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Samuel Smith's India Ale - Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

Not Rated.
Samuel Smith's India AleSamuel Smith's India Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
84
good

1,633 Ratings
THE BROS
82
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,633
Reviews: 873
rAvg: 3.68
pDev: 13.32%
Wants: 21
Gots: 70 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster) visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English India Pale Ale (IPA) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-11-2001)
View: Beers (27) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,633 | Reviews: 873 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by weizenbob:
Photo of weizenbob
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This 550 ml bottle was taken from a holiday gift pack and poured into the accompanying glassware (a tulip shaped pint glass). The neck and cap were wrapped in gold foil. The bottling code indicates that this was bottled on December 15, 2010. So though it is from this year's gift pack, this IPA is exactly a year old. As such I'm not expecting a hop bomb.

A horizontal pour yielded nearly three fingers of foamy, ivory-tinted head. Head retention is moderate. Sporadic lacing clings randomly to the glass. The brew is copper colored, with extreme translucence. A small amount of effervescence is seen through the glass. It's not awesome looking, but it is captivating enough to hold interest.

The aroma is initially bready and yeasty. Citric hops follow closely behind, leaving the impression of tangerine. The balance is skewed slightly malty, but it doesn't smell out of balance. It is inoffensive, yet unremarkable.

The initial bite of this IPA is pure maltiness. Bready malts combine with caramelized malts to create a sweet biscuity flavor backbone. A small amount of diacetyl manifests but compliments the caramel just fine. As the malts trail off, soft hop bitterness becomes apparent. As the malt impression disappears, a lingering bitterness hovers on the palate. The bitterness is not overwhelming, but it refuses to disappear. I always enjoy when the flavors of a beer manifest independently of each other; and though this is an unremarkably simple British IPA, I appreciate the separation between malt and hops in the flavor. It should also be noted that alcohol is pretty much invisible to the tongue.

The body of this ale is on the light end of medium. The carbonation is at a medium level and adds a nice crispness to the relative lightness of the body. There is a mild creaminess herein, but the light and refreshing impression sets the pace.

Overall, this is a good but unremarkable take on a British IPA. It does many things right and nothing wrong, though it does not excel in any facet. Even in the gift pack, which offers a significant savings over purchasing individual bottles, this is not an inexpensive import. Plus, it is likely beyond its peak freshmess. There are several domestically brewed IPAs and APAs that are comparable, easier to acquire fresh, and much less expensive than this old standard of the style. Still it is the example that other British IPAs are judged by, and by that account, it is a fine standard bearer. It is pleasant enough, but don't expect to be awed.

---

The Two-Schlitz Scale: (reference my profile for an explanation)
I give a Schlitz for this classic example of its style; just as Schlitz is a classic example of its style.

More User Reviews:
Photo of titty_mcbitty
4.04/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Like a normal pale but darker and possibly a tad bit murkier. Not much of a head the way I poured into the glass.

S: Not much here; although I'm not the best judge of aroma of beers. If anything, I get woody notes and some bitterness.

T: Awesome! After tasting Coopers Sparkling Ale I was looking for a beer in similar style and this exceeded my expectations. I love the English-style pale ale more than the American and this is the prime example of why. Earthy tones, bitterness from the hops, nice caramel malt backbone, breadiness, and yeast.

M: Thicker than expected. Medium I'd say with a good creaminess. Kind of yeasty. Very tasty.

O: This is what makes a good English style pale ale. Nice and crispy, yet full of flavors. The English touch (the breadiness and toffee-like character) makes this beer a winner not only in style but in craft.

Photo of oberon
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a dark amber color with little to no head,mine had been onthe shelf for awhile and developed a winey smell to it but it held up well.The malt in this IPA was very evident upfront with a good hpsmack in the end.A very well made IPA even sitting on shelf for almost a year u could taste the flavors of a very good well-made ale.

Photo of RoyalT
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Almost clear orange in the body with a little carbonation and a big head that went down quickly and cleanly.

Smell – The floral hop aroma is laden with fruit, predominantly peach. I can also pick up some grapefruit. Behind that is a strong malt backbone. This is yet another balanced Sam Smith’s.

Taste – There it is; the classic Sam Smith. The malt base is laced with caramel and extremely smooth. The hops are fruity as they are in the nose with a bit of spicing.

Mouthfeel – Once again, this is an extremely smooth and creamy Sam Smith’s. The buttery undertones, mildness and balance of flavors, and subtle carbonation give this one a terrific mouthfeel. I feel that this is the strong point of the ale.

Drinkability – Not your heavy-hitting West Coast IPA by any means, but a terrific session ale in step with traditional English tastes.

Photo of beerhunter13
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Photo of ExtraStout
3.4/5  rDev -7.6%

A - Beautiful clear, dark amber. Thick, creamy head that stays a reasonable amount of time and leaves a good amount of soft, thick lacing.

S - No discernible specific notes in the smell. Light, a little hoppy. Maybe a touch of fruity scent.

T - Kind of generic tasting. Good, but nothing unusual or unique. A little sour, but a fruity sour, not a spoiled sour.

M - Very clean, light feel. No oiliness, no real bitter aftertaste (just a nice hop.)

