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La Crosse Lager - City Brewing Company, LLC

Not Rated.
La Crosse LagerLa Crosse Lager

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
71
okay

76 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 76
Reviews: 47
rAvg: 2.97
pDev: 25.93%
Wants: 3
Gots: 1 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
City Brewing Company, LLC visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Adjunct Lager |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 02-21-2003

Brand possibly owned by Melanie Brewing Co.

 http://beeradvocate.com/beer/profile/1422 
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 76 | Reviews: 47
Reviews by pmcadamis:
Photo of pmcadamis
3.05/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours crystal clear pale gold from a cheesy loooking bottle into the pint glass. This champagne like beer has a 1/2 finger head and streams of bubbles rising to the top. Some decent lacing is left on the glass.

I just got back from a long run out in the heat, and I'll be damned if this doesn't look thrist quenching.

It smells pleasanty fruity. I smell apples and apricots in addition to a weird but nice rubbery smell. I tried the light version of this about a week ago, and the smells are almost identical (this one is just a little bit more pungent than LaCrosse light).

The taste is fruity and grainy with a macro-ish funky taste. Not bad. It's better than just about any other cheapo beer that I've had (read: all of them....I was a poor college student once). Mouthfeel is nice and creamy
for such a lightly colored beer.

As predicted, this is extremely thirst-quenching. Sure beats gatorade!

More User Reviews:
Photo of ADR
2.98/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Attractive cans just say what everyone thinks Wisconsin must be like. Clear gold, slightly darker than straw with a good head, but one that's a little foamy. Little duration of suds or lace. Aroma is malty, slightly eggy. Mouthfeel is pleasant enough, slightly overcarbonated. The taste is spot on neutral, somewhat biscuity malt with better hop finish than some, even with some slight pine-iness. A toss-'em-back beer, one that deserves patronage when you want to support a local brew to drink at a tail gate.

Photo of Brenden
2.81/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Pale yellow color? Check. Crystal clear? Check. Pretty thin in the body? Got it. The white head is just tall enough and strong enough, and lacing plentiful enough, for this altogether typical AAL to hit average.
Dust, must, grains and a note of oxidation that isn't even trying to hide comprise an unpleasant aroma.
Pale malts are a little more substantial along with the grain and husk, and this one heads to the dry side of the style, particularly as a little hop leaf come into play. There's a bit of mineral, perhaps a touch too steely, before a grassy finish. Hops are enough to give it an average rating, and it helps that the off notes the nose can catch aren't as strong to the tongue.
Light and thin with a strong crispness and not too much graininess to the texture, it doesn't err too badly until the bitterness loses character and turns astringent.

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.38/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A clear, yellow/straw-gold body is topped by a decent-sized head of bright-white froth. The retention is fair, and although it eventually drops to just a collar, it does leave some minimal spotty lace. The nose is clean and fresh with a bit more malt than your standard "generic" beer aroma, although no hops are detectable. Hops do appear in the flavor, however, even if they only play a walk-on role. It's malty, and not over-done with adjunct; and very finely balanced with a slight hop flavor and a noticeable touch of bitterness. The median carbonation is quite fine, and appears softer than it actually is, leaving it gently crisp in the mouth. It finishes short and mostly-dry with just a minimal maltiness in the mouth. Not bad at all!

Photo of DrunkMcDermott
3.41/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The folks at City Brewery worked hard to keep the yeast active at the brewery after Miller bought out the Old Style name and closed them down. In fact, this is a very decent American pilsner. Pouring from the can gives a nice fluffy head that remains for most of the drink. The usual straw color is no surprise. Can't find anything wrong with the taste, which is okay considering its Wisconsin-cheap price. Definitely recommend this as your basic lawnmower beer. I taste-tested this with some homebrewing friends against the current Old Style, now brewed in San Antonio and LaCrosse won hands down.

Photo of jackndan
2.5/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Lacrosse lager, in a collectible 2003 can. The picture is a fish and is titled “double or nothing.” Well that’s the good news, the bad news is what in the hell is this beer doing being ranked above 4?? It’s cheap, yes, but not that cheap. Pale golden color, somewhat of a head, that dissipated fairly quickly. Aroma, clean, but a little soapy/adjunct. The taste is standard American lager, with more than a little adjunct flavor, I’m thinking corn syrup, but it might just be straight corn. Light bodied, easy drinking, but can’t hold a candle to PBR or Stroh’s. I paid only $2.99 a six, and it was priced to perfection.

