Iron Works Alt | Metropolitan Brewing

Iron Works AltIron Works Alt
Liked This Beer
3.83 w/ 157 ratings
Iron Works AltIron Works Alt

Brewed by:
Metropolitan Brewing
Illinois, United States

Style: Altbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
An assertively hoppy top-fermented beer, polished by the wisdom and patience of lagering. Think of it as an octogenarian with a punk rock attitude. Slightly dry, this beer pairs well with hearty cuisine. We also suggest sipping it on its own; the complexity will keep you entertained and happy.

45 IBU

Added by emerge077 on 03-15-2011

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Ratings: 157 |  Reviews: 58
Photo of Thedaver4220
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of scottwurst
3.25/5  rDev -15.1%

Photo of mic718
4.5/5  rDev +17.5%

Photo of fatboy91
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of Norseman
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of harrylee773
4.25/5  rDev +11%

Photo of rabbitguy
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of beerhunter13
3.25/5  rDev -15.1%

Photo of BEERchitect
3.33/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Lighter than pale ale and resembling drier and huskier Amber Ale, the stalwart Altbier- German in design but American in execution; it seems that American homebrewers and a smattering of microbreweries are the only ones intent on keeping the style alive.

Iron Works Alt is easily mistaken for Pale and Amber Ale to the eye. Its coppery hues and golden highlights shine semi-bright through mild unfiltered haze. Its reluctant froth rises to a mid-short stature before receding to a thin vail and simmering with steadfast retention thereafter. Broken lace vaguely resembles the collars left behind with each sip taken.

Caramel and grain greet the nose with herbal, minty undertones. Its more balanced demeanor suggests Northern German inspirations. Its clean scent is delicately lager-like even if a tad sulfury. Its grainy-sweet flavors are stronger than expected- to the point where the spicy and floral hops struggle to meet its intensity or to provide the necessary clean crispness- this leaves the beer comparable to Amber Ale. Lightly nutty and almost brittle-like its fresh-kilned barley taste is of honey and bread crust. Floral in early taste, the hops develop into earthy and herbal middle palate before concluding with a mild stemmy bitterness that reminds me of sassafras.

Medium throughout- the body is slow to relinquish its early malt structure or its creamy carbonation. This keeps the beer sweeter and fuller, deeper into the taste and seems to forbid alcohol dryness or hop crispness from ever taking hold. This limits the beer's drinkability a little and keeps it from pairing as well with those classic German dishes as more authentic versions will.

Iron Works Alt is a common occurrence where an American microbrewery makes a foreign land's style but does so on their regular equipment, with regular ale making techniques, and with as many of the already contracted ingredients that they can reasonably get away with. Although it has glimpses of Northern German Alts, its not a classic or authentic flavor or feel. It does make for a fairly good and clean non-descript ale.

 2,098 characters

Photo of Hopheadjeffery
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of cowboy83
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of Zimm
4.25/5  rDev +11%

Photo of falloutsnow
3.52/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Metropolitan's Alt is a pleasantly caramelized malt-driven beer, with a definite, though perhaps still understated, Contintental hop presence. Fairly straightforward in presentation, this should appeal towards those that enjoy bocks and other malt-forward beers. With a more assertive aroma and perhaps another malt added for complexity, this would be a very substantial altbier.

Pours a 1cm tall head of slightly off-white bubbles, which are small in size, creating a fairly dense-looking froth atop the body. Retention is at about two minutes, the foam settling to a thin cap atop the body of the beer. Lacing is modest, a few small complex patterns linger on the sides of the glass, amidst a few thin lines and dots of residual foam. The body is a dark copper color, with light bringing out bright orange-red hues in the beer. Carbonation is visible through the hazy (40-50% opaque) body, moderate in activity and number.

Aroma is of pleasantly sweet and somewhat rich caramel malt, slightly bready malt, and a faint note of woodsy Continental hops. Appealing, but not particularly complex or assertive.

