Lager
Upper Canada Brewing Company

LagerLager
Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
Style:
Pilsner - German
Ranked #599
ABV:
5%
Score:
79
Ranked #45,592
Avg:
3.45 | pDev: 13.62%
Reviews:
61
Ratings:
93
From:
Upper Canada Brewing Company
 
Ontario, Canada
Avail:
Year-round
Wants
  5
Gots
  13
SCORE
79
Okay
LagerLager
Notes: The most popular of Upper Canada brews, this German style lager combines imported hops and yeast, spring water and malted barley for an exceptionally balanced, honey coloured lager.
View: Beers
Reviews: 61 | Ratings: 93 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of carusca
carusca from Canada

1.43/5  rDev -58.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.25

This used to be a good German (I worked in Bavaria for a number of years and drank many of the beers) style beer. Something changed after Sleeman bought it and I stopped drinking it. I think it had to do with the hops. I bought a case of Upper Canada lager recently and it still has an unpleasant after taste that is related to the hops. No self respecting German brewery would use hops like that, If they did, they would be out of business.

Oct 10, 2017
Photo of Orignal65
Orignal65 from Canada

3.94/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

By far the best value at the Beer Store. Priced at 34$ for a two-four, this is a 'budget' beer with flavour. And while it doesn't compare to the Upper Canada Lager of the late 1990s (before being purchased by Sleeman), it is better than the vast majority of macro brews out there.

Oct 08, 2017
Photo of Samuel_Merryweather
Samuel_Merryweather from Canada

3.59/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Look: nice golden honey colour. Nice lacy foam but it dissipates in seconds. A little residual carbonation.

Scent: a bit grassy. A hint of orange peel? Honeyish maltish scent? Very lil hops obviously.

Taste: Bit more ale like than I expected. Honey flavours?

Feel: coats the tastebuds but not clingy. Refreshing without being watery.

Solid cheap beer.

Sep 06, 2015
Photo of EvanHarper
EvanHarper from Canada

3.36/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

355 mL bottle into pint glass, no decipherable date code.

Medium straw color with a very short-lived head. Fairly fizzy.

Light to moderate aroma, mostly cereal grain and sulfur with faint corny DMS and the barest hint of hops.

Taste is slightly towards the bitter side, with a bit of sulfur and mineral notes and a fair amount of sweetness that is masked at first but comes out after multiple sips. Peppery hops linger on the palate.

Light mouthfeel, moderate carbonation. Slightly "sticky."

A good, basic pilsner. Much like their dark ale, it's unpretentious, more or less to-style, and reccomendable as much for the very low price as for the quality. Heads and tails above the regrettable alternatives in its price range, and preferable in my opinion to most non-craft "premium" lagers, which cost at least 50% more in Ontario.

May 09, 2014
Photo of mick303
mick303 from Canada

3.49/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A full light golden colour with a good initial head, some light lacing and plenty of carbonation. Smell is light, with grassy, malt, and slight nutty notes. Taste has a fuller malt body than mass lagers, with a bit of a caramel note, bready, light citrus edge and some mineralality. Not amazingly exciting or an outstanding lager, but it did exceed by (admittedly low) expectations. A rather balanced body with a smooth carbonation, if the flavour was ramped up a bit this could be a regular buy.

Feb 04, 2014
Photo of atr2605
atr2605 from New York

3.48/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A-pours a clear yellow straw color with a white head with average retention
S-hint of malt and spiciness
T-slightly sweet and spicy, nice bit of malt in the finish
M-medium-light bodied but very smooth.
O-really solid beer and caught me by surprise. Most canadian beers I have had don't really hit the styles they shoot for, well done and very drinkable

Apr 11, 2013
Photo of Noxious26
Noxious26 from Canada

3.88/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

341ml brown bottle with twist off cap poured in a pilsener glass. Purchased from an LCBO in Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario.

Golden yellow and clear. Bright white head is 1/2 inch on the pour and recedes to a thin cap. Lots of lines of lacing all along the edges.

Smells a little like a German lager with noble hops with a little sweet grains and malt in the background.

Taste echos the aroma. Reminds me of a euro lager leaning towards a german pilsener. Noble hops, crisp and clean. Grains and light malt.

Light bodied with steady, but not too heavy, carbonation.

I rather enjoyed this. Paired well with the Mad Dog IPA I chose as my other beer. Alternate the two to get a nice effect of citrus hop blast then crisp clean lager.

Nov 25, 2012
Photo of thehyperduck
thehyperduck from Canada

3.56/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

341 mL bottle from the LCBO; bottled May 2012. Another Guelph brewery I've never heard of, despite having lived there for years - I should be ashamed.

Pours a bright golden-yellow colour, topped with nearly two fingers of frothy, soapy white head. It fizzles away rather quickly, but an even cap and some webby lacing are left in its wake. Decent aroma, but nothing complex - typical pale lager smells. Mostly grainy, with some light honey sweetness and grassy hop notes.

