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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

3,015 Ratings
THE BROS
95
world-class

(view ratings)
Ratings: 3,015
Reviews: 1,145
rAvg: 4.25
pDev: 8.94%
Wants: 411
Gots: 265 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-29-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 3,015 | Reviews: 1,145 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of curtisb8
4.78/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Appearance: amber brown, with a low, cloud white head.

Smell: strong fruit bouquet, citrus grapefruit and orange

Taste: medium hops upfront, with a citrus complexion. The hops flavor lingers in the aftertaste, leaving something to appreciate for a few minutes.

Overall: A smooth, nice balanced IPA with an excellent finish. Time was taken to craft this interesting beer, definitely worth a try…or three. Great beer!

curtisb8, Jan 29, 2006
Photo of HogHill
4.38/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This bomber arrived by way of BA Sloejams, a wicked awwwsumm dude.

I poured this beaut into my Stone IPA glass, it has a deep amber body with a thick creamy ivory head.

The scent is pure high alpha hops, lots of grapefruit aroma.

The taste is caramel malt backed with a huge hop juicyness. Like the aroma, primarily grapefruit flavors. Mouthfeel was medium bodied, with a moderate amount of carbonation. At 7% a bomber of Alesmith IPA can be plenty. I look forward to trying this one again soon.


Notes: I haven't been into IPAs in some time, but this one reminded me of how good they can be (in moderation), just SOLID. I enjoyed with some pepperoni and Dubliner cheddah.

HogHill, Jan 21, 2006
Photo of Prufrock
3.33/5  rDev -21.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

22 oz. bottle poured into a pilsner.

hazy golden copper with an inch of bubbly white head. foam leaves chunks of lacing.

man, does this one smell great. piney hops and strong citrus in the aroma. touch of floral scents, and a sweet, almost peachy aroma.

taste not as great. has some balance at first; moist feel with a strong carbonation sting. pine is stronger in the flavor than in the aroma. touch of citrus in the taste, but not nearly as strong as in the aroma. any flavors are washed away by a massive, oily hop bitterness that coats the throat. overall the flavors are a bit harsh.

flavor needs a bit more nuance to make this one a top-notch ipa. appearance and aromas are great, but drinkability hurt by the lingering harsh bitterness.

Prufrock, Jan 15, 2006
Photo of kmcnair
4.63/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a 22oz bottle. Pours a hazy, deep copper hue and makes a thick creamy white head that slowly diminishes into a thin layer of tiny dense bubbles which never fades. Dense Belgian lacing clings to the sides of my glass. Some pine and citrus aromas appear from a quick swirl of the glass, there's a hint of sweet malts as well. Flavor hits the tongue hard with a mouth-puckering strong bitterness and then the sweet malted backbone rushes in to bring a wonderful balance. Massive herbal and grassy hop flavors mixed with tart grapefruit citrus and pine with just the right ammount of caramel malt balance to make this one taste as good as a west coast IPA can taste. Bottle conditioning gives this a nice creamy texture on the palate and then closes with an astringent dry finish. A really well done IPA in the west coast style, I enjoy AleSmith IPA often.

kmcnair, Jan 15, 2006
Photo of joecast
4.18/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

pretty cloudy copper color. little carbonation as a few disident bubbles make a break for the surface. thick frothy off-white head slowly fades from 1/2 to 1/4 inch.

aroma not as strong as i was expecting. very nice though, with a mostly floral nose. some pine and malty sweetness too.

very full flavored. packed with malt, hops, and just enough bitterness. i guess i must have been expecting a double ipa or something, but as an ipa, this is good stuff.
ok, letting this sit here to make sure its not too cold or something, but, maybe im missing something. i like it, but just feel like its missing something. too smooth, too balanced. i dont know. maybe its me.
yeah, thats it. there has to be something wrong with me right? i mean, this is a damn fine beer. one of the best in the world. and im crying in it because i cant like it more. oh well. boo-hoo. i'll get over it.

obviously a seriously smooth mouthfeel. bottle conditioned baby, thats where its at.

very easy to put back, but knowing there are a few other ipas i enjoy more, i feel like i could do better with something else. a fine beer, but not exceptional.

joecast, Jan 05, 2006
Photo of merlin48
4.75/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Unassuming 22 oz bottle, as pictured, obtained via trade with cmaruschak. Many thanks! Served at 50 degrees F. into an imperial pint glass, this is my first alcoholic beverage of 2006, and an exceptional choice.
Pours a chill hazed, rusty amber body, with a creamy, tightknit, offwhite head that floats two fingers above the body. Exceptional head retention eventually drops into fluffy clumps of sticky lace. Lots of minute bubbles are apparent in the body, madly rushing upward. Very nice to behold.

