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Alaskan Amber - Alaskan Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Alaskan AmberAlaskan Amber

Educational use only; do not reuse.

580 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 580
Hads: 1,714
rAvg: 3.65
pDev: 11.23%
Wants: 57
Gots: 310 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Alaskan Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
Altbier |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-20-2001

Richly malty and long on the palate, with just enough hop backing to make this beautiful amber colored "alt" style beer notably well balanced.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 580 | Hads: 1,714
Photo of Noxious26
3.37/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This is my first try at an alt style beer, but a newcomers view might be worthwhile to some.

A light brown clear body. Head is virtually non-existent.

Smell is sweet and malty. So far so good, but not remarkable.

The taste is quite sweet and malty. There is a strong alcohol taste that reminds me of McEwan's Scotch Ale. I don't know if this is typical to the style or not, but it really reminds me of Scotch Ales.

There is little to no carbonation and I would expect a thicker presence in the mouth from an ale with this taste. The thin beer and strong flavour don't seem to go together well.

I can't say too much about this beer in terms of drinkability. I don't think I'll try another one, but I'm going easy on the rating because of personal preference and I don't have any other alt beer experience to compare it to. (836 characters)

Photo of donnebaby
3.53/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark malty red appearance, with light haze for head. Smells strangely sweet, like artificial sweetener and honey mixed, notes of candy apple. Reminds me of a green beer not filled out by alcohol.

Taste is very much sweet, of apples, and refreshing. Lightly roasted notes and a sweet, honey aftertaste. Medium, full body. Reminded me of a lesser carbonated Bass, and very much like McEwan's overall. Fairly one-dimensional brew, sweet honey without any involvement of hops. Goes down fast, but I wonder if I'd get irked by the sweetness. (539 characters)

Photo of HardTarget
4.08/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Sampled at the Bluebonnet ’05. Massive thanks to Geoffery Lawson for bring down some beers to illustrate his talk with.
Aroma: Nice blend of light malt sweetness with a floral hop aroma.
Appearance: Clear amber with a nice head of white which collared but laced nicely.
Flavor: Sweet base of malt with a mild Saaz (I know because Geoff told us) note. Overall the beer was very clean.
Mouthfeel: Nice dry finish that encouraged the next sip, a firm carbonation level and a medium body.
Overall Impression: A nice clean malt based beer with enough hop characteristics to bring it to balance. Great to hear how history inspired the ale yeast at cool temperatures (it IS Alaska). This is a massively poundable beer; a session beer to last a long winter night. (761 characters)

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.44/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A pillow of delicately toasty and caramelish malt seems to be the heart and soul of this brilliant, reddish-copper ale. It's present in the nose, and then again in the flavor... big time! It's very nicely balanced as well, leaving it sweetish and nutty, but not sweet. The emphasis is, however, clearly on the malt, and not the hops. The hops that are present are floral, slightly grassy, and just a touch spicy; but they lay low, giiving only a waft of character to the nose, and an accent of "spice" to the flavor. And that is what gives this beer its incredible roundness and balance. It's rich without being cloying, and oh-so-delicately balanced by its restrained hop flavors and bitterness. It finishes almost without notice, leaving just a smear of nutty, toasty and biscuity malt to linger on the palate; and lending greatly to its drinkability by beckoning you to partake again. Quite nice! (899 characters)

Photo of charlatan
3.07/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours amber with a now you see it now you don't head which only sticks around the side of the glass. Bottle has freshness date, and while I'm pushing it two days beyond what was suggested the beer still tastes fresh. There's no skunkiness here.

Nose has hints of apricots, dates and figs. It is pretty obvious this is going to be a malty one.

