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Longboard Island Lager | Kona Brewing Co.

663 Reviews
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Longboard Island LagerLongboard Island Lager

Brewed by:
Kona Brewing Co.
Hawaii, United States | website

Style: American Pale Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Longboard Island Lager is a smooth refreshing lager fermented and aged for five weeks at cold temperatures to yield its exceptionally smooth flavor. A delicate, slightly spicy hop aroma complements the malty body of this beer.

18 IBU

Added by Bierman9 on 08-07-2002

User Reviews
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Reviews: 663 | Ratings: 2,561
Photo of TopherBreski
1.41/5  rDev -58.2%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.25 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 1.5

Clear yellow with a decent amount of carbonation. Almost no smell; can grab a whiff of barley. Can't tell if I grabbed a craft beer that was rated 80 on here or MHL.

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Photo of Jericho7x
4.06/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Im a new to craft beers...there is your disclaimer. lol
I like this beer a lot. If you are moving out of the mass-produced American beers, you will like this as a next step up.
Clear golden color, very light bitterness (which I do not like bold hops yet), clean finish, drinkable. Would be great for a day outdoors in the summer on a hot day. They also sell it at my local supermarket!

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Photo of ZBowden
3.72/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours clear yellow straw gold small head, smells hoppy with cracker maltiness, tastes of bitter spicy hops paired with crisp biscuity cracker malts, bright mouthfeel with moderate carbonation with a clean finish.

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Photo of pat61
4/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

L: Pours brilliant straw to gold under a 1” sudsy white foam cap.
S: Spicy hops, light grain with faint apple.
T: Drinks very crisp and clean with a firm malt backbone with just a hint of caramel and a moderately bitter hop accent.
F: Medium light body and medium to medium high carbonation.
O: Very smooth, refreshing easy to drink lager.

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Photo of MrDell
3.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I was feeling a little fuzzy when I had this as I had over-indulged with a load of Belgian trappist beers the night before I trying this! I found it very refreshing though, as a lager should be. Nothing really stands out in this one taste wise but I enjoyed drinking it with a pizza. I could session this on a hot day with a barbeque for example.

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Photo of vikinggary28
3.97/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks amber colour with thin white head. Definite smell, very hoppy, grainy for a lager. Mild smooth flavour that carries the hops over from the aroma. Very clean taste. Taste more like a basic pale ale than a lager. Great summer beer. I'm not a big lager fan, (o.k. oktoberfest and bock excluded) but this one is very enjoyable. Prost!

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Photo of Pantalones
3.67/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Second bottle from the Kona variety pack I picked up not long ago. Bottling date is February 17th, 2015.

Appearance is pretty much what you'd expect of a pale lager -- pours very pale yellow, slightly darker once it's all in the glass, very clear. Lots of bubbles rising up through the beer, and a fluffy white head of foam on top which is pretty big upon first pouring but rapidly shrinks to a coating on top over the next couple minutes -- but unlike some of the other pale lagers I've had, the foam doesn't ever disappear completely, at least not in the time you'd take to drink a standard pint glass's worth of this. Bonus points for great bottle design, both the label and bottle itself.

Smell isn't especially strong, but what's there isn't bad. A bit of a grain/bready sort of thing and a bit of that grassy pale-lager-hops smell (especially noticeable when first opening the bottle, but present afterward too) which I didn't notice when I had my first bottle of this last night, and a bit of an almost corn-on-the-cob type sweetness.

Taste has the features present in the smell -- grain, a sweet/starchy thing that's reminding me of corn even though I'm guessing no actual corn is present in the beer (as it's not classified as an adjunct lager), and again just a bit of hoppy grassiness which I for some reason wasn't picking up in the bottle I had last night. The flavors are on the milder side, but what's there is pretty nice, definitely nothing that seems "off" at all. Plays nice with food, too -- the later half of this glass is accompanying some mac & cheese with tomatoes and green chiles, and neither the food or the beer seem to be impacting each other's flavors in a bad way at all.

Mouthfeel is pretty nice, too. Light but not quite watery, and very, very drinkable. This is definitely a beer you can easily have two or three of with a meal (or without a meal, even.) I'd probably do just that if not for the fact that I've got to go to work at 4:00 and I don't want to be drinking multiple beers before I drive!

