Tröegs Hopback Amber Ale | Tröegs Brewing Company

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Tröegs Hopback Amber AleTröegs Hopback Amber Ale

Brewed by:
Tröegs Brewing Company
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Standing 12 ft. tall at the center of the brew deck is our HopBack vessel; here, whole flower hops swirl in hot wort coaxing hop oil into aromas of grapefruit pith and pinesap. This bright hop nose is counterbalanced with malt tones of toffee and Caramel.

Hops: Cascade, Willamette, Nugget, Crystal

55 IBU

Added by Maestro on 09-29-2002

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Reviews: 1,165 | Ratings: 3,068
Photo of chOAKbarrell
4.5/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Lovely dark reddish amber color.

Mouth watering cascade hops in the nose.

The taste is excellent. Imagine if all amber ales had this much body, personality, LIFE to them. The hops add so much zest to this beer. The carbonation and body are solid - not too upfront, but not watery, either. A great balance.

This beer goes down easy, much like Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, just without that special extra "something." You could have many of these in a row. Definitely worth picking up a six-pack.

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Photo of brentk56
4/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear amber color with a modest head that leaves sporadic lacing

Smell: Bursts out with a pine cone nose but there is plenty of caramel malt in the background, too

Taste: It has that caramel amber flavor going on up front with lots of piney bitterness arriving by mid-palate; nicely balanced right through to the bitter tea-bag hoppy finish, though their are plenty of amber ale elements in there as well

Mouthfeel: Medium body and moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Overall, a fine effort that shows that an amber ale doesn't have to be boring

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Photo of jaluria
4.18/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A copper colored beer with a red-hue head that has good retention but leaves behind little lacing. I can smell sugar, hops, and honey. Sweet scents seem to dominate this beer's aroma profile. The taste is a welcome blend of hop bitterness and malt sweetness as is typical for this style. The alcohol is not apparent in the taste or the aftertaste. In addition, the finish is a bit sour with a lingering sweetness that sits in the back of my throat. A well-balanced beer with excellent drinkability and taste.

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Photo of UnionMade
4.83/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks for the bottle, Jim and Allie!
Brilliantly clear copper, very shiny. Full, creamy bubbled cap of ivory foam. Excellent lacing and retention. Sheets of foam stick to the glass in layers. Really impressive, very few beers lace the glass like this. Very balanced aroma, equal parts toasty malt and piney, floral hops. Mild pear esters, but very clean otherwise. Very fresh hop scent. Very nice. The first sip reveals a gem of a session brew. Full flavored toasty malt, not too much, but just enough to keep your tastebuds content. Medium to full bodied, a little rough feeling on the palate, with sturdy, brisk carbonation. Excellent, milder ale fruitiness, appley and floral, moving seamlessly into a fresh, clean hop finish. Moderate bitterness, with a punchy pine flavor. Hints of woodiness and floral notes. A little rough edged, a little different, not your average cascade hop finish. Plenty of delicious hop flavor, but you can taste a bit of rougher flavored bittering hops in the background. I wonder what they use? If I ventured a guess, I'd say there's some noble hops here, or perhaps a US grown derivative. Tiny, tiny bit of alcohol is present, but goes away after my palate adjusts after a couple sips. Malt maintains balance, toasty with a little bit of grain, drying out in the aftertaste. Gentle, but assertive enough to hold your attention. I wish I had another.
Troegs' brews impress once again. Really, really nice stuff. If I were to choose a favorite beer that I drank exclusively, this would be a top contender. I'd definitely want it to come with me in the "shipwrecked on a deserted island" scenario. I'd love to try it cask conditioned, and I'll be sure to grab a case of bottles next time I'm in PA or NJ. I'm a sucker for great session beers, I've had hundreds, and this is a stand out.

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Photo of carln26
3.93/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This was on cask at Andy’s Corner bar on a recent NJ business trip. It poured into the shaker pint a medium copper color with a fluffy white head. Great retention. The nose had nice citrus hop, grapefruit with a little grass and hay. The flavor has grapefruit rind, hay and a little hop flower. Extremely light and slick mouth feel. Very drinkable. This would be a nice summer beer.

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Photo of burnstar
4.05/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pint at Phyrst. This beer is a very nice copper color with a medium sized white head that dissipates rather quickly. Nose is dominated by spicy hops. Taste is very hoppy as well. There is a nice malt backbone but the hops hit almost immediately and persist through to the finish. Very nice medium to thick mouthful and quite drinkable as well.

