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Half Acre Lager | Half Acre Beer Company

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Half Acre LagerHalf Acre Lager
60 Ratings
Half Acre LagerHalf Acre Lager

Brewed by:
Half Acre Beer Company
Illinois, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
We open the Half Acre time capsule and pull out an old battle axe, Half Acre Lager. In years past, this beer was taken through the ringer of inexperience. Sadly, this beer was pistol whipped and rolled by goons.

However, in the end when we were brewing it at our brewery for draft sales, it was a lager to be respected. Unfortunately, we soon abandoned it as a perennial offering because the lagering time was killing us. A glimpse at what could've been. So with a tip of the hat to nostalgia we dusted off the cob webs and laid down some serious lager tracks to offer you, Half Acre Lager, as it always should’ve been. Clean, crisp and noodling your hot spots with quenching cold power.

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 60 |  Reviews: 31
Reviews by malcontent:
Photo of malcontent
3.29/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Looks like an outstanding red lager; clear, amber body with fluffy white head that shows impressive resiliancy and leaves lots o' lacing.

A little adjunct aroma pushes out front ahead of a caramel/biscuit nose. Mild noble hop scent is faintly detectable.

The malt can't quite decide if it wants to be barley or corn and as a result, lingering sweetness hangs around on the back of the palate. However, I find their to be more than enough hop character to balance it out. Certainly not a bad stab at the style.

There is unwelcome slickness on the back end that tarnishes and otherwise crisp, medium-bodied lager. Drinkability, however, is quite strong; an easy session lager than doesn't remove the possibility of moving on to a different beverage at some point.

Note; as this beer warms the malt sweetness really gets cloying and the "corn" taste starts to rear its ugly head.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of brentk56
3.2/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a very hazy amber color with a one finger head that gets very rocky and leaves a few shards behind

Smell: Sweet caramel and a bit of grain

Taste: Sweet caramel up front and though there is a bit of grainy bitterness mid-palate; the beer finishes very sweet

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation; a bit thick on the tongue

Drinkability: Neither well-attenuated nor well-balanced, this beer has limited appeal to me

Thanks, ghostee, for the opportunity

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.95/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer pours a deep orange body with a clear but not crystal clear look. There is a think soapy head that is gone after the first sip but is supported by a strong carbonation of big bubbles.

S- This beer has a soft toasted malt nose that is more dry than sweet and leads to a soft hop bitterness that has hints of noble hop qualities.

T- This caramel malt notes have some toasted hints to them with a hint of biscuit and pale malt in the background. There is a light carbonic acid taste and sulfur note in the finish which is soon covered up by softly citrus green hops that linger as a dry bitterness just briefly.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a fizzy finish and no alcohol heat at all. The fizz enhances the hops bitterness while it is pretty cold but soon overpowers it a bit.

D- This beer has nice smooth malt qualities but good depth of flavor making it a solid session beer, however the fizz starts to wash out the flavor as the beer warms a bit.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of whartontallboy
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of scruffwhor
4.17/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Nice clear copper color at the bottom and a darker amber at the top. Ok head and foam, with some meager bubbling. The aroma isa light minty hop and toasted, homemade white bread. The taste and palate are very simple. Starting wet and mlaty, the middle eldudes to the aforementioned minty smell from the hops. PLus some toasted white bread, but now with some wiches herbs spinkled on the top. Just super faint herbal tones. The palate is pretty dry from middle to finish. While the taste has a dried bread crumb texture to it as well. Nice session ale. How a tastey and drinkable lager should be. And its LOCAL!!!

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Photo of emerge077
4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap at Blind Robin, and this new "brewery-brewed" batch was far superior to the contract-brew I remember from 5ish (?!) years ago. Smooth and balanced with crisp light bready flavors and a hint of hoppy bitterness. Clean and sessionable, no hint of hawaiian punch this time ;)

08-29-2007 3.5/3/3/3.5/3

Sampled at the Charleston...

