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Hale's Red Menace Big Amber - Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub

Not Rated.
Hale's Red Menace Big AmberHale's Red Menace Big Amber

Educational use only; do not reuse.

57 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 57
Hads: 90
Avg: 3.41
pDev: 14.96%
Wants: 0
Gots: 5 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub visit their website
Washington, United States

Style | ABV
American Amber / Red Ale |  4.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: freed on 09-23-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 57 | Hads: 90
Photo of LiquidAmber
3.75/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a medium coppery amber with light red notes and a half finger off-white head with good retention and lacing. Aroma of biscuit and light caramel malt, light citrus and grassy hops with a hint of fruit. Flavor follows with biscuit and mildly caramel malt, citrus and grassy hops with a light note of sweet citrus fruit that comes forward in the later part of the taste to provide a pleasant introduction to the light citrus hop finish. Medium bodied with good carbonation. A nice amber ale that has enough fruit in the flavor to be in red ale territory, although it is not a distinctive red. I'm a big red ale fan and am ambivalent about ambers, so this one tasted fine to me as a more full flavored amber if a mild red ale. Plenty going on here for an under 5% ale, I'm pleased. I've found Hale's to be a solid brewery and this is in that category. I'm surprised by the relatively low rating for this one.

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Photo of Hawksfan79
3.26/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Glass: Nonic pint glass

Appearance: Dark amber ish orange. Thin white head that dissipated very quickly.

Smell: strong grapefruit with a slight sweetness underneath. Not much going on in the aroma.

Taste: Strong hoppyness initially. Nice balance of hops and malts. Hops flavor comes in and out, starts off strong then fades into malts, and then comes back in the finish.

Mouthfeel: thin almost watery, very light bodied.

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Photo of Murrhey
2.76/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Reviewed live.

A- One finger head that leaves very quickly. Amber body with high clarity.

S- Amber malts, subtle smells. Nothing great though.

T- Stale malts, caramel flavors, some earthy hops. Average.

M- Light, watery. Semi-dry finish.

O- Not an impressive beer.

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Photo of JamnesCameron
3.09/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bomber purchased through LetsPour.com. Chilled and poured into a tulip glass. Pours a clear, deep reddish amber with a light tan head that does not last long.

Aromas of toffee and caramel.

Flavors of light toffee, caramel, sweetish maltiness. Light on the hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is light, good level of carbonation.

Overall a decent amber ale. Nothing to make it stand out from the crowd.

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Photo of martino_cappachino
3.39/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 22 oz bottle into a tall kitchen glass. Nice slightly uneven foamy heady with a mixture small and medium laced bubbles. Almost frothy.

More a fraction of red than brown in color it seemed in some vantages. Aroma was hard to track, but seemed relatively balanced between roasted malt and bubbly citrus. Texture was drier and coarser than other amber's I've had. Flavors my taste buds caught were faint, but almost fruity at first, that led to sweet and spicey pine I enjoyed. As the beer warmed up the fruity flavors faded and more of the malt flavor kicked in.. mostly tasting of toasted multigrain bread, and maybe flavors of hemp as well.

Overall enjoyed the flavors of beer more when it was cold vs. warm. Wished their was a little more aroma in the first pour though.
Not a bad beer in retrospect though... I'd have it again.

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Photo of beertunes
3.48/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into 10oz glass. Poured a clear, just very slightly hazy, medium dark red with about 1/4 inch of light tan head that had moderate retention and lacing.

The aroma was fairly typical for the style, solid, slightly sweet, malt base with just enough hops floating around for a bit of a citrus tingle. The story on the tongue is similar, solid malts with a little sweetness, a nice blend of hops for contrast and a tangy citrus hop finish.

The body was also averageish for the style, medium bodied and for the most part smooth. Drinkability is very good, this could easily be your sixer for a cookout at the neighbors.

Overall, a solidly decent brew. Worth trying if this style is what you're in the mood for.

