Island Lager - Granville Island Brewery

Not Rated.
Island LagerIsland Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
77
okay

37 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 37
Hads: 92
rAvg: 3.28
pDev: 7.93%
Wants: 2
Gots: 16 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Granville Island Brewery visit their website
British Columbia, Canada

Style | ABV
American Pale Lager |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: 49degrees on 01-04-2003

Island Lager is brewed to our original recipe, which combines all-natural ingredients to produce its distinct hop flavour. The same clean, refreshing taste that put us on the map in ’84 still makes this one a local favourite.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 37 | Hads: 92
Photo of MisterClean
4.42/5  rDev +34.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Light golden color, well carbonated, light white head, which dissipates quickly.

S - Honey, caramel, and a bit of citrus.

T - Same as above.

M - Excellent balance. Very smooth, but a little bit drying.

D - Most of the reviewers expect too much from a lager. It's just a simple aged beer, but this one exceeded my expectations. Not a lager fan either. (358 characters)

Photo of Derek
4.07/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this on tap and was pleasantly surprised.

A: I thought they might have brought me a pale by mistake, cause this one is a copper-amber colour, offwhite head, thin ring of retention, a little lace.

S: Nice lager-like aroma, floral, slightly bready, hints of sulfur.

T: Reminds me of a munich helles, with a light toffee sweetness, pleasantly floral (hallertau?), bready, modest bitterness, hints of mineral.

M: Smooth light to moderate body.

D: Very drinkable. (469 characters)

Photo of biegaman
3.94/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Under-ripe banana peel with an almost pastel tone when held up to the light. The beer is spotlessly clear although it does contain a blurring haze. I'm not sure if Granville filters Island Lager, if not then fine, but if so, then I'd expect something a little brighter. I like the look, but it desperately needs some white patches to cover its bare, flat surface.

For a beer aimed at being "a classic Bavarian-style lager", it's a good thing the aroma has an ample dosing of hops. It isn't anything fruity or spicy, but like examples from (arguably) the world's best lager producing nation, there's a definite distinction of raw, light pungency. I don't expect nor demand a high hop profile from a pale lager, but I sure as hell am happy when I get one!

The other notable character in the smell was that of crisp, lightly toasted wafers. Sometimes bready, always very biscuity and almost cookie-dough like at times, it smells pleasant but is far nicer even in taste. Good, clean, crisp malt is certainly the beer's domineering presence and makes for a fairly exceptional flavour as far as lagers of this style go.

The brewery appears to follow traditional methods of production, which not only involves a generous inclusion of hops but also the ever important procedure of actually lagering the beer - for a full six weeks! To save on both time and money, most macro breweries will cut corners with this step by either using lesser ingredients (read: adjuncts) or simply rushing the production altogether.

This beer's drinkability is a direct reflection of quality in the craftsmanship. There is no skunking, there is no taste of corn, there is no diacetyl, there is no indication of adjuncts and correspondingly there is no cottonmouth, there is no dry or stale aftertaste, there is nothing to evoke any sense of displeasure because all that can be tasted is hops and malt. Rightfully so.

If Granville Island set out to produce a classic Bavarian-style lager as they claim, then hats off to them because they've succeeded. I'm rarely this content with beers of this style. If only the world's pale, fizzy lager drinkers could know what "smooth" and "easy drinking" actually mean... and if only I could live a little closer to Vancouver Island! (2,254 characters)

Photo of Viggo
3.92/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly hazy golden, small white head forms and goes quick, leaving a light lace ring and some spots. Smell is very malty, honey, grass, citrus and floral hops, with some vanilla. Taste is malty as well, with vanilla and citrus. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied, with low carbonation. Very smooth lager, really pretty good. The Granville yeast always seems to leave a pleasant vanilla note. (402 characters)

Photo of IronDjinn
3.87/5  rDev +18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

