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Avalanche Ale - Breckenridge Brewery

Not Rated.
Avalanche AleAvalanche Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,091 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,091
Reviews: 429
rAvg: 3.25
pDev: 16.31%
Wants: 8
Gots: 81 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Breckenridge Brewery visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  4.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-16-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,091 | Reviews: 429 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ffejherb
2.9/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

12oz. bottle into shaker pint glass on 2/19/08.

A - Clear honey amber/orange body with tiny white head that quickly diminished into a thin film. Modest amount of carbonation. Little head retention or noticeable lacing.

S - Sweet caramel malt, honey and a unique floral/perfumy hop bouquet.

T - Flavor is sweet at the beginning, but turns slightly bitter toward the finish with the same floral/perfumy hop character as the aroma. Some bready malt rears its head in the finish as well.

M - Kind of flat on the palate with very little carbonation. Texture is slightly syrupy, but ultimately watery and thin. Finish is mildly bitter, with the floral/perfumy hops coating the back of the tongue.

D - This one's a little odd. Hop profile caught me off guard and the mouthfeel is pretty weak. Not too bad, but I wouldn't go out of the way to get more.

ffejherb, Feb 20, 2008
Photo of scaliasux
2.03/5  rDev -37.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 1.5

Appearance - Medium to dark brownish red. Slightly hazy. Short off-white head.

Smell - Sweet caramel malt. Faint citrusy hops.

Taste - Light malt flavor. Stronger, but funky citrusy hops. Flavors are not very strong, but seem a little off. Kinda like a sour lemon-lime drink thats gone bad.

Mouthfeel - Medium. Crisp.

Drinkability - I wouldn't ask for another of these.

scaliasux, Feb 20, 2008
Photo of JayQue
3.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice session beer. Pours a clear reddish amber with a small-medium white head that fades fast. Leaves good lacing on the glass. Very mild aroma probably malty but not much definition.

Tastes fairly good, crisp with a little hops bitterness up front and then a very mild sweet malty taste to follow.

Mouthfeel is ok, crisp beer not too watery but not that rich either.

Would be a good session beer. Tasty enough to drink large quantities. Low enough abv to be sessionable. Not particularly memorable, as far as seeking it out.

JayQue, Feb 18, 2008
Photo of MerkinMan
4.08/5  rDev +25.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful and clear out of the bottle with nice head.

Smell is sweet. Makes me want to drink it. Many beers I have been reviewing lately have been weak in the smell department, but not this one.

Good taste. Nice and even. A great session beer. I am glad to say this is named appropriately as an amber. Too many American beers are named the wrong style and give me the wrong impression.

Mouthfeel is nice and velvety smooth. Not too heavy.

I could drink the hell out of this. I will likely buy a sixer of this one.

MerkinMan, Feb 16, 2008
Photo of theformula
3.6/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beer #32 in my 366 Days of Beer Quest, tasted on 2/1. My second Breckenridge offering, the first was 471 Small Batch IPA.

A: Reddish-amber body into a tulip glass, w/ a white head of 2 fingers, decent retention. Great clarity and soapy lacing left over.

S: Pleasant, but nothing overly complicated or complex. Mostly toasted barley grains w/ chestnuts and a pretty solid caramel backbone. Faint cherry notes as well.

M: Nice for the style. Light body, firm & smooth. Very crisp and refreshing.

T: This is a traditional amber and nothing spectacular, but it's tasty. Lightly sweet caramel malts, cherry, raw sugar and of course that toasted grain character which is the most pronounced flavor. Hops need to be more assertive.

D: Don't expect extreme or unique here, but it's good. A solid and very sessionable beer on a hot day, but there's many better examples out there. Worth a shot.

theformula, Feb 15, 2008
Photo of prototypic
3.4/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: It pours a clear, amber color with a foamy one and half finger head. At best, retention and lacing were pretty average.

Smell: It's predominantly grainy in smell. There are some secondary toffee malt and citrus grapefruit aromas. Hops are very faint.

Taste: Much more crisp than I expected. Grainy flavor again is the primary feature. Toffee malts give it a sweet flavor. Hops are more noticeable in taste, but far from strong. They do balance it out pretty well.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's light bodied, crisp, and refreshing. Carbonation is good. Drinkability is definitely above average. This would actually be pretty nice on a hot day. It's worth a try.

prototypic, Feb 13, 2008
Photo of hops4me
3.73/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance was deep amber about two steps away from brown. Thin head quickly settled back into beer. Smelled toasty, vanallia, and caramel. No real hop aroma to speak of. Tasted very close to how it smelled with a hint of chocolate and bitterness in the aftertaste. Bitterness was just enought to balance it out. Body was light. Overall, pretty good. Because of its light body and no flavor profile being overbearing, this would make a good thirst quencher if you are looking for a little more beer then the wheats and blondes. So, obviously the drinkablility is good.

hops4me, Jan 22, 2008
Photo of patsalvaggio
3.53/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Amber in color, A bit cloudy, with decent head

Aroma: Smelled sweet,notes of vanilla and molasses

Mouthfeel: Thin, but not light a happy medium

Taste: Not very Hoppy, pretty balanced,Not too heavy or over bearing like some winter ales are.

