Smoked Maple Lager
Jack's Abby Brewing

Smoked Maple LagerSmoked Maple Lager
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Lager - Rauchbier
3.81 | pDev: 11.81%
Jack's Abby Brewing
Massachusetts, United States
Retired (no longer brewed)
Very Good
Smoked Maple LagerSmoked Maple Lager
Notes: Collaboration with Lawson's Finest Liquids
Reviews: 65 | Ratings: 437 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of cpetrone84
cpetrone84 from Pennsylvania

3.5/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pour is a hazed copper with a tight light tan head. Nose is strong grain up front, a bit rubbery. Hints of woody ash, and a touch of tree sap. Taste is super smokey, full on campfire. Some grain underneath and a hint of sweet tree sap. Body is light, carb is strong, feel is a hint slick.

Jul 17, 2014
Photo of KarlosT
KarlosT from Massachusetts

4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very interesting beer. A maple bacon flavor (yes bacon), with a very interesting meaty after-taste. If someone had asked me if I wanted a maple bacon beer with a meaty aftertaste ... heck no. But for some reason, this beer works. Can't say I would drink it all the time, but if I find this, I will definitely have it again.

Again ... very interesting beer.

May 28, 2014
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Treyliff from West Virginia

3.88/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into a snifter

A- pours a bright & clear copper color with ruby hue, small fizzy white head that reduces to leave a few patches of lace

S- smoky roasted malt with notes of campfire, coffee bean and earthy aromas, sweet maple. This actually smells very similar to a nice smoked porter

T- caramel malt, sweet honey, baked apples, glazed ham. The smoke actually becomes most prominent after the finish with a camp-fire-ash smokiness that lingers on the palate

M- medium body with moderate prickly carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel and a dry, crisp finish

O- definitely the most drinkable Rauchbier that I've had. It's sweet up front and smoky on the finish

Mar 19, 2014
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ghostwalker from Massachusetts

3.66/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Red gold body with fluffy finger of marshmallow head.

Nose is smoky and sweet. Mouthwatering.

Flavor is light but sweet. Not a usual combination. Smokiness is very present, but not over-powering. Maple sweetness really hits the mark here, without being cloying.

Pretty thin overall. Mouthfeel is slick and lightly coating.

Drinkability is very high. The mild flavors and light body make it very easy to enjoy.

Mar 16, 2014
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magictacosinus from California

4.06/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks, angrybabboon. Poured out of a 500ml bottle into a snifter. Bottling date is November, I believe.

Dark amber in color, ranging on some redness throughout. Pours a decently fluffed up white head filled with large bubbles and slight stickiness throughout, but that dies down rather quickly. Carbonation, as always, is very good, with a cascade of bubbles that drift to the top. No faults here, although I'd never guess this was brewed with maple or smoked based on the appearance.

Oh yeah! THIS is a rauchbier, unlike the Coffee Smoke & Dagger I had right before this one in the same evening. Big notes of smokiness, often resembling honey glazed ham (Virginia ham, maybe?) and bacon rinds, alongside a caramel sweetness (again, no maple), pears, apples, and some grassy zesty flavors at the end. The power of suggestion would lead to me to believe that I was smelling some maple syrup here, but I believe its long gone at this point. This mainly shines for its smoky, savory flavor, alongside the undeniable touch of sweetness that this brewery's selection of lagers is known for.

The flavor is a blast of smoked honey and caramel glazed ham, some gaminess, pepper, and some creaminess from the malts at the finish. Slightly savory and hearty in character at first, this dies down and is replaced with some nicely balanced cider notes, pears, apricots, and lemon and grass zest at the finish. A caramel-like sweetness cleanses the palate and subdues the stronger smoky notes of the beer. The carbonation is stronger and cleaner based on how this beer was made, and the character is slightly refreshing and yet simultaneously biscuit-like, which makes it an easy (albeit steady) effort to consume. Really unique, and really fantastic to see domestic breweries making beers like this.

