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Alexander Keith's Red Amber Ale - Alexander Keith's

Alexander Keith's Red Amber AleAlexander Keith's Red Amber Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

153 Ratings
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 153
Reviews: 76
rAvg: 2.89
pDev: 19.72%

Brewed by:
Alexander Keith's visit their website
Nova Scotia, Canada

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Barraclou on 03-17-2006)
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Ratings: 153 | Reviews: 76 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of DenisKolkin

Ontario (Canada)

3.35/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at the pub at the end of the street. Served in an Alexander Keith's 500 ml pint glass that was too cold.

Appearance - Dark red almost brown in color. Only 1/2 finger of head when the beer arrived to my table, but left soapy wisps of head for the during of the glass.

Smell - Nothing unpleasant, but there wasn't really much of anything other than "beer". This may have partially been because the glass was too cold and kind of dulled the aromatics of the beer a bit, but really there wasn't much here.

Taste- Crisp and clean, light caramels blended in. Also a bit of bite from other malts. Taste is a bit watery but since it was very cold seemed to work well.

Mouthfeel - Crisp, clean, seems reasonable balanced to my tastes. Lowish carbonation and thin feel.

Overall - I like this beer as a quick quaffable amber ale. Better than most offerings from Macro-Breweries and thus unfortunately would be one of the best beers on tap at a lot of establishments. While not a great beer, this is one that for whatever reason I rather enjoy.

Serving type: on-tap

10-22-2013 18:32:51 | More by DenisKolkin
Photo of beerguy1001420

Nova Scotia (Canada)

4.85/5  rDev +67.8%
look: 5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

was great and you people hatting , must drink junk beers from the usa thats not beer thats horse piss .. if this beer is so bad why is all keiths products in nova scotia sold at every bar and is the one you see signs everywhere for it because its great beer and dont give this idea its cuz its made here we have lots brands made here . its the best brand since 1820

Serving type: on-tap

10-05-2013 13:06:02 | More by beerguy1001420
Photo of The-Jolly-Imbiber


2.15/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured from a 473ml can into a conical pint glass.

This beer was quite a let-down. I am very much a lover of red and amber beers, so I was expecting something good. Where to start?

This beer's appearance is a nice, dark red-brown. Head is quite tall, due to the significant carbonation, and it lasted a few minutes. Barely any scent from the head, and still not much after the head had dissipated, except for some faint metallic smell. Moderate to high carbonation level.

I can't get over the taste of this beer. The flavour is nothing special, but the aftertaste is this really off-putting metallic flavour. To be honest, it is bringing to mind the iron taste of blood, like when you bite your lip or something. Obviously not the sort of mental experience you want when you're trying to enjoy a beverage or a meal.

Definitely would not buy this beer again.

Serving type: can

09-18-2013 02:18:25 | More by The-Jolly-Imbiber
Photo of Haydn-Juby

Quebec (Canada)

2.8/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served in a 473ml can into an English pint glass.

Appearance: Light amber color. Decent transparency. Average size head.

Smell: The smell was definitely the worst part of this beer. I can't quiet pin what it is but the IPA also carried this scent or "funk" aswell. Almost cornish maybe?

Taste: Not too bad but fairly watery. A decent session beer and could be easy to drink quiet a few. Slight caramelish taste. Not too hoppy and kind of sweet. Somewhat watery as well.

Mouth feel: Goes down somewhat smooth and not too bad feeling overall.

Overall: Not really a beer to enjoy and savor but more of a swill. I could see it being popular with party goers looking to down a couple beers that are a little better than the regular macro-lagers but honestly not really that much to offer in terms of flavor and taste. Slightly less than average for me but might be the reverse with others.

Serving type: can

12-30-2012 23:06:45 | More by Haydn-Juby
Photo of JamesHenjum


2.63/5  rDev -9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

A: This beer looks very nice. A deep see through red with a hint of gold to make it amber-like.

S: Smells very sweet. I was so surprised how sweet it smelt. It's a little caramelly.

T: Still has that sweet caramel to it but not as strong. Hops come in too strong and cover up the nice malts. Still good though.

M: Very carbonated. Watery and light.

O: I tried this in Montreal Canada. It is ok but it has too much bite for my liking. I would only drink if I wanted a canadian ale. Amber ale's should not have more malt than this.

Serving type: can

08-08-2012 01:25:41 | More by JamesHenjum
Photo of andrenaline

Ontario (Canada)

2.55/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Another left-over...

