Drop Top Amber | Widmer Brothers Brewing Company

233 Reviews
Read the review
Drop Top AmberDrop Top Amber

Brewed by:
Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
Oregon, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
availability: year-round
bitterness: 20 IBU
alcohol by volume: 5.0%
original gravity: 12.25° PLATO

Pale, Caramel 10L,
Extra Special, Honey Malt

Alchemy, Simcoe

Added by Zraly on 03-11-2003

For Trade:
View: Beers | Events
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Reviews: 233 | Ratings: 425
Photo of zeff80
3.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a clear, copper color with amber highlights. It had a one-finger, off-white head of foam that left minimal lacing.

S - It smelled very malty with caramel sweetness. There were some mild citrus notes, too.

T - Taste isn't much different than aroma. Sweet caramel maltiness with a touch of citric hop bitterness.

M - It was crisp, sharp and smooth. A light to medium bodied ale with a dry finish.

O - This is an okay amber ale. It is priced nicely and very sessionable.

 486 characters

Photo of chicagoabbot
3.15/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz into a snifter...pours a deep amber, pretty good for the style. Head isn't huge, but it's ok. Subsides fairly quickly without a ton of lacing. Nose is decent, some hops and malt...amber really isn't my favorite style and the nose on this one isn't going to make it more that way.

Decent malt on the tongue. It's pretty drinkable. I honestly couldn't name my favorite amber right now, but this one isn't it, even though there's nothing objectionable here. There's also nothing that really stands out.

Good mouthfeel, goes down well. I'm going to give it a slightly higher overall rating than indicated by the other scores, simply because I'm probably rating it below where it should be on personal taste alone.

 717 characters

Photo of echoes
3.91/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a glass.

A: Lives up the name in terms of color. It pours a thick head. The head takes forever to dissipate and looks like ice cream when root beer is poured into a root beer float. Once the head does dissipate, it leaves huge amount of lacing, which reminds me of spider web. I love the look of this beer.

S: Kind of a clean hops smell. Also can detect caramel and some other malts (possibly toasted). Perhaps cherry? as well. Overall, it smells better (more pleasant) than average, but nothing to write home about.

T: Toasted malts mostly. A bit of fruitiness to it as well. Slightly sweet. A little spicy going down. Crisp finish. Altogether it blends well.

M: Slightly syrupy, probably due to the honey. Feel medium-bodied to me.

Overall this is a nice beer. I like it. Give it a try, but don't expect anything outstanding, just nice.

 854 characters

Photo of bsp77
3.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Serving Glass: Poured from bottle into pint-like glass.

Appearance: Clear golden amber without much head.

Smell: Caramel, cherry and light spiciness.

Taste: Caramel and cherry malts drive the beer, but are fairly dry. Light citrus and spicy good hops on the finish. Slight macro aftertaste.

Feel: Fairly high carbonation, light-medium body, semi-dry finish.

Overall: Easy to drink and refreshing. Something that could appeal to mainstream drinkers and get them interested in ales.

 485 characters

Photo of Slatetank
3.58/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I picked this up as part of a mixed six from Wegman's in Mechanicsburg -poured chilled into a Dfh shaped glass.

The color is clear tangerine with visible carbonation moving semi-rapidly w/ thick quick condensing off white cap w/ tiny bead. The lace is splatted on the inside of the glass. The smell is malty with some toasted odors and a light herbal hop aroma w/ light fruit notes. The feel is dry and malty with a moderately carbonated body which is medium in that respect with mild bitterness and a dry clean finish.

The taste is a pretty smooth malt flavor with some biscuit and light hop notes which are herbal and a subtle caramel sweetness is evident in the finish. The overall taste is dry and clean with subtle bitter flavor and light fruit notes which bring to mind red pear. I liked this amber alright, it was not the best Amber I have had. I just found this beer to be satisfying, not really outstanding or exceptional in any way.

