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Cream Ale | Hardywood Park Craft Brewery

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BA SCORE
83
good
33 Reviews
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Cream AleCream Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
Virginia, United States | website

Style: Cream Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.40%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
In 1935, Richmond, Virginia made beer history as the first place ever to sell canned beer, a cream ale from Krueger Brewing Company. A tribute to the original canned beer, Hardywood Cream Ale is an unfiltered example of the style that embraces its east coast roots with an unbelievably smooth body and a refreshingly clean finish from extended cold conditioning in our lagering tanks. Raise a can to RVA, where the canned beer revolution began!

Added by cw577enfield on 05-16-2013

BEER STATS
Reviews:
33
Ratings:
183
Avg:
3.64
pDev:
27.75%
 
 
Wants:
7
Gots:
44
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 33 | Ratings: 183
Photo of tempest
3.73/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Crisp with mild esters and a toasty, honey malt character. Maybe a little corn/DMS in the nose. It's a fun session beer, ideal for summer. I'd invest in a 12-pack for a BBQ.

 173 characters

Photo of vabeerguy
3.52/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a can into a nonic pint glass. The initial smell seemed skunky but that was short lived. The taste was more of a thirst quencher than a "wow" beer but given the low ABV I think that was the point.

 210 characters

Photo of stucat
3.4/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

My daughter brought some of these back from a trip to Richmond last week. A cream ale has never been one of my preferred styles as I tend to like a more hop forward ale but given the heat wave here in Illinois this is a very nice "lawn mower" brew. Pours a pretty straw color into a pint glass without much head or lacing. Not much fragrance either but a nice malty flavor with a hint of biscuit and corn, slightly sweet, very refreshing. More tasty than the Genesee Cream Ale of my New Jersey youth many years ago and very similar to the famous New Glarus Spotted Cow from my neighbors to the North. A very nice summertime brew.

 630 characters

Photo of OldSwampy
3.96/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A good example of the need to rate a beer with its style in mind. This is a cream ale, a.k.a. lawnmower beer to some. But it is a great example of that style. Even if there are many beers out there with bigger flavor, this one is a nicely balanced example of this type. Thinking about it that way, it's hard for me to give it less than a 4 in most categories. Only the nose seemed a bit weak. Color was a murky gold with a white moderately sudsy and slightly durable head. Smell was minimal, but balanced. Taste was balanced: modest light to medium grains, mild hops. The taste evolved as the beer warmed and stood out well after I had a bite of food (after drinking more than half of it). Food brought out more maltiness in particular. Mouthfeel clean and aftertaste modest. It would be very easy to drink several of these.

12 ounce can, poured into a clear glass, bottom stamped 03/08/16.

 891 characters

Photo of oldn00b
3.76/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

This is a nice session beer - I'm not a huge fan of cream ales and haven't had that many but it has a nice malt base and a really smooth mouthfeel. Not overly sweet or hop forward, but a nice brew I'd have again.

 213 characters

Photo of mvanaskie13
3.71/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a tall pint glass: color is darker straw, a little opaque, head is white, fine bubbles presents about 1/4 inch thick.

Smell is sweeter grains, touch biscuit and bread, then some subtle hops, earthy.

Taste is also a bit sweet with prominent cereal grains, lighter toast and bread/biscuit flavors. It is flavorful but maybe a touch sweet.

Mouthfeel is a bit sharper and bitter than the aroma and flavor would reveal. Drying hops and bitterness that linger.

Overall, a this brew looks like a cream ale, but leans to the sweeter side instead of the smoother creamy side.

 583 characters

Photo of MyThoughtsExactly
3.29/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Poured from a can into a pint glass
L: Light yellow, translucent color and a thin puck of head.
S: Sweet cream smell with notes of candy and wheat malt
T: Pilsner like flavor with some notes of creamed candy
F: Light and crisp
Although I'm not that familiar with the style, I found this beer enjoyable for being such a low ABV. Has a good amount of malt flavor mixed with creamy candy sweetness.

