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Summer Honey Ale - Big Sky Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Summer Honey AleSummer Honey Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
78
okay

160 Reviews
THE BROS
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no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 160
Hads: 299
rAvg: 3.41
pDev: 16.72%
Wants: 6
Gots: 23 | 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: 299
Photo of Offa
3.9/5  rDev +14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is a very pleasant, somewhat kolsch-like golden ale with a definite honeyish character.

Golden and bubbly, it has a large white head shrinking steadily.

Aroma is honey and grain, simple but pleasant, straightforward about what it is.

The taste is light, crisp, slightly sweet with honey, grain, and a biscuity-grain aftertaste. Very pleasant, smooth, light and crisp, it is highly drinkable, pleasant, and does the job well. (435 characters)

Photo of ManuelHerrera
3.01/5  rDev -11.7%
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. (645 characters)

Photo of Clockwork420
3.82/5  rDev +12%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle into glass.
Under $14 a 12 pack.

A - Gold straw color. No head at all, after pour. Super light white layer. Less than a mm thick.

S - Clean fresh, grassy. Smells sweetly like flowery. Smells kind of like dirt in a good way. Earthy.

T - Citrus, and sweet. Lemon hints. Light malt and balanced hops. Tangy bite on end. Refreshing.

M - Great carbonation. Thin and easy to drink. Perfect viscosity.

D - Fairly high.

This is the ideal Summer blend for a beer. I can see myself drinking this mowing the lawn or sitting on the porch with this one. The only lacking area is the Appearance, but its understandable and fits the style perfectly. Could pass as a massive brew product by looks alone. Taste is not in the same category. Light years away.

Good beer. (769 characters)

Photo of biboergosum
3.33/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

16oz Yankee pint at the Iron Horse restaurant in Missoula, with me dear ma.

This beer appears a clear, medium golden yellow hue, with one finger of puffy, loosely foamy, and soapy dirty white head, which leaves a bunch of chunky bleeding stormcloud lace around the glass as it gradually melts away.

It smells of semi-sweet field honey, grainy pale malt, a hint of spicy black pepper, and earthy, leafy, and mildly floral hops. The taste is crisply grainy pale malt, a touch of caramel sweetness, some lessened generic honey notes, mild muddled dessert spices, and pretty much little to no persisting and/or discernible hops.

The carbonation is moderate in its plainly frothy manner, the body a decent and typical medium weight for the broad style, and generally smooth, nothing else really carrying a torch here. It finishes off-dry, as some reborn earthy hops round out the lingering and purposeful honeyed graininess.

Nothing overly special, sure, but enjoyable enough when the season and occasion call for it. A good beer to go with intensely spicy hot wings, as was the pairing in my case - y'know, when in Rome, and all that. (1,137 characters)

Photo of wedgie9
2.06/5  rDev -39.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Tasted from 12oz bottle. Pours pale golden with a thin and quickly receding white head. Light nose of wheat and some honey. Simple flavors of wheat and honey with some spices on the back of the palate. Body is light, and carbonation is very lively with a rather short spiced finish. Overall, I am not crazy about this beer. (323 characters)

Photo of jrallen34
2.55/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle into my Orval glass...Pours a disappointing clear light honey with a only a whisper of white head that fades right away...Aroma is super light, a little honey a skunk but thats it, not encouraging...The taste is so bland and boring with a horribly light feel, its like drinking a bud light without the skunk.

Skip this commercial garbage. (352 characters)

Photo of woodychandler
4.05/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The CANQuest hits the trifecta with this surprise gem! CAN you believe it - I will have had it on-tap, out of a bottle and now from a CAN?!?

From the CAN: "We make water fun! 'Some Catchy Phrase Goes Here.' Ale brewed with honey and spices." I should also mention that unlike the bottle label, where the bear is upright and rampant, on the CAN he is on all fours, surveying a river vista with mountains in the background.

