Grolsch Amber Ale | Grolsch Bierbrouwerij N.V.

97 Reviews
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Brewed by:
Grolsch Bierbrouwerij N.V.

Style: Altbier

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-06-2001

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Reviews: 97 | Ratings: 144
Photo of clayrock81
3.4/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Decided to pour this into a pils glass rather than a stange or flute. The smell was sharp as the carbonation kicked up there, leaving a foamy two-finger head. I picked up hints of citrus and yeast, plus earth tones but nothing too hoppy and no strong malt presence. The taste is different though, as the frontkick is drying and hoppy, but it passes over the tongue smoothly as there might be coffee or roast/burnt malt in there. For the price of the 6-pack it wasn't bad, and that aids its drinkability. It is just not complex/lacks depth that holds it back.

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Photo of Pepeton
4.38/5  rDev +36%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful clear embossed bottle with a neck label, nothing to do with the one depicted here.

Pours a dark amber, with a nice matching head and a beautiful stubborn creamy lacing.

Aroma is all roasted malts, with some noble hops in the backend.

Taste is really malty, with a nice bitter finish. Great balance.

Has a long lasting creamy mouthfeel.

Drinkability is really high, especially in my Mexican Winters. I can spend all night drinking this one.


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Photo of Floydster
2.43/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

12 ounce bottle purchased as part of a six pack that was on sale at Cooke's Market in El Segundo

Poured into a Firestone pint glass with a dark amber color, more brown than red, small 1/4 inch white head that mellowed very quickly, no retention or lacing

Smell was weak, the only thing I could really idenitfy was toasted malt and it needed to warm for about fifteen minutes before I could get any kind of aroma

Taste was also disappointing, hoppiness was overwhelming and took over any malt that was present, sometimes bread-like tastes that were chewy but not much, got a little sour towards the end when the beer had reached room temperature, this one really needs to be drank as cold as possible, definitely not a winter beer, but it could potentially be refreshing during the summer, overall very faint flavor qualities

Not a good mouthfeel, body was nothing and it was overly carbonated

This stuff is very light and has a low alcohol percentage, but the taste would get really old after a while, not filling but could become too much due to its one dimensional flavor

Did not expect much from this to begin with, but it was even worse than I thought it would be, I would not drink this again or recommend it to anybody either

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Photo of mooseisloose
3.53/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle smell is a sweet lightly toasted malt. Poured into a pint glass it has a huge creamy head that clings like there is no tomorrow. Color is, well, amber. Upon sipping the taste is very malty with a broad based bitterness that underscores but doesn't overshadow the sweetness. A typical Holland beer by all means but with a twist. The carbonation is good and the body is very heavy. This is a delicious beer. I could drink this all night long.

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Photo of billybob
4.5/5  rDev +39.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours a clear dark copper to brown color with a beige one finger head a lots of lace sheeting through the finish. fruity aroma along with some caramel in the nose. fruity and bready slightly grainy taste. mouthfeel, light and good carbonation. nicely balanced beer and i would buy again.

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Photo of geexploitation
2.7/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a dark amber, with burnt bread crust edges and no head to speak of. The nose is very slight -- just hints of bready grains and some earthy, clay-like hops. On the palate, only slight bitterness that's identifiable as hops -- instead there's a medicinal quality to it, like it's chemically derived. Too sweet at the mid-palate and the finish. Mouthfeel is a bit heavy and slightly metallic. Overall, there's nothing to recommend this beer, but it's not terrible.

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Photo of getch
2.28/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A- Dark brown, amber color, little head and goes away quickly

s-horrible smell, from the Grolsche beers i have had, they all seem to stink, not as bad when it has been poured into a glass

t-not really a fan of amber ales, has some carmal, longer after taste, not much variety in the taste

m-not the smoothest beer, and seems to linger in the mouth unfortunally

d-this will be the last grolsche amber ale i will ever have, unless its the only beer on tap.

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Photo of peabody
2.78/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours out like dark ice tea with lots of off white suds.
Smell is just like any other macro, yeast and malt and not much else.
Taste is a little more yeasty and alcoholy than the Blonde. Mabey just a little more sugary malts that hide the caramel.
Mouthfeel is clean but leaving you wanting something just a bit more.
Drinkability is OK but there are so many more macros that are better than this.( I suppose that is not a good thing to say).

