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Hook & Ladder Golden Ale - Hook & Ladder Brewing Company (No. 2)

Not Rated.
Hook & Ladder Golden AleHook & Ladder Golden Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

119 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 119
Hads: 154
rAvg: 3.13
pDev: 13.74%
Wants: 2
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hook & Ladder Brewing Company (No. 2) visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
American Blonde Ale |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: cichief on 04-28-2007

No notes at this time.
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Reviews: 119 | Hads: 154
Photo of wsunate
1.56/5  rDev -50.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

The only redeeming value of this beer is that they donate 25 cents to a burn victim fund. Other than that, I just burned $5.50 on a disgusting, offensive tasting, flavorless beer. The lemon really is quite disgusting for this beer.

You really do get what you pay for. For two more dollars I'll take something local, something great. (333 characters)

Photo of Reagan1984
1.71/5  rDev -45.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

This started off as an ok review and quickly went south.

I literally noted that this was a gorgeous beer after pouring it from the bottle. There was a thick and rich 2 finger head that had so much structure it was unreal. It started to settle and stick to the side of the glass and you could tell the lacing was going to be extensive.
The beer was a light amber/gold with orange highlights. There was plenty of visible carbonation.

The aroma was what I would expect with a clear wheat aroma that was grainy/grassy and some honey notes. Nice.

Then I tasted the beer. WOW, Metallic flavor. I mean very metallic. Tastes like my finger was bleeding and I stuck it in my mouth. Doesn't really taste spoiled, just tastes terrible.

Mouthfeel - horrible.

Drinkability - None drain pour.

Sorry, not good (800 characters)

Photo of tempest
1.95/5  rDev -37.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

The beer looks good enough with a light gold body with a little white head, but this beer reeks of plastic and cholorphenols. The flavor at least has some pale malted barley and wheat in the aftertaste, but plastic and cleaning chemical notes are way too strong. The mouthfeel is crisp and light, but the drinkability suffers from the flaws. If this beer was contract brewed for me, I'd be pissed. I haven't come across a beer flawed this badly in a long time. Avoid. (467 characters)

Photo of deereless
2.21/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: As the name would lead you to believe this is golden in color, the thinnest of layer of foam, crystal clear - 3.75, Aroma barely discernible, the faint smells that I get involve grain husks and wet corn stalks = 2.50, T: Tastes like a grain infused tea, reminds me of some of the less than enticing Asian ales, really lacks much in terms of flavor - 2.00, M: Watery - 2.00, D: My second beer from Hook & Ladder and another utter failure, tastes like a very sub-par beer - 2.25 (479 characters)

Photo of smakawhat
2.24/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Are you drinking a Blonde Ale? Yeah you are.. at least you didn't buy it, ok what's this all about, into a nonic pint glass to go.

A slightly hazy pale amber yellow, lots of carbonation. Head is shocking white, foamy, seems to fall slowly. Pour makes a lot of noise and snapping. Cap manages to keep for a short while.

Bouquet is rank. Smells like bile and vomit, not pleasant at all. Gross. I am trying to find something at least worthy, and I get nearly nothing.

Taste is very lacking. No malt presence, hop, chewiness, density, horrific aftertaste highlighting the nose nicely. Slightly numbing in the aftertaste and even grainy sour. Borderline wet, but with a little bit of seltzery feel.

There is nothing to enjoy here for me. (737 characters)

Photo of joefuzz
2.32/5  rDev -25.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Twist off 12oz poured into pint glass.

Pours golden orange with almost no head, no lacing. Smells of bananna but not really picking up anything else. Tastes slightly fruity with a small amount of malt coming through, not impressed. Mouthfeel is pretty much what I expected for the style. Overall not impressed at all probably won't be seeking this one out again. (363 characters)

Photo of Gambrinus1184
2.35/5  rDev -24.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Served on-tap at Mark Steven's in Waterbury, Conn.

A: Poured a golden yellow color with a very thin head of carbonation which faded to nothingness. Looked like apple juice after a couple minutes.

S: Smells are faint, but consist of toasted barley and some mild wheat and corn aromas. No hops in the nose.

T: Cooked corn and sweet sticky malts come to the mouth initially. There really aren't too many distinct wheat flavors here. It's odd, it drinks a tad dry, but the finish is sticky and lingers.

M: Mouthfeel is light-medium bodied, but the flavor is a tad slick.

D: I had a few of these, because it was the only micro on tap besides Sam Summer, and a couple were bought for me. Otherwise, I was ready to switch it up after the first one.

