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YuleSmith (Summer) - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
YuleSmith (Summer)YuleSmith (Summer)

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,592 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 1,592
Reviews: 901
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 9.95%
Wants: 244
Gots: 68 | 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: 1,592 | Reviews: 901 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Bubba83
4.53/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to rayunver for the bottle!

22oz Green/Red Winter Version poured into a Snifter at 45 degrees. Four finger-widths of head, I recommend pouring slowly with the glass tilted the whole way.

The best appearance of any beer I've had up to this point. Beautiful ruby musty red/amber hues with a killer light tan head that sticks for days on end and retention is awesome.

Smell is also great, lots of character, pineapple and other tropical fruits come through crystal clear, with some spicy pepper aromas to boot as well as some juniper and citrus/pine. Caramel is there too.

Taste is business in the front, party in the back. Lots of sweet caramel flavor up front and some bready characteristics beneath that seem almost rye-like. From there I get a progression into tropical fruits, chiefly pineapple, then grapefruit, followed by juniper berries, a little pine and some pepper. Extremely tasty and interesting through and through.

Also a great job on the feel, perfect amount of chewyness, yet still has a great level of carbonation all the way through.

Drinks pretty awesome, well thought out, supremely well balanced, and easy to drink with not too much alcohol heat. Does Alesmith ever get it wrong? Can't wait to try the DIPA version this summer.

Bubba83, Mar 05, 2009
Photo of natasharai
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Wow!! This would get a 6 if possible!! Poured with almost 2 inches of very creamy smooth tan head, that dissipated to a 1/4 inch (which lasted the whole glass) over 5 minutes leaving very thick lacing down the entire side of the glass. The beer is a brown color that appears amber in the light, and is slightly hazy.

Smell: Very strong roasted malts, and hoppy bitterness, followed by a sweet caramel and fruityness, and spicy aromas appear... similar to nutmeg

Taste: Up front it is really hoppy, then the roasted malt appears, there is an alcohol taste, all followed by a spicy and nutty taste.

Mouthfeel: Hoppy tingle, medium/heavy bodied, small alcohol sting, leaves mouth really dry

Overall: Pretty drinkable, no problem finishing the 1pint 6oz bottle to myself. The alcohol is somewhat noticeable. VERY well balanced, just as hoppy as it is malty! Has some nice subtle spicy notes.

natasharai, Feb 26, 2009
Photo of number1bum
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is winter 08/09.

Pours a slightly hazed reddish dark amber color with a substantial three inches of beige head. Head settles quite slowly, leaving a mess of stick on the sides and a very good, full lace.

Smell has some very resiny pine and citrus hops but also a substantial amount of malt. It's lightly toasty with lots of caramel, and pretty bready overall. As it warms a spicier note comes out; there must be rye in this. It's quite complex for a DIPA, but I'd almost wish for just a bit more hoppiness.

Taste is very malt forward, with lots of caramel and some toasted malt. There is also quite a spicy quality to this, even more so than the nose; it must be rye. There is some booze, as well. Wait you say, how about the hops? There are plenty of those, too, it's just that the malt forms more than just a backbone here - they stick their chest out and beat the hops to the palate. Hops are piney and resiny, giving a slick and oily mouthfeel. Some grapefruit and tangerine citrus flavor, as well. Hop bitterness is substantial but well balanced; not overdone by any means. A bit of alcohol burn does hit the back of the throat in the finish every now and then. I'll dock a notch for mouthfeel to account for that, rather than flavor. Also some hop bitterness and toasted/rye spiciness left on the palate. Mouthfeel is full bodied, a bit chewy even, and is quite oily and smooth as previously noted.

