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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

945 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 945
Reviews: 657
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 11.89%
Wants: 32
Gots: 20 | 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
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Ratings: 945 | Reviews: 657 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of afsdan
4/5  rDev +3.4%

afsdan, Mar 22, 2014
Photo of RonfromJersey
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear copper body, topped by foamy, frothy four-finger off-white head. Outstanding lacing. Aroma has biscuits, floral and herbal hops, and a proper dash of British sulfur. Taste is malty but dry, with enough hops to dry out the initial malt surge, and have some left over for a little tingle in the aftertaste. Nothing too big here, this is basically a slightly stronger session beer, or what passes for a session beer from Sam Smith. I don't think I could afford to actually use their beers for that purpose. This is a fine English ale though.

Regarding the clear bottles and skunkiness, I offer three possibilites. 1. I 've been incredibly lucky in never having a skunked Sam Smith. 2. Some reviewers imagine skunkiness at the sight of a clear bottle. 3. What some call skunkiness is the sulfur quality characteristic of many English ales.

RonfromJersey, Mar 01, 2003
Photo of rab53
4/5  rDev +3.4%

rab53, Dec 05, 2011
Photo of Ryan1423
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Ryan1423, Nov 26, 2011
Photo of Josievan
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: A light brown/amber color. Good head retention and lacing.

Smell: Biscuity malts, with a little bit of sweetness.

Taste: Considerably malty, per the English pale ale style. Slightly sweet, also a little buttery taste. That signature Tadcaster well water taste comes through more than with some Samuel Smith beers. Good hop flavor provides a slightly bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, but that goes without saying for any Samuel Smith beer. One of the more carbonated beers I've encountered from this brewery.

Drinkability: Full malt and hop flavors, but nothing offensive, plus a low ABV, make this a beer one could drink several of.

Notes: This is one of my lesser favorite beers I've had from Samuel Smith. However, this is more of a commentary on my preference, or lack thereof, for pale ales, and not on the beer itself. When I do crave an English pale ale in the future, I most likely will drink this. I'll also have to try Samuel Smith's organic version of a pale ale to compare the two.

Josievan, Jan 25, 2010
Photo of Blind
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Blind, May 20, 2012
Photo of Chucker17
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Chucker17, Mar 19, 2013
Photo of mattparsons
4/5  rDev +3.4%

mattparsons, May 18, 2013
Photo of Luigi
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a rich amber color with ruby highlights. The head starts off two/three fingers high. The retention is good, as it leaves a lace around the glass.

The aroma is sweet. Fruity, kind of reminds me of grape skins, and some citrus from the hops. Has a light buttery taste and some bitterness from the well water used dominated with sweet d to brew this ale. Some hints of mineral water and grainy malts.

The flavor is dominated with sweet malt. Bread and yeast come just before the dry hoppy bitterness.

Finishes clean and dry. Has a nice and creamy mouth feel. This is truly a very drinkable English pale ale.

Luigi, Mar 30, 2012
Photo of columbiankramer
4/5  rDev +3.4%

columbiankramer, Jan 14, 2012
Photo of drbenderdo
4/5  rDev +3.4%

drbenderdo, Jan 03, 2014
Photo of SkinniePost
4/5  rDev +3.4%

SkinniePost, Apr 18, 2014
Photo of WebGuyMike
4/5  rDev +3.4%

WebGuyMike, Dec 05, 2012
Photo of Soloveitchik
4/5  rDev +3.4%

Soloveitchik, Feb 07, 2013
Photo of Soybomb
4/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a dark/tea colored brown with a really nice head that drops to a very thin head over the beers surface. Leaves lacing in the glass.

Smell: A sweet smell and a semi-bread like aroma are there.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Starts rather sweet, but finishes dry. Medium bodied. Higher carbonation carries it off the palate well. No hops are jumping out at me. Maybe a little bit of a nutty flavor similar to their nut brown flavor.

Notes: Meh. Not fantastic, but certainly not bad, and very drinkable. The standard you expect from this brewery. Not my favorite style though so while its good I probably wont be specifically looking for this bottle again.

