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Barking Squirrel Lager - Hop City Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Barking Squirrel LagerBarking Squirrel Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.

124 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 124
Hads: 537
Avg: 3.46
pDev: 31.79%
Wants: 12
Gots: 92 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hop City Brewing Co. visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Lager |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Viggo on 11-16-2009

Barking Squirrel is a 5% ABV amber lager with a distinct rich burnt orange colour and subtle noble hop aroma. Its medium body, pleasant hop bitterness and caramel malt sweetness makes it smooth and drinkable with a slight hop aftertaste.

24 IBU
View: Beers (7) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Barking Squirrel Lager Alström Bros
Reviews: 124 | Hads: 537
Photo of Slatetank
3.87/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

I bought this as part of a mix-a-six from Giant in Linglestown PA, enjoyed chilled in a mug.

The color is deep copper bordering on bronze with good clarity and two fingers of thick tan head with avg sized bead and decent lacing. The aroma is very malty with bready munich type malt aromas with slight yeast ester and mild nutty element in the nose with light hop scents. The feel is great with semi-full body with moderate bitterness and medium carbonation with a mild diacetyl presence with somewhat dry finish with low sweetness and mild grainy texture.

This is a lager with pleasant malt flavors right off and nice blend of nuttiness with a toasted grain taste from the munich malt as described on the label. The malt tastes fresh, yet not overly sweet which is a good foundation for the subtle hop flavor which add to the mild yeast taste. The maltiness goes well with the hops which have a hint of herbal profile as the lager finishes semi-dry. Overall I really enjoyed this a very good lager with a nice balance of flavor which makes it more drinkable thany many of this style. I would not hesitate to buy this again even though I was on the fence about the first purchase.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.08/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

A real big fluffy white head with lots of staying power, big in size at about three fingers and not going anywhere. Collapses very slowly with pock marked peaks and valleys. Body is a very clear and bronze amber color, with little noticeable rising carbonation. What does show goes up really small and very slowly. Real nice looking.

Nose is clean, light malt caramel, a sense of slight sticky yeast. Quite nice and simple and pleasurable. Some light grass sharp hops just hide in the back.

Very light bodied caramel on the palate. Hits with a good malt backbone with a very light feel but not too wet. Hints of light brown sugar, and almost Marzen like appeal. A good brown bread toasty finish too, with just a little bit of mild hop bitterness that isn't very distinguishable.

It's not very complex, but it's stupid easy drinking, in fact VERY easy drinking. Quite enjoyable a good amber lager worth exploring again.

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Photo of Omnium
2.53/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Bottle > Pint Glass
A - Pours a lighter amber color, minimal head, goes away fast
S - Yeasty, some malt in there, not a lot goin on.
T - Tastes like a run of the mill beer, basic lager that has no real definition or outstanding qualities.
M - Lighter in feel, goes down easy.
O - Bleh, with a name like hop city you'd think they'd try to incorporate more hops into their beers, but thats quite the opposite. There's no real hop bite or flavors in here, tastes like minutely watered down Yuengling with less flavor. No thanks.

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Photo of Top_Jimmy
4.44/5  rDev +28.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Appearance - This beer pours a dark honey colour with a nice creamy head. Beautiful lacing remains .

Smell - A nice mild scent of Hops and malt nothing to overpowering.

Taste - Crisp with a nice amount of bitter, Mild to Medium hops makes this very enjoyable and not over the top.

Mouthfeel - The beer has a nice full bodied creamy mouthfeel and great carbonation.

Overall - A great beer, just the right amount of bitter hops as not to be over the top.

