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YuleSmith (Summer) - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
YuleSmith (Summer)YuleSmith (Summer)

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1,614 Ratings
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Ratings: 1,614
Reviews: 903
rAvg: 4.22
pDev: 9.95%
Wants: 246
Gots: 67 | FT: 1
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: 1,614 | Reviews: 903 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Matthew
4.4/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Holy hops! Pours a goldenish to light copper color with a huge white fluffy head. A great looking beer!
This is a very pungent smelling beer. Big hop aromas. Floral, spicey, and citrusy. The hop character in this beer is very stong to the nose. A great smelling beer for any hop head.
This beer is sweet up front with a nice malt smoothness and then my tongue is slapped with hops! The taste behind the sweet malty character is citrusy and earthy.
This is a medium bodied beer as far as mouthfeel goes. Slighty slick and sticky.
This is a pretty drinkable beer and enjoyed my first glass very much its time for a second.

Photo of oggg
4.15/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at O'Briens. 12/05

Ruby with browner elements. Aroma of sweet caramel and mild floral hops. Full and sweet caramel flavor from beginning to almost the end. Smoother than last year. Hops are resinous with tremendous hop bitterness that lingers and lingers. The finish is also dry as a bone. More bitter and dry than last year. Full bodied. Pretty smooth, also the sweetness begins to get tiresome after a pint.

Overall: much improved, excellent DIPA.

Photo of wl0307
4.78/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A great gift by courtesy of BA Greg (Dukeofearl) when he and Alice visited London earlier this year. Thanks Greg! This is officially my first "bottled" DIPA, as I am lucky to have tasted DFH 90minute IPA on cask and something else I can't remember at the BSF bar, GBBF 05. Both were huge, complex and very different, further triggering my interest in seeing how these giant hoppy monsters could maintain their subtle distinctiveness... And having warmed myself up with several IPAs and heavy APAs recently, now I'm ready:

2005 edition, 8.5%abv. Served around 10-12˚C in a goblet.
A: pours a copperish hue with exceptionally dark orangey hint; thick, cappucino-like frothy and creamy head, only very slowly dissipating w/o showing much movement, leaving layers of fine lacing. Very gentle carbonation detected. Beautiful...
S: the texture of the smell is beyond my imagination--I could sense an invisible, air-tight cell occupying the space between the nectar and my nose, in which the fat fruity hoppy and richly malty elements are wrapped together, so intense and focused that it's unmovable and never dissipates... sweetened apricot and cherry, preserved orange, melted malt sugar, flowery honey, butterscotch, peach-flavoured milk(?!), rock-candy, endless fruit and flowery esters all over the place. The whole thing is thick, intense, complex but luckily not too aggressive~~ It's easily the most remarkable aroma of all those (only a few actually) American IPAs I've ever encountered, but it doesn't get 5 coz it proves a touch too sweet for me. (at the second pour and third the smell does soften remarkably and still bloody nice!)
T: the first sip is like a hop-shell exploding on the palate and taking me aback!!! releasing high voltage of hoppy waves rediating towards all corners in my mouth and really "stuns" my tongue; after I put myself/my senses together after the first hit, the second sip shows a fat and oily hop-ball rolling onto the palate, gradually the incredibly thick orange-dominated citrus fruitiness spreads from the centre, followed by oily hoppyness, liquour-preserved cherries, along with buttery and sweet-biscuity malts, while the magnifying bitterness gradually intensifies from underneath just as a flow of flaming alcoholic warmth sliding down the throat like malt liquour. Thick but round finish, underlined by incredibly deep and lingering, herbal and slightly citrus-tannic bittering flavour deep down the throat on top of the simmering flames~~
M: incredibly rich and round the mouthfeel is... with such a 110% body and 120% flavour, I'm pleasantly surprised to find that at the back of the palate the oily hops, thick malts and ever-lasting and ever-magnifying bitterness are all rolled into one, as if there is a centre of gravity to keep the harmonious balance...
D: I feel very priviledged to try such a nice brew as my first-ever bottled DIPA. Actually I'm converted right away! But it's not to say that I would stop my love for "attenuated" American IPA and indeed even "smaller" English IPA, and "mini-mum" ESB, so on and so forth... They, as different styles, each show distinct beauty and complement each other to make the (bitter) beer world fuller and never boring. Three cheers to Greg and YuleSmith!!!

