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Samuel Smith's Organic Best Ale - Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

Not Rated.
Samuel Smith's Organic Best AleSamuel Smith's Organic Best Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
90
outstanding

594 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 594
Reviews: 371
rAvg: 3.99
pDev: 12.78%
Wants: 53
Gots: 16 | 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 02-27-2001)
View: Beers (27) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 594 | Reviews: 371 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of erz316
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottle into oldspeck pint glass

a good crisp and well carbonated beer, golden in colour with a thin white head. grainy and fruity nose, with an even sweeter taste. there is a good pinch of hops, but not too much. primary flavours are grain, a bit of metallic, and sweet malts. nose lacks, but this may be because of the temperature; but considering this is a session beer, it should be able to perform at colder temps.

Photo of Celt44
3.93/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance is a clear straw - Nice head with minimal lacing..

Aroma - Fruits and malts. Plums and raisons. Spicy sweetness towards the end.

Taste - Fruity flavor, plums and raisons again. Malty finish with a lemon zestiness also...

Mouthfeel - Smooth. Nothing of note here...

Overall an average Ale - Very pleasant and not as bitter as most EPAs....

Photo of Kromes
3.95/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: A slightly hazy gold color with a fluffy white head.

S: There is a bready/grainy aroma coming off of the beer with some noble hops thrown in.

T: The grain/bread flavors really mix well with the floral hop flavors. There is an almost citrus-like bitterness throughout and the bitterness is what keeps the beer from being really good. I like some bitter beers, but I guess on this day it was just a little too much bitterness without the actual hop flavor pay-off.

M: Mouthfeel is nice and light but sort of flat at first. The finish is dry.

D: Drinkability is very good. It has a very good flavor and the lack of carbonation in the beer makes it very session-able.

Photo of Traquairlover
4.53/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

550ml bottle poured into a pint glass.

A = Brilliant topaz with very light haze, incredibly soft carbonation bubbling, forms a small one finger head of bone white foam and small bubbles that subside into a thin foam covering on about 80% of the surface which very, very slowly reduces coverage of surface area until little remains by the end of the pint, also a strong concentration around the edge.

S = Strong smell of caramel, just a little butterscotch and butter, maple syrup, almond paste, a really good blend of smells.

T = Wow, this is really, really tasty. The maple syrup qualities are almost as strong as you find in a stronger, more concentrated beer like Thomas Hardy's Ale, JW Lees Harvest or Harvey's Elizabethan Ale. At the same time it has the distinctive Samuel Smith's caramel/butterscotch flavor. There is a really good amount of balancing bitterness in this, too. The front of the tongue gets a full dose and the finish has a nice dry, bitterness.

M = At the start I found the bite of the carbonation too forceful as it stung my tongue, after a bit though it mellowed out nicely and had a much softer feel. Mouthcoating is good and body is medium.

D = This is really a fine drinking beer. Easy to drink quite a bit of it and also good enough to want to come back to again.

Photo of t3hcho53non3
4.95/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I want to preface this by saying this is my favorite favorite favorite brew of all time.

A: Pours a clear yellow amber color with a finger head that quickly dissipates but leaves decent lacing.

S: Very complex fruity sweetness with organic undertones and earthy undertones

T: Heaven on earth. Earthy tasting with organic overtones.

M: Medium body with little to no carbonation

D: Very drinkable and very complex. You must drink more than one of these in a session before you can accurately review it.

Photo of Stinkypuss
3.75/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 16.9 ounce bottle into a pint glass. Pours a burnt orange with a pillowy off white head, decent lacing.

Aroma of noble hops and underlying sweetness from the malt body.

A definate fruity twang from the ale yeast in this english ale. Hop presence makes itself known of the back end, with a lingering lemony bitterness that lasts long after the sip. Slight roasted edge to the malts which does make the beer more palatable.

Medium to full bodied with a pronounced malty finish followed by the flash of hop. Also noted is the crisp feel of this beer on the palate which makes it very enjoyable.

