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YuleSmith (Summer) - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
YuleSmith (Summer)YuleSmith (Summer)

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1,574 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,574
Reviews: 900
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 9.95%
Wants: 244
Gots: 70 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Double / Imperial IPA |  8.50% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
Lots of hops with a nice malty backbone on this one. It is released twice yearly; once in the Summer and once in the late Fall / early Winter. Winter bottles have green & red ink, Summer is blue & red. There is a variation in the malt bill for each version.

(Beer added by: xlperro on 11-24-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,574 | Reviews: 900 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of portia99
4.47/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle received in trade from brokenleadedcask in trade. Thanks Darren! Poured into a Portsmouth goblet.

A - Pours a cloudy, pale orangey yellow (almost grapefruit juice like) with one finger of thick & creamy, bright white head. Head lingers a good long time, eventually settling to a good sized collar. Lots of sticky lacing on the sides of the glass.

S - Smells intensely of fresh citrus. Tons of grapefruit and some lemon, and a quick hit of oranges too.

T - Tons of citrus...basically mirrors the aroma, with some added character. Lots of grapefruit, hints of lemon and orange. Piney goodness kicks in too. Bitterness is ample too - good and crisp, from start to finish. Mildly yeasty (did pour the sediment into the glass), and bredy malt comes in to balance and smoothly round out the flavors in this beer.

M - This beer is very smooth. Creamy carbonation, light to medium body. A crisp lingering bitterness from the moment it hits your tongue until well after the swallow.

D - This is quite a drinkable DIPA...more hop balanced than most doubles - which for me is a positive thing. So smooth, goes down very easily - dangerously so. Alcohol is not apparent at all. Very good, definitely looking forward to enjoying another one of these bottles.

portia99, Sep 13, 2009
Photo of nickd717
4.6/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from City Beer in SF, then again from K&L in Redwood City. This beer is flat-out incredible.

A - Golden color with a large white head. Active carbonation evident with bubbles rapidly rising from the bottom.

S - Strong citrusy and floral hops dominate, as well as some sweet malt. Aroma is just awesome.

T - Bready pale malt and a hint of caramel. Hop character is citrusy and piney in the west coast style with grapefruit and light tropical fruits present. Very tasty.

M - Smooth and medium-bodied with medium-high carbonation and slight alcohol warmth. Some hoppy oiliness.

D - Very high. This is one hell of a summer DIPA. I look forward to its release every year.

nickd717, Sep 10, 2009
Photo of macktbone
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Purchased as a last minute grab from Monument liqour in Concord. 5$ or so... I had it in San Diego at AleSmith so I thought I'd grab a bottle to remind myself how good they are.
Last trip to SD was so good I was unable to rate any beer...or even remember them.

A- Light in color but not lager-like. Nice head, lace and fluffyness. Carbonation looks good for an Imperial style IPA.

S- Sweet and Hoppy. Nice traditional aroma along with a green edge that invites you to take a sip and determine if the sweetness is just a ploy.

T- Nice IPA. Well balanced and super approachable. Great intro IPA to folks, too bad its a specialty ale. Good Hoppy flavor that masks the ABV well. Not that 8% or so is high but on this IPA is blends so well that you hardly know its even there.

M- great fluffy texture. This is really nice and full. Carbonation lends itself nicely to the style and flavor.

D- Possibly one of the most drinkable Imperial IPA's especially for a non super Hoppy Imperial IPA lover. You may not be happy if you are expecting a hopslam or a PTY but you won't be unhappy regardless.

BA does need to update the picture to reflect the outstanding patriotic representation of the 4th of July on the bottle.

macktbone, Sep 10, 2009
Photo of mikey711
3.63/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Received as an extra in a trade from aewinte. Thanks alex

A nice golden yellow hue with a big fluffy white head on top. The head is very lacing and is taking its sweet time to settle. It is slightly cloudy as well.

Very nice hop aromas, both lemony citrus and a floral soapy note. The malt sweetness comes through in a mildly to add a nice toasted biscuity note in the background.

Nice taste of bread/biscuits malt sweetness in here. Not as big on the hops as I had hoped. It finishes piney and bitter.

The mouthfeel just seems to be lacking something. Not sure what but its just average.

