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Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Smuttynose Shoals Pale AleSmuttynose Shoals Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,168 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1168
Reviews: 639
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 11.2%

Brewed by:
Smuttynose Brewing Company visit their website
New Hampshire, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Our interpretation of a classic English beer style is copper-colored, medium-bodied and pleasantly hopped. Its flavor is delightfully complex: tangy fruit at the start, with an assertive hop crispness and a long malty palate that one well-known beer writer has compared to the flavor of freshly-baked bread.

52 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-05-1998)
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Ratings: 1,168 | Reviews: 639 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of xnicknj


3.3/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

on tap at a friend's party - served in neon pink plastic cup

Hazy amber pour with a frothy, two-finger creamy head resting on top, slowly fading into some patchy chunks of lacing on the cup.

Grassy and citric in the nose with dashes of crisp hops. Plenty of toasted bread, a little doughy with biscuit and light sweetness.

Crisp and softly hoppy up front with a snap of citrus peel. Doughy and bready with a sweet lacing of caramel. Biscuits and toasted bread crust with a dry, clean finish.

Lighter medium body, slightly higher carbonation, crisp and dry on the tongue. Fairly refreshing, clean and just above average pale ale.

Serving type: on-tap

06-17-2013 11:44:45 | More by xnicknj
Photo of Rifugium


3.51/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Portsmouth Brewing Company

Clear copper pour with a small white head that sank to a ringlet. Decent aroma, good balance of citrusy hops and sweet malts. Basic and simple in smell and taste. On the palate, sweet malts, crisp citrus hops, toasted grains. Not much else to say. Light-medium body, and pretty easily drinkable.

Serving type: on-tap

02-23-2013 23:08:07 | More by Rifugium
Photo of GarthDanielson

North Carolina

4.05/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured on-tap at the Portsmouth Brewery and served in a pint glass. The beer is a bright copper coloring, very light, with a thin white head that clings very well. The nose is caramel malt, but light, with a steady, dry hopped background. The flavor is grapefruit sweet, with pepper and oregano spicy hops throughout. Great blend into an aftertaste of citrus, and a clean, smooth finish.

Serving type: on-tap

09-03-2011 02:59:59 | More by GarthDanielson
Photo of WVbeergeek


4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on tap at Ciao 2 in Robinson a small Italian Cafe'...known for a nice small beer selection and a 3 dollar draft happy hora. This place has a beer on draft called 412 ale the local area code brewed by Smuttynose. I've had Shoals in the past and this is definitely a reissue of that same beer with a new label. Which is fine by me I don't see the Shoals Pale ale locally very often so that's fine. Plus it's really drinking great on tap, a pale copper hue with an off white cream head forms fine even lacing. Mild fruity nose with herbal mild citric hops, a very nice baked breadiness going on with each sip. Solid sipper for any occasion, Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied slight trace of hop oils finishes with a mild welcoming bitterness. Overall quality beverage that I will try every time I'm there and if I can get it in sixers better yet.

Serving type: on-tap

07-07-2011 20:37:37 | More by WVbeergeek
Photo of jsprain1


3.5/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Copperish amber. I would think it's an amber/red if I didn't know better. Head is creamy off white but goes down to a ring tremendously quickly.
S- Smell tends toward hoppy with citrusy notes up front. There are some caramel notes as well. every so often I think there is a bit of a sweet nutty character, that I would have liked to see better developed, but it was fleeting.
T- It is initially a wonderful beer. A snap of citrus hoppiness mellows out into a caramel malt flavor. On the whole, it leans toward hoppy but it mellows out. A bit short in the finish leaves me wanting.
M- Medium body, somewhat overaggresive carbonation.
O- A decent pale I could drink throughout an evening. Not the most spectacular, and it has it's shortcomings, but it has enough flavor (at least up front) and goes down easy.

Serving type: on-tap

04-23-2011 01:34:51 | More by jsprain1
Photo of atsprings

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Flying Saucer served in a standard pint glass a slightly murky dark orange with a thin diminishing head that leaves slight lacing on the glass. The aroma is crisp citrus hops and pale malts. The taste is a nice amount of crisp citrus hops in front of sweet pale malts. The beer is quite light and crisp with smooth carbonation. This is a very enjoyable pale ale, one I would certainly have again.

Serving type: on-tap

10-11-2010 16:29:39 | More by atsprings
Photo of beer2day

North Carolina

4.15/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reddish gold pour with one finger medium cream head. No retention but very nice lace.

Herbal hop nose. Underatated, but nice. Lots of malt presence.

Nice hop presence right up front. Good bready malt body for balance. Very flavorfull for a pale. Earthy hop finish with a touch of pine.

Feel is slightly heavy for the style but very nice.

Definite repeater.

Serving type: on-tap

10-09-2010 02:43:52 | More by beer2day
Photo of Sam21


4.3/5  rDev +12%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Sharkey's Bar and Grill on Block Island, RI. Jotted down a few notes after dinner.