Overall -- this is actually a really nice little lager, and works really well for cooling off after a long summer day or having a beer (or a few) with a meal. I think I underrated this one a bit yesterday when I had my first one -- comparing to Nooner (as I had one bottle of each yesterday) the first thing that stood out is how mild it is, but comparing to others in the overall "pale lager" category (American pale lager/European pale lager/adjunct lager) that I've had, this is actually really good, easily the best of its category that I've had!
To summarize: basically an upgraded version of the Red Stripe, Tecate, etc. type of lighter island/tropical pale lagers -- all of the positive features of those beers, but with none of the negatives and a bit more flavor. If you're looking for something that's lighter without being "lite," I'd say this would be a great choice.

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Photo of mkh012
3.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A very well-rounded beer. Not the most complex, but light and easy drinking. Has some tropical fruit flavors to distinguish it from your average lager. Slight hints of citrus and floral hops but an extremely smooth finish. A great beer to have 5 or 6 of in a night but not as boring as macro lagers. Good to convert your friends if they're macro drinkers.

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Photo of Sweet_Hammy
3.45/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Decent. Easy. Definable papaya as one other reviewer pointed out. Just enough bright hop flavor to keep.it clean. Had on tap at Old Chi. After being over hop blasted too many times I am searching for balance. This beer is nicely balanced but leaves emptiness on the initial taste. Finishes well though.

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Photo of ARoman
2.84/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 2.75

On tap, poured into a shaker. The aroma is bread dough with a light, grassy spice, and a touch of honey late. The beer pours a clear straw pale with a foamy white head that only has a light retention, but moderate lace. The taste is a medium sweet and light bitter. The beer is smooth and oily with a light fuzz and light body. The flavors on the palate are honey and corn with a slick finish of honey and a mild, grassy spice that leaves a bready aftertaste.

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Photo of biegaman
3.47/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Given its name, you'd expect Longboard Island Lager to be topped with surf-worthy white froth and leave waves of lacing. But it's not and it doesn't. Instead the surface is still and calm as a koy pond. This beer is, however, appropriately clear and sunny for something made on Hawaii's Big Island.

The aroma has a lightness on par with its complexion. But that's not to say there's no flavour. Lagers like this can be a fantastic representation for beer's most important ingredient: malt. Indeed, this one has a graininess reminiscent of the feed room in a stable. It's a bouquet that emphasizes the fresh and grassy side of the cereal grain with hops providing a faint floral note too.

The palate, on the other hand, is much more 'malty' than 'grainy'. It tastes definitively like something from the bakery not the farm; these biscuity, bready, even doughy flavours and their inherent gentle sweetness would be most at home in a confection or cake or cereal protein bar.

Despite the fine offering of flavour, this isn't the kind of beer to slowly savour - light-bodied and easy to drink, it puts up no fight going down (and doesn't take much time to do so). The contents of the glass disappear quickly as each sip almost leaves you more thirsty for the next.

Longboard Island Lager is exactly the kind of flagship beer you'd understandably expect from a Hawaiian brewery. It's an offering that doesn't demand much attention and is probably best enjoyed in hot, sunny settings. It isn't quite on par with top German Helles but is worlds above any American macro.

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Photo of loubar
4.1/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle from BevMo. Pours a clear pale golden yellow with a thin white head of foam. Nose of yeast and mild malt. Taste of biscuit and malt up front with some grassiness and a faint floral tone. Little bitterness. Very smooth. Non IPA beers like this don’t get much respect, but this is one of my very favorite American pale lagers. Light and refreshing, yet flavorful. An excellent everyday beer.

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Photo of EagleTalon
3.54/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours out to a generous head that laces. Light yellow gold color. Aroma is typical pale lager with light biscuity malts and spicy/grassy hops, yet the nose has a slightly sour twang to it that reminds me of some wheat beers. Flavor is clean, dry and crisp with grainy malts and a nice balance from the hops. Mouthfeel is watery and a bit rough but not terrible. A decently good lager. I prefer Kona's ales.

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Photo of BrownAleBollocks
2.82/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Not bad for a pale light lager. Clean and could go well with island cuisine as it has a bit of an edge and more flavor than a regular light lager. Interesting brew from a brewery than makes solid, clean beers.

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Photo of mchegash
3.88/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - 4/5
A bright golden yellow, extremely clear. No head. Lots of carbonation can be seen rising through the beer. I love the yellow color, because it really does make the beer look like an exotic "island" lager.

