Knockout Blonde
Lawson's Finest Liquids

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Style:
American Blonde Ale
Ranked #12
ABV:
5%
Score:
89
Ranked #7,899
Avg:
3.99 | pDev: 9.27%
Reviews:
63
Ratings:
251
From:
Lawson's Finest Liquids
 
Vermont, United States
Avail:
Rotating
Wants
  47
Gots
  15
SCORE
89
Very Good
Notes: Our blonde ale packs a zippy punch of hop aroma! This brew features a flavorful blend of North American malts and is fully loaded with Cascade and Centennial hops.
Reviews: 63 | Ratings: 251 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.36/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Canned on 7/9/19
Opened several times while on vacation in late July, camping/hiking VT.
Reviewed on 8/4/19

What do you think of when you think "blonde ale from Lawson's"? Perhaps imagining the best ever version...? Well, you might be right in that assumption.

Clear golden liquid, looking like a fine Czech pilsner. White foamy head, total coverage, creamy lacing, well retained.

The nose has a bunch of sweet and tangy fruit scented hops just bursting out. Strawberry rhubarb pie, mint leaves, freshly cut grass, pineapple and light Citrus. That's pretty righteous for a Blonde ale. Not to mention a light golden grainy malt thing way down deep.

The herbal, spicy, crispy malty bite at first is worth "writing home about". Now, some of the herbs n' spice effect is from the Centennial hops for sure, but overall there is this tremendous amount of earthy>grains>fruity hop complexity that simply makes this the most interesting Blonde ale I've ever had.

Mouthfeel... Let's talk MF! Light and crazy crisp bite, malt rides through with an ever so slick quickness. Effervescent finish

So light, so complex. Endless session??!

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

Drinking out of a snifter at the brewery.
Bright clear orange.
Thin filmy head.
Faint fruit fragrance.
Refreshing on a hot summer afternoon.
Nice balance between malt and hops.

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Photo of leantom
4.23/5  rDev +6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Very hoppy yet mellow. I enjoyed it. Here goes:

A: Orange-gold. Perfectly clear with tons of bubbles - very effervescent. Head is also beautiful - it's very pillowy and leaves a ton of lacing.

S: Quite mild - but not in an exactly good way. Can definitely detect soapy, dishwasher-y lemon. Also fairly grassy. Otherwise not much going on.

T: More robust. Very lemony and grassy - however, there's also a lot more grapefruit and pine, especially at the back of the palate. Cascade shines forth in this one.

F: Excellent.

O: Very well-made. Somewhat concerned by the smell, but the flavor has everything one'd want in a NE beer.

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Photo of superspak
4.03/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16 ounce can into pint glass, canned on 10/7/2018. Pours lightly hazy/cloudy medium golden yellow color with a 1-2 finger dense and rocky off white head with fantastic retention, that reduces to a nice cap that lingers. Nice spotty foamy lacing clings on the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation. Fantastic appearance. Aromas of big grapefruit, tangerine, lemon, peach, pineapple, melon, citrus peel/rind, wood, peppercorn, pine, wheat, cracker, white bread, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness. Damn nice aromas with great balance and complexity of citrus/fruity/earthy hops and moderate pale/wheat malt notes; with great strength. Taste of big grapefruit, tangerine, lemon, peach, pineapple, melon, citrus peel/rind, wood, peppercorn, pine, wheat, cracker, white bread, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness. Moderate pine, citrus peel/rind, herbal, floral, woody, grassy, peppery bitterness on the finish. Lingering notes of grapefruit, tangerine, lemon, peach, pineapple, melon, citrus peel/rind, wood, peppercorn, pine, wheat, cracker, white bread, and herbal/floral/grassy earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Great complexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/fruity/earthy hops and moderate pale/wheat malt flavors; with a nice malt/bitterness balance, and minimal lingering hop astringency after the finish. Moderate increasing dryness from lingering bitterness and carbonation. Medium-plus carbonation and light-medium body; with a very smooth, moderately bready/grainy, sticky/resinous/rindy, and fairly crisp balanced mouthfeel that is great. Zero warming alcohol as expected of 5%. Overall this is an excellent hoppy American blonde ale. All around great omplexity, robustness, and balance of citrus/fruity/earthy hops and moderate pale/wheat malt flavors; very smooth and fairly crisp/refreshing to drink with the moderately bitter/resinous/drying finish; not too aggressive. Very flavorful and not watery for the ABV. Awesome Centennial/Cascade profile. Very vibrant, dank, and earthy hop complexity; with a solid pale/wheat malt backbone. Zero residual sweetness from crisp resin dryness. A very enjoyable offering, and well made style example. A lot more bitter/hoppy than expected, but no complaints otherwise.