Aroma is inviting and heavy handed. Fresh, leafy, hops lead off with citrusy grapefruit, orangerind, and spruce. Some toffee and caramel notes become more apparent as it warms.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with a velvety carbonation and a tingly bite of fresh hops resin.

Taste is surprisingly, well balanced. Hoppy bitterness is dry and assertive, with grapefruit, citrus rind, and spruce. Sweet/Tart tangerine and a dollop of clover honey emerge after a few minutes of warming. A solid malt backbone of toffee and caramel becomes prominent at room temperature and provides a superlative balance to the bitter, leafy, hoppiness. A note of clover honey chimes in, as well, as the citrusy aspect veers toward a sweeter tangerine and pink grapefruit presence. Some mild alcohol warmth adds to the complexity near the finish.

This is, simply, a big American IPA with no flaws. Exceptional balance and drinkability. I know this one is highly rated, but I don't think Alesmith gets enough credit for the brews, like this one, that they consistently produce. This brew is as "worthy" as any American IPA I've had the pleasure of sampling.

merlin48, Jan 05, 2006
Photo of Troyone
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a darkish apple juice color with an amber hue, half inch white head, some lacing, and little carb action.

Citrus hops smell with some caramel malt in the background.

Light/mod sweet/acidic, heavy bitter, resinous pine hops, and some caramel malt in the background.

Medium bodied, slightly syrupy texture, soft almost flat carbonation, lightly metallic, and a lightly/mod astringent finish.

A very drinkable double IPA can be a session beer for those who can handle the hops.

Troyone, Dec 29, 2005
Photo of Tupperwolf
4.03/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presented in AleSmith's simple, bold silkscreened style in a dark brown 22oz. bottle. No freshness date that I could find.

Beer poured a nice rich amber with a luxurious, building, frothy cream colored head that absolutely refused to fade away. It left thick, creamy lacing along the glass, tiny bubbles that defied gravity and simply didn't break. I really couldn't ask much more from an IPA's appearance.. The second glass filled an even bigger, more cheerful head. Noticeable brewer's yeast floaties, but I had to have the whole bottle!

Smell was good, woodsy and spicy with crisp tones.

Taste equally good; The hops flood the palate with crisp, spicy, bitter flavors that are balanced very well by the sweetness of the malt. I'm not a hop head, but appreciate this style of beer and think that this is an extremely well-rounded, full-bodied example of an IPA. The 7.25 alcohol content doesn't make an appearance in flavors, instead by way of cheerful warmth. I've run into a few IPAs that are simply too spicy and astringent; This one is full and smooth on the palate.

Tupperwolf, Dec 25, 2005
Photo of goschool
4.63/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The hazy peach to orange color looks especially cool with my laptop screen providing backlight in my dark room. Fabulous head retention. The nose is big and complex: lots of pine, complimented by orange sherbet, caramel malts, and pepper. It starts out with assertive grapefruity hops, but as this warms up floral and hops come through alone with silky smooth sweet malts. Oh fucking hell- the second pour is even better. It now dons a big frothy head that's not going anywhere and the yeast is in the glass now which is fine by me. The alcohol is slightly noticeable, but it doesn't interfere with the drinkability. This is pretty awesome.

goschool, Dec 24, 2005
Photo of carln26
4.25/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy copper color topped by a thick, fluffy off-white head that lasted for days. Tons of bright citrus in the nose. Tangerine and mandarin orange dominate the aroma. Wonderful drape of lace on the side of the glass as I pause to drink. Mouth wakening bitterness. There is a lot of grapefruit in the front of the flavor. Mild caramel and just a hint of Jolly Rancher orange candy on the finish. Loads of Chinook hop in this beer. The bitterness is pronounced, but not harsh. The mouth feel is lick, mildly oily. Great drinkability as the alcohol is well hidden.

carln26, Dec 17, 2005
Photo of blitz134
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear light golden orange body with a pure white head pocketed with large white bubbles among a tight knit of smaller ones. Aroma is somewhat light but nice nonetheless. Filled with citrus including grapefruit and some tangerine. A nice sweet malt base mixes in the aroma as well. Could be stronger overall.

