1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Element 115 - Flat Earth Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Element 115Element 115

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

87 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 87
Reviews: 73
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 11.68%
Wants: 8
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Flat Earth Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
California Common / Steam Beer |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-05-2007)
View: Beers (23) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 87 | Reviews: 73 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jwc215
3.48/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to morimech for this!
22 oz bottle:

Pours copper with a thin white head that stays. Trailing, slowly vanishing, lace stays.

The smell is bready, with caramel, sour, with an herbal, metallic undertone.

The taste is tangy at first. Caramel grows as it progresses. It leans towards sour, with a rusty, metallic finish. As it progresses, it becomes more balanced and the various flavors come together more neatly, with caramel maltiness bringing things together. Finishes sweet, sour, bitter.

The feel is light-to-medium, with smoothness and a lasting aftertaste.

According to label - American pale, Victory, Crystal and wheat malts. Cluster, Mt. Hood and Northern Brewer hops. An odd brew. Mixed feelings, though I "like" more than "dislike" as a whole... seems over-hopped...which is odd in itself, coming from me - or just hopped in a "different" direction than I would like. The sourness is a bit much... I'll put this in the "interesting" category...

Photo of BeardedBoffin
3.9/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Element 115 Lager is a decent Steam beer. It pours light copper in color with a wisp head, which, surprisingly, stayed around throughout.

The aroma has bread and fruit notes with a hint of hops. More of the same in the flavor, but it goes down smooth and enjoyable. The finish is bitter and the bitterness stays around after the beer is gone.

This is a balanced drinkable beer. Not overly complex, but I enjoyed it.

Photo of Kegatron
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a clear copper with several fingers of dirty off-white foamy head. This sticks around with a nice frothy look to both the retention and lacing. The aroma is mostly sweet with bread and a fairly deep fruitiness that gives this a hefty tang in the nose. Touch of spice and floral hops float along the back.

That tangy feel carries over to the front of the taste, with bread and fruit taking control, while some light drying hops finishes this out with a steady lingering bitterness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a smooth crispness to it that gets more smooth and creamy feeling the mouth the more I work on it.

Plenty of flavor (lot of fruitiness from the Ale yeast here) and smooth drinkibility made for a fine quaff. Maybe a bit more balancing hop action would have been welcome but overall this is a decent example of a Steam Beer from Flat Earth.

Photo of joepais
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to my Santa justn for sending this my way.
My first steam beer, I enjoyed it.
I poured it into a pint glass and got a finger worth of white head that stuck a round a bit then faded to nothing. The body of the brew was clear copper in color.

The aroma was hop forward with a light malt backbone. There is a slight bready yeast smell in here as well. The flavor is dry hoppy citric in nature with a good malt balance. The feel in my mouth was light and refreshing with great carbonation.

It was real easy to drink. I could have finished a few more glasses of this easy. I did like the style so I will try a few more but this one was a quite interesting brew.

Photo of jera1350
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Golden orange in color with sudsy off white head on top. Nice bitter hop scent fills the nose. Taste is moderately hoppy. A nice bite to go along with the malt. Crisp hops with a bit of graininess as well. Feel is fine, maybe a tad thin, but nothing crazy. Very drinkable. This is one is in the top two for me as far as offerings from Flat Earth. Several of their other beers I have come away with less than impressed. Nothing outrageous here, just a solid sessionable hopped up beer.

Photo of Ragingbull
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I was very pleased with the draft variety of this beer. It seemed to present itself as less hoppy than its bottled counterpart. The color was light amber with a light white head. Sweet and malty nose. Sweet attack with some late presenting hops that acted more complementary in the draft than as the centerpiece in the bottle. There are some fruit notes in the flavor that seem almost like mild berry flavors. As I have said, much less hoppy than what I remember the bottled variety being.

Photo of ChopperSmith
3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a large 22 oz. brown bottle into a chilled standard pint glass.

Appearance - Pours a nice amber/copper color with a decent orange/tan head that doesn't last long and leaves a little sticky lacing behind.

Smell - Very hoppy with a grapefruit citrus tang. Slight malty scents underlying the aggressive hops aroma.

Taste - Very crisp and hoppy. The floral citrus hops are right up front and a little malt on the finish. very little hop bitterness on the finish. A crisp and smooth drinking beer.

Mouthfeel - A little overly carbonated, but not too bad. Light-to-medium body.

Drinkability - It's a good representation of the American Steam beer style. I could see having more of this one if I run across it again.

