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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

1,166 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1166
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: 1,166 | Reviews: 639 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of cosmicevan

New York

3.63/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

enjoyed from a blue point snifter. 2 months beyond best by date (yikes - take my thoughts with a grain of salt)

a - brew poured semi clear amber with a huge 2 finger foamy cream colored off white head. pretty foamy and creamy. nice present lacing.

s - malt forward, some grains. earthy, caramel. hops seem to have faded. toasted.

t - malt forward with bitterness on the finish. hops seem faded if they were ever present. toasted.

m - medium feel with a bitter finish.

o - overall, decent pale ale...a bit too malt forward and toasty, but to be fair, this one is a bit too aged. will try again fresh and revisit. almost more brown or marzen then pale ale with all these malts. missing the hop that i expect from a pale ale.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2012 03:40:38 | More by cosmicevan
Photo of RTEdmunds

New Hampshire

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

poured from a 12 oz. bottle.

Good sized foamy head, and a slight reddish tinge. Solid lacing.

Hoppy presence in the nose. Earthy and a hint of caramel.

Quite malty, tastes roasty and sweet. A nice bittering finish. A bit of spiciness as well in the background.

Medium bodied, with a yeasty sort of chewiness to the texture. Carbonation is moderate.

Good brew, very enjoyable/sessionable. In some aspects it reminds me a bit of an amber ale.

Serving type: bottle

04-15-2012 03:11:32 | More by RTEdmunds
Photo of Chico1985


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

Pours a dark copper/orange, some haze on the 2nd pour. Off-white head retains decently as a ring and slight cap, not much lacing left.

About even amounts of hop+malt in the scent. Herbal and earthy hops mostly with some light fruit in there as well, caramel and toasty malts.

Taste builds on the smell nicely, still a great balance but the hops are a bit more pronounced - herbal, grapefruit, some citrus and lemon. Pale and caramel malts provide a good backbone, baked bread on the finish.

Very good mouthfeel, feels full for only 5%. Good balance, smooth.

Definitely a standby pale ale for me. I appreciate the balance and that it's not a hop bomb while still producing some nice, varying hop flavor. Easy drinking, tasty, good price, great 6-pack purchase.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2012 13:04:30 | More by Chico1985
Photo of CraftBeerTastic


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

Ba Review #137
Served On: 03/14/2012
Glassware: Sam Adams Perfect Pint
Labeled ABV: -
Date/ Code: 7/10/12

This was in the current mixed 12 pack I found at Self Serve Beverage in York, PA.

Look: Poured a very clear copper with a few carbonation bubbles floating around. The head was a beige coating of patchy foam that eventually reduced down into a thin film. Nice sticky lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell: Aroma was of a nice subtle hop bouquet with a solid malt bill in the background. There was also an interesting sourness that I’ve also noticed in SN Pale Ale and a couple other mainstream examples of the style.

Taste: The hops hit first with a semisweet malt and some bitterness making up the middle. The finish was of citrus and grapefruit notes with a dry bitter finish.

This is a great pale ale that could easily become a staple beer in my household. I will definitely be picking this up again.

Serving type: bottle

03-14-2012 22:36:19 | More by CraftBeerTastic
Photo of wafers

New York

4.43/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Deep copper-colored, light foamy head that disappears quickly
S: Mild hops aroma, somewhat grassy
T: Nice bitterness, grassy like the smell; some citrus, apricot, light taste of sour apples; definite malty background to mix it up with the hoppiness
M: Somewhat thick, flavors linger in the mouth awhile
O: Enjoyed this one, very drinkable, grassy bitterness but with a solid malt backbone to make it interesting, would definitely drink again

Serving type: bottle

03-10-2012 06:32:18 | More by wafers
Photo of greybeardloon

Rhode Island

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

best before June 21, 2012

A: Dark for a pale ale, slightly cloudy, nice head, some lacing.

S: Floral hops, with the malt coming through more than one expects.

T: Some floral hops, but until the long finish, it's more about the full, sweet (but not caramel) nuttiness from the malt and, presumably, yeast. Maybe the chinook comes through in a faint saltiness (or maybe I'm making that up), but I don't get the typical cascade flavors.

M: Modestly carbonated, which is nice.

