California Lager | Anchor Brewing Company

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California LagerCalifornia Lager
1,243 Ratings
California LagerCalifornia Lager

Brewed by:
Anchor Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
In 1876, thanks to an ice pond in the mountains and a belief that anything is possible in the Golden State, a little brewery named Boca created California's first genuine lager. Anchor California Lager® is our re-creation of this historic beer. Made in San Francisco with two-row California barley, Cluster hops (the premier hop in 19th-century California), and our own lager yeast, this all-malt brew is kräusened and lagered in our cellars. Its golden color, distinctive aroma, creamy head, balanced depth of flavor, and smooth finish make Anchor California Lager® a delicious celebration of California’s unique brewing heritage.

Added by esdeebrew on 02-15-2013

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,243 |  Reviews: 253
Photo of jadpsu
3.92/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Purchased at Legacy as part of a 12 bottle variety pack.
LOOK: Pours a very clean light gold with just a faint tinge of amber. All white head that has average retention.

AROMA: Lots if malts come through, along with a touch of yeast as well a little dry hop accent.

This is a good lager. Not as bland as many it the style and with more flavor than typical lagers.

Nice dry finish.

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Photo of Mister_Faucher
3.68/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of Hopfenpeter
3.93/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of rairis01
3.24/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Photo of JonnoWillsteed
2.61/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 2.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.25

L - Deep amber, slight rising CO2 into lacing which soon clears.
S - Fresh, grainy notes. Maybe I'm congested I don't sense much more.
T - There is pleasant balanced strength and richness in the middle that goes into a nice gentle dry/hoppy ending.
M - The CO2 appeared low in the glass, but I'm surprised that there is also very, unsually little, CO2 on the tongue. Wondering if this is an unsually low-gas beer, or whether I might have a dud bottle.
O - It's hard to sum up as this is either genuinely meant as a low-CO2 beer, or something isn't quite right here. What I can say is that it would be nicer with more prominent CO2. What is nice is that it's not 'yet another American/American-style over hopped hop-bomb of a brew'.
Bought from Waitrose, London, UK. 355ml bottle. BB 3/2020. The bottle is also notable for having an unusually elegant lable featuring a bear.

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Photo of mehak
2.14/5  rDev -42%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 2.25

Photo of SargeC
4.38/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 5

Photo of HoppingMadMonk
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Aroma of malt,grain,toasted cereal/cracker, and yeasty bread
Taste follows the nose, malt arrives first but is nicely balanced with a mild hop finish

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Photo of DMcGirr
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

2.75/5  rDev -25.5%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Photo of Kwright
4.25/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Photo of NeilSilber1
3.43/5  rDev -7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours bright golden with light amber tint and white foamy head. Smooth easy drinking lager.

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Photo of dctarga
3.25/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of matodowd
3.16/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Photo of Harrison8
3.82/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a slighty foggy copper with a finger and a half of snow-white head. Head retention is fair. Aroma is pilsner, bread, and toast malts with a dash of yeast. It's a pretty malty, but clean aroma. Flavor profile is pilsner, bread, toast, and biscuit malts with a dash of yeast ester at the end. Mouth feel has a crisp edge, but a velvety, semi-fizzy interior giving a medium thickness. Overall, a pilsner focused almost solely on malts. It does a good job of being simple.

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Photo of BeerBobber
3.99/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours out a lovely golden color with a solid two fingers of slightly off white head that is audibly crackling. The head actually looks somewhat gold as the beer is poured as well.

Has a nice malty clean lager smell. Maybe a bit of sourdough bread with a lightness on that sourdough.

The taste is a touch of sweet and a touch of hops. Picking up a faint hint of lemon in here. Nice bready maltiness. The hops are more pronounced than an AAL but subtle enough to add a nice touch to the lager characteristics.

Mouth feels like it is leaning towards the medium side with a nice clean full mouth of beer feel. The finish is fairly crisp but does have a bit of slickness to the very back.

Overall this is a must try for lager fans and a definite must try for those that like AAL's. This beer really hits a lot of good notes for me. I would love to try this fresh as could be out of the tap. The only thing that holds me back just a bit on this one is the price. I see a lot of reviews that mention it is a bit pricier than other lagers. Yet this one really does taste cleaner, if you will, than the average AAL. So it does have that going for it. Good stuff! Give it a spin and see what you think of this golden California Lager!

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Photo of FadetoBock
3.06/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Photo of Callednumbers
2.72/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Photo of ovaltine
3.94/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a delicious, crushable lager - big noble hops bringing grassy aromas and flavors, and a suitable-to-style cracker malt backbone. If I lived in California, this would be my lawnmower beer this summer.

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Photo of sokol_1993
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A good beer, with good balance between hoppiness and maltiness, somewhat more toward the former but not as hop-forward as an IPA. A good example of a Californian style lager. Refreshing

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Photo of Sam_Math
5/5  rDev +35.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Photo of chitoryu12
3.63/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Look: Hazy amber orange, with a tiny white head.

Smell: Sour yeast and malt.

Taste: Mild yeasty sourdough bread with a bitter back end.

Mouthfeel: Thick and almost creamy.

Overall: A very unique flavor rarely seen in modern beer. You do have to be in the mood, though.

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Photo of scott_qua_scott
3.76/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Look: Pours clear and golden with copious, fluffy white head. A great example of a lager to my eye.

Smell: Sweet (some mellow fruit right off the bat) and fairly mild. Not a terribly complex smell, but pleasant enough. Again, pretty typical of a lager--the smell doesn't overpower.

Taste: This is an eminently drinkable lager. Upfront it's malty and clean on the palate. Finish has a mild grain taste (notes of...corn, maybe?). The hops kick in only at the very end, with a hint of flowery bitterness that sort of flickers in. The flavor has the drinkability you expect of a lager, but with enough interesting characteristics to be suitably 'craft'-y.

Feel: Clean and relatively high in carbonation. A little thick for a lager, but I actually really like that.

Overall: A great lager. I know this isn't exactly a fresh take, but I've been really impressed with all of the Anchor beers I've had. This has some of the characteristics of their trademark "Steam" beer, but chilled out and made even more sessionable. I'm not a big lager guy, but I like this one a lot.

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Photo of detgfrsh
3.71/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

From a 12oz bottle. Light orange with a finger of white foam. Straw and yeast smell. Medium feel. Tastes of grass, citrus, and a touch of spice. Very good for the style.

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Photo of RBuckley73
3.94/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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California Lager from Anchor Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.69 out of 5 with 1,243 ratings