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Prohibition Ale - Speakeasy Ales & Lagers

Not Rated.
Prohibition AleProhibition Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

841 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 841
Reviews: 329
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 12.21%
Wants: 33
Gots: 104 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Speakeasy Ales & Lagers visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  6.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 08-27-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 841 | Reviews: 329
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4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of photomike
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of jenray
3/5  rDev -22.1%

Photo of marieow
5/5  rDev +29.9%

Photo of bigred89
4.5/5  rDev +16.9%

Photo of BilbosNuts
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a nice garnet and dark copper color. A good sized white head billows up from the bottom and slowly fades to a ring around the top. It looks very still with limited carbonation.

S: This is definitely on the maltier side as far as amber ales go. There are lots of bready and toasted malts with a slight hop profile in the background.

T: The taste is similar to the aroma, but I picked up on a sweet caramel malt flavor that I didn't notice in the nose. The bready and toasted malts are still there along with the limited hop flavors.

M: The feel is pretty much average for an amber. It is medium bodied, and very still. If feels sort of watery and could use a little more character in this aspect.

O: This is a solid amber, one that I revisit from time to time. I enjoy a good amber ale every now and then, and this one fits the bill just fine.

Photo of MareInfinitus
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of Sparrowhawk
5/5  rDev +29.9%

Photo of Neorebel
3.77/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Observed to be a deep, hazy saddle color with noticeable sediment. very minimal head and minimal carbonation as well. Aroma seems akin to a hoppy American Pale Ale. Upon tasting, I found it to be very malty with additional tart, floral, and bready undertones. A grapefruit variety of hops is also very prominent and bright. The flavor lingers pleasantly in the finish and only has the lightest warmth of detectable alcohol. Highly recommended beer for all and on any occasion.

Photo of ineva
2.75/5  rDev -28.6%

Photo of Brew33
5/5  rDev +29.9%

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5/5  rDev +29.9%

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3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Photo of westcoastbeerlvr
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

Photo of TicoCali
5/5  rDev +29.9%

Photo of randomdanger
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of codynevels
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of avaldivia
4/5  rDev +3.9%

Photo of devinoconnor
3.68/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

After reading all the wonderful reviews, and with a business trip to San Francisco planned, I was really looking forward to trying this out. It was good, but a little bit let down.

Pours a dark brown color with some orange tones. Smell is well-balanced in its hops, malts and barley.

The hops provide a little bit of a citrus taste and the malt balances it into a smooth, easy-drinking ale that comes with a surprising 6+% ABV.

Nice ale... just overrated in my very humble opinion.

Photo of KomodoDragon
3.87/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Bubbles grabbed the side of my DeGroen's pint glass as I poured this ruby colored brew. The cream colored head disappeared quickly and left only modest lacing.

S - Caramel, wood, dark fruits

T - Strong English toffy malt flavors and a nice balance between a sweet caramel start and a bitter hop finish. Some nutmeg and plum flavors as well add to the complexity. Quite drinkable for a 6+% ABV.

M - Fizzy and malty. I would prefere something more smooth

The pleasant surprises in this amber makes it a treat. Nice fall brew.

Photo of Knapp85
3.53/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this back in 2007 and haven't tried it since. From the recent reviews I'm seeing I may not try this one again since a lot of people seem displeased with some of the possible recipe changes. I suppose I should be glad I had it a while ago then I guess. The beer poured out as a nice looking amber color with a pretty decent head on top too. The smell of the beer was a little on the light side, there were some hop aromas and sweet malts in the mix also. The taste was pretty nicely balanced between the hops and the malts. The mouthfeel was drinkable and overall I thought it was a pretty good brew.

Photo of vitALEity
2.65/5  rDev -31.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I used to get this in bottles as a semi regular "staple" when I wanted a break from my normal IPA's but still wanted something hoppy and with a nice malt balance. This always worked for that and then all of a sudden THEY CHANGE IT! The last two times Ive had it recently the hops have all but disappeared from the aroma and taste and now its all some sort of caramel/chocalate/carafe malt. Why Speakeasy? Why!?

Photo of afksports
3.15/5  rDev -18.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

For as popular as this shizzle-shnitz is, I thought I was gonna have me a nice relaxing brew to start off the evening.

Guess I was wrong.

Yech. All malts in the taste. Hardly a hop to be found in this bad boy. And at 6.1%, you'd think I'd find some in an amber ale.

I forgive the beer for not having a head, the bartender chopped it off because she's not a fancy beer nerd like all of us. She's just some lady that puts beer in a cup.

Anyway - smells like malt - caramel. Tastes like malt - caramel. Tiny hop presence at the front of both the smell and the taste, but dominated by the malt. And the finish - which I would love to be hoppy -- nope. It's not. It's amber. Just malty. Not a trace of hops.

I had beer on Barbados of the same exact style, and that beer was better than this.

And if you're thinking maybe I just have a malt bias... there was no complexity to it. Just sugar, burnt sugar, caramel, and water. Mouthfeel was boring, it was low carbonated, the appearance was amber with hardly any head, no lace, no carbonation again... Just overall... "meh".

Photo of biegaman
4.27/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Prohibition Ale has a deep amber colour and lightly sooty complexion, but shows almost roasted red pepper highlighting. Despite the deep shade, it still exhibits marvelous clarity. Its head, too, is tanned (like a rusted nail) and leaves enough lacing that it might be too much for a dishwasher to handle - this calls for a sanitation crew to clean up.

The aroma is delightful, it blends toasted bread with a nutty spread and a lot of candied citrus hops. There's the usual grapefruit and cast of tutti frutti hops - not surprising for a bay Area brew - but no flags are raised with regards to bitterness. Similarly, there's nothing harsh about the toast as they've ensured a coat of lavish caramel sweetness.

The taste imitates a kind of almond brittle, with lots of chewy sweet toffee and nuttiness. If you like regular nut brittle chances are you'll love this liquid form (provided, of course, you're ok with it being mixed in with flavours of grapefruit, lemon juice and other citrusy fruits). Even still, with all the toasty breadiness you can just ignore them if you like.

One of the best things about amber ales is that they allow you to enjoy the delicious sweetness of long-boiled malts *as well as* the pithy, pine-y elements of American hops, each keeping the other in check (the malts never becoming too sweet, the hops too bitter) without any need for compromises. For my palate, there may be no style more gratifying.

Think of Prohibition Ale as that perfectly toasted piece of bread or the bed that's covers are tucked in just tightly enough or the soup that's at just the right temperature or the piece of fruit that is almost but not yet overripe... I could go on and on. It is a perfectly balanced recipe that is plenty malty and plenty hoppy and just the right amount of each.

Photo of VicSlick
3.84/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I will start off with the negative, but there is not much to say EXCEPT.... The beer had a hint of metallic flavor. Not a deal breaker though. Read on.

Appearance is great. Nice a clear caramely color.

Smell is perfect for a high end American Amber.

Taste is great. Much like a Boont Amber ale or insert other sweet amber brand here. Great. Not much hops, perfection of sweet caramely flavor. I wish it had just a cunny hair of more hops in it...

MF. Great. Not too fizzy. Just great!

Overall. Great beer. Maybe my new "old faithful"?

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Prohibition Ale from Speakeasy Ales & Lagers
87 out of 100 based on 841 ratings.