Well-designed label: white type on a faded grey-blue background, depicting a water tower that is a familiar symbol in the industrial landscape on the Near West Side of Chicago. A bright red star gives a nod to the Chicago city flag. It has the visual feel of a letterpressed show poster a la Hatch Show Print.

Pours a slightly hazy amber-orange, with a meager one finger head of foam. The head settles, but still manages to maintain itself. Malty aroma, hint of vague mystery fruit.

Decent amount of Munich and pale malts, cereal-like barley, with a dry bitterness in the finish. Hops are leafy and herbal, possibly of the Saaz variety. The fruit element seemed to add mild sweetness, but seemed a little out of place. It was like artificial pink grapefruit or passion fruit (not citrusy hops), which brought me back to the Hawaiian Punch I drank as a kid. It was hard to separate from this association once it hit me.

Adequate carbonation, finish is dry, sort of frothy. Malt load gives it an above average body. A pint was easy enough, but I didn't have another.

Contract brewed for Half Acre Beer Co., Chicago, IL.

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Photo of brandoman63
3/5  rDev -16.2%

Photo of KDawg
3.15/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

poured from growler into a pilsner glass. Pours a medium gold color

very good aromas of grains, malts, and cereal. Nice balance, but lacking some depth

medium bodied with good balance and a good feel. This is lacking on the middle and finish though with notes of grains and malts

I was hoping for a bit better, but a very drinkable beer

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Photo of bluemoonswoon
3.79/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into an imperial pint glass.

A: Pours out a peachy gold and copper, topped with an inch worthy of frothy, sandy white head that unfortunately does not retain very well or leave any traces of lacing.

S: Light and slightly toasty malts do most of the heavy lifting in the aroma department. Very fresh and very crusty whole wheat bread with a splash of light and fruity hoppiness, white apple and pear to be specific, but really more of a malt-centric brew.

T/MF: Toasty and sweet, very clean and very fresh. Soft and fizzy mouthfeel with a decently chewy body, light but certainly shows a decent amount of oomph to get the point across. Slightly peppery and with a bitterness that is more evident in the finish than anywhere else as it remains slightly sticky and slightly dry and prickly on the back of the tongue.

D: An easy sipper, if a bit one sided. I'd say Brooklyn and perhaps even Sam do a better job for me in regards to this particular style.

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Photo of GbVDave
4.05/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 64oz growler into a 20oz imperial pint.

A: Pours a rich cloudy gold color. A short lived 1 1/2 finger layer of foam quickly melts down to a thick creamy collar that is fed by some rather ample carbonation. Sadly, no lace was left behind.

S: Noble hops flash over a malt backbone that shows off aromas of toasted bread crusts and spicy yeast.

T: See above. Light lemon and toasy malt with white pepper. When I came back to the growler, after having opened it a few hours earlier, the taste took on a definite grassy/herbal tone.

M: Suprisingly spicy and peppery. A rich fullness spreads across the palate becoming a bit oily before it finishes prickly.

O: Waaay better than I remember. I was able to try this out of the bottle and on draft during its' first go around many moons ago. This is how it always should've been.

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Photo of mday
3.73/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into pint.

A :: Clear golden orange with a small white head that disappears and forms a thin white film on top.
S :: Very light sweet malt and a light hop aroma. Nothing strong about this. Very light and balanced.
T :: It tastes like it smells, which is a good thing. Crisp light malts and a little citrusy hop. It finishes with a quick bitterness and then sweetness.
M :: Smooth, creamy and active carbonation.
D :: Easy drinking lager that needs to be cold and I definitely enjoyed this one. I'm glad I picked this up.

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Photo of robbyc1
2.91/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle, interesting label.

Pours with a decent white head that lasts, light caramel color looks better than most American Red lagers, I believe this should be categorized as an American lager, not red or amber.

Nose is hoppy, but a bit off smell, like spoiled hops.

Taste as expected, nice malt, a bit grainy and bready, with a decent finish.

Decent mouth feel and drinkable, just nothing special. OK lager, better than the Macros at least.

