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Trailhead Premium Lager - Wellington County Brewery

Not Rated.
Trailhead Premium LagerTrailhead Premium Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
71
okay

58 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 58
Reviews: 44
rAvg: 2.95
pDev: 12.88%
Wants: 1
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Wellington County Brewery visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
Vienna Lager |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Trailhead is a Vienna-style lager which is characterized by a careful balance of malt sweetness and clean, crisp hop bitterness.

(Beer added by: Shiloh on 02-20-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 58 | Reviews: 44 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JohnnyBarman
2.8/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Havent had Trailhead in bottles for ages, figured I'd give it a go.

Poured into a small stein. Light golden in colour, with a thin head that survived in thin patches - not much lacing to speak of.

The nose is particularly sweet, with notes of corn and lemon, and that very distinctive "welly malt" flavor. (I can't really describe it, but it's a flavor I can pick up in pretty much all of Wellington's offerings)

Taste is about the same, albeit a bit tinny. Suprisingly sweet, almost cloying. Malty, with hinds of lemon and grassy, floral hops. The sweetness really cuts into the brew's balance, placing Trailhead among the other oppressively average lagers this country produces. I understand why Welly brews Trailhead - it's a good seller for those who just want "a beer", like Canadian or Blue; and it's also among the discount brands at the Beer Store - but it's still far from their best, and a poor example of the quality the brewery is capable of.

Mouthfeel is highly carbonated, watery.

As far as a "discount" brew goes, you can do much worse. At around 30 bucks for a 24, it's not a bad brew. Can't say I really enjoyed it that much; it's not among Wellington's best offerings.

JohnnyBarman, Jul 15, 2010
Photo of cratez
2.6/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

473ml can from the Silver Selection Pack. The Wheat Ale didn't go too well so hopefully this fares better.

A: golden yellow with lots of carbonation in the body and one finger of bubbly white head. Couple dots of lace on the pint glass.
S & T: blood, iron, burnt toast, grains, sweet corn, malt, and water. Completely lacking any discernible hop flavour, though a hollow and minutely floral grassiness comes through on the nose. Yikes! NOT a Vienna Lager, as the label claims, but rather an Adjunct Lager in the tasteless macro mold. Incredibly bland.
M: thin, high carbonation, a tad spicy, light bodied, watery finish, dry corn aftertaste.
D: a drain pour for me, and yet another clunker in the Wellington lineup. They still make some good beers, but Trailhead isn't one of them. Don't bother.

cratez, Jul 13, 2010
Photo of decimator
2.78/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From the OCB Discovery Pack Summer 2010.
473ml can poured into a pint glass.

A - Poured a clear yellow with a 1cm head. Head was quickly gone and no lacing is produced.

S - Mild malty sweetness and a hint of citrus.

T - Mild malty sweetness, a hint of citrus and some hops. The finish has a slight metallic taste.

M - A bit creamy at first and a bit watery in the finish. A little crisp but it's really pretty average.

D - It's drinkable but only because it's plain and bland. It could definitely use more hops. There's nothing redeeming about this "macro" wannabe.

decimator, Jul 03, 2010
Photo of biboergosum
3.18/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

473ml tall pastel blue can, cartoon fish theme and all.

This beer pours a cloudy medium straw colour, with two fingers of dense soapy off-white head, which leaves some random arched lace around the glass as it fades away. It smells of sweet white cracker grain, a bit of corn mash, subtle earthy honey, and mildly grassy hops. The taste is soft grain, weedy, herbal hops, and some very mild nail polish remover-esque alcohol. The carbonation is fairly soft, the body smooth, medium weight, and a bit oily, and it finishes mostly dry, the musty, weedy attributes hanging on tight.

A fair shake better than your typical AA (heh) Lager, classification-wise, but it doesn't quite follow through on the packaging's promise of a Vienna Lager by dint of Czech hops and German malts - the requisite crispness and zing just aren't there.

biboergosum, Jan 16, 2010
Photo of MeisterBurger
2.63/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a turbid orangey yellow with a small head that dissipates quickly. A slight ring of foam persists for a while. Lacing: Negligible.

