Brooklyn Summer Ale | Brooklyn Brewery

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Brooklyn Summer AleBrooklyn Summer Ale

Brewed by:
Brooklyn Brewery
New York, United States | website

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Summer

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

Added by Sammy on 09-04-2006

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Reviews: 497 | Ratings: 1,709
Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.78/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

What's shaking over at Casa de LaChaingangguy, you ask?! Why, its none other than Brooklyn's SUmmer Ale!

Appearance: Pours a clear, light amber body with a thin, creamy white head.

Smell: Biscuity malt aroma with a good measure of citrus hops and a very subtle spiciness.

Taste: Biscuit maltiness with just a hint of sweetness. There's also an extremely faint honeydew melon fruitiness to it as well as what tastes like a loving pinch of salt. The hops, as with everything else in this beer, are light and provide some lemony citrus in the softly bitter finish.

Mouthfeel: Light-bodied. Mild carbonation.

Drinkability: A light, refreshing beer that makes for fine summertime drinking.

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Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
3.95/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Golden and clear. Picture perfect lacing after each sip the whole way down the class.
S: Malty, with a hint of hops.
T: Slightly sweet malts, with a dab of hops to round it out at the end.
M: Crisp, smooth, light. Taste gone almost as soon as it was there. Mild carbonation.
D: Incredibly drinkable. I had this as a night cap, but I can see it working wonders on a warm summer afternoon. I can't wait to pair this with a burger off the grill.

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Photo of sleazo
4.02/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I don't think I have tried this befor-e so I picked one up at the Greenpoint Deli on Manhattan.
Best before 12/07
A-Pours a bright copper with a steady stream of tiny bubbles to replenish the head. The head is slightly small but there is good lacing. The small soaplike head prevents this from scoring higher.

S-The malt is the predominant smell here with a very bready quality. The hops do make their presence noted with a soapy/grassy aroma. This is a very clean smelling brew.

T-A very mild pleasing sweetness hits up front followed by that light grassy hop flavour. The hops are not too strong but I do not think that is what they were going for. The malt is the main player here and it is very crisp. The taste is very Englishand better than alot of the originals.

M-creamy yet efferevescent. Perfect for a hot summer day.

D-This is a great session summer beer and different than traditional summer offerings. Refreshing would definitely be my word for it. If you are expecting an American Pale you will be dissapointed but if you aren't expecting that you will be pleased. I will be picking up a sixer of this.

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Photo of tpd975
3.8/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a mild golden yellow in color. There is a medium head that fades to a small rim atop the glass. There is a slow stream of bubbles making their way to the top to keep that little head around.

S: This beer has a nice malty aroma to it. I can also detect a nice sweetness that reminds me of the smell of Big League Chew bubblegum. I like it.

T: This is a nice brew. Starts out nice and malty. This really reminds me of a wheat beer. There is a very mild hop character in the finish which is pretty dry.

M: Nice level of carbonation to this medium to light bodied brew. Crisp is the best adjective for this beer.

D: Goes down smooth with the perfect level of carbonation. Quaffable? Yes.

Overall: This beer is poundable. It's not a world class beer by any means but take it for what it is an easy drinking good tasting beer. You could line these up down the bar and keep them coming. I won't fill my refrigerator with them, but it’s a good tasting nice drinking beer. I could see why others would love it.

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Photo of SSBrennan
3.71/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a middle of the road amber color with a tan head that falls with good lacing.

The odor is great with good crisp hops and a complex malty base. It would be perfect but it for a very subtle metallic note.

The taste is dominated by bitter hops with little sweetness.

The carbonation has a slight sharpness but good otherwise.

The beer is solid but would probably be better with food.

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Photo of blackie
3.66/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

single from Whole Foods Raleigh, notched as best by October 2007

a: Give a one finger white head when poured, gradually receding to leave a nice layer throughout. The beer is a clear medium-golden in color. Nice lacing.

s: Minerally aromas and earthy hops greet the nose alongside hard, grainy biscuits. Good in a simple way.

m: Bright, medium carbonation and a body on the lighter side of the medium range.

t: Typical Brooklyn flavors (from the water?) are immediately noticeable. English malts give subtler grainy and stale biscuit flavors accompanied by very earthy hop flavors. Pretty clean and dry on the tongue. A medium bitterness cleans up the finish. Just a touch watery.

d: Certainly easy. Another pleasant beer from Brooklyn.

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.71/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, best before October 2007. Served in a pint glass, the beer pours a golden color with an inch and a half white head. Head retention and lacing are both very good. It smells like grassy hops, grain and sweet malt, along with an earthy aroma. It tastes like grain, sweet malt, grapefruit and grassy/earthy hops. Mouthfeel is light, crisp and clean. Drinkability is good, it's not a bad choice as a session beer as it's smooth and goes down easy. I think this is a pretty decent brew, good and sessionable but even better on a hot summer day.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.97/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

If you look at Brooklyn's Summer Ale as an English-style summer ale, it's pretty much spot on for the style although most examples from the UK offer a tad bit more hops in at least the flavor. The maltiness is quite distinct, however, hitting you squarely in the nose aroma-wise, and then following in the flavor. It's straw-like, grassy, and a touch earthy - and the hops that follow are very much the same. To guess, I'd imagine there's some Maris Otter mixed with a non-floor malted base, and Fuggles with a bit of Goldings thrown in. There's a mild bit of fruitiness to it, but it's really just about the rounded malt and hop profile. It's not complex, but it's not intended to be. It's lighter than a pale ale, well, at least less bitter, and basically just a nice, easy drinking ale that's got some nice flavor to it.

