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Brooklyn Summer Ale - Brooklyn Brewery

Brooklyn Summer AleBrooklyn Summer Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
81
good

1,108 Ratings
THE BROS
80
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1108
Reviews: 450
rAvg: 3.58
pDev: 13.69%


Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
Brewed in as "British Summer Ale"; lightly dry-hopped pale ale, all barley malt, 11 Plato.

(Beer added by: Sammy on 09-04-2006)
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Ratings: 1,108 | Reviews: 450 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of TheBrewo
TheBrewo

Michigan

3.21/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer was served from the tap at St. James Gate in New York, New York. It arrived in a generic nonic glass, glowing a toasted amber coloring. It held a one finger head of uniformly tight white bubbles, showing okay retention into a crowning ring hugging the sides of the glass. Lacing was punctate and minimal. No haze or sediment was noted, and carbonation appeared to be moderate. The aroma boasted crisp pale malts, stale adjuncty metallics, dried straw, apricot and browned apple sweetness, grassy and lightly citric hops, black pepper, buttered wheat toast, phenolic plastics, and soft boozy fumes. Our first impression was that the flavoring was just as even as the nose, but with that same dank adjuncty quality permeating the grain bill thoroughly. As we sipped, the taste began with biscuity toast, pale and softer amber malts, dried baker’s yeast, grassy and earthy hops, raw barley, and light honeysuckle florals to balance. The middle came to a peak with brash metallics, corny adjuncts, white flour, pear fruitiness, toasty pales, gravel, and muddy, yeasty bite. Washing through the finish was a blend of light banana esters, continued pale and partially red graininess, crisp toast, aluminum metallics, lipstick waxiness, and floral and grassy hops. The aftertaste breathed of gritty graininess, muddy pales, table salt, tree bark, floral hop wash, apricot sweetness, and fruity apple tart zing rumbling up from the stomach along with booze and black pepper spice. The body was medium, and the carbonation was medium. Each sip gave nice slurp and smack, but little cream, froth, or crisp finishing pop. The mouth was briefly coated with foam, but this quickly dripped clean into malted dryness and light hoppy puck. The abv was appropriate, and the beer drank back easily.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this beer was its evenness through the aroma and the flavoring. This helped to maintain smoothness and ease of drinkability through to the end of the glass, with no one flavor or component really outshining or overpowering any of the others. The core ingredients, however, felt a bit cheap, with adjuncty inclusions to the malt bill, and a rather skimpy hop thrust. While the hops were there, you had to look for them, meaning that you were left looking for the refreshment and cleanliness in your beer. This is really not the drinker’s job for a commercially available summer beverage that you would hope would want to do the job for you. That said, the beer went down smoothly enough, and is definitely something you could swill a few of while taking in playoff hockey at a bar with some friends.

Serving type: on-tap

06-24-2013 22:11:58 | More by TheBrewo
Photo of karengarys
karengarys

Indiana

3.2/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This pours clear amber, leaving little head from my slow pour. After a few minutes it looks like colored water.

Typical beer smells, a bit hoppy, maybe some yeast...

Taste is typical beer with a bit extra hop bite and spicy bready zing. The "extras" are very faint though.

Mouthfeel plays a bit into the taste with a seltzery feel, almost leading to a salty taste.

Finish is way clean, almost anticeptic.

This is pretty drinkable. Nothing special leads me to yearn this brew, though. It is kind of bland and boring, but that is kind of what I expect from a beer like this. It's "English", but at least it isn't flat...

Serving type: bottle

09-18-2007 01:58:36 | More by karengarys
Photo of BeerLover99
BeerLover99

Illinois

3.2/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: straw yellow, 2 finger head, good lacing

S: faint coriander, orange peel, malt/grain

T: grain/hint of lemon + coriander, earthly pine, light bitter crisp finish

M: light/med body, slight tongue prick, semi-dry

O: Solid session brew, not world class. Good gateway brew.
The muted hops and light dry body is perfect for summer and
timid palates.

