Blue Buck
Phillips Brewing Company

Blue BuckBlue Buck
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Pale Ale - English
Ranked #98
Ranked #41,492
3.63 | pDev: 12.12%
Phillips Brewing Company
British Columbia, Canada
Blue BuckBlue Buck
Notes: The Blue Buck is a legendary beast known to grant those that see him good fortune and safe travels! A deep amber coloured beer, the Blue Buck has a crisp finish featuring a delicate hop aroma. Certainly seeing the Blue Buck on bottle grants the drinker a great experience! Worth searching for.
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Reviews: 49 | Ratings: 204 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of arizcards
arizcards from Arizona

3.46/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Da Boss enjoyed an imperial pint which i finished the last 1/3rd of it in Victoria BC for a happy hour price of $5.50 CD.

Beer was served dark orange with a nice white head with the original service.

Nose was pretty mellow with some light citrus but not much else.

Taste was very well balanced but lacking some popping caramel malt and citrus i would expect for the style. Bitterness was 2/10.

Mouthfeel was medium bodied and pretty refreshing.

Overall not a bad beer but nothing special. But it was enjoyed with a wonderful late glorious spring day in Victoria so it is all good!

May 24, 2019
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Beginner2 from Illinois

3.74/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

From a flight at Rogue kitchen and Wet Bar.
Blue Buck isa decently balanced pale with a dry finish; but not too hoppy, just subtle... like brewed in the Mother Country.
I went on Phillips website and apparently it was founded on credit cards in 2001... So many things are possible with persistence.... including good beer.

Nov 12, 2018
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patre_tim from Thailand

3.75/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Amber orange and filtered with lots of fast rising, small bubbled carbonation. Topped with a finger of off white head.

Smells of toasted malts, and light caramel.

Tastes of caramel and toasted malts. Slightly sweet, with a very light hop note.

Smooth, light weight body and lots of carbonation.

Really good brew. Exceeded my expectations as I was mostly purchasing it based on the cool can I found in The Beer Store. Drinking by the frozen lake, Dec 18th, 2017.

Dec 18, 2017
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pootz from Canada

2.9/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Can and on tap - the canned version is a disappointed - amber-gold , small off white head, aromas of caramel, some earthy hop notes and light sweetness - medium body, smooth, soft mouth feel - flavor is malt forward with caramel malts dominating and a nice but understated earthy-woody tone from the hops - finish is long, wet, clean and verging on sweet. - decent drink but I wouldn’t session the canned version. Amber ales are a catch-all category for brewers to run sweet caramel malts forward but this is toned back enough to make it drinkable - maybe 2 or 3

Aug 09, 2017
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Saiyphbeer from Canada

3.1/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tasted in pint glass, on tap.

Slight head. Anemic amber, rusty. Quite a malty smell. Tastes of caramel, a bit hoppy in mid tones. Chalky mouth feel. It's okay, but wouldn't seek it out again.

Jun 24, 2017
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dbl_delta from Pennsylvania

3.83/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap at The Sticky Wicket (Strathcona Hotel) in beautiful downtown Victoria. Poured a very nice light amber with an off-white head. Initial impression is light hops and a solid malt backbone. Medium mouthfeel and carbonation. Refreshing if nothing else. Very enjoyable.

May 25, 2017
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ofYYC from Canada

3.64/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a clear copper with a snow white head. Aroma is dry, like... Wheat? Flavor starts with a crisp, mild hoppiness, followed by a resonating biscuity taste that is quite pleasant, with a gently fuzzy feel to it. Overall, a highly drinkable beer.

Apr 28, 2017
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atigerlife from Hawaii

3.87/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had on tap.

Caramel colored beer with a off-white head, decent looking.

Aroma is sweet, some malts.

Taste is carmamel. Quite sweet. Nice malt backbone. Decent hops.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied.

Overall, glad I tried it. While nothing spectacular, it went well with the food and was quite easy to drink.

Apr 23, 2017
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flagmantho from Washington

3.42/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

I had this beer on-tap in a pint glass at the Waldorf in Vancouver, BC.

Appearance: medium golden hue with minimum haze and a finger of creamy tan foam. Quite good!

Smell: beery and sweet without a ton of character. It's OK.

Taste: caramelly and sweet with a bit of a bitter interjection. Not terrible.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a decent carbonation and OK creaminess.

Overall: a drinkable beer, but not a stellar one.

Feb 17, 2016
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PatrickFox88 from Canada

2.59/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

This is the best selling craft beer in Western Canada, from a west coast brewery generally known for their hoppier offerings

A: Nice amber colour

S: Caramel malt dominant

T: Bread/caramel/biscuit. Very sweet.

M: light and smooth. very crushable.

Overall, it is what it's supposed to be, a step into craft for your macro drinkers; but most craft beer junkies probably won't love this beer.

Jan 24, 2016
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Hat_Fulla_Beer from Canada

3.78/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Day 18 of the Phillips Snowcase advent calendar. 341ml bottle.