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Photo of jettjon
3.4/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

From a 12 oz bottle marked “Best before: 06MCH2008,” I rather doubt it would make it that long in the crystal-clear glass bottle. Into my Sam Adams glass (thanks, guys!), this one’s an amber brown clear color with small amounts of carbonation. Thick off-white head fades fairly quickly down to a thick cap with lots of sticky lace. Nose of toasted, semi-sweet malt. Flavor similar to nose, with a pleasant, toasted malt, semi-sweet flavor finishing on a lightly bitter hoppy note. Mouth is clean and wet, and fairly thirst-quenching. Drinkability is decent though there’s not a whole lot here to bring me back. I can’t justify paying “premium” beer price for this.

Overall: Not bad, not bad. Better than expected. I’m not familiear enough with the altbier style to speak to style adherance, but this is a decent brew nevertheless. I don’t see me paying a “premium import” price tag for another sixer, but I wouldn’t decline a few if offered. Worth a try.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.16/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A delicate and flavorful session beer; but maybe a bit dull in the end. Starts off with a brilliantly clear, abundantly carbonated deep golden / light copper hue, with a favorable foamstand that laced throughout. Aromas show a balance of malt and sparged grains with a mild noble hop (grassy) scent. Mild sulfers is the only deterant in the nose. Flavors also take on a nice malt / grain blend, albeit a bit strained. Sweetness takes on light toasty, biscuity, yeasty heartiness with light hints of caramel and powdered sugar. Sweetness is balanced by German hops, but don't offer much in the way of flavor. Feels light, nearly watery; thus finishing with a linger of grassy hops and mild grain-husk astringency. Fair beer that either needs to be flawless in it's style or gain a bit more intensity in flavor and feel to win beer-lovers over.

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Photo of Symphonic
3.2/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Unfortunately, I was in a smoky bar when I tasted this, so that could have affected my review. That said, the aroma I could smell, besides the smoke, was pretty good, slight caramel and some aromatic hops. Clarity was great, 3 out of 5 on sweetness, light body, since it was bottled, I had no head :( Good carbonation, and of course you can reuse the bottle for home brewing (always a plus)

 390 characters

Photo of Drew966
3.16/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Grolsch Amber Ale pours a reddish brown with an off white head from a clear twelve ounce bottle. There's a little grainyness in the nose, that's about it. There is more flavor than I expected, a bit of toasted grain, some caramel malt, just a hint of sweetness. Much more interesting than I was expecting from Grolsch. Definitely worth a try.

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Photo of 1fastz28
3.28/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a dark red amber color, with a nice foamy head that dissipates quickly. Smells like a hint of smoke, some sweet maltiness is also present. Taste is much like a smoke beer, bacony and malty, maybe i'm just crazy though. very unique amber ale. a bit watery, but nothing to turn away from.

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Photo of malcontent
3.16/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Bright amber body with a surprisingly tantalizing head perched atop. Foamy and sticky, it's quite a looker.

Grainy and slightly stale-smelling, similar in scent to many German beers on the low-malt side of things. Faint aromas of sawdust and corn flit in and out of the nose.

Much more malt than the nose would indicate although it lacks the sweetness I'm looking for considering the taste on the front-end. Lots more of the stale grain from the nose with a bitter aftertaste reminiscent of paper pulp (hey, I was a kid once). Still, it's not a horrible beer although I'd never buy it. I don't really see this as an amber as Grolsch advertises although I think the BA designation as an Altbier is also off. Who knows what this is other than average.

Solid mouthfeel with a full body and no unpleasant residual astringency. Once again, though, the taste really isn't enough to make me come back to it.

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Photo of shadow1961
3.03/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

For many of us, our only contact with Grolsch is with those big pop top
green bottles of theirs, with that skunky lager. I was happy to score a
bottle of their Amber Ale in this case. It pours out a finger of lacy foam
over a clear, deep amber brew. The nose is a bit of malt and a bit of
yeast. Thankfully, though the bottle is clear, the brew didn't get skunked.
Carbonation is a little subdued. The flavor is malt and a bit of grain up front,
with a tiny hop finish. There's a bit of a hop aftertaste, and this is pretty well
just another well made, reliable, inoffensive brew.