 395 characters

Photo of Tucquan
3.65/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Had this on 2015-08-18 in Columbia, PA from a 12oz can.

A - Mildly-hazy golden-yellow with a 1-finger white head that fades quickly with almost no lace.

S - Honey, bread and sweet floral. Pleasant but not very strong.

T - Cereal, citrus flesh, honey grass and some noble hop spice and bitterness. Much more flavor than I expected from the smell. Decent lingering flavors of sour dough bread with honey and mild hop bitterness.

M - Light-medium body and carbonation.

O - Definitely better and more satisfying than a Genesee Cream Ale and at only 4.4%, it's got good flavor.

 584 characters

Photo of DerekP
3.87/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A lot of carbonation bubbling up in this golden brew. Head retention all the way. Smell is appealing with floral hops and some malty sweetness. Taste is again, some malty sweetness under a peppery/hoppy blanket. Feel is crisp, very carbonated. I could drink this all day. At 4.4%, I wish this had as much availability as Yuengling Traditional Lager. Bought a can of this at Murphy Beverage Co in Old Town Winchester, VA.

 420 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.39/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 oz can.
Lively carbonation with a near medium body.
So so aroma but a significantly better than average (for style) flavor.
Bready malts with considerably more spicy hops than expected.
Perhaps a bit off style, but better off for it.

 236 characters

Photo of Jeffreysan
4.59/5  rDev +26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

12 oz can, poured into a pint glass

Appearance: Pours a beautiful, semi-clear, golden a finger of white-colored head that quickly dissolved away into a thin halo of foam that gripped the sides of the glass.

Aroma: Hmmm. Not much in the way of aroma. Faint, really, faint, notes of toasted malt, and maybe some honey, but not much else.

Taste: Wow! What this beer lacks in aroma, it much more than makes up for in flavor! Strong flavors of toasted malt up front, biscuit-like and bready, followed by some caramel and honey-like sweetness, a hint of black pepper, and maybe vanilla. No hops what-so-ever. Delicious!

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied and extremely smooth and creamy, as there is no carbonation what-so-ever. With an ABV of 4.4%, there is no alcohol on the palate.

Overall: This is an exceptional cream ale! One of the best I’ve had in fact! Strong flavors of malt and caramel-like sweetness, wrapped up in an extremely smooth and creamy quaff. Delicious and highly recommended for fans of cream ales!

 1,027 characters

Photo of Slack
3.56/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Flaxen colored with quite a bit of head. Smells sweet and bready. Taste is a mild sweetness with a good amount of carbonation from start to finish. Mouthful is light with a very slight hoppy finish. A very smooth beer and easily drinkable.

 242 characters

Photo of bubseymour
4.12/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice light easy to drink ale, with a crisp hoppy taste and finish. Seems close to a nice Kolsch but this is classified as a cream ale. I think this is a nice summer beer.

 174 characters

Photo of brentk56
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Despite a hard pour, the beer doesn't raise much of a head out of the can and it pours a slightly hazy honey color; not much lacing

Smell: A little grainy, with some sugary corn tone; not much in the aromatics, however

Taste: A touch grainy, up front, with just a touch of balancing hops; tastes a bit of sweet corn but mostly non-descript

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with low to moderate carbonation; a touch watery

Overall: This beer serves a certain market segment and I imagine it is popular with those who don't want much flavor or bite

 566 characters

Photo of teromous
3.96/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

From the can: 16:30 09-22-1 (not sure if the year date stamp got rubbed off or if it never made it on)

Appearance: Good transparency, only slightly hazy, light golden body with a thick fluffy white head, great lacing. Visible carbonation.

Aroma: There is a light floral hop aroma; very pleasant! There is a bit of a sugary smell to it as well...it's a bit hard to describe...but, well it just smells like sugar. I get some of the grain in there too, very similar to Cheerios.

