Monteith's Summer Ale - Monteith's Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 34 | Reviews: 23 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by doktorhops:
3/5 rDev +8.3%
Jumping across the pond to NZ to try a beer from an alright (just alright) brewery: Monteith's. These guys are like the Burleigh Brewing Co. (or vice versa) of NZ; they produce semi-interesting craft brews on an almost macro level. Anyhow Summer Ales have always seemed like a bad idea to me. They mix the "heavy" ale brewing techniques with things like honey, orange and lemon, when really ales go better with flavours like chocolate or caramel... nonetheless I will proceed to drink them, rant aside.
Poured from a 330ml bottle into a tulip pint glass.
A: This is a fairly average looking brew. Clear golden body with a white 0.5cm head that leaves a small amount of lacing in the glass.
S: Smells exactly like Bundaberg Ginger Beer! So yeah, gingery... No typical "ale" aromas (malt, hops, yeast) could be discerned because of the strong ginger note.
T: Tastes like Bundaberg Ginger Beer! (and no they aren't paying me to plug their product). The spicy ginger flavour is right up front, followed by the honey notes and then there is a mild hop bitterness at the end, but it's a ginger dominated show. I hope you like ginger (I was more of a Mary Ann man myself).
M: Nice and smooth, not heavy enough to be considered "creamy" like a Wheat Beer, but it's also not far off.
D: A drinkable brew? Quite, but with the prerequisite of liking ginger... a lot. Otherwise it's one of the more passable beers I've had of a style that is to me the uncle Fester of brewing styles; creepy and lonely. Yep that sums up Summer Ales for me; I want to love them, but they're just too weird to be lovable. Back to Pale Ales it is then.
Food match: Thai or Szechuan cuisine would be a good pairing with this beer.
09-02-2011 11:53:39 | More by doktorhops
More User Reviews:
2.75/5 rDev -0.7%
Single bottle served with dinner at a Gold Coast restaurant.
Poured into a small, slightly chilled schooner glass. Pale amber, big bubbly head, decent retention on that.
Nose is spicy, with strong notes of ginger, lemon, orange and honey. Smells like an herbal tea one might have for a sore throat.
Sweet, spicy and with bold ginger and citrus flavors, with a mild herbal bitterness to the finish. Pleasant for a sip or two, but this brew because cloying and undrinkable after just a few moments. Just too much - pushing in to ginger beer territory. Mild carbonation, slightly greasy/oily feel.
A brew that could have been quite pleasant if the defining notes had been turned down from eleven. Instead, it just tasted like a gingerbeer mixed with a pale lager. Cloying and tiresome. I only marked it above a 'D' because at least there was an attempt to do something different here.
05-07-2011 05:19:12 | More by JohnnyBarman
United Kingdom (England)
1.1/5 rDev -60.3%
Clear pale gold, with no head. aroma is like Schweppes Ginger ale. Light bodied, sweet and gingery, a bit thin, even a bit cloying. Not really exciting, and the sweetness makes it a bit cloying and not so refreshing. They recomend drinking it ice cold with a wedge of lime, i don't know about that, but the lime would probably improve the flavour, a real big dissapointment, given that ther black, saison and doppelbock beers are quite decent.
04-01-2003 01:22:30 | More by rastaman
2.68/5 rDev -3.2%
Pours amber with a large, quickly fading head.
Nose shows hefty ginger and what might be nutmeg? Pretty overpowering. Also a faint vegetal/herb-like character.
Some ginger notes as flavours, followed by weak sweet malt and vegetal notes. No bitterness results in a cloying finish.
Could use more carbonation to dry things out.
01-30-2012 07:46:47 | More by CrazyDavros
3.15/5 rDev +13.7%
Pours an orangy-gold color with very little head, which disappears almost immediately. Smells of citrus and ginger, very faint cloves & cinnamon there as well, very nice. The taste is very clean. There's some slight spicy flavor on the back end, but mostly it's just clean. Mouthfeel is pretty watery, some fizz as it goes down. Overall, it's actually pretty drinkable. It's not a bad summer ale, good for a hot day.