My pour created a finger of eggshell-white head with good retention. The color was a golden-yellow with NE-quality clarity. I got the honey up front on the nose. There was a light spiciness in there, but it seemed more yeast-driven than anything else. Mouthfeel was slightly thin with a honey-sweet taste on the tongue. Finish had a spicy dryness that I would have otherwise attributed to a yeast strain doing its thing. The spices were there, but they did not seem readily identifiable to me. This is definitely a summer beer! Light, smooth, dry on the finish - a definite CANdidate for the cooler (if only it were readily available). Tasty. (1,067 characters)

Photo of whynot44
3.8/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear golden color with a modest white head that does manage just a bit of lacing.

The aroma is bread dough, hints of honey and light floral hops.

The taste is dry bready malt, honey, hints of pepper and cinnamon, with a dry lightly hopped lingering aftertaste, crisp and refreshing, a very nice hot weather cooler.

Light/medium body, very drinkable. (356 characters)

Photo of flexabull
3.56/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a bright and clear gold color with a nice head, and good lacing.

Aromas are doughy, with hints of honey, and a dusty mineral like quality.

Taste is dry, with hints of honey, kind of floral, and a bit creamy as well. Finish is crisp, and also dry, with a light floral hop note.

Mouthfeel is nice, quite full, and pretty nice for the style.

Drinkability is pretty good, this is a decent honey ale. Dryer and less sweet than I expected, which was a pleasant surprise. All in all, a pretty good summer beer. (513 characters)

Photo of lester619
3.92/5  rDev +15%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light golden yellow with a creamy head that settles to a half inch film. Sweet and floral smelling. Some black pepper, and faint baking spices like cloves and cinamon come out. Very clean and crisp flavor. Sweetness with a little peppery kick to start. Finishes bone dry with a just with a little bitterness and a touch more spice. This stuff works for what it's for. Very refreshing hot weather all day drinking kind of beer. (434 characters)

Photo of IPASetter
3.1/5  rDev -9.1%
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. (669 characters)

Photo of WakeandBake
3.51/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A clear pale gold color pour with a thin white cap.Very light aroma of sweet malts, honey, and bread and faint hops .
Flavor has more going for it than the aroma with sweet malts, honey, apple, and cinnamon. Finishes clean.Lighter bodied, smooth, and moderately carbonated crisp clean mouthfeel.Quite drinkable (310 characters)

Photo of zeff80
3.27/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a clear, golden orange color with a small, white head of bubbly foam. There were thin traces of lace.

S - It smelled of honey and biscuity malt. There was a slight floral aroma, too.

T - It had a strong honey flavor with a good deal of spices. There was a good deal a sweet biscuity malt.

M - It was crisp and fairly sharp. A very light bodied and easy drinking brew.

D - This is an okay beer. It really seems more like a blonde ale than an APA. (464 characters)

Photo of AmberMan22
3.78/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a wonderful, true honey color -- aptly named. Slightly hazy...it really is like looking at honey.

Smell is largely of hoppy spiciness, some honey, hop bitterness, fairly one dimesional.

Tastes of fresh honeycomb, maybe cascade hops (I'm still learning, so this is largely a guess) but the hops have a peppery background. Actually a decent amount of malt to back this guy up. Nice job again Big Sky.

Mouthfeel is surprisingly thick for a beer of this color. Even the feeling of honey seems to enhance it's heft. The carbonation is too strong my my taste however.

Overall, this seems like a bit of a misfit, despite being a pretty good beer. I just don't know what season it fits in, because the mouthfeel seems too heavy for a spring/summer beer, but the flavor is in that range. (788 characters)

Photo of Tolnik
3.02/5  rDev -11.4%
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. (413 characters)

Photo of BeerOnTheWall
2.58/5  rDev -24.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into standard pint glass

A: Very light pale gold, almost looks too light. Very little head that dissipated quickly and left no lacing to speak of.

S: I hate to do this...I love Big Sky beers...this one smells like a gym sock soaked in Coors light...with a some noticeable hints of honey. No malt or hops coming through.

T: About like it smells

M: Very light body, crisp, decent carbonation

D: I would still drink this before most macros out there...ice cold on a hot day it may hit the spot. But I certainly won't go out of my way to find it.

Sorry Big Sky...your IPA, Moose Drool, and Scape Goat are still great! (647 characters)

Photo of Mora2000
3.65/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a very clear yellow color with a white head. The aroma is honey and wheat. The flavor is more of the same with lots of wheat and honey flavors. For a pale ale, there is hardly any hop character. Medium mouthfeel and low to medium carbonation. A nice easy drinking beer, but that is about it. (306 characters)

Photo of Monkeyknife
3.58/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle a clear pale gold color with a thin white cap.

