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Zoe | Maine Beer Company

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
93
outstanding
589 Reviews
THE BROS
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BEER STATS
Reviews:
589
Ratings:
2,383
Avg:
4.19
pDev:
8.59%
 
 
Wants:
321
Gots:
453
For Trade:
13
ZoeZoe
BEER INFO

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

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
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.

Added by deltatauhobbit on 12-03-2009

User Reviews
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Reviews: 589 | Ratings: 2,383
Photo of indiapaleale
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Looking for a great, well-rounded, hoppy amber ale? This is it.

Like the other brews I've had from MBC, Zoe pours very, very well straight from the solid, Pliney-esque bottle. Nice amber/red color with a good foamy white head laying atop.

Aroma is a heavy dose of both fruity/floral hops and sweet caramel maltiness. It's almost evident how balanced this is by the aroma itself.

Flavor is just about exactly what I (me, personally) am looking for in an American Amber Ale. It's got a very solid malt backbone and weighs in at a very nice 7+% abv. The sweet caramel and toasty flavors meld almost perfectly with the strong, fresh hops flavors which are citrusy and sweet like someone squeezed oranges into this brew.

I can't get enough of this beer as it seems to fit all my beery desires in one. It's easy drinking, malty and hoppy and not too strong but not too weak. I've had it on tap and in bottles and have never once been even close to disappointed.

Way to go Maine Beer Company, you guys are doing very, very well. Cheers!

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Photo of John_M
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From a bottle I picked up in Portland (Maine) a few weeks back.

The beer pours a dark, reddish amber color with very good head retention and considerable lacing. The nose in this beer is really a thing of beauty and not what I normally expect in an amber... even a hoppy one. This beer is very perfumy, with considerable orange citrus, black pepper and even some light dank earth. The flavor profile replicates the nose for the most part, and I'm impressed by how well balanced this beer is. There's some moderate sweetness from the malt initiallly, but it's buoyed very nicely by a considerable amount of hoppy bitterness. This in turn leads to a fairly long, bitter, and impressively dry finish. The finish in this beer is very clean, with not even hint of the 7.2% alcohol in this beer. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, with a fairly long, bitter finish.

This is quite well done. Impressive (to say the least).

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Photo of perrymarcus
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle served in a standard shaker pint.

pours a cloudy dark amber, almost chestnut tone; somewhat aggressive pour yields a big, billowing heady - a good 3" worth - creamy, and beige in color. decent head retention, and a lot of patchy lacing left on the glass.

fairly aromatic nose is hop-forward (pine, a little citrus), with a strong presence of toasted malt.

flavor delivers more of the same characteristics. nice and sort of unique blend of the hoppiness with the toasted/bready malt notes. very tasty. not crazy, mind-blowing tasty, but tasty.

medium-full bodied with lively carbonation.

overall this was a really solid amber, i liked it a lot. wouldn't go crazy for it, but i would definitely enjoy it again.

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Photo of stonermouse
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Excited to try this offering from a brewery that is impressing lately. Poured into a Sam Adams glass.

Nice looking dark amber color. Almost nutmeg in color. Pours super cloudy due to copious amounts of yeast in the bottle. I personally like this effect, at least on the look of the beer. It would be tough to pour this one even opaquely.

Smell is a bit spicy. A good deal of biting floral hop aroma comes through as well.

The flavor is really impressive. It's complex, as the hops are biting and grassy-good. The malt profile is also biting and spicy, and the flavor in total is deep and complex, yet refreshing. The flavor is quite dense and coats well, but the mouthfeel isn't too heavy.

A flavorful and delightful brew. Let it settle and pour carefully if you want to minimize the yeast in the look, but truly, the yeast in the pour of this one doesn't effect the flavor too much.

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Photo of brentk56
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a fairly dark amber color with a very nice head; solid in both the stickage and lacing departments

Smell: For a beer of this age, this still has a strong floral, hoppy aroma about it; rather biscuity, too, but just imagine what it might have been like when first brewed!

