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Mount Desert Island Ginger - Atlantic Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Mount Desert Island GingerMount Desert Island Ginger

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
77
okay

189 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 189
Reviews: 130
rAvg: 3.33
pDev: 17.42%
Wants: 2
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Atlantic Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
Herbed / Spiced Beer |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
A refreshing wheat beer spiced with fresh ginger root. The process of making this wheat beer has been nicknamed "special ginger tea", due to the fact that we add over 20 lbs. of fresh ground ginger root into the boil.

We use pale malt, and wheat, as well as Target and Whitbread Goldings Variation hops to flavor this light, summer ale.

Island Ginger is particularly popular during the warmer summer months, though thanks to the ginger kick it has, it would also be warming in the cold winter months.

(Beer added by: UnionMade on 11-04-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 189 | Reviews: 130 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of nmann08
3/5  rDev -9.9%

nmann08, Dec 09, 2011
Photo of metter98
3.4/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is hazy golden yellow in color and has a light amount of carbonation along with some small particles floating in suspension. It poured with a half finger high off white head that died down relatively quickly, leaving a thick ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of ginger and wheat in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and also has some notes of orange citrus and spices.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer isn’t that difficult to drink and has some refreshing properties. It tastes like a summer ale with a twist of ginger.

metter98, Jun 29, 2011
Photo of brentk56
3.43/5  rDev +3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a hazy honey color with a small head and virtually no lacing

Smell: Strong whiff of ginger overwhelms any other scents

Taste: Starts out as a battle between the ginger spice and a relatively sweet malt backbone; initially the ginger dominates, but as the ginger fades, a sugary sweetness predominates into the finish; tastes like a ginger beer (the non-alcoholic kind)

Mouthfeel: Light/medium bodied with a modest amount of carbonation; a little slick on the finish

Drinkability: I like the ginger flavors and could enjoy this on a hot summer day; ultimately, however, the sweetness of this beer turns me off

brentk56, Jul 17, 2005
Photo of BEERchitect
3.6/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It's a terrific experiment: wheat and ginger. They combine for great sensations in the flavor and feel. Initial sip takes on lemony, a light belgian tartness, and a whollop of ginger flavor. The ginger plays 'hot' on in the mouth, combined with the modest alcohol, it becomes very spicy and dry. The wheat takes on citrus and bready aromas that translate well to flavor. The wheat base also becomes very American, which thins the body and weakens the flavor. If a German wheat base were used (allowing the creaminess of offset the spiciness), this would be a much better beer.

BEERchitect, May 23, 2006
Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.53/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hazy orange blossom honey surrounding a stormcloud of fine yeast. Maybe the name and the contents are giving me ideas, but the large cap is precisely the color of ginger root. It's a good looking lid that is tight-bubbled enough to persist and tacky enough to leave the glass partially covered in attractive lace.

The biggest challenge in brewing an herbed/spiced beer, I imagine, is in getting the exact right amount of herb/spice aroma and flavor. By my nose, Island Ginger is pretty much right on. That doesn't mean it's an outstanding nose however. It smells like freshly grated ginger, but lacks pizzaz. Having said that, the flavor would do well to mirror the nose. With pizzaz added of course.

One had better like ginger before cracking the crown because this is one gingersnap of a beer. I like ginger (I don't love it) and it seems to me that even a little more would have been too much. The use of pale and wheat malts keeps other prominent flavors at bay and effectively keeps ginger at center stage. British hops are valued contributors, both in terms of flavor (less so) and bitterness (more so) even as they're buried under the spice barrage.

I can't help feeling that this beer is something of a one-trick pony. I'd like to see ginger share the stage with lemon zest. At least then I'd be able to conceive of sessioning it on a warm summer afternoon. As is, I'd get ginger overload after just one bottle. It helps that it's more bitter than sweet, but even that doesn't lend itself to one-after-another drinking.

The mouthfeel is what one would expect from what is essentially a pale wheat ale brewed by an accomplished brewery. It's as light and as airy as a summer seasonal should be, yet it doesn't deteriorate on the finish as so many APWAs tend to do. The carbonation is workmanlike rather than flashy and the mouthfeel is the better for it.

Mount Desert Island Ginger is a bit of a niche beer. I'm not sure if there are enough ginger lovers out there for it to sell like hotcakes, but then I could just as easily not know what the hell I'm talking about. It seems to me that being a little more ginger with the ginger root would have made for a better beer.

BuckeyeNation, Sep 07, 2006
Photo of Knapp85
3.75/5  rDev +12.6%

Knapp85, Jul 07, 2013
Photo of NeroFiddled
3.9/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Atlantic Brewing's ginger beer pours a cloudy orange-amber beneath a short head of creamy off-white foam. The head retention, however, is limited; and it leaves very little, if any, lacing about the glass. The nose expresses exactly what you'll find in the flavor: wheat malt and ginger. It's not complex, but enjoyable; and it's nicely balanced by a firm bitterness beneath the zesty ginger. It's medium bodied and crisp, which adds to its refreshing nature. Nicely done!

