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Zoe - Maine Beer Company

Not Rated.

Educational use only; do not reuse.

547 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 547
Hads: 2,237
Avg: 4.19
pDev: 17.42%
Wants: 309
Gots: 352 | 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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 547 | Hads: 2,237
Photo of PolhillS
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Delete than expected. Less than an inch head with fine lacing.
Smells piney and citrus with very little toast.
Taste likes an IPA, but milder. Looks can be deceiving, but this was good beer.

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Photo of mynie
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On tap at the Wild Horse in Beverly, MA. Expensive 16.9 oz bottles can be found easily throughout MA. I don't usually buy Maine Beer Co bottles, though, because their high pricepoint makes them linger on shelves and I'm just not gonna spend 50 cents an ounce on stale beer.

Pours a hazy, rusty brown. Smells of very aggressive, nice pine hops with only a small hint of a malt background. The aroma does not convey the relatively high ABV.

Tastes good, but a little uneven. Pine up front, grapefruit in the middle, pine and a bit of yeast at the back end. One of the most aggressively hoppy reds I've ever come across, and while it was enjoyable the lack of balance holds it back.

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Photo of WhiteHillsStore
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice amber red with a white head that trails the glass. The smell was full of pine but with some toasted scents coming through as well. The taste was expertly balanced with piney hops coming through and then a bit of the sweet malt. The finish was very clean with a citrus finish that left you wanting another sip. Loved this one.

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Photo of gopens44
4.24/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Although it's higher in ABV, if anyone is looking to replace Levitation once Stone retires it, have a look at this one. VERY similar in taste (although Zoe is just a touch more earthy) and it's as light a drinker as you can find at 7.2%

Looks great. Deep brown with a massive cream colored head that went on for days and laced in text book fashion. Nose carried a nice amount of hops and an earthiness, which I mention in the taste on the backend. Finishes crisp and virtually no sweetness hanging around on the tongue despite just a bit in this well balanced taste. Really a great beer that I would not have thought twice about had I not been drawn to check out everything they have because of the Lunch and Dinner craze.

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4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first go with a Maine Beer Company brew and I am impressed.

Paired with Bill Evans' "On Green Dolphin Street."

This beer was charming, clean and classy. Sometimes you just pull the right beer at the right time, you know?

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Photo of Tsar_Riga
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark red with orange highlights, slightly hazy, and a tan-orange head that forms up nicely. Not much lacing.

S - Hop oils are front and center. Pine predominates, with some grapefruit notes.

T - I fear this is a touch faded, because the fruit notes are not very strong. Pine is forward, with a malty sweetness in the close.

M - Serious drying in the close. Good carbonation.

O - I'd love to get this fresh, but even with a couple months on it, this is a very good beer. Enjoyably hop-forward, with pine as its central note.

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Photo of SHODriver
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: poured into a Sam Smith's pint glass to a deep red with a two finger dense off white head that retains well and leaves decent lacing
S: smells of piney and citrusy hops with some caramel and toasted malt backbone
T: taste is pine and citrus with toasted malt and some caramel sweetness. a little spicy at times as well. slightly herbal and earthy as well with a fairly oily and resinous character. swallow is more oily pine hop flavor with some slight toasted malt on the back end and some lingering spicy flavors.
M: this beer is medium in body with soft bottle conditioned carbonation and a refreshing finish that's a little oily from the hops.
O: overall this is a very enjoyable beer with great flavors and complexity. Well crafted and very hoppy. Definitely a solid representation of the style.

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Photo of PGD120
4.01/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

16.9 oz bottle Poured into a snifter

Appearance: deep dark amber with a 1 finger bright tan head. Some visible carbonation. And nice lacing

Smell: defintlly hop forward with some grapfruit and pine type aromas. Little bit of biscuit lingers at the end

Taste: upfront it's all nice hop flavors. Grafruit and pine but not over powering. Finishes off sweet roasted malty. Some biscuit and yeast

Feel: medium body and some nice carbonation. Actually finishes off just a little dry

Overall: it was pretty tasty, if it were easier to get and maybe a little cheaper than $7 a bottle I'd get it again.

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Photo of Antc2382
4.02/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle. Look- very dark amber, almost black. Huge tan head sticks around for awhile. Head spreads throughout, lacing looks nice. Smell- grassy.. Some floral notes. Actually this beer reminds me of a better Lagunitas Nighttime. Taste- good stuff. Blended. Malt, hops, earthiness, smoothness. Feel- surprisingly smooth, not much booze felt. O- an interesting, well thought Amber ale.

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Photo of predikit
3.76/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a brown ruby, that settles in the glass opaque deepest of ambers. Leaves a tall off-white head that sticks around for awhile, leaves a moderate amount of lacing on the glass.

Smell is hoppy, piney grapefruit notes, with some molasses and dark fruit notes.

Like the nose, hops are present, resinous, leaves malted sweetness on the tongue, brown bread, minor vanilla notes, a little fig. Hops are the main focus here it seems, and most other notes in the beer take the backseat. Minor bitterness takes the finish.

Medium bodied, crisp and leaves clean.

