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Smart People Like Good Beer: #3 Eliot Ness Amber Lager

I don't care if Will Ferrell is their spokesman, you should NEVER drink Milwaukee's Best! Miller should be sued for false advertising there because I'm pretty sure it's one of the worst possible things about Milwaukee. Instead of this swill go with something from another Midwest brewery, the Great Lakes Brewing Co.

The Great Lakes Brewing Co. is based in Cleveland, Ohio and was founded in 1988 by the brothers Conway. The brewery brews all of their beers according to the Bavarian Purity Law of 1516. Simply, the law states that the only ingredients that can be used in the brewing process are water, barley, and hops. Besides being perhaps the only good thing about Cleveland besides the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the brewery is also dedicated to sustainability in its operations, including using beer delivery trucks that run on vegetable oil.

Eliot Ness Amber Ale pours true to its name in a nice amber color, with minimal head. It is 6.2% ABV. The aroma is a little sweet with a strong malt scent. You can also get a hint of hops on the back end. The taste is a little sweet, with a distinct taste of malt on the front end. Similar to the aroma, you get the subtle hops taste on the back end as well. All in all it is similar in taste to Sam Adams Boston Lager as a comparison.

I'm going to give Eliot Ness Amber a 92, a nice, simple amber lager.

Beer Advocate gives the beer a 91 based on 828 reviews and a 100 from the experts. They recommend pork or poultry as a pairing, I can get on board with that.

Over at Ratebeer we see an adjusted ranking of 95 based on 864 reviews.

All right folks, remember, friends don't let friends drink Miller or Bud products.

This post originally appeared on Stuff Smart People Like. Subscribe to the Podcast.


  1. I think the Will Ferrell commercials are for Old Milwaukee, not Milwaukee's Best. Also, they are awesome. Old Milwaukee used to be a Schlitz brand, but now I think it's owned by Pabst. Either way, not Miller. Although I do think most of it is brewed at Miller on a contract-brew basis. Also, Old Milwaukee isn't that bad for an American Style Lager. Milwaukee's Best is pretty bad though.

  2. Ah, I stand corrected on the commercial comment. I need to watch more TV. While I am also not a fan of Old Milwaukee, or American Style Lagers in general, I'll drink gallons of it over having to drink one can of The Beast any day.

  3. "He brings a knife you bring a bottle..."

    I like Eliot Ness and not just for the irony. But if we're talking Great Lakes, Edmond Fitzgerald is where it's at. I don't often taste the discrepancy in tap vs draft, but I found a bar that put EF on tap a while back and it was even better than the bottle.

    Insert Gordon Lightfoot joke.

  4. Meh. Elliot Ness is sort of lame. I mean, he's no George E.Q. Johnson or Frank J. Wilson. Those guys took down Al Capone. What did Elliot Ness ever do? Yet Ness gets a beer named after him.

  5. Eliot Ness had the cooler name, hence the beer named for him.