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AleSmith IPA - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith IPAAleSmith IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,234 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 1,234
Hads: 3,671
Avg: 4.28
pDev: 15.19%
Wants: 479
Gots: 505 | FT: 11
Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.25% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-29-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 1,234 | Hads: 3,671
Photo of livewire78
4.51/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a honey yellow color. Beautiful head with billowy pudding like lacing that stays for the duration.

The smell was not what I expected. I was expecting at least a little pale malts. What I was greeted with was a nice citrusy piney combo of hops.

The taste was an explosion of hops. Hops all over the place. Hops left to right. Hops up and down. Hops inside and out. Yeah, there was some hops. The flavor bandwidth is pretty narrow but the intensity is of the flavors is cranked up to 11. Is there a malt background? Who cares?

Mouthfeel was slick and creamy with just the right amount of bite from the bubbles.

If your in the mood for something hoppy, this is your beer. If not it might be a little intense.

On a side note there is no way this is just an IPA. This should be a quintuple IPA if ever there was one. I either got one mega fresh or this is one of the highest intensity flavored beers I've ever had.

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Photo of tprokop7
4.52/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Recently picked up at Julios. Joe told me it was one I had to try, and I've been impressed with the rest that Alesmith makes, so it seemed like a good call. Poured into a pint at 50F.

A - Beautiful clear golden color, with nice thick head.

S - The smell is dominated by citrusy hops. Especially lemon peel and grapefruit.

T - Starts off just a bit sweet, but the flavor is quickly dominated by the hoppy bitterness. You don't taste the citrus quite as much as I expected from the smell, but the aftertaste is the same as the aftertaste orange peel leaves in your mouth.

M - Smooth, with medium carbonation. No complaints.

D - This really is a great beer, I see no reason why I couldn't keep drinking it. It's a nice, strong, balanced IPA.

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Photo of MusicmanSD
4.06/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After a slight IPA binge, I'd say this beer is not what I expected from the Alesmith hype. While tasty, the Pizza Port Swami's I had earlier was much better. I've had homebrews this good (which IS A GOOD THING!), but I feel it's like any other IPA out there. A bit sweet, not as dry as some and definitely not as hoppy as some others (doesn't taste or smell dry-hopped). While a great beer, it feels less pacific coast IPA and more east coast/british in style. Balanced though. Definitely a good beer. The head is creame and it stays around.

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Photo of pheggeseth
4.6/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: golden yellow with a huge rocky white head, tons of lacing, not much carbonation

S: floral and fruity hops up front, slight caramel and berries in the middle

T: oaky wood up front with floral notes again, some fruit in the middle with some piney sweetness, it all tapers off a little more quickly than I would like

M: crisp, maybe a little low on carbonation, ever so slightly thin?

D: a very unique IPA in my opinion, strong and complex, but still totally drinkable

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Photo of Dubber55
3.23/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a Founders snifter- clear light orange with some yellow highlights. 1 finger of white head. Some spotty lacing on the glass

From the initial aroma, this has a signature smell of a West Coast IPA- lots of grapefruit, tangerine, and possibly lime. I am also smelling plenty of pine, fresh cut grass, earthy hops, and alcohol.

Taste follows the smell- plenty of grapefruit, tangerine, some pineapple, pine and resiny hops. Then some sweetness from the malts kicks in, in the form of caramel. The finish is pine and booze. There is also some kind of soapy taste I am getting as well. Not very pleasant.

Medium body. Some light carbonation that tingles the tongue. Maybe a little too much carbonation. Somewhat sticky from the hop oils.

Overall, this beer did not live up to the hype for me. The alcohol and the bitterness are kind of abrasive. For a 7% beer, I did not think the alcohol would be so pronounced. Too much sweetness from the malts for my tastes. There is a combination of sweet, soapy, and alcoholic that is not doing it for me.

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Photo of MikeyMikee
4.88/5  rDev +14%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Served at fridge temperature, into a tulip.

Golden appearance with a frothy, sticky looking white head that has a great retention. Leaves a really nice lacing on the glass as well.

The smell is fantastic.. BIG, citrus and floral hoppiness with a resiny feel to it. As time goes on I think I'm getting some pine as well. Ultimate hop aroma. Maybe a slight bready pale malt in there but definitely a resiny, hop dominant nose.

