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Coney Island Sword Swallower - Shmaltz Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Coney Island Sword SwallowerConey Island Sword Swallower

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373 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 373
Reviews: 207
rAvg: 3.56
pDev: 14.04%
Wants: 9
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Shmaltz Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Lager |  6.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Kegatron on 06-10-2008)
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Ratings: 373 | Reviews: 207 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of scruffwhor


3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a strong, pilsnery sunshine yellow. But there's some pale hues as well reminiscent of an american pale wheat ale. Maybe a one finger head, that recedes to a filmy foam ring. Pretty good bubbling though. A lovely hoppy lemon grass withjust a touch of bread dough and gently toasted rice grains make up the nose. Taste is steel twinged hops with some lemon notes then the malts and yeast hint at straight grains right afterthey've been milled. Maybe a light touch of caramel. Very crisp palates with a great hop profile for any lager I've had. Almost sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2008 02:22:27 | More by scruffwhor
Photo of brewcrew76


4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Hazy golden copper with thin white head and a few spots of lace.

S - Sweet pilsner and pale malts with spicy and herbal hops.

T - Slightly sweet with a big maltiness and bold, spicy, herbal hops. Quite hoppy for a lager. Very nice.

M - Bigger than most lagers and it shows. Medium mouthfeel and still fairly clean and crisp for the heavier sweetness it shows.

D - I have enjoyed the several Coney Island releases I have tried. This is almost like an Imperial lager. Nice.

Serving type: bottle

10-02-2008 22:42:44 | More by brewcrew76
Photo of supercolter


3.65/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ok so happy to finally try one of the Coney Island specialties. Appearance is pretty good, with a hazy yellow color, some head and lacing. Smell and taste are of grassy hops and sweet malt. That is about it. Mouthfeel is good medium in body and a nice a mount of carbonation. Drinkability is above par for this style.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2008 03:41:53 | More by supercolter
Photo of Talisker


3.43/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber purchased from City Beer Store in San Francisco. Poured into a Pilsener glass.

Deep color, but very clear and effervescent. Head is full, but doesn't stay past its welcome - but the bubbles flow up constantly. Quite nice.

The aroma is a good indicator of what's to come - a bunch of nice beer-y flavors that don't necessarily fit quite together.

Drunk blind, I'm not sure I would even call this a lager. Or at least, it goes back and forth between a metallic lager tang and the fruitiness I associate with an ale. Some of the latter may come from the hops, which are certainly dialed up a bit. It's not sticky in texture, but nor is it super crisp on the palate. In fact it sticks around on the tongue just a little too long for my preference.

I want to like all the Shmaltz beers more than I do. Clearly made with creativity and care. And Sword Swallower is probably my favorite of the three Coney Island specialty releases. It's not bad - just not great. I'm not going to spend money on another Sword Swallower.

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2008 20:19:52 | More by Talisker
Photo of jamie2dope


3.18/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I originally meant to get the albino python beer from these guys, but picked this one up instead (oh well). Poured in to a Bar Harbor Brewing Pilsner glass a vibrant, clear, gold with a respectably sized white head. Tiny carbonation bubbles could be seen rising towards the top of the beer. Smell leans towards the biscuity side, with some herbal, spicy hops in the background. Taste is dominated by spicy hops, with the biscuity malt taking a back seat. The hop presence is very pronounced on this one, makes me think of oily hop resins. Feel is heavier than i expected, for this style anyway. Drinkability suffers a little bit for me with the sticky, bittering hops. It seems like they may have overdone it a bit. Perhaps serving it at a cooler temperature would give it a more refreshing character. Still strikes me as being a pretty damn pleasing offering from Shmaltz, a brewery I have a lot of respect for. Cheers

Serving type: bottle

09-27-2008 00:27:26 | More by jamie2dope
Photo of Slynger


3.3/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clear, brightly golden color with a sunny afternoon orange tint, and a nicely sized lid of finely fuzzed off-white.

Nice smells of sweet biscuity malts and some subtly fresh citrus. Sweet grassy-herbal hops as well.

Hmmm. Interesting flavor. Sweet biscuits, lightly toasted. A hint of fresh citric hops, and lots of peppery-spicy-herbal ones. The latter of the hops really takes over with a biting, spicy bitterness that lingers for a while. The feel is quite nice. The body is just full of medium with a lightly oily, slickly smooth feel, and just the right amount of fuzzy soft carb.