Drinkability: I could drink quite a few of these it is pretty well balanced and easy to drink.

patsalvaggio, Jan 11, 2008
Photo of mualphapiper
3.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Very nice amber or dark gold color. Nice head for a bottle, thick and somewhat off-white.

S: Nice, fruity and flowery. A little bit of dark cherry, maybe a little levender.

T: A little too hoppy for an amber ale. Not enough malt to balance the hops, almost like a thin IPA.

M: Rather watery, a little too pure for an ale.

D: Meh

mualphapiper, Jan 10, 2008
Photo of ZimZamZoom
3.73/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A clear copper color with a short-lived whitish head. Lacing was not in the picture at all here.

Aroma is earthy and bready malt. Very primitive, almost grainy in nature. Taste is sweet with malt, thick and earthy, with some hops appearing late as the beer finishes slightly bitter.

This Amber has some body to it, almost heavy with a pretty good feel. Interestingly it could trick you into thinking you're having a draft. I could dirnk another but I wouldn't session it much past that.

ZimZamZoom, Jan 05, 2008
Photo of mattster
3.03/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured 12 oz bottle into Nonic glass. No date available.

Pours a nice head of 1" that dissipates to a layer of fine lace. Color is more amber than red.

Smell is of malt, somewhat toasty and sweet. Flavor is nice, but nothing outstanding. Good clean finish, no aftertaste.

mattster, Jan 05, 2008
Photo of tonistruth
3.63/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- amber to copper in color with a foamy off white head about 1 finger tall, good retention

S- much fruity esters, toffee, very very subtle hints of grapefruit

T- fruity esters from malts dominant the palate, some toasted grain and apricot flavors find spots to pop up in there as well

M- smooth and easy going

D- obviously a brew made to session and appeal to a wide variety of drinkers including the macro crowd....and they pull if off very well, nothing offensive and a easy drinking, sessionable amber ale

tonistruth, Dec 29, 2007
Photo of linecook12
2.35/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a light amber color with thin white head which disappears if you blink. Aroma is fairly yeasty with some biscuit notes. Taste is of clean toasted malt with no hop flavor but with more enough bitterness to support an amber style. These flavors die off as quickly as head does. Mouthfeel is not rich, but is still sturdy enough to support the flavors coming through. Overall, it is just a run of the mill average amber with no obvious frills or flaws. However this beer is still perfectly drinkable but there are many other amber ales out there that beat the pants off this one.


linecook12, Dec 29, 2007
Photo of dmamiano
3.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep copper color..very clear and clean looking.
Small off white head that goes away quickly. Lacing clings to the glass as the head fades.
Very sweet in the nose. Bready with a touch of hops.
Taste is malty with a good mouthfeel and a bitter ending.
Taste of sweet malts. Nicely balanced.
Pretty good beer.

dmamiano, Dec 24, 2007
Photo of Dalem
2.05/5  rDev -36.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Good strawberry blonde color with an average amount of bubble rising from the bottom of the glass up to a quickly gone head. A faint grainy scent that smelled like a standard marco really more than anything else. Y'know the drill...not much there. It just smells like, you know, beer. Nothing off putting but lacking character or allure.
The first thing I notice in the taste is, well, not very much. Just thin. Very (and I mean very) slight maltiness and what there even is of it, just add a metallic taste to what seems a watery concoction in the first place. A hint of sour apple comes through towards the end that is, I guess for the lack of a better word, a clean finish but that finish comes from the fact that the beer is boring to begin with. I'll be passing on this one in the future.

Dalem, Dec 21, 2007
Photo of Gehrig
3.18/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

For the first beverage from Breckenridge that I've tried, I'm not overly impressed with Avalanche--not bad, but nothing exceptional. The pour was mediocre, with a razor-thin comb-over head atop an amber body--nice color, negligible head. Little accosts the nose--a but of fruit, perhaps honey, and the taste is not bad. The fruit comes through, a slightly grainy hopped taste. It's intriguing, but left me wanting more to deal with. The mouthfeel is a mix of smooth, somewhat hopped taste, combined with too little carbonation--a nice taste with a rather flat texture, ultimately disappointing.

All in all, OK, but not one I'll choose again.

Gehrig, Dec 07, 2007
Photo of revwib
2.3/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a pint glass.
A - 1 inch head. Deep orange color. Slight lacing around the glass.

S - Doesn't smell particularly good. A little bready, but generally unpleasant.

T - Not particularly good. Watery, not much flavor at all.

M - Not much carbonation.

D - I could drink a few of these, but I wouldn't recommend it.

