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Smuttynose IPA "Finest Kind" - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose IPA "Finest Kind"Smuttynose IPA "Finest Kind"

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4,128 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,128
Reviews: 1,673
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: 11.95%
Wants: 218
Gots: 370 | FT: 3
Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  6.90% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
You could say, then, that Smuttynose IPA is a physical salute to the glory of the American hop grower. The citrusy hop flavor coming from a mixture of Simcoe and Santiams is pleasantly balanced by a smooth bitterness from the Amarillo hops. The beer itself is light bodied and crisp with a golden color that will throw a slight haze, as we bottle it unfiltered. At 75 IBU's, this is definitely not a training-wheels IPA, but is meant for hop lovers looking to satisfy their craving in a way that's not easy to find. We think they’ll be quite pleased.

75 IBU

(Beer added by: Bierman9 on 03-12-2004)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 4,128 | Reviews: 1,673 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rhoadsrage
4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- The slight hazy clouds the golden orange body with a yellowish-white head and some yeast chucks swirling in the beer. There was a nice slow carbonation of tiny bubbles.

S- The smell of fresh green spicy hops had a faint pineapple note with a big grassy finish.

T- This beer has a faint caramel malt note that was overtaken by a big juicy hop flavor with notes of pineapple weed and a bold bitterness at the finish. There was a very faint alcohol taste the gave the bitterness a nice boost.

M- This beer has a medium mouthfeel with a chewy texture.

D- This beer has a nice big bitterness to the hops which balanced the flavor of the hops nicely. Many IPAs have just the flavor and aroma of hops and it is nice to see the bitterness in there also.

rhoadsrage, May 22, 2006
Photo of Derek
4.22/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy, golden bronze; Fluffy white head, good retention and wonderful lace. If it wasn't for the chill-haze, it'd be exceptional.

S: Fresh, grapefruity hops, with a touch of underlying biscuity pale malt.

T: In-your-face citrusy-grapefruit flavour. The bitterness is fairly mild, but there's a ton of hop flavour here. Very crisp, clean finish. The alcohol content is surprising... it doesn't come through in the flavour at all. There's a malty backbone, but it's subtle.

M: Moderate body is slighlty prickly and acidic. Carbonation is moderate.

D: Very good.

Derek, May 15, 2006
Photo of Westsidethreat
3.73/5  rDev -9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

First off, great label. Bottle has some yeast residue at the bottom that I plan to pour right into the glass with the beer. Beer pours a gorgeous golden color. Clear but not pristine, there's a subtle haze in there. Little bubbles stuck all over the inside of the glass. Nice snow white head...pillowy, tight bubbles. As the head falls it leaves a devastating wake of brussels lace behind. So far so good. Halfway thru this beer and the head is still nice and frothy.

Good, solid aroma. Hoppy with a bit of citrus and pine.

Mouthfeel is smooth especially once the carbonation settles down.

IPA's have come a long way now adays. Gone are the traditional cascade dominated beers of yesteryear. This is an easy drinking beer. First impression is grapefruit. Second impression is grapefruit as well. Aftertaste is pure grapfruit with a wash of bitterness from a huge pile of bittering hops. Slight alcohol waffs about halfway thru the swallow.

This is a straight forward, well crafted beer...something that any brewer would be proud of. Lacks a little bit of depth that I would prefer. I could certainly drink another one of these right now. The still going grapefruit aftertaste doesn't let you forget this beer easilly.

Westsidethreat, May 13, 2006
Photo of markb40
4.7/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a Smutty Tulip glass. The classic labels are on the bottle a little crooked, which I have learned from a tour of the brewery, is a result of a roughly 100 year old labeling machine doing the labeling. Pretty cool and gives the bottle some character (as if it needed more than the great picture on the front to give it that!).

An aggressive pour yields a beautiful off white head and a hazy, honey colored body. The head lasts for awhile and has some nice lacing clinging to the glass as it dissipates. The only thing keeping me from giving an excellent on the appearance is the fact that I like to see a little more amber color in an IPA, but maybe that is just a personal preference.

