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AleSmith IPA - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith IPAAleSmith IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
95
world-class

2,958 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,958
Reviews: 1,142
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 8.94%
Wants: 414
Gots: 251 | FT: 8
Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  7.25% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-29-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,958 | Reviews: 1,142 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of brettheartshops
4.95/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Perfect amber color with white head that laces nicely down a pint glass. Hops aroma and bitterness are ever present, but not so overwhelming that you can't taste the malts. Guessing a cennential/cascade/chinook/amarillo mix. Whatever it is, I know I want more.

On top of this being a unbelievable IPA, I had a nice experience albeit a short one at Alesmith. I was on a business trip with some time to kill, so i drove to the Brewery. Much to my dismay, the sign said it was closed. Not to be dismissed that quickly, I decided to take a look in the window because I had never been to a brewery in an industrial strip mall. As I looked in, I noticed there was definitely some activity going on. So, I poked my head in, explained that I was from NC, and asked if I could buy a couple 22s. Answer was "sure" and they bagged a few IPAs for me and threw in a couple of stickers and some coasters. I've never seen Alesmith in a store, but the price they charged me was more than reasonable.

Hopefully, they'll distribute in NC soon!

brettheartshops, Dec 10, 2008
Photo of Mauerhan
4.93/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

first off i love this beer. hands down one of my favorite ipas...ever. im surprised its taken me this long to review it.

pours into my new belgium snifter. a beautiful amber color. slightly hazy. a phenomenal two finger fluffy white head rises off this baby and sticks around long enough to make a lasting impression. when the head does fall it leaves a big amount of thick lacing all over my glass that clings till the end. now this is a good looking beer.

smell is hoppy cologne. im tempted to toss this on instead of deodorant. a complex dance of hops and malts.

taste kills me slowly with each sip. its so simple but so fucking complex. i get new layers of flavor each time i sip. pine, grapefruit zest, sweet malts. biscuty yum yums. god this beer is awesome. i think that beerfest put it best. "i want to put my dick in it- i want it to put its dick in me"

mouth is smoooth. bottle says velvety. they are not kidding. slightly oily, not a bad thing. the bitter biscut flavor lingers begging me to drink more.

i would sit in a bathtub of this if it wasnt a waste of a great beer. i dont know why this isnt higher up on the top 100. i think if it was harder to get (yearly release) this would be on the top ten easily. get it and drink it. you wont be sorry.

Mauerhan, Dec 06, 2008
Photo of magictrokini
3.8/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clear gold with a frothy white head. Strong grapefruit in the nose. A slap of resin and grapefruit in the taste, followed by caramel malt and a bit of sweet yeast from the bottom. Very refreshing and sweeter than others in its ilk (Stone, for example). Lively mouthfeel. A reliable, strong IPA.

magictrokini, Dec 04, 2008
Photo of Oxymoron
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Why are the letters so big? Pours a mostly hazy golden amber color with a light burnt orange hue throughout. A good pour leaves a soft white head. Good retention but did not last through the tasting. Limited lacing.

The nose has a nice west coast style hop aroma. To start there is a mostly grapefruit aroma mixed with a nice citrus and minor pine backing. Some non-distinct malt aromas with hints of husky and sugary notes. Some minor yeast notes but mostly clean.

The taste is a bit more balance than the nose indicates. A good balance between bitterness and finishing hops as well. The finish backs off on the grapefruit and blends more of a citrus and orange flavor. Some astringency in the finish but ok. The malt comes out with more of a grainy and biscuit/bready flavor. Has enough there to support the hops

The body is a bit sweet for style. Some astringency from the hops. The carbonation is a bit much but adds complexity to the bitterness. Overall a good example of a west cost IPA.

Oxymoron, Dec 01, 2008
Photo of ckeegan04
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Light caramel brown in color with a huge creamy off-white head. Huge sheets of lace on the glass and excellent head retention. Very hazy.

S - Big hoppy punch. Mix of citrus and tropical fruits, possibly the perfect combo. Lots of graprefruit and hints of pineapple. And light sugary sweetness underneath.

