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Summit Summer Ale - Summit Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Summit Summer AleSummit Summer Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

51 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 51
Hads: 279
Avg: 3.72
pDev: 27.42%
Wants: 8
Gots: 41 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Summit Brewing Company visit their website
Minnesota, United States

Style | ABV
Kölsch |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: jera1350 on 05-04-2012

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Summit Summer Ale Alström Bros
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Reviews: 51 | Hads: 279
Photo of metter98
3.53/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Barcade, Jersey City, NJ

A: The beer is clear light yellow in color and has no visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high white head that died down, leaving a thin head covering the surface and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Faint aromas of fruity yeast are present in the nose along with hints of grassy malts.
T: Like the smell, the taste is a little fruity and has faint bits of malts along with a light amount of bitterness.
M: It feels light-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is easy to drink but doesn't seem like a true kölsch—I couldn't detect any grape-like flavors in the taste.

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Photo of Jason
3.94/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle with no freshness date

LOOK: Clear yellow hue, decent lacing

SMELL: Herbal, green peppercorn, fresh crackers, faint mint, very clean

TASTE: Very crisp, wet, dry pull, oily hop resin, herbal, leafy, fresh grass, slightly biscuity, clean, long dry finish

Immensely drinkable, fresh malt flavors from start to finish. Hoppiness balances and shows off a little. Summit has certainly brightened up my summer a bit more with this one.

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Photo of russpowell
3.44/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours an effervescent straw color with 2+ fingers of egg-shell colored head. Stellar lacing & head retention

S: Grassy, crackery notes

T: Follows the nose, some lemony notes too up front. As this warms mostly grassyness & a touch of pear & dryness. Finishes fruity, crisp & dry

MF: Light bodied, soft carbonation, crisp

An alright Kosch, like most of Summit's offerings; decent, drinkable, but not memorable. Fairly true to style

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Photo of feloniousmonk
3.47/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Summit Summer Ale. No information at all on the 12 ounce bottle's label, just a picture of Minnehaha Falls and the promise of an ale for summer. So, let's check it out.

Clear and yellow, with a small white head.

Floral aromas, light citric nose, without a twang, bright, wide open and pretty.

Taste: Clean entry on the palate, very light in body, with a short finish. Whispers of wheat below the surface, but not much. Smoothness personified, but at what price?
Expertly consumable, and tasty, too. Before too long, along comes a hit of sour, and just the merest kiss of hops.
Next time it's in the 90's, this will go down great, but, so does water. I'm not trying to knock Summer Ale, because it's not aimed at me, but I will miss the Hefe Weizen considerably, if this is it's replacement.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.54/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap at Barcade in Jersey City, NJ

A: Pours a clear pale yellow in color with minimal amounts of visible carbonation

S: Light aromas of fruity yeasts and grassy hops over the top of a faint aroma of biscuit malts.

T: Upfront there are very light flavors of biscuit malts with light flavors of fruity yeasts. There is also a light flavor of grassy hops in the finish that contribute a light amount of bitterness which does not linger.

M: Light bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: The beer is easy to drink and refreshing, a nice beer for the hot summer but lacks the grape-like flavors I normally find in a kölsch.

A: The beer is clear light yellow in color and has no visible carbonation. It poured with a quarter finger high white head that died down, leaving a thin head covering the surface and some lacing down the sides of the glass.

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Photo of mothman
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a finger of beige head. Good retention and lace. Color is a clear golden yellow.

Aroma: Very earthy and green. Citrus fruits with some bready malts. Almost smells like a hopped up pils.

Taste: Lemon citrus and bready malts. Also has a pale malt flavor. Earthy and green. Fairly floral.

Mouthfeel: Crisp and clean. Light bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Ends clean.

Overall, this is a great offering from Summit and something I will be having in the fridge this summer. Very easy to drink, yet provides a nice flavor.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.57/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

The Fridge recently got Summit Summer in CANs and The CANQuest (TM) would be slacking if I did not score one for review and inclusion.

From the CAN: "Proudly Brewed [& CANned by Summit Brewing Co.] in St. Paul, Minnesota"; "Savor Summer With Every Sip"; "Mother Nature Doesn't Want Your Empties. Please Recycle."

