Swagger | Clown Shoes

very good
43 Reviews
no score
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Brewed by:
Clown Shoes
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Phillyz on 07-31-2013

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 43 | Ratings: 206
Photo of MinnBrewer
2.78/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

Lagers reveal flavor problems more readily than ales and this one proves it. Quite frankly, American [imperial] ale hop flavors and bitterness rarely work well in lagers when used heavily....and a clown size foot packed them in here. The beer is harshly bitter and not appealing...no lager refinement here. Pass on this one. I love the several Clown Shoes Ales I have tasted, so I was hesitant to leave this review.

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Photo of Czequershuus
3.37/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

This beer pours a reddish amber with a solid head. The leading aromas are a slightly toasty note and citrus/pine hop mix. The flavor leads with a mild but pleasant piney note, followed by a slightly toasty flavor. For a beer named swagger I find it quite restrained. It is nice, certainly, but nothing too special.

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Photo of pat61
4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had on tap at the Bulldog during a Clownshoes tap take over. This is a big bold beer with some lager crispness and smoothness but it has the big IPA hop character. Very nice, reasonably light, refreshing and full flavored.

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Photo of ChrisMon02
4.04/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice brew from Clown Shoes. Nice use of hops with a touch of sweet malt. The feel is soft but manages to still have a medium body. Easy drinker with nice flavors. Hops are the focus here. Will definitely have again. Recommended.

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Photo of BB1313
4.21/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled on 5/18/15. 12oz bottle poured into a tulip. Pours a hazy glowing amber with a fluffy off-white head that leaves great lacing and retention. Aromas are very nice. Very tropical along with strong citrus notes. Pineapple along with some strong grapefruit notes. Some caramel in the mix. The flavors have nice hop flavor and nice hop bitterness. Some berries. More citrus. Grapefruit leads the way with some orange notes. Lemon zest too. Some fresh pine needles in the mix. Slightly earthy. Maybe some rye or black pepper giving it some subtle spice. Mouthfeel is light, but has body to it.

This is a really nice brew. It's basically like drinking an IPA. I didn't pick up a ton of lager characteristics, but oh well. Nice job of showcasing simcoe and citra hops. Recommended.

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Photo of gonzo000
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

This beer is good, but a-typically low for clown shoes. Not as hoppy as I expected for a hoppy red lager. Has a plastic taste. Maybe I have an old beer - there is no born on or expire date. The color was a nice reddish brown and the 2 finger head dissipated to a floating film of bubbles that lasted through the beer. The lacing was good. The smell was flat, some malt, some carmel, not very inviting. Mouthfeel was very good.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Picked this up a few weeks back in Totowa, having never had this before. I don't tend to drink a lot of beers of this style but I wanted to give it a go to see if this leaned more towards the American Amber side and not the Red Lager. There was enough to like here and since the alcohol was not that high, the flavors came through really nicely, even though none of them were particularly pronounced.

Nice pour to this, as the cloudy bright almond hue, frothy head, and hop aroma all combined for a solid first impression of this beer. Lots of lacing could be seen once the head settled and I worked my way through this. A good amount of caramel malt was what I noticed more than anything else, along with earthy hops, a hint of tropical fruit, and some lingering toastiness. Reminded me a bit of the Sam Adams Boston Lager but without the stickiness and a bit more of a bitter edge to it. The carbonation wasn't strong but certainly present and there was a mild warming aspect to this after each sip went down.

Maybe it was from the alcohol but had I bought another bottle, it would have been easy to polish that off in a sitting. While not a session beer, there was enough to like here without this feeling weak or watered-down and this was about as balanced a beer as I've had for this style. A bit of brown sugar would have made this stand out more but as it was, I enjoyed this more than I would most other lagers, because of how much it resembled an ale. Worth a go one for anyone who loves balanced beers or American Ambers.

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Photo of garymuchow
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pleasing robust hop aroma. Full tan head over a reddish (as much orange) very clear drink. Hop forward drink as well with some holding back on the bitterness, but there is drying, bitterness and hop flavors linger long and prominent in the finish. Shot of warmth in the gut seems unusual for a 6% beer, but maybe I just haven't eaten recently enough. Firm malt holding up the hop forward drink. Moderate feel that seems to lean more towards an ale than lager- not quite as clean as I'd expect.
Overall a nice drink. I like it.
Thanks Sparky.

