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Summer Honey Ale - Big Sky Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Summer Honey AleSummer Honey Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

160 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 160
Hads: 309
Avg: 3.38
pDev: 21.89%
Wants: 6
Gots: 25 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Big Sky Brewing Company visit their website
Montana, United States

Style | ABV
American Blonde Ale |  4.70% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 06-16-2002

When the days get longer and the air gets warmer, we get outside quite a bit. And we build a big thirst. Summer Honey helps us shake off the winter and slakes our thirst for a refreshing brew. Summer Honey is a full-flavored summer seasonal ale. Brewed with a unique, balanced blend of spices, Northwest Hops, and Montana honey. Summer Honey is brewed during the early days of spring and released around the first of May each year. Light colored, light bodied, and very drinkable, Summer Honey sacrifices nothing to create a flavorful beer that can be enjoyed during the height of the Summer.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 160 | Hads: 309
Photo of Floydster
2.87/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce bottle purchased at Liquor Land in Upland

Poured into an old Budwesier mug

A lot more spicy than sweet which is odd for a summer beer

A little citrus zest to it, but it did not stand out

Thick white head

Could not drink many of these because it is heavy for a lighter beer

 286 characters

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
2.9/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Dark gold color, 1" head, looks like an ale. Aroma was plain, honey not discernible, nor are the hops beyond the faintest flourish hint.

Taste is also rather muted, hops and honey are not relevant, sweetness is more reminiscent of corn than honey. Faintly bready. Light caramel. No development through the bottle, even as it warms. Girlfriend/intro beer.

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Photo of Gatch
2.91/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A - Golden pale in color. Thin, fizzy head that dissipates quickly.

S - Hops, some malt, staleness that you find in macro lagers. Some citrus.

T - This tastes and feels more like a macro lager than a pale ale. What makes it different and keeps it a pale ale are the notes of citrus and honey.

M - Fizzy with ample carbonation.

Not great but good when it's cold.

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Photo of The-Adjunct-Hippie
2.96/5  rDev -12.4%

Appearance (3.75) : pours a beautiful hazy golden lemon appearance with an off white billowy, dense 1 finger head that pretty much stays put. The foam alone is pretty impressive.

Smell (3.75) : Lemon, flowers, citrus peel, sweet field corn. Spiced ale. Like a spring day.

Taste (2.75) : lemon peel, a faint touch of honey, some bitter hops, some esters. Dish soap...? Some quiet yeast and hops left over on the finish. Overall not impressive, the soapy taste destroys it like a dragon-zombie infested-ice age apocalypse.

Mouthfeel (3.25) : buttery, smooth, light. Medium bodied but drinks like a light bodied brew. Ends with honey notes and a slight dryness.

Overall (2.96) : A bit sickly and disgusting, although still relatively crafty. I keep wanting to say its like High Life with some bad honey lemon added to it. I expected more honey sweetness. Instead I got an adjunct lager taste honey hops and soap. Maybe I set my soaps, er...hopes too high. With that being said I'm sure it pairs with certain foods in a good way. As for the remainder, down the drain it goes. It served its purpose.

 1,100 characters

Photo of beerguy101
2.98/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Light Gold color, medium head. Light bodied ale, flavored with honey and spices. Light and refreshing. Light bodied. Lots of flavor. Good malt/hop balance. Mouthfeel is clean. Finish is crisp. Aftertaste is spicy and slightly bitter. Nice summer beer.

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Photo of ADZA
2.98/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear golden yellow hue which leaves a two finger frothy head and sporadic lacing,the smell is average and has aromas of grains,bready sweet malts and herbal hops but very uninspiring,the mothfeel is light bodied and dissapointing with tastes of honey,lemon zest,grains and finished with a spicy herbal hoppy dryness and overall its below par with an average mouthfeel that doesnt suit and would not buy again cheers.

 425 characters

Photo of Halcyondays
2.99/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours a very pale yellow, with a light cap of fizzy white foam, spotty lace.

S: Honey, piney hops.

T: Sweet with honey initially, but goes heavy into an earthy, green hop profile that wasn't my cup of tea, still drinkable though, it's OK. The honey is a very minor part of the beer, don't expect something like Midas Touch.

M: Crisp, light-bodied, nice carbonation, good mouthfeel overall.

D: I've been a fan of Big Sky in the past, I just didn't find this one very good, a pass for me.

 509 characters

Photo of barnzy78
3/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle, pours golden with a thin white head that quickly dissipates leaving no lacing on the glass. Aromas are biscuity, sweet, faint honey. Tastes are sweet, malty, honey, biscuit, some spice, and trace herbal hop on the finish. Mouth-feel is thin-to-medium with moderate carbonation. Overall, definitely sessionable, but pretty standard for the style.