Taste: The grain flavor comes through very nicely. Again it has a cereal flavor that is accompanied by a spicy but light hop flavor. The hop flavor gives it just enough juxtaposition to keep it interesting against the sweet cereal backdrop without being rough or imposing. The aftertaste is a light honey-like flavor.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is nice and smooth. It feels about average...perhaps a bit low on carbonation but it feels alright. It's light on the palate.

Overall: I really would recommend this beer if you like lighter beers that have a good amount of flavor without being overwhelming on bitterness or sweetness. This is a nice light beer that sacrifices neither hop nor grain flavor in its overall construction. I am very pleased that I bought this and I will be picking some more up!

 1,281 characters

Photo of IronLover
3.53/5  rDev -3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Deep yellow in color with a hint of orange and a touch of haze. Poured with a thick, fizzy foam that reduced to a wispy cap. Bready malt and corn aromas. Aggressive, yet soft, carbonation uo front that quickly thinned to thin watery feel. Bready and caramel malt flavors up front followed by a tangy, herbal hop bite. Flavors turn bready and quickly fade to the end.  Finishes thin and watery with a bready and herbal hop aftertaste.

 434 characters

Photo of JayQue
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A nice session beer from the home of the original first beer sold in a can!!!! The 12 oz can comes complete with instructions on how to open a pop top.....shades of comedian Brian Regan and his classic "Pop Tart" routine.

Pours a dark gold hazy color with a very small and not long lasting head. Very little in the way of lacing. Aroma is malty and slightly sweet. Taste is more of the same, but there is some evidence of corn, like a macro lager, and maybe a little vanilla. A small amount of grassy hops in the finish.

Mouthfeel is crisp and light. Nothing special, but a good enough session beer.

 607 characters

Photo of tone77
3.58/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A big thanks to the legendary woodychandler for this beer. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of toasty malts. Taste is malts, vanilla, some cream, very easy drinking. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a smooth and highly sessionable beer.

 294 characters

Photo of woodychandler
3.75/5  rDev +3%

I was down in DC this past weekend to partake of DC Beer Week, which is where I scored this and several other CANs in furtherance of The CANQuest ™.
From the CAN: “Brewed in Richmond – Where Beer in a CAN All Began!”; “In 1935, Richmond, Virginia made beer history as the first place ever to sell CANned beer, a Cream Ale from Krueger Brewing Company. A tribute to the original CANned beer, which came complete with illustrated opening instructions. Hardywood Cream Ale is an unfiltered example of the style. It embraces its east coast roots with an unbelievably smooth body and a refreshingly clean finish from extended cold conditioning in our lagering tanks. Raise a CAN to RVA, where the CANned beer revolution began!”; “To Open CAN [:] 1. Pull Tab Upward Until Tab Punctures Seal [,] 2. Push Tab Back Down [,] 3. Enjoy!”
You have got to appreciate a CAN with a sense of history! I feel like I have come full circle in The CANQuest ™ and I have seen a few of the original Kreuger’s CANs, two at Jeff Lebo’s and one at Earth, Bread & Brewery in Philly.
I followed the illustrated directions to the letter and the Crack! echoed back almost one hundred years, rewarding me with a brimful CAN. My enjoyment begins with an inverted Glug, which in turn created two fizzy fingers of bone-white head with limited retention following a brief pseudo-cascade. Color was an oh-so-slightly hazy Yellow-Gold (SRM = 4 – 5). Nose was VERY evocative of its predecessors in that it had a metallic odor to accompany a sweet corn smell. Ha! Mouthfeel was medium-to-full. It tasted MUCH better than it smelled, with notes of biscuit malt, corn and unfermented sugars. I was immediately put in mind of corn bread! I was transported to Boas Creek, where we used to go fishing and take CANs of Genny Cream Ale to cool in the water. It was one of my favorite underage beers and this was very evocative of it. Finish was semi-sweet, easy drinking and a definite Summer cooler stuffer.

