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John Smith's Extra Smooth - The Caledonian Brewery Company Limited

Not Rated.
John Smith's Extra SmoothJohn Smith's Extra Smooth

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

104 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 104
Reviews: 55
rAvg: 3.12
pDev: 18.91%
Wants: 1
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
The Caledonian Brewery Company Limited visit their website
United Kingdom (Scotland)

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  3.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-10-2002)
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Ratings: 104 | Reviews: 55 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Craiger1967:
Photo of Craiger1967
3.01/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a my new Pint glass from Next Door Brewing Co., nice cream and coffee color.

Head is very creamy as well as the first drink of the brew.

Taste: Some Licorice, caramel, grassy notes and subtle burnt flavor near the end of the taste.

Although this is a watery ale, and not too flavorful, I enjoyed drinking this because it's not so overwhelming. Sometimes Subtle beats excessive flavors in which many of our craft beers go.

This will always be a better alternative to the mass produced yellow beers here in the US, so this is definitely a nice summer type quaffer.

More User Reviews:
Photo of fionn13
3.25/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of jazzyjeff13
2.85/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A 440ml can with a BB of May 2012. Contains a nitrogen widget that activates upon opening.

Poured into a Sam Smith's pint glass (the ultimate sacrilege). A clear amber-brown colour with low carbonation. Yields a large head of creamy white foam with excellent retention; it reduces somewhat but remains as a thick, stable layer. Aroma of sweetish caramel malt and little else - one dimensional.

Tastes of mild, sweet malt with a dry finish. Faint bitterness. Hints of caramel and a slight yeasty note. Mouthfeel is great, thick and smooth. Rolls around the mouth. Dries the palate a little, leaving a weak malty aftertaste.

A bland, mass-produced bitter. The mouthfeel is lovely, but it lacks aroma, flavour - and character. Could almost pass for lightly sweetened water. Why drink this when there are so many great beers out there?

Photo of rastaman
1.78/5  rDev -42.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1.5

This is the type of beer i hate, creamy cat piss, gotta say i hate the nitro tap thingy. Way too creamy and no flavour to boot. Very sweet aswell, pretty crappy if you ask me.

Photo of watermelonman
3.28/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

This arrived as an extremely murky brown with a nice head that lasted very well. The lacing looks pretty nice.

The smell on this one is pretty appealing, but the taste could use some real work. It's a bit flat and lacks real flavor. Along those lines, the mouthfeel suffers from being too thin.

Photo of falconxman
2.75/5  rDev -11.9%

Photo of muswellbeerbelly
3/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of thagr81us
3.05/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Served from nitro-can into a Duck-Rabbit nonic. Poured yellow-orange with a one finger off-white head that subsided to half a finger very slowly. The pour really reminded me of a Guinness with the head consuming the entire beer and working its way up slowly to form the final head. Nice. Maintained nice lacing throughout the glass. The aroma was comprised of sweet malt, cream, grain, and wheat. The flavor was of sweet malt, cream, grain, earth, and subtle spice. It had a light feel on the palate with mild carbonation (almost velvety). Overall this was a pretty average brew. I have to say the pour on this one was pretty cool as it looked like a Guinness only it was a Pale Ale! However, that is where the fun stopped on this one. There was really not a whole lot going on in this one which really made it a bit of a buzzkill for me. Very light on all aspects so good for the non-robust beer drinkers out there, but if you like loads of flavor and complexity. Avoid this one. Trust me, you will thank me if you have the option.

Photo of basica
3.38/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Before having this beer I already have a pre-conceived notion that it would be in some ways
like your typical English ales in those familiar nitro-cans. The typicality of these ales is
literally smoothness, creaminess, low ABV, mellow, light tasting, etc. And yes, it was nothing
far from expected for this can of John Smith's The JOhn Smith's pours out creamy like the
Kilkenny and the creaminess ultimately collects at the top to form a thin head with average
retention; the main body of the beer is light red brown in color. Very lights notes of malt for
the smell; taste was lightly malty and a little paperish or breaded. Generally the taste was
very light, in fact almost blend but still not so; perhaps I would just call it mellow but for
me, a lover of rich, complex tasting trappist ales, I would call it a pretty tasteless ale. The
Kilkenny has a stronger taste but yet is just as mellow. However this beer is smooth like its
name though I still think the Kilkenny is probably smoother. Very refreshing and it almost has
the quaff me kinda feel when I looked at the glass. I was done with it just a little over 10
minutes. (I do not quaff; usually a beer lasts me between 20 - 40 minutes over a show or
chatting with friends). Slight malty after taste but really insignificant. Although I do not
typically do English beers I still do appreciate their smoothness and drinkability.

Photo of beerthulhu
2.63/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Poured from a can with a nitro-widget. A chalky white head is milky and settles to a 1 finger plus size. Ice tea color, clean clarity with no visible effervesce. Head retention is remarkable in terms of stay. Thick milky lacing sticks strongly and long to the vessel walls.

S: An aroma of dried corn and green corn ears come with a light but noticeable level of awareness.