A nice loud Crack! was just the thing to start this off! I began with an inverted Glug to empty this brimful CAN of its CANtents, but I quickly had to back off due to the creation of a lot of head. Its three-plus fingers created a dense cap of bone-white foam that resembled the top of a vanilla ice cream cone. Retention was good, but as it began to fall, sticky lacing appeared in its wake. Color was Straw-Yellow (SRM = > 2, < 4) with NE-quality clarity. Nose had notes of freshly-mown hay, grass and lemon zest. It smelled like a farm at the end of summer! The duck on the CAN's label quacked in agreement. Mouthfeel was medium. The taste opened with a grassy, Noble hop bitterness, but then I caught a splash of lemony tartness in the mouth. The malt was almost an afterthought, kind of biscuity. This all added up to a very dry finish. 4.4% ABV means that it is eminently sessionable, a strong CANdidate for a Summer cooler stuffer and with all of its flavor, it beats so many of these "Session AIPAs" now on the market which rely on aromatic hops but CAN come up short on flavor.

My original, bottle review dtd 23 Aug 2013, rating = 4.6 follows:

As summer begins to wind down and school has reopened, I am ready to wind down with this beer.

An aggro head netted me two pillowy fingers of dense, bone-white head that took forever to fall even in the day's humidity. Color was a sunshine-yellow with NE-quality clarity. Nose smelled strongly of Noble hops with a lemony tartness. Mouthfeel was medium and the taste was very lemony in the mouth. Boy, did I pick the right one for this humid evening! It was like lemon sorbet in its taste as well as its refreshing, thirst-quenching nature. Finish was semi-dry, still quite lemony and very tasty.

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Photo of tempest
4.05/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured a slightly hazy blond in my pint glass with a two-finger head that leaves intermittent lacing.

Mmm. Reminds me a bit of Summit's Kolsch from a couple summers back. The slight earthy mineral note is subdued, but there's still a wonderfully subtle character of bready malts, mellow citrus hops, and light fruit esters. Complex, yet drinkable, what a fine beer. It opens with fresh-baked bread and finishes with a dry grassy bitterness. I'll have another.

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Photo of tone77
3.65/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A thank you goes out to cpolking form sending this beer. Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a cloudy yellow color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of grains, malts. Taste is bready malts, some grains, a touch of hops. Feels full bodied in the mouth and overall is a good easy drinking summer beer.

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Photo of ZAP
4.2/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Excellent summer offering from Summit. 4.9% makes it a great drinker..tastes pretty similar to the unchained Kolsch from a few years back although perhaps just a little less malt forward and definitely has more of a puckering dry finish.

This has a nice gentle grainy maltiness...some light yeasty fruitiness and a pretty substantial dry finish. Body is light to medium...crisp....

Overall this is not as good as the Unchained Kolsch that came out a few years back but that was a truly elite offering. This is definitely solid and will be a nice summer beer. I plan on doing a blind taster with this and four other Kolschs to see how it stands... Schells Zommerfest,Alaskan Summer, and Goose Island Summer. Right now I would say that matchup is a toss up with perhaps a slight edge to GI...we'll see...may update this when I do that.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.68/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass

Appearance – Pours a pale golden color with a big billowy white head. The head has a pretty decent retention lasting for a few minutes eventually fading to leave a moderate amount of lacing

Smell – The aroma is of a bready wheat malt and some lemon citrus and a light herbal aroma.

Taste – The taste begins crisp with a nice blend of wheat malt as well as some light citrus fruit notes. Some floral flavors come to the tongue, and with an increase in the lemon citrus, end up lightly bittering the taste. Toward the end a very light grassy flavor mixes with the others and leaves a clean taste on the tongue at the end.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is very light with a higher level of carbonation. A refreshing effervescent brew that is very easy to drink.

Overall – A good summer session beer. It is very easy to drink with its smooth body, light abv and more simple but flavorful crisp taste.