NeroFiddled, Jul 08, 2006
Photo of Slatetank
3.73/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up at Quick six in west York, Pa. Decanted cool into mug -shared w/ tenderbranson69.

A - This is the second overly carbonated ale from this brewery, makes me wonder if it is bottle conditioned or just overprimed. A turbid tarnished gold leans toward the former. The head foams up rapidly and part of the sample was tranferred to another glass. Lively and quickly falling, though the head drops to about 1/4 inch w/ very thin lacing left on the glass.

S - Like freshly grated ginger w/ a pretty big hit of wheaty yeast in the nose. Slightly citrus scented w/ fropical odors playing up the spicy/slightly pickled hint.

M - Smooth and creamy w/out a 'ginger assault' like I expected. A well placed spice/wheat balance w/ nice creamy and nutty textures.

T - Very pleasant w/ a ginger beer, Jamaican spicy juice taste w/ a nice lemony flavor accompanied by nutty wheat. A subtle creamy flavor w/ nice pineapple and mellow peachy essence. The taste is very appropriate for summer, yet just as nice in winter in PA w/ coriander adding to the tongue tingling finish the ginger initiated.

D - Very flavorful once the foaming allows the tasting to begin, but more aroma attention was given. This is one of the better spiced American wheats I have taste in the last year. I have had few ales w/ ginger to compare this to, I appreciated the mix of ginger and wheat overall. Atlantic brewing makes a nice variety of ales - at least the couple I have had the pleasure of tasting. This is probably a choice best suited for those that appreciate fresh ginger, but I think it would go well w/ a variety of dishes or as a digestif.

Slatetank, Mar 10, 2008
Photo of jlindros
3.13/5  rDev -6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a decent fizzy 1 finger head that fades at a med pace, over hazy sediment filled orange honey colored beer.

Nose has sweet syrups, plenty of extract aromas, light wheats aromas, hints of spices and ginger, and a light herbal hops.

Taste starts slightly on the sweet side with some wheats, some more extract like flavors, phenols and a bit of plastic, light candied ginger, sweet syrupy extract flavors, a light herbal hop bitterness. Finishes still a bit sweet, little spicy from spices and ginger, sticky syrups, and some light bitterness.

Mouth is med bodied, decent carb.

Overall fairly meh, plenty of off flavors, sweet and syrupy with an extract like wheat flavor that I'm still not sure if it is extract or just very poorly done wheat beer, the ginger is barely there, and some phenols that don't belong.

jlindros, Aug 02, 2011
Photo of mendvicdog
3.25/5  rDev -2.4%

mendvicdog, Sep 07, 2012
Photo of WesWes
3.88/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a cloudy gold color with a thin white head that fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a pale malt scent with a hint of ginger lingering. It definately is spicey. The taste is good. It has a fine ginger flavor which is mellowed with the use of pale malts. It is a really smooth beer despite the spice. The mouthfeel is fine. It is a medium bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a good drinking spice beer. It has good flavor and a smooth finish.

WesWes, Jun 15, 2004
Photo of smcolw
3.4/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Cloudy; neutral amber color. Light head--leaves some slippery and spotty lace.

Mild fresh grated ginger aroma. No sweetness to the nose.

First impression is how dry the beer is. This is not an overwhelmingly strong ginger ale. The ginger really only shows up on the swallow. The aftertaste is short. The liquid is what you'd expect from a typical ale.

smcolw, Oct 10, 2009
Photo of Gavage
3.8/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: pours a clear light orange with a nice fluffy 2" head. Some spotty lacing develops.

Smell: ginger is easily detectable.

Taste: green grapes, ginger, and some granny smith apples. Malt levels are lighter than expected, and there was a bit of lite bitterness.

Mouthfeel: crisp from start to finish. Lighter in body. Short aftertaste as onl some ginger linger briefly.

Drinkability: Not bad, but not great. A different beer that would probably go good with some Chinese stir fry. Interesting.

Gavage, Apr 16, 2006
Photo of wrightst
3/5  rDev -9.9%

wrightst, Jun 06, 2014
Photo of woodychandler
3.88/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

One of my fellow LNCBC Mug Club members brought a bottle of this back for me while in Maine on vacation. Thanks, Mitch!

It poured with a big, fluffy white head, but it rapidly dissipated and then disappeared almost entirely. The color was a cloudy medium to deep amber, but the color was secondary to the smell. Man, was it ever rich with ginger! I caught it on the nose, then again on the palate, and one last time on the finish. The bottle's label identifies the beer as "wheat ale brewed with fresh ginger", but everything is just overwhelmed by the ginger. I liked the ginger, but it became a case of a little going a long way. I could see this as an accompaniment to a Thai meal, but on its own, it was a bit much. The mouthfeel was very full, almost creamy. An interesting beer that I am glad to have had the opportunity to review, but it wa just not my personal cup of tea.

woodychandler, Nov 23, 2005
Photo of dbrauneis
3.45/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a slightly murky dark golden yellow to amber in color with light amounts of gentle visible carbonation along the sides of the glass and some golden orange highlights. The beer has a half finger tall foamy beige head that slowly reduces to a medium sized patch of thin film surrounded by a thinly mottled very thin film covering about 20% of the remainder of the surface of the beer and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light amounts of lacing are observed

S: Light to moderate aromas of wheat with light aromas of fresh ginger (and just a hint of ginger spiciness).

