Deschutes River Ale | Deschutes Brewery

very good
100 Reviews
Deschutes River AleDeschutes River Ale

Brewed by:
Deschutes Brewery
Oregon, United States

Style: American Blonde Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Jason on 02-27-2013

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 100 | Ratings: 580
Photo of andrewh995
4.08/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

All I can think when I drink this is how crisp it is. The flavors are mild and I get plenty of piney notes, but oh my god is it crisp. Seriously, try it and you'll see what I mean.

 180 characters

Photo of gandres
3.33/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle poured to wine glass
Sight: Amber, hazy small off white foam
Smell: Hoppy
Taste: medium bitterness
Feel: lively carbonation, sudden drop with long finish
Overall: very good lager, repeat: yes, look for: No
Drank: 10/21/2016 9:14 PM

 247 characters

Photo of kitch
3.57/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A 12 fl oz bottle with a best by date of 19th April 2016. Poured into a Moonzen teku glass.

Appearance: It poured a clear golden copper colour with a one finger slightly off white head that dissipates quickly leaving only a little lacing.

Aroma: Bready and biscuit malt with a hint of caramel, fruity pineapple and apricot.

Taste: A strong bready malt backbone with some nice light apricot, grapefruit, pine and grass.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied with medium carbonation.

Overall: It’s easy to drink and nice and fruity. A decent beer but nothing spectacular.

 562 characters

Photo of BWED
3.79/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle poured into a willibecher.

A- Copper, semi-hazy. Cream colored head. Retains at 1/4" and little bits of lacing.

S- Earthy hop, and fruity. Toasty, sweet malt.

T- Earthy, a little floral, and slight toast. Mild but flavorful.

M- Light, very clean. Floral, semi-dry finish. Really nice.

O- Nice. Mild, but flavorful. Really clean, and a great drink.

 366 characters

Photo of Catholic_Beer_Guild
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Tastes and smells like a Northwest beer. Probably a bit heavy for some taste buds, but if your a fan of beer from Washington and Oregon this will rank high with your favorite Ale's.

 181 characters

Photo of Troy-Hawaii
3.75/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bought a 6 pack from Don Quiojte $7.77. Amber color, light mouthfeel, smooth clean taste, no aftertaste, overall a great beer for when you want to drink a lot. Surprised that the alcohol is not higher give the amount of taste.

 228 characters

Photo of flagmantho
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle into a dimpled mug.

Appearance: medium orange hue with a dash of haze and a thin layer of frothy ivory foam. Pretty nice.

Smell: sweet malt with a lightly floral, lightly fruity hop aroma. A bit low in intensity, but enticing nonetheless.

Taste: floral and a little bit fruity with a slightly toasty malt base. Quite good for a session ale.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a decent carbonation and creaminess.

Overall: this beer really is fantastic for such a low-ABV session ale. It's one of the most massively drinkable beers I've ever had.

 575 characters

Photo of Jon_Hendricks
4.25/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours a clear golden amber color.

Overall: This is a clean refreshing beer. It is fully graced with a hop aroma but has a lot of malt too. The combination makes a crisp sessionable beer. Very Good.

 210 characters

Photo of raiderandbeerfan
3/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This was one of those palate cleansers that show up to the mega bottle share in March.

Pours a straw yellow, 7/8" head on it, pretty faint, a very neutral aroma, there isn't anything to really speak about, nothing off, nothing in your face.

Taste comes off minimal/neutral as well. Makes sense they call it River Ale, water is the most prevalent aspect of the beer. Softly hits the tongue. Carbonation high. No yeast esters. The beer has nothing wrong with it. It is a good beer to check out in between more flavorful beers or when you need to sober up, but not at as fast of a pace as if you were drinking str8 h20.

 626 characters

Photo of BeerWithMike
4.1/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled also last night on 9/5/15 while watching college football. Comes in a 12-ounce bottle and chilled down to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler and poured in to a "OMAHA-BUD LIGHT" pilsner glass.

Brew pours a medium-honey amber in color with close to a 2-finger creamy off-white head that stayed around for a bit, like a good German brew. The lacing was moderate and stuck to the sides of the glass, like a good German brew does as well. Very surprised by this one. Aroma is of malts with a hint of some fruit and yeast. More going on with the taste as there is some grass/hay with a hint of the citrus zest right near the finish. Goes down easy with no harsh or bitter aftertaste at all. Once again very surprised by this one as I have only liked a few brews of this style so far. Lighter-to medium bodied with good carbonation. Overall a very tasty brew.

 858 characters

Photo of RVerduin
3.49/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

I drank this beer from a standard pint glass. Looks are not too special. It has a golden color, is slightly hazy, and has a nice and firm white head.

The smell is not very strong, and dominated by fruity malts.

With just 4% ABV this is not a heavy beer. It drinks smoothly, is well carbonated and refreshing, but a bit too watery for my taste.

As the smell suggests, this beer is fruity. I tasted stone fruit, as well as citrusy hops. The aftertaste is pleasant.

Subtle, and easily drinkable, it makes a decent beer overall. With it being this fruity, I tried pairing it with a summer salad with nuts and strawberries, and this turned out to be a great idea.

 664 characters

Photo of Wiffler27
4.26/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

pours a little dark for a blonde ale but great smell. good taste but nothing fantastic.

i would not have guessed this at only 4%. i would have guessed higher, i've had much more refreshing blonde ales but this is pretty solid.