06-06-2008 09:40:18 | More by Kulrak
2.88/5 rDev +4%
A - Pours a dull Golden colour with a white head that dies
S - Aromas are sweet spice and Honey.
T - Very sweet tangy honey and spice and not a lot else
M - Light body and full carbonation.
D - Not a great beer but Ok if you want to slam one down on a hot day
03-11-2011 16:38:07 | More by eric5bellies
2.5/5 rDev -9.7%
Years ago I had a Monteiths Black Ale and loved it so I was expecting good things from their other offerings. Alas...
The colour is an clear copper and there was a short-lived head but the aroma promised a very interesting drop. Ginger/cinnamon smell with a dash of lemon. In fact it smells like a good ol' shandy you'd give the kids or the missus once upon a time. The flavour is much the same but the ginger overwhelms the mix and is badly out of balance. The label says honey-spiced but the honey is lost in the mass of spicy ginger. The mouthfeel is near flat and lifeless so by the time you get half-way into the drink its like spicy stale piss. This could be a lot better with better balance and some spark. It seems Monteiths are mastering the anti-climax.
06-21-2007 09:43:38 | More by rjimlad
2.95/5 rDev +6.5%
A: Pours a golden color with a sudsy head that fades to some lacing.
S: Aroma of citrus, bit of malt sweetness and hint of spice.
T: Taste of mild citrus , a light malt sweetness with some fruit and bit of spice. Mild bitterness and a dry finish.
F: Light body, crisp, smooth and refreshing.
O: Nice beer to grab on a summer day.
05-30-2013 04:31:40 | More by soju6
2.63/5 rDev -5.1%
An interesting attempt at a summer beer.
Very heavily spiced with ...Ginger. Almost like a ginger ale.
The label proclaims that it contains honey, but it really takes a back seat to the ginger. I would have liked a bit more hop character and perhaps a slight touch of malty notes, but the ginger was just so bloody aggresive. One of the very few beers that I would suggest to drink very cold, and on a hot day a cold one of these would be a an interesting change as your first beer. But then I would probably move on to something else.
11-28-2003 22:05:26 | More by ALEBOY
1.93/5 rDev -30.3%
Clean golden pale in colour, with a small head that is quickly reduced. No lacing, good carbonation.
Woah! Nowhere did I read on the bottle that this would be so gingery! It mentions honey and spices on the label (which are also present in the aroma) but nothing about how this is basically a ginger beer. Only a touch of floral hops present.
Palate is still ginger with faint traces of malt. Short, tartish and unimpressive. No back palate what-so-ever.
Disappointing. Should have the word ginger in big letters somewhere on the front of the label. Avoid unless you like ginger.
11-20-2003 04:13:08 | More by koolk
2.95/5 rDev +6.5%
Enjoying a Summer ale on a very cold Winter evening. Ooh yeah.
Pours a burnished gold colour with large effervescent bubbling, but a disappointingly thin head for all its efforts. White in colour, thin crown, retains well but I'd like it thicker. Lacing is enjoyable, but fairly thin. Pretty average-looking, has a soft drink appearance.
Smells tangy, sweet and spicy. Hints of clove, banana and red apple on that. But actually smells a lot like mead, which I guess is the "honey-spiced" aspect. Nice smell, very pleasant. But not very beer-y at all.
Taste is also sweet and tangy with a slight carbonated flavour and a fermented honey kind of flavour on the mid. Hints of clove and cinnamon without any real bite, just the flavour of spice without the sensation. Feel is a little thin, with a little bit of a tingle at first that pretty much dies to leave none of that effervescence that I can see in the glass.
Overall this is a beer with pleasant flavours, but it's very sweet and too hearty to call itself a Summer brew. I'd say this would drink better heated up on a chilly Winter evening (which is kind of what I'm doing with it) A bit sickly when it comes right down to it, unable to be drunk all the time. Not too bad though.
07-13-2009 06:45:31 | More by laituegonflable
2.23/5 rDev -19.5%
Dark amber colour with almost no head. Quite a lot of carbonation. Low viscosity. Looks like a soft drink.
The nose is ginger. And more ginger. In actuality it's more like asian pickled ginger. It's got a bit of sweetness, but there's very little else outside the overpowering ginger. Very one-dimensional.