The aroma is probably my favorite part of this beer. I could sit and sniff it all day long! Fresh, floral hop aroma and a bit of citrus in there as well. I can't wait to drink this....

The taste is exactly what you would expect from the nose: Hops, hops, hops! Some might call it unbalanced, but this is an IPA for crying out loud! I think there is a sufficient malt backbone to make this beer work, but the hops are definitely playing the lead role. Delicious.

The mouthfeel is excellent and the drinkability is outstanding! On a hot summer's day, I could literally drink this beer over and over and over again...

An almost perfect example, in my mind, of the IPA style.

markb40, May 13, 2006
Photo of phisig137
2.9/5  rDev -29.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a hazy golden color, with a long lasting 1/2 finger head. Minimal lacing.

Aroma is fresh and green, with pleasant aromas of both citrusy and flowery hops.

Flavor is a bit of a let down. No real malt body, and reltively faint hop flavor. Hoppy finish is incredibly bitter and astringent. Mouthfeel is smooth, but a little thin... I'd like to see at least a little bit of a malty body. Drinkability is hindered a bit by the astringent bitterness.

I feel that this ber has potential, but lacks a bit of finess. There is simply too much bittering hops, and not enough flavor hops. In addition, I feel that the hops themselves do not blend well. The different varietals seem to clash in this beer. It's quite drinkable and refreshing, just not one of the better IPA's that I've had.

phisig137, May 07, 2006
Photo of WaffleSauce
4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Massive thanks go out to Px2Grafx for this little guy. A very fun 12ozer with a simply lovely cloud of yeast at the bottom. . .let's get that yeast cloud in to a pint glass, shall we?

Nose is kind of peachy. . .it's interesting. Not strong, but pleasant.

Pouring into my trusty Stone pint glass. Pours a very deep yellow with just a hint of amber/orange, pretty opaque. A beautiful cloud of yeast is fighting its way to the bottom of the glass. The half inch head faded quickly, not a lot of bubble action.

Very tart and piney up front, with just the right amount of the tropical hop taste I've been getting used to in these east coast IPAs lately. The piney hops are definitely predominate, though. Super easy to drink, yet there's loads of complexity here that are admittedly hard for me to decipher. I could definitely drink this every night.

Thanks again Px2!

WaffleSauce, May 06, 2006
Photo of bignick
4.93/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

On tap at TPH in Brookline 5/1/06. Served in a pint glass.

In my opinion, this is one of the finest IPAs in the world. Unfortunately, all-too-often the bottles are not fresh. I did not realize how terrific this beer is until I had it on tap at Mug's in Brooklyn in mid-March. It just tastes much more lively on tap than it does out of the bottle.

Smutty IPA is the quintessential American IPA. It has a strong hop bitterness that hits the front, middle, and back of the toungue equally. While it is not for the faint-of-heart, it is slightly balanced by a clean sweetness. Overall, it is a great pleasure to drink, and should be sought out on tap, as opposed to the bottle.

bignick, May 02, 2006
Photo of villainchiwwin
4.45/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

poured in pint glass carefully to avoid yeast spillage; efforts were successful.
gorgeous golden amber color with luscious foamy off-white cream head which stuck around. column of carbonation bubbles rising in a lively fashion from bottle-conditioning are true eye candy. straightfoward raw floral hop nose: tanginess, pleasant mustiness, and butter behind. delicious hop essence taste with some flowery elements and initial honey butteriness, lemon, and pine with a burst of bitterness upon the swallow, refusing to show mercy from the unadulterated purity of this brew's delightful hop ballad to the palate--manifests the finestkind's enticing smells. mouthfeel is creamy at first shot through with fine carbonation prickles in harmonious balance, while the finish coats the palate with a highly-textured palpable hop-film like a fond memory. yum.
this is a damn fine brew, does the ipa style right to the point of benchmark status, and representative of a heady brewery.

villainchiwwin, May 02, 2006
Photo of crwills
3.9/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I'm going to base this review on the first of two bottles of this (drank it a few weeks ago), rather than the one I'm drinking at this moment, which seems to have lost some of its flavour and has a lot of floating yeast sediment in it (even though I think I poured it quite well). I'll do my best to remember my initial impressions (the current one isn't terrible, but I do remember it being better before).

