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Alaskan Summer Ale - Alaskan Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Alaskan Summer AleAlaskan Summer Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

688 Ratings

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Ratings: 688
Reviews: 283
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 12.26%
Wants: 22
Gots: 61 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Alaskan Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
Kölsch |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-01-2002

Alaskan Summer Ale balances a softly malted palate with the clean freshness of hops. In the tradition of the style, neither overpowers the other. Both hops and malt come together to refresh and renew the palate. The straw-gold color and easy drinkability are an enjoyable way to celebrate summer.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 688 | Reviews: 283
Photo of Libeertarian
3.77/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Clear, pale, bright orange with thin off-white head. Smells of orange, banana, and grain. Aromas fall away quickly. Taste is similar, reminds me somewhat of a hefeweizen or witbier. Banana qualities are from the yeast/esters I presume and the orange (or lemon) could be either yeast/ester fruitiness or hops or both. Rindy and lemony in and around the finish, definitely the hops, but a bready aftertaste. Medium-bodied with soft carbonation but plenty of it. Quite smooth.

Photo of jesticals
2.85/5  rDev -20.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Bottle is cool, tastes kinda fruity but slightly harsh.

Photo of Doonzman
4/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Not as good as Amber ale but definitely worth buying. I like it

Photo of moundbz
4.44/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

easy to drink, simple and great

Photo of vette2006c5r
4/5  rDev +11.4%

Summer Ale pours a clear darker golden color with a small but lacing head. There is a very crisp and light malty aroma. The taste is very crisp, creamy, nice pronounced pale malt flavors, some citrus notes. Nice full flavor, good feel. Overall its a stronger and very tasty Kolsch.

Photo of pat61
3.9/5  rDev +8.6%

a little grain and spicy hops on the nose but they are not big.
The beer pours straw color with a touch of gold with a thin white head.
A touch of light grain to light bread on the palate balanced by spicy hops and a light bitter accent, hints of light fruit.
Light, crisp, mild and refreshing and very drinkable.

Photo of SitkaSteve
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%

As Summer begins to close, I pour my last one of this six pack into a stange (so glad I only recently learned about this beer vessel). Though many times before I've had it in a pint glass, luckily, as I sit here and ponder this beer, I'm comforted knowing I'll have this next Summer as well.
The appearance was a delicate glossy yellow color with a slim white head that dissipated within seconds. Light lacing stuck and then slid into the body.
The smell had some sweet corn with a delicate crisp grassy presence of hops in the background. Light citrus comes through.
The taste was basically the same.
The mouthfeel was slightly crisp and smooth with a nice refreshing texture.
Overall, I'll see ye again next Summer - matey! Cheers.

Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
3.29/5  rDev -8.4%

Kolsch! Kolsch! Kolsch!

Summer and Alaska don't seem to pair together too well, but I like the Orca on the front so let's go!

Serving style : 12 oz stubbie glass bottle/8 oz miller fortune cup for appearance

Appearance (3.5) : Pours a warm orange/yellow haze that looks beautiful when held up to the light. More clear than opaque. Glows. Head recedes rapidly and disappears.

Smell (3) : Whatever is there is very light and floral. I'm getting orange rind, lemon zest, apple juice, raisin, and a hint of booze at the end. It's fairly pleasant but very faint.

Taste (3.5) : Very nice until the finish. Almost identical in the way that the booze hits your palate just like it did in the nose. I don't like that. The overall flavor is nice, it is hoppy and pleasant. No malt. Hops are light and fruity. Peppery. A little spice and cilantro. As it warms it takes on an exclusively peppery orange flavor.

Negative flavors that surface later on are wet paper and booze. The positive flavors tend to outweigh these though so overall it's not tanking the score.

Mouthfeel (3) : Zippy carbonation that follows all the way down. Light bodied. Finish is wet and papery with a very faint husk of dryness.

Overall (3.29) : Best Alaskan product i have tried thus far. If it was sitting in a cooler at a pool party I'd be more inclined to grab this than many others as it is refreshing and easy to drink without sacrificing hops or flavor. Schell's Zommerfest is a far superior Kolsch and so far that's the only other one I have to compare it to. Summer Ale is right, and this is wheaty and zesty just like a Kolsch should be.

Photo of MDDMD
3.69/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A-golden color with a smallish white head and good lacing

S-bread dough, light fruit, hint of yeast, light caramel

T-bready malt, light Kolsch yeast, little caramel, light spice

F-medium body with moderate carbonation, smooth

O-easy drinking but lacks any really good Kolsch flavors

Photo of AtrumAnimus
3.14/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

This one pours a pure and filtered gold with a thin short lived white head that has no lacing of note.

The nose is is sweet with peppery spicy, some citrus and moderate hops. There are mild notes of floral and fruit as well

The flavor is dry malt with some biter-sweet hops that has a sweet finish. a light refreshing beer that is good but not great and has an acceptable bitter finish.

