lounge: the shitty one for passengers of loser airlines. Only five bottles of Efes Pilsener remain among the plentiful Beck's, Carlsberg and Kronenbourg. Maybe the previous passengers know something I don't.
I last encountered Efes a dozen or so years ago in the beautiful surrounds of Istanbul. It was a lot more forgettable than the city and I had no memory of how it tasted. With a few minutes before the Dublin departure was due to be called, I took the opportunity to refresh my memory and anything else the Turkish lager was capable of reaching.
As befits a hot-country lager, it's a very pale yellow colour, thinly textured with lots of prickly fizz. There's a strange candy-sweet aroma putting me in mind of the hard white sweetie cigarettes I rotted my young teeth on. Tastewise, it's properly pilsenerish to begin with, all green spicy nettles, if rather waterier than any German equivalent. Then the sugar starts to assert itself: sweetcorn, rising to candyfloss, and getting worse as the beer warms even slightly. By the end I was finding it a little difficult to drink, though I did stick it out.
On the way out I wondered if the stock was low because the airport is phasing it out. Let's hope so, for the sake of the travellers. Next time I'm having a Beck's.
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