This is quite tasty and definitely not just a simple hop bomb. Very complex and tasty malt bill. The spiciness (it must be rye) and amped up malt bill really seems appropriate for the holiday season. There is a bit of booziness to it which detracts just a bit, and if anything I would say it could be a notch hoppier (more hop flavor at least, the bitterness is well balanced), but man, this is good stuff. A very unique DIPA, and a very good one.

number1bum, Feb 24, 2009
Photo of damienblack
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Winter 08-09 edition of this beer being sampled.

Pours a dark-ruby color, with a good deal of sediment in stasis the glass. Billowey peach colored head with just the right amount of stick to it. Big hoppy grapefruit smell to it, with just a touch of soapiness accompanying. I can smell this one a foot away from my nose, and my sense of smell is horrible.

This one has a fair amount of sweet malt to it, but the overwhelming taste is fresh hops backed by sour grapefruit. Big hoppy body, but not overly bitter, not even for a DIIPA. No soapiness or lingering residue causing a harsh aftertaste, just cool constant bitterness. Good mouthfeel, a little syrupy, but for the style, solid. Very drinkable, again with no bitterness or anything. I'm not a big fan of huge IPAs, but I can tell why this one is so highly regarded. An excellent brew.

damienblack, Feb 19, 2009
Photo of sprucetip
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bomber into goblet.

Very clear, deep amber/copper. Active, foamy white head, fades to ring, eventually, leaves not alot but some lacing. Pretty close to glorious. SMELLS of hops, a well rounded profile including citrusy, floral and grassy elements. These all blend well with a prodigious malty base. Very smooth and complex, improving during the experience. TASTE characterized by bold but balanced hoppiness initially, but slightly sweet and balancing malty body and and some alc heat dancing around the palate and blending pleasantly, always in balance. FEELING is of moderate carbonation, rich pleasant texture, luxruious, and with super clean finish. DRINKS like something that has way too much flavor and complexity to take more than a sip at a time.

Highly recommended, should you be so lucky as to run across this one.

sprucetip, Feb 19, 2009
Photo of raoulduke37
4.58/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bottle with red and blue writing rather than green and red, but this is indeed the Holiday IPA (summer). LOTS of yeast in the bottom of the glass. The beer is a hazy golden color, like a hefe, maybe. Plenty of thick lacing around the glass. The smell was outstanding - pineapple and citrus - overpowering at first, but then sadly, it mellows out. Reminded me of my first HopSlam (tear). Very hoppy flavor up front, with plenty of citrus, and ripe apples. Slight hoppy bitterness on the way down. Mouthfeel is thick for an IPA, but still manages to stay smooth and not overwhelm with carbonation. This comes in a 25 oz. bottle (750 mL) and I would definitely order another.

raoulduke37, Feb 19, 2009
Photo of Jwale73
3.9/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to RomanW70 for sharing. Winter vintage served in my Gouden Carolus chalice. Poured orange with a half inch, tight, off-white head; some yeast particles evident in solution. Sheets of lacing revealed as the brew receded. Nose was grapefuit and floral hops. Taste follows nose, but some lingering bitterness. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied, lightly effervescent, but also somewhat creamy in texture at the same time. A solid DIPA. Abv is well-hidden and brew is style consistent, but my prefernce for DIPAs tends towards the sweeter side of the style.

Jwale73, Feb 19, 2009
Photo of sonicdescent
4.03/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Winter version
Great appearnce with a dark copper and frothy white head. Active Carbonation.

Smell is a bit lighter than I am used to in something of this robust a profile. Piney, Citrusy.

Taste is similar to a barleywine with a slight hop lean.

Mouth is thick with medium carbonation.

Another winner from AS.

sonicdescent, Feb 16, 2009
Photo of JohnQVegas
4.45/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Huge thanks to Matt (Drabmuh) for the bottle - a huge want for me for quite awhile now. Bottle into Sam Adams sensory glass.

Pours dark straw with a just a bit of copper, and a massive, rocky off-white head that causes the pour to take somewhere around 10 minutes, and eventually settles in to a thin, dense sheet on top. Massive sheets of static-like lacing.