A - Pours a light amber colour, finger of head with little retention or lacing.

S - Musty buttered bread, grassy notes and a hint of caramel.

T - Very mild, almost as light as their 'light' ale. Musty, metallic buttered bread, sweet corn and the caramel lingers on the tongue.

M - Medium bodied, smooth and wet.

O - A poor example of the style, and lacks the flavour that a good amber ale would typically have. A mass produced ale that appears amber, but bears no resemblence to the style.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2011 23:21:42 | More by andrenaline
Photo of nickfl


3.08/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - a clear, amber body, topped with a finger and a half of off white head. The foam settles quickly but leaves thick lace on the glass.

S - A sweet caramel aroma with some herbal hops.

T - lightly toasted malt and some grassy hops. a dry, toasty finish with light bitterness.

M - medium body, average carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - there isn't much going in in this beer, but it is drinkable and completely inoffensive. If nothing else, it its an unusually good looking beer.

Serving type: on-tap

12-25-2011 23:51:16 | More by nickfl
Photo of CharlyNovember

Ontario (Canada)

1.78/5  rDev -38.4%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Had on tap, poured with a finger of white head, little retention, some lacing. Glassy copper-red colour, completely translucent. I think I'm giving this one bonus points for appearance for being in one those nice Keith's pint glasses. Smell is bland and boring, not much to say about it. Tastes like it smells,very light malt and that slight chemical astringency very reminiscent of Keith's "IPA" (which, by the way, is not an IPA by any stretch of the imagination). Nothing interesting at all. And the worst part is a repulsive sour aftertaste that lingers for a second or two, almost reminds me of spoiled milk. It's big on the carbonation and has a thin mouth feel, pretty quaffable on that front.
Overall there's nothing ale-ish about this beer, it tastes and smells almost exactly like Kieth's "IPA". I can't call it completely inoffensive, because it kind of is... mostly due to that horrid aftertaste. Avoid if possible.

Serving type: on-tap

11-11-2011 12:07:53 | More by CharlyNovember
Photo of SebD

Ontario (Canada)

2.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: It has a nice clear amber colour to it. It has a nice white head that dies down quite fast and has minimal lacing.

Smell: The aromas give out hints of bready/grainy malts with slight caramel and some light grassy hops.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a grainy taste with some light caramel and light grassy hops.

Mouthfeel: It has a medium carbonation with a light balance and feel.

Drinkability: It's a very smooth drinkable beer accompanied with fairly bland flavours and aromas.

Serving type: on-tap

10-14-2011 18:52:04 | More by SebD
Photo of Converge

Alberta (Canada)

2.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

341ml bottle poured into a 16oz pint glass.

A - One finger of fluffy, light-beige head after a gentle pour. Deep amber red hue sits below a decently retained head. Doesn't look half bad. Impressive lacing for a Keith's brew.

S - Bready grains and light caramel malt. A light earthy, grassy aroma lingers in the background.

T - For a split second I thought I tasted a well hopped ale as the brew started off, only to have it finish with a slightly sour, metallic grain finish. Way too close to a macro-lager in this department to be considered an amber ale. And while this is a clear step up from most fizzy, golden-yellow lagers, it doesn't really do anything for me.

M - Little carbonation with a fairly thin body. Could be worse. Dries my mouth out by the end.

D - It sort of irks me that Keith's try to market their beers as real craft beers, yet their catalog seems to be filled with watery brews that are only a minor step up from boring macro-lagers. This ale is alright, and I'd take it over a gross Corona or something any day, but this really isn't anything special.

Serving type: bottle

08-18-2011 01:31:18 | More by Converge
Photo of biegaman

Ontario (Canada)

2.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I've always maintained that big, commercial breweries would make great consultants for the cosmetic industry - the way they can use adjuncts, chemicals, stabilizers, etc. to make a beer so bland look so attractive must surely be useful to the people at L'Oreal or Yves Saint Laurent. This clear, sparkling, candy-apple red offering would make a fine spokesperson.

Keith's Red Amber smells nothing like an amber ale should, but I'm somewhat impressed that it at least doesn't smell foul. Most Labatt brands - and Alexander Keith's IPA chief among them - reveal in their aroma alone that their brewers have stooped to using adjuncts and hurrying the brew process. To its one and only credit, Keith's Red Amber at least smells neutral.