 1,990 characters

Photo of Treyliff
3.42/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Canned 6/11/14, poured into a pint

A- pours a clear golden-yellow color with a small creamy white head that retains nicely due to the carbonation bubbles continuously shooting to the top

S- faint traces of whipped cream, slightly grassy with some earthy malt, overall pretty muted

T- sweet cream soda flavor up front leads to clean barley and lager yeast, trace of floral and earthy hop on a slightly sweet finish

M- medium body and carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel leading to a cream and smooth finish

O- very simple and easy drinking with a nice subtle creamy sweetness

 582 characters

Photo of delta490
3.54/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured a medium golden color with short-lived fizzy white head. The gives up pretty quickly except around the circumference of the Perfect Pint glass. The aroma is mild, with initial notes of cut grass, grain, and a light hint of vanilla. The taste is equally mild, with mostly light bread and slight earthy quality. It lives up to its name and has a nice creamy feel to the body with a mild bite on the finish. All in all, a good, lighter flavored beer that you can have more than a couple of.

 494 characters

Photo of argock
3.03/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oz can into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass. Canned on 06/11/14 on bottom of can. Single purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Slightly orange pale golden with minimal head despite a reasonably aggressive pour into a clean glass. Head is nearly white, about 1/2-finger with poor retention and no lacing.

S: A little bit of pale malt sweetness with light corn and even lighter herbal, floral hops.

T: The flavor is kind of bland with some straightforward pale malt sweetness and light herbal and floral hopping, light amount of citrus character. I didn't actually sense any of the usual corn/grain sweetness until the end.

M: LIght and refreshing although it seems the carbonation is a little low for the style.

O: Not really much to write home about -- first HP product and not too confidence inducing but will move ahead and try a couple more this week.

 896 characters

Photo of smakawhat
3.49/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the can into a nonic pint glass. Canned Jan 24th 2014, slightly old here.

A soapy thick and bone white head three fingers tall, sits on a cloudy and murky apricot orange to amber body. Some fine floaties. Head settles very slowly with some soapy retention.

Aroma is virtually non existent. Some sweet grains a bit, a little bit of orange like juice. Not much really going on or to say here.

Palate brings a little bit of the subdued senses. Mild pleasurable malt bill, with a good thick body. Slightly orange fruit sensations, and minimal bitterness. A bit of nice juiced quality to the beer, but struggling to find more to say.

I am not sure being that old for a cream ale is making a difference, but while enjoyable there is not a lot going on, compared to other creams I've had.

 797 characters

Photo of bmwats
3.2/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured from a 12 oz can into a hand glass.

A: Light golden hue. Pours a 2 finger, bubbly white head. Craters slowly and unevenly. Fair beer ring lacing. Sustained surface foam.

S: White bread and dish soap.

T: White bread, a little yeast, a little hop, and a little lemon pith.

M: Light and crisp. Little afterntaste.

D: Session.

Atmosphere is okay. Light, really nice head, and some fair lacing. Nose is very subtle with a bit of a soapy character. Bready with very light hops and citrus. Overall, this is an okay quaff.

 527 characters

Photo of dtivp
3.21/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

pours a clear light straw gold with a finger and a half fluffy white head that fades very quickly into a thin ring.

Aroma of light toasted malt and grain.

Taste follows the nose with a light grain and malt with a very slight fruit sweetness and a slight floral hop finish.

Mouth Feel was light body, with moderate carbonation, smooth with some fizziness and a dry finish.

Overall very light and refreshing if your looking for a thirst quencher this is your beer. When I first saw this green can with t eh words "Cream Ale", I had a throw back to years ago when everyone in Northern Pennsylvania was drinking Genny Cream Ale. Thank god this was a lot better.

 661 characters

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Cream Ale from Hardywood Park Craft Brewery
83 out of 100 based on 33 ratings.
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