Ginger Beer
Phillips Brewing Company

Ginger BeerGinger Beer
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Herb and Spice Beer
Ranked #247
Ranked #43,550
3.46 | pDev: 17.92%
Phillips Brewing Company
British Columbia, Canada
Ginger BeerGinger Beer
Notes: With more ginger than Gilligan can handle, some might be surprised at the instant blast of flavour and aroma from this true ginger beer, but that doesn't take away from its sheer quaffability.
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Reviews: 25 | Ratings: 81
Photo of Pantharen
1.55/5  rDev -55.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.25 | overall: 1.5

Three times I have tried this beer.. First in 2012 it was bland and tasted nothing like ginger beer. Again in 2014, nice ginger hit, but the ginger tasted like items powdered ginger, and the after taste was funky.. Again today, and I've had urine tasted better... This is a HUGE fail for Phillips.

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Photo of headlessparrot
2.07/5  rDev -40.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Reviewers here are being awfully generous--I found this nearly undrinkable, and I'm a fan of both ginger beers specifically and ginger as a flavour more generally. Thin body with sharp, medicinal, pickled ginger and sickly malt smells/tastes. Carbonated all to hell. This was very nearly a drain-pour for me.

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Photo of Svingjo
3.55/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured a golden colour with only a slight head. The ginger comes out and hits you in nose. The taste is what you would expect of a ginger beer, slightly citrus with some spice and mildly malty. Actually did not mind this beer even though I'm not usually a ginger beer fan

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Photo of Phyl21ca
2.51/5  rDev -27.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Bottle: Poured a yellow color ale with a large foamy head with good retention and some light lacing. Aroma consists of ginger is quite powerful and dominate most other ingredient. Taste is dominated by a ginger burn with a lightly sweet malt base. Body is about average with good carbonation. Ginger burn is too hot for my taste and almost no floral notes can be distinguished from this overpowering ingredient.

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Photo of wordemupg
3.29/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

650ml bottle poured into tulip 19/9/12

A golden copper with minimal carbonation and not much for head or lace

S I think I might have finally found something that can completely overwhelm Phillips house flavor... pickled sushi ginger and lots of it. It is what it claims I suppose, but I have a hard time smelling anything else

T there`s the house flavor I was waiting for, that and ginger, ginger and oh wait I think I`m picking up on some faint ginger perhaps.. Question Mark É fuck off stupid Spanish É I wanted a question mark dammit !!

M the gingers a little spicy on the finish, a little flat and has enough body too keep it average

O perhaps I`m being a little hard on this one, it is what it claims after all

Why dose my keyboard learn Spanish every now and thenÉ yup that É is supposed to be a question mark. I could see this with sushi but I`m just not thinking of many other reasons to drink it

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Photo of hopsolutely
3.7/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Wow. Definitely different - and takes "herbed / spiced beer" to an entirely new level! Not a beer I'd buy again, but think it's well brewed despite being a tad overwhelming, and I'm glad to have tried it...

Pours a hazy orange amber with enough suspended sediment to look almost gelatinous in the glass. Aroma of pure ginger, with a hint of sweetness in the background, but pretty one-dimensional. The taste is better balanced and actually has malted grain and "beer" elements in the start, before transitioning into a briefly (and pleasantly) "normal" hop bitterness. There is then a distinct transition to a lingering "all ginger" finish.

Only question now is how many days until the ginger fades? Very interesting...

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Photo of Mit
3.95/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- upon pouring its very reminiscent of an IPA in colouring. Slight head that dissipates upon pouring very quickly.

S- smells all ginger all day. Definitely just like the non alcoholic ginger beer

T-omg this is great. Nice balance between the bitter and the sweet . It does taste almost like the pop. Better than st peters ginger...which I loved... Would buy again despite prohibitive price.

M- good mouthfeel for the alc content.

O- solid beer. Would def do it again.

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Photo of biegaman
3.57/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Possibly described as 'Half spicy and peppery, half lemony, slightly sweet but pungent', ginger is a complicated taste to define. Ginger Beer, however, looks pretty simple (and conventional). Its transparent but sandy orange tone is considerably shinier than ginger, but otherwise has a colour that is similar to that of the rhizome.

If this brew really does have "more ginger than Gilligan can handle", I'm not sure what chance the average Joe has. Ginger is generally one of those 'love it or hate it' things and, in my experience, a little can go a long way. All that being said, the bouquet, despite vivid and pungent ginger flavour, is enticing and appropriately tempered.

Ginger Beer, as one might expect, drinks like something out of a Chinese sweets shop. The ultra-zesty, spicy flavour of ginger dominates the beer to an extent that little else is tasted. Par for the course, this is both fragrant and heated. It drinks exactly like a ginger ale, albeit a bit more aggressive, a lot less sweet, and slightly less carbonated. The flavour is pronounced enough that you could likely still taste it even with having a cold.

