1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Old Scratch Amber Lager - Flying Dog Brewery

Not Rated.
Old Scratch Amber LagerOld Scratch Amber Lager

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,446 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,446
Reviews: 756
rAvg: 3.42
pDev: 14.62%
Wants: 30
Gots: 74 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Flying Dog Brewery visit their website
Maryland, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Lager |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 11-12-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Old Scratch Amber Lager Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,446 | Reviews: 756 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of OWSLEY069
2.35/5  rDev -31.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a clean amber/ orange-ish color with an off white head. In the aroma, small sweet maltiness. In the taste, malty, sweet and somewhat skunky. A small bite and medium mouthfeel, with a dry malty aftertaste. Kind of skunky taste, malty and dry. Really not that good.

OWSLEY069, Jul 07, 2008
Photo of beeragent
4.03/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass:

A - The beer pours a deep amber, forming a 1/2 inch off-white creamy head with very minimal lacing.

S - Strong aroma of sweet malts creating a nutty caramel aroma with just a hint of the hops coming through.

T - Medium caramel flavor from the malts with a light hop finish. Simple.

M - Thicker mouthfeel than expected for an amber. Light carbonation and smooth finish.

D - I was impressed with this amber. Full flavor and smooth mouthfeel. Definitely a sessionable lager.

beeragent, Jul 03, 2008
Photo of scruffwhor
3.4/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a one finger head with that recedes to a small, thin island of foam in the middle. Tecolor is a nicecarml copper with some light, lazy bubbling. The aroma has some caramel, light orange sauce witha hint of mint hops. These scent are pretty hard to detect though. The taste is a fruity carmel with a toasted malt finish mixed with some light spruce hop notes. The palate is a light, sweet fruit mixed with earthy hops. With a bit of carameled hops.

scruffwhor, Jun 29, 2008
Photo of jhu1995
3.63/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich amber color with minimal head. Aroma is lightly hopped with a touch of sulfur and some caramel. Taste is malty but not overbearing - mostly caramel flavors with a faint amount of hoppiness. Mouthfeel is creamier than expected and medium-bodied - easy to drink like a god lager should be. Overall a good standard, everyday, type of beer.

jhu1995, Jun 28, 2008
Photo of bark
3.35/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The colour is deep amber; the low nice head is white. Some lacing occurs.

The smell is bold with lightly roasted malt, mild tart matured notes and some sweetness.

The taste is malty with some cask-matured flavours. Lots of aromatic hops with hints of wax and vegetables. The aftertaste is milder with hoppy notes of vegetables, chemicals (candle-grease?), fruits and dough.

The carbonation is medium strong, the liquid quite light.

Probably a very pleasant drink for a calm evening.

bark, Jun 23, 2008
Photo of jordoo
3.1/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poored into a pilsner glass.

Its a nice ambe colored brew with a smallish quickly receiding head. Smells of toasted and sweet malts with hints of floral hops. Taste is mainly toasted malts upfront and throughout with some sweet hints and a little hop hit in the rear. Has a nice mouth feel but isn't overly drinkable because of the lack of overall flavor. Not a bad beer but I would't seek it out.

jordoo, Jun 22, 2008
Photo of Monkeyknife
3.38/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle a clear copper amber color with a thin off-white head.

Aroma of light hops and caramel.

Tastes of caramel and toasted grains upfront with a touch of spicy hops following behind.

Lighter mouthfeel and lightly carbonated.

A pretty decent drinking lager from Flying Dog, but not a standout by any means.

Monkeyknife, Jun 21, 2008
Photo of brewdoc75
3.43/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours a beautiful amber color. A lively head sits atop initially but dwindles to nothing. Good carbonation throughout. The aromas are not really there. You do get a hint of malts and some slight floral hoppiness. The flavor is no suprise with mostly malts. There is a slight caramel sweetness. The beer does have a nice bitter hop bite. This doesn't linger, which is desirable in a lager like this. THe mouthfeel is thin and light. Carbonation tickles the tongue.

OVerall a decent beer. Not a great beer, but a good lager. Enough flavor to make it interesting. Light enough to make it drinkable.

brewdoc75, Jun 16, 2008
Photo of cvstrickland
3.58/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12-ounce longneck with funky Steadman art on it, poured into my DFH pint glass yields a rich garnet-hued amber with two fat fingers of light beige grainy foam that retains at a fat-edged sheet and leaves sticky patches of lacing.

