Thomas Hooker Nor'Easter Lager - Thomas Hooker Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Thomas Hooker Nor'Easter LagerThomas Hooker Nor'Easter Lager

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BA SCORE
76
okay

132 Ratings
THE BROS
37
awful

(view ratings)
Ratings: 132
Reviews: 64
rAvg: 3.29
pDev: 23.4%
Wants: 3
Gots: 8 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Thomas Hooker Brewing Company visit their website
Connecticut, United States

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  6.00% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Boto on 11-29-2008

Brewed to celebrate Winter in New England, Nor'Easter Lager possesses a Hearty Malt flavor delicately accented by mild winter spices.

16 IBU
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 132 | Reviews: 64
Reviews by Soozy:
Photo of Soozy
4.09/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a light brown, the server gave me one hell of a head (get your mind out of the gutter), but still looked great.

Smells like absolute pure spice. Strong allspice and cinnamon maybe some vanilla and clove.

Tastes just like you'd expect, a Christmas cookie. Smooth, malty, coupled with some of the holiday spices in the aroma. Little to no bitterness. Overall, a great beer. The spices aren't overpowering like you get from a lot of seasonals and they're coupled with a strong malt flavor. Fairly drinkable, but the spices might get to you after awhile, which is expected. Great seasonal brew

I'd seek this one out if you can, definitely recommend it.

More User Reviews:
Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.85/5  rDev +17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep reddish brown color, with a very thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of dark fruit, caramelized malts, coffee, chocolate and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts with strong and creamy flavors of coffee and chocolate, then some dark fruit in the background. The hops presence is mild and the malt character is hearty creating a decent balance. It seems like a toned-down version of Liberator. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, this beer's complexity makes it worth drinking for a little while if you want something with substance that is slightly different.

Photo of jlindros
3.88/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another in the line of winter beers for me to review.

A: Light fluffy head less than a finger semi quickly fades. Very clear copper color.

N: Very light sweet malt aroma and some crystal malt, some crisp lager like aromas. Little bit of toastiness and touch of spices.

T: Wow! Taste starts creamy, sweet, candy, apple, toasty, toffee. Lots of candy like. It has a candy/caramel coated apple like flavor, way out there. Some sweet malt flavors. The candy is crazy. Some toasty flavors as well mingle with the rest, and some toffee, caramel, and creamy flavors seem to fade last. The abv seems a little low for being a winter warmer, but from what I've reviewed so far perhaps that is becoming a usual occurrence.

M: Medium body, decent carbonation.

F: Finishes a little sweet with the lingering candy, caramel, and toffee slowly fading away. Light sugar coating on the mouth. As I open and close my mouth, somewhat smack it, I get more apple and caramel coated apple flavors. More toffee flavors seem to linger a bit, very slightly giving way to almost a coffee flavor. Actually, for being what it is, a spiced lighter feel, lower abv, with fruit and candy, I enjoyed this a lot more than I expected to. An interesting beer to sip and enjoy as a dessert.

Photo of Gavage
4/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a reddish amber color with a two inch head that slowly falls.

Smell: bready with some spiciness.

Taste: caramel, bread, nutmeg, ripe plums and red apples, a moderate bitterness, and a floral flavor that is hard to describe but pleasant.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crisp to start, smoother at the finish. Short aftertaste.

Overall: a nice winter beer that definitely fits the season. Very easy to consume and almost a sessionable beer. Well balanced.

Photo of jmdrpi
3.91/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

hazy dark copper color, but the head almost immediately disapears completely. looks flat, even though its not. smells a spicy almost boozy whiskey smell, even though it's not high alcohol. toffee and carmel in the aroma as well. a heavy sweetness in the taste that I can't quite but a finger on, but I like it. lower carbonation. body is thinner, but has an intersting "sticky" aftertaste.
suprising tasty for being probably 8 or 9 months old, I'd like to taste it fresh

Photo of Boto
3.88/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Growler from the Brewery: This one pours a clear, ruby tinged dark amber color. There was a pretty decent tan head on it, but it subsides quickly. There is a nice aroma to it. The spices are up front, but not overpowering. The spices seem to be those that would be in an apple pie, plus a bit of oatmeal. Caramel malts also. The taste is good also. Spices are there, but not overdone. Some oatmeal and biscuity flavors also. A good malt body, but just a hint of sweetness. Nice brew.

