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

Not Rated.
Samuel Smith's Old Brewery Pale AleSamuel Smith's Old Brewery Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

950 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 950
Reviews: 657
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 11.89%
Wants: 32
Gots: 19 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster) visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-11-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samuel Smith's Old Brewery Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 950 | Reviews: 657 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ybnorml
3.4/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A clean honey/amber ale with a small beige head. Beer has a lightly sweet kind of grassy aroma. The flavor has a light spicey hop bitterness that is followed by a nice malty sweetness that settles on the middle of your tongue. A nice session ale but not outstanding.

ybnorml, Nov 09, 2004
Photo of stangbat
3.4/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I generally really like Samuel Smith's beers, however this one will not be on my regular rotation. It smells great, a little like their Nut Brown Ale, which along with the Oatmeal Stout are two of my favorite beers. It looks nice, and the mouthfeel is good.

But it just seems like it is lacking flavor. It seems like the beer finished a little dry and bland. I can't really put my finger on it though. Maybe my palate is accustomed to American Pale Ales that are higher hopped. Overall, not bad. But I don't think it is worth over $2 a bottle, which I will gladly pay for their Nut Brown or Oatmeal Stout.

stangbat, Jan 22, 2005
Photo of Sammy
3.38/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A pleasant ambour color with nice creamy white head. Proves that pale means traditionally, an ale that is not dark but ratehr clarified. Astringent, bitter taste but modified by food. Can be appreciated a mug member. They have superior products to this.

Sammy, Jan 11, 2004
Photo of quikfish13
3.38/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The first English Pale Ale I have ever had the pleasure of tasting, Samuel Smith's was a different experience for me straying away from my usual IPAs. The body shown through the glass in a red-amber color with a off white foamy some what fluffy 2-finger head. Fairly tasty looking to start with.

Upon smelling the beer what actually stood out to me the most was lack of aroma. Not as intense as what I am used to but I did detect a deffinite sweet hops scent. Not overwhelmed with the smell but it did not have quite enough to impress me.

Tasting of the beer was enjoyable, with a slightly bitter citrus taste that proves more dominent towards the end. Gradually from begining to middle the flavor of malts comes across as it finishes with the powerful hops punch.

A bitterness seemed to linger in my mouth for longer than I would have liked after each drink. But I cannot argue that it goes down fairly smooth. A beer that I would drink again would I have the chance but I have the feeling that there is probably better out there.

quikfish13, Feb 23, 2007
Photo of Greggy
3.38/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A soapy white head. Minimal lacing but thin cap.

S Pine resin, marmalade, earthy

T earthy pine and some distant marmalade finish is quick

M on par per style. Would like to see more carbonation.

D ok but nothing special. Overall a textbook English pale

Greggy, Dec 30, 2011
Photo of orfeu
3.38/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 ounce clear bottle. Bright copper with dense, off-white foam. Aromas of English hops and toasty malts, but leaning toward skunkiness, even though I grabbed this bottle from the back of the shelf. Grassy hops dominate the flavor at first, toasted biscuit malt cuts through (briefly and slightly) in mid sip, and finish is distinctly metallic. Unfortunately, the taste is leaning towards the skunk side of things, too. Enough with the clear glass already, eh guys? Anyway, brisk mouthfeel, clean and almost juicy. Easy enough to drink, but the risk of skunked beer for the high price is not worth it in my opinion.

orfeu, Apr 12, 2006
Photo of clvand0
3.38/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This beer pours an amber color with a medium head that stays around a while and leaves a little bit of lacing on the glass. The aroma has a fruity character and floral hops. The flavor is surprisingly malty, but finishes with a nice bitterness. This seemed a bit malty and dark for a Pale Ale. This is an ok beer, but I like the other Samuel Smith stuff better.

clvand0, Nov 10, 2004
Photo of OldYoda
3.35/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a color a little darker than amber into a standard pint glass, with a very modest white head and minimal lacing.

Smell is subdued with an almost apple cider aroma.


Taste follows smell - very subdued with minimal hops an apple like lingering taste.

Mouthfeel was a little thin and watery.

Drinkability was excellent - a number of these would be no problem.

Overall a very decent beer but a little disappointing as I was hoping for more.

OldYoda, Apr 24, 2008
Photo of July2Nov
3.35/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Ruby-tinted golden brown. Not much of a head at all on this one.
S: Mild with a slight bannana hint to it.
T&M: Generally mild and a bit watery w/ a slight carbonated tail to it. It's good without being spectacular.
D: It is so mild that I could pound 3 to 4 in any given time. I'm just a tad dissapointed with this one because overall, the companies brews are pretty good.

July2Nov, May 18, 2007
Photo of RJLarse
3.35/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I bought a bomber of Samuel Smith's Old Brewery Pale Ale in a grocery store. Poured in to a pint tumbler.

