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AleSmith IPA - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith IPAAleSmith IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,975 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,975
Reviews: 1,143
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 8.94%
Wants: 412
Gots: 252 | 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: 2,975 | Reviews: 1,143 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of htomsirveaux
3.75/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. bottle tried 15 Oct 2008.

Shaker pint glass. Large foamy off white head. Almost flat. Slightly hazy amber color. Aroma is citric, hoppy, sweet. Starts with some grapefruit citrus, earthiness. Good maltiness throughout with the aftertaste becoming more bitter. Ethanol is fairly mild.

htomsirveaux, Feb 01, 2009
Photo of raoulduke37
4.6/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Drank this with a pretty lady in bed. She had a hangover and this cured her right up. Fantastic IPA, lets' start there...

A - Beautiful golden color, like refined apple juice. Very good head retention and lacing round the glass.

S - Floral, light, crisp, citrusy, reminiscent of Pliney the Elder, which is saying a lot.

T - Initially syrupy like light honey or even mead, followed by citrus, namely grapefruit. Hops are well balanced by malts, which are slightly evident.

M - EXTREMELY smooth, not overly carbonated like most IPA's I've tried. Lingers long after the initial sip.

D - Definitely noteworty as a session beer..."Keep it comin' all night long."

raoulduke37, Jan 31, 2009
Photo of tburkhart
3.95/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy golden with a very nice layer of head sitting on top. Nice lacing as well.

Smells of both hops and malts. Possibly Saaz Hops. Not 100% sure on that one.

Taste was slightly nutty, with some hops. I would expect more hops out of any IPA. They just weren't there for me.

Very solid mouth feel.

I could drink a bottle or two of this on occasion, not something I would drink night in and night out.

tburkhart, Jan 26, 2009
Photo of bitterthebetter
4.6/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

pours a light golden yellow, with slight copper hues and a creamy, lacy white head

grapefruit dominates the nose, with sturdy pine, resiny, floral, and slight lemony hops

hoppy, first piney, then slight citrus with both lemon and grapefruit, but more lemon. floral notes on the finish with a spicy and dry finish

smooth, crisp, hoppy yet balanced, with a lot of good flavors mixing around, with a light yet solid malty backbone; just enough to provide balance yet not cloud the hops. relatively light bodied but very long on the finish

its got all the hop flavors that I look for in an IPA. Solid hops with a plethora of hoppy flavors that last end coat the palate. smooth, big, balanced, delicious, with a light enough body that makes it go down way to easy.

bitterthebetter, Jan 25, 2009
Photo of MasterSki
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this bottle from dschuster03 - probably should have opened it earlier. Served it in a regular pint glass.

A - Ridiculous creamy foam - almost too much! Takes quite a while to dissipate and leaves tons of attractive lacing. The brew itself is a golden-apricot color. There are some suspended solids floating around - didn't realize this was bottle conditioned.

S - I was worried the hop profile would have faded on this guy, as I had no idea how old the bottle was before I got it from Dave. It must have been pretty fresh, as the hops are still there. Lots of lemon zest, grapefruit, and tangerine, but balanced by a strong toffee malt backbone. There's a surprising hint of alcohol kick - not something I expect from a single IPA. It smells good, but not unlike a lot of other solid IPAs.

T - The taste is also nicely balanced. Good caramel malt mixed with fresh-squeezed citrus. The aforementioned alcohol smell is nowhere to be found. Initially sweet, but with a smattering of bitterness at the back of the palate. Very mild aftertaste. Again, really solid but not mind-blowing.

M - Creamy, smooth, nice balanced carbonation (I guess all the CO2 ends up in the ridiculous head?!). Good viscosity and slightly resinous mouth-coating after swallowing.

D - 22 oz? No problem...reasonable carbonation + lack of overwhelming bitterness make one drinkable IPA. Wish we got this in Illinois like they do in Ohio...

I'd love to try this on-tap or closer to the source. It's not in the same class to me as my two favorite Minneapolis IPAs, but that may be because of the freshness factor. I wish Alesmith (and Stone for that matter) would date their bottles.

MasterSki, Jan 24, 2009
Photo of LilMatrix
4.8/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A - Beautiful clear yellow with a slight orange hue and one finger of magnificently white creamy head.

S - Citrus, floral, grapefruit, malty... Definitely west coast, this smell so good.

T - Fresh clean grapefruit, resiny, floral hops up front that is followed by a really well backboned malty sweetness. The finish is crisp and clean making me want more. Wonderfully balanced IPA, this is the most balanced IPA I've had, it's absolutely delicious

M - Creamy, full bodies, medium carbonation... perfect.