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Photo of RJLarse
3.72/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On cask at the Elk Public House. Served in a pint glass.

Appearance is a copper red color and slightly hazy. Frothy bubbly stark white head.

Smell is faint with citrus notes

Taste is a mild citrus flavor. It's a hoppy red ale. Reminds me a little of the Deschute's Cindercone red.

Mouthfeel is smooth and mildly carbonated on cask.

Very drinkable very sessionable hoppy red ale.

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Photo of uwmgdman
3.15/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This brew pours a hazy deep amber color with an off-white head that quickly diminished. The aroma is moderately hoppy -- citrus, grass, and some pine along with a bit of warm alcohol. The flavor is moderately hoppy -- mainly citrus with some underlying caramel sweetness. Hop bitterness is moderate. The body is medium-thin and moderate carbonation. Overall this beer comes across as a bit too thin and rather one dimensional generic hop. Join the party? Not so much.

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Photo of marcobrau
2.71/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours suitably red with a moderate to light amount of carbonation that produces an off-white head that falls rather quickly. Unfiltered. Lots of stuff at the bottom of the glass. Odd metallic aroma. Touch of cedar hidden behind the metal. Sweet malt, light caramel flavors mix with earthy hops which leads to slightly powdery, slightly tart finish. Kinda weird...tastes like a beer I had at a brewpub that served English-style ales in Augusta, Georgia many years ago.

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Photo of Offa
2.36/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

This is a fairly typical, heavy-handed, west-coast red ale, rather similar to Napa Smith beers in particular and not a very auspicious introduction to a brewery about which I'd heard a lot.

Hazy red amber, it has a medium orange-tan head soon shrinking to a foamy ring. Aroma is caramelised citrus, very flowery, pungent, with an exceedingly perfumy character that i find hard to pin down, and mixed citrus, dust and pine needles, but overly strong and rather unpleasant. It's specifically similar to Napa Smith Amber Ale but also broadly similar to many other west coast beers of this style which I have had. It's unbalanced and unpleasant.

The taste is similar, if not as unpleasant as the aroma, It's sweetish up front before bitterness moves to the fore at the finish and aftertaste, but overall sweetness-bitterness are at least pretty balanced at first. Caramelised grain and perfumy, grapefruity citrus dominate the character and esp. the aftertaste. The balance slowly destabilises and drinkability, never high, soon plummets.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
2.93/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: Poured a vrimson color with good carbonation and a nice white head

S: Bread, green fresh hops, caramel

T: Caramel, green hops and some bread, perhaps toasted

M: Lighter bodied and very thing mouthfeel, barely detect booze

D: Not bad but not good either

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

Poured from a 22oz bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: dark amber-brown in color with a thin finger of tan head. Pretty dark for an amber, but nice.

Smell: light, caramelly malt aroma with a nice whiff of citrus hops. Pretty light, but I like it.

Taste: nice balance of caramel and biscuity malt flavors. Hops are slightly earthy, slightly citrusy, and nicely bitter. Overall well-crafted and well-balanced, though there's a bit of a sourness which is a bit off-putting. It's light, though, and doesn't adversely affect the beer too much.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a decent level of carbonation. It works for me.

Drinkability: the sourness aspect of the flavor prevents me from giving this a better score, as it seems to build on the palate in a not-so-good way. Otherwise, this is an eminently quaffable session amber.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.4/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a Sprecher nonic. No date or info.

A - Red Menace pours quietly despite it's tall height and settles to a crystal clear red-amber color with an off-white head. The retention was rather low but it left some thin fingers of lace on the glass.

S - Toasted bread and flaky biscuit emerges from the nose immediately followed by a grassy, green, and slightly floral hop aroma. The amber malts become less distinct the longer it sits. I'm starting to pick up a metallic touch which, coincidentally, goes away as well. A swirl releases more of the citrus from the hops. It's a decent amber nose.