Taste: The biscuity, dark bread malt backbone appears right up front and is a strong presence from start to finish; it doesn't take long, however, for the citrusy hops to make a stand, leaving a tangerine bitterness that combats the malt; again, I imagine this would have been extraordinary when fresh so I am going to bump up the score a notch

Mouthfeel: Medium to full body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Maine Beer Company is a brewery to be reckoned with if you are a hop lover; I, for one, am going to keep my eye on them as this is a great example of a hoppy amber

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Photo of TheDudeRules
3.88/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a rich amber color into my pint glass. Two full fingers of cream colored head. Some lacing remains. Caramel and malt on the nose. Surprisingly this beer is hop forward. Cures that malty/caramel garbage I was worried about in the smell. Quite a pleasant beer.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Dark amber-y copper to ruby red when held to light. Dull brown otherwise. Big heap o' light beige head leaves no fewer than 8 rings on my glass by the time I finished this beer.

Aroma is dark bread, tobacco and Pinesol. Taste is citrus hops and sweet malt. Citrus and more Pinesol. Bold flavors.

I had this when it first came out and like it better now that I've come back to it.

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Photo of ShanePB
3.86/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The first of two Maine Beer Co. bottles generously sent to me by NJBeerNerd, thanks Mike! 16.9 oz beautifully simplistic bottle with a really awesome "environmental" story behind the brewery and the inspiration for this beer, Zoe. Cool stuff.

A: Cloudy dark ruby body with a creamy, slightly off-white head. This exhibits phenomenal retention and leaves wonderful lacing behind. An outstanding looking beer, especially for the style. Well done, this is off to a great start.

S: Subtle gooey caramel malt notes, pine and sap hop aromas fill in, finishing with some green tea leaves. A floral aspect really opens up as this warmed up a bit and wasn't quite as obvious as first. Perhaps something like a daisy flower, the notes are quite mellow but a nice added layer. Everything is there but overall it's not as aromatic as I expected.

T: Dry floral hop notes coat the palate up front washing it with a bitter taste. Sweet malt - kind of fruity - arrives to balance out the hop bite, even though it's not that much to begin with. Tangerine rind is in the finish and speaking of finish, it's pretty dry.

M: Prickly and bubbly carbonation but not too overpowering. Pretty average for the style, I would have liked a bit less to bring upon a solid medium-bodied feel as this seems to be teetering a bit.

I guess I wanted to compare this to Nugget Nectar before going into it. It's not as bitter or citrusy as NN, but in its own right, is a nice representation of the style. I worry if anything goes missing in this beer, though, there is nothing else to make up for it. One little missing flavor would throw this entire beer off. All in all, a very nice first offering for me from Maine Beer Co.

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Photo of 4DAloveofSTOUT
4.31/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Received this beer as an extra from an awesome trader kmurry8621. Thanks Kevin!

poured into tulip glass.

Appearance: Crimson almost brown colored body with a massive white to tanish colored head. The head dissapates down to about 1 fingers worth of head with lacing sticking everywhere.

Smell: I must say this beer just smells sooo fresh! Citrus(mostly grapefruit, hints of orange peel and lemon), pine resin, and fresh, wet hops. This really reminds me some of the highly rated IPA's including, but not limited to: Pliny, Hopslam, and Double Trouble.

Taste: Mild bitterness from the hops that is balanced to perfection by biscuity malts and slightly caramel sweet tasting malts. Hops taste of pine resin, lemon grass, and grapefruit. Hint of fruitiness. The aftertaste from the hops is a very mild bitterness still tasting the grapefruit and pine.

Mouthfeel: This beer is on the light end of a medium bodied brew. Carbonation is moderate and its just awesome. I just love the mouthfeel on a bottle conditioned beer!

Overall: Wow. This beer is fantastic! What a great extra! This beer makes me understand what a hoppy American Amber Ale is ALL about! Smells fantastic, balance is near perfection, and it very drinkable at 7% AVB. Its a beer that is a great beer for a someone who needs wants an introduction to a tasty hoppy beer without destroying the tastebuds with bitterness, but is also great for someone who has a more sophistocated palate. I really dig this brewery and want more of this beer and also want to try more of the other 3 beers that this brewery currently brews! A MUST TRY!

