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Jamaica Red Ale - Mad River Brewing Company

Jamaica Red AleJamaica Red Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

391 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 391
Reviews: 244
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 12.99%

Brewed by:
Mad River Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  6.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
IBU: 45.3
Malts: 2-Row Pale, Crystal 70/80, Wheat, Black Patent
Hops: Columbus, Chinook, Cascade, Willamette, Summit

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 01-23-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 391 | Reviews: 244 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of RoyalT


4.1/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance – Dark brown with a reddish hue and a nice, lacing head. This one is cloudy and looks good.

Smell – Sharp citrus hops come out big in the nose. There’s also a nice, lightly-toasted malt balance to this aroma.

Taste – The hops calm down at the taste, making this a nicely balanced ale. The malt is more noticeable here. A good, all around flavor.

Mouthfeel – Somewhat refreshing and medium-bodied. There’s also a slight tinge of sourness to this one, like a drop or two of lime juice has been tossed in for good measure.

Drinkability – This would make a good summer refresher, but it’s nice here at the end of November as well. It is wonderfully balanced.

Comments – Thanks to mickeymac for sending me this bottle.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2003 02:52:07 | More by RoyalT
Photo of Rumrunner


3.88/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12.oz bottle.

Pours a deep ruby brown. It looks like iced tea. A good head that is gone too quickly. Little to no lacing. A very passion fruit smell. Sweet buttery malts. Some green grape and not much hop.

Flavors are malty. Red pare, passion fruit and over ripe mango. Some mild green grape and green tea. There is a bit of a hop bite but it is barely present and not really necessary for this ale. It is dominated by its tea and fruit flavors and that is what it shall be. No need for over the top hops.

This is very smooth with a slight tang. Slick and a little less than medium bodied. Carbonation is at a minimum. It drinks quite well and has a refreshing quality.

Overall this is a very well crafted beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-21-2003 08:01:35 | More by Rumrunner
Photo of Gusler


3.93/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On the pour a beclouded cheery red, the head modest in size, frothy in its texture, and a light tan color, the lace forms a nice concealing sheet upon the glass. The aroma of sweet malt also buttery with a nice crisp freshness to greet the nose and a sweet malt-laden start, the top is middling in its feel to the palate. Finish mildly acidic, the hop potent in their spicy bite, quite dry and linger aftertaste, a decent drinking beer that I just don’t sample often enough.

Serving type: bottle

10-01-2003 00:01:34 | More by Gusler
Photo of beerguy101


3.1/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Dark brown color, kind of cloudy, small white foamy head. Aroma is malty and slightly sweet. Hoppy and slightly bitter, nicely malty. Malts are nutty and sweet. Good flavor with some malt sweetness. Smooth mouthfeel. Finish is smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter.

Serving type: bottle

08-31-2003 18:08:29 | More by beerguy101
Photo of Reidrover


4.03/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Ok comes ina pretty simple package..brown 12 oz short neck and a cheap looking yellow ..green and red label.
Wow what a surprise it is to see when poured into my mug..a nice dark brown with a huge creamy off white head..quite "murky " too!
Very pungent aroma to this ale..hops but also a wonderful light chocolaty aroma.
mmm nice taste starts of sweet malts..then a hoppy zing..then a strange yet attractive sourness..I like this.
Very nice on the palte lingering aftertastes.
Great drinkable beer..but my its hard to place this in a particular style..it says on the side of the label it is a "Crisp,hoppy Red-Bitter"..well thats as good a description as any..a hybrid..but a nice beer!

Serving type: bottle

08-09-2003 03:18:26 | More by Reidrover
Photo of Todd


4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Present in a 12oz short bottle. No freshness date.

As this is an unfiltered offering, it pours a cloudy, deep garnet colour with an off-white sticky, creamy, well-retained head. Wonderful aroma of raw, spicy, herbal hops with strong notes of citrus.

Oh yeah! Smooth, medium-body, luscious fruity/malty sweetness with notes of toffee, wood, earth, ripe pineapple and bready notes. Yeast flavours. Crisp. Sharp, somewhat coarse and leafy, hop bitterness that smacks with notes of citrus and herbal and backs the maltiness just right. Alcohol is spicy, very present and fusel. Linger alcohol, sweet bread flavours and wood linger in the finish for quite sometime.

