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Notes on beers in the style

American Amber / Red Lager

Past Is Prologue

16 oz can courtesy of Todd - thanks man! Beautiful, simple, amber pour with a little chill haze. Head is perfect. Some minor lace. The head fades quite quickly. Drinks like a classy, full-flavored, beautifully sweet and balanced Vienna Lager. I’m biased, I love a great Vienna, and no matter how this is formally catergorialzed, that’s exactly what it drinks like. Lightly nutty, soft biscuit malts, mild caramel, rounded and delicious. American Ambers or Reds are going to have drier finishes, and...

Founding Fathers
Lager Beer

This is a ruse, right? It's Yuengling, marketed by Rolling Rock, surely? Even if that's not the case, in a nutshell, this is still Yuengling. I'm generally not in the habit of dismissing beers with such an apparent lack of reflection and thought, but that was my first thought, and nearly 25 minutes later and 12 oz down, I can't think of anything else. A nondescript, straightforward copper color, with a woefully disappointing head and level of retention. Semi-sweet grains dominate the nose and...

Point Classic Amber

12 oz single, many thanks go out to Kevin for the chance to try this. Pour offers a strangely red tinge to the beer with plenty of white head. The color goes beyond amber and to another level. Nose offers little, but the tastes do deliver a touch more that I was expecting. Some light acidity on the malts and a light dry character that no-one is calling 'hoppy', but on the other hand does deliver a certain non-sweet note. Ordinary? Sure, but a beer that doesn't leave me unhappy, if at the same...

Vinyl

On tap Taco Mac, Douglasville, GA, USA. Nice clarity and good dark copper color on the pour. Head is small but provides some lace. Nose faithfully creates some decent if simple, toasty malt. Tastes deliver the expected malt notes but the beer also brings with a surprising level of dry character. Dry notes are repeated in the finish and aftertaste almost to the point of giving some noticeable hop character - not really what I was anticipating. Carbonation in the glass seems quite strong without...

William Penn Colonial Style Lager

12 oz single from Tower on Buford. Nice depth of color on the pour, but the carbonation seems a little too lively for the style which in turn produces a scant, over-bubbly head and no lace. A shame because the color looked promising. It quickly dies in the glass. The nose is pretty amazing. It has a deep, sweet malt presence that almost immediately turns into an old, slightly musty sherry note. The tase reflect that, and have me reaching for the bottle to see if there is a date on it. There...

Michelob Honey Lager

Review #1700 - not exactly a distinguished brew to mark the milestone, but so what? 12 oz single from Green's on Ponce, Atlanta, GA, USA. "Born On" May 31 2008. Pour yields a decent golden body but not much head. Some minimal lace - not the worst looking beer I've ever seen. Grain based alcohol in the nose. Lots of sweetness upfront from the honey element and it also has the effect of smoothing out the beer. Odd aftertaste that is not that attractive. I don't really dislike this beer, but at...

Coney Island Freaktoberfest

22oz bomber, $4.99 from Green's on Buford, Atlanta, GA, USA. As all have noted a bizzaro, Ribena colored body and a pink head. Head hangs around a little but not much lace. HAS to get a "5" for appearance (exceptional), not necessarily for the right reasons - this must be pure food coloring, isn't it???? Grainy, vegetal, macro bitterness in the nose. Also as others have noted, the color does tend to obscure tastes a little - odd, but it does. The brain plays tricks. As you look at the beer you...

Coney Island Lager

Unexpectedly came across this at Jax, Sandy Springs, Atlanta, GA, USA. Think it was about $4 for the 22oz bomber. Crazy label in line with Shmaltz off the wall marketing. Pour is a simple, but nicely clear amber body with some good soapy head and lace. Lovely balance in the nose and on the palate. Very English style biscuit malts are complimented with a certain richness. Some bitterness in the hoppy(ish) finish. Lovely sweet, moreish and rich aftertaste for a lager. A little Brown Ale like....

Red Oak Amber

Had this on tap twice on a recent visit to Greensboro, NC - once in Old Town, and once at Smokey Bones. Pretty simple and drinkable brew that lacks the dry bite of a true amber/red, but certainly has more taste than a simple pale ale. Drinks above the 3.8% advertised. Nice looking red body with a rather small head. Good lace that belies the lack of head. Plenty of simple malts and a sweet bread character that defines this beer. Tasty finish, but lacks the dry character that I would expect for...

