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Monteith's Original Ale - Monteith's Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Monteith's Original AleMonteith's Original Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

46 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 46
Hads: 73
Avg: 3.07
pDev: 20.85%
Wants: 2
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Monteith's Brewing Co. visit their website
New Zealand (Aotearoa)

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  4.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-21-2002

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 Monteith's Original Ale Alström Bros
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Reviews: 46 | Hads: 73
Photo of goillini93
4.55/5  rDev +48.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I love this beer. OK? Will it make any difference to your snobby, hop-loving American self if I tell you that my favorite beers are from Bear Republic, Sierra Nevada, and Russian River - the hoppy ones like Apex/RacerX, Torpedo/Bigfoot/Celebration, and the RRIPA? It might be that NZ is such a great place to visit that I was clouded in judgment - but believe me, I wasn't. I had this many times at the Monteith's bars in Havelock North, Dunedin, and Queenstown, along with (multiple samples at the) Greymouth brewery and bottles at the Redcliff Cafe in Te Anau and a bunch of other places including my suitcase on the way home. It's designed to be a pale ale and it doesn't disappoint with those great unique flavors of the Nelson hops.

A: copper-golden, always perfectly carbonated and crystal clear.

S: A little hop-stinky, in a good way, but more of what I would call herby and not necessarily flowery like the cowboy-style hops in the US

T: delicious - probably what a pale ale should be, lots of the Motueka-kind of herby-medicinal hop flavor (that's what I think, anyway, feel free to correct my wack tastes) offset by a mellow malt sweetness that makes for a well-balanced beer you certainly wouldn't find as a mass-produced beer in the US

M: it felt good the second before I swallowed it - nothing flabby or off-putting, for sure

D: I drank a LOT of these while in NZ - and enjoyed every drop. It is pretty refreshing when you can have multiple delicious 4-5% imperial pints and not be flat on your butt, which happens to me all the time with the beers at my favorite watering holes at home. Plus NZ is just cool.

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Photo of Offa
3.88/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

I find this to be a very enjoyable, light but still fairly characterful and well-balanced ale.

Copper red, deep, clear, yet bright, it has a medium pale tan head slowly shrinking to a thin, lasting top and leaving a little bit of weak lace.

The aroma is light chocolate, light caramelly toast, light earthy leaves, restrained but very pleasant with a little complexity.

The taste is simjlar, light and dryish with light sweetness and balancing light bitterness. It has light sweet-sour fruitiness, light nuttiness, hint of caramelly toast, hint of earthy-leafy hops. It has a definite English quality overall. The feel is pretty average, neither watery nor full nor interesting.

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Photo of Kulrak
3.8/5  rDev +23.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep reddish brown color with about a cm of tan creamy head that fades away to a thin layer, but leaves its mark on the glass all the way down. Smells faintly of malt and caramel and a tiny bit fruity. The taste is malty, with a bit of roast malt flavor there, and a bit of blackberry as the bottle says. Also a little strawberry on the end of it. Just enough bitterness to balance it out. Finishes fairly dry. Mouthfeel is tingly and fizzy, but not overly so. Overall, it's a very tasty and drinkable beer. Wouldn't mind having some more of these.

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Photo of RobH
3.62/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

11.2oz brown bottle

A: Pours a decent looking copper-amber color. Nothing brilliant, just simply looks like nice pale ale. Clear but with plenty of carbonation keeping it alive. Nice.

S: The malts and hops are certainly there, but not in any stand out way trying to overwhelm the senses with some big pronouncement. Appealing in it's ability to follow the path of not being unappealing in aroma. Nothing offensive here.

T&M: For my first and only beer of the night, this came off as refreshing and with just enough flavor to keep me coming back for more. Nothing fancy; but certainly highly drinkable.

Overall: I am not rushing back to the store to grab more of this, nor will I turn it down if offered. Certainly worth a try, especially if you prefer a nice ale that isn't overtly hopped.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.6/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured this brew out and noticed it had a pretty standard yellow color to it. The head was a little fizzy and white... nothing too impressive about the looks of this brew. The smell was a little hoppy but pretty well balanced with the malts that were in it. The taste of the beer to me was really refreshing that day I had it. This beer didn't last very long in my glass. The flavors of hops and malts went nicely together and formed a well balanced brew in my opinion. The mouthfeel was pretty good and overall I thought this beer hit the spot.

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Photo of xylophonica
3.55/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 33cl bottle into a Jupiler glass.

