Crush Beer - Napa Smith Brewery

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Crush BeerCrush Beer

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BA SCORE
78
okay

46 Ratings
THE BROS
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Ratings: 46
Reviews: 23
rAvg: 3.36
pDev: 15.48%
Wants: 0
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Napa Smith Brewery visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Lager |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Fall

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: DaveHS on 09-30-2010

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 46 | Reviews: 23
Photo of abgba121
2.58/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: very light copper color, about one inch of head the receded to light lacing atop of the brew, and continuous bubbling.

S: strong fruity smell, grapes are very present, no detectable hoppiness

T: Very grape-like almost no bitterness at all. It leaves something to be desired at the finish.

M: good mouthfeel, good carbonation, average in this respect.

O: This is a so-so beer, decent taste, needs more hops to complete the flavor profile. I most likely will not buy this one again. It is an easily drinkable beer, but just does not taste that good.

Photo of brewskier
2.81/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Hard pour gives a fluffy, speckled off-white head. A beautiful very hazy medium golden amber liquid lies beneath, riddled with trails of active effervescence. Pretty decent lacing, even and wispy.

Aroma, however, leaves MUCH to be desired. This has a nose like lawnmower beer...the skunked variety. A sour, slightly acrid plume wafts up from that gorgeous looking brew. I suppose it could be the grape influence, but if so, please just give me the amber and hold the crush! Sad, so sad. [note after warming: still not much here to recommend]

Tragically, the flavor, though better, is not nearly enough of an improvement to induce me to finish this entire bomber. While not lawnmower beer - it at least has some reasonable pale and even a touch of caramel malt, plus a slight fruity hint from the grapes - this is still pretty much glorified dishwater in a $10 bottle. OK, it's getting better as it warms...because I am not interested in drinking it very quickly. A little more complexity is emerging, and it's actually starting to taste a bit like German Oktoberfest, rather than American light lager. Wow, moral of the story is don't drink this one cold. It really does open up fairly nicely into a Marzen if you give it a chance, with that sweet grain tang, actually emphasized by the grapes. Not my favorite, but I'll have to redo the sniff test as well.

Quite a pleasing mouthfeel, with plenty of body but still fairly crisp, and particularly well carbonated.

Drinkability is not so good, as its character is a shifty one, and pretty unpleasant when heavily chilled. Much better things to do with a 6% alcohol, as well.

Photo of silentjay
2.85/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

kinda light for an amber with a slight haze and an almost pure white one-fingered head that retains decently yet leaves little lacing.

not picking up much in terms of grape aromas, but there is a pleasant caramel and bready sweetness. maybe a bit tart, yet grainy.

flavor is quite metallic with plenty of sweetness (light caramel), graininess, and some herbal tea-like hoppiness, as well as some salted butter. not the "wine-drinkers crossover beer" that I would have imagined. the finish is tinny and then very dry, leaving a "chewed on tinfoil" sensation that is not all that pleasant.

light/medium bodied with light prickly carbonation which is good for the style, but the finish is quite detrimental to the overall experience of this beer. Something is just not quite right with this one, and as my first experience with this brewery, I'm not sure if its a rare miss or what.

Photo of kylehay2004
3.03/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A half finger head with lots of lacing on a clear light golden body. Nearly odorless for my nose. Unique flavor with grass, grape, bread and a slight tangy finish. Light to medium body and moderate carbonation. Drinkable and unique tasting beer. Not necessarily one I want to have again though

Photo of kojevergas
3.15/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 fl oz brown glass bottle with interesting label art and standard unbranded pry-off pressure cap acquired for $2.39 USD at Wine Expo in Santa Monica and served into a Mitchells of Lancaster flared stem-tulip in me gaff in low altitude Los Feliz, Los Angeles, California. Reviewed live. Expectations are above average; I remember being pleasantly surprised by a random Napa Smith beer I picked up at Wine Expo.

Served chilled. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

6.0% ABV confirmed per the label. "Amber lager brewed with grapes."

A (Head): Pours a two finger wide head of light khaki colour. Soft complexion. Appears somewhat thin. Even spotty lacing as the head recedes. Retention is pretty decent - about 4 minutes.

A (Body): Body colour is a semitransparent translucent copper. Average vibrance. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Overall, it doesn't really look like most ambers. It's certainly not amber in colour. Standard fare otherwise. Not unique or special, but I don't notice any obvious flaws.