Smells faintly of caramel with an earthy note of Pekoe tea.

Malt flavors mostly, but nice and clean. Sweet at first with pale ale richness, then a little tart with a nice toasty malt syrup-- then nutty, dry, and biscuity, even with a slight astringency. Supremely smooth with a nice bitterness and a surprisingly dry finish.

cvstrickland, Jun 14, 2008
Photo of hiikeeba
3.7/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - Pours up a crystal clear amber orange with a creamy tan head.

S - Earthy malt aroma with accent of hops

T & M - Not much flavor. Malt and hops finish well balanced at the back of the tongue, and it's good. But there's nothing up front, which may contribute to the thin mouthfeel.

D - Because nothing is too overwhelming, and it has a nice light flavor, it is a nice session beer.

hiikeeba, Jun 14, 2008
Photo of Slynger
3.45/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Old Scratch is a decent Lager of clear orangey-copper color, with a modest lid of fine off-white fuzz. It brings some very light sweet caramel and apricots to the table, along with a more pronounced toasted biscuit and spicy hop character. It's pretty light and watery with a modest fizzy carbonation. This completes my Flying Dog sampler and this one, like most of the others, is a decent beer with good drinkability and some flavor. Better than macro stuff, but nothing amazing. I'm thinking the Canis Major sampler I just bought will impress me more.

Slynger, Jun 10, 2008
Photo of Spidey13
3.88/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Old Scratch pours a clear amber with a light tan head. It smells like toast and spicy hops. The taste starts with caramel, followed by that hop spiciness. It finishes toast with a mild hop bitterness. The mouthfeel is pretty thin with a medium amount of carbonation.

Though this is not a beer that will blow you over, I think it's very drinkable and I would gladly have a few more.

Spidey13, Jun 08, 2008
Photo of fitzy84
3.45/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Last one from the sample pack. An ok appearance: some patchy lacing over a typically delicious amber-red color look. The aromas were a bit weak. Had little roasty aromas with a general floral smell. The taste has a good sweetness to it, a bit of honey with caramel and malts. The mouthfeel is a good strong point: pretty crisp and carbonated. Overall, a decent red lager.

fitzy84, Jun 05, 2008
Photo of stewart124
2.88/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours amber in color with an inch of slightly tan head.

Smells of floral hops and a slight grainy character.

Taste is warming and there seems to be a residual sweetness. More ale like in character than I anticipated. Malty sweet and has esters of grapes and prunes.

Finish is sweet and not particularly dry. Very little hop presence.

I'm not a huge fan of this one because I was expecting a lager and got something with more ale qualities in my judgement. I'd like to know the yeast strain and temp.

stewart124, Jun 03, 2008
Photo of KI9A
3.23/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: nice, dark gold hue, off white head.

S: floral hops, roasted malts.

T: Toasted malts, caramel, slight shot of citrusy hops.

M/D: Sweet at the back, nice and refreshing. Was happy to see this wasn't a drain pour, like their Tire Bite I just tasted.

KI9A, May 31, 2008
Photo of BamaBeerBuff
3.45/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Deep amber with some tints of orange. Pours a small orange-cream head that retains poorly and leaves a few patches of lace on the glass.

S: Caramel malts, faint earthy hops, not much else. Fairly weak, but still on-par for the style, and decent for a lager.

T&M: Fairly rich caramel malts and some earthy hoppiness mixed in. A decent flavor for an amber lager, but could be a bit richer. Body is medium to light, with light carbonation. A richer flavor--both malt and hop--could really help this beer along.

D: Decently drinkable, but it really doesn't have enough flavor to hold up well enough to be enjoyable long-term. Still a decent beer, though.

BamaBeerBuff, May 28, 2008
Photo of andreasmwatt
3.68/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance - Caramel in color, basically no head, and the head that was their was gone fast.

Smell - Slight Hops smell, One of flying dogs most floral smelling beers.

Taste - Good, I think one of flying dogs best beers so far!!!

Mouthfeel - Nothing to WOW but average.

Drinkability - Goes down very smooth and refreshes the palate.

andreasmwatt, May 26, 2008
Photo of SpecialK088
3.1/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

A-Pours a very nice deep golden amber with a small head that disappears quickly and minimal lace.

S-Roasted malt with hints of sweetness and very mild hops

T-Almost identical to the smell, grainy with very small notes of hops.