The aroma is...trace elements of floral hops. A little grassy. Mildly sweet. Meh.

The taste is barely there. Mild honey malt. A little light biscuit here. A tiny nibble of hops there. A touch of dry mineral in the finish. Pretty mediocre overall.

Mouthfeel is thin and watery.

Overall verdict: Wellington should stick to English ales. This isn't a bad beer by any means, it's just a really boring one.

MeisterBurger, Sep 24, 2009
Photo of wordemupg
3.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml can poured into pint glass sept17 2009

A slightly cloudy golden yellow with a decent one finger head with fair retention and very little lace. This is one of the more carbonated beers I've seen lots of bubbles.

S a little bread with some floral hops

T a little grass and some mild hops, nothing great but nothing offensive

M light, lots of bubbles, pretty crisp and clean

D overall not a bad beer better then average but not by much

not bad for a Canadian lager

wordemupg, Sep 18, 2009
Photo of Shadman
3.15/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nice looking lager, slighty hazy pale straw in color. Really nice head and head retention,

Smell is less than stellar. Slight grainy malts with definite cooked veggie adjunct odor.

Pretty light & unassumming in taste. Weak right across the board. Weak malts, weak hops, weak metallic twang.

Smooth due to it not being over carbonated. Light body as evidenced in the 4.5% ABV.

Not the worst AAL I've tried, but really that far ahead in the taste dept from Old Milwaukee either

Shadman, Sep 06, 2009
Photo of mrmanning
2.85/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pretty average lager all around, and not the best I have had from the brewery, but a decent beer nonetheless. Head is foamy, and white, medium sized. Body is a dark amber colour. Aroma is stale hops, corn, and a faint sweetness. Taste is hoppy, bitter, sweet like sugar, and slight corn. Finish is a tad watery, leaving a mild bite in the throat as well. Not horrid, but they make better stuff!

mrmanning, Aug 03, 2009
Photo of ecoastman
3.4/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm afraid I chilled this too much and will have to review again. I got a bit of ice forming in the cold glass when I tried to cool a can and mug from room temperature in the freezer.

Drinkability - Could drink many of these easy drinking low-flavour summer time refreshers.

Appearance - clear golden.

Smell - Typical clean lager - nothing particularly outstanding.

Taste - slightly grainy. Refreshing for a hot summer day but nothing remarkable. Better than a macro beer. Very easy to drink.

Mouthfeel - smooth and watery.

ecoastman, Jul 28, 2009
Photo of TheHammer
3.15/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this one at an LCBO in Oakville I believe, while I was picking up a collectors pack of Johnnie Walker. Came in a blue can with a fish on it, with a best before date sometime in August.

Appearance: The beer poured with a solid thumb of head, but it does not lace, nor does it retain very well. The beer itself shows quite a bit of carbonation although it is hard to tell, given the murky yellow color of the beer that shows hints of green when put up to the light.

Smell: Well I am getting a smell, but I wouldn't call in diverse by any means. Corn is clearly dominant with hints of floral hops and biscuit grains. It's not offensive by any means, but it's a bit tame.

Taste: Nothing bad, but nothing outright good on this offering. Starts with a slight sweeter corn taste that turns to a more biscuit like taste, which finishes off with probably a touch of rather generic hops. Nothing here is going to knock your socks off, and if I could, I'd give it a 2.75.

Mouthfeel: Well the beer is quite carbonated but it actually helps it's case. It has practically no aftertaste and leaves your mouth very clean and only slightly dry. As plain as the beer may be, it transitions quite well too.

Drinkability: This beer can be put back with great ease and is exceptionally refreshing. It's not heavy but the carbonation does cause a little bit of a gas issue but apart from that good stuff.

