Avalanche Ale | Breckenridge Brewery

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Avalanche AleAvalanche Ale
1,362 Ratings
Avalanche AleAvalanche Ale

Brewed by:
Breckenridge Brewery
Colorado, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
That's what makes our Avalanche amber ale such a treat. We blend pale and caramel malts — and just a kiss of bittering hops — to create a refreshing-but-flavorful, anytime beer. Aromas of pale grains, a semi-sweet middle and a clean-as-Colorado snow finish make this our best-selling beer.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-16-2001

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Ratings: 1,362 |  Reviews: 469
Photo of macpapi
2.88/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Since finding the moderately priced and extra hoppy 471 DIPA from Breckenridge Brewery I've looked forward to tryng other offerings. Decided to give a single of this marked down beer a shot. It doesn't even compare to its predecessor.

Avalanche Amber pours an amber to copper color. Pretty light. There is a minimal white head and no bubble activity. Minimal lacing.

Smells sweet, malty and yeasty. There is a noted citrus presence--apricot maybe--to this beer. Also a bit of sourness in the aroma.

Tastes somewhat watery, slightly sour and malty. A disturbing metallic hint is also there. Not very well balanced.

In the mouth this beer disappoints. It is thin, but highly carbonated. There is a bit of bitterness at the end of the swallow. But it is in no way pleasant.

On the whole this is a beer that I would qualify as mediocre at best. Better than a macro for sure. But there are many, many similarly priced ambers from this country and others that are more impressive.

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Photo of nortmand
3.05/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Light amber pour with a small white head and no lace.

Slightly yeasty tart smell. A bit of caramel and a background citrus hop.

Artificial plastic taste at first, mellows into a slightly toasted sweetness. Also astringent.

Low body, could use some more, not a great beer by any means, but a pretty straightforward amber. My only real problem is the plasticness in the initial quaff.

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Photo of Zorro
3.42/5  rDev +4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 Oz Bomber brought back from Albuquerque.

Pours a hazy amber colored ale with a fast fading white head.

Smell is a bit of sourness from hops and lots of fresh grain scents. Lesser scents of caramelized sugars and a bit of rye scent.

Taste is a little sweet and bready with a good caramel flavor at the beginning. Later one the taste is one of a bready base malt and mild citrus and herb flavors from the hops. In the end the hops take over and make this a mild and quaffable ale. In sum this is a good middle of the road ale that neither excels or offends your taste buds.

Mouthfeel OK.

This is an OK ale that is nothing more than that. Just a competent average ale here, try it if you see it but don't travel for it.

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Photo of KarlHungus
2.71/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This brew is deep red in color with a small white head. The lacing the sparce to begin with, and fades into nothing quite fast. The aroma is a faint sweetness, and nothing else. The taste is mildy sweet, and clean. I actually thought this was a lager while I was drinking it. The mouthfeel is medium-light bodied with way too much carbonation. The taste might have been better and more pronounced if the carbonation wasn't so irritating. Overall, this beer was easy to drink, but not very enjoyable. I do not think I will try this beer again for a good long while.

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Photo of SkeeterHawk
2.73/5  rDev -17%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a mostly clear reddish orange color with a 1/4" head of mixed size bubbles that only retained for a few seconds. There are a few bubbles rising, but they don't really maintain the head.

Aroma: Quite a bit of fruitiness is noticeable at first along with some bready yeast and a tad of toasty malts. There is a slight metallic aroma along with a faint sour twang somewhere in the depths.

Taste: The taste is a bit one sided and hollow. There is some malt that you get in the beginning along with the metallic edge and plethora of fruitiness. The middle of the profile is so balanced that it is practically nonexistant. The finish is rather wet and uneventful. There is very little bitterness to back up the malt in the finish. It is light to slightly heavier bodied, but the carbonation is light, so it rolls across your palate a bit watery.

Opinion: This is my first beer of the evening, so I figured that this one would go over better than this. I am pretty disappointed, obviously. This beer is just too light, and the only flavors that I get with any significance are bordering on flaws. I have their pale ale in the fridge also, so I hope it makes a better showing than this one.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.45/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After tearing into a Breckenridge Breweing Company's variety pack this weekend, I beleive this beer to be the best of the selection. Though no standout characteristics, it is well brewed, clean, and easily palatable. Aromas have a medium malt profile with bready, toasty, yeasty, malty, and caramel. Looks...amber with adequate retention and lacing. Flavors are medium malty, with hop bittering to balance. Mild spices and hop flavor for accents. Finishes clean and cool. Quite a nice beer. It will be easily forgotten however, because many preceive this to be a lackluster beer style. Too bad, it's a good beer.