T - The toasted bread and biscuit flavor remains from the amber malts but is forcefully pushed to the background from the amount of strong-armed hops in this. Lots of bitterness and pine potency with a grassy backing and hint of citrus. It's a pretty hoppy amber.

M - Medium-bodied and round, Big Amber is big in hop flavor and bitterness. The finish has a dry, bitter kick and a hard mouthfeel. It's not really on the smooth side bit all-in-all it works decently.

D - This amber is a little hoppier than I like mine to be, but it's brewed well nonetheless. The bitterness with a low malt backing is the issue for me though. Still a solid beer but it lands around the lawnmower side of the scale. One is enough for this reviewer.

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Photo of HugePlume
3.48/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A- Unique appearance a deep burnt red hue. Pours with a low but somewhat thick head that dissipates somewhat quickly.

S- The best part of this beer may be the aroma. A healthy well roasted smell, with minimal fruity hop influence. You can imagine your nose immersed in the barley.

T- A little weak, the roasted flavor is still there but does not translate as well. Nothing inspiring, however the roasty flavor once again makes its presence known as it finishes, a quality i found memorable.

M- A little watery, appropriate carbonation.

D- The strong yet pleasant roasted aromas and finish make this worth sampling.

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Photo of Redrover
3.88/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hales Red Menace drank from an imperial pint at the Elephant and Castle in downtown Seattle. The beer is a dark red with a light tan head.

Caramel malts and slight citrus in the nose.

Taste leads with caramel malts that are slightly roasted. It is well balanced with some light hops (centennial) that lend a pine note and add balance. It is almost dry in the finish.

The mouth is thickish and slightly oily.

I thought it was an easy drinker that is well balanced. Nice example of what a red can be.

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Photo of Pinto21
3.1/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

solid amber color, lack luster white head though. doesn't stay long at all.

Smells of biscuit malts, some weak hops to it.

Hop bitterness, some citrus. malt finish, but not too much. not a lot goin on. kinda lame.

Just kinda lame and one dimensional. Not bad but i wouldn't call it good. I was hoping for more of something from a "Big Amber"

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Photo of froghop
3.15/5  rDev -7.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

pours a clear copper with a hue of orange, a thin egg-shell head, and very good lacing.

smell is woody, slight grapefruit, malt, caramel, roasted nuts, and a sweetness.

taste is a little watery, some metallic, a little grapefruit, caramel, hops, and some malt, ends dry and slightly bitter.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.28/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 picked up today at the COOP... paid about $3.75... poured into my shaped SA glass...

just shy of a 2 finger head.. surprising lace throughout the entire glass.. the brew is a polished amber...

nose is "fresh" .. caramel malts and a descent amount of C-hops.. a little bit of yeasty fruitiness that reminds me of underripe plums..

Flavor is expected maltiness with lesser caramel than the nose.. but the hops are also less.. less citric and more grassy.. there is an odd metallic not that lingers mid palate through the finish.. it isn't overpowering by any means .. just probably shouldn't be there.. as it warms.. the caramel sorta turns into a biscuity element.. the body is a little lite but the carbonation is where it should be..

Overall... this tastes pretty fresh right now.. but I don't expect it to hold well... the metallic note sorta sticks around but doesn't distract too badly... overall.. just an okay amber.. I doubt I'll buy it again.

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Photo of blackc5
3.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle at 40F.

A - Deep reddish copper with very minimal head but at least a bit of lacing from what was there.

S - Very faint but mainly grassy and earthy hops with a bit of malt.

T- Pretty unremarkable for a red. Grassy. Pretty hoppy with a bit of zest and pine. Very dry.

M - Carbonation is light. Crisp and medium bodied. Aftertaste is bitter.

D - Goes down easy enough, but leaves one wishing for a bit more in terms of taste. Low alcohol.

Not one of Hale's better efforts. That said, have had this on tap, and I remember it being better. Perhaps this was an old bottle...