There was much that I liked about this brew, but in the end the flavor was too heavily burdened by too much (not quite pleasant) spicy bitterness.

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2008 03:46:33 | More by Slynger
Photo of Monkeyknife


3.93/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle a hazy lemon-orange color with a very thin white head.

The aroma is malty with notes of lemony hops and brown sugar.

The taste is bright with a good dose of sweet malts and a strong lemon/citrus backbone. Finish is clean with a light hint of fresh bread.

Medium mouthfeel, slick, and lightly carbonated.

I wish more lagers tasted like this.

Serving type: bottle

09-17-2008 00:29:15 | More by Monkeyknife
Photo of albern


3.13/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I'm not keen on this lager because it is just too tart, with a big lemony acerbicness that drowns out the crispy maltiness that should be more pronounced. The beer pours a nice golden, clear color with a smallish white head that doesn't retain. No lacing either. The aroma is quite good, some nice citrus underneath, mild malt lagery presence in the nose. The taste is a crisp in the mid section, ample malts, but then the biting lemon hoppiness, maybe a peppery spiceness just takes over. The mouthfeel is a tad watery and tad oily on the tongue. The aftertaste is a continuation of the biting pepperishness in the finish. This isn't a particularly enjoyable lager, nor is it refreshing. There is a perfuminess in the aftertaste that lingers way too long for my tastes. I'm a bit disappointed to say the least.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2008 23:09:20 | More by albern
Photo of Blakaeris


3.5/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours hazy pale amber. Head is slight, white and soapy, and didn't stick around long.

Aroma is pale malt and juicy citrus hop.

Taste is pale and caramel malt. Initially sweet, then the resinous citrus hop takes over. Piney, with generous citrus character of grapefruit, and orange peel. Finish is crisp, and mildly bitter with a spicy hop bite.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, and slick with hop oil.

Overall a pretty decent brew. The hops are more aggressive than I expected giving the impression of a pale ale. Worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2008 18:38:28 | More by Blakaeris
Photo of bashiba


3.33/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured hazy yellow/orange with little to no head.

Smell had a light and toasted malt odor with a touch of juniper.

Has a good but light balance of bready malts and crisp pine hops with a touch of citrus and copper.

Mouthfeel is a bit thin with a lingering tongue coating.

Taste like a typical American Pale ale, nothing to get excited about.

Serving type: bottle

09-14-2008 18:33:13 | More by bashiba
Photo of mshallah

New Hampshire

4/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-Dark gold with a slow persistent stream of carbonation from the bottom of the glass. Minimal head comes back easily with a stir of the glass which produces lots of tiny bubbles.

S-Sweet malts hit first and are very appetizing.

T-Bitter hops from the get go, combined with yummy,sweeter than bread malts. Hops are huge and citrusy with a grapefruit-mandarin orange accent. Malts are orange marmalade on buttered toast. The hops that linger in the aftertaste are more salty and spicy.

M-Carbonation and hops maintain a slight crispness with a pronounced hop linger.

D-Spicy or rich food pairings would do you well for drinkability as this beer is very hoppy with a med-high alcohol level(6.8%abv).

Notes-Love the Shmaltz Brewing Co.. I was first sold on the Bittersweet Lenny's R.I.P.A.. Coney Island Lager followed as a solid,clean and hoppy session lager. Now this hop bomb of a Lager. Great stuff.

Serving type: bottle

09-12-2008 18:29:56 | More by mshallah
Photo of wagenvolks


4.05/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bomber with a risque image of a lady swallowing a "sword" while clad in a tiny red dress and glancing lustfully in my direction. Makes me feel special.

For an all-malt lager, this thing pours beautifully into my Unibroue tulip, producing a clear, straw-golden body with a sluggish carbonation level that supplies a well-retained (yet thin) cap of white head. Retention is quite good, and some rings of thin foam are left behind on the glass. The aroma is bursting with a grapefruit hop boquet backed by a decent pale malt note, some corn husks, and other grains. Smells better than some hopped-up ales, and for a lager that's saying something.