This is a "spiced" beer - literally - and while ginger might do wonders for the stomach, it can also really do a number on the palate. Although the zest is tempered by a good maltiness, sips occasionally feel as though they've scorched a hole in the back of the throat. Either way, chilled is definitely the way to serve this one. The bottom portion of the bottle was left behind without any reluctance (650ml is a big portion size for a beer like this).

This review required no imagination. Nor does figuring out if this beer might be something you'd like. The ginger character is delivered with the succinctness of a punch to the face - a fairly apt analogy perhaps - which will totally appeal to some, while likely totally turning away many others. All in all, I found it certainly worthwhile, if somewhat challenging.

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Photo of liamt07
3.75/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle from the LCBO, 650ml into a tulip. Best before August 2013.

Hazy dark orange, with a white head of good density. Nose has a lot of spice, sushi ginger, light sweet bready malt. Tastes of ginger ale, with a spiciness that cuts the high carbonation almost as soon as it appears. Fizzling feel, with a long lingering ginger spice. High carbonation, medium light feel. Not really for anyone that doesn't dig ginger, as it is immensely pronounced here.

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Photo of Groulxsome
4.17/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber bottle into a tulip.

Appearance: Light copper-orange with a creamy, thick white head.

Aroma: Pickled ginger (like the kind you get at most standard sushi places), a little bit of lemon citrus, and some sugary sweetness.

Taste: A big punch of ginger, similar to the really spicy, non-alcoholic Jamaican ginger beer that is available at most Canadian grocery stores (Lablaws, etc.), there is a pronounced, almost lemon zest, sweetness and then a really satisfying heat from the ginger. There is a little earthiness in here too to bring down these highly assertive flavours, plus a little sweetness, but overall the taste is profoundly and pungently of really hot, fresh ginger.

Mouthfeel: A light-medium carbonation and a light body. The linger ginger heat (it's not alcohol heat) might be a little intense at first (as the rich bitterness of hops might be if you are unfamiliar with American IPAs) which makes it a little less then pleasant at first, but as I got into it the heat became refreshing. It's perhaps an acquired feeling!

Overall: I've had three types of ginger beer that seem to keep popping up in the craft beer world. The first is a light gingery, "ginger ale" type beer that hits the ginger taste in the aroma but then progresses to a more standard ale taste. The second is a really pungent pickled ginger style ginger beer (I had this at a now closed Montreal Brewpub, Sargent Recruiter) which is, again, lacking that heat, and almost sickly after a while (a little clump of picked ginger is great, but eating the whole jar?). The third is this kind, the way that classic Jamaican-style ginger beer tastes. Big, punchy, a slight smell of pickled ginger but with the overwhelming heat and assertive acidic punch fresh ginger. At only 5% ABV this is a great beer that will help you beat the heat in the way only a good curry can. I could see this ginger heat growing on me as the weather heat continues to rise...

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
2.53/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bomber to pint glass. Fresh bottle.

A - Pale straw yellow. A small layer of off-white head.

S - A big hit of ginger up front with some bready malts and a touch of hop bitterness evident in the background.

T - Massive ginger to the point that it is hard to tell that this is even beer. A slight breadiness is present in the background when you search for it. Way over the top with ginger.

M - Light body. Moderate carbonation.

O - Ended up drain pouring 90% of this one. If I had a cold, this would be a great beer but the ginger is too strong.

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Photo of TerryW
1.8/5  rDev -48%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 2

I'm not understanding the good reviews for this beer that I'm seeing here. This was one of the most harsh, unpleasant beer experiences I've had in some time.

An average looking brew, beer and ginger on the nose. Rough on the palate, dry biting ginger character, distinct chemical edge. I like ginger beer of all types, but this is just too raw and unpolished.

Not recommended.

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Photo of thehyperduck
4.01/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bomber from the LCBO; best before August 2012. I like Vernors, so maybe I'll be a big fan of this? Still, I never like it when these spiced type beers go overboard...

Pours an attractive honey-amber hue, with one finger of fizzy white head that fizzles itself away right before my eyes. A wispy cap remains on the surface, and a thin collar around the edge. Not the most impressive-looking thing I've ever seen - but I am a big fan of the aroma. Biscuity ginger snaps come to mind, alongside some tangerine and earthy, herbal hops. Spicy and sweet without going too crazy.

Pretty tasty stuff, with a predictably intense, spicy presence. Bready, biscuity malt with a light honey sweetness provide a bit of a backbone at first, but the finish and aftertaste is like being walloped with some sort of container full of ginger - but a manageable one: say, a purse full of it, rather than a full-fledged sack. It can catch you off-guard, sure, but no real harm is done. Herbal dryness balances the malts, but everything takes a back seat to the ginger. Spicy aftertaste, with some underlying sweetness that once again reminds me of ginger snaps. Light-bodied, kind of watery, but so crisp and spicy that a hot night like this is probably the best time to be drinking it. If only I had some sushi!

