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AleSmith IPA - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith IPAAleSmith IPA

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

3,196 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,196
Reviews: 1,158
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 8.94%
Wants: 422
Gots: 322 | FT: 9
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: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,196 | Reviews: 1,158 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of MeisterBurger
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a medium amber with a frothy white head and a bit of chill haze. A thin film of foam persists. No lacing to speak of.

Smells tropical, like sweet pineapple and mango with pine and a whack of toffee and caramelized malts. Nice, but there's fairly dialed back hops presence compared to other top-tier IPAs.

It tastes overwhelmingly of pine bitterness with a weak malt presence that's almost lost amongst a cacophony of bitterness, but with every sip and as I acclimate to the bitterness, there's a powdery caramel malt sweetness that slowly rises to the fore until it finally rivals the hops. Feels like it's creeping into DIPA territory a little here, which almost seems like cheating. That said, it lacks the sort of complexity that I like in an IPA.

Mouthfeel is creamy, medium bodied with a crisp carbonation.

It's good. But for being in the top ten IPAs here, well, I guess I expected more in the aroma and more complexity in the hops. Maybe it suffers by comparison or from heightened expectations, but in all honesty and being 100% objective I've had at least a dozen IPAs I enjoyed more. Maybe it's not a super fresh bottle. Without the aid of a bottled on date I'll never know. I suspect the fact that it's something of an IPA+ or a DIPA- might skew things a little high. Meh. Whatever. I try not to think too much about arbitrarily generated letter grades and differing opinions on any given beer--that way lies madness.

Photo of oglmcdgl
4.42/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A bottle with dinner.

A- two fingers of off white head from a stiff pour that settles to a ring and a ton of sticky lace. Sunset orange in color with a touch of haze.

S- juicy orange and grapefruit with a sticky pine cone in the face. Background sweetness that reminds me of clover honey.

T- big rich citrus hops up front with oranges and grapefruit. Follows by a grassy pine hit and some sweet honey.

M- a bit above medium in body and a bit lower in carb.

D- this is one fabulous ipa and worked perfectly with my rather spicy steak and melange of cheeses.

Photo of tr4nc3d
3.55/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz bomber poured into my pint glass

The appearance was that of a very light copper color with a slightly off-white head. Average head retention that when subsides left minimal amounts of lacing clinging to the sides of my glass.

The aroma consisted of citrus hops with the likes of tangerines and grapefruit. Floral aromatics were noticeable as well with some caramel malt in the background. The hop aroma was kind of subdued IMO and it might be signs of an old bottle?

The taste was slightly sweet upfront with citrus flavors of grapefruit and tangerine. Midway is a slight bitterness with a touch of malts finishing it off.

Mouthfeel was medium bodied with average carbonation.

Overall I was coming in to this with high expectation since this is in the top 10 list of IPA. What I would have liked for this beer to have was stronger aromatics of the hops and for the taste as well to be more citrus like. What I got was maybe an old bottle which I hope so because this IPA would not even make my top 20.

Photo of Jwale73
4.04/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22oz. bottle served in my SA Perfect Pint. No freshness dating evident on the bottle. Poured a translucent, golden-copper with a loose, quarter inch, cream-colored head that eventually settles into a solid skim of a cap. Some sheets and strands of lacing exposed during the tasting. Great nose - sweet grapefruit and tropical fruit esters. Taste is a muted version of the nose with some malt character in the mix and a slightly piny/medicinal character that comes out at the back (I'm thinking this may be an older bottle). Mouthfeel is light-medium with a mild carbonation and a slightly watery consistency. Not a bad IPA at all; however, I think this was a bottle that was past it's prime. That being said, I think it has held up remarkably well, despite the diminished hops character.

Photo of hu5om
4.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

thanks to AndrewK for a sick box that included this beauty! split with newk340.
a-bronze orange. fairly clear. slightly off white foam. very fine bubbles. very nice lacing.
s-bitter orange. floral, grapefruit, light pine. smell is almost overwhelming! yum.
t-lemon zest. grapefruit, light pine. very, very bitter and fresh tasting.
m-very tingly. littl bubbles play on the tongue. "lush" as the bottle says.
d-a great ipa. It's Pretty Awesome. It's not pte, but i was very happy with it.

