1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Shoals Pale AleSmuttynose Shoals Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
87
very good

1,304 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,304
Reviews: 645
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 11.23%
Wants: 25
Gots: 67 | FT: 1
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)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,304 | Reviews: 645 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of erosier
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice amber color with a short but thick off white/tan head that laces the sides of the glass very nicely. The aroma is mostly of floral and earthy hops that blend for a nice bitter aroma layered over a sweet malty smell. The taste is really good as well. It deliveres on what a pale ale should be. Sweet roasted malts layered with floral and earthy hop bitterness that blends well together. Nothing more needed from a pale ale and this one certainly delivers. It has an good crisp mouthfeel and it is certainly a drinkable beer. I would recommend this one for sure.

erosier, Feb 04, 2008
Photo of OWSLEY069
3.33/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clean orange-ish/ copper color with and off-white head. In the aroma, a small citrusy hops. In the taste, small grapefruity/ citrus hops, and a smooth, sweet malt. A small bitter and medium bodied mouthfeel and a semi dry, tea like hoppiness. A very nice hop presence, good body and a very nice malt balance.

OWSLEY069, Jan 31, 2008
Photo of albern
4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Now this is a nice pale ale, much more of a British style pale than your typical American variety. The beer is clear amber with a whitish bubbly head, retention, and a little lacing too. The smell is your very prickly hop aroma with some yeast bite in there too. The smell is good, but it is less balanced than the taste implies. The taste is robust and very good. This is a complex brew with a nice prickly, carbonated, wide mouth hoppy dryness that tastes like it comes from the sea. There is some saltiness in this beer a bit more malt in the finish. The one word that comes to mind with this beer is just simply robust. There are some nice flavors in the malt, perhaps a little nutty flavors hidden in the background, and a prickly mouthfeel. There is ample carbonation and a modest aftertaste. This is well worth seeking out. I just reviewed a Flying Dog Pale and Smuttynose is hands down a better beer, just by way of a back to back comparison. L'Chaim.

albern, Jan 26, 2008
Photo of eberkman
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is an old standby for me, but one that for some reason I've never reviewed.

Pours a nice orange-amber into a pint glass with a fairly sticky short white head. Aromas of grassy hops and sweetness from the malt. The taste is a clean, well balanced, slightly toasty and oh so subtly toffee-like maltiness rounded out by a serious bitter hoppy punch at the end. Very clean finish that leaves you wanting to take another gulp. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with just the right level of carbonation to bridge the gap between spritzy and leaden. Highly sessionable -- the hoppiness makes it a great thirst quencher, the balance makes it enjoyable over the long hall, and it's just complex enough to keep your interest for a while without overdoing things. Very well crafted.

More importantly, it's a highly versatile dinner companion.

eberkman, Jan 25, 2008
Photo of pwoods
4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to NJpadreFan for this brew.

12oz. brown bottle poured into a pint. Best before April '08

A: Pours a very clear amber. 1 finger of pearly white head forms and slowly descends. Some decent lacing.

S: A nice balance between crisp floral hops and a clean, slightly sweet malt. Straight forward but pleasant.

T/M: Malts a nicely sweet and hops are balancing. Hops have a nice light hop leafy resin that still maintains a sessionable bitterness. Hops linger just briefly before leaving the palate clean. Body is medium light and carbonation is moderate.

D: This would be a great session brew. Very pleasant and very easy drinking... just like an APA should be.

pwoods, Jan 22, 2008
Photo of auxiliary
3.55/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

appearance -Goden amber color, with a 1/2 head adn it seems to be leaving some lace on the glass.

smell - Sweet malts and hops present here.

taste - Has a mellow malt taste up front and lots of hops at the finish.

mouthfeel - Medium body and bitter.

drinkability - Too much hops here for me, seems not a bad ipa beer.

auxiliary, Jan 02, 2008
Photo of RblWthACoz
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a foggy golden brown with no head. Nose is mild hops. Strong, but nowhere near being overdone. Just plain ol' orange-like hop scent. Smooth, hoppy flavor. Just nice and even and it doesn't drop off or leave. It stays constant and leaves a nice reminder in your mouth. Feel is good. Low bubble on the tongue, but a nice hearty liquid feel. Very drinkable, indeed.

RblWthACoz, Dec 31, 2007
Photo of ericj551
4.08/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Smuttynose Shoal's Pale Ale pours a clear copper with a wispy head. The aroma is clean dry slightly toasted malt and bitter vaguely citrusy hops. The beer is loaded with flavor, there is a lot of crisp lightly toasted malt with a nice punch of bitterness and more citrusy, earthy hops. The finish is clean and dry, with a lasting bitterness.

ericj551, Dec 28, 2007
Photo of ffejherb
3.43/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle into pint glass on 12/20/07. Best by date: Dec. 2007.

