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Alaskan Summer Ale - Alaskan Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Alaskan Summer AleAlaskan Summer Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

671 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 671
Reviews: 280
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 12.53%
Wants: 19
Gots: 44 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Alaskan Brewing Co. visit their website
Alaska, United States

Style | ABV
Kölsch |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
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 added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-01-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 671 | Reviews: 280 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of everetends
3.63/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle from my baby girl, Molly, up in the AK. She sent me a beautiful package of brews and I am forever in her debt. Sadly, this one got lost in the fridge and I am a little late at sampling this one. Hopefully not too big of an issue. Served up in my Dogfish Head shape pint.

A: Got a very nice and vibrant gold body off the pour. Has a slight hint of orange to it, but when held to the light this is all yellow in color. Body is perfectly clear. Very clean. Has a really nice and steady carbonation activity. Not too little, not too crazy. Got a little under a finger of white head. Head is foamy. Retention is a bit meh, falling pretty quickly to a thick ring surrounding the edge of the glass. Doesn't really toss up any lace but there is a couple spots stickin.

S: A pretty earthy aroma came out of the bottle as soon as I popped the cap. Wasn't expecting it to have the power, but a nice suprise. Once in the glass,getting some nice grassy and floral hop notes. Grains bring ut some more earth, but it is a bit on the sweet corn side. A little too much on the sweet corn side. Still very pleasant.

T: Pretty much like the nose, maybe a touch sweeter. The corn flavor comes out about the same as in the nose. Just pops you initially and then lets the other flavors play. The grass and floral notes play and then a touch of apple steps out. It is very earthy with some fruity notes but it jsut peeks into the too sweet category for me at times. Has a little alcohol flavor in here as well which was a bit suprising.

M: Light in body. Carbonation is a nice medium, has a good amout tingle to it. Sits on the palate a little sweet, but not cloying. Alcohol actually has some warmth for 5%, which I dig. Finishes pretty clean, leaving a bit of that corn and apple around.

D: Hey, its nice. Light and simple. Pretty much what I was looking for. Sure it could use a bit more, but its all good. Easy drinking and not bad by any measure. Actually quite damned enjoyable. Glad I got the shot at it.

everetends, Feb 02, 2010
Photo of Eldalonde
3.2/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - This beer pours a light golden color and not very much head.

S - Smells of slight hops and a touch of citrus.

T - The flavor was a little spicy with some fruity notes. It was a little disappointing, but was also a little refreshing.

M - This was good and pleasant.

D - Kolsch's tend to be very drinkable and this is no differen.t

Eldalonde, Dec 10, 2009
Photo of BDJake
3.93/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Brewed 08/12/2009, I was skeptical about the date at first but at $8.99/12 pk of bombers, I'd be stupid not to.

A- clear golden color with a decent white head that leaves a bit of lacing here to there

S- a bit grainy, yet floral and sweet at the same time, even smelling faintly of honey

T- light maltiness, some herbal/fruit notes with a crisp finish

M- a bit thin, but sharp and with decent carbonation... might be even better fresh

D- Great summertime lawnmower beer, very sessionable- although I usually prefer hoppier or darker beers this would be awesome on a sunny day out at Safeco Field or even while tending to a hot grill.

BDJake, Nov 25, 2009
Photo of seanbhudson
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle with date of B092609. Pours a slightly hazy light orange/gold color with a small white head. Little lacing.
Grain and toasted malt.
Clean light malt and grain. Apricot flavors come out as the beer warms. Light herbal flavor too.
Light body with dry/crisp mouthfeel. Lively carbonation.
Easy drinking and crisp beer. Nothing to exciting. It seems to match up well to the description of the style but for me is a bit boring.

seanbhudson, Nov 10, 2009
Photo of augustgarage
3.58/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Uerige stick glass. August 6th, 2009 bottling date.

Sunglow liquid with a soft off white head, receding to a half-finger of suds with fragile lacing. Excellent clarity.

Fragrant aromas of honey, muscat, malt, and candied apples. Mead-like.

Slightly sweet on the palate with a touch of (dry?) hops. Unripe pears (without the sourness), (pilsner?) malt, and a flowery/fruity flavor that brings to mind jelly beans. A little grassy. Finish is somewhat dry, but more bitter than tart (no citrus).

Carbonation is sufficient, but the mouthfeel is both slick yet thin. Not very appealing.

Becomes more drinkable when served well chilled on a hot day - a nice alternative to most American blonde ales, let alone your average lager.