T - Surprisingly sweet initially with hints of sugar biscuits and caramel. The hops quickly come in and take over the taste profile. Alot of citrus with grapefruit being the dominant taste. Finishes with a clean, lingering bitterness.

M/D - Medium to full bodied and almost chewy in feel. Very easy drinking. Light crispness.

ckeegan04, Dec 01, 2008
Photo of sweetbrew82
3.93/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 22 oz. bomber into a pint glass. No freshness date on the bottle.

P: Pours a yellowish-golden colored liquid from the rather simple, yet classic-looking bottle. This hazy liquid (from the bottle-conditioned yeast) is sitting in the glass a deep golden-amber color, boasting a beautiful pearly-white head with the tiniest of bubbles. Excellent retention, when the fluffy white-cloud-of-a-head finally does recede it leaves fat chunks of patchy lacing on the sides of the glass. Nice!

A: Toasted malts, slightly piney yet bitter hops, and a generous amount of yeast. Not as forthcoming as I would have liked (or maybe I'm getting a cold).

T: From the first sip of AleSmith IPA, you can really tell that these folks know what they're doing. The taste is quite hoppy, while the somewhat understated malt gets crushed by the shear strength of the intense hop attack. The taste is very crisp, very tight and clean, and quite polished around the edges. There is nothing in this brew that suggests sloppiness or carelessness in the brewing process. Not the most complex on the palate, but it's a very refreshing IPA that tastes quite good! Bittering hops make their presence known towards the finish, but it's a mellow, pleasant experience. Finishes dry with absolutely no hint of alcohol to be found. I know it's only 7.25% ABV, but the alcohol is totally masked. Meanwhile, the strain of yeast used is a stubborn bastard that never seems to let the tastebuds forget that it was once there. I would love nothing more than a glass of this on a hot summer's day. Good to say the least.

M: The mouthfeel of this AleSmith IPA is right on point. It's medium-bodied, very smooth, and contains just the right amount of carbonation to round out the pleasurable experience.

D: This one drinks rather easily! It's 7.25%, but the alcohol is so well-masked, and easy to drink, that I could, undoubtedly, knock a couple of these 22's back without a problem.

Notes: This is a very good interpretation of the style. The brewers at AleSmith definitely know what they're doing. They've managed to craft an IPA that tastes very clean. It's mighty easy to drink, smooth on the palate, throat, and esophagus (not to mention the stomach), and is quite refreshing. Every corner of this flavor profile is nicely hemmed up with clean and tight edges that really work for this particular brew. Very solid! Just not anything that really stands out as being completely unique and mind-blowing to this beer. But, recommended for sure to someone who likes IPA's.

sweetbrew82, Nov 28, 2008
Photo of mikereaser
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle into my tall Unibroue glass.

A - Poured a slightly hazy copper color with a nice head of white whispy foam that persisted for a long time.

S - wonderful grapefruit citrus aroma warning of an amazing hot bite

T - a nice mix of sweet malt and citrusy hops

M/D - quite a beer from an amazing brewery. This is my first IPA and hopefully won't be my last.

mikereaser, Nov 27, 2008
Photo of tmoneyba
4.1/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle at tasting.

Poured dark clear amber color with medium head that lasted with good lacing. Medium complex bittersweet aroma with a small alcohol tone. Medium to full body with medium finish. Medium to heavy bittersweet flavor with medium to heavy bittersweet finish and small alcohol bite.

Good complex IPA.

tmoneyba, Nov 22, 2008
Photo of Biggness
4.6/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a very light amber, semi cloudy with a 2 fingered white head and tons of lacing. The smell is awesome, nice fruity/citrusy hops, big strong and in your face. The taste is very nicely balanced, it has a nice malt base, and that wonderful hops flavor from the nose. I get some ruby red grapeftuit juice flavor and its all perfectly balanced. The mouthfeel is very nice with a good carbonation level. I wish this was available around here, this would be a daily beer for me.