The mouthfeel is a bit watery but acceptable.

Overall a drinkable beer but nothing special.

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Yellow with tinges of orange and clear with streams of small bubbles rising. Head and lace aren't that impressive.

Aroma and taste are pretty good, with a bit more taste than aroma coming through. The description is pretty spot on, malt and hops are balanced nicely and there's a touch of kolschy yeast.

Body is light and highly drinkable, fairly dry, an overall pretty good brew. Can't find much to complain about on this one, it's pretty good.

Photo of vkv822
3.68/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz : pilsner glass

Clear golden with a thin, short lived foamy white head.

Clean grassy, crackery, biscuity notes in both the aroma and nose. Quite nice, especially on a warm summer day.

Medium+ body, foamy carbonation.

A solid, well done Kolsch. Easy drinking but still flavorful.

Photo of boddhitree
3.52/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Looks like a Pils/Kölsch.

Aroma: Pils malt aroma, some lemon with a citric smell

Up front: A very little bit of bitterness, but more noticeable is a tartness and slight bite, but overall here smoother than a pils.

Mid: Here’s also just a little bitterness, and more tartness/astrincency noticeable. On the sides, a tangy, lemon-like but not really lemon mild sourness. There’s also a slight sweetness, but not Pils malts, just a bit of pure sweetness

Back: All the same flavors as above, stronger here, a tangy lemon-like tartness is quite sting, too.

Aftertaste: I’m left with a slight tang and a lemon-ish flavor lingering.

Mouthfeel: A little dry but quite thick. Feels more like a Pils swishing around the mouth. Thicker that what I remember a Kölsch being.

Overall: It’s been a few years since I’ve had a real Kölsch from Köln, so I’m not sure really sure if my memory of what they tasted like is at all accurate. I remember the tartness, but I also remember a really crisp dryness and almost a sourness. So, I get the feeling I’m almost drinking a Pils, and that’s something one never gets from drinking a Kölsch from Köln, so I have to question this beer’s authenticy. The mouth feel is definitely too Pils-oriented and not dry and crisp enough.

But, regardless of hitting this style or not, it’s a pretty good beer. It’s almost dry, but not really. It’s got lemony, citrus-like flavor up and down the tongue, so yes, this is as advertised, a pretty good summer beer. I can imagine drinking it on the beach or poolside, but I hate to say it but I don’t think it’d drink more than a bottle or 2 at any sitting, for there’s just something missing, but I’m not sure what. I like that it’s got some Pils malt sweetness but it’s not a major component, just a minor note that comes and goes, depending on what part of the tongue you’re focusing on.

I think a 3.6 of 5 is in order.

Photo of Foyle
3/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: pours a healthy 3" white sudsy head that recedes rapidly. Very faint lacing, modest amount of carbonation bubbles streaming. Color is a light golden and clear.
Aroma: mild toffee aroma, some grassy smell, just a hint of hop bitterness.
Mouthfeel: light and frothy like a soft drink with a mostly dry finish.
Flavor: toffee, lightly roasted barley malt, grass, a bit of lemon, and some bittering hops in the finish.
Overall: pleasant, drinkable. Not outstanding, but not bad either.

Photo of Redneckwine
3.92/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

cold 12oz bottle into pint glass

Appearance - Crystal clear and light gold color, not much head development or retention at all, not much lacing to speak of

Smell - Crisp and clean scent...flowery and a bit herbal. Slight biscuit and grain goodness

Taste/Mouthfeel - Tingly carbonation, medium/light body, smooth and refreshing! Taste is more of the flowery/herbal hops action, mixed with nice, clean biscuity malts. Slight hit of fruity sweetness, but finish is decidedly dry with low bitterness.

Overall - Though not attractive in the glass by any means, this is a tasty and refreshing brew, and is aptly named as it would be perfect on a hot summer day. I'll definitely come back to this.

Photo of TBoneJones
3.46/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Light golden pour, light bubbles, thin white head of a finger's width.
Smells initially of light apricots and then it's bready.
Blah taste. The hint of fruit is there apricot/ pear bordering apple, but it's quickly dominated by a heavier, earthy, metal-like finish that's a bit dry. Maybe that's the style I'm unaccustomed to, as I dont recall trying a Kolsch.
Feels light to medium carbonation, thin and crisp with a astringent-like aftertaste.
Nice to try, but I'd probably only pick this up again if the alternative was buying one of those big-name brand, mass-produced light beers.

Photo of ISmith87
3.62/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Quick one here - tried this one on a whim because the bottle was marked down to 99 cents at TW.