O: This is a very solid pale ale and should be a staple in my fridge.

Serving type: bottle

03-09-2012 02:05:39 | More by greybeardloon
Photo of tdm168

North Carolina

3.6/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy, dark orangish amber with a half of an inch of soft, dense, off white head that has great retention. The nose is a bit tart, slightly malty, and a little fruity - almost a mediicinal cherry-ish note. The flavor is also a little fruity up front, malty, caramelly, a little bready as well. The tartness of the fruit notes present a little medicinally in my opinion. The mouthfeel is medium bodied and crisp with a good carbonation bite.

This is a decent beer. There are a lot of fruity notes - cherries and dark fruits - that one usually doesn't find in this style. It's good, but honestly I'd go for a different APA if given a choice.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2012 21:12:35 | More by tdm168
Photo of cyclonece09


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

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a 14 oz. "pint" glass. Pours a nice copper amber tone with a small white head that dissipates quickly, but leaves nice lacing. Smells of flowery hops, but not that strong, and it is not as prevalent of other pale ales. Tastes of sweet hops and light malt, a nice balance between the two, but enough hops to have some great taste. Beer is carbonated rightly and beer is balanced for a pale ale. Overall, a nice beer and a decent pale ale.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2012 04:23:21 | More by cyclonece09
Photo of metter98

New York

3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is rather hazy copper in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin beige head that quickly died down but consistently left a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface and a thick ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are moderately strong aromas of caramel malts in the nose along with notes of toffee and hints of pine resin hops.
T: The taste seems to have more hop flavors compared to other pale ales and has a light to moderate amount of bitterness but is well balanced and also has flavors of caramel malts and hints of malty sweetness. The bitterness particularly stands out in the finish.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and slightly crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation. There is a bit of dryness in the finish.
O: This beer is packed with lots of malty and hoppy flavors but is extremely well balanced and also very sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

03-03-2012 01:37:37 | More by metter98
Photo of dexterk1


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

Appearance is a dark amber and has a head that is relatively thick.
Odor is of citrus and a decent amount of floral odor as well.
Taste is floral upfront with some citrus, and malt there as well. Aftertaste is of hops.
Mouth feel is pretty good. Not overly carbonated and is medium bodied.
Overall a good beer that is still a little light as far as overall impact.

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2012 22:17:52 | More by dexterk1
Photo of mooseo


3.4/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into Victory pint glass.

A - Dark copper-brown, mostly clear with a white 1" head.

S - Sweet malt is most prominent, with a bit of citrus hops coming through. Overall very subtle.

T - Caramel malt up front, followed by citrus and floral hop flavors. Just a touch bitter. Leaves a lingering bready malt flavor in the mouth.

M - Medium bodied, smooth, decent carbonation.

O - A fine pale ale, although there is nothing really distinct about it. This is more 'malt forward' than other pale ales I've tried, which isn't a bad thing. It has high drinkability and a good flavor.

Serving type: bottle

02-20-2012 19:16:33 | More by mooseo
Photo of angrybabboon

Rhode Island

2.83/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Review adapted from notes taken 9/4/11

Appearance: Somewhere between a dark gold and amber, with some yellow - white head, nice lacing

Smell: Kind of strange - mild floral, herbal, and grassy hops - notably earthy, kind of smells like dirt - pale malts are pretty dull, but they are there

Taste: Also strange - very earthy, almost salty - the hop profile is very weird, grassy - malts are decent, pale with some toastiness, some sweetness - but the weird characteristics are too prominent - overly earthy, too much minerality - gets better as it warms, but not by much

Mouthfeel: Medium body, nice carbonation

Overall: This just does not work for me

I tried this beer in early 2008 and it was a drain pour. In 2011, I finally tried it again. While I did finish the beer, I still taste too much grass and salt. I don't understand it, as I really have enjoyed everything else I have had from Smutty.

Serving type: bottle

02-11-2012 07:09:49 | More by angrybabboon
Photo of iabeerbaron


3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another pretty solid brew from Smuttynose. Copper color pour with a medium sized white head. Nice lacing on the glass. Powerful citrus character in the aroma with grapefruit being very present. Taste is very similar; citrus with malt and bitterness coming through. A very nice pale ale.

