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Smuttynose IPA "Finest Kind" - Smuttynose Brewing Company

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
92
outstanding

4,025 Ratings
THE BROS
100
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,025
Reviews: 1,664
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: 11.95%
Wants: 215
Gots: 342 | 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
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Smuttynose IPA "Finest Kind" Alström Bros
Ratings: 4,025 | Reviews: 1,664 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of bruachan
3.88/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

grapefruit. i taste and smell grapefruit
a fine looking, pale IPA that left some lacing strata in my glass at the brickskeller. i'm nmot sure what C hop it is that is so astoundingly grapefruity, but damn, it's grapefruity. good body with some sweetness to keep the hop flavor in check

bruachan, Jun 22, 2005
Photo of connecticutpoet
4.43/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Here was something unusual... a hazy IPA. It was deep yellow, with a one finger head. Looked good, if unusual.

Aroma was of pine-like hops and grapefruit over medium bodied malt. Well balanced, but no doubt as to who was the boss here.

Taste was of sharp bitter grapefruit, high in alpha acids. WHAM! Right on the tongue. Delicious. Maltiness eventually worked its way in for the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel was in line for something this hoppy... not too chewy, but the hops were supported.

Drinkability was excellent. This was one truly great IPA. I still like DFH's 90 minute more, but this one makes a great runner-up.

connecticutpoet, Jun 22, 2005
Photo of Wonka
4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 FLUID OUNCES
Notched for April

Appearance – slightly cloudy orange/gold body; 3-finger thick white, tiny-bubbled head; very reasonable lace; some particulates float about

Smell – grapefruit, pine and spice make the nose nice; rather lively

Taste – massive load of grapefruit; bit biscuity; good grapefruit rind close with big lasting effect

Mouthfeel & Drinkability – well-rounded, moderate, smooth feel that drops late; hop tinge on the edges of the tongue; glorious oily finish that doesn’t crash the experience between sips; really low on the dryness scale; big-time turnover capability

Here’s a favorite IPA. "Finestkind" is ready for the big time.

Wonka, Jun 18, 2005
Photo of yelterdow
3.6/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Andy's Corner in Bogota for Smuttynose Promo Night 6/15/05.

Appearance: Crystal clear orange with an unbelievable head. The longer it sat in my pint glass, the thicker the head became. It was like a lesson in compression.

Smell: Grapefruit melds with pine sap... a nice blend of two distinctive attributes of a great IPA. Consistent with the bottled form of this beer, only that on tap this pours even fresher.

Taste/Mouthfeel/Drinkability: This will satisfy the most discerning hop lover, myself included. The alcohol is not at the levels associated with double-IPAs, but the flavor is. Recommended.

yelterdow, Jun 16, 2005
Photo of apintofknowledge
2.93/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a cloudy, hazy orange-honey color with a 1/2" off-white head. The aroma of pine and grapefruit is dominant, signaling the hops to come. The taste starts with a sweet citrus, like pink grapefruit, that hits right away. It finishes with a slightly sour bitterness, much like a grapefruit would. Not a bad start, but as I drink, the overall flavor gets more and more bitter. A decent IPA overall, but nothing special, and the increasing bitterness makes it less drinkable to me than others.

apintofknowledge, Jun 15, 2005
Photo of quasimoto
3.43/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Well it poured nicely from the tap to leave a 1/2 inch head which stuck around for a bit, and eventualy laced down the glass as I drank it. The Aroma was strong with hops but they smelled like fresh cut lawn as opposed to good, half spicy grass, half citrus. The mouth feel was a nice smooth feeling which exploded with hop bitterness. So much in fact that it completely covered any maltiness. I'm a hop head myself, but this beer was not a balance of easy going malt and hops and a pleasant aroma. It was more of a hop attack on all counts. The aftertaste really intrigued me. I sat there for a while and literally yelled it to a friend two seats over. ITALIAN BREAD!!! It was by far the oddest after-taste Ive ever tasted. (hence the large type) I liked it, but it was not fair (balanced) beer.

quasimoto, Jun 15, 2005
Photo of LPorter33
3.6/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance = Nice head retention. Cloudy and murky tiny pieces of something floating throughout. A golden brown color.

Smell = Solid IPA smell. Can smell the hops and citrus althrough they're a little light.

Taste = Wow. Probably the strongest citrus flavor of any IPA I've tried. Almost could pass as fermented grapefruit juice. Very refreshing and very bitter. I'd give it a 4.5 if they added a tiny bit more sweetness but it's still a pretty darn good taste.