To dispel the myth, Granville Island beers are most certainly found outside of B.C., or at least across the eastern border of the Rocky Mountains and into Alberta. And cheers to that, the Island Lager was much more than I was expecting. It pours out a pale clear golden hue, not much carbonation, not much of a lasting head. The aroma is of a rich, sweet caramel malt with very faint floral hops--reminiscent of some Eastern European pilsners that I have sampled. Flavour of rich malt, a bit of caramel, some citrus, flowery hops, a bit grainy on the aftertaste. If only this was the average mean of all lagers, I'd be a bigger fan of the style. Full mouthfeel, yet it goes down more like an ale than a lager. One of the better brews from Granville Island that I've sampled. (774 characters)

Photo of 49degrees
3.8/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I'm not usually a fan of lagers, but Granville Island Brewery's lager is an exception. This lively brew has a very light and refreshing, almost citrus in nature, aroma and flavor which make is a nice afternoon relaxer or accompaniment to a meal.

On draught, this lager is about as consistent as you'll ever find from a craft brewery. Always pours a light golden hue, moderate size head which gives way to a tight foamy collar, plus minimal lacing.

Aroma wise, its pretty much on par with what one would expect with a lager, but the fruity and hoppy characteristics on this one come through clean and appealing.

Taste wise, it hits the mark with the right amount of hoppy bitterness, smooth malts and a some citrus punch to help set it apart from the big "boring" monster breweries.

I've had this on bottle a few times in the past, but its really worth enjoying it on tap rather from the bottle as the bottle doesn't seem to give this one the justice it deserves. (974 characters)

Photo of Conrad
3.57/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I was in BC in Nov 05, and brought back a mixed case of Granville Island beer. Just finished the Granville Island Lager straight from the bottle. I know, heresy. But I had others from the glass with all of the proper beer ceremony. This beer has a nice yellow-copper colour, and pours a thin head. The smell has a bit of wheat in it, and smells like a beer should. But my sniffer is not that finely tuned. The taste is gentle malt. Not offensive at all. Mouthfeel is normal. Not oily, not watery, not anything special. A good beer to sip on with Doritos or other junk food while watching the game. I wouldn't go out and buy a case, but if someone offered me one, I wouldn't turn it away. It is a step up from the Molson family of massed production stuff. (754 characters)

Photo of decimator
3.57/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle poured into a Stella Artois chalice. ABV 5%.

A - Poured a clear yellow gold with a 1cm white head, visible active carbonation, some lacing.

S - Bread, grass, slight fruitiness. Light and pleasant.

T - Light sweetness, hint of fruitiness, mild hop bitterness in the finish.

M - Medium-high carbonation, medium-low body, crisp finish. Refreshing on the palate.

O - Light and refreshing. Perfect for a hot summer day. (432 characters)

Photo of wordemupg
3.55/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

431ml bottle poured into 400ml dab glass nov4 2009

A clear golden yellow with a fast falling two finger head that left no lace

S mild hops with a little honey

T as it smells with a little bread, nothing great but nothing to be ashamed of

M clean and crisp, not as watery as most lagers

D this is a decent lager with no real flaws

on par for the style, but I hope the other beers in my mixer pack are a little more exciting (430 characters)

Photo of TheHammer
3.43/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Poured with a finger of head that produced a marginal amount of lace. The body is and expected Lager gold that boasts fairly steady carbonation. Nothing remarkable, but nothing wrong.

Smell: A sweet corn smell with a touch of earthy hops. There's almost this odd fish oil smell in the background, but it's is incredibly subdued. Warming doesn't help it either way on this one.

Taste: Starts with a sweet bread malt and a touch of oily texture that reigns in the start of the beer, but gives it an odd texture. The sweetness builds up as a sweet corn taste takes over and then hits a fairly inert, mild hop wall with a calm thud.

Mouthfeel: The aftertaste is a mixture of sweet bread malt and corn which doesn't linger very long. The carbonation is ok and tends to help the crescendo more then anything. Transitioning isn't bad either. That oily texture is still a little odd.

Drinkability: Very refreshing although it medium bodied and a bit heavier then I'd expect. There is a smoothness to the beer that makes it very easy to drink. It sits down well and is easily something you could drink all night.

