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

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Reviews: 160
Hads: 294
rAvg: 3.41
pDev: 12.32%
Wants: 5
Gots: 21 | 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: 294
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 Floydster
2.87/5  rDev -15.8%
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 Beaver13
3.32/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle. Pours a clear yellow with a smallish white head that quickly goes to a thin film.

The aroma is sweet clove honey and some spices.

The flavor is sweet bready malts and a bit of honey with some subdued spicing. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with good carbonation.

Overall, a decent slightly plain summer beer. (325 characters)

Photo of beerguy101
2.98/5  rDev -12.6%
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. (251 characters)

Photo of Redrover
3.55/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz brown bottle included in the sampler pack. Poured into a pint glass, the beer is a bright gold with a fairly dense white head.

The aroma is of grains, perfumey hops and a bit of honey.

The taste is slightly grainy with some sweetness that may be from the honey that lurks in the background. The hops add a bit of balance, but this one falls on the sweet but not cloying side of the taste spectrum. I like the bit of sourness that emerges late in the aftertaste.

The mouth is decent with unlooked for heft. I suppose this is an easy enough drinker and would be a nice cross-over beer (593 characters)

Photo of wagenvolks
2.31/5  rDev -32.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass on a scorching Montana day.

The pour leaves an amazingly transparent, straw yellow ale with a thick, cloud-white head. Decent spackles of lacing are left behind as the foam slowly recedes. It's all downhill from here... The aroma is mediocre as best: some coriander & other spices with hints of sweet citrus and lots of wheat.

The taste is disappointing as well. There's a touch of honey, barely detectable, with a bland blend of wheat and bitter spice. Pretty awful stuff, really. Mouthfeel is crisp and astringent with a high level of carbonation, but a bad aftertaste that tries its best at a bitter finish, but ultimately fails. All in all, I wouldn't ever buy this again. Quite the flop of a summer brew from the makers of such a fine-tasting beer as Moose Drool. I hope this is just a case of a bad bottle. (847 characters)

Photo of ADR
3.06/5  rDev -10.3%
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 beergoot
3.41/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice, golden yellow body topped with a thick, creamy white head. Smell comes across kind of 'dirty' and skunky. Some burnt grain notes. Some bright, grassy notes. Tastes include a light bread-like character with a good, subtle bitterness. Some slight caramel notes and buttery tones. The beer feels slightly rich, yet smooth and dry.

A decent little summer beer from "the last best place". Nothing outstanding, but worth a taste or two. (437 characters)

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 BretSikkink
3.07/5  rDev -10%
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 thekevlarkid
3.2/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Out of the bottle this Montana brew was a wet-straw gold color with a white head one finger thick. Faded after a few minutes to a thin skim and then a tiny ring. Moderate lacing. Aromas are mostly wheat and some hops with pale malt behind it. Flavors are almost all wheat, crisp but the honey is very hard to find. Slightly sour. 'Wet' finish of grains sticks to the tongue. Decent mouthfeel and fizzy carbonation. OK, but not much more than that. (447 characters)

Photo of TastyTaste
4.3/5  rDev +26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Looks like about 15,000 other beers, crystal clear gold colr, with a small white head that fades to almost nothing. Not a lot in the nose, but malt and honey sweetness, and a little spice. Taste is very nice for a honey ale. The honey is there, and makes the beer sweet, but enhances the malt flavor. Very light and crisp, the malt and honey are absolutely at perfect levels to each other. Good work Big Sky, you have made the best honey beer I have ever tasted. (462 characters)

Photo of Jayli
3.22/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Had 8/13/09
This beer pours a clear honey color with a one finger of white head that disappears immediately. Minimal to no lacing on this beer. Nose is of pale malts, honey, and faint wheat tones. Taste is of grainy and pale malts up front then a bit of citrus with a honey sweetness in the finish. Lighter bodied, medium carbonation, really thin feel but finishes with a crispness. (382 characters)

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.52/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Yellow to tan and a bit hazy. Head was about a half inch and lacing was sparse.

Smelled of honey, lemons, and grains.

Taste is refreshing and crisp, with a grainy base being accented heavily with lemons and honey, along with a somewhat floral afternote.

Body is light and more bubbly than I expected from the head. Easy drinking and summery to be sure.

Overall it's tasty and I would like to get it in cans for a day of fishin'. (434 characters)

Photo of DogFood11
3.95/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked this puppy out at BevMo because it was from montana and I dont think I've had a beer from there yet...good a reason as any is suppose. Plus with the weather we are having a good summer honey ale sounds great.

I wasn't dissapointed....It is what its trying to be....a bit spicey yet sweet almost to the point of annoying but like george castanza's dad it pulls up short....nice, refreshing carbonation levels. I did this six pack in tonight and would like another, in my book thats some super drinkability. Far from a big beer, this is lawnmower material and it does what you think it will, refresh without boring you. (627 characters)

Photo of woemad
3.62/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The bartender at The Viking in Spokane gave me a bottle of this on the house. The label features a bear doing something to a tree that's just plain wrong.


Poured a slightly dark yellow color, with a moderate white head. A very slight amount of lace.

Smell was of a honeyish sweetness, coupled with a more submissive spicy bitterness.

The first thing to greet the tastebuds is a honey flavored sweetness that, while not quite something I'd call mild, nevertheless is not over the top. This is quickly followed by a very mild peppery hop bitterness. Not a bad tasting beer, but it didn't send my tastebuds into ecstacy either.

This is a medium bodied beer. Nothing to complain about here. Nothing earthshattering either.