First time having this style, so I can't compare to "the real thing."

augustgarage, Sep 23, 2009
Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.63/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I'm still on the road this summer and never had a beer from Alaska before. When I saw this on the store shelf, I wanted to give it a try...but part of it had to do with the fact that I haven't had a Kolsch in quite some time. This didn't have a lot of taste to it, but I thought it was a decent brew for the summer nevertheless!

Nice pour - golden, clear, and a ton of head and lacing. Sure, there's some grape taste to this but accompanying hops are almost nowhere to be found. This is malty, frothy, and a bit thicker than I pictured it, and it's also a bit sharp in the aftertaste. This isn't so light as to go right down but it's not a complex beer by any stretch either.

I couldn't feel the 5.30% ABV as I was drinking this, and it was only after I had the whole bottle down that I felt a slight buzz. While this isn't a typical Summer Ale or Hefeweizen, this would be a decent choice for those warm days where something with a bit more substance is called for...

JerzDevl2000, Aug 06, 2009
Photo of jkdrummer
3.9/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice fluffy white head, dies down to a very active carb. A very dry beer, not much aftertaste. A little sweet. Some tartness. Hops are very mild. Malt is there and also very tame. Some citrus tones. A great beer at a great price for a hot summer day! Recommended.

jkdrummer, Aug 03, 2009
Photo of ffejherb
3.88/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On tap at Hop Yard, Pleasanton, CA on 7/14/09.

A - Clear golden/amber body with lively carbonation and slim creamy white head that reduced to a thin veil and decent lacing.

S - Pretty muted aroma overall suggesting light toasted grains, sweet caramel malt and light citrus hops reminiscent of oranges.

T - Initial flavor is sweet and fruity with orange and banana notes. Very minimal hop bitterness overall with just a hint of citrus and floral notes. Finishes with a toasted and bready malt character.

M - Medium bodied with moderate carbonation resulting in a lively, bristly mouthfeel. Crisp finish with light bitterness and some residual sweetness on the palate.

D - Easy drinking, refreshing warm-weather beer that is quaffable and pretty flavorful overall.

M -

ffejherb, Aug 02, 2009
Photo of zeff80
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a clear, bubbly, golden-yellow color with a small, white, fluffy head. It left no lace.

S - It smelled of grains and caramel malt. There were some floral notes, too.

T - It tasted of sweet caramel, slightly bready. There was a mild grassy bitterness.

M - A crisp, sharp and smooth Kolsch-style ale. It was light bodied and easy drinking.

D - This is a nice summer brew. It is tasty and makes a good session brew.

zeff80, Jul 28, 2009
Photo of AltBock
3.7/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. stubby bottle with a bright orange twist off cap and a bright orange label. This bright orange label has a really good life like drawing of a Killer Whale jumping out of the ocean. To the far left of the label is the Government warning and to the far right is all the other mandatory US information. Immediately to the right of the whale is a brewed on date. My bottle was brewed on 7/4/09. Served in a standard DFH pint glass.

Summer poured a lightly hazy pale lemon yellow color with a head of foam that wasn't all that special. The head of foam was about 1/2 to 3/4 of an inch in height, pure white in color, and just a bit on the fizzy side. This fizzy head actually good retention that left behind a string of white rings and 3 tiny spots of lace around the glass. At first, this beer had an average toasted aroma of toasted malts and not much of anything else. That changed slightly when it was swirled around. When it was swirled around, a nice light juicy fruit aroma and a hint of bitter hops emerges from the background. I thought the taste was going to start off malty and then roll gently into some hops. Instead, this beer did the opposite. This beer started off with crispy floral hops and when the hops reached their peakness, the taste then rolled into a nice solid maltyness. This was a light bodied beer that certainly wasn't light in flavor. In the end, this was a great Summer time treat. It had session written all over it. I just wish I had a few more bottles of this beer.

AltBock, Jul 27, 2009
Photo of berley31
3.6/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured with a spare, white head that diminished quickly to a thin film. Body was clear and flat, with a dark-yellow color. Aroma was of light malt and some slight citrus. Light-bodied and thin on the palate, with average carbonation. Taste was of a short duration, but it was good... lightly sweet, again with some citrus. Overall it was fine, but nothing great. High drinkability in that it goes down very easy.

berley31, Jul 21, 2009
Photo of jujubeast6000
3.33/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed 6/8/2009 (Bottle):

Pours a light golden colored body, with nearly no head, whitish in color. Malty aroma, some freshness. Enticing. Malty nutty taste, refreshing. Effervescent. Not skunky tasting. Pretty tasting. A little heavier than a typical summer beer.

jujubeast6000, Jul 11, 2009
Photo of shivtim
3.43/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A somewhat bland Kolsch. Clear yellow and heavily carbonated with a big white head.