Photo of morimech
3.85/5  rDev +29.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

The Old Style beer of yesteryear.
Nothing sets this apart in the appearance or aroma. Typical macro straw yellow color with a short-lived white head. Some spotty lacing is left on the glass. Has a sweet malt aroma. Has a pleasant sweet macro flavor with a touch of apple. A little more hops in the flavor and bitterness than your typical Bud or Coors. Light body and fizzy but finishes nice and clean. This is superior to much more expensive macro beers at a budget price.

Update: After a couple of years, this has become my cheap beer standby. Cannot beat the price/taste point. I have upped the score.

Update 2: This beer deserves a spot in the top 50 in Pale Lagers. It is better than most that is listed at half the price.

Photo of bluemoonswoon
2.79/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz can with "Brewed with pure Artesian Water" on the front so you know it has to be good. Poured this one into a nonic pint glass.

A: Quite a bit darker than the Bud I just tried so points for that, also pours a hugly bubbly liquid and head. The head is pure white and bubbles down to a barely there cap. The beer is a very light shade of amber.

S: The smell was a bit of a let down after the pour, this one does not smell too much different that a Bud, sort of a fruit twinge with ceral grains, not impressive so it scores likewise.

T/MF: This one is a bit more malty and a tad more hoppy than the Bud, but has sort of a strange sour fruit taste but finishes quite clean. Light to medium bodied but not much better than the Bud.

D: Again the fruityness sort of turns me off, but for some reason tastes better out of a can (and for some reason fells more natural to keep it in the container it came in) that being said I'd take this one over most other macros, and would make it the second or third choice if I were on a tight beer budget.

Photo of tone77
3.14/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Another beer from the creator of the canquest, woodychandler. Poured from a 16 oz. can. Has a light golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is mild, some malts and grains. Taste is crisp, mild malts, light, a bit of metallic after taste going on. Feels light in the mouth and overall nothing offensive here, just your standard, run of the mill adjunct lager.

Photo of plaid75
3.38/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a medium straw hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was decent retention and lacing.

The smell featured a light doughy malt and a smattering of flowery hop.

The taste was rather well balanced and consisted of some soft bready malts and light balancing hops. Pleasant residual sweetness.

The mouthfeel was toward the fuller side for the style with a touch of creaminess.

Overall a tasty lager. I enjoyed the simplicity of this beer.

Photo of biggred1
3.55/5  rDev +19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Clear gold with a fizzy white head that quickly shrinks to a tight collar of foam and leaves scraps of sliding lace on the glass. Sweet malt,soft lemon and hay make up the nose. The flavor is nice, grainy and corny with a decent mild (cluster?) hop bite. Light bodied and seltzery. Finishes squeaky clean. Not a bad lawnmower beer.

Photo of FreshHawk
3.03/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Light golden color with a fairly full, foamy, bubbly, light, whispy, white head. Average retention leaving a very thin lace.

S - Very grainy and sweet. Also lots of apple in the back. Almost like a light/off cider. Some hints of bready malt. Overall it is pretty light though.

T - Similar to the nose. Pretty light with grainy, bready, and sweet malt being strongest. Very little grassy hop flavor. Again, plenty of apple notes given it a ciderish taste.

M - Light body with above average carbonation. Light, crisp, and a lingering sweetness.

D - About as drinkable as a macro light lager. Apple flavors make it slightly distinct, but I'm not sure how exactly I feel about it.

Notes: Interesting beer. Lots of apple that isn't too far off from some malt liquors. Grainy and bready sweetness. Ok but nothing to search for. Ok for a cheap beer but nothing impressive, even for the price.

Photo of Gump
2.73/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Wohoo, I'm drinking a beer with a fish on the can!
A friend told me to try this beer, suggesting it as a "very good light beer".
I found it in a 15pk cans for $6.

Poured from a can, clean and light yellow with a lofty head.
Not as stinky as some mass produced domestics.
The mellow carbonation offers a pleasant mouthfeel.
The flavor is light, and presents no aftertaste, which makes it very drinkable on a hot summer day.
Yes, it's good for a cheap beer, but the flavor is no more intense than say, Bud Light.