Sm: Red grape must. Clean barley. Mild floral hop character. Munich malts. Berries/currants. Grapeskin. Light bready malts. Restrained caramalt. Pear. Grape must is subtle yet still dominant - and certainly the most interesting aspect of the beer so far. No yeast character or alcohol is detectable. An above average strength aroma. Looking forward to trying it. Pleasant and appealing in a general sense.

T: Red grape must and grapeskin; this note actually runs against the rest of the beer, leaving it feeling imbalanced. Munich malts, crackery malts, pear, some crystal malt. Light caramalts. Certainly a grainy build for an amber. Simple as well. It borders on coming off artificial - almost like a fruit syrup was used. No yeast or alcohol comes through. Clean barley. Little subtlety here, if any. I'm not a big fan. It's mundane.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Slightly overcarbonated. Decent presence on the palate. Suits the flavour profile decently, but it by no means feels custom-tailored to it. Good thickness. Lightly syrupy. Not oily, harsh, gushed, or hot.

Dr: Damn drinkable, but forgettable. A pedestrian offering from Napa Smith; the grape addition seems like a marketing gimmick. I won't be picking this up again, but I'll easily kill the bottle. I like the concept, but the execution falls short. Not recommended.

Overpriced.

C+

Photo of mactrail
3.19/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear amber in the glass with a grudging head each pour. Quite spritzy in the mouth, however. Nice malty aroma. It tastes like a fruit-flavored club soda. Sort of woody with a little touch of tannins. Fairly malty with a persistent herbal flavor.

Fizzy herbal tea sort of brew. I can just taste a hint of fruit, whatever you say it is. It's a gulp that leaves a bitterish, black tea residue. Less interesting than I'd hope. From the 12 oz bottle purchased at The Bottle Shop in Santa Barbara.

Photo of Fatehunter
3.29/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured one finger of head on a orange/medium straw colored body.
The aroma is caramel, ripe grapes and orange. It's all fairly faint though.
The taste is watery, grape and woody sweetness and mild pine bitterness.
The texture is crisp with moderate carbonation.
It's a weak ale overall with a mildly interesting grape flavor.

Photo of pkalix
3.29/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

wouldn't ordinarily go for something like this, but I am running out of "newbies" to try, even though I haven't reviewed or rated all the ones ive had...
pored a deep nectar golden yellow.... no head, and what's with all the floaty stuff sitting at the bottom of my glass?
smell is a lager-ish, fruit-y kind of thing. much like an abita purple(?).
taste is... lager-ish with something else in there. supposed to be grapes.... maybe.
6% ? okay. I can do one of these. it aint an Oktoberfest brew, though; I don't care what they say....
don't think i'll try this one again. or much else from this brewery. it's a decent brew. it's got it's own flavor, which is very respectable, but it just doesn't suit my tastebuds at this point in my life. the 6% helps it stay in the picture...

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.33/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - pours a caramel/gold color. Nice sticky almond head of a finger or so, some light lacing.

Aroma - some brief grape notes immediately after the pour. That disappears after a few seconds. Just a vague general graininess.

Taste - grain with a touch of bite. Some metallics on the aftertaste, maybe a result of grape tannins? A residual bitterness on the finish with notable length, some palate drying as well. No hint of actual grape flavor.

Mouthfeel - medium carbonation and body. Fairly refreshing.

Drinkability - a serviceable amber. Nice balance. I forget the cost but I'd have it again.

Photo of beertunes
3.38/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into 10oz goblet. Poured a very nice honey-gold color with about 1/2 inch of white head that had good retention and very light lacing.

The scent profile was mostly solidly grainy malts. I picked up just very light hopping and none of the grapes mentioned on the label. The flavors also were mostly good earthy grains, with just enough of a hop zing to provide a counter-point. Again, I didn't get any grape aspects to this beer.

The body was full and well-rounded, with a crisp finish. Drinkability was OK, mine bottle went down easily enough and I could see having a couple pints if I saw it on tap. Overall, an OK brew, nothing special, nothing terrible. Try it if you see it.

Photo of BucannonXC5
3.39/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Type: 12.0-oz. bottle
Glass: Firestone tap room pint glass
From: World Market in La Mesa (San Diego), Calif.
Price: $1.99
Purchased: July 11, 2013
Consumed: July 12, 2013
Misc.: N/A

Poured a caramel amber murky color with what seemed to be chunks, seeds or pulp and two fingers of frothy white head. Watery foggy layer of lacing on the sides of the glass. Good retention all the way down.

