Backseat Berner
Otter Creek Brewing

Backseat BernerBackseat Berner
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American IPA
4.04 | pDev: 9.16%
Otter Creek Brewing
Vermont, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Backseat BernerBackseat Berner
Notes: The first year-round IPA in Otter Creek history, Backseat Berner is an American beauty that's loaded with juicy hops.

Like Oslo, Brewmaster Mike's 150 pound Bernese mountain dog that adorns the label, Backseat Berner is your everyday companion for life's adventures.

This brew clocks in at 7% ABV with 68 IBUs, so load up your buds and partake in this juicy exploration of American hops.
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Reviews: 149 | Ratings: 849
Photo of VoxRationis
4.15/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Served in a 12 oz (355 ml) pub glass at Byrne's Irish Pub in Brunswick, Maine.
A: Pours a hazy golden color with a half inch, white head with good retention, and serious lacing all the way down the glass.
S: Aromas of peach and mango predominate.
T: Semisweet. Palate basically follows the nose. Complex and subtle. Light bitterness just enough to achieve crisp, clean finish.
M: Light to medium bodied with solid carbonation throughout consumption.
O: A delicious IPA, lighter and less bitter than many produced today. A nice blend of the light, refreshing, elements seen in a more traditional ECIPA with the fruity elements of a contemporary NE. Enjoy!

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Photo of haines710
4.32/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured a hazy yellow orange from a 16 oz orange can. Nice looking beer with hop forward slightly citrus smell. Taste is even better. Very hoppy, but still smooth and easy to drink. I like this one.

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Photo of Stockatron
4.03/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Solid IPA with the hops nicely boiled up to give a lot of bitterness, and behind it a nice buiscity maltiness .... not so juicy in my opinion, but still a good one.

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Photo of akirakcat
4.15/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Orange haze with plenty of floating bits. Lots of citrus on the nose. Taste is a burst of sweet, juicy fruits--orange, peach, mango--with a solid tangy citrus finish. Medium body. Pleasantly surprised with this brew.

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Photo of mikeg67
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On Tap. Pours golden with tall, long lasting, fluffy white head and nice lacing. Aroma is of citrusy hops, bready malt and tropical fruit. Body is medium and crisp. Citrusy hops, bready malt and tropical fruit fill the mouth. Finish is long and dry. Tasty brew.

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.93/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was poured into a nonic pint glass. The appearance was a hazy burnt orange to yellow color with a thin white foamy head that dissipated within less than about forty seconds leaving a light lacing roaming all about. The smell had a sweet to tangy to bitter grapefruit gracefully touching my nose with some bitter lemon rind, fresh and full, bright and somewhat grassy. The taste was bittersweet thoroughly balancing the bitter citrus hops to the sweet grassy hops. A light sweet dry citrus aftertaste leads to a quick dry finish. On the palate, this one sat about a light to medium on the body with a fairly decent sessionability about it. Carbonation comes off semi-harsh and leaves a dry bitter texture rolling over my tongue. Overall, this was a pretty good AIPA.

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Photo of PianoManKD
3.63/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I wanted to give another OCB beer a try as I've had nothing but success with these guys. This one is no different. Firstly, the pour is a gorgeous golden orange color, with the perfect amount of foam at the top; probably one finger height. There is a beautiful aroma of gentle hops that fill the air right away. The feel of the beer has almost a creaminess to it. The hops aren't overpoweringly (is that a word?) bitter and makes this IPA an easy drink. Careful though, the 7% ABV will catch up with you! Great beer!

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Photo of teromous
2.65/5  rDev -34.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I don't see a date listed on the bottle or label.

Appearance: The body of the beer is extremely occluded by numerous suspended solids. Only shadows are visible through the light gold colored body. The head is a minimal ring of white foam with a few islands of lace.

Aroma: I get some peach and tangerine along with a bit of an an old damp carpet aroma which is odd but strangely works with some of the mossy, earthy, and decaying leaf aromas that come out later on. There is some Brussels Sprouts aroma which also hampers the aroma some.

Taste: I get some light pith with some very light cedar and a good deal of alcohol flavor. Not a lot going on in the flavor department. I sat for a while to see if anything came to me but in the end it was a Where's Waldo for flavor. Every now and then I would get a peak of grain flavor or a peak of a stone fruit flavor but it would get crushed by the alcohol flavor.

Mouthfeel: It feels wet at all times with moderate-to-light bitterness and a body that feels a bit too textured for the style.

Overall: It just wasn't a very memorable beer. No element, individually or as a whole, made a lasting impression. It floated in that realm where it feels like the beer is treading water to be average. It's not something I would buy again and I wouldn't recommend it unless there was nothing else.

