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Pinstripe Red Ale - Ska Brewing Co.

Pinstripe Red AlePinstripe Red Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

246 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 246
Reviews: 125
rAvg: 3.56
pDev: 13.2%

Brewed by:
Ska Brewing Co. visit their website
Colorado, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  5.15% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-26-2002)
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Ratings: 246 | Reviews: 125 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of BeerWithMike


3.96/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled back on 10/23/13. Chilled down to 36 degrees F in my beer cooler and poured into a pilsner glass.

Pours copper-brown in color with a thin white head. Left a lot of lacing with each sip. The aroma isn't much actually, maybe some caramel with some grain. The taste was much better than the smell. A tad 'watery' at first but has a lot of complex flavors at the end. Perfect carbonation and great balance. Smooth to drink and goes down easy. Better than many other 'Red Ales' i have had.

Serving type: bottle

10-30-2013 21:53:30 | More by BeerWithMike
Photo of ChapPJ


3/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Medium strong. Good but I've had better.

Did not note where I first had the beer but I've ordered it more than once.

Feb 2012

Medium strong. Good but I've had better.

Did not note where I first had the beer but I've ordered it more than once.

Feb 2012

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2013 05:00:16 | More by ChapPJ
Photo of Ryan_Graham


4.16/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

A: Golden brown color. One finger head. Cool bottle artwork.

S: Hard to explain. Pretty basic beer smell.

T: Very refreshing to start. Goes down like a cheap watered down beer but ends with a complex aftertaste.

M: Very smooth! Great balance. Aftertaste is a little rough but it fades quickly.

O: A good beer for a hot day. I would definitely buy again.

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2013 00:33:30 | More by Ryan_Graham
Photo of gleemonger


3.38/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Slightly hazy golden red color with a small frothy white head that sits around for a bit. Nice, fine lacing down the glass. Looks much heavier than it really is.

Weird, almost no aroma at all, just the slighest hint of sweet caramel malts, that's about it. I wonder if this one is a little old. Tiny bit of biscuity malts in there too if I try really hard.

Kind of honey sweet with the expected caramel malts, but not very spicy or much else going on to really make it taste like a red ale. Actually it tastes a little more like a blonde with caramel malts in it. Just a little hop bitterness to round it out, but no hop flavors really.

Slightly full bodied with moderate carbonation and a really creamy smooth feel. This is probably my favorite thing about it.

Not exactly a red ale, in my opinion. Really pretty basic, kind of mass market tasting. I guess a good gateway beer for some BMC fans, but just not very interesting at all to me. That said, it's refreshing, decent, and a good session beer, so I wouldn't knock it too much.

Serving type: bottle

06-13-2013 21:28:01 | More by gleemonger
Photo of gxtmfa


3.15/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Great beer for the price. A little flat and watery, with no strong aftertaste. This isn't to say it didn't have flavor- it was smooth and I don't remember the mouthfeel varying too strongly. Some may like that about the beer, others may want a three-part experience between palate, throat and aftertaste. What makes it a better beer is how it compares to the others of its price range where I live. Compare it to some of the classier stuff where the mouthfeel is a 3-part experience and it doesn't stand as strong.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2013 21:49:11 | More by gxtmfa
Photo of facundoCNB

New Jersey

3.56/5  rDev 0%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

a light coper clean pour with absolutely no head, just a light rim of white foam. the smell is quite sweet and fruity - very reminiscent of their blonde ale i am getting a lot of pilsner malt, bready notes, slight fruit hint of pears/apples. sweet malty taste, slight tangy fruity feel, slight hop bitterness. medium body with barely any carbonation.. not exactly sure where this beer went wrong, but it is not honestly what i'm used to from ska brewing company.. i feel pretty let down. could just be that this is an old bottle.. i was told that this and their esb don't move much, so that could be the case, and it makes sense. even though it's not their best, it is still not terrible and very drinkable, but it just lacks profile in every aspect. or maybe i've just been spoiled by their other brews.

