Rock River Lager | Minhas Craft Brewery

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Rock River LagerRock River Lager

Brewed by:
Minhas Craft Brewery
Wisconsin, United States

Style: German Pilsener

Alcohol by volume (ABV): not listed

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by TastyTaste on 12-04-2004

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 67 | Ratings: 77
Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.17/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the Beers of America 18 pack.

Pours a clear, slightly yellow color, decent fizzy head. Still lighter than usual color though, even compared to BMC.

Smell is weak, can barely make out much, made out some floral scent though.

Taste is pretty slick, more than I thought it would be, has a crisp taste and leaves a decent mouthfeel, full bodied lager with a upfront sweetness and a mild bitterness.

If this was mass produced, it would easily be my choice in the war of BMC, regardless of it's flaws in the appearance and smell.

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Photo of Winter
3.05/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear light golden yellow in with white soapy sudsy head. Aroma consists of malt with a some light floral hops. Mouthfeel is somewhat thin with a pleasant crisp carbonation to it. Taste has a light malty breadiness to it. Hops are present but low in bitterness. Finish is fairly clean but exhibits a a grassy quality to it with a light floral flavor.

This a fairly unoffensive lager. Nothing that exciting, yet it's low bitterness for a pilsner makes it a mild beer. I wouldn't go so far as to say it's "uninteresting", because I don't think that's the case. Perhaps a little more hops and this would be a respectable offering. A little more malt and body wouldn't hurt either.

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Photo of Traquairlover
3.02/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12- oz bottle poured into a pilsner glass.

A = Light golden yellow, no head, no lacing, low carbonation bubbling with medium sized bubbles.

S = Very light scents of malts and hops, slight traces of wet hay, light floral notes. Not much there, but more than I expected from the appearance.

T = Not much flavor to speak of on front of tongue but some slight bitterness, some vegetal flavors hit at mid-palate, as with the smell I am reminded of wet grains, like hay kept in a leaky barn. Not bad really, indeed more than I was expecting since this looks a lot like a macro lager in the glass and the smell was not much better.

M = Lighter bodied, but not thin, carbonation level is pretty good on the tongue. Mouthcoating is a little light, but there is some there.

D = I would not search this out again, but it is drinkable and would no doubt be perfectly fine to drink while at a backyard bar-b-que or something.

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Photo of pmcadamis
2.42/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

A - Clear and shining gold hued brew with a two finger white head like crisp linen. The head recedes to a cap, then a collar within a few minutes, and some crusty white lace is left on the glass. Swirling builds up a thin cap again.

S - This lacks the German pils aromas entirely. This sort of smells like a sweet malty macro lager. There is a whiff of mineral metallic notes, and the malt aspect is thin.

T - Better than the nose, but still narrow and thin with a metallic overtone. Some crisp hops show themselves here.

M - Crisp, biting, and clean with a good deal of carbonation and a sweet touch on the finish. Metallic and thin.

D - I would drink a couple of these if they were free, but I won't buy this again. Not all bad, and macro lovers might really enjoy this as a baby step up to more authentic German and Czech pilsners.

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Photo of jasrbrd
2.03/5  rDev -30.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Came in a Christmas gift pack (and I found out that most of them in the pack are from the same brewery)
From Minhas Craft brew but listed as "brewed and bottled by MDII Rochester, NY".
Not very much to this at all.
I basic and I mean BASIC lager. Listed as "brewed with high grade halt and hops".
No hops flavor at all and little malt.
Not recommended

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Photo of shabbtastic
1.67/5  rDev -42.6%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

I really hate to give this review but as a beer lover I have to speak the truth.

A - With the exception of the label, it was run of the mill 10 cent draft quality. No head and very little carbonation. Lacing was non existent.

S - Corn husks and vinegar

T - Dry with no hop flavor. Also a bit flat - perhaps the twist offs had something to do with that??

