1. The BeerAdvocate Store is back! Pre-order your stuff now. Items begin shipping Dec 15. Christmas deadline = Dec 18 @ 5pm EST.
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Smithwick's Imported Premium Irish Ale - Guinness Ltd.

Not Rated.
Smithwick's Imported Premium Irish AleSmithwick's Imported Premium Irish Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,403 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 2,403
Reviews: 746
rAvg: 3.45
pDev: 15.07%
Wants: 28
Gots: 197 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Guinness Ltd. visit their website

Style | ABV
Irish Red Ale |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Mebuzzard on 04-01-2006)
View: Beers (30) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 2,403 | Reviews: 746 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Rayek
3.6/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at the Irish Snug in Denver. It was served to me ice cold, so I had to let the beer warm up in order to fully appreciate its character.

A: Deep amber colored brew. Very little head, but what was there stuck around a left a small amount of lace.

S: Nice toasted malt and caramel notes. Slightly sweet. Faint floral hop aroma.

T: Nice sweet/bitter balance. Has initial caramel sweetness and toasted grain qualities. Bitterness from the hops comes in the middle to balance the malt's sweetness. Hops have citrus and spicy qualities. The beer gets more complex as it warms up.

M: Medium-Light body has some substance. Carbonation is maybe a little low.

D: A very good social beer. Not interesting enough for me to drink it by myself, but perfect for a night at the pub. Goes down easy.

Photo of bluegrassbrew
3.33/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a reddish-copper with a large pillowy white head. Leaves some very nice looking lacing.

Smell is a combonation of slightly bready malt and a hint of vegetables.

Taste is the same, a very vegetable like aftertaste around some decent breadiness and just a sampling of caramel malt.

Overall, this is a nice looking beer. It is an easy drinker. Alas, it is not very tasty.

Photo of scoobybrew
3.85/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This was poured from the bottle into a pint glass.

A - deep ruby amber color with a thick head that settles, but is well retained in a slightly chunky lacing

S - toasted malt aroma with a slight peat-like quality

T - as with the aroma, mostly toasted malt character with a subtle peat flavor and a noticeable hop finish

M - medium-light body with moderate carbonation

D - I really enjoy Smithwick's as a very 'sessionable' Irish red. I really think it's a good standard by which other Irish Reds could be compared to, not only because it's relatively common in distribution, but also because of it's simple (but good) qualities.

Photo of Pauly2X
3.58/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Deep amber, two finger frothy head.

S- Spicy hops intermingled with caramel.

T- Sweet malts up front with a bitter finish comprised of both spicy hops and toasted malt bitterness.

M- A little light.

D- Tap availability is pretty good so I hit it up from time to time.

A good choice for a second step up from BMC. This beer is also good for realizing that there's more to Ireland than just stouts.

Photo of codydmoore
4/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 Oz bottle pored into pint pub glass. Creamy white head with good staying power.
Very easy drinking ale with nice dark copper color and good lacing. Makes a good session ale or good beer to introduce to non craft beer drinkers who will occasionally drink Guiness Stout.

Photo of Kingdom4aPint
3.33/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Standard pint glass applied...

Dark copper color with two finger head with decent staying power and leaves lots of thick lacing. Smells like the inside of a whiskey barrel...slightly burnt wood soaked alcohol scent that works well for me. Taste is not complex, malt up front with hop bitterness bringing up the rear with dry finish. Light in body therefore highly drinkable. A decent, solid beer that goes down easy.

Photo of Lupe
3.63/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep amber-red in color that brightens up when held to the light. Creamy off-white head, decent sized with some staying power, and left a healthy amount lace along the sides of the glass.

Light malty aroma of caramel and toasted bread. Very mild and difficult to pick up anything else.

Sweet caramel and toasted grain flavor. Not overly sweet and well balanced by toasted and light roasted malt flavors. A touch of hop bitterness towards the end. Finishes a little dry with lingering caramel.

Light bodied, smooth and crisp. Easy drinking and refreshing. Not going to blow you away by anymeans, but a nice little session beer.

Photo of ricchezza
4.18/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Pours a clear brown with a 2-finger head that receds to a 1/2" with nice lacing.

Smells to me of caramel malts, but I could be mistaken. Not much of a hop aroma.

Light and crisp on the palate. A thin feeling beer, but it has a nice malt flavor.

I drink this beer quite often. It goes great with any food I've paired it with; and is very enjoyable on it's own as well.

Photo of MrIncognito
4/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another poor pour from the bartender... no head. Does leave nice lacing. Dark, dark amber red.

Smitticks is hard to smell. I really have to put my nose in it. Dark roasted hops, sweet malts.

Taste is smooth and sweet with a nice roasted hop flavor. Not too bitter. Slight metallic taste.