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Photo of SurlyDuff
3.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy dark copper with a toasted marshmallow head from the 22oz bomber.

Sweet malt and lemon peel aroma.

Taste is malty at first, with a sharp high-alpha bitterness. Burnt caramel in here, with some oily hops and lightly sweet. Getting some metallic flavors in here too, and some bromophenol/disinfectant taint to it. Aftertaste is a bit sicky and oily, but it's not bad. The low abv makes this a pretty good session beer.

A pretty unremarkable amber, though it does have a good memorable name and CCCP'ish logo.

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

Appearance- Pours a low one finger tan head with good retention, beer is a dark reddish brown amber

Smell- Sweet and fruity amber malts and some nice fresh hops

Taste- Sweet amber malts, biscuity with notes of molasses, orange rind and dried fruits. Hops are citrusy with a bit of pine. Complex and balanced. An absolutely outstanding flavor.

Mouthfeel- Light smooth carbontion, moderate body and somewhat mouthfilling

Drinkability- Smooth and quite flavorful. Big flavor and still surprisingly drinkable.

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Photo of mralphabet
2.73/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 Oz Bottle Poured into Pint Glass

A: Brownish Red and Copper in color 1/2 a finger of head with very little retention and little lacing.

S: Hops Hops and more Hops, very leafy and full of citrus noted hops. Maybe some burned malt. I'm also catching some glass like smells and some steelyness.

T: Like the smell hops, hops, hops and green leafy hops... There are some citrus like notes here but the grassy like taste in the aftertaste that kills any citrus notes that are left. The aftertaste to me is a little to bitter for my liking.

M: I'm go with medium-bodied but I wouldn't call it full. There is a grassy bitterness in the mouth. The carbonation is pretty lite.

D: Note I'm not a big Red Ale Guy.... and this brew is a bit more Hoppy than I like.... So this one is not that much up my alley. Over all I think the Grassyness is killing it for me...

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Photo of timtim
3.62/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

head and lace on this burnt amberish beer are almost non-existant. off white head fades quick and leaves no lace. i can't put my finger on it, but i just wasn't terribly fond of this one. i love a good red ale, and it doesn't have to be a hop bomb, so... if you ask me, a couple of reviews down nailed it. strawberry and raspberry SEED, mixed with lightly burnt toast a touch of pine in the nose. more of the same with a touch of metal in the finish when tasted. above average brew, depending on what you consider average. decent medium body and fairly easy to drink. i won't be revisiting this one.

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Photo of Magpie14
3.17/5  rDev -7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: light clouded apple cider color with more orange tones when held up to the light. Head was gone in a heart beat and left bubbles galore around the rim of the glass. Not to sure what to think, looks lifeless and very uninteresting in the glass

S: pale malts, dry stale hops, and caramel base with light wet paper. Has a shot of spicy hops in the nose, uncharacteristic for an amber ale...nice

T: far from the full flavored category and plenty of room to improve for this one. It does have a little bit of raw and spicy hop edge to it. Grains are watery and shaky in the flavor profile. Sweeter flavors are at times offensive and linger of soaked watery oranges, lemons, and caramel.

M: dry aftertaste, nice acidity, and more of a pucker feel instead of hop presence. Body is not bad and has a medium body feel

D: timid and watery at times, not a revolution! This one missed the mark for me but still maintains a title of acceptable

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Photo of LilBeerDoctor
3.7/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed on 10/9/08. Bottle courtesy of scrizzz. Pours a deep, dark amber with a very small white head that dissipates quickly. Aroma of light sweet fruits (raspberry seeds) and sweet malt. Flavor of nice light fruity sweetness (more raspberry and strawberry seeds). Nice, light, and tasty.
7/4/8/4/14 (3.7/5)

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Hale's Red Menace Big Amber from Hale's Ales Brewery & Pub
79 out of 100 based on 57 ratings.