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Photo of KarlHungus
3.1/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This beer pours a semi-clear golden color. The head is half an inch in height, and recedes rather quickly into a thin cap of lacing. The aroma is of herbal, spicy hops with an underlying breadiness. It is rather weak though, and I have to try really hard to detect it. The taste is similar to the aroma with a nice balance of bready malt, and spicy, herbal hops. Again, like the aroma, it is weak even for the style. The mouthfeel is on the lighter side of medium bodied with lively carbonation, and a smooth texture. Overall, I really don't think highly of this beer. I'm a big fan of the Kolsch style. However, this is a weaker example of the style, I can't see myself drinking again.

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Photo of jera1350
4.15/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Crystal clear straw yellow color with a clean white head of fluffy foam. Nice lacing.

The smell is very clean and fruity with some bread dough. A little bit of green grass from the hops.

Light honey sweetness, the hops are lightly grassy and spicy, but the key is light. Crackery finish on the palate.

Lots of pillowy carbonation in a body that feels somewhere between light and medium. Dry finishing. Very nice feel.

This would be extremely easy to put back several. Very clean and refreshing, yet has enough depth as to not get boring. This makes a great summer drinker.

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Photo of morimech
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear straw color with just over one finger of head that had good retention before settling to a thin cap. A lot of lacing is left down the glass.

Semi-sweet pale malt that gives a bready aroma with hop compliments of grass and black pepper.

Slightly sweet bready malt base. Hints of green apple, grass, and pepper. Finishes slightly spicy. More bitter than just about any other Kolsch on the market.

Light to medium body with some nice carbonation. Lively without being harsh.

Enjoyable summer brew that is different from boring hot weather beers. I did not enjoy it as much as the Unchained Kolsch from a couple years ago, but being produced on a larger scale, I understand that compromises had to be made.

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Photo of garymuchow
3.75/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Cheese Cave.
Mild aroma that is mostly malt.
Clear yellow/gold body with white head.
Soft malt flavors with a smooth bitterness that doesn't overpower. Yeast character is in background.
Moderately light body with a soft carbonation.
This is a nice summer ale. Soft and well blended flavors. Should work for the masses, and could make a nice lawnmower beer.

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Photo of MattyG85
4.3/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12 oz. bottle into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint glass.

Appearance: Pours a bright and clear golden yellowish orange with lots of rising bubbles. Huge five finger white foam head with good retention. Leaves lots of lacing around the glass.

Smell: A crisp and malt forward aroma. Bready pale malts and wheat grains with good hints of biscuit and crackers. Hints of lemongrass. Also some floral German hops in the mix along with some grassy aromas. Smells pretty refreshing and crisp.

Taste: Like its smells, a nicely bready and crisp beer. Sweet pale malts and wheat grains. Pretty bready taste with notes of cracker and biscuit. Good notes of lemon and some light hints of other citrus fruit. Nice backing of floral and grassy German hops. Well balanced and tasty.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a moderate level of carbonation. Very crisp and somewhat creamy. Nice body for a lighter style. Very smooth, refreshing, and drinkable.

Overall: A pretty solid take on a Kolsch. Its everything you would expect from the style. Very good summer beer.

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Photo of gatornation
3.33/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz bottle BB 09/25/12

A- pours a light clear yellow color with a brilliant white head

S- malt floral hops bread and lemongrass

T- light floral hops with grain and bread light sweet malts

M- light on the palate low/medium carbonation

O- a session thirst quencher with mid Kolsch flavors, not my first choice for a kolsch or a summer beer for the matter

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Photo of bashiba
3.21/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a nice bright golden yellow with a thin white head, light lacing.

The smell was a touch of grain with a bit of coppery and light grassy hops.

The flavor is very balanced with light crackery malts mixing in with a bit of lemon peel and a touch of metallic tinny flavor in the finish. Has just a bit of lingering bitterness.

The mouthfeel is dry and crisp.

A decent summer beer, fairly clean and easy to drink.

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Photo of 57md
3.6/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a cloudy light straw color with about a finger of white head that dissipated rather quickly but left some lacing. The nose is wheat-like. The taste is light but pleasantly dry. There was a touch of tingling bitterness on the finish which is the highlight of this offering.