Photo of kmo1030
4.65/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

ruby hued coper with a thick creamy tan head that stick around for the long haul.
citrusy floral hoppiness, orange rind, cut grass. toasted caramel, caramelized sugar. a hint of alcohol in there somewhere. yeasty, with a nice rich bready aroma as well.
the taste is drenched in hops, but no overwhelming biterness. powerfully hoppy like ruination, but without the overpowering bitterness. tons of great flavor, great amount of bitterness. sweet and citrusy not overly so though with other floral fruity flavors in it too, rounding out the hop side of the equation. the malts hang in there with the hops with caramel and rich hearty breadiness. excellent, excellent balance for such a hoppy beer. a nice spicy quality from the alcohol or hops adds a nice complexity
lighter side of full bodied with delicate effervescent carbonation that creates the most fantastic creamy quality that coupled with the piney quality at the finish, creates a near perfect double IPA experience.
drinkability is amazing, the booze is present in the flavor but only adds. the incredible taste coupled with the perfect mouthfeel makes you wants to drink a bomber or four. absolutely top notch. i will be gettig more if/when i see it. an excellent double IPA.

Photo of MuddyFeet
3.98/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured an orange-gold in color. Astoundingly clear. Bid, thick head that left some very pretty and layered lacing. Nose is just full of wet citrusy hops. Little bit of sweetness at the back.

this a big ass, juicy beer. Grew on me after initial dissapointment. Loads of citrusy hops that I almost have to chew my way through. But throughout it all there is a nice and solid malty sweetness that grounds the hops. Big wet and full mouthfeel that loses a bit of its consistency as the beer warms. Just a slight bit of heat from the alcohol that does not really come out until the beer warms up a bit.

Photo of ggroller
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer comes all the way from my friend in Cali, SwillinBrew.

Clear, burnt orange beer with a mountainous head. The beer is well carbonated and the head is reminiscent of a scoop of melted vanilla ice cream in a root beer float.

The nose bounces between aromas of fresh hops and candy caramel sweetness.

Tastes quite alchoholic. Sweet Belgian candy with sharp notes of salt to balance.

Sticky, chewy mouthfeel.

This is a nice sipper. Time to throw a few more logs on the fire and savor this treat.

Photo of spazaru
4.08/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another outstanding Alesmith brew. The only issue I have is that it doesn't offer enough more than their regular IPA to justify the cost.

I guess it's a compliment that all of their beers are so good, that this one just lives up to those, rather than exceeding it, but at $5.49 for a bomber, I expected more. Sorry.

Great beer, but there are plenty more as good.

Photo of taez555
4.2/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a bright reddish/orange/tan body with a small white head.

Nose was a sharp citrus burn. Black pepper, citrus peel, natural pepper, very intense and very in your face. Super hoppy and very crisp and sharp.

Taste was FULL bodied with a rather fruity, almost fancy bath soap, sort of flavor. Very rich and spicy. Pine needles, black pepper, touches of other winter spice as well. A big huge malt flavor gives a nice balance but is completely overshadowed by the big hop taste. Bitterness isn't overpowering but sits evenly against the large malt and hop flavor.

Really a very nice and rich holiday ale. More of a kick ass DIPA than a Holiday type ale, but hey, it's still very yummy.

Photo of HardTarget
4.55/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bottle Inspection: Silk screened brown bomber that notes it’s bottle conditioned, should be served between 40-50 degrees, poured gently to keep the yeast in the bottle, and 8.5% abv.

Aroma: Sugary malt base that is the starting point of all good IPAs, & DIPAs. The sugary base is dosed with citric and floral hops. Not quite Cascade in character, I’m guessing another “C” hop blend.

Appearance: Hazy orange amber glass (golden edges) with a big frothy sandy head that clumped and held like Marines.