Photo of woodychandler
1.35/5  rDev -54.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

If memory serves me correctly, I bought a couple of La Crosse CANs at Riley's Wines of the World in Madison, WI during my annual trip to the Great Taste of the Midwest and search for CANned beers in support of The CANQuest (TM). If I am incorrect, local in-person trader, tone77, brought them by for me, but he has not reviewed them, so I am dubious.

From the CAN: "Fully Kraeusened"; "Double Brewed with Pure Artesian Water."; "Clean, Smooth Finish".

The Crack was nice and loud and I was ready for an inverted Glug, despite it being a tall boy, which CAN be tricky to maneuver. If you are trying it for yourself, the trick is to know when to begin to back off. Rarely CAN I get the entire beer into the glass initially, but I CAN get a lot of head from this style of pour. Here, I got just better than a finger of rocky, foamy, bone-white head with reasonable retention. Color was a pale sunshine-yellow (SRM = > 2, < 4) with NE-quality clarity. Nose smelled of silage and I would like to know who's zoomin' who, here. APL, my Aunt Fanny's fanny! This is nothing more than another AAL. My first draught from the glass was all that I needed to reinforce my initial thoughts. Hell, it was damned close in taste to and one of its Wisconsin brethren's beers from the dreaded Minhas! I swear that I could taste PolyVinyl Chloride (PVC) in suspension in this beer. I began to hear the tromp of heavy footsteps in the alley as the Cybermen were coming for me. I began to weep because I have eluded them so often that it it is hard to count and now I was being taken unawares! It tasted like stale corn chips blended with old tobacco in the mouth. Finish was metallic, maize-y, and I swear that when I inhaled, I could smell cigar or cigarette smoke. OMG! This hearkens back to the early days of The CANQuest (TM), when the bulk of CANned beers that were available were AALs, but that has changed for the better of late. It was like nostalgia drinking, but without the nostalgia. Brrr. Oof.

Photo of hopdog
2.95/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle acquire as part of the Mystery Beer Swap v2 from DocLock (thanks!).

Poured a lighter and see through straw color with an averaged sized white head. Aromas of grain, some straw/grass, and a touch of honey. Tastes of grain and lightly honey sweet. Thin and watery body.

Notes from: 2/7/07

Photo of TastyTaste
3/5  rDev +1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Paler-than-straw in color, with a small white bubbly head. Smells of corn and malt. Taste is very smooth, this is definitely an Fish House beer from 'Scony. Looks out of place in my Samuel Smith tulip, but it is not bad for the price ($7 for a 15 pack).

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
2.73/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Ahh, the fully krausened Lacrosse Lager. Let's give 'er a go...

Appearance - pours the basic golden straw color, a thin white cover. Decent bead action in the glass.

Aroma - a mixture of grain and sour apple. That's a first for an all-malt. Starts to wear on me after a bit.

Taste - hmm. Grainy like I expect, and per the sniff, quite apple-ly too. It's kind of like a shot of apple cider in the beer. Unusual profile, I think I'd go for it more if I knew what to expect. A little strange outta the gate though. I'm undecided on this one.

Mouthfeel - thin and crisp per the style, no surprises here.

Drinkability - light, a bit sweet per the apple flavor, a little tasty and a little weird at the same time.

Photo of kilustration
3.68/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a 30pack. What a pleasant surprise! Smooth taste, nice head, decent color. This may be my new beer of choice, just ahead of PBR and Hamms. Beats all the BMCs. Cant beat the retro looking can. May even try the Lacrosse Lager Light version too. Worth a try!

Photo of Frozensoul327
3.56/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This is a darn good American Macro. Screw all you beer snobs who can't drink a Mass-Made Beer from a can. You don't know what you're missing. Pourd out to a nice clear golden yellow color with a nice head that stayed to nearly the bottom of the glass. No lace noted in the glass. Looked like a classic beer with a foamy white head. Medium carbonation. The aroma was a little weak, but traces of hops and corn were noted. The taste was really good for a macro. Pronouced flavors of hops, malt and corn, with a smooth overall flavor. Very good. Felt good going down, leaving a crisp, slightly sweet and malty aftertaste. This is an excellant beer for the money. Highly recommended for lager fans.

Photo of Redrover
3.95/5  rDev +33%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz brown longneck. No freshness date.

This beer pours a very light yellow (kind of the European Pilsner color). Minimal head and lace. Smell is decent. You pick-up some hops & grain.

