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Smithwick's Imported Premium Irish Ale - Guinness Ltd.

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Smithwick's Imported Premium Irish AleSmithwick's Imported Premium Irish Ale

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2,455 Ratings
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Ratings: 2,455
Reviews: 758
rAvg: 3.45
pDev: 14.78%
Wants: 37
Gots: 270 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Guinness Ltd. visit their website

Style | ABV
Irish Red Ale |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Mebuzzard on 04-01-2006

No notes at this time.
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Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,455 | Reviews: 758
Photo of thekevlarkid
3.59/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Off the tap this beer was a deep amber/mahogany color with a thick khaki cap for a head. The lacing was minimal because the cap was so sticky but the retention was quite great. The aroma was understated, some caramel malt and something like iced tea. Odd. The flavors however were pretty good, pale malt and toasted malt with some hops muted in the background and caramel sweetness that lingers a little artificially in the finish. The body was rich, velvety and the carbonation soft so it was easy to quaff. But the flavors just weren't grand and I felt in general there were improvements to be made.

Photo of danny013
3.79/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pair of 12 oz. bottles poured into a 16 oz. dimple mug and topped up as needed. Beer pours a rich red/brown body topped with a thick, rocky off-white head. Head sticks in nice, huge chunks and leaves a good covering on the beer for most of the pint with some decent lace.

Aroma is predominantly of sweet, bready malts, some good toast, and a faint hoppiness. Not bad.

Taste follow suit, good sweet malts up front, and plenty of toasty biscuity grains. Mild carbonation moves things around, some light herbal hoppiness shows itself but is quickly pushed out by a light grain astringency. Light sweetness hangs around after the beer is swallowed with some faint hops. A bit on the sweet side, though not overpowering, balanced nicely by plenty of light toasted malts.

Light-medium body with some light carbonation make this a smooth, easy drinker. A simple brew that is not too complex that makes for laid-back sipper or something nice to quaff; a great beer to enjoy and not think about with your mates. A tad bit expensive for a 6'er, but I got this one for free :), so no complaints!

Photo of jwhite1979
3.78/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Heck yeah! An attractive auburn color, a subtly sweet aroma, and a smooth mouthfeel make this beer a new favorite for me. No complicated flavors, really, so drinking it is a simple pleasure rather than a sophisticated challenge. Kind of like drinking Guinness.

Put simply, this is the everyday beer I've been wanting Sam Adams to produce for a while now.

Photo of cnally
2.81/5  rDev -18.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

The brewery was started in 1710!!! It must be good!

The beer has a dusty, off white head. The pale brown coloring in the beer is clear and unappealing.

The scent has a malty, yeasty, chocolately quality. Oaky, yet sweet.

A full, hoppy taste resounding with sour and bitter flavors is the initial feel. Unbalanced flavors of mild caramel and a woodsy nature. The bitters really come out strong in the aftertaste.

The feel is bubbly and dry. Astringent and overwhelming.

The drink is too pale in color, bubbly and sour. The flavor just doesn't sit right with me at all.

Photo of dstc
3.88/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a ruby color with a big frothy, slightly off-white head that is slow to fall with a thin lace left behind.

Roasted malt aroma with caramel and a slight metallic quality.

Nice full malt flavor with a slight metallic finish.

Smooth and medium bodied mouthfeel.

Easy drinking and enjoyable.

Photo of jazappi
4.2/5  rDev +21.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very good beer with great taste. One of my favorites that I can drink a lot of with very good flavor.

You can taste the toasted malts with just a very small hint of citrus.

Has a nutty smell and very decent lacing. You can drink this straight from the bottle or great in a pint glass.

Photo of PatrickJR
3.73/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this on-tap at Cooper's in Greensboro.

A - Very dark in appearance, somewhere between a dark red and brown. Light comes through on the edges. Two fingers or so of off white head stick around for a bit, leaving some decent lacing.

S - Vanilla hits me more than anything, with some lightly toasted grain and caramel in the background.

T - Much like the nose. Huge vanilla flavor on top of toasted malt. Fairly sweet with some brown sugar as well.

M - Creamy, smooth, medium to full bodied. The carbonation is quite low, maybe a little too low for my tastes.

D - An easy, mild session brew. I had no problem downing a few pints of this, though the sweetness can be a bit much after a while.

Photo of pweis909
3.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Picked up as a $1 single at the local dollar store - they sell 6 packs for regular retail but label broken sixes for individual bottle sales -- for a dollar. It's hit or miss, and the beer may not be the freshest (it's the dollar store, after all) but I have had a chance to try a good assortment without investing in a 6 pack. I digress.

This beer poured a dark amber and had a tightly packed slightly tawny colored head that stuck around for a while.

The smell and taste was dominated by caramel. Possibly there was a teeny touch of chocolate, but the caramel was the big player. While not imbalanced in the sweetness to bitterness ratio department, the caramel makes it one dimensional to a fault, in my opinion, and impinges on my desire to drink more than one.