Drinks pretty well and as I drink it, I like it a bit more. Certainly worth the try and definately a good example of the style.

Photo of seand
4.45/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

A: Pours a clear yellow amber with a generous foamy white head. Just a small layer retains longer than a few minutes, which leaves so-so lacing.

S: Sweet, full, with floral/fruity notes and a caramel background.

T: Complex fruity sweetness leads to a hoppy finish. Very tasty.

M: Medium to high carbonation, relatively smooth, medium to full bodied.

D: Drinks quite easily, an excellent session beer.

This is a great English pale ale. It doesn't really add anything to the style, but the execution is excellent.

Photo of adamb02155
3.9/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Amber colored with a nice foamy head on top.

S - Not a strong aroma at all. A slight sweet, fragrant smell.

T - Grew on me. Not terribly hoppy at all, but a nice crisp, clean ale. Good balance on the beer.

M - Very good balance of carbonation and flavor.

D - After the first few sips I wasn't impressed. Toward the end of the glass, I was left wanting more. Easily drinkable, but with enough flavor and balance that when you come around, you realize what a good beer it is.

Photo of techtatu
4.43/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a nice amber color with a cream colored head about a half fingers worth. It had a fruity aroma to it with a hint of citrus. It is a full bodied beer with an apple cider tasted to it, and very low carbonation. It laced the glass pretty well and an extremely smooth drink.

It is a beer well fit for summer and as an every day drinker. Something everybody could enjoy and grow accustomed to. Definitely a beer I would suggest everybody to try at least once.

Photo of BeerisfoodLLC
4.18/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served from a bottle into a pint glass:

A - Cloudy orange hue, pours with a medium to small head and leaves a fine lacing.

S - Fruity scents derived from the hops. Clean citrusy smell.

T - Very balanced. Malty overtones balance very well with floral hop tastes.

M - Medium carbonation, goes down easy.

D - Flavorful and well balanced combination make this very drinkable.

Photo of KarlHungus
4.18/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a hazy pale orange color. The head is small, and recedes quickly into sparse lacing. The aroma is a near equal balance of malt and hops. Toffee, biscuit, herbs, and flowers. This aroma has nice complexity which keeps me thinking. It isn't the strongest aroma out there, but I would trade strength for complexity any day. The taste is has the same equilibrium as the aroma. There is nice malt up front, and a slightly hoppy finish. It lacks a little of the pizazz that the aroma has, but it is solid nonetheless. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with lively carbonation, and a smooth texture. Overall, this is a wonderful beer. If it were available in six/four pack form it would quickly become a regular session beer for me. I single bottles I can see myself having it every now and then.

Photo of Finn
4.45/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Served up this beer in s standard pint glass. Very clear golden caramel coloring, with hardly any head on top. The aroma is quite nice and simple, with that nice fruity british ale yeast ester character, mixed with the smell of sweet caramel malts. A very clean aroma. This is a tasty beer: first flavors are the mild fruity english ale esters, which mix in very well with the crystal malts to form a beautifully balanced, dry, refreshing ale. The finish is slightly crisp, and dries the mouth, kind of like tea does, in a very refreshing sort of way. The carbonation is plenty strong, but not excessive, and easily bites through the body of this beer. I could drink several of these. This is such a well balanced beer. I could easily see this beer being passed by as "nothing substantial" but for those who value balance, subtlety, drinkability, and above all, great flavor, then do give this one a try.

Photo of ProfessorHomer
4.33/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another wonderful little jewel from Samuel Smith's fine family of beers. The high quality is evident throughout. Highly recommended if you like high-quality smooth malty session ales.

A: Pours a light amber gold color with a nice whitish head that fades rather slowly. Leaves a nice thin lacing on the glass.

S: The aroma is of honey, tea, light caramelized malts and a touch of hops.

T: The taste is very balanced with nice malts and flavors of caramel and dare I say apples? The mellow maltyness makes it stand out - a wonderful hearty beer you'd find in the Lake District taverns. Hops are mild and subdued quite nicely in the background. A nice sweet lingertaste is left on your palette.