Flavor is, overall, of caramel malt with a mild Continental hop bitterness and a grainy, slightly biscuity close. Front of palate picks up caramelized malt and sweet bread. Mid-palate continues the clean malt flavors with caramelized malt and rich, sweet bread flavors, and faint hints of woodsy, spicy Continental hops. Back of palate finds increased influence of caramelized malts, resulting in a rich, caramel sweetness that's tempered by more notable Continental hop bitterness and a slight cherry-like ester. Aftertaste is malty, rich, caramel-like sweetness with a grainy and slightly biscuit-like backdrop.

Beer is medium-light to medium in body, with carbonation of medium-high to high in intensity, resulting in a fairly fizzy mouthfeel that's a bit too pronounced for the body's weight. The result is a prickly feel that takes more than a few seconds to dissipate, eventually settling to a gentle foam on the palate. Closes fairly dry, with subtantial stickiness lingering on the palate.

 2,108 characters

Photo of JellyJacket
3/5  rDev -21.7%

Photo of guityler83
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Amber to copper appearance, off white mocha colored head, nice lacing that glazes the edges of the glass with each sip.

S: Toffee, butterscotch, and caramel malts pop off the nose. A little fruity (apples, pears), no hop aroma detected

T: Toast and bread crust. apple like character comes through from the aroma. Sweet with a finishing caramel like flavor

M: mouth drying after taste, middle of the road carbonation and big chewy body.

O: I think if it wasn't for the apple like flavor i'm getting (possibly the yeast?) I would have rated this much higher. I've not had many Alts, but this one fell short of expectations.

 629 characters

Photo of Caskaway
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of Sparky44
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of vickersspitfire
3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

It’s in a stange! Just sitting there staring at me like I’m some crazy beer knurd…and its got a beautiful semi-dark copper color that just gets darker towards its center, its mildly hazy and filled with some good carbonation. The head is thick and fluffy and just will not go away, did I mention that its in an off white color, maybe even tan. Medium lacing; nothing else to say here. Weak fruit aromas like apple, banana, raisins and mild malts. Crisp and sharp when it first hits your tongue, it mellows out into a slightly tangy beer over all. The malts are well represented here, herbs and mild citrus fruits also come through, very interesting taste. It warms up in the aftertaste and the tanginess wanes just a bit as well, and the alcohol is well hidden.

 767 characters

Photo of dhannes
4.07/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Sam Adams' Perfect Pint.

A=Darker orange with impressive cream colored head of 2 fingers that lasted a good minute.

S=More malt than hops; also citrus and maple.

T=Honey-like, but with a smokiness; reminiscent of "German" beers I've had an Essen Haus.

M=Nice medium body with slight carbonation...very drinkable.

O=I'm not too familiar with the style, but this was enjoyable...will definitely try the style again.

 432 characters

Photo of ssimpson89
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of crytion
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of mfnmbvp
2.66/5  rDev -30.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle, no bottled on date present. My first beer from Metropolitan Brewing.

Poured into a Duvel tulip glass.

A - Pours a hazed dark coppery amber colored body with a giant fluffy three finger cream colored head with very good retention. Steady column of bubbles rushing to the top. Tons of huge fluffy webbed lacing.

S - Smells of pale malts and dusty adjuncts. A little bit of raisins creeps out also. Some yeast.

T - Pale dusty malts again with a bit of hop bitterness clinging on for dear life in the end swallow. Dusty & nutty, with subtle notes of chocolate, hazelnut, and dark dried fruits. Maybe some sort of a caramelized raisin taste, but it isn't dark or pleasant, just adds the tiniest bit of sweetness. Maybe some kind of a grape aftertaste lingering. Lots of carbonation.

M - Mouthfeel is semi-dry, sticky, fruity. Feels a little too carbonated, but not terrible. Nutty at first, but it then becomes a bit medicinal perhaps on the finish.

Overall, not impressed, and probably not a beer I would try again. Modest 5.8% abv, better than mass produced Bud Light / Miller Lite swill, but still not my favorite. Would be interested to try more from this brewery.

Metropolitan Iron Works Alt ---3/5

 1,223 characters

Photo of beersvh23
3/5  rDev -21.7%

Iron Works Alt from Metropolitan Brewing
Beer rating: 66.2% out of 100 with 157 ratings
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