River Guide | Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.

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Very Good
233 Ratings
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Brewed by:
Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Dark Wheat Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
Formerly River Ale

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-13-2002

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Ratings: 233 |  Reviews: 123
Photo of Nichols33
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of sgregory
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of WoostaBia
3.89/5  rDev -1%

Photo of JohnofUpton
3.98/5  rDev +1.3%

Photo of 2014LM2X1
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

Berkshire Brewing was the first craft brewer that I fell in love with. I started out on Steel Rail and went through all of their flavors, including River Ale, in quick succession. That was three years ago; since then, I have been branching out to a number of different breweries.

I revisited Berkshire's Coffeehouse Porter recently, and it was slightly disappointing. Fortunately, I can't say the same for River Ale. I am glad I picked up a bomber on my way home.

The best way I can describe River Ale is this: try it alongside Trappistes Rochefort 10, St. Bernardus 12, and Westy 12. Other than the higher alcohol burn of the latter three, I find the tastes are very similar. I actually don't favor Belgian ales, so I prefer River Ale to the big-name Belgian quads. River Ale doesn't focus on the yeast flavors like the Trappist quads; instead, its more balanced nature allows the sweetness of the malts to shine through.

For $5.00 per bomber, I'd say this is the best value that Berkshire offers. I would highly recommend trying it. And, just for kicks, I would also recommend a blind taste test against some of the more famous Trappist ales - the results might be surprising!

 1,195 characters

Photo of SABERG
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of zestar
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of Stagga_Lee
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of Doomcifer
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of jfink603
5/5  rDev +27.2%

Photo of lkokot
5/5  rDev +27.2%

Photo of dustinjkline
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of sulldaddy
3.84/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Drinking a cold 22 oz bottle poured into a snifter.
the beer pours a chestnut and copper hue with some small flakes of precipitate. the beer is also with a soft fluffy beige head of 2 cm foaming up with some larger bubbles in the center of the foam.
Aroma is sweet malt with some brown sugar and caramel, I also get a bit of spicy character, which was unanticipated, but pleasant. Wheat twanginess comes through on the nose as well.
First sip reveals an average body with fine and very tingly carbonation. texture is smooth and easy drinking making for an enjoyable physical experience.
Flavor is some sweet fruity malt with a little red grape and some caramel mixed with wheat twang again as on the nose. Finish brings back the small amount of cinnamon that was on the nose. It is an enjoyable beer and I dont get any hop character nor any real booziness.
The beer is not overly complex, but is certainly not flawed and makes for an enjoyable evening.

 953 characters

Photo of doctorjack
4.5/5  rDev +14.5%

Photo of berkshire413
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of rorjets
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of mklisz
3/5  rDev -23.7%

Photo of Stoutmeister
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

Photo of Durge
3.75/5  rDev -4.6%

Photo of soxandbeer
4/5  rDev +1.8%

Photo of ctwybeerguy
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

Photo of Fettpopps
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of DBosco
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

Photo of 666_MPH
4.25/5  rDev +8.1%

Photo of mlefebvre7
3.5/5  rDev -10.9%

River Guide from Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
Beer rating: 3.93 out of 5 with 233 ratings