Heavy Seas - Cutlass (Amber Lager) | Heavy Seas Beer

39 Reviews
no score
Send samples
Heavy Seas - Cutlass (Amber Lager)Heavy Seas - Cutlass (Amber Lager)

Brewed by:
Heavy Seas Beer
Maryland, United States

Style: Vienna Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Spring

Notes / Commercial Description:
This malty lager is our most award-winning beer: it took gold, silver, and bronze medals at the Great American Beer Festival from 2006 to 2010. Cutlass Amber has a toasted, biscuity character. The slight sweetness comes from Crystal malt. Vienna malt contributes a remarkable smoothness and Munich malt gives an amber color and delicate aroma. Tettnang hops infuse the beer with a slight earthiness. Formerly named Heavy Seas Märzen, Cutlass Amber is our second best-selling beer. In 2012, Cutlass Amber won a silver medal at the World Beer Cup in the Vienna Lager category.

Added by bubseymour on 04-30-2013

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 39 | Ratings: 210
Photo of BJB13
3.44/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Best by JUN 16 17 printed on label.
12 oz. bottle poured into a tumbler style pint glass.

Pours clear and coppery with an off white fizzy head that started at one finger but disappeared in a couple of minutes. To my nose, only a light aroma of yeast and grain, nothing special. Refreshing and quick to drink. Slightly bitter. It is lightly hopped and has a bit of malty sweetness. Finishes clean and dry and is light bodied with medium carbonation.

I'm not a fan of this style but this is OK.

 494 characters

Photo of q33jeff
1.91/5  rDev -44.5%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

AROMA: Mild Barley, very weak.
LOOK: Light orange, no head.
TASTE: More Mild Barley, Grasses.
FEEL: light body
Pleasant enough to swig down a few. Nothing special though in terms of flavor.

 207 characters

Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into lager glass, best before 1/12/2017. Pours slightly hazy golden orange color with a 1 finger dense off white head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Light spotty lacing clings down the glass, with a fair amount of streaming carbonation retaining the cap. Aromas of honey, cracker, toasted biscuit, light nuttiness, light pepper, floral, and herbal/toasted earthiness. Nice and pleasant aromas with good balance of bready malts and light earthy hop notes; with solid strength. Taste of honey, cracker, toasted biscuit, light nuttiness, light pepper, floral, and herbal/toasted earthiness. Light herbal/spicy bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of honey, cracker, toasted biscuit, light nuttiness, and herbal/toasted earthiness on the finish for a good bit. Nice robustness and balance of bready malts and light earthy hop flavors; with a good malt/bitterness balance, and zero cloying sweetness after the finish. Very clean on lager flavors; with minimal fruity yeast notes preset. Medium carbonation and body; with a very smooth, moderately creamy/grainy, and slightly sticky mouthfeel that is nice. Zero warming alcohol as expected of 5.4%. Overall this is a nice Vienna lager. All around good robustness and balance of bready malts and light earthy hop flavors; very smooth and easy to drink. Was hoping for a bit more noble hop character and bitterness; but this is a nice showcase of Munich/Vienna malt flavors. A nicely enjoyable offering.

 1,503 characters

Photo of daliandragon
2.99/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours kind of bland quickly, with an apple juice color and look, and almost no head at all within three minutes. Nose is faint brown caramel malt and yeast and a hint of citrus zest.

Taste is appropriately splashed with yeast and mild chocolate and caramel notes Texture is low on carbonation and relatively smooth.

 320 characters

Photo of chinchill
3.54/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle served in a pint glass.
A large, creamy tan head with very good retention tops the clear copper body.

Aroma: sweet malts with light floral hops and, surprisingly, a touch of booze.

Flavor: Mildly bitter-sweet. Light spiciness from the hops. Moderate malt load for style.

Feel: smooth medium body with soft, medium carbonation.

Overall: a rather run-of-the-mill craft amber.

 397 characters

Photo of DrMullet
3.59/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a pale amber color.
Smell is a sweet biscuit malt.
Taste follows the nose, malty, bready and slightly toasted.
Good example of a Vienna Lager.

 158 characters

Photo of BrokenEdge
3.4/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a dark reddish amber, with a thick off white head. Rich, carmelly malts that give it a bready taste. It's got a little bit of a sweet taste like honey and faint fruit flavors (peach? pear?). It was a little watery and could have used some more carbonation. Not spectacular but easy to drink and pleasant.

 311 characters

Photo of cyclonece09
3.64/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a pint glass. Pours light red with a tiny white head. Smells of roasted barley and slight fruitiness. Tastes of caramelized malt, not much else. Beer is perfectly carbonated, light bodied, extremely drinkable. Overall, an above average to very good beer.

 266 characters

Photo of bmeehan
3.17/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Cutlass is an okay beer. I couldn't really distinguish this from other amber lagers, and I might just be learning that amber lagers aren't my thing, but this beer is pretty weak in terms of flavor or mouthfeel.

