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Zoe - Maine Beer Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

544 Reviews
no score

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Reviews: 544
Hads: 2,213
Avg: 4.2
pDev: 17.38%
Wants: 308
Gots: 342 | FT: 14
Brewed by:
Maine Beer Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  7.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: deltatauhobbit on 12-03-2009

Our take on an American amber ale. Complex malt bill delivers notes of dark raisin, chocolate and biscuit. Copious additions of American hops yield notes of pine and citrus.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 544 | Hads: 2,213
Photo of sk8man121
4.64/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

2010 Vintage 16.9 oz bottle poured into goblet.

A: Pours a hazy amber with a massive 4-finger head. Between this and Spring Peeper Ale, I'm constantly amazed at the size of the heads on MBC beers.

S: Perhaps the "freshest" smelling beer I've ever come across. This smells like a pine forest, with grapefruit and toasted malts coming through. Unbelievable.

T: Taste is similar to smell, with the extreme hop notes toned down just enough. Swings back and forth between a brown, red and amber ale. Very enjoyable.

M: Nice, unobtrusive mouthfeel makes this go down even easier.

D: As far as a west-coast style east-coast ale, this one takes the cake. Spring Peeper was very good; this is incredible.

Do not miss this.

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Photo of mpedara429
4.64/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A: Reddish brown in color. When moved into the light, it has more of a resemblance to a hazy copper. Two plus fingers of tan head that hold strong with their retention. Once faded, it leaves a Swiss cheese-like lacing.

S: Big, juicy fruit scents of grapefruit, pineapple, and mango. A healthy portion of pine in there to make this super appealing.

T: Very piney and earthy. Fruit that was in the nose is a little more subtle than the it would've implied, but not to a fault. Overall maltiness seems just right. The layering of flavors is great.

M: Medium body and medium carb. Pretty clean and refreshing for 7% above brew.

O: Incredible. if only more ambers were as well put together as this one. Ambers have always been tough for me because I find they are either too hoppy, not hoppy enough, or too malty. Zoe strikes the balance.

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Photo of Thickfreakness
4.63/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

A- Pours a sinful mahogany cherry brown with over two fingers of frothy head. Redeculous amounts of sticky, spider-web lacing grabbing onto the glass. Very nice clarity with cherry red highlights.

S- Fruity grapefruit, cocoa, pine needles, rye bread, orange peel all with a wonderful spiceiness. Picking up some caraway, cilantro, fennel, and a touch of funky yeast.

T- Spicey and fruity! Grapefruit, orange, rye malt, caraway, pine sap, and a touch of caramel. Over-ripe pineapple, slightly funky yeast, and some bits of raisins/figs/dried fruit and dry hay. Has a touch of a metallic/mineral finish.

M- Nicely bitter, yet sweet. Pungent citrus/pine punch meets caramel/pineapple sweetness and blends seemlessly. Loving the spiciness! This is unreal, really glad it's finally in my area.

O- If you like NN... you'll love the shit out of this beer! It's like a more mature Nugget Nectar. Tons of sweet, bitter and spice that dance all over your tongue. The only problem with this is the price. $7/16oz is gonna make it hard for me to justify very often. I wanna see how much of this excedes the 90 drinking date near me. I have a feeling not very much. Too bad this wasn't in a 4-pack for $20.

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Photo of CheezyBlaster
4.63/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Wonderful pour! Great head and retention, a rocky beast.

I close my eyes and sniff, and I smell a well hopped and fruity arrangement with the associated citruses and pines. The hops are the voice and I have to search for some malt or fruit, and I do eventually find some moderate caramel, but the hops are just, mmm, juicy.

Initially, at the front end, it tastes like roasted barley with a slight nib of dark chocolate, and I expect that to follow differently than the fruity/citrus driven hopsplosion that ensues. Fresh grassiness and smoked woodchips finish it out with a lingering chalky malt and sour hop tingle. Very interesting brew. I like it, a LOT. Try one!

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Photo of king75
4.62/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A- extremely dark red, almost black, a nice solid inch or two of a dirty white foam head.