Nose is of huge, massive tropical fruit - tons of pineapple and some tangerine, with a bit of a rock-candy edge, accented by just a nice bit of alcohol. Wee bit of caramel poking through.

Taste starts off with those big, smooth, juicy hops, same massive tropical pineapple and tangerine notes from the nose, with just a bit of piney bite to the lingering bitterness. Whatever light malt sweetness that comes through ends up adding to the juicy-fruit effect of the big tropical hops. Finish is long, juicy up front but eventually drying out and leaving a very manageable bitterness.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, deceptively light, just a bit oily. Carbonation is quite light and lets the hop character really shine through.

Drinkability is really very high. Some alcohol for sure, but the light(er) body, mild bitterness, and massive hop flavor all make this one go down really very, very easy. Very tasty beer. I noted that Winter version really did remind me of Christmas in a bottle, and by the same token, I totally get a tropical-island vibe from this one. Another very well-done beer from possibly my favorite hop-masters.

JohnQVegas, Feb 11, 2009
Photo of bifrostguard
3.85/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Type: Winter Imperial Red

A - Pours an eye catching amber color with a small off white head and minimal lacing.

S - Caramel malts with a light citrus hop backing. I can already tell this one is gonna be sweet, but the smell is pretty intriguing.

T - Sweet caramel malt backbone that dominates all other flavors. A citric hop bitterness is present in the background struggling to compete with the sweetness of the malt. A very tasty imperial red, just too sweet for my tastes. Still clean and crisp for the style though.

M - Medium bodied with a building sweet residue on the palate.

D - This is one tasty beer, but the sweetness limits the drinkability for me. That being said, I would still be happy to find this on tap when I least suspect it.

Note: I am very much looking forward to the DIPA summer version. Sounds like it would fit my tastes more adequately.

bifrostguard, Feb 09, 2009
Photo of gibby
4.1/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to crazynelson for sending this an extra along witht the dreadnaught bombers.

Bomber poured into oversized wine glass. Beer poured very red with a tan 1 finger head. Smelled hoppier than I expected. Taste was very nice, malty with a nice hop kick at the end. Really enjoyed it. Hoping to try this again and get a few of the summer versions once they get released.

gibby, Jan 31, 2009
Photo of wagenvolks
4.58/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Big props to screach for the share at the Draft House...enjoy that Terrapin! 22 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a murky, brownish-amber hue with a massive, rocky head of light custard bubbles. Great head retention, but not much lacing left behind, which caught me off guard considering the amount of hops utilized to craft this brew. Nevertheless, the aroma is everything I look for in a IIPA--HOPS! Leafy, citric, earthy, resinous, glorious hops coat every crevice of my olfaction, but not without an proper balance of sweet caramel & toffee malts. Drool...

The flavor mirrors much what had been anticipated from the aroma, as sticky hop oils immediately coat the palate to deliver a deliciously bitter blast. Rich layers of caramel malt provide a solid backbone to the hoppy onslaught, and a semi-fusel booze presence seals the deal alongside alpha acids during the finish. Mouthfeel is near-perfect for the style, with a big, chewy body and a well-crafted carbonation level. Immensely enjoyable. AleSmith rarely disappoints, and this was no exception. I can't wait to break into their IPA!

wagenvolks, Jan 24, 2009
Photo of koopa
4.18/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

SUMMER VERSION 22oz bomber sampled today.

Appearance: Honey orange colored and lighter around the edges. Nice 2-3 fingers of foam with lots of retention and lacing.

Smell: Lots of caramel malt sweetness, a boat load of hops, and a touch of alcohol.

Taste: exactly like the nose.

Mouthfeel: a touch syrupy and medium to medium full in body. The carbonation doesn't come through enough IMHO.

Drinkability: Good for the style but a touch too thick in body and under carbonated for me to keep kicking these back.

