Thomas Creek Appalachian Amber Ale | Thomas Creek Brewery

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Thomas Creek Appalachian Amber AleThomas Creek Appalachian Amber Ale

Brewed by:
Thomas Creek Brewery
South Carolina, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Full-bodied, crisp and refreshing American Amber Ale with a malty flavor, rich caramel color, smokey notes and a smooth aromatic finish.

40 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-20-2003

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Reviews: 56 | Ratings: 158
Photo of scottyshades
4/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled from a bottle, also on-tap at the Thomas Creek brewery
Note: Appalachian Amber Ale is Lazy Goat Amber Ale

A: Pours a transparent amber mahogany color with a creamy/rocky/dense eggshell colored head. Retention is good, not great.

S: Caramel and 2-row Pale malts immediately greet the nose, lending some toasty, toffee, caramel, and slight vanilla. Hops do a good job balancing, but its all malts.

T: Hops are less apparent other than the slight bitter kick. Malts give off caramel, toffee, molasses, and some dark fruits. There is an inherent sweetness throughout the entire flavor profile. This bottle seems a little old (getting a little wet dog flavor), but this brew is excellent on-tap when fresh.

MF/D: Chewy for the style (even though it looks light), fizzly carbonation (a little prickly), with a lingering caramel and metallic finish

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Photo of beer2day
3.23/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a deep cloudy gold with brown tints. Frothy 2-finger head, nice retention, and decent lacing.

Nose is slightly tart, with roast notes sneaking through. Bock-like. Slight winey hints present as well, bringing the overall presentation down.

Iced tea flavor dominates. Slightly peaty, but weak. Weak tart flavor at the end. Little to no hop presence.

Feel is thinner than expected for the style and the taste profile.

Not bad to drink, but not a very good beer.

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Photo of feelmefoam
3.78/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12-oz bottle into a DFH specialty glass.

Pours a nice dark amber color with 2 fingers of sticky off-white head that hangs around a while. Really impressive lacing around the glass.

The nose has some light fruit notes surrounded by a bready and caramel malt background.

Pretty good flavor. Right off the bat some bready and caramel maltiness greets your tongue, followed by some light fruitiness. The beer finishes with a nice earthy, slightly spicy hop flavor.

Medium mouthfeel, moderate amounts of carbonation.

Overall, a very drinkable beer with a pretty solid flavor. So far, it seems Thomas Creek makes some pretty decent beers.

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Photo of Apellonious
3.55/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear orange/red color, with a thin head and lace.

Smell: Hops, flowery overtones.

Taste: Taste has a balance of hops and malt. Plum and grassy overtones.

Drinkability and mouth feel: The mouthfeel slightly thin. The beer is drinkable, though I will probably not be searching this out anytime soon. Would like to try it on draft.

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Photo of jballeng
4.36/5  rDev +28.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Poured a dark amber with a huge, beautiful but unfortunately short-lived soapy head which filled the glass immediately even though I was pouring very carefully. Excellent lacing though, some of the best I've seen in an American ale. Succulent aroma of sweet malts and berries. The flavor is surprisingly non-sweet with a subtle maltiness and a robust hoppiness that is neither overly cloying nor bitter. There is a background of smoky, woody tones with hints of apple and grape, and an assortment of mixed ripe fruits not unlike some of the more complex Belgians, although considerably dryer and with less body. There is a smoothness there that is surprising and delightful considering the dryness of the mouthfeel. Also, there is a lot of carbonation in this beer, which accounts for the gigantic head.

Overall, an absolutely beautiful, dry, and complex amber ale that is well worth trying.

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Photo of atsprings
3.35/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Flying Saucer served in a standard pint-glass a crisp dark amber with a nice off-white head. Aroma is slight sweet malts and fruits with a hint of hops. The taste is a slight amount of sweet malts with a touch of caramel and fruit, hops certainly take a backseat in this one. The beer is fairly light with moderate carbonation. This is a decent amber ale, but has the same mediocrity I find in most Thomas Creek beers.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.91/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle - $1.69 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a clear, dark amber body with a large, frothy, off-white head. Fair amount of lacing on the way down.