Being 'neutral' isn't normally a quality worth commending, especially not for a style that can boast the richest maltiness, the most resinous hop profiles and, in the best examples, the operative balance between the two. But the fact that this one lacks a cloying corn syrup feature almost makes up for the fact that it also lacks the other two features just mentioned.

Given its colour, I keep expecting to taste *some* degree of malt flavour or sweetness, but it's as if I had a cold. I reckon this has less flavour than Keith's IPA and while less of a bad thing is good, more of a good thing would have been better. This is so plain so as to be utterly unrecognizable from even the most average amber ale. This is like drinking stale lager.

Alexander Keith's Red Amber Ale is by no means offensive like the Alexander Keith's IPA, but it's equally as pathetic an example of the style it claims to be. If you came looking for rich, caramelly maltiness and/or pine-y hop zest, you've come to the absolute wrong place. If you're content drinking something that tastes virtually like nothing, pony up.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2011 21:02:28 | More by biegaman
Photo of spinrsx

Ontario (Canada)

2.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

341ml Bottle

Appearance – Clear reddish brown colour with a large size fizzy and frothy beige coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for close to 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell – Malts, an earthiness, breads/grains, dark fruits, butterscotch

Taste & Mouth - The beer has a below average amount of carbonation but it still feels kind of thin. I can taste malts mixed with grains and an earthiness. There are also notes of dark fruits and butterscotch. It finishes with a malty slightly sweet aftertaste.

Overall – Well, it's one of the better beers I've had from this brewer.. but that still isn't saying a whole lot. It's drinkable, but nothing something I'd buy again.

Serving type: bottle

06-07-2011 19:09:44 | More by spinrsx
Photo of evlu1441

Alberta (Canada)

2.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

This seems to be a staple at local pubs. I've had a bunch of other keith's brews, and have yet to be impressed.

Pours a clear reddish amber colour (go figure?). Almost no head to speak of.

The aroma is faint. Kind of grainy. Also faintly metallic or chemical.

Taste is weak. Slightly sour, but some nice malty notes come out towards the end and stick around.

Really heavily carbonated, and thin.. Not my thing.

I wouldn't turn this beer down, but I'm definitely not seeking it out in the future.

Serving type: bottle

03-12-2011 22:35:13 | More by evlu1441
Photo of marty21

Manitoba (Canada)

3.08/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

A: It's a clear amber with a small off white head. Settles to a solid cap and left a lot of lacing all over the glass.

S: Not much there for aroma. A little bit of sweet malt but pretty faint.

T: It has a caramel malt flavor that's very sweet. There's a faint grainy aftertaste.

M: Light carbonation with a light to medium body.

D: Not much to say about this beer. It's not bad at all but it's nothing that will blow your socks off. It would be a refreshing session beer. At least Alexander Keith's got the correct style name for this one.

Serving type: on-tap

02-02-2011 07:49:57 | More by marty21
Photo of Mora2000


3/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

473 ml can. The beer pours an amber color with a white head. The aroma is heavy on the toffee and grass, about what I expect from a red ale. The flavor is more of the same. I get some toffee, grass and some grain notes. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Not much to say about this beer. There is nothing really wrong with it, but there is not too much going on either. Not one I would try again, but not something I regret trying.

Serving type: can

01-21-2011 06:46:31 | More by Mora2000
Photo of CrazyMike

Alberta (Canada)

2.7/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reddish-amber appearance with minimal head. Smell is sweet and slightly malty.

Taste is overwhelmed by bitterness, it is a bit sweet and picked up some floral hops, but overall watery. Body is light with high carbonation. As for the aftertaste, once the bitterness is gone, it is mostly dry.

Overall, a very mediocre Red Ale. At first I was surprised Keith's made anything besides IPA, and I suggest Keith's fans stick to IPA over this.

Serving type: bottle

12-18-2010 23:26:31 | More by CrazyMike
Photo of kwjd

Ontario (Canada)

2.15/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a bright red colour without any head (or it completely dissipated by the time the waitress brought this to my table). No lacing on the glass. Smells of some mild sweet caramel added to a macro lager. Flavour has a bit of sweetness, almost no bitterness, pretty bland. Carbonation was quite prickly, which wasn't expected since it had no head. I'm pretty sure this only exists so they can have an alternative to Rickard's Red, though it falls way short of mediocre.