This beer definitely comes as advertised, because there's plenty of freshly-cut ginger flavour to it. This is a spice beer done properly - it doesn't skimp, but it doesn't get completely outlandish either. It's certainly better and bolder than, say, Crabbie's. With spiced beers, grades are always influenced by how palatable the reviewer happens to find that particular spice. Anyone reading this should know that I like ginger - in my tea, in my soft drinks, and now even in my beer - on occasion. This is a perfect seasonal to bring into the LCBO, mostly because I can't imagine finding it nearly as enjoyable at any other time of year.

Final Grade: 4.01, just barely scratching out an A-. If you have no use for ginger, this won't be worth the money. But if you're like me, you'll find Phillips' Ginger Beer to be an exceedingly drinkable, and very unique brew well worth the effort of seeking out. Given my partiality to ginger, it should come as no surprise that I think this is one of the best spiced beers I've had in a long while, and I'd easily recommend it to anyone without a seething hatred for the spice.

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Photo of Digimaika2
3.2/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Semi-hazy bronze colour with a decent height of foam head that promptly recedes to a ring.

S: A ton of ginger upfront that is fresh and appealing, with also some floral notes detectable. The ginger might almost be a bit too dominant as I can't pick out much else.

T: Ginger quite strong throughout that leaves a spicy-sweet burning quality, combined with cloves, pepper, and nutmeg. Reminds me a lot of cinnamon hearts candy combined with nutty gingerbread. Once again, having a tough time picking out other tastes as the ginger is quite strong.

M: Medium bodied with a moderate carbonation. Slightly oily with a prickly and hot mouthfeel.

D: Interesting and glad I tried this as I love ginger, but I was hoping to pick out other tastes that compliment a more subtle ginger taste. Nonetheless, great to see the creativity, and availability in Ontario.

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Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.23/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bomber from the LCBO, part of the 2012 summer release. I haven't had anything from Phillips since I was last in BC, and I remember they were one of my gateway craft brews - good to see them again!

Poured into a nonic. Slightly hazy amber-golden brew with a rich creamy head that will never let you down or desert you. Sticky lace. Nice looking brew indeed.

For most of my life, the only ginger I ever encountered was in Canada Dry, so I often forget just how potent and spicy the real stuff can be. This brew serves as an excellent reminder of this fact. Smells like fresh ginger root and perhaps a touch of hops and pale malts, but really ginger is the star of the show.

Well, this brew certainly delivers what it promises - ginger by the bucketful. I was concerned that this brew would prove to be too spicy for my tastes, and I was right - I'm getting a bit of heartburn and my lips have a constant spicy burn. It certainly tastes like a ginger beer. But the "turn it up to eleven" mentality of this brew just makes it difficult to drink. Might be nice to share a bottle with friends over a platter of sushi, but I really can't see me getting this again, let alone finishing the bottle. A bomber is a bit ridiculous, actually, unless the intent was to share it.

I've had brews infused with ginger that I've enjoyed, because they played the ginger card sparingly, opting for subtlety. This brew takes the ginger to its logical conclusion which is to an overly spicy tangy destination I don't really care for. I have to mark low for beers that I can't finish, and this is one of them.

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Photo of cyrenaica
3.15/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

650ml bottle
5.0% ABV

The first Phillips beer available for sale in Ontario and part of the 2012 LCBO Summer Feature. I tried this beer on June 2, 2012 after purchasing from the King/Spadina LCBO outlet in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The beer poured a translucent gold colour with a 1" off-white cap. The aroma was grainy malt and ginger. The mouthfeel was medium bodied with medium carbonation. The flavour was very gingery, reminiscent of a ginger snap, and peppery. There was some grainy malt in there as well, and not a lot of bitterness.

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Photo of andrenaline
3.6/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

As part of the LCBO summer release...

A - Pours a nice clear golden copper colour, thumb of big bubbled head with some retention and no real lacing.

S - Ginger blast in your nostrils, light citrus and hints of bready malt followed by more ginger.

T - Fresh cut ginger, earthy citrus hop notes, the ginger heat blast continues to dominate throughout and the finish is more ginger with a touch of bitterness, some leafy greens and touch of caramel and bread notes.

M - Medium bodied, prickly, spicy and finishes with a touch of heat.

O - They aren't kidding about the ginger levels in this brew. This stuff is ginger throughout and was a tad overwhelming, but at the same time it kept me wanting more. This fits the bill of a ginger beer, and is by far the most powerful of the style I've tried to date. The heat is reminiscent of fresh ginger on sushi and it would certainly pair well. Worth a try indeed.