Nose is hay and barny Eurohops. Mild taste, slighly hoppy. Slightly metallic as well. Fits the kolsch style but it's not well balanced.

Pretty good mouthfeel, much fuller than it looks.
A drinkable summer ale, but not much more than that.

shivtim, Jul 09, 2009
Photo of Todd
4.08/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz stubby bottle w/ twist-off cap.

Pours a pale/straw color with a touch of haze and a thin, bubbly, white lacing. Aroma is clean, fresh, lightly malty.

Firm body, slightly chewy, but still on the light side. Crisp carbonation pulls through with some prickliness and a creamy feel. Sweet-ish, malty, toasty, and bready in the finish. Splash of fruitiness. Mild hops offer a leafy herbal flavor, grass, and faint notes lemon rind. Things dry-up in the end with some residual crackery malts and weak tea.

Nothing overly exciting, and I wish the beer was brighter, but overall a tasty take on a Kölsch and a very worthy session brew.

Todd, Jul 06, 2009
Photo of melagnus
3.58/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Delicate frothy white finger-thick head that quickly dissipates to a mere film after a few seconds, which exposes the clear Straw-to-Pale Gold (SRM 3.5) hue. Carbonation bubbles consistently rise to the top, giving it the appearance of a beer with medium-high carbonation levels. Swirling the beer in the snifter rouses the beautiful head, leaving no legs on the side of the glass.

S - Clean Noble hop bouquet of Granny Smith apple and sweet malt rise from snifter glass to nose; no one smell seems to dominate the other, yet blending beautifully together.

T/M/D - Medium body at first, but thins out quickly into a more watery finish. No lingering bitterness, though hops are mildly noticeable. Carbonation seems high on the palate and the crisp dry finish finishes very clean, providing for a refreshing quaff on a hot day. Very slight hint of sweet malt comes through to help balance the Noble hops, which after a few sips leaves a very slight syrupy finish that allows one to further enjoy the taste left on the palate! Drinkability is definitely high, as this beer not only fails to fatigue the palate, but at 5.3% ABV it doesn't exactly fit into the Session Beer category.

C - According to the website, the SRM is listed as an 8, yet they state the appearance is a straw-gold color, which would put it closer to an SRM 3, than an 8. Therefore, I'm sticking with my SRM 3.5, but could be wrong, as I don't have a spectrophotometer on-hand to test it myself. Either way, this is a beautiful little beer and very much one that could provide for an afternoon six-pack over a hot grill, while listening to the waves of the ocean in the background. Enjoy!


melagnus, Jun 22, 2009
Photo of Ragingbull
2.83/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Dark gold in color and very still. Some random prickle pops around in the glass and there is no head to speak of. Sweet malty nose is okay. The attack is refreshing and clean and leads you to believe it will be a nice, simple, easy drinking beer. The flavor has a strong sour grain flavor. It seems a bit heavy to me for a summer ale. The aftertaste is sour. Compared to other summer ales, I am not a huge fan of this one, but I get that summer in Alaska is different than summer in other places. It just doesn't seem all that much like a warm weather beer. A little heavy and sour.

Ragingbull, Jun 19, 2009
Photo of xhcadamx
4.4/5  rDev +22.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - yellow straw with a touch of honey. fizzy white head the leaves quicker than it came. no lacing

S - creaminess which is what draws me to these kind of beers. Hops are present but I cant detect which varities.

T - creamy and i love it. I wish I knew other beers like this. I only know of two: anchor steam and four peaks kolsch. Graininess and cereal. Perfect amount of bitterness.

M - super light and delicious

D - i love this beer

xhcadamx, Jun 18, 2009
Photo of MaggieReed
2.73/5  rDev -24%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

At first I tasted this and thought it was a mis-pour and I had been given an MGD...which I dont completely hate...

Maybe that initial reaction is a little harsh...but this was a kinda wimpy beer for me. I know that that is the style, but I have had better versions of it. In the end, it is more drinkable as it warms than your average macro, but I am pretty underwhelmed here...