Final Thoughts: Well, I knew this beer was one of Wellington's weaker offerings, but even still it has it's niche. This would be a great after a long hike in the woods, which is really what this beer sorta implies by it's name. It's not bad for an adjunct lager, but when you pour it into the glass, the lackluster smell and appearance doesn't do it any favors during the review.

TheHammer, Jun 09, 2009
Photo of DoctorStrangiato
2.25/5  rDev -23.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured a 473-ml can into a pub draught glass.

Appearance - poured a mild yellow-gold colour with fast disappearing 1-inch head. Lighter on the carbonation, and a little foam lace.

Smell - thin corn aromas and average adjunct smell characteristics.

Taste - tasteless beginning and then in the middle it gives way to a little bready-sweet corn flavour, ending in a boring dry finish. The finest Czech hops? Please. Almost no hop bitterness to notice.

Mouthfeel - even effect from start to finish, another beer manufactured for drinkability. Too bad there was no flavour profile for the smoothness.

Drinkability - for me, this will be the first and last time for Trailhead Premium Lager. Not a good product, not a good beer.

DoctorStrangiato, May 18, 2009
Photo of IronDjinn
3.43/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear golden in colour, quick splash of head that fades quickly.

Wonderful aroma of bready, biscuity malt, rich and lush, ends on a graham cracker sweet note. Floral hops.

The flavour is a malty treat as well, fresh baked bread throughout, very light hop finish, the goodness is only cut short by the bristling unbalanced carbonation of the mouthfeel, it interferes more than it helps to present. As a result it feels thin and watery in the end, even though it isn't. It's actually kind of creamy.

This has potential for sure, just round out the carbonation a bit and we have a winner here, otherwise a great malty lager.

IronDjinn, Oct 19, 2008
Photo of Voonder
3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours clear golden yellow with moderate white head which dissapeared quickly. Smell - malts mostly, average smell for this type of beer. Taste - sweet malts, corn, not too bad actually, at least id doesn't taste like medicine, like other brews of this kind. Feels a bit flat, but stil OK with clean finish. It's pretty drinkable, this is not something I'd drink on a regular basis, but still an OK beer.

Voonder, Oct 17, 2008
Photo of elricorico
2.83/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A very clear deep gold with two fingers of white head. Head slowly falls to a thin cap but holds there for some time.

Slightly sweet malt aroma. Fairly light smell even for a lager.

Malt flavour gives a faint honey and grain impression. Hops are not strong, and give some metallic flavour. Taste is quite average.

The body has a thickness to it, and the carbonation is fizzy. Not bad.

Easy enough to drink, but it really lacks in substance. Could work for a lawnmower beer.

elricorico, Oct 11, 2008
Photo of hegelec
2.93/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Sampled in bottle at David's Bistro in London, poured into a fluted pilsner glass. Had asked for the Wellington Arkell, which they usually stock, but they were out. This was offered as a comparable beer from the same brewery.

Clear, yellow liquid with minimal head. Definitely more appealing than a macro lager, but really is nothing special.

Nose is malty and biscuity. Sweet, with touches of honey. Pretty good so far.

Taste is not as full and sweet as the nose would lead you to believe, but there is a nice biscuitiness. A little noble hop bite with some herbal, citrusy notes, but not much. The finish is odd though, like stale crackers. And a little sour.

Hmmm ... There's just something about this beer that doesn't sit right. Perhaps it's too passive.

Mild carbonation. It's sort of thin and weak -- not very refreshing. Not what I expect from this style; it should be crisp and fresh. Drinkability is hurt here.

Not terrible, but not worth what I paid for it. Why couldn't they have found an extra case of Arkell in the storeroom?

hegelec, Oct 07, 2008
Photo of funkengruven
3.15/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Stopped off at the beer store in the sticks on my way home, thought i'd pick me up something cheap and macro-y and saw this sitting there, and thought what the hell. So I took it home, cracked one open and here it goes.

This pours very calmly, very little head, it's very clear and yellow. Smell is a bit grassy, kinda sweet, nothing special. Flavor is very subdued, a bit malty, don't detect much in the way of hops there. It does have some redeeming features however. This is perfect lawnmower beer. Refreshing and watery, hits the spot, and isn't difficult to drink either.