Man, I haven't had too many domestically smoked beers, but this one really hits the spot for now. I really wish they continue to make this, as I would love to have a fresher bottle of this and hopefully expect fresher maple notes within the beer. Otherwise, as savory as it is, I really enjoy how refreshing and crisp its build is.

Feb 06, 2014
Photo of dheacck11
dheacck11 from Connecticut

4.13/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Nice bright and clear auburn color with a hint of amber and cayenne. No real head. Definitely notice the maple and lots of smoke. Smells like a smoky gouda or sweet smoked bacon.

Tastes really bright and crisp. Good sweet maple up front then a lot of smoky char, but not burnt tasting. Really just smoked, with some hickory and cedar flavors. Finishes with a soft malt back bone.

Feel is perfect lager style. Refreshingly light but with a little oomph.

Really unique flavors and super drinkable. Great for BBQ or in the fall.

Dec 13, 2013
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angrybabboon from Massachusetts

4.18/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Consumed 11/29/13, originally saved for Thanksgiving night, but I was too drunk on pie

Appearance: Somewhere between medium amber and dark copper in color, lightly hazy with some clarity, pours with a medium-sized, light beige head, fades to a nearly solid cap - leaves some nice streaks and spots of lacing

Smell: Light smoke and maple aromas on top of a nicely complex malt profile - smoke, smoked malts, and some general roastiness - some maple, not a ton - some nice caramel malts, biscuits, and some molasses - light sweetness - light hint of hops - very clean overall, especially for a Rauchbier

Taste: Remarkably balanced considering the big flavors here - nice, low amount of smoke - might be disappointing to someone looking to drink an ashtray, but it works for me - lightly smoky with some nicely smoked malts - some maple syrup and molasses - caramel, caramel malts, and some toasty grains - ultimately, the flavor profile is like biscuits drizzled with maple syrup and then heated up over a campfire - nice depth for the malts, finishes very clean

Mouthfeel: Medium body, nicely carbonated, smooth, finishes crisp and clean

Overall: Pairs best with pancakes, beards, and flannel

I've only had a few beers from Lawson's, but I think I have had enough (along with beers from Jack's Abby) to claim that this is a remarkable fusion of what I would expect from these breweries. This is a very nice beer, and I'm glad I was able to find it on the shelves months after it first appeared.

Nov 29, 2013
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MNishCT77 from District of Columbia

4.07/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

16.9 oz. bottle obtained on trade (thanks, Greg R.), 2013 vintage but unclear bottling date, poured into my FFF Teku glass, drank 10/31/13 over an hour.

A: 2/3 - amber-red coloration, moderate clarity (could not read or see through), one finger head resolves into a subtle glass lacing persisting throughout pour, minor alcohol legs

S: 9/12 - intense smoke/rauchbier aroma admixed with caramel and maple notes

T: 16/20 - on the anterior tongue, there's an intense smokiness with some minor Noble hop spiciness; in the middle of the mouth, the malts start to emerge that matches the aroma perfectly - again, maple, caramel, toffee; little aftertaste that invites another sip quickly; little-to-no lager yeast flavors on my palate

M: 3/5 - moderate-bodied; appropriate carbonation; little alcohol aroma

O: 8/10 - I am not a big fan of rauchbiers and smoked flavors in other styles; however, this beer comes correct due to the balance of the malts, maple and clean lager yeast; I'm drinking this beer from Framingham on Halloween, which seems appropriate; solid Fall New England beer here from two excellent New England breweries

TOTAL = 38/50

Nov 01, 2013
Photo of MDDMD
MDDMD from Pennsylvania

3.99/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-slightly hazy orange amber color with a nice off-white head and no lacing

S-smoky, caramel malt, maple , light citrus, earthy

T-maple, caramel malt, citrus, smoke, apple, mild bitter finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, crisp

O-nice flavors and well-balanced, enjoyable drinking

Sep 20, 2013
Photo of CHADMC3
CHADMC3 from Connecticut

4.18/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a transparent copper body with subtle carbonation rising to the abundant, foamy off-white head which eventually gives way to a constant, thin ring of lacing which clings the glass for the duration.

