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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.

4,086 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 4,086
Reviews: 1,669
rAvg: 4.1
pDev: 12.2%
Wants: 218
Gots: 358 | 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: 4,086 | Reviews: 1,669 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Phatz
3.28/5  rDev -20%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The dandruff in my beer was the initial reaction that got me off to a bad start. I was nervous about this beer to begin with and that made me scared to even touch it. Fortunately, I did, and things actually improved from there. I am recently trying to broaden myself from being a malt-head into accepting and understanding IPAs. For someone who typically does not prefer this style, this is a great beer. But to my tastes I could not rate it as high as others may have.

Appearance: The appearance started of on the wrong foot as I am pouring along normally, getting minimal head, I increase the speed of my pour as I near the end of the beer, then... panic, "shit! what is that!" comes out of my mouth. There are big thick disgusting looking white chunks of an unknown substance that are floating in this beer. I am not new to bottle conditioned beers. I often enjoy adding the yeast. This is NOT that type of matter. It is flaky dandruff that is quite unappealing. Nonetheless, I got over it and moved on. If you eliminate the mysterious substance, the rest of the appearance is decent. It’s a light orange almost peach colored beer with a small off white head and nice lacing.

Smell: This is a big beer but the smell is not overly intimidating. It does have a hop presence but the acceptable level of pine notes are balanced with some sweet malt character. It has floral hops but mostly makes me think of orange peels.

Taste: Pine to me is usually a bad description because I do not like that green grassy flavor in my beer. However, this is a good tasting beer. It taste primarily like grapefruit juice. Whatever green (pine or grass) hints there are, lie beneath a VERY strong citrus character that I can enjoy. It reminds me of breakfast when I had fresh grapefruit. I do not usually have grapefruit with my beer but this is an interesting and complex taste. It is not a green bitter but rather citrus tart flavor. The taste is quite sweet with lots of sugar and malts. It is okay for a sweet tooth like me.

Mouthfeel: Creamy upfront, full body in the middle, tuning tart and crisp on the swallow, with a pleasant aftertaste bleeding sweet sugars back into your mouth that are seeping out of your lips and cheeks.

Drinkability: Although I like a small 8 oz glass of grapefruit juice I do not ask for a super size of it, or pick up a full liter bottle at the convenience store, on my way to work. No, I appreciate it in moderation. This beer is to tart for me to dink one after another. It goes a long way in small quantities. I had a glass of water in the middle of the beer and I don't need another Smuttynose IPA now that I'm done. This is a 'one at a time' beer for me and definitely a 'sipper' beer. I would consider this a low drinkability (but that is coming from a guy who is not a big IPA fan). I see this as a good candidate for me as a transition beer though. It feeds into my sweet tooth and as a malt-head it has enough body to help me get through it. In another year of drinking this, I may just be an IPA fan too.

Hope this is helpful.

Phatz, Jan 15, 2006
Photo of ericj551
4.28/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a hazy light orange with nice lingering head. Surprisingly the pale ale Smuttynose makes is much darker then this beer. The lacing sticks to the side of the glass all the down. The smell is beautiful floral hop aroma and bitterness. The taste is bitter hoppiness with a nice citrus and floral hop flavor underneath. The malts are mostly hidden, what I would expect for an IPA. Another great beer from Smuttynose.

ericj551, Jan 03, 2006
Photo of woodymq
4.35/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Everything an IPA should be and maybe more. Perhaps too much more.

A very nice, drinkable beer. Not too heavy. The hops are very strong. The Alström Bros called it when they said that it was like being hit over the head with a bag of grapefruit. The taste definitely lingers. I'm a fan of bold hops, so I love it, but I can see how it could overwhelm people who like a smoother experience.

My kind of beer.

woodymq, Dec 29, 2005
Photo of bjohnson
4.47/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a golden amber with an orangey tang to it. Half finger white foamy head that dissipates but leaves a nice film on top and good lace down the glass.
S: Aromas of floral and fruity hops. A bit of citrus and pine in there also. Hops are definately noticeable, but I like the strength of them.
T: Tastes of citrus and floral hops with a very nice interlude of pine. Malt is hanging out in the background but the bitter hops are the most noticeable of all. Well balanced and medium bodied with a nice bitter end. Bitterness tends to hang out for awhile stinging the tongue.
M & D: Mouthfeel is good, smooth and refreshing. Lip smacking bitter end, but very well balanced. Definately a drinkable beer and one of my favorites. Perhaps my go to IPA. I love having a bunch of these if in one sitting. The "finest kind!"

bjohnson, Dec 25, 2005
Photo of brewcrew76
3.1/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bottled in October

A – Pours a hazy copper orange with snowflake like yeast sediment floating around. Two finger off white head w/ decent lacing.

