Amber Waves Ale | Capitol City Brewing

21 Ratings
no score
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Brewed by:
Capitol City Brewing
District of Columbia, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-08-2005

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 21 |  Reviews: 16
Reviews by AndyAvalanche:
Photo of AndyAvalanche
4/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got it on tap at Capitol City Brewing, got a sampler then got this one by itself. Had a small head with only a little bit of lacing and head. Poured a dark reddish sort of dirty-blond color. It wasn't quite as clear as I expected. It smelled good, the hops stood out. I was very pleasantly surprised at the taste, surprisingly hoppy, in a good way. Mouthfeel was good and it was very drinkable. We got wings and burger, it went excellent with them. A very good Amber Ale in my opinion.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Calico
3.93/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a glorious light ruby color. Good carbonation; tan head lingers for a while.

A full-bodied American amber ale. Appropriately malty and well-balanced with the hops.

There was an estery flavor and aroma I couldn't place. A little caramely, a little fruity. Flowery hop finish.

This is a pleasant beer, and quite drinkable.

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Photo of asabreed
3.5/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Into the pint glass.

Appearance: Slightly red, slightly brown, with not much head retention or lace retention. But it's so filled to the top that it's not really allowed to happen.

Smell: A good balance between malt and hops, and a slight huskiness that combines them both into something fairly aromatic.

Taste: More hops than I wanted, but there's enough malt there to quell the bitterness, and enough hops to achieve some semblance of harmony between the two. Slight huskiness, but it's a bit overshadowed by thew hops.

Mouthfeel: Crisp and moderately carbonation with a slight slickness.

Drinkability: I imagine this would go fairly well with a mean and / or as a session beer. As far as complexity it's nothing great, but it's certainly drinkable. Not as good as the brewery says it is, but it's worth trying a glass if you're there.

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Photo of nickd717
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer is obnoxiously listed about 3 or 4 separate times on BA. Someone's got to clean that up.

On tap at Capitol City Brewing Co. First DC beer!

Clear medium amber color with a medium white head.

Aroma is slightly hoppy with citrusy and earthy notes as well as caramel malt.

Flavor is fairly sweet and malty - caramel malt is really showcased here - along with some light tropical fruit and citrus/earthy hops.

Body is fairly full for the style and mouthfeel is very smooth.

Drinkability is high. Nice balance overall, well-done for the style and I can see why this won GABF gold.

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Photo of imbibehour
3.63/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured on tap at the 1100 New York Avenue location, into a shaker pint glass.

Poured with virtually no head, but one of creamy off white bubbles. Head manages to maintain a puck pretty much all through drinking except to the very end. Minimal lacing on the drink while consuming, and giving a cloudy dark amber mostly brown body. Some visible carbonation from the bottom.

Muted nose. Some small malt senses and perhaps a hint of butter (diacetyl maybe?). Not much on this.

Taste is a bit better, slight simple hops at first and small malt chewyness. A bread finish comes up a little bit after the first swallow, but then a bitterness comes up very slowly afterwards. Fairly tolerable, not too wet either. Fairly solid.

An acceptable drinkable beer offered here that is served year round.

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Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.68/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This beer came a crystal clear orange amber with an irregular off-white head that left a little lace.

Smells of orange zest, watermelon and strawberries and little grapefruit rind. This seemed just a little bit on the thin side, but still quite tasty.

Tasted of the aforementioned hop characters blended into a smooth ruby red grapefruit with a little rye bread crust. The way the flavors were effortlessly blended into one another was marvelous. I think my rating more reflects how much I appreciated this one’s originality or maybe that it was exactly what I was in the mood for.

The mouthfeel was light to medium bodied with a super clean silky feel to it with only a light and easy carbonation.

Hell yeah! This is one of the most enjoyable beers I’ve had in a long time.

 788 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
3.03/5  rDev -19%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reviewed from notes. On tap at the DC location.

Served in a pint glass. Pours amber with a slight note of citrus and light floral hops with some toast and bread. Taste is confined mostly to some light bread. Slight hops but this is fairly plain. Defer body and carbonation. Nothing wrong with this but it is just a fairly average amber ale.

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Photo of hopsaplenty
3.65/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The pint glass arrived filled with a burnt orange skin beer topped with a big fluffy white head of mixed sized bubbles. There was a great deal of lacing as the glass was emptied. The smell is extremely hoppy and floral with minimal sweetness. The taste is also big and hoppy, nice and juicy with a biscuity malt middle and a crisp, biting hop finish, almost salty. Medium body, with a nice and smooth mouthfeel, the hops pinch the tongue. Easily drinkable, perhaps a tad over hopped for an amber ale, but I won't complain.