Not a bad brew at all but I'm not a fan of so much caramel malt in my DIPA's. Its a fairly balanced DIPA for a West Coast offering.

koopa, Jan 17, 2009
Photo of duffextracold
4.47/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Winter release

A- Orange honey color. Lots of floaties. I swear there's whole hop leaves floating around in there. HUGE head. Dissipates quickly, leaving fluffy lacing.

S- smells like pineapple, lots of pineapple. there's a hint of bitter hops in there too.

T- tastes hoppy, but very well balanced by sweet malty goodness. slightly fruity, with a hint of citrus. tastes great, keeps getting better as it warms up.

M- smooth silky texture, perfect carbonation.

D- Very good, very well balanced. Tasty, tasty, tasty!

duffextracold, Jan 16, 2009
Photo of seanpachefddfa
4.47/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

winter release

appearance- poured a dark amber orange almost copper. thick fluffy off white head.

smell- piney hops with sweet caramel malts very nice.

taste- lots of piney hops with caramel malts. Also getting some good citrus also.

mouthfeel- medium body with good carbonation.

drinkability- this is a very good beer overall.
very high drinkability. alcohol is not very noticeable

seanpachefddfa, Jan 13, 2009
Photo of beachbum1975
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

~Winter Release~
Picked this one up fresh from Jungle Jim's on 12/19/2008. Review taken from notes taken on 12/20/2008. 22 ounce bottle.

What a beauty to look at - poured a rich, thick orangey/bronze behemoth! The slightest bit of haziness rests below a mountainous, off-white, creamy head. The head is gorgeous and complex network of intricate bubbles and super sticky lacing. I drool just looking at this beast.

I can't give this beers' nose enough justice, or I lack the correct defining terms. All I can say is, "Wow". Caramel wallop mixed with fresh, spicy, fresh citrus and a pine tree. Biscuit-like yeasts trail making this brew so desirable.

The taste is a PERFECT blend of thick, sweet, syrupy malts and fresh, tasty citrus hops. Like the beer notes on BA state, "Lots of hops with a nice malty backbone on this one." The way this beer was engineered stuns me. Hops were definitely the focal point, but Alesmith didn't forget about the all-important malts for one second. This is a serious DIPA and should not to be taken lightly. Definitely a world-class DIPA sipper. Sit and savor this one slowly because the more it warms, more spicy phenol character comes out!

Highly recommended, try this one fresh!

beachbum1975, Jan 12, 2009
Photo of bonbini26
3.65/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Winter Holiday Verison

Appearance: Pours a hazy amber color, in my Sam Adams glass the color actually goes light to darker from bottom to top, really nice with big head

Smell: Huge caramel malt and piney hop aroma; the alcohol is well-disguised, but with this aroma, you can tell it's there

Taste: Assaults the palate with a blast of piney bitterness with a strong caramel malt presence underneath; after the swallow, the sweet flavors build and balance the pine into a long-lasting finish

Mouthfeel: Full-bodied and creamy with moderate carbonation, sweet sticky feeling

Drinkability: Not a bad DIPA, but didn't stand out to me, a lot better DIPA's out there on both coast, this beer didn't live up to the hype

bonbini26, Jan 12, 2009
Photo of BrewerB
4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Winter version poured into a New Belgium globe.

A - Medium copper color, great clarity. Thin off-white head with good stability and retention.

S - Citrus and mango hop aroma, alcohol. Alcohol a bit dominant over the rest of the components.

T - Lots of citrus hop flavor with a supportive malt backbone providing flavors of cracker and caramel. Piney.

M - Medium-bodied with a moderately high level of carbonation. Smooth.

D - Lots of flavor but surprising drinkability for the depth. Credit this to a dry finish and enough complexity to make you thirsty for a second pint.

BrewerB, Jan 11, 2009
Photo of sweetbrew82
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz. into a tulip/ Summer version

P: Shiny gold with an off-white head that stands an impressive 3 fingers tall, with a very firm, dense, thickly-whipped consistency to it. Showed very good retention before it sank to a thin cap, leaving lots of sticky lace on the way down.

