Session Lager | Full Sail Brewing Company

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Session LagerSession Lager
1,201 Ratings
Session LagerSession Lager

Brewed by:
Full Sail Brewing Company
Oregon, United States

Style: American Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.10%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
The original Session that started it all is a classic, all-malt lager that’s crisp, smooth, and refreshing. Winner of multiple gold medals at the top national and international competitions, Session Premium Lager is a beer that truly crosses boundaries, from blue collar to white, red state to blue, cocktail bar to bar-be-que.

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Ratings: 1,201 |  Reviews: 490
Reviews by mattmaples:
Photo of mattmaples
3.89/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Now I have gotten excited about “BIG” beers, unique beers, and even wacky beers but this is the first “Retro” beer that have ever peeked my interest. Don't get me wrong I'm really into historical brews but "retro" is a tad different The style of this beer is referred to as a “Pre-Prohibition American Lager”. This beer is what it meant to be an American made lager BEFORE BudMillerCoors started to bastardize the style by making it as cheaply as possible (mostly by using rice and other cheap adjuncts).

This beer is 100% barley and it shows in the color, body and flavor. For those of you who are familiar with the English term “session beer” do not be fooled. An English “session beer” is one that is purposely low in alcohol so one can have a long drinking “session” without getting into too much trouble. This beer called “Session” is not that, at 5.1% it is right up there with most micros and should be treated as such.

Session pours a perfect golden color and has an ample head that falls slowly. Whiffs of light malt commingle with the grassy hop aroma. The flavor is light in intensity but long in character. It starts with a smooth malt note but quickly moves into the light but crisp hop makeup that is lemony and grassy.

The bottle is way cool, an old style stubby (with paper labels for all of you homebrewers that want stubbies for your collection). The look fits perfectly with the retro style they are going for. Not only that but under each cap is a Rock Scissors Paper game. I’m sure it is not too hard to come up with a drinking game with that. They are only doing 12 packs of this beer, no 6 packs or kegs.

This is a great lager that Full Sail should be very proud of.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of Jason
4.03/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

11 oz brown twist off stubby ... why 11oz? Reminds me of a Red Strip bottle.

A- Crystal clear pale golden yellow with three fingers of white head that dissipates to a thin lace.

S- Clean grass grain in the nose mild herbal hop as well.

T- Very clean palate with a powdery, floury malt character. Soft oily hop is modest and a light yet balancing bitterness. Suggestions of white grape skin, mildly hay-like.

M- Excellent rolling crispness, just enough body in a semi-dry beer.

D- Not surprising that this is very drinkable ... the name says it all.

Plain but perhaps the best basic lager I have had in a long time. Shame this is not in MA cause I'd buy it by the case.

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Photo of GabeBoise
4/5  rDev +9.9%

Tasty, refreshingly hopped pale lager. I love that this lager is commonly available and well priced. I knocked a few points off for the 11 oz bottle, which I think is a cheesy move.

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Photo of moodenba
3.1/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I bought a half case of Full Sail Session Lager a while ago when it was available in New York State. I found the beer to be fairly unremarkable, but details of my impression have faded. I'm reviewing this to explain the significance of the 11 oz. bottle. Once upon a time the Northwest beers (Lucky, Oly, Heidelberg, Blitz, Rainier) were available in 11 oz returnable stubby bottles. For a brief time after Oregon passed the bottle return bill, designating the stubby as the industry standard, even brands like Pabst and Miller showed up in the stubby. This Session stubby is a nod to history. Does anybody remember the Pennsylvania steinie?

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Photo of mmmbeer89
4.38/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

one of my favorite beers and my favorite ''full sail session'' (you can't go wrong with any of them, especially with the cheap price of $9.99 a 12-pack)

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Photo of oberon
3.97/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a stubby a clear light golden with a one finger white head very sprtizy looking,wow nice aromas going on definent lemon rind and grassy hop aromas melding nicely with some toasted grain and maybe a touch of iron.Very sturdy mouthfeel no wimpy yellow fizzy lager here quite grainy in the flavor and mouthfeel department quite clean with very nice herbal finish showing a generous amount of hops thrown in this brew.Now this would be a go to beer for sporting events or get togethers for me,a well built American lager old school and damn good.

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Photo of RoyalT
3.53/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – This one poured a pretty yellow in color with a light orangish tinge. The head came up nicely and was white as the driven snow.

Smell – The malts are very light and easy, not grainy at all, with a bit of vegetable sweetness.

