Ornery Amber | Tommyknocker Brewery

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Ornery AmberOrnery Amber

Brewed by:
Tommyknocker Brewery
Colorado, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-16-2001

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Reviews: 170 | Ratings: 228
Photo of FickleBeast
3.06/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Jan 10 2011 notched in label.

Pours a clear copper color with a finger of fluffy foam that fades away slowly. Aroma is spicy, peppery... almost like a saison.

First sip is... muted. Minimal sweetness, minimal hoppiness, just a minerally flavor that finishes very dry. Finishes with a bit of a cabbage aftertaste. Overall pretty bland - no real flavors shine through.

Well, I'm glad I got this as part of a mix pack and not as a whole 6er. I will say that it looks great, but that's where the positives end. Cross this one off the list - not worth getting again.

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Photo of smcolw
2.41/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Thick, dome head that leaves a solid blanket of lace. The color is a neutral amber. Clear.

The smell reminds me of freshly opened beef stew. Not appealing.

The taste is an improvement from the smell. It's creamy and more malty, but there's a modest level of hop bitterness. Decent body with a light level of carbonation. Leaves a sour taste in the mouth.

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Photo of ForWhatAlesYou
3.53/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Very cloudy amber color. Small foamy head.

S: Sweet citrus hop. Malt. Orange.

T: Orange soda, malt. Apricots with a sourness (good).

M: Medium carbonation & viscosity with a little chewiness.

D: Very. Not too cloying. Sweet but quaffable.

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Photo of boudreaux
2.94/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Got this beer as part of Tommyknocker's "Mother Lode Sampler".

A - Poured a pure clear amber; poor/weak head dissipated to almost nothing, with little lacing to even be mentioned

S - Hello, caramel! Plenty of malt and sweet caramel notes hit my nostrils as soon as I popped the top; only increased once I agitated the beer with a couple of swirls

T - Remained true to my expectations based on the smell; malt and caramel dominate the flavor; light on hops and little/no bitterness; a little sweet for my tastes, but this isn't my favorite beer style anyway

M - Smooth, almost velvety feel; reminded me a bit of Irish Cream, minus the warming affect on the tongue

D - A little sweet for my taste, so probably not one I'd session; however, fairly easy to drink one

Not a bad beer, but definitely not one of my favorites. I'd drink another one if it were free, but I won't be going out of my way to buy this one.

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Photo of allforbetterbeer
3.65/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a tall thin glass. Brewed on date cleverly marked on label. Good job Tommyknocker.

Body is a reddish amber full of little bubble streams capped with a very soft looking half finger of nearly white head. Average lacing. A good looking reg lager.

Smells of soft sticky hops on a strong malt base. Sweet is predominant, followed by pecans, maple, caramel and dried deciduous tree leaves.

Sweet malts run through the entire flavor, and some nice English style withered hops bring in a tad of bitterness, which never overcomes the sweet but adds nice flavors. Hmm... this is tasty for what it is! If it were a little less lagerish I would have tagged this as an English Pale Ale if I were tasting it blind. Surprisingly complex.

The mouthfeel is a little lacking, which is too bad following the nice nose and flavor profile. Just overall a bit watery. Carbonation is right on however. Drinkability is high but not in that highest range reserved for beer that begs you to gulp it down.

Conclusion: The average rating for this beer is below a B-. Why? I am not sure, because this bottle is tasting quite nice for an Amber/Reg Lager. I don't expect anything mind blowing from this style, simply a brew that is easy to drink and tastes nice with an array of simple foods or by itself. This would go well with a cheap pizza or hamburger any day.

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Photo of Krishob
4.32/5  rDev +37.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - The beer has a nice clear & as the name states amber color. Not a lot of head, but it does retinas a small amount across the top. It is not thick by any means but it does tend to cling to the edge of the glass. It looks light and lively.

Smell - The nose on this beer is very nice. There is a toasty, biscuity smell from the malts, but the hops are great. They give a slight spicy/citrusy smell but very clean. It is at a really good balance.

Taste - There is a very slight floral taste from the hops & yeast. The hops are defiantly stronger and are still in balance with the other ingredients. It has a very clean taste all the way from the when it first touches your palate till it exits.

Mouthfeel - The flavor of this beer coats your palate and as you swallow it there is still a wonderful coating fact left on your palate. It is not a thick feel, but a comforting feel since it seems to just give a sense of warmth & comfort. The carbonation from this was spot on, you could still feel the carbonation inside your mouth but did not feel like over powering.

Drinkability - This is a well made beer. Good body that is filling but still light and refreshing. Would definitely have another and would hopefully get to share more with some good friends.

Serving type - Bottle poured into glass

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Photo of andrenaline
3.26/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a hazy amber colour with a bit of a burnt orange hue to it, finger of head, and some fine spotty lacing.

S - Scent is quite mild, but some light caramel malts do break through. Could be a bit stronger.

T - Taste is also on the light side, some metallic caramel malts, slightly bitter finish, with a buttery bready malt that lingers.

M - Nicely carbonated, not too watery and goes down smooth.