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Photo of daudelin2000
3.79/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear, golden color with a fairly small white head. Decent amount of bubbles are visible.

Aroma is spicy and floral with a touch of sweet citrus. Malt aroma is reminiscent of a pilsner.

Taste is very clean and crisp with some light citrus and spice. A decent amount of bitterness in the finish. Probably more than usual for this style and might detract from the overall enjoyment of the beer.

Mouthfeel is very light as you would expect. Very dry as well. This would be a total crusher if not for the high bitterness.

Overall, I enjoyed this beer. It tows the line of Blonde Ale and Session IPA. It has the malt profile of a Blonde, but the bitterness of a Session IPA. Not my favorite from Lawson's, but a solid beer nonetheless.

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

A-Pours a golden color with a slight head and lacing
A-Aroma has hoppy hints
T-The taste follows the nose with a nice hoppy flavor
M-A light bodied moderately carbonated beer
O- A nice Blonde ale

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Photo of ScaryEd
2.63/5  rDev -34.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Not feeling the new version of this. Had it on tap at the new brewery and it's basically a pale ale with little depth or balance.

Very dry and bitter. Not much else going on.

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Photo of Hyptochrons
3.96/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

grainy, sweet, and biscuit malts, some mellow grassy hop character and touch of lemon and citrus peel. overall pretty subdued overall but a decent easy drinker, profile does become slightly tropical as it warms. decent stuff.

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
4.16/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a Lawson's becher pint glass (because it is a blonde ale and I'm treating it as one).
The appearance was a semi-thick hazy burnt blonde to murky orange color with a thick finger and a half's worth of white foamy head that softly dissipated to leave some clingy foamy lace.
The aroma had a fantastic blend of sweet to bitter pine up front playing with an underscore of citrus rind trying to pull in a little bit of bitter pulp. Malts play nicely. Some oily to grassy hop tones are ever so slight underneath.
The flavor leaned into the bitterness initially and ended up pulling in a nice sweetness from a blend of the citrusy to piney hops playing nicely with the malts. Nice smooth aftertaste of the citrus and piney hops, with that Sean Lawson-esque oily imparting that I expect from his bottled beers.
The mouthfeel was about medium bodied with a fair sessionability about it. Carbonation felt on par. ABV says 5% on the bottle, so I'm not exactly sure if he changed up the recipe recently, still, I'll leave this here until I find further evidence that this is a newer beer. And yes, the ABV does feel at least between the 5% to possibuly 6.10%.
Overall, as a blonde ale by Sean Lawson, this is one I can expect by him, perhaps a bit different than one of it's normal style showcasing a bit more hops. I'm thinking IPA fans might like this one a lot.

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Photo of Ri0
3.85/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured 22oz bottle into snifter. Clear and yellow with a soft white 2 finger head and spotty lacing on my glass. Aroma is very green and leafy with some light bready malt and yeast. Flavor is hoppy with a green taste (almost like a wet hopped beer) with some leafiness and grassiness. The malts are light and there is a touch of yeast to round it off. Very light feel and lower ABV that makes it ideal for warm weather. Well hopped and flavorful.

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Photo of IvoryFoxhole
4.13/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle purchased at Lawson's 8th Anniversary Sale and poured into Lawson's tulip glass.

L: 2F+ head with decent retention, lots of lacing and a good ring/cap. Beer is a very hazy copper.

S: Light malts, yeastiness, wheat. Light citrus and pine on finish.

T: Light wheat and malt up front, light grapefruit and pine. Yeasty. Crisp and bitter finish (hello, Centennial hops)

F: Light to medium body, medium carbonation, which helps with crisp finish and doesn't prolong bitterness. The bitterness and carbonation keep you from pounding this one quickly. Well constructed.

O: Not my favorite style, but as good as a rendition of it as I have tried. Always worth trying new things.