Flavor: Potent citric hop taste, but no acid burn! The lack of acidic bite lets you experience the full hop flavor without just reacting to it. Backed masterfully with malt sweetness, this is a real showcase for how good a hop can taste!

Mouthfeel: Milky smooth, heavy body triggers a chew. It’s a bit oily (it should be) and has a mild carbonation level that feels just right.

Overall Impression: Masterful! Massively drinkable, even dangerously so. Full rich flavors but not overpowering in any way. Bravo!!
Many thanks to acoatley for bringing the bottle back from AZ.

Photo of SteveO1231
4.58/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Grabbed a growler of the Yulesmith from the brewery this weekend during their X-mas party. Sat in the frig for 24 hours.

Pours a light ruby red with a nice foamy tan head. Lots of carbonation, and some nice lacing of little tiny bubbles.

Very strong malty/nut aroma, hints of cherry, little bit of a winelike smell to it.

This growler is awesome! Clean and crisp, great sweet malt flavor. Nice fruity taste of cherries and raisins. Very mild citrusy bitterness that clings to the back of the palate. Very full bodied and balanced. Very drinkable brew. Goes down so smooth, this is going to kick my ass!

Oh man, a growler fresh from the brewery is the shit! I recommend you getting it fresh.


Photo of TurdFurgison
3.85/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at Naja's in Redondo Beach. Golden color, mostly clear, thin white head.

I've been eyeing this beer for a long time, looking forward to trying it. When I saw it on tap I jumped at it. Unfortunately I tried it alongside Pliny the Elder. This simply can't compare. It's good, and might have been really good if I had nothing else to compare it with. But the Pliny rocks and this was mediocre in comparison.

Too bad, the Horny Devil is extremely good.

Photo of acoatley
4.7/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Aroma: nice warm alcohol, heavy malty sweetness hists you in the nose first though, definatley American Hops (Crystal?) both citrius and floral

App: Rich amber translucent with golden edges

Taste: Nice hop flavour well balanced (possibley a little light for the style) , smoothe buttery malty sweet finish

Mouth: Rich feals like chocolate milk on the palate, pleasently frothw a bit when I coat the palate

Overall: Excelent well balanced maybe under hopped for the style but sooo good

Photo of bigbelcher
4.03/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Was able to do a vertical tasting of both the 04 and 05 on draft at the same time at Papago Brewing. Not surprising was that the beers tasted different but surprisingly not in the way I would have thought. The 04 was actually more hoppy than the 05. I would have thought that an extra year would have mellowed out the hops but it didn't. The 05 was more malty with less of a hop bite than the 04. Color was the same in both, a nice deep brown color, both had good head. Nice spicyness that is expected in a holiday beer. One of the better tasting holiday beers I have had this year. I liked the 04 better...Call me a hophead.

Photo of SacoDeToro
4.47/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours an deep amber with a nice light tan head. The aroma is dominated by citrusy and resiny hops with some alcohol in the background. The maltiness of this beer is just sweet and caramely enough to perfectly balance out the hops. The carbonation is perfect and tight. The mouthfeel is full and compliments the initial weight of the beer.

Very few beers are worth the praises of being perfect. Yulesmith, however, has truly earned it. It wouldn't do much justice to try and articulate the flavors and experience any further - go get a bottle - now!

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.63/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a deep copper color ale with huge white head with pretty good retention. Aroma of deep citrus hops with a strong presence of semi-sweet malt. Taste is totally dominated by the mix of citrus hops and strong caramel malt. Body is just above average and carbonation is medium. Alcohol is well hidden. While this is not a bad beer, I feel that it is a bit too one-dimensional and would probably have been happier drinking their regular IPA.

Photo of RedwoodGeorge
4.5/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

While it may have one of the crappiest photos I've seen here on Beer Advocate this is one of the tastiest brews listed...

The pour is a deep golden brown (or a light browinsh gold, you decide) with a generous thick, lumpy, sticky tenatious off-white head. The crown lasts for quite some time and leaves plenty of lacing on the glass.