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Photo of stephendr
2.79/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. bottle- color of clear dark amber , with a frothy egg shell colored head - nose of sweet malt , and slight hoppieness – taste of sweet maltyness , white corn , caramel , slight bitterness , and semi floral - body is medium , dry , and with medium carbonation – aftertaste of metallic , malty , and hint of sourness

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Photo of DoubleJ
3.78/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Having tried it's famous pale brother already, I decided to give this a shot. On to the beer:

Poured into a glass, a thick head arises from the copperish-red body. It's a sweet beer, kind of a hybrid of Bass and Newcastle. Toffee, toasted malts, and a soft gentle hop aroma. Firm, crisp, and easy to drink, I found their Amber Ale to be a pleasant surprise.

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Photo of zeff80
3.24/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours out an orange color with a one-finger head. No lacing.

S - It smelled of malt and grass.

T - It tasted very grassy and of light malt.

M - It was crisp and light-bodied.

D - This was pretty good. Sometimes with "old-school" imports branch out it isn't so good, but this was pretty good.

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Photo of bearrunner44
3.33/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Very clear copper color, with a thin and bubbly white head.

Smell: Crusty, toasted malt. Slight brown sugar sweetness, with a touch of grassy hops.

Taste: Dry malt, like slightly overdone biscuits. A touch of rummy sweetness takes the edge off the toasted flavor. The finish is tight and grassy, leaving very little aftertaste.

Verdict: Lacks complexity. It may not be a great representative of the style, but its availability makes it a good standby beer for those times when better brews aren't within reach.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
3.3/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A light amber pour and I glugged into a glass so the head built up pretty well. Still, it did not stay long.
smell of sweet malt and soft fruit. Some faint apricot or pear. slight skunk, but not like their lager.
Taste is light, some malt and thin citrus. A hint of lemongrass seems to be around, too. Some skunk.
Smooth to a point. the malt gets old after a while. Overall, better than the lager, wish the skunkiness would go away.

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Photo of mpyle
2.99/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Looked pretty good. A large, creamy, pale tan head. Sparkling clarity with a pale amber color

Generally a clean (lager) aroma. A hint of an aroma I couldn't quite identify - probably hop, but subtle.

Bitter hop character up front. Finishes fairly dry with a bit of hop bitterness and malt lingering into the finish. Hints of oxidation late. Bottle not stale (almost 5 months until best before), but clear glass. Overall has clean malt character and subtle flavors.

Body is light, and the carbonation is moderate. Tanginess from carbonic acid and perhaps a bit of oxidation give some astringency.

Overall a bitter, moderately dark lager. A bit bland, but certainly drinkable if nothing better was sitting around.

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Photo of gmfessen
3.24/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, beer is a true amber color with a huge head that leaves nice webs of lacing. Smell is all malt, mostly of lighter corn but also slightly of the amber malt and a slight metallic smell. Taste is of caramel and toasted amber malts, nice balance of hops, slight metallic taste as with the smell. Mouthfeel is medium bodied and very smooth. Overall, this is a drinkable beer and in my opinion better than Grolsch's Premium Lager.

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Photo of Pete9094
3.63/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured bottle into glass...ruby red with very thin white head. Nice lacing. Subdued sweet fruity aroma, very faint. Nice firm taste, lots of malt with some hops on the back end. Pretty good stuff.

Great mouthfeel, almost creamy. Nice body.

This is a great session beer. Good value at $24/case. Bought this for the non beer geeks that are attending Thanksgiving dinner at my humble abode. They better get here soon because these are going down pretty damn quick!

Good choice if you are looking for a change. Happy Holidays from the Keystone State!!

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Photo of baxterbrew
4/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this one at the local grocery, I miss the swing-top bottles.

Poured it out into a glass with a nice head that dissolved into little ribbons of foam. The color is clear, deep amber, almost red.

Smell is very malty, very sweet. Puts me in mind of my homebrew as it's slow boiling on the stove.

Taste: Sweet and hoppy. Bigger taste than I expected from this class.

Mouthfeel: very carbonated, I would say overly so. A little rough on the tongue.

Drinkability: I could put a few of these away. It has a nice taste, not exactly what I expected from an amber ale, but definitely not unpleasant. This would make a nice session beer.

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Photo of afinepilsner
3.03/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz clear bottle

Grolsch Amber Ale was clear and amber in color. It had an off-white head with good retention and left some lacing behind. The aroma was mainly malt. The taste was malty as well with a slight twang and a dry finish. The mouthfeel was fairly light with medium carbonation. It's nothing special and I prefer the premium lager.

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Grolsch Amber Ale from Grolsch Bierbrouwerij N.V.
3.22 out of 5 based on 144 ratings.
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