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Photo of chefhatt
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

When poured it has a dark reddish color body with a small foamy head. The smell has a grapefruit, fruity hop aroma to it. The taste has a citrus hop up front, then the a little bitterness comes into play. The mouthfeel is smooth and has a great hop flavor.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3.69/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a finger and half of head on a clear dark red colored body.
The aroma is a dank lemon and grapefruit and wet hay, all the in the best way.
The taste has a strong lemon bitterness upfront, loaded of malt in the background, but it's a hoppy beer.
It has a medium body with moderate carbonation.

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Photo of JackieTH
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Old Chicago Plymouth Clown Shoes tap invasion. Nice dark amber with a thinnish cap of foam. Heavy lace. Smells orange, flowerys, hay, grassy. Taste is crisp, lightly citric and floral. Moderately bitter. Medium body. Easy to drink and great flavors.

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Photo of SmashPants
4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottle: a standard 355mL brown bottle with a typically Clown Shoes-esque craft label.

Appearance: a cloudy dark amber in colour with orange highlights. Big carbonation visible. A one-finger off-white head with good retention and fantastic lacing.

Aroma: a sweet aroma of bread malts and yeast, citrus hops and tea leaves.

Taste: big citrus hops with some earth bitterness. The sweet bread malts linger in the back too. A fantastic tasting lager.

Aftertaste: again plenty of hop bitterness coming through, but it is very sweet and well-rounded, unlike some AIPAs for instance. Very nice.

Mouth feel: a moderate feel with a big carbonation to carry the flavour. Sweetness up front, smooth with a dryness on the finish.

Overall: well-rounded flavours, a sweet and bitter hop with good malt backing. Add a reasonable price and that this is different to your normal grain lager; definitely one of the better lagers I have had to date.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
3.64/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clown Shoes Swagger has a medium, off-white head, a hazy, brown-red appearance, and some light lacing left on the glass. The aroma is rich- sweet bread crust, tea, and hop oil. Taste is of sweet brown bread crust, tea, and floral hop bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium, and Clown Shoes Swagger finishes mostly dry, easy drinking, and refreshing. Well, it’s a rather simple beer and overly hoppy for a lager (a style issue), but it’s also very delicious.


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Photo of a0lbudman
4.25/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A-amber color with a large white head that lingers around and leaves a good lace
S-Hops is strong, but some malt comes in
T-At first you get the malt then you get a hop bitterness in the aftertaste that gives you a grapefruit and pine taste in there, and it lightens up in the end
M-medium body and medium carbonation
O-great beer has a great hop taste and a malt background that I enjoyed

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.67/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

nice brew from clown shoes. not sure why they are getting a bad rap out here in colorado, all of their stuff has been solid. red lager hopped aggressively. caramel color more amber than red, with over an inch of lacy white head, looks great. the nose is all lemon hops, citra probably, and maybe something for bitterness, because this is very bitter. the taste is malt first hops second, with a distinct lemon character all the way through. one of the first reds where hop bitterness trumps sweet malt and i really like it. soapy sudsy feel, really big for a lager, but it drinks clean in the finish. i think this is a great illustration of a well flavored and not boring lager. the hopping is done very well, and the mouthfeel is big for the style. these guys deserve some credit for making some really neat beer.

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Photo of wethorseblanket
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Twelve ounce bottle, dated 8/5/13.

A: Pours a hazy dark amber with a finger thick off-white head which leaves splotches and spots of lace.

N: Floral and herbal, citrus (orange and grapefruit) zest, some toffee malts.

T: Grainy malts, mildly sweet caramel, bready, faint grilled toast, wood/earthy.

M: Moderate body and medium carbonation. Crisp and malty finish.

O: I've relearned the importance of looking for bottle dates very carefully before purchasing anything hoppy. The dry-hopping with Simcoe and Citra just wasn't there for me.

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Photo of Chico1985
3.77/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Pour is darkish amber with orange highlights. A beige ultrahead fills most of the glass, falls to a thick frothy fingers worth, leaving an abundance of lace.

Certainly lots of fruity hops in the scent with some pine and floral as well. Malts are big as well however with caramel and toastiness. Decent strength.

Taste follows suit, decent amount of hops and bitterness but good malts to back it up. Like the scent, noticeable grapefruit and citrus with some floral, pine/earthy qualities. The malts are a kinda on the sweet side for a lager, lots of candy caramel/toffee with just light toasted flavors on the finish.