Appearance - Reddish brown with a great off-white head. Great retention and lots of active carbonation.

Smell - Bready malts and hops. Balanced and inviting.

Taste - Great balance between hops and bready malt. Citrus mingles nicely with malt before the juicy hops assault the taste buds in a moderately bitter finish. Bitterness lingers for a good while.

Mouthfeel - Medium-full bodied. Lots of carbonation. Creamy and smooth.

Drinkability - Great American pale ale. Smuttynose sure knows how to make fantastic beers. The hop presence tastes similar to their IPA but that doesn't detract from this beer at all. Definitely one of my favorite pale ales.

Serving type: on-tap

08-04-2010 01:33:46 | More by Sam21
Photo of drabmuh


4.1/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On draft at Red Rock Pizzeria in Washington D.C. Served in a pint glass. Beer is orange, white head, covers the beer completely, some lacing on glass, carbonation steady and moderate sized bubbles. Malty, citrus smell, some pine, nice balanced aroma. Beer tastes great. Bitterness high, definetly malt character, a slight aftertaste. Good mouthfeel, high drinkability.

Serving type: on-tap

10-02-2009 05:26:04 | More by drabmuh
Photo of Stinkypuss


4.13/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured ontap into a pint glass. Appearance is deep gold/light copper in color. Nice lace documents every sip/gulp I take.

The nose has just a whiff of hop.

Shoals Pale Ale has a very assertive earthy hop flavor. Malt does little to stand in its way, leafy bitterness reigns supreme.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a drying finish.

This is a very drinkable brew to anyone who likes a hopped up pale ale. Solid stuff here.

Serving type: on-tap

09-04-2009 13:56:24 | More by Stinkypuss
Photo of TLove

District of Columbia

3.83/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Shoals Pale Ale is one of my favorite pale ales. It has a beautiful amber color and although a bit bitter to smell and taste, the beer settles very well in the mouth and finishes very well. The amber color is topped with a light head that clings to the walls of one's glass. The taste is very flavorful for a pale ale and is reminiscent of a sour fruit such as cranberry or a light plum.

This is particularly important for a pale ale for a critical drinker of darker, more substantive beers such as those that I usually review because it has a fantastic mouthfeel and really rounds out after the bitterness fades, though the hoppiness doesnt dissipate entirely in your mouth. The finish, thus, is incredibly well-balanced.

Serving type: on-tap

11-30-2008 23:06:38 | More by TLove
Photo of Georgiabeer


3.9/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap at the Portsmouth brewery's pub. Poured an orange/amber with a nice head and lacing. Smelled very slightly sour with grain, bready, and with English, perhaps Ringwood yeast. Tastes quite bready, but with some nice bitter, earthy hops. Smooth and creamy in the mouth. This beer is pretty straightforward, but well made and pleasant to drink.

Serving type: on-tap

08-11-2008 00:00:28 | More by Georgiabeer
Photo of Jwale73

Rhode Island

3.03/5  rDev -21.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a beer mug with a nice clear copper color and a 1/2 inch white head. Scent of hops and floral undertones. Thin lacing adhered to the side of the glass during the tasting. More flavors of hops and somewhat crisp in the mouth with a slightly bitter finish. Not an unpleasant APA. but I wouldn't drink more than one or two in a sitting.

Serving type: on-tap

11-03-2007 01:52:15 | More by Jwale73
Photo of NeroFiddled


3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Shoal's pale ale is copper-amber in color with a short head of creamy white foam that holds fairly well before dropping to an average collar and whispy surface covering. It leaves a ring or two of thin lace at the outset and then the occassional whisp and splash.

It has a limited aroma for a pale ale, showing only a bit of malt and nary a hop.

The flavor is clean with a little bit of yeast character (mild fruitiness), caramelish malt, and grassy and leafy hops. It's backed by a solid bitterness, and it finishes dry with some lingering caramel malt and leafy hops.

A basic, "go to" pale.

Serving type: on-tap

07-08-2006 03:24:42 | More by NeroFiddled
Photo of lordofthewiens


3.1/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This was an attractive copper color, with a decent head and some very nice lacing. It had a sweet odor with a hint of fruitiness (?orange). The taste was tart/hoppy and rather nondescript. It had good mouthfeel, and good drinkability. Overall, though, just an average beer.

Serving type: on-tap

01-25-2006 20:17:35 | More by lordofthewiens
Photo of Lnedrive14


3.58/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at Cambridge Common:

For me, it's just average. I love the Smutty IPA, but felt that this lacked that beer's complexity. Pours a dark amber and smells fairly basic. Little bit of hops, no real fruit or anything. I love hops, but in my opinion, this beer was too hoppy without enough counterbalancing from other flavors. This, I felt, decreased its drinkability.

All in all, a fine beer, but I'd take Alpha King any day.

