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Heavy Seas - Small Craft Warning (Über Pils) | Heavy Seas Beer

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Heavy Seas - Small Craft Warning (Ãœber Pils)Heavy Seas - Small Craft Warning (Ãœber Pils)
1,102 Ratings
Heavy Seas - Small Craft Warning (Ãœber Pils)Heavy Seas - Small Craft Warning (Ãœber Pils)

Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer
Maryland, United States

Style: American Double / Imperial Pilsner

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Arguably our most well-balanced beer, Small Craft Warning seems at once hop-forward and malt-forward; our brewers debate over which flavor force prevails in the beer. Small Craft exemplifies a robust pilsner - it's crisp, well-carbonated, and slightly sweet. The beer is characterized by a firm malt backbone and a pronounced hop character. A fine aroma, from an array of hops, completes this quaffable beer.

Added by farHillsBrewer on 03-12-2004

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,102 |  Reviews: 592
Photo of tiger88
3.51/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy golden with a white head that sticks around for a short wile. dissipation leads to a light lacing effect. This is a refreshing looking brew! Smell is "ho-hum" Nothing stands out too much. Light hop aroma but that's all I got. Crisp refreshing taste considering the ABV is over 7. Drinks easily and compliments a beef dinner well.

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Photo of halfP1NT
4.05/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed this on 4/29/08.

This beer pours a clear, straw yellow with bubbles rising throughout. Its thin, white head dissipates to a soapy thin cap, leaving behind a little bit of lacing.

Aroma is light; floral with a hint of citrus, sweet malts and caramel.

Taste is much of the same; light, sweet malts balanced with some yeasty and hoppy flavors.

This beer is crisp, clean and refreshing. Carbonation is low to medium. It's hard to believe this is 7% abv. I believe this brew is bigger-bodied than a typical pilsner, but it is still very drinkable, even despite the higher abv.

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Photo of Dalem
2.36/5  rDev -36.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Colorwise it's a bit more orange than any other pilsner I've seen. Looks more like malt liquor (first time mentioned) actually. The slight head vanished fast and a very thin lacing that leaves from the side of the glass seconds after each tip. It smells of fresh mowed lawn and sugary malt. It's a smell that takes me back to my younger years of buying malt liquor (there it is again) 40's because they were more bang for the buck. The thing is though that while there is one day every summer where I go and visit my old friend Mickey Big Mouth I wasn't planning on today being that day. Maybe it's because of the higher alcohol content but the taste reminds me of malt liquor (3rd reference now) too more than it does of a proper pilsner. Metallic and too sweet like a corn syrup quality. It tastes like everything was overcooked turning the entire presentation into a flavor lacking mush. There is a bit of a hop flavor in the finish but the beer lacks complexities and particular characters to get excited about it.

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Photo of malty
4.25/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best before Aug. '08

Pours a rich golden color that is brilliantly clear with a blossoming 2 1/2" almost white colored loose & creamy head. Just a little amount of ultra fine suspended yeast particles floating about. Average amount of visible uprising carbonation. Gorgeous globular sheets of lace all the way down.

The smell on this lager is awesome. Fresh mown hay with that clean and stony lager yeast whisping up my nostrils. Lemon zest and a touch of vanilla bean in there also.

The cleanliness of the scents delivers straight through to the taste of this lager. First off is a nice hit of hops that tingle the tongue and keep the dryness of the lager going on and on. After a few more quaffs, the malt profile is just enough to keep the hops from going way out there. Although there's not much sweetness from the malts, (like a good Maibock) it's round and earthy enough to maintain a beautiful balance.

Mouthfeel is on the lighter side of medium bodied with a bit lower amount of carbonation that I'd expect in a Pils, but still enough to keep the flavors moving around nicely. A tad bitter and dry in the finish.

Drinkability is very good. The 7+% ABV is literally undetectable anywhere in this beer. I'm certain it would pair famously with many styles of food also.

