Saranac Winter Lager - Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

Not Rated.
Saranac Winter LagerSaranac Winter Lager

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BA SCORE
78
okay

110 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 110
Reviews: 60
rAvg: 3.4
pDev: 16.18%
Wants: 0
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
Vienna Lager |  5.90% ABV

Availability: Winter

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-07-2009

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 110 | Reviews: 60
Reviews by deruiz10:
Photo of deruiz10
3.65/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pilsner glass.

A - Soapy 2-finger head is eggshell in color, leaves a small amount of lacing. Color is a deep amber, moderately opaque. Fine effervescence seen.

S - Tree sap and mild roasted malts. Slightly sweet, hints of caramel and maple syrup.

T - Big malty flavor, flavors like maple oatmeal, finish is sweet and very drawn out and tastes mildly of German hops.

M - Crisp, but feels bigger than I was expecting. Good carbonation keeps it from being too heavy.

D - Though not particularly complex, the flavors are well-balanced and definitely capture the spirit of the winter. A good after-work beer for the colder months.

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.11/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Part of the Saranac twelve beers of winter pack.Poured aclear bronze with a tight one finger bone white head that left decent lace as it settled pretty slowly.Not much in the aroma,some lingering spice and caramel bit its really light.Flavors are much of the same,lightly sweet caramel and some toasted malt, but really thats about it.Eh pretty ho hum,not a real Vienna lager in its true form by any means.

Photo of generallee
3.6/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pint glass. The bottle has no freshness date or abv% listed. This bottle was part of the 2009 Saranac Winter 12 pack.

Appearance: The body has a garnet color with good clarity. On top sits a thin half inch thick head which is beige in color and fades quickly. Lacing is very minimal and slick leaving a mostly clean glass behind.

Smell: It is light overall in the nose with some malty sweetness and hints of leafy, almost herbal/metallic hops.

Taste/Palate: There is a rich bready sweetness up front with some light roasted grain notes as well. This maltiness meats some hop flavor in the middle it and adds a nice moderate balance of hop spice and bitterness with just a very slight metallic edge. It seems to finish quickly and fairly clean. It is dryer than it started but there is still a thin residual sweetness mixed with thin hop bitterness. The body is light to medium with average carbonation.

Notes: For the style it seems just a little on the light side but everything is in good balance for the style. Once again Saranac has brewed another decent easy drinking beer.

Photo of tigg924
3.5/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: amber in color, 1/4 inch head, moderate carbonation, clear

Smell: caramel and toasted malt

Taste: big caramel toasted malt taste with a slight bitter hop backbone

Mouthfeel: medium/high carbonation, medium/light bodied, slightly sweet

Drinkability: This is an above average attempt at the style that is easy to session. I could have six of these while watching a game, but it is not anything I would get too excited about. Still a very solid effort.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.5/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 Beers of Xmas 2009, this one pours a deep caramel ruby color crystal clear visuals. Light beige head forms thick and dwindles slowly. Aroma has some slight caramel malt sweetness with herbal German hops in the background. Flavor has a nice rounded caramel sweetness with slight roasted nut edges. Clean mildly hopped finish with a mineral edge. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied for a lager carbonation is decent just not as soft as it should be. Overall tasty Vienna style not the best but a solid approachable beer for any of the in laws during the holidays.

Photo of caddybuyer
3.53/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass

A-Clear copper with a thin whisp of an eggshell head

S-Bready malts predominate

T-Sweet malts, bread, caramel, toffee with very little hop presence. This is pretty refreshing, but not particularly wintery.

M-Decent mouthfeel, if slighly overcarbonated.

D-Pretty drinkable, if slightly unremarkable brew.

Photo of NJpadreFan
3.45/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Saranac- Winter Lager

A- Clear amber/ copper brown with a thick head. Ringed lacing but quick head dissapation.
S- Malty, brown sugar, caramel, and spicy.
T- Thick and sugary sweet malt, brown sugar, caramel, light touch of molasses, and light woodsy spiciness.
M- Malt is dominant with a syrupy sugary sweetness. Light dry earthy finish.

Overall- My 1st from this years Winter variety pack and a decent offering. A good 1 to start off the night with.