Taste – The malts are very light at the taste as well. It’s definitely on the lighter side of the style category. There’s not a lot of complexity here, but the flavor doesn’t offend.

Mouthfeel – This light-bodied American Lager has some good, lively carbonation and finishes crisp.

Drinkability – I don’t know if I’d want to “session” a case of this, but it was a solid entry in an otherwise tired market.

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Photo of JudgeRoughneck
4.37/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I had this beer out of the bottle (no glass on hand), but what a sweet bottle it is! The only way it could be cooler is if it came in one of those oil can looking things. The smell is sweet grain tempered with spicy hop, and just a wisp of alcohol.

The bottle gives up a great, crisp, crackery grain flavor, that lifts up spicy hops in the backend. Very smooth. Gets a bit grassy with warmth. This is pretty much like if you took many of Hieleman's products, stripped them of their off- flavors, boosted the body, and bittered them a tad more artfully.

Mouthfeel is nice. Midwieght with plenty of carbonation but almost no sting. Drinkability is great, my only beef with this as a session beer is it is just a bit on the filling side.

This is a great product. It is an easy-drinking macro-style beer brewed with high-quality ingredients. A well-built beer, but still makes you kinda want a plastic cup and a cigarette.

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Photo of wesbrownyeah
4.22/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Session Lager from Full Sail Brewing... 5.1% alcohol. Short and fat bottle with simple red label reading Session Premium Lager printed on front. Looks like a session beer.

A- Pours a crisp golden fluid that has a one and a half inch head that falls to a froth and ring around glass. Lacing is very light but there.

S- Smell is of fresh malty goodness, grassy hops and light and sweet yeasty scent in the backbone of the nose.

T-M- The taste is a fresh and in your face lager with massive drinkable qualities. Upfront is a grainy malt with slight dry qualities, second is a faint grassy hop oil flavor that offers slight bitterness and to finish is a perfectly carbonated watery smoothness that rolls off the tongue with ease.

D- The drinkablity on this session is on the outrageous side perfect if you can find a whole lot of these badboys to take out for a night.

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Photo of tbryan5
3.25/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of dill
3.4/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I was in the mood for a lager when I came across this one and it didn't disappoint. The aroma wasn't very strong and the taste had a touch of sweetness to it, perhaps from fruit. An earthiness was also noted. It had a medium body with light carbonation on the tongue. I wasn't blown away by it, but it was easy to drink.

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Photo of megamass
3.25/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of Schmit
3.4/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Generally I like American ales and prefer German lagers, but I thought I'd give this PNW premium lager a try.

I picked up a 12-pack at my closest Fred Meyer for a decent price. Bottles are an unusual 11 fl. oz. which recalls the Oly stubby of yore.

This beer really grew on me as I drank it over the course of a couple weeks. Slight toasty/caramel flavor, full-bodied for a lager, with great mouthfeel. Definitely better than any of the American adjunct lagers I'm used to.

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Photo of Billolick
3.35/5  rDev -8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Stubby 11 ounce bottle, pours clear very light/golden amber, quickly departing near white head, leaves nothing behind on the glass. Just a faint wiff of adjunct on the nose, corn?

Best I can say is, its light and easy drinking...not a lot going on here. Just a thin layer of malt, just barely a hint of hops to dry the finish. Hot summer day, ice get the idea. Not worth driving cross town for.

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Photo of tigg924
2.4/5  rDev -34.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance: moderate carbonation, 1 inch head, yellow-gold in color, clear--nice looking botttle

Smell: corn, toasted malt, and sugar

Taste: corn, toasted malt, and sugar with a bit of hops around the edges.

Mouthfeel: slightly sweet, high carbonation, light body

Drinkability: To me this is in the lower half of this style. It walks a line between pilsner and American adjunct beer. Certainly not the worst I have had in the style, but nowhere near some others. I might drink this more if the abv were a bit lower, but for me this is a one and done.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.58/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a clear golden color with a white head. The aroma is full of grain with a little bit of grass from the hops. Smells like a pale lager should smell, only without the harsh notes you sometimes get in the non-craft versions. The flavor is very similar. I get some grain and sweet biscuit malt notes, as well as some grass. No bitterness. Thin mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Photo of mattster
4.28/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Opened 11 fluid ounce "stubby" bottle, poured into Wiessen glass. Cap reveals "Paper," which beats rock (although I am a huge rock fan).

I usually don't judge on packaging, but the stubby bottles are great and let the drinker know that this is a different beer - not what you are use to. Box is also creative and good marketing effort for full sale.