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Photo of koganator
3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ah, glad to have this beer in my hands it's pretty rare in that it's distribution is only in the city of chicago, so it isn't widely avaliable.

Smell: Yeasty, hoppy, beery, not too strong, beery. Hint of grapefruit.
Looks: Darker than your average lager, cloudier and darker, although not hefe cloudy, just cloudy in typical american lager terms. Appealing.
Taste: Good, very tasty, Deeper than macro, but not so deep as to offend, casual, nothing radical, but it has an atypical and slight grapefruity flavor; rare. Intresting, solid beer.
Mouthfeel: could be smoother?
Drinkability: Easy like sunday morning, but probably wouldn't want to drink it in too great amounts.

Overall: Get it if you want a solid lager, get it if your in the chicago area and happen to stop in a store that carries this beer. Distinct and well designed bottle label worth purchasing if you happen to collect beer bottles. PEACE!

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Photo of wspscott
3.43/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle in pint glass

A: dark golden color with a one inch off-white head that never completely disappears, leaves lots of lace.
S: Grainy and a little sweet, no hint of hops.
T: Again, grainy with a little bit of huskiness, slightly sweet, bitterness in the background so it is not cloying. A little too malty/rich for my preferences. No hops other than a slight bitterness.
M: A lot of carbonation helps balance some of the sweetness, but could use just a bit more attenuation.
D: Goes down pretty easy, I would be pretty happy to find this at a baseball game or a BBQ, but I don't think I would be picking up a six pack very often. Not bad, not great, worth trying.

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Photo of thewimperoo
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%

Photo of aerozeppl
3.26/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Thanks to masterski/Sean9689 for this.

A: Not bad looking. A little bit of red highlights Mostly a hazy copper color with a little less than a half finger of white head. Some spotty lacing.

S: Smell is of faded grain and a fairly clean yeast smell. Little bit bready as well.

T: The taste is a little hollow. Truth be told it is what you want in the style. Lots of ceral grains. Its not bad at all just is lacking something to really make it stick out. Just the slightest hint of hops.

M: Medium body. Carbonation is interesting. One sip it is a little abrasive the next smooth.

D: A slightly above average lager. This would be a great beer for someone just getting in to craft beer. Too bad it is retired.

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Photo of trbergman
3.55/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a shaker pint.

A - Pours a somewhat hazy amber with one finger of rocky off-white head.

S - Toast, cereal graininess, floral hop aroma.

T - Clean toasted cereal flavor with a hint of nuts. Spicy and floral hop flavors with fairly aggressive (for style) bitterness. The finish is very dry and slightly astringent.

M - Solid, not-quite-medium body, with perfect carbonation.

D - Drinkable, though I'd prefer a little less graininess and astringency.

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Photo of Kegatron
3.53/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a crystal clear copper, topped with a finger of bright-white head. This retains with a tight cap of foam, which stays rich and leaves some thick patchy lacing behind. The aroma is fresh and floral, with a sharp backing tang of earthy citrus and bready caramel giving this a sweet grittiness in the nostrils. The nose here is fairly hop forward overall.

The malts splash the tongue in the taste with a toasty sweetness that is well balanced by some leafy feeling bitterness that leaves behind a good bit of lingering earthy grit that really sticks in the finish of this. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, maybe a little lighter, with a creamy softness to the carbonation that then gets crisper as you swallow.

This was decent. While the flavors came off as mostly sweet, I actually picked up a decent amount of hop activity in this that helped keep it balanced. While not the most full flavored selection that I've had, there was certainly enough here to make things interesting and keep this drinkable for the most part.

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Photo of MasterSki
3.21/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of Half Acre's first beers - a contract brewed lager made in Black River Falls, WI and now discontinued. Served in a pilsener glass.

A - Pours with two-plus fingers of eggshell foam that settles to a thick chunky cap and leaves behind spotty lace. Body is a slightly hazed dark golden orange color with a ton of bubbles visibly racing upwards.

S - Light toffee, roasted grains, herbaceous and zesty noble hop character that verges on too much for me.