Despite my leniency when reviewing pale lagers, I am very rarely genuinely impressed with the style - which is why this one really surprised me. It's a great lager - straightforward to be sure, but I can't really ask for much more from this type of brew. There is not a single hint of adjunct here - nothing but tasty, bready malt flavours with some light hay-like hop bitterness. Usually I find these pale lagers to lean on the sweet side, but this one is nicely balanced, and much more quaffable for it. Light-bodied and watery, with a very smooth mouthfeel; quite drinkable and refreshing. A true old-school Canadian session lager.

[Updated Jan 23 2016]

Another twist-off bottle from a 24. This one's category was changed to a German Pils in the ~4 years since I last touched this review, and the price has also gone up slightly (making this more of a pseudo-value lager than a true one à la Laker or Old Milwaukee). I'd still be willing to argue that Upper Canada Lager is better than 95% of the other macro lagers, and it is certainly better value than the premium brands like Canadian or MGD. But as a pilsener, it's just nothing more than average. If that's your bag, stick with the imports - but if you just want a classic-style "Canadian lager", then this case should prove better value than most of the competitors.

Final Grade: 3.56, a B.

Jun 07, 2012
Photo of JohnnyBarman
JohnnyBarman from Canada

3.77/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Single bottle from a six-pack picked up at the LCBO. I'm on a mission to find the Great Summer Lager - at under 9 bucks a sixer, will this one fit the bill?

Poured into a nonic. Golden, clear, lager-like in every sense of my made-up word. Leaves a decent sized head of foam that dissolves into a thin but persistent head.

Nose had some sweet malt to it, usual malt suspects.

Huh. An inexpensive lager with some flavour to it. This is really something. Opens with sweet bready malt, and finishes with decent hop bitterness. Crisp and refreshing. Thin bodied, good carbonation.

My long search is over. This brew has some flavor, it's not pricey, and tastes great on the patio. If you're looking for a cheap summer brew, look no further.

May 19, 2012
Photo of CharlyNovember
CharlyNovember from Canada

3.97/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a very slightly hazy golden yellow, with a nice bubbly head, decent retention with little lacing.

S: Sweet and malty, a hint of floral hops.

T: Less sweet than it smells, which is good thing. Fairly malt heavy taste, which lingers for a delicious finish. More bitter than your average lager but not too much so, has just the right amount of bitterness.

M: Medium-heavy carbonation, soft and refreshing. Very enjoyable.

O: An excellent Canadian lager, will definitely be buying this again.

For the price this is has got to be one of the best values at the Beer Store, and I can confidently say that this is by far the best beer in it's price range, in my opinion. Definitely worth a try, especially if you're on a budget! Cheers!

Nov 07, 2011
Photo of RyanBelle
RyanBelle from Canada

4/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Small Pilsner Glass

A remarkable beer by a remarkable brewer. I hear Sleeman produces this and they are fantastic Guelph, Ontario brewery whose mass production beers easily compete with craft brews from Ontario. This beer is no exception and gets great marks across the board...now to review...

T - Malty, Earthy, Full and Robust for the style. Fizzy and very lively carbonation (I like!)

M - Fizzy and balanced. Great.

A - Pure straw yellow with a nice head and good lace rentention in the glass.

S - It has this full earthy wheat characteristic about it that works great for it and is slightly indicative of the taste of this brew.

Overall, this is a must try Ontario, Canada beer!!

Apr 20, 2011
Photo of Mit
Mit from Canada

3.43/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a Pours a clear golden colour that has a relatively long lasting head.

s-smells chiefly of malts some bready notes and some hoppy bitterness.

t-Nice and flavourful. Malts balanced against the hops but nothing over bearing.

m-average for the the alc percentage.

o-Good beer overall.

Apr 19, 2011
Photo of SebD
SebD from Canada

3.95/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: : It has a nice dark gold colour to it. It has a nice white head that dies down fast and has lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitly give out hints of malts with a bit of hops.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a nice malt character to it with the hops balancing it out. I also sense small citrucy notes.

Mouthfeel: It has a medium carbonation with a very nice balance of malts and hops giving it a nice sweetness.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied with good flavours and aromas. It's an overall great Lager.

Feb 11, 2011
Photo of grac1970
grac1970 from Canada

3.51/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I purchased this beer in anticipation of guests dropping by. I hope they enjoy it as a nice change from our usual as much as I did.

A = dark golden yellow in colour. Not much of a head when poured into a pint glass from the bottle. Carb bubbles were plentiful. Despite the rich colour for some reason the beer seemed to look "watery" in the glass - probably due to the lack of head which made it look flat early on.

S = not much there, a bit of a hopsy smell.

T = a bit of citrus; hopsy; I detected a taste that reminded me of a somewhat tart apple; otherwise not a very overwhelming taste - quite nice

M = not watery despite initial appearance; the carbonation became apparent in the mouth; a bit of a tart/dryness left in the mouth with a slight bitterness to it

D = this went down very smooth and easy; I quite liked it.

Sep 23, 2010
Photo of BBP
BBP from Canada

3.46/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- Golden yellow, decent head. Average carbo.

S- Pretty much all bready malts. Couldn't make out much more.

T- Bready malts, subtle smooth hops. A little bit of citrus as well.

