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Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Shoals Pale AleSmuttynose Shoals Pale Ale

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

1,232 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,232
Reviews: 640
rAvg: 3.84
pDev: 11.2%
Wants: 23
Gots: 40 | 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)
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,232 | Reviews: 640 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of 99bottles


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

Apperance: This beer pours a deep orange-tan with an inch of white head, average retention, and active carbonation.

Smell: The nose is full of sharp and spicy coniferous scents. Pine like, but not in a Cascade manner. Some carmel sweetness.

Taste: This is a solid pale ale. It has nice aromatic hops, with minimal bitterness in the finish. The hops and thier oils impart a nice leafy flavor which counters the sweetness of the malts used. Round, sweet, slightly biscuity malt character. Imagine soaking up sugar just as it carmelizes with a biscuit. Nice pucker to the finish, but as I said, not immensely bitter.

Mouthfeel: Light in the mouth, high carbonation helps. Quite nice when cold.

Drinkability: I thought it was good. This isn't mind blowing, but it is a nice solid PA, and capable of being a good session beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-01-2004 20:46:14 | More by 99bottles
Photo of twelvsies


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

This is a pale ale that definately pushes the boundaries of the style. Appears darker than the average pale ale, yet still see- through, and with a nice puffy tan head. There's a "Smuttynose Scent" that I pick up on here, it's also present in thier Brown Dog Ale, but I can't exactly put my finger on it. Get the mix pack, you'll understand. It's almost piney, or woody, but not in a hoppy way, if that makes sense. Taste is good. This is the perfect example of a beer where the hops and malt are very well balanced and niether takes charge, allowing other flavors (fruits, nuts, berries) to come out, making for a complex brew. Very smooth and easy to drink. Good for Smuttynose.

Serving type: bottle

10-21-2004 16:55:56 | More by twelvsies
Photo of putnam


3.48/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Red rose and brown colors form the core. The foam has less durability than the Portsmouth Lager's did. Deeply concentrated brown sugars and malt in the aromas remind me of some sort of baked artistry involving walnuts, butter and vanilla. Then, of course, there is the nuance of green resin. Its relative proportion is bound to depend on how accustomed to hops and other herbs one is. On the palate the piney, citric qualities are surer while the malts form a glossy coating of brandy, nuts, poppy liqueurs and tanned coconut flesh. Sharp, tangy tannins and mercurial alcohol flavors detract from the experience.

Serving type: bottle

10-18-2004 22:14:23 | More by putnam
Photo of wailingwench

New Mexico

3.08/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Eye Candy: Translucent swirling hazy orange. Off white pillowy head that quickly gave way to excellent lacing. Plenty of hop clumping on top

The Nose Knows: Honey sweet up front with some rich malts thrown in, citrusy hops to finish. Very sniffable. I particuarly enjoyed the honey.

Tongueland: The citrus hops were very bitter and overpowered the honey that I enjoyed from the nose. The hop bitterness was way overdone. Wish there was more of a balance.

Bender Factor: I could not drink more than 2 of these without a couple of glasses off water. Very dehydrating. I was informed that Smuttynose recently changed their recipe. I remember sampling Shoals at Empire Brewing Festival in Syracuse (2004). What I consumed last night was different in a bad way.

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2004 18:38:47 | More by wailingwench
Photo of blitheringidiot


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

12 oz'er with an informative label explaining "unfiltered ale - yeast sediment is natural," a freshness notch indicating "Brewed in March" and a blurb about the house on the label "Samuel Haley House on Smuttynose Island.

Delectible looking misty, deep copper & bronze hued pour into me pint with a sand colored frothy sticky head coating. A few small bubbles flow up.

Medium grassy hop aroma meets me nose first, with malts peaking out. Warmed up gradually, some esters became detectable.

First swigs: Bold balanced brew with the hops beating out sweet caramel malts. Well balanced flavor that vacilates back 'n forth to caramel nutmeg malts & laid back maybe American and English hops, followed by a long buttery root beer finish.

Plenty of carbonation blends with a medium bodied buttery pale. This is quite quafable. The first few sips practically took out half the brew.

Last swigs: Straight "four flush" balanced nutmeg noted pale.

Beer is good. Happy balanced beering.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2004 02:52:32 | More by blitheringidiot
Photo of Sixpoint

New York

3.25/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: I give this beer 3.5 despite possilby being too dark for an American Pale Ale. Generally, I like to see darker APAs... they tend to be more full-bodied and caramely, which adds a nice touch.

