River Horse Lager | River Horse Brewing Co.

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River Horse LagerRiver Horse Lager

Brewed by:
River Horse Brewing Co.
New Jersey, United States

Style: American Pale Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
A crisp, refreshing Lager. Bready notes and a subtle maltiness are balanced with just enough hops.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-20-2002

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Reviews: 108 | Ratings: 226
Photo of VoodooBrew
2.08/5  rDev -37%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

I picked this up as a part of a mixed 12 pack upon the recommendation of the local beer merchant. I will hesitate to take this man's advice in the future, well-intentioned though it was.

This beer advertises itself as an Irish Lager but fails to elaborate on how this hitherto-unheard-of style is achieved.

The pour is hazy and orange-copper with minimal head.

The aroma is faint at first. It starts off not too offensive but there is a slight tartness that increases with progressive sips. At first the aroma simply does not contribute to the experience, but eventually I would say it becomes a negative.

As far as taste goes, I failed to detect any distinct qualities that would have shed light on its Irish heritage. The tartness from the nose is carried over into the palate, but it's more of an aftertaste issue, as there is a slight maltiness in the fore. There seems to be enough hops to counteract any cloyingness, but I would not say hops are a feature of this beer in any sense.

I would say that the mouthfeel is negatively impacted by the tartness, which begins to take up residency at the rear sides of the toungue.

I see no reason to drink more than one of these beers in a sitting. This is not a horrible beer, and it does not seem to be overly beset with major flaws, but with so many quality beers available today I would not recommend this brew.

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Photo of marcpal
2.11/5  rDev -36.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3.5

Nothing enjoyable at all here, run of the mill generic tasting lager that leaves no desire for more. Quickly went back to the IPA.

On tap at the brewery when sampling all the varieties.

Cant really say all that much about this beer but this is just completely run of the mill. No more, no less. I guess you can call it drinkable, but very watered down and flavorless- right in the eyes of a macro light.

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Photo of jmc44
2.18/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

I picked up a 12-pack sampler today from my favorite beer store. Figured the brewery's only some 10 minutes away from the store, so why not give it a shot.

Very dissapointing beer. Pours yellow with a decent head that dissapeared as I blinked. Really very much like an American Macro. Extremely light aroma, you can smell adjuncts. Tastes very bland, very watery. Very light, thin mouthfeel. Really less satisfying than a glass of cold water.

I'm sure that some people (ok, the Majority of Americans) would find this lager very drinkable. And I suppose it is; it is really not like drinking a craft beer at all.

I pity people that are trying to expand their beer horizons, pick up this, then think, Damn, I couldve bough 2 cases of Bud for the price of that 12-pack.

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Photo of craigowens
2.22/5  rDev -32.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

As the previous reviewer accurately (and much more tactfully) points out, the label is about the only thing of any interest with this beer. Tried as part of their three-beer sampler case, this lager unfortunately represented the most drinkable of the three with the other two being (mistakenly??) way, way too overcarbonated.

Clean golden color with a loose, minimal head, it does have a moderately interesting, very slightly hoppy aroma that I enjoyed. However, when it comes to taste..ummmm....what's the opposite of bold? Mild I guess would be generous description - or maybe like an English-style bitter of sorts. Water-like and uninteresting is probably more accurate.

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Photo of goindownsouth
2.32/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

After having tasted the dry-hopped pale ale, this brew was something other than impressive. The aroma was faint, although it did offer some hints of malt, albeit not much. The head was gone before I finished pouring the brew out of the bottle, and the flavor was about as non-descript as the aroma. An average cross-over brew, if there ever was one.

Zum wohl!

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Photo of hungryghost
2.33/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a hazy gold with little foam. A small ring lingers around part of the glass.
Cannot quite put my finger on what I smell, maybe a bit of yeast, not much aroma.
Very plain, watery taste and feel. A brief second of carbonation or maybe a stray handful of hops got in.
This beer is just bland. Not in a Budweiser way for sure but the lable led me to expect something more.

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Photo of woodychandler
2.48/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This poured with a thin, white head that seemed to evaporate as quickly as I could pour. It turned out to be a pale yellow color with some floating yeasties in evidence. The nose was sweet, but not neccesarily of all malt. I thought that I may have detected some corn in there. The mouthfeel was thin and grainy with a light sweetness on the palate. The finish was also mildly sweet, but lacking a really good lager flavor. This would be good as a summer beer; with an outdoor barbecue and friends; as a session beer; but I'm not going to reach for it as a matter of habit.

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Photo of mikesgroove
2.53/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

pale golden yellow with a huge amount of carbonation inside. Lots of bubbles stretching up toward the surface throughout the session. A small white, fizzy, soda like head formed on the top and hung around for a brief second before finally settling down and leaving nothing across the top, nor any side glass lace.