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Photo of herman77
3.88/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Pale yellow with a small bright white head. Some haze to it when held up to a light. Good lacing.

S: Sweet cereal malts, a bit of fruity esters. A bit of lemon zest coming through.

T: Some light, slightly sweet grains up front. Then a bit of lemon and some very mild spicy hops punch through. Nice crisp and clean finish.

M: Light body. Moderate carbonation that is feels pretty soft.

O: Great drinkability. Nice and refreshing. Another great seasonal brew from Summit, glad it replaced the Hefe.

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Photo of bsp77
3.88/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving glass: Poured from bottle into new Summit glass.

Appearance: Bright, burnished gold with moderate head and nice lacing.

Smell: Semi-sweet malts with notes of apple and grass. Floral, spicy hops make this quite dry and bitter smelling. Aroma becomes too muted after a couple minutes.

Taste: Just slightly sweet apple, pear and fresh cut grass, countered by a nice level of spiciness. Ends primarily with a spicy hop bite and is more bitter than most Kolsch I have had. Really fresh tasting (at least when it IS fresh).

Feel: Moderately high carbonation, clean & crisp body, dry finish.

Overall: Very refreshing but with a nice amount of flavor. As far as I can remember from two years ago, this is very similar to the Summit Kolsch Unchained beer, and that is a great thing. I know they used some slightly less authentic ingredients for this one than the Unchained one (to save money and/or increase production), but I can't really tell.

Much better than their Hefe Weizen (which this replaced), but I still miss the old Scandia Ale summer seasonal.

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Photo of budgood1
3.95/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours out a pale straw yellow colour with a frothy egg shell white head at least an inch high and not showing any signs of receding. plenty of chunky lace. pale malt aroma...some herbalness with lemongrss accents and hints of herbal hopppiness. the taste is frontal with the spiciness and herbal and lemongrass notes. a sturdy wheat and barley malt presence provides the impetus for all the impending flavours to take hold and lay down a foundation. it's a bit dry, and definitley has a quenching aspect to it, and i enjoy that after a hot day in the sun at work. well received body with a bit "rough around the edges" mouthfeel make this a unique kolsch. drinkability is quite nice...i like takes on a summertime style that exudes character.

overall i would say that summit has hit upon something good here, after messing around with the hefe and scandia. not sure where this rates compared to those two, but the ultimate comparison will be to see how this stands up to the schell zommerfest as go to summer slammers for my drinking pleasure. stay tuned...

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Photo of Omnium
3.76/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bottle > Pint Glass

A - Pours a cloudy straw color, nice one finger of fizzy white head, good lacing too.
S - No real good aroma here that stands out, a little light grain, some grassy tones, a little lemon peel, maybe some biscuit.
T - Taste is mild bitterness on some biscuit malt, a little grassy and floral on the end.
M - Crisp and refreshing, light bodied.
O - Excellent summer beer, probably my favorite, easily drinkable, very refreshing. Not the most on flavor, but definitely a good example of a kolsch.

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Photo of augustgarage
3.59/5  rDev -3.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best before 9/25/2012. Poured from a 12oz bottle into a generic kolsch glass.

Perfectly clear, very pale straw/maize liquid with a lasting finger of active ghost white foam. Delicate creamy lacing; superior retention.

Aromatics are subtle to the point of abstraction. Perhaps a hint of winter fruit or wheat, but it's difficult to discern.

Gentle malt flavor is accompanied by a low bitterness and faint (noble?) hop taste. Some wheat peaks through towards the finish which is mineral-rich and medium-dry with hints of biscuit dough.

Soft bodied, pillow-y, and refreshing.

A bit lacking in character, but clean, and a reasonable approximation of the style.

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Photo of JuicesFlowing
4/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured 3 cans into a German boot glass.

A slightly hazy golden straw colored body holds a white sea foam head with decent retention. Light rings of lacing on the glass. Aroma is malt based with grains and lemongrass coming through. The taste is clean, grassy, and a bit more hoppy in the finish. Bright and citrusy. Mouthfeel is medium to light.

Overall, a nice refreshing summer ale.

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Summit Summer Ale from Summit Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 51 ratings.