Serving type: on-tap

11-11-2005 17:45:22 | More by Lnedrive14
Photo of Jacobob10

New Jersey

3.95/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap @ The Linwood Grill in Boston, MA.

Nice amber/orange color with good head retention. Light malty aroma with the hops really cutting through. Slightly citrusy. The taste is loaded with hop bitterness and creates a dryness in your mouth. Unbalanced? Yes. Delicious? Yes. The dry mouthfeel would make it tough to drink many of these in one sitting. But still, a damn good tasting beer and something I would order again.

Serving type: on-tap

06-10-2005 15:05:22 | More by Jacobob10
Photo of carln26


3.73/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was on tap at Bison county an poured a bright, clear amber with a medium cream colored head. Hop flower, citrus aroma. Sheets of lace down the side of the glass. Hops up front with the flower citrus in the flavor. Caramel malt backing. Light hop bite. Slightly slick mouth feel good drinkability. This is one of the more hoppy English style pales I’ve had. I had a west coast (Red Tail) in the same sitting to compare, and the Red Tail had much more malt to balance the flavor. If you like the English style, and your hops, go for this beer,

Serving type: on-tap

01-07-2005 23:46:02 | More by carln26
Photo of waughbrew


4.22/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A coppery color, a little too dark to call itself "pale." Smell has some fruitiness to the hops, but in a restrained way and is overshined by the big bready malt aroma. Flavor carries through with the beautiful toasted biscuit maltiness. Crisp bitterness is well balancing, and the finish is pleasurable enough to make you want another sip.

I was very surprised by this, because I don't remember the bottles being that impressive. This was very nice. Much more English than American, but neat that it has influences of both.

Edit: The owner of Smuttynose says this is an ESB, which is much more accurate to its taste than "American Pale Ale".

Serving type: on-tap

07-12-2004 12:54:42 | More by waughbrew
Photo of RoyalT


3.45/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance – This one came out of the tap very dark, almost brown, with a nice head that showed good retention.

Smell – The classic citrusy hops were held up by a significant, dark malt backbone.

Taste – This one is interesting. The citrus hops were out in force and very bitter. The malt backbone from the nose showed up at the tongue as well. They somehow managed to keep all signs of sweetness out of this recipe, though.

Mouthfeel – This ale was medium-bodied and had a fluffy carbonation that was unusual for the style.

Drinkability – A very unique Pale Ale and a pleasure to consume.

Serving type: on-tap

06-10-2004 01:58:38 | More by RoyalT
Photo of drugsbunny


4.75/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Great color and a hardy head that lasted longer than my last few beers. But the taste is a wonderful mix of the sweet malt and bite of hops. The perfect hop character is replaced by a sweet malty aftertaste. Such an assortment of flavors in a well crafted beer, much like all the Smuttynose products.

Serving type: on-tap

06-01-2004 16:46:30 | More by drugsbunny
Photo of gentlebubbles


3.38/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

on tap at Redbones

A beautiful, red gold amber, very clear. With the table candle shining through it, I can watch the bubbles rise. The white head, about a finger's width, falls quickly.

Served cold. Piercing scent. Crisp malt with a strong old sock funk, but it bites hard enough that I kinda like it. Bit of metal in the finish.

Serving type: on-tap

04-09-2004 01:06:58 | More by gentlebubbles
Photo of yankeeheel


3.28/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice ruby with little to no head. Lacing is non-existent. Smells of a bit of fruit and yeast.

The taste is rather subtle in it's malts. Quite a bit of plum in the background. Perhaps a little too hopped up at the finish for me. Moderate amount of carbonation.

Overall a average, though slightly dark, pale ale.

Serving type: on-tap

09-25-2003 20:52:50 | More by yankeeheel
Photo of xgrigorix


4.15/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap, presented in a shaker pint glass.

Dark copper color, tiniest bit cloudy. One finger of almond coloured, creamy looking foam. The head hangs out for a while before receding to a 1/4" halo, leaving behind an amazing amount of sticky lace.

Sweet malt & an aromatic hop festival fill the nose.

Great biscuity English malt flavor with hints of toffe. This is followed up by a rainbow of hop flavors - spicy, orange, floral, & even some pine.

Medium bodied, a little bit chewy (in a good way) with moderate carbonation.

Well hopped, well hopped indeed! A well done, straight forward pale ale, bordering on IPA territory.

Serving type: on-tap

08-25-2003 17:03:44 | More by xgrigorix
Photo of UncleJimbo


3.93/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on guest-tap at the Portsmouth Brewery.

This pale ale poured a clear, amber color with white foam that clung to the glass. The smell was modest: hops and malt. The taste was sweet malt and floral hops with some bitter hops in the finish. It was tangy with a hint of caramel. The mouthfeel was smooth with a nice, malty aftertaste. The body was medium with moderate carbonation. This was an enjoyable pale ale on tap.

Serving type: on-tap

07-07-2003 15:02:06 | More by UncleJimbo
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Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale from Smuttynose Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 1,168 ratings.