The taste is pretty bad. Initial taste of ginger again, backed up by a strong hit of wet yeast. It's unbalanced and quite unpleasant. Eh. Mouthfeel very lifeless and dull.
Quite a disappointing beer. You could make a much better spiced ale for summer, and this just doesn't deliver.
01-07-2006 03:50:28 | More by lacqueredmouse
1.95/5 rDev -29.6%
I didn't even want to try this beer after the Radler Bier, but the bar tender in the brew pub insisted I try it, as it's apparently their best seller. The only difference between this and the Radler beer is that instead of Spite lemon/lime soda, this tasted like carbonated apple juice soda. Not sure which one was worse, but they were both the worst beers I tried on my trip to New Zealand.
03-23-2010 04:49:58 | More by femALEist
3.38/5 rDev +22%
Monteiths Summer Ale pours a radiant golden amber lets through plenty of light. Head is light and thin and disappears quickly. There is very little in the way of lacing as the glass quickly empties. Not a classic looking ale, but what would you expect with a beer designed for hot summer days?
The smell is a clear indication of the taste journey you will be taken on when drinking a summer ale. It’s all about the ginger initially – not quite as punch as a ginger ale where I actually recoil when the zing of the ginger hits my nasal cavity – but a definite dominance. There is also some sweet honey (Monteiths actually add Rata Honey) to the brew, as well as light citrus and spicy herbs.
The ginger is strongly evident again on the taste. It is dangerously close to overriding the other flavours, but there is just enough maltiness to let you know you are actually drinking beer. The honey is there again and the citrus becomes more clearly defined as orange zest. The herbal spices are still there on the taste as well – a very similar taste to cloves which is a good match for the orange and ginger. My major criticism is that although the rata honey flavour is great the whole taste is just too sweet to have more than a couple of these. When drinking Summer Ale I have often felt the urge to move to something bitterer and more refreshing
It’s a medium carbonated beer with a light body giving it a good balance for drinking over a session
01-13-2012 23:12:17 | More by aBeeraWeek
3.08/5 rDev +11.2%
did someone say ginger? this beers got it in spades! i swear someone at monteiths accidentally dropped a case of stones in the vat. interesting, but not necessarily a world beater, and for a summer beer quite hard to drink.
looked like an inviting summer brew, full golden color with a beady head that remained present. smell was of three main things, honey, cloves and, you guessed it, ginger! the aroma was great, but then it all went too far. taste contained the same three underlying elements, just alot more potent. has a faint hint of malt, and some nice floral hops that unfortunately werent qute dry enuff in the bitterness stakes compared to the rest of the brew. had reasonable zing from the carbonation. still its too full on for what is supposed to be a refreshing easy to drink summer beer. becomes real hard work once it gets past ice cold. its trying to cover too many bases and doesnt stay within itself. lacks overall balance, and as others have stated, if you dont like ginger, give this a wide berth.
ive said it about monteiths before, its good to see a brewer have a crack at some interesting styles and ill give this beer some credit for that. but the two i had were enuff to tell me i dont need to go back to it, and that wont be any great loss to me.
as a further review after drinking a big session on these with a kiwi mate who really likes this brew, i have to admit the further you get into it, the better it gets. after a few of these i was actually enjoying it. you lose the power of the ginger after a couple, and it actually turns out to be quite refreshing. im going to upgrade my marks slightly based on this. as of 21/12/03.
11-24-2003 10:25:31 | More by diablo14
2.5/5 rDev -9.7%
Here's a bolter.
Reminds me of a drink I had when I was a kid in England - Limeade and Lager - in cans, around 0.1% ABV it was. Sweet sweet sweet.
This is very similar - highly carbonated, golden yellow with a white head. Looks alright.
Aromas of honey, lemon or lime cordial and a sweet soft drink style taste to follow. No hops. None!
Grab from an ice bucket, thump it down quick and it would be mighty refreshing, but don't call it beer. No, really.
05-26-2011 03:12:33 | More by heygeebee
Monteith's Summer Ale from Monteith's Brewing Co.
69 out of 100 based on 34 ratings.