Borderlands Santa Rita Amber Ale
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RATINGS: 4   MEAN: 3.15/5.0   WEIGHTED AVG: 2.91/5   IBU: 22   EST. CALORIES: 168   ABV: 5.6%
This is not your typical Amber beer. We’re big fans of rye, and we couldn’t pass up a chance to use it in a new way. Rye, caramel malts, and lightly roasted barley set up an interesting malt foundation for fruity and herbaceous hops. We’re also huge fans of Belgian style ales, so we threw caution to the wind and fermented it all with a clean, fruity yeast. It’s easy to drink, but it has a bit more complexity and depth than you might expect from an Amber.

Zymurgeist2's rating

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 11/20
Zymurgeist2 (1870) - Redwood City, California, USA - APR 24, 2013
On tap at the brewhouse. Pours a slightly haze amber with off-white head. Aroma of slight cracker malt. Flavor is slight malt and not developing the hops too strongly.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 12/20
Lubiere (12970) - Ottawa, Ontario, CANADA - DEC 27, 2013
A clear amber ale with a thin lacing mocha head. In aroma, sweet nutty caramel malt with light fruity notes, light peated, good. In mouth, a nice sweet fruity malt with light butterscotch, fruity esters, faint bananas, decent. On tap at brewery.

   AROMA 7/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 7/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
JPDurden24 (1673) - Chandler, Arizona, USA - SEP 12, 2012
Red amber pour with a slightly off white head. Very tropical fruit in the nose and taste. Maltiness is ever present. It’s a decent amber, but nothing special.

   AROMA 6/10   APPEARANCE 3/5   TASTE 6/10   PALATE 3/5   OVERALL 14/20
FlacoAlto (4152) - Tucson, Arizona, USA - SEP 9, 2012
Sampled on tap @ Borderlands
The beer arrives from the tap with a murky, hazy amber color and it is topped by a half-finger thick, amber tinged, dark tan colored head. The aroma is quite fruity with notes of pear, melon, tropical fruit, and berry like notes. A supporting maltiness provides some crystal / caramelized malt notes and a sweetness, a touch of nut like character, and lots of cracker / whole grain bread like notes.

The beer has a fizzy texture from lots of carbonation, and this makes the beer seem a bit more light bodied that it might otherwise be. The malt and fruit notes mix together at the front of my first sip and the beer finishes with a light bitter bite, a husky grain astringency, some yeasty notes and perhaps a hint of phenolics. The body gets chewier as it loses the excessive carbonation. A whole-grain sweetness is a mix of brown, caramelized crackers and bread notes. The beer is quite a bit smoother without the excessive carbonation, and it is fuller bodied as well. The malt character seems a bit muddled somehow, and I am wondering if part of this is a yeasty interference; there is a definite whole grain spiciness here that contributes to the chewy grain character. The hop character is sharp, though not well defined, it is a touch astringent, and a bit herbal leaning in the finish. The upfront fruitiness reminds me of some sort of apple / pear / berry combination with perhaps a touch of melon character to it.

The expressive fruit notes in this beer seem to be a combination of the malt, yeast, and hop character somehow; it is certainly at a more noticeable level than I was expecting, and it is hard to tease out the specific contributors between those three. This is not a bad Amber Ale, I am certainly enjoying my pint. It seems like it could use some cold-conditioning or perhaps even a rough filtering to more refine / polish the finish, which can be a touch rough at times.

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