A - Poured a fairly clear amber/orange body with some active carbonation and small eggshell head that diminished into a thin, whispy film.

S - Caramel sweetness is apparent right away, along with some bready maltiness. Hops are pretty faint, but I can detect some grassy and herbal notes.

T - Begins with a sweet caramel flavor paired with a very mild bitterness that gets more assertive as the liquid rolls to the back of the tongue. There's also a touch of roasted nuttiness that comes out in the finish as well as more sweet caramel goodness.

M - Medium bodied and crisp with lively carbonation. Feels just a tad watery on the palate, but slightly bitter and prickly on the tongue. Finish is bitter and actually pretty long-lasting.

D - I find pale ales highly drinkable, and this one's no exception. Always a good choice for a session beer. I'd have another.

ffejherb, Dec 21, 2007
Photo of dickieb
3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy brown with an average sized head that leaves good lacing throughout. The smell is full of grassy hops, somewhat balanced by sweet malts. The flavor comes on strong with bitter hops, going into some darker malt flavors. Very bitter, and rather dry. Over all a very good beer, different then allot of APA's but enjoyable and quite drinkable

dickieb, Dec 09, 2007
Photo of Gmann
3.4/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden brown color with little head; no lacing detected on the glass. The smell is rather faint; I am picking up light biscuit malt and very light grassy hops. The taste starts off with a bitter hop blast, kind of a resin like bitterness. The hops quickly subside to a mellowing bready malt backbone. The feel is moderate with moderate carbonation, finishes on the bitter side. A decent APA, though not a big fan of the hop profile, a bit harsh.

Gmann, Nov 21, 2007
Photo of GFSchwab
4.22/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was in my opinion an exceptional pale ale. Buying the sampler pack of this company continues to show me how great of an idea it was.

The pour into the glass gave off a dark orange hue with an off white/cream colored head that gradualy dissappeared with time.

The smell was of orange peel and a brilliant array of hoppy goodness that appropraitley placed this beer as a good pale ale. I got a bit on ginger in there too.

The taste and mouthfeel was excellent, with the full flavor of the hops blending nicley into a citrus inspired finish. It was a very fruity but at the same time bitter pale ale, thus steering it away from the Fat Angel of Magic Hat.

The carbonation was moderate and the flavor lasted quite long and remained full and unfettered as time passed. Definitley a very graceful exit from my pallet.

It was a very balanced beer and would go great with a lot of vegan dishes and curries. I would reccomend thai, malaysian or pan asian in general. Otherwise, it is just plain old a good beer to drink by itself!

GFSchwab, Nov 18, 2007
Photo of buzzworthy
3.7/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Smuttynose Shoal's Pale Ale pours a hazy amber color with a finger or so of head. There is a good amount of lacing down the glass. Not much on the nose, a little bit of a clean, grassy smell. Hoppy bitterness is most of the taste with pine and herbal accents and a dry finish. It is a solid pale ale tending to the hoppy side.

buzzworthy, Nov 16, 2007
Photo of Wasatch
4.33/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks goes out to UncleJimbo for this one.

Pours a dark golden amber color, nice carbonation, real nice one-finger plus creamy head, lots and lots of sticky lacing throughout the drink. The nose is malty, hoppy, with a good dose of caramel. The taste is malty/hoppy, slightly sweet/bitter, and some caramel. The finish is dry and bitter. Medium body. Very drinkable, this is an awesome Pale Ale, highly recommended.

Wasatch, Nov 06, 2007
Photo of Jwale73
3.03/5  rDev -20.9%
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.

Jwale73, Nov 03, 2007
Photo of kimcgolf
4.15/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours from the bottle to a nice copper color, with thousands of infused carbonation bubbles and a thick off-white head that lingers thru most of the glass and leaves very good lacing. Aroma is predominantly citrus hops (grapefruit and lemon) but also a hint of malt. Flavor follows suit perfectly, begining with the hoppy citrus fruit, then slowly moving to a hint of malty dark fruit.

Finish is not very bitter, but is a nice mixture of being dry from the hops and sweet from the malt.

I had read a lot about Smutty and was excited to try one. My first was a Portsmouth Lager, which I found disappointing. However, this Shoals Pale Ale exhibits all the quality I had expected. Good job Smutty!

kimcgolf, Oct 25, 2007
Photo of Bighuge
3.08/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Murky looking deep copper body. Thin off white head. Lace is moderate. Aroma is light and minty. A little piney as well. Flavorwise, this is a very run-of-the-mill type of APA. A little hoppy. Some caramel malts in the background. But nothing really makes me sit up and take notice. Fairly crisp in the mouth. Medium to medium-full in body. Bitterness is quite subdued. Nothing wrong with this, but really not a lot right about this either.