 358 characters

Photo of humuluslupulus8
3.01/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A: The beer was a golden color like a light honey. It had a white, medium-thick head.

S: The smell wasn't too exciting. I noticed some sweetness and a weak mention of hops.

T: The flavor was close to balanced between the sweetness and bitterness, but it leaned toward the sweet side. As in the smell, the hops were faint and I couldn't really taste them distinctly enough to describe if they were piney, floral, or herby.

M: The beer had a medium density. For some reason, I was expecting it to be thinner. The beer would probably be more enjoyable if had a little more carbonation to thin it out.

O: Overall, the beer was good, but it wasn't exciting. None of the flavors were very distinctive from the malt base to whichever hops were used. I would drink this beer again, but I wouldn't expect it to be memorable.

 819 characters

Photo of ManuelHerrera
3.01/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 2 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance- This beer pours a clear yellow with a little head retention.

Smell - Very sweet aroma with heavy honey, mildly syrupy. The smell is quite promising before tasting this beer.

Taste - Very thinly flavored on the front end, but as the beer lingers honey and grapefruit notes carry this subtle beer into a flowery sweet finish.

Mouthfeel- Light, very carbonated, but not particularly smooth feeling. The thinness makes this summer brew particularly appropriate on a hot day, though.

Drinkability - Overall a decent beer with very little complexity. I'll admit I expected more from the makers of Moose Drool, but alas, it's just okay.

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Photo of Tolnik
3.02/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Poured this pale wheat colored beer into a pint glass. The foam that was created off the pour was that of a 1/2 inch. Then reduced down to wisps of lacing. The wheat and floweral tones of the beer off the aroma is tantalizing. The taste isn't that great that follows the aroma. It has a bittering taste of the wheat that doesn't create a great pallet. The after taste is likewise but doesn't linger for that long.

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Photo of BigRedN
3.05/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: Poured into a pint glass from the 12 oz bottle. The beer is clear, golden in color, with a somewhat thin white head (about 1/4 inch). Head fell to nothing and left no lacing.

Smell: Some faint spices and citrus fruit. I smell nothing sweat or honey like.

Taste: A bit spicy. Much like the smell I taste nothing really sweat or honey like. I should not be surprised because it seems that I can rarely pick that out any any beer that says it has honey.

Mouthfeel: Light in body with some decent carbonation. Crisp, with a smooth finish that goes down easy.

Drinkability: Purchased a mix 12 pack to try the Big Sky beers. I should have waited til they had a different seasonal in the pack. I would not purchase this as a stand alone product.

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Photo of ADR
3.06/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Clear yellow ochre color with a substandard head that's a trace after 20 seconds. Bright aroma, trace of honey. Off tastes (!), tap water with spicy impressions. Stays medium-bodied to the swallow, but has some unsettling qualities in the esophagus. There's a little mid-mouth interest in this brew, but it doesn't redeem the wandering finish of sweet/sour/weird to my tongue. Big Sky Brewing is a real puzzler to me, high variation in quality in their brews.

 464 characters

Photo of jreitman
3.06/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Nice gold-orange color, but unfortunately for me the beer quality did not match it's appearance. Honey sweet with citrus undertones and a medium (leaning towards the light) bitterness. Subtle hints of nuts.

 208 characters

Photo of awmiller
3.06/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Under the cap – “If yer gonna be stoopid, ya gotta be tough!” This brew poured up a clear golden body with a one-finger head (from a somewhat vigorous pour). Retention was minimal reducing down to a bubbly film on top with minimal lacing effects. Smell- Lots of sweet honey and spices throughout. Served ‘fridge-cold’. Scents and flavors of honey (duh!) and various spices and very little detection of hops or malts throughout.

 437 characters

Photo of BretSikkink
3.07/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Clear with some chill haze, not much of the very white head. Sweet and spicy aroma, some citric zest mixed with malted grain. Fullness of spicing.

Rough but light honey is all over this one, along with grain mustiness. Not much for bitter flavors, just cramming sweet down the throat with the honey and pale malts. Multiple spices lend a 'unique' (not necessarily off-putting, but not genius either) rounded flavor. Probably some coriander snuck in there.

As I've found with spice-heavy brews, let this one sit out a minute to appreciate the subtlety of the ingredients. Very crisp when cold, lots of carbonation. Light of body, a touch watery but quaffable. Not bad.

 674 characters

Photo of brownbeer
3.1/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- gold with a white head.

S- Grainy aroma, corn, musty honey, somewhat floral.

T- A mild honey sweetness, juicy fruit, caramel

M- Smooth and malty, goes down pretty easily.

D- Not bad on a hot day but there are quite a few others I would reach for instead. Not worth seeking out.

 285 characters

Photo of IPASetter
3.1/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Poured a nice golden color with not much of a head that quickly dissolved and didn't create much lacing.