A very nice flavor for an IPA. A good bit of bitterness but nothing overwhelming although it does finish with a bit of a bite. Taste has some citrus in it although I find it to be predominately resin dominated. Nicely balanced with a malt backbone to compliment the hops. No hint of alcohol either.

Has a nice mouth coating medium mouthfeel. Flavor lingers for a while. Drinkability is superb. Crisp and refreshing that comes with a nicely balanced flavor.

blitz134, Dec 04, 2005
Photo of BEERchitect
4.5/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks again to Kmpitz2 for sharing. Looks IPAish with a copper-orange hue and a little haze. Has incredible head retention. Smells very citrusy and pine-ey with an almost balanced barley malt base, allowing the hops to dominate the nose. Flavors are sweet of malt and hop flavored all at once. The hop flavor shows more of a citrus (grapefruit, oranges, lemon rinds) with the pine-ey, grass-ey flavors showing more in the back of the throat and a little more subtle in strength. All hop flavors and aromas swirl around a solid, but not overbearing, malt base. Very smooth and silky to the mouth. A joy to drink. I can see why it's one of BA's top beers.

BEERchitect, Nov 29, 2005
Photo of mentor
3.5/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber provided by nvsblman and shared with absolutesites on T-Day, 2005. Thanks for the opportunity! Pours a one finger nearly white head over a very cloudy light apricot colored liquid. Smells potently of grapefuit. Pithy, some pine, and a kind of driftwood dryness. Flavor is biting hop grapefruit with too much crystal malt. Disjointed. I don't know if age could bring the hops and sweet together. I think the hops would fall apart before the crystal malt settles. Well, shucks, I'm focusing on trash-talk when I've actually got a quality beer in my hand. It's enjoyable. Just not the soothing beverage I was hoping would add to the lull in my turkey-infused body. The hops leave the medium mouthfeel dry and the carbonation is medium.

mentor, Nov 26, 2005
Photo of MuddyFeet
4.08/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a slight orange-ish that was trying to glow but failed and came off dull. Big thick white and foamy head rested on top. Dissolved down to a thick, small and free floating island on top of the beer.

Nose was my favorite thing about this beer. Very hops, but they were not abrasive on the schnozz. Very piney and Christmas. Kind of a woodsiness all about this beer.

Solid flavor but nothing spectacular. And perhaps maybe a little bit of butter in there but the hops do a great job of concealing any such failing. All pine and sharp citrus. Malts provide a nice sweet balance that hold throughout the entire beer.

Medium mouthfeel with a slight alcohol burn. A bit of a dry finish. The hops are still very nice and make this a very easy beer to drink.

MuddyFeet, Nov 24, 2005
Photo of BrewMaster
4.93/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Appearance: 22 oz bottle, no freshness dating or batch number. Pours and orange to copper color with a frothy off white head. Very nice lacing as the glass is tilted and nice head retention. As the head thins it leaves creamy smooth islands.

Smell: The complex hoppy nose is fabulous. It is spicy with pepper and cinnamon while still being piney and earthy. And on top of all of that there is a sweet citrusy component that smells strongly of tangerine. There is also a slightly toasted malt aroma and some dextrin scents.

Taste: There is sweetness that is dying to come out of this beer as it frist hits my tongue. The flavors in this beer are complex but none of them are raging and strong. Subtle and soft while still holding their ground. Citrusy sweet followed by a toasty malt and earthy, sandy, bitter hop combination. Earthy components are firm with clay, dry leaves, and lemon grass. Hop bitterness shows in the seconds quarter and then again in the last quarter. The combination is nice with orange, sweet, and honey flavors first and the second appearance holding a more earthy and dry character. The aftertaste has a toasted malt flavor that is more bold than expected and carries a rich nutty flavor (peanut and almond). The alcohol is completely hidden. The beer is juicy like no other with sweet pear and a clean water ending.