Pours a brown brew about the color of tea. Creamy thick off-white head has an orange tinge to it.

Smell is earthy sweet, hints of peat and toffee with a litle rum presence.

Taste is like the smell. Peaty, with a rum candy flavor. Mild bitterness.

Mouthfeel is smooth, medium body, mildly carbonated with a dry bitter aftertaste.

Average drinkability I guess. I'm not much on the style and the English brews always seem to have a rum candy or brandy flavor to them that I find a bit off

RJLarse, Mar 08, 2009
Photo of OKCNittany
3.35/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

550ml clear bottle into a pilsner glass

A: 1/2" tan head, decent retention & lacing. Brown to amber body.

S: A mostly fruity aroma with a hint of grapes (I think). Not much hop presence.

T: A somewhat unique flavor for a PA (or maybe I just don't drink many English Pales). A grape, almost candy like flavor stands out. Hops are a bit light for my tastes, but overall a nice flavor anyway.

M: Dry (as expected) - but a bit over carbonated.

D: Goes down ok, but it's not special enough to make me want a lot of them. A nice changeup, but that's about it.

OKCNittany, Jul 22, 2007
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.35/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

$3.99 at Beverage Resort in Kennesaw, GA.

Appearance: Pours a reddish-copper body with a foamy, yellow head.

Smell: Light aroma of floral, soapy hops with a bit of earthy butterscotch.

Taste: A fairly light, almost vacant butterscotch maltiness with some mild, English hops showing in the drying finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Moderate carbonation.

Drinkability: A humdrum offering from Samuel Smith's Old Brewery that really pales in comparison to their Imperial Stout, Oatmeal Stout, Taddy Porter, and Nut Brown Ale. Ah well.

ChainGangGuy, Jun 28, 2007
Photo of feloniousmonk
3.35/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a huge, and well-retained creamy head, with a pale amber color. Aroma is soft, slightly floral, faint fruitiness, some citrus, but very mellow in the hop department. Overall, a sweetish palate, practically nil on the bitterness scale.
Light texture, very easy mouthfeel, lacks some substance. Doesn't need any really, for the purposes of this style. It's a pub ale, with not so much flavor to take your attention from the football or the darts. Slightly coppery, tangy taste, a little buttery.
My least favorite Samuel Smith's beer, just too mild and pale for my taste, although perfect for what it tries to be. I compare all "pale ales", sometimes unfavorably, against hoppier American craftbrew versions.

feloniousmonk, Feb 27, 2003
Photo of bundy462
3.33/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Copper with an off white head.

S: Dominant fruity smell and slightly buttery. Reminds me somewhat of a sweet wine smell.

T: Dominant fruity malt taste that finishes dry. Very slight hops.

M: Medium bodied, carbonation seems a little light.

O: Good, it's a complex pale ale that is a nice change of pace.

A good beer by Samuel Smith, but doesn't even compare to their Nut Brown Ale or Oatmeal Stout.

bundy462, Jun 04, 2010
Photo of mnstorm99
3.33/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pour looks goo with a nice white head on top on a clear copper beer.
Aroma is malty and floral hops, nothing pronounced, but there, smells a little skunky even.
Taste is lacking, not exciting, not even that good, but ok. It has a malty mix that tastes like almost every other EPA I have had with a touch of spicy floral hop that is kind of nice, but nothing out of the ordinary.
mouthfeel is ok, but over carbonated for me, I could have a couple of these they just really seem plain, but not even that good.

mnstorm99, Mar 06, 2008
Photo of changeup45
3.33/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pretty good beer but not as good as some of their others. The color is a little darker than most Pale Ales I've tried. It does have a nice foamy tan head and a lot of lace on the glass. The aroma is mild, I just didn't get a whole lot. Malty and spicy flavors with a hoppy, fruity finish. Decent EPA.

changeup45, Aug 24, 2008
Photo of jampics2
3.33/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

8oz or so, enjoyed at a beer tasting with Samuel Smith, the son of the current head of the brewery @ the Winking Lizard. Consumed in a branded English half-pint glass.

The beer is copper with some amber and orange highlights. It's not cloudy; instead, it's quite clear and has just a small film of head. Great color but poor head retention.

The smell of this beer is enjoyable but not what I like in the style. I prefer just a touch more expression from the hops. I know English Pale Ales should be more malty than their American counterparts and lack the citrus and pine aromas, but this had very little from the Golding hops Samuel said they use. Some bready malt, caramel, and minor wet cardboard I can only assume was mild oxidation.

The mild malt in the taste sets the stage for what could be an epic beer. But there's little to balance it, just some earthy hops and medium bitterness. Just not as flavorful as I like, and there's no contrast of sweet and bitter flavors.