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Photo of ghisty
3.72/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

pours a reddish amber, small head but it was a bit warm, low carb, but thats fine by me. laces just a touch. very red for an amber. almost mahogany.despite lack of ehad it retains its carb reasonably for the small amount there is to begin with.

very malted. but also heavy on hops. a bit smoky. a bit sharp on the nose, but pleasant and not at all offending, the grains involved become more present as the pint gets low.bitter smelling, and intruiging at the same time.

full bodied, has a very present malt as with the nose, and the hops really shine,
alot sharper than expected from the amount of carb, levels out to a medium malty
with some nice hints of roasted grain and maybe even a nutty flavour in there someplace .alot sharper and hoppy than most ambers ive had.
finish is malty as hell, maybe a bit dry, definatly session worthy.

sharp at first , levels out nicely, finish is somewhat dry, leaves a thin malty bit behind
mouthfeel is always hard to describe but even more so with this lager.

this lager has alot of the traits of an english ale, but with alot more hops, and a sharper malt, tried it on a risk, not dissapointed at all, as far a craft beers go this one isnt bad at all, if anything the only thing id say lacks is the amount of head.
taste is great, very hoppy. very bright. its different, if you want something not the norm esspecially where lager is concerned, give it a try. I will be buying it again. its not a game changer, but it has things about it I cant help but like.

**something odd.. i always pour out beer into a glass.. but i drank a few of these from the bottle out ice fishing..seems to taste better direct from bottle..maybe it was just the environment tho.**

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Photo of jmdrpi
3.11/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle, no clear bottling date on label.

appears a clear light copper color with rusty orange highlights. off-white head, good head retention. earthy aroma. cracked corn, some mild grassy hops.
taste is just a bit of malt, grain. one note, not complex. thin to medium body, medium carbonation.

overall - an okay beer, but I probably wouldn't go out of my way to drink again.

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Photo of jdbonnette
3.33/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nice lager. I am very into IPA's so this has a touch of hops at the end after a malty beginning, which I kind of enjoy. Not a bad after taste. Overall, a decent beer. I might buy it again. At this point I am kind of on the fence with this brew. A case would probably not make it into my house.

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Photo of Cylinsier
3.68/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

16 oz can.

Pours a deep clear gold, two inch white head. Dissipates slowly.

Mild dry hoppy bitterness and bready semi-sweet malts.

Slightly toasty bread and butter malts make up the flavor.

Medium body with light bubbly carbonation.

A solid and pretty tasty drinkable lager, easy to drink. Good thirst quencher, would have it again.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.05/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Served on tap in a pint glass

Appearance – Served a medium golden colored brew with a one finger white fizzy head. The head faded very fast leaving only a small level of lacing.

Smell-The smell is rather clean and simple. It’s mainly of toasted malt and a small amount of caramel sweetness.

Taste –The taste begins with a smoother malty flavor mixed with a light amount of caramel malt sweetness. As the flavor moves on, the caramel fades some with a more bready flavor coming to the tongue. A light citrus hop flavor accompanies the breadiness. The hop starts out rather weak and gets slightly stronger as it advances to the end where a little bit of floral and hay-like hops joins the profile. Overall the flavors end up leaving a dry and lightly hopped bready flavor on the tongue.

Mouthfeel-The body of the beer is on the thicker and creamier side for a lager style of only 5 % abv, with a carbonation level that is rather low. The feel really doesn't suit the style very well as it doesn't make for an as refreshing and crisp brew as a more traditional lighter body and higher carbonation level do.

Overall- It is an OK brew, but this is one I wouldn't likely go to again as there are much better and/or cheaper out there.

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Photo of thecheapies
3.54/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Two fingers of head looks massive and rocky. Light amber color. Nice look.

Pale grains, light toast, and some grassy Noble hops. Slightly metallic, but not offendingly so.

Snappy crisp with a Hallertau bite. Barley sweetness before a bitter hopped finish. Toasty like a Marzen, but a little drier. Slight gasoline note. Nice German flair. Tastes like a Vienna Lager.

Medium-thin, with some rip-and-romp carb. Easy to take back.

I'll be ordering more of these at the local dive. I'm a fan, what can I say?

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Photo of cbutova
2.92/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Reviewed from notes last night. Random grab while in Philly.

A- Dark amber pour with a small fizzy white head. Retention of the cap is fairly poor and a tiny ring leaves just a few spots of lace. Ends up looking like a juice with just enough lace to save it from being abysmal.

S- Has a slight adjunct lager feel to it. I just think there isn't enough going on to really make it interesting besides a bit of lager yeast hints, light fruits and herbal hops.

T- A bit more satisfying here. Yeast bread, apple light fruits and buttery lager yeast. Some cracked grains and sweets from the malts. Hops are mostly herbal but spicy and grassy as well.