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2012 14:34:44 | More by iabeerbaron
Photo of johnnnniee

New Hampshire

3.33/5  rDev -13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a medium copper color with a huge bubbly bone white head that displays great retention and lace. Smells of citrus, earth, mineral water, bread and a hint of toffee. Floral earthy hops are noticeable but restrained. Taste is bready and toffee malts up front. Earthy mineral with a hint of citrus from the hops cut through the sweetness nicely. Medium body with lively amount of carbonation and a resinous mineral water mouthfeel. Very nicely balanced English style pale ale. Great for what it is, but boring to the palette I've been working on wrecking for the last few years.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2012 00:51:29 | More by johnnnniee
Photo of rangerred


3.7/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Appearance is a slightly hazy reddish-copper with a 1.5 finger white head. Lacing is really good.

Smells of citrusy hops with just a few malt undertones.

Taste is hoppy up front with citrus/floral notes leading to a long lasting moderate bitterness. A nice caramel maltiness follows along with toasty flavors. Nicely balanced between malt and hops.

Overall this is quite a tasty APA. Good flavor without too much alcohol.

Serving type: bottle

01-17-2012 01:39:23 | More by rangerred
Photo of ryan1788a5


4.18/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Slightly hazy amber/orange. Big creamy off-white head eventually settles into a thin slip. Delicate lacing clings to the glass in rings.

S: Floral and piney hop profile. Some resin. Bready pale malt. There's a creamy porridge-like aroma as well.

T: Pale malts open, but quickly give way to floral and resiny hops with a firm bite of pine. Grainy tastes return, and drag woody and slightly husky tastes in their wake. A touch nutty. Finishes with grain and bitter resiny hops.

M: On the lighter side of medium bodied. Delightfully full and creamy. Velvety, even. Just the right amount of carbonation. Reminds me a bit of a good cask mouthfeel. Stellar.

O: A quintessential American Pale Ale. Full, creamy, and tasty with a distinctive hop bite. A great beer.

Notes: Gives Sierra Nevada Pale Ale a real run for its money. And I really can't say enough about that mouthfeel.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2012 21:12:51 | More by ryan1788a5
Photo of FanofHefe


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

12 oz. bottle poured into a Duvel tulip; best by June 2012. Surprised how dark the body is on this one, hazy dirty yellow body with a bit of red tint. One finger tan head that has decent retention and leaves a little streaky lacing.

Light aroma of citrus hops, mostly grapefruit. A little sweet bready malt in the background.

The flavor steps it up a notch over the aroma. The citrus hop flavor is, again, primarily grapefruit but a touch of orange and lemon lend a hand. The sweet malt comes through with enough balance to give a decent assist to the hops.

Medium to light mouthfeel that is very drinkable. Solid APA for sure.

Serving type: bottle

01-15-2012 20:46:12 | More by FanofHefe
Photo of SirWalkAbout


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

Pours a nice red color with a perfect head that stays with it till the end.

Citrus smell along with a strong hop smell.

Taste is light and pleasant. Not as much of a hop bite as expected. Grapefruit. Very clear.

Rolls off the tongue cleanly, no aftertaste.

Overall, solid pale ale. Would get this again.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2012 23:28:09 | More by SirWalkAbout
Photo of Kendo

New York

4.2/5  rDev +9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Best by date of 5/16/12. Consumed on 1/5/12, so I'm guessing this one's real fresh.

A: Poured from the bottle into a pint glass. Body is slightly hazed dark golden/light copper color, turning more orangey when backlit. Small ecru-colored head on top leaves behind some decent lace.

S: Nice nose - definitely citrusy C-hops in this house. Strong enough in the hop department to smell like an IPA, but there's also a touch of underlying malt.

T: This is a very solid APA. Malt is there and imparts an almost English-like taste with a light taste of crackers and caramel malt. Hops are the star of this show, however, as I get the grapefruity, citrusy stuff I sensed in the nose. Finishes with a slight metallic/minerally taste that competes with lemony bitterness. Torn between a 4 and a 4.5 here - will give it the 4 due to that metallic taste and up the "overall" score to offset a bit. But this is close to deserving that next level.

M: Medium in heft with a slightly resiny, slightly slick feel to it. Carbonation is active but not offensive.