A: Tons of citrus and pine just leaping out of the glass and ripping through my nasal passages! It's reminiscent of grapefruit, orange, pineapple, and other tropical fruits with pine sap drizzled over the top. There is a caramel malt sweetness underneath, but the hops are the star of this show.

T: Wall-to-wall hops with big citrus right upfront that follows the nose with flavors of juicy grapefruit, orange peels, and pineapples being the most dominant. The pine seems a little more spruce-like in the start, then turns a little more sappy, resinous, and spicy towards the finish. The bready caramel malt was added with enough of a heavy hand to counteract the hops with some balance by adding a nice touch of sweetness underneath. The alcohol is pretty well hidden on the palate, but the heat is definitely there. Pretty tasty!

M: Yulesmith Summer is a full-bodied beer with a thick, creamy, impressively sticky feel which helps to perpetuate the looong aftertaste.

Notes: At first, I had a hard time trying to decide which version is better, summer or winter. But, after reaching the bottom of this glass I would have to cast my vote for the winter version. This is still a damn good beer, though! So hop-smackingly delicious with more than enough malts to balance things out. Still, my palate is left with tons of hop oil soaking on the tongue after every sip, reminding me of the genius that is Alesmith. Highly recommended

sweetbrew82, Jan 08, 2009
Photo of Oxymoron
4.43/5  rDev +5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

If they want to distinguish between the beers, why not call the two different names? Oh well, winter version. Pours a mostly hazy tanner brown color with a light red hue. A off white head with good retention that hides to the side of the glass and ok lacing.

The nose is more along the lines of a barleywine. The malt comes and balances well with the US hop character. Some kettle caramel notes some lighter bready and a touch of biscuit under tones. The hops have a citrus and pine mix. A bit muddled and not really distinct. There is noticeable alcohol as well. Not fusel, but some clean yeast.

The taste is similar. The malt seems to come out more and emphasizes more of a b-wine thing even more. To start the malt has a more malty/grainy, base malt flavor. Some caramel and a touch of minor chocolate notes. Some honey and molasses notes with a slight mineral under tone. The hops are noticeable with a more piney flavor. Some citrus and a bit of a chalky finish. Some spicey notes from the hops as well. Very nice yeast character with some light alcohol notes. A touch a phenols as well, but pretty clean.

The body is closer to moderate than full. Ok so one point towards IPA. Carbonation is limited though so take that point away. Overall a very nice beer. The malt is a bit muddled and would like more hops in the finish for an IPA but this is nit picky. Very clean.

Oxymoron, Jan 07, 2009
Photo of treyrab
4.55/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I split this with my dad on Christmas. He likes light lagers and appreicated this, but I had to drink most of it!

A: Pours a splendid copper brown with some nice ruby hues. The head is complete stickiness like a white adhesive to the glass.

S: Wow, this is intense. Tons of bitter hops but it is completely masked by the strong caramel and barley-wine like malts. It is completely strong, but completely necessary for this!

T: Damn is this intense. Incredible flavors with strong and sweet caramel malts and alcohol. The hops come in nicely but not enough to cover the intense malt sweetness. Slightly cloying, but overall, this is just fantastic.

Overall, this is a big, BIG beer that is magnificent.

treyrab, Jan 03, 2009
Photo of GatorBeerNerd
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle of the Winter variety purchased for me at Jungle Jim's in Ohio during Thanksgiving by a friend. Poured into my 22oz Terrapin snifter. I drank it along with some blue cheese.

A: This one is gorgeous. It pours a nice ruby tinted brown with an frothy finger and a half thick head that is somewhere between an off-white and tan color. The bubbles cling to the side of the glass as it is consumed. The head retention is good but not great, and is the only reason I didn't give it a 5.

