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Summit Extra Pale Ale - Summit Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Summit Extra Pale AleSummit Extra Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

971 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 971
Reviews: 428
rAvg: 3.7
pDev: 11.89%
Wants: 9
Gots: 61 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Summit Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  5.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: ADR on 08-31-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 971 | Reviews: 428 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of Ricochet


3/5  rDev -18.9%

Seeing as how I list this as one of my favorite styles, I'm really critical of the ones I try. This one was, about average, but a little too sweet for me to really look for it again. It's actually leans more to JW Dundees pale ale, but isn't as low in price to make this a buy again beer.

A: Head small, nice orange, little carb, little lace

S: Slight grapefruit, mostly malts to the nose. Eh...

M: Bitter going down, thicker on the tounge with little aftertaste.

T: Standard APA leaning towards the budget side. Grapefruit was strong as usual, bitter hops flavor is average, sweetness pervails, a little nicer than JWDPA, but not enough.

This is a standard drinker, about average as they come. Nothing I would seek out, but not bad in a sampler pack.

01-21-2007 04:53:46 | More by Ricochet
Photo of Chaz


3.9/5  rDev +5.4%

A brilliant copper pour is topped by a pale tan head which subsites after a minute or three, leaving a touch of lace all around. Great nose: musty-dank / perfumey in the best possible way, blending a touch of yeast with citrusy hops with slightly buttery malts. Bittersweet on the first sip, with a sharp aromatic element from the yeast aiding the sharp hop bite, round malt profile sort of dominates in the middle, but it ends fairly quickly in a semi-sweet, semi-dry finish. Buttery as I said, but not overly irritating or off-style. Mildly fruity, with aromatics of fresh-picked pear and the tang of green grape skins. Hops are both citrusy and lively throughout, not to mention the fact that the bitterness lingers interminably - I love that! A touch of astringecy gives this the cleansing, semi-dry finish that makes it a great match for some of the most unforgiving of greasy pub-grub while not making it in the least bit sour - sour = bad in this style doncha know : ) ?

I've always thought Summit's EPA (or just "EPA" to its loyalists) to be a bit more challenging than a true 'gateway' or 'training wheels' craft/micro brew, and I still feel this way. Many first-timers feel EPA to be a bit too chewy, and that first impression remains with a few of them ever after. As for myself I've enjoyed so much of this fine brew over the past twenty years that it hardly impinges upon my sessioning as such, but I will acknowledge its heft and complexity to the palate of the many, many neophytes: it's a great beer to cut your ale-teeth on! There has also always been an *excellent* hop profile to EPA, something that initially snares the Pilsener-lovers (for one) and reels them in . . .only to later confounded them with the mildly-fruity characteristics of ale! Not a light or 'thin' brew at all, but a long ways from a strong ale, and lacking in the richer malt complexity of certain of the British renditions. I'd call this the 'hall monitor' of ales, to whit: once you've passed the gateway, once you've left the training wheels at home, Summit EPA will be the beer to keep you on track through the sometimes weedy, sometimes downright rough halls of Aledom (where's Perry King?) Also, from its looks alone EPA could pass for an all-malt Amber Lager ala Boston Lager, and I've often seen folks mistake two freshly-poured taps of these in a dimly-lit bar with a hilarious result! Am I waxing nostalgic already? Yes, apologies all-around, and my sincere apologies to Mr. Grossman and his fine flagship ale but . . . my sense of hometown pride would be sorely abused if I didn't admit that I prefer our local 300 lb gorilla to his 900 lb offering! Fact is, Summit was the first American Pale Ale I'd tried and remains my personal benchmark for the style. The fact that I can get this in 50% of the bars in Minnesota, in one form or another (and usually quite fresh, and with clean lines : ), only makes me prouder of the work that the folks at Summit have done over the years. All of this being said, isn't it about time they released that Barleywine squirreled-away in Horace and Damien's collective noggin?

12-15-2006 02:17:24 | More by Chaz
Photo of Grundle20


3.43/5  rDev -7.3%

Pours copper in color in to a pint glass. There is a one finger slightly off white head with some minor lacing but little retention to speak of.

The beer has an interesting sweet and sour citrus hops smell mellowed out by and base of mild malt scent. I suspect the beer may be old but not beyond drinking.

Taste and Mouthfeel:
There's an odd almost lambic like funk to the taste. It's an underlying fruity sour hint. An oily pine hop note is soon to follow after the initial interesting tart fruit taste. There is a very light caramel malt body but it's kind of a wash to the other flavors. The finish is clean with a citrus rind aftertaste. Not bad, not great.

