Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine?

Learn more about beer and save over 53% with a 3-year subscription.

Subscribe now →

4² (Four Squared) - Real Ale Brewing Company

Not Rated.
4² (Four Squared)4² (Four Squared)

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

35 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 35
Hads: 294
Avg: 3.99
pDev: 31.83%
Wants: 14
Gots: 58 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Real Ale Brewing Company visit their website
Texas, United States

Style | ABV
American Blonde Ale |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Lawl3ss on 07-01-2012

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (46) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 35 | Hads: 294
Photo of mactrail
4.22/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Fabulously fragrant. Pours quite a light golden amber color in the dwarf nonic. Long lasting head and plenty of fine carbonation. Big sudsy foam with every pour. Rich, fragrant, flavorful, and madly drinkable.

The zingy hops are just bitter enough, but mostly it's a festival of leafy, herbaceous, perfumey, and darkly fruity aromatics. I can't identify anything that reminds me of specific fruits, but it's quite a harmonious warm brew. I'm not a hop obsessive, but this is a really sensational hoppy beer. I think it should be categorized either as a Pale Ale or an American IPA. The focus is clearly on the hops, and the color is neither a red or amber. From the 12 oz can purchased at Texas Wine in Fredericksburg.

 719 characters

Photo of superspak
4.1/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got in a trade with Cyde. 12 ounce can into pint glass, best before 8/20/2013. Pours moderately cloudy pale golden amber color with a 2 finger fairly dense white head with great retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Spotty foamy lacing clings down the glass. Aromas of big grapefruit, orange zest, lemon zest, orange rind, floral, grass, pine, light honey, and dank floral earthiness. Damn nice aromas with good balance and complexity of dank hop notes with a light malt balance; and good strength. Taste of grapefruit, lemon zest, orange zest, tangerine, orange rind, floral, grass, pine, bread, light honey, and floral earthiness. Fair amount of dank floral bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, citrus zest, floral, grass, pine, bread, light honey, and floral earthiness on the finish for a bit. Very nice complexity and balance of dank hop flavors; with a light-moderate malt balance and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a smooth and moderately sticky mouthfeel that is nice. Alcohol is very well hidden with no warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is an excellent hoppy blonde ale. All around nice balance and complexity of hop and malt flavors; and extremely smooth to drink. Really enjoyed this one.

 1,290 characters

Photo of stakem
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can into a snifter. Thanks to BA CanadianGhetto for the hookup with this. The brew appears a hazed golden yellow color with a finger plus white cap. The head remains with solid retaining powers producing patchy lacing as it fades.

The aroma is pleasantly hoppy with notes of citrus like lemon peel and orange rind. A hint of grassy herbs and faint pine. Somewhat catty with a fruity to floral aspect that increases with intensity as the brew warms up along with a soft touch of solvent alcohol.

The flavor is resinous with hoppy bitterness that is catty and herbal with a zesty component of rind and pith of oranges, lemons and grapefruit. A touch of bready malt backing before finishing more fruity to floral with a faint noticeable touch of alcohol. As the brew warms up, it gets a bit green with a almost vegetative yeastiness.

This is a medium bodied brew with a modest amount of carbonation. It is quite enjoyable with a mellow yeastiness and alcohol feel. Probably the best real ale offering I have tried to date. Thanks again Will.

 1,046 characters

Photo of smakawhat
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the can into a nonic pint glass.

A hazy bright brass yellow, more towards lemon but a little darker with a real nice fluffy white four finger head. Pock marked top, soapy clumped retention, quite odd looking but hanging around quite a bit there. Pretty aggressive.

Nice hop forward nose. Hints of mellow pine and spruce, with a juiced front slightly on the hop angle. Slight hints of pineapple a bit as well.

Palate works out nicely. Good malted light body with some sweet depth. Good hints of honey and pineapple juice, with a great fruity finish. Light bodied notes of fruit and juiced tropics really hit. Airy herbal to pine spruce like finish as well.

Pretty solid amped up blonde, and certainly one of the better ones I've had.

 756 characters

Photo of AgentMunky
3.86/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 ounce can into a pint glass. From notes. Reviewed 21 September 2013.

A: Good head. Clear, with suspended particulates. Golden.