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Photo of tone77
3.58/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a dark golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of citrus, juicy. Taste is dank, resin, some citrus, light malts in the background, fairly bitter. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is an enjoyable beer.

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Photo of superspak
4.2/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got in a BIF from Roguer. 16 ounce can into tulip glass, canned on 2/9/2017. Pours lightly hazy/cloudy medium golden yellow color with a 1-2 finger fairly dense and fluffy white head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice spotty soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of big tangerine, grapefruit, peach, apricot, pineapple, passion fruit, mango, melon, papaya, guava, lemon/orange zest, light pepper/pine, light honey, toasted bread, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of citrus/tropical/fruity hops and moderate bready malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big tangerine, grapefruit, peach, pineapple, passion fruit, mango, melon, papaya, guava, lemon/orange zest, light pepper/pine, light honey, toasted bread, herbal, and floral/grassy earthiness. Light-moderate pine/grassy/citrus peel/spicy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of tangerine, grapefruit, peach, apricot, pineapple, passion fruit, mango, melon, papaya, guava, lemon/orange peel, pepper, pine, toasted bread, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a while. Fantastic complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/tropical/fruity hops and moderate bready malt flavors; with a great malt/bitterness balance, and minimal lingering hop astringency after the finish. Light-moderate dryness from lingering bitterness, increasing through the glass. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately bready/grainy/sticky, and lightly resinous/rindy balanced mouthfeel that is great. Zero warming alcohol for 7%. Overall this is an outstanding IPA! All around awesome complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/tropical/fruity hops and moderate bready malt flavors; very smooth and easy to drink from the modest bitterness. Very bright, juicy, and dank on hops; nice malt backbone, without feeling sweet. Fairly tame feeling bitterness at first from the malt balance, but dries out really nicely without being astringent. A highly enjoyable offering.

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Photo of digboy
3.92/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 oz can marked 2/9/17 (6 weeks old)

Pours a bright clear orange-gold color with plenty of carbonation. Very thin white head with poor retention

Aroma is weak but vaguely fruity/earthy - hard to pin this down. There is a little yeast and cracker in there too.

Taste is sweet malt up front with moderate bitterness. Hop flavor is orange rind with maybe a touch of resin. It is not overpowering or strongly hoppy like juicy IPAs (despite how the OC description tries to make it sound). It is a clean and pleasant flavor though - a nice refreshing summer beer IMO.

Feel is clean, not sticky due to the low malt. Effervescence tingle lingers nicely.

Overall I like this beer and would get it again - maybe I'll look for it this summer.

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Photo of JamFuel
3.74/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a light orange, with loads of floaties.

Smell is hoppy with a bit of weed and dankness to it.

Taste is piney and resiny. Well balanced, but i had hoped for a bit more hop bite.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and adequate.

Nice IPA, bt I think I had my hopes too high for this. It's well balanced, but the look is so-so, and I don't get that much hop bite.

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Photo of brewme
4/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I had sworn off this brew after being traumatized by a skunked sixer a couple of weeks ago. Saw a four-pack of cans @ Kappy's in Norwell for eleven Shekels. Ahh...much better...very nice local the new cans....

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Photo of WesWes
4.05/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The beer pours a hazy dark golden color with a thick frothy off-white head that fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a well balanced mix of pale/carapils/bisquit malts along with a solid hop aroma. It's bitter and refreshing. The taste is good as well. It has a hop bitterness that hits you up front, but is mellowed by a malt bill that provides balance and excellent flavor. It's not a bold, in your face beer, but it's damn delicious for what it is. The mouthfeel is fine. It's a medium/full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is highly drinkable IPA. It's bitter enough for the hop lover, but balanced enough for those who don't prefer overly hoppy IPA's.

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Photo of JayQue
3.75/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Good East Coast IPA. Pours a hazy gold color with a small white head. Head retention is average with some streaks of lacing. Aroma is of piney and grassy/earthy hops. Fairly pronounced. Taste is hop forward as well. There is some biscuity malt but the hops are dominant. Mouthfeel is crisp and nicely bitter. Very enjoyable and at a reasonable abv level.

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Photo of illpass78
3.88/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. poured into a stemmed glass.

Appearance: Glowing unfiltered orange/gold with a one finger white head. Some lacing behind. Some yeastie bits floating in there. Decent carbonation.

Aroma: Kind of smells like orange jam or orange rind with some pine and herbs.

Taste: Big citrus flavor, focusing on orange rind and grapefruit. Herby, earthy, grassy. Lots of flavor.