M - Nothing spectacular in the way of "feel". It just laid there :)

D - Not overly offensive, the feel gives the drinkability a lower score here.

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Photo of trill
1.32/5  rDev -54.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Crystal-clear yellow pour with a nice large head that drops to around 1/8". Smell is buttery malt with a hint of DMS. Taste is lots of DMS and corn, and a touch of dry bitterness. Mouthfeel is not compltetely lacking, but this one tastes terrible. Sink pour.

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Photo of scruffwhor
4.08/5  rDev +40.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Great golden straw color with a strong, one finger head and incesant head. The aroma is a strong grass and light fig malt with some calcified water smell mixed in. The taste is a little adjuncty but still crisp and refreshin. Ther is a lack of that grassy malty that enjoy so muchin a German pilsner. Very easy to drink again and again. Could be a little more crisp, maybe even drier.

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Photo of madjr80
2.85/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a large mug.Light gold in color with a thick head of foam that eventually fizzled down in about 15 minutes. There was plenty of carbonation (real tiny bubbles) that gave it a crisp bite. The taste of it wasn't bad, but it wasn't something that I would rave about. Slight bittering from hops, but it didn't linger or leave me wanting more. I would probably keep the remainder of these beer cold just for any of my macro drinking friends.

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Photo of SetarconeX
2.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Reddish brown and crystal clear. Not just normal clear either, I mean 'I can see perfectly through a mile of this stuff' clear. Smells just a bit off. There's a brand of hand lotion made of corn oil that smells not unlike this. Not bad,

Been a while since I've accused a beer of being phenolic, but this one's definitely it. It has a really tasty, grainy quality to it which would be great if the strange corn-oil quality didn't rush in on the aftertaste and ruin the party.

The more I drink, the less I like. You can do better than this.

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Photo of cooncat
3.04/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Serving from an "American Beers" 12 bottle sampler. All 6 in this variety pack were made at the same brewery. This was a birthday gift from my well meaning sister-in-law.

On the pour, you get a clear, straw-gold colored beer, with a good sized head, which lasted longer than expected. Some lacing is evident through most of the drinking experience.

Nose: What nose? A faint hint of a malty lager coming from the glass, but not much else. I made this my first brew of a session, just to be sure I gave it a good chance to present itself.

Taste is dominated by bready malts. I honestly could not detect any hop presence, but if they did in fact use hops in this lager, the IBU rating would probably be less than 10. Mouthfeel is medium light, crisp, and refreshing when quaffed on the cold side.

This is a pedestrian lager, probably a cut above most "macro brews". Given a choice, I'd prefer this to BMC any time. With the light taste and abv, it would likely make a decent session beer. Not impressive, but very drinkable.


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Photo of williamherbert
2.92/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Ultra-clear light color. Completely transparent and seemingly without any body. No head, not even a little.

Mild but sweet malty smell. Very mild and unassuming aroma, but it does have a very slight sourness.

It's a standard lager/pilsner. Exactly average. Better than your B/M/C product, but nothing exceptional.

It's very light and watery, but a miniscule bite at the end. It is the very definition of middle-of the-road.

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Photo of Mdog
2.85/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Gold, nice carbonation, but the head fades to nothing quickly despite the many bubbles rising through the glass.

Smell: Fruity, yeasty, almost smells like a white wine for some reason.

Taste: Sweet fruity malt. A little more there than macro-brews.

Mouthfeel: Smooth.

Drinkability: Easy to drink.

A slight step up from the big boys in flavor, just smells a little different and the appearance could use some work.

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Photo of daliandragon
3.29/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From some kind of "All American beer extravaganza" or whatever I got from my future in-laws for Christmas..hey, these beers look fake and cheesy but at least they made a decent effort. I mean, it's better than a sweater or a fruitcake or something.

Rock river pours a dull, lifeless light amber color with almost no head, cap, or bubbbles of any kind. Rather apple juice looking. Nose is sweet with noticeable caramel notes and undertones of light hops.

