Spab (2696) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - OCT 19, 2012
2.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
355 ml bottle from LCBO. Pours a somewhat cloudy golden yellow with modest-sized white head. Aroma is very honeyish grains with grass and a light citrusy note. Flavour is also quite grainy/honeyish with a sourish grassy hopiness and a little citrus. Bit of butteriness too. Modestly crisp finish. Not great but a serviceable lager.
scaphio (1) - St Catharines, Ontario, CANADA - SEP 14, 2012 does not count
0.8 AROMA 1/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 1/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 1/20
I happened to notice six-packs of this beer near the checkout in a local liquor store. I was buying a four-pack of Old Speckled Hen, which is a nice ale from the UK, and as I was waiting in a large lineup, I thought I would go ahead and support the local new brewing school at Niagara College, near to where I live. $12 for a six-pack. It might be a good idea for the College to reduce the price considering the source and the quality of the product.
Their label is nice and the name is a clever pun: a first "draft" being a rough start on a sheet of paper---although "draft" beer is preferably spelt as "draught" beer in Canada, although not universally so--- we do adopt US spellings at times. I like the joke in the name.
The colour was a little more yellow than many typical Canadian industrial lagers or Canadian craft brewed lagers, for that manner. Not that I mind that: it is similar to European lagers in colour. Thatís a plus.
It wasnít overly carbonated, so there was little of the acid, edgy taste of many lagers. It was mellow and smooth. A small "zing" of carbonation on the tongue when I took each mouthful. When there was only an inch of beer still remaining in my tankard, there was still a small 1/8 inch head of white bubbles at the edges. Another plus!
It seemed moderately creamy in the mouth--- pleasant in that way---possibly related to the lower carbonation, but perhaps ingredients/adjuncts?
But, there was not much hop odour or flavour or bitterness. Really, barely anything. Maybe trying to imitate the macro/industrial beers? That is the wrong route to take. Give us more hops. All three times.
Previous reviews here make some reference to malt flavour, etc. I did not taste much of that. Maybe the batch they were tasting was produced earlier. This batch which I tasted in September 2012 had the prevailing and overpowering flavour of very strong diacetyl. It covered up any malt flavour that might have be there. And that should most certainly NOT be there in a lager. Butterscotch flavour. I am amazed that the previous reviews of this beer do not make a note of this defect. It hit me on the first sip. I was surprised!
Did the Niagara College instructor not include information about a "diacetyl rest" in his lessons to the college class that produced this beer? It is pretty necessary for these cold fermented beers. Maybe it was not done properly.
I will try their next efforts. If they make some English style ales, the diactyl flavour is less of a problem, if one at all. Cheers!
HogTownHarry (6199) - Toronto (Harbourfront), Ontario, CANADA - SEP 9, 2012
2.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
July 8, 2011 - with blankboy, joemcphee, jerc and mabel. 341ml bottle from joemcphee. Pale clear yellow, small quick diminishing fizzy white head (3-). Aroma of clover, light ginger, honey, some light floral bitterness - mostly just mild. Taste has much more bitterness, a nice bite to it, if generic - not harsh. Extremely carbonated, light bodied, quite crisp, surprisingly dry with a medium length dried grassy finish - but the bitterness turns a bit harsh in the aftertaste, a little gritty.
JesseM (1151) - Margaritaville, Ontario, CANADA - AUG 30, 2012
3.2 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 13/20
UPDATED: AUG 31, 2012 Bottle from a six-pack. Pours a nice yellow with a large white head. Aroma has a lot of grain husks and pale malt, musty, hay, with a nice addition of citrus hops. Flavour has more sweet malt backbone but with a sour tinge, but sour in a citrusy hop kind of way. Not sure if itís hop extract or legitimate hops. Decently tasty malt grain flavours in this serviceable lager. My only major complaint is that it develops that weird dish-soap off-flavour a lot of lagers tend to get. But itís nice to see these guys getting products into the LCBO.
SudsMcDuff (6512) - .....Manchester United.........., Texas, USA - AUG 23, 2012
3.9 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 15/20
..First stop of the day, Had on draft @ First Draft, Niagara College .. . deep yellow .. medium head, medium lacing .. . bold bitterness .. awesome crispness .. refreshing and quite damn tasty, a great pale lager! .. . . This thing will never get off the ground. Never fly. Take my word for it.
solidfunk (4898) - Washington D.C., Washington DC, USA - JUL 10, 2012
1.5 AROMA 3/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 3/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 5/20
Pours gold with pop-up, die-down fizz. Smells like little. Tastes trashy with some chemicals. Itís easier to taste the palate on whatever dish detergent they used to clean this glass than the beer itself - there ainít nothing. The name brings a reminiscence of all the shitty hangovers I had to enjoy as a result of not getting laid in college, without the breakfast burritos. Cheap bottle at Saving Gigiís.
Oakes (13156) - Vancouver, British Columbia, CANADA - JUN 20, 2012
1.7 AROMA 3/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 3/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 7/20
Pale straw. Sweet, lightly grainy. Sweetish Canadian lager, and nothing more.
Ontbeertaster (2348) - Ontario, CANADA - APR 1, 2012
2.4 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 9/20
Bottle, pour light flavoured stuff. A few off flavours were in my bottle, the taste is drinkable and overall decent stuff
JoeMcPhee (8819) - Toronto, ON, Ontario, CANADA - AUG 11, 2011
2.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Pale golden pour. A little bit cidery with a touch of diacetyl. Crisp with a bit of clean pale malt. A bit of soft herbal hoppiness. Subtly spicy. Itís decent.
mabel (7015) - Toronto, Ontario, CANADA - JUL 13, 2011
3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 12/20
[3808-20110708] 355mL bottle. Blueberry fruity aroma. Clear, pale orange body with a medium-lasting foamy white head. Light fruit yeast flavour. Light body. Refreshing, light, not bad. (6/3/6/3/12) 3.0
(c/o JoeMcPhee, w/ him, blankboy, HogTownHarry, jerc)