 522 characters

Photo of nmann08
4/5  rDev +7%

Photo of dugly2ugly
3/5  rDev -19.8%

Photo of claytri
3.65/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured a translucent amber with a white head that drew down to a trace. The aroma was a good mix of malt and hops. The taste had malt on the front with even some fruity sweetness, but this was eventually overwhelmed by a strong hoppy aftertaste. The feel was medium light and wet to drying at the end. Decent but it could use less hops.

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Photo of tgbljb
3.97/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presented as a medium amber colored beer with whitwe puffy head. Smell is dominated by hops and is very pleasant. Taste follows through with a strong hoppiness with very little malt to be found. Nice dry finish is a good ending to this beer. Enjoyable brew.

 257 characters

Photo of GFSchwab
3.9/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

At first look it was avery average amber ale. However, look were definitley deceiving for this beer.

The beer meets the palate with a blast of hop bitterness with rich floral notes cascading over to a resiny, piney finnish, with the hops mixing beautifuly with the roasty character ofo the dark crystal malts used in this brew. Excellent mouthfeel and drinkability further imporove on this beers otherwise unsuspecting appearance.

 431 characters

Photo of HarmonMW
3.75/5  rDev +0.3%

Photo of ColSanders123
4/5  rDev +7%

Photo of nrbw23
3.72/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Pours a pretty clear reddish brown with an off white head that left a bit of lacing.

S- Pretty nice balance between the hops and malts. Also some fruit in there as well.

T- More hops here than I expected and I'm not complaining at all. Some caramal malts pop up in the back.

M- Medium in body and good carbonation.

D- Easy to drink but nothing stellar at the same time.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.48/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Beer is amber and clear with a thin white head of small bubbles that leaves some lacing on the glass. Carbonation moderate to high.

Aroma is mildly hoppy and somewhat malty, smells fine.

Beer is medium bodied and has a kind of tart bitterness at the back. The lead off is malt sweetness and the finish is clean and bitter. The finish is not as dry as I expected which is a good thing.

Overall it was nothing too special, just your average American amber, nothing interesting or unexpected, craft for the tourist masses of DC.

 528 characters

Photo of joe1510
3.62/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Capital, DC

Capital's Amber Waves shows off the standard amber body of the style with cinnamon highlights when held to the brightly lit windows. A fingers worth of head sat atop the brew when it was brought to the bar and didn't have much stick-to-itiveness. The head receded fairly quickly but the swirling left behind some nice looking spotty lacing.

A Big caramel maltiness gets things moving along at a good clip with a side of toffee to add some depth. A nice, although modest, hop profile sits atop the maltiness with a candied citrus quality in the form of orange peel and light, sugared grapefruit. Amber Waves smells like a nicely hopped amber which is just how I like them.

The flavor has the exact components as the aroma. The caramel and toffee lay it down but seem a bit muddled. A sugary citric hop profile adds the depth of flavor needed with candied orange peel and sugared grapefruit adding a touch of bitterness. My only mild complaint about this brew is the muddled maltiness. If they were a touch cleaner this beer would be much more enjoyable.

The body is right down the middle of the spectrum when it comes to weight with a moderate carbonation. The mouthfeel fits the beer but is fairly boring for whatever reason. A mild bitterness sticks to the tongue after each drink.

I could easily put away a few of these in a sitting but I didn't while there and don't think I would if I go again. Amber Waves just isn't interesting enough to keep going back to.

This was a decent, even enjoyable, amber ale but it was like so many others on the market it just didn't catch my attention.

 1,617 characters

Photo of Boto
3.38/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Draught in Baltimore location: This one pours a clear copper color with minimal head on it. There was a decent enough hop nose to it, but not overdone. The taste was fairly well balanced. Some hop bite coming through, with a decent enough malt body behind it. Drinkable.

 270 characters

Photo of t0rin0
4/5  rDev +7%

Photo of Pencible
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

I don't exactly remember how this looked, but I think it was pretty standard for a red ale. It had a malty scent, and a flavor to match. It had a smooth hops aftertaste that made it very easy to drink. It was kind of watery for my preference, but still had a decent texture. Overall it was pretty good.

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Amber Waves Ale from Capitol City Brewing
3.74 out of 5 based on 21 ratings.
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