Smelled malty dark fruits initially. Grape, plum, dates, figs, earthy, grainy, honey and iced tea.

Tasted even maltier than the smell. Got dark fruits in grapes, dates, figs, plums and faint dark cherries. Also oatmeal (I know), honey, caramel, creamy and iced tea. Lots of butter characteristics as well.

Medium body. Creamy texture. Average carbonation. Buttery, long finish.

Light body. Thin-to-oily texture. Soft-to-average carbonation. Bitter, dry finish.

Actually had high hopes for this beer, but it just didn’t materialize. I wouldn’t have it again.

Photo of DirtyPenny
3.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Now how in the hell did you end up in Massachusetts, lil' guy? Poured several times from a 22 oz bottle into a Leffe goblet.

A: Poured with no head but a thin coating of white foam on top. Beer was a light orange or amber color, hazy with active bubbles rising to the top. Strips of lacing along the sides.

S: Bready with slight apple and white grape notes.

T: Slight bitter tartness from the grapes, faint fruity/white wine notes that move into subtle biscuit malt and ends on a mildly bitter note, with light raisin notes. Sweet and soda-like in a way.

M: Light-medium with sparkling texture and dry finish.

O: Beer brewed with grapes, eh? In any case, I rescued this from a random wine shop that also had a small craft beer selection. Interesting to try and very refreshing. Looks like it's an autumn brew, and this is May so I imagine the bottle had a bit of age on it, but it tasted fine.

I'd look for it again but I'm under the impression that this is from a smaller California brewery and is seasonal. Never seen it before and would be surprised if I saw it again any time soon.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.45/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A delicately fruited ale with the pleasantries of both crisp golden ales, dry Belgain ales, and zinfindale wines.

Pouring a mostly golden color with a tinge of cranberry, the beer's sparkling carbonation gives it a very spritzy and lively appearance. A very airy ivory foam stance caps the beer with a loose froath and fair lace.

Aroams of thin caramel, light grain, slight bread crust or toast, with a tart scent that I attribute to grape additions. Lightly nutty in the grain profile with complementary ester aromas of apple and pear.

Semi-dry flavor of cracker malts with nutty grain and a light caramel flavor sets the stage for a mild fruit acidity that delivers flavors of obvious grape, crabapple, pears, and appricot. Medium tartness melds well with light herbal hop and spicy tanin flavors.

Medium bodied at first, but the beer looses its structure quickly after the initial sip. The slight early creaminess is replaced with a dry wine-like finish, mild tanin astringency, and a sprite peppery heat in finish.

Immediate comparisons to Dogfish Head's Red & White come to mind. If not for that resemblance, I would rather like this beer. But in comparison this beer is very light, to the point of becomming a flaw.

Photo of rangerred
3.48/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a hazy gold with a white half finger head. Decent head retention but no lacing.

Smells is nearly all metal. A little grape aroma comes through as well but not much in the way of malt.

Thankfully there isn't any metallic flavor but rather quite a bit of grape up front. That is quickly followed by a wonderful caramel maltiness that is very reminiscent of an Oktoberfest. Finishes crisp with a slightly sticky mouthfeel.

I didn't realize this was a fall seasonal when I picked it up so it probably has some age on it. It was still really good and I would love to try this fresh sometime.

Photo of Gmann
3.52/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a toasted straw color, crystal clear, with a small white head that settles into a light ring.

The aroma is sweet. There is a good grape scent to it. It provides some sweetness as well as a tart aspect. Some toast from the malt.

The malt provides a grain and light toast notes. Some noticable metallic & rust notes as well. The grapes provide a sweet and tart flavor that goes well with the malt. A bit of an odd earthy bitterness in the end.

The feel is light and crisp; has fizzy carbonation. Fairly sweet on the palate but well balanced.

An average brew, pretty good for a boring style. Its refreshing if anything else.

Photo of DaveHS
3.53/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into my Green Flash pint glass.

A-Amber with a 1/2 inch off white head. Leaves almost no lacing.

S-Grainy, a bit sweet.The back label indicates that this is based on the Oktoberfest Marzen style lager (even though the front label calls it an "amber lager brewed with grapes.")Anyway, it smells like a typical Marzen lager.

T-Straightforward marzen lager with an almost imperceptible sweetness that can be attributed (possibly) to grapes. I'm not sure what they're trying to pull here. Calling your beer "crush" and bragging about your addition of grapes on the label should mean that I can taste the grapes. I don't. But it's a good lager. There's a nice grassy hoppiness in the finish that's growing on me as I sip.