Mouthfeel: One to sip, but a little easy to drink fast because of all the flavor and fairly concealed alcohol.

Overall: Good IPA from a brewery that does good work with hoppy beers. Pretty complex. Punches above its weight: about the equal of some much pricier IPAs.

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Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.07/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

"Load up your buds"......done ! Lets go.
Looks totally unfiltered with a big haze and some yeasty floatie bits swirling around in an orange-gold liquid.
Earthy, citrus and sweet malt are very obvious in the aroma. The hop aroma is pretty big, with a hint of heat and sweet, orange fruitiness.
The flavor is full of nice hop complexity, including a big, gritty earthy bite, orange and assorted citrus based flavors, pine and even some woody aspects. A sharp, bitter bite hits pretty hard but mellows to earthiness and leaves lingering citrus. The malt is pretty crisp and has some wheat vibes and delivers a nice sweet base. Alcohol is a bit hot but it seems to just blend with a wild but interesting balance of flavor.
The feel is pretty heavy, sharp and long, bitter, earthy, grainy but mellows after a bit to a smooth finish.
A very complex, but comfortable brew. This modern hippie "digs it".

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Photo of argock
3.42/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Herbal hopping leaves some weedy character with peppery accents. Orange marmalade with stiff bitterness - suggests possible oxidation. Body medium if not a bit more but finishes dry and tacky. Not really what I like in this style but I think herbal hood lovers will really go for this one. IPA built in the East Coast style.

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Photo of MacMalt
4.24/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

I had this on draught at a baseball game. It was served in a 16 oz. plastic cup. It poured a hazy, golden-orange color with a frothy, milk-white head and lacing. It had a fragrant smell of pine needles, grapefruit, tangerine, and floral hops. It's pleasantly aromatic. The primary tastes were grapefruit, sweet tropical fruit, pine, and biting, bitter hops at the finish. This ale is medium-bodied, moderately carbonated, and with an ABV of 7% it is substantial but not overpowering. You can easily have more than one and you'll want to because this is a first rate American IPA. I was pleased to try it and will look for it again.

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Photo of daudelin2000
4.23/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

I love the new beers Otter Creek has introduced the past year or so. Backseat Berner is, in my opinion, the best IPA they have ever released. Tons of juicy citrus in the aroma and flavor. Lots of haziness and floaties. Very well balanced and easy to obtain here in Vermont. You can even get it at the grocery store. Gotta love that!

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Photo of dd43
3.78/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Not quite as impressed with this one as a lot of other reviewers seem to be. It was a little too aggressive in terms of a savory and herbal character that wasn't jiving with my palate when I tried it. I was getting a rosemary and sage kind of thing. It had some dankness as well which would have been more welcome if not for that first note. Tropical juice flavors were present but played a "backseat" to borrow horribly from the name. A decent brew but I'm not going to run out for a sixer.

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Photo of Nishriver
4.15/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

To start you get a lot of citrus, piney flavors coming through and then a little malty at the end but this does not overpower. Really big hop bite which is what you would expect from a Vermont IPA. Not on the top of the podium like Lawsons or Heady Topper but real close. Delicious beer and would drink all summer.

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Photo of dbl_delta
3.99/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Undated bottle into pint glass. Pours a hazy orange-gold color, with a thin eggshell-white head. Initial impression is juicy citrus and grapefruit, somewhat balanced by a hint of malt. Malt becomes a little more pronounced as the beer warms. Medium mouthfeel; medium carbonation. Very refreshing. Slightly sweet finish with a lingering bitterness on the back of the tongue.

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Photo of dnoahg
4.01/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Subdued pour into a 12 oz. goblet from the 12 oz. bottle. Could only allow for a 1 finger head so it didn't overflow. Head subsided into a thin partial coating with mild lacing. Pours a very hazy orange with a lot of particulates in suspension.

Nose was initially juicy hops along with the same juicy hop taste. As it went on though, the malt came out along with some alcohol bitterness. Not unpleasant though.

This is good drinking with body. I wouldn't hold it up against a Heady, or a Captain's Daughter, but it's certainly worth trying, and I'd have it again.

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Photo of Alias2325
4.13/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

About 75 day old bottles picked up at a store. Pours orange hazy good looking brew. Smell is pretty citrusy, lil piney, hoppy. Medium mouthfell very easy drinking. The hops really come in as you drink it. Huge hop bite, no malt at all which is fine. Overall great brew by otter Creek. If your walking around a store trying to figure out what to try and see this one, go for it. You won't regret it.

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Backseat Berner from Otter Creek Brewing
Beer rating: 90 out of 100 with 849 ratings