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AleSmith IPA - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
AleSmith IPAAleSmith IPA

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

3,080 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,080
Reviews: 1,150
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 8.94%
Wants: 416
Gots: 276 | 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: 3,080 | Reviews: 1,150 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of lifebeer
3.63/5  rDev -14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

a. pours a dirty straw color, has chill haze, about 2 fingers of cream-colored head, head-top forms marshmallow honeycomb, 3D tendrils from top of sticky head reaching up to top of glass (not lacing)

s. not much here, a subtle sweet and average grapefruit hop aroma

t. not as aggressive as other SoCal IPAs, subtle grapefruit until the swallow, tart grapefruit peel and alcohol

m. a medium feel, subtly creamy

d. above-average drinkability, with hops not taking over the tongue with time like other similar IPAs

not the most distinctive IPA, but relatively drinkable, probably wouldn't buy again

lifebeer, Jan 15, 2008
Photo of IceEyes
3.5/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I thought I would splurge and get a bottle of this IPA that I'd heard so much about. But frankly, I can't see what the big deal is. I drink better IPAs than this all the time.

The Alesmith IPA poured with a lot of head, but the body was cloudy. There's a lot of fresh flowery hops in the smell but the beer still tastes sweet. Not much balance really. And that's what lost me. I don't know what the IBU is but it doesn't hold the beer together.

This isn't a bad IPA, but it's over rated if you ask me.

IceEyes, Jan 14, 2008
Photo of RustyDiamond
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into my dandy Sam Adams Lager glass. Poured pretty carbonated as 3 fingers of lucsious head quickly rose. Head was thick and bright white while the color was a nice bright, semi-cloudy yellow/orange.
Aroma of pink grapefruit lovely hoppy.
Taste was the same pink grapefruit from the aroma. Quite zesty in the mouth with a bitter hop finish. Hops were definitely there but not overpowering. Very enjoyable and classic example of a San Diego IPA.

RustyDiamond, Jan 14, 2008
Photo of yemenmocha
4.85/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours hazy orange with thick, creamy white head that leaves sexy lace as the pint goes down in the glass.

Nose is a pleasant metallic-citrus, grapefruit with maybe tangerine.

On the palate a huge, mouth savoring juicey-fruity flavor that makes your mouth pucker. Citrus is more towards grapefruits and orange, with some candied sweetness, and the hops also come through with some hop resin & pine sap. Overall, though the juicy fruit dominates, there is some sweetness to balance it out and make it extraordinarily drinkable for an IPA.

One of the best examples of an American IPA.

yemenmocha, Jan 13, 2008
Photo of MuenchenerKindl
4.3/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle to a pint glass the liquid is just gorgeous, pale yellow, great carbonation, The Head is big 3 fingers white, fluffy and billowy, it has great retention and leaves great lace.

The smell is fresh and hopy, I wish I could get a salad like this, Hopy notes include, pine, flowers, grapefruit, and orange peel.

The taste is very good it follows the nose well but may drop off a tad, grapefruit, and earthy qualities are the main taste, malt takes a back seat.

The mouthfeel is good to very good. very nice body and a good carbonation.

The drinkability is high, a very solid brew to be sure.

Prosit, MK

MuenchenerKindl, Jan 13, 2008
Photo of mobud
4.22/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber into Tulip

A- caramel color with 1/2 inch head. clings to the glass and leaves an oily lacing going down the sides.

S- Floral citrus explodes in the nose. Very fresh and inviting.

T- Level hops flavor inspite of the nose. Strong hoppy taste, but an even malt base holds it all together.

M- Medium to heavy.

D- Very nice. Got this beer on my last trip to SD and wish that I could have it more often. The beer has a good rep and it is easy to see why.

mobud, Jan 12, 2008
Photo of marcpal
4.9/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Textbook west coast IPA, this is what I was looking for. Had a 22oz bottle while visiting San Diego at the Vine. What an IPA.

A: Thick tan head laid nicely on a hay yellow/orange amber. The retention was tight throughout and the stickiness was what this style asks for.

