Amber Ale - German Style Altbier | Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's

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Amber Ale - German Style AltbierAmber Ale - German Style Altbier
36 Ratings
Amber Ale - German Style AltbierAmber Ale - German Style Altbier

Brewed by:
Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's
Kentucky, United States

Style: Altbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.19%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Altbier, literally translated as “Old Style” beer, is a classic German ale. BBC Altbier is brewed with additions of Munich, wheat, caramel, and chocolate malts creating a delicate, but flavorful malt profile. This delicious amber colored session beer is balanced with additions of tradtional spicy German hops creating a light and floral bouquet to compliment its complex malt profile.

28.6 IBU

Added by mooseisloose on 08-29-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 36 |  Reviews: 20
Photo of Tone
3.35/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazy amber/copper color. 1/4 inch head of an off-white color. Decent retention and decent lacing. Smells of sweet malt, pale hops, yeast, and slight grain. Fits the style of an Altbier. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp with an average carbonation level. There is also a slight wateriness to the mouth feel. Tastes of pale hops, sweet malt, slight nut, and some grain. Overall, a decent blend, good drinkability, and a decent Altbier.

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Photo of huguey
3.01/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle.

A: Brown with excellent head.

S: Wheat, other grains.

T: Very grainy, slightly bitter. Almost a rice after taste. Bittersweet.

M: Goes down easy and not too oily.

D: I had one, it would be good with food. As a standalone beer, it doesn't stand up to my taste standards.

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Photo of argock
2.51/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz brown bottle into a clear pint glass. Bottled on date on front label. Single purchased at Market Street Wineshop (Charlottesville, VA) for $1.40.

A: Clear tangerine hue with 1-2 finger foamy sandy colored head with average retention and some lacing.

S: Aroma is of some roasted caramel and pale malts with minimal herbal hops bitterness.

T: The flavor is metallic and off with some bland roasted caramel and pale malt flavors that don't approach bready followed by sour and metallic, aspirin notes that leave no trace of bitterness. Not even close to style.

M: The mouthfeel is thin and watery with no personality. Afteraste is chalky.

D: A definite skip. Not really sure what they are going for in calling it both an "amber" and "German style altbier" at the same time. This brew is not a good stab at either one.

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Photo of brentk56
3.58/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy amber color with a frothy head that persists fairly well and leaves some remembrance of lace

Smell: Caramel, with bready undertones

Taste: Bready, up front, with a developing caramel flavor that is quickly supplanted by bitter and sour elements; after the swallow, the caramel returns to domonate the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: An interesting take on the style but the bitter and sour elements in the middle throw it a bit out of whack

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Photo of drtth
2.73/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Moderately chilled and poured into a Duvel glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: The beer pours out a clear dark amber/orange color with a ¼" off white head that soon recedes. Initially there is some modest lacing which is soon gone but a thin ring around the liquid remains.

Smell: The aroma is lightly bready and has some caramel malt in it but there is no real hop presence

Taste: The flavor includes caramel malt, hints of bready malt and nutty tastes and there are traces of floral spicy hops, but nothing dominates or stands out.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is thin and there is not much carbonation. The relatively short finish is dry with some hop bitterness trailing off.

Drinkability: While this was an OK beer I'll not return to this one and I probably would not buy this one again if I'd already had one. I definitely prefer the Long Trail Double Bag Stucke Alt.

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Photo of briman
2.58/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours light copper color, with a lot of orange and golden tones. Slight haze, with a moderate off-white head. Little retention.

Aroma is very light, slighly bready with a slight grainy character. No hop aroma.

Flavor is very mild bready malt, with no discernible hop characteristic.

Medium light body, moderately high carbonation. Somewhat watery. This is classified as an altbier, which calls for noticeable to assertive hop bitterness. This beer has little to no bitterness. It has the color of a Dusseldorf Alt, but none of the assertive hop bitterness. It's the wrong color to be say a Northern German Alt, but still no bitterness, and although both versions of the style indicate a rich malt profile, it just doesn't exist in this brew. Honestly, I'm confused as to what this beer is really trying to be. In then end, it's basically bland and uninspiring.

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Photo of CrazyMacHarris99
2.83/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This one pours a amber orange with a half inch white head. I was expecting a decently hopped amber ale not an altbier. Smell is malt and grains, very bland with no hop presence. The taste is the same with a slight fruity twinge. It is slightly watered down with no hop flavor at all. It is kind of old and musty as well. The mouthfeel is thin and there is no drinkability. Worst offering from this brewery.

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Photo of Brewsmith
3.63/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From a 12 oz. bottle set to me from a friend in TN. malty aroma with a little bready/toast. Color is a clear amber orange with a small off white head. I must have poured too vigorously because there is a little yeast sediment in the glass. Biscuity malt flavor with a hint of caramel on the back end, evenly bittered and a little floral/spicy hop character. Clean, easy drinking body and a dry finish.

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Photo of eporter66
3.13/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Recieved this in the BOTMC - fresh date July 09

A - Poured hazy orange color, 1/2 finger head that quickly dissolved to a small ring around the outer portion of the beer. No lacing left on the glass.

S - I get a fruity - berry aroma from this beer, good smell. As it warmed a more woody or grainy aroma overtakes the beer. Started better than it finished.

T - Beer tasted better out of the fridge. As it warmed up it had a grainy taste, the fruitiness was more pronounced on the first few sip.

M - light to medium bodied beer, with a little zip from the carbonation.

D - One of the few craft beers that I have had so far that was better colder, usually the flavors come out more as they warm up. A drinkable beer, nothing outstanding about it.

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Photo of LordHammer
2.41/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Part of this month's BOTMC shipment. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a very clear amber with half an inch of off white head, which quickly faded to a thin lacing that stayed at the top of the beer as I drank it.

Aroma is mainly grains, with the faintest hint of hops in there.

Taste is very similar to aroma, only stronger. The overwhelming flavor is grain, with little else. It really tastes like chewing on raw grain, somewhere in the range of light caramel malt. This taste lingers for several minutes, which is most unpleasant when the taste is less than pleasing.

Mouthfeel is a bit thin, and the carbonation fairly light. The beer would be very drinkable, if not for the fact that it tasted fairly poor.

I was looking forward to this brew, as I quite like Altbier, but this example left quite a bit to be desired.

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Photo of mooseisloose
2.47/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

A recent arrival from BOTMC. Smells of grains and malts hint of cinnamon. Pours to a rusty orange. Really no head at all. Taste is watery really with a little fizz and no sweetness or bitterness. Kind of like drinking alka-selzter or beer flavored selzter water. A huge disappointment for what I shell out for BOTMC. Maybe this is a bad bottle? I'll re-review if others bottles fare better. Maybe also this brew is SO balanced that all the flavors are cancelled out. I never heard of that though.

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Amber Ale - German Style Altbier from Bluegrass Brewing Co. - East St. Matthew's
Beer rating: 3.12 out of 5 with 36 ratings