Final note: I drank half the bottle while waiting for dinner, a chicken curry, and the second half with dinner. The beer did not hold up well to this spicy dish.

Photo of MAB
3.65/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

My brother-in-law is finally buying good beers to have around for company to drink (he still thinks Heineken is an outstanding import and regularly drinks Corona- with lime- or Canadian/ Blue/ Kokanee).
Thus it was that he offered me a Smithwick's Irish Ale this weekend and I gladly accepted it.
Like other reporters here, I have seen these cans around town many times but never bothered to try them. Espcecially when a world-class Irish Ale from Big Rock Breweries is sitting in bottles right next to these. But, I digress.
The beer was poured into a Foster's pint glass, stolen from some pub somewhere, no doubt, but again I was grateful.

It had a nice dark color with reddish tones, not a lot of head and that dissipated pretty quickly. The first sip was all malt up front but the slight bitterness and hop flavor followed and it finished slightly sweet.
A very decent effort (I do dislike cans, though) and worth having again, if he's buying.
If I'm buying, I'll stick to the McNally's Irish Ale from Big Rock...

Photo of brewmudgeon
2.78/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

3.5 A ruddy brownish amber. not much head but nice rings of lacing
3 S citrusy but not grapefruity. some sort of indistinct citrus. maybe a bit of pine
2.5 T not very crisp. that vague citrus taste and some bitterness as aftertaste. something coppery in the taste, something a bit dulling. becomes a bit too boring. tangy, but not crisp enough. astringency sort of like teabags.
3.5 M enough carbonation, nothing offensive
2.5 D 2 pints without much problem, but would not consider a 3rd. resulted in headache and lousy overall feeling.

Photo of chilidog
3.93/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I kept putting this beer off, first impressed by Guinness, but then, this stuff was everwhere, so I kinda backed-up at the mass appeal.

Pours a good looking dark reddish, slightly brown. Nice full off-white to tan head. Lace abounds all glass long, very nice.

Aroma is malted, sour bread, biscuit dough.

Taste is malts, slight toasted, yeast hint with a toach of caramel.

Mouth is good, malted sweetness, alittle thin on body.
The slight wateryness aids the drinkability and the mass appeal. I see why, an ok red. It would be a preferance over a Killian, if I want my true red from Ireland.

Photo of schanker21
3.25/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a twelve oz. bottle into a cool-looking retro Guinness pint glass.

A- Huge, huge frothy, off white head (like 3 fingers). At first I thought I maybe I made a bad pour, but even on the second bottle, this ended up with a gigantic head. Lacing left all over the glass. Pours a dark reddish/brownish color.

S- Smell is of bread, and a slight bit of hops, but also very metallic. The metallic smell is the most predominant and almost ruins the nose in my opinion.

T- Very malty, but well balanced by a small amount of hops. The metallic smell is not nearly as noticeable in the taste (thankfully). Bready taste lingers on the palate. Pretty good. I've never gotten into Irish Reds too much, but this is one I might buy again.

M- Too much carbonation makes this one a little less smooth than I would have liked. Otherwise, not terrible.

D- Average when it comes to drinkability. I don't know if I could have a ton of these without getting sick of them.

Photo of EnojysAnyBeer
4.06/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a good, refreshing Red

A- A bit too transparent, but the head on this is beauuutiful. Thick and frothy it leaves a great lacing, off-white caramel. Garnet color

S- Reminds me of an english pale ale, with that hard water smell.

T- Taste is malty and biscuity. Decent

M- Feel is medium-bodied and refreshing

D- Drinks real well for a Red

Photo of changeup45
3.48/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

4/8/2005. Tried this on a suggestion by a worker at this beer store (I was looking for something new to try). I'm glad I did. Pours an amber body with a nice thick off-white head and quite a bit of lacing on the glass. Aroma is mild malty with hints of chocolate and coffee in there. Slightly sweet tasting with a mix of roasted malts and a mild hop flavor. Only negative I can think of is it could use a little more to it, mouthfeel may be a little thin and could use the kick. I would have no problems drinking this again though.

Photo of prosper
4.07/5  rDev +18%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours with a nice thick frothy head. Very dark color, with a hint of red. Very clear. The smell is nothing special, light, fruity-malty with little to no hops. Nice creamy texture, with a tad more carbonation than I'd like, but it finishes very nicely. On the palate, there's a nice dark roasty flavour coming through, grainy and deep. Like toast. It carries a bit of hops with it as well that become more apparent in a few seconds, blending nicely with the nutty toasty flavours. It doesn't carry the same 'weight' that you'd normally associate with such a dark ale, and I think I could probably spend a whole evening putting these down.

Photo of nollid
4.26/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

So I have never reviewed beer before but I love trying new beers I come across and go out of my way at times to seek out stores that carry beers I have never seen before. I'll be honest I have no idea what lacing is or how in the world a beers appearance affects how much I like a beer.

that said....