S: Pine hops with the citrus hops to even it out. Lets you know the hops are coming fast. The bitterness is striking to the back of the nose. Cant wait to dive in.

T: Hops and a little more hops. The citrus matched up with the woodsiness was measured nicely by the maltiness. The bitterness was sticky and oily but washed away nicely by the rest of the profile and the alcohol. What a great tasting IPA without having to be a double or imperial.

M: Oily stickiness with with a thick carbonated mouthfeel that was smooth as you could hope.

D: Cant complain about any part of this, and the ABV is perfect- lets you enjoy it with a hop complexity that is usually reserved for the bigger beers.

This is a must try and Ill be packing a few of these for the flight back. In terms of a single IPA, this one is right there with the two hearted in my opinion as versions that I cant get back home but would love to have on a daily basis.

marcpal, Jan 10, 2008
Photo of rallison
4.45/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Clear amber with a 1 1/2 finger fluffy white head.

S: Subtle hoppiness with a touch of nuttiness.

T: Nicely balanced citrusy hops with a slightly caramel-y malt body. Somewhat sticky and resiny with a perfect bitterness. Just about flawless.

M: Slightly sticky with medium carbonation.

D: Excellent.

Truly one of the best IPAs on the market. This is an excellent benchmark IPA by which to judge others.

rallison, Jan 07, 2008
Photo of jwc215
4.88/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to jcwattsrugger -

22 oz. bomber -

Pours hazed orangeish deep gold with a thick foamy white head that sits beautifully atop the beer. Great head retention. Trailing lace slides down the glass with some stickage.

The smell is divine - and powerful - earthy, piney/resiny, slightly herbal with lemon zest and citrus - wow - what a hop-lover's dream of an aroma...I happily smelled the empty bottle awhile after it was finished...

The taste was hoppy - piney, earthy, citric, resiny with a caramelish/toffeish- malty background. Well-balanced for the style while allowing the hops, which were present, but with bitterness well-balanced, to come through well. Alcohol very well-covered with just a glimpse in the long finish.

Full-bodied, yet silky smooth.

Wonderful aroma with a hoppy, yet complex and balanced taste and oh so smooth...This is one of the best IPA's I've had, if not the best! Awesome hop profile and usage.

jwc215, Jan 04, 2008
Photo of Scoobydank
4.45/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

L: Light vibrant orange color. A huge froathy head
S: Right away those grapefruit hops start pounbding out with just a touch of sweetness as well.
T: Whoa, there are those grapefruits again. Those over power, but there is a nice little touch of candy sweetness as well.
M:Sharp fizz on the back going down. Otherwise a round full feeling
D: Awesome. I am a huge fan of Alesmith.

Scoobydank, Jan 04, 2008
Photo of mbunje
4.28/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz. Bomber, poured into a pint glass

Appearance is good. Golden but darker than many. 1/2" head that evaporates to just a thin layer. Lacing is nice, consistent as it flows down the glass.

Smell is nice, definitely an IPA but not a hop bomb. Citrus floats to the top but there is a bit of of breadiness to the smell.

Taste is excellent. Borders between an IPA and a Double IPA...not sure which class this falls in. But you definitely notice the hop dominance. Mild bitterness up front, tart middle with a hint of burnt something in there, stings a bit at the end with a piney flavor.

Mouthfeel is busy carbonation, not as oily as I would expect for the amount of hop flavor. Rich, thick beer almost oozes down your throat. Very dry finish with a slight alcohol burn. Not sure what is better about this beer, the taste or the mouthfeel. It all comes together soooo nicely.

Drinkability is pretty good at "only" 7.25% ABV. Two bombers. Very smooth, enjoyable as it goes down.

Great IPA. Not sure I would go so far as to say it's an Imperial/Double as it is very drinkable and doesn't kill your palate. A MUST for anyone who likes IPA's and Hops. Not as piney as Stone IPA, but definitely a quality competitor if not better than my favorite (former favorite?) .

mbunje, Dec 30, 2007
Photo of Lothore
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A- Pours an orangey hue with an absolutely phenomenal head which sticks around all the way through, leaving torrents of lacing on the side of my glass.