D - Man this beer is delicious. This IPA is in my top 3. No way this is 7.25 ABV, I'm going to session this one and we'll see what happens. :)

LilMatrix, Jan 22, 2009
Photo of craytonic
3.68/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Hazy-dull-straw-yellow-gold, gets cloudy on the way down. Nice head and lacing

Smell: Hops - shocking, I know. Citrus, orange and grapefruit rind, apricot, pine resin, usual suspects. Tad bit of caramel maltiness. Looks like a few tiny hop floaters.

Taste: Similar to the smell - hops, citrus, orange and grapefruit rind, apricot, pine resin, caramel maltiness and a touch of sweetness.

Mouthfeel: Some body, but never huge. I would love to see more malt and body. Carbonation is well done.

Drinkability: This is decent, but a big disappointment after the shining star that is Alesmith Celebration Ale

craytonic, Jan 14, 2009
Photo of StJamesGate
4.13/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pale yellow with lots of lace. A big mulchy nose. Layered hops: grass, anise, rosemary, and spice; either clove or coriander. Some orangey fruit and a bit of caramel malt.

Complex hops without being heavy handed; unfolds rather than just searing your taste buds.

Well worth your time.

StJamesGate, Jan 08, 2009
Photo of bunnyhustle
4.4/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

To me this is a completely different IPA, one with depth. The pours is clear and golden bronze in color. An nice 3 finger white, fluffy head then appears and will stick around with ya until your glass is empty. Each sip you take leaves a nice lace ring along the glass. The smell is of fresh hops that had an incredibley floral smell to them. One of the most unique smelling IPA's I've ever had. A touch of pine and citrus in there as well, for the record. The taste was suprisingly balanced. This isnt a hop-bomb by any means. A wonderful caramel malt backbone with a citric hop kick. Stong flavors of citrus here, espeically pineapple. Overall its pretty mellow for IPA standards but it will leave a nice bitter aftertaste in your mouth, dont be fooled. A medium bodied beer with an oily, bitter aftertaste left behind. Given the higher ABV, which isnt noticeable, I'm giving this a 5 on drinkablitiy. The taste is so well balanced and unique I kept wanting to go back for more. A beer very deserving of its high reviews.

bunnyhustle, Jan 07, 2009
Photo of SaCkErZ9
4.47/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to 011x0110 for this one.

Beer emerges from a 22oz bottle into a pint glass a clear, dark golden color with a tight looking one finger sized head. Plenty of carbonation rushes to the top to keep the head a steady size. Copious amounts of lacing. The elegant and sleek look of the bottle (simple, yet eyecatching) puts this beer in the 5 range for overall appearance.

Aroma is supremely hoppy. Citrusy hops as well as some hay and grass aromas. The slightest touch of sweetness to balance the hoppiness but the hops shine here.

Very well balanced. Perfectly balanced, actually. A sweet sort of hop flavor greets the tongue immediately and is followed by a touch of caramel sweetness and rounded out with a solid dose of hop bitterness. The bitterness is more pronounced in the finish and lingers for what seems like ages. MMmm.

Finishes dry and quite bitter. Kind of thin in the body but oily on the teeth and toungue. Bitter for the style which I really love. A wonderful example of the style. Simply delectable.

SaCkErZ9, Jan 03, 2009
Photo of Reagan1984
4.53/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This review comes with a shout out to Estarrio, who was kind enough to provide me with the information that this sought after IPA was available at Julio's. Cheers Estarrio!

After purchasing several bottles, I've saved the official review for my last bottle.

This beer has a gorgeous pillowy white head that demonstrates excellent retention and has wonderful structure.. The beer is a bright golden amber color with perfect clarity and a pretty good amount of visible carbonation. Foamy lacing clings all over the inside of the glass as this is consumed. A dollop of whipped cream remains in the center of the glass as you drink this.

The aroma is spectacular and never ending. Some beers aroma is present for a moment, but then fades as the beer settles. Not this one. The huge hop/citrus aroma packs a punch and keeps coming at you. If you dig deep you smell some light malt tones here, but it's really about the citrus/grapefruit hops.

Spectacular flavor (get the sense I like it?) This is one of the greats and another reason why I love California (not "West Coast") IPA's. First you get a brief flavor of the cracker type malt tones and the backbone that is there... Then a second of gentle sweetness. BAM, then you are hit by the fresh grapefruit hops. This is definitely more citrus like vs. pine to me. After the initial hit you are brought back with a touch of the yeast and then settle on for the lingering hop effect. Actually crisp for as hoppy as it drinks.

Just wonderful mouth feel. Medium/light in body, but huge on flavor. Carbonation is sublte and works.

Drinkable? = HELL Yes.

A classic.

