Cedar River Amber Ale is brewed by Hale’s Ales under the "Northwest’s Best" label for Trader Joe’s. The alcohol content isn’t listed, though I’d guess it’s around 5 to 5.5% by volume. It’s a pretty standard-fare amber, and I picked up a 12-pack for $9.99, which is a good deal all around.
Appearance: Mostly brown with some orange edges… a dab of red. No real head to speak of.
Smell: Sweet and malty, grainy, a bit of caramel. Nothing surprising.
Taste: Malty though a bit bitter—a harsh bitter from some grain astringency or something. Chocolate/caramel notes in the sweet portion of the body. Hops are oily bitter but otherwise take a back seat.
Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied with a harsh (bitter) note to it.
Overall: Drinkable, not outstanding. If I lived close to a Trader Joe’s I could see buying this to have an "everyday" beer on hand, but otherwise I wouldn’t go out of my way.
On BeerAdvocate, there are only four reviews; the average score is 3.68 out of 5 but all four reviewers were positive. On RateBeer, it fares worse, scoring 2.84 out of 5 and is in their 27th percentile.