An easy one to drink, but I will be fine with the bomber

mikey711, Sep 09, 2009
Photo of bret27
4.68/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

[bottle above depicts winter bottle, this review is for summer yulesmith w/4th of july fireworks bottle]

Appearance: Deep gold/amber w/white fluffy head and lacing as I continue to drink. Lots of yeast chunks which threw me off, but then reading bottle, they are supposed to be there d/t bottle conditioning.

Smell: Piney and citrusy hops, not really sweet, tiny malt.

Taste: Very good. Hops carrying you from beginning to end. citrus, pine, fresh grass. Little tingle on tongue at the end. Also a perfect cararmelly malt backbone which holds on steady through entire drink. Perfect balance + mouthfeel IMO.

Overall: One of the best DIPA's I've had, and I've had most of the best ones out there. IMO better than regular Alesmith IPA or Winter Yulesmith. If you weren't impressed by those, still give this one a try.

bret27, Sep 08, 2009
Photo of waltonc
4.22/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Summer version.

Thanks to JoeySchlitz for dropping this off in Denver for me. IPAs don't get much closer to perfect than this. Pours an appealing golden body with poofy white head. Lots of bubbles rising up from the bottom of my glass. Smell is fresh pine and citrus hop notes balanced against some nice malt. Pine sol fresh flavor with slices of grape fruit mixed in. But unlike lesser IPAs, this is nicely balanced with an abundance of malt, making all the hops quite tolerable. Medium body with a lot of carbonation. The carbonation prevents this from being a syrupy hoppy mess. Overall, one of the better IPAs I've had.

waltonc, Aug 27, 2009
Photo of Habanero58
4.72/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

My first ever review of an American beer!

This was the Winter, the green and red, version of Alesmith Yulesmith. Anyway... it was love at first sip.

First up it had the rich, warming, alcoholic maltiness that I would associate with an English beer such as Fuller's Vintage Ale. That is good enough in itself but then it gets better still as I realise it also has some of the delightful uber-hoppy profile of the American IPA's I am growing to know and love, such as PtE and DFH 90 min.

Coupled together this adds up to a delightful complexity and I am really glad I have one more bottle of this to enjoy at a later date. I hope I can source more of these for the Festive season proper!

Habanero58, Aug 21, 2009
Photo of Trappissed
4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Summer Edition:

One thing about Alesmith brews. They are always very flavorful and never boring. This is very hoppy with big doses of citrus flavors. Orange and grapefruit, with a little pine thrown in on the aftertaste. Can taste a little of the Alesmith IPA in this, but like I said, citrus dominates here. Enough maltiness to offset the barrage of hops and bitterness.

Pretty enjoyable overall. Mouthfeel is great, almost juicy if that makes any sense. It does remind me of other California DIPA's that I've had, so that is a little bit of a letdown that there is not more to distinguish itself from the pack. Would still recommend it and I find it to be a worthwhile beer.

Trappissed, Aug 19, 2009
Photo of brokenleadedcask
4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on 08/08/09. Reviewed from notes

Lots of off-white (bone) colored head appears a top the golden yellow ochre body. Some good lacing attaches itself to the inside of the pint. My only problem with the appearance is the fact that the first pour was clear and the second pour had some floaties and chucks swimming around. Lots of grapefruit and pine on the nose, with a healthy back-up band of malt. Some earthiness and dirt in the taste, but in a good way. Plenty of bittering hops, it is a DIPA, and some apricot just hanging out with his friend malt. There's some stick to it, lingering just long enough and a healthy amount of carbonation. Would like to include this in a DIPA tasting and see how it holds up. That is, if my palette could withstand the punishment and the ABV doesn't kick my ass.

brokenleadedcask, Aug 19, 2009
Photo of GJ40
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Sampled from a bottle purchased at the Pizza Port Bottle Shop.

A - Golden and hazy with and a moderate white head. Some serious yeast chunks come through at the end.

S - A floral and fruity aroma with some yeast coming through as well. Very inviting.

T - Citrusy hop flavors with a moderate lingering bitterness. The flavoring and bittering hops work nicely together. There's just enough malt for a good foundation and the alcohol remains well hidden.

M - A creamy and silky consistency with a moderate carbonation.

D - A great beer for a great holiday. Now if we could only get some in NC.

GJ40, Aug 17, 2009
Photo of JayQue
4.38/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Summer 2009. Compliments of Joey at South Bay.

