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Sawtooth Ale - Left Hand Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Sawtooth AleSawtooth Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

1,930 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,930
Reviews: 675
rAvg: 3.72
pDev: 12.9%
Wants: 59
Gots: 199 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Left Hand Brewing Company visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
Extra Special / Strong Bitter (ESB) |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 09-16-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,930 | Reviews: 675 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of originalsin
3.73/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Came home for the summer the other day and found a 6 of this waiting in the fridge for me. Thanks mom ! hahaha

But really- Hadn't heard much about this stuff but saw it on tap at a local spot last night (went with some dogfish brews instead) but had one with lunch first thing this afternoon. The pour was a clear clear amber color with a tasty white head that retained and laced beautifully. No complaints here.

Mostly caramel and a little light sweet fruit on the nose. For some reason I love the way this beer smells but then after I let it set in for a moment I can't enjoy it quite as much. A light hint of citrus hops on the nose, too.

It's got a solid mouthfeel with some biscuity malt flavors that work nicely with the weak hop bitterness and light citrus hop flavors. It's dry on the back of the mouth .

Likely won't take me long to finish the rest of the pack, but I can't say just yet if i'll be goin' back for more. It's a decent beer, and a great ESB. That is all.

Photo of aquatonex
3.38/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at East Point Tavern down in Atlanta.

Pours a nice copper color with 1-2 fingers of fizzy head, not much lacing but good carbonation. Nose is very weak, light fruity malts and a little floral hoppiness. Taste is rather balanced, light malts and good hops marry well but overall not very strong flavors. Even though it is an ESB I find it a rather light and refreshing example, good for the heat.

Photo of BigMike
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

"Brewed on the banks of the mighty St. Vrain"

Bottle on date of 12/17/08

Pours a dark orange color with two fingers of head.

This has a nice fresh fruity, and citrus hop aroma,

Flavor is sweet and almost candy like. Strawberry bubblegum on the finish.

Thin bodied and mediumly carbonated. Crisp and light and finishes smoothly. The 4.75%abv make this a good summer drinker.

Overall this isn't a bad beer. Very drinkable on a warm summer day.

Photo of drizzam
3.88/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Poured into a clear pint glass. Creamy half finger eggshell head with mediocre head retention. Cloudy reddish orange color brew.

Smell - Candied caramel, with a tinge of citrus hops. Very light esters in this one.

Taste - Caramel and buttery toffee are the prominent flavors that I'm getting here. It finishes with a bitter piney hop bite...not overly hoppy, but it's there. The flavors are actually very well balanced.

Mouthfeel and Drinkability- Thin bodied mouthfeel with medium carbonation. Finishes crisp with no aftertaste to speak of. The low ABV and well balnced flavors make this a highly drinkable offering from left hand.

Photo of marcellaproust
3.92/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I was just lamenting how few good beers I've reviewed and how many I've enjoyed when this Sawtooth Ale, what I've been drinking now for the past couple of weeks, beside me on the end table wryly remarked "And whose fault is that?" Thus have I been moved by the spirit to report that these past two weeks have been utmost pleasurable. This ale looks and smells like an English pale ale (in the American microbrew style, not truly English pale), amber/rusty color and hop perky scent following a whiff of unsweet malt/caramel scent. Pours into glass leaving a nice but short lived 1 1/2 head. The taste will please pale ale, amber ale, and even IPA lovers because the Sawtooth seems to straddle all three of these, making it an easy drinking but lively and interesting bev. On the one hand, you taste hops from start to finish, but the hoppiness of an IPA remains just beyond your grasp. On the other, the tease of amber maltiness (again, more in mouth feel and scent than sweetness or flavor) never quite congeals. Once down the gullet, bitter and herby remainders on the tongue.It's Left Hand's genius that such an interesting bev can be undemanding and low maintenance at the same time.

Photo of bonkers
3.88/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured from a 12 ounce bottle into my SA pint glass. It pours a pale orange with a sticky, long lasting, white head. The aroma is bready. The flavor is slightly bitter, with diacytle notes, and a lingering finish. The brew has a light to medium body, average carbonation and goes down easy. Even though I am not really into the style, I could session with this one.

Photo of Birdiebeagle
3.67/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle Pours a hazy golden with a good off white head. The head is airy and last okay. Has a good mixed aroma. Hops and malts seem to balance each other out. Has an oily texture. Good carbination. A pretty good mouthfeel. The flavors are very well balanced. A light body. A very drinkable beer. I like it.