Reagan1984, Dec 29, 2008
Photo of paulthebeerguru
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: pint. slightly opaque. bright orange with yellow hues. nice off-white, yellow tinted, head. good retention and great ringlike lacing.

S: nice grapefruit hop aroma. pine notes as well.

T: great IPA. tons of grapefruit and citrus. moderate malt backbone, but the hops really shine through.

M: very bitter palate with some sweet malts balancing the tongue. mild carbonation. crisp and refreshing.

D: very drinkable brew, and a great example of style. amazingly fresh.

paulthebeerguru, Dec 27, 2008
Photo of TeddyBG
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. bomber poured into a Smutty pint glass.

A: Cloudy burnt orange. off-white head with OK lacing.

S: Sweet Grapefruit! As it warms up you can catch a little bit of the malt.

T: Great balance on this one. Fresh upfront grapefruit and pine with a good caramalt? middle and then a good hop bitterness on the finish that is just right.

M: Quite good. Juicy, not too thick and the hops know when to quit after they have done their job. The bottle conditioning really makes this feel a lot lighter then it really is.

D: Certainly a great drinking beer, but the ABV is on the upside and you can feel this one towards the end.

Another terrific West Coast IPA. Have to put this one right up their with Green Flash. Right now I am kicking myself for only purchasing one of these when I had the chance.

TeddyBG, Dec 22, 2008
Photo of ommegangpbr
4.22/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This has them
lots of them.
After trying their pale ale I was anticipating something a little bit more distinctive, something a little bit more signature but this is a solid, tasty, belly warming IPA.
This just begs a taste test between Stone IPA and some others... maybe an east coast/west coast IPA rumble.
I had Green Flash's IPA in the recent past and the flavor profile reminds me of this: mild grapefruit presence that doesn't offend. Some malt character and sweetness that does just enough to support the hop show. Flavorful hop burps during consumption.
I'd be happy to have easy access to this beer.

ommegangpbr, Dec 22, 2008
Photo of John_M
4.55/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Hamilton's yesterday.

The beer pours an orange peach color with good head retention and lacing. This IPA has a very citrusy, hoppy nose, and it's clear this one is going to have some nice bitterness. Despite the attrative nose, however, I still was not quite expecting the intense amount of flavor in this beer. This lovely West Coast style IPA presents your palate with an onslaught of dry, hoppy bitterness, with just a kiss of malt to keep it all in check. This beer is impeccably balanced, and each sip begs for another.

I could drink this beer all day and was tempted to do just that (expect that Hamilton's had many other things to entice my palate this day). The beer is medium bodied and is about as drinkable as a 7.25% abv. IPA can get. This is great stuff.

John_M, Dec 21, 2008
Photo of Walken
4.83/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Alesmith: IPA (No freshness date) (Tasted 12/17/08)
22 oz. bottle, poured into an imperial pint.

Appearance: Brilliantly clear gold with amber highlights. A moderately tame pour yields a gigantic puffy, bubbly white head that fades over the course of two or three minutes, leaving a coating of chunky foam in its wake.
Odor: If a comic were to be drawn wherein a bottle of Alesmith IPA was opened, there would be stink lines all over the place. Passion fruit, grapefruit, pineapple with resiny pine, briny sea air (I really can't think of any other way to describe it, sorry) and spice in the background, thick, oily and fresh. Wowzah.
Consistency: The excessive hop oils seem to elevate the perceived body of this beer to medium, but when imagine the beer without the oils, all you're left with is a light almost airy mouthfeel. On the dry side for an IPA of this high an alcohol content.
Taste: Fruity alcohol and candy-sweet caramel malt kick things off and stay strong, acting as a vehicle for the leafy pine hop bitterness and spectrum of rich, juicy hop flavor. It's almost odd saying this about an IPA, but it's pretty well balanced. Finish is clean, hoppy and long, bittersweet with a nice layer of lingering hop flavors.

I'm going to spare the editorial on this one, many other reviewers have put it much better than I ever could. Simply put, this beer deserves it's spot on the top 10 for style. The intensity of hop flavor captured in this beer is not something you get to taste every day.

Walken, Dec 18, 2008
Photo of aerozeppl
4.45/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Nice cloudy copper color with two fingers of white head. Excellent lacing.

S: Big citrus nose. A nice sweetness to go with it. More of a hop sweetness than a malt sweetness which is nice.

T: Big floral citrus hop blast. Really crisp. The hops are put to the forefront by the rest of it and it really does shine.

M: Nice bubbly mouthfeel. Has that nice IPA creaminess.

D: This is another example of an IPA I wish I could get with regularity. Wonderful taste with a double IPA taste in a single IPA.

aerozeppl, Dec 15, 2008
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
AleSmith IPA from AleSmith Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 2,975 ratings.