D - Overall, a tasty offering, but nothing outstanding. I've had better amber ales, and this one is not overly memorable. That all being said, it's still a worthy ale and I would never turn one down if offered.

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Photo of droomyster
3.06/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear amber with a decently sized head. Aromas are predominately sweet, toffeeish; notes of sugary cereal are also present. Flavors aren't bad, but they're very unbalanced. The hops come nowhere close to balancing the sweet maltiness that dominates the flavors from beginning to end. It wouldn't be so bad if only the malts were more layered and interesting, but they're pretty much one note wonders here.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.43/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This one is glowing with an orange clouded amber body. Off white orange tinted khaki head forms nicely with sporadic hit and miss specks of lacing. Aroma a nice mix of sublte bready malts and a chalky mineral yeast character going on, not much hop zing. Flavor pretty much a weird brew up front sweetness hits with caramelized sugars and fresh bread tones with some mineral slighly metallic edges. Really not a bad flavor just a bit one dimensional, backing cluster hops come out with each sip but nothing other than to balance out the bready sweentess. Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied no a watery beer definitely has some girth to it, no off flavors to be had. Carbonation is smooth and slightly creamy in texture. Drinkability overall was solid. Makes me not as scared of a mixed 12 pack from them as I used to be.

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Photo of jadpsu
3.35/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light amber with a good lookingoff white head that like the other "knocker" brews immediately disappates but does leave some decent side lacing.
Aroma: Just not much, nothing prominent but distant maltiness and orange rind.
Has a hint of sweetness up front but finishes dry witha a slightly bitter after taste.
Mouthfeel is crisp and still creamy, not at all thin with a moderate body.
Decent but forgetable.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
3.13/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a copper color with an beige head and good clarity. Limited, slight lace.

Really gotta seek the scent in this one. Some toasted malt and butter. Odd, general.

Weaker flavors really hurt this. Instant prickliness on the tongue that dilutes the flavor of the beer. They tried to make this one crisp -- so much so that they killed the flavor. Toast. bread, butter, biscuit, and a carbonated tongue finish. Meh.

A bit watery and lighter than needed. Marginally ok.

Overall, I didn't hate this, and it served a secondary purpose of washing down food, but not a real great beer. Just ok, if that.

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Photo of Tballz420
2.87/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pretty hazy copper colored brew, small khaki head topping it off. Some lacing. Big sweet amber malt scent, touch of bitter hops mixed in there. The thinness immediately strikes me. The malt and hop tastes are kind of underwhelming, there are some fruit and yeast tones that are fairly pleasing though. Im not really a major amber guy to begin with, but this one seems like they forgot to put in half of the ingredients.

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Photo of philbe311
2.45/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A - No real head to speak of off of a standard pour, just a fizzy layer of pure white fizzy bubbles that recedes slightly leaving a cloudy lacing... Loads of rapid carbonation race to the top... A murky yellowish brown color...

S - The aroma is completely subdued... Nothing really stands out... Just an odd mix of random aromas... An ever so faint hint of Pear... An ever so faint hint of raspberry... A very thin layer of caramel malt...

T - Bready malts... A touch of caramel... An artificial fruitiness... Eucalyptus...

M - Medium bodied... Thin... Just a very faint bite of carbonation... Slightly dry... Mildly salty...

D - Nothing too impressive going on here... The appearance is average at best and teeters on slightly off putting... The aroma and taste are an incoherent mix of scents and flavors... I hate to be overly harsh on craft offerings, but this one is sub par all the way around and drifted far from style guidelines... This was my first Tommy Knocker offering, and while I won't discriminate in the future, it won't be a brewery that I eagerly seek out...

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Photo of womencantsail
3.36/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to BigDank for sending this bottle in my way. Finally getting around to typing up the review.

A: A pretty nice looking pour on this beer. A clear amber color with a thin layer of white head and some spotty lacing.

S: The smell has a citrusy sweetness and some caramel malt. Not much in the way of contrast as just about all the aromas are sweet.

T: Like the nose, this one is fairly sweet. A honey and toasted, biscuity malt flavor are present up front. The finish has a mild bitterness to it.

M: Nothing terribly exciting in terms of the body, and perhaps a bit watery. The carbonation is a bit on the low side for what I expect from a lager.

D: Definitely a more flavorful incarnation of an American lager, and for that I'm grateful. The flavor and nose are a bit one note, but certainly not bad.

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Photo of tone77
3.41/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a cloudy caramel color with a small head. Smell is mild, some hops. Taste is a good balance of hops and malts, refreshing. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and has decent drinkability. Overall this is a fairly good beer.

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Photo of tjd112
3.85/5  rDev +22.2%
look: 5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation - Poured into Sam Smith's nonic

Appearance - True to form amber, but the big draw is the large 1 finger, well-retained white head. As I type this two minutes later, I can already see that lacing will be good

Smell - A faint maltiness, nothing special at all

Taste - A bit of caramel and honey

Mouthfeel - Medium to light with smooth finish

Drinkability - Hell yes!

Overall - One of my faves in the genre

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Photo of katan
3.42/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint

A - Pours a very dark golden color, with only the lightest hints of amber. Head formation is eggshell white, strong, and well retained. Carbonation is obvious.