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Photo of RedwoodGeorge
3.85/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours an acceptable deep amber color with a thinnish off-white head... The head quickly flattens out to a white collar which leaves a bit of lacing on the glass.

The smell was deceptively mild - a bit of malty goodness, some fruit notes and just a touch of hops. Frankly, it smelled quite a bit like the Bass I had at lunch. Surprising then when I took my first sip - as expected, first notes were well roasted grain notes, quite a nice caramel flavor, good hints of peach and plum and POW! hops. I never saw 'em coming. Great aggressive gobs of greenness, grapefruit and grass... Some noble notes in there but mostly PNW hops and plenty to make sure you didn't miss the point. From that point on it's a hopfest in a glass.

Mouthfeel is good - enough carbonation to clear the palate, no oily notes or residue and a good amount of bittering with each sip.

Overall a very drinkable brew with all the hopping you'd hope for.

[yet another Eastern treasure sent Westward by mntlover]

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Photo of mrasskicktastic
4.23/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

A - Amber, virtually the ideal shade of amber with just the right (at least in my mind) amounts of yellow, red and brown. Frothed up with a one finger head, almost no retention, no lacing. A bit dissappointing, but the color makes up for that.

S - Mostly pine and floral hops on the nose. Slight metals and a bit of malty tones, I'd expect better from Troegs.

T - I take that back! This is what I expect from Troegs! It is a strong, but not overwhelming pine hop kick upfront. A slight caramel malt taste compliments the hops just right. A bit of dark fruit and flowery notes as well. Amazingly well rounded. For the style, I cannot picture a way to improve upon this taste.

M - Thin and flat. Fairly refreshing. Not terrible, but again I'd expect more from Troegs in this category.

D - This beer is very good all around. Smell could be better, but as far as drinkability goes, it's top notch. Would go well with almost any meal or as a session beer. Definitely a must try. Another great Troegs beer!

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Photo of DrunkMcDermott
3.88/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I finally got back to my beer after a few days of gastritis (caused, no doubt, by the pitcher of swill from my previous rating). And found this beer to be a nice mellow transition back to real beers. Pours a big country cream head over a pretty amber body; the head turns rocky as it starts to fade. The hops are clearly of an American IPA mode, piney more than citrusey. The bitterness is pleasing more than bitter for its own sake, and matches up well with a smooth caramel malt. Kudos.

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Photo of Muse
4.6/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This is the first time I've been inspired to write a review. I'm new at this, so take that into account.

I've always been a fan of hoppy ales, and after reading a review of Tröegs' ESB I picked this up. Honestly, I thought I was getting the ESB, but turns out it was this amber ale instead. No problems though, I set out to do my tasting...

First thing I noticed upon pour was actually the smell. I was watching for appearance (a fine 1/4 inch on top of clear reddish amber), but was quickly seduced by the floral scent -- fruity with distinctly apricot overtones. Very attractive.

The taste answered expectations, with a nice balance of fruit and bitter. I think I my bottle may have been a bit overchilled, which felt refreshing -- and happily, the bold and balanced flavor had no problem punching through. Very clean.

Red Hook ESB has been my flagship favorite for some time now. No more -- when I can find Tröegs Hopback Amber, it's first on my list. I'm hoping to find the Tröegs ESB and give that a try next.

Thanks to this site and your reviews! Like I said, I'm new at this, but I think I've already taken a big step up. Cheers!

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Photo of orsulacp
3.96/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this out of a 1/6 at home, it poured a nice clear deep amber with a big off white head that was present for the whole glass. It has a sweet smell, like caramel, with some piney hops. Starts sweet, big caramel flavor, then the hops give some bitter bite, but not over the top. The after taste is all sweet malts. Medium body with moderate carbonation, really easy going down. Nice drinkable beer. I usually don't like amber ales because they are too sweet but this one was just right.

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Photo of GnomeKing
3.9/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is really smooth, drinkable session beer. Hops are mentioned in the beer's name, but it's not a super-hoppy beer at all. Actually, the hops character is nicely balanced by some sweetness (fruits and malt). Worth trying when you want to kick back and enjoy beer after beer.

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Photo of Higravity
3.76/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

For one this beer is the perfect color amber, if it crystalized I could sell it as jewlery. It has a nice lasting white chunky head that laces the glass. The smell is of lots o'hops, full fragerant floral, a touch citrus, a touch piney, with some sweet malt sneaking though and a little yeast too. The taste was a little confused though, nice malt base bold and assertive with a little alcohol, but the hops seem to go in different directions and the bitterness was grassy. It had a good body but overall the beer was decent in the bottle probably much better on tap.