The nose is very inviting with very strong, clean hop notes. Pine, citrus and new mown grass are obvious from an arm's length and they're complimented by some softer toasted bread smells which bring a nice complexity. One sip and you know this is something to celebrate - a strong malt body full of biscuit, toast and caramel provide a solid body to balance out the aggressive hop flavors. The hops have a very 'fresh' note to them - quite green and vibrant shades of citrus and pine give this beer a real juicy punch. Just the slightest hint of alcohol sweetness in the background, while not overwhelming also doesn't compliment the other flavors; that's about the only thing keeping the flavor from being a '5.0'

Mouthfeel is again, very good. As a bottle conditioned beer the carbonation is fine and plentiful leaving plenty of effervesence to lighten up the hops and clean the palate after every sip. While there's plenty of hop flavor there's not that much bitterness - enough to finish the experience and no more. Again a bit of burn from the alcohol but not enough to seriously degrade the experience.

Another finely crafted hop boquet from Alesmith, I've now got (yet another) reason to look forward to the holidays.

Photo of GClarkage
4.13/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12/06/05- Purchased at Ledger's Liquors in Berkeley, CA.

Presentation- 22oz bottle, 2005 release. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Copper colored pour with a 3/4 inch solid nice white head. Lacing is very patchy and nice.

Smell- Lots of hops as expected. Pine and grapefruit as is the norm in most qulaity DIPA's. Maybe even some melon scents? Not much malt to sniff.

Taste- Pretty tasty. Heavy doses of pine sap and fresh squeezed grapefruit domintate the pallete. The sweeter caramel malt does come into play to make it a pretty decent balanced brew. The hops are king here though.

Mouthfeel- Nice carbonation level and bitter mouthfeel.

Drinkability- No sign of ABV when drinking this...could be dangerous. Pretty yummy brew. Recommended.

Photo of kmcnair
4.65/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Winter 2005 Imperial Red on tap from mr. kegerator.

Pours a dark reddish copper tone and makes a full offwhite colored head. Floral and piney hop aromas tangled up with light caramel and crystal malted barley, almost like fresh baked artisan bread, slightly yeasty. Delicious flavor, sweet light roast barley, moderate hop bitterness, piney, floral and earthy hops, such a well balanced flavor profile. Palate has a buttery cream like consistency, leaves a soft coating on the palate, medium to full body and finishes with a soft coating. This is an incredible, awesome brew that I would gladly take to the grave. A+

Photo of Gaisgeil
4.33/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the best US west coast style IPA's I've partaken of. Hoppy? Naturally! but well balanced, and to me, that's the real trick.

Pours a deep gold with amber tones swirling about, slightly hazy with moderate carbonation. Pours with a fluffy everlasting white head and lots of it! Lacing present as well. Nose is definatly hoppy, lots of citrus, lemon and grapefruit, slightly grassy. Taste is very well balanced as I said, a nice malt background, rich and sweet coupled with the citrus and herbal hop notes. Mouthfeel is quite full for style, but managable. Quite alcoholic as it warms, but again, still remains attractive. Dangerously drinkable.


Photo of OStrungT
4.78/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This beer pours, from a summer 05 bottle, a golden brown color with a thin off white head. the head fades quick, leaving a small layer over the to of the beer. Heavy laces coat the sides of the glass. This beer has a piney hop aroma. It has a slight citrus aroma as well. I also detect a very subtle malty aroma. The alcohol content is present in the aroma also. This beer has a piney taste. Not overpowering though. The balance of flavors in this beer is incredible. I taste a slight citrus flavor as well. I can also taste a hint of caramel like malt flavor. That is unusual for hoppy beers. The alcohol content is slightly noticable in the flavor. this beer is strongly carbonated. It goes down smooth leaving a refreshing, piney aftertaste. I think this beer would make an excelent session beer. The alcohol is a little high, but even so, I can see myself drinking this beer all night.

Photo of jonnylieberman
4.18/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2005 Vintage: Pours from a bomber into my pint glass. Funny story, I went to pick up my winter 2005 case and they only had seven left, so when they went to ring me up, they had to scan the bottles. Well, it turns out that AleSmith's bottle screening is not liked by scanners. Anyhow, good looking IPA type beverage, hazy from hop oils and with a big, rocky, barely-off-white head. World class lacing.