Taste is a bit off, with metallic and corn notes at various times, but the body is full and the finish pretty smooth. They're definitely on the right track, they just need to work the kinks out.

This is a quirky beer, kind of all over the place. I can''t highly recommmend it, but as far as gifts from your girlfriend's parents, you could probably do worse.

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Photo of BretSikkink
2.58/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Yellow color belies fuller bodied taste. Lots of malt, late kick of hops. This is a tastier than average American pilsner, the malt is somewhat more roasted, in the German fashion. Tastes fresh and crisp, like October Country. This was once the taste of rural communities all over: small regional breweries using no adjuncts, plenty of ingredients, without watering to taste.

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Photo of afinepilsner
3.15/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz brown bottle

Rock River Lager Beer was light golden in color with a white head. The head was large at first, but was soon reduced to a thin layer that remained until the beer was nearly gone, leaving a little spotty lace behind. The aroma was light, but malty. The taste was mostly malt as well. The body was just shy of medium with medium carbnonation. Good drinkability. It's a pretty average, easy drinking lager.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.6/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Corn silk gold with a fair number of jaunty bubbles leading up to a lightly lemon-accented ivory head. Three fingers to start, the cap is slow to deflate and leaves an acceptable amount of splotchy lace on the glass as it does so. Not a bad start.

This is what lagers from the Big 3 should smell like: cereal grain fresh with just a hint of spicy German hops. Simple, clean and effective. It's hard to make a nose like this one exciting, but it more than gets the job done.

Rock River Lager reminds me of a quality American Macro Lager; what Budweiser, Miller et al would taste like if high quality ingredients were used in sufficient quantity. It would seem to be an easy transition to make since this beer has the same general flavor profile (multiplied several-fold) and eliminates any trace of adjuncty nastiness or off-flavors.

A light pale malty sweetness is a bonus. It's clean, but is definitely not crisp or quenching. Nothing wrong with that; I actually prefer it as long as I'm only having a few. As in the nose, noble hops are at a low ebb while providing a counterpoint to the sweet grain.

Due to the relatively generous amount of ingredients--especially malt--the body is on the full side of medium for the style. It's somewhat fluffysmooth with a restrained amount of soft carbonation that goes a long way toward enhancing drinkability.

Rock River Lager isn't outstanding beer, but it is a perfect example of what lagers from BMC would taste like if I was king of the world. If the vast majority of Americans had the opporunity to directly compare RRL with their usual dreck, I would like to believe that they would taste the error of their ways.

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Photo of mynie
3.38/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

My 7th grade Consumer Education always used to say something. He'd stand up in front of the class, up in front of all us kids, and he'd say "Caveat Emptor." I forget what that means; I think it's German for something about what you should do when you're buying a horse.

Anyhow, I was at the liquor store the other day, and on the way out I spied a collection of retro-looking bottles that were quaintly packaged together in a cheap wooden crate. What's more, they were priced down to a mere fifteen bucks for twelve bottles (two each of six different beers), *and* I got to keep the wooden case as a free gift. Well I just sat down my bag and walked right up to the counter and spent even more money, is what I did!

Come to find that these beers are made my Huber. Shit. All I've had from Huber are a few selections from the mediocre Berghoff collection and the abhorrent Fat Cat Lager. How easily I get suckered in by these things!

Now I have to be a big boy and review these beers objectively. That is, without thinking about how I paid premium money for Huber brews. Put that out of my head.

First up is Rock River, and I really have to give a props to Huber for the label; it looks like something you would have seen posted in an Irish slum circa 1868, enticing starving people to come to this fine country and get treated like slaves. I doubt this is how beer was actually packaged back in the days of our forefathers, but it's still nice and purty.

The beer pours darker than a dark macro, darker than most German pils, actually. Big head that dies down to a respectably-retentive cap. Pretty nice.