This is a great Red Ale, with a wonderful malt and hop profile. Thoroughly enjoyable!

Serving type: bottle

07-14-2003 11:24:41 | More by Todd
Photo of mickeymac


4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The bottle really stands out with the island colors and a series of stars and a heart on the label. It pours a very distinct dark red with an off-white head that's on the small side. The smell is very nice: a winning combination of hops and malt. It's very inviting, and the taste is even nicer. Malty sweetness is backed up by enough hop bitterness to give each drink a good kick. It's a very good warm weather beer (keeping in line with the name) and goes down very well. I'd bring this along to a poker game.

Serving type: bottle

07-13-2003 20:17:17 | More by mickeymac
Photo of wofat


4.05/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A dark red ale with a slight head that dissapates rather quickly, leaving no hints of lacing behind as I work my way through the brew. Has an aroma of caramel and spicy hops, slightly grassy. This is a very smooth and flavorful brew that starts very smooth and mildly sweet, fading quickly into a hop bitterness and finishing with an excellent hop flavor. A tasty beverage indeed, that could go down easily for hours.

Serving type: bottle

05-15-2003 06:34:34 | More by wofat
Photo of oberon

North Carolina

4.22/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Was more impressed with this than the extra pale ale,poured a nice deep brown/red color with great creamy head.Incredibly hoppy took me by suprise but a roasted malt flavor comes in to balance this bad boy out.Loved this beer great to find it around here will have many more for sure.

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2003 17:59:35 | More by oberon
Photo of zerk


4.43/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a murky amber brown with a thin but persistent off white head. Aroma is big and bold... citrus hops, fruit, and a caramel malt backing. The flavor is very unique.. begins with an all out malt assault with biscuit and caramel flavors, then becomes nutty. Has a wonderful citrus and spice hop finish. Not overly bitter, but enough to grab your attention. Medium to full body with ample carbonation... slightly rough and oily. A damn fine brew. Serious thanks to DavidBanner for this one!

Serving type: bottle

02-21-2003 10:23:18 | More by zerk
Photo of TheLongBeachBum


4.35/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The first time I tried this beer was when I met fellow BA’s StoutLove77 and DavidBanner for the very first time at the Yard House, Long Beach during one of, if not the, first official BA Social and LB Pub Crawl. They suggested I try this. It was stunningly characterful then from draft, and no less dissapointing from the 12 fl.oz. (355ml) Bottle, which they incidentally brought round for me last weekend because they knew I liked it and I was in no state to Review in the Yard House (because I was relaxing, and not drunk I hasten to add!!!!!).
It has a very colourful label yellow, red, green & black, in a true Jamaican pictorial style.
Head was large at first, light tan color, that soon settled to a thin ⅛” on the surface and a ¼” rope around the edges.
Nose is absolutely marvelous, a very fruity, deep smelling hoppy character that screams – “marry me”. On careful sniffing, some sweet malt is also detectable but the fruity hops are dominant and firmly control the nasal specifications of this beer for sure.
The first thing I notice though – is that on draft it was murky to say the least, after being in the fridge for nearly a week, the yeast stayed firmly adhered to the base of the bottle, and it poured perfectly clear! A deep highly polished chestnut brown in color, that looks stunning. Minimal carbonation but has a solid mouthfeel. Initial tastes are of hops, the middle has some sweet malt undertones, and the end is an incredibly dry fruity lingering experience that finishes with an astringent hoppiness. A truly great "ass-kicking" Red Ale that is highly drinkable. Smooth, Malty, Fruity and very Hoppy. Just how I like it. A really great beer, I simply must try other Mad River beers some time.

A **huge** thanks to StoutLove77 and DavidBanner for this offering. You’ve really added a whole new dimension and a massive driving force to the LA Area BA Events. You can come around my Apartment anytime, just bring some more Mad River Beers!!!!!

Whow!!!… I going to Jamaica…….