S: Piney hops. Surprisingly fresh and delicious.

T: Tasty! Lemon peel. Strong, astringent citrus. Herbal finish. Clean aftertaste. Brief main taste.

M: A bit lackluster, the main feel coming from hops.

O: An enjoyable, recommendable beer.

 387 characters

Photo of elNopalero
4.5/5  rDev +12.8%

I first had this on tap at Real Ale during an anniversary party, long before I started reviewing beers apparently. I was glad to see it is now in cans. Thanks to @Xicanobeerrun for the trade!
This pours from the can a solid yellow tan color, like a dark lemon jello color. There’s a underprounced straw-grass hop aroma on it which lends itself to a crisp, straw/grassy characteristic as it’s sipped. The seasons haven’t changed to fall where I live yet but this beer is making me think it would be the perfect autumn IPA sipper.

 536 characters

Photo of Pegasus
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Massive, coarse white head spanning several inches crowns a moderately hazy medium golden body. The retention is utterly superb, wit the head little diminishes several minutes after being poured. Scattered . patchy lacing adorns the glass walls. Profuse, fast-rising carbonation renews the head.

Aroma: Spicy, peppery, citric, and grassy hops dominate the aroma. Beneath, there is a little understated pale malt. There seems to be a whiff of alcohol as well.

Taste: Opens with a substantial hop presence, with grapefruit rind, pine tar, and grassy hops at the open. As the taste progresses, the hops rise to ascendancy, with only a little toasted malt as a backdrop. There is a faint alcohol presence in the taste, as well. Finishes with a mild, lingering grapefruit rind hop flavor.

Mouth feel: Smooth, soft, pleasant, and full.

Drinkability/notes: An interesting variation of a familiar beer from Real Ale, "Fireman's Four". Very drinkable and refreshing, quite pleasing.

Presentation: Packaged in a standard twelve-ounce aluminum can, served in a New Belgium Brewing chalice.

 1,095 characters

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Had first on tap at the brewery, then in cans from the local supermarket.

What a delicious brew this was. I was expecting something a little bigger than regular fireman's 4, but this really matches the brewery's commercial description, and then some.

Tannish yellow with some sediment and a fair head and lace. Looks something like their fireman's four (which is to be expected, since it's a spin-off of that beer).

Monstrously hoppy and pungent in both aroma and taste, with a medium body and ample carbonation. I need to look up what hops they use and try something like this in my homebrewing.

A very tasty beer. Highly recommended.

 655 characters

Photo of sendsilk
3.62/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Received this as an extra in a recent, perfect trade. Thanks Bill!

Not sure why this is called an amber ale, it's pretty much a pale ale from the looks of it. Darker straw colored with some small bubbles and head poured into a snifter.
Smells like a pale ale too. Not as rich in male or smell as an amber or red ale IMO.

T- nice, nothing to knock your socks off, slight grapefruit and corn flavored. The can says it's dry hopped so I was expecting some more hop blast in the taste category but it isn't really there. Easy drinking though

O- a decent pale ale that is better than a lot of the, but nothing to blow me away. Love the fact that it comes in a can though, although I didn't see a "bottle on" date but I may have just missed it.

 741 characters

Photo of jngrizzaffi
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a hazy golden color with a finger width 1/2 foamy, 1/2 carbonated head. Head retention is mild. Lacing is decent. Very nice citrus, piney resin aroma. Citrus taste predominates. Nice piney hop at the end. Very minimal astringency to aftertaste. Light bodied. A little watered down but is still a good beer.

 320 characters

Photo of mjurney
4.07/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Golden color, some amber highlight, hazy. Lots of small bubbles rising up. Thick head.

Hoppy, grassy, piney, sweet pale malts, tropical fruit.

Burst of hops up front. Grassy, piney, spicy. Bright fruit character. Sweet pale malts in the background. Bitter finish, very crisp. Body is crisp, tangy, refreshing, semi-dry.

It's an excellent beer.

 381 characters

Photo of JMad
4.28/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a golden yellow color with a soapy white head that left tons of lacing. Smells of fruity tangerines and grapefruit with some caramel in the background. It tastes of hoppy citrus peel, mostly grapefruit, there is some breadiness and pine in there too. It has a light body and the carbonation is soft, full and silky and the finish is crisp and slightly dry. I really enjoyed this beer, way better than the regular Fireman's 4.