Photo of philbe311
3.43/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Two fingers worth of very light khaki head... Solid retention... Attractive lacing once the head settles... An intriguing translucent copperish amber color... A minuscule amount of carbonation...

S - Almost non-existent... Faint pale malt... Faint hops... Grainy... Minor floral aroma... Caramel... Toffee... Butter... More strength in this category would have been appreciated...

T - Caramel... Toffee... Biscuit... Grainy... Hints of light fruit... Slight hop profile...

M - Medium bodied... Smooth... Faint amount of carbonation... Slightly bitter finish... Simple but enjoyable...

D - Extremely sessionable... Nothing overly complicated, but nothing detracts from this beer either... Average, solid, and respectable are the three adjectives that I associate with this brew...

Photo of aibkstaff
3.36/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Left Hand's Sawtooth pours a partly cloudy golden brown, accompanied with a tall three finger smooth slick head. The taste is faintly malty, and barely hopy. A very light flavored beer. The aroma is the pretty much the same, slightly malty. It has a medium carbonation which is perfect for the style. Light body with only 4.75% abv. Overall this beer has a good drinkability, and in my opinion makes a great session beer.

Photo of DoubleJ
3.48/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

State Pen Porter was damn tasty, but now I must focus on Sawtooth Ale as I drink this with my dinner. On to the beer:

A creamy, bubbly one inch head forms on top this semi-hazy, orange colored beer. The aroma is tame, it has some buttery and pine character hitting my nose. Taste is similar to the aroma. A little grain and malt to start things off, but a light buttery character and piney hop flavor emerge. Hints of peach flavor. Mouthfeel is light, and a little watery for my liking. Still, it is a solid offering that's worth sampling.

Photo of Monkeyknife
3.3/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle a cloudy a hazy golden brown with a thin wispy white head.

Aroma of light fruit, light spice, and light sweet malt.

The taste is pretty weak with a bit of malt, a bit of biscuit, and a bit of fruit. Just a bit.

Lighter bodied, clean, and moderately carbonated.

Not a lot going on here. It's malty but also quite watery in taste.

Photo of david131
3.18/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- A deep copper/ orange colored beer with a thin, splotchy white head that looks kind of soapy.

S- Slightly fruity, most notable strawberry. Slightly carmely and buttery biscuit. Overall very subtle and tame.

T- Very subtle. Slightly bitter, fruity, and biscuity. At first it tasted almost like nothing, but then it grew some flavors.

M- A pretty dry aftertaste, but very clean with some carbonation.

D- A very bland beer. But, it is easy going at that. Still this really isn't my thing.

Photo of jujubeast6000
3.32/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed 3/6/2009 (Tap @ Flying Saucer, Houston, TX):

Pours a very clear brownish red body, some white creamy head, diminishing. Bitter malty aroma, hoppy. Musty and somewhat dusty. Malty sweet taste. very drinkable. Somewhat dusty. some bitterness, vegetableness. Drying on the aftertaste. Sweet and dry taste. Some spices.

Photo of BMoney575
2.98/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Sampled on 3-8-09

Pours a slightly hazy amber color, with a thin white head and thin rings of lacing.

Smell is extremely subtle, a little fruity, and that's all I can get.

Taste is, like the smell, very light and almost non-existent. A little malt, and a little bitterness is all that is offered.

Mouthfeel is way too thin.

Drinkability suffers from the fact that there are many other beers I'd rather drink.

Overall, not good, not bad, just ultra-bland.

Photo of Rayek
4.04/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Amber with good clarity and minimal carbonation. Very small cream head doesn't stick very well, but does leave spots of lace.

S: Toffee, lemon and dry earth make up the nose.

T: Very nicely balanced. Toffee and caramel malts start things out. Bitterness comes on with a lemon and black tea flavor. Finishes with a light lemon tartness.

M: Medium light body feels good in the mouth. Carbonation is right on.

D: An exceptionally drinkable ESB. I really enjoyed this. Low ABV makes this a great session beer. Pairs nicely with traditional pub fare.

Photo of americanbeerbuzz
2.85/5  rDev -23.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a chilled stemless wine glass. It pours virtually no head with a vigorous pour. Settles kind of flat and lifeless. The deep color is pretty cool. Has a good first pale bite but putters out into a sorta syrupy mix. The flavor is pretty good after it resonates for a while. Don't think it has the pale bite I've grown to like.

