Pinstripe Red Ale - Ska Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Pinstripe Red AlePinstripe Red Ale

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128 Reviews
very good

(Read More)
Reviews: 128
Hads: 306
Avg: 3.52
pDev: 20.17%
Wants: 8
Gots: 28 | FT: 1
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:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-26-2002

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 128 | Hads: 306
Photo of TheAlamoWrocker
3.09/5  rDev -12.2%
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.

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Photo of notsoprobeer
3.38/5  rDev -4%
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.

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Photo of TexIndy
3.85/5  rDev +9.4%
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]

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Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.39/5  rDev -3.7%
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.

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Photo of rawfish
2.78/5  rDev -21%
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.

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Photo of mikesgroove
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a deep dark amber with a nice one inch off white head and a good amount of lace. Nice retention on the head as well. Smell was deeply hopped, with a nice pine resin aroma and a hint of light grain. My first impression was a bit light in the carbonation, and a slight slickness or oilyness to it. Big hop profile was very nicely balanced against the malted grain back. Overall this was an easily sessionable and highly enjoyable brew.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.76/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thursday eveniong home late from work...time to unwind with some SKA Pinstripe Red. The appearance is very nice, finger thick white head that is lacing great. The color is clear amber. The smell has very sublte hop and pine. The taste is very good and balanced nicely. There is hop that is balancing the malt. The aftertaste is a little sour and clings to the pallete. The ABV is right in line for a session beer...which I could certainly do! Overall it is a very nice beer!

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Photo of Tone
3.8/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, copper color. 1/4 inch head of an off-white color. Good retention and good lacing. Smells of slight citrus hops, slight floral hops, sweet malt, slight earthy malt, and slight pale malt. Fits the style of an American Amber / Red Ale. Mouth feel is smooth and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of sweet malt, spiced hops, slight citrus hops, and slight earthy malt. Overall, good appearance, aroma, blend, and body. An easy drinking, session beer.

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Photo of mjurney
3.23/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Amber-golden color, clear. Some carbonation. Fairly nice head. Lacing looks pretty good on the glass.

Clean sweet aroma. A little caramel and hop aroma.

Sweet malts up front along with clean bitterness at the end. Malt is pretty sweet, slightly caramel. Clean-dry bitter hops. A little fruity from the yeast. Light-medium bodied. Medium carbonation.

Clean finish, yet pretty crisp. Slight dry aftertaste.

Not very complex in flavor, but very sessionable.

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Photo of JoeAmerican77
3.13/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Vigorously poured, a copper liquid fills the pint and leaves one finger of white head on the top, not much in the way of lacing...

Smells of slight alcohol, and some mild hops not much here

Taste is sweet and malty, a good first impression. A little bit of bitters in the back but they do not dominate.

A medium body and copious carbonation give this beer a solid foundation, slightly chewy as well.

Overall this was a surprisingly sweet red, that I did enjoy. i would recommend a try for a new "better beer" drinker to have as a stepping stone to heavier playing fields.

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Photo of ZenAgnostic
2.83/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance - Huge slightly off white head with good retention. Slightly hazy amber body.

Smell - Overripe banana and malt.

Taste - Good front end, poor finish. Hoppy and stale. Slightly astringent. Almost like a strong AAL or a vienna lager.

Mouthfeel - Too watery.

Overall Drinkability - The watery mouth kills the overall drink.

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Photo of jwinship83
3.23/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle picked up as a single for $1.69. my toddler son kept telling me to buy the bowling pin beer, so i finally did. drank from my samuel adams perfect pint glass.

A- this one pours out a translucent amber colored body with honey looking highlights. a small bright white head forms on top that has decent retention and leaves behind small spots of lacing.

S- the main attraction in the nose seems to be caramel malts. theres a little bit of toasted bread in here also. faint earthy hops can be picked up in the finish.

T- the taste starts out and is dominated by sweet caramel malts and toasted bread notes. other than some earthy/herbal hops at the end, thats about all this one has to offer.

M- medium bodied and well carbonated.

O- a decent beer for what it is. a good alternative to the mainstream, and realitively sessionable.

