Brooklyn Lager | Brooklyn Brewery

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Brooklyn LagerBrooklyn Lager
3,804 Ratings
Brooklyn LagerBrooklyn Lager

Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery
New York, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
In the late 1800’s Brooklyn was one of the largest brewing centers in the country, home to more than 45 breweries. Lager beer in the “Vienna” style was one of the local favorites. Brooklyn Lager is amber-gold in color and displays a firm malt center supported by a refreshing bitterness and floral hop aroma. Caramel malts show in the finish. The aromatic qualities of the beer are enhanced by “dry-hopping”, the centuries-old practice of steeping the beer with fresh hops as it undergoes a long, cold maturation. The result is a wonderfully flavorful beer, smooth, refreshing and very versatile with food. Dry-hopping is largely a British technique, which we’ve used in a Viennese-style beer to create an American original.

Added by UncleJimbo on 02-11-1998

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,804 |  Reviews: 1,274
Photo of assurbanipaul
3.53/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear gold with a tall foamy off-white head. Aroma is light malts and some sweetly bitter hops.

Taste is light but full and toasty. Pale malt, just a little sweet and a good bitter hoppy end. Mouthfeel is nice, smooth and clean. Not too complicated but one of the better lagers, always nice to have a quality fall-back.

Thanks to AKSmokedPorter for this one.

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Photo of bultrey
4.3/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sometimes when you are seeking the next great beer, you take for granted a solid old friend. Knowing full well that I may be accused of being a homer, this is one of the finest lagers I have ever had, so perfectly balanced that you can't help but feel it defines the style.

The appearance is a beautiful amber brown -- as one of my non-BA friends put it: What other lager do you drink on a regular basis that looks like this?

The smell has some nice caramel malt to it, perhaps a little orange, and a slight herbal grassiness. Good, but understated aroma overall.

The taste combines caramel-covered toasted coconut, anise, maybe a little licorice, and orange into a delicious sweetness that is far from cloying, and is balanced out by one of the better hop profiles you'll find in a lager. This is a lager with some balls. To me, it is very reminiscent of Anchor Steam -- another beer that is so ubiquitous it is now underrated. The mouthfeel is just fine, with solid, refreshing carbonation, and the drinkability is off-the-charts smooth. This is a session pint supreme.

What I find impressive about this beer is that it hasn't lost its quality, even while being contract brewed in very large batches in upstate NY.
If every macro-brewed American lager were half as good as this, we would live in a much better beer culture to be sure.

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Photo of Truh
4.15/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got caught between the moon and New York City with this one on 3/4/2005. 20-oz. imperial pint pour at the Plough and Stars.

Filmy cream of sheening head that has a fair amount of stick. Light amber hue is clear and has a fair amount of action going on. Soapy malt wash on nose leaves mouth watering, and just a touch of light oak. Bite at top of goodly caramel malt and a wash of lemonade finings on mouth makes this pour whoringly refreshing; I will search for this during the summer months without reservation.

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Photo of FLAbeergutinMASS
3.23/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Didn't really now what to expect from these guys. Had the stout before, much better than the lager, but this beer is not bad. Immediate nose infusion of flowers-T-Rose, remember that?!?!?!?! A nice mixture of floral and hops. The beer is slightly more handsome than other lagers, smell is there, not too overpowering.

This is a pretty good beer. I just cannot find a characteristic that separates it from any other. It's slightly above normal. But I like it.

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Photo of Luigi
3.5/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Has a clear light amber color with a decent head. The head settles to a lace around the glass. Smells very hoppy. A spicy floral hop. Has a firm malty body. Taste very hoppy but has enough sweet malts to go around. All round a good lager. Not quite a Boston lager but makes a great session beer.

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Photo of merlin48
3.53/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I don't care much for this style, but bought this one along with some other Brooklyns that I've never tried over the past week. This pours a clear amber body, with a thick, offwhite head that stands about a centimeter tall and insists on hanging around, eventually leaving some impressive lacing on the glass. Aroma is very lagerish, with vague sweet maltiness and some floral hops. Mouthfeel is typical for style, with a light medium body and high carbonation. Crisp and refreshing for the most part, with slight floral hops bitterness. Malt is quite bready, but thankfully stays in the background for the most part. Another quality brew from a fine NYC brewery. This is a good one for fans of American lagers.

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Photo of whartontallboy
3.32/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a light cold with a small head of white bubbles that dissipated rather quickly. Malty scent with some hops and floral notes coming through. Taste is similarly malty but with quite a good little bit of hoppiness in there as well. Mouthfeel is light and lager-tastic.
Overall a very drinkable nondescript lager with a bit more hops that I was expecting. Not too bad!

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Photo of Hibernator
4.1/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

While visiting NYC, I picked up a single of the Brooklyn Lager to sample. I have had this many times over the years and this beer works as an excellent session beer for a long evening of drinking.

I had this out of a 12 oz brown bottle and served in an imperial pint glass. Best before date clearly notched for June 2005.

