Stillwater Artisanal Ales

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Lager - Light
Ranked #1
Ranked #21,372
3.87 | pDev: 8.53%
Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Maryland, United States
Very Good
Notes: Canned beer has made a serious return in the craft brewing world. Prior to this resurgence, the only beer found in cans were industrial lagers. So as a nod in both directions we present an elegantly crisp and hoppy new world lager. The light and refreshing pilsner malt body delivers an abundance of floral, spice, and grass driven hop flavors and aroma. Perfect for those luxurious cruises through the Caribbean.
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Reviews: 67 | Ratings: 234 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of woodychandler
woodychandler from Pennsylvania

3.84/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

For my next entry in New More Odds 'n' Sods Beer Sunday (Week 780), I am returning to the DelMarVa (+ DC) debacle & my old friend, Stillwater. I still have a number of DuClaw & some Keys before I totally close the book, but I was starting to get bogged down to the point of taking a break. This seems like a nice add to The CANQuest (tm) while helping to reduce the backlog.

From the CAN: "Dry-Hopped Session Lager"; " ;7 Contemporary Works by Stillwater"

Works for me! I Crack!ed open the vent & beCAN a slow, gentle, C-Line Glug into the awaiting glass. Man, did this one ever want to foam up! I wound up with two-plus fingers of dense, foamy, rocky, bone-white head with great retention. Color was a gorgeous Yellow-Gold (SRM = 4 - 5) with NE-quality clarity, like liquid sunshine in my glass on an overcast, rainy Sunday in early-Febrewary. It also caused The Gelt Gang of Mammon, Midas & Croesus to jump up from my couch, where they were watching the Pens/Caps pregame on my telly, to join me in the kitchen for a taste. Nose was royally hoppy! 8=O I was pleasantly surprised even as it caused me to sneeze in response. Mouthfeel was medium, good for a Lager of any stripe. The taste was quite hoppy & bitter, which was fine for me, but totally out of whack for the style. 8=( From this site's Style Guide: "The hop character is low and should only balance with no signs of flavor or aroma. … For the most part, this style has the least amount of flavor than any other style of beer." Aarrgh! I have no choice to mark it down when reviewing to style & in this case, it pains me. This was as crisp & hoppy as a Pilsner, really tasty & quite refreshing. Finish remained crisp, dry & hoppy. It actually scratched an itch for me, but this was no Miller Lite/Bud Light/Coors Light. I would definitely want this in my beach-bound Summer Cooler! YMMV.

Feb 02, 2020
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OohToBeAGooner from Indiana

4.02/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked it up for a buck on the weekly run. Strong citrus smell with a hint of malt behind it. Taste is crisp with nice carbonation. Floral with a hoppy finish. Very nice mouth feel. Amazingly light and easy to drink but the carbonation and flavor fill the mouth and nose. Overall surprised by how solid this is as a session lager. Light enough to throw back a few but won’t water you down.

Nov 12, 2018
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AZBeerDude72 from Arizona

4.19/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A: Crisp gold in color with rich head and great lacing.
N: Grass, soapy notes, hops and light citrus/floral.
T: Follows the nose, a crisp lager with excellent notes of grass, hops, floral and a slight dryness on the finish.
M: Light
O: What a nice lager this was, loads of flavor and so easy to drink. Just a nice clean beer.

May 25, 2018
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brentk56 from North Carolina

3.72/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Pours clear and golden colored with a prodigious head; good retention and the lacing coats the glass

Smell: Grain, grass and sulfur

Taste: A lot of sulfur on the palate from start to finish; grainy and grassy, otherwise

Mouthfeel: Light body with moderate to high carbonation

Overall: Rather disappointed by the sulfuric dominance here

Mar 05, 2018
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beergoot from Colorado

4.05/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pale yellow body; thick, fluffy white head; foam sticking to the sides of the glass. Light, fruity bouquet on the nose; melon and strawberries. Delicate notes of light malts also with a low-key berry-like fruitiness; a little lemony; grassy; fine hop bitterness. Light body; delicate; crisp and refreshing on the palate.

This is one fine pilsner, lightness in body and delicate in the taste and aroma categories yet delivering some solid flavors throughout. There is a deft presence of fruitiness throughout and nicely balanced with a crisp, dry hop bitterness. A session beer packed with depth and complexity. It makes for a fine summer quencher and would be suitable any time of the year when you want flavor and satisfaction but a heavier beer just doesn't fit the bill.

