Live Oak Big Bark Amber Lager | Live Oak Brewing Company

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Live Oak Big Bark Amber LagerLive Oak Big Bark Amber Lager

Brewed by:
Live Oak Brewing Company
Texas, United States

Style: Vienna Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Pegasus on 04-30-2003

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Reviews: 50 | Ratings: 224
Photo of crob3888
4.5/5  rDev +21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I love a good Vienna lager and this one delivers the goods. Toasted biscuit, slightly floral hops, and a deep Amber color with red and orange hues. Paired excellently with fried cheese curds and Olaf sauce.

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Photo of Premo88
4.41/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Onion Creek, Houston

Copper, clear, super sticky head of beige/tan foam.

Slightly hoppy fruit flavor, very sweet. Hop bite is a bit grassy

(original review above, June 22, 2015)

additional notes from first chance to try it out of a can -- July 28, 2016 -- 12 oz. can poured into pilsener

L: head is fantastic, about 1-inch to 1.5 inches of offwhite/beige foam; no sticking or lacing but it does keep a solid collar; super tight column of bubbles flying up middle of glass

S: so malty ... some grain, too, and it's good toasted grain; the toasted malt note is fantastic; a little hoppy thing ... almost grassy or onion

T: earthy hop bite, toasted grain and lots of toasted malt sweetness

Original numbers: 4.75, 4, 4.25, 5, 4.5

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Photo of bisonkron
4.4/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - slightly cloudy, small light head that fades quickly.

S - sweet malts, light hops, caramel

T - light caramel taste, toasted bread, also sweet malts, it was a very light taste overall, very refreshing

M - light, smooth, crisp. great.

D - amazing drinkability. could drink this for several hours. really enjoyed this one, will not be seeking it out soon, but if its on the menu i may grab it again.

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Photo of SWMeyer4141
4.35/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Pint Glass.

Appearance-Dark red with a off white, almost brown head. About 2 fingers which leaves some nice lacing.

Smell-Bready, some cider and spice.

Taste-Lots of Apple Skins Light tartness and balanced nicely with some big bready notes. Really simple but this is very very drinkable and extremely tasty.

Mouthfeel-Medium bodied, carbonation was perfect. Goes down real smooth and I could drink alot of this.

Overall-If these beers were canned/bottled this would be my go to session beers. Another really nice offering from Live Oak.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.35/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This pours a clear caramel color with a tight layer of foam topping it. There’s a muted aroma and this light, malty flavor with a sharp, hoppy bitterness that rounds it out. And, honestly, that’s the way I like my amber lagers: with character and a kick, not just malty syrup. Good one.

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Photo of kbub6f
4.25/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Scholz Garten, Austin.

The beer arrives with just a thin film + ring of fine white head on top of clear, brown/amber liquid. The nose is faint, but has some grapefruit and grains. The front is quite fruity, with a full malty middle that's almost dark. Finish is very hoppy, with lots of grapefruit bitterness and a nice roasted nuttiness.

This is a delicious, balanced, malty-hoppy-nutty amber lager. Fantastic!

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Photo of Tuck_leepulin
4.2/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Can poured into a pint glass, canned on 06/08/16. I believe this is from the first run of Canned Big Bark.

Exceptional clear amber with 1/2 finger of head that recedes to a fine lace, smell of cracker and toasted grain, taste of bread, toasted grain and earthy hop bitterness with a clean finish. Solid Amber lager.

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Photo of mizzourah
4.18/5  rDev +13%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had it on tap at Cain and Abel's in Austin.

Appearance- Dark caramel color with a nice head that left decent lacing. Slight carbonation evident.

Smell- Caramel, perhaps a hint of chocolate and somewhat fruity.

Taste- Caramel malts at first and then fruity hops afterward. Good fruity aftertaste that wasn't too strong and quite enjoyable.

Mouthfeel- It wasn't too watery and danced around nicely on the tongue.

Drinkability- Excellent drinkability. I could drink this all night and be happy. None of the flavors are too overwhelming, I found it nicely balanced, and I kept wanting more. I always find myself ordering this when I'm in Austin.

