Otter Creek Spring Ale: German-style Kölsch | Otter Creek Brewing

95 Ratings
Otter Creek Spring Ale: German-style KölschOtter Creek Spring Ale: German-style Kölsch

Brewed by:
Otter Creek Brewing
Vermont, United States

Style: Kölsch

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.85%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Bitterbill on 01-20-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 95 |  Reviews: 82
Photo of Walken
3.92/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Otter Creek: Spring Ale, Kolsch (Bottled: 01/05/10) (Tasted 04/12/10)
12 oz. bottle, poured into a dimple mug.

Appearance: Bright, lightly hazed golden liquid with a squat soap-bubble head that leaves a few strands of lacing on the sides of the glass.
Odor: Lemon zest, hints of rich maltiness and a smattering of floral hop aromas wafts up into my nose.
Consistency: Crisp feel with a moderate level of carbonation which lends a fluffy feel to the beer.
Flavor: That 'ol familiar Otter Creek bread-crust yeast flavor kicks things off, it works extremely well for this style. Citric, slightly waxy hop flavor phases in and out, adding a hint of lemon zest, as noted from the nose. Finish is dry, yeasty and short. Bit of lemon and bread-crust lingers.

This is a good beer, no glaring flaws, in fact, it's a great thirst quencher. For my money though, I prefer more depth to the malt flavor in a kolsch, more dough/bread pils malt goodness.

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Photo of DNICE555
3.9/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at flatbread with Larsontyle

A - Cloudy golden color with a decent white head. A nice looking spring Kolsch.

S - Lemon, Bread, subtle hop presence.

T - Bread, lemon, fruit.

M - Light body, medium carbonation, crisp mouthfeel.

D - A decent Kolsch. The rain has died off finally and this is a nice kickoff to celebrate the spring season.

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Photo of bum732
3.68/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear straw yellow, decent head that dissipates. Smells of light breadiness, touch of grassiness, very light fruitiness. Tastes of sweet malt with a nice earthy and herbal aspect. Moderate bitterness with a fairly clean finish.

A decent beer, great on a warm day. Not exactly traditional, the light fruitiness i was expecting was maked by the sweetness of the malt and the herbalness of the hops. Still, not bad.

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Photo of EStreet20
3.53/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of several Otter Creek/Wolaver's brews my sister brought home from a recent trip to Vermont.

12 ounce bottle. 20 ounce "becker" style glass (tall straight walled pub glass).

A - Slight chill hazed golden/yellow. Small white head forms then fades to a thin cap.

S - Subdued grainy smell.

T - Nice laid back flavor. The graininess is there but subdued and a tiny hop kick balances it out. Smooth flavor with some quenching tart fruit flavor and a subtle bready aftertaste (great use of wheat malt in here for sure).

M - Light bodied, lively carbonation.

D - I consider drinkability the name of the game for a Kolsch.Goes down easy. Flavors aren't too complex, which is not what the style calls for, but it's a straightforward, thirst-quenching session brew with enough flavor to be tasty and interesting.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
3.68/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clear golden with a 1 finger white foamy head and some decent lacing. Good bubbles in the glass.

Grassy aromas and some floral hops. Nice scent, but where is that grapey element you get in Kolsch?

Some light malt, grassy sweetness, light grain, some dry bread sweetness, and some hop bitterness. Clean and drinkable, with enough carbonation and body to make this well rounded. Goes down very easy. I wonder how long into the grilling season this will be available... A great beer to drink on a warm day while flipping burgers. Not exceptional, but very very decent beer.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
4.05/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Possibly my favorite post-run beer.

Clear gold with a white head that leaves good retention and splashy lacing. Nose is light grai, and mild hops-- a little grassy, a little herbal.

Not as crisp as I would anticipate from a kolsch but pleasantly smooth, light and biscuity. Light herbal/floral (jasmine-esque?) hop peeps up in back.

Perhaps the perfect post-run beer.

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Photo of matth33
2.53/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Otter Creek Spring Ale poured to a pale golden yellow color with little if any head. Average taste that did not "wow" but was mild and pleasant. No distinct aroma but was light and finished that way. Don't know if it was me or mother nature, but just not ready for spring on a chilly March evening. Good/average and have had other Otter Creek products that have made more of an impression.

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Photo of JohnPan
4.2/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm surprised at the amount of poor reviews of this beer. Discovered in February 2010 and, since I love the Kolsch style, I grabbed a 6-pack to try. My overall impression is that this is a very good beer, one that I look forward to having again. My only complaint is I think it misses the Kolsch flavor (a little too strong) and body (a little too heavy) profile. I'll put it in a horizontal of mixed Kolsch this spring and see what my friends think.