Smell: Malty, lightly sweet-smelling blend of caramel and pale malts with, as the taste, some toasty hints. Light fruit notes. Spicy, earthy, maybe even a tad herbal hop scent.

Taste: Pale and caramel malts, a tad toasty, and with a medium amount of slight candyish sweetness. Touch of fruitiness. Spicy, lightly earthy hop character, seemingly English, and with only a medium-low amount of bitterness. Finishes dry, malty, and with merest bit of lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: A pleasant, reasonably well-balanced amber ale. I liked it well enough. Though, if you're interests reside with the bitter, tongue-pinching West Coast ambers, you might want to look elsewhere.

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Photo of grayburn
3.21/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pulls a nice tawny color with a good crown of small bubbles. The retention isn't great, but the lacing is.

The smell is minimal. There are some nice caramel notes, but they are few and hard to find.

The taste is again a bit of a let down. There just isn't much there, for an american amber, I expect more of a hop profile, and at least some kind of malt backbone...not getting it.

The mouthfeel is pretty nice, medium body, medium carbonation. Doesn't leave much behind.

I could drink a few of these, but I opted for something different rather quickly.

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Photo of glid02
3.3/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on-tap at Brixx in Greenville, SC.

Pours a clear dark amber color with a one-finger tan head. The head dissipates into a wispy layer on top leaving light lacing.

Smells of deep caramel malts with hints of nondescript fruits - if I had to say it would be citrus.

Tastes similar to how it smells. Caramel malt flavors start things off and taste like they're almost toasted. Light citrus flavors follow into a mildy bitter finish. Every now and then a metallic flavor comes out, although it's not terribly invasive.

Mouthfeel is good. It's got a nice thickness, although I would've preferred a bit less carbonation.

Drinkability is alright. I finished my glass alright, though I'm not excited about another.

Overall this is a decent beer - it's almost a light version of an American Brown. Not really recommended, but not one to avoid either.

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Photo of bigone4
3.93/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I really enjoyed this brew on my trip to Easley, SC. Nice presentation. Clean and clear amber orange copper color with a nice tanish off white head. Strong lace down the glass. Smell is dough like with a mild citrus hop scent. Good carbonation and head retention. Taste was more along the lines of an ESB in my opinion. Nice mix of hops and caramel malt very well balanced and enjoyable to drink. Certainly has a dry hop finish that makes you want another sip. Good malt flavor up front followed by that lingering hop finish. At $2.50 a pint at two restaurants I was at it is a winner every time in my book! Man the bubbles do not stop cascading up the pint. Not over carbonated at all and it has a really easy drinkability. I would like to get my hands on a few more of these. Certainly recommended any time in South Carolina.

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Photo of sholland119
3.65/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A-Pours a clear ruddy amber with a thin tan head. Lots of carbonation.

S-Malty, grainy sweetness and plenty of it. Appealing nose for the style.

T-Lots of malt all the way through with a very little bit of hops. Also a bit grapey in the finish. A bit odd at the end but decent up to that point.

M-Nice carbonation, a little dry.

D-Pretty good. I rarely get jazzed about drinking a lot of ambers in a row but this one would work for me.

First beer for me from this brewer. Looking forward to trying the porter in the fridge. Thanks to greenvilleguitar for this cool extra.


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Photo of PhillyStyle
3.1/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass. The beer poured a decent clear red with a standard white head. Nothing really that memorable. Had a fairly decent hop aroma and taste. The beer was smooth and had a dry finish but the best part was that I felt that I could have had a few. Overall, the beer is average and would only look for it everyonce in a while, maybe when only in South Carolina.

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Photo of DrJay
3.2/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

mikesgroove sent this along in a recent trade. Thanks!
This one poured a clear reddish amber with a short cap of off-white foam. Streaky, chunky lacing clung to the glass as the head settled to a thin skim and collar. Grainy aroma with some caramel and a bit of fruit. The flavour was balanced towards malt, but it still had enough bitterness. Grainy and caramel throughout. The fruit character was along the line of grapes and there was a slight tartness. This flavour was very similar to what I found in their pilsner earlier this evening. Medium bodied with a dryish finish. Not bad, but it suffered a bit from the strange fruit character in the flavour.

