Creemore Springs Collaboration Altbier | Creemore Springs Brewery Limited

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Creemore Springs Collaboration AltbierCreemore Springs Collaboration Altbier

Brewed by:
Creemore Springs Brewery Limited
Ontario, Canada

Style: Altbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Fall

Notes / Commercial Description:
With a goal of celebrating Creemore’s 25th anniversary in a big way, Creemore Brewmaster Gordon Fuller and head brewer Bryan Egan travelled to Düsseldorf in early 2012, to immerse themselves in German brewing culture. Learning trade secrets from the brewers at Zum Schlüssel allowed them to create a unique and special variety of their own Altbier at home in Canada. Follow their journey on our blog.

28 IBU

Added by Sammy on 08-05-2012

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Reviews: 29 | Ratings: 83
Photo of kevinlater
3.53/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

473ml can into nonic pint glass. "J1515" on the bottom edge of the can, which is most likely a canning/production date of sept 15 2015. consumed oct 23 2015

a: carelessly aggressive pour yields four fingers of tan-hued head over a transparent caramel body

s: nuts, toffee, and bread in the nose. malty and appetizing. a hint of floral hops

t: sweet raisins up front that lead to the aforementioned malt flavours. nutty in the mid-palate, floral on the back end. medium-minus bitterness

m: light with medium-minus carbonation

o: a very unspectacular but still pleasant brew

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Photo of Bunman3
3.75/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

This is a lovely beer. One of my favourite memories of Dusseldorf was visiting a pub in the city's core. We had spent the afternoon watching street performers and headed into a hole in the wall. I clearly remember the barman toting a wooden cask of beer up the stairs from the cellar - our Dutch host explained that we were trying Alt, and I was completely awestruck. I digress... Creemore has come up with a winner here. It is dark, rich, sweet and incredibly smooth. If you can find this beer, I highly recommend you try it!

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Photo of BuckyBeerBeaver
3.63/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

To celebrate Creemore’s 25th anniversary, Brewmaster Gordon Fuller and head brewer Bryan Egan travelled to Düsseldorf in early 2012, to learn how to create their own Altbier in Canada. Bucky sampled the fruits of their labour in a 473 ml can with a production date of September 2013 stamped onto the bottom. Altbier was 5.0% alcohol by volume. Altbier (German for 'old beer') is a style of beer first brewed in the region of Westphalia and is a specialty of the city of Düsseldorf. Its name comes from its production using the technique of top fermentation, an older method than bottom fermentation which is characteristic of lagers.

Altbier poured a clear mahogany colour, with a large off-white head that faded to a thin cap of foam, leaving some minor lacing and spotting in its wake. Its aroma was pleasant enough and consisted of sweet toasted malts. The flavour began with a sweet, rich roasted maltiness which gave way in the finish to a mild, slightly earthy bitterness. These flavours were nicely balanced and all lingered on as a pleasant aftertaste. Relatively light bodied for a beer this dark and with a fine carbonation, I found the mouthfeel to be a bit thin for my personal taste. Overall though, this fairly uncommon style of beer is probably the best of Creemore’s offerings, and certainly worth a try at $2.85 per can.

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Photo of DrJay
3.74/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Clear and coppery with a short cap of fine bubbles. Solid sheets of lace covered the glass. Floral hop aroma, toffee and biscuit malt, slight lemon, a hint of smoke. Same character in the flavour, but with moderate bitterness. Nicely balanced with lingering lemon. Light bodied, average carbonation, decent texture. Pretty good, pleasant to drink.

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Photo of seand
3.67/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a clear amber with a small amount of light white head. A small amount retains, leaving reasonable lacing.

S: Lightly sweet with a fruity note and a touch of grain.

T: A touch sweeter than regular Creemore, with the same lightly sweet and lightly grainy flavors.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation.

Overall, good. A nice minor variation on standard Creemore, though not as nice as their Kellerbier.

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Photo of CAMRAhardliner
3.17/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Pours clear deep copper with a patchy shortlived head. The aroma is of light bread and some fruitiness. In the taste lightly roasted malts mix with a bit of stayed leafy, herbal hops and some cooked vegetable flavors in the back. A nearly cloying sweetness builds in the finish. Hop bitterness is very low throughout, with a bit of lemon showing with warmth. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a medium to light carbonation.

An okay beer, but pretty lacking in complexity and a bit too sweet.

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Photo of DenisKolkin
3.47/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

473ml can from LCBO for $2.85 CDN poured into a pint glass

Appearance - dark amber in color with one half fingers of head that dissipates quickly, virtually no lacing left in the glass.

Smell- Biscuity malts are faint but at hand. Slight apple scent is present when beer is cold but transitions to a breadier smell as beer warms.