Photo of Doomcifer
1.14/5  rDev -65.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

I usually take a whiff of my beers as soon as I pop the cap off the bottle....this time I was smacked upside the dome with an aroma of rotten apples that were left out in the hot summer sun; fermenting in their own slimy filth. Ugh, WTF is going on here?! Have I been duped?!

Upon closer inspection of the bottle: "Lager with artificial flavor" ...huh?! I wish I had seen that lil subtitle before purchasing this. It all makes a bit more sense now.

I guess I'll pout the contents and give it a shot. What the hell, right? I work pretty hard for my money. It pours a cloudy amber color with minimal head or retention. Smells like hard cider produced from pressed rotten apples. The aroma doesn't even resemble beer at all. Flavor takes a detour into artificial territory with the finish. Starts off with a hard cider taste along with sour notes and then melds into a weird artificial caramel candy apple flavor. Mouthfeel is pretty watered down. Not much body to speak of. I think the statements I made above can clue you in on the drinkability factor.

Thomas Hooker brewery hardly ever disappoints me but they have truly struck out with this offering. This "beer" presents us with a whole 'nother level of putrid. How is this rated a B? How can anyone drink this shit with a straight face?! "A Winter Embracing Brew" my ass. More like an appropriate substitute for Drano. Pardon me while I go pour this down my slow draining bathtub drain. I'll post the results.

Photo of glaze0101
3.23/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This amber colour lager had a nice head and is nothing exciting. I was told it was an "amber", a bit dark for an "amber" (the lighting sucked so it is even darker looking in the photo). Hooker is a hit or miss brewery to me, this was a hit, in the sense that I would drink it again.
After a bit of research I realized it was a darker lager and in that sense the colour was fine.

Photo of Jason
1.37/5  rDev -58.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

12oz brown bottle with no freshness date.

"Lager With Artificial Flavor" YIKES!!!

Clear and tawny with a nice looking head on top. Perfume-like cinnamon toothpaste, brown apples pulp, faint alcoholic esters and some graininess in the nose ... not too pleasing. Some smoothness in the medium body. Hint of caramel from the malt the this odd artificial flavor drops on the palate and knocks the beer off kilter ... a chore to get past. With each sip it becomes more annoying to the point of being undrinkable.

Seriously ... is there a need to add this garbage to beer? Pass on this one, there are too many other winter seasonals that are better or at least drinkable.

Photo of Billolick
3.37/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle, "Born on 2011-10-19" etched onto the neck of the bottle.

Pours is hazed medium plum, under a very moderate and timid off white head, that departs rapidly and leaves just a hint of a tiny bubble film and near no lacing.

Slight sniff of sweet fruit and hard candy.

Moderate fruityness, slight winter spicing, with some licorice in the finish. Ehh, not my favorite winter seasional, but likely to do in a pinch on a cold winters night

Photo of Homebrew35
3.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a half fingers worth of white head, clear amber brownish body. Smells sweet and Carmely, some toffee, cinnamon clove mixed with a typical lager yeasty quality. Tastes of Carmel, bready yeast and malts, cinnamon, clove and allspice. Medium body, low carbonation, medium dry finish with some lingering hop bitterness. Overall this is fairly good. When fresh this is a nicely spiced beer that's an easy drinker. I'm updating my previous review because the bottle I reviewed apparently was quite old. $8.50 a sixer

Photo of tigg924
4.18/5  rDev +27.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: 1 inch head, clear, reddish brown in color, high carbonation

Smell: bread and light holiday spice

Taste: bread is dominant, but there is vanilla, toffee, cinnamon, other spices, and sweet fruit. This beer has more going on but it is hard to describe.

