Big House Red | Alcatraz Brewing Co.

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19 Ratings

Brewed by:
Alcatraz Brewing Co.
California, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Viking on 11-10-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 19 |  Reviews: 10
Reviews by Floydster:
Photo of Floydster
4.02/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Growler from the source today at the Block of Orange for around ten dollars, split with my parents tonight, poured into a pint glass

A-Color is a mix between copper and orange, thin 1/2 inch fairly creamy white head, did not last too long, not much retention, small amount of lacing
S-Caramel, light fruits, nuttiness, roasted malts, toffee, nice smelling hops, toasty bread, and citrus
T-First taste is hops, middle is toasted biscuity malt, then more dry hops in the finish, some mild fruitiness later on, mostly oranges, the pine accents really mellowed on once it warmed, not a big malt profile which worked out well for the balance and overall flavor
M-Medium bodied, nice strong level of carbonation, dry, robust, somewhat fruity, bitter, and slightly malty mouthfeel, taste lingers for a minute or so
D-Could have gotten close to finishing this whole thing off myself but glad I did not, light on the stomach, low in alcohol and hidden well, crisp and refreshing

Not my favorite style but sounded good today, not a bad shot at an amber either, more on the hoppy side, good thing we drank the jug tonight though because it might not have stayed fresh for much longer, would probably drink again, recommended

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More User Reviews:
Photo of g_jenkins
2/5  rDev -41.5%

Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.08/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

4 oz tap pour in a mini American tumbler pint glass. 6.0% ABV. Had at Alcatraz Brewing Co. at The Block in Cali.

A - Big House arrives unassuming with a clear golden amber color with a low off-white head. Not much lace left over and the beer isn't really red per se but still fairly attractive nonetheless.

S - Toasted amber malts start out the nose of this Red. They're followed up by a low hop presence that isn't all that characteristic of a typical red. The aroma is pretty one-sided.

T - Again, not much is going on in the flavor of this beer as it starts out with grassy hops similar to that in the ESB. Toasted amber malts back 'em up but the balance is off slightly.

M - Medium-bodied, it feels lighter from the sharp carbonation finish and ends a bit dry with a mild bitterness.

D - This red is ok but it remains rather plain in the end. Nothing offensive is going on but the flavor, like most of Alcatraz's beers, needs more.

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Photo of pperez38
3/5  rDev -12.3%

Photo of GreenWBush
1.81/5  rDev -47.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

Ironically brown. No head or lace.

No nose to speak of. Plastic-y, "beer in a box" taste with hints of lake water and rubbery malt.

Caustically bitter, not hoppy. No sweetness at all to bounce off the "hop tea" flavors. Absolute, utter lack of character.

Thin, weak mouthfeel.
Like sucking barnacles off of a barge.

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Photo of hopdog
3.03/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap at the Alcatraz location in Anaheim, CA.

Poured a medium golden color with a small sized off white head. Aromas of caramel, a little floral, and toasty. Tastes of caramel, toasted grains, and a little nutty. Body was on the lively side and slightly fizzy side.

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Photo of likesbeer
3.25/5  rDev -5%

Photo of charlzm
3.05/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

consumed at brewery, 03/17/08.

The beer is a medium golden-brown. Plenty of active bubbles replenish the thin foam skin regularly.

Aroma has notes of sweet caramel malt.

Mouthfeel only a hair thicker than water. A little sweet caramel malt flavor up front, followed by a slightly astringent pine hop character. Does succeed in hitting the palate profile of an amber ale, but, as with all the Alcatraz beers I sampled, flavor is restrained to the point of near-blandness.

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Photo of bumchilly25
3.25/5  rDev -5%

Photo of womencantsail
3.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Alcatraz (Orange)

A: Pours a clear, copper color with a fluffy off-white head which had poor retention.

S: The nose is fairly typical for an Amber. A lot of caramel malt with some slight fruitiness and toast. Not too much in the way of hops, but a slight citrus character.

T: I was expecting this one to be overly sweet, but was pleasantly surprised. Of course, there is the caramel sweetness and toasted malt with a pleasant bitterness provided by the hops.

M: The body is medium (maybe a bit on the light side) with a moderate level of carbonation.

D: One of the better offerings from ABC. Given some of the other draft choices, I would definitely recommend this one if you're here.

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Photo of HopfenUndMalz2015
4.11/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Great malty backbone. My favoriet brew at a favorite place.

59 characters

Photo of JamesS
4.6/5  rDev +34.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured a very nice dark amber color with good head and some nice lacing. Nice deep malty scent with chocolate undertones, heavy but easy on the nose. Excellent taste, a great deep malty ale with wonderful chocolate flavors and a nice balanced aftertaste. It also goes down very smoothly, if a little thick. My personal favorite at Alcatraz.

 340 characters

Photo of TrojanWheels
4/5  rDev +17%

Photo of Beefytits4
4.5/5  rDev +31.6%

Photo of AlexM
2.5/5  rDev -26.9%

Photo of Viking
4.2/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear reddish-amber brew. Thick bubbly head with good retention. Earthy hop aroma dominates the smell, but there's plenty of sweet caramel malt present as well. Bready caramel malt flavor, with plenty of earthy, herbal hops. Caramel malt becomes richer and more pronounced as the brew warms. A bit of an acidic tang in the finish. Rough mouthfeel to this one, but very good drinking!

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Photo of t0rin0
3.75/5  rDev +9.6%

Photo of tmoneyba
3.23/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Draft sampler at Indy.

Poured clear medium amber with an average frothy white head that mostly diminished with fair lacing. Light malty citrus aroma. Light to medium body with a watery texture. Light sweet flavor with a light sour finish of moderate duration.

Average brew.

 275 characters

Photo of Dogbrick
3.92/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From a sampler: According to the menu this is a "house favorite". The beer is a dark amber with a thin light beige head. Thin lacing. The aroma is rather malty with a hint of coffee. Medium-bodied with more hops in the flavor than expected. It has a solid malt overtone throughout. The finish is on the sweet side with malt and caramel. This is a pretty good "signature ale" for the brewpub.

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Big House Red from Alcatraz Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.42 out of 5 with 19 ratings