Photo of VelvetExtract
4.6/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Alesmith IPA- one of my favorites.

A-Golden color and super carbonated. Gigantic head that leaves great lacing. What an IPA needs to look like.

S-Hoppy and delicious. Fruity and citrusy hops. Very juicy and delicious smelling. Aromatic is quite the perfect word to describe this. Subtle spicy hints.

T-This is exactly what I wanted and needed. The hop flavor follows the smell. Surprisingly well balanced. Great citrus and pine combination. The flavor is just a textbook delicious IPA. Very nice.

M-Nice carbonation and respectable feel on the tongue. Medium bodied.

D-7.25% and no alcohol burn. I could easily consider this a DIPA, but its a regular IPA. I love how much flavor they pack into this bad boy. Overall, an unbelievable brew.

Photo of Mjoepp
4.18/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Golden, white foam white average sized bubbles.

S: Citric fruits. Spices I can't exactly name.

T: As the smell with a nice bitternes to it.

O: Quite expensive and hyped among my friends and by other reviewers. Quite dissapointed honestly, but wouldn't mind drinking again.

Photo of bark
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The colour is gold; the liquid is clear. The gigantic head is made of airy off-white foam; it sinks slowly leaving massive amounts of lacing.

The smell is hoppy with more fruity-zesty notes than bitterness. Hints of smoked rye malt, lemon peels and sweet chemical hints of wax and crayons. Fine bitter flavours with hints of lemon acid and meat plus a metallic note. Mildly roasted malty hints of rye flour. A bit too much metal, I think.

The taste is fresh, bitter and very hoppy with lots of sweet citric fruits, fine dark bread, and a grand yet balanced bitterness. A hint of hoppy-chemical wax. The aftertaste is very fruity with notes of pineapples, oranges, kiwi fruits and green apples. The bitterness is elegant and clean. Some malty notes of sweet bread and fruit flavoured candy.

The carbonation is medium strong, the small bubbles are soft. The liquid is smooth.

A great American IPA. Very elegant!

Photo of armock
4.32/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured light copper color with a white head that leaves lacing behind

S - Is a nose full of pine and citrus hops

T - Follows the nose with pine and grapefruit hops theres a small amount of malt that tries to come through

M - This beer has a smooth fuller body with medium carbonation to it

D - This is a little more hoppy than I'm used to but it all works out and is a pretty enjoyable beer that I could drink a few of theses in a sitting

Photo of KAP1356
4.32/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 1 pt., 6 fl. oz. bottle into my Weyerbacher tulip...

A - Pours a hazy golden, orange, amberish color with a huge 2.5 finger head that forms quite quickly. This might be the biggest head I've ever gotten from an IPA. Some nice sticky lacing as well.

S - Smells of mango and pineapple. Some great citrus aromas of lemon and grapefruit as well, but there is a very strong pine presence as well. A very nice malt backbone is present which mixes nicely with the strength of the hops.

T - A very sweet IPA. The taste of tropical fruits and citrus fruits are the forefront, with a piney taste as well, much like the nose. The finish is a nice malty, caramel flavor which adds nicely to the balance.

M - About average I would say. There is a good amount of carbonation, and there is a bit more stickiness than I expected from just an IPA.

D - Quite drinkable. The ABV is right where it needs to be to be a great drinking beer. It really is quite impressive for "just an IPA." It is quite tasty and could rival some DIPA's.

Photo of Chizoad
4.53/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Opening the bottle did not prepare me for the mountain of foam that billowed out when I poured this into my glass. Fat bubbles eventually formed in an everlasting (everforming?) head. Crazy carbonation rising through a golden-orange nearly clear liquid.

The first thing that attacked the nose was pine needle extract. Smelled very fresh, like I could hang it in my aging truck. Hmm.

Delicious. Not as hoppy as anticipated. Pleasantly bitter up front, and mellowing into what I can only describe as ... peanut butter. Yeah I've never tasted this before in a beer, and maybe my limited palate can't figure it out, but that's what it reminds me of. And I have to say, it's pretty amazing. Not amazingly complex.

Great carbonation, actually on the light side for an IPA. One of the most refreshing I've had, and just awesome drinkability. Dangerous.

