Isabella Blonde | Kern River Brewing Company

very good
34 Reviews
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Isabella BlondeIsabella Blonde

Brewed by:
Kern River Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Blonde Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Bitterbill on 03-01-2007

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Reviews: 34 | Ratings: 121
Photo of HalfFull
3.87/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From a 22 oz. bomber into a pint glass, this brew pours golden in color and with a light haze. A thin cap of foam is short lived, settling to a surface cap/ring in a minute or so. Rather clear in the end.

Some light hops on the nose as well as a good dose of light and nondescript malts. More hops later on. Rather nice for the style yet somewhat of an aberration of sorts. Interesting nonetheless and without the chalky notes often present.

Taste is moderate and smooth, with a relatively full body on the finish, particularly given the light color of the brew. Nice and dry on the finish per se, yet hmmm. Bit spicy on the close.

An easy drinking beer with a bit of citrus spice and a good dose of hops as well.

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Photo of HopHead84
4.27/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bomber consumed on 9/14/2009 and poured into my Moonlight pint glass. The beer is straw colored with a pretty great looking pillowy white head. It's about one inch with great retention and lacing.

The nose is bready and biscuity. The hops impart some grassiness and just a little citrus. The beer is well balanced but is slightly malt forward. Notes of corn are evident, as well as a hint of alcohol. The nose is subtle but really nice.

The flavor is of biscuity, bready malt and wheat with just a touch of lemon and orange. Bitterness is at a low level. Alcohol is nowhere in the flavor. Corn is noticeable. This is very well balanced. The finish is clean and dry.

The beer is light bodied with moderate carbonation. This is a perfect summer beer, and one that will slake your thirst. Very quenching. Requisite joke: I would session this blond with rock hard resolve.

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Photo of russpowell
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Reviewed from notes, drank about 2 months ago, cheers to BitterbBill for this one!

Pours an effervescent straw/blonde with a finger of pearl white head. Stays effervescent throughout & keeps ab amoeba like head structure. Average head retention & lacing

S: Grassy, bready & with hints of lemon

T: Dryness, lemony hops up front. Grainy bready as this warms, plus fruittyness & dryness.
Finishes with juicy grain, some grassyness & a touch of coriander???

MF: Medium bodied, smooth carbonation & great balance

Super sessionability that harkens back to many nice golden ales I drank in the 90s (many of these breweries are no more). Well done Kern River!

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Photo of Halcyondays
3.72/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bomber,

A: Pours a clear dark yellow with a soft white head, good lacing and head retention, a solid looking pint.

S: Intriguing, pineapple juice is most predominant, with orange, apricot, and rose petals rounding it out, very floral.

T: Light grainy malt with some floral/herbal hops, a clean flavour, lighter than I expected.

M: Smooth and creamy, light/medium-bodied.

D: A nice easy drinking ale from Kern River, it looks like I wasn't as taken with it as the rest of the group, but a beer that has its moments; a solid session pint.

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Photo of BARFLYB
4.39/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to oglmcdgl for sharing the bottle brought back from cali.

A- Isabella has a mix of light gold with some orange built in to enhance the appearence. A one inch sturdy white head stood on top of the liquid for quite some time. Good lace patterns seen on the way down.

S- The smell on this is my favorite part of this beer, it's just so inviting. Big blasts of citrus scents with oranges and clemintines at the forefront. A nice hop base giving off floral qualities backed by some sweet malts. Smells delicious.

T- The huge citrus in the scent comes through in taste but it is not as pronounced as I thought it would be. I seem to get alot of oranges from this beer. In the middle some wheat and yeast present themselves with some hops built in. Finishes off rather floral and delicious.

M- A very small step up from light bodied while the carbonation was felt on the tounge. The carb is a touch high but still works well with this. Without it this would have been less interesting. The flavors invade the tastebuds.

D- I would of had no problem finishing off the bomber by myself. I look forward to more from this brewery. Hopefully one day they will find their way to store shelves in PA.

