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Fat Tire Amber Ale - New Belgium Brewing

Not Rated.
Fat Tire Amber AleFat Tire Amber Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

6,444 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 6,444
Reviews: 1,785
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 14.76%
Wants: 133
Gots: 619 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
New Belgium Brewing visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 10-07-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 6,444 | Reviews: 1,785 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of goatxpower


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

So, I was first obsessed by, then burnt out on this beer, and I've poo-pooed it for years now. But, I thought I'd give the little guy another chance, so I picked up a bottle of it tonight

A- Nice amber red. thin, fast dispersing head. Crystal clear.

S- Real toasty, Molasses, German dark bread.

T- Nice maltyness, flavors of toast and biscuits. Slightly nutty. Barely perceivable hops. Saltines?

M- Light, but has some lingering body. The taste of biscuits stays on the tongue long after the sip is done.

D- I'd like to nominate Fat Tire as the new standard for American session beers. This goes down incredibly easy, and packs a lot of flavor. It's not a flavor that I'm always in the mood for, but neither is Pliny the Elder or Mikheller. Doesn't deserve all the "meh" that it often gets from beer snobs (notice I said "snob" and not "geek").

05-20-2009 08:44:21 | More by goatxpower
Photo of mattster


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Opened 12 fluid ounce bottle (best before 18 April 2008) and poured into snifter.

Pours an intense foamy head of 1", dies down to thick bubbly layer across top of brew. Some lacing on sides of glass. Nice dark amber ale, good clarity - some bubbles rising through brew.

Malty and slight yeast on sniffer, some herbal and a bit of cassis. Palate notes are nice and clean, not hops or bitterness. Follow through with nose. Bubbles are active, but not too overwhelming. Nice Medium body, good finish.

03-20-2008 07:31:08 | More by mattster
Photo of far333


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Pours a light honey color, with a beige head that rises up and settles quickly. Subtle aroma of lightly toasted malt, a bit flowery, some honey and fruit. Flavor is unassuming, lightly toasted malt, no hops to speak of, bits of honey and butterscotch, but not much else. Smooth mouthfeel, even carbonation. Good with a meal because it doesn't overpower any flavor but accompanies many pretty well. It's just a solid basic beer with good malt flavor, very drinkable.

07-15-2005 02:16:27 | More by far333
Photo of LordofTime25


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Pours a nice clear amber color with a big off-white head that last till your done drinking with good lacing.

You can smell lots of caramel malts with a subtle hop spice aroma.

You can taste the caramel malts as you drink and it finishes with a spicy bitterness too it.

A medium bodied beer with a average carbonation!

A delicious beer!

10-31-2008 22:38:03 | More by LordofTime25
Photo of studentofbeer


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

New Belgium's Fat Tire is from what I understand one of the great successes of craft brewing in America, with a decent amount of crossover appeal between beer nerds/geeks/snobs and your average drinker. I've also heard it is an overrated brew that's nothing special. When I found some on my recent trip to Texas, I had to give it a shot.

The bottle is very nice--the raised lip at the base of the neck recalls Westmalle. The beer poured out into a straight-sided imperial pint a brilliantly clear honey orange with an almost pink hue. The shortish white head died off pretty fast, but the color in the sunlight is pretty impressive.

A lot of roasted, toasty flavors came through the nose, with banana, roasted nut, burnt malt, apple and soap also figuring in the aroma. It was an interesting scent but not completely inviting.

I let this one sit out a bit so serving temperature was probably more than 50 degrees-- right around cellar temp. The first sip was almost too roasty, with not many flavors peaking through. Coming back for my next sip, a bit larger this time, I found a mouthful of candy sugar sweetness giving way to the darker roasted flavor, which leaves a tobacco taste in the back of the throat.

A bready malt flavor and hints of orange shows up in the middle and in the aftertaste, and the rather thick, oily body coats the mouth.

I had this beer a couple of times during the week in Texas and it didn't taste as good as it did today. I think each of the other times I tasted it the beer was too cold, leaving the roasted flavors intact but killing off the sweet sugar and bread, which made for a pretty unbalanced beer. At cellar temperature it's actually rather tasty, and would make an excellent session beer. Especially for an amber--not one of my favorite styles--Fat Tire does a nice job. The candy sugar/bready tastes put the beer somewhere between Belgium and England, a nice compromise for an everyday offering.