S- The smell of this beer is absolutely amazing, hops galore, citrus nodes, even has a slight wild flower smell.

T- get a lot of hops, but there is a good quality malty taste accompanying it. A very clean finish. Leaves you begging for more.

M- Light, just the right amount of weight, light but not too light. Floats across the palate.

D- Could drink this all day long and you would never hear me complain.

The best amber ale I have had by far. Blew my mind! The flavor complexity is amazing almost drinks like an IPA which is something that I do not mind. Highly recommend you try this one if given a chance. I definitely want to try this one again.

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Photo of telecomz
4.62/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The best take on the amber/red ale on the market. An epiphany.

I love this beer.

Strong citrus, tropical notes lead to a slight malty-dried fruit aroma.

The taste is amazing. Stronger than typical hoopy notes give way to a solid malt backbone.

The beer is bottle conditioned and has medium carbonation, Mouth feel is solid.

As a native Mainer, I couldn't be prouder.

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Photo of JoEBoBpr
4.62/5  rDev +10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Maine Beer Company Zoe

Poured into a Schlafly snifter from a cool 1 pint 9oz bottle.

This brew pours a nice rich dark amber color with some slight brown hints. The head is nice and dense and stands about 1 inch tall with some medium sized bubbles sprinkled around. There are some nice dark amber and ruby edges in this brew and the ehad recedes slowly with some nice sticky lacing. (4.5)

Wow! Aroma is DANK! Like a fresh bud of pot it has tons of resinous pine notes with some delicious herbal notes. Earthy and flowery hop aroma. There is also some slight citrus notes on the back end of the aroma. This is one of the nicest smelling beers I’ve ever had. Biscuit notes and slight grainy malt is definitely in the background and gives the brew a mouthwatering quality. (5.0)

Starts off with some intense hop notes and bitterness. Intensely balanced resinous hops with a nice bitter middle and dry bitter finish. The flavor is soo balanced then with delicious deep malt sweetness. Slight dark caramel notes mixed in with the hops give this beer a delicious balanced flavor profile. Finishes with some citrus and some nice dry hop notes. Body is thick for the style and very well carbonated. (4.5)(4.5)

This brew is delicious and gorgeous. Nice hop notes and a delicious malt backbone. Very well crafted. If I lived in Portland, Maine this would be in my fridge constantly. (4.5)

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Photo of FrankLloydMike
4.62/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow! What a great beer--I've never had such a fresh hop taste from a bottle.

A: Pours a very dark amber with little head. Could have fooled me for a brown ale at first.

S: Beautiful, fresh, floral hop smell dominates but only slightly over a nice caramel, malt background.

T: True to the smell, the taste here is dominated by the uber-fresh, floral hops. This could not be more perfectly balanced against the lovely malt, almost coffee-like background. This tastes more like an unusual, but excellent, fresh IPA.

M: Smooth, medium body and carbonation, lingers from the stickiness of the hops.

D: This goes down easy and the overall excellence of the beer begs for another.

This is an exceptionally well-done beer, and has cemented itself as my favorite to date of Maine beers. I had to pick up another and the Spring Peeper before heading back, so we'll see if it gets knocked off by its sibling.

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Photo of xanok
4.62/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into my Stone VE glass.

A-Pours a foggy brownish red. Little lacing on the light brown head.

S-Piney hops, hints of grapefruit. Strong scent of caramel as well, with other malts.

T-Pretty straightforward, not overly complex. Great hop profile followed with that strong malt aftertaste. The beauty in this beer is its near perfect balance.

M-Body is actually a bit heavy for the style. The hop bitterness really stays in your mouth for quite some time afterwards. Carbonation is average for the style.

D-I can't stop sipping it. It's truly a great amber. 7.2% abv isn't a whole lot, but its completely hidden.

Notes-I don't need my ambers overly complex, just balanced. This one is near perfection.

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Photo of dpalaci6
4.6/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Bottle purchased straight from the brewery poured into a pint glass.

A- Dark brown with a slightly reddish tint. Nice, white head on top. This is a pretty dark amber.

