Sand Island Lighthouse | Straight To Ale

106 Ratings
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Sand Island LighthouseSand Island Lighthouse

Brewed by:
Straight To Ale
Alabama, United States

Style: Kölsch

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Formerly known as Stop Work 689 Kolsch.

Added by DavoleBomb on 07-17-2011

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User Reviews
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Reviews: 19 | Ratings: 106
Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.24/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Sand Island Light House has an extremely thick, spongy off-white head, with tan notes, at points, a fiercely bubbly golden-straw appearance, and quite heavy lacing left behind. Aroma is of sharp, biscuit, barley notes, some lemon, cracker, and strong, pale barley. Taste is of sweet malt, soda cracker, lemon, buttermilk biscuit, with a mild, yet sharp hot bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium, and Sand Island Light House finishes crisp and refreshing.


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Photo of ordybill
4.09/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from the can into a pint glass. The appearance is a hazy bright yellow with a large white head. The aroma is packed with fruit and yeast. The taste is a crisp with a nice hop flavor. The beer is heavily carbonated.

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Photo of BigGold
3.77/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

First had Sand Island Light House poured from 12-oz. can into tumbler. This "German kölsch-style ale" is an all-around solid entry in the kölsch category.

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Photo of TX-Badger
3.5/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazed darker golden color with white head. Cereal grains, light hop grass, and some malt on the nose; follows onto the palate. Light bodied. Finishes pretty clean.

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Photo of AgentMunky
2.67/5  rDev -26.8%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On tap at the brewery.

Surprisingly good for a Kölsch! Lightly sweet and sulfuric, but with a pleasant fruity wheatiness. Oddly syrupy for the style, but perhaps that works in its favor.

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Photo of emerge077
4.03/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Canned 2/25/15
Thanks to Jim for this one!

Pours a hazy canary yellow, ample foam that reduces down to an unbroken skim after a few sips. Spotty lacing all around the glass. Rapid carb trails visible.

Aroma is yeasty and lightly floral, trace white grape as is usual for Kölsch yeast.

Taste is nicely crisp and lemony, with an earthy hop bitterness in the aftertaste. Fleeting fruitiness up front, lemon zest and tangy white grape. Body is crisp and full feeling, but more of a light-bodied summer drinker. More assertively hopped than most Kölsch, which is still relatively low, but definitely noticeable. A fine Kölsch, simplicity is highly underrated.

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Photo of hellraiser
4.16/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

12 oz can poured into a kolsch glass. Light yellow, slightly hazy with a thick head mounded above the rim.
Aroma: sweet, vegetal, yeasty, some citrus
Taste: mildly sweet with citrus and a nice hoppiness
Feel: medium mouth feel with a little hop burn on the tounge
Overall: One of my favorite all-purpose beers

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Photo of Roxie_B
2.88/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Serving Type: Can
Glassware: Pint glass
Appearance: Translucent, hazy virtually no head which quickly went to a thin bit of lacing. Straw colored.
Smell: Musty and crackery, yeast forward. Some presence of citrusy hops.
Taste: Biscuit like with mild noble hop presence. Faint traces of apricot, clover honey and hay. Definitely some earthy/musty funk going on with that.
Mouthfeel: Thin, crisp and dry. Adequate attenuation but a lingering sense of grittiness that detracts from the experience..

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Photo of JamesS
3.72/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice golden, semi-hazy, bright yellow with quite nice head. Sweet and pungent aroma with a nice hint of spicy hop zing. Nice sweet and light malty flavor with a good light finish of spicy noble hops. Goes down with extreme smoothness, a light and refreshing beer.

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Photo of sommersb
3.59/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Tasted On: 06-20-2014
Freshness: Canned on 03-03-2014
Packaging: 12 oz. can
Glassware: Kölsch glass
Purchased: 6-pack from Midtown, Nashville

Straw-colored hazy beer with a nice sized white head. Good retention and a fair lace is left behind. Smells have a tartness to them, with lemon/citrus character. Flavors also have lemon for a tart taste. Also has what seems like a salty character. The finish is dry with lemon aftertaste.

Overall a pleasant beer that would go great on a hot beach in the summertime.

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Photo of Zach136
4.18/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Mostly clear pale yellow with a thin white head and good lacing.

Aroma: Light grassy, hay character.

Flavor: Touch of lemony tartness, light grainy malt character, and even lighter earthy hop.

Mouthfeel: Light and refreshing

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Photo of Jacurdy60
3.77/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A-Pale golden color with a thin white head with little retention. Leaves almost no lacing.

