Old Scratch Amber Lager | Flying Dog Brewery

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BA SCORE
78
okay
760 Reviews
THE BROS
81
good
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Old Scratch Amber LagerOld Scratch Amber Lager
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Flying Dog Brewery
Maryland, United States
flyingdogbrewery.com

Style: American Amber / Red Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-12-2001

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Reviews:
760
Ratings:
1,536
Avg:
3.41
pDev:
20.53%
 
 
Wants:
37
Gots:
149
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 760 | Ratings: 1,536
Photo of WhiteHillsStore
3.74/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

I love Flying Dog brewing company and am sad to see it leave Connecticut but hope it comes back soon. The appearance was a nice dark yellow almost orange with a light head. The smell is full of malt and hops, very effervescent. The taste is sweet in the beginning with the malt and then the hops give a bright finish. Hope to have one again soon.

 346 characters

Photo of slym
3.3/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

This would be a good replacement for someone who likes SamAd Boston Lager. It is a little sweeter up front, a little more hoppy on the finish, but it is pretty dang similar to SamAdBL to me.

It's a little light on mouthfeel, as you'd expect such a crystal-clear brew to more highly carbonated.

Overall, I give it a 3.25

 322 characters

Photo of jsausley
3.71/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass from the Boston, MA brewery.

A: This beer pours a beautiful reddish-orange and amber that is slightly opaque. Its appearance gives the impression that it is a thick, heavy beer. It forms a nice head that is long lasting for a lager and bubbles nicely from the bottom of the glass. The head clings to the side of the glass as you drink, which is uncommon for a lager of this smoothness. Overall the appearance is rich and deep and the beer begs to be drank.

S: Old Scratch has a fairly crisp and pleasant smell that is rich of hops. There are fruity hints but nothing overpowering and it smells fairly typical for a lager. There is certainly nothing unpleasant in the smell.

T: Tasty, clean and smooth with lots of toasted malt. There are also subtle flavors to this beer. It smells more hoppy than it tastes, but there is a hint of bitterness. There is a rosy quality to the nose which is very pleasant and there are also hints of fruit, notably green apple. There are also flavors of caramel. It has a crisp and sharp bite that is absent from many other amber lagers. There is very little aftertaste, but what is there is reminiscent slightly of a yeasty wine with some bitterness.

M: Probably what I will remember most about this beer is its mouthfeel. There is very little carbonation, and I expected more from a lager. Additionally it is exceptionally smooth - it feels more like a stout with its thick, silky texture. These are not bad things but it is somewhat uncharacteristic of an amber lager and so it only ranks average here.

O: A great beer that I would certainly buy again. It is a different type of amber lager and is worth a buy - delicious, smooth and looks wonderful in a glass in front of you.

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Photo of kcrosson492
2.47/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.75

A relatively plain lager. Nice, amber color. Smell is pretty unappealing. Taste is plain, comparable to more main-stream lagers such as Yeungling or Sam Adams. Flying Dog is an excellent brewery, specifically in regards to ale, but this lager falls relatively short of what I've come to expect.

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Photo of gonzo000
2.77/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

A - poor was nice, caramel in color

S - Smell was lacking something, knew a watery beer was to come.

T - Taste as expected, lack luster , little to no body, flat tasting.

M - Mouthfeel was waxy-watery.

O - As a lover of ambers I was not impressed. Taste was not there, not enough body - this one just missed the mark.

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Photo of Mongrel
3.7/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours an attractive honey-amber color with half-finger of off-white foam. Head quickly recedes to a sudsy film that helps lend a soft, smooth mouthfeel.

The nose is comprised of slightly sweet, bready malts and a hint of vanilla. Perhaps a little hint of cool noble hops.

The taste delivers on that sweet, bready vibe from the nose, along with a nice complement of vanilla and perhaps other spices. It's somehow reminiscent of cinnamon raisin breakfast bread, but in a very subtle way. There's also a little tinge of lemon to everything, which keeps things clean.

The body on this beer is medium, if that, but the mouthfeel is big, round and smooth. Like silky smooth - pretty nice actually

Overall, a solid example of the style. Far from an intense beer, but more flavorful than your typical amber lager.

 810 characters

Photo of steveh
3.34/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Received a couple of these in a mix sixpack as payment for some freelance work. I know I've had Old Scratch in the past, but never reviewed it so...

Based on the label's Julian code, I'm surmising this was bottled in October of last year; not terribly old. Maryland brewery for this batch.

A -- Clear, deep copper with orange highlights and a firm, sticky light tan head.

S -- Toffee and biscuit up front with spicy hops and fruit esters back.

T -- Toffee and cookie characters up front, fruit esters in the middle, and spicy, bitter hops in the finish. The cookie and ester flavors linger through the aftertaste along with an earthiness that could be malt or hop characters.