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

I love it when a new beer pops up on the shelf!!

Very dark amber with brown hues and a strong 3" towering head, chunky foam that almost doesn't dissipate and leaves at least a 1/4" of foam on top throughout the session!! a healthy looking brew for sure.

The nose is simply bursting with massive hop aroma's! Fresh strawberries, raspberry tarts, pineapple...fresh hop cones that have just been ripped open! A simply amazing fresh "wet" hop aroma.

The flavor delivers sweet toffee maltiness along with sweet dates, and a slight citric tanginess with a dry, snappy finish. The flavor just like the aroma is busting out in fresh hop flavor's, fruits, citrus, dry earthiness...amazing complexity in the hop that could rival any of the best Pale ale's or IPA's out there...this one is flavorful I'm amazed it's not a "wet" or fresh hopped ale.

The feel is medium bodied but lush and thick with a delightful dry, earthy snap.

This one is a WOW!

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

Deep brown color, about in-line with a Grade A medium amber maple syrup. Pretty, long lasting, rocky light tan head. Leaves plenty of lacing. Nice looking beer!

Dank, piny hoppy aroma. Spicy hops mingle with caramel from the malts to make a tasty beer. Brown sugar sweetness toward the finish. But just the right amount of spicy hops bitterness races across the finish line, inspiring another sip.

Creamy mouthfeel with medium body. Nice example of an American brown ale, in my opinion.

Update 22 Jan 2012 - just cracked open a 4 month old bottle (27 Sept) and it is as good as a much fresher bottle. I could smell the piny hops as soon as the bottle cap had been cracked open. I purchased this bottle off an unrefrigerated shelf yesterday. This is one hoppy beer that does last.

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Photo of stevenstofen
4.48/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into an over-sized wine glass from a bottle.

A - The appearance of this brew really is exceptional. It has a beautiful amber-reddish color and fabulous head retention. Continual lacing with every sip throughout the entire experience.

S - Raisiny, piney, and fruity. Mostly fruity.

T - I get a lot of fruitiness that really stands out. Again, raspberry and grapefruit; a fantastic compliment to the piney and hoppie flavor.

MF - Amazing. Extremely smooth on the palate. The flavor remains between each individual sip.

O - A fantastic beer. One of my favorites. An excellent bang for the buck.

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Photo of scottfrie
4.18/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle into DFH shaped pint glass. Thanks to SneezyAchew for this one.

A: Pours an unsuspecting dark raisny brown with huge, oily, dark tan head that took its time to fade into a rocky film. Chunks of lacing were left down the glass.
S: First impression upon popping the cap: "Holly shit I've had DIPA's that smell ten times worse than this!" This is one hopped up amber ale with huge notes of fresh fruity and floral hops. I get almost no malt. Delicious.
T: Luckily the flavor reminds me this is an amber ale (although this would have made a great ipa!) The hops are somewhat balanced by lightly roasted malt and a touch of sweet caramel. However this beer is far from balanced and should not be drank by those looking for a malty brew. Finish has a good dose of bitterness and is slightly smoky.
M: Body is on the thicker side of medium with soft, even carbonation and a chewy, somewhat oily body. Goes down easy without a trace of alcohol.
O: A definite rival to Nugget Nectar. This is one hoppy beer and one I feel deserves just as much praise as the all mighty beer by Tröegs. I'm not sure amber ales are "supposed" to be this hoppy, but what the hell, that's the way I like them! Well done Zoe. Thanks a ton for sending me a few of these Michael!

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Photo of twiggamortis420
4.08/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

500 mL bottle courtesy of jleblanc, review is from notes. Pours a dark copper color with decent clarity. Fluffy tan foam shows excellent lacing and retention, very pretty beer.

Nose is excellent as well, hoppy leaning with a nice touch of toffee and toast. Hops are tropical and lightly resinous. Nice.

