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Gritty McDuff's Vacationland Summer Ale - Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Gritty McDuff's Vacationland Summer AleGritty McDuff's Vacationland Summer Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
77
okay

159 Ratings
THE BROS
84
good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 159
Reviews: 98
rAvg: 3.35
pDev: 14.03%
Wants: 3
Gots: 9 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company visit their website
Maine, United States

Style | ABV
American Blonde Ale |  4.90% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
You can't put summer in a bottle, but we may have come close! When the weather gets warm we roll out our summer seasonal, Vacationland Summer Ale. Vacationland is an Extra Special Golden Ale that's light in color but full-bodied, with a snappy hop finish. A bit of extra time in the conditioning tank rounds out and mellows the ale. We use generous portions of pale malt with just a touch of wheat malt to give VSA unique flavor that?s richer than most summer brews. Cascade leaf hops add a delicate and forward hop character as well. It's the perfect brew for all things summer.

22 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 04-25-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | Likes | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Gritty McDuff's Vacationland Summer Ale Alström Bros
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Ratings: 159 | Reviews: 98 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of djrn2
3/5  rDev -10.4%

Photo of Phyl21ca
3.43/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a golden color beer with a light foamy head with minimal retention and no lacing. Aroma of medium sweet malt is somewhat boring. Taste is also somewhat bland with some light notes of medium sweet malt with no material notes of hops. This one is quaffable and refreshing but still too bland to be one of my summer beer.

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.55/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

"Babies don't need a vacation, but I still see them at the beach. I'll go over to them and say, 'What are you doing here, you've never worked a day in your life!'"

--Stephen Wright

Bright orange with even brighter orange highlights. A somewhat vigorous pour produced three full fingers of suds that are somewhere between ecru and ivory in color. The head doesn't look to be melting fast and is doing a pretty decent job laying down thin, vertical streamers of lace.

The aroma has a cream ale-like vibe, which makes it more enjoyable than many American blondes. The Cascade and Saaz hops aren't appreciated, but that's what happens when they aren't added with a very heavy hand to begin with... and when the beer is being consumed about two weeks past the 'best by' date. Sorry, couldn't be helped.

It's easy to tell that Vacationland Summer Ale is better than average beer when fresh. It's barely so now, but the taste score is still honestly earned. There's much more flavor here (thanks to fruity ale yeast esters) than in any American or Euro pale lager that you'd care to name. Drinkability is definitely up there.

There's a modicum of toasted malt that is just prominent enough for my tastes. The hops provide a balancing bitterness and a little bit of orchard fruity flavor (apricot and lemon). Saaz might have been among my guesses if blinded to the hop bill. Cascade would not have been. It's nice to drink a blonde ale that has some character.

The mouthfeel barely hangs on to the above score (ABV kept firmly in mind). It comes close to wateriness on the finish and is saved by proper carbonation.

Gritty McDuff's Summerland Ale probably tastes better on a hot, humid July day than a cold December morning. That said, my taste buds know no season and recognize this as pretty good beer... for what it is. Not approved for vacationing babies. Thanks jwc215.

Photo of TMoney2591
2.85/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Served in a Chicago Bears shaker pint glass.

Thanks to papollo for this bottle!

Something about Gritty McDuff's conjures up images of some special reserve brew from The Simpsons. If only... Anyway, this guy pours a clear pale amber-straw topped by a half-finger of white foam. The nose is pretty faint, comprising flowers, chalk, and light wheat. ...I think that's what creeps into my 'strils, anyway. The taste holds notes of funky wheat, chalk, moss, and flowers, with a pervading orange-peel bitterness. Hm. The body is pretty light, with a very-light moderate carbonation and a kinda dry finish. Overall, I did not enjoy this beer. The flavors just don't come across as good to my 'buds, plain and simple.

Photo of StonedTrippin
3.44/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

one of the least offensive beers on at grittys, a balanced light summer drink, but a bit watered down, and painfully undercarbonated. it boasts a clear golden color, but the lack of head or rising fizz makes me skeptical from the outset. notes of light wheat and pale malt caress the nose, but generic C hops in low doses and ale yeast ive met before greet me rudely. taste matches, generic as anything, light and crisp like a lager, but a little sweet and a little fruity like most summer ales. its drinkable enough with a nice light to medium body and a particular floral element that sits well, but the carbonation is woeful, way underdone, and the one factor that made all the beers at grittys underwhelming. its made heavy by the flatness, and resonates a lazy sort of frustrating carelessness toward fermentation. I wish they thought this through a little better because it has potential, but not a beer I would buy again. go for the food to grittys, not the beer.