M -- Mouthfeel is soft to dry with a medium to lightly robust body.

O -- This is a complex and enjoyable beer, but it has so much of a warm-fermented profile that I find it odd to be labeled a lager. I honestly remembered it as an Ale from tastings in the past, and the flavors make me understand why it left that impression.

Looking for a good Amber Ale? This could be your beer!

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Photo of kaplunk02
3.14/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass

A: poured a clear amber with a short off-white head that disappeared quickly

S: I didn't notice a very strong aroma but definitely a bit bready and hoppy with some grassy notes. Something a little sweet in there too. Maybe honey.

T: Tasted of cereal and hops

M: Very smooth and crisp on the tongue like a lager should be.

O: A pretty good Amber Lager. Not too crazy with the flavors but a solid brew from Flying Dog.

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Photo of upton7418
3/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

poured from a bottle into a snifter

A - no doubt an Amber lager copper color and very clear. good head upon pour that dissipates quickly. minimal lacing.

S - starts with a bread malt smell that unveils a light floral scent as it warms not very complex but there.

T - very bready with a light hop bite. nothing spectacular to note and very similar to Yuengling.

M - light carbonation and sweet.

O - the beer is ok but tastes similar to commercially available Amber lagers. not very complex but not bad.

Serving type: bottle

 533 characters

Photo of Theheroguy
3.82/5  rDev +12%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Flying dog is a brewery which tends to produce consistently excellent beers, I still have many more beers in the lineup to try but in the past they've very rarely disappointed me. Old scratch is a medium to dark caramel color. It smells sweet and taste accordingly. It is noticeably more hopped than your average amber lager keeping that sweetness in check. The beer is crisp and perfectly carbonated. The finish is short and hoppy. Easy drinking and delicious check it out.

 474 characters

Photo of jeranbrews
3.26/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - pleasant ruby amber hue. Short quickly fading paper white head. Lots of effervescance.

S - masked hop scents. Lite rye whiskey and malt soda.

T - sweet but biting. Sharp but lite in aroma and body

M - fizzy but dry

O - fine but not outstanding.

 254 characters

Photo of Huffs
3.22/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Poured into a sam adams glass, nice off white head developed, though retention and lacing were mild. Appearance was a nice clear to copper color with a mild aroma with light notes of malt and toffee. Tasted of caramel and toffee, sweet with a medium to light mouth feel. Aftertast was sweet.

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Photo of BurgeoningBrewhead
3.55/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured into shaker pint glass; lovely glowing orange-amber with a nice big white head that comes up and fades like soda, leaving a topping of clear foam on the top fed by bubbles.
Smell is quintessential lager; soft, bready malt with a hint of sweetness and a slight crisp pinch of generic hops at the end.
Taste is the same, and tasty; bready malt with a hint of cracker moving into crisp hops with a hint of bitterness to balance the malt left over in the aftertaste.
Mouthfeel is medium-light and smooth.
Overall, nothing mindblowing but a tasty drinkable lager.

 569 characters

Photo of bnes09
3.49/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hazy orange amber ale. Weakish soda like head. Poor retention and a few lace spots.

Slightly roasted aroma with hints of apple.

Malty, sweet flavor. Hint of caramel and apple. Minimal hop flavor.

Medium body. Coarse texture. High carbonation.

Middle of the road.

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Photo of tabhill
2.84/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

A - big cream colored head left lots of lacing but the head didn't last very long. Beer was a beautiful translucent dark copper color but not much carbonation bubbling up.

S - very light sweet honey nose, seems almost weak

T - starts out with a nice malty sweetnes but quickly fades leaving you wondering where the rest of the beer went.

M - very light on the palate leaving a residual film on your tongue

O - bought the beer to use to poach some salmon, which turned out great, but not impressed with the drinkability

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Photo of FinchSCF
3.34/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

A - Pours a honey gold with a slight amber tint. Head just short of an inch rolls down to some spotted, hazy lacing. Clear body with mild carbonation bubbling to the top

S - Sweet and yeasty. Light flowery scent, sweet honey notes. Not a lot going on scent-wise, but it's pleasing.

T - Very light in flavor. Slight hop bitterness but that goes quickly. Some of the honey taste from the smell but that dies out quickly as well. Finishes out malty but goes off the tongue fast, leaving a slightly metallic taste behind.

M - Smooth-drinking, which is probably the best aspect of this beer. Maybe a hair too much carbonation but it is still close to what I'd expect and want from an amber lager.

O - Not something that stands out and not an example of this style that made me feel it stacks up well to it's competition. There's just not much that sticks out about it. It is a very easy drinker and something that would be enjoyable on a hot summer day and would be a good choice for company that's maybe not big into micros.