M: Full & smooth, nice body with just-right carbonation. Very clean finish that I'll attribute to the fine water used.

D: Very full and tasty. A nice session beer that quaffs easily whilst not too filling. I could drink several of these along with a nice pipe.

Does this fine brewery make a "bad" beer? Methinks not! Man, I just gotta get to this brewery the next time I'm in Great Britain! Another recommended high-quality long drink from Samuel Smith's brewery. Bravo! Huzzah!

Photo of TAREUA
5/5  rDev +25.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Sometimes revisiting a beer you found to be great even a few days later can be like seeing that old girl friend again. "Did she always bark like that when she laughed?" This beer is so good it keeps getting better with each revisit. I have found myself daydreaming about having another pint of this on a beach somewhere.

English style pale ales are the epicenter of beer: stouts off to port, and lagers to starboard. I always found this brewery to be good not great, but this beer is great. The head is thick and white. The aroma is the wonderful scent of rich ale, not daisies or tar pits or tequila. The mouthfeel is full not fizzy, not syrupy; but liquid that can taste flavorful, while doing what beer is meant to do, quench your thirst. Their is a fine balance in this beer that allows hints of sweetness and grain to come and go on your tongue without as much dry bitter flavor as an English style ESB. Smith's regular Old Brewery pale ale I find a bit murkier and more malt dominated. This beer is a wonderful drinker, and a great reminder to me that beer is about the beautiful flavor, not just an excuse for intellectual excercise.

Photo of BDTyre
3.48/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A nice pale ale from Sam Smith, but somewhat unexciting and pedestrian.

Amber-gold in appearance with a thin, quick-settling white head. Sweet malt smell, fairly like corn syrup and a mellow hop presence. Taste is a little bit better balanced, but still a bit syrupy. Nice carbonation, easy to drink but not as nice as the organic lager.

Photo of Psilo707
3.6/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Organic!
S: Organic!
T: Organic!
M: Organic!
D: Organic!

Nah... well, kinda. I liked the appeal of this bottle. It trademarks itself as an original brew. Like drinking it will place you in the elite, upper echelon of beer drinkers and it's fluids will make you more healthy and natural.

Not too much head, not too much lacing, but a nice beige appearance in the mug. Smell is laced with a bit of fruit, a bit of corn, a bit of wheat, and a bit of awesomeness all in one. Taste is alright; tastes exactly like it smells so I need not repeat. Mouthfeel is light and not on par with the previous. Drinkability is on par with the previous.

Overall, I love Sam Smith's and this isnt a bad entry into their line, but not my favorite of the bunch.

Photo of magine
4.65/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a pint glass.

Brew has a cloudy dark copper - almost like an iced tea color. Small off white head that fades to a small thin head that is broken up in parts. A little lacing.

The brew has a fruity sweet smell. Somewhat bready, honey maybe even.

The brew has a crisp refreshing taste with a bubbly mouthfeel initially, then has the smoothness. Had a bit of a kick to it. Nice clean, sweet taste with some nice malts. Has some lemon flavors. Nice dry finish with little aftertaste. Very good balanced taste. Very refreshing and smooth.

This brew is very drinkable, a crisp refreshing ale, and yet another well crafted gem from Samuel Smith. An anytime brew and an all timer.

Photo of dudecandle
3.65/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

18.7 oz bottle poured into pint glass:

A: Slightly hazy golden-orange with a small head. Modest retention, minimal lacing.

S: Vanilla, nuts, lemon, though the yeast takes over as the strongest component.

T: The lemon from the smell balances out to include some orange as well. A subtle hop finish, but most importantly, the toasted malts and bread notes remain most significant, with a deep finish.

M: Disappointingly thin.

D: This is a great beer to have with a meal or on its own. It's relatively complex, but not too heavy.

Photo of hdofu
3.98/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not quite what I had expected being as it was slightly a darker gold then I had expected, had a white head which disappeared swiftly. The taste was sweet like molasses. The smell was something like honey bread with other spices not too much bitter hop in there. The beer had a crisp mouthfeel. Overall it was rather drinkable as it was sweet and went down easy.