Overall a beer I've heard of for quite a while and I'm glad I got to try it. Dryness is what I look for in a Pils and this one's got it. I also look for a nice hit of hops in a good Pils and this one's got it (and some to spare). A big fluffy white head with gargantuan lacework...check. I'm a fan and will definitely be on the lookout for a sixer when this product officially hits my area's retail shelves.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color, with a short white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of hops, bananas, citrus and light malts.

T: The taste is sweet and fruity up front with flavors of bananas, citrus and decent hops bite, although not as hoppy as most in the style. There's a hearty but light malt character. The after-taste is slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and very crisp, light-to-medium body, medium-to-high carbonation, finish is clean.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, good kick, decent representation of style, to be honest I haven't like much of anything from this brewer, so I was well-prepared to not like this beer. I'm happy to say that I was pleasantly surprised. This beer is good one to drink for a long time.

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Photo of evantwomey
2.96/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Good beer, but I don't know how they can call this a pilsner.

A: Beautiful golden yellow, but it looks like a pale ale, not a pils.

S: Sweet and fruity, not what you would expect from a pils. Little hop nose. As it warms, alcohol very apparent. Smells a bit like vodka.

T: Pretty well balanced, a bit on the sweet side. Very ale-like. Or maybe like a bock. But pils?

M/D: Easily burned through a 6 pack, but probably would not buy again

This beer is in style-limbo. Definitely not your normal pils, much closer to a very tame pale ale or a hoppy bock.

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Photo of Gehrig
4.35/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Don't judge Heavy Seas by its cover, for though it looks like a straightforward pilsener, it most assuredly is anything but. Nice off-white layer of foam on a fairly dark golden body, with bits of lacing on the pint glass. Fine. The nose veers toward a 4.5 score, but falls just short despite being far more hopped and malty than every other pilsener shy of Sam Adams' Hallertau. Really good smell.

Ah the taste. This is damn good, full of hop richness and complexity more smooth than bitter though there certainly is bitterness present. The malt does much to offset the hops without stunting the rich aroma and flavor. Orange, grapefruit, and a hint of berry. Really excellent.

The mouthfeel is hard to beat, smooth, crisp but with lots of texture. This is one worth grabbing a couple sixers, cellaring one and chilling the other for a warm summer night on the porch. Easily one of my very favorites from Clipper City. Well done.

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Photo of Twerknasty
2.74/5  rDev -26.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I have to pull this one out of my ass, but the color looks EXACTLY like Bell's Oberon, not the label but their poster! Smells like pine resin, moldy wood, tuna (so true, you dingdongs) and a little bit of grapefruit. Well, as you can think this beer is going downhill, but the palate does fend a little better. Ill throw some good in, and follow it with some more atrocities. Good entry, showing some hops that aren't overpowering at all! A little bit of lemon peel, and a little orange. After that, it turns into a very wavy like palate of off flavors that don't belong in a beer. I like to find major flaws in beers, and i rarely do- yet this one flaws like a champion. A taste of old meat, what? You would think with very little hop/malt flavors that the alcohol would shine, yet I don't taste much alcohol what-so-ever. Doesn't that make you think a little as to why the hell don't i taste the alcohol with all these off flavors? TUNA

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Photo of SchmoTerp
3.82/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy amber-orange with a short head that will last longer than you may think it should. I'm not tremendously versed in the Pilsner category, but this one is quite clean and easy drinking. The mouthfeel is a bit too long lasting for me but I wouldn't say it is unpleasant. I certainly would get this one again though I may not go out of my way.

I imagine this would be a fairly safe choice for folks just venturing out into craft brews.

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Photo of BeerImmediately
2.86/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours a hazy, golden color with small white head that sticks around. Decent lacing as well.

Some ripe, citrusy hop notes help break a relatively thick alcohol smell. Reminded me slightly of a Triple, of all things.

Bready / yeasty flavor greeted me upfront, and finished with what I can only describe as apricots soaked in a vodka. Also noticed black pepper as it warmed.