Bighuge, Oct 09, 2007
Photo of sinistrsam
3.05/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured a medium-amber with a small white head. The aroma was mostly hops with some mild malt; generally well-balanced.
The taste was somewhat disappointing; it was lots of malt and hops, but both faded rather quick and didn't present themselves very uniquely. The feel was the most disappoiting part in my mind; very dry and almsot watery, and despite the hops and malt, not as full-bodied as I had hoped.
I love SN, but this was one of the more mediocre beers I've had from them.

sinistrsam, Oct 09, 2007
Photo of viperpiper522
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- 2 finger cream colored head.Amber in color and pretty clear. A little dark for style.

S- balance of biscuity malts and spicy, light citrus hos.

T- biscuit malt and a little toasty up front. Distinct piney and resinous hop bitterness. It seem a little light dark pie crust and cookies. small citrus note with slight diacytl and alcohol. A very nice biscuit finish that segways into bitter.

M- well balanced smoothness that finishes very dry with a lot of biting bitter finish.

D- not my favorite of the style but a well rounded APA. The biscuit edge was very refreshing.

viperpiper522, Sep 17, 2007
Photo of jmalex
3.48/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I got this in a Smuttynose mix case (which feaured Robust Porter, mmmm) which I took on vacation to Maine. This is one of the leftovers that I get to finish off.

APPEARANCE: Pours a crystal clear bronzish amber with some slight red highlights. The off white head is impressive and hangs on for quite a long time. What's left is a full surface covering of bubbles. Lacing comes comes in thick sheets. Looks great!

SMELL: A nicely balanced aroma of citrusy and earthy hops with a deep toasty maltiness. The hops take the forefront (as can be expected), but the aroma is just well rounded and wonderful.

TASTE: The taste hits initially with a blast of citrusy, earthy, and piny hops. The full flavor drops out a bit on the swallow as the toasty malt makes itself fleetingly known. The finish is empty with just a leftover bitterness. Disappointing given the aroma.

MOUTHFEEL: The body is fairly thin and nearly watery. The carbonation is slightly low, but good enough.

DRINKABILITY: I suppose it goes down quite easy, but it's just a bit watery for me. It could make a very serviceable session beer though.

What a crazy beer! It looked and smelled fantastic. Too bad it didn't come through. I'll stick to some other Smuttynose offerings in the future.

jmalex, Sep 14, 2007
Photo of argock
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz brown bottle into clear pint glass

A: Lovely hazy copper with thick off white head with ample lace retention

S: Syrupy sweet fruity smell with caramel malt as well. Minimal hops scent. Smells like a strong ale.

T: Immediately sweet but not as fruity as the smell. Strong malt presence with bitter hops finish which is quite enjoyable.

M: Best feature of this beer. Smooth and creamy with medium body, light but crisp carbonation, dry finish, and pleasurable lingering aftertaste.

D: Extremely smooth but pretty malty for an APA.

argock, Sep 11, 2007
Photo of Redwood21
3.98/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: This beer has a nice brown golden red hue...lots of colors but when you look at it you will understand. the head is lack luster however...its unfortunate that it disappears way too fast
S: it does not have a very strong aroma, somewhat earthy, not alot of hops
T: very subtle, not complex a little bitter with a faint trace of sweetness, maybe citrus in nature
M?D biting and a tad dry, but very pleasant. i enjoyed this beer alot especially as an uncomplicated straightforward drink. very enjoyable

Redwood21, Sep 01, 2007
Photo of tai4ji2x
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

amber, clear caramel color. heady and lacy

smells of pine and freshly cut leafy greens, hint of toasted grain

hops are complex and sophisticated. pretty high bitterness for a (non-india) pale ale. some roasted malt, but slightly sour acidic note creeps in.

mouthfeel is almost substantial, as it's not too thin and the carbonation has bite.

lingering pleasant bitterness

tai4ji2x, Aug 25, 2007
Photo of dreadnatty08
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a very hazy medium caramel color with plentiful off white head, great tracing as well. Deep malt forward aroma with quite a bit of complex bready, slightly roasty notes. Good spruce and citrus notes as well hinting to its hop character. On the palate it's a very balanced, very drinkable beer. More of those complex malty notes come through, the hops are certainly noticeable but not to the extent I was hoping. Still, a thoroughly enjoyable beer.

dreadnatty08, Aug 20, 2007
Photo of stereosforgeeks
3.83/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Dark amber color. Large head. Thin retention but nice lacing.

Smell - Flowery hops, caramel malts, and grapefruits.

Taste - Smooth flowery hops, grapefruit and caramel. Some nuts and toffee that I didnt detect in the smell.

Mouthfeel - Medium bodied. Full carbonation. Little oily in the mouth.

Drinkability - Refreshing and easy to drink. Session able.

stereosforgeeks, Jul 28, 2007
Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale from Smuttynose Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,304 ratings.