Poured slightly on the yellowy side for an IPA, slighly cloudy, with a nice bubbly white head. Faded a little bit quickly. Very little smell compared with some other American IPAs -- mild bitter hops, some faint pine and soap.

This brew is very bitter, but again, not in the same way as some other American IPAs. The standard blast of citrus (especially grapefruit) is not there, and instead a solid piney/plantey bitterness hits quick and sticks around. Definitely better a little on the warm site. Dry bitter aftertaste, and relatively pleasant mouthfeel.

Not my favourite, despite the high rating it has here but, again, my second sample may be 'tainted' so I should review this again the next time I come across it.

crwills, May 02, 2006
Photo of Golden2wenty1
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single at Riley's here in Madison. Enjoyed right before heading to the old fieldhouse on campus for a free Common concert (which was amazing).

Pours an orange/amber with yeasty haze and a few fingers of khaki head leaving a nice coating of soapy lace. Nose is dominated by intense bitter hops with a hint of caramel/apricot fruitiness. Taste is genuinely bitter, not just piney or herbal, with a sweet malty and fruity backbone that brings some balance. Mouthfeel is medium and crisp. A nice, assertive American IPA, wish I had more than a bottle

Golden2wenty1, Apr 28, 2006
Photo of longarm
3.75/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dingy, cloudy yellow pour. Solid carbonation with relatively large bubbles that drop quickly. Coloring reminds me of a wheat.

Aroma basks in citrusy american hops and layered upon a cotton candy-esque base. A mild combination of pine and something floral also noticed. Overall a very pleasant smelling beer.

Sharp bitter bite on the palate, but this doesn't burn and quickly washes the palate clean. Somewhat of a bitter hop bomb without enough balancing malt.

Some may like this and it's not necessarily out of style, but it's not my personal preference to have this much unbalanced hop bitterness.

Footnote: Drinking with a side of mild cheddar helps cut the bitterness a bit.

longarm, Apr 26, 2006
Photo of heyitsbyron
3.7/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a single bottle ($1.35) into a pub glass.

Poured crystal clear gold with a frothy white head of about 1.5cm. Lighter than most IPAs, but darker than most pilseners.

Smelled like a pilsener through and through. Grassy malt and slight hints of fruitiness.

Taste was a bit too "raw" for me. Crisp and clean instead of being hoppy in that sticky IPA sort of way. Bitter from start to finish (Saaz hops?), but lacking complexity. Also, malts were somewhat plain.

The bitterness almost carries with it an astringency that is not necessarily the most pleasant. Decent carbonation, but I wish it were more fun to have in my mouth.

Maybe I should have aged this or maybe they should re-label it as some sort of IPA-pilsener hybrid because that's what it tasted like. A good beer that I'd love to drink again, but considering the style, not quite right.

heyitsbyron, Apr 26, 2006
Photo of NolateM
4.58/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Damn am I glad I bought this six-pack. I was looking for a good IPA to buy at the liquor store, and I sure did a good job finding one. Poured into a mug, it has a hazy golden color, with lots of sediment which kind of threw me off at first, until I found out that those specks are actually delicious little hop particles that were never filtered out. A lot of lacing, and a thick white head that disappears a bit but still kinda hangs around.

Well, obviously the taste is very hoppy... if it's an IPA and it's getting a good review, it sure better be hoppy. A bit of a pine flavor, and definitely a refreshingly acidic, VERY prominent yellow grapefruit kind of a flavor (you know what I mean right? not the red or purple grapefruits, the other ones). As bitter as it should be, but still pretty crisp. This is really really drinkable/sessionable... I'm not the biggest guy in the world, so I usually only have one or two beers at a time, but I could see myself downing three or four of these guys fairly easily.

NolateM, Apr 24, 2006
Photo of SethB2
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Thanks to MuddyFeet for the sample.

Looks like an IPA. Orangish/amber colored, milky and non transparent with a respectable head and nice lacing. Smell is very one diminsional. Grapefruit hops and that's about it. Taste is good. Hoppy but not over the top. This brew goes down easy. Nearly chewy body.