The aroma was dull, boring, and bland. This was your classic macro lager. Light aroma of grain and rice and that was about it. The taste went nowhere as well. While it was crisp and refreshing, so is water and this was not what I wanted at the time. Very light grain flavor and no depth at all. The finish was non-existent

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Photo of benmiliron
2.58/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Paid $1.49 for a bottle. A very lazy slightly almond/amber brown with a hint of orange. The most noticeable smell is like under converted malt. The taste is similar - like i'm drinking right out of the mash tun. Low carbonation and mouthfeel is quite wimpy and weak.

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Photo of callmemickey
2.61/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Dark golden body.. thick fluffy white head.. not much in the way of lacing...

S: Mostly malts... bready and biscuity...

T: Taste is bland malts with a slight citrus tone... not very complex...

M: Light bodied.. not as crisp as one would like..

D: Could be sessionable, but there are other choices out there... not the best from River Horse.

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Photo of jwc215
2.63/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours straw yellow with a thin white head that soon becomes barely a covering.

The smell is faint, but what's there is mainly sweet grass. It has something of a typical macro-like aroma.

Not much of a taste here. There is a bland, mildly hay-like sweetness. The watered-down hops are undetectable. The only real advantage of this flavor over most typical macros is the lack of adjuct-taste. But, it's lacking because, even though it's pretty inoffensive other than a bit too sweet, it almost lacks a flavor completely.

The feel is mostly watery thinness with just a hint of malt. One of the most watery micros I've tasted. There is a smoothness to it, but it seems to come from the water more than anything else. A pretty clean aftertaste is left.

It's somewhat drinkable if you are looking for a no-frills beer. It might be average-at-best if it were a macro, but as a craft beer, it's a miss.

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Photo of necoadam
2.63/5  rDev -20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Part of a 12 pack sampler that I bought.

Poured out a light golden color with a small head, no lacing left on the glass which told me that it wasn't the freshest out there. Smell consisted of some sweetened malts, light whiff of corn, and that was pretty much it. Quite light in the smell and taste department. Taste was slightly on the sweet side with a hint of some pale wheat. Mouthfeel was slightly watered down I thought, it also seemed to be a little flat. Overall it's not the best lagers out there, but to wash down dinner, I guess it gets the job done.

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Photo of Zekezilla
2.65/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Tried the River Horse Unfiltered Lager on a whim. I had high hopes at first. The initial taste is full of flavor--maybe a little subtle malt/biscuit flavor but as it goes down, it becomes very average. Also, too carbonated for my taste. Appearance and smell also unremarkable. The end result is not unlike a very average domestic (mainstream) beer.

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Photo of ElGuapo
2.65/5  rDev -19.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours golden with a decent head that dies quicly and didn't leave me much lace. The aroma is very faint, but there are sweet malts with a grainy trace.

Where is the flavor? You will pick up a very bland malt base with basically nothing else going on. It is hard to tell if the flavors would be good if there was more because it is very difficult to pick up on much of anything. This beer was a major let down.

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Photo of Gusler
2.66/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

The beer pours from the 12-ounce brown bottle a slightly murky gold color with a moderate frothy white head and the residual lace a thin but concealing sheet. Archetypal lager nose, all malt, sweet, crisp and clean with a sweet start that carries to the cadaverously thin top. Finish is stern in its acidity and the hops apropos to the style, drinkable, but a little light for me.

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Photo of Urk1127
2.72/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 1.75 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

-very hazy copper, almost no head
-Bread crusts, little citrus, maybe some corn smell
-White bread, all crusts, toasted, tiny bit of alcohol
-Semi dry, medium feel, medium carbonation

-on par with Yuengling, but less carbonation. Thats about it.

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Photo of TheFightfan1
2.77/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very cloudy honey color with a decent white heading. Leaves little lacing throughout.

Smell is slightly malty,slight earthy tones as well. Not really getting much at all no hop presence whatsoever.

Taste is a bit sweet. Some biscuit. Not really getting much at all here.Almost tasteless to be honest. This might even classify as a light lager.

Mouth light bodied decent carbonation. Some slight hoppiness are apparent on the tongue.