SOLID, NOT ESSENTIAL!

Serving type: bottle

05-20-2011 17:14:27 | More by BeerLover99
Photo of AMiz602
AMiz602

Pennsylvania

3.2/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Very gold colored, about as pure as you'll seem them. Has a light and quickly dissapating head. At first it tastes like a very strong lager, with a very dry, biscuity flavor that slowly turns into a malty end. It is not overly malted, but enough to let you know you're drinking more than a normal lager.

It gets a much sweeter, malty taste after a while, but unfortunately loses its flavor if you let it sit to long, and takes on a very dry, biscuit flavor.

Serving type: bottle

05-29-2012 02:43:56 | More by AMiz602
Photo of Gmann
Gmann

New York

3.2/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a lightly toasted straw color with a wispy white head that settles into a light cap.

The aroma is light and fruity. A bready pale malt, some light brown sugar sweetness and a touch of mineral water. The malt is not as toffee sweet in the aroma as a traditional EPA.

The taste is of a fairly neutral bready pale malt. Some malty sweetness and a lemony note that drys the finish. The hops add some grassy notes. Again, a pretty neutral flavor, doesn't really lean any sort of way. The malt profile seems light for a EPA.

The feel is light and dry; perfect for a summer ale. Sweet malt up front with an offsetting earthy bitterness in the finish. Good balance. Finishes suprisingly dry.

A refreshing "summer" brew. No bold flavors to weigh this one down. Some easy drinking.

Serving type: bottle

06-16-2012 01:04:10 | More by Gmann
Photo of VictorWisc
VictorWisc

Massachusetts

3.2/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Got this at an event. Not something I normally buy.

Pours weak fluorescent yellow, like urine after taking a high-dose vitamin-B-complex pill (generally associated with Riboflavin). Head plentiful, large-grained, white--and fleeting. No lacing to speak off, some visible carbonation that quickly dissipates.

The nose is the best part of this beer. Initial hit of resin and peach out of the can, more of the same from the glass. This is followed by a hint of malt and generic spiciness.

The flavor is close to something I would expect from Belgian Witbier sans floral yeast note. Mostly orange--almost like a blend of mild natural orange soda and AAL.. A bit of pepper and straw, followed by somewhat unpleasant bitter aftertaste. Fortunately, no lingering notes.

The beer is nicely carbonated, with not-quite-medium body--the only characteristic that distinguishes this "ale" from a lager. No consequential alcohol feel.

Unfortunately, this only reinforces my distaste for beers labeled "Summer" anything. It clearly suffers from an identity crisis and falls short in almost every category. Not something I would buy or recommend buying.

Serving type: can

08-22-2013 01:36:38 | More by VictorWisc
Photo of simpliciter
simpliciter

Massachusetts

3.18/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - dark for a pale ale, with big bubbles and a very thin head comprised of oversized white bubbles.
S - very light. Pleasant but non descript
T - Uncomplicated citrus is not bitter, not sweet, finishes clean.
M - Lightly coats, with zing from the bubbles. Perhaps the best part of this beer!
D - Goes down easy on a hot day.

Serving type: bottle

06-05-2010 22:29:30 | More by simpliciter
Photo of rarbring
rarbring

Sweden

3.18/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer is clear dark straw/bronze colored, the off-white head settles quite fast but leaves good lacing.

The smell is very sweet fruity, like canned peaches in syrup. Some lemon zest.

The taste starts sweet, again that fruit syrup, peaches, pears and apricots. Then some orange peel bitterness.

Medium low carbonation, very small bubbles, a rather small body, a smooth long dry finish.

Well, as a summer drink it has some merits, could replace rose wine as an aperetif on a summer evening.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2011 17:29:51 | More by rarbring
Photo of zimm421
zimm421

Ohio

3.18/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a standard pint glass. Has a below average white head that has a thick consistency, not great staying power and a very minimal amount of lacing.