S: It smells as good as it looks. Citrus and pine hop notes dominate the main aroma, but the sweet malt aroma is also present as well. I wish all hop dominate IPAs smelled this good.

T: I have used balanced many times before to describe IPAs. After tasting this one, I do not know if any of the ones I had before deserved that label. It starts out very sweet, but the hops come in quickly and level out the taste, then they provide a dry finish making you want to go after the next sip. The alcohol is there but not overpowering. I can not think of a way that this could change to improve the taste. What a fantastic beer.

M: It has a nice thick body. The carbonation makes it creamy and smooth while the hop bitterness tickles the tongue a bit. Once again, this one is right up my alley.

D: The bitterness and ABV, make this one a bit of a sipper for me. However, for a big Imp IPA that you could argue also fits the winter warmer style, its relatively easy to drink.

I think I have found my new favorite Imp IPA. Too bad its not available anywhere near where I live. I will definitely seek this one out again.

GatorBeerNerd, Jan 02, 2009
Photo of mbunje
4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Winter 2008 bought in early December 08. Really need to individually rate these as they change from year to year.

Serving: 22oz bottle rough pour into pint glass

A: 4.5
Rich red-brown color with a giant head (rough pour) that stick around for quite a while. Lacing everywhere.

S: 4.5
Cherries, Carmel, a bit of orange

T: 4
I taste the cherries and carmel. This is a malty beer but with a nice hop finish. Well balanced. A bit sweet for me or I would rate it higher.

M: 4
Smooth going down. Not much carbonation. Dry finish leaves you wanting another sip.

D: 4
Very rich. 1 bomber is more than enough.

Comments: Do these guys do anything that isn't of the highest caliber effort? Alesmith continues to put out some of the highest quality, most consistent releases. Another good one here. Perfect for a nice San Diego holiday season (and hey, it was "cold" here this year. Like mid 40's overnight!)

Happy New Year!

mbunje, Jan 02, 2009
Photo of Goliath
3.8/5  rDev -10%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4


Pours a dark amber with a large inch and a half slightly yellowed head. Excellent retention and some nice lacing.

The aroma is great. Big hop notes, citrus and pine with a nice caramel sweetness and a nice malt presence.

The taste is ok. The hop presence isn't as dominant as I had hoped. A nice bit of pine with a big malt profile.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and lightly carbonated.

Drinkability is fairly high. Easy to drink, alcohol is not very noticeable, and the flavor is decent. The catch for me is it's not as hoppy as I'd like. Good nonetheless.

Goliath, Dec 31, 2008
Photo of scootny
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Winter 2008 version. Into the tulip tumbler and a huge, and I do mean huge head takes over half the glass. It sits like shaving cream atop a dark copper amber fluid with a touch of haze and gentle carbonation visible. After many minutes it fades and leaves a smaller pile of foam protecting the integrity of the brew. Sticky globs of lacing on my glass betray the huge amount of hops that must be in here.

Smell confirms the hop bomb. Sweet pine and a splash of citrus. A caramel infused dark, sugary, molasses and cake.

Taste is a big malt sweetness swimming under a mountain of hoppy goodness. The hops attack your taste buds and flood the sinuses. Then the malt backbone punches back with a fruity mix of pineapple and toffee. Grapefruit counterpunches and closes out. Finish is bitter and lingeringly hoppy affair with sweet rolls and alcohol.

Moutfeel is thick and syrupy. Carbonation cuts through and froths the mouth and and cleans the throat. It also dries and quenches the back of the mouth and throat. Nice.

Drinkability is quite nice. You can go through a few of these, as I finished the bomber after a meal. Alcohol is pretty well hidden and the pleasure of drinking this one allows you to forget the hi abv.

A good Holiday IPA. The piney hops and sweet malt go well with the sights, smells, and tastes of the season.

scootny, Dec 31, 2008
YuleSmith (Summer) from AleSmith Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 1,592 ratings.