Taste- Roasted corn and roasted malts transitioning into earthy notes on the finish and in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel- Smooth with medium-light body and decent carbonation, dry on the back end.

Overall- First Altbier I've tried happens to be pretty tasty and look forward to trying others in a similar style.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.53/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to korguy123 for this can.

A - Medium amber with a big orange glow and one finger of dirty white head.

S/T - A good sweetness with bready and caramel notes present. There is also a light hop presence and some floral notes.

M - Light body. Slightly creamy. Moderate carbonation.

O - This was a nice easy drinker. Thanks again Matt!

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Photo of biegaman
3.77/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Creemore Altbier is a glossy toffee-amber colour and retains little head. My finger on the other side is easily discernible but hopelessly distorted due to the deep tone. Still, the beer manages impressive and highly aesthetic highlights. Swirling hastens head production but retention, unfortunately, is hopeless.

The aroma of rich, nutty, softly roasted malt is every bit as denotative of German culture as accordion-led polkas and sausages. This is a Canadian beer, of course, but it clearly utilizes top-notch German variety malts and, as the name reveals, came about with a little help from a German expert (Zum Schlüssel).

The beer gains high marks for purity of expression; the flavour features chewy, biscuity maltiness - and plenty of it - plain and simple. While there are some soft, bittersweet, herbal flower petal-like notes, the taste is characterized by its rich nutty-sweet graininess. It is highly approachable but still substantial.

Nutty, biscuity malts not only start the flavour but also conclude it; the aftertaste rides that sweetish, caramel malt wave for some time. The finish, however, is also where bitterness suddenly becomes a more concrete notion as earthy hops mount a silent takeover. Until then that bitterness is masked by the rich malt character.

I look forward to the day when a glass of Altbier is as popular as a latte and traditional brewhouses are as plentiful as Starbucks. That's the norm in Germany, though it is still a long way off here in Canada. Creemore Springs Altbier, however, is a step in the right direction. Here's hoping more breweries follow.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
4/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Can: Poured a clear brown color alt with a large foamy head with good retention and some alight lacing. Aroma of dry caramel malt with chewy biscuit malt is quite great. Taste is a great mix between some dry caramel malt with light roasted nuts and chewy gain. Body is about average with medium carbonation. Pretty bang on to style, great drinkability and very enjoyable.

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Photo of drinkininthewood
3.17/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served from a 473ml can into a pint glass. No freshness date.

A- Dark copper color with a finger thick head that diminishes to a small ring of lace around the glass.
S- Malt sweetness, candied nuts, mild aromas of grassy hops are present also.
T- Caramel malt, fresh raisin bread, nuts, touch of dark fruit, hops are light and grassy but balance the malt backbone effectively. The finish is dry and lingers somewhat.
M- German altbiers and altbiers in general are a style im not too familiar with but i would say the body is below medium and a touch on the watery side, carbonation was ok.
D- A beer with enough flavor to keep you interested beyond one or two.

Overall a decent beer but not my favorite from Creemore. I like the UrBock better. Still a highly drinkable beer nonetheless.

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Photo of TheHammer
3.48/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Poured with nearly two fingers of head that retained at half a finger for some time and produced a solid amount of lace. The body of the beer is a dark amber/brown that boasts ample carbonation. A bit more lacing would have earned the five.

Smell: This is my first Altbier and I guess they aren't kidding when they say this is a balanced beer. Dry apple and pepper yeast is battling it out with equally dry citrus hops and a sold wet sweet caramel malt. This battle while interested however seems subdue itself, although warming helps, mainly the side of the yeast though.

Taste: Starts with a peppery and nutty taste that doesn't really accent the sweet molasses malt very well, however it does appear to pull back a bit and allow fruity apple and nut touch forward a slight bit before it fights on equal terms with dry floral and earthy hops.

Mouthfeel: Not a big fan here, the transistioning seems abrupt and seems to linger on the end for far too long, on far too much of a dry note. The carbonation doesn't appear to help out the middle of the beer either, although it is ample. The aftertaste is dry, peppery and cloys a bit too much.

Drinkability: Out the gate it did very well, it was interested, balanced and flavourful but as the beer went on it became drier and drier and that really hamstrung the experience. It was medium bodied, and sat down well.

Final Thoughts: I don't think Altbier is my cup of tea. As with my love for english brown ales, my preference for brown beer is malt over nuttiness and certainly over dryness. If you like a dry beer, but don't like the high bitterness of excessive hops, this beer is for you. I hate to say it, but it's my first disappointment from Creemore Springs, but I can't really hold it against them as at the very least, they continue to push the envelope by brewing this under represented style.

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Photo of Kremlock
4.35/5  rDev +18.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Clear, dark copper colour. (colour of medium maple sirup) Poors a nice 1/2 inch head then settles to about 1/4 inch. Lacing is medium on the glace.