The nose is bready and yeasty and not much else. Maybe a slight hint of spices. The taste is very uncomplex. Just lots of bready malts and some yeast. A slight hint of lemon and pepper. Not real impressed here. Something that would be good on a hot day but pretty boring other than that.

Mouthfeel is thin to medium bodied, with an average amount of carbonation; very drinkable. Overall, a good summer beer, but other than that, I wouldn't touch it. I understand that's the point of this brew, but I'm looking for a bit more refreshment and taste out of a summer beer. This is also something you need to drink quickly because as it warms it becomes far too sticky and less refreshing and the good qualities really start to disappear.

Serving type: bottle

07-24-2011 19:22:01 | More by zimm421
Photo of tigg924
tigg924

Massachusetts

3.15/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: medium carbonation, 1 inch head, clear, light gold

Smell: malt, hops, citrus--not the most complex smell

Taste: malt, hops, citrus, honey and bread

Mouthfeel: smooth, dry, light, medium carbonation that can be felt, sweet body with a slightly bitter finish

Drinkability: This is ok for summer ale. I could have it again, but just as easily pass. I am glad I bought a single, not a six pack.

Serving type: bottle

06-01-2009 15:49:54 | More by tigg924
Photo of jthreee
jthreee

Massachusetts

3.15/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A: Clear, golden, apple juice color

S: Clean, Fresh, slight hop bitterness, bit of lemon

T: Bright and fresh, but underwhelming. Light hop bitterness and a bit of lemon/citrus, but they both seem like afterthoughts. Kind of like a light IPA, and I wasn't in the mood for an IPA. A bit of acidic tartness in the finish, but the length of the finish is short, dull.

M: A bit sharp and overly carbonated. Refreshing, but makes it tough to savor and detect flavor characteristics.

Buy again: No.

I had high hopes for this beer but overall I'm a bit disappointed. Not a bad beer by any stretch, just didn't live up to expectations.

Serving type: bottle

04-25-2010 16:44:00 | More by jthreee
Photo of Metalmonk
Metalmonk

North Carolina

3.15/5  rDev -12%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Found a 6-pack way cheap, I guess because it's no longer officially summer, although the hot, muggy day here is trying to keep it going. Perfect time to pop a couple into a big ol' pint glass.

A two-fingers head is produced with an effortless pour, and it stays fluffy for a good while. The color is a sunny golden yellow exhibiting plenty of clarity, but not what I'd call "clear."

The aroma brings in a nice fruit elements, like pear and sour/young peach, and a mild white bread/biscuit-like cleanness. A little musty with a faint hint of mineral/metal, but the fruit cleanly swipes most of that away.

Maybe this has been sitting in the store since late spring? Because it tastes a bit lifeless. I'm getting this in before the "Best Before Oct 2010" recommendation, so who knows. Maybe it's supposed to be this way. Pear remains in the forefront, with a crisp hoppiness coming in from behind, and a bright white bread character. Still, it's all just a bit subdued and muted to get all that excited about.

Feel is appropriately crisp, tingly, snappy...with a decent slickness rounding off the sharper points.

I'd rate the drinkability way higher if it actually tasted better...doesn't taste bad, it's just not very interesting.

Serving type: bottle

09-23-2010 22:27:42 | More by Metalmonk
Photo of BigCheese
BigCheese

Massachusetts

3.15/5  rDev -12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Meh

Golden straw appearance with a thin white head. Leaves minimal lacing.

S: mild, some citrus hops, not much else.

Taste, a bit of sweet molasses malt upfront, followed by a predominantly lemon/citrus hops, slightly metallic/astringent, crisp finish.

M: Very light/thin body, lots of carbonation, very very drinkable, I could drink these till the cows come home.

Overall a decent run of the mill summer ale, Pretty average for the style but certainly not sub par. Not brooklyns best not their worst. Worth trying once, good in hot weather, nothing particularly noteworthy.