Nice aromas, the maple is certainly present with toffee and biscuit as well as the smoked wood one would expect.

The flavor is similar and it really does a fine dance between sweet and smoke as the maple and rauch play well together and there even seems to be a touch of munich type malt in there which offers a carmel quality sweetness.

Medium in carbonation with a lighter open and finish but bordering on chewy mid-body as you enjoy the maple.

I'm impressed. The maple really takes the edge off the smoke if you are not a rauch bier traditionalist. Well done.

Sep 16, 2013
Photo of LittleDon
LittleDon from Texas

3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Brown copper color with very little head retention. Medium light bodied and medium carbonation. Barbeque sandwich aroma, bread and smoke. Flavor profile has less smoke than a traditional Rauchbier and less dry than a traditional lager. More caramel than maple.

Sep 05, 2013
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take_it_sleazy from Vermont

3.89/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured this into good nature snifter. I really enjoy everything ive had from both breweries so far.

A: a nice, deep copper color. Minimal head that dissipated pretty instantly. No lacing.

S: maple hits me instantly, with smoked malts following subtly in the background. Not getting much hop aroma in this one.

T: not nearly as much maple as I thought I was going to get. Nice, mellow beer that works very well with the selected malts. A crisp refreshing taste. A lunch meat like aftertaste with spice lingering.

M: light bodied, plenty of carbonation. A surprisingly good beer for a warm summer day. Normally maple is associated with porters, but the subtleness of the maple allows the body to be a large presence in the enjoyment of this beer. An astringent like after effect that coats the inside of the cheeks. Interesting beer in this respect.

O: got this one along with the 2nd anniversary and I must say I enjoyed the double ipl more. That being said I find this beer highly enjoyable, but I was expecting a bit more from a collab effort from two of my favorite breweries. A great option if you are craving something sweet and malty.

Aug 30, 2013
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BlackBelt5112203 from Michigan

3.77/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Thanks a ton to beersndrums for this one!

500 mL bottle poured into a globe at cellar temperature.

L – Deep amber color with a 2-finger bubbly cream-colored head that dissipates rapidly into a ring of bubbles around the glass. No lacing. Crystal clear with lots of bubbles.

S – Fits the name to a tee – lots of smoked malt and maple syrup with a touch of brown sugar. Not much more than that.

T – It starts off sweet with lots of maple syrup and rich brown sugar malt. As the taste progresses, a bit of smoky malt comes in, just enough to round out the sweetness of the maple syrup.

F – Light-bodied, decent carbonation, a crisp and clean mouthfeel, and a mildly smoky and mildly dry finish.

O – This is a pretty good beer. I’m not going to lie and say that I didn’t expect a bit more from a collaboration between two of the best breweries in New England, but it’s still a tasty beer. I wish there was a bit more smoke to round out the sweetness and to add some complexity. Nevertheless, it’s a good and drinkable beer that’s worth a try if you get the chance. Thanks for giving me the chance, Jared!

Aug 25, 2013
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shangwang from Pennsylvania

4.09/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was recently given a mixed four pack of Jack's Abby brews by a good friend from the Boston area. I've been looking forward to trying their beers, as well as Lawson's, who I also have yet to have tried.

Poured with a thin finger of whispy white head which dissipated quickly to a very thin ring around the inner edge of the glass. The beer was chestnut in color and slightly hazy. Lots of smoke in the smell, like smoked gouda cheese, and an earthy peat quality. Loved the smell. The taste carried the same smoky character as the smell, but a sweet finish set this one apart from many of the rauchbiers I've had before. The smoke wasn't nearly as intense as I expected, and the beer tasted like liquid applewood bacon to me. The mouthfeel was slightly flat and mellow - not much bite or thickness to it.

I very much enjoyed this unique beer and would absolutely love to enjoy it again someday.

Aug 23, 2013
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hagbergl from Maryland

3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a pint on tap at Armsby Abbey in Worcester, MA.

Appearance (3.5/5): Amber and a one finger, creamy off white head.

