Finger Lakes Amber Ale | Ithaca Beer Company

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Finger Lakes Amber AleFinger Lakes Amber Ale
9 Ratings
Finger Lakes Amber AleFinger Lakes Amber Ale

Brewed by:
Ithaca Beer Company
New York, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-09-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 9 |  Reviews: 7
Reviews by the Alström Bros:

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More User Reviews:
Photo of yankeeheel
3.33/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy amber-orange with a monstorous uncontrolable white head. Down boy! Smells very fruity with a bit of hop oil coming through.

I found the taste to be somewhat complex. I get some apple, bannana, and even a little orange. Not what I expected at all. Slightly dry hoppy finish. The carbonation was a little on the high side, hence the monster head. A very drinkable brew that is worth a look.

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Photo of Hobbz
3.19/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This was a fine American pale ale of the lighter-hopped style (definately NOT "west-coast"!). Color was a crystal-clear light copper. Nice. Some perception of hops on the nose, not too strong. I liked its well-balanced taste: sweet and mildly bitter with usual characteristics; added back-end bitterness when allowing extra tounge time. Good American drinkability.

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Photo of tclapper
4/5  rDev +9.6%

Photo of ppoitras
3.63/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle obtained via trade with Shippos. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured in an imperial pint glass, forms a 2" beige head, which lasts more or less forever, and leaves large foam bits down the glass sides. A copper brew, with slightly malty, yet somewhat effervescent aroma. Taste is basic pale malts, with a tad fruity (apple?) flavor. Mouthfeel okay, the apple tinge kind of harshens it a bit, but it seemed to grow on me. Drinkability is good, seems quite sessionable.

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Photo of Dantes
4.15/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Package: 12 oz. longneck, crowned brown bottle (and draught). No date information or ABV indicated. Brick-colored label with the standard Ithaca Beer motif of Cayuga Lake with a face superimposed on it.

Cost: $5.99 per 6-pack at Finger Lakes Beverage

Presentation: Poured into a Shaker pint glass at ~45º

Appearance: Pours the expectedly amber-copper color, with a medium-sized, vellum-colored foam cap. Head settles down to a thick-collared skim with moderate lacing. Fine carbonation percolates through the beer. Fairly standard.

Smell: Ithaca beers have a pretty distinct smell and taste that appears again in this beer. The yeast seems to draw out a fruity-malt smell that evokes rustic, moist bread. It is particularly apparent here. Little indication of hops.

Taste: My first thought is that this is a bit hoppier than the aroma suggested, providing a spicy counterpoint to the malty sweetness and hint of fruitiness. There’s also a touch of molasses and of roasted malt. Possesses a relatively short but clean finish, typical of the modest lack of concentration in Ithaca’s beers. However, this seems to be improving.

Mouthfeel: The draught is particularly smooth, but the bottles don’t disappoint. This is a medium-bodied, easy drinking beer.

Drinkability: I find all of the Ithaca beers eminently drinkable. They get the carbonation right, and with the recent formula tweaks, flavor concentration seems to be improved. Provides lots of flavor in a medium-bodied, low-ABV beer.

Backwash: I’m a bit astounded (and disappointed) that these beers don’t seem to rate more highly. I’d be the first to admit to being prejudiced about Ithaca (I think it’s one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been); but I wouldn’t inflate my scores of the beer! I don’t even bring enough back to “pimp” it for trades. Anyway, I’ll admit that I think the Flower Power and Pale Ales are better, with the Amber and Nut Brown seeming a touch diluted. However, the Amber has improved, and I expect the Nut Brown will as well, if it hasn’t already. Do yourself a favor and pick up one of the 12-bottle sampler packs. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.

NB: Someone mentioned that this style might be discontinued, but I don’t think that’s the case.

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Photo of WesWes
3.57/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a dark golden/amber color with little head. There is a little lacing here. The aroma is of pale and crystal malts; a slight hop aroma as well, but small. The taste is average. There is decent bittering and flavoring hops, but the malt character is lacking. It is a low bodied beer that drinks well, but it's a little too simplistic for me. They changed their pale ale recipe and made great strides. Let's hope they follow suit and do the same here.

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Photo of UnionMade
4.25/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a tawny amber color, brilliantly clear, topped with a finger's worth of antique white froth. The head settles into a thick mist, lasting throughout the glass, broken sheets of lace sticking all the way down.
The aroma is dominated by a soft, toasty malt, as well as excellent, fruity esters. A bit of caramel. Mostly a sweetish apple scent, with a touch of dryish pear. A touch of orange, hinting at mild citric hops. Very clean scent, with everything well placed.
The flavor starts with a soft, delicate toasty malt, lovely estery fruit creeping in early. Some caramel flavors creep in as it warms, with a bit of a dextrinous sweetness. Heaps of apple and pear, with a bit of a perfumey floral taste, easing seamlessly into a fairly hoppy finish. Great citric flavor, with only mild bitterness tempering the easy going malt sweetness. A touch of grain in the end, as well. Toasty malt lingers in the tongue, coating the surface with a fruity sweetness. Medium bodied, with moderate, somewhat assertive carbonation. Smooth drinking, sessionable mouthfeel.
This is a hell of a session brew. Mild, subtle flavors with a fantastic estery flavor. The hops have just enough bite to keep the interest of a fairly well developed palate, and the esters are the sort of thing I look for in a great ale. I guess it'd be a beer lover's amber, although I'd call it something more akin to an ESB. The only thing I'd change would be to soften the carbonation some. It feels just a bit too effervescent at first, and I'd prefer something more gentle and english styled. Great stuff.

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Photo of BeerTruth
3.72/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

This ale pours a dark copper color with a very little white head which dies down to nothing before I can even take a sip. Bubbles racing to the top of the glass throughout tasting. Odor is of chocolate and caramel malt. Very clean, crisp, typical earthy Ithaca odor. Very minimal hop scent. Hops are much more present on the tounge but the malt flavor definitely shines through the most. Very sweet malts, very enjoyable. Some floral flavors coming from the earthy hops. Mouthfeel is very smooth. Drinkability is definitely there, could be a good session brew. Decent ale, but not the best from Ithaca.

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Photo of rab53
3/5  rDev -17.8%

Finger Lakes Amber Ale from Ithaca Beer Company
Beer rating: 3.65 out of 5 with 9 ratings