Let's put it this way. I'd like to have another. Good beer.

SethB2, Apr 19, 2006
Photo of coldchill
4.6/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I really enjoyed this beer. It poured a nice golden color with a small fine head. Slightly hazy. The huge hop flavor was belied by its mildly hoppy aroma.

Mouthfeel was a little heavy and the flavor lingered a bit, but all in all I found it to be an excellent example of the style.

If you are into hoppy beers, definately give this one a try.

coldchill, Apr 18, 2006
Photo of Freshie
4.6/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Amazing appearence, with cloudy bright gold colour, frothy head that laces hardcore, and many tiny bubbles floating to the top. It looks awesome.

The scent is floral, and pine sappy, with just a hint of citrus.

The flavour is very hoppy, from start to finish, but not so much so that you cringe. Very clean and dry. Past the hops there was some grassy, pine, and fruit flavours. The carbonation was in good balance with the hops to help with the hop whallop.

Very drinkable. Hops upon hops, but clean, and lovely. I paired this with my Easter meal, and it was fantastic. I think this just took the spot for my favorite IPA.

Freshie, Apr 17, 2006
Photo of Manosbeeroffate
4.83/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Oh this is good, makes up for the unusual winter ale. Pours hazy orange, slight head to it. Smells quite citrusy. Taste? Wow!! Hops galore, bitter but citrusy at the same time and oh sooo good. Extremly drinkable. Best part is you can taste the hops again when your burp. That is what beer is supposed to be about!!

Manosbeeroffate, Apr 16, 2006
Photo of bbirks
4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 ounce bottle with born on month on side served into a pint glass. Color deep amber with a healthy head. Great tasting with an explosion of hops that is not overwhelming but just right. Awesome lacing down the sides of the glass. A very easy drinking IPA with the alcohol not killing the taste. It is going to be hard not to pound back a lot of these bad boys. Another great beer from the folks at Smutty!

bbirks, Apr 12, 2006
Photo of Metalmonk
4.38/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A steady pour and I still got some sediment in the beer...which isn't a big deal because I like that, though I know lots of drinkers who don't. The head was rocky and creamy and big, and it took awhile to thin out. That light-orange/peach color was dotted with very very mellow bubbles.

A pungent yet sweet and smooth hops scent is at the very top of the aroma, almost fruity in its inviting mellowness.

I let this bottle warm from the fridge for about 20 minutes before opening and pouring, and it helped the hops tingle become buttery smooth. A hoppy spikiness spreads throughout the mouth, never cloying, very earthy and grassy. The carbonation was unexpectedly on the lower side, giving this IPA a somewhat medicinal feel, but a mild sting reminds you there's just enough fizz and pop happening.

This one has such strong character, very bold, and while I'm tempted to drink it daily, it's uniqueness in a sea of hundreds of other IPAs makes me want to savor it and only bust it out rarely, so that it always remains something special.

Metalmonk, Apr 11, 2006
Photo of TastyTaste
4.55/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A great easy drinking IPA, with a great big hops bite. Enjoyed from a bottle into a small 6ish ounce glass at The Brickskeller in Washington DC. Great label with a couple old guys hanging out in front of an RV. Smell and taste are loaded with fruity and pungent hops, very citrusy. Taste was a little raw and unexpected, but still very enjoyable and different. Good for a hops fixed that hasn't been filled enough lately, this should sate about anyones cravings.

TastyTaste, Apr 10, 2006
Photo of barknee
4.6/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Smutty IPA is all an IPA should be and more... A big fat frothy-chunky head that lasts and lasts with massive lacing. Beautiful and massive nose of fresh apricot and pine as well as generous carbonation; something that is missing from many fine IPA's. The taste is full bodied with big-time hopping, moderately to generously bitter with a very dry finish. Interestingly, you are led to believe you are about to taste a sweet beer based on the fruity nose; this is not so whatsoever as this brew throws a curveball at your sensory system! Always one of my favorites any time & any place. On a point, a phone call to Smuttynose today reveals that they will be changing their labeling on all their products shortly to indicate a "Best by" consumtion date rather than notching the month of bottling date out...Hummm.... I think I prefer the old system, as I would rather judge "should I or shouldn't I"... She suggested the drink by date will be 6 months beyond the bottling date..Being this IPA is unfiltered; it should be fine based on proper storage..

barknee, Apr 08, 2006
Photo of akahn
4.03/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

From a case bought in February, brewed in January.