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Photo of Cyberkedi
3.75/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Looks like a typical clear amber, but a little more appetizing than most. Aroma is strong and smoothly hoppy, not outstanding but still inviting. Flavor is rich and overwhelmingly malty - hardly any hop bitterness and exceptionally smooth. This is one beer worth savoring.

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Photo of drperm
3.46/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Stone Soup, Landrum, SC

I tend to favor local beers whenever I get the chance; TC definitely qualifies as a local brewery for me. Of the three I sampled (Amber, Doppelbock, and Pilsner) at dinner, the amber was my least favorite; HOWEVER, it was stellar with my dinner entree: she-crab soup and Vietnamese duck spring rolls! The very quality that drove the beer down in my book -- too sweet on the tongue -- married it perfectly to the food.

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Photo of armock
3.3/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured an amber color with a tan head

S - Is of caramel malt with a touch of hops

T - Starts off with some fruit notes finishes with some hops

M - This is a pretty smooth beer with lighter carbonation to it

D - Overall I think this is a decent beer the taste is good and it goes down easy this could be a session beer

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Photo of cjgator3
2.61/5  rDev -23%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours a dark amber color with a small off-white head. The aroma is malt, caramel and citrusy hops with some weird off-flavors. The taste is toasted malt, a hint of nuts and a dry bitter finish from the hops. Mouthfeel is light and prickly from the carbonation. Overall, this is a less than stellar Amber that I would not purchase again.

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Photo of
2.73/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz. bottle

Hazy, orange gold in color. Modest, creamy, ivory colored head.

Smell gives up citrus and a sweet, caramel scent. Some sort of smell like artifical sweetner in the background.

Taste of citrus. Biscuity. Grassy, lingering well into aftertaste. A bit out of balance.

Medium body. Medium carbonation. Dry.

Seemed out of balance for style. Not terribly interesting in that bitter is about all I get out of the taste.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.83/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured a hzy burnt amber with a nice fluffy off white head that quickly faded leaving behind a nice thick layer of lace.

S - Smell was somewhat light, but picked up after a few mins. Main flavors were baked cereal, and a nice grain and bread tone. A slight hoppiness can be detected and serviced to lighten it up a bit.

M & T - First impression was very smooth, and a very easy drinker. Crisp clean feel and taste with a nice dry finish. A somewhat tones were detected and only served to punctuate the profile. Nice flavor of cereal and grain were the most predominant and were balanced against a fruity texture in the back. Only really downside was a slight watery or thin feel, just didn;t have a robust profile.

D - Overall a decent session beer that I could easily see myself throwing back a few during a ballgame. Nice amber ale, nothing special, but not bad at all.

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Photo of jwc215
2.45/5  rDev -27.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours slightly hazy amber with a thin head that soon becomes a patch.

The smell is of sweet graininess with a touch of caramel. There is a slight fruitiness in the back. A subtle funkiness is present, as if the aromas don't mesh very well, but they work well enough to not be unsatisfactory.

The first sip reveals a certain fruitiness. The subequent sips reveal that there is some malt - a caramelish sweetness mixed with an earthy leafiness. The flavors are mild and in an odd mix that take it in different dircetions that never really come together so well. A slight mettalic tinge becomes more noticeable as the drink progresses. There is a candy-ish caramelish sweetness, but seems almost lost. Finishes...well..oddly - some bitterness with a sweetness that seems out of place - and abruptly.

The body is rather thin. There is some coating effect, but the flavors don't hang on long enough to make that matter. There is a slight astringincy to it.

Not too drinkable, though it's not drain pour either. I made it through one, and that's enough of that.

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Photo of SaCkErZ9
2.58/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Beer is a murky, brownish amber color with no lacing and what heads forms deteriorates into a thin lace around the edge of the surface of the beer.