S – Citrus hops, orange and grapefruit, maybe a hint of bubblegum? There is also a flowery aroma going on.

T – Starts off with a strong bitter grapefruit/citrus bite. A little sweet caramel malt balances it off and then it finishes with more hop bitterness. Somewhat bitter overall with only a small hint of malt balance.

M – Mouthfeel is light to medium body with a little bit of an oily feel on the tongue. The lingering bitterness leaves the feel in your mouth when you try swallowing an aspirin with a dry mouth and no water (maybe a chalky feeling).

D – A decent IPA a little heavier on bittering than all out hop flavor. The dry bitterness aftertaste would make it difficult to put more than 1 or 2 down. Overall an average IPA.

brewcrew76, Dec 22, 2005
Photo of Higravity
2.53/5  rDev -38.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Bitter and grassy, that is the short review. Well it pours a nice yellowish body with a white head and some lacing. Smells of heavy bitter hops and a grassy lemon with some malt in the back end. Taste is really just bitter hops with some grassy tanic tang. Not enjoyable in the sense I would want to session this beer. No thanks and never again.

Higravity, Dec 20, 2005
Photo of ClearDog
3.15/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance -- Filtered, bright golden yellow in appearance. One finger of white foamy head that quickly dies down. Nice sticky lacing.

Smell -- It's weak for an IPA in my opinion. Citrus smelling hops . . . very faint. (I've had two bottles so far. Smell is based on the warmer serving.)

Taste -- It's bitter alright, but there's nothing else. This beer is lacking a strong finish. This is really a let down.

Mouthfeel -- Creamy; medium feel.

Drinkability -- Average drinkability. I won't seek this one out again.

ClearDog, Dec 18, 2005
Photo of WeymouthMike
4.28/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer forms an small off white head which hangs around for a few minutes before leaving a little lace with a beautiful orange/amber liquid. I also noticed a few floaties but they don't bother me as the incredible hoppy ipa somehows bests the wonderful pine and fruity aroma.

WeymouthMike, Dec 12, 2005
Photo of clvand0
3.55/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden color with a small head that falls fast and doesn't leave much lacing on the glass. The aroma has a bit of caramel sweetness and some citrus hops in the forground. Nothing too special in my opinion. The flavor was much the same. Something in the flavor just doesn't do it for me. The finish is bitter and the mouthfeel is moderate. Drinkability is good.

clvand0, Dec 10, 2005
Photo of orfeu
4.45/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden amber with an incredible amount of floating bits of hops, and a small rocky white head. Sticky lacing with lots of rings. Smells overwhelmingly of pine and citrus...and like someone soaked a bud of cannabis in it. There's a noticeable peachy undertone as well. Taste is piney hops, a mandarin orange peel twinge, a sweetness not unlike peach juice, and finishes with a toasty biscuit flavor. Medium body and juicy mouthfeel. This has a certain astringency that keeps the drinkability down a bit, but this is absolutely a fine and solid IPA. Glad it's available in my neck of the woods.

orfeu, Dec 05, 2005
Photo of BrewMaster
4.33/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at the Puclick House in Brookline, MA.

Appearance: Pours a nice hazy copper color with a thin off white head. Excellent retention and lacing to this slightly creamy head.

Smell: Malty witha a rush of floral hops. It's spicy and sandy as well. Mellow but rich.

Taste: Spicy hoppy opening with citrus juices and a big malty middle. The malt is bready and sweet with a floral ending. Nice lingering bitterness on the end without ripping into my tongue. Good malty backbone.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and smooth, medium bodied.

Drinkability: Very nice balance to this beer. Well hopped but not overdone. That malt gives a good showing and is paired nicely with the hop varieties.

BrewMaster, Dec 03, 2005
Photo of Terp96
4.22/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I frequent this beer. It is a good representation of the style, is inexpensive and packs a solid hop and alcohol punch.

Pours a heady hazy orange color. It is hard to pour this one without getting the yeast floaters. The pour must be careful because this one has a lot of sediment.

Smell is great. Very citrusy sweet. So sweet that you forget about the bitternes that follows.

Tastes fantastic. A nice sour/sweet citrus flavor. Very balanced with the malt character and finishes dry. Very nice.

Mouthfeel is solid too. Just the right amount of body to match the flavor. Again, very balanced.

Drikability is good as well. Six packs of this one go down very smooth with good conversation. Very easy to drink.