First sip: impressive grapefruit and tangerine hop presence zaps the sides and back of the palate, while a semi-sweet malt presence provides an excellent balance. Mouthfeel is near-perfect: juicy, well-carbonated, crisp, and packs one hell of a bitter, hoppy finish for a lager. This is an excellent lager, a great addition to a summer session, and a brew I look forward to having again. To date, I haven't been all that impressed with Shmaltz's ales...maybe their lagers are the way to go!

Serving type: bottle

09-11-2008 04:05:52 | More by wagenvolks
Photo of corey0212


4.2/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a light-copper color, rocky white head slowly fades into a foamy ring around the beer, some thick patches of lacing left in the glass. Honey-like sweetness to the malt on the nose, very floral hoppy aroma...nice. Very hop-forward taste, grassy, herbal/floral tastes, and a nice malty sweetness. There's some citrus buried in there somewhere, and maybe even a trace of pineapple, and some aspirin-like bitterness....a lot of bitterness to this one, and I'm loving it. Crisp mouthfeel, really refreshing, but the lingering hoppy bitterness really means business! Super versatile, super drinkable, and very tasty!

Serving type: bottle

09-05-2008 00:31:59 | More by corey0212
Photo of oelergud


3.68/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Tall 650ml brown glass bottle with a pry-off cap. The label shows a woman swallowing a sword.
Semitransparent straw orange body with a white head that falls quickly to a shallow ring and leaves little lace. Good carbonation.
Dark rye, cherry and banana scent.
Dark earthy flavor and harsh hops. Licorice, spice and nutskin. The aftertaste is long and plenty strong in the hop department.
Medium body, prickly carbonation and a dry finish.
Good drinkability.


Serving type: bottle

09-03-2008 03:14:43 | More by oelergud
Photo of hwwty4


4.22/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a 22oz bottle into my New Belgium globe. This beer pours a light, hazy, lemony orange. The aroma is lemony citrus with just a hint of orange. The aroma is slightly citrusy with just a kiss of bread. The taste is orange and lemon with toast and just a hint of vanilla. The mouthfeel is light. It would definitely make a great summer beer. I find this a easily quaffable beer. Also as a side note, I drink this regularly at my favorite beer bar, and I find that the hops are much more pronounced in the draft version.

Serving type: bottle

09-02-2008 00:42:42 | More by hwwty4
Photo of bhalter8


3.38/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured fresh into a glass pint.

A - A light amber haziness with a fair amount of carbonation.

S - Apparent hops... not overbearing.

T - A nice lager (for not the biggest lager fan), in the end, the aspects I dislike, the bite, are balanced by the rest of the beer.

M - There is definitely a bit of a bite from the hops. Also fair carbonation.

D - The hard bite of this makes me feel like the one would be enough, a nice beer, but maybe more bite than I am looking for.

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2008 21:55:47 | More by bhalter8
Photo of froghop


3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

pours a semi-hazy orange with a small off-white head, good lacing.

smell is malt, some grains, hint of corn, some citrus, a little caramel.

taste is thick, hoppy, slight grapefruit, malt in the back, touch of caramel, some citrus, touch of spice, nice bitter ending.

overall a very nice refreshing beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2008 03:19:04 | More by froghop
Photo of TurdFurgison


3.98/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a He'Brew bomber. The beer was light copper colored, very clear, with a massive head of foam that lasted a long time. The smell is more hoppy than most or all all-malt lagers, a little bit of citrus covering a sweet and toasty malt aroma. The taste was very good, it reminded me a little of some hoppy pilsners I've had, a hops cherry on a malt sundae. Really sweet malt flavors were reinforced by sweet hop citrus rather than opposed by hops bitterness. I suppose it isn't balanced in that regard but it was pretty good. The body didn't feel too thick but it was substantial enough, very drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2008 10:42:57 | More by TurdFurgison
Photo of feloniousmonk


4.38/5  rDev +23%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Slightly hazed, mostly clear and yellow lager-y look, slim white head on this pour.

Sweet-ish, cereal-y nose at first sniff...clean and just a tad grainy. Good.

