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Red Wheelbarrow | Maine Beer Company

122 Reviews
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Red WheelbarrowRed Wheelbarrow

Brewed by:
Maine Beer Company
Maine, United States | website

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.00%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Like many of our beers, Red Wheelbarrow (which started out as a pilot batch brewed by Brewer Dan Roberts) doesn’t fit neatly into a style category — think of it as a stronger, more hop-forward interpretation of a traditional red ale. Red Wheelbarrow is not, however, a “red IPA” — there is robust malt character (think raisin and fig) on both the nose and palate that temper the abundant hop presence (think citrus fruit).

Added by sleestak12 on 10-23-2013

User Reviews
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Reviews: 122 | Ratings: 939
Photo of SawDog505
4.28/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a 13 tulip, bottled 3/25/14. Pours a dark cloudy rust color, with a 3 finger off white heads that leaves behind plenty of lace.

Smell is caramel, papaya, apricot, biscuit, tangerine, and grapefruit.

Taste follows perfect, so sweetness from the malt with a nice burst of citrus from all the delicious hops. Really nice.

Body is medium, plenty of carbonation, not dry, and easy drinking.

Overall another excellent beer from this excellent brewery. Time for them to go to four packs so the Brice can improve!

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Photo of Mises85
4.79/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

Had this in a tulip at 50 or so degrees dated 052014

Appearance: Beautiful red color with a classic MBO Pillowy head that resists dissipation. 3 fingers to be exact.

Smell: IPA with big citrus and pineapple notes. I got some malty character although I couldn't tell whether it really was a dark fruit character as defined by the description. Extreme freshness.

Taste: ale taste with a strong hoppy finish. Some caramel coming through and some biscuit.

Mouthfeel: just right amount of carbonation, very bread like, with medium creaminess.

Overall: Another fantastic beer from MBO. My only gripe would be that the smell seemed the same from each of their other beers but who knows. A fantastic beer nonetheless.

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Photo of Kendo
4.2/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Bottled on 4/22/14; consumed on 5/30/14, making this one about 5 weeks old. . . .

A: Poured into a Sam Smith's nonic-style pint glass. Body is slightly hazy coppery-amber with a BIG (3-finger) ecru-colored head that retains well, settling (finally) to leave good glass-painting random splotchy lacing.

S: Very nice - caramel malt and brown sugar foundation. Followed by juicy citrusy hops.

T: Nice variety here. Solid malt foundation of caramel malt, brown sugar and toasted bread. This is followed by citrusy grapefruit and a touch of grass and pine. Nice profile of a hoppy big red ale.

M: Loses some points here, as the feel is a little . . . thin isn't the right word; it's more about the bubbly fizziness that doesn't seem right for a beer like this. Call it medium in heft, but it drinks a little lighter due to the active fizzy carbonation.

O: Good stuff. If this were priced like NN, I'd be happy to buy it regularly when NN was off-season, as it's a nice substitute.

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Photo of avalon07
4.03/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured from a bottle to a pint glass. Had a reddish-orange color and a cloudy consistency. There was an inch of creamy, fairly long-lasting head. Very good lacing.

S: A subtle aroma of hops, malt, caramel, and a bready quality.

T: Tasted of a good amount of hops, caramel, a hint of pine, and a bit of malt. Like Maine Beer Company's other offerings, the flavor here is remarkably balanced. It's not too hoppy or aggressive, with just the right amount of mildness.

M: A well-carbonated beer with a prickly finish. Medium-bodied.

O: A very enjoyable, well done beer. Quite focused and certainly drinkable.

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Photo of JAFoley
3.95/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - A deep hazy dark amber body with three fingers of foamy off-white head. The head recedes some what quickly, ok retention and some lacing.

S - Huge tart fruitiness, apricots and lemons, bready malt sweetness as well.

T - Lots of nice fresh citrus hops, followed by sugary cherry malts, somewhat of a medicine taste. Alcohol not too present.

M - Light body and high carbonation. Very thin and slick but slight stickiness in the aftertaste.

O - The body is just too weak for me. The flavors are all really nice, but I can't sink my teeth into the beer. With the high carbonation and thin body, it drinks more like a soda in my opinion. Worth a try and certainly not a bad beer, but it's not a beer I'd be picking up again. That said, I am a big fan of Maine Beer Company who make a lot of fantastic beers.