Biggness, Nov 12, 2008
Photo of kasper
4/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle about 2 months old.

A: Pours a near translucent amber. Small, frothy banana cream-colored head sits atop a mass of tiny bubbles which leave horizontal lacing legs on the glass.

S: Sweet grapefruit citrus on the initial chilled pour with hints of fresh red ripe fruits in the background and maybe some pineapple. As it warms a bit, aromas of pine resin surface. Overall a sweet citrusy smell.

T: Predominately sweet bready malts up front, some citrus and then a a fragrant, almost pungent cross between floral and pine bitters on the finish. Lingering bitterness.

M: Good body...a bit slick and oily, moderate carbonation, tingly bubbles on the tongue.

D: Lots of bitterness going on here, but a really nice IPA. Drinkability is fairly good, though I'm not sure you'd want to pound these back one after another. This has nothing on Pliny's smoothness IMHO, which has a tad higher ABV.

kasper, Nov 11, 2008
Photo of hopdog
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasted from a 22oz bottle.

Poured a medium and cloudy amber color with a medium sized white head. Aromas of pine, citrus, and had a little fruitiness to it. Tastes of pine, citrus, and had a lighter maltiness to it. Nice bitter finish.

Notes from 12/11/04

hopdog, Nov 10, 2008
Photo of ATPete
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle
another 'want' nailed by Vurt!

I want to start off by saying that i absolutely love the simplicity and the power of the bottle design. The Alesmith IPA pours a chill hazed orange brown color with a huge white "donut pillow" of a white head, im not sure if they planned to have the head cave in but god damn does it intensify the nose! The aroma of tons of fresh semi sweet hops fill the glass. The taste is much the same, smooth and very well balanced lots of strong pungent fresh hops battle in the mouth, good peppery spice esters emanate from the beers flavor as well as a solid biscuity yeast character from the bottle conditioning. Slightly woody with notes of maple syrup and brown sugar. Grapefruit blasts sneak in more and more as the bottle gets lower. Medium bodied and very good drinkability, this beer is an absolute winner!

ATPete, Nov 10, 2008
Photo of jujubeast6000
4.05/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Reviewed 1/14/2008 (bottle):

Pours a soft golden yellow color, fizzy. Huge head, very lasting w/big bubbles & good lacing. Very piney aroma, some nuttiness present too. Very sweet smelling, almost like a candy. Soft fizzy mouthfeel. Piney hops & some malt. Bittery good but not too caustic. Warming up, drier, less bitter & hoppy.

jujubeast6000, Oct 30, 2008
Photo of barleywinebrewer
4.4/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

wow, 432 reviews as of this writing. Thanks to overlord for the chance to try this beer!

A - crystal clear golden amber beer, huge 3/4th glass of white head that takes a while to settle
S - Light citric / grapefruit hops.
T - nicely balanced piney grapefruity hops, mild sweet malts in the background.
M - medium bodied, high carbonation level, crisp clean finish
D - assertive, balanced and approachable without an over the top hop hit.

A solid American IPA and bottle conditioned too! Glad I got to try this one.

barleywinebrewer, Oct 27, 2008
Photo of riored4v
4.63/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 3/28/08

Poured into a pint glass. Formed a nice thick, white, pillowy head. Body was clear and copper in color. Good lacing and a head that lasted the entire serving.

Smell was strong on the hops. Citrus and grapefruit dominated. Mild malt sweetness.

Strong hop profile. Citrus and grapefuit flavors shine. Perfect amount of malt sweetness and caramel to be give a good balance for an IPA. No real presence of the higher abv.

Oily and medium body. Very slightly dry finish. Medium carbonation.

I'm torn on drinkability. It's an EXCELLENT IPA. One that I could easily have a few of, but with the semi-high ABV, it would catch up real quick.

riored4v, Oct 20, 2008
Photo of Murchmac
4.1/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I Prefer Alesmith

Like everything they do, this is fantastic. Big creamy white head. Bubbles, cloudy amber with yellow highlights.

Malts smell with citrus notes. Hoppy Hop notes.