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Photo of Sammy
3.62/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

lcbo bottle. Pours thickish medium yellow. Big spicy ginger, and that's it.One dimensional, better than the sweet soda versions. Medium mouthfeel. Decent drinkability. Not something worth more than a glass.So a bomber is a lot. Better on a hot day, fising by the lake.

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Photo of leaddog
3.83/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - A hazy gold colour with warm amber tones. Pours with a thin white head.

Smell - Fresh ginger, passionfruit/guava, and citrus fruits.

Taste - Fresh ginger root taste comes through prominently, but does not overpower the beer's hops flavour. Slightly bitter and not as sweet as expected. Slight lemon taste as well.

Mouthfeel - Ginger leaves a slight tingle in the mouth after swallowing (very pleasant). Light-to-medium bodied with good carbonation.

Overall - An enjoyable ginger beer from Phillips. Better than other Canadian ginger beers/ales that I have sampled recently. Expected more ginger and sweetness, but was pleasantly surprised by the balance of ginger vs. beer. I quite enjoy the nice, tingly feeling left on the tongue. Well executed brew.

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Photo of IronDjinn
3.7/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 650 ml brown bottle. Pours out a slightly hazed light amber hue, tight frothy white head.

The aroma starts with a hit of both earthy, spicy ginger and some sweet candied ginger. Faint bready malt behind it all.

Grainy malt up front that also carries a biscuity snap, while earthy ginger dominates the middle and finish.

Mouthfeel is pretty solid for any style of beer, medium-bodied with silky and well-attenuated texture that gives it a fuller feel, finishing with a brisk zip of moderate carbonation.

This ale certainly delivers the goods when it comes to ginger, and there isn't any off-flavours, however I think I hit my limit after about half a bottle. While it's good for what it is, there isn't much dimension after a certain point, and I suppose I lost interest after a while. Still enjoyable though, I'll probably get more to share, and also to pair with food.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
3.85/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - clear golden with a light orange tint, thumb of white head retained at a decent covering from a constant stream of bubbles
S - sweet spicy ginger, grainy, some herbal earthy aromas
T - a bright blast of fresh ginger, biscuity malt, a pleasant sweetness with a herbal hop finish
M - light and very refreshing, spice tickle through the back of the throat, slightly dry
O - the ginger flavour is fresh and prominent but well balanced, a very nice example of an under appreciated style

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Photo of canucklehead
3.03/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is one of a few Ginger Beers making the rounds in BC . This is quite a understated ginger beer letting the ginger take a lesser role in the flavour profile. Not a bad beer though I found some off flavours in the finish , almost a cardboardy taste like the beer was old which is weird as it has only been on shelves for about a month. I found the carbonation lacking as well and realized that I want a lively fresh beer with more ginger for the style. Not as good as Granville Islands version

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Photo of Derek
4.02/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Hazy, coppery-bronze with an off-white head, very little retention or lace.

Candied ginger aroma, hints of biscuit & tropical fruit.

Ginger is upfront, but quite pleasant and not overbearing. They've got the ginger right. Light biscuit and toffee, hints of fruity esters, crisp bitterness.

Well-attenuated, moderate body has a crisp finish.

An easy drinker and well-crafted brew.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.95/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

650ml bottle, shared with my better half at a fine park on Bellingham Bay.

This beer pours a clear medium copper amber hue, with two fingers of puffy, tightly foamy, and somewhat creamy off-white head, which leaves a spotty wall of lace around the glass as it evenly recedes.

It smells at first whiff of a sightlier more zingy version of Canada Dry ginger ale, but once I get acclimated, the fresh ginger, bready malt, and soft, clove-like spice are borne out. The taste is more peppy ginger root (like the mildly pickled stuff you get with sushi), a solid crackery bready malt, and noticeably bitter earthy, floral hops.

The carbonation is middle to low in strength, the body a decently innocuous medium weight, and more or less smooth, all over a slight spicy edginess. It finishes with a step up in the bitterness, hops and ginger ganging up on the once equally-footed malt.

Overall, an enjoyable, well rounded ginger beer - and while the guest spice plays it nice, it doesn't lack for presence, either, and works well with the other resident flavours. I can duly imagine enjoying one of these with some spicy maki in an overpriced Lotusland sushi joint.

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Photo of BDTyre
3.85/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice ginger beer, not as sweet as Gentleman Jim's. Nice orange body and a big, ginger nose. Ginger dominates, very little sweetness or hops. Rich, fire-y ginger flavour with a bit of sweet malts and some mild hop bitterness.

A little bit under-carbonated, though the ginger does help that a bit. Weird aftertaste, but otherwise a great beer.

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Ginger Beer from Phillips Brewing Company
Beer rating: 79 out of 100 with 81 ratings