Overall, one of my favorite IPAs. One of the best from the east coast.

Terp96, Nov 25, 2005
Photo of kmpitz2
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy peach color with a light head that falls to a sparse coating over top. Nose is light grainy, moderate citrusy hop, and moderate caramel sweetness. Flavor is full hop with a light grainyness from grain. Solid sweet, citrusy hop with a very moderate malt to back it. I don't think the grainyness works well with this one. Needs more caramel sweetness for me. Hop lingers well, but not harsh. Feel is moderate with a moderate carbonation. Standard. Overall, I think the grainyness takes away. I want caramel in my malts for an IPA. A good IPA, but not one of the better I have had recently.

Edit: I don't want to do a full re-review, but I am finding the flavor a bit better than I did before. Bumping from 3.5-4.0

kmpitz2, Nov 23, 2005
Photo of DarkerTheBetter
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a bright copper color with a thin head. Smells a fantastic hoppy pineapple and pine. Tastes about the same. Big hopps with a sour fruitiness. Unfortunately, the flavor is a bit subdued dull; and not as bright as it could be, but well done not the less. Smooth in body with a slight carbonation. I could definitely knock back a few of these. At 6.6, what we have here is a fine session beer.

DarkerTheBetter, Nov 21, 2005
Photo of arizcards
4.47/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a six pack while visiting the northeast back in early October.

This brew was a nice orangish color that left nice spidery lacing with OK head retention. Nose was of piney simcoe hops with a a hint of grapefruit. Taste was a blast of the simcoe hops with a nice integration of malt sweetness to balance it out. Mouthfeel was creamy and full bodied with a a nice amount of carbonation at the end. Overall drinkability was very good. I thought it rated up there with the best western IPA's that I have enjoyed in the past!

arizcards, Nov 21, 2005
Photo of PBRstreetgang
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy orange, with a creamy three finger head. Good retention leaves patchy lacing. Herbal and citrus american hop aromas, and some extra light malt in the background. Sweet citrus and pale malt flavors upfront, then fresh whole hops and yeast notes dominate. Hop bitterness becomes grassy in the aftertaste, finishes dry and pleasently abrasive. Tiny, slow carbonation keeps the mouthfeel smooth and the drinkability high. Well hopped, but balanced and palatable, this is an excellent example of a true american IPA.

PBRstreetgang, Nov 20, 2005
Photo of ppoitras
4.1/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle purchased as part of a six-pack from Yankee Spirits, Sturbridge, MA. July notched on the side, but no info as to what that indicates specifically.

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" eggshell head over the slightly cloudy golden amber brew. Head fades slowly, with full coating of lacing. Aroma is a juicy tangerine hops combined with malty sweetness. Taste starts with the malts and fruitiness, but takes on a stronger, more out-of-control bitterness near the end, which continues through the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is pretty smooth, once the mouth gets used to the bitterness, like most IPAs, and drinkability is good as well. A nice brew, but I had hoped for a bit better here. Maybe I ask too much.

ppoitras, Nov 11, 2005
Photo of IrishRedRock
2.58/5  rDev -37.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a very hazy peach color, fluffy sudsy head that retains well. Bitter tangerine aroma with some herbal tomato-vine hop notes. This is herbacious, whoa! Thin and citric sweet, carbonation is gentle. Lacks a real wallop of hop bitterness and has an herbal, soapy thing goin on in its place. Not a lot of malt to balance either. I'm a little let down by this one, as it lacks the balance and flavor that I've come to expect from this brewery.

IrishRedRock, Nov 08, 2005
Photo of asabreed
4.47/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Lots of sediment in the glass, which has always happened and is actually welcomed by me. Nice spidery lacing, head dissipates quicker than I wanted, but great overall.

Smell: Piney and oily hops with citrus grapefruit zest in the mix. Some malt sweetness, also, which isn't usually able to be discerned as much in an IPA as far as I'm concerned, but the aroma melds them together well.

Taste: Huge burst of bitter and piney hops. Yet again, though, the malt sweetness curbs it, makes it extremely singular and extremely pleasant. One of the better IPAs out there for sure; this is made with care.

Mouthfeel: Creamy and moderately thick-bodied, with a smooth and crisp burst of carbonation at the end. Very nice.