Photo of mempath
4.45/5  rDev +30.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

pours an amber-red that laces very nicely and delicately in my DFH pint...bready smells rise out with a hint of muscadine? interesting. maybe it's the spices. this tastes (from memory...) similar to the sam adams winter brew. this seems less thick and luscious in mouthfeel, but really has a nicely balanced flavor profile of malts, spices, and some subdued hops keeping the sweetness at bay. a good session winter brew i'd find easy to drink on cool, early spring days.

another swallow as it warms it and it only gets better, more rich, more sourdoughy...

another one of Saranac's standouts.

RECOMMENDED!

Photo of russpowell
3.02/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours an effervescent copper/orange with 1 finger of tan head. Average head retention & lacing

S: Breadyness & a touch of toasty malt

T: Toasted malt, herbal hops, dryness up front. Dryness, a bit of metallic hops & some toasty malt as this warms. Finishes chalky with a slight apricot fruittyness, & a whisper of booze, barely pulled a 3.0

MF: Thinnish with a bit too much carbonation

Drinks okay, but a bit weak & uninteresting, maybe one of the most disappointing Saranac beers I've had

Photo of Gmann
3.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a crystal clear amber color with a tight egg-shell colored head that settles into a light ring. The aroma is of a light caramel malt, a bit bready with hints of copper. The taste is of caramel malt, a little doughy, light spice, and a touch of grassy hops. All of the flavors are rather light. The feel is light but not watery, plenty of carbonation, well balanced; finishes with an ever so slight bitter hop. This is a darn refreshing beer. Very clean flavors and very crisp. No off-putting flavors. Not the most flavorful brew but its very drinkable. Great to session.

Photo of Kinsman
3.98/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nothing fancy here, but there is nothing wrong with a simple beer done right, and thats the case with this Vienna Lager. Pours a really nice clear amber color and nice white head. Not much retention on the head, but just enough to leave a good lace.

Smell is of an inviting malt character, sweet with hints of caramel. German hops provide a nice counterpoint to the malt, providing a slightly floral/spicey hint.

Taste is well balanced in this one. Toasted malt character, but also a nice crisp from the hop bitterness. Slightly sweet, but not overly so. Also a little earthy spice from the hops at the finish.

Mouthfeel is of a rather light body but very crisp. Overall an enjoyable refreshing brew; very easy to enjoy several of these at once.

Photo of puboflyons
3.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle (2009 batch) marked 2649-0834. Sampled on Nov 11, 2009. The pour is a darker amber color with a lot of bubbly carbonation flowing upward to a thin off-white head. The lacing is limited. In the aroma I note some muted malts and hops with something a bit fruity and grassy. The mouthfeel is thin. The taste has a bit more to offer than the aroma with a hint of caramel bitterness with a slightly bolder hoppy finish. But overall it is quite average, although easy to drink, but with the character of a cheaper winter lager for a slightly larger dollar.

Photo of akorsak
3.8/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 of the 12 Beers of Winter; from a 12 oz bottle.

A: The lager is a dark amber color, a syrupy caramel that fits nicely as a Vienna lager. A finger of head, white, didn't lace.

S: The nose has a clean bready flavor that lacks the traditional aroma of many Saranac ales. Earthy hops finish off the nose.

T: Clean and grainy, this is the second Saranac lager that has really hit the spot. A vine-fruit sweetness assists the malt profile. As in the nose, hops are subtle, balancing rathering than bittering.

M: The mouthfeel is grainy sweet, lighter bread flavors and a kiss of hops.

D: The fuller malts add a great deal to the body, strengthening it up significantly. Another good lagerbier from Saranac.

Photo of bourbonbock
3.7/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A. Chestnut brown body with about one finger of off-white bubbly head that drops after a few moments. Light amount of carbonation rising from the bottom of the glass.

S. Roasted malts and lager yeast aromas dominate this one.

T. Sweet roasted malts and earthy bready texture.

M. Light and creamy with a sweet aftertaste.

D. I wouldn't mind picking this up every once in a while.

Photo of mikesgroove
3.83/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The fourth in the lineup for the day for me. Not really sure what to make of this one at first, but I will admit it did grow on me after a while. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 2/21/2010.

The pour was nice, garnet in color and clear without much in the way of haze or cloudiness at all. Really nice and light head of white that sat on top for all but a few moments before settling down with some nice side lacing and a rich, even layering. Aroma of caramel, smoked nuts, hints of toffee and sweet brown sugar came off a little much for me at first, but again it tended to start to grow on me after a while. Nice smooth, coating feel here really seemed to do the trick for me though as it rounded its way through the palate. Caramel and nuts were the big the players here. Rich brown sugar and caramel all seem to come together nicely, evenly and smoothly. Light abv and a nice carbonation all lended themselves to being able to pull it all together quite nicely.

