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Switchback Ale - Switchback Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Switchback AleSwitchback Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

536 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 536
Reviews: 112
rAvg: 3.57
pDev: 13.17%
Wants: 9
Gots: 43 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Switchback Brewing Company
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Switchback Ale (First sold October 22nd, 2002)

Using only traditional ingredients, Switchback Ale is a reddish-amber ale which is particularly well-balanced, allowing for complexity of flavor coupled with an unusually smooth and refreshing character. Five different malts, select hop varieties, and our own specially cultivated yeast create an ale which leads with hop flavors and a subtle impression of fruit (our yeast's contribution), followed by a palate pleasing malty finish. Our own special process uses the yeast to naturally carbonate the beer, and we leave it unfiltered. The result is a satisfying brew full of flavor with a remarkably clean and smooth finish.

(Beer added by: kaszeta on 08-06-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 536 | Reviews: 112 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by metter98:
Photo of metter98

New York

3.5/5  rDev -2%

05-11-2013 00:39:25 | More by metter98
More User Reviews:
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4.5/5  rDev +26.1%

12-17-2011 19:00:12 | More by Mac19872
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5/5  rDev +40.1%

06-29-2014 00:47:37 | More by DontTreadOnMe
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Rhode Island

4/5  rDev +12%

07-04-2013 14:32:22 | More by jpwadd
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4.5/5  rDev +26.1%

09-17-2012 19:26:57 | More by kevrob802
Photo of lordofthewiens


3.3/5  rDev -7.6%

Maybe I'd reached my beer limit that day, but I just couldn't get into this too much. Hazy amber color, small white head. Mildly sweet, mildly citrus aroma. Kind of tepid grapefruit taste. Fairly balanced. Not bad, but I'd had some great beers prior to this, and it suffered in comparison.

07-21-2009 21:03:48 | More by lordofthewiens
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4.5/5  rDev +26.1%

02-09-2014 13:56:07 | More by Custom151
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3.5/5  rDev -2%

07-02-2012 21:31:14 | More by DWolf
Photo of SunDevilBeer


4.15/5  rDev +16.2%

Had this several times on a recent trip to Sugarbush, as it's available on tap nearly everywhere.

Looks like a cloudy Sam Adams, but that's where the similarities end. A caramel-ish sweet citrus taste up front which gets washed away by the hops at the end with a slight tingle. Each sip leaves you wanting more - quickly. And you can do it too, because the alcohol is left in check. This beer is definitely a drinker, not a sipper, and not one you want to sit and dissect flavors....just drink.

This is a terrific beer to session apres-ski. If I lived in Vermont this would be my go-to beer.

03-07-2011 01:18:47 | More by SunDevilBeer
Photo of bishopdc0


4.08/5  rDev +14.3%

Served in a big glass (special night at the GLB)

The color is amber not transparent with a nice thick head to start. As I drink lacing forms

The aroma is sweet subtle hops of citrus and a sweet malt very nice

The taste is brilliant start with a soft carbonation a sweet malt comes and reveals a citrus hops mixed with a slight earthiness

06-10-2011 00:02:31 | More by bishopdc0
Photo of ThisLadyLovesBeer

New Hampshire

3.11/5  rDev -12.9%

A = unfiltered orange-amber color, a quickly dissipating head that leaves no lacing on the glass.
S = Lightly flowery, I can smell hops at first sniff.
T = I found that the malts are outplayed by the hops in this brew.
M=carbonation is okay, medium body but somehow watery as well.

Overall, I was hoping for more balance between the hops and the malts, but found the hops took over and left a bitter hoppy aftertaste. The finish was somewhat clean, except for the aforementioned hoppiness. It is a lighter feeling ale than most in its class, but I think would be a good pub choice with burgers or a wrap. Best way I would describe this is that it's kind of like a "Light IPA."

01-18-2014 17:33:34 | More by ThisLadyLovesBeer
Photo of tigg924


3.03/5  rDev -15.1%

Had on tap in St. Johnsbury

Appearance: 1/4 inch head, dark amber in color, clear, high carbonation

Smell: earthy hops

Taste: earthy hops and light caramel malt

Mouthfeel: medium carbonation, medium bodied, bitter with a touch of sweetness

Overall: This strikes me as an average hoppy amber. This is not a bad beer and certainly worth a try for hopheads. However, I have heard fanatical things about this beer and it just left me wanting a bit more in the taste department.

08-15-2011 13:30:17 | More by tigg924
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New York

3.5/5  rDev -2%

03-09-2014 03:48:31 | More by JC333
Photo of Cavanaghty


4.03/5  rDev +12.9%

Poured from tap

Appearance: Dark Brown color with a small amount of head. Decent carbonation. Slightly off white head.

Smell: Toasted malts and hoppy. Some sweetness.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Medium bodied not a smooth as I had hoped for. Toasted malts and yeast could be tasted with a subtle sweetness. Bitter after taste.

Overall: Good beer. I think I will revisit this beer the next time I'm back in the Burlington area.

07-22-2012 01:15:23 | More by Cavanaghty
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4/5  rDev +12%

This is quite a tasty beer, it's got a cloudy medium pale amber color with a nice little head, and some of the best lacing I've seen in any beer! This went the whole way down the pint!
The smell was rather dull, although I was at a restaurant my nose may have been overwhelmed.

Overall it tasted really great, some nice hoppy notes but overall quite smooth, great to be paired with pub food!

05-17-2009 02:08:28 | More by kingcrowing
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3.25/5  rDev -9%

05-26-2014 16:56:30 | More by ccurrid
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3.5/5  rDev -2%

04-23-2013 00:00:29 | More by WeymouthMike
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3.5/5  rDev -2%

08-23-2014 02:25:31 | More by sourdog
Photo of far333


3.25/5  rDev -9%

Hazy honey apricot color with a foamy oatmeal colored head that hangs around for a good long while. Aroma is very faint, but I pick up some sweet hops. Flavor is sweet, biscuity malt, with some hops thrown in, but nothing too strong or over the top. Mouthfeel is full and creamy, filling the mouth. Faint citrus aftertaste. Decent beer, but seems afraid to make its presence known.

10-21-2003 23:04:08 | More by far333
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3.5/5  rDev -2%

06-21-2013 14:18:25 | More by doremite
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3.75/5  rDev +5%

01-24-2014 00:21:38 | More by Seattle_Suds
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West Virginia

3.5/5  rDev -2%

03-10-2013 16:34:51 | More by williamjbauer
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4.5/5  rDev +26.1%

09-09-2012 03:33:59 | More by JustinTauscher
Photo of poop_brew


3.44/5  rDev -3.6%

A - Had it on tap at a local bar. Served in a 16oz. pint glass.

S - Not a lot going on. A bit of hop, and malt with a citrus. Mostly malt.

T - A light hop with a malty finish. Orange citrus to finish it off.

M - A great mouthfeel. The beer is easily consumed and finishes so smooth.

O - Since I live in the town it all started I think I am over the whole Switchback craze, but if it's on special or a good price it's always worth it. Monday's at Drink they have $2 switchback drafts. Stellar deal.

07-30-2013 15:37:20 | More by poop_brew
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New Jersey

3.5/5  rDev -2%

02-07-2012 18:43:18 | More by acurtis
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Switchback Ale from Switchback Brewing Company
81 out of 100 based on 536 ratings.