S-Sour grapes, cheese, yeast, mild hoppiness, a touch of sweet fruit.

T-The yeast and cheese come through well here but are not overpowering. The grape flavor comes through as well and is a nice, sour complement to the sweetness of the fruit.

MF-Medium bodied with fair carbonation. Seems drinkable and a bit too watery.

O-My first Kolsch, so I'm not too sure what to expect. I enjoyed the beer, thought it was well balanced and nuanced. Overall, a drinkable beer but nothing that is too spectacular.

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Photo of Mojo
3.57/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce can -> snifter

A - pours up a light gold, almost straw with a one finger white head, no retention to speak of and not much lacing either.

S - bread and corn

T - sweet and apply with a dry clean yeasty finish

M - about average with decent carbonation

O - very easy to drink

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Photo of GPHarris
4/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a - poured a two-fingers thick fluffy, white head that disappeared halfway through. the body was a bright golden color.
s - lager yeast, corn, toast.
t - bready and green apples.
m - smooth with a dry finish.
o - easy drinking and very flavorful. looking forward to having this in my cooler while tailgating this football season.

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Photo of doopydoogle
3.82/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

This is what an American Summer Beer should be!

Light, unassuming, but flavorful and rich all the same. Pours a fizzy light straw color, and with the fragrance you might think you're in for a typical lawnmower beer.

The beer comes in light and clean, with a sweet caramel malt breadiness leading to a slight bitter followed by crisp apples and some spices with a bit of astringency. Here, about halfway through the beer, the grains become very apparent and the beer has a pleasant "beer"ness to it.

All in all, this is what domestic lagers should be. Light, drinkable, but with flavor, character, and an experience that refreshes.

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Photo of brentk56
3.69/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Arrives with a clear golden color but very little foam; virtually no lacing

Smell: Grainy, with a hint of apple

Taste: Bready, up front, with a growing apple sweetness; the hops add a lemony, somewhat grassy character

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with low carbonation

Overall: A little too sweet and lacks some balance; but for the poor mouthfeel, it is still a decent beer

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Photo of gerite
3.58/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a goblet glass at the Nook in Huntsville, AL.

Small white head that rapidly dissipated but left plenty of lacing for the entire drink. The appearance was a nice yellow-amber color with moderate carbonation that made lots of tiny bubbles. The taste was clear and crisp with a slight hoppyness and hint of fruity citrus. Nothing over-powering. A good late summer or early fall brew.

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Photo of Reaper16
3.71/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

served on-tap @ The Alcove, Tuscaloosa, AL, into a mason jar

Pours a very slightly hazy yellow color. It's pretty much what you'd expect a German lager to look like. There's a bit of sterling white head on this pour, but like so many beers served on-tap the head is up to the discretion of the bartender. Solid appearance though, by any metric.

This beer has the requisite apple aromas that so characterize Kolsch beer for me. It has the non-wheat graininess that I come to look for. It smells like an accurate Kolsch in a lot of ways. What holds the beer back is this plasticky, PVC aroma that I've only really smelled before in Magic Hat No. 9. It seems like a yeast-related problem, but there is the possibility that the cleanliness of the tap lines are playing a roll in producing this off-aroma.

Thankfully that PVC component doesn't really show through on the palate. This offering from Straight to Ale is a pretty straightforward Kolsch. Apple skin and apple flesh and clean yeast flavors and lots of grain husk. That's all you really need from a Kolsch, and this beer delivers on that refreshing promise.

The mouthfeel is appropriately bodied. I find it to be a tad bit over attenuated, but nothing too major. Overall, this is one of the most solid American interpretations of the Kolsch style that I've come across. Straight to Ale continues to impress. They are on their way to becoming the Three Floyds of the state of Alabama.

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Photo of DavoleBomb
4.01/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A coupel pours from a 4 oz. taster glass.

3.0 A: Lightly hazed golden yellow. No head formed.

4.5 S: Impressive for the style. Cidery with grassy hops. Wild apple fruitiness. Hay, straw, and a touch of earthy funkiness.

4.0 T: Surprisingly earthy with lots of horsey-type funk. Grassy and earthy hoppiness. Straw and a moderate bitterness. Clean overall.

3.5 M: Light body. Undercarbonated, but it might be the growler's fault. Could be creamier, but otherwise nice.

4.0 D: Good kolsch. One of the best I've had.

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Sand Island Lighthouse from Straight To Ale
3.65 out of 5 based on 106 ratings.
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