 947 characters

Photo of flyingspatula
2.55/5  rDev -24.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Little to no head on this very clear reddish yellow ale. Aroma is very hoppy. Kind of a malty taste. Not as good as it smells. I'm surprised by some of the other reviews, maybe I got a bad one, but it doesn't do too much for me. Actually, I do like the carbonation level and it is kind of easy to drink. Not bad, but definitely not one of my favorites.

 352 characters

Photo of johntp
3.03/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

a: hazy golden honey to light amber. one finger egg shell white foamy head disipating quickly. little carbonation.

s: sugary carmel malt, faint spice and orange peel.

t: buttery toffe maltiness, little hops. flavor is quite toned down overall.

m: medium carbonation, thin body.

d: good drinkablity due to thin body, medium carbonation and mild flavor.

While this beer does have a good drinkability, i just dont find myself craving another - it gives me no reason to want to come back for more. It is very mild flavored and for lack of a better word, bland. At the same time there is no one quality that specifically detracts from the beer.

 644 characters

Photo of Kegatron
3.33/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a clear copper, with a finger of foamy off-white head. This retains with a thin film that stretches across the surface and then stays a little creamier around the edges, leaving back some light spotty lacing that quickly slides down the sides of the glass. The aroma smell of grass and citric hops, with a sticky malt backing of buttered bread and caramel. This isn't super forceful or anything but its pleasant enough I guess.

The taste is similar, with a green citric bitterness layered on top of toasted bready grains and a splash of sweet caramel. Hops return again and trail into the finish with some lingering bitter dryness. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a crisp creaminess that expands out into the mouth but then also has some slickness in the backend that keeps this moving easily.

Fairly average Amber Ale flavor wise here but I do think that the fact that this was a relatively fresh bottle helped elevate this somewhat as it was overall quite crisp and quaffable. This would be a good one for when you just want to crack something moderately tasty and have it with your dinner. This seemed like a pretty good buy to. I paid $9 for the sixer here in PA, so I'm sure that it can be had for less elsewhere.

 1,267 characters

Photo of Jimmys
3.01/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 1.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: for an amber this one is pretty pale. fluffy white head with a bit of carbonation. the color is really getting me here though. im having trouble believing this just poured from a bottle labeled amber.

S: sweet honey and crystal malts. definitely getting a gentle hop bitterness in there as well. each time i revisit this nose it changes from sweet and bitter. however each visit is on the subtle side.

T: a little sweetness changes moves right into the sweet category in my initial sip. hoppy towards the finish quickly gets overwhelmed once again by sweetness. the honey really lingers on the palate on the aftertaste. very distinctively honey.

M: fizzy carbonation that smooths out a little into the sip and works well with the body of the beer.

D: not what im used to in an amber, but like every american brew it is sometimes hard to put a style in a specific box. overall a drinkable brew with a touch of sweet and bitter.

 935 characters

Photo of matjack85
2.3/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I found this single 12oz brown bottle at the Binny's store in Plainfield, IL for $1.49. Bottled on date of 11/16/10 is clearly marked. Wish all freshness dates were this easy to read.

The beer poured a pale golden/amber color and made a 1-finger white head. Unfortunately, the head disappeared in less than 30 seconds and left no lacing whatsoever. Not a very impressive look.

Very weak nose to this despite the impressive list of interesting ingredients. Slight fruitiness along with some mild hops.

Rather bland tasting for a beer with 4 different malts and 2 hop varieties in it. More bitter than sweet despite the honey malt and milk sugar. The cracker-like dryness and mild bittering hops are what mostly stood out. I didn't care for it.

Smooth and medium bodied with a dry finish and moderate carbonation.

It's not horrible, but not memorable either. At least the alcohol is well hidden so I gave it average drinkability.

 932 characters

Photo of theboozecruise
3.4/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Another one on tap at the Front Porch Pub in Houston... this one looks nearly identical to the Broken Halo IPA I tried before. A clear amber color with about a finger-worth of white bubbly head.

Much like the Broken Halo IPA, there really isn't anything outstanding about this one, but nothing offensive either. The only interesting thing really is the honey malts that give it a sweeter flavor, honey obviously, but it's not too strong.