A - 3.5 - golden straw clear color, minimal head, no lacing

S - 4.0 - Sour, yeasty, citrus fruits, bananas, wheat bread

T - 3.5 - No much at all, really light bread, corn, rice, slight banana, a TINY bit of tartness but you basically have to imagine it

M - 3.5 - very light, extremely easy to drink , slightly wheaty aftertaste, alc completely hidden.

O - 3.5 - Wanted more tart flavor from a kolsch. I can think of a few I'd rather have than this one, but that's just me.

Photo of alphagnome
3.92/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pale, golden yellow hue with a soft, white head that quickly recedes. Decent amount of carbonation and light chill haze.

The aroma here is simple but pleasant. Malt, grains and a tint of honey. Light and sweet as a any beer of this style should be.

Not a lot going on here either. Grains, slightly sour yeast, and a faint bitter finish. Hops are mostly undetectable

Light. Carbonation isn't as pronounced as I'd like but it's good. Saying this one is easy to drink would be an understatement - you will be at the bottom of your glass before you know it and on the prowl for more.

A highly enjoyable Kölsch. Not a ton of character, which might be a turn off to those unfamiliar with this style. However, those who can look past that are in for treat that can be enjoyed anytime, anywhere.

Photo of elNopalero
3.94/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

One of the coolest tap handles—in the shape of a killer whale. Ah, marketing.

This poured a light golden-blonde color with a bit of foam. Light aroma, with a clean, crisp, easy drinking flavor with a touch of toasted biscuit and a light squeeze of orange blossom.

Photo of Fatehunter
3.47/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured minimal head on a fairly clear, medium straw colored body.
The aroma is a pleasant mix of fruit: apricot, pear and banana.
The taste is nice and crisp. Mildly fruity with a mild bitterness. Clean finish.
The texture is crisp with moderate carbonation.
A fine beer.

Photo of beergoot
3.67/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A fine medium gold body with a thick, chunky white head. Light grain scent; cereal; somewhat woody. Warm biscuit flavor with a soft hop bitterness. Light bodied; soft and dry.

A nice little malt-forward ale, perfect for a summer afternoon when you're in the mood for a lighter ale. Nothing mind-blowing, just easy drinking and tasty...

Photo of BigBrewStu
3.51/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Ok summer beer. Enjoyed several of these light feeling beers--also light golden in color. The flavor is an interesting flavor--surprisingly malty. I tried this by error--the keg I ordered was not delivered so I took this one instead--and I am glad I tried it. I am not a big fan of this style (Kölsch) but it is worth trying.

Photo of flagmantho
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: medium golden hue with a crystal-clear body and a very strong effervescence. Head poured a finger of fizzy white foam that doesn't have a lot of staying power. Body is brilliant, though.

Smell: crisp malty aroma with a hint of pear and apple character. There's a little graininess, too; it's a bit on the sweet side, but I like the composition.

Taste: similar to the aroma. The graininess is a little more pronounced, along with a very light sourness which is not entirely appropriate. Tasty, though not perfect.

Mouthfeel: light body with a rocky yet refreshing creaminess. Not bad.

Overall: this is a decently drinkable Kölsch, although perhaps a little bit unrefined. Still, great on a hot day.

Photo of Auraan
4.05/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a clear golden yellow with a one finger white head. Scents of German ale yeast, crystal malt and German hops. Flavor is crisp and clear with sweet malt and some bread and slight citrus pith flavors and an excellent moderate level of hop bitterness. Good and flavorful without being overwhelming. Mouthfeel is light bodied with moderate carbonation. Very easy to drink. This is a good Kolsch, well worth trying. It's an easy drinking, light bodied, yet flavorful beer, great for the summer.

Photo of spoony
3.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

From a 355 ml bottle (dated September 13, 2013) into a pokal.

A-A normal pour produces about a finger of white head that quickly fades. There is no lacing left behind. Carbonation is chunky and visible in the clear, medium-golden liquid.

S-The beer has a mild aroma that is vaguely sweet at first with unidentifiable, light-colored fruit (maybe apple and white grape?) and some drier crusty, bready scents.I detect very little in the way of hops.

T-The taste, like the smell, is light and pleasant, but lacks any real distinguishing qualities. Vague sweetness, a light hit of lemon/orange citrus, and dry, bread-crust pale malts. The finish is drying, but not quite chalky or biscuity. As the beer warms, I detect a slight herbal astringency from the hops.

M-The feel is pretty light, but medium for the style. Carbonation is noticeable, but not aggressive. The finish is crisp and drying.

O-This beer is an easy drinker, but lacks any real character. From the looks to the smell and taste, everything about the beer is vague...not bad, just not great or memorable. On the other hand, I find the feel to be refreshing and the beer is definitely drinkable, without being too light or fizzy and I suppose that is what a summer beer is for.

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Alaskan Summer Ale from Alaskan Brewing Co.
81 out of 100 based on 688 ratings.