Mouthfeel is smooth, nice light carbonation.

This is a definite session beer, which I've done in the past. I actually like Smitticks and would choose it over many other pub beers.

Photo of rxdrewthejew
3.38/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Finally getting around to reviewing this old standard.

A: A transparent red to red-brown. Poured pretty aggresively it gives about a 3-4 finger off-white head that slowly fades, over about 5 minutes, to a thin film, although lacing seems pretty good.

S: Smells like malt, slightly sweet and somewhat roasted.

T: Again, this is a malt dominant beer. It actually has some characteristics of a brown ale, but I'd say a bit sweeter. Not much hop balance, but the flavor isn't especially strong either.

MF: A bit of a metallic feel. A thin beer, though not watery. Carbonation is pretty low, but I also have to take into account that this has been in my fridge for quite a while.

D: I've always enjoyed this beer. It's nothing to write home about, but it is tasty and easy to find. Better fresh, so if you buy a six pack, plan to drink it pretty fast (or share). Good, sessionable beer, and with St. Patty's day right around the corner, you can't go wrong with this one.

Photo of BeerCon5
3.75/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: This beer has a clear, dark amber color, with good retention

S: Light malty smell with a slight caramel sweetness

T: Good balance of flavors, very clean finish with hardly any aftertaste

M: A bit thin with good carbonation

D: Very smooth, easy drinker, easily a good session beer.

Photo of tgbljb
3.95/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served as a very deep amber colored beer with moderate white creamy head. Good retention.
Smell is significant for roasted malt and caramel.
Taste also has some light caramel notes, with only a slight hop character at the finish.
Very thin mouthfeel, with little taste retention.
A nice refreshing beer, but really very simple. Could be a nice sessuon beer.

Photo of Homerbag
3.43/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark red with minimal head that does lace a bit.

Smell is of sweet malt and some hop spice. Taste of sweet malts, some hop bite, otherwise clean and unremarkable. Feel is a bit fizzy, but clean and refreshing.

This is a session beer through and through. Not much to remember about it. This is a gateway beer for people to take the big scary step towards craft beers. You can drink alot of it and still be find. The taste is not offensive or heavy. Great beer to drink when you are thirsty and not in the mood to enjoy complex tastes.

Photo of Wasatch
3.1/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clean/clear dark amber color, some carbonation, little fizzy off-white head, some tiny islands and sticky lacing left behind. The nose is mostly malts and caramel. The taste is malty with some caramel. Light body. Drinkable I guess, but I would not buy it again.

Photo of SIRIUS2
4.05/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass. Abundant foamy white head with good retention formed with a modest pour, which diminished to a thin layer of bubbles after a time. The color was a medium to dark brown in color, clear in nature.

S: Mild scents of light malt and, perhaps, tobacco. No real hop smell on the nose.

T: Mildly malty, nicely carbonated, and relatively clean finish. Drinks very smoothly.

M&D: The mouthfeel for this is nearly perfect for the flavors on the palate as everything comes together for a very enjoyable brew. I don't know that I would call this one "balanced" in flavor as there is definitely little in the way of hop bitterness, but man, this stuff is easy drinking and highly enjoyable.

Photo of Slynger
3.63/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bright clear reddish-copper with a big, foamy off-white head. Smell is quite soft, but has some toffee and tea-like sweetness mixed with lightly toasted malts. Medium bodied with a fizzily carbonated mouthfeel. Light in taste as well with a tea-like and almost fruity sweetness mixing with lightly toasted grains. A touch of bitterness dies in a relatively clean and fresh finish. Not complex but nicely drinkable and refreshing, and better than your average macro.

Photo of OWSLEY069
2.8/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a yellow-ish/ copper color with an off-white head. In the aroma, a caramel sweetness. In the taste, again caramel sweet maltiness. A light body, with a nice bitterness in the mouthfeel, and a dry, caramel maltiness in the aftertaste. A nice caramel presence, yet nothing too exciting, a nice OK stand-by.

Photo of avalon07
3.45/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had this one on tap on Super Bowl night. Had very little head once it got to me, but left a little lacing on the pint glass. The color was light brown and pretty thin.

Had a subtle smell with some malts and a little bread.

The taste was a little on the weak side, but not without charm. Malts and yeasts were apparent, but not overwhelming.

Had a very average amount of carbonation, adding little bite to the beer.

This is an okay beer, but hardly one I'd drink on a regular basis. It's simply too thin and lacking a bit in flavor. As I said earlier, it's not without charm, but still sort of average overall.

Photo of armock
3.35/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured a nice amber color with an off white head that leaves some lacing

S - Is pretty light sweet malt with a touch of hops

T - Is a little more there than the smell sweet malt and some hops

M - Theres a pretty good level of carbonation in this beer

D - This is one of those beers that you can session and do other things than think about the beer I'd drink this while playing in dart leagues

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

A - Good dark, burnt red coloration. Minimal head.