The taste is a little less sweet than the nose, but one can nevertheless detect a little brown sugar flavour. Bitterness is barely discernible. This is too watery and light for me. It could be a session beer, but wouldn't make for a killer session. (597 characters)

Photo of Padron4KM
3.1/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle.
Pours a clear dark amber color with a large 2" head. Head settles slowly and leaves spotty lacing.
Aroma is sligty caramel, with some light graininess.
Body is light.
Flavor is lightly sweet, caramel, toffee with just a sint of hops to keep the sweeness in check.
Overall an easy drinking sesion beer. (321 characters)

Photo of bditty187
3.89/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Largely clear, coppery-amber in hue with a slight golden influence, the color is pleasant. The head formed poorly, only a small cap of bubbles topped the liquid and these bubbles fizzled away to an insignificant collar in a moment, before leaving completely. This does nothing but hurt the appearance. There was no subsequent lacing. Honestly the appearance from top to bottom is too average to be noteworthy. The nose said, “Alt” on the first sniff. I like that. Sweet, grainy malts with a biscuity caramel underscore. In the middle is a lovely array of fruity aromas, peaches and strawberries. The finish offers a soft smattering of earthy, grassy hops. The nose is perfectly articulate, the potency of these aromas is moderate but I understand what it is saying. Inviting. I’ve had more dud Alts then good ones. Surprisingly this falls into the latter category. I haven’t been impressed with Alaskan Brewery (aside from the AK Smoked Porter). I was expecting this offering to be lifeless and limp. It wasn’t. Upfront is a blast of malty sweetness with undercurrents of grainy, biscuty qualities and this says nothing of the caramel influences. This maltiness lingers awhile. In the middle is a kiss of astringency and most of the fruity tastes (berries, peaches, and oranges). In the finish, like the nose, are the hops, earthy, grassy with a mild bitterness that does manage to balance the beer nicely. The palate is well crafted, I am impressed, and I find this Alt to be quite tasty. This beer would be great for a crossover beverage; I can see no reason why this beer couldn’t supplant Fat Tire as the reigning western “amber ale.” I guess Alaskan needs to get a catchy name for this beer… and find a wider distribution area. Details. Around medium in body, the carbonation level is on the low side of moderate but it feels natural. The mouthfeel is a bit slick but appropriate. Pleasant. This beer is very drinkable. Give me six full bottles and I’ll return you six empty bottles... in no time flat! There isn’t anything special about this beer but not every beer needs to be “mind blowing.” Sometimes simple… tasty… quaffable… is all a beer needs to be. I say, well done with this one. I purchased a 12-ounce bottle on-line from Liquid Solutions. (2,271 characters)

Photo of Southernbrew
3.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a healthy amber with some copper hues.

Good sized, bubbly head. I can hear the carbonation popping.

Aroma is mostly malt with a bit of sweetness and dark fruits.

Medium body, reasonably smooth. Hefty malt presence, some weak sweetness shines through as does a weak bread flavor. Light bitterness shows up in the end and leaves a weak sweet-bready aftertaste.

My first experience with the style, not especially exciting, but it sure is easy drinking. I could put a few away no problem. (502 characters)

Photo of Hunter
3.46/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Heard so much about this brewery for more than a year, and finally its ales have arrived in the desert Southwest.

Amber pours a deep coppery-orange color, clear with little carbonation. Atop is a quickly fading tan head. No lacing effects.

Aroma is sharp hops and light malt. Grassy and light.

Hops are more subdued in the mouth. Sweet malt and hops are your primary flavors. Similar to a Fat Tire but the hops are more noticeable.

Thin mouthfeel and a dry, crisp aftertaste.