The mouthfeel is decent, with a crisp medium bodied beer having nice carbonation and a lingering mildly bitter finish.

The pale ale, unfortunately, was my least favorite of the evening. But it paired well with the roast beef, horseradish mashed potatoes, and yorkshire pudding we enjoyed with it. I just wish it was a bit more flavor-forward and expressive. While discussing this with Samuel, we talked about American Pale Ales and he mentioned he enjoyed a few in Seattle the previous evening and said they were fantastic but certainly too hoppy for a session ;)

jampics2, Oct 10, 2010
Photo of Damian
3.3/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Drank from a 1pt. 2.7fl.oz./550 ml bottle
Served in a Samuel Smith's imperial pint glass
Thanks to my dad for this bottle

The beer poured a slightly hazed, deep crimson-amber. A two-finger crown of tight, frothy, beige colored foam topped the liquid and slowly faded to a lasting cap. Patches of lacing trickled down the glass.

The nose was very British. A bit steely and quite mellow overall. Good dose of biscuity malts. Somewhat toasty. Mild toffee notes. Slightly fruity and moderately sweet.

The flavor profile was decent. Biscuity malts dominated. Some toffee. Touch of noble hops. Fruity in the center. Earthy, bittering hops came through in the finish. Crisp and drying.

The mouthfeel was slick, smooth and somewhat creamy on the palate. Medium bodied with a fine and mild effervescence.

Samuel Smith's Old Brewery Pale Ale might be spot-on for the style, but I found it rather boring. If you have an affinity for British session ales, this might be your cup of tea.

Damian, Apr 24, 2013
Photo of prosper
3.3/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a deep copper. very clear. Big, dense head.

Smells of dark malts - toasty, slight acridness.

Tastes strongly of dark caramel - molasses, dried fruits. Sweet. Not much hop flavour, and only just enough bitterness to balance out the sticky-sweet malt.

Mouthfeel is medium.

prosper, May 01, 2010
Photo of BeerManDan
3.3/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The color when poured was a dark amber, with a reddish hue. Very little foam, but fair lace retention on the glass. The taste was of mild roasted malts with a lack luster hoppy flavor. Weak on the aftertaste, but a bit to bitter. Overall, not a big smell, weak flavor and a little to bitter.

BeerManDan, Feb 09, 2011
Photo of dpasotti
3.3/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3

This is an attractive-looking beer all around. Translucent, light copper shade under a long-lasting, fine ivory head. The aroma is comprised of lightly sweet caramel malt, English hops, and a fruity ester presence.

The taste is quite a bit different, with the yeasty apple/grape flavor in front. The English hop presence is well-balanced and not intrusive. A slightly biscuity and sweet malt base rounds things out. There is also a prominent metallic taste that is appropriate for the style.

Excellent mouthfeel. A medium-full body and modest carbonation render quite a smooth texture. This beer is good but not great, as it falls short in the flavor department. Not one of my favorite styles, nor my favorite brew from Mr. Smith.

dpasotti, Jun 05, 2010
Photo of EStreet20
3.3/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

550 ml bottle poured into a Sam Smith's nonic pint glass.

A - A nice deep amber color topped by a gorgeous fluffy two finger head. Lots of lacing on glass.

S - nice hoppy aroma ( bit grassy) with some sweet malts.

T - Extremely dry witht he tiniest bit of malt sweetness. Not a whole lot going on flavor wise though.

M - A bit more watery than exepcted.

D - I could see this being a good session beer for some but it really just lacks too much in the flavor dept in my opinion.

EStreet20, Dec 24, 2005
Photo of Cpherg
3.3/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Darker apple juice with little to no head, hazy with no suspended particles

S: A cidery, nutty nose with a total absent of hops.

T: Sweet apple with a dry finish. Nice hoppyness. Little beyond apple.

M: Medium bodies beer with a fizzyness that leaves the mouth dry

O: An easy beer to drink, light for a medium bodied beer

Cpherg, Aug 22, 2011
Photo of jrallen34
3.3/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I drank this from a bottle into a chalice.

This beer pours amber with a 2 finger white head and good lacing.

It smeels sweet with vanilla and spices.

Its a very light tasting beer, smooth throughout but nothing to distinguish itself.

This is nothing like a true English Ale.

jrallen34, Jul 27, 2009
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.28/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Weird appearance, a red and copper color, not seen too often, if ever in a pale ale. Aroma is not apparent.

Taste, a little earthy grassy minimal hop presence. Tastes mild and balanced. Easygoing. Smooth mouthfeel. Approaches the nut brown ale in that characteristic. Tea flavor. Toffee too.

Beerandraiderfan, Mar 24, 2010
Samuel Smith's Old Brewery Pale Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
87 out of 100 based on 950 ratings.