Final Thoughts: All in all, just a well done Lager, and certainly something that is a welcome change to adjuct lager, and a lot better then their pale ale. Give it a shot, but don't expect something epic. (1,325 characters)

Photo of PorterPro125
3.41/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Serving Type: 341 mL Bottle

A- Pale Yellow with a thin, whispy, white head. No lacing.

S- Apples and bready malt.

T- Same as aroma.

M- Light body and Moderate to High Carbonation.

O- Like many other "Premium" Lagers that are brewed, this one has a sweet nose and taste and nothing much that really sets it apart from Macro Lagers. (338 characters)

Photo of Noxious26
3.4/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

355ml can poured in a pint glass.

Pale, straw yellow and slightly cloudy. Head is white and a full inch high and very foamy before settling to a thin skim that stays until the bottom.

Smells like your standard Lager only slightly more grainy and malty.

Mild taste and very smooth. At the swallow it's briefly sweet and lightly malty, then a brief hops appearance is followed by a very mild bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is smooth and even and nicely carbonated.

This is similar to the majority of macro lagers out there. It is quite smooth and unoffensive, however, it isn't anything special. A better option than most macros for those thirst quenching sessions. (677 characters)

Photo of biboergosum
3.35/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

20oz pint at Original Joe's Edmonton Oliver location.

This beer appears a clear medium golden amber colour, with one finger of weakly foamy, and soapy dirty white head, which leaves random broken Swiss cheese lace around the glass as it hastily recedes.

It smells of crackery, stale bready, grainy pale malt, corn, a touch of sourdough, a faint, underwhelming dry stone fruitiness, and very mild grassy, weedy hops. The taste is more of the same - a blend of blandly sweet pale grain and corn mash, rather overripe lemon, a hint of dry honey, and understated leafy, weedy hops.

The carbonation is a bit high and airy at first, but settles down to a dull hum soon enough, the body a surprising medium weight for the style, and just a tad prickly in its otherwise sycophantic smoothness. It finishes off-dry, kind of crisp, with some waning pale malt notes, and a softly neutered earthy hop essence.

A rather so-so, um, 'craft' lager - well and above yer standard macro swill, yet still fairly middling overall, nothing exactly capable of standing up, as if to say "Pick me! Pick Me! I'm so very worthy!". (1,109 characters)

Photo of BigBry
3.3/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

One of four selections in the Granville Winter Mingler 12 pack.
Light gold color, 1/2 inch of white foam, quickly dissipates. Basic lager smell with a little extra malt and grain. Taste has a bit of sweetness and slight bitterness near the end - a good balance. Fairly light body, refreshing, easy to drink. Nothing spectacular, a good transition beer up from Molson/Labatts. (376 characters)

Photo of tone77
3.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to woodychandler for the trade.Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of grains and malts. Taste is of malts, some grains and a hint of hops. Good but not overly flavorful. Feels light in the mouth and has good drinkability. Overall this is a decent beer. (299 characters)

Photo of Seanstoppable
3.25/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A friend of mine flew into town for Christmas. Asking for 'one or two bottles if you have the room', I instead received 10 cans of assorted Granville Island brews.

Pours a clear, pale gold color with plenty of fizzy white head. Small traces of lacing are left on the glass.

Smells slightly sweet and a bit yeasty.

Flavor is fairly straightforward. A nice light malt flavor, low carbonation, with a minor sweetness at the end. Very smooth overall, with minimal aftertaste.

A very refreshing lager. Easily drinkable. (518 characters)

Photo of atigerlife
3.23/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden color with a small white creamy head. Small amounts of carbonation seen rising. Decent lacing.

Light aroma---light hops, slight sweetness, grainy and light malts.

Taste of light hops, malts, sweet [not sickly] and yeasty.

Lightly cleansing mouthfeel. Smooth.

Overall, though not my favorite style, this was good. Quite drinkable. Good for the style. (375 characters)

Photo of CrazyMike
3.23/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Golden yellow appearance with moderate head that disappears quickly. Smell is sweet with honey and a hint of bread.