O: Good stuff. I was surprised to see I hadn't reviewed this before, and now I'm disappointed that I hadn't.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2012 02:27:48 | More by Kendo
Photo of Crossmd


4.25/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured probably 38 degrees into a wine glass. No born date.

Pours a hazy amber with a copper rim, 1.5 finger eggshell head that dissipates into a cap after about 90 seconds, good lacing.

Smells of some heavy brown malts, some toast, a bit of spiciness underlined with a hint of booze.

Taste is a nutty, robust maltiness, with a touch of hops at the beginning of the finish, that dry out nicely and clean up just slightly. This leaves a just slightly dirty drydown that lingers well. Mouthfeel is one of the heaviest I've ever seen in a pale ale, with a considerable weight for the style.

Overall, a fantastic and robust offering from a favorite producer. Puts countless other PAs to shame and raises the bar in an excellent way.


Serving type: bottle

12-28-2011 20:41:46 | More by Crossmd
Photo of champ103


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

A: Pours a hazy burnt orange/red color. A two finger white head forms with excellent retention. Sticky spiderweb looking lace is left behind.
S: Very floral up front. Grassy, herbal tea like hops. Followed by an excellent balance. Sweet caramel, bread and biscuit. Very nice.
T: Follows the nose. Floral and grassy hops. Some grapefruit bitterness in there. Great balance with toasted and lightly sweet caramel malts.
M/D: A medium body with near perfect carbonation. Crisp, clean, and refreshing. So easy to drink. All day with this.

A great pale ale. So enjoyable and easy to drink. Highly recommended.

Serving type: bottle

12-23-2011 01:58:14 | More by champ103
Photo of Pintofbrown


4.25/5  rDev +10.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I had this one in a tulip.

Appearance- A quite dense, off-white and orange tinged head is nice to look at. It grew to about two-fingers and has very good retention. There are some bubbles on the smooth lid popping lazily.

The body looks like melted caramel in the glass.

Smell- There is some grape fruit and lemon present, even a little biscuit malt in the background. It is not "big", maybe the foam is making it hard for the smells to escape.

Taste- Really, just incredibly drinkable with citrus notes being prominent. You have some grape fruit and some passion fruit in there to lead things off.

The malt balances really well, and you can easily tell it is of the biscuit malt variety, and pretty sweet too. There is just a bit of resin oil in the finish to accompany the malt. Delicious.

Mouth feel- A medium body that comes off pretty fizzy on the tongue. I actually like that it has some zest here to go along with the flavors.

Overall- I think this pale is a little maltier than it needs to be. Dial that back a bit and let that citrus really take over. Meh, I feel awfully nit picky. What a great pale!

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2011 22:57:29 | More by Pintofbrown
Photo of schoolboy


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

I know I had this once before, maybe a year or two ago on a trip in New England. It's a passable APA, but not a great one. It has a funky yeasty taste underneath a good hops taste and aroma.

It isn't quite a clear but looks good in the glass. The taste and aftertaste both have that funkiness that I don't like. This is generally a good brewery but this one is not excellent like some of their others.

Serving type: bottle

12-17-2011 01:21:58 | More by schoolboy
Photo of TheMultiYeast


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

Bottle ---> Pint glass. Dark brown with a large white head and bubbly lacing.

Smell is mildly sweet with lemongrass, cereal, orange peel and mellow citrus.

Subdued citrus-grassiness combines with yeast, grain and crackers with

This is a refreshing pale ale with prickly carbonation. Enjoyable.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2011 07:01:40 | More by TheMultiYeast
Photo of Bendurgin


3.63/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass. This one pours amber with a finger of beige head. A nice cap sticks and leaves soapy lace.

Hints of orange in the aroma with a nice bitter hop finish. A little bit of caramel malts linger in the background. The pallet gives off a little bit more of a malt presence than the aroma leads on. Big caramel flavors with a good finish of bitter citrus hops.

Light bodied with sharp carbonation. Solid offering, but not my favorite from these guys. I usually just go with Finest Kind, but this does the trick.

Serving type: bottle

12-16-2011 05:44:18 | More by Bendurgin
Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale from Smuttynose Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 1,166 ratings.