Smell: My harshest criticism of this beer is that it lacked a nice hop aroma. A pale ale should definitely provide a nice bouquet of fresh hops... all I could detect in my sample was malt.

Taste: Overall, I must say the beer was pretty well balanced. However, there wasn't enough bitterness to counter the malty body the beer emphasized.

Mouthfeel: Nice carbonation and fuller-bodied than most pales. My favorite characteristic of the beer.

Drinkability: Overall, a nice session beer, but nothing I would seek to find in a store or on tap at a bar or restaurant.

Serving type: bottle

08-14-2004 01:50:00 | More by Sixpoint
Photo of kegerator


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

This was a nice offering.
poured a orange amber color with a nice 1 inch head that left good lacing throughout.
Smell was all hop, floral, with some citrus tones
taste was about the same with slight hint of malt in the back but not enough to say it was a good blend.
mouthfeel was crisp and medium bodied.
overall a very drinkable, pleasant brew.

Serving type: bottle

08-10-2004 13:13:16 | More by kegerator
Photo of NEhophead


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

Off white 1" head that is very frothy. Settles but doesn't completely disappear leading to lots of nice lacing. A very crisp and clear auburn color.

Good hop, floral, and citrus aromas along with a medium bodied sweetness.

Nice hop flavors that encompass the palate but don't overwhelm. The floral qualities come through at the end combined with a sweetness and bitterness.

Well hopped but not overpowering. Light and crisp mouthfeel without feeling thin or watered down.

Dead on for the style: very similar to Sierra Nevada's Pale IMO. Thirst quenching Pale that I wouldn't mind drinking all night.

Serving type: bottle

07-22-2004 12:53:42 | More by NEhophead
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 mschofield


3.43/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a browned amber, topped with a two finger light-tan head, leaves rings of puffy lacing.
Malty aroma, toffee, earthy and a touch of herb.
Toffee and wood in the taste, a good amount of citrus rind - the bitterness especially feels like citrus rind. Toffee, a touch of flowers, a bit spicy, and a note of burnt caramel.
Medium bodied and dry.

Serving type: bottle

07-09-2004 00:40:08 | More by mschofield
Photo of taez555


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

This beer poured a red/tan body with a thick frothy tan head.

The nose was a big malt attack. Some sharp alcohol, slight citrus and caramel as well.

The taste was a really big earthy/citrus hop accompanied by a large malt taste. A chunky almost salt-water sort of medium body. Really a firm present malt taste. The hops in this beer have a definite natural, possible dry hop, taste to them. The earthy/citrus dirty leafy hop dominant over any hop bitterness. It ends with a decent lingering bitterness.

The first time I had this beer I was really impressed, the more I drink it I’m just not sure. It’s a lot bigger than smaller micro brews, but it just doesn’t seem to balance well. I like the bigger than average malt flavor, and the hops are right there, but… I just can’t put my finger on it. A great session beer, but maybe not my first pick.

Serving type: bottle

06-29-2004 08:45:12 | More by taez555
Photo of abcsofbeer


3.98/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy, dark amber. The bottle says "This ale is unfiltered". The head is minimal and quickly disappears with very little lace to line the glass. The aroma is very hoppy for a pale ale. The taste is not abundantly hoppy, but hoppy, nonetheless. There is a hint of apple spice.

Mouthfeel is very nice on the roof of the mouth with a nice bit of carbonation. This is a very good pale ale, solid and very tasty. Highly recommend.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2004 02:02:06 | More by abcsofbeer
Photo of FranklinPCombs


3.35/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer has good appearance, pretty typical dark amber, crystal clear with a nice foamy head that subsides lazily. The smell is a slightly harsh and unrefined sweet hop smell. The rawness of the smell masks much of the other smells there might be present if this could mellow a bit. The taste also is really sweety, hoppy, and rather alcoholic and harsh. This beer seems to need quite a bit of aging, and mellowing of flavors, and I believe it has the potential to be a really good brew, but right now its still too raw. Chalk thisup on the list of beers to age

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2004 01:29:33 | More by FranklinPCombs
Photo of meathookjones


3.65/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one poured out a nice clear deep amber color with a small off white head. The head quickly dropped to a collar covering the beer and stuck around the rest of the time. The aroma was a bit weak with the smell of citrus hops rides a slightly sweet malt. The tastes of malt start this off before a citrus hoppiness follows. This is a bittersweet finish that comes in at the end that is quite pleasant. This one reminds me in part of an IPA in the same sense SNPA does. Good mouthfeel and carbonation. Overall a good beer that is a bit different for a Pale Ale and quite tasty.