Floral hops dominate the taste. Juicy, fruity flavors make their way through with orange and grapfruit dominating. Minor, bready pale malt makes its way through and adds to the complexity but in no way balances it, which is just fine. This beer is perfect as is, perfect hop flavor.

Smooth and silky body with a really sharp bitterness. It's not as resiny as the smell implyed but it leaves a dry bitterness at the end and the bitterness lingers and almost stings the back of your tounge. Although the bitterness lingers, it is still a crisp and clean beer.

This is an unbelievable beer. The epitome of what an IPA should be, pure hoppiness with very little malt interference.

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Photo of TaySuth
4.64/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Nice amber color with a one finger head that hangs around for a good amount of time. Nice lacing. Good but not amazing.

Smell: Great smell. Excellent amount of hop aroma. Can't wait to taste it.

Taste: Wow. Just wow. Absolutely delicious. Amazing hops flavor that goes down super smooth. Great, but not overpowering sweetness from the grains. Perfect amount of bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Just the right amount of carbonation. Great amount of body.

Overall: So impressed with this beer. Delicious. Definitely will be buying some more of this.

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Photo of BetterDarker
4.71/5  rDev +10%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz poured into pint glass.

A- Amazingly thick, fluffy off white head, hazy gold with fantastic retention and lacing. Quite simply an amazing looking beer, almost fake it's so perfect.

S- Hop slap to the face, and it feels good. Herbal, lemon citrus, pine and grass, I wonder if there was a hop they didn't use.

T: Great hoppy depth of flavor with citrus and pine overtones with a hint of malt in the back.

M: Perfect carbonation with a medium body.

D: Highly drinkable, so much so I may move to San Diego so I can get this on a regular basis.

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Photo of jwolfie70
4.84/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a 22 oz bomber into a Sam Adams pint glass. Poured a light copper color, with a good sized white head that stuck around for a while and left a good coating on the glass. The smell was caramel, apricots and flowery hops. The taste was caramel balanced by a wonderful flowery, citrusy hop flavor balancing it out wonderfully. This is one of my favorite IPAs, if not my favorite. A beer I would highly recommend.

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Photo of jimj21
4.85/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Twenty two ounce bomber poured into a tulip. Purchased in Massachusetts. Pours an orangish amber color. Very clear at first. Additional pours produce more yeast haze. Slow pour still produces a huge head, as does swirling the glass. Light colored tan head. Four fingers at first, reduces slowly to about a finger. Big chunks of lacing.

Exceptionally hoppy and citrusy and piney. Sweet orange and grapefruit. Hops, hops, hops. I think I'm picking up some toasty malt in there too, but the aroma of citrusy hops is front and center, as it should be.

Taste is just as one would expect given the nose. Tons of hoppy goodness. Very citrusy, again with orange and grapefruit. Piney as well. Good amount of bitterness here. Malt comes through slightly in the middle as toasted white bread. Bitter pine on the finish.

Nice smooth and creamy mouthfeel. Medium to full bodied. Slightly dry on the finish. Provides a nice warmth. Carbonation is a little high, but the small bubbles really help create the smooth feel.

Wow. This is an amazing beer. This might be the best IPA I have ever had. It's too bad Alesmith isn't more available. Anyone that is a fan of IPAs needs to try this.

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Photo of tmcelvain
4.2/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bottle shipped with the Most Wanted BIF.

looks great, smells great, and tastes pretty damn good. This is a top notch IPA. I've tasted it within a couple of days of the other big boys: Sculpin, PtE, Blind Pig, and Abrasive, and this one can hold its own. The overwhelming impression is Apricot. a nice dark gold color, with a bitter hop taste that reminds me of that fruit.

Just like the label, there are not any tricks to this one, just a big, bitter, hop forward beer, with excellent body and mouthfeel. Not a ton of balance, but in an IPA your not really after that are you?

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Photo of BigHead
4.5/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first brew from the Alesmith line, and I like what I see so far. A good clear copper amber with nice head, the alesmith has been working hard. Oh, the aroma is ga-good. I detect the floral hops wonderfully, but a good presence of the malts, hints of caramel. Mercy, a good flavor as well, perhaps I should start my training as an alesmith. The hop bite is balanced so well by the malt presence and those tiny little bubbles that you read about on the bottle. Those little bubbles make the beer feel great in your mouth. I will be getting this again.