Drinkability: One of my favorite IPAs. It's relatively cheap for how well it's made, and it's insanely drinkable. At around 6.6% ABV too, it's not crazy to think of it as a session beer. Certainly try it if you haven't already, especially if you're an IPA fan.

asabreed, Nov 06, 2005
Photo of FirstMan
3.95/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I've had this beer so many times now, that I'm kind of surprised that I haven't reviewed it yet. Oh well, here goes:

The picture on the bottle makes this one of the best beer labels in America, if you ask me. It's a damn shame that one of the happy old-timers pictured died earlier this year. If we was drinking this beer regularly, you can be pretty sure he died happy.

Pours a somewhat hazy golden orangeish color with a nice fluffy head. More clear than hazy, though - not cloudy like some heftier IPAs. Eventually the head settles down into little islands of bubbles across the top. Very very nice. The only thing you have to watch out for is that there is often a lot of sediment at the bottom of these bottles. I don't like floaters in my beer, so I generally leave about a half inch at the bottom of the bottle after a very careful pour.

Nose is hop love. Clear, crisp, warm hop flower. Spicy citris. There's a slight back of breadish sweetness, but the hops take the cake.

Just a really well balanced taste, with big, bold hop flavor tempered by a dry, but clear sweet grain flavor. Citris notes linger on for a long time.

Mouthfeel is slightly more carbinated and less creamy than I like in an IPA, but not so much as to put me off. Overall better than average.

This is a quality beer. Much consumed in the FirstMan household.

FirstMan, Nov 02, 2005
Photo of ElGordo
4.15/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly cloudy blonde hue with a creamy stark white head. Yeast from this bottle-conditioned ale is suspended throughout. Nose is full of spicy hops, ale yeast, and a touch of mellow malt. Palate is again full of assertive hops, very floral and fresh, well-balanced by light malt. Body is rich and creamy, yet not syrupy like some stronger IPAs tend to get. God, I wish I had bought more than one bottle on my trip up north.

ElGordo, Nov 01, 2005
Photo of EStreet20
4.05/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce brown glass bottle poured into my HopDevil nonic pint glass.

A - A golden color, a little lighter than most IPAs but still near opaque. A nice tight white head rests on top.

S - I pick up the nice floral hops smell on the initial sniff. A bit piny and a nic einviting smell that clues you in on the bitterness of this one.

T - A nice bitter hoppy taste from start to finish. A good flavor overall as a bit of maltiness balances out the hop punch very nicely.

M - Feels great on the tongue. Nice and smooth.

D - Pretty easy to drink, the bitterness may get to a new IPA drinker but I;ve always been a hop fan.

Notes: I did enjoy this beer but I was expecting a little more since I loved the Big A IPA from smuttynose. Oh well, no shame in being my second favorite IPA from such a great brewer.A great IPA overall.

EStreet20, Oct 23, 2005
Photo of stevemcqueenjr
3.7/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy light amber color with good lacing with little head. The nose is hoppy but sweet. I noticed a lot of sediment that would not settle, it just kind of floated around in the beer. If anyone else has noticed or if i just got an unusual bottle of this would you let me know.
Flavorwise there is that hoppy flavor but also a subtle sweetness, the finish definatley has that hoppy tang typical of an IPA. Its smooth, medium bodied, i could drink a few of these and not get sick of them. I dig IPAs and this is a pleasant one.
*Its worth it to purchase a bottle just for the picture of the two awesome old dudes on the front, I hope to live to that age so i can be that awesomly senile.

stevemcqueenjr, Oct 22, 2005
Photo of pikemark
3.63/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Got this from the foodery in Philly, funny that I never did find it in Boston but finally get it back home.

This to me seems like one of those special IPAs from the sheer look. Not as transparent as most IPAs and smelled just as strong as the Stone IPA if not stronger. The stuff was a murky grain color, bodering on amber.

The smell definitely has a touch of phenols but is pleasantly more fruitful than medicinal.

Not as sweet as I would have suspected, in a way it was almost too harsh going down. It has a deeper flavor than most IPAs Ive had trying to balance out the acidity.

For me the bite is too strong in this one, not as balanced as I would like although a worthwhile stop on the IPA route.

pikemark, Oct 22, 2005
Photo of jaluria
4.22/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a straw color with white foam that has a distinct texture and great lacing. Aromas of citrus, grapefruit, tangerine, and sweet tropical fruits. Interesting, but a bit overpowering, as far as I'm concerned. The taste is incredible with a dry, hoppy flavor upfront leading to a blast of bitterness that melts effortlessly into a sweet citrus flavor. The aftertaste is typical for this style, but not too powerful. I very enjoyable beer that can be had numerous times.

jaluria, Oct 14, 2005
Smuttynose IPA "Finest Kind" from Smuttynose Brewing Company
92 out of 100 based on 4,086 ratings.