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Photo of Biermaedchen
4.13/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - reddish brown with copper colored highlights, a nice off-white head that has good retention

S - exceptional malt aroma with toasty sweet caramel scents & very slight hint of hops

T - tasty set of malty flavors with sweet toffee/caramel and light toasty malt note. smooth graininess with a crisp hop bitterness in the background

M - medium bodied. well-balanced and smooth, but firm. great carbonation.

O - really exceptional beer... tasty and drinkable & good representation of the style. Happy they gave this year around.

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Photo of Huhzubendah
4.1/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at The Flying Saucer in San Antonio, TX.

The beer is amber hued with a half inch of head. Aromas of lager yeast, light fruity character, a touch of bread / grain. Fresh, really smooth on the palate and well balanced. Easy to drink and enjoy. Refreshing on a warm summer day. I sat outside and alternated between this and Live Oak Hefe, both tasty brews. Definitely above average for the style. I normally don't enjoy amber lagers this much. I would definitely have this again.

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Photo of Morris729
4.1/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep amber color with a creamy light tan head that settles into a nice lace. Nose is grassy and citrusy hops. Taste begins with fruity caramel malt and a toasted nuttiness followed by a somewhat spicy hop bitterness with a bit of grapefruit rind. Finish is crisp. Would make a good session beer.

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Photo of BlesstheHarvest
4.04/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Had it on Tap at D&T Drive Inn in Houston.

Tan/copper color with nice discolored head. It has very good flavors for a lager. Malty and some hops, nothing to blow you away. but a good quality drinkable beer. carbonation is standard for a lager.

would drink again.

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Photo of BeerBelcher
4/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

I had this on draft at Shozols [sic] Garden in Austin, and I thought this was a very nice but not over the top malty lager. It was hot in TX, and this beer was quite refreshing while not insubstantial.

It came in a big 20 oz glass, without a lot of head on it. It was a sparkling amber color. Aroma was a good amount of malt without any cerealness, and with a bit of hop. Flavor was more of the same; a nice amount of malt without any loss of refreshingness. Very good.

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Photo of redstripe
3.9/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On draft at the Ginger Man in Fort Worth

This beer looks (and tastes) like the archetypal amber. It is a clear, light, amber color, with a relatively thin white head that stuck nicely to the side of the glass. There is sufficient, though not exuberant, carbonation--enough that a swirl of the glass resurrected the head.

The smell is faint and sweet.

The taste, like I said, is dead-on amber. It is well-balanced, sweet in the beginning with a light bitter hop flavor at the finish. Ambers are perfect introductions to craft beers for beginners, and this would be a good place to start. It is not a challenging beer to drink, and would make for a good session.

The mouthfeel is very light.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Addison Flying Saucer.

The beer pours an amber color with a white head. The aroma is very nice. I get quite a bit of toffee, but I also get some bread and a little bit of grape. The flavor is more of the same, with a lot of toffee and bready malt as well as a little bit of pine and grass from the hops. I also get a little bit of grape in the flavor as well. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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3.85/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - 1" off-white head that falls to a cap over the course of a minute. The beer is a copper penny color. Clear and bright. Nice lace left behind.

S - Sweet malt - some caramel. Faint whiff of some hops in the rear. Touch metallic.

T - Malty, sweet beginning, a sour flash in the middle and enough hops in the finish to dry it out. Mineral quality in there, maybe from the water used?

M - Medium body and medium carbonation. Nice, crisp finish. I like the fact that this is way less sweet than a lot of amber lagers.

D - Good drinkability. High sessionability. Went great with some pizza.

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Photo of jasonjlewis
3.83/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great head and retention.

Smell is of nice caramel malts and hops. Apple phenol comes out on the nose.

Very typical and basic amber. Caramel malts are decent with a low hop bitterness. Nothing bad about this beer, but nothing special.

This beer is pretty decent and clings to the palate well. Makes for a decent session.