Serving type: bottle

03-19-2013 06:58:26 | More by facundoCNB
Photo of KajII

North Carolina

2.9/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

[Suggested Glassware: Nonic Pint]

The pour was a clear copper orange with some light peach highlights and an average (1-2 finger) off white frothy head that was mostly diminishing, reducing to a medium film and large collar and having fair spotty lacing.

The aroma was of a light bread malt, grassy hops and a soapy yeast with notes of caramel and citrus (grapefruit).

The taste was a lot like the aroma with a light bitter malty flavor with just a hint of caramel early on, progressing with a mild hoppiness and a light citrus presence towards the finish. The flavor lasted an average time after the swallow with a light citrus peel bitterness left behind.

Mouthfeel was light in body with a watery, dry texture and a mild carbonation.

Overall I found this brew to be a mildly hoppy and slightly fruity Red Ale with a very good drinkability...


Serving type: bottle

12-26-2012 16:30:19 | More by KajII
Photo of kojevergas


3.28/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4

The bottled on markings aren't marked at all. 12 fl oz brown glass bottle with red label and standard pressure cap served into a nonical pint glass in me gaff in high altitude Castle Rock, Colorado. Reviewed live. Expectations are average.

Served straight from the refrigerator and allowed to warm a bit over the course of consumption. Side-poured with standard vigor as no carbonation issues are anticipated.

A: Pours a 1.5 finger head of beige colour, fair cream, fair thickness, and pretty good retention. Body colour is a clear translucent copper. No yeast particles are visible. No bubble show.

Sm: Floral hopping, brilliant toasted malt character, biscuit malt, and even some pine. Closer to an Irish Red than an American Amber. A marvelous aroma for the style. No yeast or alcohol is detectable. An evocative aroma, and a pretty strong one at that.

T: Toasted malt backbone with nectary hops throughout, as well as some muted floral hops. Crisp and clean. Tasty but overly simple. Lacks subtlety. That said, it's very pleasant to drink and rather refreshing. Quite an enjoyable beer. No yeast character. No alcohol comes through. Really well balanced.

Mf: Smooth and wet. Crisp and clean. Refreshing. Good carbonation and thickness. Nectary. a major problem is that it's too wet, even bordering on watery.

Dr: Drinkable but held back by its simplicity. I could down this all night, especially at a party. I'd happily pick up a keg of this, but it's by no means an impressive brew. There's nothing unique or special here, but it's damn drinkable.

Low B-


01/24/13: Brief impressions:

Appearance isn't at all amber or red, but is rather a clear copper of average vibrance. No floating yeast particles/sediment is visible.

Has a pleasant malty aroma with some pleasant herbal and floral hop aromatics. A hint of bubblegum too. Not the amber malt/toasted malt build you might expect in a red ale, but pleasant and inviting. No alcohol or yeast character is detectable.

Very enjoyable, if a bit simple. Floral and herbal notes dominate the hop profile, with a generic pale malt and light amber malt foundation playing well alongside it.

Not boozy or yeasty. Quite clean.

Mouthfeel is a bit too coarse and has too much weight for a red ale.

Quite drinkable but ultimately unremarkable. A nice red when in the mood, but nothing particularly impressive.

High C+

Serving type: bottle

12-26-2012 01:53:23 | More by kojevergas
Photo of jazzyjeff13

United Kingdom (England)

3.23/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A 355ml bottle with a BB of Nov 2012 (I think; it's partly scratched out). Still, only just out of date amirite?! Picked up a little while ago from Trembling Madness in York. What's with the skull & skittles on the label?

Poured into a straight pint glass. A clear coppery-amber hue with light carbonation. Yields a decent head of creamy white foam that lasts for a few minutes before subsiding. Aroma of grainy caramel malt with dry, earthy yeast, stewed hops and a mild hint of pine.

Tastes of caramel malt with a dry finish. Notes of grain, biscuits, earthy yeast, stewed hops, faint candy sugar and undertones of pine resin. Slightly sweet. A mild bitterness upon swallowing. Mouthfeel is smooth, dry and tingly, but perhaps a tad insubstantial. Aftertaste of grainy caramel malt and yeast.

An OK brew, though nothing amazing. Primarily malty in flavour, with a subtle touch of hops - kind of like a paler brown ale. Nothing really stands out about it, while the body could perhaps be amped up a little. Drinkable enough, but no need to seek it out.