M-Light to medium-bodied with a moderately dry finish and medium carbonation.

D-It's okay, but I can't help feeling disappointed at the lack of vinous character, considering how it is advertised.

Photo of Bfarr
3.55/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear amber with orange highlights, thin tan head and poor retention. Light biscuit malt and grape aroma. Toasty biscuit with a sweet grape finish. Thin, high carbonation with sharp tannins.

A simple and refreshing beer with a twist. There’s no off flavors and it’s clear and simple while showcasing the grapes without being overpowering. It’s nothing I could drink a lot of but it’s a nice, subtle hybrid… if you like wine as well.

Photo of Halcyondays
3.55/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a light amber with a medium white head, good retention.

S: Hint of grape must, caramel.

T: Light grape character, but a good mix the malt. Toffee, nice hop flavour.

M: Crisp, medium-bodied, biting carbonation. Mild aftertaste.

O: Nice mix of flavours. I liked what the grapes brought to the table, but this is by no means great. Just good beer.

Photo of TheSixthRing
3.66/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Pours a hazy golden amber with a white, finger width head. Fair retention, resulting in a ring of suds around the edge of the glass with a near barren surface in the center. Virtually no lacing. Lots of sediment floating around; grape must or yeast? Either way it's no bother to me.

Smell - Sweet notes of malt, honey and hints of grape. Light touches of grass.

Taste - Sweet and lightly earthy, with notes of honey. Hints of green grape sweetness mid-taste and into the finish. Mild grassy bitterness in the aftertaste help give this brew balance.

Mouthfeel - Light, thin body with moderate carbonation. Semi-dry finish.

Overall - Eh, it's a fair to good red lager. Something I'd drink again, though nothing I'd probably buy unless options were limited, and considering this brew mostly finds itself in craft brew locations the only way I imagine options would be limited is in an apocalyptic event.

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle - $2.39 at Olde Crabapple Bottle Shoppe in Alpharetta, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a golden-copper body, slightly hazy, and with a small-sized, near white head.

Smell: Toasty, caramel-sweetened maltiness in the nose paired with a touch of grape-like fruitiness and sprinkling of dried herbs.

Taste: Toasted maltiness with a fair amount of candied caramel sweetness going on. Just an additional low hint of fruitiness from the grapes, nothing more. Herbal, lightly earthy hops with a restrained bitterness. Still fairly malty on the back end with an addition of light brown sugar.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium-plus carbonation.

Overall: Why is this listed under "American Amber/Red Ale"? Good grief, people. Not great, kinda pricey for what it is, but it's still one of the better beers I've had from Napa Smith (though that's not saying a whole lot, really).

Photo of nebula1999
3.77/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tall rocky near-white colored head when poured from its bomber bottle. Fades to a thin film. Clear orange-amber liquid.

Aroma is a clean, mild with some grain. There's some "Oktoberfest" maltiness in there too, which is welcomed. After all, Napa Smith bills it as somewhat of an Ofest anyway, so what the hey. Go with it.

Taste is just what the doctor ordered. Smooth lagery maltiness upfront fading to a mild hoppy dryness. Definitely some Ofest flavorings in there, but subtle. I like this. Grape juice? Which varietals? Just curious. I guess they add to the overall smoothness of the brew.

Mouthfeel is clean, but not mouth-filling. Does not coat the mouth with any heaviness. The 6% abv is just right for this lager.

I like this beer. Pleasantly surprised for sure. Wine grape juice in a beer? My curiosity steered me towards a very nice little brew that I will return to again. Had it in the cellar for almost a year. I recommend it, and will be buying more. (This is my 25th beer review).

Photo of jaialainut
4.5/5  rDev +33.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

im no expert in grading beer, but after a few gulps i can say that this is a nice tasty beer.
it does not have a grape taste and to be honest im glad of that.
its a well balanced lager that pours a good head, i would rate this as a bit above average as far as lagers go.

Photo of BMac17
5/5  rDev +48.8%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

22 oz bomber
Pint glass

Beautiful amber lager.

Nice head retention and carbonation.

Brewed with grapes from harvest in Napa.

Clean notes of fresh cut grass, citrus zest with a touch of spice in the hops! It’s literally harvest in a bottle…of beer!!!

Great seasonal brew!

Crush Beer from Napa Smith Brewery
78 out of 100 based on 46 ratings.