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Photo of KidDoc
3.89/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Beautiful crystal clear light gold color with nice head, decent retention and nice lacing. Aroma had a nice earthy piney feel. Flavor followed with nice bittering but I would like a little more malt to the balance.

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Photo of Rezzin
4.62/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a nice semi hazy copper color with a fluffy off white head that just sticks around as I drink for the glass.

S - WOW - this thing smells awesome! Smells piny, floral, sweet, malty, maybe a little grapefruit and peaches, and something else can't pin down. Just smells really really good!

T - MMmmm! Great piney, a citrusy hop taste than goes immediately into malty sweet goodness. IPA's like this are hard for me to describe because there seems to be so much going on. I had a slight alcoholic bite at first sip but it's been covered by all this flavor goodness. This thing has a great aftertaste too.

M - Smooooth with a slightly dry finish. Moderate carbonation.

D - This beer has immediately become one of the house staples. A VERY drinkable beer and you don't necessarily have to be a hop head to enjoy - but it doesn't hurt I'm sure. It's not over the top imo because of the great malt balance. Thanks for making my evening AleSmith Brew Co.!

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Photo of mully
3.88/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

thanks to rayjay for this beer

a-- thick fine bubbled head leaves a fine lace down to a thinly retained head murky gold apricot color

s-- sugary apricots, hint of citrus brightness a light caramel undertone

t-- full/grainy meaty hops balanced biterness - citrus comes in later slight apricot damn good beer

m-- fine carbonation well attenuated not overly sweet

d-- not over the top -- well balanced and refined.

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Photo of FishGetter
3.38/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Darker amber color with loads of streaming bubbles. Half inch frothy head.
Not a real fregrant nose. Some sweet malts with very mild citrus hops. Somewhat bready nose captured for the most part.
After breaking through a frothy head, a melow cirtus hop flavor. Some sweetend barly breaks through with a semi-spicy alchol burn to finish.
Almost a medium body with sticky oily resins left in the mouth. Remains on tounge with alchol.
Respectable but not very impressive by a west coast IPA. Was very excited to see it back on the shelfs after what I was told to be "distrbution problem". Freshness is suspect here but really feels like lighting a firecracker and finding out its a dud.

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Photo of wd40
4.16/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Looks like the perfect beer! Has a somewhat hazy dark golden color with a thick foam. The head reminds me of a Belgian beer because it set into an almost solid layer above the beer. Tons of lace left behind on the glass. Smell is hoppy. Peach and apricots. The taste is similar with a crisp finish which adds to the drinkability. The bitterness of the hops lingers a little, but it fades quickly and completely enough to allow exceptional drinkability. The mouthfeel could have just a little more carbonation to allow for a slightly more airy texture. But it was good nonetheless. Exceptional beer. Somewhat reminiscent of Alesmith's Yulesmith winter IPA, but with a little less bite.

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Photo of JoeySchlitz
3.7/5  rDev -13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

5/16/09 review from my notes.

A: Pours a rich golden yellow with a 2" off white custard head. Thick and creamy topping on a great looking glass of beer.

S: A rich citrus, piney hop aroma is released when you open the bottle and once in the glass that's all you can smell. Sweet grapefruit - fantastic smell.

T: Unfortunately the smell seems more powerful than the taste which seems a bit on the light side. There is a bit too much bitter at the end for my taste.

M: Also a bit lighter than expected but has great carbonation for the style.

O: Overall this is a good IPA but not the best. PtE has this beat on all accounts and for Alesmith I think that I prefer a fresh Winter Yulesmith - not sure why this one is rated higher?

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Photo of zuggy9
4.79/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was recommended to me by an employee at BevMo, and I was quite pleased. It has a somewhat milky nature for an IPA, but the smell and taste are quite wonderful. Smooth and dense, it's has a hearty taste and a good moderate finish, not too dry and not too bitter.

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Photo of macktbone
4.35/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up as a gift as we can't get Alesmith products in NorCal.

A- very crisp cider like appearance. Thin white head with even coverage over the beer. Visible carbonation makes me a little hesitant.

S- Strong centenial/cascade hops. Apples and cinnamon, very clean.

T- Cider like bite with and oaky finish. Taste doesn't hold up to the hoppy aroma. Cherry wood aftertaste.