Photo of Apokalypsdetta
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

The reason I selected this beer, amongst the other selections at the Flat Earth growler Tuesday (and Thursday) sales, was to accompany a night of barbecuing. After tasting the array of beers and walking away with the Element 115 I headed to home to throw on a peppercorn encrusted pork loin, a trio of waxed/green/purple beans in a shallot butter (wrapped in tinfoil for easy grilling), and roasted sweet corn. This beer was a excellent selection as it was my purpose to match rather than contrast the flavors in the pairing.

Element 115 is, as it is categorized here, a california common and reminiscent of Anchor Steam in many ways. The lead in sip has a nice creamy maltiness but finishes lean, mean and clean with hints of white pepper and grapefruit rind. I particularly liked the acidity and hoppiness...palate cleansing and perfect for washing down anything smoked or grilled.

A: It has a rich golden tawny color and a nice white head upon pouring.

S: The aroma is a very soft butterscotch and smells like the every lead in sip as described above.

T: See above.

M: Light bubbles that jump once it crosses your lips. It looked surprisingly flat in the glass after the initial pour and first few sips but it instantly revives in your mouth particularly on the back end with the hops.

D: Very drinkable with the right food choice but as it stands alone I could have only a few before I would want to pair it with food.

Thanks for reading my first review and if there are are any of you traveling to this part of the country I live in Saint Paul, MN near Summit, Flat Earth, Lift Bridge and a couple killer beer bars (Happy Gnome, Muddy Pig, Great Waters and Bulldog Lowertown). Hit me up, bring some beer and well definitely raise our glasses in a cheer!

Photo of degerbah
3.05/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

cloudy yellow with some sediment in the glass. Has a sweet smell with lots of floral hops. Tastes citrusy, reminiscent of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale with a very clean drinkable mouthfeel. As I drink it I notice tremendous head retention with a bitter hop aftertaste. This is a

Photo of wardough
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked this up at 4 Firkins in St. Louis Park. Thanks guys.

Pours a light copper into the glass. Not a ton of head. Barely any now!
Smells of sweet grain and malts. Very little hop presence.
Taste is sweet. A little hop bitterness in the middle to balance it out. Overall, very solid try.

Photo of ckeegan04
3.45/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Claer medium to dark amber with a large head consisting of lots of little bubbles. Head slowly fades leaving good lacing a thick foam cap on the beer.

S - Lightly toasted malts dominate the nose. There is a faint hint of fruity hoppiness, but the breadines dominates. A little tropical fruit.

T - Very fruity with a light breadiness as well. The fruitiness is a little off and just not that good. Hints of berries as well as a little lime. Not a bad taste, just a weird mix of tastes.

M/D - Light to medium boided, excellent carbonation. Easy drinking but the flavor does not leave me wanting more.

Photo of Metalmonk
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours with nary a head, and only a quarter-inch if I really throw it in there. Dies out almost entirely and pretty quickly. Has a copper/rust glow that veers toward orange, which I associate with double IPAs. (I do understand this will not taste like a double IPA and I'm willing to accept that. Boo hoo.)

Aroma is a bit dead--not much happening. Light caramel/biscuit-like malt with that tell-tale lager yeast aroma.

Flavor-wise there's a pretty stark contrast between the buttery, biscuity malt and herbal bite from these particular hops--at first. They mingle pretty well once you sit with it awhile though. The mouthfeel delivers these contrasts well, having a tingly carbonation over the top of a smooth, almost silky body. A bitterness like astringent black tea ends up dominating the finish.

A good beer. Hardly a great one, but certainly an interesting offering, with an equally interesting label and text to accompany it. Thanks to BDLBrewster for the chance to try it!

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Sampled March 2009
A solid pour into my 25cl tulip glass produces a three finger thick head that is a pale tan color and just crests the top of my glass. The head subsides somewhat quickly and completely disappears after a bit. The beer is a brilliantly clear, light ruby color that shows a deeply red stained, bright copper hue when held up to the light. The aroma smells of toasty malt and berry-like hops. There is a slight lemon like note to the nose that comes off as being a little washed out. Sweet malt aromatics form a backdrop to the up front toasty malt notes that remind me of whole grain crackers.

Up front the beer tastes lightly bitter and it picks up a malty sweetness through the middle, but then dries out in the finish where there is a strong bitter finish that also has a bit of menthol to it. The bitter hop notes in the finish can get quite sharp and almost astringent at times; it really lingers on the palate with a spicy, almost peppery bite. This has a medium fullness to it that helps to stave off the biting hop finish when the beer is actually in the mouth. Malt flavors of toasted whole grain crackers, a touch of caramelized malt sweetness and just a solid malt character really help this to balance out much of the hop notes. This definitely has that signature mint-like / menthol note that is characteristic of Northern Brewer hops.