Very light aroma of sweet malts, honey, and bread.

The taste has more going for it than the aroma with sweet malts, honey, apple, and cinnamon. Finishes clean.

Lighter bodied, smooth, and moderately carbonated.

An easy-drinking APA from Big Sky. Not great, but definitely good. (351 characters)

Photo of happygnome
2.87/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

a: pours a pale golden color with about a half inch of head that disappears fairly quickly leaving a ring of lacing around the edge of the glass
s: citrus and floral hops. There is a strong aroma of biscuity malts, along with hints of the honey sweetness
t: similar to the aroma. citrus hops biscuity malts and light hint of honey sweetness
m: light bodied beer with ample carbonation

overall, i enjoyed this beer but dont think ill get it again (446 characters)

Photo of JBogan
2.67/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a very pale gold color with a small white dome and minimal lacing. Kind of dull looking actually.

A weak corn and sweet malt aroma greets you, along with a grassy accent. Again, kind of dull.

Tasted a bit more interesting than the scent and appearance would suggest, however it's still only average at best. Sweet malt is the main draw here, with an ever so slight hint of orange and pepper.

Mouthfeel was on the watery side. Had just enough carbonation bite to keep it from getting a lower score.

This is a moderately enjoyable brew, but once I finished off the bottles I had no desire to revisit it again. A bit too sweet and thin for my tastes. (657 characters)

Photo of colts9016
2.77/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass at 37 degrees.

Appearance: A one finger head that sadly dissipate fairly fast. The body of the beer is a pale straw color. There is effervescence in the beer. The clarity of the beer is clear.

Nose: A medium toasty biscuit malt aroma with a light hop characters. The hops displays in some floral and citrus. The label said spice and it is too low for me to catch it. There is however, the honey aroma, lightly sweet.

Taste: The malt has a light toasted character. The hops are flat with no flavor really standing out. The honey is apparent and the spices are hidden.

Overall: The mouth fee is light, carbonated and a tad crisp. The body is also light and the finish is mild. I am not impressed. This beer does not taste like an APA. I think it is a tad sweet and not enough hops. (811 characters)

Photo of Wasatch
3.5/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice clean/clear golden yellow color, nice carbonation, little fizzy off-white head, with minimal sticky lacing left behind. The nose is malty, very slight hop note, little spice note. The taste is sweet, malty, with some spice. Medium body. Drinkable, this is not an APA, should be a Blonde Ale or Cream Ale. (317 characters)

Photo of bnes09
3.32/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance is light with slight haze and reminds me of white grape juice. Smell is quite sweet with not much else to speak of. Taste is sweet and full of honey up-front with emerging hints of lemon and orange to provide a sour balance. Body is light and carbonation is high. I could take down a six pack fairly easily but I would prefer to drink other styles. Overall, its not bad for a honey ale style but I like a more flavorful brew. (436 characters)

Photo of brownbeer
3.1/5  rDev -9.1%
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 jmalex
3.74/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to Tim for this one. I don't think I've ever had anything from Montana before.

APPEARANCE: Pours into a Sam Adams glass a clear pale yellow with a loose-bubbled white head on top. It shrinks down to a full cap with great staying power.

SMELL: Quite sweet with indications of wheat and lemony citrus. But it's really overtaken by the spices in this beer. Coriander for sure, but there could be more.

TASTE: Light and lemony and assuredly wheat-based. The spices aren't as formidable but still add a subtle complexity to the beer. Hops are much more apparent giving the beer a great balance. This really has a nice flavor and is quite unique.

MOUTHFEEL: Medium light body with an average carbonation. It does seem a bit slick though and lacks any crispness.

DRINKABILITY: It's a fine choice for a session and is well suited for summer weather. An ABV under 5% is a nice feature too. Unfortunately for me it's the coldest day since spring here today, so it's not quite well suited for drinking on this day.

A fine choice and good to drink if it's available to you. Not worth going out for your way for though. (1,119 characters)

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