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Photo of Gavage
4.18/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: pours a clear amber color with a 2" head that lasts a long time.

Smell: loads of malt and fruit sweetness and a floral presence provides a pleasant aroma.

Taste: caramel, bread, ripe fruit sweetness, some grapefruit, and a hearty bitterness makes up a well balanced beer.

Mouthfeel: medium-heavy in body. Light crispness to start, smoother and a touch dry at the finish.

Overall: a very drinkable and flavorful red ale. More than one can be enjoyed in a session.

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Photo of portia99
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle (11/12/13 - probably a little past its prime) poured into a Duvel tulip.

A - Pours a deep reddish amber color touched with brownish highlights. Three fingers of rocky tan foam erupt off the surface on a normal pour and lingers for many minutes slowly falling to reveal thick, sticky webs of lacing all over the glass.

S - Interesting combination of malt and hops. Hops are grassy, green and surprisingly fresh smelling despite being almost 6 months in the bottle. Malt is lightly sweet, doughy/yeasty, a bit of biscuit dryness also and some lightly caramelized, sugary malt too.

T - Caramel malt up front, toasted malt, lightly roasty...very smooth malt profile. Hops are cleanly bitter, appropriately medium intensity and grassy in flavor characteristics. Traces of pine, but at a subdued level.

M - Lightish medium body, light/medium carbonation. Mostly creamy and a bit tingly in feel. Hop bitterness is clean and not really one to linger. Malt is smooth. Pretty easy drinker overall.

O - Waited a bit long to crack open this bottle, but still holds up well. Quite enjoyable, gives a sessionable impression and is an easy drinker.

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Photo of MacQ32
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

A - pours a cloudy mostly amber copper color with a finger of caramep head, fantastic lacing and rrtention, as is the case with all maine beers.

S - decent dry piney hop bitterness, malts compliment it well. Enticing

T - fantastic dry bitter hoppy red ale. Nice dryness, almost piney

M - medoum boded and well carbonated.

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Photo of brentk56
4.06/5  rDev -1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Really impressive presentation, with a massive head squatted on the clear copper liquid; terrific retention

Smell: A blend of malt and hops, with caramel and fig tones meshing with pine and tobacco

Taste: The malt/hop blend is apparent from the get-go, with the caramel and fig tones blending together with the pine and tobacco; juicy tropical fruit, after the swallow, joins the parade, but the finish is decidedly bitter and dry

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: I like what's going on but I didn't love drinking it, if that makes any sense, as I found the analysis more interesting than the enjoyment

Thanks, cp45, for the opportunity

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Photo of antott0523
4.83/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

4/24/2014 bottle date. Poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Rich amber with a red hue. Foamy two finger head that leaves a lot of lace. Very attractive beer.

Smell: This beer is extremely fresh and crisp. Citrus hop notes of sweet grapefruit, and a touch of pine. There is a prominent malt presence that manifests itself with fruity notes of peach and fig. A faint hint of alcohol.

Taste: Flavorful malt profile, but the hops are still the star of the show. Not overpowering.

Mouthfeel: Well carbonated, yet round. A light tingle from the hops.

Overall: This beer is extremely drinkable. MBC makes a point to say that this beer is not a "red IPA." Although I prefer a greater hop presence in a red ale, this beer is perfect for what it is intended to be. For that reason, taste gets a five. Bravo MBC for achieving such a scrumptious beer that showcases the hop and malt profile in such a fresh and crisp manner. This is my first time trying anything from Maine Beer Company, and I look very forward to trying others if this beer is any reflection of the quality coming from this brewery.

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Photo of RaulMondesi
4.25/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Like getting spanked by my baby mama after the midnight hour, "Thank you, baby mamma, may I have another?!" The caramel is perfectly balanced by a hint of toffee that would even make Willy Wonka have to cancel his viagra prescription.

This one, my peeps, is a keeper.

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Photo of jlindros
4.13/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Bottled 3/25/14

Little upside down waterfall head hits 1.5 fingers and fades semi slowly, creamy thick head leaves nice lacing, mostly clear amber reddish copper color.