Drink I guess would be good but with the sweetness of this beer it could be much better.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
2.85/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Fresh batch delivered from the brewery 1 week ago. Quite hazy, but it does not appear to have been bottle conditioned. No yeast particulate can be found in either the bottle or the glass - this is some serious chill-haze! Yellow golden in color with a creamy white head that drops quickly but keeps a good collar and light surface coating. The aroma is not off-putting, but somewhat odd. No real malt character is noticeable, and there are no hops to speak of. The body is medium with a fine, moderate carbonation that is somewhat dull in the mouth. The flavor is of a quasi-dryish maltiness supported by an underlying bitterness. No hop flavor is discernable. It's well balanced but lacking in finesse as neither the malt or the hops come through. It's also kind of soapy which may explain things. I'm guessing that this is a bad batch due to insufficient rinsing following a caustic cleaning leaving an abundance of fatty acids and an increase in pH due to residual caustic residue. I'll have to revisit this beer, but it is fresh and it was delivered to the distributor by one of the owners. The packaging is in perfect condition, so I have to assume that there's nothing unusual about this (not an old or returned case going back out to the public) - it's just a bad batch. However, since I hate to put this up I will make an extra effort to re-review it this week.

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Photo of BWH3
2.87/5  rDev -13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A: This is a beautiful lager. Golden, clear, big slow moving bubbles crowned by a foamy white head that stands the test of time.

S: Very little malt sweetness detectable. The hops are somewhat wrong. They give off a sour tart scent. The aroma is not musty and skunky.

T: The aftertaste is probably the best part of this beer. Starts bubbly and oddly tart malt sweetness. The hops are too harsh and not subtle or noble. The aftertaste eventually mellows to a mild malt sweetness tempered by a rich mineral hops bitterness. It ends right but starts off on the wrong foot.

M: Great head retention for style. The carbonation is appropriate. Nicely weighted beer.

D: Fine but not great.

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Photo of tweeder263
2.88/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours out a hazy gold yellow with minmal head.Smells grainy smells like a light beer.Has a sweet taste with minimal to no hop flavor.Mouthfeel thin typical adjunct nothing special. Drinkability is ok, theres better lagers out there,nothing special. probably wouldnt go out of my way to buy again.

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Photo of maddogruss
2.9/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Got a bottle of this in a River Horse mixer.

A: Pours a slightly, hazy golden body with a small, white head with decent retention and lacing until the finish.

S: A slightly sweet, malty smell with some sweet, honey notes, but nothing beyond the norm.

T: Not too much of a taste to it overall. Soem sweet malt notes were evident with a slight honey aftertaste. I'd say it was just decent overall.

M: The mouthfeel was very crisp and refreshing; very complimentary of the style.

D: Overall, a fairly nice mouthfeel and taste combination. Nothing to get overly excited about here as the lager finishes smooth, but was a little on the bland side. A little bit more sweet malt backbone and this beer could be much better.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
2.93/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The worst beer of the mixed 12 pack by this brewery but still not too, too bad overall. Nice hoppy aroma and slight bitterness to the taste, but had a bit of a funky aftertaste that didn't sit too well with me. I've definitely had better euro pale's but this one is a decent shot at one... drinkable, but not the best tasting thing you'll try.

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Photo of Jimmys
2.93/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A: Rich golden hue w/ fat carbonation bubbles streaming to the surface. Dismal white head died almost instantly. Rather transparent for being unfiltered.

S: Sweet 'monkey-bread' like aroma w/ a real mild hop smell at the tail end.

T: Definitely malty (yeasty perhaps?), bready body to start w/ a bit more of a bitter hop finish then detected in the nose. Definitely leaning more towards the sweet side.

M: A light to medium body w/ an abundance of crisp carbonation.

D: If you are looking for a quick refresher, this is a good beer.

Not really sure what to think of this one. Just seemed way too sweet for a euro pale.

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Photo of ARoman
2.97/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

12oz bottle, poured into a shaker. The aroma is a sweet honey and caramel combination with a very light nutty touch. Later in the drink, peaches and bread start to come through along with a light spice. The beer is an orange-gold color with some haze, and is topped by a white head that retains well and leaves a good amount of messy lace. The taste is a medium sweet and light bitter. It's a thin oily texture with a light buzziness and a medium light body with fruity notes of orange and peach as well as supporting notes of bread. It finishes spice with a honey sweetnes and a grassy quality. The aftertaste is fairly strong, but short, with bread crust and a light metallic hint as well as a waxy, bitter citrus and grass texture.

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Photo of mvanaskie13
3/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a mini pint glass, color is translucent pale gold, small thin head but a light ring, no lacing.

Smell is nothing to note, mild pale/pilsner malt flavors and just a touch of hop bitterness.

Taste actually somewhat fruity up front, more on the malt sweet type of fruit flavor with a bitter finish. Interesting flavors for lager but a little to sweet for me.

Mouthfeel is actually ok for the fruity taste, i think the hop bitterness comes through to finish of odd flavors.

Overall, a drinkable beer, hinted at a touch of cider in a piles or pale ale.

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River Horse Lager from River Horse Brewing Co.
3.3 out of 5 based on 226 ratings.
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