I wouldn't pay for another one, and I'd only drink a few if it were free.

revwib, Dec 04, 2007
Photo of Cyberkedi
4.45/5  rDev +36.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

This dark ale pours a very nice dark golden brown with a decent tan head. Aroma is spicy and hoppy with some malt hints. Flavor is malty and spicy, with a little bit of a hop bite and plenty of malty smoothness. This is a delicious and very drinkable beer, perfect for a cold night.

Cyberkedi, Nov 17, 2007
Photo of dakeller80
2.88/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Appearance: Poured into pint glass. . .thin (2mm) head dissipated into very thin, sparse lacing. . .almost no webbing on side of glass. Beautiful clear orange-amber color. Almost no haze

Smell: picked up on faint sulfur smell, "ashy" at first. Very faint grassy hops. Some apricot too.

Taste: Sulfur comes through in the taste. . .seems almost more like a British pale. Fairly balanced. . can't pick up an malt or hop dominance. I wonder what hops were used. . .very grassy and "stale" tasting. Almost "watery" tasting. . .could benefit from slightly higher alcohol

Mouthfeel: Thin. Watery. Despite lack of substantial lacing and absolutely no head. . .carbonation seems high.

Drinkability: This is a drinkable in a sense owing to its low alcohol and rather muted flavor profile. However, nothing much of interest here. Tastes more like a British pale but not a very good one. . .maybe I just don't like American ambers.

dakeller80, Nov 03, 2007
Photo of jackorain
3.05/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap at the Sheraton Four Points in Littleton.

A-Looks like a nice beer. Amber color, clear as a bell. Real nice tan head. Nice lace and retention.

S- Biscuit malt, doughy, no hops found here.

T-Caramel malt, biscuit malt, some mild bitterness in the middle. Yeasty. Nothing real substantial here.

M-light to moderate body, fizzy carbonation belies nice head.

D-not much

jackorain, Oct 23, 2007
Photo of NitroGen
2.2/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

P: 12 ox Brown Longneck Bottle that after staring at the back label see that it was brewed on the fourth week of April..hopefully of this year…a bit under 6 months ago.

A: Pours very clear amber with a light head that quickly disappears with a wee bit of a foam collar. Just a few bubbles rising to the top.

S: Very light malt and a bit of grain.

T: Carbonation walks on the tongue a bit but found it very thin with only a few notes of flavor and then gone and quickly forgotten.

M: Not bad, not outstanding …just a pretty ordinary beer that although not unpleasant does not stand out.

D: If offered I would drink it without a qualm as it is a safe drink, but not memorable or one to mention in conversation

NitroGen, Oct 20, 2007
Photo of pmcadamis
2.33/5  rDev -28.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Picked this up with my buddy Ben at a grocery store in Fort Collins.

A - Clear deeply tinted amber ale with a nice one finger rocky head. Some nice lace is left on the side of my pint glass.

S - Earthy malts with some vegetal elements. Fruity and estery, but not very assertive.

T - Again, very earthy and almost mushroomy. Normally, I like earth and mushroom dankness, but this isn't really working in an otherwise lightly fruity amber ale. Biscuity malts and anemic hops round out the flavor profile. This isn't very tasty.

M - Very carbonated and medium bodied with a neutral finish. Boring.

D - I didn't care for this one. It's not all bad, it's just boring and a bit funky. This seemed way off-balance.

pmcadamis, Oct 10, 2007
Photo of montageman
2.3/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a pint glass.

Given to me as a gift, I wouldn't normally purchase an amber of my own volition. This particular beer is average at best, but is closer to below average. The head is surprisingly dense and creamy. After the pour, however, it goes down hill. An ideal pizza beer because it would not overpower any aspect of the food's flavor, but it would not enhance it either. Nothing special here - recommendation to avoid.

montageman, Sep 20, 2007
Photo of briman
3.43/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Served from bottle into standard pint glass.

Pours a crystal clear amber color. About quarter inch white head dissipates quickly into minimal lace.

Aroma is primarily toasted malt, with some caramel, though this seems to fade away as it warms.

Flavor is toasted malt, maybe a touch of caramel. Finishes with a slightly bready note along with a very mild hop bite. Bitterness doesn't linger,

Medium body, moderate carbonation. Balance is ok, but it's a little on the watery side. Pretty basic amber. Flavors and hop presence are both pretty mild. Certainly sessionable, but overall nothing really sets it apart.

briman, Sep 16, 2007
Photo of KFaulkner
2.8/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I poured this into a pint glass. It pours real nice and it's a great amber color with a thick, slowly dissolving head that leaves those nice little whisps on the side of the glass.

The fun stopped there for me though. While it's possible I may have gotten a bad batch, and there was a spot on the label to denote bottling date, it wasn't marked for whatever reason. The smell was subtle, the taste a bit bland. It's a nice thick ale, but it just doesn't hold up to more flavorful beers I've had in this style.

KFaulkner, Aug 31, 2007
Avalanche Ale from Breckenridge Brewery
73 out of 100 based on 1,091 ratings.