Nose interesting hops, bit of the earthy floral kiwi hops, riwaka, little tropical fruit note, musty mild resinous but little citrus fruit, little sweet caramel malt base.

Taste starts with sweet candy malts, caramel, little syrup, then hops, earthy and spicy, little grassy and floral, more earthy kiwi terrior and some candied tropical fruits, little resin, hint pine, and fairly bitter. Finish dries a bit but little sticky, quite bitter on the finish, more spicy earthy and little resin and pine.

Mouth is med bod, decent carb.

Overall pretty nice, good hop character, nice malty base for an amber, cross between an amber and nice IPA almost. Enjoyable.

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Photo of dpgoblejr
4.5/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled date of 3/25/14
Pours a hazy copper color with intense foam head. Noticeable lacing; and for me, a very powerful citrus aroma. Grapefruit appears to be the dominate one here. Tastes superb with nice biting hops on the palate. Very easy to drink and quite smooth. Not a super fan of the red ale style but this is by far one of the best I've tried. Again, Maine Beer Co., has come through with a really decent brew. Glad I could try this relatively fresh. Very nice and highly recommended!

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Photo of donkeyrunner
4.52/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A celebration for finishing NH4ker #29 Cannon Mountain

Deep copper color with a dense, lumpy, lazy light beige head that leaves sheets of foam slathered to my glass. Maybe a bit too copper and not red enough but I'm poking at perfection.

Bright citrus candy aroma. Soft pine. Caramel drizzle malt showing through after the initial hoppy embrace.

Vibrant citrus candy dominate the flavor profile. Some bread crust and caramel in back to give this red IPA it's "red." Just enough bitterness to prevent this beer from being to sweet.

Another stellar hop forward offering from Maine Beer but I'm noticing a trend. Is Red Wheelbarrow that different from Zoe? Or Lunch form Another One? They do what they do well I guess. I seem to remember Zoe being a bit messy so maybe I just contradicted my own criticism.

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Photo of utopiajane
3.59/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy honey brown with a bit of something ruby in it. A fat tan head of persistent foam that left lace and dwindled slowly to a layer on top. Nose is toasty bread, crusty, grainy and earthy with a touch of grass. Some citrus peel in the nose and a light caramel. Taste is a bit hoppier than I would like for an amber. It has plenty of toasty bread and sweet caramel that are out shined on the palate by hop forward flavors like grapefruit. It has the earthy pith and the peel of the grapefruit, and a bit of hop bitter too. It lost some of the caramel and bread to the hops in the dry finish. medium body with plenty of carbonation.

I liked it well enough but I think it's a touch too hoppy to be an amber.

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Photo of argock
3.7/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 16.9 oz light amber bottle into a Samuel Adams Perfect Pint glass. Bottled on 022514 on side of label. Purchased at Wine Warehouse (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Crystal clear red/amber with prodigious 2-finger frothy/foamy beige head with good retention and clingy lace at the top of the glass.

S: Sweet toffee-caramel and strong citrus with grapefruit, lemon, and orange with some pine resin and honeysuckle floral notes too.

T: The flavor is good but a bit estery and overhopped for the style in my opinion. The floral component of the hoppiness takes over with big orange blossom aroma that fades to more sweet malt and a moderate bitterness. I think this is good but the hops overtake the maltiness and leaves an aroma/flavor mismatch.

M: A little sticky but with good medium body and carbonation.

O: Not worth the exorbitant price ($7.29) and badly outdone by Zoe in my opinion. THis might spell the end of buying Maine's tres cher beers.

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Photo of Tmyhre802
3.84/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Good beer, but overall not recognizable or standoutish. I understand that's what some people want but there is just nothing terribly unique about the wheelbarrow. Don't take this as I don't like it, rather it's hard not to compare to another one, lunch, dinner and even though they are different styles I feel this one feel a little short.

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Photo of MDDMD
4/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A-red amber color with a nice off-white head and good lacing

S-pine, citrus, caramel, malty, slight earthy

T-citrus, light orange, caramel malt, earthy, moderate bitter finish

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, crisp and smooth

O-enjoyable amber ale, flavorful

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Photo of clayrock81
4.03/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Poured a amber brown body with two finger head and lace patches. The aroma is real hoppy with notes of grass and maybe pine along with a decent chunk of caramel and a little bread. This is a more hoppy red and one of the hoppier ones that gets it right. Hops are the star as the beer is balanced and has both a bread/cracker like crispness in the finish and caramel sweetness, but these are underneath a real citric and fresh hop bite that is very pleasing.