Aroma is mostly nonexistent. What aroma there is is mostly a sourness, a little bit of dirty diaper, and a litte bit of toasty caramel malts. Some light fruits such as apple or pear as well. Not very appealing.

Taste is fruity and sour. Again, a big apple flavor but there is some toasty caramel and some bicuity flavors, but overall, unimpressed and different than any other amber I have tasted.

Not bad, but there are certainly better examples. Good drinkability and mouthfeel is nice: Well carbonated, smooth, crisp, light medium body. Most TC beers I have sampled are below average and this, unfortunately, is in that category as well. I will not revisit this beer again.

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Photo of MSchae1017
2.6/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer was tasted in a pint glass from the 12oz bottle.

This beer pours a cloudy amber witha asmall fizzy white head that doesnt stick well or lace well. The smell is all malt and that malt (whatever it is) that is present in all of the Thomas Creek beers. The taste is again dominated by that malt (what the hell is that). The mouthfeel is fine for body and carbonation. Overall another below average beer from Thomas Creek. I am thoughouly unimpressed by them.

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Photo of Metalmonk
2.65/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Nice looking slightly-cloudy dark sunburst color with a big-bubble head on top. The head retains fairly well, and there's a good bit of carbonation happening too.

A malty aroma brings some caramel to the nose, with a fairly sweet graininess following.

Flavor is dominated by a sourness the pushes away the malt and hops characteristics this obviously possesses. There's your basic hop tanginess, and then there's just bad sourness, and this flavor is dominated by the latter. Some very basic, earthy graininess rears its head, but overall this just tastes "blah". I don't believe this is a bad beer, it was bought fresh, has been stored properly and to my knowledge has not been light-stricken. Just tastes like a poorly-brewed beer to me.

I've had two Thomas Creek offerings, and the multi-grain was just a little better than this. But so far this brewer's output isn't anything worth returning to.

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Photo of jabocu
2.9/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clear copper with a two finger cap that dissipates quickly. Aroma is caramel malt and citrus hops. A little floral too. Flavor did not quite meet the expectations from the nose. Malty at first... but instead of a balance it a little on the bitter side... not really a good hoppy bitter, but a little harsh.
Med-light body with med-high carbonation.

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Photo of bditty187
3.78/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Upon popping the cap the beer erupted from the bottle; I lost a fair amount of fluid. Damn. I delicately poured the bottle into a pint glass and I still got a fist of white head. If this was a Belgian Ale or a German Weizen I would have been impressed. Head retention was excellent, I had to wait a while before I even tried to smell the beer let alone drink it. Oh, the liquid was hazy, peachy-brown in hue; I like it. There was tons of thick, sticky subsequent lacing. This is an excellent looking beer aside from the explosion and massive dome.

For the style the nose was bright; juicy citrusy orange notes with faint graininess and fruitiness. I don’t mind the nose; it’s a tad APA-like. The malt is too silent thought, for any style. I’d like more depth and rich, louder aromas throughout. The bouquet is simple but promising… I’ll call it inviting.

Amber Ale, eh? The palate says APA meets an Americanized ESB but I’m not going to complain. I like the juicy orange-citrus hoppiness, moderate bitterness but lingering, spicy finish. The malt profile is grainy and lightly fruity with a faint kiss of earthiness. I’d like more life from the malt but it is acceptable for an APA/Americanized ESB, pour for an Amber Ale though, IMO. But it is tasty regardless. Overall, I like the straightforwardness of the flavors and the hoppy bite. Quite nice, from start to finish.

Medium in body, slightly heavy carbonation but I can tolerate it, the mouthfeel fits this beer well and the bubbles do add to the possible food partners, I’m thinking pizza, BBQ, burgers with sharp cheese. Yum.

It is plenty drinkable, I could kick back with a six-pack and be quite happy. While not the best beer of its ilk and frankly it is forgettable in the grand scheme of great beers but it is a worthy quaff from South Carolina. I’d be happy to drink it again. Thanks timtheenchanta for the bottle.

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Thomas Creek Appalachian Amber Ale from Thomas Creek Brewery
3.39 out of 5 based on 158 ratings.
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