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Photo of Sammy
2.71/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

On cask at Rattle 'N' Hum. Good grapefruit colour. Sour bitter(that was the lemony part) though creamy mouthfeel. Not hitting the spot.
Should have worked as a cask if it was good. May be better enjoyed in the summer in lieu of lemonade. Just lacking in taste.

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Photo of hreb
2.89/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cold 12oz screw-cap bottle poured into pint glass. Beer pours pale Mountain Dew yellow with a trace of a white head. Very faint aroma is vaguely floral/grassy.

Taste is like a light lager. Actually, it's not that offensive. But it is mostly bland, not too bitter, not too sweet. Not skunky, stale or dry. Refreshing, but not crisp. Might make a better summer lawnmower beer than a "first day of spring" beer.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
4/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From BeerAdvocate Magazine Volume II, Issue II:

It's nice to see any early spring release--this one came out in January. Makes the winter seem less wintry. It's also nice to see a spring seasonal offering that's not another Belgian Wit or other wheat beer.

Clear and bright golden-colored brew, white head that drops to a translucent lace. Fresh grain and a touch of green grass in the nose. Very smooth on the palate with a near medium body. Crisp snap up front, with a moderate carbonation level. Hint of mineral opens up to a biscuity malt profile, followed by a hint of honey and bread. Dry overall, mildly sweet. Soft herbal hop character, more grass. Dry and biscuity in the finish, with some lingering grain.

A well-built Kölsch. Balanced. Very refreshing beer. Quite the session beer. The world needs more.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
3.3/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Otter Creek- Spring Fling

A- Light clear orange with a small filmy head.
S- Light dry bread crust grain and caramel malt.
T- Dry toasty bready malts, caramel malt, and grassy hops.
M- Very light and watery with a dry woody tannin hop finish.

Overall- Starts off with a nice malty graininess but fizzles.

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Photo of generallee
3.65/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12oz bottle into a pint glass. The bottle has a born on date of 2-5-09 and it was sampled on 6-3-09.

Appearance: The body has a light golden color with good clarity and some visible carbonation. On top sits a small bright white head that fades quickly, down to just a thin ring of slick lace.

Smell: Its aroma is clean and light. There are some light pale malt notes with some modest clean hope notes.

Taste/Mouth: The flavor starts with a light to medium body, crisp pale malts with maybe just a hint of fruit notes and mellow hops in prefect balance. The carbonation is soft yet active giving it a fun lively texture with a quick, crisp and dry finish.

Notes: The light crisp and fairly clean character makes this a nice average tasting summer drink.

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Photo of thekevlarkid
3.93/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Off the tap at the brewery this beer was a pale gold color with an off-white head two-fingers thick. The retention was good and the lacing was very good in thin sheets. The aroma was 'bright', floral hops, pale malt and citrus. The flavors were crisp and refreshing. Summery notes of citrus hops, pale malt and floral hops, especially on the finish. Semi-acidic and clean. A good example of the style. The mouthfeel was soft but a touch watery, the body medium/light and the carbonation appropriate.

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Photo of sliverX
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured a very light yellow crystal clear with a small white head that faded to a very thin film ( it looks like a macro lager )
Smells pretty much the exact same way a macro does just a bit more grassy than those
taste starts out tasting like a macro but then suddenly is very watery with a hint of white wine and grass
mouthfeel is slighlty short of medium bodied but is very clean and crisp on the palate
drinks like a tasty glass of water, would be excellent after mowing the lawn

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Photo of Sycodrummer
4.18/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the 12oz. bottle into a stange the beer was a translucent medium gold color with one finger of pure white fluffy head. Steady carbonation streaming up the glass and the had retained very well with thick dense rings of lace all the way down the glass.

Malty nose with a slight grainy (cereal) aroma. Very soft fruit.

Taste stars out malty with a bready and slightly buttery backbone. This gives way to a very slight mild hoppiness with just a sublt bitterness in the background. Hop presence is mild, very mild, and more noble hoppish, nothing brash here, just enough to balance the malty sweetness the beer begins with. Finishes slight grains, clean, and dry with a sublte buttery sweetness.

Medium body and about average carbonation.

This is a very drinkable seasonal. It's tough to find a quality domestic Kolsch and this is certainly that. Nicely balanced, clean, not overly carbonated, and very refreshing. I'll be back to this each year.

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Photo of ColForbinBC
3.28/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pilsner glass

Pours a pale golden straw color with a fluffy, two finger bone white head. The cap dissipated quickly and left little behind.

Aroma is of toasted cereal grain and a faint floral hop aroma.

The taste mimics the nose. Toasted ceraeal with a faint floral hop flavor. Very dry, not as bitter as I would like. Very subtle.

Light bodied with a little too much carbonation for my taste.

After doing some yardwork, this was a perfect quencher.

