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Penn Gold - Pennsylvania Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Penn GoldPenn Gold

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

129 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 129
Hads: 222
Avg: 3.8
pDev: 15.26%
Wants: 20
Gots: 20 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Pennsylvania Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
Munich Helles Lager |  4.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-17-2002

Nationally acclaimed as the best Munich-style beer made in America. Penn Gold is a light-colored, medium bodied lager beer with a delicate hop aroma.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 129 | Hads: 222
Photo of tastybeer
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Color is golden straw and very clear. The small head is white with a fine texture and leaves a few spots of lace. Aroma is a refreshing mix of bright spicy floral 'happy' hops and toasty/musky malts. Taste mimics the smell with spicy flowers and toasty malts. Nice balance of light flavors and a solid representation of the style. Good carbonation and nice slick, semi creamy texture. Body is right and drinkability is high. Also, this happens to go excellent with salmon.

I have a feeling this beer will see many springs and summers with me.

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Photo of Kanyon22
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got a sixer of these on my trip, visiting the family back in OH. Poured in to my Murphy's tulip tumbler glass.

A: Pours a dull goldish color with a white very fading head, with tons of little bubbles riding up the glass. Pretty much on point for style just wished head lasted longer then 20 seconds.

S: As a sweet raw dough smell with a hint of spiciness. Has that typical German beer funk smell I always get in these kinda beers. Has a nice clean smell nothing out of the ordinary

T: Starts out sweet and doughy. The middle it has a spicy kick from the hops and ends with a tart sourish finish. That might sound bad but it all combine for a very pleasant helles. This beer is probably what all the German helles taste like, but unfortunately I've probably never had one this fresh before.

M: Its surprisingly on the medium side which is amazing considering it comes in at 4% abv. Carbonation is high and it has a tart bready flavor that coats the throat a bit.

D: Super high at only 4.00% abv. also very cheap got a sixer for $7.99 and thy go down nice and easy and still has enough flavor to keep you satisfied, what more could you want.

Not an absolute behemoth beer and not one to get all excited about by beer geeks, but truly a wonderful take on the helles style lager.

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Photo of NardiByNature
4.12/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

White head builds and falls quickly but leaves a decent cap for the style: a few small islands and a collar. Remarkably clear and light golden golden. Bright? Yes.

The aroma from this is subtly earthy with some fresh grassiness.

Light toasted malts meld nicely with the mildly peppery-bitter hops.

Finishes clean and clear, the carbonation provides a well-placed crispness to divide subtle bitterness from the malt.

VERY sessionable beer in one of my favorite styles. I’m lucky enough at the moment to live in Pittsburgh where Germanic and East European heritage has rubbed off on local breweries like the Pennsylvania Brewing Company and Church Brew Works: they both make nice German-style lagers. I hope to see more lagers from American craft companies.

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Photo of smerkinb
4.11/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From notes on 4/24/09.

Pours crystal clear pale gold with near 1" soft pure white head.

Smell is not great-lightly sweet, basic malts. Nothing interesting, nothing to entice me.

Malt. Sweet. A bit of cracker/biscuity carries thru the middle. There's both maltier and hoppier characteristics trying to find their way to the forefront. More spiced towards the end as it (briefly) warms.

Smooth and utterly drinkable.

Bottle claims "smooth, mellow and easy to drink" which sounds like a damn Bud light commercial. Llet me say though that is where the comparison ends. At first the more subtle flavors surprised me and I didn't know quite what to do with this. But I went with it and damn! It's nearly 90F here today and this didn't last long--perfect for quenching on a hot day.

I know like my words aren't doing this justice--but it was damn good. I think the subtleties were a bit past my depth honestly. I do know that despite my lack of appropriate words, this beer was really good and I'll be having more.

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Photo of oberon
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of the best of the "helles" style I have had,pours a light golden color with a light to medium head,the aroma is crisp and lightly malty with a hint of grassines.Real nice taste here,crisp malt taste with some iron-like qualities and a hint of smokiness with a light grassy taste in the background.I could drink these all day real nice brew.

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Photo of Jason
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz brown long-neck bottle with a blurb about the beer on the back ... freshness date notched on the back label.

Appearance: Sparkling bright light golden in colour with a champagne like carbonation. Nice tightly bubbled white lace.

Smell: Very clean in the nose with a hint of sweet malted grain and a mild hoppy aroma.

Taste: Light to medium in body ... very smooth that makes for a slightly crisp malty palate. Lots of sweet and grainy malt on the tongue with a floating hop bitterness and flavour similar to fresh cut hay. Hop bitterness and grain wrap up the finish with a trace of residual sweetness.

Notes: Drinkable to say the least, three gold medals from the GABF (1990, 1993 & 1998) ... enough said. A great lunch time beer, goes well with rubens or roast-beef on dark rye.

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Photo of BeerSox
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into pilsner glass.

Hazy golden hue with a thick two finger white head that slowly settles to a thin cap. Stringy lacing.