Poured a nice head of 1" that dies down to a nice foamy layer of foam across the top of golden-amber brew. Nice stream of bubbles rise to top.

First smell is of malts and sweetness, further reveals slightly floral/herbal tones. Taste is pleasant and very smooth. Malts are nice and provided just enough sweetness while giving a nice dry finish. As many bubbles rise in the glass, one might expect something more attacking, but bubbles are quite pleasant and easy to drink.

For $10.99 a 12 pack, this brew is an excellent alternative to the BMC brews. While I don't often drink a session brew, Session is a great choice. Very easy to drink, and very much worth a try.

I keep these around now for Whenever.

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Photo of Byeast
3.75/5  rDev +3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured a clear bright gold, with a foamy pure white head, nice lacing.

Smell: Clean grains, cracker malt, hops are a bit leafy and spicy.

Taste: Smooth, clean and mildly dry body of straw like malt, hint of bread dough, hops balance out the brew with a nice restrained floral and grassy bitterness and a hint of lemon rind, dry finish with lingering hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, mildly crisp, dry throughout and in the finish.

Drinkability: It lives up to its name, i would definatly enjoy knockin back quite a few of these with some friends, cool bottle too. A basic beer brewed right.

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Photo of startreker
4.99/5  rDev +37.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I found this beer by mere chance. I was at my local grocery store, and the name of the beer begged me to give it a try!! I`m so glad I did!!

A .. Very nice golden color, pours up beautifully, nice lacing throughout the beer

S.. Not a whole lot of aroma, but nonetheless, it is pleasing, and reminds me of fresh made bread.

T.. Very nice and quenching, not overly bitter, nor sweet. Very pleasant, and finishes dry, wich is delightful.

M.. A very satisfying mouth feel going on here. Not to heavy, not watered down, but just right!

O.. Overall .. I love this beer!! Its not overly complicated, and really hits it spot on!! Price is very affordable!! This is my new go to beer hands down!!

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Photo of Hugh37
2.5/5  rDev -31.3%

Photo of maltmelon
3.61/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Didn't care for this at first, but realized I had let it get too warm. Drink it cold and it goes down easy, slightly sweet with a crisp finish. Lightly carbonated. Drink it only slightly warm and it has a wheatish and unpleasant aftertaste. So plan on drinking it fast and having several. True to the name.

Wish the bottles were 12 ounces instead of 11. Have a nagging feeling that I'm getting shorted somehow, even though I knew about the size before I made the purchase.

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Photo of dogfishandi
3.3/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

11oz medecine bottle pulled from fridge poured into SA perfect pint glass. best before 2 19 11.

pours out a clear watery straw yellow color with one finger of soapy white head that quickly faded to a thin ring and just a bit of patchy foam. tiny spot or two of lace.

not much of an aroma. some light cirus notes, grains, and a mineral, cooked corn like lager aroma.

taste follows aroma. light flavors all around. light body and mouthfeel. cooked corn and grains balanced by a light lemon citrus hop. a hint of skunk. over carbonated.

overall, good for the style, but way too light and fizzy, too reminiscent of a macro. i wont buy again.

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Photo of awalsh
3.25/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of Hairrrrrrrr
3.25/5  rDev -10.7%

Photo of Thrasher
3.41/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Session Lager is a "concept" beer, complete with unique packaging (11 oz stubbies in a 12 pack, with barely a mention of Full Sail on the label, twist-off tops that aren't exactly easy to undo). It's possibly the worst beer in Full Sail's current line-up, but it's deserving of consideration since this is a purpose-driven beer; it is suitable for a large number of occasions, most of which involve outdoor activity and the kind of company that has no interest in hoppy or dark craft beers. This is an anti-snob microbrew.
Marketing aside, how's the beer? It's a decent, all-American golden lager, very close to what the megas make. It has perhaps a bit more ooomph, just a bit more flavor, and a cleaner profile. But it's got those mild if prickly, tangy hops in the nose to remind you of cheaper brews. The finish is succinct and keeps you coming back for more; drinkability is very high which stands to reason since that is the beer's sole reason for existing. I imagine many will love this but most BAs will probably taste this, think "hmm, ok, fine" and quickly move on to something more substantial. Bring this to a party, or on a trip where trunk space is at a premium (the stubbies take up less room than longnecks). This is a good choice if you are spending time with those suspicious of beer snobbery, but the beer tastes much better poured into a glass, hence you may need to blow your cover.

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Session Lager from Full Sail Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.64 out of 5 with 1,201 ratings