Pours a light color brown with a nice fluffy head on top. Scattered sticky lacings on the sides of the glass.

Whiffs of bready caramel sweetness and toasted malt.

A very tasty beer and straightforward brew. Thick malty backbone with a melted caramel sweetness. Slight buttery backdrop with a clean hoppy finish. The Brooklyn Lager has great drinkability level and would make a good choice to pair up with a number of different foods.

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Photo of Southernbrew
3.42/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a golden color with a respecatble, bubbly head.

Crisp aroma, some malt and spicy hops.

Smooth feel, bready malt flavors combine with a lemon flavor and a respectable hop presence. Dry aftertaste.

Decent beer, nothing to get that excited about, but good enough.

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Photo of maybrick
3.32/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12 oune bottle. Nice head initially. Very detectable malt in the nose. First sip cold was nice. Good tast, good crisp finish. Delicate.

As it warmed malt became much more pronounced yet retained a good balance with the sublte bittering hops.

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Photo of rajendra82
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden yellow colored, with active carbonation and a medium foamy head, this was a classic looking lager when poured into a Pilsner glass from the signature minimalist Brooklyn styled brown bottle. The aroma indicated presence of sweet honey and caramel malt and noble grassy hops in this beer, and after the first sip I could tell that it did not lie. Medium bodied, bready, sticky, creamy, and slightly salty, this is a moderately flavored, crowd pleasing lager with enough character, and hoppy bite, so that it would not disappoint even the seasoned beer connoisseur (among whose ranks I would not place myself, I might add). Worth seeking out if in the mood for some simpler pleasures.

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Photo of aracauna
3.53/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Clear, pale amber-brown body with a good head. There’s a slight tingle in the nose. The flavor has a slightly bready malt. This is extremely drinkable and actually not a bad beer by any stretch. I actually preferred this over the disapointing Pilsner.

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Photo of silenius
3.81/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I liked this beer in its simplicity. I am not a big lager fan, but this one hit the spot. A bit dark for the Classic "American Lager" category with a light head and no lacing.

Smell is pretty much not there.

Taste is a nice balance of malt and hops with a nice clean crisp taste. Enjoyable and simple like a good 3 chord song. Hops presence is duly noted when burping.

Mouthfeel is a little to prickly for me, especially toward the end.

I could drink this regularly with no complaints. A nice solid beer.

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Photo of TongoRad
4.04/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear amber with a thick slightly tan head that dissipates too quickly.

Nice aroma of caramel and spicy hops.

Clean malt and hop flavors- again with caramel dominating- and a decent amount of bitterness. Finishes with lingering malt.

For its niche this beer is quite good indeed and worth a look.

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Photo of jed
3.68/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: Comes in a brown, 12 oz bottle. Typical Brooklyn label art with green accents, short blurb about the history of the lager on the bottle neck. Poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a chestnut-colored reddish brown. About one finger's worth of head, which disappears slowly. As the head disappears, it leaves behind a small amount of fluffy lace.

Smell: Very similar to the Pennant Ale. Sweet, toasted malt, almost biscuit like, mixed with floral hops. Some caramel sweetness from the malt.

Taste: Surprisingly sweet, light malt nose with hints of bread. Followed by mild hop bitterness, and chewy caramel sweetness. Hints of fruit from the malt, some citrus sourness as the beer warms. Finish is dry, with lingering malt sweetness.

Mouthfeel: The only disappointing part of this beer. Not bad, just average: fairly thin, okay carbonation.

Drinkability: This one would get a little bit boring over time, but an okay session beer.

A slightly above average beer in most respects. Solid, but nothing amazing. I'll be sure to try it on tap when I have a chance, but I probably won't buy any more. If you like lagers but don't want an American macro, check out this offering from Brooklyn.

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Photo of NearerMyBeerToMe
3.3/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours with an inch-deep head that quickly fades to a spotty, soapish off-white film despite a fairly high level of carbonation. Beer is translucent sienna in color with bronze highlights bordering on orange. Clean, somewhat dry nosefeel with light aromas of toasted malts. Smooth, not-too-sweet malt flavors share the stage with a surprising amount of hop bitterness. Surprising amount of overall flavor, actually... Mouthfeel is firm and hardly overcarbonated, with a nice bitter aftertaste that hangs around for several seconds after each swallow. There's not much going on here, but this would be serviceable for heavy session drinking. At any rate, I'd take this over just about any other standard American lager from a comparably-sized brewery.

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Photo of claytri
3.03/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

It poured a good looking light bronze with a small white head. It had a pleasant light hoppy smell too it. The taste fell in line although there was more hop in the taste than the nose. There wasn't much malt to this one, just a lot of hops. The feel was light and very dry. This is one of those beers where you could tell it had been well brewed, but it just isn't your beer. This lager has just too much hops for my taste and I'd be looking for an alternative.