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Photo of walleye
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

thanks to weeare138 from the bottle . poured a nice amber with a off white head. aroma hops, and a small amout of malts, a touch of citrus like lemon, floral. flavor gotta like the hops nice and mild and the malts blend in there nicely.satisfied the hop craving.

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Photo of BrinkyBeerBoy
4.42/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle with a beautiful hop logo on it. Little info about the brewery, tour times, and bottled on date included.

Poured this wonderful Brew in a pint glass, and it looks good. 1" Sticky, frothy, and foamy white head. I can tell that the lacing designs are going to be outstanding, and stack up nicely. Amber-copper colour with great clarity.

AAAAHHH!!! Spicey Hoppy Heaven. Amazing sweet grapefruit and floral perfume aroma. Hint of sweet malt underneath. The aroma should be bottled for a womens perfume it smells so good.

And the taste is Amazing also. Everything fits almost perfectly, and is well balanced. Nice thick hop oil attacks the palate aggressivly, and doesnt let go for a long time. This Brew shows you why Hops are on this earth, and how there supposed to be used. Medium mouthfeel with great tingling carbonation.Very long, crisp, and smooth tangy finish.

I'd like to finish by saying I'm proud that I live 4 miles away from this awesome brewery. Always look forward to drinking Troegs. Great local Beer.

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Photo of farHillsBrewer
4.37/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The pleasure of this brew starts with the pour and goes all the way to staring at the lace on the side of the empty glass. The color is a classic amber with an ample off-white head. The nose powers through with sweet malt and piney hops. the front end reminds of an American IPA, but continues with a more moderate bitterness and a pleasant mild spicy aftertaste. The malt was buttery caramel and it bit nutty as well. The mouthfeel was a bit prickly, though that may have due to drinking it at about 40 degrees. My first thought was "I need to have another". Highly recommended.

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Photo of Px2GrafX
3.5/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

presentation: 12oz. bottle with a yellow label and a white circle, a large hop graphic and the troegs logo aross the two. nothing really special about the bottle, label, copy or graphics. there is no abv or freshness date displayed.

appearance: pours a clear red-orange with orange amber highlights in a pint glass. lotsa little bubbles rising up through the brew. head is an off-white light 1 inch that dropped to a thin cap quickly.

smell: piney hop aroma. light sweet caramelly fruit aromas in the back as well. earthy bean-like flavors as the beer warms.

taste: spicey pine and hop flavors. hops are complimented by toasted wheat bread flavors. medium bitterness. i don't notice the sweet malts that i associate with a typical american amber. finishes lightly bitter and dry.

mouthfeel: nice medium and tongue prickling carbonation. light body but an average swallow. not great but not bad for this style.

drinkability: only somewhat drinkable. alcohol is well masked, and carbonation is good, but the finish doesn't keep me sipping like it should. swallows a little harsh as well.

overall: i really wanted to like this amber, as it gets very good reviews on here, but i was a little disappointed. taste reminds me of a lager/ale/ipa instead of an amber. a decent beer, but falls even outside a "catch all" style like this.

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Photo of hustlemuscle
4.15/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A lovely amber amber, with golden highlights.Didn't get much head out of my pour(s). Very nice clean piney hops scent, with a pleasant hop bite taste, with a perfect malt balance. Slighty candy undertone sweetens. Clean, smooth, a little chewy, but not overly puckering. The combination adds up to an all day drinker.

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Photo of jakester
4.45/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this bottle at The Deli in State College, Pa.

Pours a beautiful, clear orange/amber with a one finger head of off-white foam. Carbonation is evident. Eventually drops to a coating and a ring. Pretty good lacing.

Aroma is a wonderful fresh citrus/grass, like lemongrass, and sweet caramel candy. Some light toffee apples in there also. Very fruity/estery. Smells great!

The first flavor is fantastic citrus/grass, then sweet caramel malts. What a combination of malt and hops. This beer has an addicting quality to it. The aftertaste is lemony/grassy sweet, with a good dose of bitterness thrown in for good measure. This might be just a tiny bit too sweet.

The mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, with a modest carbonation bite. For all the sweetness, the finish is kind of crisp and refreshing.

This is one goddam good beer. A slammer. One of my favorite APA's in the whole country.

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Photo of budsboy
4.25/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear, deep and rich amber with a frothy eggshell head that clings. Lots of little bubble trails in there. Nice.