S: Rich malt/caramel scent. hops are low yet present enough. Hints of pepper are present in the hops yet the malt balances it with sweetness

T: Caramel flavours are present in the malt with a quick bitterness and dryness. Some bread is present, almost like a french toast.

M: Dryness beginning to end with a well balance bitterness to malt. (higher bitterness to malt as per style). Medium bodies and well carbonated.

O: This is an amazing collaboration beer and a great beer. The Germans should be proud that Canadians have brewed a great Altbier.

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Photo of BGDrock
3.41/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: clear; maple syrup brown/red; good frothy head

Aroma: toasted malt, caramel; very light

Taste & Mouthfeel: toffee, burnt caramel (not too sweet) , but overall flavour is mild; dry finish is of resin; body is medium-light, almost thin; description mentions nutty flavour, and can get a sense of that - chestnuts

Overall: resin flavour begins to dominate over time but that prevents it from getting tired; dry rustic flavour is great, but too light

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Photo of heebes
2.64/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5


Pours a clear dark brown with large foamy bubbly head, cream coloured. Nose is very nondescript. I literally almost get nothing out of it. With deep breaths through the nose, the faintest malt, grain, perhaps creamy. Taste is actually quite similar; next to nothing. Just malty: bread, bland caramel, some grain, water. Mouthfeel is light.
Overall a highly unimpressive beer, leaves a malty aftertaste and drinks like a macro (seeing as its Molson owned). Disapointed, let down.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.83/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

473ml can. Nice to see Creemore Springs releasing more (a relative term) exotic offerings, to help combat those who would usurp their throne as Ontario's, if not Canada's finest purveyor of tasty all-malt lagers (and now, one ale). Thanks to the rep for leaving (forgetting?) a scout sample for me to stumble (literally and figuratively) across.

This beer pours a clear, dark bronzed amber hue, with two fingers of silken, puffy foamy off-white head, which leaves some random scattered tendril lace around the glass as it evenly sinks away.

It smells of softly sweet biscuit and caramel malts, a mild nuttiness, and floral, musty hops. The taste is fairly reflective of the promise of the aroma with a grainy, somewhat bready malt, subtle earthy nut character, a bit of understated orchard fruitiness, and dusty, leafy hops.

The carbonation is a wee bit fizzy, but generally behaves itself, the body on the low side of medium weight, and smooth enough, as a slight metallic edges takes something away from that. It finishes mostly dry, the grainy, biscuit character mostly spent of sweetness, and the zingy leafy hops pulling up their socks well enough.

A hoppy altbier? Sure, why the hell not - and thankfully not very adherent to west coast 'standards' in that regard. Anyway, a decent, balanced tipple, and a nice sideshow for this brewery, very helpful in showing we far flung customers that they haven't lost their old-world Deutsche moxie since, well, you know.

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Photo of mintjellie
3.94/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep copper colour, brilliant clarity. Poorly retained beige head doesn't lace. Malty aroma of bread, toasted grain, and nuts with floral hop notes. Flavour is malt forward toasted biscuit and nutty notes, followed by a firm leafy bitterness in the finish. Flavourful but but very balanced. Medium-bodied with low carbonation and a smooth, rich mouthfeel. Creemore have stuck to their roots making European-inspired beers while doing something fairly different for the Ontario market. They've also made a delicious beer. Prost!

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Photo of allergictomacros
3.85/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Clear copper with a half inch of creamy foam on a gentle pour.

S - Nose is malty-sweet, hints of lemon, husky grain. hint of cocoa.

T - Dry and grainy with a bit of lemon hop. Light toastiness

M - Smooth with a moderate zip.

D - Very easy drinking, dry balanced brew. Good patio sipper. Unlikely to find this on the average patio though.

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Photo of decimator
3.89/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

473ml can poured into a pint glass. ABV 5%.

A - Poured a clear copper with amber hues. 1cm off-white head quickly dissipates. Almost no lacing.

S - Roasted malts upfront, brown sugar, floral, hint of fruit, grass.

T - Toasted bread, caramel, fruity sourness, hint of spice, a bit nutty, mild bitter finish.

M - Medium body, medium-light carbonation, a bit syrupy, tangy, light yet lingering hop aftertaste.

O - Pretty good beer.

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Photo of badandy
3.87/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Light brown, excellent clarity, attractive colour. Poor head retention and minimal lacing. Head it not particularly creamy and dissipated in less than a minute

S: Deep, rich toasted malt tones. Nutty. Earthy. No hop profile in aroma, though I imagine this is typical for the style (not familiar with Altbier). Intriguing.

T: Toasty with a hint of smoke. Pleasing bitterness, quite dry. Aroma hops are hidden by the malt. I'd like to see some later hop additions to balance the bitterness. Fairly clean finish, but leaves some residuals on the palate.