 210 characters

Photo of maximum12
1.57/5  rDev -54.4%
look: 1.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Thanks to -name redacted- for this 12 oz. bottle. It has tough competition with Schell’s Firebrick, which I consider the mad-drinkable beauty of this style.

The pour isn’t encouraging, as even a hard pour yields less carbonation than the milk I downed for dinner (which I rated a 4.20, by the way). As the bottle indicates, it’s amber, leaning coppery. Nose is fleeting: lager yeast, acorns, not much else. Almost invisible.

Cutlass fouls my palate immediately. The aftertaste is horrifying, a mix of damp fall leaves, licking the inside of a cast iron pan, & lager yeast. Sure, I could mention there’s some malt sweetness, perhaps caramel in there somewhere, but I don’t want to put anymore of this in my body to analyze it further.

Flat. Foul. Fratricidal. Given the appalling, lingering finish & the lack of carbonation, I’m going to assume this is an off bottle. I hope. Drain pour.

 904 characters

Photo of mothmanscott
4.04/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Pours a beautiful pale amber producing 2+ fingers of off-white, frothy, shortlived head that leaves very little lace. Aroma is a blend of biscuity & lightly toasted malt, honey & Graham cracker with fruity notes of banana, peach & a little pear & cobbler like with faint earthy, grassy hop hint. The lager yeast is prominent. Taste is malty-sweet up front with the same fruity notes of banana, peach & pear but less honey than the nose, then come notes of biscuit, toast, Graham cracker, caramel with a hint of butter & grassy/earthy hops. Dry in the finish with an astringent & bitter aftertaste with mineral & metallic hints. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation, silky with a nice prickle over the tongue & a light astringency in the aftertaste. A nice brew that in my opinion should receive a higher overall score.

 836 characters

Photo of TLWalsh
3.52/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy amber tone. Has a toasty yeasty aroma. Mouthfeel is medium to thin. Has a malty sweetness going on. Slightly dry finish. Not bad just not great either.

 164 characters

Photo of DuffDaddy
3/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Twelve ounce bottle at Uncle Ronnie's house while there for Donna's funeral. Anticipated a stronger malt taste, but good nonetheless. A better than average amber lager that I would enjoy again if the opportunity arose.

 219 characters

Photo of Marraybay
3.95/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

In all honesty, I'm not really a lager fan, but this is a pretty decent beer. The glass presentation is the first thing that captures your attention, with a cloudy sunshine egg-yolk color topped by an inch or so of white foam. The nose has a crisp clean lager scent with a slight sweetness to it. Similarly, the taste showcases a nice upfront sweetness that transitions into a slight bitter finish. A full and creamy mouthfeel + a pleasant level of carbonation accentuates the overall experience. Really well done and for me, an actual lager that I'd consider creating a little space, whether to offer to others or have occasionally myself.

 646 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.54/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a shaker pint, the beer is a bright, slightly hazed, caramel coloring, with a steady flow of carbonation throughout and a filmy, sparse surface coating of off-white head. Aromas of toasted grains, subtle sweet caramel and nut, and some floral highlights. Tangy sweet nose. Flavors are roasted and tangy sweet, with candi sugar, nut, and caramel present. Subtle toasted grains, with floral and slightly bitter hops notes. The body is smooth and big, and the carbonation keeps things light and drinkable. Rich, roasted, caramel aftertaste, with a smooth, slightly dry and crisp finish. Refreshing and easy to drink.

 639 characters

Photo of Mikec1115
3.34/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle with a quickly dissipating white head. Amber color moderatly clear beer. Smell was a bready malty. Taste was good with the bready malt front and center. Smooth clean mouthfeel with a slight hoppy aftertaste. OK beer but very forgettable.

 261 characters

Photo of ManapuaMan
3.05/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Not a fan of the style so my review reflects this. Tastes like a more malty lager with heavy bread and caramel notes and slight hop flavor to combat the oat. Might be a perfect representation of the style which, in that case, only confirms my first sentence.

 258 characters

Photo of microbrewlover
4.2/5  rDev +22.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This brew pours a a transparent orange/straw color with high carbonation and a .5 finger white head some of which lasts until the end.

The smell is very malty, bready and biscuty. There is a strong caramel note along with a grassy smell.

The taste follows the nose with sweet and roasted malts dominating. Followed by caramel accompanied by a strong bready taste. The finish is slightly grassy but this does not interfere with the crisp, clean lager finish. The feel is thick and bready and the beer is lightly hopped. I don't drink too many lagers but I will pick this one up again if I see it. This brew would be great for a hot summer day.