It's a little too bitter and weird for prolonged drinking but it's a pretty good one at a time beer.

Bottom Line:
The beer could be a little old but it's still showing a good amount of it's character and it's alright. Plug in a few extra points for a more fresh bottles and give it a whirl sometime.

12-14-2006 00:24:27 | More by Grundle20
Photo of BeerBelcher


2.45/5  rDev -33.8%

I've had this a few times...my understanding is that it is Summit's largest volume beer, but the Extra Pale is my least favorite Summit product (I think their Maibock is great).

This beer pours a dark amber/orange color typical of a lot of APAs. The beer is clear, but has a certain dullness to it and an adequate amount of head.

The smell is of sweet hop esters, and is quite pleasant. I didn't pick up a lot of citrus or pine notes.

The taste is a bit of a letdown. The beer is slightly bitter (that's good), but there's a maltiness or an earthiness that just doesn't seem like it belongs there...I know that malt taste is there for balance, but I feel this beer would be better with it toned down.

My mouth seems to interact with the beer in the back of my throat, instead of the roof of my mouth where other APA's seem to "stick." Mouthfeel is a bit thin and watery.

In terms of drinkability, the beer is light enough to drink several of, but I didn't really want another.

12-13-2006 13:58:16 | More by BeerBelcher
Photo of mattcrill


2.08/5  rDev -43.8%

Aroma: Biscuity and a touch fruity. Some musty wet hops as it warms but that's stretching it a bit.

Appearance: Clear orange with a sudsy white cap. Good looking brew.

Flavor: Wait, I missed it...a little biscuity, a little vegetal, touched with some seltzer water. Finishes with a bit of a saltine flavor. Just a touch of hops but my tongue has to fish around for it.

Mouthfeel: Highly carbonated and thin.

Overall impression: This one is lost on me. I don't see anything "extra" about it. I think I'd look for other APA's. There are too many good ones out there to re-visit this one.

11-25-2006 21:09:13 | More by mattcrill
Photo of hylton44


4.1/5  rDev +10.8%

What's the difference between "Extra Pale Ale" and a standard APA? Not sure. But this offering from Summit is a nice addition to a summer repertoire, in any event. Sharp, dry, toasty bitterness but almost a little "thick," rather than "clean," if that makes any sense. Ranks in the upper echelon of APAs, among those I've sampled,and it can usually be found for the right price during the summer season in Minneapolis/St. Paul, so that's an added bonus.

11-15-2006 02:50:16 | More by hylton44
Photo of gmfessen


4.08/5  rDev +10.3%

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, beer is a tan/copper color with a foamy off-white head. Lacing that loves to hang around. The smell is subtle, but is of pale malts and hops. The taste is good, almost citrusy like grapefruit, with a definite hoppy finish. The mouthfeel is enjoyable, light on the palate, but creamy with carbonation. Overall, this is a very drinkable beer, and I would recommend it.

10-19-2006 01:50:58 | More by gmfessen
Photo of Redrover


4.1/5  rDev +10.8%

I was able to sample plenty of this during my recent visit to the Cities.

The beer is a burnished copper with an eggshell colored head and good lacing.

Nice nose of citrus & pine with plenty of bread like malts. Very fresh aroma.

The beer is moderately bitter with nice grapefruit notes that compliment the caramel and cracker tastes from the malts. Seems well balanced. A bit of pine taste emerges late.

The mouth is sturdy with a good level of carbonation for this style. very easy drinker and my favorite from this brewer. Sessionable to the max!

09-26-2006 14:56:49 | More by Redrover
Photo of Cresant


4.1/5  rDev +10.8%

Poured this undated 12 oz. brown bottle into an IPA glass. Clear honey/amber colored body with two fingers of off white head.

Scent was floral hops. Herbal. Slightly tobacco-like.

Taste was refreshingly bitter with sweetness under the surface. Faint tea flavor. Interesting and multidimensional.

Mouthfeel was zesty and slightly prickly. Rich. Very nice APA.

I will seek this easy drinker out again.

09-19-2006 00:49:00 | More by Cresant
Photo of rowew


3.95/5  rDev +6.8%

Presentation: 12 oz short bottle. 20th anniversary label on the neck. No freshness info.

Appearance: Poured into a standard shaker glass. Pours a clear light copper color with a nice head that has great retention and lacing.

Smell: Big bready malt with just a hint of yeast.

Taste: Definitely malt dominated, but the hops come in nicely to balance things out, and leave a dry finish.