I know the porter is the ale from these guys that everyone raves about, but I figured I'd start with a basic ale. This is not bad, certainly drinkable. smooth and mellow, but not much to distinguish it from others of similar style. (722 characters)

Photo of KoG
3.85/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had this in bottled form and ended up enjoying it fairly well and giving it a 3.5 overall. In my opinion, this is better on tap. The malt flavor is more pronounced and a bit nutty. Mouthfeel comes off a bit better as well. More drinkable to me as well. (257 characters)

Photo of goodbyeohio
3.7/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a tasty, crisp hoppy taste with adequate darkness and depth brought me back to this NW staple time and time again, despite being an east coast boy..

to count the number of times i asked a west-coaster if he could get me this beer would be impossible.

first sampled at the twin peaks fan festival and had a boner for it ever since. more than anything, this is a great session beer. for the price, well worth it. not the most complex brew, but certainly containts enough substance to file above macros and in-betweens like sierra nevada and flying dog. (556 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.51/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Alaskan Amber is a beautiful shade of dark orangish copper and is as clear as the proverbial bell. Atop the liquid is a tight-bubbled head of beige foam with a pale tangerine peel cast. The cap was never very large to begin with, but at least it's deflating relatively slowly. The upper portion of the glass remains perfectly clean, while an extended collar forms and lengthens as the beer falls with drinking.

There isn't a whole lot going on in the nose. It's light on toasted malt and even lighter on hops. The flavor, although more impressive, isn't exactly bowling me over. It's modestly malted with a pleasant caramel flavor and a sprinkling of indeterminate spice that's probably hop-related.

I'd like a bit more hop flavor and bitterness, but I guess Amber could be classified as balanced; never a bad thing in an altbier. The finish is on the long side and features lightly spiced, toasted grain. This is clean and drinkable beer more than immensely flavorful beer. The light-medium body contains just enough carbonation to get the job done and no more.

Alaskan Amber is a decent alt. I don't look to be wowed by this style and wasn't by this beer (self-fulfilling prophecy?). That said, it is a friendly sort and goes down easily enough. (1,257 characters)

Photo of clvand0
3.43/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a standard amber color with a very small head that doesn't stick around and doesn't leave any lacing on the glass. The flavor is slightly bready and has a caramel taste, but it also has a tiny bit of lager stank. The mouthfeel is a little too thin, but the drinkability is ok. (282 characters)

Photo of kmpitz2
3.6/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a nice golden amber color wtih no real head over top of the beer. The nose is caramel with a touch of biscuit in there, along with characteristic to let me know this is a lager. The flavor is mostly biscuit on the start, with a nice caramel finish. There are no real hops that I can pick out. Its not a bad beer. The feel is thin to moderate, with a bit too much carbonation for me. Drinkability is just okay. The beer is maybe a touch watery, with a bit of a metallic finish. I like it, but not as much as others. (529 characters)

Photo of mschofield
3.72/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a medium amber with a red tint, topped with a short lived one finger creamy light tan head, no real lacing.
Fruity, caramel, nut, malt and cream aroma.
Apricot, caramel and fruity taste, Lots of toffee especially in the back, nutty note.
Medium bodied, nice drinkability. (280 characters)

Photo of alexAK
3.65/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A fairly tasty and quite quaffable brew. Kind of the standard "upscale" beer in the pacific nw (well from budweiser at least), but makes a great session brew.

The amber color is nice and full and adds a little depth to the beer, but unfortunately head retention is fairly low. Still not bad.

The smell is a little light, but it does hint at what's to come.

While not overly powerful, the hops blend well with the other elements in the beer enough to cancel any bitterness. Lingers long enough to an allow for an appreciation of the taste but not much longer.

The mouthful is smooth, but the extra sweetness is a tad bothersome. Still insanely drinkable (within reason).

In short this makes a great everyday sort of beer. (735 characters)

Photo of DPMomutant
3.73/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a dark but definitive copper color. 1-finger head dissipates rapidly with no lacing. But the good body scores good.

I'm having a hard time generating any smell whatsoever out of this beer. I do catch a hint of nice, fresh malt though.

The taste is more evident of said fresh malt, with just a twinge of hop bitterness in the end.

This is very smooth and gently carbonated. This 'liquid bread' drinks as easily as a nice hot loaf of solid bread eats.