In the mouth, a buzz of hops, a brace of malt, long play on the palate, good stretch in the finish. Body is mighty full for a lager, I hesitate to even call it medium, it fills the mouth so pervasively at first sip. It smooths out, but never really quits.
Tons of hops in this, really one of the hoppiest lagers I've had in a long, long time. Probably only the Sam Adams Imperial Pilsner compares. That's saying something.

Most of the popular and inoffensive lagers are prized for their lack of after-taste. This one's a hit for me because it does quite the opposite. Hoppy, tasty, deep, and dazzling, and delicious.

The Coney Island line-up is three-for three with me, so far.

Serving type: bottle

08-22-2008 01:27:50 | More by feloniousmonk
Photo of RblWthACoz


3.68/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear amber with a thin crems head. Nose is thickly sweet with a noticeable malt backbone. Flavor has a bit of a bite to it. A bit much, but still interesting. Sweet tone really keeps things going. Feel has a biting carbonation. Liquid is a bit thick, but still about right. Nice one here. Not really that bad at all. Worth a shot.

Serving type: bottle

08-21-2008 07:51:05 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of Zorro


3.9/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Starts with a mild chill haze, this is a clear deeply golden colored lager. Not much head forms too bad I could have given this a much higher rating for looks if it had one.

Sweet pilsner malt and a wonderful Nobel hop scent. Lots of spice and a strong citrus aroma this is quite herbal.

The taste starts out slightly sweet and quite strongly hopped. Lots of bitter and herbs here, this is pretty much all Nobel Hop flavor and quite strong. Bitter enough that you do need to acclimate to it a bit. Herbal and spicy just like I like them, could be a little more complex though.

Mouthfeel is quite thick.

Quite nice but flavor wise this is basically an Imperial Pilsner. I LIKE it but this has a punishing level of hops, if you don't like Imperial Pilsners you will hate this. One bottle of this is enough and this would be great for really spicy food.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2008 22:29:33 | More by Zorro
Photo of rajendra82


3.95/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The body was clear and golden peach colored, with an ample carbonation forming a one finger thick and durable head. The nose was clean and displayed a combination of noble hops and Munich malts. The taste was quite a bit more hoppy than I was anticipating from the smell. The hops were spicy and floral in character, and were backed by a Festbier like malty but drinkable backbone. The body was creamy and smooth, and the aftertaste was herbal and marred by a slight metallic note. An enjoyable and affordable offering from this brewery that seems to be growing on me with each release.

Serving type: bottle

08-16-2008 05:26:44 | More by rajendra82
Photo of WesWes

New York

3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a nice pilsner malt scent along with a less than stellar hop aroma. The taste is good. It has a light pale and pilsner malt flavor along with a good hop taste. It's quite bitter, hence the Steel Hop Lager name. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good drinking beer. I was expecting better because the He'Brew beers are so good, but this drinks well regardless.

Serving type: bottle

08-12-2008 23:25:38 | More by WesWes
Photo of Gmann

New York

3.5/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy golden color with an average white head that settled into a slight cap. The aroma is of a buttery malt, thats pretty much it, very one dimensional. The taste is of light caramel malt, rust, and light stale hop. The feel is moderate with fizzy carbonation; finishes with a hoppy bitterness. A slightly butter slightly hoppy american lager, not fantastic, not terrible. Definitely not macro, just not as good as Brooklyn or the Boston lagers.

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2008 04:45:52 | More by Gmann
Photo of ruckzuck


3.85/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Into my Chimay chalice (it was out and I just washed it)

A - a very clear golden color. Very lovely. That lager clearness with a bit of amber/copper to it. I am so down

S - some citrusy and floral hop notes initially. Pretty inviting. There is certainly a malt backbone there

T - initial hop bite, but it's not too pronounced. The bite gives way to some citrusy and floral goodness. Finishes with a nice hop flavor in the mouth with the malt present and accounted for. Nicely done

M - medium bodied with the right amount of carbonation. Treating me right

D - man, this is a serious lager. Goes down well and has a pretty good taste. I know some beer dudes who hate lagers (just a few) and I'm always all "WTF lagers have a time and a place how can you just write them off like that." This beer backs up my reasoning. Would totally drink again. Definitely more hoppy than I thought it would be. Liking this.

Serving type: bottle

08-08-2008 02:52:02 | More by ruckzuck
Coney Island Sword Swallower from Shmaltz Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 373 ratings.