Honestly I expected a bit better than this from Wellington, but for what it is it's not terrible. Worth a try at least.

funkengruven, May 29, 2008
Photo of slitherySOB
2.58/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I was expecting something a bit better from Wellington brewery. This seems more along the lines of the discount, buckabeer brews. Perhaps that's what it's meant to be? Anyways... Pours a very pale straw colour with a head that quickly fades away, leaving a small film of foam on top. Sort of a basic, sweet, bready smell with a small floral hop scent. Bit sweet tasting with plenty of grain. Has a very mild citrus and grassy/floral aftertaste. Mouthfeel is a bit dry and watery. Sort of a 'meh' beer. Decent for camping, but their are much better session beers.

slitherySOB, Apr 28, 2008
Photo of Antilochus
2.93/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Purchased at a Kingston, Ontario LCBO (473mL can). Presentation is kind of stupid... a big blue and black can with 'Trailhead' and a jumping fish. Pretty obvious what look they are going for but as a craft brewery it's a little odd.

Poured into a gold-rimmed Stella Artois glass.

Appearance is golden, got a nice bit of colour to it over the bland strawishness of most macro lagers. Little bit of a bubbly white head, too thin to leave lace. Some big bubbles and some fizzy ones.

Aromas: sweet malt, lots of graininess, some floral hop notes, bit of sourness. Some Chardonnay. This isn't half bad, it sure as hell doesn't smell like a macro lager though. EPLish and I'm anticipating EPL taste too.

Oh... wait. Just took a sniff and actually aspirated some beer up my nose. Um... not looking forward to drinking this. Pungent maltiness... think overripe fruits.

Here we go. Definitely a sweet palate, too sweet for my taste. Grain predominates. Some citrus in the background (almost like pop!). Subtle hop notes, way less than what I thought there would be. Finishes a little too cloying and malty for my taste, medium length finish.

I could drink a ton of these, apparently it is a discount beer? This blows away most macros, too bad anyone buying discounts is going to look for higher abv (meaning like 5.5-6%...) and this will get passed over.

But coming from Wellington I would expect much better.

Antilochus, Feb 27, 2008
Photo of allergictomacros
2.7/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A - Pours a clear straw with a decent white head of foam.

S - Sweet, slighty sulfury smell with a touch of leafy hops.

T/M - Drier than expected with an astringent edge. Rough, albeit mild, hop bitterness in a watery finish. Not overly fizzy.

D - Overall, a clean, light, watery brew. A good choice for people who don't like beer.

allergictomacros, Feb 20, 2008
Photo of shamus
3.43/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

very sudsy head; like bubblebath in fact. This is in a can so there is a tinny metallic smell but part of that is the style as well, I think. This from a brewery that in my opinion is better than the macros like Sleemans, Labatts and company, but falls short of making really great beer. It's almost like they purposely fall short of making crafted beer because they are afraid that brewing real character into the product might scare people away. I don't really know what the company's reasoning is but that's the impression I get.

Any way this beer is like that. it tastes alright but just isn't anything memorable. So i won't try it again.

shamus, Feb 16, 2008
Photo of ThatWineGuy
3.13/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Straw colour witha half finger white head that spread out soon enough with minimal lacing. A mix of large and small bubble carbonation. Smells of fresh grass, mild citrus. Taste is citrus hoppy, dry, bitter, malt, slightly sour finish. Light to medium body. Not a bad lager overall but not a great one by any stretch. This might appeal to the scores of lager lovers who don't want to spend too much, it's certainly better than many of the macro lagers that have unfortunately cornered a certain market here in Ontario. From Wellington County, an honest effort at compromise, better than most they're competing with on this level.