I dunno how this was a wheat ale, but to me, it was more like a Bud with some more flavor and more body. If you're gonna go Hook & Ladder, stick to the Backdraft Brown. This should be reserved for washing down food, or serving to some fireman buddies for kitsch value. (1,016 characters)

Photo of auxiliary
2.38/5  rDev -24%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

appearance - Poured yellow, very small head on the top.

smell - Some smells og grain, not much here.

taste - Has some sweetness here, mostly taste of grains and some hops.

mouthfeel - Light body.

drinkability - Says it is a Pale Weat beer, but seems like a macro beer. Was very watery and light. Could be better. (319 characters)

Photo of dedrinker
2.4/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Gold-ish color with a small white head. The aroma was somewhat pleasant with a clean kilned barley aroma topped by some light earthy hops. The flavor was similar in the malt department, but there was an overpowering soapy flavor that me and my partner just could not get past. The soapy taste dominated all the way through the finish. Medium body. Had to pour it out. (367 characters)

Photo of ktrillionaire
2.43/5  rDev -22.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Old tick... (the first of a few hundred in my backlog.)

First off, am I to understand that the brewery is called Hook & Ladder, but wishes to further self-gloss as "No. 2?" Hmmm. "Number two"... is that second best (aka head loser) or does it reference fecal matter? Either way, a brainiac must've been responsible.

A - It pours a pale, fizzy gold with an unspectacular white cap.

S - Not much to the nose, except a bit of pale malt and maybe, wait, is that hops? I don't think it was, actually. False alarm. My bad.

T - The flavor is as the nose suggests, vaguely 'beer-y', with some light grain and green hop flavor. I am not a fan of a beer like this. It seems like the flavor has been sucked out.

M - Thinner, intended to be refreshing, partially successful.

D - Mehhh. (779 characters)

Photo of antlerwrestler19
2.45/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured light golden yellow, very clear, with a very small head that disappeared quickly - no lacing. The smell is funky like lemon or orange zest that has been left out awhile with a mellow malt bill and no hop aroma. Flavor follows aroma pretty well - it has an almost funky yeast product coming out that I cannot pinpoint - not good but not bad. The mouthfeel is pretty light - almost too easy to drink down without a whole lot of enjoyment. I would choose this beer over bud light or the like if need be but I was given this beer to me by my father and don't really feel the need to buy more on my next visit to MN.

Cheers (626 characters)

Photo of callmemickey
2.53/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: cloudy golden body... off white head that lingers

S: wheat and yeast... nothing noteworthy pops out

T: the taste follows suit... wheat and yeast with a hint of spice

M: Light bodied... easy on the mouth

D: Goes down well.. not likely to drink again (255 characters)

Photo of timtim
2.53/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

pale golden with a white head that diminished quickly, but left some okay lace. smell was dominated by wheat, which lent a little spiciness, but was not very pleasant or enjoyable to simply breath in. taste was watery, wheaty and a little hop and spice came through. very light and watery. not nearly as spritzy, spicy, citrusy, or refreshing as a wheat beer should be. i was told it was 3.5% abv, and it was much harder to get through than expected. strongly not reccommended. (477 characters)

Photo of allergictomacros
2.56/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Clear gold with a sticky head of white foam. Nose is floral and lemony hops, light maltiness, and some grass. Don't like the mouthfeel in this - fizz seems a bit harsh and the body a bit watery. Flavour is ... well ... low. Some muted bitterness, dry husky grain and a bit of a lemon hop. Somewhat astringent. Good looking beer, but not much else good to say about this one. (374 characters)

Photo of TheManiacalOne
2.58/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

On-tap at East Ave Café in Pawtucket, RI on 9/13/07, served in a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep gold color with a medium white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of wheat, light malts, a touch of hops and some fruit.

T: The taste is light and decently balanced, with flavors of wheat, pale hops and some tart fruit (apricot & raspberries maybe?). The malt character has some substance but is on the thin side. The after-taste is slightly bitter.

M: Crisp but not very smooth, light-to-medium body, medium-to-heavy carbonation, very clean finish.

D: Not too tasty, goes down ok, not filling at all, not the best representation of style, it's a decent beer but I really didn't like it too much and would not pick it again. (782 characters)

Photo of Bowdoinbeerboy
2.58/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance- Hazy amber yellow color with little head or lacing.

Smell- Strong malt in nose with a hint of sweetness, not hoppy at all.

Taste- Very little flavor, beer is way to crisp. Strangely enough I'm tasting roasted almonds, a strange combination for a lighter beer. Also there is a big flavor hole in the middle of this, the taste completely disappears mid-way through.

Mouthfeel- Pretty average, not water but not chompy either.

Drinkability- An interesting offering, no one of my favorites but not awful either. (523 characters)

Photo of Staab016
2.59/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Sampled a 12oz bottle into a glass.

A - cloudy and golden with an average head. There was little to no lacing on the glass

S - The first sniff of the beer was confusing, and I wasn't able to tell if I liked the smell or not. I was able to able to pin down a lemon scent but there was an unappealing malty/sweet scent that was overwhelming.

T - Taste didn't blow my mind, but wasn't terrible either. Definitly a super malty beer with little to no hops at all. The lemon was again apparent, and more pleasing than it was in the nose.

M - Watery and thin. Picking up flavors was difficult due to how quickly this beer was gone.