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Photo of KornWallace
4.24/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Date: 4/14/14
Location: Half Time Poughkeepsie
Glassware: Tulip
Appearance: Pours amber to brown in color. With a rich and light brown head about a thumb width in size.
Aromatics: Rich in both citrusy hops and thick wheats.
Flavor: The wheats and yeast give the beer a very bready flavor. There is a citrusy yet peppery flavor
Mouthfeel: The beer has a very bready mouthfeel
Notes: Bottled 10/22/13 and drank after the 90 day recommendation.

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Photo of CHADMC3
4.11/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours an opaque red body with copper hues beneath the rocky off white head which billows atop the beer begfore dissipating to leave scattered sticky lacing about the glass.

The piney and citrus ho notes can be smelled from afar but close inspection reveals caramel or toffee malt are a bit more prominent. There are some darker citrus fruit hints like nectarine or maybe even traces of plum.

The flavor offers generous malt up front, again caramel or toffee, and maybe just a touch toasted with more pine and citrus hops.

Medium to fuller in body with a palate coating finish and generous carbonation.

Just a darn good beer. Well done. Great character and plenty to offer the senses.

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Photo of PicoPapa
3.75/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

16.9oz bottle with a bottled on date of 022514. Pours a murky rust color with an inch of head. Good amount of lacing. The aroma is piney hops, toasted malts, and caramel. The taste is pine hops, orange peel, toasted and caramel malts. Floral hop notes as well. Light pine with lots of toasted and caramel malts at the end. Pretty malty. Light mouthfeel that is a bit oily. I prefer Zoe over this one. Overall, nothing special, but not bad.

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Photo of johnnnniee
4.06/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle from Ayotte's
Pours a stunningly clear red brown color with a huge fluffy milky white head that persists forever. Huge citrus hop aromas are nicely countered with a bit of caramel and toffee as well as hints of dark pitted fruits. The flavor is solidly malty with caramel and toffee up front with hints of dried fruits. Citrus earth and pine sweep in quickly to cut right through the fruity sweetness. Lingering hop bitterness last long after every sip. Medium body with a moderate level of carbonation and a slick resinous mouthfeel. Another great beer from Maine beer. I would drink so much of this shit if I weren't forced to buy it in 7 dollar pint bottles. Love your beer, hate your price point!

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Photo of far333
4.19/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.5

Dark honey colroed with a half inch head of oatmeal colored foam that lingers long, and leaves big webs and pinwheels of lace on the insides of the glass as it's drained.

Inviting aroma of toffee, cinnamon, brown sugar, and grapefruit.

Bright and pungent hoppy flavors upfront, full of pine and grapefruit, assertive bitterness. A subtle malt backbone rides beneath, but hops fully overpowers.

Full mouthfeel, puckers the cheeks, finishes with a carbonation tingle. Great beer.

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Photo of farrago
4.42/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a deep, dense head of minimally three fingers, very even surface, light brown in hue, very impressive looking, slides immediately down the side of the tilted glass, only a rare streak of lacing to be found, the overall retention is excellent. Filmy amber red in color with a healthy glow, you have to get really close to see the active bubbles within, overall the color may be closer to brown than orange, on the dark side. The nose mixes cocoa. floral water, orange peels, baking spice and a stiffening amount of bright hops and hard crust baguette, while there’s little that is bitter it never feels too sweet, the peach, apricot, red cherry, pear fruit scents are much more complementary than the star of the show. Medium-bodied, creamy mouth feel with close to zero softness, has an understated muscularity. Not a lot of roast, dryness comes from the grassiness, dark chocolate powder, bread grains and bare touch of black pepper. Caramel, spiced oranges, chamomile, basil and oregano, the breadiness is not sweet but is a steadying cornerstone. Peach, apricot, nectarine fruit with a touch of pineapple. It has a slimmed down fluidity which you don’t find often these days in this beer category. Goes on and on at the end, entirely unforced.

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Red Wheelbarrow from Maine Beer Company
91 out of 100 based on 122 ratings.