S - Grainy, malty, almost fruity nose with hints of caramel.

T - Smooth taste with good toasted malt flavor, overall clean flavors, slightly fruity taste is present here.

M - Average here, with a thinner mouthfeel and moderate carbonation. Not bad, just average.

D - Good drinkability, could easily session this beer and enjoy a few at a sitting.

Photo of tkarsies
3.3/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I got a case of brews from Guinness (6 each of Guinness Draft, Harp Lager, and Smithwick's) at Christmas and just realized I have never reviewed this beer. Served fairly cold in a pint glass.

Pours a nice, clear amber with a 1 finger tan head that dissipates to lacing that stays until the end of the glass.

Smell is nondescript. Slight hops and malt. Not much going on here.

Taste is not any more exciting than the smell. Some malt sweetness and some grassy hops. Nothing offensive but not much to stand out.

Mouthfeel is OK. Moderate carbonation and light to medium mouthfeel.

Overall, this is very drinkable. I actually kind of like it. It is not something I would actively seek out, but it is available many places and is a good step up from BMC. I would consider this a solid, middle-of-the-road red ale.

Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.8/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Had this on draft tonight at TGIFs. After a lackluster experience from the bottle, I thought it deserved another try.

Appearance - served in a large 22-ounce tumbler mug, amber red, high clarity as with the bottled variety. About a finger of tan head, constantly fed from below, there was still a thin cover at the end.

Aroma - clean, sweet, caramel and toastiness. I can already tell this will be better than my initial experience. Maintains a light roastiness throughout dinner.

Taste - the metallic taste I picked out from the bottled sample is not here on the draft version. Matching the nose with a caramel, toasted grain flavor, slightly sweet but not very much, really. My wife had a Killians and in a side-by-side, hers was less malty, thinner, and sweeter. Comparatively, the Smithwick's had a far more robust malt flavor, was a little drier, and the hops played a far better role in balancing out the beer.

Mouthfeel - thin-bodied, crisp. Pretty average.

Drinkability - much better on-tap, I'd session this easily.

Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
2.98/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle>16 oz SA glass.

Amber brown with some light-red hues. Speradic, quick carbonation creates a 1/2", bright white head that dissipates pretty slow. Kinda sticky.

The scent is very herbal and spicey, bready, lightly sweet malt. Not exactly bursting with aroma, even in this glass.

The malt flavor is mellow but semi-sweet with an abundance of herbal notes, mildly spicey hop, sour, tangy yeast makes this one a bit strange but the balance is not bad. Taste's much like a hybrid of an amber and Brown ale.

Medium bodied, crisp but slick going down...almost smooth.

Not a bad choice when your options are limited.

Photo of drinkininthewood
3.43/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Funny story, i remember one year around Christmas time me and my brother were at a Christmas party with my parents when we were younger. Someone gave my brother some 500ml bottles of Smithwicks as a gift, well after having several brews at the party were proceeded to make our way home, our sober parents driving ofcourse ( its about a 2 hours drive from Port Elgin Ont. to our hometown of Cambridge Ont. ). My brother and I proceeded to drink all of the bottles, keeping a low profile because our parents didn't want us drinking in the back seat of the car obviously, opening each bottle with the middle seat belt buckle. Needless to say we kept ourselves pretty occupied for the duration of the ride, even convincing our parents to make a brief stop at KFC. They didn't suspect a thing, my brother and I were fairly happy with our little " mission impossible" late night drinking session. Reviewing for the first time in many years>>

Served from a 473ml can into a pint glass.

A- dark slightly golden brown in color with light tones at the bottom of the glass. Nice head dimminishes leaving some lace spots.

S- Slight caramel, and some coffee aromas with some hops noticed.

T- is decent with flavors of well roasted malt, some dark chocolate and black coffee as well, with a decent floral hop bitterness in the finish. Decent balance.

M- is light bodied, somewhat thin but no worries, aggressive carbonation.

D- Enough flavor to keep it satisfying, so drinkability is fairly good.

Overall a good brew, not the best example of the style, but worth checking out.

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

This beer is becoming pretty popular now, and with good reason. Poured a dark reddish brown with a decent head.

Smell was toasty and sweet, with a slight bitter coffee smell, which I personally enjoy.

When you taste it you can definitely notice the sweet caramel and coffee flavors. Again, toasty, just like the smell. A little thin, but otherwise tastes great.

The feel was actually pretty similar to Guinness. Smooth and creamy, but this one was a bit more crisp. Altogether makes for a very drinkable beer.

Smithwick's Imported Premium Irish Ale from Guinness Ltd.
79 out of 100 based on 2,403 ratings.