S - A very subdued nose - only the lightest hints of yeast and an even lighter hint of malt.

T - Starts off with a light malt sugar sweetness which is accompanied by an adjunct of crystal and other caramel malts. Very clean flavored. Mid-stream is a bit more of the same while the bitterness builds. Finishes with the only noticeable hop profile and a bitter aftertaste.

M - Moderate body, carbonation bite strong, Full bodied beer.

D - Moderate to high drinkability. ABV is manageable while a bit high. The beer is not extremely filling. Flavors are ell integrated.

Nothing special, but a pretty solid offering nonetheless.

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Photo of UnionMade
2.48/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Hazy amber, with flecks of floaty yeast in suspension. A thin head that quickly dies out to a slim collar.
Smells malty and a bit buttery. Not exactly clean or lager-like at all.
Sweet malt flavor, with some band-aid phenols and a bit of a green apple tang. Finishes with an odd watermelon fruitiness. Medium bodied, with mid-level carbonation. On the sweet side overall, with negligible hop presence. Finishes fairly dry. Nothing I'd want again, but I can finish a glass. Inoffensive.

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Photo of CarlP2
3.09/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle into my test mug.

A- Deep amber color with one finger of head that disappears fairly quickly. Slightly hazy, I thought most of these type lagers were clear. A thin layer of head remains on top until the beer is gone.

S- Caramel malt with a tiny bit of a sour smell to it, a slight hint of hops. Nothing special here.

T- Tastes like it smells, no hops taste though. There is a very slight citrus taste that appears as the beer warms up.

M- Light to medium carbonation, kind of weak and watery.

D- I wouldn't go out of my way to drink it again, but I certainly wouldn't turn it down. It goes down very smooth, I could drink several of them if that's what I had available.

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Photo of mazingblue
3.66/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Beer smell is nothing special. As a matter of fact, I haven't been sick all year and I thought my nose was plugged. I could hardly smell any of the beers natural aromas. Taste of the beer is alright. Aftertaste of the beer is good, though. Not one of my favorite Ambers, but I would drink it again if someone bought it for me. Tommyknocker fell off on this one...Other products are better.

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Photo of bonsreeb85
2.47/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A- opaque ruby red w/ thin head

S - smells decent, caramel malts, slight biscuity yeast, and faint almost non-existent hops

T - what a let down, basically a way weaker and watered down version of what i smelled, again, not a bad flavor, just not very much of it

MF - thin, watered down... bad

D - easy to pound them back if you are just looking for fuel to get hammered, and not for flavor.

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Photo of KarlHungus
3.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

This beer pours a hazy light amber color. The head is a half inch in height, and recedes quickly into minimal lacing. The aroma is very faint. There are some clean malty caramel notes with no hop presence whatsoever. The taste is has more to it than the aroma. There are toffee and caramel notes. The mouthfeel is a medium bodied with appropriate carbonation, and a velvety texture. Overall, this is a weak example of an amber lager. I can't see myself drinking this again.

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Photo of Natural510
3.5/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From the Mother Lode Sampler 12 pack.

Pours a predictable pale amber-crimson color, with a half-inch of fluffy white head which quickly dissipates into a thin ring of lace on the sides of the glass.
Not heavily scented, but what is there is honey-sweet & slightly floral.
Very malty at the forefront; malts which are sweet and only subtley biscuit-like (unlike many ambers which go heavy on the toasted/biscuit quality). Caramel flavor with a tart, yeasty finish and light hop twang.
Creamy, crisp and smooth; feels pretty good in the mouth.
Not exceptional, but a nice mid-road red lager which goes down easy and has an inviting malt quality not too overloaded with hops.

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Photo of therica
2.68/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A= slightly cloudy orange-amber, almost no head when poured slowly, some lacing.

S= hardly any scent but if you search hard enough you can find some hints of malt and light citrus florals. Slightly more evidence of malts as it warms.

T= lackluster, nothing redeeming that impresses me. Slightly flat stale hops taste, not much in the way of hops bitters but a slight undertone of some residual biting bitterness in the finish. A little citrus and sweetness, basically weak in all regards. Slightly more evidence of malts as it warms, not that they're enough to get excited about.

M= not bad, although not very great. Just some hints of light citrus rind bitterness and light sweetness.

D= if you don't care what beer you're drinking, you could probably drink a good few of these if you don't pay attention to it.

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Photo of Tone
3.97/5  rDev +26%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly hazy, dark golden color. 1/4 inch head of an off-white color. Decent retention and decent lacing. Smells of yeast cleanliness, slight hops, some fruity aromas, and some sweet malt. Fits the style of an American Amber / Red Lager. Mouth feel is very smooth and slightly thick with an average carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt up front, some earthy malt comes through as well, a good hop background, some pine notes come through faintly, and a slight dryness is present in the finish. Overall, a pretty decent beer with a good blend of flavors; the appearance is lacking, though. Worth a try and definitely deserves a better rep than it has received so far.

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Ornery Amber from Tommyknocker Brewery
3.15 out of 5 based on 228 ratings.
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