A - Thin, frothy head. Dark amber colour.

S - Roasted oats & barley. Bit of wood & malt.

T - Mild, slightly watery old ale taste. Slight hint of dark malts and barley softened slightly by a sugary sweet feel.

M - Good carbonation gives a spicy feel on the tongue. Very lively.

D - Easy to knock back but not overly complex or interesting.

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Photo of chinchill
3.54/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Monteiths Original Ale on tap at the brewery in Greymouth, NZ

Excellent clarity in this deep amber ale. Both flavor and aroma are a bit light for style; the lightest pale ale I’ve had in NZ. Still, very well-crafted and balanced, as well as very fresh (of course).

Feel: Light+ body with medium-high, very crisp carbonation. Clean finish.

O: recommended as a somewhat light flavored pale ale.

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Photo of tone77
3.53/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a brown 11.2 oz. bottle. Has a dark brown color with a small head. Smell is of chocolate with some malts. Taste is good, chocolate, malts, some notes of caramel. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and has good drinkability. Overall this is a good quality beer.

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Photo of thekevlarkid
3.53/5  rDev +15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Out of a bottle this beer was a clear copper color with one finger of beige head. The retention was good and the lacing good too (esp. for a mass-produced, small country beer). The aroma was of generic grains, hints of caramel malt and toasted malt. The flavors were solid, a malt driven brew with an emphasis on caramel malt, some woody undertones, nuts, a bit of toasted malt and enough hops to add balance. The mouthfeel was good, smooth and light, the body medium and the carbonation soft. Very sessionable and worth a swing. Props to the kiwis who are behind this brand; I like their work.

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Photo of Kemmerlin
3.52/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: dark amber or light brown color, filtered, lots of carb bubbles and thin but lasting white creamy foam head leaving light lacing.
S: has a well balanced caramel malt and light aromatic hop smell but would mostly say maltiness is the main aroma.
T: taste is good but typical, caramel malt flavor mixed with bittering hops that really come out in the aftertaste also tastes like the brewer used some type of filler like corn or rice in the mash.
M/D: true to the statement on the label the feel is smooth and light bodied which something I was not expecting. The drinkability is good but due to the malty sweetness I can't say I could drink many of these.

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Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.5/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #44 (Sep 2010):

Creamy top to a tawny-looking brew. Hints of crusty baguette, caramel, yeast and a fine berry sweetness in the aroma. Some what lighter bodied and pretty smooth. Hops are very modest here, letting the yeast and malt show more. A bit of toasted biscuit and bread crust with some caramel sweetness deep within. Yeastiness comes across chalky and dry, but compliments the malt very well. Semidry finish with a growing drinkability. Not half bad--a flavorful little session ale from another hemisphere.

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Photo of StJamesGate
3.48/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours bright ruddy amber with a loose eggshell head. Nose is light toasted grain with stewed apples and a bit of wax. Mashed pears, peanut skin, some toast with earthy English hops. Sweet finish, tight linger. Light to medium, some stick, some tingle.

No better or worse than a lot of English bitters in bottles that get far more respect. Nothing earth-shattering, but you could stay on this all night.

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Photo of eric5bellies
3.45/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a dark golden colour with creamy head that dies quickly.

S - Caramel malts and some bread wuth sweetness.

T - Yeast flavours dominate with some malt at the finish.

M - Light body and carbonation is full.

D - A decent sessionable beer and worth a try.

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Photo of alexgash
3.38/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Golden copper color, off-white head. Fruity malt nicely mixed with earthy, bitter hops. Solid malt backbone of toasted caramel. Light fruitiness. Hops are generous and herbal, with decent bitterness in the finish. Medium to light bodied ale with a slightly overcarbonated feel. One of the better beers in the generally underwhelming Monteith’s range.

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Photo of soju6
3.33/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

On tap at hotel in Auckland.

A: Served a deep golden color with a nice head that fades to some lacing.

S: Aroma of roasted malt, some caramel and a bit of dark fruit.

T: Taste of roasted malt with caramel sweetness and dark fruit. Mild bitterness and a clean finish.

F: medium body, quite smooth with a slightly grainy texture.

O: Enjoyable beer but nothing fancy.