Aug 13, 2017
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ichorNet from Massachusetts

4.22/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

So glad to see this one back on shelves... out of all of the beers Brian "Stillwater" Strumke has been part of as either brewer or co-conspirator, none have inspired rebuying quite like this (though some of the Gose Gone Wild editions, as well as Extra Dry, have really contended for such an illustrious spot, I must admit). A dry-hopped session lager, Yacht is the ultimate in Summertime crush-worthy beer in my humble opinion. It takes the best of the old world of boring industrialized lagers and tweaks the formula just enough to create a modern take that still pays deference to drinkability and pioneer spirit. I'm very glad to have this in my glass again!

Pours a somewhat clear yellow color with a surprising amount of particulate matter dangling throughout. Must be remnants of the dry-hop stage, but it's very fine and tough to notice unless you're looking for it. I'm glad this isn't a super clear, boring looking lager beer, and the fairly-solid head formation also speaks to its willingness to move a bit from the pack. Some nice legs here with decent lace and a nice, hazed-over surface of white suds. At its highest point, the foamy head measures up to two fingers, though it seems to sink somewhat quickly to about half-a-finger.

Nose is corn, hay, floral Noble hops and slight spice-like notes with some grassiness. Very apropos of exactly what Stillwater's going for with this one... a return to form for the light lager, bearing some slight and not-overdone hoppy notes that dial up the crisp and bright aspects essential to this simple, clean style. Not much to say here, but this is an effective and perfectly solid nose for the style.

Slight citrus pith on the tongue with more grassy hops, light floral/Noble hop notes, crackery malt and corn-like sweetness lingering slightly toward the mid-palate. Finishes on the dry side with some hay-like rustic undertones and minimal bitterness. You just can't beat the clean, easy-drinking flavor on this one, especially considering the citrusy/floral note from the dry-hop.

Feel is perfectly crisp and carbonated to such a degree that it feels bright and active on the tongue. The malt backbone here is a little bit bigger than a 4.2% light lager designation would lead one to believe, in my opinion, but the complex and satisfying dry-hop livens up the whole experience and makes this one of the best and most drinkable "simple American lager" beers I've ever had. High marks!

Aug 12, 2017
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SLeffler27 from New York

3.98/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A bit hazy, pale yellow straw with an amazingly stark white foam that reaches four inches before lifting like a cloud leaving copious sticky lace. The remaining fluffy head lasted an eternity in the inaugural use of a Pretentious Beer Glass Company lager glass.

Fresh lemon with grass and floral notes open the aroma. Warmth shifts these aromas to an earthier side, adding white spices, possibly coriander.

The flavor balances a hop bite with malty sweetness. Neither are strong. Specific flavors include barley and fresh baguette. A lingering grainy finish builds between sips. Warmth brings the sweetness more forward.

Significant effervescence scrubs the slick texture and medium body. Alcohol is surprisingly present, though light. There is a slight metallic note in this crisp clean lager.

The beer elevates its style beyond anything I had expected after years of generic offerings. This is definitely worth a try, especially given how sessionable it is. While I had it mid January, it would be an excellent choice to enjoy while raking leaves.

Jul 25, 2017
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EMV from Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a tallboy can into a Dogfish Head tulip

L: Clear light golden pour. A mountain of foamy white head... lasts awhile and leaves great lacing.

S: Lager malts and citrusy/lemon hops with spice.

T/F: Very light... somewhat thin in body. Grains and light malts... dry with some citrus character and spice. Grassy. Very clean and crisp. Definite hop bitterness towards the finish. Citrus flavors are dominant and this is not a bad thing.

O: A very nice citrus hop forward session lager. Refreshing and crushable... you could drink this all day and not feel a thing. Great flavor for what it is and the low ABV.

Jun 04, 2017
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AndrewMichael from Virginia

3.5/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16 oz can, poured into American tumbler. Golden color, nice balanced aroma, hint of hop aroma since dry hopped. Definitely sessionable, crushable beer. I always enjoy a good Stillwater beer.

May 28, 2017
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Tsar_Riga from Indiana

4.06/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark golden body, largely clear but with a slight haziness, a short fizzy white head that fades to thin wisps. Not much lacing, but a pretty beer.