Smooth, somewhat bigger and maltier than expected with lowish carbonation.

I've had this a few times now, good stuff. Nice hops but the sweetness of it detracts a little.

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Photo of oberon
3.86/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours into a becker a clear deep bronze with a large blooming head that leaces two full rings of broken lace as it settles oh so slowly into a frothy mass.The Simcoe hops stand out in the nose along with caramel malts and mild toast,like a hopped up Vienna lager to me.Dryer on the palate with toasted grain,earthiness,and leafy hop goodness,a little more oomph from the leafy hops and it would bump up my score.A damn fine amber lager,a healthy dose of hops, and on the dryer side.

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Photo of ISmith87
3.53/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - 4.0 - Dark kind of hazy reddish brown color. Thick film of off white bubbles that leaves a nice lacing.

S - 3.5 - smells like caramel, saaz hops, bready malts, peppery,

T - 3.5 - peppery, bready malt taste, saaz hops, slight caramel in the background, not that great, but better than tasteless american lagers

M - 3.5 - light-medium, pretty bitter aftertaste, alc covered.

O - 3.5 - It's not that great. Little bit of a dirty/earthy taste.

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Photo of Mikecap
3.72/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Pours a dark reddish amber with a finger of whitish lace that fades quickly to a spotty lace.

Smell: Citrus forward with grapefruit and lemon, a vegetal note, and a blend of hoppy notes. Almost reminiscent of a west coast IPA, but not as hoppy.

Taste: Lemon, grapefruit and peach up front are balanced by a hoppy backbone with pine and grass. Not overly malty as amber ales can be, thanks to a nice happiness.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied and smooth with a nice hop kick, but not overly bitter. Easy drinking and refreshing.

Overall: A quite solid beer from Clown Shoes that I would drink again. This bottle wasn't extremely fresh so I'd love to get my hands on something fresher.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.99/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A very dirty amber brown with a solid 1/2 inch of head. Very sticky and stays around for a while.
S - Very hoppy and citrus forward heck I can smell it from my desk! Other than that it does have some distinct sweet malts. In a way it kind of smells like Nugget Nectar.
T - Kind of hollow so this may be a touch old. The hops are rather timid, some orange rind hop bitterness and malts do a pretty good job of balancing. It is quite good.
M - Light to medium in body. Goes down smooth.

Overall quite a good deal mixed and matched for $2.50 and I found it quite worth it. A great tasting hoppy red ale despite if its a few weeks or months old.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light golden brown color, with a large off-white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains floral hops, caramelized malts, lager yeast and some citrus.

T: The taste starts out with bready flavors from a hearty malt character and lager yeast. Then a strong but not over-powering hops bitterness comes in. There are some mildly sweet flavors of citrus and caramel that bring a good balance. The after-taste is slightly hoppy and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, decent kick, good hoppy representation of style, this is a solid beer to drink for a long time.

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Photo of BigCheese
4.09/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Love the 4 packs. Clown shoes always has cool labels. I think its their summer seasonal and its october but whatever.

A: Deep copper, big thick 1' head. Some great sticky lacing.

S: A little light, some roasted molasses and toffee malts, some piney-citrus hops.

T: Hoppier than the smell. Well balanced. A nice earthy, spicey, with some tropical notes too. Solid malt body with some english malts with toffee, nutty, and caramel notes. Some tea like bitterness from red malts.

M: Lively, high carbonation, smooth, easily drinkable. I like.

O: This would make a great everyday drinker. Great beer to pair with any meal, not too overwhelming, but interesting and tasty. I suspect fresh it would be way hoppier, I'll try it next year.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottled 8/5/13.

Pours a murky orange-brown with a foamy tan head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Small streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, caramel, and citrus zest aromas. Taste is much the same with earthy citrus zest flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and medium bodied mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer that is tasty but the hop profile in this one is quite earthy.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

LOOK: Pours a deep copper color with a chill haze.
SMELL: Pine, resin, tropical, very nice hop character in the nose.
TASTE: Has a strong hop flavor and bitterness. Pine, grapefruit and citrus zest. Mild faintly nutty malt note but mainly hoppy, with the citrus flavor and pine.
FEEL: Medium bodied brew with a good level of carbonation.
OVERALL: A very hoppy, citrusy amber ale. Quite tasty and worth revisiting.

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Swagger from Clown Shoes
3.83 out of 5 based on 206 ratings.
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