S- I didn't get much out of the smell of this beer maybe some sweetness but that's about it.

T- A smooth summer beer that has a nice crisp taste to it. A step above all the mass produced beers but nothing it the taste to make me rave about.

M- Has a light mouthfeel and some carbonation that you would expect any summer beer to have.

D- Pretty high easy to drink nothing about that taste wants to make you not have another one. If you are just relaxing with friends and want to throw a few back this is a great choice instead of buying a mass marketed beer.

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Photo of terrabyte
3.12/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours into a nice yellow color with a small white head.

The aroma is sweet, with a rice or wheat malt.

The flavor is quite light. Nothing bold going on. However, there is still some subtle complexities going on. It says honey, so let's assume it's sweetness comes from honey. It's followed by some spices such as coriander. It finishes without much bitterness.

Dry crisp mouth. Last inch of my glass could be shaken up with carbonation, however, it wasn't a distraction while drinking.

There are too many amazing Big Sky beers I'd rather be having. Yes, this is better than any other refreshing lawnmowever macro beer due to its honey spiced flavor. But I just want to move on from this beer.

 706 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
3.13/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear, yellow body with a fizzy, white head. If that doesn't say "Summertime Drinking", nothing does!

Smell: Faint pale malt nose with a note of honey, but maybe half a note each of spice and fruitiness.

Taste: Light pale maltiness with a modest honey-based sweetish. Hint of peach fruitiness as well as a touch fo spice. Floral, citrusy hops with a fairly tame, gentle bitterness. The flavor bounces back and forth between the simple, sweet honey and light spice taste until you reach the dry, thin finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-thin body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: Easy drinking, lightly flavorful, though somewhat forgettable. Yep, it's about average for a simple, summertime libation!

 716 characters

Photo of Thorpe429
3.18/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the brewery in August 2009 during our West Coast road trip. Reviewed from notes.

Pours a pale golden color with a white head. Nose brings forward a dash of honey and a little bit of mildly floral hops. Pretty plain overall, and this carries over into the taste. There is some faint honey-baked bread along with some ever so slight bitterness. Feel is light and well carbonated. No apparent defects, just nothing really going for it.

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Photo of Goliath
3.18/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear golden color with a large inch and a half slightly off white head. Good retention.

The aroma is ok. A slight hop presence giving a touch of citrus is followed by a sweet bit of honey. How appropriate.

The taste is ok. A light hop presence gives a bit of citrus and is quickly followed by a hefty malt backbone lending notes of bread and grain. A slight sweetness takes the edge off.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderately high carbonation giving it a nice tingle.

Drinkability is moderate. The beer is easily sessionable at only 4.7% ABV, however it's a bit dull and uninspiring which doesn't exactly compel the drinker to have another, or finish the current one for that matter. It's ok, but subpar in my book.

 733 characters

Photo of abrand
3.18/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle poured into the Ommegang tulip. I believe this is the last summer brew in my DBF so thought it would be wise to drink her up. This was purchased earlier this summer as a Big Sky sampler. label shows a big grizzly and displays that it contains real honey and spices.

Appearance is a golden orange and minimal head after an aggressive pour. Minimal lacing but lots of carbonation. Not much hits the nose, but the aroma is sweet malts and maybe a little bit of honey. Taste is similar to the nose with it seeming very watered down. Little hints of sweet honey and a rather dry, bland finish. Mouthfeel is very thin and drinkability is rather low. Not a very exciting beer in any way.

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Photo of LXIXME
3.2/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear rich golden color below a small white head, that quickly recedes into a thin lasting lacing.
The aroma is a light sour lemon and honey with a slight bready maltness to it.
The taste is also a light sour lemony with honey in it. There is still a slight bread like maltiness in the taste and even into the aftertaste which really doesn't dry out much.
This beer has a light body and mouth feel from the first sip to the last swig. If you are into drinking lighter beers aka Bud, Coors, etc. this is right in your ballpark but a step up without getting all heavy on you.

 583 characters

Photo of lurpy1
3.2/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Split a bottle with my lovely wife last night. It's uber-tropical here, so seems like a good night for a beer that runs towards the light side.

Unfortunately, this one is too tilted towards the light. Mouthfeel, while not unpleasant, is clearly thin. The taste is pleasant, honey, breakfast spices, apples, but there's just not enough there there. Hop characteristic is completely lacking, although it shows up in the aftertaste . My wife summed up well after we were done: "Find me something else, I don't even feel like I drank a beer."

It does go down very well on a hot, hot night. Probably a good gateway beer from Macro beers to craft brew. Other than that, I look for something with a little more action.

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Summer Honey Ale from Big Sky Brewing Company
78 out of 100 based on 160 ratings.