T - Taste is a touch better, with a bit of lemon zest, tart apples, cereal, and toasted malt character. Aftertaste is lightly bitter.

M - Carbonation is lively and zesty, and the body is surprisingly on the fuller side of medium. Finishes sticky, with a bit of oiliness.

D - Easy to put back a 12oz, especially on a hot day like today. It's a step up from macro swill, but it's decidedly average for the most part. I can see why they discontinued this and went with Gossamer instead.

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Photo of beerfairy
2.64/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A- This beer has an orange body with a nice look. There is very little head but strong carbonation and lots of bubbles when poured.

S- This beer has a cheesy and slightly bad feet smell.

T- Tastes like a light caramel malt, slightly acidic and dry taste. Hops are strong but not overpowering, bitter flavor.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with an acidic carbonated finish.

D- Too much carbonation drowns out the flavor over the long haul.

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Photo of MrMcGibblets
3.95/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

went through a sixer of this faster than expected. clear bright amber color, decent creamy head. bready and caramelly malts in the slightly subdued nose along with grassy and citrus notes from the hops. nice light malt sweetness is well balanced by the smooth moderate hop bitterness. frothy mouthfeel, crisp finish, just over light in body. very drinkable, and an interesting sessionable lager.

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Photo of tapman
3.97/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Body is a dark orange/light red, whatever you like best. Head is thin with medium lacing. Not a '4', but I would rather look at this then some piss yellow, over-carbonated lager.

Nice pilsner malt smell with a hop aroma that is part earthy Czech and part bright American. Check out the balance, baby!

A bit too pilsner-like to be mixed with this level of hoppiness, but still pretty good. I like this one better from the bottle than the tap. The tap version is a lot more hoppy and I think the greater malt presence in the bottle version does much for it. Good session brew. Slight mettalic aftertaste.

This brew tastes like a small version of an imperial pilsner. I like the mouthfeel because it isn't very thick and goes down smooth.

Like I said, a good session. Goes down easy with maximum taste. I would like to see this recipe as an Imperial, however and I think that the company could do a lot for big recipe craft beers.

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Photo of SiphonKing
2.82/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

One might expect from the label that this "lager" would be a light-bodied experience. On the contrary. The beer pours with an amber color and minimal head. The taste of citrus hops lingers with a slight maltiness. I bought this beer to help support the "local" beer scene in my city. This beer is brewed in WI for Half Acre Brewing Co. I hope that Half Acre puts out other beers to tempt the palate that are more to style.

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Photo of Bubba83
3.46/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a tumbler at 45 degrees on a warm night. Thanks to Kegatron for sending the bottle.

Pours a nice orangey/yellow copper color. I don't understand how this is classified as a Red Lager, since the color is more akin to a normal lager, only maybe a little darker. Lots of vivacious bubbles rise from the floor of the glass, up to the bright white, perfect two finger width head. Good retention and quite good lacing too.

Smells chiefly like hay-bails. Some fresh baked bread is in there too, and a slight grassy characteristic that I wish was intensified.

Taste is a little more complex than the aroma, with a nice bready sweetness. The surprise flavor I'm getting is a bit of green apple, which is nice. There's a grassy component too, but it's pretty muted. Alcohol actually is fairly apparent towards the end, but doesn't detract too much from the flavor.

It's maybe a little heavier than most lagers, but still quite lively and refreshing. Finishes pretty dry.

Pretty good drinkability, but hampered a little by the bit of alcohol flavor I'm getting in there. Still, all in all a pretty nice lawnmower beer offering from Half Acre.

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Photo of birchstick
3.31/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - nice head - light amber in color
S - not much to the smell. A bit of malts and hops.
T - Nice, crisp flavor. A Little spicy, some hits of malt and some faint hops and bitterness on the finish. Nice balance.
M - thin, but creamy
D - very easy drinking beer. This is a very good, well-balanced lager. I would recommend this as an alternative to other American-made lagers.

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Half Acre Lager from Half Acre Beer Company
Beer rating: 3.58 out of 5 with 60 ratings