The roasted, toasty flavors still feel a bit oppressive and the slippery mouthfeel lasts a bit too long, but overall it's an enjoyable drink especially at a warmer temperature. Not sure what I would pair this with, although I think it would have been a better choice with the Pad Thai I had last night than the brewery's Biere de Mars, which was overwhelmed pretty fast by the dish.

I can see why this beer has its supporters and detractors, and while it may not be intensely complex as what one might expect from a Belgian pale ale--for instance there isn't much in terms of yeast flavor--it's a good beer that I wouldn't mind drinking for a session, especially if I was feeling burned out on the pale ale American superhop bandwagon of beers.

06-01-2004 13:03:26 | More by studentofbeer
Photo of kwill


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Pours a light amber with a small head that disappeared rather quickly. Smell is like all good amber/reds with a bit of hops.

Taste is a well balanced amber with a bit of hops finishing of the flavor. Mouthfeel has a good bit of carbonation that finishes of clean and a bit dry.

This is one of those classic beers that you can find everywhere, everybody can drink and enjoy, is fairly cheap, and makes a great party drink since you can drink several of them easily. I usually have a few of these in the fridge for all of my friends that haven't quite taken the full plunge into beer advocacy.

04-01-2003 18:53:19 | More by kwill


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Bomber to pint glass with a best before date of Jan 22, 2010, exactly 1 day after I drank it. (Review from a backlog of notes.)

A: Average size off white foamy head. (Much bigger on my second pour.) Good lacing, good retention, very clear orange body. Multiple streamers of carbonation all along the glass. Very attractive.

S: Strong biscuity malt character. Bready, doughy. Sweet malts. Caramel notes. Grainy. Heavy toasted toffee aromas and flavors. Hops are in the background, (probably due to the bottle's age) but who says all amber ales need to be hop forward? The aroma was pretty solid nonetheless. maybe drinking this beer at the end of the 'best before' date was a happy mistake.

T: Taste follows nose. Hints of peanuts and marcona almonds. Slightly lacking in complexity, depth of flavor and any kind of intensity for that matter. Well balanced, I guess, in that sense. Much more malty than hoppy.

M: Finishes dry with a short flavor duration. Medium-light body mouthfeel, a little too thin on the tongue for my preference. Well carbonated.

D: The Fat Tire is an easy drinker and it would definitely pair well with many types of food. Pretty good, but certainly not wowing.

03-13-2010 13:55:09 | More by FeDUBBELFIST
Photo of yamar68


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Ruby gold body, plenty of paper white head that laces well.

Very clean aromas... loads of sweet malts, hard water, simple syrups, brown ale notes, nothing too aggressive, very approachable.

Super smooth. That's this beer's mantra... complete balance. Some almond notes, stale coffee, dried hop presence, brown sugar. So easy to drink.

11-06-2012 05:27:28 | More by yamar68
Photo of endincolorado


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Clear amber with a huge white head that settles gradually and leaves lots of lace.

Sweet caramel malt with subtle hop bitterness to balance.

Pleasantly balanced, focused flavors of crisp caramel malt and a clean hop crispness.

Medium body. Creamy and satisfying with appropriate carbonation

Perfectly balanced. Focused flavors. Quite drinkable.

01-30-2010 23:45:12 | More by endincolorado
Photo of SurlyDuff


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

New Belgium's flagship beer. I've had this countless time, just getting around to a review.

Not just a typical amber, for NB has a tendacy to almost belgianize it with their propietary yeast.

Biscuity malt presence, with some honey/caramel sweetness. Good medium body with a light fruity and sweet floral/nectar hop presence.

A superb session beer in every respect. The perfect fall-back, and in my opinion it's better in bottles than on tap, maybe something to do with conditioning?

05-27-2008 00:28:17 | More by SurlyDuff
Photo of fourplayed


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Have had this from the bottle and on tap...I like both.

Clear, nice medium red-amber color. 1 finger head.

Smells of spices, hops, mild fruity sweetness.

Taste is good. nice blend of Hops, spice with nice mild amount of fruit sweetness. An interesting blend.

Good amount of carbonation, not too heavy, goes down nicely.

Drinks very well. Again an interesting blend of flavors. Hops, spices, fruit...can't compare it's taste to other beers I've tried.