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Photo of Frozensoul327
3.43/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Not a bad Amber Ale. Pours out to a slightly hazy red / auburn color with a short lived head that quickly turns into a thin layer of foam on top of the beer. Medium level of carbonation. Some notes of lacing. Aromas were light; some sweet malt, herbs and spices. Taste was quaffable; flavors of malt, sourness, minor hops and some cooked veggies and herbs. Mouthfeel was decent and appropriate for the style. Medium bodied with a slight touch of viscosity. Overall drinkability is decent. Could be a good session beer. Worth a try.

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Photo of Brent
3.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a crisp copper with lively carbonation. Some orchard fruit in the aroma and carried up front in the flavor. A touch of grain husk punches through toward the end, but withdraws and the light fruityness picks up again for the finish. Moderate hops bittering is constant but plays second-fiddle. Pleasant but unremarkable.

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Photo of kmpitz2
3.51/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a brilliantly clear copper color with a finger of head that falls to a patchy coating over top. Small tendrils of lace cling to the glass. Nose is very grainy, almost spicey from the grain. That is really all I get from the nose. Flavor is more subdued on the grain than the nose, but it is still the dominant flavor. There is a touch of caramel sweetness that takes the edge off the graineyness. Flavors don't hang on into the finish much at all other than the nice toasted grain. Rather tasty beer. Feel is very solid moderate with a light carbonation. This is a pretty enjoyable beer. As with many, nothing makes it stand out, but there are no overriding flaws that would keep me away from it. This one would is nice for watching some NCAA football on an early fall evening. Could easily session it all day.

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Photo of BeerBob
4.05/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Breckenridge Avalanche Ale pours a clear ruby hued amber from a 12oz dark brown glass bottle. Light tan head of fine bubbles went to well over two fingers before going down to a firm full carpet of foam with ample lacing all along the inside walls of my 22oz beer glass.

Nose is a firm citrus pine with some barley malt moving in and out. The alcohol is also present with the nose, but in a subdued fashion.

Palate is a barley malt balanced with citrus and pine hops. The mouth feel is a smooth silky flow over and through the palate.

Fragrant smooth and tasty, Breckenridge Avalanche Ale will find its way back into my beer glass real soon.

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Photo of karengarys
3.6/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This pours slightly hazy rich amber, giving a finger of head which dissipates rather quickly. As it sits, even the foam ring goes away. No lacing.

Smells citrusey, with some hops.

Taste is rather good - sour, but hoppy enough to balance. Not lots of character, but what is there is interesting.

Mouthfeel is pretty good, Somewhat coarse but it is a thick rich pillow of foam.

Finish is clean, dry, and slightly sour.

Nice medium body.

this is a really good beer. Not a lot of hit you in the face flavors, but enough interesting going on to make me want more. I recommend it.

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Photo of Vancer
3.03/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Well, a better brew that the pale ale. But this amber ale’s pour was still not to impressive – clear dark orange with minimal heading and lacing. Only slight hint of malts in the aroma and taste. Also noted some earthy grains in the quaff – this one seemed more lager like than an ale.

A medium bodied brew, a basic quaffer for any season – but in the end just not to exciting or one I would seek out.

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Photo of chilidog
3.48/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is the first Breckenridge to show up in my area ( I think ). It did so in 22oz. bottles for $2.99
The beer poured a nice copper/orange, with a good carbonated, full, soft, egg-shell head. Looked good
At first open a round of hops hits the nose but softens as the malts show themselves.
The taste is smooth with malted grain and a slight crisp citric hop shows up mid-drink to the end. The body seemed average and the mouthfeel abit watery.
Although the watery feel aids the drinkability, for it was easy to put this 22 oz. offering away, to easy. The 5.41% abv can sneak up on you.
If this beer had more backbone to its body it would only make it that much better. Alittle richness wouldnot hurt thisone.

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Photo of ypsifly
3.42/5  rDev +4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz from their mixed 12 pack poured into a pint. The side of the label is not notched for bottled on date.

Clear copper with a thin head of white that dies into a ring in less than a minute.

The nose is mostly caramel with some floral hop way underneath.

Again, caramel makes up most of the taste, but the dry hops are a little more pronounced this time, still not much going on overall.