Photo of jpmclaug
3.66/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into my Duvel tulip

A - Holy mother of humongous heads. This thing has a huge head on a a nice orange/amber body. The head is fluffy and looks delicious. Lots of sticky lacing.

S - Tropical juiciness with some citrus hops. Smells a bit of the pale malt and some heat n the background but this is all about the hops.

T - Balances the malt and hop flavors with a lingering bitterness. A nice bit of citrusy sweetness in their. I dunno... the flavor doesn't doesn't live up to the aroma. A nice bit of resiny, lemony hop flavor.

M - Medium body with a fair amount of carbonation

D - Pretty good IPA but doesn't blow me away. I'd drink this one again but wouldn't seek it out. I had high expectations for Alesmith... I'm sure the Speedway will live up to them because this didn't

Photo of glazeman
4.4/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Received this bottle in a recent trade with airohead2001, thanks buddy! Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a snifter.

A: Pours a hazy, dark orange with a two finger creamy white head. Excellent head retention and wonderful lacing.

S: I know this will sound weird for an IPA but this beer smells like granny smith apples mixed with lemons. Citrus smells, yes, but not your typical citrus.

T: On the sweater side as far as IPAs go. Somewhat reminiscent of Surly's Abrasive Ale. Nice balance of malts up front and a big, smooth hop finish. The malty tastes I get are apples and caramel. The hop tastes I get are lemons, tangerines, and small amount of grapefruit. The hop flavors really come out more as the beer warms. This is one of those beers that gets better with every sip.

M: Not quite as much of an aftertaste or stickiness as I have grown accustomed to in some of the better IPAs. A bit thing for my liking, also a tad over carbonated in my opinion. As I think about it more, this the previous two sentences are probably me just finding something to be critical about in this beer as it is so exceptional in every other category.

D: This is a very drinkable beer. The balance in the taste (read: "not a hop bomb"), the thinness of the mouthfeel, and the fact that the alcohol is completely hidden make this a very drinkable beer. I wish I could enjoy this one more often, sadly it's not distributed in my neck of the woods. The best IPA I have had to date. (In the past month I've had Sculpin, Dreadnaught, Abrasive, Hop Rod Rye, Alpine PH, Nelson, Duet, Blind pig, and PtE a few months ago).

Photo of connecticutpoet
4.08/5  rDev -4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Wow. This looked amazing. I got a four finger, rocky head on the pour. Color was yellow, and there was a slight haze to it. Awesome.

Aroma was mainly of citrusy hops. However, it wasn't grapefruit... to me, it smelled a little sweet, and like oranges. Unusual. But good.

Taste was sharply bitter at first, strong hop resins and alpha acids prominent. The follow-through was slightly sweet malt, maybe a little bit of a caramel flavor but not much. Aftertaste was long and bitter.

Mouthfeel was well carbonated, creamy, and somewhat chewy. Above the norm for a... what would you call it, a "single" IPA?

Drinkability was good. I liked it, and I would have it again, but the one bottle was enough for me. I may buy another and cellar it for 6 months to see if the hops mellow.

Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
4.8/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

From bomber to pint glass. Purchased at Hawthorne's (when first released in PA) for $14. No date or batch number indicated on bottle.

A: A huge frothy and rocky head slowly rises to 3 1/2 fingers. The color is the whitest white imaginable and lasts impossibly long, riding unevenly down the glass in chunky, lop-sided mountain peaks as my enjoyment continues. Each pour over the course of an hour (plus) produces an enormous head. Excellent but erratic sea-foam lace throughout. The body is light in color, peachy orange and pretty clear with just a slight haze. Leaves nothing to be desired.

S: A firm and sweet malty backbone of cookie and caramel support a heavy hop load with orange and grapefruit aromas. Definite yeast contribution. Phenomenal.

T: Building from the nose are flavors of additional tropical and summertime fruits: juicy tangerine and peak of the season peaches. The flavor duration is excellent. Sweetness is a touch below medium. Moderately bitter. Alesmith's IPA tastes incredible at first, and gets even better as it warms, and better still on the last pour with the inclusion of the yeast sediment (which dials back the bitterness as a result).

M: The body is full for the style with a thick, creamy texture. Carbonation level is somewhat average, with fine tonic water like effervescence. Finishes chalky and bitter.