Overall a nice little lager, nothing really earth shattering, but nice and clean.

Photo of buschbeer
3.21/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I poured into a pint glass to a couple inches of head. It is amber in color and clear. It smells of sweet toffee. The taste is pretty much the same. This is a pretty simple beer. It goes down easy because there is not much to it. A little too sweet for me, but otherwise clean and drinkable.

Cheers!

Photo of airheadmtrcycle
3.9/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a Sierra Nevada pint glass. Rich, semi-opaque brown beer with a small, but long lasting tan head. Lots of lacing left behind.

Aroma of caramel and other sweet malts. The sweet malt flavors are right up front. Not much bitter or hop flavor, but they're not necessary here. The mouth feel is substantial and not watery at all. This is a really good lager. I could drink several of these tasty beers with no problem.

Photo of plaid75
3.53/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a medium amber hue with a one and a half finger frothy white head. There was very good retention and good lacing.

The smell featured a light caramel sweetness, some roasted malts and a strange mintiness.

The taste consisted of a slight artificial sweetness, some toasted malt and a bit of caramel.

The mouthfeel seemed to lack the body of better examples.

Overall a decent lager. The strange sweetness adversely affected the experience for me.

Photo of KickbacksSteve
3.75/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle poured into a Unibroue tulip. Off-white head lasts for a just a short period and than disappears, leaving mild lacing. Aroma is hoppy and spicy with a malt base. Taste is slightly sweet and nicely hopped. Body may be a bit thin, but overall a pretty decent winter brew.

Photo of mjaskula
3.86/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Served in a pilsner glass. Poured vigorously for a nice thick tan head. It thinned to a film and laced nicely.

Aroma is mostly hop bitterness and some malt, fairly weak. The flavor is really great though, despite the aroma. Alomost exactly what I would expect from the Vienna Lager description: "Subtle hops, crisp, with residual sweetness." Fits this perfectly.

Lingers in the mouth perhaps a bit too long, but otherwise a great and easy to drink beer.

Photo of biggred1
3.31/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Clear copper with a creamy tan head that leaves filmy lace on the glass. The nose is faintly caramel with a whiff of noble hops. Ths flavor is mostly sweetish caramel with an earthy hop bitterness but not really well balanced or particularly flavorful. Medium bodied with gassy carbonation. Not the best tasting example of the style.

Photo of CHickman
3.43/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours clear copper amber color with a 1/2 inch off white head; smells of malt and light spices.

Tastes of roasted malt, hops, spices, caramel, nut and grains or bread; the brew warms as you sip it, which I assume is due to the alcohol as an intentional "winter warmer".

Nice (good) beer with an overall malty taste that releases more malt flavor and taste as it warms up and goes down easy. Not exceptional flavor, but quite drinkable.

Photo of bob3701
3.5/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pilsner style glass. Nice copper color with a head the quickly turns into a film. Sporatic lacing. Hint of caramel in the finish. Not a bad beer by any means but strangely non-discript. One of the weaker beers in the Saranac Winter sampler, which I highly recommend picking up.

Photo of dsa7783
2.68/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Copped as part of a twelve-pack Winter sampler... One of the better brews in the bunch but still, nothing to write home about... Pretty bland and nondescript in terms of overall flavor profile... Not enough substance in the mix... Hints of bread, butter, and caramel struggle to be noticed... not recommended...

Photo of jwc215
3.03/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours copper with a thin head that becomes wispy. A little lacing sticks.

The smell is of caramel and slight bread. Very slight noble hop presence (perhaps noticeable at all only because I was really "looking" for it).

The taste is overly caramelish - sweet. That's not to say it is rich in maltyness, but a steely caramel dominates with just a nod of noble hop spicing. I would expect a winter lager to be malt-leaning, but the steely malt just doesn't do anything spectacular to the palate, and it could use more "balance". Not to say it's "bad" - it's not - just lacking all around enough to push it above mediocre.

Quite a bit of fizz, though it's not tingly, and the body holds together...

Throughout, this one manages to cling on to "mediocre". Steely caramel dominates, and has a certain fizzy thinness.

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Saranac Winter Lager from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
78 out of 100 based on 110 ratings.