This is a perfectly drinkable beer, though it's nothing fantastic. I'm just not a fan of honey beers. It was quite good at the price I got it at, but I'm not sure I'd seek it out and pay actual money for it. (943 characters)

Photo of budgood1
4.02/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

pours out a slightly hazed light golden colour, with a fair sized head and some minimal lacing. grass and honey aroma, leaning towards clover and certainly perfumy. nice nose. light flavours of some grainy and coarse maltininess, sweetened a bit by some honey notes and balanced nicely by a small shot of some northwest hops. there is a definite underlying spiciness that adds a delicate layer of herbal goodness. tastes quite nice and is very satisfying. the mouthfeel is rounded and ample for a lower ABV summer themed ale, and the overall body is light and airy, making for easy quaffability. drinkability rates high for the quenching characteristics this summer ale imparts.

a nice beer. this should be a revisited every summer. recommended. (746 characters)

Photo of IntriqKen
3.71/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a pale honey color (sorry...that honestly is the shade of yellow I see) with a half finger white head that melts slowly to fine sticky lacing.
Aroma is floral and honey with almost a lager yeast smell to it.
Taste is initially pale malt lightly sweetened with a floral honey but then quickly turns to citrus hops. Actually a very nice evolution or balancing of flavors.
Aftertaste is sort of a floral or clover honey-lemon peel mixture and a nice quenching dryness.
This is a good summer beer...maybe excellent...very refreshing. (539 characters)

Photo of bump8628
3.37/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

One of the many "easy-drinking" summer seasonals that shows up every year. Like most, this doesn't offer much in flavor, but what it has is pleasant. Subtle spicing sets it apart some. Light caramel honey sweetness, interesting herbal spicy twang from the hop/spice combo. Clean and light on the palate. Nice enough, I can't put my finger on any single spice which helps keep it mildly interesting. (398 characters)

Photo of yesyouam
3.6/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Big Sky Summer Honey is a crystal-clear, lively light golden ale with an off-white head that mostly dissipates and leaves good lacing. The first aroma that strikes me is... pizza dough?, followed by honey and cane syrup and a hint of spruce. That yeast is too loud, otherwise it's excellent. It is medium bodied and soft, lively on the tongue, and it leaves the mouth raw and oily. It's hella bitter. The flavor balance is excellent-- a bit top-heavy. The yeast is in balance here and has a great Western US flavor. The blue spruce aftertaste reminds me of big country. It's fruity and bready-- a rowdy western session ale!
(rated Aug 9, 2007) (643 characters)

Photo of Mdog
3.91/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Gold with lots of carbonation.

Smell: Smells grassy to me.

Taste: Starts sweet then has some breadiness with maybe a little coriander, then finishes dry.

Mouthfeel: Light and refreshing.

Drinkability: If I want a night off from hops or something easy on a hot night, this is a good one.

A nice summer beer, not too heavy but complicated enough to be interesting. Recommended. (402 characters)

Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.36/5  rDev +27.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a standard pint glass.

A- Beautiful golden honey color with bubbles slowly rising from the bottom. A huge foamy white head that takes forever to recede, and sheets of thick sticky lacing coats the glass.

S- Smells malty, with a sweet honey undertone.

T- Big sudsy malty taste, with a gentle coating of honey afterward. Just perfectly balanced.

M- Medium bodied and creamy.

O- Another great beer by Big Sky, my second favorite brewery. This is delicious, and the perfect amount of sweetness makes this a great session beer. (542 characters)

Photo of BeerBelcher
1.48/5  rDev -56.6%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

This beer had a musty earthiness I found rather unpleasant, and nothing else to recommend it. I can't recommend it - I found it rather lousy.

This beer appeared to have an oily sheen; it was slightly hazy, an unflattering shade of yellow, and had a little head. The appearance didn't give me a lot of reason to have faith that I would enjoy this beer.

The aroma didn't provide any additional reason not to be pessimistic. There was the aroma of some spice and maltiness, but also a lot of earthiness that I found off-putting and unpleasant.

The watery mouthfeel hit me before the flavor. Flavor was a distinct compost-y flavor.

Not good...not recommended...most went down the drain. (694 characters)

Photo of angrybabboon
3.85/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Consumed: 10/14/11

Appearance: A mostly clear, pale golden color - honestly looks a lot like Trout Slayer, which I had earlier tonight - small white head, minimal lacing

Smell: Pale, light malts with some quite obvious honey - very honey-forward - maybe this was added post-fermentation? - a little spicy, a little floral, but really not that exciting

Taste: Interesting - the honey is really prominent - sweet, but not excessively so - some spice, some light fruit - malts are very light, kind of like barely-cooked biscuits, kind of tastes like some wheat is involved here - a touch of citrus to balance things out - certainly not bitter, but there are some hops in here

Mouthfeel: Light medium body, kind of coats the tongue in a dry way, medium carbonation

Overall: Surprisingly good

At first I was a bit confused by the honey, but it grew on me very quickly. This is really one of the best uses of honey I've encountered in quite some time. I'm note sure if it's what I want in a summer beer, but it works quite well right now as I'm drinking it in October. (1,068 characters)

Photo of katan
3.56/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

12 oz into a pint

A - Pours an extremely clear, light golden color. Lots of bubbling is present from the strong carbonation. Head formation is extremely light.

S - Smells of a sweet pilsner malt - only the lightest hint of honey. No hops to speak of.

T - Starts with the malt pilsner sweetness, which only briefly adds some bitterness. No hopping on the taste. On the aftertaste the honey starts to show just a bit. Sits on the tongue with a bit of a bitter bite.

M - Light in body - light in carbonation, which is against its appearance. Light sugar cling on the tongue.

D - Easily drinkable. ABV is manageable. Not filling.

Not really an APA to me, but an okay offering nonetheless. (691 characters)

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