This was a great find. It starts off tasting similar to say a Killans Irish Red but then you get a taste of hops and sort of a nutty smooth almost creamy finish with a touch of bitterness. Smell was not anything special but the scent was deceiving.

Great beer I will definitely buy again.

Photo of JayQue
3.26/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I have had Smithwick's several times on tap. While it tasted better, I don't remember a big head or lacing.

The bottled version looks good. Clear light amber color. Big head, good retention and heavy lacing. Mild malty aroma. Pleasant but mild bready, malty taste with a hint of bitterness in the finish.
Mouthfeel is about average - crisp, not too watery and no unpleasant aftertaste.

Drinkability is pretty good either with food or as a session beer.

Photo of yelterdow
4.47/5  rDev +29.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served at between fridge and cellar temperature in a Stella glass. Paired with grilled salmon for dinner.

Appearance- Pours the traditional color for this style... burnt red with a hint of brown, supporting a sudsy two finger head. Fantastic retention, and wide rings of lacing drape the interior of the glass.

Smell- Starting with the water, the foundation of brisk, clean ingredients is laid. Wonderful bright, lightly roasted malts tease the nose with a bready, delightful aroma. There's a perfumy sweetness that adds another layer to appreciate and savor.

Taste- Wow, very nice! As with the smell, there's plenty to enjoy here. Malty and biscuity, the crisp flavors melt on the tongue and concede to a drying bitterness. The aftertaste is a summary of all of the above, with no flaws.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- Slick and substantially effervescent, with enough action to lift food off the palate and accentuate the terrific balance of all ingredients. It never gets dull, and the beer only gets better as it comes to temperature. A totally unexpected winner for me, and it's available everywhere.

Photo of OtherShoe2
3.38/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Copper/amber color with a slight choppy off-white head that lasted fairly well into the pint.

Smell is some bread and malt, a little sweetness. Nothing distinctive.

Moderately balanced caramel and dry grain flavors with some bready sweetness and malt. All a bit subdued. This is not a strong-flavored beer (meaning over the top in your face distinctiveness).

Some carbonation and sweet in the finish.

These go back pretty easy. This one is much much better on tap. Good middle of the road brew, decent session sipper.

Photo of barleywinefiend
3.42/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a deep with a decent off white head. Nose was sweet, mild roasted malts, faint hops. Taste was slightly grassy hops, malts are sweet but a bit Creamy mouthfeel quickly thins out with a more astringent than bitter character. Nothing special but certainly drinkable.

Photo of SpecialK088
3.61/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap in a pint glass

A-Very clean clear copper color one finger head with a little lacing but not much.

S&T-There is a dgree of sweetness in the nose and taste of this beer that i cannot put my finger on maybe carmel or something close to it, notes of hops as well as malt in the middle and a good bitter finish.

M&D-Medium to light body with a little to much carbonation not to bad though overall a pretty good session i could drink a few in a setting.

Photo of hustlesworth
3.15/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A- burnt sienna color with a rocky beige head and some lace.

S- toasted bread and burnt caramel and a little bit of earthy english hops.

T- toasted caramel and a little chocolatey, woodsy, nutty, and a mild hoppy finish.

MF- rather thin bodied with medium carbonation, overall it felt watery.

D- easy enough to drink. i remember it being better out of a bottle.

Photo of kinger
3.55/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at a local pub served in a large "pint" glass. Aroma was subtle wasn't able to pick up on much except for some creamy maltiness. Pour was a very dark amber with thin creamy head and little lacing. Thick mouthfeel for an ale with a full easy finish. The flavor was pretty good, creamy with a distinct maltiness. I had been looking forward to trying this beer, but overall it was simply decent. I question the freshness of the keg and the cleanliness of the taps and glasses so perhaps there is a slight injustice. I plan on trying out a sixer in the future and revisiting this review.

Photo of Stinkypuss
4.07/5  rDev +18%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A. Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into an odd long glass my roommate has. Anyway.. This bottle has been in my fridge for almost a year. Pours a reddish brown with a small white head.

S. Bready malts, some bitter hops.

T. A pretty good Ale here. Malty, I can taste some grains as well. Leafy hop bitters. It even tastes slightly roasted. Well balanced and mighty tasty.

M. Medium bodied, pretty smooth.

D. Something about Smithwicks makes me happy. I love drinking these. Good as a Black N Tan as well, I prefer this to Bass. A good session beer.

Photo of klintok21
4.3/5  rDev +24.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from bottle to pub glass. Dark reddish color with very little head. I was expecting a 'Killians' when I first picked this up and was unusually surprised. It was more on the verge of a stout than an Irish Red. Basically to summarize this beer, it is like a watered down version of a stout without the strong coffee flavors. I actually enjoyed this quite a bit, it is easy to drink but for the price ($8.99/six pack) I'll stick to a full bodied stout as to my personal preference, but wouldn't mind one of these every so often to mix it up, give it a try!

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Smithwick's Imported Premium Irish Ale from Guinness Ltd.
79 out of 100 based on 2,455 ratings.