S- Very floral hops and a sweet malt backbone.

T- Taste is smooth and sweet, definitely hopped up but not obtrusively so.

M- Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy, not too viscous with about an average amount of carbonation.

D- This is a monumentally drinkable IPA. I shared the bomber with my dad but could have easily had the whole thing to myself.

Lothore, Dec 28, 2007
Photo of Trueant1
4.85/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pours orange brown. Has one of the most unusual heads I have ever seen. A previous reviewer said it looks like soap suds in a washer machine. Right on. ... Lots of suspended small sediment. White chuncks lay at the bottom of the glass. Extreme lacing coating on the side of the glass. Cloudy appearance overall like a Wit. Very nice.

As soon as I opened the bottle, the room filled with pine/oily hops.Am I back up in Humblolt forest after a rain?

Sweet IPA up front. Very sweet. Pineapple and citrus sweets. The sweets are followed by "HOP BOMB". This IPA is an IPA. It works, It is well balanced, bitter aftertaste, sweet, hop bomb near perfection.

An above average West Coast IPA. Drinkability is sickly easy for such a bitter hop bomb...be carefull! HA!

Trueant1, Dec 27, 2007
Photo of jmalex
4.72/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap last month in San Diego, but this will be my first taste from the bottle.

APPEARANCE: Pours into my Duvel tulip a fairly hazy orange golden color. The head is barely off-white and holds fairly well at one finger high for an exceedingly long time. Quite impressive.

SMELL: A wonderful blast of citrus and hop resins hit you first with perfect IPA strength. It's all west coast hops in this one. A sweet malt backbone is certainly present though, and even presents a slightly toasty aroma.

TASTE: Awesome. Huge citrusy hop flavor is accompanied by a taste bud-assaulting bitterness that matches. The hops really smooth out as it crosses the palate leaving a few sticky resins behind. The finish begins with the beer's malty base showing itself prominently before disappearing behind a lingering hop bitterness. This is as close to perfect as an IPA can get.

MOUTHFEEL: The body is medium full and carbonated sufficiently. It's only a slight bit sticky and resinous.

DRINKABILITY: Suffers only from being such a big beer. It definitely goes down way to easy for its ABV though. I love it.

Well this is just as I remember it from a month ago. I guess my biggest mistake was only bringing back 1 bottle for myself and giving away the rest. I'm sure my friends are appreciative of such a fantastic gift though.

jmalex, Dec 26, 2007
Photo of AlexJ
4.53/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Vigorous pour produces a brilliant bright copper colored brew with a billowing head of off white suds that towers just above the rim of the glass. Immaculate retention and epic lacing.

Aroma is bursting with hoppy goodness in the way of grapefruit, tangerine, and light florals. Notes of crusty bread and caramelized malts lay underneath.

A burst of crushed grapefruit and orange skins leads the tasting, flowing into bright floral and hearty pine hops. There is a solid malty backbone of toasty, semi-sweet caramel. Hoppier than most standard IPA's and supremely balanced. Super drinkable, albeit rather expensive.

Mouthfeel is big and creamy for an IPA. Luckily a plethora of flavors abound to make use of the malty medium. An outstanding IPA all the way around.

AlexJ, Dec 21, 2007
Photo of russpowell
4.43/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours bronze with 4+ fingers of pillowy mauve/sand colored head. Out of this world lacing (white patches are stuck all over my pint glass) & great head retention, slight hazing at the end, from the yeast, waste not want not!

S: Bready & citric hop notes in healthy amounts

T: Grapefruit & lemon hops along with breadyness up front. A touch of honey malt gets past all the grapefruit & lemon, plus a bit of peppery hops& a bit of sting from either alcohol or all that grapefruit hoppyness. Finishes with puckery hoppyness, just a touch of breadyness & a whisper of malt sweetness. 11 out 10 hopheads will love this

MF: Medium bodied with low carbonation & damn fine balance, enough hops to hold the hop assault off for a while! Maybe a bit too hot

Drinks pretty good, I can really see why this brewery is so highly regarded, based on previous old numb skull experience & now this.