This is actually pretty nice; at first I didn't like how jarring the transition between the smooth, chewy malt notes in the middle and the harsher hop notes in the finish, but after a few sips it begins to get a bit more integrated and balanced (though the hop character is a bit more harsh than I might prefer). This definitely seems to be an under-appreciated beer though, but I suspect that the breweries consistency issues have to do with much of the problem; I am just glad that I got a stable / fresh bottle.

Photo of jjanega08
4.13/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A= pours an amber color with a tiny white head that doesn't last long and leaves no lacing
S= grainy and a small amount of pine hops. Only slightly more odor than a adjunct lager
T= smooth grain and a small amount of bitter hops. Very clean tasting. Maybe a small amount of yeast slips through as well.
M= low carbonation and slightly dry finish. Very smooth.
D= great. A very good beer. I wish they would make sixers

Photo of csmiley
3.38/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

A - Opening this beer provides a nice loud pop and then *whoooosh*. Hmmm. Pours a light amber color and quite clear. The cream colored head tops out at 3 fingers and quickly becomes rocky. It show a hefty amount of staying power. There is more lacing than expected. Looks nice.

S - Nose is clean. Starts out with some cereal and graininess. Alcohol is noted and stronger than expected which is odd for a 5.5% brew. Just a little bit of bitterness can be picked up to finish it off.

T - There is a nice piney bitterness that just keeps biting at the palate along with the overly active carbonation. Some malt is in there to back it up but not much. More cereal, grain, and a note of honey. Alcohol is hidden well behind the bitterness.

M - Lighter bodied with too much carbonation. Finish is bitter and clean.

D - Drinkability is not bad. The earthy characteristics are nice and refreshing. It could be a nice session beer if the carbonation issues could be addressed. Time doesn't seem to work this issue out. Pour it, swirl it, let it set, swirl it, let it set, and still it just has too much carbonation to truly enjoy the experience. Not bad overall though. Glad I got the chance to try this one out.

Photo of mdwalsh
3.28/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured with little to no head, and was quickly a naked top but around the edges there was decent lace. A few bubbles. Amber-Golden in color. Pretty see through

S: Malty, some bitter hoppy notes as well, but those are very hidden. Not a very complex nose at all.

T: Bitter, citrusy. Very citrusy. Bitter turns to sour. Not a great taste, not much there and i don't enjoy what is there.

M: Smooth and light, just like the other FE I tried today, though this one makes itself known on the tongue a little more.

D: Goes down pretty good, no carbonation to fill you up and no single taste to make you spit it out.

Photo of Tolnik
2.68/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured this beer into a pint glass. The copperish wheat colour of beer gave off a fair amount of foam then reducing to wisps of beer. The aroma was that of citrus and malts. The taste however tasted of flat citrus with slight tones of malt that left a bitterness in the aftertaste. Overall I won't have this beer again just due to the unbalanced combination that it gave.

Photo of tmoneyba
3.63/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from Jungle Jim's.

A - Poured a clear ocopper color with an average frothy off-white head that mostly lasted with good lacing.

S- Moderate balanced citrus hop and malt aroma.

T - Medium bitter flavor with a medium bitter finish of moderate duration.

M - Medium body with a smooth texture and flat carbonation.

D - Good drinkable brew that met my expectations.

Photo of mothman
3.3/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into new belgium globe glass (only glass I had with at my buddies).

Color is a copper/carmel brown. Light tan head that is VERY fluffy. Leaves some good lacing.

The aroma is very citrus like. Some floral hops, while the malts are underrepresented. The taste is very smokey. Earthy hops and sweet carmel malts stand out the most. There is also a hint of raisins.

Mouthfeel starts out bitter then gets very smooth. The alcohol becomes present here. Leaves a dry aftertaste. Great carbonation.

Overall, this isn't my typical style of beer. It is very easy to drink, but I don't plan on buying this one again.

Photo of CHSLBrew
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into an imperial pint glass.

A-Poured a very thick, out-of-control head, off-white in color. Head retained for a while, reducing to a large-bubbled heady mass, eventually down to sparse bubbles. Unattractive lace left on glass. Amber beer was a bit hazy.