Pours a very hazy bright yellow-orange with frothy, nearly-white head, which slowly recedes to a skim, leaving behind more lace than not.

Aroma is strongly hoppy, with juicy citrus notes, especially grapefruit. Later on some honey/molasses malty notes emerge.

Taste is initially coarse, bitter hops, sort of like dishwashing soap, with an underlying grainy malt. As it warms, it becomes juicy and somewhat sweet. Pine needles. Dry, leafy, green aftertaste. If you like hops you will probably like this beer.

Mouthfeel is smooth, medium body, with slight carbonation, which mingles well with the hop bitterness. The hops do the tingly work here.

I must implore you not to drink this beer too cold -- it is quite harsh before it warms up, and it really comes together if you wait for it. I remember drinking this beer a few summers ago right from the fridge right from the bottle and finding it undrinkably lemony-bitter. That was then and this is now. Now I find it a bold and tasty IPA, sessionable, but its dryness overwhelms after a few, and the alcohol is definitely apparent, and I don't mean in the flavor. I'm liking Smuttynose more and more!

akahn, Apr 06, 2006
Photo of karst
4.6/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

In all fairness (inspite of my ratings @ 4.5) I don't know if I would change a thing about this beer including those guys on the label!

Pours a nearly clear auburn that radiates light beneath the 3 fingered dense persistant head that holds an eternity becomming a thick pillow cap waiting for you to dive in. Pungent grapefruit rinds mixed with citrus undertones reach the brain through the nose. Flavors a little more moderate that the aroma suggests with a breif but drying hit of grapefruit rind as a finish ( no sharp bite as expected!) A medium body and a soft round mid taste mouthfeel that I can hold on to for a minute without thinning and becomming watery. Tingle of carbonation and hops balance with initial sweet dextrins and suggest a bit of mild citrus honey. Malt holds up well and plays second fiddle to the hops as IMHO the style requires.

Exceptionally drinkable and I will have a hard time sharing this Feb. '06 sixer with all by my best brewbuddies. I am thinking a private 1 man session as I write this review.

karst, Mar 28, 2006
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.9/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours out a bright cloudy* peach color with a fluffy, creamy white head.

*(Per chance, I caught the sediment warning on the label and managed to keep most of the yeast beasts in the bottle.)

Smell: I keep getting inviting grapefruit and pine scents. Some soft malt notes, but it's mostly Hop City!

Taste: Opens with a lively sweetened citrus burst, followed by a delightfully grapefruit flavor, which yields to balancing flavors of grains and a pale malt mellowness. All before finishing dry, with a fresh floral bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Juicy and remarkably crisp.

Drinkability: In regards to hop lovers, I think that if anything... this beer succeeded in spades.

That's how I'll put it. Give it a try if you're fortunate enough to be within Smuttynose's distributional reach.

ChainGangGuy, Mar 15, 2006
Photo of JMD71
3.88/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Wonderful unfiltered deep orange/copper color with visible sediment. Excellent!

Smell: Strong hop aroma with hints of citrus. Very floral. I loved the smell right out of the bottle once poured.

Taste: Crisp grapefruity/citrusy flavor with a lingering hop aftertaste. Bitter aftertaste was a bit stronger than I would have liked. I didn't find it to be very balanced.

Mouthfeel: Clean & smooth while just slightly cloying due to the bitterness. Again, more balance was expected.

Drinkability: Enjoyable beer for sipping, but is a bit bitter for me for more than one or two.

Overall: I found this to be a very good IPA, but a bit more bitter than I was anticipating for a single IPA. I think I would like it more paired with the right food, i.e. something spicy perhaps? to balance the flavor a bit. I would definitely recommend to those who enjoy IPA's.

JMD71, Mar 14, 2006
Smuttynose IPA "Finest Kind" from Smuttynose Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 4,128 ratings.