MF- Creamy light end body with a fair hop bitterness. Smooth moderate amount of carbonation.

Average lager with just enough hops and malts to keep it out of a very bad category of beers.

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Photo of cmq103
3.13/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Appearance: Poured from a 12-oz. bottle into a Duvel Belgian Tulip glass revealed a darker rusty copper looking color, yielding an off white 1” head with a semi aggressive pour. The head reduced to a thin ring rather quickly. Respectable lacing for a lager.

Smell: Not much going on with the nose. A swirling of the glass gets me a lightly sweet caramel malt with a hint of bread and hay.

Taste: Very similar to the smell. A mild sweetness shoots across the tongue with a light caramel bready maltiness. Light on the hops, but surprisingly pleasant from start to finish. The lightly sweet malts surely dominate this beer. Any hint of hops decided to sit this one out.

Mouthfeel: Carbonation is right on to allow the mild flavors to blend. An easy drinking crisp and clean light to moderate body lager.

Overall: Nothing really jumps out with this lager, but I did find it to be an easy drinking potential session beer. This is probably a step up from your generic lagers. With that said, I don’t see myself running out to grab another 6-pack of this. Dollar for dollar, Yuengling Lager has proven to be the staple in one of my three taps at the basement bar.

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Photo of leaddog
3.65/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours a copper/amber colour with two fingers of foamy head.

Smell - Bready/biscuity malts, touch of leafy hops, hint of grains.

Taste - Dominated by the bready and biscuity malts. There is a touch of the hops at the end, but quite minimal.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Dry finish.

Overall - A crisp, refreshing amber/red lager. For me, it is a little malt heavy and I'd like to see the hops play a slightly stronger role. Pretty easy-drinking.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.93/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The squirrels are definitely barking at The CANQuest (TM) today. My neighbor had this as a single the other day and I am in a lager mood. CAN you dig it?

From the CAN: "Craft with attitude."; Welcome to HOP CITY, where we brew beer with equal parts flavor, complexity & sessionability. BARKING SQUIRREL LAGER is a 5% ABV, 24 IBU amber lager brewed with a blend of Hallertau Mittelfrueh & Saaz hops, perfectly balanced by [CAN]adian Pale 2 Row, Crystal & Munich malts. Mmmm.

The Crack & Glug was a pleasure, resulting in two-plus fingers of dense, foamy tawny head with excellent retention. Color was a deep coppery-amber with NE-plus quality clarity, enabling me to see through walls and into the neighbor's kitchen where the cat was asleep on the counter. Nose was heavy with a biscuit malt scent. Mouthfeel was full, especially for a lager and the biscuit taste continued on the tongue. Finish was semi-dry with a lingering taste of bread or biscuit well after the swallow. More lagers like this are needed!

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Photo of HATS4BATS
3.88/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Pleasant and rich. Pours deep and amber with plenty of carbonation. Subtle, unexceptional lager nose. Balanced body defined by rich malt and hints of sugar, with traces of biting hops that combine to leave a pleasant aftertaste. Big challenging taste for that doesn't overpower. More IPA than lager.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.53/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This poured out as a nice looking clear amber color with a white head on top. Th lacing was impressive looking as well as the thin retention it had. The smell of the beer is grainy and sweet smelling with a bit of earth in there too. The taste of the beer is malty, with some musty flavors in the finish. The mouthfeel of the beer is medium bodied and had a soft carbonation. Overall it's a pretty good brew, not one I would seek out often but still a sessionable brew that could be enjoyed frequently.

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Photo of undeadozzy
3.56/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured vigorously from the can. Looks awesome! So much head and no bubbly soda look. Looks great so far! Deep amber color is making my mouth water already.

S - And here we go! Sniffing...smelling...not getting anything? Wow, I don't know if it was a bad can or something, but it doesn't really smell like anything...

T - Beautiful taste for a beer I thought was gonna be bad because it was only $6.99! Has a rich amber lager taste with a nice hoppy bite! The hops! Pretty intense for a beer that's relatively far away from IPAs on the beer scale.