D: Drinkability is remarkable. In case it went unnoticed, the 7.25% ABV keeps this one safely below the DIPA range. (This website and the bottle itself state 7.25%, even though Alesmith's website adds a half point.) I'm amazed by how the flavor is even more impressive than many respectable DIPAs.

Photo of ShogoKawada
2.38/5  rDev -44%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

22oz into tumbler. Review from notes.

A- Nice golden color, snowcapped ivory-white head, sticky icky lacing that is pretty thick. Great IPA appearance.

S- Piny hops, a bit of grapefruit. Pine resin is pretty potent.

T- The pine sap is here, but there's a soapy quality to it that just doesn't jive with me. I'm finding it to be a bit sweet, too. Hmm. As I keep drinking, the sugary sweetness becomes oppressive. And what the hell is this soapy taste? No thanks.

M- A bit too sweet, good carbonation though. Decent body.

D- Actually drainpoured this one. The soapy sweetness was not vibing with me at all. Not sure if it was an off-bottle, but it was just not enjoyable. This beer looked and smelled so good and was a huge letdown. Perhaps I'll have to get another bottle. My least favorite Alesmith to date.

Photo of scottyshades
4.36/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Review #400

Thanks to both Ryan011235 and mrmiles for sending these in trades!

A: Pours a completely hop-hazed pumpkin color. The head is simply amazing...retention is excellent, lasting the entire time. This is the best looking beer I have ever seen, and the head is completely dense. Yeast floaties can be seen floating around

S: As soon as you open the cap, hops hit you. The nose is straight west coast...strong pine and resin. I also get a lot of rye and a yeasty note that I've never come across before.

T: This is flat out bitter with strong pine and resin flavors. Also, the hops have a grassiness that really adds to the bitterness. I get lots of citrus notes in the flavor, like I expected to. Just really piny and resiny. I can't figure out if the yeast takes away from the flavor or adds to it...either way, it happens to taste like dextrose. Malts are a little light, considering the mass amounts of hops used. Also some honey notes.

EDIT: If you let this decant for about 30min, it will really open up and balance itself out. The citrus really starts to shine as it warms! Completely different

MF/D: Carbonation is a little prickly up front, but seems to get better as it decants. Flat out bitter bite at the finish, with slight dextrose and resin.

Notes: Damn, not quite as amazing as I expected, but really good nonetheless. I've heard very different things. The good news is that I have a few more bombers of this to let sit for a little, and see if the flavor settles down.

Photo of sfprint
4.29/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy Brown/yellow/orange in color. Although medium sized bubbles are rushing to the top like I've never seen before, the head is relatively small.

S: Wow, extremely strong. I smelled it before I even tried to smell it. Sweet and orangy for an IPA, but for me this is heaven. One of the best smelling beers I've ever had. This is amazing! And canned pineapple! Or pineapple sherbet, with a metalic (aluminium, i dont know why since it's a bottle!) edge.

T: Bitter, like IPA's are. Almost disappointingly average. Or maybe I'm just used to good IPA's. I wish the flavors in the smell were reflected in the taste. The alcohol percentage is noticeable however, not overt. It is good, but not definitely not outstanding. Oh wait, there is barely a hint of pineapple in there.

M: Not too mouth drying for the alcohol content, subtle carbonation.

D: A very drinkable IPA. A nice beer with an extra kick.

Photo of ktrillionaire
4.55/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Big thanks to jerz for the hook-up

A - Pours a copper-amber hue, fairly translucent, and with a generous amount of rocky off-white head, leaving lace boulders clinging to the glass.

S - The epitome of a West Coast IPA; fresh citrusy hop aroma yields to piney and herbal notes. Malt is lightly toasted, but subdued overall.

T - The taste is pungently hoppy; huge impressions of grapefruit and orange rind are in-your-face, along with notes of sappy pine, fresh cut lumber, and cannabis. Subtly sweet and toasty malt is underlying, but it is not assertive. Huge bitter citrus finish. Great stuff.

M - IPA. Good.

D - This just world-class, along the lines of Sculpin IPA, Green Flash West Coast IPA, Just Outstanding IPA; I want more. Now.

Photo of cvaypai
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 22 oz bottle to new belgium globe. Thanks to andrew for this one.