Smell (4/5): Smells a little peaty and lightly sweet. Has a good clean lagery aroma and unlike any beer I've ever smelled. It has elements that remind me of Schlenkerla's rauchbiers but the maple character adds a completely different element to this beer. Really interesting, though some might rather call it "weird."

Taste (4/5): Wow. This beer is a lot different than expected. The maple flavor is not as intense as I thought it would be. The light maple flavor combines with the smoked malt to actually create a bacon-like flavor in the aftertaste. Very crisp. The flavor also has a bit of a sweet potato- or squash-like flavor. This would be perfect around the Thanksgiving table.

Mouthfeel (4/5): Light body and nice, medium carbonation that adds just enough effervescence to the beer. It has a very lagery feel to it–clean and crisp–and the smoked malt is not overwhelming at all.

Overall (4/5): This beer is actually quite easy to drink, despite what the name might make one think. The smoked malt and maple flavors separate this beer from the pack, and in a good way. This beer has the flavor of acorn squash with maple syrup. The one point I will make about this beer is that it might be best enjoyed in a smaller serving, say, 9 or 10 ounces instead of the full 12. Good stuff, nonetheless; something I expect every time from Jack's Abby and Lawson's.

Aug 22, 2013
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REVZEB from Illinois

4.26/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Really dark amber, no head. Smells like a campfire: smoke, char, wood, with maple and caramel coming through on the finish, really pleasant for autumn. Sharp contrast between the smoke, char and wood vs the maple, but in an invigorating way. Feel is sharp and smoky, with higher carbonation for style.

Aug 20, 2013
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SnifterWorthy from Michigan

4.17/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Pours a deep, murky amber with a tinge of red (almost akin to maple syrup). Small amount of white foam that leaves as quick as it came.


Sweet malts, maple syrup, and a smokey campfire scent


Starts with malty sweetness which gets covered by a smooth smoke flavor. The beer has subtle woody notes from the barrel aging, and the smoke is in perfect balance with the rest. This reminds me of 2 things: breakfast (maple sausage links come to mind) and camping.


Medium-bodied and not very carbonated. Most rauchbiers I've had left my mouth with a numb, unpleasant, nearly orajel-like sensation. This one did not.


Great rauchbier. It's sweet, smokey, an easy drinker, and one of a kind

Aug 19, 2013
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gcamparone from Rhode Island

4.31/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 16 oz bottle into a tulip glass. Purchased at Yankee Spirits in Attleboro, MA.

A- Pours a cloudy, dark amber body with golden highlights. Has a 2" white head that reduces fairly quickly to nothing. No lacing.

S- The aroma is very smokey.. campfire, charred malt, burnt coffee, and almost a burnt sugar/toffee scent.

T- Where do I begin.. the first impression is like drinking a campfire - there's a super potent smokiness to this beer but it's not overbearing. This transcends into burnt sugar, toffee, and caramel notes. The maple shows up on the finish.. very subtle maple but it's definitely there and adds complexity, and for that +1/2 point for taste!

M- Could be a little heavier, light-ish body with a little too much carbonation. Doesn't take away from the overall enjoyment though.

This was a very good interpretation of a less common style. The Germans would be proud. Complex and extremely flavorful.

Aug 15, 2013
Photo of ehammond1

3.59/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Bottle (2013)

Acquired via NBA LIF victory
Thanks, brooklynbrews!

A copper and dark amber without much of a head. There's a thin film of off-white bubbles atop. Leaves the glass nearly clean on the way down. Unremarkable and somewhat lifeless.

A nice maple and honey sweetness leads in the aroma, along with mild smoke and toast in the background. Simple, straightforward, but remarkably present.

Low bitterness, maple-dipped, toasted waffle leads the way in the flavor with a little bit of a lingering, almost meat-like smoke character on the finish. The smoke character lingers longer than the rest of the flavors. Moderately refreshing.

Medium bodied with fairly low carbonation.

An easily crushable bottle of an interesting lager, but I wouldn't necessarily seek it out specifically in the future.