Very aromatic, IPA-like. Hops upfront and mellow sweet malt. Hints of fruit, wood and pine. Very inviting.

That big aroma doesn't translate to the taste as expected. Sure, it's hoppy, just much more subdued than what was promised by my nose. Warm, rich and malty with a pleasant and growing bitterness toward the end. Nicely done, indeed.

Medium bodied, slightly oily on the lips, but still maintains a jaunty carbonation.

Again, another easy-to-drink Troeg. Mellow, if not on the hoppy side, and may very well be a top American amber. Very well crafted. Try some.

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Photo of HappyHourHero
4.3/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A rough pour produced a moderately thick, dense, dirty cream colored that faded slowly to a film leaving a sheet of lace behind. Aroma of candied grapefruit and spring flowers ( I almost sneezed!). Transparent, dark copper colored beer with a few streams of tiny bubbles rising from around the bottom. Solid malt backbone tastes like caramel and toasted malt. It's joined by doses of sweat tea and grapefruit. The finish is mildly sweet, not bitter as I had expected. The body is nice and light making for a refreshing beer. A full flavored beer with a nice mix of hops and malt. It's sweet, but more of a candied/sugary sweet then the thick gooey cloying sweetness.

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Photo of lostbearbrew
4.42/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle - recently sent from PA - see end of review for a secondary note on older bottle I had here.

Reddish-brown, with great floating oranges in the light. Thick head on pour down to dull roar quickly.

Smell was tremendously hoppy, very pine resin with sweet maltiness behind it, but WAY behind it.

Great taste, with a little pine up front, but in general, I thought floral/citrusy hops dominated the taste, whereas the cedar and pine doiminate the smell. Great amber beer qualities, with a slight malt kick part way through the sip.

A perfect session beer - mouthfeel is awesome, goes down smooth, easy and agreeable. I have brought down from PA three cases of this over time. Still hadn't reviewed it. Sad, I know. Anyway, I just got a sixer sent from a friend in PA. I also had a bottle here from the last time I purchased a case, likely 9 months ago. The major difference was in the aroma - and the body. The aroma was not as strong, and the mouthfeel/body lent more texture to the beer, but wasn't bad in any way. Just an interesting note.

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Photo of Chadbrew
2.92/5  rDev -27.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance - Reddish gold and mostly clear with a thin head and OK lacing.

Aroma - Sweet syrupy and oh yeah... there are some hops too, but not as much as I though there would be.

Taste - Bitter and dry with some sweetness in the finish. Not bad but not exactly great either.

Mouthfeel - Thin to medium, mostly thin though.

Drinkability - Not too bad, I won't be going out of my way to get it. I've been told by others that this beer was pretty good so maybe a fresher representation would warrant an edit.

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Photo of KroMagnon
3.92/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

very clear - crystal clear - but little head after a vigourous pouring. The aroma is nice, seems heavier on malty notes than hops with a little licorice and candy note there as well. Flavor follows through too, not overwhelming but a nicely balanced blend of spicey hops (with some cinnamon aspect noticed, wonder what hop that is?) and a slight bitterness, complimented with maltiness and some caramel notes. A good drinking beer, would make a good session beer except the ABV may shorten your session somewhat prematurely.

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Photo of blitz134
4.34/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep caramel with strong red highlights. Nice transparent body. Full of carbonation bubbles. Head is just offwhite and poured about 3/4" thick and reduced to a thick layer.

The aroma on this is amazing. I have always thought I smelled pine in a beer until I took a wiff of this. The pine sap and cedar is extremely dominate. A touch of citrus with bits of sweet malt coming through. Amazing smell. I think I have a really fresh bottle because it doesn't seem any of the aroma imparted by the hopback used to produce this beer has died down at all. Some of the other reviews don't seem to note a strong aroma in this beer, and I just don't see how unless they got a slightly older bottle. Not many get a 5, but I think this one deserves it as most amber ales aren't extremely strong in the aroma department and this one breaks the mold.

Flavor is a bit lighter than the aroma but is still very unique. A strong pine presence and a finish with a touch of diacytl. Citrus hops round up the back and leave a dry feeling in the mouth. Nicely balanced with some malt as well.

A very nice mouthfeel to this. It seems to be very sticky initially but washes down well leaving only a hint of what was just tasted. Drinkability would be excellent and the beer almost demands it with its dry taste. I think that if this was more available that I would have a new session beer.

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Tröegs Hopback Amber Ale from Tröegs Brewing Company
4.02 out of 5 based on 3,068 ratings.
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