D - I had one and moved on... There's still more in my fridge that will probably be saved for a friend to review. (744 characters)

Photo of Drew966
2.68/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Hook & Ladder Golden Ale pours a golden yellow with a white head from a brown twelve ounce bottle. There isn't much to the aroma, a little bit of malt. There isn't much to the flavor either, a little bit of malt and that's it. Easy enough to drink, but not especially compelling. (279 characters)

Photo of philipquarles
2.71/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle. Pours clear gold with a surprisingly large, fluffy white head. Smells slightly grainy with some off-putting metallic notes. Pretty faint. The taste is similarly non-descript. Hints of malt, some slight tang from the wheat, but all-in-all, not a lot going on. Light-medium body. Unoffensive, but so characterless that one doesn't want to drink it. (359 characters)

Photo of Gmann
2.73/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clear golden color with a small but dense egg shell colored head that dissipated into a light cap. The aroma is sweet with grains and honey, some cookied veggie smell. Overall kind of odd. The taste is of cooked veggies, quite grainy, a stale grassy or tea hop bitterness can be detected towards the end. A jumble of off-putting flavors. The feel is light with fizzy carbonation, finishes malty/grainy sweet. Not sure what they were going for with the brew. It seems to be a failed attempt at a Kolsch. (510 characters)

Photo of bboven
2.74/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

This is what I'm supposed to crave if I want an ice-cold beer. After a 2.4 mile hike with 50 camp kids, we'll see...

Great deep golden color with a finger of head and rings of lacing all the way down the glass. Crystal clear.

Smells like a macro with a lot of diacytal. But then, it is a bit warmer than ice-cold.

Taste is the same; diacytal dominates a slightly malty body.

Highly carbonated and very very drying. Definitely encourages a bunch of sips.

I gave it a shot, and it's not bad if you can get past the diacytal and pretend it's flavor. I'd drink it over macros, but being as it's priced the same as all the great craft beers on the shelf, I think I'll pass on paying for this again. (698 characters)

Photo of deltatauhobbit
2.79/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a golden yellow with a bit of haze.

Smell is the least savory of the features. The combination of a slight hop smell and other aromas does not meld well that leaves the nose a bit off-putting.

Taste is decent and the beer is light to drink but has enough hops to be pleasing, little more than usual carbonation though. (327 characters)

Photo of matjack85
2.82/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I found this single 12oz brown bottle at the Binny's in Glen Ellyn, IL for $1.39. There was no freshness date.

The beer poured a hazy straw yellow color and made a 2 finger white head that lasted several minutes. It left lots of spotty lacing on the glass.

Not much to the smell - faint citrus is all I get.

"Lite" is the key word to describe this beer. It's lite on malty sweetness, lite on hop bitterness, and lite on lemony citrus. It has some flavor, just not enough of it.

This is a weak and watery beer. The carbonation level is decent but the drinkability is only so-so. There's just not enough flavor. I did discover that this will taste better as it warms up a bit, so don't drink it ice cold right out of the fridge. (730 characters)

Photo of becktone
2.82/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From notes 10-28-08

Eye: Golden coin in color and the beer is nice and clear. Head formation and retention are super poor. It looks worse than algae growning over a pool of shit water. After pouring the Lighter from Hook and Ladder I'd expect a much better eye appeal from a beer that has less adjunct and more flavor.

Nose: Huge buttery notes, over the top in my opinion. In addition to that there are fruity esters floating round in there. Coupled with a caramel malt sweetness the previous two aromas combine to create a cloyingly sweet aroma. Not quite what I'm looking for in any beer. The aroma is potent, however, its just too much.

Tongue: Big caramel notes, fruity esters, and buttery. If it weren't for the hops here to give some balance it'd be pretty much undrinkable. Hop flavor is just about non-existent. Pretty uncomplicated in flavor, and really nothing outstanding about it. Nothing that really makes me want to drink another one. Nothing that damns it and nothing that makes me want to celebrate it.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability: Medium-light body and fizzy. Finish is pretty dry. Average nothing more. Easy enough to drink, though I don't think that I'd want to drink more of it. Just nothing worth coming back to. (1,239 characters)

Photo of budgood1
2.83/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

pours out a slightly hazed golden colour with a minimal mead and subsequent minimal lace. sweet toffeeish aroma...a bit buttery showing off some grainy and sugary notes. upon tasting...more characteristics of the golden ale style present themselves...sweet maltiness, cloying at times; a strange spicy boozy note i wasn't expecting...and more buttery diacetyl that really isn't all that welcome. minimal hopping...just enough to notice...and no real bitterness. bigger body than most other golden ales with a slick and sugary mouthfeel. drinkability is ok...i'm drinking on a very warm day in spring after work and it's having a hard time hitting the spot.

overall i would say that since this is a delicate style, with subtle nuances being most important...this is a heavy handed stab at the style and misses the point. oh well...i didn't have to pay for this. (861 characters)

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Hook & Ladder Golden Ale from Hook & Ladder Brewing Company (No. 2)
73 out of 100 based on 119 ratings.