Aug 07, 2013
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xnicknj from Pennsylvania

3.63/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

bottle poured into taster

Mostly clear golden-amber pour with a thin film of beige head, dissolving completely. Formidable smoke in the nose with sweeter touches of maple syrup, roasted malts and honey. Peat and smoke collapse onto the tongue right off the bat, followed by maple syrup. Lightly sweet, heavily smoked and resting on a medium malt backbone with toasted bread and caramel. Finishes with lingering dry smokiness. Fuller medium body, dry and lasting on the palate.

They weren't kidding when they said 'smoked' lager. I enjoy rachbiers, although since Lawson's was in on this I was hoping for a bit more of that maple love.

Aug 06, 2013
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inlimbo77 from Delaware

3.74/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

16oz, 5/1/13
Hill Farmstead wine glass

A: Hazy deep orange in color. Initially a thin layer of bright white head. Fades into a collar of white. Loose bubbles. Carbonated.

S: Very interesting nose. Initially you smell that sweetness, from the maple syrup and lactose for sure. Then hidden beneath is the smoked malt character. It's subtle.

T: Again, another interesting JA beer. Initially getting nice sweetness from the maple and milk sugars. It's clearer and easier drinking than expected. Then that slight smoke flavor come in on the back of the palate and lingers. Per the lager style, close is fairly clean less the lingering smoke.

M: Medium bodied. Silky and clean.

Aug 05, 2013
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jsg978 from Massachusetts

4.47/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4.75

Another great beer form an amazing brewery.

The Maple provides the perfect sweetness that most Rauchbiers ultimately lack to balance out the smokiness.
Had from the bottle plenty of times. Finally got to try it on tap. Draught puts this beer into the phenomenal category. The Maple comes through and flourishes. Never overpowering, a nice compliment to this style of beer.
Very smooth drinking and can be drank in both the dog days of summer and the snowy days of a New England Winter.

Can't wait to see what Jack's Abby comes up with next.

Aug 02, 2013
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N17shelfside from California

3.63/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Maybe rating a little high because I really like maple syrup, but this is interesting for the "rauchbier" style that it emulates with the syrup variation. Not a lot going on with the initial smell, maybe because the beer is a little old now? On the pour the head appears and disappears fairly quickly. The smokiness was very light compared to something like Aecht Scherlanka, and stronger than something like Boson de Higgs, although it lingers softly in a pleasant way with the extra sweetness that the syrup imparts. Overall a nice summer drinker.

Jul 18, 2013
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harrymel from Washington

3.1/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Bottle date can't be read.

Pours murky amber with really no indication of carb, some soapy bubbles around the rim. Smells of malt, some smoke, a little plastic and oaky character. No maple in the nose for me. Flavor is sweet malts, smoke (not too overpowering), some tea, some mineral character. Maybe a bit thin with lower than appreciated carb with an off dry finish. Don't really see what lawson's added to the mix here, the smoke is well done, but the beer overall isn't something I'm impressed with.

Jul 18, 2013
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Gatch from Rhode Island

4.24/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

There's a date printed on the label but it isn't discernible. JA should go back to the previous system where they printed the month and year or season on the label with the rest of the text.

A: Clear amber with shades of brown and a fizzy, thin, white head that builds and fades quickly. No lace or retention. Just liquid.

S: You get more maple in the nose than you do in the taste. Plenty of smoke, wood, roasted malt, and caramelized sugars.

T: This is really nice, although I'm a big fan of the style. Great roasted/smoked character with sweet, woody malt and a bit of maple sugar to bring it all together. Not overly smoky or roasty.

M: Super smooth, clean, and full of great flavor. Pretty much no carbonation but it works with this beer. Nice finish.

O: Another fantastic smoke beer from JA and with the addition of Lawson's knowledge it's even better. Could have had more of a maple presence but it's still mighty fine as is. Delicious beer.

Jul 08, 2013
Smoked Maple Lager from Jack's Abby Brewing
Beer rating: 86 out of 100 with 437 ratings