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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

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

658 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 658
Hads: 990
Avg: 3.86
pDev: 14.51%
Wants: 43
Gots: 35 | 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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-11-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (31) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Samuel Smith's Old Brewery Pale Ale Alström Bros
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Reviews: 658 | Hads: 990
Photo of Sammy
3.36/5  rDev -13%
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.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a clear amber/brown color with a 1 inch head that fades to a 1/2 inch cap. Lacing is not that great.

S - Smells of biscuit and sweet fruits.

T - Tastes like a biscuit with fruit preserves. There is VERY little bitterness or hop taste to this beer.

M - Very creamy and smooth.

D - Very tasty. Another great offering from Samuel Smith.

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Photo of metter98
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: The beer is clear light amber/copper in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high sense beige head that quickly died down but never completely faded away, leaving some lacy patterns of bubbles on the surface along with a thick ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: The smell has moderately strong fruity aromas of apples along with some hints of toffee.
T: Like the smell, the taste is quite fruity (apples seem to stand out in particular) and also has some flavors of biscuit and bready malts, toffee and hints of tea.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a low to moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is very sessionable as it’s easy to drink and goes down very smoothly.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.7/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

the glory of these beers is their price, less than 4 bucks per go? are you kidding me?! the quality to price point is unrivaled in the beer world. while some are outstanding, standard setters, others are just okay. this pale ale is somewhere in between. its clear in the pours, more red than copper, with a finger of off white bubbles that pop down to a thin skin before long. the nose is quintessentially English, with all the caramel malt dusty attic you could ever want, but with a welcomed touch of vanilla extract. the yeast doesn't really manifest itself until the flavor, neither do the hops. the yeast combines with the caramel malt to give a doughy cereal profile, while the hops finish the beer nice and bitter, balancing the vanilla expertly. tastes just a tad old at the end, but ill bet this is nearly perfect at the source on tap. thinner body, which im back and forth between liking and not, and airy carbonation that keeps this beer drinking easily. overall this isn't my favorite beer from sam smiths, but now that I have worked my well into their lineup, I can safely say that the quality of this brew is up to the high bar of the others. again, the economics cannot be beat.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.15/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This Pale ale pours out slightly darker than most of the typical pale ales out there today. This look more like an IPA with its really nice copper color. The head is white and doesn't have the best retention. The aroma is earthy and had a strong backbone of malts coming from it. The flavor is a little hoppy, but it's more grainy than anything. The mouthfeel was decent, good carbonation and drinkable on mostly all aspects.

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Photo of brentk56
3.81/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear amber, almost russet, color with a thick head that leaves webs of lace behind

Smell: Toffee and earthy tones, with mild butterscotch diacetyl present

Taste: Opens with a herbacious, diacetyl-influenced caramel character that moves in a bitter and earthy metallic direction by mid-palate; after the swallow, these English pale ale flavors blend together

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: It has been a while since I have consumed a true English Pale Ale, the style pretty much having been abandoned by American craft brewers; an enjoyable change of pace, even though the style is not one I would reach for every day

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Photo of BEERchitect
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma: Sweetly malty and robust. Mild scent of alcohol along with sweet fruits of dates, and figs. Low hop aroma and caramelly.

Appearance: Copper and light browns. Mostly clear. Nicely carbonated, creamy though not over done. Dense off white head. Held its firmness for duration.

Taste: Nice sweet barley complex. Well matured. Enough hops in the right locations to add appropriate flavoring and bittering. Full round body, but not thick. Very mellow, yet firm throughout the body. Finishes mildly sweet, pruny, raisony, slightly bitter.

Aftertaste: sweetness of dark rich fruits. Alcohol more pronounced, but still not dry.

Impression: A classic strong ale. Maybe not as strong as I am used to , but well balanced and appropriate.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.05/5  rDev -21%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

550ml bottle - Pourred a light brown brew with a nice head with short retention span. Powerful floral aroma coming out of my glass is wonderful. Taste is bit sour with great hops balance. Body is medium. Overall, this is an above average english pale ale.

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Photo of largadeer
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Copper colored, this beer has a light haze to the body with an ample bone-colored head atop. Stonefruit and butter toffee permeate the nose, the fruit being especially prominent, lightly sweet and lightly tart. It has a bit of graininess to it as well, pale and amber malts with a touch of biscuit. The taste is similar to the aroma, but rearranged; the biscuit-like malts are foreward, with a mild jam-like fruitiness behind. It's like taking a bite of toast covered in peach preserves and butter. Hearty but light, this has a lot of depth yet it's very quaffable and balanced. It ends on a malty and mildly buttery and fruity note with only a hint of bitterness, ultimately drying and crackery. Very good.