Very light grainy aromas with a slightly sweet smell. The hops sit in the background and give a slightly herbal aroma.

The grain carries a slightly toasty, but sweet, flavor. The hops add a very nice balancing bitterness.

A very refreshing lager. Smooth malts with a good amount of balancing hops. Really hit the spot on a warm spring afternoon.

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Photo of blackie
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

a: the pour into my pils glass gives a big, fluffy white head, the beer is an ultra-clear pale golden in color

s: clean, slightly sweet and doughy pale grain with a dose of grassy hops

m: medium carbonation, body light but not thin

t: grainy pale malts with a grassy hop flavor and crisp finish, has that light touch of sulfur that identifies it as a German lager, without any flaws but with nothing to really set it apart

d: very sessionable, simple and authentic, with enough character to keep it interesting

single from Whole Foods Raleigh

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Photo of skinny0ne
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I has a very pale yellow color which is slightly cloudy. It has a large head. The aroma is very clean with a hint of bread and sweet malt. It starts with a nice biting carbonation. There is a lot of malt sweetness in it. Oddly, I'd say corn although I know they don't use corn in their brewing. I also get a bit of lemon and slight bread. The finish is clean with a little hops but definitely lots of sweetness. Very light and drinkable.

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Photo of pezoids
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed this beer on tap at their brewery. This poured a clean deep golden color. The aroma has a chalky maltiness about it. The taste is wonderfully clean and crisp. Soft malts and floral hops meld together flawlessly and finish with a slightly winey, lemony finish. Overall, a very nice, smooth and clean tasting beer.

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Photo of Jimbo87
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into US pint glass.

Pale gold, nice while head that doesn't stick around too long. leaves nice lacing.

The smell is a very nice pilsner, pale-variety lager smell, sweet tangy grain and balancing hops.

Taste is very much the same. Great job balancing the malt sweetness. Smooth, refreshing taste.

Mouthfeel is good and fits the style.

Drinkability is pretty huge. Tasty and mild enough that you could drink it all night. 2nd from Penn that I've had, after St Nicholaus brewer's reserve, and I conclude they are an excellent brewery.

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Photo of goindownsouth
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A wonderful looking Helles-style lager out of the bottle, Penn Gold offers a stunning clean and golden hue from the very onset. The head is apparent, thick, and quickly vanishing to leave an omnipresent lace along the side of the glass. One smell and this brew could be as good as some of the best Helles-style lagers I have had (but Weihenstephaner Original is still tops there). The aroma is slightly sweet yet malty and rather light on the nose. A sign of things to come. The flavor is not overpowering by any means, and the mouthfeel is typical for this style. Very well done. If you are looking to try beers of the Munich Helles style, this is one you must take in.


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Photo of tankg
4.1/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this years ago, and it seemed a little light-bodied, but my tastes must be changing, because I found this to be much better than I remembered when I got a 6 in a sampler case. Never have had a bad beer from this brewery, and their Oktoberfest event is always a lot of fun. I read that the owner is retiring, and a hearty Salud' to him, although he'd probably prefer a german toast.

Slightly cloudy appearance in a pint glass, with a very faint aroma and a very clean finish - a much better summer beer than a lot of what is out there and not so robust, so that you might be able to convince some of the light beer guzzlers to give it a try.

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Photo of FleeVT
4.09/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a dull straw yellow with a slight haze. The head is thin and leaves something to be desired. Very light carbonation.

S: A nice bright nose with a perfect balance of light hops and malts, backed by a bouquet of grains.

T/M: This is an absolute thirst quencher. Clean, fresh, delicious, light bodied, with a nice carbonation to boot. Sweet on the front provided by the malts and a slight bitter back end with the hops. Again, nothing overpowering just a fine mix of two. A beer with just the purest flavors; it should put the macros out of business.

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Photo of IronCitySteve
4.09/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: A bright yellow, very clear. A quickly dissipating foam head. No real lacing.

S: Lots of malt. Nuts, caramels, bread and a tad hint of citrus (I could be imaging that).

T: A smooth mix of bread, caramel and citrus. Seems like an odd combo, but it works, good balance.

M: A light body lager, very refreshing, clean on the palate.

D: An all-around great lager, very enjoyable in the spring and summer.

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Photo of DrDemento456
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another beer I had on tap at the Restaurant at Penn Brewery.

A - A clear bright golden colored beer with a very sweet half inch of creamy white head. A simple swirl easily brings it back so nicely carbonated.

S - Slight bittering hops, bit of buttered popcorn, and bread with a touch of honey.

T - A very stellar Helles Lager. You get sweet honey like malts, then a surprising bit of bittering hops mild but present, and a finish of buttered bread.

M - It was medium bodied since I was stuffed on the food but it was very drinkable.

Overall one of the best I have ever encountered: good flavor, medium bodied, and sessionable. Would consider trying it again in the bottle to see if it's as good.