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Photo of Rickdiggity
4.33/5  rDev +23%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

All in all my favorite beer from ska. All around

sessional. Smooth on taste, great flavor, not

too heavy. A red ale thats not gonna blast you

with hops. My solution to all you trendy fat

tire drinkers. Was able to split an 18er with a

friend (before we went out) and felt great the

next day!

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.16/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Apricot orange with Sunkist borders. In other words, the color that results when amber and red are mixed together (though this is clearly marked as a red ale). A thick slice of eggnog colored cream was produced on the pour and looks good at all points along the journey.

The nose is primarily musky and fruity. Despite the fact that caramel malt is used (which fits the style), it isn't really appreciated. Liberty hops aren't making much of a positive impression either.

Pinstripe Red Ale tastes like a combination amber ale and Oktoberfest. There has to be some form of nutty-earthy malt (like Munich) in use, because my melanoidin detector is hyper-sensitive. Too bad the flavor profile isn't actually caramel malty because it would have made for better beer.

It tastes and feels like all 42 IBUs are present and accounted for, so this must be a fairly fresh bottle. PRA's biggest negative is that it doesn't have a flavor hook. Malts dominate the first half of each mouthful, and hops dominate the second, but the whole isn't worthy of even semi-enthusiastic praise.

There are no problems whatsover with the mouthfeel. It's an appropriate size and hangs on nicely at the finish. Well-done bubbles too, which helps.

Ska brews (mostly) solid beer across the board. This is another well-crafted offering, but the ingredients used don't exactly jibe with my idea of an American red ale. Pinstripe is not a strike... and probably not even a spare.

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Photo of kinupanda
3.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A solid ruddy amber color that is still relatively transparent. A foamy one-finger head with good retention; nice light lacing during drinking. Balanced aroma for the style, not too malty and not too hoppy, and overall not particularly complex. Obvious toasted malt taste with some sweetness, leading to good bitter finish from the hops with a somewhat lingering aftertaste. Not very imposing, with medium carbonation and smooth texture.

FourthBeer potential: AVERAGE. Overall this isn't a bad beer, but I can't see myself drinking too many of them due to the lack of complexity in the taste.

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Photo of dhowe
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Nice head retention, low carbonation, clear, amber colored.

S - distant floral scent

T - Distinctive amber "toasted" taste - very nice aftertaste, as well.

M - Balanced mouthfeel.

D - Very Drinkable.

I like this beer. Did have nice packaging and interesting name. Was not sure I would like this but was pleasantly surprised. Will have another soon and want to try others they make.

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Photo of Fenris244
3.12/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Ska pin stripe: I have to say I got this beer because of the name and the bottle art.

Pours a coppery amber color, very clear, very little head, poor retention, leaves very little lace. Seem like it's lacking carbonation...

Not much to it aroma wise, some faint malt and not much else.

Tastes better than it smells, sweet malt and hop flavors are nicely balanced with a metallic flavor underneath, normally I consider that a bad thing but in this beer it works

It's crisp and reasonably refreshing, more carbonation would help it's drinkability. I have no idea how long it was on the shelf though it could just be past it's prime.

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Photo of u2carew
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz longneck.
A) Pours with a finger thick head. Settles quite quickly leaving a thin lacing at the edge of the glass. Copper in color. Hazy body.
S) A nice hop aroma - floral and citrus, but not overly aromatic. Very mellow caramel tones linger just below the surface.
T) Malty sweet - caramel, raisins, subtle apple. Finishes with a subtle and dry hop bitterness. A clean taste overall.
M) Medium body. Fairly smooth. Some crispness and a mellow dryness in the finish.
D) A decent brew. I'd drink another.

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Photo of ocelot2500
3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear copper color with a tight off-white head that leaves a decent amount of lacing.

Smells of toasted malts and grassy hops.

Tastes of the solid malts with a nice hop kick. Malts have a toasted bread nature with some syrupy sweetness to it. Some fruitiness comes through as well. Hops come in the end and add a bitter finish. Mostly an herbal, floral characteristic with some grassiness as well. Fairly balanced.

Mouthfeel is medium-light with a slightly assertive amount of carbonation.

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Photo of Lemke10
3.78/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I bought a single bottle of this at Woodman's in North Aurora, IL for $1.50 in Fall 2010.