Overall, an easily sessionable amber ale, one I'd be happy to split in a pitcher with some friends, but not something I'd order on my own again if there were other good options.

 618 characters

Photo of BaronRogue
3.8/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got the variety pack from Ralph's so i can get some serious reviews in. :] Bottled on 12/14/10

Nearly-clear amber color, no head to speak of, but slight lacing.

Could smell more of the hops, surprisingly... a little sour prune-y smell with a slight bread backbone... Not saying that the smell is strong, by any means, but it's not bad.

Taste is pretty standard for an American Amber. First sips noticed the malts, especially the honey malts. Yum. As i progressed through the beer, the hops actually came through and added a little sour-ness, but the aftertaste is definitely bready.

Fairly crisp in the mouth, pleasant.

Could drink these whenever. A standard ale that's a bargain when you can find it on sale.

 715 characters

Photo of thedoubler55
3.3/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear amber color than leaves slight head the disappears as soon as you finish the pour.

S: Simple sweet smell of malts, with some toffee at the tail end

T: Toffee and sweet malts right away in taste a bit to sweet for a red ale for me

M- Carbonation and Medium bodied

D: Not to bad for an amber ale but not sure if I would like to drink this one again.

 360 characters

Photo of bum732
3.88/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

S: Yeasty bread crusts, earthy hops.

L: Hazy orangish yellow, light tan head that dissipates to a layer, solid lacing.

T: Slightly fruity and light caramal malt, mostly semi-sweet honey. Some pears detectable as well. Low bitterness leads to some yeasty breadiness. Finishes quite clean with just a touch of bready dryness.

M: Medium creamy bodied, medium carbonation.

A very simple, subtle amber ale. Really enjoyed it and could easily drink a dozen of these.

 464 characters

Photo of dhowe
3.45/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Light in color for style. Very clear. Decent head retention and lacing.

S - Smell fit my idea of an Amber Ale.

T - First taste impact was nice but the aftertaste didnt have the expected Amber Ale taste, probably due to hop choices.

M - Good mouthfeel.

D - Good drinkability not too impressive but at same time very drinkable and can't say I disliked anything about the beer.

 382 characters

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.59/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Clear and amber in color, didn't produce that much head or lacing, some rising bubbles were present.

Smelled interesting. A lightly hoppy brew, with floral and fruity notes to compliment the biscuit malts.

Flavor wise it's pretty darn tasty. Sweet floral tastes accent an even combination of caramel malts, lightly tangy hops, and a bit of mixed fruit flavors. No one taste is overpowering, balance is nice and the beer is very inviting to the taste buds.

Feel wise it's nothing special but not bad. Good carbonation is present but it's a bit on the watery side.

It's an average drinker for "all beers" but for the amber style, one that I'm not that fond of, it's definitely above average. I'd surely buy it once in a while for a change of pace, or when I was in an amber mood. Would be great beer for a sporting event or barbecue.

 839 characters

Photo of welldigger888
3.85/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Ok so, I am a fan but the variety pack seems a little contrieved. I am getting the same fruity aromas as the drop top.
So,poured into a pint glass, very little white head that faded fast with almost no lacing. Having said that the elixer is an ipa ish orangey hue,Amber maybe but hardly a red.
Fruit I say, again with the fruit.Possibly some faint yeasty breadiness but is the fruit the hop?
The flavor profile seems to contradict the aromas. I am getting a nice malty biscuity toasty nut type notes with a descent hop bitterness, bravo for the change there.
Nice smooth mouth with some creamy malty feels.
I couls session this if'n the $ was right.

 650 characters

Photo of Andrew644
2.79/5  rDev -17%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- light amber with a very light tan head that laces the glass nicely.

S- very little aroma but what is there seems to be balanced very well between malt and hops.

T- sweet malt flavor with a floral/fruity hop flavor. It almost tastes like it is hopped more for a pale ale than an amber ale and between the hops and malt it is too sweet. The two don't work together like they should.

M- very good level of carbonation for the style.

D- average, nothing I would run to the store for.