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Photo of DogFood11
4.08/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

from a mixed twelve pack that included the gold, pilsner, hefeweizen and dark. The gold offering is indeed golden in color with an impressively tight, frothy, white head that leaves speckled lace with each pull. Lots of racing mad carbonation.

First thing I got off this brew was the impressive mouthfeel, quite a substantial body for a light beer. Sweet grain mixing with a slightly drying hop zip that sticks around a while before becoming sweet again. Carbonation is also well done and crispens this baby up at the finish.

Notes: Impressive. Tough to find a really good Munich helles lager but the bus can stop here. Was a joy to sit down to this as an after work relaxing beer on a hot summer day. Add this to your shopping if you can get it.

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Photo of bluegrassbrew
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle into a pilsner glass.

Pours a crystal clear golden color. The head is about one finger thick but quickly disappears to nothing.

Smell is buttery with just a hint of citrus.

Taste is very crisp, but has some buttery malt flavors. A touch of citrusy hops in the finish.

Overall, a very tasty Munich Lager. Smooth and crisp, yet flavorful. Highly drinkable. Recommended.

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Photo of beergeek279
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served in the 12 oz. bottle. The color is golden, with a clumpy white head. The smell is very malty sweet. The taste is quite sweet, though the Hallertau hops keep the beer from becoming a malt monster. Mouthfeel is heavily-carbonated. As for drinkability, this is a beer that I could enjoy all day.

Another fine offering from Penn. Definitely the sweetest of their regular offerings, the Gold is a great session beer, and one I know that I will have again.

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Photo of Shaw
4.07/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A bright, gold beer indeed. It's a light gold in color with a nice white head that reduces to a ring of foam in my glass.

It smells grainy and grassy, thanks to the noble hops. There are also light, sweet fruity notes.

The flavor is spicy and hoppy, with plenty of flavor but light enough to be really easy to drink.

The body is crisp and light, but not watery.

This is a very drinkable lager. As the first I've had from this brewery, it's a good sign.

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Photo of bigdeuce
4.04/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I am very surprised at how much I enjoyed this one, I am not crazy about this syle at all. Pours a rich golden color with a fizzy head, disapating to nothing, leaves no tracing. That is all that is well, average. The taste is great, light bodied with some toasty, buttery oatness with some true tettenang hops to balance out the sweet maltiness. A well balanced and heck, as good as any other of the syle I've tried.

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Photo of jifigz
4.02/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into a pint glass.

The beer pours a...well, what do you know, beautiful gold color with a head that doesn't last all that long. The head didn't leave any real lacing as it disappeared. The beer looks very carbonated by the amount of bubbles rising towards the surface. It looks like a pretty standard Helles. The aroma smells mostly clean and crisp with a little bit of "skunk" thrown in there. It smells a lot like an American macro Pilsner but with less grainy sweetness and a little more hop aroma. The flavor is pretty much what I expect out of a Helles lager. The initial flavor has that distinct Helles flavor that I can't really describe, then it fades to some sweetness, then the sweetness mingles with the hops, and then the sweetness kind of takes back over for the rest of the aftertaste. The MF is very light and just what I expect for the style. It finishes dry.

This is a very solid Helles Lager. The beer is crisp, dry, flavorful, and very easy drinking without being boring. Well done Pennsylvania Brewing Co. and thanks for representing my home state with the name of your wonderful brewery.

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Photo of PittBeerGirl
4.02/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A- Transparent golden yellow body with thin white head that disappears quickly. Little to no lacing left behind in the glass.

S- Light sweet caramel malt smell. Nutty smell too. Very warm and inviting.

T- Initial taste is somewhat bland. Some hints of light malt. Aftertaste is wonderful. Sweet caramel malt and nutty flavors last and last.

M- Light carbonation and light body. Not watery. Well done since this beer has a very light character.

D- Great. I could session and enjoy this all day. I will get this one again.

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Photo of number1bum
4.01/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a crystal clear, pale straw yellow with lots of bubbles rising up to meet a beautiful 2 inches of soft, fluffy white head. Retains a nice, full lace and leaves lots of stick.

Smells of grain and husk, grassy noble hops, and overall a wee bit skunky.

Taste is very clean and smooth. Grain, light malt sweetness, grassy hops, bit of hop bitterness through the finish. Nice flavor, very clean and crisp. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, crisp carbonation.

This is a very tasty, drinkable brew. I don't often reach for a lager, but if I wanted a good one this would definitely hit the mark.

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Photo of JackTheRipper
4/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear golden color with a big sticky head

Smell: Light hop aroma, not citrusy, more of a floral character.

Taste: very nice balance of a malty sweetness and a touch of hoppy bitterness. Finish is a clean grainy bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Crisp, clean, very nice level of carbonation. Alcohol is warming but not too upfront.

Drinkability: Fantastic. Would make a superb beer to have a few of.

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Penn Gold from Pennsylvania Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 129 ratings.