This isn't going to blow you away, but I find I could easily have a session with this beer. Also nice and light on the ABV in case you're in for prolonged drinking.

I'd certainly pick up a 6er of these once in a while, which would happen as soon as I don't have to take a vacation to Vegas just to get some (missed the legendary Smoked Porter by a week *sniff*) (832 characters)

Photo of Dogbrick
3.8/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another gift from the mother-in-law after an Alaskan cruise. The beer is a dark brownish but clear color with a medium and creamy beige head. Thin lacing. The aroma is nicely malted and toasty. Medium-bodied and smooth, with malt, caramel and nut flavors in varying degrees. Light hop finish. Overall not the best Alt available but I was impressed enough that I would get it again. (381 characters)

Photo of alexgash
3.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: pours a dark copper with a thin off-white head. Nothing to move to Alaska for so far...

Smell: sweetish cookie-dough malts; a little spicy fruit in there as well.

Taste: Much like the smell, but with a nice hop bitterness that comes in halfway through. Finish is roasty bitter with some minor sweet malt notes.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability: A fine medium to light bodied brew. Not my favorite beer style, but this example is drinkable enough. (462 characters)

Photo of Gavage
3.76/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: this brew arrived in a pint glass looking clear and amber in color with a thin 1/2" head that disappeared to a flat residue after a few minutes.

Smell: the aroma was of lightly roasted malt.

Taste: the flavor sported a stronger malt tone, with some caramel and a hint of fruit. The bitterness was very light, but overall the brew seemed focused on maltiness anyway.

Mouthfeel: smooth with a short malty finish. This is a medium bodied brew with decent carbonation levels.

Drinkability: nicely drinkable, as I quaffed two with some lunch. (564 characters)

Photo of thadkaster
3.3/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Undoubtedly a fresh sample, as it was hand carried from the brewery by a colleague. Poured an intriguing ice tea color with lots of very fine bubbles. Head dissipated rather quickly. Nose of light caramel and a distinct nuttiness. Seems fairly well balanced, easy to drink. Nuttiness comes through in the mouth, I am wondering if it should have labled Nut Brown Ale instead. As i resampled this after about 10 minutes in the glass, it body had develped, and the finish pleasantly lengthened. Overall a delightful amber, perfect for those seeking a change from Killians, or Newcastle. (583 characters)

Photo of NJpadreFan
2.8/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Alaskan Amber

Appearance- reddish hue with barely any head to be seen.
Smell- malty/ breadiness. not much else.
Taste- weak malt and a hint of bread?! taste similiar to a Killians Red.

Overall- not a very pleasant beer. I could drink if that was all there was, but I won't purchase this beer again. Not worth it! (320 characters)

Photo of Gueuzedude
3.73/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is nice and malty up front, it has a bit of hop flavor in the middle that adds a nice component to this beer. The hop flavor could be a bin more hearty though. The hops really assert themselves in the finish; it is spicy yet mild, and has a hint of minty character to it. The malt flavors are sweet, with notes of caramel and an accompanying lightly toasted note. (368 characters)

Photo of MrNuggets
3.62/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

In an instant the head is gone. They've kept it simple, which i like. Mellow malt flavor on a base of almost flavorless hops. Aftertaste is almost bread-like. Feels kinda odd while in the mouth. This brew is undercarbonated for sure. This does not take away from the drinkability. This ought to be a fine session. (313 characters)

Photo of WesWes
3.25/5  rDev -11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours an amber color with a thin off-white lace head. The aroma is decent. It has a weak malt scent that boasts of pale and crystal malts and a grainy finish. The taste is slightly above average. It has a light feel with a bit of sweet malts and a dry finish. It is a little weak for my taste, plus the recipe is quite basic. The mouthfeel is average as well. It is a medium bodied beer with not enough carbonation. This beer was a disappointment. It had little character and horrible mouthfeel. It's one and done for me. (530 characters)

Alaskan Amber from Alaskan Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 580 ratings.