Gateway Kolsch | French Broad Brewing Co.

57 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Gateway KolschGateway Kolsch

Brewed by:
French Broad Brewing Co.
North Carolina, United States

Style: Kölsch

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by cvstrickland on 02-23-2009

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 57 | Ratings: 180
Photo of PhillyStyle
2.83/5  rDev -23.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

22 oz bottle

Poured a hazy dark yellow with a huge white head that was very well retained that receded into a thin cap that lasted throughout the beer. The beer did have noticeable particles floating in the beer. To be honest, I expected the beer to be perfectly clear.

Aroma is mainly bready and citrus tones. No hops to mention. Definitely not what I had in mind for the style. It reminded me more of a Belgian Witbier than a Kolsch.

Taste follows the nose well, what I did not get was any hint of hop or bitterness to the taste at all.

The beer is light, smooth and easy to drink. The beer did have very good and very prevalent carbonation, and this was not a determent to the beer. The beer left a dry aftertaste, which I had expected, but it was somewhat unappealing. Overall, this may be a decent summer beer, but it reminds me of Blue Moon and not a Kolsch, especially after my first was Reissdorf Kölsch.

 917 characters

Photo of jeranbrews
2.9/5  rDev -22%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.25

Poured from a can into a pint glass.

A - faint watered down chamomile tea color. Big puffy white cloud of head. Minor continued carbonation. 3

S - sharp astringent but not caustic. Hoppy but without so much of the AAL aluminum smells. Faint crystal malts. 3

T - better than the smells but overall very weak. At times reminding me of a pilsner or Vienna lager but sadly subdued. 3

M - pleasant fizzy malty. 3.5

D - easy simple but very boring. Won't return 2.25

 469 characters

Photo of AlexFields
3.02/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a light fuzzy banana color, light head.

At first not much on the nose, just a touch of light tart wheaty malt and maybe some banana. Gets sweeter as it warms, touch of honey.

Taste is pretty similar--tart wheatiness again, light honey sweetness, hint if banana and yeast.

Nothing special but a decent kolsch.


 325 characters

Photo of mtstatebeer
3.12/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle. Pours a clear and effervescent light golden color with a nice sized, frothy white head, good lacing. Aroma is pale malts, wheat, light citrus, grain, and grass. Flavor is sweet grain, bread, yeast, and a light hoppy finish. Mouthfeel is dry, bitter, and light. Not a whole lot of flavor here, but a very crisp and drinkable beer.

 344 characters

Photo of Tiklmelmo
3.21/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle from gford217 in SS09

A - Very cloudy straw yellow. Bigtime gusher (even when opened pretty darn cold)

S - Smell is much better. Nice noble hop aroma with some fruitiness from the yeast.

T - Crisp, refreshing, follows closely to the nose with pears and a little bit of hops. Little bit of an odd aftertaste though.

M - Highly carbonated and very light. Nothing special on the mouthfeel.

D - Great lawnmower beer. I could see drinking this on a hot summer day. Goes down easy.

 495 characters

Photo of NODAK
3.22/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Aroma is quite grainy and wheaty. Pretty light stuff. Figured on a bit more.

Taste follows pretty closely. It's fairly honey sweet, full of grain and wheat, and a very small bitterness at the backend. This is a pretty straightforward beer here. A bit surprised at the lack of citrus character. Nothing complicated, but it goes down quite easily. Would probably make a great summer beer.

 388 characters

Photo of mbrown26
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

First Kolsch style beer. Went from the bottle to a goblet.

A: A nice hazy beer with a fairly decent head that slowed down to a quarter inch thick, and stayed there for a while.

S: Lemons. Hay. Citrus.

T: Not a whole lot of flavor, but not necessarily a bad thing. Would pair well with fish or something light. Citrus to lemon taste, but the crispness of the beer overpowers the flavor.

M: Crisp. Somewhat of a bitterness. Watery and Thin. A decent level of carbonation.

D: I like my beers maltier and heavier than this, but not hard to drink either.

Probably had this at the wrong time of year for me. Could be very pleasant while out on the back porch during the spring and summer.

 693 characters

Photo of matzah
3.33/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured from a bomber into a pint. Pours clear and a nice yellow color with a hint of orange. 1.5 Finger head quickly turns to a half finger. Highly carbonated.

S: Something like a cross of a hefe and pilsner, but favors pils. Clean grassy notes.

T: Crisp with good, but long, aftertaste that is true to the flavors of the beer. Taste favors pilsner or even saison. Grassy flavors more pronounced than in smell.

M: Light and carbonated. Slight burn from carbonation but not unpleasant.

O: Good light Kolsch. I'm not too familiar with this style, but enjoyable. I found it less sessionable than others though, simply because the aftertaste hung around so long.

 665 characters

Photo of mklinger
3.46/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I had this at Lupi's in Chattanooga. Served in a pint glass. Super bright pale golden beer. Nice inch thick head that left good lacing behind.

Aroma was fine & subtle. Lots of slightly bready malt character. Some hop character, though not a lot. This is a beer that isn't so much about the aroma, though what's there is solid.