S-Light and crisp, showing some characters of the California yeast used. A bit of fruitiness with some light, seemingly spicy hops.

T-Nutty with bread crust maltiness, with hints of some lighter fruits on top. Some subtle bitterness presents itself with a slight spiciness. Finishes relatively clean with a nice bitterness coupled with a slight bready aftertaste.

M-Feels a medium body with medium-high carbonation. Despite my assumption after the overly heady pour, the carbonation was more or less in line with style.

D-A nice brew. Not my favorite from Flat Earth thus far, but still very ejoyable. Would consider this one again in the future, if the time is right. I was rather expecting an over-carbonated mess after the first pour, but it turned out to be alright and quite enjoyable.

Photo of HomebrewPgh
3.58/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A nice steam beer (I refuse to call it California Common). Aroma was so so. There's a spiciness to it that I wasn't expecting. Pour was a beautiful clear amber with a puffy one finger near tan head. Clear and crisp. Taste was good but odd. There is a strong astringent bitterness to it that I don't associate with steam beer. The hops create a resinous film on the throat that don't let any malt through. Not bad.

Photo of corey0212
4.35/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Thanks to csmiley for this one!

Pours a handsome copper color, with a monstrous, almost unruly beige head that really hangs in there for a long time, and leaves clumpy & sticky lacing all over the glass. Nice floral hop aroma, some grainy/beery aromas, some slight citrus/tangerine notes. Really nice flavors here, bright, citrusy, some bitter grassy flavors, some slightly sweet malty flavors. Clean, crisp, really nice/active carbonation....this is the very definition of session beer. I'd love to have this again, and would really love to see more beers available in the style.

Photo of kenito799
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bomber poured into a pint glass.

Medium amber, clear, small foamy head, little retention or lace. OK looking.

Very frsh, clean, malty aroma with soft undertones of dried leaves. Nose is not remarkable, but is inviting. The first sip brings an unexpectedly perfect impression of Anchor Steam, but maybe better...very soft, creamy mouthfeel, broad fruitiness that gives a feeling of sweetness but isnt really sweet...dry roasted bittreness in the finish. Outstandingly drinkable, a perfect session beer. One to get by the case for parties or BBQs. Impressive effort.

Photo of mikesgroove
4.22/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Very nice twenty two ounce bottle that was acquired via a trade recently. I had heard of this beer many times, but never pulled the trigger on a trade, so I figured what the heck. Served cold, right out of the fridge and poured the whole thing into a 24 ounce pilsner glass. Consumed on 10/05/2008.

The pour was very nice, with a rich amber color coming forward right away. Nice carbonation was evident right away. Lots of bubbles rippling to the surface to reinforce the inch and a half of white foam that came up across the top of the glass. Nice settle left behind soem good side glass lace.

The aroma was much more hoppy then I would have thought. Light citrus aromas are peaking up throughout the session, with hints of orange, lemon, and a touch of tangerine all joining in here. Light grain and a touch of sweet malts are bringing up the rear on this one and really pushing it to the forefront. The flavor was fantastic. Rich, and very bright notes of citric hops stole the show here for sure. Light orange and pineapple flavors were playing off the light grain and bready malt base. Easy to throw down, I found myself drinking this one far too quickly which caused me to slow down a bit for a while afterward. Nice light to medium bodied feel never became dull or too heavy, and the long lasting dry hoppy bite kept going long after the last sip.

Overall I was really taken by suprise on this one. It was a hoppy little ale that I did not see coming. Nice balance and feel lef to this one being a favorite of mine over the last week or so. I would have to recommend this one for sure.

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
1.63/5  rDev -55.7%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Appearance - uncaps with considerable force. A pour into a shaker pint yields six quick fingers of foam, likely a bad sign. Lots of the light mocha foamage, sticky and falling unevenly. While the orange amber is attractive enough, the volume of suds raises concern.

Aroma - not good. Light sweet grain is distant, outmatched by an acrid, dry foreboding sourness.

Taste - no. Metallic, hints of grainy goodness back there, but sadly this I believe is off. I think I can taste a flash of citrusy hops behind the first wave of sourness, but I'm not certain. How disappointing, I can taste hints of malty goodness up front and good citrus character at the end, but the middle is messed.

Mouthfeel - average body, over the top carbonation. Properly bottled, I would imagine this heavier, softer, and smoother.

Drinkability - thanks to WankerWeasal for the teaser; with any luck perhaps I can find another one of these at DLD09 to re-review.

Element 115 from Flat Earth Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 87 ratings.