Mouthfeel: Velvety and smooth. None of the flavors are grating on the palate as is often the case with IPAs. Medium bodied with a slight stickiness and hop oiliness.

Drinkability: Lovely in every sense of the word. I like the balance of rich flavors without selling anything short. Smooth and tasty. The malt is toasty and hop flavors are bitter and complex. It doesn't get much better than this.

BrewMaster, Nov 08, 2005
Photo of karst
4.93/5  rDev +16%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Thanks to OstrungT for the bomber! I have protected this for several months and broke it out last night to share with a fellow homebrewer.

Pours slightly hazed peach/orange with a persistant creamy head. Aroma as dominate and pleasing as your going to find. Hop candy! On a par with 3F's Dreadnaught. Flavor is huge pine and citrus hops perfectly balanced by a massive and complex malt base that offers no turn offs. Alcohol is well hidden and offsets the sweet malts to offer drying as the bitterness lingers. I can't think of a way to improve this and expect the haze was a simple matter of a rough ride before the pour.

karst, Nov 05, 2005
Photo of SteveO1231
4.33/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I popped a 22oz bottle.
Poured a cloudy golden yellow.
Thickest head I've seen yet, very foamy, off white, held up until the bottom of the glass.
Lots of carbonation.
Nice hoppy aroma, scent of malts and a little citrus.
Flavorful IPA; nice balanced malt taste with a strong hop finish, little hint of citrus in there.
Bitter hop flavor lingers.
I could feel the alcohol warming my gut.
This one got better the further I got into the pint.
Worth a taste.

Cheers!

SteveO1231, Oct 04, 2005
Photo of bcm119
4.18/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 bottle. Medium copper color with a nearly white, chunky head. Smells of grapefruit rind and pine. The nose is grapefruity with a slight pale malt sweetness that gets sweeter as it warms up. Mid palate it has a fairly full mouthfeel and a nice balance of citrusy hops and mild sweetness that comes through as sort of ripe orangey, almost juicy. Finishes cleanly though, not exactly crisp but clean enough, and it has a faint malt aftertaste. Outstanding hop flavors and nicely balanced, but could be a touch crisper.

bcm119, Oct 01, 2005
Photo of Wasatch
4.73/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bottle
Pours a deep gold color, huge head. Lacing/head stayed thru out the whole time. Very hoppy/citrus scents. Hoppy/sweet taste with a nice bite at the end. Medium body. This is one helleva brew, awesome taste and quite strong for a IPA, a couple of these and you will be feeling pretty good.

Wasatch, Sep 09, 2005
Photo of RedwoodGeorge
4.58/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

For the ardent hop-head, this brew is truly a gift. It pours out a hazy deep gold color with a very thick very sticky head. It's as if the brewers added a dollop of bread dough to each bottle to form such an impressive crown.

The smell is pretty pure - clean, clear hops and lots of 'em. A mild grain note in the nose but it's a very quiet note; this is all citrus and spice.

The taste is quite exquisite - while it's unapologetic about the hops, there's a very clean, sweet grain note to add balance to the brew. As strong as the taste is, it is by no means harsh - far from it. This is a very smooth, incredibly well balanced brew.

Mouthfeel is good. Plenty of carbonation and a nice velvety feel going down. Not so astringent that it leaves your tongue burnt but instead each sip invites the next.

This is a very drinkable brew and I'm happy to discover it's available locally. No surprise that it's one of the top rated IPAs and frankly, it could easily stand up to all but the very finest double IPAs.

RedwoodGeorge, Aug 30, 2005
Photo of blitheringidiot
4.9/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Simple yet attractive 22 oz’er declaring 7.5% ABV. The bottom is loaded with a bottle cap thickness of powder sediment yeast in the bottom.

First pour off lees is a golden cloudy peach loaded with rising champagne bubbles to a wispy frothy beige cap, leaving a dripping scattered lattice lace. Upped the AP to 4.5 after then second pour contained a statuesque spumescent gooey cratered surface of the moon countenance that included a plethora of scrod chunkers, 5. The lattice lace left behind was awesome.

Initial aroma of orange sherbert and syrupy sugary sweet. Quite mouth watering scents of citrus lemon peel and candy caramel apple. Second pour with the yeast released a more piney sappy aroma.

