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Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale - Smuttynose Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Smuttynose Shoals Pale AleSmuttynose Shoals Pale Ale

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very good

1,310 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,310
Reviews: 646
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 11.23%
Wants: 25
Gots: 69 | 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: 1,310 | Reviews: 646 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of MikeBrandman
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep copper body with a red tint to it. Pours with two fingers of white head and leaves a thin cap. Good amount of lacing. Translucent body. Good looking beer.

S - Very strong smell. Purely a hoppy smell. Very exciting for an APA.

T - Taste is just as hoppy. Not overwhelmingly bitter, I'd even go so far as to say it's balanced. Smooth taste that isn't offensive, but a good relaxing APA. Nice grassy, floral taste to the hops.

MF - Smooth and thick. Heavy mouthfeel.

D - Very drinkable for a APA. Not quite a sipper, but a good session APA.

Photo of johannasclimacus
4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice, hazy orange. Taste is a perfect mix of hop and malt--very earthy hop character and biscuit malt. A small amount of bitterness in the aftertaste, just about the perfect amount. Drinkability is extremely high. This is becoming one of my favorite APAs. I would easily keep several of these on hand, very versatile. I could see myself turning to this beer and some MLB games on warm summer evenings. Overall, an outstanding session brew from an outstanding NE brewery.

Photo of nelnutter
3.73/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle served in a Sam Adams glass.

A: Solid finger of off-white head. Stuck around for a while and left nice lacing throughout.

S: Biscuity/toasted caramel malt mostly, with earthy hoppiness.

T: Toast with earthy/piney hops at first, then some slight caramel sweetness, ends with nice bitter, earthy hop bite. Very balanced. Nothing is strikingly fantastic, but nothing's off, either.

M: Medium-bodied with nice carbonation, slightly oily but dried out by the hops at the end.

D: Very solid APA overall. Glad I have a couple more in the fridge. Definitely one I'd ble glad to cross paths with again, but not sure I'd necessarily go out of my way to hunt it down.

Photo of bluejacket74
3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a hazy orange/amber color with a half inch off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both pretty good. Aroma is pine and citrusy hops, and some caramel malt. Taste is much hoppier compared to the aroma. The brew tastes similar to the aroma, like pine and citrusy hops and some grain/bready malt. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit slick and is well carbonated. Drinkability is good, it's enjoyable to drink and not a bad choice for an occasional session beer. I only bought a single bottle of this, but I'll buy a six pack of this in the future. I think it's a good, sessionable APA.

Photo of morimech
3.58/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- Dark amber, slightly hazy, large white head, large amount of lacing.

Smell- Not too impressed with the aroma. A lot of caramel malt, not much else.

Taste- Picks back up with the flavor. Some grapefruit and orange from the hops. Caramel malt in the finish. Moderate bitterness. Has a bit of a aspirin flavor as well.

Mouthfeel- Medium body, nicely carbonated, good overall texture.

Drinkability- A good APA but nothing that puts it in the upper echelon of pale ales.

Photo of mwa423
3.25/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Welcome to Ohio Smuttynose! First beer of theirs I have had.

A - Very beautiful finger and a half of thick white head on top of a perfectly clear reddish gold.

S - Pleasant and well balanced mix of malt and pine/citrus hops.

T - The hops are far more muted than in the aroma, but there is lots of bitterness. There is a very grainy and thick malt flavor, but the hop bitterness is center stage.

M/D - Mouthfeel is very thick, and a bit biting with the heavy bitterness. This isn't a particularly drinkable pale ale, but it's well on its way to an IPA.

Photo of PorterLambic
2.73/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours slightly cloudy due to a good of sediment being left in the bottle. Dark orange/amber color. Small head drops fairly fast leaves little lace.
Smell is hops, slight malt, floral with a mustiness and wet cardboard note. Not off-putting but....
Taste is strongly hoppy with adecent malt backing. Nothing else at all.
Medium bodied, fairly strong effervescence up front, dry finish with a strong hop aftertaste. Knock on taste due to lack of any complexity. Knock on smell due to musty/cardboard notes though the balance was good overall. A decent beer but a little too IPA for me.

Photo of Stigs
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle, served in a standard pint glass

A - about a finger of loose, very light tan colored foam, liquid is clear, copper colored with some active bubbles. impressive lacing throughout the drink.

S - ample piney/grassy hops, crackery malt along with some caramel sweetness...

T - hops are definitely the focus...earthy and grassy, very quick citrus flash in the middle, malts follow, biscuity, light caramel and a twinge of spice...finishes with earthy bitterness

M - nice carbonation, a tad thickish body for the style...a bit oily but the sharp hops cut through easily

D - solid APA, there are others i would go to first. just missing something else, either more citrus hops or slightly sweeter malt.

Photo of BEERchitect
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A classic Pale Ale that tilts into Amber Ale territory with the malts.