Perfect balance of smooth malts and citrus hops, piney overtones as well. Like a hop and malt party on your tongue.

Bitter, but not resiny aftertaste. This one flirts with a DIPA aftertaste.

This beer rocks that bitch up and down the coast.

Murchmac, Oct 20, 2008
Photo of abfraser
4.1/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pours a golden yellowish orange with a nice white frothy head. Good lacing in the glass on the way down.

S: Piney malt, honey, citrusy, some grapefruit. Nice classic smelling West Coast IPA

T/M: Strong malt gives way to hop oil and piney malt. Major bitterness with a dry distinctive depth on the finish. Medium-bodied with good balance. As a flaw, bitterness is a little overboard

D: Very drinkable but so dry as to be difficult to consume too many.

Overall a very good representative West Coast IPA. If you like hops, you'll like this one. I like this better than the Port IPA/DIPAs. It just tastes cleaner. The hops seem more in balance with the sweetness of the malt. Less palate blowing (although still harsh)

abfraser, Oct 17, 2008
Photo of ironlung
4.47/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz Bomber from Liquor Wherehouse for $4.19 into AB tulip (pictured above).

A: Light crystal clear amber with nice tight 2 finger head even though I poured soft!

S: MMM. This is the best smelling beer I'ver reviewed so far. Hops and malts really come thorugh. Some grape fruit and lemon peel.

T: OMG! this is what ipa's are all about! If your lookin for balance you've found it. world class beer here.

M: Bottle conditioning really does wonders. It's a shame more brewers havent embraced this method(stone,moylans,marin,etc.) it really does so much more for a bottled beer as opposed to co2.

D: This is top notch for an aipa. So if thats your style I'm sure you have plenty in the fridge like I do! Cheers Alesmith (how do I join the cult?)

ironlung, Oct 15, 2008
Photo of DrDogbeer
3.7/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

oured from the 22 oz bottle into a sam perfect pint. Pours a hazy orange with a huge pillowy head. Smell is a bit faint for what I was expecting. Some pine, but mostly bready malt. I get the feeling this is not the freshest Alesmith IPA. Taste is similar. Lots of caramel type malts, not enough hop slam for my taste. Very drinkable. Still a good beer, but with the recent onslaught of fresh CA ipa's - this one is average for me.

DrDogbeer, Oct 15, 2008
Photo of MMAJYK
4.45/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Bright gold with a touch of copper. Head is 1/2" after a relatively soft decanting. So far, it looks as if the foam will hang around for a while. It is very sticky and clingy consisting of mostly soft fluff but also some larger bubble patterns.

S- The first scent that hits my nose is honey malt. Following closely are the hops. Citrusy, piney, and maybe a touch of floral. Buttery popcorn aromas are deeper into the beer as well as an ever-so-subtle alcohol warmth. Very nice!

T- The honey malt is up front just like the nose leads you into. The moderate hop bite is PERFECT to balance with the sweetness of the malt backbone. The bittering hops are very earthy, dirt-y, and resiny. Leaving the mouth, it finishes sweet at first but the lingering aftertaste is quite dry. Excellent!

M- This beer is light to medium in the mouth with a nice touch of carbonation. However, the 'sting' is a little much; too far on the high side. I would rather it be that way, though, than the opposite.

D- Usually, I don't like to open bombers alone. On a whim, I grabbed this one out of the fridge and I can honestly say this is one of the best IPA's I have ever had. Excellent representation of the style and an easy drinking beer. Kudos to Alesmith for crafting such a wonderful brew. This is now one of my favorites of all time.

MMAJYK, Oct 10, 2008
Photo of JoeMayo
4.43/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Pours a golden-orange color with a very generous white, frothy head. I don't think I've ever seen such ridiculous lacing from an IPA before. The amount of lacing rivaled some of the most good-looking belgians I've had.

S- The nose is refreshing and juicy. Crisp, sweet grapefruit and notes of pine come through. The likneness to a sweet, fresh, ripe grapefruit is astounding. Enough malt comes through to balance, without dominating.