M- Probably the best mouthfeel for an IPA. creamy and low carbonation lends itself well to the citrus blend without loosing the crispness.

D- easily drinkable for a solid IPA. Alesmith keeps to its hard hitting quality.

I will give this another shot. I almost hope this bottle was affected somehow that might have dulled the taste.

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Photo of BitterPachyderm
3.52/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bomber (no freshness) into SN pint glass...had been waiting in vain to try this beer after about a week of going dry...

huge four fingers of sticky white head-great retention, massive pillowy yet rocky froth...hazy burnt yellow/orange body

STRONG citrus character with a giant hop presence...good malt backbone helps keep this floral boquet in check...sweet ass west coast aroma

bitter + bitter=unbalanced!! there is a sweetness near the finish, but the bitterness takes away from everything esle. there is some citrus with a strong hop presence but it quickly fades. it seems as if there is absolutely no malt backbone for it to stand on, which contradicts my thoughts on the nose...

a bit watery and low on carbonation, but just smooth enough to be average

the bitterness hurts but with no alcohol showing, it is a decent quaffer...

is this a good ipa? yeah... is it great? no...

there are a lot of things that have left me a bit befuddled by this beer, mainly the lack of yeast at the bottom of the bottle. either this was old (can't tell when it doesn't have any freshness markings that i can find) or i have started getting tougher on my IPAs. either way, i was expecting more...i will probably revisit this in the future to see if anything changes.

(i don't think Ben and I are drinking the same beer)

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Photo of Dlish
4.19/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A- Golden color, very light in color, heavy frothy head not crystal clear. Would like a little more amber color or something to let me know that this is not going to be all hops.

S- Strong smell of lemon and orange, like orange jello, a bit pinny bit herbal and little no malt. I really like the smell its IPA but its a little bit different.

T- woo, a lot different that I imagine, it is very malty and sweet, there is a solid amount of hops but a lot of the lemon and orange. But very syrupy, and something is a little bit off, there is an almost apple/yeasty taste which messes up the fresh hoppy taste.

M- Syrupy, almost yeasty.

Overall better than the last alesmith I had, it is nice and hoppy like any san diego beer. But the malty syrupy taste gives it something a little bit off, and not a good off like a double ipa.

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Photo of beersabound
4.62/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Another great IPA out of San Diego or as I like to call it San Di-IPA-go!

The aroma has a great piney, earthy and light caramel/toast bouquet. The appearance was copper with a slight chill haze. I know it's bottle conditioned but even the first four ounces out of the bomber were hazy. The head has small bubbles, lasts forever and is merenque-esque. The flavor is great, a full mouth of centennial (I think) hop flavor and bitterness nicely held up by a pedestal of malt sweetness and some mild alcohol warmth. The mod low carbonation makes for a smooth mouthfeel and keeps the hops from bowling over the rest of the flavors. This was a higly drinkable IPA. I wish I could get it in Alaska.

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Photo of vwcraig
4.13/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Held onto this for my 50th review and many thanks to Tim for the trade.

Poured into AleSmith pint glass just for the occassion. Poured the deepest amber color and almost brownish. Large off-whit head laces the glass well ans really sustains even though the rising bead isn't overwhelming. Smells of orange peel and floral hops jump out with a toasted malt smell also. Resiny hop taste that follows the nose too. Malts almost taste darker to me like between toasted and roasty. Medium bodied and decent carbonatiare on in mouthfeel that isn't overdone. Bitterness in mouthfeel is really felt on rear sides of tongue. Drinkability is very good eventhough availability is not for me. Alcohol is decently masked for the strength. Will try for more bottles of this in the future.

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Photo of ThirdLap
4.48/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours a light, clean-looking copper into my Stone pint glass. A two-finger thick off-white head dissipates after a few minutes, leaving a thin film that remains till the last sip. Minor amounts of lacing remain.

Nose is very floral and citrusy, with pine and grapefruit notes well-balanced for an incredibly crisp smelling beer.

Bigger malt presence than the nose would predict, but not intrusive as some of the more malt-forward brews can be. The citrusy hop presence seems just about perfect.

Body is right in the middle, with a medium to high level of carbonation for the style. Finish leaves the mouth with a perfect bitter hop presence.

Another world class offering from AleSmith.

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AleSmith IPA from AleSmith Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 1,234 ratings.