Fresh, bright and citric hop flavors come out to play, big time. Pleasant balance of toasted caramel malts. This is the second beer from Maine Beer Co I have had and am wishing this was a local brewpub already. Very good stuff. Clean amber ale that manages to distinguish itself in a loaded style category with its lovely hop aroma and flavors. Superb!

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Photo of MbpBugeye
3.9/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Shared by Ryan011235. Poured into an E&J Cask and Creme glass on 5/19/10.

Appearance
Zoe is dark and rusty. Shades of purple and plum provide shadows to reds and umbers. A tall, frothy head is long lasting and leaves sticky lace.

Aroma
This aroma is by far the best element of this beer. Its sweet and juciy, but piney and bitter at the same time. Lots of fresh pineapple and orange citrus. Layered below that is a sturdy pine aroma. Its very woody, sappy and green. Not a whole lot of room for malts to peek through.

Taste
There is plenty of that nice citrus in the flavors, but a very woody pine element is intense. Contrary to the aroma, the malts are attempting to show themselves. For the most part the malt base is toasty, with notes of a crusty bread.

Mouthfeel
The body is quite full, especially for the style. The puffy carbonation is not so lively that it gets in the way of this beer's fuller weight. The finish is spurred by resinous hop oils.

Overall
A very nice red. Its a decently big beer, in the same vein as a few other imperial reds, e.g. Uncle Rusty. The aroma is fantastic.

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Photo of muttyd
3.8/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy deep amber with a huge fluffy off white head. Coats the glass very well and leaves tons of suds all over. Aroma is very hop forward; piney, grapefruit, earthy. Some smokey and roasty characters in the nose as well. Flavor combines the hoppy aroma with a caramel malt sweetness. Bitter, slightly astringent finish. Bubbly, almost prickly on the tongue. Well balanced hoppy amber ale. Bit pricey, but worth it.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
4.45/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer is my longtime girlfriend's name, and perhaps the most sought after beer (within reason) for me.

A-The brew pours like a pretty glass of Pepsi. Ruby highlights tint the outer regions of the glass. A huge bubbly mound of foam materializes the instant I begin to pour. The head refuses to die but also leaves chunky lacing. Overall, this brew looks awesome.

S-The aroma is brimming with huge hoppy scents. Delicious floral hops along with some thick fruity, juicy citrus. A rich luscious nose of hops. Caramel malts help to balance, but the nose is all about the hops.

T-Oh boy this is simply delicious. A floral and grassy hop coats the tongue and overwhelms the taste buds. Bright and lively citrus comes in the second wave of flavor. The beer clearly hop forward but is also quite balanced. Some respectable maltiness adds both flavor and depth. The beer's awesome hop components linger on the palate forever.

M-One of the best mouthfeels. It feels to me like the rich malt helps to give this beer a pretty thick feel. Oily and resinous. Sticky and lasting. Well carbonated.

O/D-Overall, this beer exceeded my expectations. Zoe is far too drinkable. I absolutely love this brew. Every aspect of this beer demands high marks. I have been waiting a while for this one and am so very happy to indulge in its flavor. Great, great beer!

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Photo of sisuspeed
2.98/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a Russian River tulip. Dark amber brown with almost 3 fingers of white fluffy head. Nice lacing.

Lots of resiny pine hops on the nose, bready malts and just a touch of diacetyl.

Hoppy, caramel bread notes on the tongue. A tad buttery. Odd hop astringency on the finish. Light cardboard. Not bad, but not really good either.

Mouthfeel is almost creamy with decent hop bitterness throughout. Buttery feel. Feels off for a hoppy amber. Can't really get rid of the diacetyl presence.

Overall, this is a slightly below average hoppy amber. Ok, but there are many better beers out there in this category.

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Photo of gdkersey
3.98/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - quite a bit darker than I imagined, perhaps it was the glass. dark reddish-brown. fair amount of carbonation, had to let it settle before pouring more.

S - earthy, grassy hops. brown bread.

T - roasty malt backbone. the hops do their job well and this is an extremely well balanced beer. there isn't a crazy amount of hop flavor (compared to something like Nugget Nectar), but that is not a bad thing, great tasting beer

M - carbonation is a bit on the high side, but doesn't take away too much from the beer

Overall, great beer from a new brewery...looking forward to seeing what else these guys put out.