Wish I could offer a more interesting perspective or review, but all I can say it it's just a pleasant, easy drinking ale that's not spectacular, but nothing to complain about either.
I'd willingly have another, and that's good for me.

Photo of JudgeRoughneck
3.18/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This is a new copper colored beer with thick, creamy, white head. There isn't much in the way of smell, especially for an IPA. I get a very faint, soft, fruity hop smell. The taste is metallic then sweet for just a second before going very dry with a big bitterness and a dry, clean finish. Mouthfeel is on the thicker side with some stinging carbination. While there isn't really anything wrong with this beer, there is nothing terribly interesting about it either. I'd sooner take some of its American counterparts, especially for the price. Not Sam Smith's best beer by a long shot. Interestingly, I've had this beer past it's prime (like almost a year old probably) and thought it was very good. It had fun butterscotch flavors then.

Photo of ArrogantDeadGuy
3.13/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This pour from a 550ml brown bottle is a hazy amber with a white head with little retention. Can't find any freshness info on the bottle. The smell is sweet and malty with notes of grain and grass. The hop nose is pretty understated. The flavors are very malty with notes of the aforementioned grass and grain. The hop flavors are weak and the finish is bland to average with regard to the hoppiness. The body is okay tending towards syrupy and leaving an unpleasant film on the pallet. If I were to select a Euro Bitter or India style ale this would not be one of my top choices.

Photo of tbryan5
3.25/5  rDev -11.7%

Photo of GameOfBeers
3.36/5  rDev -8.7%

Photo of Shakerman
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of joemetric
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of chOAKbarrell
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Dark amber golden with a small dense bubbly head.

Obvious hops in the nose, but not a blast in the face like a lot of other IPAs. You can pick up on the malt also.

Kind of mild tasting from what I'm used to in an IPA, but I guess that's the difference between English & American IPAs. Extremely well-rounded and balanced, just like all other S.S. beers. I feel like the malt stands out just as well as the hops, in this beer.

Mouthfeel is very smooth and easygoing. Refreshing.

Highly drinkable. If you were up to it, drinking a 4 pack in a sitting would be very possible. This beer is unlike most IPAs. Doesnt leave my mouth all that dry, either. Recommended, but dont expect a hop-monster.

Photo of FadetoBock
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of NWer
4.5/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Popped the bottle cold from the beer fridge into a pint glass.
Initial reaction was underwhelming.
Fortunately, I left it for a couple of hours and when I came back to it, it was sublime.
The wonderful balance of fruitiness and hops blended to a taste to behold.
Definitely not to be consumed cold in my opinion.

Photo of SD-Alefan
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of grynder33
3.33/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy amber orange color, like that of a sunset, faint malt hop aroma, the taste is surprisingly more malty than hoppy and somewhat on the light side, but overall its good. I like it i guess, not because of a big taste, but rather the balance and drinkablity. You could stick with this all night

Photo of R_Kole
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Photo of jonphilipp
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of wardamnbeer
2.75/5  rDev -25.3%

Photo of Doomcifer
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of Jason
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 18.7-ounce brown "Victorian Pint" bottle, no freshness date to be found.

Appearance: Deep copper orange in colour with a wispy off white lace.

Smell: A touch of tartness in the nose as well as tangy hop aroma.

Taste: Medium bodied and on the dry side. Nice crisp mouth feel with a moderate carbonation, semi aggressive prickly hop bitterness that leaves a tea like twang throughout. Malt flavour is like a pulled punch ... light caramel, hint of butterscotch and a handful of grain. Hop flavour is dominant in the finish also with an orange pekoe tea flavour.

Notes: A decent ale ... though small in comparison to other modern day IPAs both British and especially American. Oddly enough this brew is not any bit stronger than the Pale Ale in alcohol ... the body and hops are only a notch higher in comparison. Not a bad ale ... at least the English characteristics make this brew an interesting ale.

Photo of Billolick
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

550 ml bottle sampled, no freshness dating. Pours a nice dark honey almond shade, fairly clear and supporting a creamy light tan head with some retentive powers. lacing is quite well developed and long lasting. Nose is malty, yeasty, bready. This is classicaly British brew, maltyness balanced nicely by understated but present hopping for an IPA.Mineraly water quite evident. Real nice ale , give me some english chedder and bread, and I'll be in beer heaven.

Photo of Homebrew35
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a big creamy off white head. Hazy pale body. Smells mostly of bready malts, yeasty esters and some sweet crystal malts. Tastes of pale malts, bready yeast, some citrus hops. Fairly crisp finish. Some lingering bitterness to balance it out. Full bodied, medium carbonation. I could have a few of these at a time. This tastes like an english ale through and through. I won't seek this again for some time but will give it another go when I'm in the mood for an easy drinking english style beer.

Photo of Mora2000
3.1/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The beer pours an orange color with a white head. The aroma is a mix of floral and perfume from the hops as well as some bread and a little bit of earthiness. The flavor is the same. I get a low to medium amount of bitterness with some grass and earth notes. There is also a slight amount of floral notes in the flavor. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation.

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Samuel Smith's India Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
84 out of 100 based on 1,633 ratings.