MaggieReed, Jun 08, 2009
Photo of popery
3.38/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I have very little experience with this style, but this isn't a half bad beer. I can't say that I'm blown away by it, but as compared against other summer beers (American Wheats and various lagers), it's alright. The beer pours an almost off-putting shade of yellowish orange with essentially no head or lacing of any kind. The nose is malty but light and not particularly engaging. That said, it's sweet and bready and doesn't smell off at all. The taste brings in some spicy hops and a faint vinous character. There just isn't enough depth of character to bring out any more interesting notes. The mouthfeel is surprisingly effervescent and would be even more enjoyable given a different flavor profile. Ultimately, it's an ok beer with a bland recipe. I don't know why a brewer would choose to make a Kölsch, specifically. At any rate, Alaskan does not make a very strong case for the style.

popery, Jun 06, 2009
Photo of anchordrinker
3.45/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours a crystal clear medium-light straw with a little head.

S- Floral and slightly sweet aromas dominate, not much else I can detect.

T- Subtle fruity tones with a light biscuit-y maltiness. Not much else goin' on.

M- Really light mouthfeel, with medium, pretty fine carbonation.

D- Very drinkable, definitely something that I think would be universally inoffensive.

anchordrinker, May 30, 2009
Photo of Haybeerman
3.93/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Straw yellow color; bright and clear. Poured a 2 finger creamy off-white head with fair retention to a thick skim. Sticky lacing. Decanted lightly throughout.

S: Grainy and slightly sweet. Hay and grass.

T: Bready, slight honey-sweety malt. Strongly bitter to finish clean.

M: Light to medium body. Ample carbonation. Crips and dry in the sharply bitter finish.

D: Flavorful and refreshing. Not too complex. Very drinkable.

Haybeerman, May 14, 2009
Photo of flexabull
3.65/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a bright and clear gold color with a faint white head.

Aromas are mild, light candied sweetness, a little floral and doughy.

Taste is light, crisp, and clean with a surprisingly full mouthfeel. Some sweet creamy malt flavors, light dough, and slightly spicy floral hops.

Mouthfeel as mentioned earlier, is full, clean, and with nice carbonation.

Drinkability is good. Not a great beer, but it's refreshing, and very easy to drink.

flexabull, May 08, 2009
Photo of Jason
3.23/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz brown bottle with some sort of freshness code I can't make out.

Crackling off white head leaves a scattered bubbly lacing on the glass, golden straw color shows off its clarity. Dusty grain, lemony hop and a mild fruitiness from the yeast in the aroma. Snappy crispness settles into a nice smoothness for the light to medium body to roll in. Light maltiness, faint orange lemon citric combo from the hops and perhaps yeast. Grainy and mostly dry with a dusty husk tone in the finish.

Its tough when a brewer slaps "Kolsch" on a label, the style is so narrow and there is only a small handful of true Kolschs that are sent to the US from Germany. A little to ale-like rather than Kolsch, this is not to say that this beer is not a decent quaff. Its sums up to be a simple Golden Ale at best.

Jason, May 04, 2009
Photo of sevopie
3.2/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

Pours yellow with a light but active white head.

Smell is intriguing, there's some graininess and corniness, and there's also a light hint of fruit, pear and apple spring to mind.

Light and dry, with a slight astringent bitter I've never tasted before. The corniness evident on the nose all but disappears, and while still sweet, its still left much like a pilsner.

Very light on the tongue, and full of carbonation.

Overall, this isn't too bad, but I can't see myself coming back to this one. The flavors just don't jump out like I was hoping.

sevopie, May 03, 2009
Photo of bonsreeb85
2.8/5  rDev -22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I wish that the Kolsch style was done more frequently here in the states, as it is sort of hard to find. I am only familair w/ Tire BIte(Flying Dog) and I beleive that I has one by UNita. That said, i love the style, however am not all that familiar with it. But here goes my review anyway.

A - clear golden/copper w/ small head and LOTS of bubbles

S - Barely noticable, not to much going on in the olfactory, just sweet malts and apple cider???

T/MF - Very sweet throughout, mostly all malt, but the hops are there just really well hidden.
Pretty much middle of the road beer, better than the macros, but not much complexity here. Just a balanced, yet 1 dimentional beer w/ a crisp bite and low biterness.

D- Very high if you are just looking for something to throw back while watching a game or snacking on some pretzels. Very light body(a bit watered down)and low ABV mske this quite quaffable. In fact, i forced myself to sip the first round, but after that it was game on and i found myself pouring them down.

bonsreeb85, May 02, 2009
Alaskan Summer Ale from Alaskan Brewing Co.
82 out of 100 based on 671 ratings.