T: Upfront there is a moderate flavor of wheat with some lighter notes of citrus/orange and fresh ginger - though with only a light amount of ginger spiciness. Minimal amounts of bitterness are present and fade very quickly.

M: Light to medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: Easy to drink but I really wish the aromas and flavors of fresh ginger were more prevalent, more spicy, and more intense. Refreshing and a nice beer for the summer.

dbrauneis, Aug 22, 2013
Photo of jdhilt
2.7/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Disappointed with this, I was expecting a ginger nose - there was none and a ginger flavor also none. Slight crispness but it was more like an ordinary lager. The ABV is 5.2%.

jdhilt, Nov 05, 2002
Photo of ppoitras
3.33/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12oz bottle obtained via trade with bennybrew. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2"of white head, which quickly shrunk down to a lyaer of light foam. Very slight lacing over this slightly cloudy honey-golden brew. Aroma is of lightly of grain and a tinge of the advertised ginger, noticeable but not overpowering. Flavor seems a bit lacking in the malt area, and I expected a bit more ginger flavor than I can taste. The ginger does seem to bring out the crispness of the hops at the end a bit more, which is nice. Probably a nice warm weather brew, have to give it a try then, with a somewhat thin mouthfeel and the corresponding drinkability...

ppoitras, Apr 09, 2004
Photo of rab53
3.5/5  rDev +5.1%

rab53, Nov 22, 2011
Photo of beerthulhu
2.93/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Poured a pale, dirty orange with a frothy linen white colored head that dissipated to a patchy covering within the first minute of pour. There was a turbid nature of tiny speckled yeast matter that was sparse and spaced far between with enough clarity to clearly distinguish objects on the other side.

S: musky and dry with light sweetly toasted grains and dry orange grinds. The ginger was dry, powdery and muddled with no distinguishability. Overall was muddled, flat, and bland.

T: The flavor faired slightly better then the aroma. The spiciness of the ginger comes through with some honey cloves and lightly sweet toasted grains. A fruitiness of melons and pear juice are also noted here. There is a ginger root/flower hopping on the finish. Overall found the malting to be overbearingly sweet at times.

M: alkaline, light bodied and slightly fizzy. The finish is a bit scratchy perhaps from the ginger. Nothing else mentioning here.

D: Hard to imagine drinking this in multiples. Less then average enjoyment and ease of consumption. It is what it is, a ginger beer that comes off overbearingly sweet malt wise limiting multiples or repeatability. If curious try lefthands ginger over this, otherwise cant imagine what I would do with a six pack of this.

beerthulhu, Jul 27, 2009
Photo of GarthDanielson
4.01/5  rDev +20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer was poured on-tap and served in a shaker pint, and it was a bright, hazy, orange-gold coloring with a filmy, foamy, white head. Nose of subtle ginger and toast. Flavors of sweet gingerbread, with a roasty/toasty highlight. Lemony ginger aftertaste, with a cookie character. Smooth, light bodied, with a frothy, clean finish. Very good brew.

GarthDanielson, Aug 22, 2013
Photo of Trashcat
3/5  rDev -9.9%

Trashcat, Nov 18, 2014
Photo of Bighuge
3.88/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Fuzzy, hazy peach appearance. Thin ivory white head. Lacing is adequate. Nice whiff of ginger blends with some minty and perfumey hop aromas. Some sweet malt is detected in the background. There's a nice taste to this beer. I'm not a big fan of ginger, but this is nicely spiced and pleasing to the buds. Fairly sweet overall. The malts seem a little bready and biscuity. Nice little touch of yeastiness. The ginger is held in check nicely and blends with the herbal tones from the hops nicely. This is a pretty good spiced brew. Beats the hell out of that JUJU Ginger beer I just had from Left Hand.

Bighuge, Jul 28, 2004
Photo of harpus
3/5  rDev -9.9%

harpus, Oct 06, 2012
Photo of Gusler
3.6/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

ItDebarks from the 12 ounce brown bottle nebulous amber with a modest white head that is spumous in texture, the lace a thin slip to cover the glass. Nose is sweet, hints of ginger, and to me a cinnamon like aroma also present, nice to sniff at any rate, start is quite sweet, nice malt presence, top is moderate in feel. Finish has a nice benign acidity, the hops understated but pleasing to the palate, the aftertaste sweet and dry, a real nice summertime beer, and one that would sell well in arid-zona.

Gusler, Apr 24, 2004
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Mount Desert Island Ginger from Atlantic Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 189 ratings.