Shoals begins with a medium amber color, mild haze (dry-hopped?), and a firm white head that lasts the session while leaving convincing lace behind.

Aromas seem to be a balance blend of earthy hop resins, American citrus hops, and English floral and spicy hops. Hops certainly take precidence with the nose but does allow a bready, caramelly, maltiness to peak through from time to time.

Flavors of malts take the initial step with graham cracker and toffee taste. Hop flavor follows closely behind with resiny, piney, fresh cut grasses. Citrus rinds gain intensity at mid-palate and increase in bitterness deep into the finish.

Malty and moderately full up front but the beer fades quickly into a dry, bitter, and evaporative feel. A skeleton of hops and malt flavor leave no residual sweetness on the tongue.

A very solid Pale Ale that holds more malt flavor (think Amber Ales) than expected and with an aggressive, and sometimes bitey, bitterness that seems slightly out of proportion to the rest of the beer. Still deserving of high marks. Thanks Stiggs!

Photo of rosmhuire
4.35/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from bottle into pint glass

A: Medium amber coloring with fairly significant head.

S: All hops on the nose. Typical grapefruit. I'm getting a little leery - is this going to be a carbon-copy of their IPA?

T: Wow - I am not disappointed! Definitely predominantly hoppy flavor profile, but not overboard. Super-clean dry finish too.

M: Love the dryness of the aftertaste. This is just a clean, sessionable, ale, which is exactly what an American Pale Ale should be!

D: Exceedingly drinkable - I could drink these guys all night!

Photo of hustlesworth
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- oh man does this look english! hazy deep reddish orange amber with an awesome creamy head thats the color of the light edge of a pancake. bubbly and frothy on top, sheets of thick lace and great retention. their website lists wheat as an ingredient which i'm sure contributes to the look of this one.

S- a little on the hoppy side, cascade is is a certainty. mandarin orange, grapefruit, passionfruit, guava. some spicy and pine hop notes in there as well. some caramel and toasty malt as well but mainly just a pleasant non-aggressive hop aroma.

T- good hoppy flavor. not too bitter, but straight hop flavor throughout. i was expecting something a little sweeter, but this one is toasty and dry allowing the hops to stand in front. woodsy with a tea-like bitterness at times, pine and grapefruit hop flavor, and a mild toasted grain backbone. finishes herbal bitter and earthy.

MF- nice level of carbonation and an inescapable dryness, but nothing special when it comes to the malty feel, especially when wheat is thrown in the mix i would have expected something a bit more plush. it's got a bit of a softness to it, but nothing to conjure up images of natural breasts, kittens, or pashmina.

D- tasty for a hop lover, but a little unbalanced on the hop side. more like a light IPA. a great pale ale in my book should have the best of both ends and this one falls short in the grain aisle. not bad by any means, but i could find myself straying to england or the west siiiide.

Photo of Bierguy5
3.45/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Welcome to Ohio Smuttynose! 12 oz bottle, best before June 2010. Pours a slightly hazy amber color. Rocky off-white head holds together well and leaves some nice patches of lace.

Earthy and slightly floral aroma, with a healthy dose of caramel malt. A few fruity notes blend in.

Caramel malt up front, pretty good character. Earthy hops have a spicy edge which makes it a bit more interesting. A few subtle fruity notes.

Medium body, with ample carbonation. Easy to drink, but not very interesting to me.

Photo of puboflyons
3.93/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle dated May 2010 and sampled on January 14, 2010. This is one of the staple brews of my homestate brewery Smuttynose. It pours a cloudy amber color with a thin head. It has a rich aroma balanced with a little barley, malts, and an upped dosage of hops. The taste has a tart cleanliness about it with a mild but obvious hoppy ingredient. It warms the insides and is easy to drink.

Photo of Mora2000
3.63/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours orange-amber with a white head. The aroma is piney hops. The flavor is grassy hops with a strong malt backbone. Medium mouthfeel and carbonation.

This bottle was a few months past its best by date so I think it may have been past its prime. I think this beer could be better than the example I had and I will seek it out again.

Photo of Cmack15
3.55/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured 16 oz bottle into a pint glass and got a 1 finger head. Lot of carbonation in this beer. The aroma of this beer is an earthy musty kind of scent. Taste is upfront with the a peppery hop note the slowly fades into a slight malty aftertaste. I am more a fan of citrusy/piney hops so that is why it did not score so well with me.

Photo of wilbrew
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz bottle into a standard pint glass. Very drinkable pale ale. Nothing overpowering and true to pale ale form.

A - Deep clear amber color. Head consists of larger bubbles and dissipates fairly quickly while sticking the side of the glass.

S - Piney hops aroma which is not overpowering.

T - Piney hops flavor which is balanced with a light malt flavor.

M - Smooth carbonation with a slight lingering bitterness from the hops.

D - Very drinkable beer. The six pack did not last very long between my wife and I.