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Photo of Wasatch
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to Bitterbill for this brew.

22oz. Bomber

Pours a nice hazy golden yellow color, nice carbonation, nice little fizzy white head, with some really nice sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, with some slight hop/yeast profile, and some spices. The taste is malty, sweet, yeasty/slight hop, and some spice notes. Medium body. Drinkable, a tasty brew, glad to have had a chance to try it, thanks Bill.

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Photo of joe1510
4.4/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

22oz Bomber

Here's another Kern River brew from the man himself, BitterBill, thank you Bill! Isabella is a bright golden beauty that shows a touch of haze and some straw golden highlights when backlit. Carbonation rises from random spots on the glass to the voluminous two finger linen white head. The foam settles lazily to a one finger cap with good staying power. This blonde is a knockout.

The nose is simple but clean and inviting. A semi-sweet graininess opens up a dusty grain aroma that fits incredibly well. A mild grassy hoppiness hits first and segues into a floral note that's very attractive. I don't know why but clean malty sweetness is incredibly inviting and almost comforting. It's tough to pull my nose from the glass.

The flavor mimics the nose fairly closely and manages to surpass it in the enjoyment category. The maltiness of this beer is so fresh and vibrant. That semi-sweet character gets things moving and eventually engulfs the tongue. Freshly husked grains and a drizzle of honey are what this beer tastes like in the most soothing of ways. The hops don't play much of a role but do manage to leave a whisper of floral notes behind. A touch of lemon is noticeable on the end too but I find myself reaching for it.

Isabella has one amazing mouthfeel! I couldn't imagine it being any better than what it is right now. She shows off a medium body and the carbonation is there but velvety soft. This brew rolls along my tongue like it was meant to be.

Drinkability is way up there with this fantastic blonde ale. I could honestly and easily drink this beer all day long without a care in the world. A beer this easy to drink is a rare find.

Isabella is the best blonde I'll I have ever encountered hands down. It's a true comfort beer for me and seems to fit perfectly as my idea of session ale. This beer actually blew me away which is something I never thought I would say when referring to a blonde ale. It's so simple, pure and clean it's hard not to love. Thanks for the treat Bill! Kern River seems to have a couple gems in their lineup.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.57/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Purchased from HiTime Wines in Costa Mesa CA.

This pours a clear straw gold with about an inch of foam. Head retention and lacing both turned out to good.

The smell has a nice malty nose to it. I pick up some caramel for some sweetness and a bit of earthy hops.

The taste is malt dominated as well. Caramel malt, very light grain, some honey, and a bit of earthy hop semi bitterness and light tartness make this American Blonde quite tasty. The low abv is certainly a plus as this is going down very easy so I won't have to "pay" for it later.

The mouthfeel is on the high end of light, the carbonation is pretty light but fits nicely, and it finishes a little bit bitter, a little bit sweet. Right at the end it becomes slightly watery but no big deal.

Drinkability? The 4.5 says it should be very good. The taste says It *is* very good. Nothing boring about this ABA. I'm just checking my reviews of the style and there aren't many but I find Isabella ranks with the best I've tried.

I'm glad I found out about this brewery as I have a couple more styles of theirs to try. If the others are as well crafted as this one, I'm in for a real treat.(s)

Edit: second bottle tried and I'm even more impressed. Score adjusted accordingly.

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Photo of sirk0rebreg
4.45/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

had this on draft on 2 occasions while i was in kernville, once at "the broken oar" restaurant and once at the brewery itself...

pours a nice golden straw color, with a good 2 findger head...taste and mouthfeel is nice and smooth, with a hint of honey in the only 4.5% this is extremely drinkable and would make an excellent session beer!

cannot wait to get back to kernville for some rafting and good beer!

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Isabella Blonde from Kern River Brewing Company
3.78 out of 5 based on 121 ratings.
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