Overall a good brew. I can drink this "one after another". Not too heavy. I find myself ordering it on tap quite often while out for the evening. Worth trying, worth buying!

10-11-2010 20:40:36 | More by fourplayed
Photo of NODAK


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Had this in a bottle at the hotel bar while waiting to go out and have quite a few more beers. Aroma was malty and somewhat sweet. I sensed a bit of biscuity aroma as well.

Mouthfeel was a bit creamy.

But the taste was quite nice. Crisp upfront with faint piney hops that quickly give way to a biscuity and toasty body. This beer is certainly one of a kind flavor profile wise, I haven't had any quite like it. The finish is pretty clean with only a little malt sweetness lingering.

A very tasty beer, and one that I'd recommend as an entry beer for somebody who only drinks macros. A little adventerous for those who don't drink much craft beer, but tasty for the rest of us.

06-24-2009 00:06:55 | More by NODAK
Photo of pweis909


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

22oz bomber.

Bright translucent amber-orange with a head. Not highly hopped, this beer features toasty malts. The toasty notes were subtly apparent by smell, but more apparent in the taste. It is not sweetly malty, however, and actually has a crisp, dry finish that makes it highy drinkable. It's a well-balanced beer with crowd-pleasing appeal.

11-26-2007 14:44:24 | More by pweis909
Photo of punky796


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Poured from the bottle into a tulip glass.

A - Pours a light amber-red, about a finger of medium-thick head. Head disappears in short time but leaves very nice lacing.

S - Bread/biscuit comes through first, with possibly honey and some hops. Malts dominate, though.

T - Bread/biscuit again, malts, honey or caramel, can't tell which.

M - Well-balanced, not just a heavy blanket of malt or just a tongue-stab of hops. Bright finish.

O - Solid, well-balanced ale. Would have it again.

11-25-2012 20:10:54 | More by punky796
Photo of cameraready


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

A: Pours golden amber color. Lots of light tan head that leaves nice lacing on the glass.

S: Has nice malt smell and hops with hints of pine.

T: Mild bitterness with minor aftertaste.

MF: Smooth, dry, slight carbonation and medium body.

Overall very drinkable and refreshing. Good beer for after a hard day of work.

Notes: Poured from 22oz bottle into glass. Drank 5-30-09 from bottle dated 14Aug09.

06-06-2009 02:24:49 | More by cameraready
Photo of garymuchow


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Obtained from a friend of mine who brought it back from Colo. when he was on a business trip. Thanks John!
Initially a pretty standard pale malt aroma with a pinch of flowery hops. This was followed by a very pleasing bisquit aroma. Head leaves too quickly. Color is a nice orange amber and very clear. Flavor is very much like the aroma with the bisquit quality leaving a very pleasant lingering. Not much complexity beyond that. Good balance of carbonation with a fair amount of fullness from the carbonation. Medium to thinner mouthfeel. Slightly rich.
This is an enjoyable and unique beer. Well crafted and highly drinkable. It's popularity doesn't surprised me, it's unique without being excessive.

07-10-2003 12:19:48 | More by garymuchow
Photo of marksto


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

This is the flagship brew from New Belgium, a very popular ale and I can understand why. It has enough quality to endear beer enthusiasts and is yet approachable enough to appeal to novices or those who dont normally drink craft beer.

It's flavor and aroma are dominated by major biscuity maltiness. Hop rates are not high but balance well to accent the malt. A very drinkable, refreshing ale.

The label features a Fat Tire cruiser bike. A visit to the brewery will find a bunch of these bikes parked outside as employees are awarded them and frequently ride them to work - cool!

12-28-2005 03:37:06 | More by marksto
Photo of Zraly


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

This is a friendly ale. When I use the term "friendly" I am implying that most beer lovers, malt lovers, hop heads and plain ol' enthusiasts can find something enjoyable about this beer. (Or at least I can see how that could be possible).

The appearance is a light-nut brown with a tinge of orange. The head poured light and fluffy.

The main flavor is a toasty-malt tone. I smell, as well as taste, a little bit o' fruit upfront. The hops finish rather unassumingly...leaving this beer tasting rather herbally fresh.

There is nothing outstanding or over-the-top about this beer, but that is what makes it highly drinkable. It's neither here nor there...it just is. The Tao of Ale.