Photo of dpodratsky3
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass

A: Clear brownish amber with a big chunky slight off white head that starts sticking to the sides of the glass immediately

S: Floral and herbal hops make up the dominant aroma, but nothing overly impressive

T: Hops are not super strong, they are comprised of floral and herbal again, malt definitely provides counterpoint but not too much actual flavor, the bitterness lingers well after the flavors have faded

M: Just barely shy of medium, dry finish

D: Pretty good, flavors are alright, but nothing that says "drink me now"

Notes: This beer has some good qualities, notably its appearance. The flavors are good, just not super bold or anything. As a pale ale it will obviously not be as punchy as an IPA, but some aspects just fall a little short of excellent.

Photo of KTCamm
3.13/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours an amber, medium dark, with 1 finger white creamy foam. Laces down the side. Translucent.

Lightly hoppy smell.

Opens bitter but washes out for a cleaner drink - closes bitter at the finish. Domonant hop taste, that I found a bit harsher than expected. The underlying flavor is good, but drowned in the hop. Strong carbination.

Very average drinkability - the extent of the bittering is a bit offputting.

Photo of josefnewsong
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours an amber color closer to that of an IPA than an APA, and the taste is like a light IPA as well. Dominant hops flavor with slight malt finish. I was expecting something a bit more typical of the style from Smuttynose, as they normally seem to make great beers without trying to reinvent the wheel.

Photo of towersfall
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a cloudy amber with a nice touch of ruby when held up to the light. Head dissipates quickly and leaves behind a webbing of lacing all down the glass.

Smell: HOPS. Malt can be sensed but they're overpowered by the hops in my opinion.

Taste: Hops greet you upon the first sip with a sick 1-2 combination that's quickly followed by an uppercut from the (caramel?) malts. Great combination of flavors!

Mouthfeel: Crisp with a medium body. Enough carbonation to let out a few good belches :P

Drinkability: Malty APA that's not afraid to expose it's hoppier side. Crisp and pretty easy to drink. I'd probably pick up a sixer of this.

Photo of VTaler
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark Brown, Almost the same color of the bottle. Very little head and some lacing. Also very cloudy. When held up to the light it looks like honey.
S - Smells like hops and lots of them.
T - First taste is of dryness. Kind of unusual. Citrus hops with a sour lacing. Also a kind of spicy hop presence. The malt is there but not very present. This overall is a nice beer. Not too bitter and not too heavy. Good example of a English style pale ale. This is how a "pale ale" should taste like. Sour malt but not to sour that is bad.
M - Medium-high carbonation. Leaves a lacing on your tongue
D - nice session pale ale

Photo of TheFightfan1
3.88/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

pours a hazy amber color with a thick eggshell heading that dissapates to a nice fine lace around the glass.

Smell is malty at first followed by a subtle graininess.

Taste again bigger with malts on the palate. A decent stab of hops enter the picture with an almost THC like crystalization. (I must be getting a little weird now).

Mouth is very smooth with a tingle on the palate from the crystalized hop mouthfeel.Mid bodied with good retention. Finishes with a linger.

Drink is excellent a well balanced beer Pale ale and certainly could be enjoyed by anyone.

Photo of Andreji
4.05/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is an unusual pale ale in all senses, certainly an unexpected blend.

Pour is, for starters, much darker than i'd expect for an APA. brown-amber deep looking with a short lasting tan head. some lacing and a peculiar arrangement for the creamy film left atop (odd looking rings).

Smell is hoppy by all means. very unsweet, dry grassy smell. straightforward, smokey at a certain point.

Taste is also very different from the usual. THe malt is there, very strong and prevalent, just simply by no means sweet, much leaning towards the hoppier trends of the americans. The very oily body is topped off by a hoppy wooden, oak-like feel which makes it a special kind of bitter i enjoyed very much.

for a dry beer, this is certainly a great pick.

Photo of kurp001
3.9/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle bought at Beltway Fine Wine

A moderate pour yields about two fingers of creamy ivory head that holds up pretty well. Body is a very deep amber, darker than I'd expect for a pale ale but very nice.

Smell is mostly citrusy hops and a mild malt aroma in the background.

Hop bitterness is apparent upfront, followed by a biscuity malt presence midway and a touch of grapefruity citrus on the finish.

Mouthfeel medium-bodied; crisp but not overly-carbonated.

A fairly drinkable pale ale, this is a solid but not exceedingly interesting beer. Good to have around, but there are others I'd probably be more inclined to go for.

Photo of mirish72
3.65/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a ruby amber/chestnut brown with a one finger head with slight lacing. The first thing that strikes me is this is the darkest pale ale I think I have ever seen.

The aroma is malty with a decent hop profile. There is definitely a toasted maltiness and less hoppiness than I would have expected from drinking several of their other offerings, not complaining, just not what I expected.

Probably wouldn't pick it as my favorite pale ale, but it is very drinkable and a good session beer.

Smuttynose Shoals Pale Ale from Smuttynose Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 1,310 ratings.