Overall = Intersting flavor. I like it although the bitterness hurts it slightly as it hurts the drinkability. Even though it's a refreshing taste, after drinking a full beer, I am not desiring another one. I think the bitterness overwhelms any other flavor and doesn't really allow this beer to compliment anything else. I still recommend it for IPA fans though.

LPorter33, Jun 15, 2005
Photo of jdhilt
2.83/5  rDev -31%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours with a white, five-finger head, fades soon and leaves a good lace. Light-medium carbonation. Clear amber color. Nose is hoppy, starts hoppy with some sweetness, finishes hoppy with some bitterness. Lingering hoppy aftertaste. $6.29 for a 6-pak from Rite-Aid Pharmacy Concord, NH.

jdhilt, Jun 13, 2005
Photo of TongoRad
3.88/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A decanted pour shows a cloudy deep amber color with a dense one-finger head. The head eventually settles down to a fine layer atop the beer.

Aroma is of fresh, almost raw, hops- citrus peel and piney resin- and suggestions of peaches and tropical fruit.

The beer is aggressively bitter on the palate, balanced with a good dose of caramel and some fruityness. The malt is sufficient to support the bitterness and the finish is dry. A hop 'coating' lingers in the mouth long after swallowing and, quite frankly, I'm not so crazy about that sensation hence my drinkability score.

TongoRad, Jun 11, 2005
Photo of ITK4ever
4.93/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

By far my favorite beer....period. I crave the hops. They hit you like a ton of bricks when you pop the bottle open. Pours nice amber color with a off-white head, lotsa lacing. Nose is hops, hops, hops. Bring it to your lips and it's again...hops, hops, and more hops. Malt comes in to try to balance it in the middle but the hops bitch-slaps them back into submission. Grapefruity finish that you too will crave. Love this stuff!!!

ITK4ever, Jun 08, 2005
Photo of mntlover
4.55/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy golden orange mixture almost peach color with nice white head that leaves behind some decent lace.

Aroma is fruity floral inviting very nice on a sweet malt background. Some light pine and citrus hints in the mix also but the aroma doesn't smell bitter hoppy, it hides the hops softly in flowers.

Taste on the other hand is hoppy bitterness hitting the taste buds right away have about 2 seconds of caramel malt lightly floral and sweet. Hop bitterness is combination of orange peel grapefruit rind with hints of pine resin. Very nice IPA, light malt lots of hops wonderful aroma little light in the body but who cares at this point.

Mouthfeel is a little light but aides drinkability and wouldn't subtract for it here.

Drinkability is great a very nice IPA. mdavis31481 said it was his regular IPA of choice, I can see why now this beer rocks thanks for the sample.

mntlover, Jun 07, 2005
Photo of LiquidBreadMan
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was pleasantly surprised to find some IPAs in my beer of the month shipment, since all I ever seem to receive are stouts.

Smuttynose IPA pours a pale gold with a thin, short-lived head. It's very aromatic -- moreso than most IPAs in my experience -- with an intense bouquet of rasberry, citron and batangas. The flavor starts very sharp and hoppy, before yielding to a pleasant rush of lemon. It finishes dry and extremely clean.

I am impressed with this beer - from the whimsical label, to the clean finish of the very last drop.

LiquidBreadMan, Jun 04, 2005
Photo of HopMaster
3.8/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Ten Stone.

A good, but not great IPA. I would rather have almost any of the other IPA's from this rating range - HopDevil, Stone IPA, Troegs Hopback or Nugget Nectar, etc.

Appearance: Light-golden color. Small, white head disappears quickly.

Aroma: Nice hop aroma with strong overtones of citrus and pine.

Taste: Strong hop flavor with very little malt balance. I am a hophead and the hop flavor and aroma was great, but the bitterness was too strong given the weak malt presence.

Mouthfeel: Mild carbonation with a medium body

HopMaster, May 29, 2005
Photo of deejaydan
4.45/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Wow, this is all about the HOPS.

Pours a pale copper color. Some hazy "floaties" in it. Great lacing, low head retention.

Aroma-- Wow. Hoppy. Every kind of hop is present in this one, or at least that's the way it tastes. It's citrusy and piney and floral and spicy all at the same time.

Taste-- A bit more malt to balance would be ideal, but it's still great, following the aroma with multiple doeses of hops hitting your tounge.

Mouthfeel-- I think it's a touch over carbonated and thin for the style. Dialing down the carobonation would do great things for this.

Drinkability-- One of the best IPA's I've had.

deejaydan, May 26, 2005
Photo of doerickson
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy golden/orange, with a rocky, frothy ivory head. Smells like I have a raw hop flower lodged in my nose--citrus and grassy.