This red ale has a nice amber color to is and a good scent of malts. It has a semi heavy malt taste and a slight taste of hops nicely mixed together. Overall it has a decent flavor that drinks smooth. Definetly worth a try.

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Photo of brdc
3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Small capped bottle poured into a pint glass.

Amber in color, with a thin tan head that shows average retention but not a lot of lacing.
Aroma is delicate, a bit more on the sweet, caramel malty side, but floral hops do have a noticeable presence.
Medium bodied, perhaps slightly thinner than that, it shows a well balanced taste of mostly caramel maltiness and grassy hoppiness. Ambers are not supposed to blow you awaym and this one does not, but it is a very solid and pleasant amber.

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Photo of stakem
3.68/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Finishing out the ska brews my friend Ryan set me up with. Thanks fella! "Brewed and bottled by Ska Brewing Co. Durango, Colorado. We use the finest malt, hops, yeast, water and love." ... hmmmm dirty hippies or lovers of the craft? Regardless here goes.

The neck of the bottle has a stamp: Best by 12/30/10. How about that, the other Ska offerings I got to try didn't have a freshness indication. Poured into a pint glass this brew appears an orange amber color with a finger of yellow stained head. As the head fades away, and it does so quite quickly, it leaves some small patches of lace clinging to the glass. A few bubbles of carb rise through the clear body and break at the surface where there remains little to no head outside of a persistent thin film.

The aroma of this brew has some fresh grain character that smells a little sweet like caramel malt. The hops present themselves with a bit of a floral aspect that really highlights the sweetness of the nose but it fades into a more herbal hop scent towards the back.

The taste of this brew has a nice balance of sweet caramel malt to herbal bitterness. A light fruity aspect almost akin to orange is noted partially due to the mixture of hops and alcohol flavor. For just over 5% abv, the alcohol is not shy at all in this brew. It comes across as being more bold in both warmth and taste. There is a lingering aftertaste of fresh grain left inside the mouth, slightly biscuit-like in flavor.

It is a medium bodied brew with a moderate amount of carbonation. Initially I thought this was going to be quite light on the carbonation but as it is swirled it picks up more strength to the head and it is somewhat prickly with carbonation on the tongue. Overall not bad but not something I would go out of my way for.

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Photo of Rayek
3.4/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at Freshcraft in Denver. Served in a Nonic.

A: Reddish amber with nice clarity and minimal carbonation. A foamy cream cap is small, but does stick around. Leaves a little lace.

S: Toffee and grape really stuck out at first. A citrus hop aroma came in late.

T: Basic, but pretty decent. Starts sweet with caramel and grape. The beer thins out in the middle before the hops come on to provide a balanced grapefruit bitterness. Finishes rather clean.

M: Medium-light body feels a bit thin.

D: For me, this is a decent and unassuming session beer. A good beer to drink with friends at a social outing.

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Photo of LacquerHead
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a lighter shade of amber

S: There was a musty hop aroma.

T: it was hops dominated. The hops provided a nice pale taste. To me it tasted like a pale ale that was attempting to cross over to IPA status. The malts took a supportive role to the hops.

Overall, my only complaint is I would have liked a more pronounced malt profile. Despite my modest complaint I'll still order a pint at a bar, where I typically drink this. This is a readily available beer that is worth a try.

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Photo of climax
3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A very bright copper hue sat below a sticky frothy tan head. It receded slowly and left a nice curtain of thick lace.

The nose was somewhat mild off the get-go. Toasty biscuits, cinnamon pie crust, and caramel malt ran the show. The website's claim of 42 IBU's seems high compared to what I whiffed. Some earthiness and a dash of noble hops is what I could muster.

The hops had a bit more strength in the flavor, as grassy earth tones emerged to balance the still very toasty malt flavors. Sweetness was limited to some fruity esters before the hops finally came into color, as the nose shifted to earthy and floral towards the end.

The body was on the light side of medium, and the feel was a bit drab. Slight carbonation and a bit of stickiness barely pushed my verdict from watery to smooth. Definitely easy to drink, enough flavor to satisfy, yet could have more spunk. But I suppose, that's what most ambers and reds are all about.

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Pinstripe Red Ale from Ska Brewing Co.
80 out of 100 based on 128 ratings.