A interesting take on an amber ale, but slightly over-hopped to my tongue which steal from the experience.

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Photo of kojevergas
3.65/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

BOTTLE: Brown glass. Understated label art. Pry-off pressure cap. 7.2% ABV. "09C214 50."

Served cold into a tulip. Expectations are sky high given its reputation and current ratings.

HEAD: 2 fingers wide. Pale khaki colour. Fluffy soft consistency. Even. Retention is great - about 7-8 minutes. Leaves an even coating of nice lacing on the sides of the glass as the head recedes.

BODY: Dark deep amber hues. No yeast particulate or hop sediment is visible.

It's a good looking amber, but isn't unique or special per se.

AROMA: Amber malts, malty sweetness, floral hop character, some caramalt, and vague herbal hop character. No yeast character, alcohol, off-notes, or spice is detectable.

Overall, it's a nice aroma for an amber, but isn't mind-blowing. Aromatic intensity is average.

TASTE: Has a lovely amber malt backbone with a fresh pleasant hop profile comprised of fresh floral notes, herbal character, and an edge of pine or perhaps faint spruce? Light toastiness, some caramalt, and mild resins. The herbal character is more pronounced than you'd find in most ambers. It's complex and subtle enough, but doesn't impress in terms of intricacy or nuance.

Above average depth of flavour. Average flavour duration and intensity. Bitterness/sweetness balance is apt, and the hops seem well paired to the malts. No yeast character, overt alcohol, or off-notes are detectable.

I'm not finding the raisin, chocolate, and biscuit mentioned on their website, nor is it citrusy.

TEXTURE: Smooth, wet, refreshing, medium-bodied, overcarbonated, and aptly soft. Thickness is apt. This texture complements the taste nicely but doesn't quite elevate the beer.

Not oily, gushed, hot, boozy, astringent, harsh, rough, or scratchy.

Overall presence on the palate is good.

OVERALL: A very good amber with a surprisingly well balanced taste, Zoe is a beer every enthusiast will enjoy trying. But it doesn't beat out Troegs Nugget Nectar for the title of best amber, and it's not a world-class brew per se. Easily one of the best beers brewed in this style in the USA, but it won't gobsmack the discerning drinker. It's damn drinkable, though, and I'll inhale the bottle. A nice introduction to Maine Beer Company.


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Photo of mabermud
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep ruby red body. One inch, persistent, off-white, pillow-fluffy head. The head is super slick. Medium-malt and caramel aroma, with some sharp hop notes in back. I am not an amber guy, so my take my review with a grain of salt. The taste was ho-hum...I can understand why it is highly rated. Balanced flavor of medium roasted malts and hops. The mouth feel substantial, but was somewhat dry...

Overall - For me, the appearance and the smell were the best things about this beer.

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Photo of KidDoc
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured 16.9 oz bottle (102114 date) into a Samuel Smith's pint glass. Hazy deep Amber color with nice head, good retention and nice medium lacing all the way down. Aroma is a delicious understated piney hop. The flavor picks up some of the darker caramel malts and is almost a touch toasted copper. The alcohol is mostly well-hidden but breaks through at the back of the palate. Amber ales are not my thing but this is very nice. My first MBC beer. I will certainly seek out others.

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Photo of Smithjt3
4.24/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Though I tend to like more flavorful brews, Zoe has become a favorite in my house due to its smoothness. Like with most bottles from Maine Beer Company, it is best to drink them within a couple of months.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.77/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Another old ass beer picked up from the house of 1,000 beers discounted by half since it's the April 15th batch 2014.

A - Deep amber in color very dark ruby semi hazy with sight sediment chunks. Head is 2+ of off white head that pulls back for exceptional lacing on the glass. Pretty.
S - Decent amber not too hoppy mostly biscuit malts, some chocolate, and a touch of caramel like sweetness.
T - Has a bitter twang to it lingering to some woody notes and some herbal hops. Mostly mild with tones of caramel and biscuit malts. I assume better fresh.
M - Good body easy to drink light to medium carbonation.

Overall though not bad or off this beer doesn't seem to go very good with age so if you see a bottle 6+ months old avoid it unless hella cheap. Not bad at all.

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Photo of ronricorossi
3.95/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Another classy beer from MBC. Rich and malty, frothy head. Those good amber flavors, biscuit, oat, just a touch of caramel, does copper have a taste? MBC reminds me of Russian River, in that their not experimentalists, they're not releasing bunches of variations with unusual ingredients. They just take a beer style and nail it, giving us their version of a classic recipe. They just make great beers.

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Photo of spacecake9
3.75/5  rDev -10.5%

Very tasty amber ale. One of the few beers I've had recently that still had a head when the class was almost empty. Good solid beer, but I've had better from the folks at Maine Beer Company.