Taste was very refreshing. Lots of pilsener malt character with good earthy/herbal hops afterwards & finishing with just a complement of hop bitterness. Decent slightly acidic character too from the fairly ample carbonation.

Light mouthfeel, thin & refreshing with a good amount of carbonation. Very easy to drink on a hot summer's day

 665 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.52/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a can into a shaker pint, the beer is a hazy, straw gold coloring, with a fluffy, tall, clingy, white head. Steady carbonation action throughout the body, too. Nose of toasted grains, subtle floral notes, and hints of berry esthers. Flavors are tangy forward, with buttered toast notes, and a subtle hops bitterness. Smooth and light, with a frothy, effervesced finish. Tangy, grainy aftertaste. Not bad.

 416 characters

Photo of avalon07
3.52/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured from a bottle to kolsch glass. Had a pale yellow color and a clear consistency. There was a quarter inch of quickly-dissipating, foamy head. Average lacing.

S: A decent, if two-dimensional, aroma of malt and a bit of citrus.

T: Tasted of lemon, pale malt and some hop. Like the smell, the taste wasn't overly dynamic, but decent enough.

M: A good amount of carbonation with a dry finish. Light-bodied.

D: This beer isn't horrible or undrinkable, but it isn't particularly memorable.

 496 characters

Photo of msnow34
3.56/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Smells a little like a white wine, maybe some grapes. Pours a pale yellow with a very thin head that dissapates quickly. Tastes like a bubbly wine, very heavy taste on the grapes, with a good level of carbonation. Fairly dry but very drinkable. I drank the entire bomber. Without an issue. I would say this is a very sessionable beer. That is easy to drink and doesnt kill the pallet. This would be good for a wine drinker, as a craft option.

 442 characters

Photo of jpro
3.57/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had a couple of these at DD Peckers to go along with some wings on Divisional Playoff Saturday...

A: Served in a standard shaker pint, this beer was a light, straw gold with a one-finger, snow white head; not much for retention or lacing to be had.

S: Grains; fruity (maybe yeast derived?); lightly floral; a touch grassy / wet-hay-like.

T: Light biscuit malts, backed up by the fruitiness that was evident in the nose (hmmmm, don't know how I feel about that); some lightly earthy hop bitterness provides some balance and crispness to a slightly sweet beer.

M: Between light and medium bodied, with a moderate carbonation. Pretty standard for the style, I suppose.

D: A good beer to have a few of - although not too exciting; went well with wings!

 754 characters

Photo of tdm168
3.63/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Biere Garden in Asheville.

A - clear gold with noticeable carbonation bubbles; thin lacing of white head; no retention

S - faint grass, hint of lemon

T - grassy, noble hops, faintly bitter finish

M - smooth, little carbonation, light bodied

This is a very light, easy to drink, refreshing beer. It doesn't have much flavor, but it's to style and ultimately enjoyable.

 386 characters

Photo of kylehay2004
3.64/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thin head that doesnt last long on a near crystal clear bright golden body. The aroma is very light with barely perceptable pale malts, sweet corn and honey. Flavor has a nice amount of honey flavor with barely, wheat and herbal flavors. Nice body for the style with moderate to high carbonation. Certainly drinkable with nice degree of sweetness and flavor for a style that can be fairly bland.

 395 characters

Photo of srandycarter
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Light straw, slightly murky, small near white head leaves to thin bubbly disk.

S - Barny, sharp, deeper malt notes underneath.

T - Crisp, a little funk, finishes clean and snappy.

M - Light body, medium coating, good carb.

D - Easy enough to drink, just doesn't keep my interest.

 287 characters

Photo of JohnQVegas
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into Sam Adams sensory glass.

Pours hazy pale straw, with a thinnish but nicely persistent, long-lasting fluffy white head. Decent lacing.

Nose is big on lemons... smooth and citrusy, just a bit sweet, some grainy pale malt peeking through underneath.

Taste is big on lemony hop flavor, despite a very restrained if not non-existent bitterness, some light, very pale malt sweetness in there as well. Finish is, again, a nice balance of pilsner malt, just a bit of wheat perhaps, and lemony hops - just a bit of very mild noble hop bitterness. This, to me, is not a Kolsch - much closer to a Blonde Ale. The hop presence is surprisingly prominent, and the yeast is pretty much drowned out. There are some great Kolsches produced in the Carolinas - Mother Earth and COAST come to mind - and while this is not really a Kolsch in my experience, it's still pretty tasty as an American Blonde.

Mouthfeel is dry-ish on the long finish, medium-light in body with a light carbonation. Just a bit tingly.

Nicely drinkable, not nearly as delicate as you'd expect a Kolsch to be. An American take, perhaps, decent amount of flavor but lacking in subtlety.

 1,157 characters

Photo of nlmartin
3.68/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer came my way via my Secret Santa Ding. Big time thanks! The beer was served in a pint glass. The beer was a pleasure from start to finish.

Appearance: The body of the beer is clear straw yellow. The head is a thick white foam. The head retention is perfect.