Serving type: bottle

12-02-2012 22:49:00 | More by jazzyjeff13
Photo of Twincrasher

3.5/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Clear amber color. Moderate head retention.

S: Mineral (metalic?) smell. Some altbier tones. Much more floral at warmer temps. Recommend serving in 40's.

T: Good overall, not great. Nice for session beer.

M: Typical for this style.

O: Worth having again. A nice red ale beer.

Serving type: bottle

11-26-2012 20:27:44 | More by Twincrasher
Photo of TMoney2591


2.95/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in a Walter Payton shaker pint glass.

Who's up for some bowling? ...Maybe later? Anyway, this stuff pours a clear brass topped by a finger of off-white foam. Gotta be one of the palest reds I've seen in a long time. The nose comprises pine resin, caramel, and a strong backbone of orange peel. The taste holds notes of mildly sharp (yup) orange rind, lightly-toasted biscuit, light caramel, and a twinge of pine sap. The body is a light medium, with a light moderate carbonation and a languid feel. Overall, this is a pretty sad red, one that partially-vainly tries to add a hop bite, and one that feels really odd and unappealing on the tongue. Not a fan.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2012 21:15:49 | More by TMoney2591
Photo of CHickman

New York

3.55/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours clear amber orange-ish with a huge foamy 2 finger beige head that was packed with bubbles and didn’t move, fading very slowly and leaving very nice foamy lacing and rings as it went down. Impressive looking brew.

Smells of malt, grains, caramel, light butterscotch, wheat bread, syrup, herbs and light floral hops; pretty malty nose that has just enough hops for good balance.

Tastes of malt, grains, caramel, wheat bread, biscuit, light syrup, herbs, faint brown sugar, yeast and light floral hops; there’s almost a cake-like sweetness from the caramel, brown sugar, what seems like cinnamon and herbs. It’s all malt, but somehow easy to drink. Not the most exciting beer, but fits the style.

Mouthfeel is light, crisp and very smooth at the same time, with light to average carbonation, a medium body and a bready finish that's on the sweet side.

Good beer, I guess, but I was hoping for more hops in the mix for better balance. It's a little too basic tasting and I had hoped for more zing in the flavor.

Serving type: bottle

10-27-2012 04:53:48 | More by CHickman
Photo of StoneTSR


3.98/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

APPEARANCE: This is one of the most crystal clear beers I have ever seen. Very pretty. The color is a very light orange and hundreds of bubbles are popping up from the bottom of the glass into a slightly off-white ceiling of head. The head is about a half-inch thick, but quickly loses half of its height.

SMELL: The aroma is quite pleasant with a strong dose of orange, maybe a little coriander and a little citrus.

TASTE: It's funny how the first sip of this instantly takes me to Durango. I first had this beer there a couple of years ago and thoroughly enjoyed it. This is what a summer night in Durango tastes like to me, but enough gushing about Ska - the caramel malt comes through in a big way up front. Citrus and some dark fruit emerge towards the end of the sip before an ever so small hint of earthy hops finish it off.

MOUTHFEEL: The malt makes this a medium-bodied brew that starts out a little dry, but finishes a little sweet. Very solidly balanced in this respect.

OVERALL: This isn't the best beer in Colorado. It isn't the best beer that Ska makes either. It is, however, a wonderful session beer from a great brewery.

Serving type: bottle

08-17-2012 09:00:22 | More by StoneTSR
Photo of JuicesFlowing


4.03/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Medium toffee colored amber. A cream colored head dissipates to chunky bubbles and film. Pretty good lacing.

Smell: Caramel, malts, biscuits.

Taste: Sweet malty caramel hits first, and it's a perfect sweetness. There's a slightly metallic taste in the middle, then a slightly citric hop finish. Balanced.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light, dry finish.

Overall: Perhaps the best offering I've had from Ska. Although, as I continue drinking this, I taste the hop finish more and more. Still, decent.

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2012 18:23:13 | More by JuicesFlowing
Photo of Megahertz


3.78/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a shaker. Best by 4/28/12. Sad face.