Smell - 3.5/5
Smells like a lager. I have a hard time smelling anythine other than the lager smell (but that's the case with most lagers I try...so maybe it's just my unrefined nose, rather than the beer.) The smell does seem to have a hint of fruitiness to it, almost tropical fruitiness.

Taste - 4/5
Sweet malts, some fruitiness, some "lager taste". I like this lager a lot, because I can really taste the malts. The lager aspect is still very present, but there is a great balance between malts and "lager taste". The beer is quite sweet, with perhaps hints of honey.

Mouthfeel - 4/5
Medium bodied, quite crisp, a good amount of carbonation. Smooth, and perhaps a bit syrupy (but only slightly).

Overall - 4/5
This was actually a great lager. One of the best I remember having.

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Photo of Ernie_B
4.11/5  rDev +22%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

My go to beer. I always eat this at Islands. This is a refreshing beer at its finest. One of the best lagers available. Crisp, tasteful, and it will make you happy.

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Photo of JuicesFlowing
3.76/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a shaker pint glass.

Look: A pale golden body with some slowly rising bubbles. A white head recedes to a wispy film. Light lacing.

Aroma: A malty aroma laced with a faint lemongrass hop presence.

Taste: A little sweet maltiness up front with a grassy, hoppy finish. Simple and clean.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light and crisp.

Overall: A very tasty beer, not very complex, but balanced. Refreshing.

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Photo of bwood06
3.37/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

A - Very clear golden in color. Moderate to high carbonation is easy to see. Very thin white head. 3.75/5

S - White bread and some corn. Grassy hops. 3.5/5

T - Dominated by a corniness and grassy hops. Some yeasty white bread is also prevalent. Creamed corn is the major note that I am getting here. 3.25/5

M - Very creamy but also light at the same time. Medium bodied which throws me a bit for such a light beer. 3.5/5

O - This is a beer that I could easily drink on a warm day and enjoy. Creaminess reminds me more of a Cream Ale (like Spotted Cow) than an Island Lager. 3.25/5

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Photo of SierraFlight
3.2/5  rDev -5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap and poured into a shaker pint. Clear yellow in color with no head thanks to the pour. Aroma is light malt, biscuit, grassy and floral hops. Taste is bread, grass, and grain. Medium body, thin texture, moderate to high carbonation, dry bitter finish.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.75/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

it looks : A soft pour yields a stark white, fluffy head. It is 2 fingers in height and leaves wisps behind. The body is heavily carbonated, leaving bubbles along the sides of the glass, ascending up like champagne. It is pale straw blonde in color.

It smells : heavy malted corn scent, not far from Corona's smell although much sweeter and not as odious. This makes up most of the profile. Behind that, a slight banana peel note, faint fruity hop.

It tastes : Crisp, clean, mild malt flavor - made up of barley and corn. A slight slap of hop comes in but is flooded by more corn malts.

Mouthfeel : very clean all the way through , very crisp, with a sharp finish. Heavily carbonated.

Overall : This was an impressive lager. I'd have it again.

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Photo of gopens44
2.6/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed from notes, this isn't altogether too bad for what it is. Little biscuity but otherwise very easy drinking. Full bodied yet refreshing. Touch sweet but not off-putting

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Photo of Lukasbane
2.97/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.75

Imagine if any of the generic/popular watery beers had more flavor and smoothness, you get Longboard. Not bad if you're just looking for something light.

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Photo of Willster333
3.46/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pours a pale yellow with lacey head. Smell isn't very strong at all, very light yeast/wheat smell to it. Taste is very crisp and smooth, no aftertaste, but pretty light. Very drinkable but a little flat tasting. Not bad, not great.

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Photo of supervike
3.53/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Very thin and translucent pale yellow. Smell is mild, and barely noticable. Great light and crisp flavor, no aftertaste and a smooth overall taste. A perfect thirst quencher, not filling.

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Photo of HamdenHector
3.96/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: slight haze; pale straw in color; less that a one finger white head that receded quickly to a very thin cap; almost no lacing;

S: grainy; a little floral;

T: grainy all the way though; light bitterness at the finish;

M; light to medium bodied; moderate to high carbonation; moderately dry finish;

O: reasonably good representation of the style; refreshing, but a little boring;

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Longboard Island Lager from Kona Brewing Co.
77 out of 100 based on 663 ratings.