S- This is different than many of the beers from the Portland area. Yeast is not dominant in the smell at all. Smell is clean, straight forward, and to the point. Toasty malts and a nice floral/slightly citrus hop aroma.

M + D - Very smooth mouthfeel. Almost slick.

D- Very easy to drink. I wish I could have brought more back to Michigan

T- Same as the smell. Straight forward. Toasty malt and floral/citrus hops. The yeast gets out of the way and lets the malt and hops shine. Beer finishes dry

I am not usually an Amber guy, but this beer was fantastic. They advertise this beer as a happy, hoppy amber. For once, there is truth in advertising. If you live in Portland, do yourself a favor and get some Zoe.

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Photo of harrymel
4.59/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottled 07MAY13

Pours amber with a gingerbread hue and a solid quilt of toasted cream foam. Smells of hops from the pour, now I will dive in.... Very northwest: pine, resin, some grapefruit, some tea, Special B malt here on the nose (or the likes), and a bit of stones. Flavor is malt, tea, hops, some really aromatic character I just can't put my finger on, some toasted wheat bread. The flavor here is surprising and quite nice. Fairly full bodied for the style with low carb and a semi dry finish. I am really impressed with this beer. I'm happy with the divisive character of the nose vs flavor on this one. I am met initially with the impression that this will be a robust, in-your-face amber a la Troegs, but am met with a sophisticated, mature flavor profile hard to beat for the style in my opinion. A real treat of the style.

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Photo of twelvsies
4.58/5  rDev +9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

The second offering from Maine Brewing Company. I've been drinking a lot of this beer recently, but just now got the chance to sit down and reminisce. 16.9 oz bottle, smiley label. This is one handsome beer. A hearty pour yields a huge head and the retention is unbeatable. Thick inch of foam tops a rusty garnet brew, thick lacing on the way down. Hops dominate the nose, mostly pine, and subtle malt presence. At first sip... Mmm. Hoppy, yes, very bitter up front with lots of pine / spruce flavorings and some citrus, but also plenty of malt backbone for balance. Rustic, toasty bread malt and the slightest sweetness underneath the hops. Zesty. Excellent lingering dryness on the palate, yet a robust and supple mouthfeel, very sturdy. Really tasty beer here folks. And this beer is great w/ food. Having just moved to Portland I'm excited to have this available all the time. Definitely worth seeking out, as is their Peeper Ale - these guys are on a roll. I literally cannot wait to see what they brew next. Cheers!

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Photo of JMScowcroft
4.58/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Maine Beer Company - Zoe

Look - Pours dark maple syrup then settles dark brown, almost amber around the sides. Great soapy head. Unfiltered sedimentary body. Glorious lacing. These brews tend to intimidate those who are not into craft beers. Pour carefully to avoid getting too much sediment, unless you are like me and you don't mind eating it.

Smell - Dark malts, sweet but subtle. Toasted caramel. Burnt citrus hops are a nice addition here.

Taste - Wow! Dark fruity complexity of an advanced malty dubble. Bitter hops are there in the back, nice and deep.

Mouthfeel - Not boozy, sweet and burnt caramel. Drinkable for sure. The burnt bitter hops are quite unique and round this out quite well.

Overall - Interesting brew. Almost like burnt maple syrup or burnt dark brown sugar, but in a good way. Thoroughly enjoyed. Would recommend.

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Photo of Willytee3
4.58/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap poured into an 8oz sniffer glass, perfect.

Pours a dark chocolaty black with large tan head that the bartender kindly allowed to flow off when filling this smallish glass.

Smell of roasty malts and bittersweet chocolate with good hop aroma floated in there.

Tastes of toasty bittersweet chocolate malts, with pine and fruity hops present in the background. Nice bitter blends with the toast through finish. Nicely balanced!

Very smooth and velvety mouth feel with perfect carbonation.

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Photo of shigg85
4.58/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bought a bottle from M & R Liquors in Manchester, CT. Poured into a U.S. pint glass. Bottled 9/10/2013; consumed about 55 days afterward. Really rich malty flavors and an absolutely beautiful body (maybe due to the bottle conditioning). The foam is always a treat on these Maine brews. The aftertaste is a bit harsh toward the end of the bottle, but other than that, this is a solid, amazing red ale!