 1,024 characters

Photo of Ryan_Graham
3.46/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Amber color. Not picking up much of an odor. Taste is okay. Not much complexity. Smooth at first, good initial flavor but has no aftertaste. I'd like for it to have a little more depth as far as taste is concerned. It tastes watered down. Overall it's an okay beer. Better than domestics but not outstanding.

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Photo of utopiajane
2.35/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 2.5

Pours a true amber color. Almost no nose and no head. While it didn’t boast of anything up front I did notice a little floral hops character, some bitterness. No lacing. Light carbonation. The body of this beer was weak and unbalanced. It had a flat, fruity sweet quality that really detracted form the essence of the malt.

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Photo of BeerYoss
4.1/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured into the complimentary Flying Dog 'wine' glass that came with the case.

Appearance - pours with a high and firm head, the pillow settles down but never fully dissipates. Redish-coppery color. Looks crisp but full. Lacing clings to the glass the whole way down.

Smell - Hoppy, sweet and citrus smell

Taste - Citrus of the hops and some other flavors that I can't particularly finger but typical lager flavors, yet full and crisp. Take a deep sip of the beer.

Mouthfeel - Carbonation comes on strong. It is light and refreshing but all the flavors and feels are unmistakably 'there'. There is a bit of a lingering 'oily-ness' but not overwhelming.

Overall - Haven't had a lager for awhile but this is a good brew. I would recommend. I imagine this would go very well with food. But it is highly drinkable on it's own.

 828 characters

Photo of Maltdog
4.64/5  rDev +36.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Easy drinking-went down smoothly.
Perfect to accompany food-complimented flavors perfectly !
This went well with both normal food, but was quite refreshing with spicy food.
My companion thought it was eminently drinkable; attractive flavor and color, with balanced body.
"Food friendly" and thoroughly enjoyable.

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Photo of TeamMathis
2.99/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Almost ale-like. Keeps a fine/very thin head.
Smell: Subtle sniffs of maple syrup, honey, and egg.
Taste: Subtle sips of maple syrup, honey, and egg.
Mouthfeel: Smooth. Improves as it warms.

I suppose if you were in the mood for a lager, this is not a bad option. Both the taste and smell is subtle, but it mixes well in the final swallow. As my hand warmed the glass, it did seem to make the whole experience a bit more enjoyable. A decent drink, but I probably wouldn't get it again.

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Photo of lilmissbeer
4.44/5  rDev +30.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Yum! The first thing I noticed about this beer was it's great smell! It has a really refreshing taste without being totally seltzer-y. Awesome mouthfeel and aftertaste. A great beer to accompany a meal (I'm having some berries, chocolate and almonds with mine, and it complements them well). It was hard to resist chugging!

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Photo of Uncle_Jimmy
3.36/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance- Sparkling amber half a finger of yellowish head. doesn't linger

Aroma- CIder, some egg/sulphur, a slight touch of carmel and some real light florals.

Taste- Light toffee flavor at the front some light bready-ness and baked goods mixed in. The Hop bitterness is a bit vegetal and the whole taste stops somewhat abruptly. It gets better though as it warms.

Mouthfeel quite a bit of Carbonation LIghter to medium bodied with a dry finish. It finishes like a lager for sure.

overall- maybe amber lagers are just not my thing, i would do a black lager or a lager. If i wanted "Amber" I would just have a brown ale. That being said I could see myself having a few of these in an airport bar. at 5.5 abv they would get the job done for a short flight. I could also see them mixing well with dry snack mixes and and potato chips.

 839 characters

Photo of habitual_calculus
2.7/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Looks nice, not much head/lacing, a fairly dark brown lager color, compared to say, Red Oak's Red Oak.

Smell: The smell was good, more complicated than other lager's I've had but nothing I could really note.

Taste: Things take a left turn here. Although the main body of flavor wasn't bad, pretty standard lager, there is an after-taste or spice I can't put my finger on, but it really turned me off. I just came from some purity law style lagers (Red Oak Hummin' Bird and Red Oak) and I couldn't bring myself to finish more than half this one.

Mouthfeel: Forgotten with the bad taste.

Overall: Not as good as other offerings I've had from Flying Dog

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

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Clear red-brown with one-and-a-half-finger, white, creamy foamy head that lasted a couple minutes and left a nice film. Okay lacing.

S: Caramel malt. Mild.

T: Light to moderate sweetness and light bitterness. Lightly sweetened bread and toast. Some fruity notes. Mild.

M: Medium bodied with fizzy carbonation.

O: About average amber lager. Looks really nice though.

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Old Scratch Amber Lager from Flying Dog Brewery
3.41 out of 5 based on 1,536 ratings.
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