This beer surprised me. Given the moderate price and the initial appearance when poured, I really didn't expect very much. I was pleasantly surprised with taste. Well balanced with hops slightly in the forefront. There is some grain that adds sweetness, but it was a good sweet. Excellent carbonation. Very small and active bubbles. Very good with spicy food.

I really picked this up on a whim when I was picking up some of this brewery's very fine pale ale. However, the taste made sure that I will buy more in the future. Truly an unexpected find!

Photo of NOOGIE
3.4/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Look: Poured 12 oz can into pint glass. Medium foam, which stays with the beer for the full drink. Normal stained yellow beer color.

Smell: Lot of water in the smell, almost to much really masks the other smells. The only thing I can smell is some malted barley.

Taste: Really sweet, with some barley and yeast in the taste. Then the watery taste is also in the drink.

Mouthfeel: Lot of water in the mouthfeel, also a sugary residue is left in your mouth.

Drink: Easy going down, but it fills you up fast. Also this is one of the sweetest beers I have ever had that wasn't flavored.

Photo of garymuchow
3.29/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hey at $.35/can I had to give it a try.
A sour almost skunky smell I notice in lots of beers of this ilk. Not particularly appealing to me, but I guess it's the way it's suppose to be. Touch of malt too.
Looks as it's suppose to. Brilliantly bright and clear. Paper white head that's big and full, but settles fairly quickly. Yellow gold.
Nice malt sweetness dominates and stays throughout. Rather appealling really.Very slight sourness and very mild dryness, neither unappealling. Adjunct qualities are really low. Dryness increases as warms and becomes less enjoyable.
Mildly filling from carbonation, yet adequate smoothness for style.
Maybe this got me on a good day. Really not too bad. I'll give 'er a try again and see how it goes.

Photo of shippos
2.81/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

poured a very pale light goldne yellow that is super clear and brillant with a light water froathy head that sloshes around on top of the body. light sweet malt aroma, I can barely pick up on anything in this. very very light flavors and very clean. some hint of malt in the taste but it's hard to make out. would be welcomed on a hot hot humid day but probably not any other time though.

Photo of CraftPro
4.18/5  rDev +40.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

La Crosse Lager is a beer that underachieves, but not in the traditional sense. At $14 to $16 for a 30 pack of cans, it could be assumed that many potential beer drinkers are swayed from this brand due to its low cost and the risk that if it's a bad brew, one is stuck with 29 cans taking up space. The fact of the matter is that La Crosse Lager is truly an excellent beer.

In a recent double-blind taste test we conducted, La Crosse Lager scored higher than the vast majority of its "big brew" adjunct american lager counterparts (i.e. Budweiser, Coors, Pabst, Old Style, Leinenkugel's) and a number of "micro brews" from our region (i.e. Fitgers, Bent Paddle).

Reputedly, La Crosse Lager is brewed from the original recipe for Old Style. As most of us are aware, however, the Old Style product was greatly cheapened by Stroh's and Pabst after Heileman's got out of the business. Whereas today's Old Style has a noticeably stale, almost chemical taste, La Crosse Lager is spared from those unpleasantries. It's clean, crisp, and has well-rounded flavor.

La Crosse Lager is "krausened", the process that Old Style made a fixture of much of their marketing before turning to a cheaper brewing process. Krausening and the overall creation of La Crosse Lager is an expensive, old-fashioned process that is misleading, once again, by the beer's exceedingly low price point. Undoubtedly as City Brewery has 3 large breweries and derives most of their profits from contract brewing, they have the financial flexibility to bring this beer to market at a great price.

I would go so far to say that if this beer came with a Sam Adam's or Montana Brewing Company label that it would be the darling of "beer elitists" and command 3-4 times its current market price. But until that unlikely time comes, I will enjoy this taste of the Northwoods at a price that makes me feel that I'm getting an absolute steal!

Photo of tgbljb
3.83/5  rDev +29%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a medium amber color with sparse white head. No retention, no lacing.

Smell is very light. Only a slight sweetness detected.

Taste is unexpectedly full bodied. There is a very strong malt presence that gives this beer great flavor and a refreshing character.

Great taste retention with a long lingering malty sweetness.

Very nice to drink, Refreshing. A very enjoyable tasty beer.

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La Crosse Lager from City Brewing Company, LLC
71 out of 100 based on 76 ratings.