S - Acidic notes of lemon and zest, a bit of spice and hop pine.

T - Clean crisp cracker malt mingles nicely with bolder zest, grapefruit and resin, mild lightly bitter close.

M - For a light beer, this is a pretty full feel. Highly drinkable.

O - If this were a standard issue light, I'd drink them all the time. Lovely flavors, clean, crisp, satisfying.

Apr 07, 2017
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strohme2 from Michigan

3.46/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

16 ounce can for $2.09. Pours pale yellow with orange highlights. Big fluffy head that lasted and laced down the whole glass. Lemon, cereal grains and doughy bread on the nose. Lemon, some saison characteristics, a tiny bit of Stillwater funk. Light hoppy finish. Light in mouth feel but rather enjoyable taste wise. Not much to it but very drinkable.

Feb 28, 2017
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Immortale25 from North Carolina

4.07/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Duvel tulip. Bottom of can says BBE NOV 2017.

A- Pours a semi-hazy dark golden color with a 1/2 inch white head that retains well before becoming a thin ring around the edge of the glass and a mostly full sheet of sheer surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves small clots behind.

S- Sulfury aroma with some cracker-like malt and very little hop character.

T- Hops come through more in the taste and are quite pleasant. Decent mix of fruitiness and pine all with a very light malt backdrop. Tight bitterness is pretty mild.

M- Very crisp with medium carbonation and a very light body that somehow doesn't tread into watery territory.

O- As other reviewers have said, if you're going to drink a light lager, it might as well be this one. Certainly the best example of the style I've ever had.

Jan 27, 2017
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hoptheology from South Dakota

3.74/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Light blonde color with slight haze. Huge soapy head of 3 fingers, leaving tons of lace behind.

Tons of piney hops on the nose, but they aren't offensive - they're clean and crisp, like a fresh stream.

Feel is pretty hoppy to start, with sharp straw notes, but it fades away quickly to a very easy drinking lager flavor with calm malts and blonde flavors. Not a ton of flavor, but for a light lager this one wins.

Feel is extra dry like a champagne, but also quenches, and keeps excitable with a tight carbonation.

Overall, Yacht isn't a totally flavorful beer, but it's meant as a session lager, and I could drink this all day. Very nice work.

Jan 10, 2017
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smcolw from Massachusetts

3.89/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Whitish straw color. Hazy. Moderate white head which leaves a couple of chunky spots for lace.

Grainy, pale malt aroma with a touch of white pepper hop. Appealing in a low brow sort of way.

Overall, this is a decent, flavorful lawnmower beer. The body is thin and the carbonation is high. The hop is more present in the taste than the smell. The pale malt has a bit of graininess and light sourness. Relatively long, semi-bitter aftertaste.

Dec 16, 2016
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JayQue from Virginia

3.79/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

If you are going to drink a Light Lager, this is a good one to try. Poured from a pint can into a pint glass, a hazy straw yellow color. Big light frothy white head with some frothy patches of lacing. Aroma and taste are light citrus (lemony), a little dry biscuity malt and some grassy hops. Mouthfeel is a bit light as you would expect, but crisp with just the right amount of bitterness. A good session beer or summer thirst quencher...no Coors Light here!!!!!!

Nov 07, 2016
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mac31 from California

4.16/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

White grapes/wine, melon, mineral, straw. Subtle, but short sweetness in the entry. Nuanced pungency/earthiness takes up after the sweetness wanes. Hops ramp up in the finish. Grassiness lingers on the palate. (Water) cracker thin malt bill. Super clean malt allowing the dry hopping to take and stick. Tropical and stone fruit notes crop up as the beer warms. Pulled from my beer fridge, which hovers at around 48-50F. Obviously and intentionally thin, crisp body. Carbonation seems to be on the softer side of the acceptable limits. Extremely crushable. I had this beer one other time. I was watching a movie and didn't think much of it. But on having this beer as my focal point helps me to see how good of beer this really is.

Nov 01, 2016
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dcotom from Iowa

3.71/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from can into pilsner glass. Cloudy, pale topaz color, with a fluffy white head that left some nice ladder lacing. Even though my sample was a year old, there was still some bright citrus on the nose and palate. Light malt backbone, with the hop bitterness coming through strongly on the finish. Now the search is on for a fresh(er) one.