Mouthfeel: sweet, medium bodied, high carbonation

Drinkability: I love the fruity and bready taste. This is one of the top holiday seasonals I have had this year and maybe my favorite from the brewery. Wish I was able to find a six instead of a single. It is like a liquid fruit cake. The spices are subtle but pleasing.

Photo of jondeelee
3.12/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Nor'Easter smells of spices, apple pie, and Christmas. The brew does contain "mild apple pie spices"--though the brewer's website says "mild winter spices"--and there are definite touches of allspice and clove in the nose, as well as a healthy dose of brown sugar, and a fresh bread/pie crust malt aroma.

On the tongue, the apple pie spices come out in full strength, bringing not only the aforementioned allspice and clove tones, but cinnamon as well. The malts bring a further apple-like fruitiness, as well as bread-like notes and brown sugars. Hops are barely noticeable over the malts and spices, despite the brew having three different varieties of hops, and mainly exist as a slight tingle at the edges. The aftertaste is mainly apple, bread, and spice, and lasts for a while. Mouthfeel is medium-light, and carbonation is medium.

Overall, the beer is good, and definitely lives up to the apple spice flavors noted on the packaging--i.e. if you're not into flavored brews, this one is not for you. It would, however, go excellently with a big bowl of vanilla ice cream and a roaring fire.

Photo of far333
3.95/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at a Friday happy hour at the brewery. Dark amber honey colored with a beige frothy head that recedes slowly.

Aroma of toasted biscuit malt and cinnamon. Rich flavor of medium toasted malt, cinnamon and vanilla, maybe just a touch of cocoa. Semi-sweet, not cloying.

Even mouthfeel, full and rich, moderate carbonation. Very drinkable beer, I had about 5 draughts of this during the evening.

Photo of jmz62565
3.85/5  rDev +17%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear dark red with a smallish tan head that leaves no lacing. The Smell is only average with scents of apple,bread yeast,holiday spices,and roasted malt. The taste is creamy with roasted malt,bread yeast,apples,and vanilla. The m/f is medium with all the flavors mixing well. A very tasty beer,that will down well with Holiday meals.

Photo of tempest
2.88/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Grabbed a bottle at Euro Market. The bottle date says it's about 3 months old. Well, the spice certainly hasn't died down here. It reminds me of the same spice profile of Southern Tier Pumking, heavy on clove and nutmeg. Unfortunately I think I'm also pulling a light sour note of this from infection.

I gotta say I'm not crazy about this beer. It's all spice and I'm not getting much (or any) barley and hops. There's a little caramel malt as it warms, but the sour lemon is also growing. Pass.

Photo of KTCamm
3.62/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle (part of a six-mix) into a pint glass.

Pours medium amber with quick foam. Very little trace left. Deep rich malty nose. Taste is a rich caramel malt, modestly sweet. Very mild bite bitter at the finish, but more sweet than not. Easy drinker winter for sure. If anything, maybe a touch too sweet.

Photo of dexterk1
3.08/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from bottle into pint glass. Not really much head. Color is dark reddish or light brownish. Appearance is good overall.
Odor is light and sweet. Like fruity candy. Not really much else beyond that.
Taste is pretty average I would say. Not bad, but just to much cinnamon or spice. Not really balanced all that well. Has a nice smooth fell to it though.
Overall a pretty average beer and nothing really to rave about. Not bad however, just not very memorable.

Photo of tone77
3.68/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a iced tea like color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is malty, bready. Taste is good, lots of malts, nutty, bready, a bit of a caramel sweetness, a touch of spice. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is an enjoyable beer.

Photo of u2carew
3.97/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz long neck. Consumed 01/08/10

A) Pours with a thin head that quickly settles. Very little lacing. Body is clear and amber in color.
S) Sweet. Subtle herbs. Notes of dates, cranberry, raspberry, cherries maybe even some heather.
T) First initial taste - a wow! A mouthful of herbs. Heather, maybe some jasmine and lavender. Dark fruits - cherries! Finishes flavorful and with a lingering cherry aftertaste.
M) Earthy sweet. Closer to medium body. Slightly crisp and fizzy up front. Mostly mellow and smooth.
D) A yummy seasonal brew. Nice job T-Hook!

