Northwoods Lager | Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company

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Northwoods LagerNorthwoods Lager
102 Ratings
Northwoods LagerNorthwoods Lager

Brewed by:
Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style: American Pale Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by TastyTaste on 03-02-2002

Bros Score:
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Ratings: 102 |  Reviews: 62
Photo of Half-full
3.5/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of ordybill
3.52/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 OZ bottle into a pint glass. The appearance is a dark anber color with a medium sized white head. The aroma is b ready malt. The taste matches the nose.

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Photo of Chaz
3.54/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a brilliant golden in color, topped with an off-white head. Though it's not quite an amber lager, it's darker than a good many American Adjunct Lagers. Some a higher percentage of malt, or an all-malt beer?

That's a good question, and as memory serves it's among the few all-malt beers from heritage, regional breweries of its era, being originally known as "Leinenkugels Limited."

At any rate, it's got a predictably malty-sweet nose -- very neutral, with just a twinge of lemon rind-like hop character.

Sweet and fully-flavored on the first sip, but not with too much depth by comparison to some other all-malt lager styles. The malt flavor is in a sense "one-dimensional", but the hop character is likewise rather light in both bittering and aromatic aspects. That's not to say it doesn't do much for the overall flavor profile -- because it does. But by comparison to today's hope experimentation and variety, a recipe from the 1980s (or earlier) such as this one isn't very likely to excite contemporary drinkers. In one sense we've come quite a long ways, and yet, as it is, this recipe holds up well.

Very good mouthfeel, and at 4.9% there's a very good drinkability, too. Northwoods Lager is always worth trying whenever the powers that be at the brewery decide to unleash it on the unwary, Shandy-drinking public. ; )

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Photo of tone77
3.43/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a dark golden color with a 1 inch head. Smell is of malts, light sweetness. Taste is lots of grains, malts, light hops, just a touch of lemons. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a refreshing and decent beer.

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Photo of lwillitz
3.27/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

12-oz bottle into Pilsner glass

A - 3 fingers white foam over a body of golden amber; high visible carbonation

S - grain with a touch of sweetness

T - grain, light caramel sweetness, grassy bitterness, touch of fruitiness

M - smooth medium body; high carbonation; quite refreshing

O - nothing pretentious here, just a good simple lager; refreshing at the end of a long day

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Photo of superspak
3.93/5  rDev +20.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle into lager glass, best before 3/26/2018. Pours crystal clear golden amber color with a 1 finger dense and rocky off white head with fantastic retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Nice dense soapy lacing clings on the glass, with a moderate amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Fantastic appearance. Aromas of cracker, white bread dough, and lightly toasted biscuit; with light notes of honey, nuttiness, pepper, and herbal/grassy earthiness. Very nice aromas with bready malt and light earthy hop notes; with good strength. Taste of cracker, white bread dough, and lightly toasted biscuit; with light notes of honey, nuttiness, pepper, and herbal/grassy earthiness. Mild herbal, grassy, spicy bitterness on the finish. Lingering notes of cracker, white bread dough, biscuit, light honey/nuttiness, and herbal/grassy earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Very nice robustness of bready malt and light earthy hop flavors; with a nice malt/bitterness balance, and zero cloying flavors after the finish. Lightly increasing dryness from lingering bitterness. Perfectly clean on lager flavors, with zero yeast notes present. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately bready/grainy, fairly crisp, and lightly sticky mouthfeel that is great. Zero warming alcohol as expected of 4.9%. Overall this is a delicious pale lager. All around nice robustness of bready malt and light earthy hop flavors; very smooth, crisp, and refreshing to drink. Flavorful and not watery for the ABV. Clean and nicely rich Pils/Munich malt flavors, with just enough earthy hops to balance. Drinks more like a Helles to me. A really enjoyable offering, and great style example.

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Photo of Tone
3.17/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Pours a clear amber color. 1/2 inch head of an off-white color. Good retention and good lacing. Smells of slight sweet malt, pale malt, corn, and a hint of citrus hops. Fits the style of an American Pale Lager. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of slight sweet malt, pale malt, hint of corn, slight caramel malt, and a hint of yeast. Overall, good appearance, but lacking in all other aspects.

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Photo of sweemzander
3.69/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of puboflyons
3.32/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle that was packaged on 11/29/17 and an expiration date of March 26, 2018. Sampled on January 26, 2018.

It does have a handsome looking amber-golden pour with a quick lasting white foamy head and very nice clarity.

Loads of melted caramel sweetness and malts on the nose. The hop profile is lower

The body is light to medium. It is also quite smooth.