Grab a few friends and sling a few back...you'll have a good time.

12-06-2002 17:44:53 | More by Zraly
Photo of pezoids


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Poured with a thin to almost no head. Bright and glowing orange-amber color with a decent amount of carbonation in the body. The aroma is cloying with honey and molasses in the forefront and sweet grapefruit in the back. The taste is malty, fruity and lemony that leans towards the sweet side, although a floral honey bitterness is detected. Overall - solid body with a complimentary bitterness. Always happy to have New Belgium's flagship brew. A Classic.

11-17-2005 10:30:09 | More by pezoids
Photo of archaeofreak


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Poured from a standard bottle into a glass. Excellent hoppy aroma and flavor profile. Pours smoothly with a deep reddish brown color, with excellent head retention and superior lacing on the glass. Strong mouth-feel and nice bite. Hops might be over-whelming to some. Overall, quite enjoyable as a six pack, but more than 6 might be too much hops.

06-24-2011 18:29:00 | More by archaeofreak
Photo of I3eck

North Carolina

3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Bottle -> Wine Glass

A: Crystal clear orange/amber color, nice 1/2" beige/blonde head which dissipates quickly, minimal/spotty lacing.
S: Toast, toasted malts, chocolate, caramel, crème brulee.
T: Malty, chocolaty/mocha, slightly hopped, floral.
M: Light to medium body, light CO2, nice slightly bitter hop finish.
O: I've had this beer many times before and felt it was time to do an official review - as I am new to this and this is now #8 for me. This is a good go-to for me. Great drinkability for any season or occasion and is a pretty solid beer. In the past I have paired it with a sidekick of orange cognac and the two play off each other quite well - it is a great chocolate/orange combo.

10-04-2013 21:10:41 | More by I3eck
Photo of CountJustinian

New York

3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Appearance: Hard to tell drinking out of a bottle... While not ideal, obviously, it seemed like a better option than the available plastic cups.

Smell: Mild hints of peppery malt, not especially noteworthy. Made me want to continue, but more out of curiosity than from anything it offered up.

Taste: Maltier than the smell suggested, and thankfully so. Early, bready, malt flavor, with a distinct earthy undercurrent.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, with better than average carbonation. Starts strong and finishes stronger, a little thin in between. Clean malt aftertaste.

Drinkability: Very easy to drink. Any complexity it has gets lost after the first one or two, but no reason not to continue. It's a shame New Belgium doesn't distribute this to Northeast U.S.

10-26-2010 18:53:32 | More by CountJustinian
Photo of Jdmpolk


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Sadly where I'm from we can't get New Belgium, so I always try to pick up a six pack when I can/

A- Moderate head that dissipates quickly. Moderate lacing with three or four lines on the pint glass I poured it into. Color resembles that of peach tea exhibiting a reddish pink hue.

S- Primarily rich malt initial smell with a very slight hint of hops appearing at the end.

T- Nice dry biscuit taste makes itself known immediately. Like in the smell a slight hint of hops bring up the rear, and make themselves most know in the aftertaste.

M- Clean feeling, but the flavors of malt cling to the inside of the mouth after it's gone.

D- Very light and easy to drink.

10-19-2010 00:28:22 | More by Jdmpolk
Photo of meatmallet


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

Appearance: Copper color with a thick white head. Lots of lacing around my pilsner glass.

Smell: Smell is very sweet. Has a caramel aroma as well as malt and some biscuit aromas.

Taste: Taste is sweet up front with a bitter malt finish. A little dry.

Mouthfeel and drinkability: I love this beer and it has been a staple for me lately.

08-15-2008 23:05:33 | More by meatmallet
Photo of haver


3.98/5  rDev +10.9%

I drank a lot of Fat Tire in 1994 when I was living in boulder, Colorado. This Beer is hard to come by in Ohio, so when I have a friend going to Chicago I ask for a favor. This Beer is very drinkable, and the smell of cherry scones always come to mind. Hop heads will be disappointed because the malt is up front. This is a great intro Beer for people who want to delve into craft beer. Smooth, refreshing, very good!

11-15-2008 01:33:45 | More by haver
Fat Tire Amber Ale from New Belgium Brewing
81 out of 100 based on 6,444 ratings.