Serving type: bottle

07-21-2011 22:47:06 | More by BigCheese
Photo of MaltyGoodness
MaltyGoodness

Pennsylvania

3.13/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz. bottle

Pours a clear golden straw color with a small white head that thins. Decent lacing on the glass.

Aroma is a little bit of malt and a little bit of hops. Smells fairly crisp.

Light crisp malt taste upfront with a mild hop flavor and tame bitterness. Finishes dry, with a sligt lingering hop taste.

Medium-light body. Good carbonation.

Yet another Americal pale wheat that dares to be unoriginal. It's easy enough to drink, but doesn't even begin to challenge the palate. This is one of those wide-open styles that seems to invite (if not embrace) varied interpretations - yet many still brew these plain renditions. This particular beer is well crafted, but thoroughly uninspired - as are many in the style.

Serving type: bottle

05-12-2007 03:16:16 | More by MaltyGoodness
Photo of Neehan
Neehan

North Carolina

3.13/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Light golden body with lots of bubbly carbonation. The smell is strong in the grassy grains over a light texture of wheat, similar to a classic pilsener. Light in the mouth and quite easy drinking with a sharp bite of carbonation and just a hint of bitterness at the finish. Very different from your stereotypical "summer ale" by staying away from the citrusy fruits that we are accustomed to. Not bad, just not what you would expect from the style.

Serving type: bottle

06-09-2007 04:10:29 | More by Neehan
Photo of holzmann
holzmann

Massachusetts

3.13/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale, lightly golden color with minimal head. Nose is very fresh and grainy with sweet notes. Certainly a pleasant aroma but nothing special (no hop aroma). Crisp refreshing taste with a hint of sweetness. Mouthfeel is smooth but short. Finishes slightly sour.

Overall this is a decent refreshing summer ale. Something very sessionable to be consumed while mowing the lawn perhahps, but nothing special beyond that. I like the grainy nose, but this beer lacks any complexity beyond that. The color is a little on the light sight (reminds of a cheap BMC lager)

Serving type: bottle

10-13-2008 23:33:17 | More by holzmann
Photo of david18
david18

New York

3.13/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I've never been a big fan of summer beers and this one is not much different. If I want something light I'm more likely to get a good german pils or a kolsch. This is called an English pale but i think it ha too much esther to really fit in that category. Very light in color, highly carbonated, aroma wasn't bad. Just a little bit of a weak beer overall.

Serving type: on-tap

06-27-2010 17:16:51 | More by david18
Photo of Momar42
Momar42

Maryland

3.13/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into Duvel artist tulip

A - clear, straw yellow. Moderate head with a vigorous pour that fades quickly. Mild lacing.

S - very typical "summer" beer aroma. Sweet malt with hints on lemons and other light smells. Not a strong nose but present thankfully.

T - lemons first. pale malt body carries it through the quaff (i hate that word). Faint bitterness mixed with lemons finish it off nicely. Easy drinking if a little lack luster.

M - Light. Easy on the palate as most summer beers are. I should have tried this in cans as it is ideally suited for coolers at the beach/pool.

O - for the style, its fair to average. For a good summer beer with some flavor its slightly better than most of the drivel I've tried over the years. Not bad, so long as you drink it for what it is.

Serving type: bottle

07-20-2012 02:53:35 | More by Momar42
Photo of jazzyjeff13
jazzyjeff13

United Kingdom (England)

3.13/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A 355ml bottle with a BB of April 2013. Picked up a little while back from Trembling Madness in York. As it's the last official day of summer, I thought I'd pull this out before it's too late!

Poured into a straight pint glass. A clear golden colour with good carbonation and a bit of floating sediment. Forms a large head of creamy white foam that lasts for a few minutes before reducing to a surface layer. Aroma of floral hop notes underpinned by light caramel malt and stewed hops. A faintly harsh leafy quality in the background.

