Blonde | Island Brewing Company

Your Rating: None
Want it   Got it 
25 Ratings

Brewed by:
Island Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: Kölsch

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Zorro on 04-20-2004

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 25 |  Reviews: 13
Photo of crob3888
3/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of GFD400
3.19/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Photo of L0ne
3.38/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

From backlog. On draft in some random bar in Belize.

Straw colored and clear, with a foamy head that doesn't last long.

A little sweetness, bready malts, some spicy hops. Refreshing and drinkable, but not especially memorable.

 228 characters

Photo of UCLABrewN84
3.43/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.25

Bottled 1/23/15.

Pours a clear gold with a foamy bone head that fades to nothing. No lacing on the drink down. Smell is of malt, grain, and grass aromas. Taste is much the same with sweet grain, corn flake, and grass flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of earth bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is an above average beer that is drinkable, but the flavors are pretty sweet to me.

Serving type: bottle.

 499 characters

Photo of HaydenP
3.28/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Photo of ynoT0207
4/5  rDev +25.8%

Photo of AleHunter805
3.25/5  rDev +2.2%

Photo of Jenlo_21
3.75/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of GeorgeH
3.5/5  rDev +10.1%

Photo of scottfrie
3.47/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22oz bottle in an imperial pint.

A: Pours a light straw color with two fingers of fluffy bright white head that left spotty lace down the glass.
S: Cracked grains, dry bread, and pale malts. Faint biscuit and faint sweetness come through as well.
T: Pale malts, bready light toasted grains, slight fruit nectar, and a hint of citrus. Spicy earthy hop finish alongside yeast, with a sweet aftertaste.
M: Medium-light body, tight carbonation, light mouth with a good bit of chew.
O: Straight forward and easy to drink kolsch. Not the best but nothing really wrong.

 563 characters

Photo of TheMarkE
3.75/5  rDev +17.9%

Photo of t0rin0
3/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of TicoCali
3/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of womencantsail
3.68/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Island

Pours a clear golden color with a white head. Straw, light grass, and some floral hops. A nice biscuity aroma, plenty of yeast, and a good bready aroma. Light fruit esters, too. The flavor is crisp and lightly dry. Good malt base of bread and biscuit flavors. Floral hops, very light bitterness, and a touch of orange peel. Really clean and enjoyable.

 369 characters

Photo of dominic4beer
3/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of McStagger
2.38/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A: Aggressive pour leads to a finger and a bone white head. Moderate to lively carbonation. Minimal retention. Minimal lacing. Slight haze with a rich golden color.

S: Burnt crackery malt. Hop presence noted as mainly that of cooked veggies. Asparagus, perhaps?

T: Bland and blase. Nondescript cereal grains give way to the same vegetal hoppiness. Splash of diacetyl thrown in for good measure.

M: Thin, watery and on the carbonated side.

O: Negative, ghost rider. This beer is not enjoyable and is a poor example of the style.

 535 characters

Photo of Retsinis
3/5  rDev -5.7%

Photo of palmdalethriller
3.85/5  rDev +21.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Golden yellow and fizzy, with a thin white head. It leaves bubbles down the side of the glass rather than lacing.

Earthy grassiness in the nose with hints of bread.

Feels crisp and has a nice blend f a real faint hop profile and sweet caramel with a clean dry finish.

Drinking this one poolside - it's a great day for this beer, perfect for the sunny weather.

 365 characters

Photo of Floydster
2.58/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle purchased from the brewery for $3.50 a few weeks ago, opened last night with Drake as well, poured into a pint glass, color is light golden yellow, two inch foamy white head, not much retention with very little lacing, aroma has grassy accents, light skunk, earthy hops, whole grains, lemon juice, and bread, flavor has some dry and skunky flavors at first, bready malts in the middle, finish has a bit of citrus and more chewiness with light dryness lingering, flavors are very weak and do not last long at all, not very crisp for its style either, slightly dry, skunky, and chewy mouthfeel, thin to medium bodied, medium level of carbonation, could drink a lot of this because it is super light but I would probably switch to something else after a glass, not heavy at all and watered down, not very interesting, this brew was not my favorite from Island, lacks flavor even for the style, would not drink again, not recommended

 945 characters

Photo of charlzm
3/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Draft at brewery, consumed 02/18/08.

Very clear yellow with long-lived active carbonation. Slightly spicy aroma (thank you, Saaz). Lightly bitter up front with a touch of malt. A little sweet on the finish with a berry flavor. Thank goodness for the lack of corn character!

While not exciting, this is better than the average brewpub "light" ale that's supposed to be a gateway for macro drinkers to enter the world of craft beer.