Smells Like: Hops dominate. Makes me think of British hops, as this one smells musty and perfumey rather than like citrus and redwood groves. Some malt and alcohol are present, too.

Taste: Yes! Near ideal hop-to-malt ratio. The malt backbone is strong with toasty, bread-crust like taste, yet the hops are there for the whole ride. Not overly bitter, the hops themselves provide a certain fruitiness that the relatively dry malt does not. Complex, and will no doubt age with the best of them. The water seems a little soft for the style -- more suited to a barleywine. Still, quite good and very nicely hopped.

Mouthfeel: Medium-Full with relatively light carbonation and a soft, round character. Again, water could be harder for a little more bite; a couple more angles.

Overall: A wonderfully warming beer that hides its 8.5% abv rather well behind a mountain of hops. One of those rare beers where you want to drink more not because of the taste (which is great) but because of the sublime aftertaste. A really good swallow. Nice work again, AleSmith.

Photo of orfeu
4.7/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22 oz. bomber hand delivered from Tucson, AZ, by my fine brother-in-law. Big ups!

Hazy, honeyed amber. Thick, rocky, ecru head -- craterey meringue with millions of microscopic bubbles, excellent lacing, rings all the way down the imperial pint glass. Smells of caramel corn with candied orange peels. Vanilla malt with slight whiffs of pine sap. This is the sweetest, maltiest DIPA (if style designation means anything) I've ever tasted. Hops are almost an afterthought. They're present, though: candied citrus rind and forest floor pine needles. Alcohol is totally and completely hidden by lip-smacking tastiness. 8.5 % ABV?!? No freekin' way. Hops are most noticeable in the deliciously bitter and dry finish. Medium body, juicy and satisfying mouthfeel. Since the alcohol is more or less MIA, this is insanely dangerously drinkable. I'd drink this all the time if I could get it out here in WNY. I'm so glad I have another bottle...Man, I've gotta ask my brother-in-law to score me some more for when I see him at xmas...

Photo of jaymirage
5/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Brought to you by OldSock, who procured his 22 oz. bomber, by way of San Diego and fiascos unknown.

Pros: Super-creamy, super-impressive head. Carbonated perfectly. The appearance is spot-on, and the flavor's just right. So true to style.

Cons: Not surprising or innovative. Purely refined. Built solidly on a foundation of everything everyone else has been doing right for the past 15 years. It's so perfect that it's boring.

This beer blows away everything else in its class, boring or not.

Photo of nlmartin
4.25/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a 20 ounce wine goblet.

Appearance: Pours a very deep hazy copper color. The head was thick almost two inches of off white goodness. Leaves lacing like pancake batter on the glass.

Smell: Very floral with lots of spicy hop oils backing up a carmel biscuity smell.

Taste: This beer taste citrusy juicy. Very crisp spicy hops playing well with a gingerbread taste.

Mouthfeel: This is a very full bodied ale. The hops and the maltyness play well together. Very dry finish that leaves you craving the malty intial taste.

Drinkability: This beer is easy to drink and will leave you wanting more.

Photo of mentor
3.6/5  rDev -14.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle provided by nvsblman and shared with absolutesites on T-Day, 2005. Thanks for the opportunity! Pours a cloudy orange-apricot liquid with a light tan head. Smells grapefruity pith with orange oil, alcohol, and a malt sweetness. The smells are mild, mind you, but that's what I get. Taste is more sweet than hop flavor or bitter. Way too much crystal malt, to the point that I get a 'cobwebby' flavor I encountered in one of my early homebrews. The best single word description for this beer is really 'rough'. Hop bitter mixes with too much caramel amid an alcohol sting. Disjointed. Dry and edgy in the mouth, I'm looking forward to my next beer (and it won't be another of these). Fruity esters are pelted by the dramatic conflict of hops, sugary sweet, and alcohol such that they are lost. Thick sticky mouthfeel, but somehow dry in the throat.

YuleSmith (Summer) from AleSmith Brewing Company
94 out of 100 based on 1,614 ratings.