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Photo of Jacobier10
3.95/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I am a bigger fan of ales than lagers, but I am trying to broaden my horizons a little bit. This is one of the more satisfying lagers I have tried to date. Nice amber colored pour with a good amount of head. I love the aroma that the hops give off. It's not an exotic smell by any means, it's simply done right. Light malts complement the hops perfectly and make for a fine-tasting brew. Easy to drink and not harsh on the palate. A satisying and enjoyable beer. I've been giving Brooklyn Ale a lot of praise lately, but the lager does itself justice as well.

After tasting again, this is one of the hoppiest lagers I've had to date. I was really pleased with this brew. Great on-tap as well.

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Photo of Beastdog75
3.9/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Brooklyn Lager, the brewery's "flagship" brew, is supposedly an example of a pre-prohibition brew. After drinking this brew, I am left wondering of what could have been in the world of American beer if the 18th Ammendment had never been devised. I can only imagine a country where the top breweries in the country produced beers as high quality as these, instead of the "dumbing down of the masses" which occured after the repeal of said ammendment.

Brooklyn Lager pours a nice medium amber color with some reddish hints to it. A decent foamy head forms and lasts for a little over a minute. The aroma is quite crisp and refreshing, with some darker malt scents in there along with a grapefruit-like and some pine scented hop presence. The mouthfeel is fitting for the brew, with it being moderately carbonated. Not watery in the least, I have to say that this is one of the nicer bodied brews in its "genre." This lager is a shining example of balance. Caramel maltiness is definitely present, but the sweetness is effectively balanced by the hop presence, lending citric/grapefruit, pine, and some sweeter fruity notes to the mix. A decent drying effect occurs in the finish. The aftertaste contains some butteriness and additional maltiness, followed by the lingering dryness. The brew finishes out with very little alcoholic warmth.

The elements of this brew mesh very well together. The hop presence was more assertive than I would have predicted, but the brew is not bitter at all and is in fact dangerously easy to drink. It can be compared to Samuel Adams Boston Lager, but overall I would rank this a top session brew.

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Photo of necoadam
3.9/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured out an amber color with a nice head that lasted for a good while. Smell consisted of sweet malts with an undertone of hops and caramel, but it was a little subtle though. Taste made up for it though. It's more on the sweet side. Sweeten malts come up first with an underlying of hops (which seems to be big at times) and some caramel. Moutfeel is medium which was good. This is a perfect example of a session beer. A good beer.

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Photo of twilight
4.14/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I first had this one years ago when I first moved to NYC. Brooklyn Lager was all the rage and my friends and I would suck it down from the bottle. Eventually, I realized I didn't like it, so I moved to sucking down Smirnoff Ice. I know, I know, bad bad me.

At a party recently my german friend noted that this was one hoppy lager. I tried it. Yeah, yeah. Hops. It pours clean and golden with slight hints of red. Nose is hoppy, but not overly so. Taste is clean, remarkably, with malt notes and that lager sourness/grassyness mixed in with the hops, and dies down to a slightly bitter aftertaste. Mouthfeel is nice if a bit carbonated, but it adds to the clean and crisp of the lager. Maybe one day I'll devote a Friday at the brewery to this one. I'm coming around to lagers. Slowly, but this one is good enough to make me want to try more.

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Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
3.68/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz. can courtesy of AKSmokedPorter.

Poured a deep golden in color with a *HUGE* sticky white head. All sorts of lacing. Aromas are caramel sweet with some flowery hoppy-ness. Flavor is pretty tasty. I wish had this in a can in college. Flavorful mix of caramel sweetness mixed with a muted hop note. Nice mouthfeel, medium body. Very drinkable.

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Photo of heidelbeerg
3.73/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer poured a golden amber color with a 1 inch cream colored head. Looks pretty good. The smell was just malt and floral hops. The taste was likewise. Good balance between the two. More hop flavor then expected which balanced the anticipated strong malt flavor. This lager is better than average and I would drink these anytime. Very drinkable. This would be good for a session.

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Photo of kegerator
3.75/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured a nice amber color with very little head
smelled a little floral hop and some sugars
taste was a bit bitey for a lager. wasn't as smooth as it should be and a bit watery in the mouth. Not enough malt in this one for a lager.
its more of a combo of lager and pale ale in my opinion.
decent but for 8 bucks a 6 its a bit pricey for what you get out of this one

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Photo of tjd25
3.82/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The head is dense and regular; it fades smoothly and slowly on the amber orange color body. The smell showed a great and sweet fruitiness, mostly red fruits; yeasty, with light hints of chocolate. The taste didn't completely fulfill the expections I got from the smell. It is good, but the red fruit notes are much less noticeable. There's more of a tart grapefruit aspect that bites the tongue; or maybe it's more floral. The round and very sweet maltiness sometimes evokes caramel. The hops are quite thick and probably contribute to the grapefruit/floral aspect of the brew. I'm confused about this aspect though. I guess it just didn't give me what I thought it'd give me from the smell. Still a remarkable lager.

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Brooklyn Lager from Brooklyn Brewery
Beer rating: 3.72 out of 5 with 3,804 ratings