Skipjack Amber

On-tap, Mellow Mushroom, Hilton Head Island, SC, USA. Better than average AB product, poorer than average Amber Ale (which for me is what it most closely resembles). Standard pour with a decent color but as usual head and lace are basically non-existent. Aroma and tastes are vaguely based in toasted malt and caramel sweetness but remain non-descript. Decent carbonation, good clarity. Drinks OK, but this is a pretty bland beer in the grand scheme of things. I wonder if this is actually EXACTLY...

Gila Monster Amber Lager

Single 12 oz bottle from Trader Joe's, $1.00. Nice amber color, good head and decent sticky lace. Good carbonation. Very surprised, but a decently balanced Amber, malty up front, but with a true amber, drier, hoppier finish. Perhaps a tad thin in the mouth, but still drinks well and is excellent value. A decent and cheap sixer. Worth a try.

Ornery Amber

Dark orange color with a small head with some scant lacing. Sweet and sour flavors come through strong. Some very sweet malts initially and a pleasingly bitter finish. A slight metallic grapefruit aftertaste that is not really bad at all. In no way is this my favorite style, but I was surprised at how nice and drinkable this was.

Real Rock

I don't think this is correctly categorized, but there you are. If it really has no adjuncts in it, I would say it drinks MUCH more like a low quality Pilsner. Pours exactly as a standard adjunct lager would, with a typical golden color. However, the head lasts a little longer than similar beers, and there was a little lacing. Aroma has definite corn character, even though the label claims "only the finest hops, spring barley and pure Jamaican water...(are used)" Very sweet taste, and for me...

Yuengling Traditional Lager

A very simple beer that barely out-performs a macro. The color is obviously more attractive than BMC, but the head (virtually non-existent), the serving temperature (too often Arctic temperatures) and the tastes (muted to say the least) all resemble nondescript swill. Unlike most of those macros, this benefits from warming up. This begins to release a little hop-aroma and a small (if somewhat weak) malt backbone. Mouthfeel is decent, with some carbonation that renders it pretty smooth and...

Brooklyn Lager

=== Note 01/10 === (I have a feeling that this used to be categorized on BA as a Vienna Lager but now falls under the American Amber/Red banner. This is certainly in line with what Brooklyn says about the beer, and the dry-hopping does seem to lend a typical American abruptness to the brew). === Updated 08/08 === 12 oz bottle. Amber hue, minimal head but nice lace. Bumped appearance scores for the beer in general. Remains quite dry and surprisingly bitter when considering the Vienna lager...

JW Dundee’s Amber Lager

$5.99 Six Pack, Publix Supermarket, Villa Rica, Ga, USA. Another beer that falls into the, "When I want cheap domestic, I'd definitely pick this up instead of macro adjunct lager swill, but other than that it's very average and poor compared to literally thousands of real quality micro's and many macro's", category. Aroma and taste are very muted with weak maltiness being the order of the day. A nice looking pour with a decent head that does hang around and produce some, if not much, lacing....

Dundee Original Honey Brown Lager

Typically macro in a number of ways; head retention (zero), fizzy carbonation, light mouthfeel and body, Looks better than average with a nice amber color. The honey taste in is evidence upfront, although I would not necessarily be able to discern it as honey were it not on the label. It is definitely sweet though. Not a sickly sweet that makes it difficult to drink, but a kind of smooth sweet that aids the drinkability. Difficult to know if the malts are adding to the sweetness or if its the...

Old Scratch Amber Lager

Guess what? This Amber lager is...well....amber in color. The appearance is average with some head and lacing, but only after a quite aggressive pour. This stuff is very drinkable, with the only slight let down being a average mouthfeel - a little too thin for my liking. It is a very sweet beer on my palate. There is not a huge amount of maltiness either, which keeps the sweetness in check. I guess that it is also some hops coming through that helps check the sweetness, but I didn't feel the...

Killarney’s Red Lager

Oh dear. This may be the most flat, uninteresting beer I've ever drunk. It looks EXACTLY like iced-tea, with a cloudy, orange hue and absolutely no head or carbonation despite an agreesive pour. Aroma is non-existent and the taste, well, watery would be a compliment. A cloying dryness completes the experience. Awful.

Killian’s Irish Red

$3.96 for "small", 16oz serving at Smokey Bones Sports Bar & Grill, Douglasville, GA, USA. When hunting around the USA for just about drinkable macros, this would be one that I would pick up simply becasue it was the most drinkable and tasty of a terrible selection. In the bottles served at room temperature, I used to think that I was drinking something half decent. On draught this is/was served at Arctic temperature meaning that any possible macro credit it would/should receive was lost. This...