Appearance - Pours a beautiful golden straw yellow with hints of orange throughout. Totally clear when held up to light. Poured with a 2 finger fluffy white head that lasts and lasts. Leaves an awesome layered lacing down the glass.

Smell - Wonderful fruity and citrus aromas. Tons of grapefruit, orange and other fruity scents. Notes of floral hops also come through and meet a bit of grassyness. A bit of pine but hard to find. A faint whiff of some bready malt.

Taste - Just like it smells, tons of citrus in the taste. Lots of wonderful grapefruit, the floralness comes through also meeting a tiny bit of spice and a wonderful sticky bitterness. The pine can be found on the tongue as indicated by the nose, what a lovely IPA. The bready malts are there if you search hard enough and a bit of caramel sweetness can be found.

Mouthfeel - This ones carbonation is right where it needs to be. It maybe feels a bit thin for the style, the bitterness bites the tongue very nicely and it has a definite stickyness to it. Not as sticky as some though.

Drinkability - I could drink the bomber of this quite easily but I would probably stop there, it's a great beer but the market would keep me from drinking it all the time, probably along with the price. I could see it being a fairly regular treat though.

Photo of adkirkish
3.53/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Subtle pale malt, citrusy and floral hops, no esthers, slight astringency.
A: Pours Clear, golden yellow w/ a thin white head that quickly dissipates.
F: Tastes bitter upfront, malt presence is slight if non existent, the balance is towards the bitter hops. Finish is w/ a lingering bitterness.
M: I found it to be lacking in carbonation with an almost watery mouthfeel. No warmth / creaminess . Slight astringency coming from the hop bitterness.
O: This beer has a great nose per style. A very bitter IPA. However I found this beer to be lacking in mouthfeel and taste. Suggest more in the way of malt character that would improve the body and flavor of this beer.

Photo of stimulus
4.88/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

22 ounce bottle.

A: Pours a hazy copper with a medium white head.

S: Quite subtle citrus flavors followed by a nice hop aroma.

T: This is where the beer gets its value: powerful citrus flavors dominate the palate with a crisp hop finish that doesn't linger too long.

M: Very smooth and well-carbonated.

D: Wow, one of the best IPA's I've ever tried, possibly beaten out only by Sculpin in flavor profile while a hair smoother than Two-Hearted.

Photo of thetomG
4.1/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a pleasant golden straw-yellow with a good amount of foamy white head that stick around quite well leaving some lacing around the glass.

Aroma is quite nice with subtle floral and fruity notes with a hint of hoppyness.

The taste is similar but with some bitterness coming through in the finish - not too much, but just the right amount.

Well carbonated and lively in your mouth, but overall just supremely balanced.

An excellent representation of the style and, surprisingly, not overly hoppy and bitter like many west coast IPAs tend to be.

I will definitely be drinking this one again if I get the chance....

Photo of levifunk
4.22/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

sampled at Madison, WI BA Tasting #3

a - yellow, white head. some sea monkeys floating around

s - citrus hops, sweetness. quite nice.

t - Big hops. both pine and citrus. bitterness sticks around for a bit, but not too bad. I almost want to say there was some mint in there?

m - light body. refreshing.

overall - tasty. easy to drink, especially for 7.25%!

Photo of AleWatcher
4.34/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I've actually had 3 bottles of this now, all from my buddy John (Sideswipe) in Cali. I finally got around to reviewing it, and I took notes. The following is a true account of those tasting notes. Names and locations have been changed to protect the innocent.

A bright cheery gold with some particulates/floaties in there... Huge torrents of carbonation rising up through the glass in columns of bubbles--- reminds me of the current oil leak-- thanks BP! 3 fingers of frothy white billowy head-- just huge.

Sweet bready/caramel malts with big fresh citrus and grapefruit hops... maybe even a bit floral. Flavor starts sweet and then turns to the hop profile. Towards the finish, the sweetness rises up again to mesh with the lingering bitterness. Comes across as very well balanced. It acts as a reminder of how delicious the whole beer is put together.

Feels light and airy with tons of carbonation. This feel like it could be an ultimate summertime beer--- then the 7% abv would catch up to you! The taste is refreshing too. Very nicely balanced, but leaning towards the hoppier side.

AleSmith IPA from AleSmith Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 3,196 ratings.