Photo of steelerguy
4/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Liquid gold, very bright, light carbonation, 1 finger head that dissipated to a coating within minutes.

S - Light bready aroma, good solid malt smells with some sweet honey in there. Nice floral hop aroma in the background.

T - Some light English hop bitterness up front then lots of malt. I pick up the bready character in the taste, along with some light caramel malt sweetness. Extremely balanced flavor, nothing standout outs other than an overall good flavor.

M - Smooth feel, slight tingle, clean and refreshing.

D - When you are looking for a good beer, that does everything well, but doesn't really stand in any particular way...this is it. This beer would please about any appreciator of good beer.

Photo of KTCamm
4.68/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I love everything about these beer, from the bottle to the label to the taste.

Pours a beautiful copper orange with one finger foam. Good retention. Minimal lacing.

Smell is slightly fruity, malty.

Taste is clean, crisp, hint of map, full of malt, swirling fruit - all coming together in a perfect combination. Goes down smooth with virtually no aftertaste. You could drink this ale after finishing a 10K road race - its that smooth.

Balanced in the mothfeel between taste and cleanliness. There's an elemnt of water to it - its not watery - but maybe thats what makes it so GD refreshing.

I could drink buckets of this stuff.

Photo of berkey
3.78/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Nice snow white head formed when poured into a flute. Clean and lucid light amber body with good lacing.

Smell: Very subtle fruit notes brings to mind slightly over ripe red apples. Mild honey aroma, some yeast. No one thing comes through strongly, all things soft and balanced.

Taste: Pretty faithful follow through on the nose. Some hops cut through a little more but still very mild and well blended in with the soft malty character. This beer is so refreshingly mild and simple I actually forgot for a moment I was drinking an English Ale and was reminded of a malty German Pilsner. Like on the nose, no one flavor dominates. The one distinguishing quality here is the overall balance.

Drinkability: Easy drinking and refreshing beer but one that is meant to be enjoyed slowly. I don't think it would make a good session beer. I was ready for something else when I finished the bottle.

Photo of rebel1771
4.08/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a golden copper color with a nice head that quickly dissipates.

S: Fruity aroma with a touch of honey and malts.

T: Sweet but slightly toasted malts, just a touch of honey.

D: Quite a good brew. Unfortunately I am stuck drinking this from a bottle, would love to try this on tap.

Photo of Offa
4.88/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is a wonderful, very drinkable and quenching, yet subtley complex and very well-integrated ale.

Light, bright amber, it has a medium off-white head steadily shrinking to a thin, permanent foamy top with weak foamy lace.

The aroma is lightly fruity, citrusy, leafy, with strong yeasty bread and a very fresh character that screams "ale."

The taste is pleasant, fresh, crisp, extremely even, consistent, balanced, and well-integrated throughout from start to finish. It is lightly sweet with light balancing bitterness plus a hint of fruity-yeasty sweet-sour and light zesty tartness, all integrated extremely well, playing together simultaneously and complementing each other rather than clashing. It tastes of faintly tart fruit, leaves, citrus (esp. lemon), with hints of yeasty toast and butter. The finish is lightly bitter with a lingering leafy-citrusy bitterness balanced by faintly buttered toast sweetness. The feel is firm, not quite oily, and zesty and lively.

Photo of fitzy84
4.15/5  rDev +4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured with a clear yellow-gold appearance, large head that slowly dissipated into patchy lacing. Aromas are quite rich in cloves, florals, grains, citrus (orange) and a slight woody hint. The taste is a little bit simpler but wonderfully sweet and juicy. Slight biscuit tones mixed wonderfully with the citrus flavor. Just not as complex as the aromas might make it seem. Mouthfeel is a little watery but does allow the drink to be enjoyed as a light, sweet ale. Overall, a great organic ale.

Samuel Smith's Organic Best Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
90 out of 100 based on 594 ratings.