A - Medium amber, crystla clear. Off-white head fades quickly. Carbonation appears moderate. Very little lacing.

S - Toffee, honey, slightly floral.

T - Initial brown sugar sweetness transitions into a sticky, toffee, caramel-rich mid. Finish is decisively sweet.

M - Light body with moderate carbonation.

O - A good, drinkable AAA, would be even better with more assertive bitterness and a drier finish.

Serving type: bottle

05-25-2012 23:02:03 | More by Megahertz
Photo of ADZA


2.88/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to Beermasons for this and pours a red copper hue which leaves a fluffy three finger head and heaps of lacing,the smell is weak and below average with aromas of toffee and a touch of herbalness but thats it smells abit flat to me,the mouthfeel is lightbodied and flat and the tastes are not much better with hints of light biscuty malts,toffee,boiled candy,a hint of herbal hops with a sweet finish overpowering any hop action for me and overall i wouldnt drink again if i had to pay for it cheers.

Serving type: bottle

02-12-2012 10:10:29 | More by ADZA
Photo of MrKennedy


2.83/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle from Beermasons poured into a Golden Monkey tulip.

Pours a light glowing amber coour with a beige head of foam that was a couple of fingers before falling with some lacing.

Smell is a mix of malt and resinous hops. The malt sweetness seems to blend in well with what seems to be relatively modest hopping.

Light malt flavour with a little bit of pine hop flavour. Not enough hops to keep it in sync for the style.

Mouthfeel is thin to start with, ends with good balance, but the thinness does sort of shock you a little.

First underwhelmer from Ska. Needs more oomph for an American Amber/Red. More hops and a bigger body and this would be fantastic. This bottle sadly wasn't in that league.

Serving type: bottle

01-18-2012 09:43:14 | More by MrKennedy
Photo of soze47


3.48/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked this up at Binny's in Northern Burbs of Chicago in December, 2011. Reviewed from notes.

Appearance: Kind of brown more than amber. Nice lacing.

Aroma: Sweet and slightly floral. Soft, but nice.

Taste: Roasty malts hit first, then a nice light touch of flowers kicks in. No bitterness, but the hops play a nice role in brightening this brew.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: Light bodied and very easy to drink. The floral notes offer a slightly dry finish. Combined with the lower ABV on this beer, you could easily have a couple of these in an evening.

Overall: Not a remarkable beer for my tastes. Many others in this style ratchet up the hop action, which is more what I look for. However, that does not make this a bad options if you'd like a subtle, yet great tasting balanced beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-09-2012 20:26:24 | More by soze47
Photo of bigaltemple


3.95/5  rDev +11%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Bright, clear, amber brew. Good looking burnt copper color. Relatively no head. Gentle swirl produces a small cap that doesn't really leave any significant lacing.

S - Some light maltiness with piney hop aroma.
Seems like it will be pretty well-balanced.

T/M - Get a taste of light crystal/caramel malts before the resinous hops kick in. It does come across as a good balance. Light to medium bodied with just the right amount of carbonation.

O - Easily drinkable. Don't think they were trying to re-invent the wheel, just put forth a good beer. I generally like what SKA puts out.

Serving type: bottle

10-24-2011 12:17:51 | More by bigaltemple
Photo of StonedTrippin


3.75/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

i bought this one to bring to the furthur shows at red rocks because it had a grateful dead-esque skull and roses on the label. its a very sessionable ale. pours a not so red copper color, with a medium head. nose is hoppy and enticing. mouthfeel is perfect for what it is. its drinkable but medium bodied, sprightly. taste is indicative of a red ale, but not fully engaging. props for a not overwhelmingly sweet version, but not fully memorable either. worthy

Serving type: bottle

10-03-2011 05:44:24 | More by StonedTrippin
Photo of TheAlamoWrocker


3.1/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle, best consumed by September 30 of 2011, into a Blue Star Brewery Pint Glass.


Poured a one fingered head. Mild carbonation with bubbles sticking to the side of the glass. Most of the head dissipated within a minutes time. Carbonation randomly rises to the top. The color is a Tawny, shade of brown, and it does look nice. The lacing is probably the best looking thing to this drink since it follows the consumption of this drink quite nicely.