Pours a nice bright copper with two fingers of foamy off-white head that leaves Monument Valley lace as it recedes.

Smells of caramel malt and mild citrusy hops.

Tastes of dinner biscuit malt, mild caramel and more mild citrusy, piney hops.

Feels light and mildly frothy. Body is on the light side of medium. Finishes not quite dry.

Verdict: Recommended. Simple, pleasant and sessionable.

Dec 22, 2015
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biegaman from Canada

3.69/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Blue Buck is a name that, for me, conjures thoughts of Canadian wilderness (outstretched skies and lakes, muscular wild deer) but the liquid itself looks very domesticated - figuratively and literally. The sterile cleanliness, polished highlights and pale amber colour characterize many commercial beers.

The aroma has a biscuity maltiness, steely minerality, and pleasantly floral but lightly pungent hoppiness - all the telltale signs of a classic English Pale Ale. The people at the BJCP couldn't have drawn it up much better themselves. It smells like it was brewed some 7500 kilometers east from where it actually is.

Far more mild (in every sense) than its typical West Coast counterparts, Blue Buck doesn't turn green or pink with dank tree serum or sharp citrus notes. But it does have an underlying hoppiness that is subtly fruity and adds appreciable tastes of bergamot as well as hints of marmalade and flower petals.

These flavours pair wonderfully with the overarching maltiness and its butterscotch, biscuity, wafer-like characteristics. The smack of toffee sweetness only compounds the impression that this pale ale would be an acceptable alternative to afternoon tea. It would also make a sessionable cask at the pub too.

Blue Buck is a mediocre beer but it's got everything I enjoy in an British-style pale ale. It's a good candidate to convert the mainstream beer drinker as it balances toothsome sweetness with agreeable hoppiness. While nothing to proudly hang on the wall, it's definitely worth the shot.

Oct 24, 2015
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LampertLand from Canada

3.87/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Phillips Brewing 'Blue Buck' an English Pale Ale @ 5% , served from a squealer purchased for $6
A-pour is a light gold from the squealer to a a clear dark gold/amber in the glass with a medium size off-white head leaving a spotty lace along the pint
S-hoppy with a bit of spice
T-ok tasting pale ale (that's it no wow factor)
MF-ok/lots of carbonation , medium body
Ov-ok English pale ale
prost LampertLand

Jul 24, 2015
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headlessparrot from Canada

3.79/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Blue Buck is *everywhere* in Western Canada--even in the crappiest of dives, in the touristy-ist of mountain-top restaurants--and Western Canada is better for it. There's nothing truly *special* about it, but it's a nice, drinkable beer that's just a bit *different*: heavy, heavy malt character, with a light dusting of hops (more on the smell than taste) and Phillips trademark yeast (just a touch medicinal, but also, weirdly reminds me of, like, crystals? Even though crystals don't have a taste?). Moderate-to-high carbonation, light body. Campfire or canoe-trip or apres-ski approved.

Jul 23, 2015
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DaveBar from Canada

3.99/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased at the LCBO for just around the $2.75 mark or so for a 473ml can. Served at 4deg C in a draught glass

A- Opens well and pours a 1" high white head that lasts for a minute before film out. Medium to dark gold color. Filtered clear

S- Malt galore. Sweet

T- Malt bomb. WOW this is a malty beer. Not much else other than a nice selection of malt

M- A bit above average. Dry

O- Pretty good break from the everyday. At this price point I will put a case away for slow consumption as this malt bomb will work with many different foods

Food Pairing

This nice brew went very well with...... Roast beef with gravy made from the drippings with root vegetables


Jul 19, 2015
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EricVonStein from Canada

4.15/5  rDev +14.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

pours a couple fingers of off white foam that lingers nicely. clear dark honey colour. plenty of active carbonation.

malts malts malts on the nose, bread and grains. So rich with musty bread smell it makes you wonder if youre going to eat it rather than drink it.

surprisingly rich and sweet on the tongue at first, dried sultanas. Lots of malts bring dark rye breadiness strongly through the middle. hint of burnt caramel and a hopps on the finish.

Smooth and creamy in the mouth, good body.

Overall quite surprising! Love the malts that dominate this beer, complimented well with sweetness and a bitter burnt finish. Great from start to finish.

Jul 18, 2015
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taxandbeerguy from Canada

3.83/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

473 ml can served cold into a pint glass. Purchased from LCBO for $2.75 CDN. Good to see another one of this breweries' beers in Ontario stores.

Appearance - mostly clear bronzes color with plenty of bubbles. Two fingers of white head with surprisingly good retention.

Smell - decidely English, tons of tea aroma, light floral aspect and a solid grain backing. Smells wonderful.

Taste - light and mild, some tea and herbal aspects, a touch of toffee and caramel followed by mellow grain. Easy to drink and good if not bold flavors.

Mouthfeel - smooth and light, reasonably carbonated. Very drinkable.