 646 characters

Photo of Slatetank
3.94/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I tried this chilled in a mug, bottle purchased at Wegman's enjoy before 4/7/15 - I tried on 4/6 whew!
The color is a very gently hazed amber with thin white head with fine bead and visibly carbonated with streamers of lace. The smell has a mild sweet and nutty malt odor with light caramel quality and slight almond-type fragrance. The feel is medium in body with moderate carbonation level and mild sweetness with slight creamy texture and mostly dry finish with low bitterness.

The taste is what you might expect from a vienna/Marzen or American Amber lager very nice malt presence with toasted acccent and light fruitiness with subtle herbal hop flavor and bready malts carry into the finish with a light spice accent and mild alcohol in taste. Overall I enjoyed this -very nice tasting lager. I think it fits the style well and is easy to quaff. Not an outstanding beer but I think it deserves more credit-very enjoyable.

 927 characters

Photo of beertunes
3.42/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A big Thank You to Shroud0fDoom for this brew, my first entry for NBS BIF #1. 12oz bottle with a best by date of 5/2/15. Poured into 10oz goblet. Poured a clean, clear medium light amber color with just a thin cap of off-white head that had low retention and no lace.

The aroma was mostly grain and biscuit, but there was an earthy/grassy undertone. The flavors featured the same basic "beeriness", lots of biscuit, with just enough hops to offer a decent counterpoint.

The body was a step or two on the light side of medium for the style, and had a slightly sweet finish. Drinkability was good, the beer was gone quickly, and I suspect one could slide several of these down in short order. Overall, a solid, if unspectacular, example of the style. Worth trying if you see it.

 778 characters

Photo of seedyone
3.5/5  rDev +1.7%

On tap at Rattle n Hum, NYC. Tons of malt & near perfect sweetness. I getting a touch of banana/peach on the tongue. Not much head or lacing but I really like this & at 5.2% I`m in for the long haul.

 199 characters

Photo of biegaman
3.8/5  rDev +10.5%

Cutlass is a Vienna Lager - a style characterized by rich, ample maltiness - so it's only natural it should have such dense haziness, a promising indication that this coppered pumpkin coloured beer is an amber lager not merely in appearance only. That it retains most its head is a good sign too.

Indeed, things are shaping up nicely; this bouquet is generously aromatic and has a distinct nuttiness that, while superficially sweet, is firmly grounded in biscuity, toasted grain and a whole wheat breadiness. This style requires the highest quality malts (Vienna and/or Munich) to be done successfully - there's no other way to achieve a bouquet like this.

Such a rich malt bill allows the beer to show quite a bit of flex but also some elegance; the flavour is laced with little kernels of nut brittle and hard toffee while never veering too far from the tastes of toasted whole wheat bread crusts and graham cracker biscuits. This is pure, clean, rich maltiness showcased as it was intended to be. Very tasty stuff.

Vienna lagers will be a little austere for many craft beer drinkers; without possessing the sexiness of dry-hopping or anything impactful by way of IBUs, amber lagers like this one may seem fairly ordinary in comparison to modern amber ales. But these are Germanic in origin and, as such, are designed for - not extravagance - but endless, effortless drinkability. And this has it.

I've never found any big "treasure" with Heavy Seas but the booty has been pretty consistent over the years. I like this brewery and the bulk of their lineup is at least respectable and more often pretty damn good. Cutlass, I happen to think, is fantastic. There aren't many truer, better examples of the Vienna style currently brewed stateside.

 1,765 characters

Photo of UPMD_Bill
3.65/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Good year-round beer: not too heavy but still has some depth and character. It seemed like this beer was all about getting the balances right: there are the biscuit/bread flavors from the malt and yeast, but it's not overly sweet. There is enough hopping to balance the malt, but it's not overly bitter. This is a great beer to have with food - I would have this with an entree salad instead of bread.

Would definitely get this again.

 435 characters

Photo of Lucular
4.39/5  rDev +27.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Amber lagers are either hit or miss for me. Heavy Seas Cutlass is a definite win. The flavor is of toasted biscuit malts with just enough hop presence to make it a well-balanced brew.

 183 characters

Photo of KajII
3/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

[Suggested Glassware: Dimpled Mug]

The pour was a clear caramel orange with an average (1-2 finger) white frothy head, reducing down to a light film and medium collar with poor runny lacing.

The aroma was of a sweet biscuit malt, mild herbal hops and an earthy doughy yeast with notes of caramel and toffee.

The taste was somewhat malty sweet and had a touch of caramel throughout, with the finish having a slight bitterness and a light toffee sweetness towards the end. The flavor lasted only a short time following the swallow, with a nice crisp finish on the palate.

Mouthfeel was light in body and watery in texture with a carbonation that was just past soft in intensity.

Overall I found this brew to be light in body and taste, that being said it still does possess a decent maltiness and a nice sweet bitter finish, making it somewhat enjoyable and easy to drink...


 920 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Heavy Seas - Cutlass (Amber Lager) from Heavy Seas Beer
3.44 out of 5 based on 210 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.