M - Smooth and velvety. The head adds great texture to it, but other than that, just kinda average.

O - Not bad! Very good beer for the money! Can't wait to see what Hop City has up its sleeve next!

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Photo of eddie_g
3.73/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My second review, and as with my first, bare with me. I don't reach for a lager when I want a good brew, but tonight when I asked the bartender for something different, he handed me this tall 16 ounce can. I poured the beer into my glass, and an average pour produced about two inches of thick white head. The color was a bit darker than an average lager and allowed less light through. The beer gives off a typical lager aroma - a metallic hoppy smell. The taste is what sets this drink apart. For a lager, I found the flavor sweet, starting with a toffee taste and migrating to a typical lager blend of malt and hops. That initial rush of sweet toffee really drew my attention, however. The body was also nice. I found the mouth feel to be a bit thicker than the average style - still light bit teetering on medium bodied. Overall, if I ever find myself with a hankering for a lager, this beer would absolutely do the trick. It doesn't rewrite the style. Rather, Barking Squirrel Lager serves as a nice edition in any lager lover's library.

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Photo of DaveGold
4.42/5  rDev +27.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I found this beer to be a pleasant surprise...a larger with real legs.

I would typically recommend it to those seeking out a more flavorful beer that can stand on its own vs. accompanying food. Two cans in and I found I wasn't hungry!

Looking forward to seeing other brands from them.

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Photo of NilocRellim
4.16/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a can, this beer is a very nice, rich, golden colour; slightly more amber/red in colour than a standard lager. Very light, refreshing, lager taste with a tad more hop taste (but not much) than most lagers. A little too carbonated than most beers, but a clean taste and a little bitter aftertaste.

Would I buy it again? Yes, and have numerous times.

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Photo of LDOBSON
4.32/5  rDev +24.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

At first I questioned the appearance of can but after trying Barking Squirrel I enjoyed it as it was a beer that went down smooth. I find that some beers drink heavy and leave you feeling bloated, with Barking Squiirel I did not experience that. I found it to be similar to Creemore, another beer that I enjoy.

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Photo of Jimmys
2.32/5  rDev -32.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

pint can into snifter. not exactly sure what the coding on the bottom of the can means...

A: clear amber hued body. slightly off-white head with great retention. lacing is good as well.

S: oxidized. very malty. the use of the crystal malt is obvious and very present.

T: sweet caramel dominates the body. the sugar is a bit astringent. and cloying. body is seriously lacking as i find it a bit watery.

M: moderate amount of fizz. light/medium-ish body.

D: i wouldnt hate to see some more hops here Hop City. i actually wish this beer wasnt this big as it is a bit hard to sip. boo, pass.

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Photo of hdofu
2.7/5  rDev -22%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I tried to like this one but it has some problems for me. Appearance is pale, Smell is sour. Taste starts out ok tasting like a typical lager.... but the more one drinks the more it has this inescapable nasty finish that builds. If it weren't for the finish I wouldn't mind the beer so much. but that kills it for me. Overall I have to say the squirrels bark is worse then it's bite.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.28/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A 16oz CAN into a pint glass.

Barking Squirrel Lager looks the part with a mild shade of bronze with some light gold balanced within. The hed is off white and tight looking leaving minor cling. Smell is a typical lager, the malt is front and center, some grassy appeal, caramel and I don't get ANY hops, either way I classify this more as a lager than a red ale. 24IBU's is low IMO, so don't go looking for a hop fix although the CAN may fool you with the graphic on it. The taste is pure lager, with grain balancing out with caramel and crystal malt. I guess there is some hops used, but they aint reaching my tounge. Feel is in between light and medium, for 5%, I expected a lighter body. Not bitter at all while the carb is felt. This will be in the runnings if I need a quick lager fix from the CAN if Im hiking.

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Photo of tone77
3.28/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 16 oz. can. Has a light amber color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is mild, some malts and grains. Taste is also a bit on the mild side, some malts, lightly hopped, easy drinking. Feels light in the mouth and overall is a refreshing but somewhat bland beer.

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Barking Squirrel Lager from Hop City Brewing Co.
79 out of 100 based on 124 ratings.