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Anchor California Lager - Anchor Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Anchor California LagerAnchor California Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

754 Ratings
THE BROS
85
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 754
Reviews: 144
rAvg: 3.66
pDev: 11.75%
Wants: 16
Gots: 101 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Lager |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
In 1876, thanks to an ice pond in the mountains and a belief that anything is possible in the Golden State, a little brewery named Boca created California's first genuine lager. Anchor California Lager® is our re-creation of this historic beer. Made in San Francisco with two-row California barley, Cluster hops (the premier hop in 19th-century California), and our own lager yeast, this all-malt brew is kräusened and lagered in our cellars. Its golden color, distinctive aroma, creamy head, balanced depth of flavor, and smooth finish make Anchor California Lager® a delicious celebration of California’s unique brewing heritage.

(Beer added by: esdeebrew on 02-15-2013)
View: Beers (23) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 754 | Reviews: 144 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by JamesQuaff:
Photo of JamesQuaff
4.48/5  rDev +22.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint.

Pours a deep golden color with a bit of an orange-copper cast. Head is a dense, foamy 2 finger cap of white that has good retention and leaves a thick coating of lacing. Lots of bubble action. Excellent looking pale lager.

A generous aroma for the style. Nice hop notes, fresh baked bread, a bit of funky umami. Very agreeable.

Also a generous dose of flavor for the style. Slightly sweet malts, generous hop bite, long crackery finish with the hop bitterness holding on right along with it. Great balance. Very tasty.

Crisp and light bodied, but not thin or watery. Carbonation doesn't have as much bite as the bubble show led me to expect. Eminently drinkable.

Overall this is an excellent example of an all-malt American pale lager, maybe one of the best I've had. Price is a tad steep for what it is, but it delivers a level of flavor and aroma that few others I've tried within the style can match. I've been experiencing a bit of a personal DIPA backlash recently, having had a few examples that just did not impress. Simplicity, balance and drinkability have been doing it for me more and more lately. This beer will be making appearances in my fridge this summer for sure.

EDIT 6/10/14 - I've been spending a lot more time with this beer and have upped my ratings a bit. I now consider this my personal favorite lager produced in the US. It possesses all the cleanliness, crispness and breadth/depth of flavor of the finest German lagers but is quintessentially 100% American. I will usually have 6 or 8 different brands and styles of craft beer in my fridge, all great brews, but when the CA Lager is amongst them, I almost always find myself instinctively reaching for just another one of them until they're gone. An absolute gem of a lager that stands up to anything produced in the world today.

More User Reviews:
Photo of BEERchitect
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picking up what they could, westward travelers made beer from all kinds of things as they attempted to make beers traveling toward the promise of gold. Where the California Common ale is well documented, it makes sense that the more tried-and-true Lagers would have also been part of the early settler's beer drinking diet.

Like any well made lager would, Anchor's pours with a medium gold color and bright clarity. Building a creamy ivory-white foam, its head character is long lasting and proud with lacing collars as the beer fades. It's a rather fantastic looking Lager!

Grainy-sweet aromas of raw barley, supple bready sweetness and a richer bread crust rise to the nose for a crisp and pleasantly light scent. Floral hops give a slight perfume character that's similar to honey suckle. Light apple and sulfur lurk in the background and help to round the scent but careful not to make too meaningful of an impact.

To taste, the ale fares similarly- part-malt and part-grain to start, its sweetness is light and is of fresh baking bread, light dough and yeast. But its cracker-like taste reels in the slight fruitiness of honey, apples, and slim citrus. What's floral in aroma provides a soft flowery herb taste before developing a spicy and earthy bitterness that overrides the malts and ensures a crisp and clean finish.

Light bodied, the ale's elegant sweetness might imply more weight, but its bolsterous carbonation lightens the body and floats the lager over the middle to arrive in a finish of lemongrass bite, herbal warmth and pepper.

The lager is surprisingly crisp, clean and refreshing as it shows no apparent off flavors and keeps its balance well in tact. Its a fabulous beer that is sure to fare exquisitely with sushi and Cobb salad.

Photo of oberon
3.7/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured one and a half bottles into a 1/2 liter stein with a clear golden color with a frothy one finger white top.Aromas of toasted grain and minerla mainly,a tinge of caramel sweetness.A nice flavor profile that mildly sweet,lightly toasted grain along with some honey and sweetish pizza dough.A pretty damn solid American lager,will be good to throw back while smoking some sausage and shoulders this spring.

Photo of mojohawk21
3.25/5  rDev -11.2%

Photo of Josh_ew_uh
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of tbryan5
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

Photo of A2NobleG
3.88/5  rDev +6%

Photo of jose_alehouseSD
3/5  rDev -18%

Photo of EastBay_Nick
3/5  rDev -18%

Photo of danthehopslamman
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of DaftPatrick
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of Lynch52
4.5/5  rDev +23%

Photo of SunDevilBeer
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of generallee
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12 oz bottle into a tall pilsner glass.

Appearance: It has a light golden body with some visible carbonation and a small white head that just hangs on to a thin layer of foam. Lacing is minimal.

Smell: There are some light biscuity maltiness and some mild grassy hop notes.

Taste / Palate: I am picking up the same biscuity and white bready maltiness. It’s dry overall and finishes with some mild grassy/herbal/botanical hop bitterness. The palate is light with a well carbonated feel.

Photo of mufc
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of 77apm
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of BuckeyeSlim
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of Beerswag
3.25/5  rDev -11.2%

Photo of Jason
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of henryclay_
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of Guinnsslvr
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%

Photo of andrewdanks
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%

Photo of sculls65
4/5  rDev +9.3%

Photo of innominat
4/5  rDev +9.3%

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Anchor California Lager from Anchor Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 754 ratings.