Mouthfeel could be fuller. Drinkable but rather boring.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
3.48/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Avalanche is amber-orange in color with a average-sized, off white head. The aroma consists of medicore amber malt aroma with just a touch of hops thrown into the mix as well. The taste has a decent malt profile, not quite rich enough and a little grainy. Citrussy hops make an appearance mid-way through a sip and give this beer some needed character. My overall impression is that this beer is just tasty enough to be good, but still seems a little raw around the edges. At $4.99 a sixer this is a good find.

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Photo of rowew
3.1/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 12 oz longneck bottle with a rather plain label. Bottle date is notched on the side.

Appearance: Pours amber with a slight haze, and a thin head.

Smell: Aroma is very malty, with a slight grain smell to it.

Taste: Again, the taste is dominated by malt. Slight sweet and bready quality, with just a bit of hops at the end.

Overall impression: Not the most exciting beer - kind of a generic amber. Watered down Fat Tire comes to mind. Not bad, but there are many many other beers from Colorado I would prefer.

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Photo of palliko
2.7/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Aroma consists of faint herbs and spices. Mouthfeel is mid-range as far as carbonation. Initial taste is a mild maltiness, barely present hops, and a vegetable taste redolent of green beans. There is a hint of citrus, but it is subsumed by a bland, unpleasant taste, and, combined with its lack of flavor makes this beer a “pass.”

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Photo of WesWes
4/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours an amber color with a thick creamy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a light pale and crystal malt scent along with some mild hopping. The taste is good also. It has a light, yet sweet malty flavor that boasts of pale and crystal malts. It goes down easy and finishes slightly bitter. The mouthfeel is good. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a good amber ale. It has good flavor and aroma; a fine sessions ale.

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Photo of deejaydan
2.31/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Starts out easy enough. Looks,well, amber, as it should. Decent lacing, moderate head. Aroma is carmelly, but lacking anything else. Taste is a myriad of faults. Starts again, good, with some carmel notes, but then into a strange Granny Smith apple taste.

I had hopes for this beer, but I just couldn't get past the Granny Smith Apple.

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Photo of cokes
2.5/5  rDev -24%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Faintly smoggy amber with a thin lace that whittles itself away in less than a minute.
Nose of peanuts, grain husk, and caramel.
Begins with a toasted caramel maltiness, and immediately cleaved in two with a sticky lacto tartness. The milk fade, but the sourness remains with green apples, as it settles towards as a coarse graininess. The close is full of grassy hop greeness, and dilute tea bitters.
The carbonation is so low as to be nearly nonexistant.
Vastly unimpressive.

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Photo of scottum
3.56/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A bottle of ale as per BIF16

Pours out a sexy amber color with a white heaadskie on top. Nice smooth body makes for good drinkability factor. Nice balance, tastes good, but not great. An above average amber ale worth checking out me thiNks because anyone could easily put down these one after another.

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Photo of skybluewater
2.83/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a standard pale amber. Smells like a macro-not good. Mouthfeel is thin. Taste isn't all that good at all. It tastes like a Corona, but with some darker malts thrown in. Drinkability? Sure. Good? Nah, not really.

Overall, I wouldn't buy this beer again, not with many other similar, better brews available for nearly the same price. This one's just too weak and blah.

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Photo of mschofield
3.68/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark amber, topped with a two finger creamy light tan head, left webs of lacing.
Floral, tea and malty-toast in the aroma.
Lots of caramel in the taste (relatively), light toasted malt, citrus, note of toffee, nice bitterness for the style, fruity.
Light to medium bodied.

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Photo of allengarvin
3.58/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Orange-amber color, fair head and lacing. Aroma is sweet, grainy malt. Pleasant caramel malt flavor up front and moderate bitterness balance out fairly well. Finishes slightly grainy but mostly clean. Moderate carbonation, with a body resembling light lagers more than winter-warming ales.

Breckenridge's least interesting beer.

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Photo of Wolfsdenbrew
3.7/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a light off-white head atop a clear amber hued ale. head dissipated within about 30 seconds or so and left miniml lacing clinging to the sides of the pint glass.

The aroma has just a lsight bit of floral hop bouquet.

Taste is of caramel malt, with a little bit of fruitiness. Nice piney hops with a good balance between hops and malts.

Average carbonation level for this style with a light to medium body. A good session beer for enjoying football on the tube.

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Avalanche Ale from Breckenridge Brewery
Beer rating: 3.29 out of 5 with 1,362 ratings