T: Smooth creamy flavor, corn ears greenery, smooth silty malt lacing on the tongue. Low but noticeable bitterness.

M: smooth and creamy, light and medium body, silty malty leave.

O: Overall the nitro-widget enchances the smooth creamy body, has some sility maltiness, and low bitterness levels. Nice beginning though the flavor tends to lean and thin out deeper into the drink. Don't know if i could tackle two in one sitting. Great visual but dives downhill from there.

Photo of jaydoc
2.75/5  rDev -11.9%

Photo of WillAndSarah
2.75/5  rDev -11.9%

Photo of dpool
4.13/5  rDev +32.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Dark red, very nice to look at when settling.
S: Not much to please my nose, very mellow.
T: Taste is good mix between a Guiness and a Fullers.
M: This is what makes this beer one of the smoothest I have ever experienced. Almost like silk.
D: Good beer to have while sitting in a pub, and you will definitly want a few.

Photo of JohnQVD
3/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of BrazilianAussie
3.25/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of RonaldTheriot
4.26/5  rDev +36.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

John Smith’s Extra Smooth has a cascading head, which eventually builds to a creamy, beige bar at the top, with a clear, copper appearance and heavy lacing left on the glass. The aroma is of sweet, creamy, tea, with bread, hops, and barley notes. Taste is of barley malt, bread, bread crust, sugar, caramel, nougat, iced tea, good hop bitterness, and even buttery flavor. Mouthfeel is full, but not heavy, and John Smith’s Extra Smooth finishes dry, refreshing, extra smooth, and delicious. Overall, this is really wonderful.


Photo of zebedee
2.45/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A couple of cans of this stuff were lurking at the back of one of my cupboards, so I thought I'd give it a going over.

Poured this into a pint glass, with a massive two fingered head of thick creamy froth topping an orangey brown body. Lots of tiny little bubbles clinging to the inside of the glass, but no real carbonation.

The aroma was, well, not much for me. Faint malt, grain and dough. Overall, a bit of a used soapy dishwater smell.

The taste was a very mild maltiness with a slightly sweet aftertaste. Nothing really stands out in the flavour of this.

M&D are probably this beers selling point. It was slightly watery, but very silky in the mouth. There was no carbonation, however, this just added to its blandness. Definitely drinkable, if only because there is so little taste or smell to offend you, unless you actually are offended by a lack of taste and smell. A lacklustre offering indeed, don't bother dirtying a glass to drink this one.

Photo of ThaCreep
2.6/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 3.5

Copper color. Creamy and smooth with a body that will in the same direction. A taste of rye bread in the mouth surrounded by a creamy rich lather and a rather discrete hops. A quasi-imaginary carbonation as extra smooth but not really exciting. The finish is bitter but without being excessive for a beer style bitters.

Photo of tzieser
4/5  rDev +28.2%

Photo of frank4sail
3.45/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Golden slightly amber color. Thick rich one inch beige head. Smooth rich malty taste with a slight dry hoppy finish. Not a huge nose but there is some malt sweetness. Fuller cream mouth. A starter pint for yourself in a London Hotel!

Photo of warpedrevolution
3.25/5  rDev +4.2%

Photo of FreshHawk
3.43/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Light amber color with a decent sized creamy, white head. Decent retention with little lacing.

S - Light grain and malt smell. Not that strong.

T - Lightly toasted grain and malt. Some bready flavors and caramel. Also a bit of bitterness with earthy hops. Pretty mild tasting.

M - Medium body that is very creamy and smooth. Good carbonation.

D - Easy to drink and goes down smooth. Mild inoffensive flavor that is meant for drinkability.

Notes: Decent beer for something smooth and easy to drink, especially at places with limited selection (in the UK at least).

Photo of pin
3/5  rDev -3.8%

Photo of joecast
3.1/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours a hazy foam from the widget that eventually clears to a dark caramel color with a damn near perfect one finger tan head. the head sticks around until the beer is done. just gorgeous.
sweet, floral, earthy woody aroma. not too strong, but its got just about everything.
a bit of a let down in the mouth. though it is "extra smooth", it does seem slightly watered down. a light bnitterness comes through as it passes, but it doesnt make too much of an impression.
atm, this is in the epa style, but im guessing its more of a bitter. not that im an expert on either. perhaps john smith (or who ever) was holding back a bit for the esb version.
either way, this is fairly drinkable. nothing thats going to knock your socks off, but thats probably not what the expectation is from this beer.

Photo of david18
3.5/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I spent the better part of the week in London last week and wanted to try as many of the local beers as I could. John Smith's is somewhat of a staple and, in many bars is listed as "extra cold", perhaps for the yanks.

This was one of the more refreshing beers among the british usuals, perhaps the nitro had something to do with it. LIght in color with a good nitro head. Very smooth in taste, perhaps too smooth and less aroma than I'd like. I would recommend it but not whole-heartedly.

However, when in London....

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John Smith's Extra Smooth from The Caledonian Brewery Company Limited
73 out of 100 based on 104 ratings.