Props to rye726 for letting me split a liqourama order with him. Between the abv & the grapefruit profile, I doubt I could stay on this all night, but wouldn't mind giving it a shot!

russpowell, Dec 08, 2007
Photo of Georgiabeer
4.45/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Great West Coast IPA. Pours a dark golden orange with a healthy tight head and some decent lacing. Aromas of citrus and spicy hops. Great grapefruit presence in the nose. The taste is beautifully balanced with nice citrusy hops and spicy notes and a long grapeffruit bitterness in the finish. Subtle malt underpins it all. Mouthfeel is crisp and smooth. Just an all around pleasure to drink. This would be a staple if it were available in my area.

Georgiabeer, Dec 06, 2007
Photo of NCSUdo
4.95/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22 oz bottle via ncvbc

A: Semi-hazy dark golden body under a huge fizzy, but thicker than anticipated, white head. Pretty good lace and the head will not go away. Almost finished with my first pint and the head has gone to about half the size it was on original pour.

S: Great citrusy aroma. Oranges and lemon peel, grapefruit. Excellent noise.

T: Wow. Usually the hops you get in the nose aren't always the hops you get on the tongue. This beer however delivers. Hops stay citrusy. Lemon peel and grapefruit with some subtle hints of the malt backbone. Bitterness is in perfect balance with the hop citrus flavor. Dry finish with the a great warming feeling as it goes down. This is one damn tasting fine AIPA.

M/D: Smooth and velvety, just like the bottle says. A light to medium body. Carbonation is a tad high, but the beer so damn near perfect. Drinkability is almost perfect as well. The 7.25% isn't that high and I could see my self drinking this all night. This is almost certainly the best AIPA I have every had.

NCSUdo, Dec 06, 2007
Photo of MiguelMandingo
4.85/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Damn. Easily the best IPA I've had to this point. The first bottle I tried was good, the second is even better. It took me experiencing this brew twice to fully wrap my palate around what I was tasting. This beer is something that everyone should seek out and acquire during their beer drinking careers. Thank you Joey at South Bay Drugs in Cali for providing your online services.

Poured part of a bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance - The best looking IPA I have ever seen up to this point in time, period. Looking at this beer made my mouth water. There is a solid two finger head white frothy head. It doesn't want to die down. The lowest it sinks is to the half finger mark, but the head just persists. It leaves a seemingly endless amount of lacing. It is a golden orange copper color, heavy on the golden, almost completely transparent. There is a constant stream of carbonation bubbles that rise to the top of the glass. It doesn't get better than this.

Smell - An extremely balanced scent. The only reason why I took a .5 point off is that I just want more. What scent is actually present is nearly perfect, I want it to be bigger. Smells like a hops bouquet - floral and grapefruity and piney. The bouquet sits on a caramel foundation, slightly sweet and sugary beneath the hoppy plumage.

Taste - How does an IPA taste better? How? If anyone comes across something that tastes better, they should consider themselves very privileged. Alesmith IPA has every hop flavor I could want or expect in an IPA. Extremely cirtusy - and all types of citrus - orange, lemon, and a ton of grapefruit. The hops evolve in your mouth, transforming from floral to citrus to piney bitterness. The malt in is perfect balance, providing a perfect level or subdued sweetness to back up the evolving hop flavors, never in competition, always in complement. Perfect.

Mouthfeel - I would have to say that this is full bodied - for the style, IMO. It is sticky and oily and very mouth-coating. The carbonation level is perfect - nothing over the top. The mouthfeel is the perfect complement to the flavor. Goes down perfectly smooth. Makes me want to keep drinking, and it takes every ounce of self-restraint to not drink this beer too fast.

Drinkability - It doesn't get much better. If I could have the privilege of sessioning a beer like this, I would be a happy alcoholic. I will search this one out again. I am jealous of anyone who has access to this beer on a regular basis.