Sharp hop bitterness grabs the tongue and does not let go, with flavors of grapefruit & lemon zest and a leafy character. Slight biscuity malt is there for "balance", such as it is, but it's easy to ignore if you're after a strict hop bonanza. Bitter tang on the tongue serves as the finish.

A hop lover's wet dream, without tasting like your mouth got washed out with soap. A pair of thumbs up to Smuttynose.

doerickson, May 20, 2005
Photo of BeerResearcher
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz brown bottle. Freshness date etched on label.
It pours a hazy orange-hued amber with a big, slow-fading off-white head and lots of sticky, clinging and trailing lacing.
A big whiff of floral hop is released immediately upon opening the bottle. Deep citrusy fragrant grapefruit and orange zest follow, as does a light smell of pinesap. A distant malty grain smell is noticed with a bit more concentration.
A lightly sweet caramelly malt is revealed incrementally as it warms. A mild taste of pears comes to mind.
Sharp-edged grapefruit and lemon zest bitterness really perk the pucker up. A bit of fumy alcohol is noticed from time to time. For all of the abundant hoppiness, this brew maintains a nice, lightly creamy malt body. This potent IPA should have a fairly decent shelf life.
.

BeerResearcher, May 17, 2005
Photo of Sycodrummer
3.25/5  rDev -20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz. brown bottle into a pint glass yeilding a deep golden-bronze color with about one finger of frothy white head. Slight yeast sediment floated near the bottom of the glass. Faint rings of lace rimmed the side of the glass but did not last for the length of the sample.

The smell was super citrus and hops upfront. Very powerful almost overwhelming grapefruit smell. I don't very much like grapefruit or grapefruit juice but decided to still give this a try.

Taste backed up the smell 100 percent. Overwhelmingly fruitty taste of nothing but grapefruit pounding the tastebuds. As soon as the grapefruit subsidded the hop bitterness kicked in just a strong if not stronger. Very strong bitter bite to each sip. Overall a very crisp, somewhat refrshing taste that kicks you in the mouth with bitterness.

Light to moderate on the palate with only a slight carbonation and overall smooth crisp feeling.

For me it was hard to drink not because of the bitterness but simply because I don't like grapefruit and this beer was inundated with it. It tasted like either a very bitter grapefruit beer, or a very fruitty American IPA (I lean towards the latter because of the hop content). I was content with having one, and don't think I'll rush back to this.

Not a bad beer, but not one for my tastes.

Sycodrummer, May 16, 2005
Photo of CRJMellor
4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours cloudy sort of amber and pink or peach color with a nice big head that has some staying power and throws some lace lines.
Aromas of grapefruit and pine waken the olfactory nerve with a sugary caramel note underneath the powerful hops hits.
Flavors of caramel and some grain shine through but this a hop heads delight. Strong grapefruit and resins in the mouth make this a classic to style and really tasty.
Mouthfeel has a sharp and almost metallic bittering to it, not in an unpleasant way though. Some residual malt sweetness tries to break the stranglehold of the aggressive hops but alas it fails and this one is bitter to the nth degree.
Drinkability is great. Really classic IPA with a little bit extra on the bittering scale but still very tasty. Actually for the aggressive bittering it holds up well.
Thanks to PPoitras for the bottle.

CRJMellor, May 15, 2005
Photo of Symposium
4.28/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy light copper, looking almost as if an orange would if it were hollowed and illuminated from within. Beautiful creamy head that just doesn't seem to want to quit.

A very inviting scent of grapefruit and faint pine needles greets the noise. Oh the glorious hops!

The hops here are the stars of the show--grapefruit citrus fades into a lengthy, but enjoyable bitterness. I taste perhaps a slight twang of alcohol which adds a nice warming touch on the back of my throat. The body is moderately thick, smooth and oily, accompanied by nice and prickly carbonation. Enough biscuity malt rises out of the background to keep this one under control. Subdued, but noticeable.

I have the feeling that if you keep drinking this all night, you'd do a number on your tastebuds. The bitterness is so tenacious that it might get tiring after a while. But this one is overall a great IPA and one that I will have to make a place for in my fridge.