Serving type: bottle

06-10-2004 14:18:27 | More by meathookjones
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 longpondbeerman


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

The Shoal's pours a nice dark and clear amber with a light caramel head. The aroma is not terribly distinct: light citrus hops and lightly smoked nuttiness. The taste is initially very peaty, much earthier than I expected, and the tangy notes play only towards the finish, which itself ends up pretty dry and resinous. The mouthfeel is moderate, with commensurately active carbonation. A reasonable, but not a noteworthy, brew.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2004 22:17:56 | More by longpondbeerman
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 BadBadger

New York

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

This "Pale Ale" pours a nice amber color. There is a nice foamy head which lasts for the duration. The smell is nothing spectacular. The tase however is rather pleasant, nice malts and hops. This beer is worth giving a try if the opportunity presents.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2004 19:51:30 | More by BadBadger
Photo of tar


3.48/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a semi-opaque, medium amber, with a nice half inch thick white head. The head doesn't persist for very long, leaving only the amber liquid in the glass and virtually no lacing. The aroma is a bit carmelly--it has some sweetness along with hints of citrusy hop aroma. Initially tastes bready and sweet--good malt flavors, and then ends with some nice hop flavors in a somewhat dry/bitter finish. A medium-bodied beer, with a smooth and "thick" feeling.

Serving type: bottle

04-29-2004 19:05:25 | More by tar
Photo of ADR


3.55/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Hazy brown, a little dull in color. Frothy head with very nice lacing properties. Hops simmer under the lightly musty aroma. Body is somewhat heavy for style, carbonation is lower. Hops show through early, but there's a sandy chalkiness up front that's slightly off-putting for me. Malts are sufficient but ordinary. Winds out with a good amount of bittering, not juicy but more resinous in quality. There's a lot of Pales that come and go, this one gets points for being more stolid and different than many. Didn't strike me that well, though. Thanks to Liza P. for bringing a bottle back from a short Easter break in Rhode Island.

Serving type: bottle

04-15-2004 14:54:39 | More by ADR
Photo of MuddyFeet

North Carolina

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

Deep amber in color. It pours and formed a nice head which went away quickly with a small collection around the edges of the glass. No lace to speak of. The smell is of overrip oranges and bananas. It is sweetly bitter, almost like an IPA, rather than a pale ale. The aftertaste is also of citrus fruit. Pleasantly bitter, wish it was warmer out because this would be a great summer beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2004 03:07:08 | More by MuddyFeet
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 Stimack

New York

4.08/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice brew from Smuttynose, as it poured to a cloudy orange amber color. Nice 1 inch off-white head that broke down quickly and lead to some lacing. The aromas where of malt, hop and a slight fruit/citrus ester, a very pleasant smell. The taste is very nice, you can notice the malt at the beginning and sense a citrus hop end that goes nice. In between you are able to sense flavors of caramel and some earthy tones. Over all a very nice brew, one that I am sure that I could kick back on a nice summer day and enjoy for an extended period!

Serving type: bottle

03-16-2004 03:12:15 | More by Stimack
Photo of Gavage

New Jersey

3.68/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a copper color with orange tones. A nice 1" head produced some very light lacing through the drink. The aroma is of malt, light citrus and some hops. The flavor is of caramel, honey, light fruit, and decent bitterness. A very simple pale ale. The body is somewhat heavier for this style. Decent carbonation.

The mouthfeel is a balance of smoothness and crispness, with a slightly dry aftertaste. The malt lasts on the tongue for a bit.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2004 23:17:52 | More by Gavage
Photo of ngandhi


3.45/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Roasty cascades with a good citric bite and dry finish. The mid-palette is boring, mostly reminiscent of very clean water. The bittering is delicate and downright perfect for an American pale ale. Not much to garner criticism here, nor much to garner any praise. Light hop resin and toffee poke through at the end, adding a much needed touch of satisfaction to this brew. Very good, lingering hop character.

Thanks to yankeeheel for this one.

Relax, relax.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2004 04:19:51 | More by ngandhi
Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale from Smuttynose Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 1,232 ratings.