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Photo of jhavs
4.42/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

On tap, 12oz. pour. Then later at the Lawson's Anniversary event.

Look: Clean straw color, pure white head, foamy, settles to ring around the glass. Lots of stick lacing.

Smell: Get the crisp citrus hops up front, lemon zest, and a bit of pine. A bid of breadiness.

Taste: A nice smooth full flavored brew. Full of crisp hoppy flavor with a balancing sweet malt backbone. Touch of honey, touch of yeasty dough.

Feel: Moderate level of carbonation, medium body, smooth and easy to drink.

Overall: A tasty light brew, great flavor full flavor for the ABV.

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Photo of Ericness
3.75/5  rDev -6%

Another part of a trade. Again, many thanks.

Appearance: Light golden body with a lacy white head.

Smell: Fantastic! First whiff is like fresh hops with a sweetness and something else I can't quite put my finger on.

Taste: Light, and hoppy. As it warms I get kind of an unbalanced bitterness that is a bit disappointing after that first smell. There's also a cracker almost yeasty taste going on.

Mouth Feel: Light body with pleasant bubbles.

Overall: A satisfying beer but goes slightly wrong for me somewhere, probably in that slight bitterness unbalance I picked up. I don't think the carb helped that so much later on in the beer but a decent bottle nonetheless.

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Photo of dar482
4/5  rDev +0.3%

The beer comes in a darker blonde straw yellow.

The aroma is of classic American hops. Orange, lemon zest, floral, fruity honey sweetness.

The flavor follows of that hint of honey sweetness, then lots of grapefruit peel and pith throughout. A medium plus bitterness of grapefruit, floral, and grassy and pine.

A crackery malt profile makes this beer slightly different from a classic American pale ale, which this very much tastes like (SN Pale Ale, Bear Republic Grand Am).

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Photo of BoldRulerVT
4.13/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured from the 22oz bottle into a snifter.
Pours a nice medium straw color with one finger of head.
Smells nice, good hop aromas, light breadiness.
Tastes very nice, full flavor with nice hop bitterness in the finish.
Mouthfeel was really nice as well, very drinkable.
Overall, this is a flavorful beer and the 2014 edition is only 5.0 ABV. It tasted stronger than that which I enjoyed.

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Photo of Hendry
4.59/5  rDev +15%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy golden yellow pour,half finger of bone white head,spotty lacing in the tulip.

Orange zest and a whiff of banana bread, slightly herbal/piney also. Notable difference as it warms up, as if it blossoms.

Taste pretty closely mirrors the warmed up aroma.There is a solid orange peel zing that shines and becomes brighter upon warming as well as an herbal bitterness that counters the slightly sweet malt. This is one of those beers that starts out tasting good and ends up tasting great, the bomber went down all too easy.

Mouthfeel is light medium, goodly amount of carbonation without going overboard, and a piney bitterness that rests mid palate and hangs on for a spell.

The blonde ales I've had before have been pretty boring and monotone, but that wasn't the case with Knockout Blonde. Sean Lawson has a knack for interpreting styles with a certain verve, and panache. I wish I was able to get more of these as I enjoyed it more than I expected.

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Photo of bobv
4.17/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

4/5 rDev +0.3%
bobv, Jul 11, 2013

11/13/18.
Review 5 years later:
L: Nice and bright, golden amber, one inch white head, some sticky lacing.
S: Citrus, pine, and a bit of floral attributes as well.
T: You want bitter? You got bitter. Not overly so and so nice. Mostly pine with a bit of citrus pith on the finish.
F: Nice Lawson's feel.
O: Not quite a knockout, but certainly a looker.
Cheers!

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Photo of TMoney2591
3.03/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Bruery snifter.

Thanks to cbeer88 for this bottle!

Reviewed blind as part of Blind BIF 7. It pours a mildly hazy goldenrod topped by a finger-and-a-half of cream-white foam. The nose comprises light orange zest, mild brett-like funk, light wheat, and a smidgen of bold banana. A strong whiff of lemon zest wafts up as the beer warms. The taste holds notes of waxy lemon rind, light brett-ish funk, dirt, and a vague but sharp bitterness that pervades the finish and malingers a bit. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a dry finish. Overall, I found the odd bitterness to be too much to overcome here, especially considering the style. Not my cup o' tea.