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Photo of biboergosum
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

550ml bottle.

This beer pours a clear, medium bronzed amber hue, with three fingers of puffy, tightly foamy, and creamy beige head, which leaves a decent array of sudsy bike-chain lace around the glass in its slow and meandering wake.

It smells of slightly toasted caramel malt, buttered biscuits, edgy orchard fruit, and some floral, earthy, and mildly piney hops. The taste is bready, almost sourdough-esque caramel malt, a bit of further toffee sweetness, a mild oily nuttiness, some reserved apple, pear, and dried apricot fruitiness, a touch of aerosol black pepper, and soft floral, herbal hops.

The carbonation is a bit strong, and forcefully frothy at first, but quickly settles to a more reasonable spritz soon enough, the body a solid medium weight, generally smooth, with a wee twinge of creaminess. It finishes still rather off-dry, the malt and fruit lingering like aimless teenagers, and cleanly bitter.

Overall, this is big on flavour, without any particular one standing out. Nicely drinkable, and what I imagine a proper EPA to be. Could see sessioning a few rounds of this in a dim pub, arguing the various inconsequential merits of Champions or Premier league play.

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Photo of zeff80
3.41/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a burgandy/orange color with a tan, bubbly, three-finger head. It left a small amount of lace.

S - It smelled of malt and clove. There was also a fruity aroma.

T - It tasted of mild malt. It had an earthy grassiness that added a slight bitter flavor.

M - It was smooth,soft and creamy. A light to medium-bodied beer.

D - This is an okay beer. It just isn't something I'd run out a buy every week.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Burnished orange-bronze with bright orange highlights at the margins. The impressive looking head of creamy, caramel colored foam looks to be going nowhere fast. Arching streamers of lace are beginning to stick to the glass and are the capper on a wonderful looking English pale ale.

Eau de skunk has almost completely faded, although traces of it remain when I finally get around to assessing the aroma. It's easily ignored at this point, but dammit, why do we have to put up with clear glass bottles? The nose is equal parts lightly toasty caramel malt and herbal, earthy, slightly musky English hops. I prefer my pale ales to be more highly hopped.

Old Brewery Pale Ale is solid, even though it's just about as hop-deficient as they come. The flavor profile is dominated by bready caramel malt with traces of buttered toffee that I find more delicious each time I upend the glass. What hoppiness is able to be appreciated is predominantly herbal and earthy, along with a little orange juice fruitiness. I'm reminded of English Breakfast tea, as I often am when drinking an English pale ale.

Although this is a rather simple beer overall, and would probably benefit from a slightly more assertive hoppiness, it's delicious. The mouthfeel is medium for the style with a softness that isn't quite negated by a slightly too generous amount of carbonation.

Samuel Smith is a quality brewery. Given the fact that Old Brewery Pale Ale leans so heavily toward malt, I'm a little surprised that I like it as much as I do. Quality is quality, though, and I will happily continue to give these guys my hard-earned money for their well-brewed beer.

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Photo of oberon
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a medium brown with slight amber tones with a real nice big head,the aroma was more malty with some light hop aromas lingering.The taste up front is of lightly sweet malt with a hop smack that hits and lingers thru the finish.There is a winey,fruity undertone to this beer wich I like and havent tasted on any other pale,a good solid English classic.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.46/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poors a rich brwon with a small creamy head which quickly disappears. Color is wonderful. Some lace present. Smell is a classic english ale smell. More malt then hops. Not much hops on the taste, all malt on this one. Very smooth going down, no real after taste to seak of, but again very smooth and drinkable. Would drink this again, not a goto kinda of drink, but would turn it down if served.

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Photo of womencantsail
3.46/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer pours a burnt orange color with a nice finger or so of slightly off-white head.

S: Light floral aromas up front but other than that, sort of blah. Toffee and stale bread with a small amount of butter in there, too. Slight butterscotch as well.

T: Luckily the flavor picks things up a bit. Still on the sweet side, as to be expected from an English pale. Malty all the way with caramel and toffee, but there is a nice little bite of floral hops and bitterness.

M: Medium in body with a lively carbonation and a dry finish, despite the sweetness.

O: Wish I could give this one a higher score, but the nose was just off-putting. Too bad.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.33/5  rDev -13.7%
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.