Smell: A pleasant combination of floral hops, lemon and a bit of clove ride a malty biscuit.

Taste: The flavor of the beer is floral up front a bit grassy nice subtle lemon. The malt profile is biscuity. A bit of pepperyness coming in at mid flavor perhaps cloves.

Mouthfeel / Drinkability: The body of the beer is light. The carbonation levels work well with the beer. This is an excellent flavorful beer. Many people may like this beer on a hot day. I am thinking this beer would be good on any day of the week. Thanks again Ding!

 806 characters

Photo of brentk56
3.68/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: A gusher, with a huge head of foam atop the hazy straw colored liquid; nice stickage

Smell: Biscuity, with a bit of lemongrass in the background

Taste: Bready, up front, with a growing grassy, lemony character appearing by mid-palate; after the swallow, the floral, bitter elements dominate but there is a bit of residual sweetness from the malt

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body but overcarbonated

Drinkability: Aside from the mouthfeel, this is a very nice example of the style as it is well-balanced and flavorful

 530 characters

Photo of RedChrome
3.68/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A very light golden color with a faint haze. Huge white head takes minutes to settle down. Tons of carbonation bubbles rising rapidly.

Grain husks and white raisin scents assault the nose on inhalation. A light earthy grass scent in the back of the nostrils. Hints of hops fade in and out.

Very dry crispy malt flavor on the tongue. Taste has a very mixed coating to it, both metallic and plastic. Hops do provide a decent amount of bitterness.

Tastes cling, but the overall feel is watery. Carbonation is a nice burst on the tongue.

An OK brew. Would work well with a nice piece of lemon grilled whitefish. Not the best choice in the style. IF you like kolsch give it a try, otherwise, look for something else.

 716 characters

Photo of Mojo
3.7/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 ounce can -> New Belgium globe glass

A - very pale straw color with a very small head, no lacing and no retention.

S - lemon notes dominate with some floral and grass

T - Lemon honey sweetness with a dry finish. Very easy to drink.

M - light with average carbonation

O - does not make the earth shift on its axis, but is easy to drink and satisfying.

 361 characters

Photo of pburland23
3.7/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz. bombe into my Gaffel kolsch stange.

Appearance: Beer pours a clear, brilliant golden yellow. Pour released a little more than two fingers if light, bright white head. Decent head retention and no lacing. Inviting looking pour.

Smell: Sweet and grassy on a nose, a very light and delicate smelling beer. No hops presence but still nice smelling, very clean.

Taste: I found the taste to be the weakest component of the beer. It's just a touch off from where I think a kolsch should be. There is a nice German hops bite but the sweetness and grassy maltiness I expect from the style aren't big enough. There was an almost adjunct like flavor in the middle of the sip.

Mouthfeel: Very refreshing and quite drinkable. Would be a good beer to enjoy after some yard work or poolside.

Overall: I love kolsch but is one isn't as well crafted and flavorful as some of the better examples of the style. Not a bad beer, but kolsch fans can do better.

 969 characters

Photo of womencantsail
3.72/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Bobby for sharing this one.

A: The beer pours a pale golden straw color with a huge, rocky, white head.

S: Quite a strange smell for a kolsch. Lemon zest and apple juice are prominent. It's got a slight champagne character (likely from the high carbonation and yeastiness). Moderate bread notes and some floral hops.

T: Light bread and cracker malts provide much of the flavor. More lemon zest along with some floral and earthy hops. Just a light bitterness to it. The carbonation is extremely high, which diminishes from the flavor intensity a bit.

M: Light in body with very high carbonation.

O: Despite not being terribly "kolsch-like", I thought this was a pretty decent beer.

 695 characters

Photo of maximum12
3.73/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Rec'd from gford217 during the now legendary FC BIF, along with three other bombers from this brewery I'd never heard of. Thanks Grant!

This brew is macro golden with only a smallish bit of head on the pour. Smell is mild to the point of having on odor only existentially. Shadow of wheat grains in the nostrils.

Gateway is crisp, clean, refreshing. Hey Bud, Michelob, Coors - this is what your beers should taste like! A quick, simple style that would be great on a hot day with the grill spitting the smell of venison brats in my face & a bit of sweat on the back of my neck. Drinkability is insanely high; this could easily be pounded by any Wisconsin small-town homey (& I mean that fondly for all my Miller-pounding WI friends in the cheap seats) or savored sip-by-sip with the geek crowd.

Very nice. If French Broad can make a kolsch this appealing, I'm looking forward to the other three bombers resting in the basement.

 932 characters

Photo of metter98
3.74/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On-tap at Mellow Mushroom, Asheville, NC

A: The beer is crystal clear light yellow in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin white head that died down, leaving lacing on the surface and a thin ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: Light to moderate aromas of grassy hops are present in the nose.
T: The taste has flavors of bready malts along with slight hints of bitterness.
M: It feels light-bodied (but not watery) on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is easy to drink and has some refreshing properties. It makes for a good beer to drink outside on a hot summer day.

 650 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Gateway Kolsch from French Broad Brewing Co.
3.72 out of 5 based on 180 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.