This beer is nothing short of amazing. Find it, and hoard it.

MiguelMandingo, Dec 05, 2007
Photo of drseamus
4.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beautiful beer all around. Crystal clear dark amber reddish body with tons of visible carbonation. The white head on top was about a half inch and stuck to the sides.

Grapefruit, citrus, a touch of pine, and tasty. Just like an IPA should smell. Not as sweet as a double IPA would be which is perfect.

The hops are strong and up front in the flavor also, but they aren't as citrusy as they were in the aroma. The hop flavors are more piney which seems to make it more sticky malty. The hop flavor is really clear but not what I expected or prefer in an IPA really. Just personal preference really. Big malt presence and a great amount of bitterness.

On the heavier end of what I would expect in an IPA, but still good. The malty backbone adds body.

Not my favorite IPA, but that's because I like a lot of grapefruity flavor. Certainly a top notch IPA though.

drseamus, Dec 02, 2007
Photo of bluejacket74
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle. Served in a Sam Adams BL glass, the beer pours a golden orange color with an inch frothy white head. Head retention and lacing are both very good. Aroma is mainly citrusy (grapefruit) hops, along with some lemon peel, caramel malt and pine. Taste is mainly citrus and piney hops, and there's some caramel malt noticable too. Hoppy bitter finish lingers around for a little while. Mouthfeel/body is medium/full, and a bit sticky. Carbonation is between moderate and high (but closer to moderate), it has a nice zippy feeling. Drinkability is good, it's smooth and enjoyable to drink. Overall I think this is a pretty good IPA.

bluejacket74, Dec 01, 2007
Photo of PhxHorn
4.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Now this is an IPA. Pours a deep gold color, with a one finger head and lacing all the way down. Smells of citrus, grapefruit, hops, yum. Tastes of citrus and hops, but not as overwhelming as a strong IIPA like Ruination. A bit more bitterness than citrus, not exactly the ratio I'd prefer. A pretty strong amount of carbonation with a bitter finish. This goes down easy. First rate!

PhxHorn, Nov 29, 2007
Photo of Deuane
3.58/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Maybe the bottle I treid was not as fresh as some...I did not get the fresh hops smell and taste that many others did. Will try again as I love AleSmith stuff.

A- Golden red orange with a thick white head.

S- Somewhat earthy with hints of grapefruit.

T- To malt forward for my liking. Hops did punch through towards the end...is this AleSmith?

M- Nice and full bodied, hops linger nicely in the aftertaste.

D - Not bad but would like to have a west coast IPA with more of a hop forward profile and not malt forward....maybe the bottle was not treated well?

Deuane, Nov 23, 2007
Photo of ncvbc
4.2/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

An exceptional looking IPA. Steady carbonation, a deep amber that gets murky on the second pour. Huge head with great retention and lacing all down the glass. Quite a looker. Smell is very fresh and inviting, not quite like the Yulesmith but pretty close. Sweet grapefruit and hints of tangerine with some piney hops also present. A light caramel malt background rounds it out. Taste is also pretty citrus fruit oriented. Grapefruit is the main culprit and there is less of a malt background here. Not a stand out but solid for sure. Mouthfeel is nice and bitter, almost resinous. Bigger than most IPA's with lively carbonation on the tongue and a slightly dry finish. Overall good drinkability. I truly enjoyed this beer and owe thanks to flexabull for the trade.

ncvbc, Nov 17, 2007
Photo of NJpadreFan
4.03/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Alesmith- IPA

Thanks to Pimpp for this 1.

A- Hazy reddish orange with a thick frothy sticky head. Big messy lacing down the glass.
S- Sweet grapefruit and tangerine.
T- Sweet citrus fruits. Grapefruit and lemon with an equal dose of tangerine and peach. A mild dose of vanilla caramel malt.
M- A good balance of sweet, bitter, and tart.

Overall- Very good, albeit fruity as hell!

NJpadreFan, Nov 14, 2007
AleSmith IPA from AleSmith Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 3,080 ratings.