Overall impression: Very drinkable - glad to see this available in the Colorado market.

09-14-2006 23:25:14 | More by rowew
Photo of zjungleist


3.5/5  rDev -5.4%

On tap at the Summit Brewing Company. Poured copper colored with a medium white head that didnt last. The smell was your basic, malt/hops, one/two punch combo. Taste? You guessed it. Bready malt and herbal hops. No hidden prizes or second chance drawings. Mouthfeel was medium to light, with average cabonation. Drinkability was also average. This beer is pretty much your average craft pale ale. Calling it "extra" is somewhat ironic, because if found it to be "average" in every way.

09-12-2006 03:29:44 | More by zjungleist
Photo of marcobrau


3.63/5  rDev -1.9%

Poured out the bottle this beer displays an attractive head of foam that takes awhile to settle out. The aroma herbal with a very grassy, almost sour note to it. This beer has some pleasant toasted malt flavors towards the middle and a fairly assertive bitter finish that lingers a bit. The mouthfeel is just right for this beer. Something about this bottle tastes just slightly odd, though. I've had this beer before and I think this bottle might be a bit old. The hops are there, they just seem a bit faded.

09-07-2006 03:25:48 | More by marcobrau
Photo of Beaver13


3.4/5  rDev -8.1%

12 oz bottle. Pours a golden amber with a fluffy white head that retains well and leaves some lacing.

The aroma is earthy and grassy hops with a little fruitiniess.

The flavor is a little sweet fruity malts followed by a grassy bitterness. It has a bitter somewhat buttery finish. The mouthfeel is medium with some sharp carbonation.

Overall, a decent but rather pedestrian pale ale. I did like this better than their IPA - it was much better balanced.

08-31-2006 23:53:43 | More by Beaver13
Photo of tgbljb


4.1/5  rDev +10.8%

Poured a slightly hazy amber color with massive shite puffy head. Very good retention. Smell is mainly malt with a slight hoppy presence also to be found. Taste follows through on the smell with a strong maltiness and only some mild hops present. Nice full mouuthfeel. Very drinkable, an enjoyable beer.

08-20-2006 20:28:14 | More by tgbljb
Photo of BEERchitect


2.8/5  rDev -24.3%

"Extra" Pale Ale...Is this the new word for "Weak" Pale Ale? If so, then this review will be easy. This beer is a watery Sierra Nevada Pale Ale--end of review. I guess they brewed a regular old Pale Ale and threw in twice as much water, then market it as something special. Genius! Actually, the beer tastes fine from the tap, but the under-malted, under-hoped, blandness lets metalic, grain, grassy, fizzy character show from the aroma to the finish. I can drink it, but really prefer better.

07-27-2006 12:37:17 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of teg8612


4.25/5  rDev +14.9%

The bottle may say "Extra" but it is a classic American pale ale like Sierra Nevada. INtersting note is that Summit bought their bottling line from Sierra.

Anyway, pours a nice copper color with a nice head. Nice mouthfull with just the right amount of carbonation. Smells of pine and has that same taste with fruity overtones. Nicely hopped without being overpowered. Not as dangerous as an IPA. Hops begin to mellow as it warms reveiling more of a malty smoothness. Great out of a bottle in a pint glass or on tap. This is my go to beer for all occasions because it makes a good session beer and works with all kinds of food. Take a tour and try it at it's best for free.

07-20-2006 15:10:12 | More by teg8612
Photo of keoki182


3.33/5  rDev -10%

The nose was that of an evergreen that grows citrus fruits. The colour was a reddish tinge, more of an amber really. All similarities in my mind to a pale ale ended there, when I first sipped this ale. Very nice mouthfeel, not too heavy or light. The oily piney bitter taste I expected never appeared. Sure, it’s more bitter than a brown ale or a porter, but for an American Pale Ale, this was quite mild.

07-15-2006 16:55:57 | More by keoki182
Photo of dreadnatty08

District of Columbia

3.65/5  rDev -1.4%

Pours a light amber color with a frothy head about a half inch, clears out to a small covering. Aromas are fairly clean: sweet bready malts, floral hops. Flavors of stinging hops, EKGs?, followed by its clean malt background. This is a basic APA if there ever was one. Possibly almost too similiar to SN. Exceptionally easy drinking, would pair nicely with a variety of summer foods: bbq, sandwiches, burgers etc. Hop bitterness has a bit of sustain in the mouth but only enough to balance it out.