 227 characters

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.69/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a clear golden amber color with a big billowy white head. The head fades rather fast, leaving a light level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell – The aroma of the brew is rather strong of a bready and yeasty smell mixed with a rather lighter citrus and apricot smell. Along with these aromas comes some lighter notes of a hay and grassy smell.

Taste – The taste begins with a slightly cracker like taste mixed with a bit of yeast. Right from the start there is also very light hay and grassy taste, which create a nice hop base for the taste for the brew. As the taste advances a lighter grapefruit and grassy hop as well as a little bit of a lemon taste come to the tongue. With a hint of pine at the very end, one is left with a somewhat drier cracker malt and lighter soured citrus taste to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is rather light and thin with a carbonation level that is on the higher side. For the lighter abv., the bit of sourness, and the drier tastes the feel is rather nice and makes for a more refreshing and crisp brew overall.

Overall- A rather easy drinking ale with a little bit of sourness and hop flavor, keeping it lively, but not overwhelming. Not a bad one to go to on a warm summer day as a nice session brew.

 1,358 characters

Photo of love2ride
4.83/5  rDev +28.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

just picked this up at HyVee. it's delicious. not sure if there's a hint of mint or ginger or what's going on. or is it fruit or something I can't place? it is truly a beer with a great taste, thus compelling me to write my first beer review on any site. I even bookmarked this website a year ago and finally today I leave ths review.

 334 characters

Photo of breadwinner
3.24/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Deschutes exudes quality for me, so I was surprised to find a rather off-putting nose on this one, a touch vegetal, not quite textbook DMS, but something off to be sure. Palate improved things a touch, with a sort of light bittering hop note working alongside some crackery malt. Body is thin, which makes sense for the low ABV take on the style, I suppose, but still wasn't really endearing. I don't know...the whole time I just kept thinking, "Why bother with this -- just spend the extra .5 - 1% ABV and have a Mirror Pond or Twilight Ale."

 543 characters

Photo of schoolboy
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a style that is hard for me to get excited about, but this particular one is an excellent example.

It's dark yellow with a bit of fizz. The aroma is fresh yet slightly hops and yeast skunky and skanky. Just slightly, not blonde slut level. A complex odor.

The taste is characteristically mild yet interesting. It does bitter and malt all balanced together. Nice.

The aftertaste is mostly sweet, with less bitter. This is a well endowed blonde.

 454 characters

Photo of iCica
3.94/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought a few of these and went to the river with a some friends. It was a great session, everyone enjoyed the beer, with a modest 4.0% abv it was perfect for the setting. The taste is very mild, delicate almost in a floral kind of way. There wasn't anything too exciting going on with it it, just pleasant to drink without leaving much of an aftertaste.

 353 characters

Photo of drunklewddude
3.77/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours golden with a light head and finishes with a very light lacing. The smell is very mild herb, pine and is pleasant. Taste is very clean pine, floral and malt. It is a prefect beer for sipping on a hot summer day.

 220 characters

Photo of maedhros09
3.93/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A pretty nice session ale - with the level of flavor it's hard to tell it from something like mirror pond, which has a higher ABV. A light west coast style pale ale.

 165 characters

Photo of Tsar_Riga
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Bright yellow-orange ale, transparent, and bright white, full, tight head, which persists. Not much lacing, but very pretty.

S - Pine and a touch of floral notes, a bit of citric acid, and a hint of honey sweetness.

T - A very nicely balanced brew, with a strong malt backbone and a bright hop note of pine and resin, a smidge of lemon and zest, and a clean close.

M - Brisk carbonation, bright, with a quick, easy close.

O - A beer that is pleasant and easy, a drinker of the first order. Not incredibly exciting, just a very well executed ale for a summer day.

 572 characters

Photo of Steve_Studnuts
3.16/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Pours a very clear, pale reddish color with quickly dissipating head. Smells pleasant enough, kind of sweet-scented, but its real faint. Taste is likewise pleasant but faint; somewhat yeasty and I believe I detect some raisin in there too. Mouth feel is _very_ light, almost watery. At the end of the day this is decent enough but, to compare it to another Oregon ale, this is like Dead Guy Ale's lightweight brother.

 417 characters

Photo of drdiesel9483
4.04/5  rDev +7.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look - golden color with slight head and good lacing
Smell - slight yeast smell
Taste - solid ale. Slight toasty with some yeast.
Fell - medium body and carb
Overall - pretty good ale

 184 characters

Photo of losthusker
3.47/5  rDev -8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

What we've got here is a craft brew absolutely tailor made for the faint of heart. This particular brewery is highly respected and I think this beer is their attempt to appeal to the bud light drinking masses. As a former bud light drinker I can say this would have been a much better first foray into the craft world than the Sam Adams Rebel IPA that broke my craft beer cherry last year. Mildly hopped and low alcohol, my 80 year old mother could knock a couple of these back with no problem.

 494 characters

Photo of Briancaldel
4.25/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

(Stay a little longer)
Golden straw color with thin white head. Smell of hops and light floral. Light carbonation, balanced beer with malt taste and a bitter finish.

 167 characters

Photo of pat61
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Had at the Bryant Lake bowl on tap.
A: Brilliant straw gold with a ½” creamy white foam collar that leaves thick lace.
S: Citrus and light grains
T: The palate starts with light fruit and light grains and then it dries out with a slight grapefruit rind bitterness, fairly light.
M: medium body and carbonation.
O: A refreshing, easy to drink beer.

 355 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Deschutes River Ale from Deschutes Brewery
3.77 out of 5 based on 580 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.