Soybomb, Jun 05, 2004
Photo of mpayne5
4/5  rDev +3.4%

mpayne5, Aug 27, 2013
Photo of ehammond1
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle

Texas Liquor
Carlsbad, CA

Copper and auburn with a thick, pillowy, persistent light brown head that leaves small lines of lace down the glass.

Sweet caramel and toffee lead the way in the aroma, with biscuity and bready malts combining for a pleasantly sweet aroma. There isn't much hop presence, but as an English pale ale, that is to be expected. Very nice.

The flavor too is lacking in distinct hop character, which I don't mind in this style. The caramel, toffee, and bready flavors combine well for an incredibly easy drinking pale.

Medium bodied with ample carbonation.

A definitive version of the style. Malty and delicious.

ehammond1, Dec 07, 2011
Photo of MattyG85
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 550 ml bottle into a Sam Adams perfect pint glass.

Appearance: Bright amber orange with lots of rising bubbles. Big four finger off white head with good retention and lots of lacing sticking around the glass.

Smell: Sweet toasted caramel malts with apples, bread, dark berries, figs, nuts, and hints of citrus hops. Very malt driven. Smells a lot like apple cider.

Taste: Like the smell. A big taste of bready sweet caramel malts with apples, toffee, nuts, berries, and figs. There is a light but noticeable presence of citrus hops in the finish. Tastes a lot like apple cider but the small kick of hops in the finish reminds you that its a beer.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation. Very creamy in the mouth and smooth.

Overall: A very fine English pale ale. Very malty but the sweetness is nice and not too much. Pretty well balanced.

MattyG85, Aug 27, 2011
Photo of skillerified
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Fairly dark copper-orange brew with a small white head. The head faded quickly. Lacing looks alright, but a little slick maybe.

Pine and citrus dominate the scent. It's lemony citrus. There's a hint of a metalic scent. A touch of spice too.

Sweet malt up front with a little caramel mixed in. Some of the citrus flavor comes in around the middle. Fades to a hoppy, bitter flavor at the end. Grapefruit-like on the bitterness, but not nearly as intense.

Fairly smooth and mellow mouthfeel. Medium bodied. A slight carbonation prick on the tongue. Like I said, it starts with a smooth sweetness and fades to a slightly harsher hoppy bitterness. Fairly well-balanced.

Not bad. There something about these English Pale Ales that's appealing to me. This wouldn't make a bad session beer, but I think I'd prefer it on-tap if it were available.

skillerified, Feb 05, 2006
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A clear russet body (with orange highlights when held to the light) is topped by a rocky light tan head that holds quite well and leaves excellent lace. The nose displays an earthy malt and lightly grassy hops as well as an affirmative diacetyl / butterscotch note. The body is medium light, and combines with a very fine & gentle carbonation to create a nicely creamy mouthfeel. The flavor is mainly of a lightly caramel & biscuity malt that's enhanced by a touch of buttery diacetyl, a distinct earthiness, some mild fruitiness, a light hop flavor and a firm balancing bitterness. In the finish, the hoppiness combines with the sweet buttery malt to give a light spiciness on the tongue and throat similar to that of black licorice candy. A really enjoyable English pale that probably deserves more attention than it gets.

NeroFiddled, Dec 18, 2002
Photo of hyuga
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Amber-orange color with an off white head that stays thick. Why use clear bottles? Preserving the freshness of the beer is much more important than being able to see the color through the bottle before buying or pouring it. A bit of skunky aroma escaped when the bottle was opened, but it went away quickly. My aroma rating would definitely be higher if it wasn't for that. Sweet and fruity malt and subtle spicy hops in the nose, similar to other Samuel Smith brews. Extremely well balanced flavor profile packed into a medium body. Malty grain sweetness is almost one with the slight spicy hop character. Very traditional feel. Nice and refreshing, just an all-around pleasure to drink. Good session brew, too. A craft beer classic!

hyuga, Oct 11, 2002
Photo of DrDoitchbig
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Poured much darker than I was expecting, a crystal clear deep copper red. It's practically as dark as an Irish Red. The head was a creamy two fingers that stuck and left some very nice thick rings of lace at least half way through the pint until it ran out of steam.