Overall - solid representation of the style and very drinkable. On the maltier side of things with a healthy grain bill, but definitely a light English ale worth seeking out,

Jul 17, 2015
Photo of kevinlater
kevinlater from Canada

3.95/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

473ml can into nonic pint. best before nov 28, 2015. consumed on july 15, 2015

a: clear light copper or medium amber topped with 2 fingers of off-white head

s: mild orangey citrus, hints of stone fruits, quite floral/herbal/leafy/tea-like, backed by a decent caramel presence, plus some apple notes that i recognize in english ales. smells great!

t: follows the nose. nice modest citrus fruits + apple all around with floral touches and bready caramel malt

m: slightly watery but satisfying overall. comes with moderate carbonation

o: a delicious, mildly-hoppy easy-going ale

Jul 15, 2015
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thehyperduck from Canada

3.76/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

473 mL can from the LCBO; best before Nov 28 2015 and served well-chilled.

Pours a clear orange-amber colour, with one inch of frothy, off-white coloured head seated atop. Good retention; it slowly dissipates over the next five minutes or so, settling down into a creamy, lumpy cap and collar accompanied by an uninterrupted curtain of lacing. On the nose, I am getting a mixture of toffee/honey sweetness, bready malts, some nutty notes and a few fruity undertones that include marmalade-y orange, red apple and apricot.

This is an approachable pale ale - not entirely English in nature, but probably still closer to that end of the spectrum, versus the APA end. Bready malts, caramel and toffee, along with some lightly toasted, nutty flavours, characterize the front end of the sip. Mild hints of orchard fruit, such as apricot and apple, are next to come through, with a tinge of orange citrus soon overcome by a leafy, earthy bitterness that lasts through to the finish. Bittersweet aftertaste that encourages quick, successive sips. Light-medium in body, with relatively low carbonation levels that provide a touch of crispness - the overall feel on the palate, however, is fairly smooth, slick, and satisfying.

Final Grade: 3.76, barely eking out a B+. Phillips refers to Blue Buck as a session ale, and it certainly is, at that. This is an unchallenging, enjoyable English-style pale ale that is clearly meant to be consumed in larger quantities than the two cans I picked up. No real complaints here - it's a decent-to-good example of the style, and something I'd like to try on-tap, given the chance. Not an exciting beer by any means, but that's no reason to slag it.

Jul 13, 2015
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Bunman3 from Canada

3.71/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Enjoyed several times, most recently on tap at one of my favorite eateries. Blue Buck has lots going for it. Clear, decent carbonation, and plenty of hops in the aroma profile. The flavour is earthy malt, grass, with a floral citrus hop profile. Blue Buck is a staple of the Phillips line, and worth picking up again and again.

Mar 09, 2015
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nukfan94 from Canada

2.6/5  rDev -28.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

I live in Victoria, so this is everywhere. Cheap, but certainly not terrible. You could be drinking worse things on a light-hearted Friday night with some nachos. The taste is fairly mild, and the aftertaste is underwhelming. Smells a bit like a backyard after a party. Has a yellowy appearance that perhaps suits its price.

Feb 07, 2015
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HipCzech from Texas

3.69/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Sampled during a tour of Phillips in Victoria, BC. A nice clear amber color. Mild caramel malt, fruity ale yeast and earthy bitter hops balance each other. Another easy drinker with just enough character.

Jan 31, 2015
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argock from Virginia

3.21/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a clear pilsner glass. 02/May/15 on top of bottle neck.

A: Clear light chestnut with 1/2-1 finger of off-white, tightly bubbled head with low retention and a jagged strip of lace.

S: Aroma is very low and is mainly medium caramel-toffee and earthy, herbal hops. Not much there.

T: Flavor is also pretty mild with some medium caramel sweetness, up front, low but present bitterness from herbal, earthy hopping, and a sweet finish. Very unobtrusive flavor, maybe a little too unobtrusive. WOuld be a decent session beer, a half-step above BMC.

M: Overcarbonated a tad with an otherwise creamy texture and light body.

O: A bland beer, nothing offensive and probably a good session beer option but really not very flavorful.

Jan 02, 2015
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Svingjo from Canada

3.63/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This poured a coppery colour with a thin head that did stick around for awhile. The nose brought forward an orange citrus smell along with a bit of grass and a bit of toffee. The malt came forward on the tongue with a bit of hoppy citrus. There was another fruit that I couldn't quite put my finger on, maybe unripe peaches. I did find it a bit effervescent but not a bad pale ale but also nothing special.

Dec 22, 2014
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Vinster171 from Canada

4.25/5  rDev +17.1%

Sampled on tap at BierCraft on Cambie street, Vancouver. Golden blonde, clear, with nice malty nose. Hops are not very noticeable at this point. An easy drink, that has a surprisingly strong taste for a beer that is not excessively strong in terms of alcohol percentage. The hop mainly takes a backstage at this point, mostly supporting the malt without revealing itself too much.

Nov 22, 2014
Blue Buck from Phillips Brewing Company
Beer rating: 82 out of 100 with 204 ratings