M: Medium body. Nothing notable.

A very drinkable beer. I feel like this would pair nicely with a rich pasta dish. I'm interested to try another Altbier! Would definitely purchase again.

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Photo of thehyperduck
3.88/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

473 mL can from the LCBO. Never had an altbier before, but at this point I'm fairly confident in Creemore's ability to brew solid beer.

Pours a clear copper-amber colour, topped with just over one finger of smooth, foamy eggshell white-coloured head. It lasts for a few minutes before subsiding into a thin cap, with a coat of lacing smeared onto the sides of the glass. The aroma is pleasant, with toasted biscuity malts being a prominent feature, along with some caramel, grains, hay and a faint hint of nuts. Fairly enticing so far.

The flavour isn't all that complex, but it's undeniably pleasant, with enough nuances to raise my eyebrow. Bready malts, brown sugar and toasted biscuits form the backbone, with a distinct nuttiness to the flavour. This is balanced toward the finish by a robust hop profile, which is grassy, floral and slightly earthy in nature, with just a hint of baker's chocolate. Bittersweet aftertaste that doesn't stick to the palate long. Light-bodied, with mild carbonation that gives this stuff a silky-smooth mouthfeel, and contributes strongly to the absurdly high drinkability. Extraordinarily smooth tasting.

Creemore Springs' Altbier makes for yet another fantastic offering to add to their portfolio. Despite their acquisition by one of the nation's macro giants, this brewery keeps chugging along and producing some of Ontario's most widely-available, consistently solid beer. This is well worth adding to their seasonal lineup, assuming it doesn't displace their (also excellent) kellerbier. This is a great summer/autumn refresher that is well worth sampling.

[Updated Oct 25 2015]

Another tallboy from the LCBO; this brew has been upgraded from a sporadically-available special edition into a regular fall seasonal. With a few more altbiers now under my belt, I still feel that this is a pretty solid German brown, but it doesn't get me excited. Still one of Creemore's better products, but at $3.00 a can, I'll probably only be buying this one occasionally.

Final Grade: 3.88, a B+.

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

Pours a deep, clear amber colour with a large white head that gets retained as a thick cap without leaving much lacing.

Carries smells of honey-sweetened, toasted malts, yeast, a berry-like fruit tone, tree nuts and a hint of chocolate, along with the brewery’s signature mineral water aroma.

The taste is led by a deep toasted malt flavour, with nutty and earthy accents. Slight sourness in the finish before a wallop of bitterness.

Full-bodied with light, but fine carbonation. Thick with yeast tone on the tongue, which lingers throughout the otherwise dry aftertaste.

Despite being the first ale from Creemore Springs Brewery Limited, this Altbier has a familiarity the brewery’s fans will appreciate. For my taste it could use a bit more of a malt punch to balance the bitterness, but this is a very solid effort that I will be sure to try again while it’s available.

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Photo of korguy123
3.97/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

25th Anniversary Collaboration release.

A- Crystal clear almond brown pour. Short lived two finger foamy white head. Lacing is decent.

S- Roasted malt, almonds, nice floral hops and a touch of chocolate in the back end.

T- Floral hops and sweet roasted malts are both up front and melding together. The sweetness continues and opens to chocolate, coffee and bakery fresh desserts.

M- Light bodied, good carbonation.

O- It's nice to see something new coming out of Creemore. They do things well and aren't ones to push boundaries or experiment and I enjoy the subtleties of their beers.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.5/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml Can from the Ottawa LCBO for 2.70$

Appearance - Clear copper colour with an average size fizzy beige coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation and there is some decent lacing. The head lasted for around 2-3 minutes.

Smell - Malts, toffee/caramel, hops

Taste & Mouth - There is an above average amount of carbonation and I can taste light hops, malts, and toffee/caramel. There is also something along the lines of chocolate and a nuttiness. It ends with a malty slightly bitter aftertaste.

Overall - Pretty decent I guess.. but nothing exciting. It's been a while since I've had an altbier so I don't have much to compare it with style wise. It's worth trying but I'd have one of their other varieties before this one next time.

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Photo of peensteen
3.95/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pale amber red colour, one finger of white head, lots of lace here. Smell is rich and malty, nutty toffee, caramel, lightly yeasty with a bit of floral hop present too. Taste is malty with rich caramel flavours, toffee with more grainy malts, a bit of earthy hops mid palate, starts off sweet but finishes slightly dry. Medium carbonation, medium body, a little dry and prickly at points. Defintley a nice altbier, I enjoyed the extra hops in this one and one of the more enjoyable brews for a style I'm not crazy about.

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Creemore Springs Collaboration Altbier from Creemore Springs Brewery Limited
3.66 out of 5 based on 83 ratings.
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