Mild caramel aroma with a slight hoppiness. A light floral smell, but overall the is nothing special and over kinda faint.


This mostly taste like malts with a hop aftertaste. There is even a floral taste to this. This beer follows it's smell to the key and that's nice, but I would rather be amazed with subtle almost random flavors. I feel like it personally taste better as it warms, but that's just me.


There is some slight carbonation in the mouthful. It's goes in with a smooth creamy feeling. It does feel somewhat light, but it's decent.


For a Red Ale it taste like it's supposed to. I just wish as a Red Ale it had more to offer. This drink is far from bad, but at the same time it isn't anything special. This feels almost like a safety drink rather than something I would be excited to drink.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2011 09:28:08 | More by TheAlamoWrocker
Photo of notsoprobeer


3.4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Light copper / amber in color (clear) with a white head that dissipated quickly, leaving no lacing. The aroma of toasted malts and light floral hops reminds me of a pilsner lager. Flavor of caramel malts and light floral hops. Light boded with and mildly carbonated. It has a very crisp mouth feel and finishes dry with some mild hop bitterness. This is a well balanced, session beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-22-2011 06:01:35 | More by notsoprobeer
Photo of TexIndy


3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Best by 9/30/11 lasered on the neck. It was a clear copper color with good carb streams. It had an average sized head that quickly settled into a thin collar and some wisps. Standard light sheeting with none sticking.

The aroma was good with solid caramel malt base and some fruitiness. Not much hop action. The taste was better than the aroma with a nice, crisp caramel malt bite tempered with a bit of fruit. Again not much hops but still tasted pretty good and goes down smooth on a hot day. Light mouthfeel with good carb and nice aftertaste.

Overall, a solid red ale that does the job with some good malt flavor and fruitiness. Normally not a big fan of the style but this one does it proud. Avail here in TX. Rotation - the occasional single and would like to find on tap. [O;Y]

Serving type: bottle

07-27-2011 23:22:53 | More by TexIndy
Photo of Beerandraiderfan


3.4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Light red and orange hues to the beer, good 1" head to it, plenty satisfied with the appearance and clarity on this one. And yes, they do get a .5 point for involving bowling, skulls and ska on the label. Too cool.

Aroma was largely malt driven, did have that woodsy irish red aroma, but was hoping for more from the Liberty hops in this one, but I guess they aren't really aroma hops anyways, but so rarely used, was still hoping for some unique convergence here.

Was amazed with the light body, yet full flavor, even if primarily malt sweetness driven. Low bitterness, low hopping. Mild breadiness. Despite its appearance, doesn't really have that caramel thing going for it.

While this beer was decent, I would like to see some kind of hop variation for it. Like hop it along the lines of Modus. Or double/triple the amount of Liberty hops to make their existence cognizable. Yeah, amping the hops up isn't exactly 'original,' but I'm just interested in good, not unique. This beer is unique. I think it can be even better with a slight change.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2011 22:40:44 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of rawfish


2.73/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours a nice clear amber with golden highlights. Soapy white head reaches an inch in height with decent retention and nice bands of lacing.

Well hopped, amber light amounts of bready malt with a hint of toast. Hop aroma makes this smell like a hop enhanced lager, dark notes of pine and herbaceous notes.

Starts nicely with some cereal grains and a good toasted quality flows smoothly into pine resin hops. Finishes all down hill from there, hop quality becomes increasingly herbal and medicinal taking out the balance of the malt. The beer finishes both astringent and metallic something I wasn't hoping for in an ale. Doesn't go away even as the beer warms.

Slightly watery body with adequate carbonation. Mouthfeel is slick and thin with a metallic and astringent finish as it dries. Unpleasant.

Finishes alot more like a lager than an ale with the soapiness but the whole beer on a whole seems like it has a split personality ale front, lager finish with enhanced bitterness. Herbal flavored hops are probably my least favorite of the varieties and pinstripe is full of them.

Serving type: bottle

06-15-2011 22:07:02 | More by rawfish
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Pinstripe Red Ale from Ska Brewing Co.
81 out of 100 based on 246 ratings.