First swigs: Citrus grapefruit homerun! Unbridled grapefruit rhind and grapefruit lemon juice. Good. Tasty Pez candy chalky tight tartness. The balance is stupendous. A mindblowing feather of sweet caramel malt that puts the hops peddle to the metal. Aftertaste is a peppery lemon peel and Starburst candy. Second pour releases more of the acidic pine and orange citrus sizzle. (Note to self: Side by side Alesmith IPA vs. FFF DN.)

Sparkling crispness with firm dense carbonation, and some chalky mouth pucker. Thick settled medium body that just oozes with hoppy goodness.

Last swigs: The highlight of this bottle was the LAST pour with loads of flavor and gooey lip smackin’ hop smack. Hop heroin. I wish they all could be California IPAs! It might be their yeast strand that really allows those hops to shine. This IPA is such a blast of crisp hops, that doesn’t get muddled in a malt mud. That is why it is so good. This might be my best example of a true Am IPA. I flew back from Portland with about 20 bomber bottles of varied beers. They should have been all Alesmith IPAs. Why this isn’t cosidered a 2IPA is beyond me. It’s been a long time since a beer really excited me.

blitheringidiot, Aug 27, 2005
Photo of lostbearbrew
4.85/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Again, thanks go out to the west coast trading connections on this one...wow, folks, nice work. I've had this around for a few weeks, and it finally was time to go for it.

a Smoky Copper with a fat ole light tan head. Sticky and clinging lace...

Citrus, pine and straw rush forward, with a really wonderous mix of aromas amongst them. Seems grapefruit and orange really have the market on the olfactory here.

Taste is almost like a double, but without the thick coating tendency. Lower alc % and flavor, as well. The malt in here holds the hops up and supports them as the flagship flavors, but you don't miss the sweet caramelly malt in the middle. The finish on this hangs in your mouth next to forever.

Mouthfeel is quite nice, but not perfect - maybe it is the fence sitting between single and double that makes me feel that way, but something seems a little off for the IPA style.

I'd drink these all day, and get used to the slightly off mouthfeel....lol!

lostbearbrew, Aug 25, 2005
Photo of warriorsoul
4.7/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Many thanks to cmaruschak for this one. I've been really looking forward to popping this one open...too many beers, too little time.
Pours a nice cloudy copper color w/ a tremendous amount of light tan head. Very foamy and produces tons of loose, sticky lace...very nice to look at.
Wow...I've smelled double IPA's w/ less aroma than this one. Tons of fruity, bitter hops smack the nose...oranges and subtle grapefruit mainly dominate.
Taste is incredible...again, similar to a double but without the alcohol. It is over 7% so I can faintly detect it, but by no way distracting. Great balanced brew...hefty malt backbone and a fantastic bitter finish.
Mouthfeel is above average...drinkability is a no brainer.
Ah, they say Alesmith may make it's way to MA soon...I believe I could get used to having this one around.

warriorsoul, Aug 17, 2005
Photo of budsboy
4.53/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear, light amber with a small white sticky head.

Smell is all warm and toasty and hoppy, all citrus and pine. Familiar from many other highly hopped IPAs.

The first taste brings to mind Stone's Ruination, but wait a minute. It's not as much of a palate pounder. Bitter for sure, but malt is thrown into the balance. Citrus, then pine than warming alcohol. Very well crafted.

Full in the mouth, a bit puckering. Smooth, almost creamy, with a wee bit of oil left behind. Would have liked a bit more carbonation.

Not for the IPA beginner, this beer is closer to 2IPA then most 2IPAs. Very hoppy, very potent, very alluring. If you get the chance, get some.

budsboy, Aug 14, 2005
Photo of egajdzis
4.35/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a hazy copper, orange color with a small sticky off white head that diminished to a small film but still left nice lacing. Amazing citrus and pine hop aroma. Sweet malts, bitter hops, perfect mouthfeel, perfect balance. It doesn't taste bitter enough to be an Imperial, but the balance is superb... YUM! Thanks Marc

egajdzis, Aug 09, 2005
AleSmith IPA from AleSmith Brewing Company
95 out of 100 based on 3,015 ratings.