07-08-2006 18:12:29 | More by dreadnatty08
Photo of timtheenchanta

South Carolina

3.7/5  rDev 0%

Copper orange color with a thin creamy looking white head. Very faint traces of lace down the pint. Small streams of carbonation bubbles continue to rise from the bottom of the glass.

Sweet hoppy grapejuice smell with a thin peanut buttery smelling maltiness.

Mmm. Creamy malty backbone. There's a slight hoppiness and it finishes slightly dry but it's hardly "extra."

Good beer. Beer good.

07-03-2006 01:24:58 | More by timtheenchanta
Photo of supercolter


4.18/5  rDev +13%

Appearance is very good dark reddish in color, decent head, very good thick lacing.
Smell is good as well a whole lot of malty yeast greets you then there is the follow up of some hops.
Taste is just like the smell. Very full flavor.
Mouthfeel is decent, but a bit too creamy.
Drinkability is good as well, especially when it starts to warm up.

06-28-2006 05:56:11 | More by supercolter
Photo of Phatz


4.22/5  rDev +14.1%

I had this on-tap an Porter's in Easton PA.

Appearance: Golden orange amber color with sticky lacing.

Smell: Malty sweet with an extra bold hop aroma in the nose.

Taste: WOW! You mean they call this an American Pale Ale; it seems much more hoppy than that to me! The only other APA I have had that had this much citrus hop character is FFF Alpha King Pale Ale. I love the flavor but it is not what I expected. Beside the firm bitter and hints of nuts, it has a nice sweet caramel malt character that hides underneath the bitter blanket. Finally a slightly dry finish.

Mouthfeel: The mouthfeel is a bit on the thin side but very crisp with the hop bite adding texture.

Drinkability: This beer was the surprise of the day. I was not expecting much from this APA as I have historically not been a huge fan of the beers in this style. I have now come to the realization that some APA are both extremely drinkable *AND* extremely tasty too!

Hope this is helpful.

06-26-2006 05:37:23 | More by Phatz
Photo of dciskey


4.35/5  rDev +17.6%

I've been away from beer for a while, trying bourbon and scotch, but really not drinking that much. I've missed it. Today I return to beer with a familiar pale ale I've enjoyed before but never reviewed.

This 12oz. bottle (best by September 6th) pours copper with a 1.5 finger off-white head. The head diminishes into a thick ring around the surface of the beer, with a small amount of lacing on the glass. The smell is piney and floral hops, with slightly malty edges. I also detect a touch of salt.

The taste is similar to the smell and it's delicious: pine and floral hops, but with a solid malt backbone that's a little biscuit and a little caramel. The malt comes through more as it warms but never overpowers; the beer stays balanced to the end. The mouthfeel tells me instantly that it's a Summit beer; all of their products have that same extraordinarily smooth mouthfeel that's got exactly the right carbonation.

This is an easy to drink pale ale that's not quite a classic like SNPA, but it goes well with a variety of food and is great on its own. I think this was a good choice for coming back to beer; it's not the end-all-be-all of ales, or even of pale ales, but it reminds one why beer is such a great thing.

06-19-2006 00:03:04 | More by dciskey
Photo of strattor


4/5  rDev +8.1%

Pours a nice looking amber with white head.

Aroma is mostly of citrusy and piney hops, with a little maltiness coming through.

Very full flavor. Hops are dominant--pine and fruit flavors mostly. There's a nice, lingering finish that seems almost tart.

Great balance of smooth and bubbly in the mouthfeel.

It's got bold flavor, but it's not so overpowering you couldn't kick back a few of these in a row, which I did. A great beer for people who want to work their way into IPAs.

06-17-2006 21:43:25 | More by strattor
Photo of rhoadsrage


3.85/5  rDev +4.1%

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a warm golden light copper body with a white creamy head and a good carbonation.

S- The smell of green spicy hops had a soft pale malt note that was a bit dry.

T- The taste of light caramel toasted malt with fresh pale malt had a note of dry malt in the back ground. There was a nice crisp pine resin bitterness with a citrus note in the background.

M- This beer had a medium mouthfeel with a slight slippery texture.

D- The big hops had a nice complexity and a smooth malt flavor in the background.

06-08-2006 18:37:17 | More by rhoadsrage
Photo of jthree78


5/5  rDev +35.1%

This is my drinking beer, always a case on hand, so good on hot days. I love the hoppy aftertaste. I like other pale ales but this is just so good all the time, wether from tap or bottle. mmm. You can drink it at any temp, but best real cold. I need to get some more.

06-02-2006 18:41:57 | More by jthree78
Summit Extra Pale Ale from Summit Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 971 ratings.