Smell: Nothing really sticks out in the smell, there isn't anything that's clearly in command. It's a pleasant amalgamation of earthen, grassy hops, buttered biscuit malts and some fruity esters that almost mimic strawberry candy.

Taste: More of the same balanced affair. Though I will say the hops have a slight command here. As in the smell they're very earthy, grassy and slightly spicy. The biscuit like malt shows up again, but doesn't have the same buttery quality as is in the smell. There is a little bit of almost caramel like sweetness to it also. The fruity esters get pushed to the background and have the same strawberry quality as the aroma.

Mouthfeel: Solid medium body on this one. It's got a great creaminess to it, especially when the head was still sticking around. The head almost reminded me of Guinness with it's creamy properties. Carbonation is middle of the road.

Drinkability: This is definitely something I could revisit again when I'm in the mood for a nice, balanced, but still moderately well hopped brew. Definitely tame, but enjoyable.

Overall this reaffirms my conclusion that I prefer the American hop strains versus those out of the UK. But this is certainly a nice change of pace and the first beer that's impressed me out of Samuel Smith's stable.

DrDoitchbig, Feb 28, 2010
Photo of rtratzlaff
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My 55ml Bottle of Samuel Smith's Pale Ale pours into my 20 Ox Bass Glass,revealing a clear golden bodied beer with a cream colored head that leaves some lacing and sticks around well into the pint.

The aromas are bready malt, faint fruitiness and some earthy hops.

The flavor is caramel malt bready with a hop bitterness and metallic finish. There is a bit of diacytle buttteriness in the finish.

The mouthfeel is medium full with smooth body and moderate carbonation.

rtratzlaff, May 10, 2009
Photo of ritzkiss
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

550ml bottle, pours an attractive clear caramel color with a finger of bubbly head that quickly dies down and leaves a placid top. No retention, no lacing.

Nice caramel malt in the nose, light rasiny hint, bread and fruit.

Pleasant malt base, caramel plus a slightly toasty pale malt, hint of fruit and grass and summer meadows, slightly metallic, pleasant herbal, grassy hop profile that provides a nice dry 'twang' to the finish, not over the top but certainly there. Nothing too flashy but that's the English style in my mind. Low/medium carbonation adds to the drinkability as well, could easily see myself drinking a couple of these at a pub or with a meal into the evening. Nothing wrong going on here.

ritzkiss, Dec 07, 2009
Photo of jlindros
4.03/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured this into the complimentary flared out Samuel Smith pint glass.

A: A nice 1.5 finger frothy head develops on the pour that slowly dissipates. Brilliantly clear amber toasty maple brown color that shows all the little bubbles rising up in the middle. The rich head faded to a semi thick head covering over a minute or so, but stays around there with all the little bubbles rising up.

N: An interesting creamy malt like aroma really starts, with some fruity aromas, almost fruit punch, very light. A rich juicy hop aroma billows out. A slight earthy hop aroma also tangos with the juicy and is accompanied by a light toasty amber malt like aroma.

T: Starts very juicy with a nice hop flavor. That is followed by lots of varying malts, some toasty crystal and amber like malts. A slight earthy juicy hop flavor really hits. Its pretty pale, but not really bitter. A slight fruit flavor also comes out, very light. A slight roasted malt quality comes out, that gives a slight hint of a porter or brown ale.

M: Pretty good body, very lightly creamy, good carbonation.

F: A little bitter, but slightly fruity and sweet actually. Pretty pale and a little tangy. A slight juicy hop flavor sticks around with that fruit punch taste. A little bit more of the earthy hop qualities as well.

jlindros, Dec 07, 2009
Samuel Smith's Old Brewery Pale Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
87 out of 100 based on 945 ratings.