Tastes of flowery aromatic hops and light malt, with a dry finish. Notes of white grape, citrus, stewed hops and mild earthy yeast. A harsh, astringent background quality and a hint of cardboard. A faint bitterness upon swallowing. Mouthfeel is light and tingly, but unusually dry. Body has a light effervescence, like sparkling water. Somewhat astringent, with an aftertaste of stewed leaves and faint aromatic hops.

Rather so-so. When I first cracked the bottle and took a sniff I thought it boded well, as various 'summer ales' I've tried have been naff. However, the taste put paid to that - too much harsh stewed hops milling around and spoiling everything. Not a brilliant effort; I probably wouldn't have this again. No need to seek it out.

Serving type: bottle

09-21-2012 22:34:42 | More by jazzyjeff13
Photo of Mongrel
Mongrel

Maryland

3.11/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tastes, looks and smells like a Magic Hat #9. The mouthfeel is a bit softer and the apricot is less pronounced, replaced by a little lemon. But really, not much special here, which is disappointing considering how many folks rave about this beer on here.

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2013 18:43:24 | More by Mongrel
Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

3.1/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Best before Oct. '07 (Had in June '07):

Pours light golden yellow with a thin head that soon fizzles down to a thin disappearing patch.

The smell is of wheat bread.

The taste is of light wheat breadiness/dough with a touch of butter. Plastic-like fruitiness is present in the finish.

Soft fizz hits the tongue - quite a bit of carbonation here. Light. Some wheat crispness.

Not much going on here to make it stand out - too bready without much else. A run-of-the-mill summer wheat beer at best.

Serving type: bottle

06-21-2007 03:14:49 | More by jwc215
Photo of bierguru
bierguru

Florida

3.1/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A - light in color but cloudy head stays very well at about an half inch after settling time

S - strong hopps smell with fruit accents

T - very crisp slight bit from the hopps fairly big lemon taste

M - high carbonation thick foam taste from the head

D - if you like citrus beers then very drinkable if not then not so much however none of the flavors our very overpowering

Serving type: on-tap

08-04-2010 20:53:31 | More by bierguru
Photo of Sammy
Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

3.08/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

The first I have heard of this one, and AJ said it was brewed specifically for the Clark's Ale House real ale fest. People were not rushing to it, Medium mouthfeel, on the sour acidic side,though above average hoppiness and quaffable.Light pale colour.

Serving type: cask

09-04-2006 04:33:01 | More by Sammy
Photo of PittBeerGirl
PittBeerGirl

Pennsylvania

3.08/5  rDev -14%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours transparent yellow with almost no head. Looks much like a maco lager. I could barely pick up a malt smell to it but I guess it was there. The taste is pretty average. Sweet carmel malt and it finishes very clean. Mouthfeel is low carbonation with a medium weight body. Somewhat watery and goes down smooth. This is pretty drinkable and I bet it would be a great transition beer for the BMC drinker (since they are so similar).

Serving type: bottle

05-19-2007 04:25:45 | More by PittBeerGirl
Photo of kenito799
kenito799

New York

3.08/5  rDev -14%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

20 oz pour at Ulysses, Stone St, NYC.

No head to speak of when this brew arrives, yellow-amber, a bit of lacing, not much to look at.

Pleasant floral-citrus hoppy aroma on arrival. Average ale mouthfeel. The flavor is OK, but very one-note. Some grassy and tart hops, some malt, but neither complex and aromatic nor particularly refreshing. Yes, it's on the light side for an ale but I am left wishing I went for a good pilsener or hefeweizen (Brooklyn makes a nice pils). So I don't quite get the reason for this beer's existence. Not interesting, flavorful or refreshing enough to come back to; but not terrible.

Serving type: on-tap

06-02-2008 01:11:30 | More by kenito799
Brooklyn Summer Ale from Brooklyn Brewery
81 out of 100 based on 1,108 ratings.