 434 characters

Photo of JayTheFinn
1.76/5  rDev -44.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1

I'm really not a fan of this one as you can tell by the ratings I gave it. This is a bit of a surprise since I'm generally a fan of Island's beers. Their Blonde has a weird off-putting taste that I can't put my finger on. It's like a tangy, sourness or something. Sorry I can't be more specific. Granted I don't have much experience with the style. However I have tried others, and while maybe I didn't LOVE them, I was able to finish them. My tastebuds just don't dig Island's version I guess.

 494 characters

Photo of Westsidethreat
3.3/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Very crisp and clean looking golden hay brew with a good snow white creamy head.

S: Copper, blueberry, wheat and European hops.

T: Begins minerally with some spicy hops. Moves to some metallic tones..not over the top but certainly evident. Slight sourness at the tip of the tongue like under ripe pear and honey. Finishes dry with a hint of hops and more metallic tastes.

M: Light body with a decent mouthfeel to it.

D: Not a bad beer. Good balance that strikes harmony through the different aspects of flavors. Nothing to run out and get but still very drinkable.

 579 characters

Photo of MaltyGoodness
1.82/5  rDev -42.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

22oz. bomber purchased at The Jug Shop in San Francisco

Pours a clear golden color with a mountain of a white head. Thick head maintains with nice lacing on the glass.

Smell is slightly malty with quite a sour underbelly. Hmmmm....

Taste is slightly malty and then sour city. Ugh. I hope it's infected and not supposed to be this way.

Fizzy carbonation, poor beyond that.

I could only drink this if I could win money by doing so. I am so disappointed I wasted the space and energy lugging this home in my carry on.

 529 characters

Photo of TheLongBeachBum
3.53/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: 22 ounce Bomber. Single main label around the waist of the bottle has an oval that contains an orange sunset over a couple of silhouetted islands each with its own palm tree and the words ‘ISLAND Brewing Company’, whilst around the oval it also states’ Fresh • Flavorful • Local Brewed on the Santa Barbara Coast’. Yellow background to the label with the words ‘BLONDE Kölsch-Style Ale’. Hand Bottled and made “….with 5 different types of malt, liberally added noble Czech Saaz, and carefully brewed a kölsch-style ale with lingering malt flavors and subtle hop finish”. No strength or freshness listed. Picked up at BevMo in Pasadena last weekend for a couple of greenies.

Appearance: Hazy lemon meringue colored body which has the consistency of freshly squeezed lemon juice. Light amount of streamers punctuate a massive white head which collapses to reveal a thick foamy surface full of deep crevasses and rock pools. Liberal amounts of sticky lacing shot-blast the glass walls.

Nose: Cutting and rather pungent, angled sour odors in the malts that verge on smelling like the brew is off, but which fool you into a Belgium mode and tease you that the sourness is intentional, I don’t know which!? <Scratches head>. Deeper inhalation reveals strong Saaz hops in the back end, these meld with the sour bready malts nicely for balance.

Taste: Sharp lemon almost Saison like entrance…this completely threw me…it has a cutting sharp feel to it but I rather like that kind of taste profile, yet somehow I am not sure it is intentional in this case, but I could be wrong. Finish is lingering and long after the swallow a fruity sugar soaked lemon slice feel evolves. Rather tasty. But is it supposed to be like this.

Mouthfeel: Pretty filling in the swallow I have to say. The fine edged sourness lingers a little but never wants to make you dump the brew; moreover it invites yet more mouthfuls.

Drinkability: Rather quaffable in the finish, once I got used to the lemon zest and fleshy pineapple funky sharpness I became rather accustomed to this brew.

Overall: Not that bad….I just can’t help but wonder if it's supposed to be as cloudy as it was, maybe it was well aged and beyond its non existent freshness date and that I had a bottle that had started to turn, if so this is pretty good as it gets old, though that may not be intentional, yet if this is how it is supposed to be, why was it cloudy and so acidic and sharp? Aaah who cares…I’ll pick this up again and who knows even one day get to Santa Barbara to try it on draft…then I’ll guess I’ll know for sure. Likeable!

 2,639 characters

Photo of Zorro
3.58/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From the label: "Island Brewing took five types of malt, liberally added noble Saaz hops and brewed a kolsch-style ale."

Pours a clear golden brew.

Smell is sweet and malty with a pleasant grassy Saaz hop aroma.

Taste is sweet and bready with a strong Saaz hops flavor.

Mouthfeel is good.

A nice drinkable brew. Don't think it will be beating the Germans anytime soon though.

 390 characters

Blonde from Island Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.18 out of 5 with 25 ratings