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Photo of atsprings
3.7/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a crisp golden yellow with a decent head that slowly diminishes to a ring. The aroma is dominated by earthy hops with some sweet malts. The taste is a very decent balance of earthy citrus hops and sweet malts, it's just nothing all that spectacular or overpowering. The beer is light to slightly medium bodied with a very slight heaviness to it. This is certainly an enjoyable beer, but I must admit, I'm partial to American style over English styles any day of the week.

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Photo of KevinB
3.93/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had a couple of these on back deck while grilling some food up. Nice easy drinking summer brew. Poured from a 12oz bottle and served in a pint glass, revealed a nice dark golden yellow body topped with a white, foamy 2 finger head. After a couple minutes the head settled down and after several sips, there was some nice lacing on the glass. The smell was somewhat faint at first but after digging in I could detect wheat, malt and some very mild fruitiness, a nice aroma. This ale tasted really good, it's got little bite, it strikes a nice balance between tangy hops and a tasty malty flavor, along with a wheat backbone. Mouthfeel is clean and crisp,it's a light bodied beer, with a mild dry bitterness. Overall this is a really good summer brew for the summer months, very sessionable.

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Photo of prototypic
3.65/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: It's a very clear, golden color with a thick, foamy two finger head. Retention and lacing were good.

Smell: Initially, it smells of malty sweetness with just a touch of citrus. A bit of a yeasty or biscuity aroma comes through along with a touch of floral hops.

Taste: Very nice, sweet malty base. There is a light citrus taste to it Floral hops are noteable as well as a spicy kick. Leaves a bit of a yeasty or biscuity aftertaste.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: Light bodied and carbonation is very good. Very, very drinkable. I could session this. Overall, it's good. I'll drink it again.

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Photo of arguemaniac
3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This crystal-clear amber brew offers a grainy, bready malt palate with a nice caramel note and a firm peppery hop hint as well. There is also a fair but not cloying level of residual malt sweetness.

Easy-drinking with superb flavors. I’m not sure what’s up with BeerAdvocate’s classification of this brew as an American Pale Wheat Ale, after reading the description on the bottle and visiting Brooklyn’s website, its clear that there isn’t a bit of wheat malt in this thing. And that’s is one of the reasons I like it; I’ve always applauded any brewery that opts to brew something other than a wheat beer for it’s summer seasonal. I mean, a wheat beer isn’t the worst choice for a summer seasonal, just the most obvious. But besides all that, it’s just a refreshing brew with bright malt flavors and touch of crisp peppery hop spice.


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Photo of WesWes
3.77/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a gold color with one finger white head that fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a clean pale malt and wheat scent that's refreshing. There is a bit of yeast fruitiness present. The taste is decent. It has a clean, crisp wheat flavor that goes down easy and refreshes. This is a simple brew that's quite tastey and easy drinking, especially during the summer. The mouthfeel is good. It is a low bodied beer with good carbonation. This isn't my favorite Brooklyn brew, but it's very drinkable.

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Photo of Bierguy5
3.68/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle, 4.5% ABV. Best before Oct. 07. Very slightly hazy, bright gold color. Rocky white head. Pretty good head retention.

Pale malt, bready, grainy aroma, with a bit of zest thrown in near the end. Some earthy and slightly perfumy hop aromas.

Pale malt, a touch of tartness, and a bit of zest. Pretty clean. Enough bitterness to balance, while still leaving the beer refreshing.

Light body, with an appropriate amount of carbonation. Pretty simple and easy to drink, especially with a low ABV. Not a bad beer at all, and seems to fit well in the summertime mode.

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Photo of jwc215
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.

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Photo of tempest
3.26/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Not a bad beer, but there's a watery feel that turns me off. Still, it's a nice amber color with a caramel malt profile and light cascade-like hops. So for a summer ale, it has malt and hops, the problem is just that there isn't quite enough of each. I feel like this might be better enjoyed outside in the heat, but inside it comes off like craft beer-light.

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Photo of Billolick
3.7/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ouncer with best before dating notched onto the side of the label, pours medium golden amber, clear, near white head and leaving minor lacing on the glass. Fruity, sugary nose. Dry, crisp summary creation. Quite dry in the finish, with notes of wheat, earthy hops and toasty light malts. Decent summer quaffer.

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Photo of BBM
3.38/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a golden yellow with a thin white head atop it. Aroma was not very prevalent; slightly bready I suppose.