M- Smooth with a mid/high carbonation feel.

D- Pretty quenching. Good balance as well.

Sep 08, 2010
Photo of Travlr
Travlr from District of Columbia

2.53/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Draught in Toronto.
A: Bright yellow with a thin white head, and little lacing.
S: Aroma of malt and light citrus.
T: Taste of malt, black pepper and a hint of lemon. Not complex.
M: Weak body.
D: Unimpressive overall, and average lager that is pretty forgettable.

Dec 08, 2009
Photo of biboergosum
biboergosum from Canada

3.5/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a clear pale golden hue, with two fingers of white soapy head, which leaves a small ring of head as it dissipates. It smells of light biscuit malt, and slightly skunky green hops. The taste is somewhat acrid white grain, and grassy, weedy hops. The carbonation is moderate, the body mildly creamy and decently weighted, and it finishes dry and grainy.

An overall decent and drinkable lager, a definite step up from the native macros of Ontari-ari-ari-o...

Aug 15, 2009
Photo of webmanspidey
webmanspidey from Michigan

3.48/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I won this in a bet with a colleague when the Red Wings won the Stanley Cup last year. It's been in my fridge since.

Bottle poured into a pint glass.. fizzy pale yellow with tan head.. emphasis on the fizzy.

Smell is somewhat skunky and sour.

Taste is sweet, caramel malts. Not really hoppy but very nice malt presence for something I was expecting to be watered down and boring. Fizzy mouthfeel but pretty thick for a pale lager like this. Nothing to complain about as far as drinkability.

This is a beer I had lying around without drinking due to lack of excitement, but it turned out to be a pleasant surprise. This is a pretty decent pale lager.

May 02, 2009
Photo of bobsy
bobsy from Canada

3.44/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I poured it into something approximating a kolsch glass, and my, does it look like a beauty. Very classical lager appearance - a clear light gold liquid topped with a solid white head. Great retention and some nice lace. Subdued grainy malt aroma, but clean. Bready flavour, lots of pale malts and some honey. Slight citric bitterness and sourness in the finish. Medium-light mouthfeel and spritzy carbonation. Aye... its not a bad beer for a hot day. Too bad its still March!

Mar 25, 2009
Photo of steeler
steeler from Canada

3.88/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this one in a twelve pack, for a celebration for the conclusion of exams! Anyway, pours out a nice deep yellow color, looks real inviting. The smell was not to bad i docked it .5 because it had an odd cardboard smell to it, but nice floral hops and malt. Smells pretty good. THis is one tasty lager, nice and smooth with a nice hoppy bitter finish. Quite satisfied. Mouthfeel was nice and full, smooth and carbonated. Nice. High drinkability in this one, when its nice and cold it really does go down good. I really enjoyed this one! Highly recommended! Good Job Sleeman!

Dec 13, 2008
Photo of matt7215
matt7215 from Canada

3.83/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

341 ml bottle from TBS

pours golden with a average white head and nice lacings.

aroma are of pale lager malts and minimal floral hops.

flaours are clean and crisp with malts and hops playing off each other in order to make a good pale lager.

very drinkable and one of the better macro pale lager out there IMO.

id drink this anytime.

Dec 03, 2008
Photo of changeup45
changeup45 from Florida

3.08/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pretty good lager but nothing spectacular. Pours a golden color, some head but that fizzles away pretty quickly. Average aroma for a lager, there's not much there. This is pretty smooth and flavorful (for a lager), a little sweet and malty and a semi-sour finish. Aftertaste is pretty good.

Aug 24, 2008
Photo of kinger
kinger from Ohio

3.03/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Surprise find at my local grocery store, last twelve pack of bottles on the shelf and at a price I couldn't refuse. Overall this is a decent lager slightly different than the more popular Canadian Lagers. The beer poured a dark golden color with a thick head that ultimately dwindled down. The aroma was crisp and fresh, malty with a slight grainy chaser. The mouthfeel is thin but this can be expected in your standard lager. The flavor is a pleasant surprise. Slightly malty with a very faint hint of sweet grain adjuncts. There is a small bittering finish that is also crisp to the palate. Nothing special but a nice and solid choice among many more popular brands.

Jul 31, 2008
Photo of thartman
thartman from Pennsylvania

2.58/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

The appearance has a medium golden hue with zero head. This beer had a grainy-malty smell and had a corny-grainy-biscuity flavor, if that makes any sense. The beer has a medium body, and is quite filling

Overall, if you like traditional Canadian Beer, this is definitely worth a try.

Oct 23, 2007
Photo of MTNboy
MTNboy from Germany

3.03/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

straw hue. A small and rough head with very little lace and not much for bubbles either.

Smell- There was definitely a grain smell to this beer that was very pleasant and long lasting. A touch of hops bouquet.

Taste- Balanced for the most part but bland . There is a nice grain flavored finish.

Mouthfeel- Average.

Drinkability- An average beer but easy to drink.

Sep 05, 2007
Lager from Upper Canada Brewing Company
Beer rating: 79 out of 100 with 93 ratings