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Photo of utopiajane
3.58/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.5

Pours darker amber, hazy with lots floating in it. Faint soft glow form orange hue and a tinge of ruby. Fat head of khaki colored foam that hugs the glass, is terribly creamy, lasts and leaves striking lace. Nose is biscuity malt with a touch of light brown sugar. Orange, caramel and pine. A trace of herbal scent to the nose as well. Mouthfeel is medium but lies to you and tells you it's lighter. You almost believe it too. The biscuit is soft and creamy. Hints of brown sugar and soft light caramel. The hops are fruity with a touch of orange a bit of pith and a nice gentle pine. The taste overall is a bit bland. The body of the beer is so soft I guarantee that will be your first thought. " How smooth, creamy and soft." There is a substantial bitter that takes the finish and leaves you with that bland biscuit and some pine. There is a moment of resinous stickiness on the tongue but it's not got enough flavor to it.

I thought the softness of the malt in this was remarkable but that the flavor was lacking in boldness. It could have been more dynamic.

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Photo of MisSigsFan
4.21/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Pours a dark red/brown color with a thick tan head. Smells of pine, citrus, and a little chocolate. Taste is fairly well balanced between malt and hops. A lot of roasty, chocolaty malts complemented by pine and citrus hops. Some dark fruit in there too. This isn't as much a hoppy amber as it is a Black IPA. Much darker and roastier than other hoppy ambers I've had. Mouthfeel is slightly heavy and carbonation is pretty low. I usually like my hoppy beers to be lighter and crisper. Overall, a pretty good amber. MBC definitely did their own thing with it.

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Photo of yarnbomb
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

Maybe I'm hitting a bit low here, it's just not my favorite MBC beer. Still top quality, a fantastic version of the style... which I don't care for all that much. I'll take any other MBC over it, but I'd take this over most other red ales.

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Photo of TubaManJack
4/5  rDev -4.5%

An unexpected treat and it is only 8 days out from bottling, $7.49 for 500ml. Classic styled review

Appearance - Clean Pour, yields two foaming, wispy fingers of head. Best head retention I have come across in a while. Nice retention. The body is a deep mahogany wood a light carbonation coming though it.

Smell - Clean pinny and light grassy hops and mild malts, exactly what it should. There is a bit of dry hopping without going overboard.

Taste - As with the aroma, this is pretty classic amber ale, with a nice healthy malt profile with grain sweetness and subtle caramel flavors as well as a slightly bitter finish from the toasted malts. There is also a complementary presence of the citrus and pine that kick this one up to another level and make it more unique than most amber ales.

Mouthfeel - Medium body and carbonation. Very easy to drink and clean finish.

Overall - "Balling", a great very balanced Red Ale, but not as hoppy as the label would lead me to be believe but a great example of what the style can be. However at this price per oz it is hard for me for justify all the time. If this was in a six pack format, then it would be in a regular rotation.

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Photo of SD-Alefan
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%

Poured from the bottle into a tulip.
Pours a very dark amber color with a creamy. light tan head that left lacing all down the glass.
The aroma is citrus and candied fruit and a hint of caramel. Very nice.
This beer is a taste experience. Lots of tropical fruit up front , then some caramel and biscuit and then that piney, hoppy finish that leaves a bitter dryness on the tongue.
Medium-smooth on the mouthfeel.
Overall, this is a lovely blend of malty and hoppy and somehow manages to be both things at the same time. Wish I could have another right now!

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Photo of Immortale25
4.24/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Funky Buddha Brewery snifter. Label says 05/20/14.

A- Pours a light brown (not amber) color with a 1/2 inch tan head that retains well before becoming a thick ring around the edge of the glass and a bubbly half sheet of surface foam. Semi-resilient lacing leaves a jagged ring behind.

S- Very hoppy nose with piney elements and a brown sugary malt sweetness. Combined, it reminds me more of an American Barleywine or straight-up IPA.

T- Piney hops, toasty sweet malt and a noticeable alcohol presence. There are caramel notes from the malt and the bitterness has a considerable duration on the palate.

M- Oily from the hops with medium carbonation and a fullish body.

O- I don't know who they're kidding. This isn't a simple amber ale. This is either a red IPA or an American Strong Ale due to the high hop content and moderate-to-high alcohol. It's delicious but mislabeled.

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Photo of SebD
3.86/5  rDev -7.9%

Appearance: It has a nice deep ruby/amber color to it. It has a nice thick off-white head that dies down moderately slow and leaves some lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitely give out hints of roasted/buiscuity malts, sweet caramel, some nuttiness, light coffee and pine resins.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has some roasted/buiscuity malts, some caramel, a definite nuttiness, light coffee and some bitter pine resins.

Mouthfeel: It has a medium carbonation with a nice overall balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied by good flavors and aromas.

Serving type: bottle

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Photo of Flounder57
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%

16.9 oz bottle was poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: A two finger head was poured that reduced to a small puffy layer. It is an amber color with great clarity when held up to the light and vision of tiny bubbles coming up through the glass.

Smell: Pine hops, chocolate, roasted coffee, caramel, nutty, and toasted malts.

Taste: Same as above. Nice blend of ingredients with mild tingly bitterness in the rear. Hop flavor lasts all the way through the sip.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, medium to full bodied, medium carbonation, a little chewy, and mild bitterness.

Overall: Mmmm, I have forgotten how good this beer tasted. Need to make sure I have it more often.

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Zoe from Maine Beer Company
93 out of 100 based on 547 ratings.