Symposium, May 15, 2005
Photo of gotbeer
4.83/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is the first time I have had this beer, and I am very impressed. This is the way an IPA should taste. Strong hops, lots of citrus and pine flavors. Pours with a great head that lightly laces the glass. The color is a translucent amber. Has a great mouthfeel, and it quite drinkable. Good thing it is very drinkable, because the hops will destroy your taste for anything else (and your ability to taste it). This is an outstanding beer, and an almost perfect IPA.

gotbeer, May 12, 2005
Photo of FLAbeergutinMASS
2.28/5  rDev -44.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

I guess it's all what you are used too. Smuttynose is a great brewery and like all great brewer(ier)s the difference is well...the difference between this and that. If you know what I mean.

This beer is definitely a departure from other IPA's I've had. Heavy pine and citrus, so much so I really cannot detect anything else. This is defiantly a craft beer and it shows, but this is not my style at all. I am trying to be constructive in this analysis, but quite frankly, this beer is annoying me.

FLAbeergutinMASS, May 03, 2005
Photo of assurbanipaul
3.68/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy orange with lots of floaties and a tall, frothy head. Aroma is sweet, juicy grapefruit and a light pine.

Taste is a malty grapefruit flavor with plenty of resin. More malt than a lot of IPAs but the piney nature of the hops really dominates. Good use of a lot of hops without becoming too astringent of hurting its drinkability.

Mouthfeel is medium with a fair amount of unfiltered heft. Might be an old bottle, would make me feel better without the sea monkeys in it. Thanks to ppoitras for this one.

assurbanipaul, Apr 20, 2005
Photo of GClarkage
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

04/12/05- Received from BA member Spinlock.

Presentation- 12oz bottle with a bottling date of November 2004. Poured into my Englander pint glass.

Appearance- Orange-golden pour with a nice billowy pock marked head and above average lacing.

Smell- Mostly a subdued grapefruit hop scent, but also a tad of a wet dog kinda smell.

Taste- Equal amounts of malt and hops. Well, a bit more of the hops. Nice bitter grapefruit flavor on the back of the tongue and a nice malt flavor on the finish.

Mouthfeel- Perfectly carbonated for an IPA.

Drinkability- One of the best balanced IPA's I have ever had. I would have liked a bit more of a hop punch, but otherwise a pretty top notch IPA. Thanks to BA Spinlock for the bottles of Smutty!

GClarkage, Apr 12, 2005
Photo of trumick
4.7/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light orange color that is clear with 1 inch fluffy off white head and lacing all around all the way down to the bottom of the glass.
Scent is of citrus, piney hops and lightly sweet malts.
Taste is like no other IPA I have ever had. This beer is expertly balanced. The sweet malts start, alongside there's the grapefruity hops, they're together from start to finish. Speaking of finish, it's dry with a grapefruit pith that holds on forever paired with the slightest of malt flavor. Umm, WOW!!! This is what an IPA is supposed to be IMO.
Mouthfeel is medium to full bodied with the perfect amount of carbination.
Drinkability is above average. I am going to try and get a case of these from the brewery (yea right) as I don't have access to this beer here in Mi. I think I have 1 left from the BOM club.
This beer blows all other IPAs out of the water. The Amarillo hops are the shit for this beer. Two Hearted can only aspire to be what Finest Kind is.

trumick, Mar 31, 2005
Photo of GolgiIPAratus
4.08/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz

Sampled: 3.6.05

A hazy haze of orange with off-white head that screams it will lace the glass with each deduction. The beer does not lie. Lacing: Check.

The aroma is hoppy sweetness with hints of red grapefruit. Tangy, but not too citrusy, followed by a bitter tinge.

The sweetness in the mouth matches the nose. I sense the presence of apricots? Bitterness prevails, however. Good, proper IPA bitterness. The mouth is well carbonated and full rolling over the tongue. I've had better bottles, but this beer's minimalist qualities get me. It's not too much, it's not trying to be way complex. It's an IPA and it tastes like one, and a good one at that. I can't give it a review score in the taste category I'd have given past bottles because wouldn't be honest, but it's still a nice beer. And I know it can be better.

If you're an IPA person, this is a good one. Sessions might need to be reigned in a little as the 6.6% has some damaging potential. But a sixer should treat any cookout right.


***
UPDATE 9.26.05:
Had a portion of a sixer this weekend, and it tasted a LOT better than the bottle/six I reviewed at the time, thus supporting my "I know it can be better" claim. So, I've bumped the taste rating up a half point to reflect that.

Tip: I drank some of this beer at room temp and it was fantastic. Great juicy flavors really came out. It was as good as a Hoptical Illusion I had on cask. The temp really mimicked that cask feel. Anyway, I suggest trying it!

GolgiIPAratus, Mar 28, 2005
Smuttynose IPA "Finest Kind" from Smuttynose Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 4,025 ratings.