Photo of Jason
3.7/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 oz brown bomber, thanks to bennybrew!

Decent lacing on the glass, bright pale golden hue. Tight crispness deep with in the moderate body makes the mouth feel smooth. Smells and tastes a bit buttery from the yeast, the pale malt flavour provides a thin base of sweetness. Ample bitterness drops a metallic flavour on the palate. Lingering buttery flavour in the finish with some sweetness.

Tastes like a best bitter to me, I’d swear there is a good amount of wheat in there as well. Good drinking either way.

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.13/5  rDev -6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color, with a short white head that fades slowly and leaves a decent lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of citrus, pale hops, light malts and some spice.

T: The taste starts with a bite of spice. Then there's a sweet citrus flavor that comes in and remains dominant. There's a mild hops presence and a thin malt character that have trouble balancing things out. The after-taste is slightly spicy and slightly sweet.

M: Crisp but not very smooth, light body, high carbonation, finish is clean.

D: A little tasty, goes down easy, not too filling, mild kick, decent representation of style, it's a rather lackluster lighter beer that you could drink a lot of if it suits your taste, but there definitely many other lighter beers out there that are better than this one.

Photo of WesWes
3.53/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

The beer pours a nice gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a light, pale malt scent along with some fruity yeast esters and a bit of hops. The taste is decent. It has a very dry pale malt flavor that goes down easy and finishes bitter with a crip hop bite. The yeast provides a slightly fruity character. The mouthfeel is decent as well. It's a low/medium bodied beer with a bit too much carbonation for me. This is an average Summer ale. It's light and bitter, but too dry and carbonated.

Photo of jwc215
3.53/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Best by Nov. 09 notched on label:

Pours deep golden with a fluffy white head. Lacing sticks.

The smell is of grainy malt - "English"-like. There is a hint of citrus, some dough and butter. Smells like an English bitter, and not a bad one at that.

The taste is of sweet malt, some yeast (spicy) and butter. Butter stands out, a bit too much. It has an herbal, slightly metallic, slightly citric dry finish.

It is light-bodied (though not thin) with a pretty creamy texture and mild carbonation.

A pretty strong "house character" here. More of a summer version of an English bitter, IMO. A bit too buttery and not quite as refreshing as I would expect for a seasonal summer, but a decent brew on its own.

Photo of smcolw
3.58/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Golden in color, clear. Impressive head with good sticky lace

Light candy sugar smells--malty; strong caramel

Far more dry than the smell suggests. Some creaminess in the flavor. Strong dry hop is present in the swallow and the aftertaste. Full body for the style, high carbonation.

This brew is nearly lip-smacking in its dryness. Not complex, but is still interesting as a contrast to the typical "summer" offerings of wheat-ful, lemon flavored specialities. This would fit nicely in the Bitter category.

Photo of Rochefort10nh
3/5  rDev -10.4%

Photo of oriolesfan4
3.7/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Had a few beers from this brewery before and enjoyed them so time to dabble with their summer seasonal. Not too shabby I must say.. it's a nice crisp, golden/blonde ale. Nice refreshing hop bite to it (reminds me a lot of a kolsch) and light bodied so its super drinkable. Yeah it doesn't have an extreme flavor profile but it's well balanced, light and brewed for the right intent.. to imbibe on a hot summer day. Pretty solid summer brew.

Photo of wrightst
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%

Photo of Gavage
3.78/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I thought this would be fitting to have this as the first beer I had at Gritty's during my short vacation in Maine. Clear yellowish orange in color with a 1/2" head. The head reduces to a soft surface foam. Some mild lacing develops on the glass.

Aroma is of strong citrus which was a bit of a turn off. The taste was much better as mild malt, light bitterness, weak butter, and lemon zest produces a refreshing flavor.

Lighter in body, with a light crisp mouthfeel. Finish is mildly dry and relatively clean. Nicely drinakable.