Smells like an above average German pils! Deep fruity grain and simple hop dryness. Not too complex, but free from any metallic adjunct imperfections.

Tastes light and fruity—maybe a little old, but not showing it too much. Fruit grain starts things off, very crisp, and it ends on a simple, dry hop. Nothing special, but solid for the style.

Nothing wrong with this beer. Nothing wrong with it whatsoever. Oh lord how I hope Huber keeps this up.

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Photo of zeff80
3.05/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle pours out a golden yellow color with no head, but highly carbonated.
It smelled (like alot of lagers) like corn.
It didn't taste too much like corn. There was a slightly sweet malt flavor to it, but not much else.
Mouthfeel was very average. I would call it smooth, though.
It is fairly drinkable but it's not my favorite.

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Photo of ikats
2.9/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This may be the case of mistaken identity. There is no mention of Joseph Huber Brewing. It only says "Brewed & Bottled by MDII, Rochester, NY". There is also a small copyright "MDII Chicago" in the corner. Yet, it matches the bottle picture and it also came from the Beers of America pack from Costco (like so many reviews point out). Accompanying booklet did not clear any confusion. Smells like a contract brewed gimmick.

Yellow in color with some amber highlights. White fluffy head disappears in exchange for a nice white cover. Aroma is not bad - malty base with citrusy hops. Taste is not very pleasant - nothing substantial to bite on and not balanced. Hops are all over the place. Drinks almost like hop flavored water. Very light body.

For me the value of this beer is that it came from a pack that my dad picked up as a gift because of my interest in beer. It really is from the "it's the thought that counts" category. Not terrible, but nothing to miss once it's gone.

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Photo of ihscout426
2.68/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This one is labeled a German Pilsner, but is more accuratley an American Pilsner. The color was golden and it poured clear with a small head. The smell was slightly sweet and almost of corn. No real hop note and the malt never develops beyond the initial sweet characteristic. This is a plain old american lager that does not stand out from the crowd.

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Photo of MSchae1017
3/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This beer was tasted in a Pilsner glass from the bottle.

This beer pours a golden color with a white foamy head with average retention. The beer smells of faint hops and barley malts. The taste is very similar to the smell in both content and the fact that it is rather weak. There is a slightly thin mouthfeel with a decent carbonation. Overall this is not a bad beer, it just seems like it could use a bit more soul to it.

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Photo of ommegangpbr
2.51/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

All around.
I think there's something just not right about the water that this brewery uses. There's a crappy tap water taste to the brews I've tried.
As a pilsner this a C- student. Very mild, slightly lemony.
The best thing about this beer is its appearance, but the sad part is that this is probably tastier straight from the bottle.

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Photo of scooter231
3.08/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pale straw color. Simple. Smells sweet and floral, malty. Not terribly delicious or intriguing. Taste is mostly a sweet maltyness and a bready backbone. Again, nothing special. Mouthfeel is thin and watery with a hint of lively carbonation. Fairly drinkable. Light and easy, a simple brew, not offensive, but nothing spectacular. For the style... eh. This is not Prima Pils.

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Photo of Pegasus
3.08/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Medium golden in color, with a bit of haze. The head is large, coarse, and off-white, and retains well; there are a number of small, slow-rising streams of cabonation.

Aroma: Predominantly sweet aroma of apples, pears, and candied pineapple, the expected hop presence seems to be absent.

Taste: Opens with a light, sweet honey-like note, this soon turns to light fruityness, at the close the taste becomes a bit grassy. The finish is dry, with a faint hop note.

Mouth feel: Smooth, fairly full, with a taste that is softer than many macro lagers.

Drinkability/notes: Overall, not bad, a pleasant example.

Presentation: Packaged in a twelve-ounce brown glass longneck bottle with a twist-off crown, served in a standard pint tap glass.

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Rock River Lager from Minhas Craft Brewery
2.91 out of 5 based on 77 ratings.
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