The taste was a solid blend of grassy hops and a malty wheat. There was a subtle musty flavor, along with some notes of citrus and pine. Mouthfeel is clean and crisp. Overall it's not the best seasonal Brooklyn, but it's still worth a try.

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Photo of Stimack
3.28/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This brew poured to a dark golden yellow color with a fair sized white head that had good retention and did leave a little lacing along the sides of the glass. The aroma while possessing some wheat like characteristics seem to have a pretty good amount of hop scent. The flavors have a number of noticeable things, wheat flavor, toasted flavors, some citrus and a lasting, but mellow, hop flavor at the back of the mouth. I really wonder if they are trying this one to be similar to Hop Sun from Southern Tier? It is a ok beer, a good one for the summer months but really does not seem overly interesting. I would get it again but do feel that it is one of Brooklyn’s more basic choices.

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Photo of Applesauce1
3.33/5  rDev -7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

I picked this up at the Pit Stop in Nelsonville, OH.

Appearance: gold and transparent with a nice 3/4" head on the pour; looks decent
Smell: some oranges; a little skunkiness
Taste: orange taste; some wheat flavor; a hint of hops
Mouthfeel: light bodied
Drinkability: goes down easy; you could drink many of these in a night

It seems more and more that summer ales are just too light for a good session beer. I think they're trying to market these beers to people who really don't like flavorful, full bodied beers. It seems that brewers are adding citrus taste to mild tasting beers to sell these. Oh well....

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Photo of biegaman
3.62/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had ice cream twice today. Twice. It seems excessive, but 'tis the season no? Today at times I drove with the windows down, the sunroof popped; at other times with the AC cranked. The summer is my favourite time of year. The women wear those lovely sun dresses, my favourite Latin rhythms feel all the more appropriate, and the beer tastes better - well, simple lagers and pales ale anyhow. After an eventful June day of beautiful weather and an impending trip to New York City, the Brooklyn Summer Ale seems perfectly suited.

Pours with a creamy level of white head. The lacing clings hard to the glass. The body a clear and glossy but pale golden shade. A constant stream of bubbles is very active. A soothing almost therapeutic aroma of very subtle yet ripe hops. A fruity underscore with notes of grapefruit and pomegranate. A very strong wheat bill as well. The 'harvest wheat' smell and green, ripe hops compliment each other so very well. They certainly add character.
The carbonation is spot on with accompanying creamy texture. A low level bitterness but some pinch of wheat on the finish. The flavour is dominated by a whole-wheat graininess. Reminds me of eating a whole grain bagel. The yeast (is this bottle conditioned? .. no?) seems noticeable at times as well. The hops lend some staying power to the beer. Simple flavour, not overly tasty but free of adjuncts and with far more dimension than a pale macro lager.
For a summer style ale this is quite quenching without compromising any of its flavour. Brooklyn brewery seems to offer a good product.

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Photo of ommegangpbr
3.77/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice gold color and clarity with some head.
Scents are bright and citrus laden; clean and pleasing. There's more odor here than one might expect from something in this style.
Flavors are light and pretty clean. There's a bit of a rye bitterness that one finds in some ales from the pale end of the spectrum; something reminiscent of sparkling mineral water. Some might find it off putting, especially those from the Bud/Miller/Coors crowd. Rolling Rock fans might dig it.
Mouthfeel is cleansing; very much a palate cleanser here.
Easy to drink summer time fun in a bottle. I prefer Brooklyn's Pilsner when the weather is hot but this will do just fine.

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Photo of RustyDiamond
3.7/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Skeptically picked up a 6-pack at Green's-Midtown. Poured into a pint glass, and the golden-straw colored ale was topped by a nice fizzy, fluffy white head. The head slowly dissipates after a few sips. Smell of faint wheat malt with a slight whiff of cucumber. Tastes like a well balanced hybrid of an american pale ale and a wheat ale with a zesty, slightly fruity finish. An excellent summer beer, in my book, and I could easily have 5 more.

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Photo of soupyman10
3.33/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a slightly hazy amber-copper color with an inch of white head on top. Looks pretty solid. Nose is quite mild, hints of wheat and some citrus fruit. Some saltiness, maybe a little astringent up front. I could do with a little more malt presence or stronger lemon. A hint of hops at the end. It's a fairly subtle flavor, even to the point of blandness. Feel is a little thin bodied. Overall, this one's alright, although there are much better Pale Ales out there.

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Photo of daliandragon
3.73/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice bright summer colors on the label a plus, although with these guys I'd be trying it out anyway. Pours goldenrod with a weak white head that instantly crumples iin a fizzy cap. Lots of carbonation bubbles. Hop notes are grassy. Something of a European or pilsner ring to the nose. Nothing special so far.

Crisp and refreshing at the opening of the sip, and not nearly as bubbly as I feared. Late breaking wheat taste is easy on the palate. Recovers nicely from a substandard outward measure. Definitely could be consumed in quantity in the summer months, particularly outside. Worthy of the Brooklyn moniker.

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Brooklyn Summer Ale from Brooklyn Brewery
81 out of 100 based on 497 ratings.