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Photo of BayouBengal1537
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Scholz Beer Garden in Austin, Texas. Took notes on my phone
A - orangey amber color, big fluffy head that remained pretty much through whole beer
S - sweetness, caramel malts
T - Matches the caramel malts aroma, breadiness, slight bitter hops in the end
M - medium mouth feel
D - very drinkable, I enjoyed 1 but would have liked to have a couple more.
I'm glad I got to try a local Austin brewery beer, I'll look forward to trying more when i'm in the area.

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Photo of SFRider
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear. Light amber in color. Slightly more orange/red. Great head.
Smell: Musky. Kinda sweet. Actually smells kinda woody...but I wonder if that's from the name suggestion. does...
Taste: This was a little sweeter than I prefer for an amber - but not bad at all. Pretty good. Mildly malted. A little bitter on my breath at the end.
Drinkability: This beer was very drinkable. Medium carbonation.

This was a good beer - very drinkable. Definitely worth trying if you find yourself in Texas. I was told Live Oak is a good brewery out there - this was my first of their line. I'd have it again, but wasn't my favorite. Not bad at all though...

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Photo of Getalegup
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I've had this many time cold and on tap over the years. But this was really more of a bitter ale. I'm not sure what the firkin did to this but didn't help. Maybe it was too warm?

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Photo of HardTarget
3.73/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed on tap at the Gingerman, Austin.
Aroma: The slightest hint of hops, and a touch of spice
Appearance: A clear reddish amber that produced an off white head that maintained a thin coat deep into the beer
Flavor: Balance is toward a honey like sweetness but not cloying. Mild hops notes are hard to come by, but present. There is a slight spice taste that I had trouble naming (something like nutmeg, but not exactly, may have been the grapefruit other reviewers caught).
Mouthfeel: Light body and a firm carbonation
Overall Impression: A very thirst quenching beer. I enjoyed it. It reminded me of Abita Amber or St. Arnold’s Amber, so I think it is fairly close to style. It would make a decent session, but I was happy after one beer. Next time I’ll try another Live Oak.

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Photo of JDV
3.72/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Draft at Billy’s in Austin. Light Amber in color, with light to medium carbonation and small to medium white head. Smell is of caramel sweetness, intense juicy dried apricots, slight maltiness. Taste is similar with a mild bitterness as well. Medium finish and a good beer overall. A nice vienna-style lager.

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Photo of GCBrewingCo
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer arrived on the table amber golden and crystal clear with a white head which lasted well to lace the glass.

The aroma was caramel malt and a light fruity character. Some slight grassy hop presence was notable.

The flavor was light caramel maltiness with a nice but somewhat low bittering level that was slightly grassy and slightly menthol.

The finish was dry with just lasting caramel. The body was medium. A fairly straighforward, but uninspired brew with little complexity.

Draft at Flying Saucer in San Antonio.

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Photo of DeathbySexyBT
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Amber-ish gold with fluffy white head that laces the glass marvelously.

S: A little light on the aroma here. Sweet caramel malts with a splash of apricots and a hint of wet grass.

T: Much like the smell, the taste is a bit restrained. I liked the apricot influence, but this beer comes across with a minor amount of bittering hops, mint, and caramel malt. The issue I take with this is that no ingredient or flavor sufficiently leads the charge. Just a bit boring, but not nasty. Too middle-of-the-road of a beer to follow something as delicious as their Hef.

M: Decent carbonation and body.

D: No problem with hammering this one over and over if you so desire. Smooth and not syrupy.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
3.65/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is a shiny amber with an average-sized, light brown head. The aroma is of lightly toasted malt, pretty good, but not quite rich enough. Taste is more of the same, the strength of the malts seems to be just a little weak for the style. A little graininess does give the flavor another facet. Looking at the other reviews it seems to have been hoppier in the past or I got a weird batch. Anyway, this beer seems taylored for session drinking, but cannot compete in taste with some of the maltier ambers.

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Live Oak Big Bark Amber Lager from Live Oak Brewing Company
3.7 out of 5 based on 224 ratings.
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