Pours a beautiful hazy orange color with a big pillowy white head and thick lacing. The head fades fairly quickly to a covering of the glass.

Smell is strong and pleasant. Mainly citrus hops.

Tastes good as well. Strong citrus hops up front, good bitterness and a hint of alcohol. The flavor balances out with more mild piney hops. Non of the Celebration Ale style spiciness in the summer edition.

Mouthfeel is rich and crisp, a little harsh up front and smooths out as thepiney hops (and malt??) kicks in.

Drinkability is good. I split this bomber, but could have easily drank it myself.

JayQue, Aug 15, 2009
Photo of HalfFull
3.75/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Summer Yulesmith, 2009.

Pours a hazy and frosted golden/deep straw in color with an inch of mountainous and sticky white head. Strong retention and decent lacing follow, yet rather light and translucent for the style.

Smells like SNPA initially. Citric and with a bit of smoke. Light hops and a touch of alcohol on the nose. Pine and resiny hops reveal themselves after some air. Spice and depth improve with warming.

Perky and citric on the tongue. Touch of spice. Offers a smooth feel and drink yet not a whole lot of character. A certain pepper spice and some cloaking sweet notes are present but subtle. Well balanced given the hop structure, yet overly so for a hophead. Decent drinkability but a bit too sweet to encompass. Nice but surely not stellar...

HalfFull, Aug 14, 2009
Photo of foxbat2500
4.28/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

09 Summer Version in a bottle from BevMo.

Looks awesome. Orange/dark golden with a nice foamy head that really sticks. Wonderful carbonation

In a word pine I guess. Not as big as one might think. There is a sweetness in the smell.

Sweet, bitter, orange, others say Pine, but I've never had a pine cone to drink.

Great balance shows in the mouthfeel. Its big, but its all there in balance.

You know what's drinkable? Water! This has taste.

foxbat2500, Aug 12, 2009
Photo of StJamesGate
3.93/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Winter '08 discounted from Half Time, Poughkeepsie.

Pours opaque rusty red with a clumpy yellow cream head that thins fast but holds. Orange musky nose. Sweet fruits - papaya and grapefruit - dominated by big pine, ginger, birch hops. Sticky feel, ABV sting, long linger.

Sitting on a shelf for 6 months sure hasn't toned this one down. Lots of great flavors, but heat and lack of balance hurt it overall.

StJamesGate, Aug 11, 2009
Photo of seaoflament
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This review is from July 8, 2008.

Picked this one up today from SouthBay Drugs and Liquor.

Ah, the time is upon us once again, Summer YuleSmith!!!

The beer is a rusty golden color with about one inch of soapy, soft, foam.

The aroma is of an intense grapefruit, pine, citrus peel, tropical fruits, and alcohol. It has a very complex fruit mix that I can pick up some guava, peach, pineapple, grapefruit, orange, lemon, lime, and nectarine. There's also some musty aroma coming through. The malts are mostly that of toasted bread and caramel, maybe a little dry cracker.

Wow, just as good as I remembered it. Bitter orange and grapefruit with pine, a mixture of fruit--like a fruit cocktail almost--and alcohol. The sweetness of the malt, toast and caramel, comes in the second half bringing some balance to the onslaught of hops in the beginning. The aftertaste is mostly pine needles, citrus peel and a little alcohol. After a few sips the toasted flavors become more pronounced and combines well with the bitterness.

Pretty smooth on the palate, soft carbonation and just a little syrupy thickness. The alcohol could be a bit obtrusive at times, maybe a little too present. Would have scored higher if not for the noticeable alcohol in the finish, but that's also expected once the beer's temperature raises.

This beer, along with Hop15, was the one that got me hooked on Hoppy beers and is still a favorite to this day.

seaoflament, Aug 08, 2009
Photo of ColForbinBC
4.18/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22oz bomber poured into a tulip pint; Summer 09 version

Pours a pretty deep red amber with a huge, fluffy ecru cap. Head sticks around forever and leaves loads of spider web lacing all over my glass. A large amount of yeast is suspended in my glass.

Huge aroma of resiny pine, grapefruit, and pineapples wallop the olfactory's off the bat. The malt bill is earthy and sweet; mainly sweet, sticky, caramel.