Had decent carbonation, and was fairly smooth. Alcohol left a film on the tongue though.

Didn't find this refreshing or very drinkable. I appreciate Clipper City going for a new angle here, but this seemed awfully far removed from the great pilsners of today.

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Photo of SIRIUS2
3.85/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a deep golden color, clear, with about 1/2" of off-white soapy head. Head dissipates to a heavy ring. Pretty good lacing.

S: Nice mix of moderate malts and light citrus hops. There is something just a touch fruity on the nose as well.

T&M: Good strong malty flavors rush the tongue with slickery sense of alcohol rolling around the mouth. The hops collide with the everything bringing the whole experience to a sharp crescendo just before the swallow. The finish is quick, leaving only mild warming alcohol vapors and a light kiss of hops in the linger. Carbonation is mild but persistent, lending to an overall light creaminess that plays interestingly off the slickness.

D: Nice, but different. I enjoyed the brew and will be happy to enjoy it again!

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

A - Pours a clear gold with an inch of blond foam.

S - Nose is sharp grassy hops, malty sweetness and a hint of lemon.

T - Noticeably malty but with a solid hop kick. Quite bitter in the finish. Booziness is well controlled, but there if you go looking for it and nicely balances the fresh hoppiness to give it a bit of an edge.

M - Mouthfeel is slick and substantial. Medium bodied, with some fizz, but not too much.

D - I'm not much of a pils drinker, but the uberness of this is getting my attention. Definitely has that pils-like taste profile, but kicked up a notch. Not as clean or crisp, but much more complexity. A very rich, beefy "pils"

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Photo of tonytuffnuts
3.62/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

From a mixed 12-pack.
Looks a smidge rustier and less crisp than your normal Pils. Light doesn't SHINE through per the norm. Nice rocky head. Good retention leaves a sticky lace.

Smells delicious. I think I would've believed it to be an American pale ale. Cascade hops and cereal malt with a slight fruit spritz. Think of a bowl of rice krispies with hop pellets and mandarin orange bits sprinkled in.

A little too hoppy to be a Pils, I guess that's where the Uber comes into play? It's very enjoyable though. Not so crisp, very malty, albeit not so grainy. I guess the taste confirms the smell.

I dunno if this fact impresses me with ALL their brews, but this Heavy Seas series seems to put a new American twist on every traditional style it undertakes. In some cases, I appreciate it, in others, it's a bit disarming.

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Photo of CrellMoset
4.15/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into one of my brand new Waterford pilsner glasses, a very nice birthday present from a friend.

Appearance: A gorgeous, creamy, slightly off-white two-finger head (granted, I'm drinking out of a proper pilsener glass, so the diameter of the mouth is much smaller) that leaves thick sheets of lacing in nice little rings. The carbonation is fantastic! Lively and fine, propelled upwards through the crisp, golden body as if by some unseen force, they seem to get faster the closer they get to the surface. A fine, fine looking beer.

Aroma: The glass concentrates the aromas wonderfully, and they're lovely - a delicate freshly-mowed lawn smell, some spicy, herbal notes, and a touch of citrus peel, definitely lemon. It's all wonderfully fragrant, and smells like a summer afternoon.

Taste: Lots of sweet German pils malt, and tons of earthy spiciness. There aren't really any earthy things that one imagines "taste" good - you can enjoy the smell of freshly-mowed grass and flowering trees, but the taste of freshly-mowed grass? Not so much. Regardless of my inability to express it, however, it's here - woody, herbal, leafy goodness. Ends with another load of sweet, pale white bread. Nice.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium bodied, a little heavy for a pilsener, but the bubble size is about appropriate for the style (crisp, larger effervescence), and the profile is very smooth and creamy.

Drinkability: This is the kind of beer I would want on a hot summer afternoon. There's enough taste and aroma there to keep me involved, but it's light and crisp enough to keep me cool and refreshed. 7.25% abv? Well, it is an Imperial Pilsner after all ...