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Photo of jlindros
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
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.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.01/5  rDev +3.9%
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.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.09/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light brown color, with a very thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of strong elements of caramel, toffee, honey, nuts and spices with slight touch of hops.

T: The taste is sweet up front with flavors of caramel, honey and some spice. There's a mild hops presence that provides some balance. The malt character is hearty and brings good substance to the beer. The after-taste is slightly bready and slightly sweet.

M: Smooth and crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, clean finish.

D: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, mild kick, very good representation of style, it's a little sweeter than I've seen in most EPA's but it's a nice beer to drink for a long time.

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Photo of Jason
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: 12 oz clear bottle that has gold foil on top, no freshness date to be found.

Appearance: Bright and copper colored with sea foam like off white lace.

Smell: Hint of hops with a light jolly rancher candy like fruitiness.

Taste: Medium bodied and a dryish mouth feel show on the palate, subdued fruitiness and a malty sweetness holds the front with a mellow biscuity malt taste. Hop bitterness and a slight husk flavour help to balance. A little grainy in the finish with a true pale ale dryness in the end.

Notes: Clean to the tongue with lots of complexity, perfect quaffing material ... A Pale Ale to reckon with.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours an amber copper tone with a vibrant and quite fuffy vanilla colored head that leaves lacing sporatically as it leaves speckled lacing. Aroma: European hops take much of the aromatic qualities this beer has to offer with a bit of an offness from the light exposure that it has been under from the cooler I bought it at. Still some noticeable malt caramel sweetness not too shabby. Taste: Flavor has a bready quality from the Sam Smith's yeast used good mix of hops and malts here not over the tops a quality session pale ale very nice. Mouthfeel: Quite uninteresting mouthfeel medium body but nothing special here. Drinkability: Easily would like to have and would be to finish a four pack of these puppies, just at nine bucks a pop I'm not willing to do that.

Haven't had this one in quite awhile, this time around it pours a pale copper hue with a billowing off white light khaki head. Clouded texture which rises above the rim of my glass adds to the eye candy. Served slightly chilled, lacing is sporadic and spotty but this beer is nice. Served into an official Samuel Smith imperial pint glass. Aroma is quite fruiy with some green apple and and bready qualities coming togther. An interesting layer of earthy hops and a touch of mineral water colliding together. I bought a nice gift sampler with big 550 ml bottles of this, the Nut Brown Ale, and Oatmeal Stout with the glass included for around 11 bucks. Flavor is semi sweet with a mix of caramel malt, bready yeast tones, and balanced with fruity ale notes and herbal earthy English hops. The well water used does impart a nice mineral water character that doesn't impart any off flavors, it just really works well here. Mouthfeel is well rounded carbonation is subdued and very smooth on the palate, medium bodied session ale for sure. Drinkability is pretty effortless the only thing better would be a couple pints pulled from a hand pump while hanging in a London pub.

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Photo of smcolw
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Large rocky head that leaves plentiful lace. The color is orange, copper. There is the slightest of haze.

Sweet caramel aroma; no noticable hop.

Full bodied with a low amount of carbonation. There is a smoothness to this beer. Lots of berry-like flavors. Nice hop finish. The aftertaste is a combination of light hop and sour milk.

This is what I would call a mellow pale ale. There is none of the in-your-face hop that is common in the American versions of pale ales.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
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.

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Photo of jwc215
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours copper with a slightly off-white head that slowly descends to a thin covering.

The smell is of mild barley and citrusy fruits. Hints of bread come through.

The taste is of earthy hops balanced by a sweet, grainy malt. As the drink progresses, some mild graininess emerges. It has a fairly even balance of sweet malt and soft bitter hops, leaning towards the malt, that remains steady. Basic, not complex, but flavorful and well-balanced in a medium body. The flavors hold up pretty well.

It's smooth. The sweet and bitter intermingle.

This is a fine example of a classic English Pale Ale. Mild, yet tasty, smooth and drinkable.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

No date on bottle, beer served in an imperial pint glass. Beer is brown / amber and clear. Carbonation is low and the beer forms a tight white head of small bubbles that leaves a lot of lacing on the glass. Beer looks good.

Mostly malt in the aroma. Not too surprising.

Beer is oddly bitter, highly drinkable, medium to full body. Overall its really smooth and there is almost a red like flavor / sweetness in the front of the mouth. Overall its pretty good.

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Samuel Smith's Old Brewery Pale Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
87 out of 100 based on 658 ratings.