 487 characters

Photo of csiewert
3.45/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The drop top amber is a good american amber beer. Good hop aroma and nice clean hoppy flavor, which is not necessarily what you would expect from an amber. There is a good amount of maltiness to balance the hops. The color is a pretty amber. The finish is malty and lingers a little longer than I would like.

Although, similar to the Widmer Hefeweizen, I have noticed that the beer seems to have 'cheapened' in taste recently...

 429 characters

Photo of Clydesdale
3.47/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a somewhat hazy orange-amber color. The medium-sized head has a light orange tint and a somewhat dense, foamy texture. Retention is average, and the head only leaves a few random splotches of lace as it fades.

S: A bit of bready malt aroma, with some mild caramel and honeylike notes. Some vaguely tart fruity character is accompanied by a balanced, freshly herbal hop presence.

T: Somewhat biscuity flavor up front. Balanced caramel sweetness. Surprisingly tart, although not over the top. Hop bitterness is middle-of-the-road, with a balanced fruity and herbal flavor.

M: Medium body - perhaps a tad on the full side of medium. Carbonation is perky and lively, lending a crispness to the finish.

D: Mostly paint-by-the-numbers, but it is interestingly hopped for the style. Unusual tartness saves this from being nondescriptly average. It drinks easily enough and is pretty approachable.

 906 characters

Photo of far333
3.08/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Honey copper colored with a low head of beige foam that disappears quickly.

Low aroma of biscuity malt and slight metallic note.

Flavors of corn and honey, some ripe pear and biscuit, notes of mint. Mild bitterness offsets the malt.

Even mouthfeel, a tad slick, finishes tingly. Average beer all around, just okay.

 317 characters

Photo of budgood1
3.57/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours out a slightly muddled orange hued copper colour with a very thin head and sparse lace. nose is lightly but brightly hopped with an underlying caramel and toffee malted nose. taste is a pleasantly complex mix of malts and hops...leaning towards biscuits and crackers with an underlying dry sweetness probably due to the honey. the hopping tilts towards some floral and flowery notes, never bitter but cutting in its tea like herbalness. medium bodied and a bit of creamy like smoothness makes it all the more enjoyable. dry finish. drinkability is pretty good...i'm sure a few pints of this would compliment some bar snacks.

overall an approachable amber ale with just enough going on to satisfy. a session beer to be sure and a no brainer to share with someone curious about the world of better beer.

 809 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
3.3/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes.

Pours a moderate amber color with a single-finger off white head and not too much lacing as it recedes. The nose is fairly one-dimensional, bringing notes of caramel and a bit of baked bread. The taste is the same without much other than a bit of bread crust. Medium body with moderate carbonation levels. There's nothing terribly special about this beer, although there aren't any clear defects, either.

 426 characters

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.7/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from BeerAdvocate magazine Vol. II Issue VII:

Brewed with an addition of honey malt and hopped with Alchemy and Simcoe hops to make things interesting.

After a hard pour, this beer sports a thick crowning of white lacing. The pale amber color flaunts its clarity in the light. Delicate hop aroma that has suggestions of freshly cut banana peppers, wild flowers and faint mint. A little bit of malt in the nose, more of a creamy sweetness and toasted biscuit. Lots of smoothness, medium-bodied. Clean, sharp hop bitterness nearly cuts through all of the malt. The hop flavor leaves a long subtle trail of green tea, white pepper and wild flower flavors. Creamy maltiness with a touch of sweetness up front, more of a dry cracker and biscuity tone in the semi-dry finish.

Balanced and very complex, still very drinkable. A session ale that makes you think a little, it is also intricate enough to pair against a bolder cuisine.

 936 characters

Photo of Malt
3.59/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer has a citus type after taste whith a hint of honey. It has a thin head, great carbonation with little to no lacing. Almost looks like a cognac. Me and my brother think that it does not have the typical amber taste.. Definitly different.. We will only drink this this one time.

 286 characters

Drop Top Amber from Widmer Brothers Brewing Company
3.36 out of 5 based on 425 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.