Gooey pine resin and hop oil coat the mouth right off the bat with a rush of earthy, slightly sweet caramel and biscuit malt that fills the void briefly before a bitter punch really assaults the palate. A larger bitterness would have been more welcome. Everything is in pretty good balance up to the bitterness, hence why I wanted a little more on the back end.

A very wet, resiny, and oily mouthfeel that finishes slightly bitter. There is a decent amount of heat that lingers amongst the bitterness.

Considering how well-balanced this is and a do-able 8.8% abv, I would have to rate this pretty high. However, I was not in love with how balanced this was.

ColForbinBC, Aug 03, 2009
Photo of atremains
4.03/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Winter 08, got it off the shelves at Julio's in Westboro Ma in July. Pours a great deep golden amber with a monstrous head that leaves a substantial amount of lacing. Nose is that of any double IPA, maybe a bit of holiday spice in there, some nutmeg, cinnamon, what have you. Taste is nice and sweet with cinnamon, caramel, and some sweet fruit. Rounded out by some spicy flavors and hops. Alcohol comes out bigger and bigger as it warms up. Mouthfeel is rich and creamy, low-mid carbonation on this one. It's not a session beer at 8.8%, but it would definitely be excellent on a cold winter's night. Can't wait to get my hands on a fresh batch.

atremains, Aug 03, 2009
Photo of nomomentwasted
4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Had this out of a bottle on my back porch tonight. Summer 2009 version. Beautiful evening, poured into a pint glass and sipped away. Great way to unwind and enjoy a good brew.

Appearance: Golden orange hue with frothy white 2-finger head. Very yeasty pour as well with unfiltered quality to it with suspended yeast throughout. Laced fantastically and overall a stellar-looking IPA.

Smell: Piny and citrusy, with a grapefruit/pineapple ester up front and a stronger earthy pine coming through as it opened up. Very pleasing, but after trying a few other IPAs of late with a bit more complexity and strength, this is just good, not fantastic.

Taste: Starts out with a nice piny bite and the wet hop oil coats initially, with an earthy malt balance on the secondary wave. Pretty well balanced and certainly not overwhelming in the hop department. A bit of biscuity malts are welcomed, but really it's just balanced and not too powerful. Again, good, but not outstanding nor does it separate itself from some other DIPAs here in Southern California.

Mouthfeel: This beer shines here with a very wet, oily start that finishes with a very smooth balanced bitterness. Not too carbonated nor flat, it's just a great IPA texture through and through.

Drinkability: Can't say I'd want to have another bomber of this immediately afterwards, but it did drink very well while I had it. Would recommend certainly, and another solid outing from Alesmith. Again, this didn't blow me away, but it a great beer for an awesome sit-out-and-enjoy-it summer's eve.

nomomentwasted, Jul 31, 2009
Photo of glid02
4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Summer version had on-tap at Beachwood BBQ in Seal Beach, CA.

Pours a light copper color with a one-finger white head. The head sticks around for a good while before settling into a thin pancake on top leaving thick lacing.

Smells of tropical and citrus hops with a just enough pale malt aromas to balance things out.

Tastes similar to how it smells. The hops aren't quite as intense as they are in the aroma, but they're certainly still there. Pale malt flavors give way to lots of citrus - grapefruits with small amount of oranges - and a bit of tropical fruit flavors. Near the end of the sip there's a hint of vanilla right before the moderately bitter ending.

Mouthfeel is good. It has a nice thickness with soft carbonation.

Drinkability is good. I didn't have a problem finishing my glass and could have another.

Overall this was a very good and very fresh DIPA and one that I recommend seeking out.

glid02, Jul 30, 2009
Photo of mothman
3.93/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Summer 2009

Poured into Surly Pint Glass

Pours 1 finger of beige head. Poured a little yeast into the bottle, oops. Color is a golden orange copper. Good retention and nice lace walls.

Aroma: Big fresh hop aroma. Floral and earthy smells. Big grapefruit citrus. Not to strong, but good.

Taste: Wow, this is pretty hoppy and very fresh. It is too hoppy. Very bready. This is like shoving a handful of flowers in your mouth. Has some grapefruit citrus. A little caramel. Some spices at the end.

Mouthfeel: Very, very bitter. A little boozy. Ends with a super dry, hoppy flavor. Medium bodied. Lower level of carbonation.