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Photo of jarmby1711
3.33/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Red teak in colour .A mixture of caramel sweetness and sharp bitterness both on the nose and palate.It balances these well.
I was hoping for and expecting a bit more hoppiness to this and ,was subsequently disappointed.
It has nothing nasty or unsavoury , it is a little bland.
Easily drinkable but not something I would seek out especially.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.3/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a one finger off-white head that fades quickly to a ring leaving some lace. Malty nose. Deep clear mahogany color. Light-medium carbonation and light bodied. Flavor is light caramel, hops stay in the background. Best before Mar 2010. $1.75 for a 330ml bottle from Beverage Warehouse Winooski, VT.

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Photo of russpowell
3.28/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours an effervescent copper/amber with 2+ fingers of rocky cream colored head. Above average head retention & great lacing

S: Grassy hops, breadyness

T: Follows the nose, plus some lemony hops & slight grainyness up front. Grassy & lemony hops dominate as this warms, plus a touch of mineral hoppyness as well layered under grainy bread flavor. Finishes crisp but starts to go a bit watery

MF: Medium bodied, fairly low carbonation, okay balance

Drinks alright, but not hoppy or malty enough to really hold your attention for very long, not near as interesting as their black ale was...

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Photo of Hoppsbabo
3.28/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.5

A: Dark amber with a small whitish head. I quite like the way it looks.

S: Metallic hops and rubber balloons. SlIghtly herbal.

T: Hmm, it's lagery and a bit metalic but there's definitely something Belgian going on, like earthy and herbal notes reminscent of Duvel, only subtle. Still lagery though. Dry.

M: Lager like.

O: This is to New Zealand what Coopers is to Australia – by far the best thing widely available. Tastes better cold.

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Photo of Brad007
3.27/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber color with a head that is very quick to fade. Interesting presentation.

Aroma is full of buttery malt with just a touch of hops present. Seems about right for the style.

Taste is full of buttery malt with a hint of caramel, followed by just a hint of hops. Certainly fits the style it's trying to convey.

Mouthfeel is full of lingering buttery/caramel flavors. Not much else.

Not bad. I'd say it's average for the style and a bit too dark.

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Photo of Sallerj
3.21/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

This is a mild, caramelly, slightly chocolatey ale with carbonation that's a little to sharp, and a pleasing bitter finish. It's very drinkable and well balanced, but in the end, it doesn't have a whole lot going on. It doesn't have any of the cloying qualities of a cheap generic ale, and I could down a few pitchers of this beer if I had to.

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Photo of dgilks
3.18/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear copper colour with a small and very short lasted off-white head.

Mild malty and dusty aroma. There's a touch of earthy nuttiness but nothing particularly special or commendable.

Smooth malt, slightly earthy hops but ultimately an emptiness that lets this beer down. It seems to suffer from Monteiths-itis, a disease which inflicts ordinariness on a beer that otherwise has potential.

Crisp, light and refreshing with a moderately-high carbonation. Decent.

This is the ale that lager drinkers like. There's nothing special about it but it doesn't do anything particularly wrong either.

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Photo of mulder1010
3.14/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Was quite suprised by this beer. Really like their dark offering and this was not what I expected.
Poured a golden brown color, got at best a half inch of head and it quicky disappeared.
Smell was of hops and I got the carmel off the bat. A very different version of a pale ale to me but was workable.
taste was a little more sweet than I expected. The sugar and carmel is much more apparent in the taste.
Mouthfeel is more like a candied apple, very different.
Drinkibility, had 2 and not too keen on this beer. A different style pale ale. Might take a few of these to sway me the other way. Prefer the dark and the radler much more.

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Photo of mazstar
3/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I'm a big fan of NZ craft beers, and Montheith's is one of the better known micros here in Australia.

Well packaged and presented, I was looking forward to what the brewer calls its 'original' ale.

It's a lightly malty, bready smell and pours an a decent glass but the taste is simply non-eventful. First up you get some nice caramel, malt, banana, brown sugar but the palate is left alone at the altar after the initial introduction.

It is easy to drink and would suit someone who drinks lager but wants something fuller and warmer.


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Photo of brendan13
3/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Cooper colour with a couple of centimetres of off white head that falls away almost straight away.
S - Label states that hops dominate...theres some slight floral aromas but other than that it's dominated by a caramel malt presence.
T - Taste is sweet caramel maltiness and some floral hops.
M - Quite light bodied, medium carbonation.
D - Another ok if somewhat bland beer from monteiths.

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Monteith's Original Ale from Monteith's Brewing Co.
73 out of 100 based on 46 ratings.