Big sweet caramel malt sweetness in the taste and an almost fruity bu very mild, subtle hop finale. Fairly easy drinking beer.

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Photo of BeerWithMike
3.6/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.34/5  rDev +33.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Northwoods Lager has a thick, off-white head, a clear, bubbly, golden appearance, and some glass lacing. Aroma is of sharp, bread crust-like barley malt, and the flavor is of corn-mellowed barley, some hop bitterness, and a touch of white bread. Mouthfeel is light to medium, and Northwoods Lager finishes crisp and refreshing. RJT

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Photo of arlingtonjoe
3.27/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of holtonwes
3.72/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Look: Poured into pint glass. Clear Dark gold with a soapy 1.5 finger head. Dissipates with some lacing

Smell: malt, light hops, white bread, lemon, grassy, orange peel

Taste: grassy, cilantro, citrus, very white bread on the finish

Feel: a little on the lighter side, a little filmy, but still refreshing

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Photo of rodbeermunch
3.06/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

These were pretty much ubiquitous during my time in Wisconsin. Can see the 6 packs sitting in the cooler at Koppa's right now. . .

Pours a pretty amber color, decent clarity, small 1/4" off white head. Aroma has a little bit of a honey malt thing going on, almost Vienna like. Definitely has that marzen/oktoberfest kind of fall season type of vibe. Mild hopping, relatively smooth, only a slight bitterness to it. Mild caramel notes in the mouth feel, with the caramel and honey references, I don't want you to think this is a high sugar sweet beer. Its very mild. Its a mild fall ball kind of beer. Carbonation is up there and lively. Given the substantial amounts of Germanic people s in Wisconsin, its not surprising that they would kick this Oktoberfest lite version kind of beer.

Its a pretty color.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.21/5  rDev +29.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Happy Post-Apocalyptic New LeinBelStarr Coup de Boule Sunday (Week 667)!

From the bottle: "Brewed with Pride by the Leinenkugel Family since 1867."; "The Pride of Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin Since 1867"; "Carefully Brewed by the Leinenkugel Family for Six Generations"; "Northwoods Lager. A Throwback Favorite Offered for a Limited Time. Enjoy!"

Well, once more, I was let down by a screwed-up screw-off cap! Screw it! I am giving it a heavy-handed pour in response. This actually worked out rather well as it puffed up with three-plus fingers of dense, foamy, rocky, bone-white head with decent retention, leaving nice lacing in its wake. Color was a gorgeous solid Amber (SRM = > 7, < 9) with NE-quality clarity. Nose had a clean, slightly-sweet honey-like breadiness, all of which are the hallmarks of a good lager. The early days of The CANQuest (tm) saw me drinking a LOT of AALs, so it is nice to have one that is not laden with nonsense. Mouthfeel was medium. The taste was very honey-like, but more biscuity than bready. Honey-drizzled biscuits! Mmm. Finish was semi-dry & very refreshing. Why is this only for a limited time?!? CAN they put it in CANs before it goes away?!? Now, I feel sad.

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Photo of MattReily
3.75/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Photo of GStone899
3.13/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Nothing special. It's okay.

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Photo of imperialking
3.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Photo of dd53grif
3.75/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of jzlyo
3.52/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Taste is mostly malts with a bit of caramel and a hint of hops. The flavor is malts, caramel, fruit and the finish is mild/medium hoppy/slightly bitter.

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Photo of djrn2
2.8/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.75

Photo of Hackattack
3/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This one is Okay as stated above. Not that good. But, better that any American adjunct beer for sure.

104 characters

Photo of NilocRellim
3.19/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a darker, amber colour. Smells like slightly sweet malts and lager yeast, not much to it. Tastes like it smells, sweet malts, lager yeast, and crisp.

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Photo of mattjp03
3.18/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 1.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3.5

Photo of Squire
3.65/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Attractive rose gold color with good cap and some lacing.

Aroma of caramel, roasted malt and toffee lightly spiced with hops.

Taste is caramel on entry with darker touches of toffee and roast malt entering mid palate. Hops are there but like a transparent finish on dark wood furniture. There is some hop presence but they have more an aromatic than bittering influence. Aftertaste brings a homemade bread touch and the hops spark a bit before dying out.

Medium body with a slightly fuller feel.

Overall it strikes me as somewhere between an amber and an oktoberfest. This isn't to say it's lacking, just seems to have it's feet on both banks straddling the stream. I find it a pleasant, easy drinking style that should work well with a variety of food. I think I would like it to be just a bit dryer but it's well balanced as is. Reminds me of what beer used to be back in the 60s.

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Northwoods Lager from Jacob Leinenkugel Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.25 out of 5 with 102 ratings