Serving type: on-tap

11-09-2010 04:45:50 | More by kwjd
Photo of DrJay


2.05/5  rDev -29.1%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Clear red/amber with a thin layer of fine beige bubbles topping the beer. A bit of lace, fair head retention. It doesn't smell very good, sour with some fruit and grain aromas. The flavour's a bit better, but still not great. Sweet with very low bitterness, fruity and grainy for the most part. Light to medium bodied with higher than average carbonation, a bit of dryness. I won't be going back to this one.

Serving type: can

08-29-2010 00:46:55 | More by DrJay
Photo of BruChef

New York

2.23/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 3

Had a bottle at a Jays game at Rogers Center. Appearance was dark red/brown with a decent head that diminished after about a minute. Smelled somewhat of caramel and light cereal. Taste was bland, unbalanced and lacking somehow in both malt and hop flavor although the hops were just a little more prevalent than the malt. Reminded me of miller light with food coloring added except you could taste the food coloring too. mouth feel was light and luckily easy enough to slug down during a hot day at the ball park. Would not seek this one out again.

Serving type: bottle

07-16-2010 04:31:39 | More by BruChef
Photo of soju6


3.13/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had at a local pub in Kingston.

A: Clear amber color with a decent head that faded to some lacing.

S: Aroma slightly sweet, not much else.

T: Had a mild sweetness and fairly clean finish.

M: Light body, smooth with some carbonation.

D: Decent beer, good for a couple.

Serving type: on-tap

06-22-2010 12:01:11 | More by soju6
Photo of thehyperduck

Ontario (Canada)

2.95/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Got this one from a sampler case, containing three of their brews.

Appropriately enough, it pours a copper-amber colour, generating a thin head with decent retention. It looks pretty inviting, to say the least. The aroma is sweet and malty but I can't put my finger on any specific odours.

The taste is similar to the smell - smooth, caramel malt, and rather sweet. A brief bitter hop bite at the start of the sip. A little nondescript I suppose, but nothing offensive. The carbonation is a bit high for my liking, but this is a pretty minor complaint. Mouthfeel is watery, but this is a Keith's we are talking about here so that's pretty much par for the course. It's light and tasty enough that I don't think I would have much trouble throwing back a few of these.

Everything about this beer is moderate. It's moderately tasty, and the flavours are generic and subdued. I have no strong feelings either way on this one, it's a decidedly average beer. I can't see myself going out of the way to pick up more of this, but it's certainly better than their flagship IPA.

Serving type: bottle

06-08-2010 05:10:24 | More by thehyperduck
Photo of orcasteve

North Carolina

3/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

thers nothing special about this one, this is thin and watery, their is a dry malty flavor up front and a light kiss of hops that are citrusey and week at best. the hops are the one thing that i like in this one. i could drink a few of these on a hot sumer day but i wont go out of my way to get more but i would drink one if it were offered to me

Serving type: can

05-22-2010 17:30:34 | More by orcasteve
Photo of keithmurray

New York

3.15/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On Tap at a rib joint in MOntreal

Poured a copper red color with fluffy tan head

aroma was a bit malty, caramel

flavor - malts, caramel

mouthfeel - watery, light mouthfeel, medium carbonation, not very complex

drinkability - these go down quickly

a decent beer, not really anything special but not bad either.

Serving type: on-tap

05-19-2010 14:49:54 | More by keithmurray
Photo of Sammy

Ontario (Canada)

2.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

On-tap at Bugsby's in St. Catherines. A little cheesy aroma, reddish brown colour, a lot of white foam. Malty, a tad of bitterness. The smallest amount of toasted malt. Drinkable, but not something to seek out.DRying, average mouthfeel.Taste is not that complex, weak for style.

Serving type: on-tap

05-19-2010 00:19:06 | More by Sammy
Photo of prosper

Alberta (Canada)

2.15/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Nice brilliantly clear amber/red with a decent head.

Smells faintly of caramel malt sweetness.

Taste is thin and sharp - slight caramel, but nothing really substantial, and not much else going on the malt side. More bitterness than I'd expect, but no real hop flavour. Finishes dry.

Very light mouthfeel.

I don't know what this beer is trying to be. It's like a light lager that sort of wants to bean amber, but in reality - just has a little food colouring in it. It's a feeble attempt, and ultimately, very unsatisfying.

Serving type: on-tap

05-02-2010 15:51:21 | More by prosper
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Alexander Keith's Red Amber Ale from Alexander Keith's
68 out of 100 based on 153 ratings.