T- An excellent example of a San Diego style IPA. Very light on bittering hops, but tons of floral, fruity, and piney aroma hops. The flavors that come through (with minimal bitterness) are grapefruit, pine, and notes of lemon. The malt is there, providing a caramel-like sweetness, but mainly for support, rather than flavor.

M- Very rich for an IPA. Extremely fine carbonation, as to be expected from the incredibly fluffy head. Very full-bodied with a very nice lingering finish.

D- With almost no bitterness and well-hidden alcohol, this 7.25% IPA is about as drinkable as it gets.

JoeMayo, Oct 08, 2008
Photo of EGledhill
4.18/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into pint glass. got this one via trade. Can't remember who sent this one but to whoever, I thank you

A. Wonderful orange/amber body with a full twofinger white head that lingers and laces. very nice

S. hops. fruity, bitter goodness smell.

T acidic hoppy taste. Grapefruit with a bitterness and a slight malt backbone. very good.

M. Full, rich and smooth. almost coats the tongue.

D. Smooth for a 7+ abv beer. So smooth It could get you in trouble.

Wow. This beer was a pleasure to try. Smooth the whole way through. All I was expecting and then some.

EGledhill, Oct 08, 2008
Photo of rhinos00
4.8/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

For my first review, I had the luxury of drinking the AleSmith IPA out of a 750 mL bottle.

A- the first color that came to mind was an amber glow with a tint of orange; the complexion was clear with slight cloudiness and medium carbonation; head was extremely fluffy and laced the sides of the glass as the beer was consumed.

S- mix of hops and citrus with a hint of sweetness in the background.

T- initially there was a mix of citrus with hops and other various herbs; in the background there was a slight taste of malt, just the perfect amount.

M- smooth with medium density, medium carbonation.

D- amazingly smooth...I could drink this beer for several hours straight.

Overall, I was really impressed. I love IPAs, and this is definitely at the top of my list. Definitely worth the long trip to buy this beer!

rhinos00, Oct 07, 2008
Photo of AKBelgianBeast
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Floydster for this one.

Pours a nice clear amberorangeish color with a nice fluffy white head that lingers and leaves lace.

Nose is all west coast hops, mostly grapefruit, some pine, resinous, a slight sweetness in the nose, but hops take the front seat for sure.

Taste pretty much follows. Radical west coast grapefruit hops, pine resin, perfume and sharp herb. Malt backbone is solid, but not so much to distract from the hops.

Mouthfeel is very nice here, a tiny bit thick, but carbonation is dead on. Slightly too slick.

Drinkability is very solid. A super chuggable 7%. Defenitely drinkable.

Overall a very very nice IPA, super sessionable and full of great flavor. Excellently drinkable, and smooth. I would mind thinning this one out a bit, but other than that this is a staple example of what a good west coast IPA should be. Great representation of the style. Good IPA, hopheads will enjoy. Good beer.

AKBelgianBeast, Oct 05, 2008
Photo of callmescraps
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Got this guy as a treat for myself. Basically, I'm amped.

Appearance - Just about perfect. It pours nice with a thin, fluffy inch head that begins disappearing in a couple moments. Really excellent carbonation here, tons of little bubbles sneaking their way up the glass. Beautiful amber, golden color as well.

Smell - Hops, sweet hops. A real grapefruit hint here, almost like a fresca. A little yeast as well, but mostly sweet hoppiness.

Taste - It comes with the hops, no joke about that. Pretty sweet up front followed by the hoppy bitterness. The hop definitely sits on the tongue. A little bit of booze on the finish.

Mouthfeel - Very smooth, with little bubbles that sort of dissipate instead of bursting.

Drinkability - Pretty good considering the hoppiness. Still, not the sort of bev you're packing away.

Overall this is a really excellent beer. Up there with the WIPEOUT IPA in my estimation (one of my all-time favs). More or less what an IPA should be.

callmescraps, Oct 05, 2008
AleSmith IPA from AleSmith Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 2,958 ratings.