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Photo of pmlondrigan
4.57/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Zoe pours a really, really deep red, like clay red. Huge puffy off tan/light tan head tight, tight carb and a bite'o sheeting. Just a hair to dark on the color for me. Super fresh, olfactory over load of hops. Big piney and resinous hops, light citrus undertones. Massivley pithy and piney red ale here. But wait there's more, fruity flavors and malty flavors too. A well pronounced malt backbone. A slightly lingering bitter hop/bitter chocolate finish. I'm buying more of this stuff. This beer was so insanely fresh, all should seak this out.

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Photo of Pahn
4.57/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle into Duvel tulip. Bottled April 28, 2011 (ie ten days ago). Notably, bottle mentions that 1% of profits from the beer go to a whale-related charity, which is laudable.

Appearance: Free pour yields a three inch, frothy offwhite head that dissipates slowly leaving small, densely packed islands of lacing all over the glass. Pours a hazy dark ruby, and continues to fill the glass with lacing.

Smell: Giant hop aroma, like a fine Californian DIPA. The hop aroma is dank, grassy, piny, foresty, but rounds out with a nice citrus and apricot bite. Decent pastry-like malt backbone, though it fades to little more than a highlight. Hop aroma gets bigger and bigger with warmth, ending up as a beautifully integrated floral, grassy, citrus hop explosion.

Taste: Healthy bitterness, with grassy hops that transition to a nice malt backbone. The hops aren't quite as big as in the aroma, but the flavor compensates with a much better developed malt character, which is toasted and biscuity with just a bit of cookie sweetness. The bitterness sticks around as the beer transitions into a long, well-blended aftertaste.

This is a great beer. Over delivers both the hop fix and the malt fix. Near the end of the bottle, the flavor finally develops some booziness, but rather than being distracting this just lends a spiciness that compliments the big hops and malt. Hard to imagine improving on this beer... I guess if the hops were as potent and distinct as in the nose, it would be perfect.

Mouthfeel: Full side of medium bodied. Moderate carbonation. Slight dryness in the finish leading to a long, satisfying aftertaste.

Overall: This is the kind of beer I could keep on hand at all times, or--even better--drink fresh at a bar or local taproom on a near daily basis. Masterfully put together. Compares very favorably to Nugget Nectar or Cascazilla, both very formidable beers. I've been meaning to try Maine Beer Co. for awhile now, and having done so I'm very impressed.

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Photo of PHBoiler
4.55/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Roughly 6 week old bottle poured into Spieglau glass

This is the deepest darkness Amber I've ever poured. The balance between the sweetness of the malts and the bright hops is impressive on the nose as well as in the taste. Almost a nuttiness or roast on the tongue from the deep Amber at first. There are plenty of citrus hop notes as well as bittering hops. The malts round this beer out quite nicely. Impressive beer beyond the sea of DIPAs and barrel aged offerings that seem to dominate craft beer lately.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4.53/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Recieved this as a very generous extra recently. I decided to open it up today on my first day of vacation to really get things started right. Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 06/30/2010.

Huge pour, deep and ark brown in color with a three inch head of light tan that capped the top of the glass perfectly, leaving tons of coating lacing all over the sides of the glass that settled down nicely, and evenly, creating literally the perfect look.

Aroma was very hoppy, loads of orange, pineapple, lots of rich citrus notes riding on the back of a deep malty base. Rich caramel, bready malts, touches of deep citrus all over this. Really quite intense. Drinks like a thick IPA, an a damn good one at that! Really quite an amazing beer. Long citrus flavor in the finish with touches of candied sugar an pineapple slices.

Overall a fantastic beer. Really under the radar here and one of the best extras I have ever recieved.

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Photo of DrinkSlurm
4.53/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had from bottle. Packaged on September 19, 2011 - drank on October 21, 2011. Thats pretty fresh, especially living 5+hrs to the brewery.

