Review: 1811 Lager, Fort George Brewery

1811 Lager
Fort George Brewery + Public House — Astoria, OR

  • Style:  Lager
  • Bitterness:  Not specified
  • ABV:  5.1%  
  • Malts:  Organic 2-Row malted barley, cracked maize
  • Hops:  Sterling and Galena
  • Sampled:  16 oz. can

Description:  "Two centuries ago, on the site of what is now the Fort George Brewery block, fur magnate John Jacob Astor’s expedition boldly built a trading post they called Astoria—the first US settlement west of the Rocky Mountains. Today, we’re proud to craft the Official Bicentennial Beer of Astoria.  Many West Coast brewers in the 19th century had no ice, so they improvised an effervescent beer by brewing lager yeasts at higher-than-normal temperatures. Described as a “refreshing drink, much consumed by the laboring classes,” it’s the inspiration for 1811 lager." — Fort George Brewery

Random thoughts:  1811 Lager, along with Vortex IPA were the first two beers that Fort George released in cans. Made for Astoria's bicentennial, 1811 is brewed with lager yeast at higher than normal temperatures. I'm sampling 1811 Lager as part of my series on Fort George's 16 oz. canned beers. This beer is quite popular with some of the local bloggers. Beervana's Jeff Alworth awarded his coveted Satori Award to 1811.

The tasting:  Golden color, hazy, with a white head that dissipates slowly. Aroma of bread, light grass, citrus and spicy hops. The hop aromas were stronger than I expected for a lager, but still nice. Flavor similar to aroma, except the grapefruit hop bitterness was more pronounced in the middle than the grass and herbal spice. Light alcohol is present in aroma and flavor. There's a touch of malty sweetness in the middle, but the hop bitterness quickly kicks in to temper it. It's light bodied, has an effervescent mouth feel, and finishes very dry with a lingering grassy hop bitterness. 

Rating:  3 star.  Good. I would drink this again if someone gives it to me.  If you're looking for a traditional lager, know that 1811 definitely veers towards the hoppy side. It's a great example of a NW lager. Hops providing the NW component, as you might expect.

Have you tasted Fort George's 1811 Lager?  What are your favorite Fort George beers?

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