Saranac Chocolate Amber Lager | Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

227 Ratings
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Saranac Chocolate Amber LagerSaranac Chocolate Amber Lager

Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
New York, United States

Style: Euro Dark Lager

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-22-2002

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 227 |  Reviews: 185
Photo of jzlyo
1.25/5  rDev -61.8%

Photo of Amalak
2/5  rDev -38.8%

Photo of OriolesFan1008
2/5  rDev -38.8%

Photo of Metalmonk
2.05/5  rDev -37.3%
look: 4 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Chocolate...Amber...Lager...would could this possibly be like?

This looks quite nice, with a really creamy head that retains for a solid several minutes. The color is a rich, ruby-hued dark dark brown, or just-barely-see-through-it black. Leaves trippy lace as the glass empties.

The aroma smells of copper, exactly like a penny,'s not my glass either, I'm sure of that, because I poured it into another, wondering if the glass wasn't properly washed. Same crappy smell. Blah.

The flavor has the same metallic notes that offend the nostrils. But at least something else gets through, that being a chocolate layer, and a roasted, no, burnt finish. But that metallic sheen persists. I love my metal, but not in my beer. Why even go further in the review? Who cares what the mouthfeel is like when the aroma and flavor is this bad? (For the record, the mouthfeel is too thin.) It's obviously not very drinkable. An "off" batch, or were my tastebuds totally wrecked forever by He'Brew's awesome Monumental Jewbelation last evening???


 1,061 characters

Photo of Uncledoobz
2.25/5  rDev -31.2%

Photo of TheRuss9585
2.25/5  rDev -31.2%

Photo of dacrza1
2.42/5  rDev -26%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Dark--too dark?--black lager with creamy head that traces nicely in the glass (quite attractive)...thick brown half-inch head...malt/hops are nondescript--chocolate? not so much... slight effervescent... textures on the tongue feigns a porter more than a dunkel... soft toasted malts add a weight to the experience--smooth and swift with hints of corn... a dark lager that has little dunkel quality--pleasantly toasty for the colder evenings.. Saranac seems to have a circle of winter beers that run together in taste, and this is certainly one of them...

 555 characters

Photo of BigPlay1824
2.46/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Enjoyed in a pint glass

A: Pours a light amber color that is extremely clear with a small amount of carbonation bubbles, pours with two fingers of creamy off white head that lingers nicely and leaves a lot of lacing all around the glass
S: sweet chocolate malts
T: ugh oh, not what i had hoped for, the taste through and through reminds me of powdered chocolate milk mix or the chocolate protein shakes i used to drink in high school, not the high quality pure chocolate characteristics i've seen in other chocolate brews
M: pretty intense carbonation tingle, thin, leaves kind of an odd astringency and powdery like feeling on the palate
O: average at best, just was not a pleasant beer to drink, with all of the other, much better chocolate beers out there, there is no way i will ever buy this again, sorry fellas

 818 characters

Photo of hadlance
2.5/5  rDev -23.5%

Photo of Skabiski
2.5/5  rDev -23.5%

Photo of Damian74
2.5/5  rDev -23.5%

Photo of ZOSO2192
2.5/5  rDev -23.5%

Photo of chrispoint
2.5/5  rDev -23.5%

Photo of rxthree
2.5/5  rDev -23.5%

Photo of jrob21
2.5/5  rDev -23.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Photo of jfcaa193
2.5/5  rDev -23.5%

Photo of Trail
2.52/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Ugh, I'm really not impressed by this. It looks OK. The smell of this is really great, though not - as far as I'm concerned - for a beer. This is where it stops being acceptable.

The taste and mouthfeel are both unexpectedly syrupy and thick, like a squirt of Hershey syrup in a Sam Adams Boston Lager. There's a little black cocoa bite in the back, but it's overpowered by the overwhelmingly sweet presentation of the malt. I don't know how I'm supposed to finish this.

I like beer. I like Hershey syrup. They aren't supposed to go together. I'm pretty sure that a chocolate beer could work, but it doesn't here.

 615 characters

Photo of NJpadreFan
2.58/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Saranac Chocolate Amber Lager

Appearance- Dark reddish black with a tan head.
Smell- very light chocolate and coffee.
Taste- watery, very watery. Slight chocolate flavor not much else.
Mouthfeel- soooo watery.

Overall- very little flavor. What little chocolate flavor isn't that bad though. I would need to chug a few of these to taste anything. Not a horrible beer but why would anyone bother with this?!

 414 characters

Photo of nlmartin
2.59/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer was poured into a pub glass.

Appearance: The beer poured a very nice dark brown coloration. The head was thick and luxurious off white brown coloration. Major head retention was evident in this beer. The lacing was thick webbing up and down the glass.

Smell: I was let down by the smell. The smell contained a unpleasing funky grainy smell. Very small undertones of chocolate.

Taste: This beer has an unfortunate acrid taste that immediately makes itself known. There is a nice bakers semi sweet chocolate taste to the beer. Just to much other funk present.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: The beer is light bodied. Sadly the potential of this beer is ruined with a acrid taste. Just an average drinking beer that needs a bit more cleaner taste.

 760 characters

Photo of abcsofbeer
2.64/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a bottle with no freshness date. Comes out a dark brownish, red color, a little like red wine. I was impressed by the appearance. Came up with a 2inch frothy, rocky, tan head after a generous pour. Lace was medium rings around the glass.

My first impression of the aroma was warm alcohol right from the first. There is some sweet caramel and some roasty malts in the smell too. The taste, first off, is not chocolatey at all. There is a warm alchohol taste followed by some week malty flavors. The taste becomes more abundant as it warms, but, does not amount to much.

 583 characters

Photo of Rainintheface
2.65/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle poured into SA glass.

A: Dark, almost black. minimal tan head, mostly just ringing the glass.

S: chocolate, roasted malts and coffee. nothing stands out much.

T: malty, slightly bitter chocolate. again, not much stands out.

M: medium body, a little syrupy with alright carb. fizz

D: eh, nothing special. I had one and that's enough for me.

 357 characters

Photo of Gmann
2.7/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured a dark brown color with hints of amber. Small tan head that dissipated quickly. The smell was kind of faint for a style that uses roasted malts. The lager had a sweet roasted malt flavor, though not very chocolatey, with a bitter hop aftertaste. The mouthfeel was moderate with decent carbonation. Nothing special about this lager, not something I would drink many of.

 375 characters

Photo of Backer2004
2.73/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Does a chocolate amber even make sense for a style? I guess a Munich Dunkel would explain a few things but I was just disappointed in such after seeing such an appealing name. No redeeming qualities in really any category. Really wished this was like a Young's Double Chocolate Stout but doeasn't even come close. The chocolate just isn't there . . . smell, taste. Not terrible but not good either.

 398 characters

Photo of frank4sail
2.73/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Slight roast aroma. Deep dark mahogany color with a decent 1/2 inch tan head. Roast malt flavor which is upfront followed by a metalic dry finish. Medium/light mouth. The overwhelming metalic (tin) finish was not my thing.

 222 characters

Photo of jaydoc
2.75/5  rDev -15.9%

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Saranac Chocolate Amber Lager from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
3.27 out of 5 based on 227 ratings.
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