Maybe my palette has been destroyed by months of double IPAs, such that I can't appreciate the delicate qualities of true pilsners, but THIS, in my opinion, is a pilsner. A strong, flavorful beer with real presence, well-hopped, spicy and floral but sweet, and a real beauty at that. A definite summer go-to beer.

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Photo of animal69
3.8/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

picked this one up the other day, states it's a bock lager tho ; pours a slightly cloudy pale orange-yellow w/ a thin fluffy off-white head which dissipates quickly leaving a moderate broken lacing down my snifter ; a steely grain smell with hints of floral hops and vinous alcoholic adjuncts ; a rich cereal grain flavor balanced with a citrus and poss. noble hops, some "twangy" corn (?) adjunct-type hot alcohol in the finish as well as a bit of metal, tastes like what a REAL "malt liquor" should taste like ; a med-full mouthfeel, but could just feel a bit thick from the bountiful co2 giving it a dry & creamy feel ; a really good beer, my first Am. dbl/imp pils, i look forward to my next & more of this style

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

The beer poured a great orange color with a huge, fluffy, egg shell colored head which stuck around for a while. Lacing was present the entire time. The beer smelled of huge hoppiness with hints of malt and citrus. Had a nice sourness(grapefruit) and citrus hint as well. The taste was similar to the nose. The maltiness was very pronounced with a nice bitterness as well. The alcohol was highly present also. The mouthfeel was a medium body with medium high carbonation. Overall this beer was good. Drastically different than your average pilsner in color and taste.

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Photo of albern
3.78/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This is probably one of the sweetest pilsners you'll encounter. Actually, it has several non pilsner characteristics so if anything else, the beer is an interest hybrid or non traditional pilsner. The beer is slightly more orangy and less pale than a typical pilsner, it has a very thick frothy head, and laces like crazy. The foamy head lingers awhile too. The aroma has sweet fruity malts, some husky smells come through too right after the pour. The taste is very chewy, some hop bite in the finish, just a fruity pilsner that is interesting. The dryish, wheat crackishness of a pilsner is lingering in the background, but there are more interesting tastes presenting themselves. This is also much more medium bodied for style, slightly more bready, more chewy, more husky grain too. The aftertaste is very mild, the mouthfeel is about right for the style. This is well worth a try if for no other reason than it is very uncharacteristic pilsner beer. L'Chaim.

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Photo of neenerzig
4.2/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got a bottle of this at a bowling party I was at yesterday. Poured out of a 12 oz bottle into an imperial pint glass. This beer is a clear, medium golden color. White, fluffy head is about 2/3 inch thick when poured. Slowly settles to a nice surface coating. Has a sort of citrusy aroma along with some malts and hops. Tastewise, the citrus hop bitterness are present upfront, followed by the grainy, malty sweetness. Nice balance of flavors. Has a nice crisp, medium to full bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Easy to drink indeed. I enjoyed this one quite a bit.


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Photo of cvstrickland
3.93/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a pilsener;

Nice 2+ finger puff of fizzy head diminishes slowly to a finger of foam that leaves some nice lacing; pretty orangey-golden, clear as a bell, nice trickle of bubbles from the bottom of the glass throughout the drink.

Smells of dry, crisp hops and a sweet light malt;

Taste is clean and sweetly malty with good bitter hop balance. Grainy and tangy fruitiness prevail, with a satisfyingly clean, pleasantly bitter finish.

Nice tickle of carbonation throughout; refreshing; satisfying.

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Photo of callmemickey
3.97/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Crisp golden body with a healthy white creamy head.. moderate carbonation.. good staying power.. some lacing

S: Nice grainy malts.. some floral european style hops and some sweeter malts tucked in there

T: Bready malts with hints of the sweeter candylike malts present in the nose... floral hops are present throughout.

M: Medium bodied and velvety.. moderate carbonation on the tongue. Crisp finish.