Overall, this is a good west coast IPA, but nothing stellar. Just too many hops for me. Half a bomber was good enough.

mothman, Jul 29, 2009
Photo of GilGarp
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to HoppyIPA for including this in a great trade!

This is the holiday version with red and green label. I was going to save it for Christmas but figured the hops may have faded enough as it is. Instead, I'm enjoying it on a cooler July evening.

Served chilled in a globe, it pours a beautiful deep amber red color with good clarity and thick towering head. The head sticks around really well and leaves heavy lacing on the glass.

Aroma is sweet and still very hoppy but clearly subdued. Some dried fruit and winter spice round it out.

Flavor is intensely bitter but has likely mellowed out considerably. It has some nice dark fruit sweetness with carmel and toffee notes as well. The hop bitterness comes on strong with lots of earthy spicy character. In a way it reminds me of the SN Celebration from last year that I had recently.

Mouthfeel is full bodied with appropriate carbonation. Fairly well-balanced despite big hop presence.

This is one hellova winter warmer and I can see now why it would be called a DIPA. Even after 6+ months, it maintains a strong hoppy bitterness. I would love to try it fresh but it has a nice balance to it now that is quite enjoyable.

GilGarp, Jul 29, 2009
Photo of womencantsail
4.53/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Hazy pale gold/yellow color with one finger of fluffy white head.

S: Citrus hops (mostly grapefruit and some lemon) and tons of pineapple. A fruity sweetness.

T: Grapefruit twang, pineapple, a nice bitterness but it certainly doesn't stick around long.

M: Nice medium body, slick mouthfeel.

D: Great fruit character, which I wasn't expecting. A most tasty beverage.

womencantsail, Jul 28, 2009
Photo of vtfan77
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2009 Summer Release, purchased online from South Bay Drugs

A- Crystal clear gold with maybe a hint of orange. Looks almost like a pilsner. A nice half-inch of head forms on the pour and sticks around for quite some time, leaving behind tons of lace.

S- Tons of leafy, piney hops in the nose. Perhaps a bit one-dimensional, but I can't say I really care. This is clearly an unapologetic hop bomb.

T- Actually a lot more balanced than the smell would suggest. The emphasis is still heavily on the hops, but the malt comes through just a bit with a nice caramel sweetness to back the massive hop onslaught. The huge leafy hop flavors carry over into the taste and coat the mouth with lupulin goodness. The finish is dry and very bitter, although not overwhelmingly so.

M- Nice medium body with a good dose of tongue-tingling carbonation to keep things lively.

D- The alcohol isn't particularly high for the style and isn't noticeable at all. I'll finish the bomber with ease. This is an extremely drinkable DIPA.

This is another fantastic DIPA from the West Coast, right up there with Pliny in my opinion. I really wish I could try some of these beers on tap but I suppose I'll have to make due with the occasional online purchase. Anyway, this is a great beer and a must-try for any hophead. Highly recommended.

vtfan77, Jul 28, 2009
Photo of Docer
4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Received in a trade from by buddy alexD...

- I can tell from the appearance I am going to love this brew... looks like a winner of a west coast IPA to me! And a double at that! Cloudy orange/yellow glowing west coast color.. fluffy white head, quickly down to a swarm of lacing all about...

- Sweet honey and caramel malt, some bread.. and plenty of citrus hop.. fresh, sweet and clean.

- Great honey/caramel.. some bread 'n yeast.. and wonderful sticky hops.. citrus, some floral, and a touch of pine with a bit of some spiciness too.. settles well..

- Oily, touch chewy.. overall decent... sweet

- Huge on the drinkabilty.. great after-sense of alcohol and warmth... blends so well, and is balanced so well... truly a nice IIPA.

Docer, Jul 28, 2009
Photo of LittleDon
4.18/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The last of three IPAs I had for the day (preceded by Alpine Duet and Pliny the Elder). Cloudy, dark golden with a filmy head that had nice texture to it. Some noticeable sugar aroma which I can't pin down is present with the hops. Strange start. I get an almost tomato/tabasco (w/o the heat) upper palate taste which goes away after I've had a few bites to eat. Can't figure out where this came from except, maybe, the alcohol. Bittersweet dark chocolate finish. Except for the tomato sensation (which was more strange than unpleasant) worthy of a second.

LittleDon, Jul 26, 2009
YuleSmith (Summer) from AleSmith Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 1,574 ratings.