Photo of nickfl
3.62/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Small, off white head that settles quickly and leaves slight lace. Clear, amber-brown body.

S - Malty with lots of caramel and biscuit malt. Weak floral hop aroma in the background.

T - Malty but dry with toasted malt and lots of biscuit flavor. A bit of caramel in the middle with slight yeast fruitiness and a little slickness on the palate in the finish.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, and a dry finish.

D - This is a drinkable amber ale with good caramel aroma. A bit bland overall, and more of and American Amber than an ESB, but enjoyable nonetheless.

Photo of Tone
3.68/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear copper/amber color. 1/2 inch head of a white color. Good retention and good lacing. Smells bread strongly up front, slight hops, and some earthy malt background. Fits the style of an ESB. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp with low carbonation level. Tastes of bread, earthy malt, and slight hops. An overall dryness is present, but a pretty decent beer.

Photo of tigg924
4.57/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Appearance: dark copper, medium head, cloudy, high carb

Smell: cinnamon, malt, brown sugar, and honey

Taste: brown sugar and sweet malt dominate

Mouthfeel: light, smooth, and sweet

Drinkability: I love sweet malt, I love this beer. Left Hand is slowly becoming a favorite of mine and this beer is excellent...I will session this. Wow another great offering.

Photo of donteatpoop
3.87/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a copper color with a very light haze, thin white head with no retention

Smells like fruit and funk and funky fruit.
Very sweet.

The smell is the taste, though the funk hits you first followed by a lingering sweetness.

A bit fizzy, not bitey carbonation but fizzy. It's all very fizzy. And funky fruit fresh.

You know that drink that people make for parties? The big tub of random liquers with a bunch of random fruit left to soak in it for like a day or two... That's the type of impression that this ale gives, full of all kinds of shit that I can't quite place but pleasant just the same.

Very unique beer, and though I would certainly drink it again, it might be a very "occassional" thing.

Photo of tconboy
3.5/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber copper with a little head, not much lacing to speak of. Smells malty with a hint of sweet caramel. Tastes malty and bitter, light mouthfeel, finishes pretty smooth. Pretty drinkable for its style. This is a few people I know's favorite beer and they always have some, but otherwise I would not go out of my way to find this.

Photo of Guzzler78
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy orange/copper color. A nice finger and a half of foamy white head. Leaves a fair amount of lacing.
Smells of sweet malts and fresh fruits.
Tastes of malts and citrus fruits, a light hoppy flavor.
A light to medium mouthfeel, nice medium amount of carbonation. A lingering slightly bitter aftertaste.
Overall a good drinking beer. A lighter ale that is satisfying and refreshing.

Photo of AdmiralDiaz
3.62/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured to pint glass.

A: Copper in color with a one finger head that has decent retention but not a lot of lacing.

S: Smells malty with a bit of caramel and sweet fruits.

T: Malty up front with a strong caramel flavor with some fruit that turns into a nice bitter finish that balances out the initial sweetness very nicely.

Overall a pretty enjoyable ESB and even better for the price. I bought this as a single bottle for just a bit over a dollar so I'll pick up some more for sure. Very drinkable and very crisp.

Photo of HeyItsChili
3.98/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had this on-tap at Gene's Hofbrau.

A - Pours copper colored and clear with a medium, foamy, white head.

S - Smells like malt, mild fruits.

T - The frontend is sweet, malty, sort of a roasted malt flavor, then the bitterness takes over and leaves you with a grapefruity finish.

M - Thin bodied with moderate carbonation.

Notes - Tasty, very drinkable and refreshing. Should pick this one up again in the summer.

Photo of SLeffler27
3.4/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Fills the glass with a clear, shiny, new-penny copper with a rocky champagne head. Lace coats the glass, dropping to a light puff.

Straw, nuts and caramel greet orange, some coriander and wood.

Sawtooth is a lightly bitter beer with fair balance, although a bit grainy with a moderate finish. While full-flavored, it lacks complexity.

Dry, with a medium body and watery texture, there are some metallic notes and no hint of alcohol.

This is a great lawn-mower beer and thirst quencher. If having a deck party, let this one flow and enjoy the company.

Date consumed: 11 September 2008

Sawtooth Ale from Left Hand Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 1,930 ratings.