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Photo of bsuedekum
3.81/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a tulip

A - Absolutely perfect looking beer. A rich, dark red color that illuminates beautifully when held up to a light. With slightly free pour it carried a 2 inch head that works its way down to about a 1/4 head eventually. Has a steady lacing to it as well. For an Amber Ale it presents itself exactly as I think it should... love this appearance.

S - Fresh grassy hop aroma. Very pleasant and similar to that of an IPA.

T - I get oranges and a citrus zest to compliment the hop profile. Definitely is a "hopped up" Amber Ale but it has a crisp finish and good balance throughout.

M - Refreshing and well balanced.

O - Solid beer. I recently had Nugget Nectar for the first time and think this is every bit as good... just doesn't carry the hype for some reason. I wish I had a Nugget left to try next to this. Very legit beer that I would suggest trying to anyone.

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Photo of Chincino
4.2/5  rDev +0.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I bought this beer at Whole Foods in Portland, Maine.

This beer poured to be a dark copper with some reddish tint to it. Thick one inch off white head.

The aroma is of malt and citrus.

Taste is hoppy, the taste of malt is not overpowering. This beer is well-balanced. There is a bit of spice to the taste of this beer.

Good drinkability. I'm definitely glad to have tried this beer.

Cheers!

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Photo of bernie879
4.1/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pouring into a Sam Smith imperial pint glass revealed a dark amber ale with a hughe 4cm lt tan head. Remarkable retention and splotchy lacing.

Aroma: Hops were real strong upfront; piney and grassy in a good way. Could pick up some malty undertones, but the hops are pretty assertive.

Mouthfeel/taste: Full bodied with enough carbonation to enhance the hop bitterness leading to smooth yet crisp feel. Malty characteristics much stronger, with a chewy feel. Caramel and roasted notes definatly there. While hops aren't as strong in this regards they do offer a nice orange-grapfruit zest which balances out the sweetness really well.

Overall: This was a really balanced ale with a lot of complexity and great drinkablity. It is a pricey at 6.50 and I wont't be buying another, but definatly worth the chance to try it.

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Photo of Sensaray
4.83/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Lot 042811
Pours an orange-brown color that is somewhat hazy. Full light tan frothy head.

The smell has a nice fresh flowery hoppy scent. Also smell the red with a caramel sweet nose that's also got some milk chocolate aromas. Citrus characters like an ipa.

After an initial hop spiciness theres a sweet malt flavor. Theres a crisp bitter finish. More dark flavors than the scent gave away. Some coffee, roasted, chocolate, caramel flavors. Letting these flavors linger on the tongue let them meld together and the aftertaste is so good. Pretty decent hop backbone even when the malt comes through. This at some points reminded me of a good dipa. Had citrus characters.

Very smooth carbonation and easy to drink. Medium body. Solid.

Overall, this is what I want an american amber to be. Definitely delicious. I kept trying to tell myself this is not as good as I think, but it is. Will be buying more. Probably all the time. One of my favorites

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Photo of TurdFurgison
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a bottle of this along with Peeper Ale in MA last week, now having Zoe with dinner back in OH. It pours a dark color, more brown than red, with a huge tan foam. Nice hops aromas, pine needles and light citrus, with some sweet malty aromas of caramel/toffee, maybe some mild toastiness.

Very flavorful, leaning towards the hops side of the equation, this is my kind of red ale. More like an IPA than a classic red ale, lots of citrus character. Still enough malt balance to it but thankfully not overly sweet from the malt contributions. A bit dry in the aftertaste, with some lingering citrus flavors.

Wow was this good, I wish I had another. I also wish it was just a little cheaper, it would be hard to turn to this too often if I lived in the distribution area, needs its price knocked down a bit for daily consumption.

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Photo of Pahn
4.57/5  rDev +9.1%
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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Zoe from Maine Beer Company
93 out of 100 based on 589 ratings.