Taste is sweet with bread hops, but mostly made up of honey. Small hint of malt and toffee, but overall the taste is light. Light bodied with moderate carbonation. Aftertaste is almost non existent, picked up some sweetness though.

Overall, really mediocre beer, but it is refreshing and easy to drink. There are better beers from Granville Island though. (473 characters)

Photo of Converge
3.23/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 341ml bottle into a 16oz pint glass.

A - Fizzy but thick two-and-a-half finger head of bone-white foam. Effervescent golden-yellow liquid. Respectable head retention.

S - Sweet grains, corn, cereal, grass. Mild but pleasing.

T - Nice sweet grains, barley, and mild hops. A generous hint of honey also comes through. Heck, I can't taste more honey in this than the Cypress Honey Lager... Overall, simple but enjoyable.

M - Crisp carbonation, light body. Decent enough.

D - Easily one of the better lagers I've come across. Definitely wouldn't be my first choice from Granville, but it's still fairly good. (624 characters)

Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.23/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Single bottle sampled at a neighborhood pub. Fairly pale straw color with a quick-breaking soapy white head. Aroma of apples, grape candy, doughy pale malts and some floral hops. Rather standard fare much like what one encounters with most or all adjunct lagers, perhaps a hair more assertive. Ditto on the palate. More sweet white bread malts, apple pomace, a citric note vaguely reminiscent of lemons, perhaps less sweet than many mainstream lagers with a more pronounced malt flavor. The dryish finish is probably this brew's greatest asset, I am actually getting some gooseberry-like hop notes. All in all, decidedly "meh" and inoffensive. Sort of a textbook example of the pseudo-style "American premium lager". Perhaps one could gently suggest that a pub mate who insists on getting the least interesting lager in the joint every time you go out broaden his horizons, with this as a tentative foray into the scary world of "different". (941 characters)

Photo of allergictomacros
3.2/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a clear straw. Head/lacing appears to be quite good. Slightly sweet, with clean notes of grain and mild hops. No notable off flavours, but not particularly flavourful. Light bodied with hard-ish carbonation. Overall, a solid brew suitable for mass consumption. Well crafted, but not particularly exciting. (312 characters)

Photo of vanrassel
3.18/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had a fresh pint of this at the brewery's taproom, delivered to the table with a tight white head sitting atop a clear, dark gold body. The head quickly reduced to a soapy ring that left some sticky lace on the glass.

The smell was a subdued balance between floral hops and bready malt, with a slight grassy whiff. There are Willamette hops in the beer, too, which may explain a taste that is a touch more bitter than the aroma lets on. The bitterness is takes a back seat, however, to bready malt and a honey/clover sweetness. It's pleasant, but not particularly memorable.

High carbonation and a crisp finish made this an OK choice to have fresh at the brewery, but I would have opted for a seasonal brew instead if there had been any on tap the day I was there. (772 characters)

Photo of beerguy101
3.18/5  rDev -3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Light gold color, small head. Light bodied lager, mild malts and hops. Nice balance of malts and hops. Nice flavor sort of mild, not to hoppy. Clean and refreshing. Mouthfeel is smooth and round. Smooth taste. Finish is clean and crisp. Aftertaste is slightly bitter. (267 characters)

Photo of OskarL
3.18/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A clear golden color with lots of bubbles and a big head that with some retention and leaves little lacing.

Typical lager smell of bready malt and floral hops.

Taste of bready malt with some sweetness, little hops and yeast.

Light body with a crisp feeling and medium carbonation. Quite refreshing! (301 characters)

Photo of OpIvy
3.1/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Decent beer. Typical of what you could expect from Granville island.

A- Pale amber colour. Thin. Virtually no head.

S- Smells very sweet. Medium hops smell.

T- Slightly sour. Vaguely sweet. Strong aftertaste. Kind of bland. Average.

M- Very refreshing feel.

D- I can see this as a daily drinker. But nothing special. (321 characters)

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Island Lager from Granville Island Brewery
77 out of 100 based on 37 ratings.