 440 characters

Photo of Lawl3ss
2.82/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

(from notes)

Had this on tap at the Real Ale 16th Anniversary party alongside Fireman's 4 and dry hopped cask conditioned versions of both 4 and 4^2.

I'm fairly sure this is one of Real Ales' two 16th anniversary releases. Unfortunately, the place was packed and the sheets describing the beers were tiny and inaccessible in the crowd, so I'm not too clear on the details.

Look- Clear medium amber tinged with orange, vigorous carb visible. Served without head, not much lace.

Smell- Biscuit, bready, floury, nondescript bitterness, herbal.

Taste- Just about what you would expect from a doubled-up version of F4, clean bready malt with a hint of caramel, clean herbal bittering. Light mineral finish.

Mouthfeel- Medium body, crisp carb. Not as clean or light as I'd like with the flavor profile.

Overall- Just about what you'd expect, it's a beefed-up Fireman's 4, but unfortunately the things F4 has going for it (clean, light, crisp, good drinkability- all great in a blonde ale) don't really come through. Still quite balanced and on the refreshing side, but a heftier beer needs bolder flavors to entice me.

 1,135 characters

Photo of obrike
3.8/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Saw this one for the first time the other day at my Round Rock Specs.

Nothing really stood out for me on the look. A hazy yellow pour with a head that didn't stick around too long. A thin white ring remained for the duration at least.

Getting some grassy hops and a bit of citrus...nothing too pronounced here, but smells fresh.

Very light citrus/grassy hops and some barley/grain on the backend. A pretty easy drinking beer with a slight bitter finish that kind of makes you want to take another sip almost immediately.

I'd consider this one a summer beer for sure. Offer it to friends at the pool instead of the typical bmc this season.

 643 characters

Photo of BryanCarey
4.09/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden in color, this beer is very fragrant, with a nose that combines citrus, mixed tropical fruit, and floral notes. The white head of foam looks nice and it does leave a good deal of lace as you consume.

The taste of this beer is about in- line with the nose. It is fruity and tangy from the hops, with flavors of lemongrass, orange, and grapefruit dominating. Search a little more and you will taste flavors such as honey, bread, pale malt, and some pine. The hops are definitely present, there is no doubt about that. But the overall flavor is not over- hopped by any means and most will find it enjoyable and highly drinkable.

This Real Ale beer is a tasty one and the hops help make it and enjoyable brew. It seems like it would go very well with certain cheeses and its fruity component makes it a good refresher for a summer day- something I wouldn’t normally say for a hoppier than average beer. But this one is definitely one to try and enjoy and I recommend grabbing a six pack or two if you can find it.

 1,020 characters

Photo of TBoneJones
4.29/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Cloudy golden body on the pour into my pint. Nice frothy white head. Decent lacing.
Smells quite hoppy, with some sweet bready malts. Citrus, pear.
Nice enough flavor. The hops come through on the puckering side, with light citrus fruity and earthy bitterness dominating.
Medium carbonation, creamy smooth, drying, slightly astringent.
Overall a very nice beer.

 365 characters

Photo of guityler83
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A: It poured a pale straw color with a moderate amount of haze. The tiny bubbles in the head built to a finger and a half and was long lasting in the pilsner glass. I nice thick coating of lacing once it receded into the beer.

S: Fresh fruity hops that remind me of amarillo and cascade, A bit of a sour wheat vibe that almost reminds me of a berliner. No alcohol, and a hint of bread.

T: Malt forward with bready, toast and bread crust melding together to form a deeper complexity. The bitterness is moderate to balance out the hint of sweetness at the beginning. A subtle fresh piney hop profile comes through along with another flavor I can't identify.. toffee, carmel malts?

M: Very creamy and light texture. Finish is on the dry side and carbonation is on the high side.