Photo of woodychandler
3.03/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I got this handed to me with a finger of foamy, bone-white head with decent retention. Color was a deep gold with NE-quality clarity. Nose had a slight hoppiness. Mouthfeel was medium with a mild hoppiness on the tongue. The finish left me with a lightly malty quality. My notes read: "I will be interested to see what style they are calling this. I'm guessing a pilsener." Wrong-O! Oh well, I never said that I was a style maven.

Photo of ejimhof
3/5  rDev -10.4%

Photo of jdhilt
2.1/5  rDev -37.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Pours a five finger off-white head that goes quickly, leaving traces of lace. Clear amber color. Light carbonation and medium bodied. Hoppy nose. Flavor is balanced, but strong hops are in your face at finish with a lingering soapy, bitter aftertaste. $1.50 for a 12oz bottle from Capitol Convenience Concord, NH.

Photo of smakawhat
4.03/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a shaker pint glass from the bottle.

Foamy soapy head with lots of retention and off white. Body is a real nice true clear blonde amber with some rising slow carbonation. Looks great.

Bouquet is soft bready malts and sourdough sweetness. Smells a little like sour yeast.

Light bodied and soft malted grain and yeast in the palate. Fluffy and slight hint of crisp palate. Almost a hinting hop bitterness on the swallow.

This just might be an American Blonde ale I could get into, probably helps that I am on vacation right now drinking it which makes it even better (wink).

Photo of tdm168
2.9/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to my man Hoyt for bringing this back from Maine.

22oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours a clear gold with a 1/4" head with great retention. Smells is hops and wheat similar to a german pilsner. Taste is mild hops and wheat; bitter and unbalanced; even a little sour in the finish (maybe yeast gone bad?). Mouthfeel is light with absolutely no carbonation.

I did not enjoy this beer at all. Given the sour taste I suspect it may have gone bad.

Photo of Kelp
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%

Photo of plaid75
3.9/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a light copper hue with a finger and a half creamy white head. There was good retention and sticky lacing.

The smell featured a subtle sweet caramel malt with hints of soft flowery hops.

The taste was very well balanced and presented a light soft malt and floral, yet drying hop.

The mouthfeel was of average fullness with a very dry finish.

Overall a very nice, gentle APA that is very drinkable.

Photo of Latarnik
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%

Photo of beerthulhu
2.95/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: Orange pour with a frothy, ivory colored head of 1 finger statue. Good retention rate, and ample lace coverage of the glass. Spacious rise of medium sized carbonation bubbles.

S: Touch of sour orange peels, dry with some bread is very limiting on the nose.

T: Flavor was watery with some sour funk of orange peels on the first impression. The second and concurring sips faired a bit bette but was very linear in terms of the flavor progression. Bitter flowers, dry citrus with a light lingering bitterness of spicy hops follow the swallow. Spicy hops appear mid-palate with a base of sweet syrupy malt.

M: Light mouthful, a bit frothy, turns washy and foamy, sour orange funk, ok carbonation, not crisp, nor sharp.

O: Sits on the fence for me, a good blonde relies on its grainy, edgy flavor, this is a light smooth malt bill, some good points, others not so good here. A no brainer downer that comes more off as a tweener.

Photo of GarthDanielson
2.45/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a bottle into a pilsner, the beer is a super-bright maize coloring, vibrant but a little watery. It pours with a decent amount of fluffy white, airy head that stands around 2 inches and settles very slowly. Great cling along the glass as you go, the beer has toasted oats and honey sweet aromas. Some light spicing on the nose, too. Flavors are a bit light, but a smooth toasting hits first, with a slight sour malt character at the end. The aftertaste is watered down, also, with a limp malt sweetness. The finish is almost nondescript, with a watery and lacadasical honey sweetness, barely. Felt light water throughout. Meh.

Photo of Brad007
4.03/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a typical pale color. Aroma has some spice with the usual hints of malt and fruitiness. Taste is somewhat different though. It's seemingly more bitter than Gritty's Pale Ale with some alcohol taste and fruitiness around the edges. I can't really detect much else. No citrus. Hmm. I would probably rate it above the Gritty's Pale Ale as it fits better with the style. Still a decent summer ale.

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Gritty McDuff's Vacationland Summer Ale from Gritty McDuff's Brewing Company
77 out of 100 based on 159 ratings.