Poured a reddish/brown haze. Even the foam had a reddish hue; almost looked like a fresh ripe fig. Fantastic looking. Smelled very very hoppy, but the taste wasnt overwhelmed with hops. Very hoppy initial flavour but finished very crisp, malty, and like a red ale should. An amazing unique beer! It is in my personal top 10 maybe 20 beers I ever had. Buy it if you see it! I just wish the bottle was bigger! :)

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Photo of SawDog505
4.53/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a 13 oz tulip glass. Pours a magnificent deep amber, with a tanish red highlights 2 inch sticky head, that takes some time settling, gorgeous lacing. Smell tangerine, pineapple, pine, and some grass. Taste is all of that, with a little hint of carmel in the finish, really well balanced. Most dominant flavor tangerine, by a tiny margin. Body is really nice, a little on the larger side for the ABV, very easy drinking. Not really dry and the perfect amount of life. Hello Maine Beer Company, welcome to New Hampshire! This is a wonderful beer and says the date of 10/27/11 on it, hard to walk past this when fresh.

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Photo of potownbill
4.52/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I had a chance to have the Peepers Ale on a recent trip to Bar Harbor. I purchased a bottle of Zoe at a great beer store (Global in Ellsworth) on the way home. Should have bought a case!
Appearance: Cloudy Mahogany Brown. Off white head with good lacing.
Smell: Bitter hops. Default smell would be citrus with some pine, but it was a very pleasant bitter aroma.
Taste: Citrus, with a decent malt background.
Mouthfeel; some puckering, but not overly hopped. Smooth
Drinkability: Oh, sooo good!
This brewery only offers a couple beers, but they do them very well.

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Photo of NiceTaps
4.52/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

500ml bottle poured into a nonic pint glass. Bottled on 2/28/13, nice and fresh.

A- It's catagorized as an American Amber/Red ale and that's no joke. It is a beautiful, hearty looking reddish amber, some brown too, depending on the light. A dense 4-finger head, khaki-tan in color, lasts and lasts leaving heavy lacing and a heavy 'plop' of creaminess in its middle.
Just hazy enough to highlight the bottle conditioning, and it starts off with lots of bubbles.

S- Fresh pine is the first smell that I pick up. Following are the citrus hops, bready malts, and some note of alcohol making it a subtle blend.

T-Citrus and raisin malt bread with some pine resin and a mild chocolate finish. How's that description...?...yeah, that's what I said!

M-Lots of chewy body, a bit of oily pine. This beer feels good on the palate.

O- A flavorful, powerful brew. The only downside that I see is that it's not an everyday 'go-to' type because it's aggressive. As a hearty amber, it's the real deal.

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Photo of scotorum
4.52/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the 16.9 oz. bottle into a Duvel tulip glass.

a: A deep nearly clear ruby, a two inch tan head receded very slowly to heavy surface foam and considerable lacing.

s: Plums and/or some other dark fruit.

t: Dark malt balanced beautifully by fruity hops. Refreshing and delicious. Smoky dark fruit aftertaste lingers.

m: Moderate to chewy, lots of body and carbonation.

o: A superb brew, perhaps more like a hoppy Belgian Dubbel than the American Amber it is listed as. At $7 a pint most of us cannot afford to drink Zoe regularly. But it is a fine treat anytime.

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Photo of celticfutblclub
4.52/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

16.9 oz poured into a pint glass. bottled 3/10/2011

A - dark dark brown with a nice thick creamy head that slowly recedes to a thin line that sticks for the duration.

S - holy hops. they werent lying about this being a hoppy amber and you can tell right from the first whiff. citrus banana and a bubblegum type flavor are also in there.

T - there are those hops again. theres a nice balance between them and a malty underneath. the finish on this thing is quite amazing and if drinkability was still around would definitely be giving this a 5 out of 5 in that regard.

M - this thing is just so unbelievably smooth and sticks to the side of your mouth for just enough time.

O - i had heard a lot of great things about this company and though i thought the peeper ale was very good quality it did not blow me away but i knew i had to wait to try this one. it definitely holds up to the hype in my opinion. go get one.

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Zoe from Maine Beer Company
93 out of 100 based on 544 ratings.