Serving type: bottle

01-16-2003 20:56:58 | More by TheLongBeachBum
Photo of frank4sail

New Jersey

3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

malty sweet nose. Deep dark almost black cherry color with a tan head. initial notes of coffee and sweet malt and a clean crisp finish. It is quite easy drinking and would be a good introductory beer to a newbie.. it does not offend in any way. it is just a crisp clean slightly rich red.

Cheers to matt maples for the sample.

Serving type: bottle

08-06-2002 19:18:51 | More by frank4sail
Photo of marc77


4.43/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazy dark red hue. Thin, but tight off - white head leaves decent lace. Hugely caramelly in aroma-- darkly caramelized sugars dominate, but fruity esters and citrusy hops round out the aroma. Flavorwise, this brew is a tasty mix of dark caramel sweetness, fruity esters & citrus hop flavor. Hop bitterness is well - calculated, being assertive enough to be noticed on its own, while controlled enough not to overshadow malt notes and esters. Flavorful and highly drinkable. Moderate in body, w/ plenty of residual dextrins. Finishes w/ fading bittersweet residual sweetness and hop bitterness. Jamaica Red Ale is an excellent brew, possessing much more character all around than the typical prosaic red ale.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2002 06:04:03 | More by marc77
Photo of ZAP


3.98/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Murky reddish in appearance..fruity hop essence at first, followed by a sweeter caramel aroma...some yeast sediment evident...Very tasty for a red...strong malt backbone of caramel combined with a fresh, hop profile. More hops than most reds, but also more maltiness...For its style it is very bold, and tasty.

Serving type: bottle

04-07-2002 18:38:41 | More by ZAP
Photo of Bighuge


4.28/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a mudddy brown color with yeast sediments floating all over. A bit on the dark side for a Red. Small tan head dissipates quickly. Aroma is a blend of sweet caramel malt and NW hops. No off flavors detected in this one. It has a good hop taste, but this is not a bitter beer and does not have a bitter aftertaste. There's a great maltiness to this too. This has some character for a Red Ale. The creamy liquid rolls over the tongue very effortlessly, although this is one of the more viscous Red ales I've had.

Serving type: bottle

04-05-2002 14:44:00 | More by Bighuge
Photo of Mark


4.33/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Deep brownish red color, reminded me of some winter warmers. Thin head, not as much lace as anticipated. Very smooth, malty, and not overly hopped liked many western U.S. ales. I liked this brew. Very drinkable

Serving type: bottle

02-04-2002 22:39:47 | More by Mark
Photo of DOCALYN


4.85/5  rDev +26%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

jamaica Red was the first of Mad River's products I tried and it was love at first taste! I am a hophead and this brew satisfies all my taste preferences. I called the brewery to tell them of my appreciation for this beer and lo and behold they sent me a package of shirts, glasses and coasters. A very tasty beer on any occaision.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2001 15:16:57 | More by DOCALYN
Photo of gwfrankpsu


3.7/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A good Red Ale from the guys that make - John Barleycorn

Serving type: bottle

09-01-2001 11:51:29 | More by gwfrankpsu
Photo of Jason


4.5/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Presentation: 12 oz short brown twist bottle with no freshness date to be found. Thin layer of sediment on the bottom of the bottle.

Appearance: Big creamy and thick light tan head with a well painted trail of lace all the way down to the bottom of the hazy very deep brownish red brew.

Smell: Thick aroma of hops and caramel malt. Hops are a tad pungent to the nose and the caramel is quite well rounded.

Taste: Medium body moderate carbonation, hops are very flavourful with a straight-up bitterness and the pungent citric aftermath. Huge wave of malt, caramel rides on top with both chocolate and roasted flavour underneath. Fruity of pear though a grapefruit citric character from the hops rips right through to disorient the taste buds into nirvana. Finish is a bit clean with some residual caramel sweetness and a dark grainy bread flavour.

Notes: This is really good stuff, this one showed me that American beer can still reach this height of greatness. 6.0% abv.

Serving type: bottle

01-23-2001 23:26:39 | More by Jason
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Jamaica Red Ale from Mad River Brewing Company
87 out of 100 based on 391 ratings.