D: This is a hearty drink that definitely fits my idea of an "uber pils"... quite drinkable without all the blandness that sometime comes with the pilsner territory.

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Photo of rwathree
3.85/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

June '08 buy-by date; poured into pilsner glass, accompanying satay noodles

A: pours a translucent orange-gold, with a short-lived head rising after the pour. leaves a thin lace on the glass. the sight of rising carbonation is a good sign.

S: i'm particularly stuffed-up today, but i'm getting lemon peel and wheat, bordering on a german weissbier.

T: not as hoppy as i thought it would be, and probably not the quantity of hallertau or saaz hops one would expect. smooth malty taste with citric notes.

M: creamy. nice. little bit of metallic bite in aftertaste.

D: for the abv, smooth session beer. i'm really enjoying it with the chilis in my thai food.

this doesn't have any stand-alone "big beer" characteristics, but it's a great food accompaniment. i'd happily drink this again.

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Photo of jbphoto88
3.55/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a 12 oz bottle with a best by date of June 08. Its darker then I expected, the color of golden wheat right before harvest time. Very little white head that raises from the brew less then an 1/8 of an inch and dissipates quickly.

Smells of malts with some peppery spices. A sharp scent that also has a little bready yeast in it.

Tastes of a rich but wheat-ish malt, slightly sweet and bread like. Very german pilsner like. A slight spice note that is supported by a fine carbonation that yields a little bite on the tongue from the combination. This is a clean beer, the taste is right up front with you but doesn't last long.

An easy drinker but not my favorite of this style. This is a well rounded beer but I don't feel its anything more then slightly above average.

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Photo of Redwood21
4.1/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Love this beer especially as a pilsner, the head is nice and frothy dies down a bit but it sticks the way down. one of the best heads of any pilsners ive ever seen. the wheat color is very enjoyable

S: i cant place the aromas of this beer maybe some sweet maltyness as well

T: great, my new fav pils. i could suck this down all day there is an assertive earthy maltness, with a hop back ground, that supports it. very clean, crisp, a tad bitter

M/D: i could drink this beer all day, there is a twang at the finish which is the only thing that doesn't put this beer well over the top. but man i do enjoy it.

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Photo of chiefydawg
3.98/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Came out of the bottle a hazy, straw-colored liquid with vibrant fizz. The usual patented Heavy Seas head: thin, creamy, living froth that grabs the glass and leaves a trace all the way down.

Catching a light, crisp grapefruit scent with some beer bread (go figure).

Sweeter and maltier than expected for the smell and style, but not at all unpleasant. The hops are just enough to join forces with the yeastiness and round out the malt and grain to retain the feel of a pils. The mild graininess and sharpness keeps this one rolling along nicely - right down the hatch. Great session beer here.

Dig the adherence to the pirate theme and the consistent artwork too. No Ralph Steadman, but I seriously like it.

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Photo of Philabeerphia
3.61/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

purchased today at BeerYard during a very cool BA excursion with rpohagan.
12FL.OZ. of Uber pils best by 6/08. Appearance is super crisp and clean and bubbly sharing those characteristics of a pilsner, except for the fact that this beer is 5 shades darker, yielding an amber color. Another difference - I'm seeing no head or lace.
Smell: dominated by malt, crisp on the nose with a spicy hop undertone giving it just enough to be interesting.
Taste: peppery and hoppy up front, sweetcorn, raw wheat, caramel malt dominate the big middle and becomes cloying after the first sips. Finishes dry and fairly hoppy, never ceases to be sweet, even when the hop kicks in. As this warms, alcohol exposes itself sharply.
MF: carbonated nicely..still buttery from start to finish.
D: a good sipper, very malty though, I think the hop bitterness needs more playtime here.

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Heavy Seas - Small Craft Warning (Über Pils) from Heavy Seas Beer
Beer rating: 3.74 out of 5 with 1,102 ratings
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