ThatWineGuy, Dec 27, 2007
Photo of CAMRAhardliner
2.58/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a straw gold color with a pathetic non existent head and a few wisps of lace. The aroma has a mildly synthetic feel. Very weak grainy flavor mixes with an equally anemic hop presence. The taste is bland and watery with some light herbal hops and a wiff of DMS. The finish is sweetish and short lasting. The mouthfeel is light and carbonation levels are low for a lager.

A very lackluster beer, but still a notch up from BMC

CAMRAhardliner, Dec 13, 2007
Photo of drinkininthewood
3.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Ive been thinking about this beer for quite some time now as my search for a quality beer at a quality price continues...

Served from a 341 brown twist off bottle into a pint glass. BB 10 08 07

A- Fairly nice golden color with a big fizzy head which settles and leaves some slight lacing. Lot of big bubbles flowing.

S- Slightly metallic with some malt and some floral hop character noticeable. Fairly grainy overall but not bad. Much better than you're typical macro for sure.

T- More of the same. Crisp and clean, somewhat spritzy with a decent hop profile with some grain but slightly metallic in the finish. Tastes better than alot of typical macros.

M- Light in body but not watery and moderately carbonated.

D- Not alot of flavor but drinkability is high. Good sessionable beer.

Overall for the price of this beer you can't go wrong. You pay for what you get, and in Trailhead Lagers case, that is an above average brew at a great price. Its hard to find cheaper beers that are of decent quality but, Wellington brewery makes a pitch into the buck-a-beer market and for once we see a brewery make a decent,drinkable, natural beer thats better than you're basic macros at an unbeatable price. Give this brew a shot! It may not be the best beer out there, but it sure is one of the best discount beers.

drinkininthewood, Jul 26, 2007
Photo of biegaman
3.1/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Trailhead's prairie gold colour is smeared in a foggy mist to make for an appearance that, curiously, is at once sunny and smoggy. Almost microscopic bubbles race through the beer at near time warping speed. They come to a screeching halt, however, once hitting the tarp of filmy white lather that extends over the beer's surface.

The aroma showcases a very sweet graininess that is one part pleasant (honeyed oats) and one part unpleasant (canned cream corn). The Saaz hops that are advertised can hardly be noted - if at all - although a tinge of floral-accented bitterness does leak out. I'm still unsure if I want my nose in the glass, I reckon it's just as well left out of it.

You're not doing the beer any disservice drinking it at near freezing temperature - you're probably doing yourself a favor. At very least, you aren't missing out on anything (nothing important, anyhow). Not to suggest the taste is bad, rather just plain and conventional and, well, not exactly good. It just tastes like grain, specifically a mix of barley and corn.

And when I say corn I don't mean corn syrup or any distasteful canned corn-like flavours, but rather that of a grist that was minimally diluted with a little flaked maize in the way American lagers traditionally have been. Like any adjunct lager it's not entirely desirable but, unlike those which use corn (or its syrups) too liberally, this is at least agreeable.

Fortunately there's enough good beer out there that none of us should ever have to settle for something that's just 'agreeable'. Trailhead was obviously designed for those with low standards and, while not the bottom of the barrel for beers in this style and price range, I personally would have to feel pretty down on myself to sit through another pint of it.

biegaman, Nov 06, 2006
Photo of Derek
3.25/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Wellington says "No ordinary lager! A Euro-traditional style lager derived from Czech hops."

It's definitely more of a Euro Pale Lager than a macro.

A: Clear, golden-straw. Subtle, fizzy white head quickly dissipates. No retention or lace.

S: Earthy, metallic & floral hops with some underlying maltyness (bread with a touch of light caramel).

T: Plenty of hop flavour (earthy, metallic & a little floral), a little malty sweetness up front, with a moderate bitterness in the finish. Slight buttery flavour. Personally, I'm not a fan of the Czech hop flavour. It does have a nice malty flavour.

M: Light to moderate body (surprising for its strength); moderate carbonation.

D: A good, sessionable beer, but the hop profile isn't my style.

Derek, Aug 22, 2006
Trailhead Premium Lager from Wellington County Brewery
71 out of 100 based on 58 ratings.