M-Its a smooth beer but unfortanly goes down the same way water does with little to no flavor and a hint of bitterness in the finish.

D-Its easy enough to drink but not something that i would reach for very often as it doesnt have enough flavor for me i have had much better ambers.

SpecialK088, May 21, 2008
Photo of beerthulhu
3.45/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a copper/amber with a creamy head that quickly dissipated.

S: sweet caramel.

T: light toasted grain with amild floral hop bitterness.

M: slick, somewhat thin, and softly carbonated with a quick finish.

D: Smooth hoppiness, nice balance, and a good malty sweetness provides for a smooth drink.

beerthulhu, May 17, 2008
Photo of Leebo2007
2.75/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

COLOR: Light to medium brown

HEAD: slight to low head, very bubbly, great tight bubbles.

SMELL: light yeasty smell, but not the greatest aroma for Flying Dog Beers.

TASTE: Cold it has a great yeasty taste. The lager flavor is great but could have been better.

I would like to have this on draft, may be better!

Leebo2007, May 16, 2008
Photo of PatrickJR
4/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into nonic pint glass.

A - Clear amber with 1 finger head that dissipates into thin film. No lacing.

S - A little more complex than most lagers; grain, a touch of sweetness and some toasty malt.

T - Lagers in this general vein usually rub me the wrong way, and though this is fairly similar to dozens of others, there's something about it that I really like. It starts off with some slightly sweet, slightly toasted malt, moves on to a pleasant grainy taste, and then some mild spicy hops wrap up the finish. Very clean with minimal bitterness.

M - A little less carbonated than most lighter lagers, with a perfect body somewhere between light and medium. Lowering the carbonation highlights some of this beer's finer characteristics, probably one of the reasons why I find it more appealing than it's counterparts.

D - 4.5 might seem high, but this is extremely drinkable. It's not too heavy, not too belch-inducing, and not bitter. All this alone makes a good session beer, but the wonderful simplicity of flavor is what pushes this into a great session beer. I'm trying this via a Flying Dog mix pack, but I could definitely see myself buying a sixer of this for a night with friends.

PatrickJR, May 14, 2008
Photo of GClarkage
3.9/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

05/12/08- Purchased at Piazza's in San Mateo, CA.

Presentation- 12oz bottle with a code in the lower corner of the label. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Copper in color with a 1/2 inch head that leaves decent lace pacthwork behind.

Smell- A bit of grain, a bit of roasty toasty malt and even a bit of a hoppy note.

Taste- Caramel malt, fairly well roasted comes through the most in this beer. A bit of grain in the taste as well. Hops come into play in the aftertaste. Some fruity notes are found as well.

Mouthfeel- Traditional lager like carbonation..a little more than average. Caramel-hoppy aftertaste.

Drinkability- Wow, Flying Dog has been impressing me so far. Another session quality beer.

GClarkage, May 13, 2008
Photo of animal69
3.98/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours a clear light-med. copper color w/ a thin white head which dissipates quickly leaving a decent amount of lacing down my nonic ; a decent smell, a steely grain and toasty caramel, smells a bit raisony and metallic ; a crisp and robust deep malt flavor, a bit minerally but blends well with darker fruits and a clean finish ; dry and light but w/ some residual sweetness and decent co2 make this a very creamy feeling brew tho ; wow, very drinkable, i wish i had a few cases of this...

animal69, May 08, 2008
Photo of TerryW
3/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A rather plain-Jane looking beer. No head, no lace. Only saving grace is a handsome coppery-amber colour.

Understated brew overall. Some malt in the nose alongside alcohol. Taste is predominantly malt, little else. Dry with a hint of bitterness, bit of an alcohol bite.

A little too much like a weak-kneed malt liquor. Drinkable, but not particularly memorable.

TerryW, May 05, 2008
Photo of orangemoustache
3.88/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-poured a dark amber with a soft looking tan head that retained nicely leaving lots of lace in its path

S-a caramel sweetness followed by hints of toast and hops

T-a very nice balance on the palate,starts off with caramel malt sweetness along with banana and some hints of citrus all the while being boldly hoppy and grassy

M-pretty light overall but smoothe and slightly creamy and crisp

D-I think I had four or five pints and I enjoyed every single one

orangemoustache, May 03, 2008
Old Scratch Amber Lager from Flying Dog Brewery
78 out of 100 based on 1,446 ratings.