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Photo of DrinkSlurm
3.89/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle purchased at the coop. Pours a nice clear golden with thick foamy head. Really great hop aromas, citrus and pine. Taste is a bit blah...it has very little personality and is super dry. Well...blonde ales in general are usually pretty lacking in flavor and personality, so I guess when compared to most blonde ales, this has way more to offer...including abv. Nice brew and somewhat superior blonde, but when it comes to overall drinking experience, Lawson makes better brews than this.

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

A-hazy orange yellow color with a nice white head and good lacing

S-citrus, herbal notes, hints of pine

T-light caramel malt, citrus, pine, grassy herbal flavors, nice hoppy character

F-light to medium body with nice carbonation, crisp

O-an interesting blonde ale, easy drinking

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Photo of Kinsman
3.93/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Blonde ale? More like a light IPA. Nice orangy blonde color with a beautiful creamy white head. Nice balance of hop notes with some grapefruit notes and a healthy dose of pine.

An aptly named beer with the hops packing quite the punch. Bitter and fruity with just enough malt to keep things in line. Pretty light mouthfeel but finishes nice and crisp.

Overall, a excellent easy drinking hop-forward beer. Nothing really blonde about it, just doesn't quite have the heft to make it a pale ale I guess.

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Photo of Alieniloquium
4.07/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

650 mL bottle poured into an Allagash chalice. Bottle says 5%, not 6.1%.

Appearance - Hazy orange body with no head until the very end. Small white head that leaves 3/4 coverage as it dies down. Quite a variety of bubble sizes.

Smell - Herbal hops. Gives it a saison aroma. Almost nothing by way of malt. A hop bomb of a light beer.

Taste - Herbal hops, pine, and everything else hoppy wonderful. Grainy malt comes through here. Strong bitter aftertaste. It's a bottle of hops. And it's really good.

Mouthfeel - It's a little strong on the bitterness, but it's really easy drinking. Well carbonated. Light and crisp.

Overall - The best session beer I've ever had, probably? I just had two Hill Farmstead blondes the other night and I'm fooling myself into thinking that blondes are all like this. Only in ABV is this a blonde. It's really like a super hoppy pale ale/ Really nice.

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Photo of Sammy
3.83/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on tap at the Black Back Club. A tasty blonde, funk in the taste, a funky dirty blonde. Nice hops, piney and a little citrus. A sipper. Lace sheet.Complex and something I would have on a regular basis, as it would yield different flavour profile each time

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Photo of jaasen64
3.88/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle picked up in Vermont about 2 weeks ago. Poured into pint glass. Bottle says 5% Alcohol not 6.1%.

A- Pours translucent golden with about a quarter finger of white bubbly head that quickly recedes, slightly below average carbonation. Leaves nice layered lacing. Looks good for a blonde ale, except it could have used a little bit more carbonation.

S- Hops, wheat, light caramel malts, about average aroma strength, fairly appealing smell for a blonde.

T- Hops, some light caramel malts, some wheat, finishes a little bit bitter due to the hops with a tiny bit of pepper. A little bit of a hoppy wheat aftertaste that lingers for a little while. A little bit different for a blonde, but definitely interesting.

M- Fairly full bodied for a blonde ale, but slightly lighter then your average beer, average carbonation, slightly oily and juicy, easily drinkable.

O- This was an interesting blonde ale. I'm usually not a huge fan of blonde ales, but this one wasn't bad although definitely not my favorite Lawson's offering. I recommend trying it if you like blonde ales, but definitely not a must have.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.58/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle purchased fresh on July 20th. Poured in to Bruery tulip. ABV listed at 5%.

A - Golden yellow with one finger of bright white head.

S - A light hop aroma up front with some lemon and earthy notes. A fairly big malt backbone contributes bready aromas and provides good balance.

T - Moderate bitterness up front with lemon, grassy and floral flavours. The malts provide some bready flavours and a good sweetness that balances this beer out well.

M - Medium body with a good chew. Moderate carbonation.

O - Not what I expected from the label, which listed cascade and centennial hops but I go no aroma or flavour from them. Perhaps they were used just for bittering. This beer was true to the style.

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Knockout Blonde from Lawson's Finest Liquids
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 251 ratings