O: Definatly not what I was expecting. This was recieved on a trade so I hadn't heard of it previously. I did enjoy the malt profile of this beer and the fresh hop aroma, but it lacked some of the bitterness I was expecting. But a solid beer overall

 1,031 characters

Photo of Sark
4.01/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appareance- I don't think this beer was meant to be an amber/ red, it's light yellow and golden with a thick cratering head of eggshell white

Smell- super floral and citrusy of the centennial variety of hops, herbs and grassy, some pale malt sweetness too

Taste- interesting first note is the tangy hops followed by a bready and grainy malt with a nice bitter and herbal finish

Mouthfeel- light and watery, crisp finish

Overall- I'd really love to try this from the tap, I think it would have much more character than from the can

 534 characters

Photo of Ranz
3.81/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A: Half a finger of head sits atop the caramel-golden brew, which I'm calling a DIPA; some carbonation lifts up the side of my pint glass, and the head dissipates quickly, leaving some uneven lacing.

S: Pungent lemongrass, pine, and citrus. I was homebrewing with a buddy last night, and this most certainly has some heavy cascade-like hops just like last night's concoction. A thick breadyness from the malt blasts through as well.

T: Acrid hop here, perhaps even a bit much; however, it leaves a fresh, lemon aftertaste. This would be perfect on a warm spring or summer day with a thick, meaty cheese.

M: Nicely carbonated, its medium-bodied feel has a crisp, dry finish.

O: While it has a bit too much acidity from the hops, this is still quite refreshing. Plus, it's cheap!

 783 characters

Photo of zander4dawin
2.71/5  rDev -32.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Let me first start by saying I'm a big fan of both Real Ale and Fireman's 4 but this rendition of the beer is not to my liking. The beer is a bright golden color with a soap bubble head. Nose is extremely floral and citrusy. Beer is a sharp one hit of bitterness and overpowering yeasty flavors that left an unpleasant after taste. The body is light and crisp, almost no malt flavoring to balance. Not something I'd recommend or return to, Fireman's 4 just isn't a big enough beer to balance the dry hoppying.

 509 characters

Photo of HipCzech
3.92/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Serving: 355 mL can (stamped "best by 05/05/15") poured into a 7 oz Libbey Gibraltar glass.

Appearance: Almost clear, light gold with a frothy, bubbly white head and patchy lace.

Smell: Floral and herbal hops with a light malt sweetness.

Taste: Biscuit malt, slightly sweet, with citrus rind and floral hops. Nice, crisp bitterness throughout.

Mouthfeel: Moderate to light body, smooth feel and good, visible carbonation.

Overall: Light and refreshing, but with some nice hops to add character and crispness.

 513 characters

Photo of Rootscipio
4.06/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

poured from can into new belgium globe. Appearance is cloudy gold with about two fingers of white long lasting foam.
Aroma is of floral hops,
Taste is lemony bitter start with some light malt notes mid pallet moves to a slightly more grapefruit and a light bitter dry finish.
over all a really surprisingly good beer that is well balanced hoppy beer.

 351 characters

Photo of brurevu
4.18/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A supercharged version of the Fireman’s 4 with a clean dry finish that went down smooth. The 4-squared poured a hazy gold with a substantial white head. The added hops were readily apparent on the aroma and through the first sips that really transformed the Firemen’s 4 into a fantastic beer. The base Fireman’s 4 flavors are there with a bit more body behind them and more pleasingly bitter hops all around.

 414 characters

Photo of tpgraham
4.3/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this last year and rated it a 3.5 or so because I found it just OK. I was looking for something easy drinking for the weekend and this was $5.99 so it was a no-brainer. I threw it in the fridge at work so that it would be ready to pop open once I got home while the kids are outside.

WOW! I don't know if it is just super fresh right now but this is an incredible beer!

A - I drank straight from the can but what I could see was a pleasant, hazy orange color.

S - Bright hops and bready malt.

T - Follows the nose with a nice, bright, citrusy taste up front with a medium malt backbone. Delicious!

M - Great medium to light body, perfect for summer time.

O - I will buy this all the time.

 701 characters

Photo of EGreen
4.27/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

reat nose! Sweet citrus, cotton candy, definite pine. Much more on the malty flavor... Somewhat surprising. Nice caramel, mild breadiness, with a twinge of tartness near the finish. Very nice hops that finishes a pretty solid beer. I don't really like their fireman's#4 offering and was afraid this would be a mildly hopped version of that. It actually is a very nice beer that really showcases the hops around a decent base beer

 429 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
4² (Four Squared) from Real Ale Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 35 ratings.