Sep 27, 2016
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IvoryFoxhole from Virginia

4.1/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

16 oz. can, no date. Poured into Belgian ale glass.

L: Big foamy head with good retention, lacing, ring, cap, the whole shmear. Beer is a nice hazy gold.

S: Pilsner and crystal malts, nice floral and spicy notes added by the dry hopping. Can can't be too old as these notes seem pretty sharp.

T: Light malts with floral and herbal notes, a tiny bit of peppery spice and maybe some honey (!) on the finish.

F: Light bodied, medium carbonated, crisp and easy drinking. Uncomplicated, but very tasty.

O: Hope this is the future of lagers. If so, you'll see beer snobs drinking it all day. Nicely done.

Sep 19, 2016
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snilsen13 from Massachusetts

4.18/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

What I like about this most is the flavor and finish. It has a great balance of malt and hallertauer-like bitterness (think German pils) and a great dry finish. This could be called a pils, but the malts must be non-pils. It is a great example of what pils drinkers love and I would put it right up there against Stoudts Pils or any other great American microbrew efforts. It seems spot on. Caveat: my can is not that fresh, this beer could just age really well.

Aug 15, 2016
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BEERMILER12 from Maine

4.02/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a straw yellow color with 2 fingers of head that fades down to a small cap that leaves a ring of lace around the glass

S: Some grassy and lightly herbal hops up front with some notes of hay. Malt is on the lighter side with a very light bready sweetness

T: Follows the nose. Grassy herbal hops lead things off, quickly joined by the hay/straw notes. Light malt hangs in and provide a light bready note and a modest sweetness. Finishes with lingering grassy and hay notes

M: Light bodied with moderate carbonation

O: A great dry-hopped light lager that is extremely easy to drink and maintains lots of flavor and body. Definitely worth checking out for summer crushing

Aug 15, 2016
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SmashAdams from New Jersey

3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A really nice lager. The smell is bready, slightly sweet, grassy, light lemony hops. The taste is clean, smooth, slightly bitter and very easy drinking. Loving the low ABV. yb

Jun 30, 2016
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yoogaloon from Florida

3.97/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Like the name suggests, this would be perfect for a day in a boat. Light and refreshing with more flavor than most lagers I've tried. Very floral- Hibiscus? Overall a great choice for a bright, sunny day.

Apr 14, 2016
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mynie from Maryland

4.06/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Somewhat reasonably priced, for a tallboy craft can in 2016. And billed as a "dry-hopped session lager," which was interesting enough to catch my eye.

Pretty can. The beer jumps out violently when opened, however, which might mean trouble.

Pours fine. Hazy for a beer billed as a light lager. But a nice white head. The fizz isn't too aggressive.

Smells medium hoppy with some distinct pilsener malts against floral hops, but a little bit of hay in the back. It's pleasant, and I guess I can't judge too harshly since light lagers aren't known to be good, but this seems a bit too rough to run with the best of the category.

Tastes like it smells: nicely composed, but some esters hold it back from being great. Spicy and floral euro hops up front, pilsener malt in the middle, dry hops and american blonde ale nodes in the back. I'm not some kind of style snob, so this still gets a solid score, but I can't rank it among the best.

Mar 31, 2016
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Act25 from New Jersey

3.96/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pilsner package with surprising hop notes. Try 6.

Poured from a 16oz can into a curvy pint glass named Adams.

A: The beer is a straw yellow color with a large white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass. As good as lager/ pilsner gets.

S: Big for a lager: yeast, crackery malts, lemony citrus and a good amount of hops.Let her warm.

T: Big for a lager. It starts out sweet with citrus and caramel swirl. Then on top of the cracker malt base comes ample hops to provide a good balance. Finish is slightly sweet and crackery.

F: Crisp and very smooth, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean. As good as lager gets, because of its added hop tingle and taste.

O: Tasty and flavorful, an all day lager - up there with "Sit Down Son" from Carton.

Mar 06, 2016
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tmentzer from Virginia

3.75/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Nice example of the style. Clear, pee-yellow look, bigger head than expected. Bit of sharpness on the nose. The taste is nice for the style, the lager backbone with some nice hoppy bitterness. Goes down really easy, nice carbonation. I'd appreciate a sixer of these when the temperature was high. Very drinkable.

Mar 05, 2016
Yacht from Stillwater Artisanal Ales
Beer rating: 87 out of 100 with 234 ratings