Photo of PEBKAC
1.38/5  rDev -58.1%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Time to get tough. Fridge needs clearing. More winter warmers.

Hazed, Vienna lager-sorta color. Inch of insecure cream-colored head.

Smell is a sharp, soured & browned. Thick with sticky malt & sprinkled with bitter nutmeg. Smells like an infection, except I can't tell if just the additives at work.

First off, feel is nearly flat. Frothy & thin. Tangy, lightly honeyed, bit limey, tea-ish. Empty spices, flat grain finish. Bit of whiskey. A flat score of "1" is reserved for beers that actually make you nauseous, while this was just misshapen.

...And here comes the headache.

Photo of TheMattJones88
4.05/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I found this on tap at Cousin Larry's in Danbury, CT. So far this is probably the best Winter Warmer that I've had.

Poured from the Tap into a Guinness Pint Glass

A - Pours a dark brown / black with a small creamy head, the head disappeared real quickly.

S - Smells like Cinnamon, Nutmeg, and Caramel right off the bat. No hoppiness at all really.

T - This is where this beer wins. It tastes like the sugar cookies that your Grandmother makes around Christmas time. I took a sip and suddenly thought I was sitting in front of a fireplace wearing a sweater. It also reminded me a bit of apple pie, I think it was just the spices mentioned above. A nice aftertaste that sticks around as well. This beer is pretty much dessert in a beer. But while it IS a spiced beer, it isn't over spiced at all, it's pretty much perfectly balanced. Nice and Malty and sweet. Exactly what I want in the winter.

M - Very smooth, not a ton of carbonation, but you can sense a bit of a prickly carbonation on the back of your tongue when it finishes going down.

D - Incredibly drinkable. It's a bit of a heavier beer, but not too heavy. Heavier than say, Newcastle, but not as heavy as Guinness. Apparently these are only 5.8%, and that seems about right. No boozy taste at all in it, just smooth and tasty all the way down the hatch.

I'm pretty sure this is only a limited brew right now, and only on tap in Connecticut, but if you have the means, I highly suggest getting your hands on some. Probably the best Winter Warmer I've had. If Hooker bottled this I'd buy a lot more of it.

Photo of metter98
3.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is relatively clear amber in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high light beige head that quickly died down, leaving a thin film covering the surface and a thick ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are moderately strong aromas of caramel malts and hints of a variety of spices in the nose—cinnamon and nutmeg seem to stand out in particular.
T: The overall taste is quite malty and like the smell it has added flavors of spices with some hints of malty sweetness.
M: It feels a bit shy of medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer tastes like a hybrid between the maltiness of a Vienna Lager and the spiciness of a Winter Warmer (but without the full-bodied nature and alcohol warming).

Photo of barleyroad
3.91/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance is amber with a nice light cream foam. Smell, in very faint and lacking in the aroma area. Mouthfeel is very clean and crisp, lays well in the mouth. Taste is nice and the hints of herbs are nice. This beer is balanced well in the spices and herbs. We had a 2010 and this 2011 is much better. Good with some stew or chowder.

Photo of mountdew1
3.23/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into an imperial pint glass. Color was a dark golden amber with a very thin off white head. Head clung to the sides very well. Aroma was sweet and fruity with a hint of malt. Almost an overly strong barley wine at times. Taste finished off a vanilla flavor with hints of malty but also had hints of salty sour. Terrible feeling in the mouth. A small amount coated well, but most of it felt watery. Went down easily, but I couldn't see any reason to drink. The flavor was just off, and coupled with the moutfeel it wasn't a hit.

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Thomas Hooker Nor'Easter Lager from Thomas Hooker Brewing Company
76 out of 100 based on 132 ratings.