African Amber | Mac and Jack's Brewery

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Very Good
424 Ratings

Brewed by:
Mac and Jack's Brewery
Washington, United States

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-04-2002

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Ratings: 424 |  Reviews: 133
Photo of imrichbeeeatch
1.4/5  rDev -64%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

What is wrong with this beer. I am not one to bad-mouth a beer just for the sake of it but...

This beer is bad. It smells like the fermentation went poorly. Old yeast, spoiled hops and cheap malt. I don't know where else to go. I can't believe this beer is in as many places as it is. I saved this review until I tried it in a few different places. I did this just to rule out dirty lines, bad glass ware, and poor environment. No luck. Just a bad beer. How do they make/sell so much of this?

Like Bill Cosby said, "It tastes like bad breaf."

 549 characters

Photo of kylemckinnis
2/5  rDev -48.6%

Photo of projhex
2/5  rDev -48.6%

Photo of piclee
2.25/5  rDev -42.2%

Photo of ClavisAurea
2.43/5  rDev -37.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I drank this one on tap at Our Place in Silverdale, WA.

Consumed in a pint glass.

Appearance: chestnut amber but nothing to write home about

Smell: wet dog, horse hair, grass and citrus

Taset/Mouthfeel: hoppy but what do you expect from hop country, light citrus, malty but not in a good way

I have drank Mac & Jacks African Amber quite a few times but this time just ruined it for me. I must have been blind to the way it really is. Could be a bad batch/tap though.

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Photo of VinoGuy
2.5/5  rDev -35.7%

Photo of Anaxagoris
2.65/5  rDev -31.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Very weak and bland taste. Body leaves something to desire and overall a bad beer

81 characters

Photo of lifeboyq
2.68/5  rDev -31.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Drank this on tap at the Taphouse in Bellevue, WA. I always hear this is a good beer and remembered differently so here goes. Pours a light murky amber. Minimal lacing. Smell, not much there, slightly sweet hints of grass and dirt, metal. Taste, up front its very much like a dirty sock, but finishes slightly malty, caramel malts, slightly sweet and a little citrus most likely from the overbearing hops. Mouthfeel is smooth and crisp, finishes clean but not interesting. Im sure its drinkable, but the dirty sock taste throws me off. I'll pass on this bland less than interesting offering. Severely overrated but just as I remembered. Great offering for an unrefined palate.

 676 characters

Photo of maximum12
2.7/5  rDev -30.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Sampled on tap at...well, I don't know the name of the place, but I've visited it three times now in Seattle & know exactly where it is. If you like to walk like I do & stay downtown, this is a place that always has a dozen local taps. That place. You know it. Across from the Underground Tours, sort of.

Anyways. Have heard good things about it & had no doubt about what to order after walking in the door. Pours a muddy, turbulent, impenetrable kind of reddish brown clay. Smell is about the same. Muddled, red.

Mac & Jack's African Amber isn't what I'd heard, or hoped. The whole thing is a big mess, like the Mississippi flooding a clay mine. Malts collide with sediment & minimal hopping to create a beer that's, what? Not really sure.

Frankly, I couldn't figure out what was going on with either this beer or the friend/s that recommended it to me. Perhaps it had been sitting in the keg for eleven months, perhaps it's just not my thing, but this is a weird & unappealing mess to me. Mediocre at best.

 1,014 characters

Photo of kamikazeokami
2.73/5  rDev -29.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

Had this for the first time in a few years. Tasted like how gasoline smells. Left a chemically feeling in my mouth, not a fan.

126 characters

Photo of WetCoaster
2.78/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 1 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

So I'm in Seattle at your standard tourist theme seafood place for lunch. Their "house" beer is this local brew. OK, I figure, they're probably going to play it safe with a middle-of-the-road amber, nothing else they have is too interesting, eh, why not?

What I ended up with is one of the odder beers I've had in a while. First, the appearance -- there is unfiltered, and then there's this. It looked like a glass of Metamucil, orange-brown and completely opaque.

So I have what appears to be a pint of river silt with a head on it. Alrightly, then. First sip is sort of... chewy? It was kind of like a beer smoothie, I guess, very thick and dense.

I considered sending it back at this point, truth be told, but I figured it may just be an odd style I haven't quite wrapped my head around, so I soldiered on. The taste was, again, interesting. It was sort of like a mild old ale, very fruity and sweet. The flavor sort of vanished and then came back in the finish as a sort of yeasty brown bread.

Uh-huh. The smell was also a bit fruity and yeasty, and given all the weirdness going on, I couldn't imagine drinking another.

I know a bit more about beer than your average guy, and I found this absolutely baffling. But since this was the featured beer in a chain restaurant, I'm assuming something must have been a bit off here, or they'd probably get back 95 percent of the ones they poured. Maybe this was one of the last ones left in the keg, which dredged the sediment, or maybe this keg just got away from them somehow.

Anyway, I'll have to give this one another shot, because I cannot believe a beer this weird could be so popular.

 1,644 characters

Photo of MuddyFeet
2.85/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Dirty amber in color with a clean, headless pour. Woven inbetween the hops is a citrus flavor (orange maybe?). Makes me think of a hefeweizen taste; not an amber. There was little lace on the side of the glass. The beer's aroma made me think of being outdoors. My friend said it was tasting funny, so maybe the it was a bad keg.

 328 characters

Photo of Jetlag767
2.88/5  rDev -26%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Photo of Lazaro
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of HungarianCount
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of oline73
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of timwardjr
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of Kopfschuss
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of Laurabee
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of TerriNJoe
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of mdavidson
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of sharpski
3/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of rab53
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of tastymug
3/5  rDev -22.9%

Photo of Franch
3.05/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

a seattle institution - when i came to seattle, i was told to order both this and manny's pale ale - neither of which impressed. i get the feeling that they are the "good beer" that's on tap at anywhere in the seattle area, much like there's a one-off bell's offering anywhere in ann arbor, or back in downstate illinois there will be a sam adams lager.

unlike Manny's Pale Ale, but had a funky taste i couldn't kick. would not order again.

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African Amber from Mac and Jack's Brewery
Beer rating: 3.89 out of 5 with 424 ratings