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Photo of allergictomacros
3.6/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear straw with a not-too-bad white foam. Nose is a bit raw with grassy hops and a touch of lemon. Maybe some vegetal notes. Sweet, light and herbal with a mild hop bitterness. Impression of citrus is very faint and a hint of alcohol sneaks through. Fairly fizzy with a bit of slickness to the body. Drinkability isn't a problem with this one, and it has some nice hoppiness for such a light beer. Refreshing.

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Photo of sulldaddy
4.02/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Drinking a cellar temp bottle poured into a snifter.
The beer pours a clear gold from the bottle but appears slightly orange in the glass. Bleached white fizzy head of 1 cm foams up and rests lightly on the surface of the beer.
Aroma is clean and crisp with some spicy and earth hops and general grainy malt. Not overly complex but it doesnt have to be for the style.
First sip is a light to average body with fine fizzy carbonation.
Flavor is straight forward and refreshing. Grainy malt with a little husk to it, followed by some grassy hops that are just slightly bitter on the finish. A bit dry on the palate after each swallow as well.
The beer is well made and would taste great cold on a hot day. Put a 6er in the cooler and sit poolside for a hot sunny day!

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Photo of Thorpe429
3.61/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottled on 02.10.2009

A: Pours a ver light golden color with a large, two-finger bone-white head. Plenty of carbonation bubbles visible throughout. Okay lacing.

S: Mild grains along with some very mild, tart fruit sensations.

T: Soft malt and the tiniest bit of sweetness. Mild bitterness. Very few hop.

M: Light and refreshing, though a tad bit over-carbonated.

D: Pretty good--I wouldn't mind knocking back a couple of these once the weather's nicer. At the same time, I don't think it stacks up with the Goose Island Summertime.

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Photo of kshankar
3.57/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden color with good carbonation. Head isn't that impressive, leaves a slight amount of foam. Otherwise looks fine

Aroma: Its mild. I can detect grains, and minimal hops, but it still is a pleasant aroma

Taste: Nice grainy flavor..mild on the hops, some malt coming through as well. I can get some wheat notes from it as well (bottle indicates there is some wheat there we go)

Mouthfeel: Crisp, and good carbonation. Goes down well

Drinkability: Light and crisp, refreshing. Tastes good.

Give it a try

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Photo of Kendo
3.83/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Poured into a pilsner glass. Body is light golden with a small white head. Bubbles rising result in a nice presentation.

S: Not terribly strong -- some cereal and basic grain with a hint of florally or fruity hops.

T: First impressions: light, slightly fruity and cereal grains. A lingering fruitiness reminds me of ripe apples, though it finishes somewhat dry and lemony.

M: Somewhat slick, surprising me for the style.

D: Good. A little too fruity or else this would've been a 4.5.

Notes: IIRC, I haven't been that impressed with Otter Creek's offerings. This, however, was solid. I think it would make a decent summer release, actually, as it's light and fairly refreshing.

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Photo of DrJay
3.63/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Yellow/gold with a light chill haze and a sticky white cap. Solid sheets of lace clung to the glass and it had good head retention. Aromas of floral hops, cereal, and crackers. Moderate bitterness with floral and crackery malt flavours, plus a hint of fruitiness. Light bodied with carbonation a little more than average. A bit dry, nice texture overall. Refreshing and tasty, a decent kolsch.

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Photo of yelterdow
2.77/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Bottled on 1/28/09. Served in a traditional German stange at fridge temperature.

Appearance- Wow... I know Kolsches are pale in color but this really takes the cake! A suggestion of light yellow/gold is all we've got here... the white crown fizzles quickly to just a thin, transparent mat.

Smell- Zippy and bready, the malts outweigh the hops on the nose... it's like walking past a bakery at 5 in the morning. There's really nothing much of anything else going on.

Taste- This one doesn't hit the mark. It's real lemony and hoppy, drying for sure... but it's also astringent to a fault. It's not balanced at all regarding the hops and malt, but the aroma had me fooled. I'm going to have to pass on this one.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- This beer blooms nicely in the mouth right from the outset, becoming full and frothy without going overboard or being *too* gassy. It's light enough to session, but I just wouldn't go here again with the flavor profile not being so great.

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Photo of KTCamm
3.24/5  rDev -11%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours very pale transparent golden yellow with crazy high white foam. The head stays around and recedes very slowly. Lacing everywhere.

Smell is a grassy/pine-y/hoppy aroma.

Clean taste - a tad watery with a mild hop finish. No buzz from carbonation in the mouth, Finishes dry.

Good representation of the style. Not earth shattering, but definitely a beer you could have a few of.

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Otter Creek Spring Ale: German-style Kölsch from Otter Creek Brewing
3.64 out of 5 based on 95 ratings.
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