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Hit The Trail Ale - Long Trail Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Hit The Trail Ale
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BA SCORE
82
good

195 Ratings
THE BROS
92
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 195
Reviews: 91
rAvg: 3.59
pDev: 12.53%
Wants: 8
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Long Trail Brewing Co. visit their website
Vermont, United States

Style | ABV
English Brown Ale |  4.20% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Hit the Trail is a deep amber ale with a rich and smooth flavor. Malty undertones of vanilla and caramel are kept in check by the addition of Northern Brewer hops.

24 IBU

(Beer added by: Jason on 12-31-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 195 | Reviews: 91 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by ZCoale:
Photo of ZCoale
3/5  rDev -16.4%

ZCoale, Dec 13, 2012
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A pretty average brown here in my humble opinion,pours more of an amber than brown color with a pretty light head aroma is lightly vinagery and kinda funky.Taste is pretty harsh when cold as it warms becomes more of the style lightly earthy and sweet but nothing spectacular.A prety average brown nothing really sticks out.

oberon, Oct 30, 2003
Photo of Tiernan
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

Tiernan, Mar 17, 2014
Photo of lordofthewiens
3.53/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was a dark brown beer with a medium head that lasted. A tiny bit of lacing. It had a roasted malt and slightly grainy aroma. The taste was sweet, raisin bread-like, with a little bit of hops coming in. A pleasant beer, kind of middle of the road for this style of beer.

lordofthewiens, Jun 02, 2006
Photo of Jason
4.1/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz brown long neck bottle with a bottled on date on the label.

Appearance: A decent head at the initial pouring but the subsides to a semi-sticky ring of lace afterwards. Nice clarity in the old bronze-brown hue.

Smell: A bit malty with hints of butterscotch, ripe fruit and toasted malt.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Very smooth off of the moderate carbonation and creamy medium body. Lots of malt flavour going from sweet to toasted. An even crispness of hop bitterness rolls across the palate to level things off. Faint buttery diacetyl, light fruitiness and a continual toasted malt flavour linger in the end.

Notes: Chalk this one up as another great session beer, paired well with a lightly spicy blackened chicken and caramelized onions.

Jason, Nov 13, 2003
Photo of Billolick
3.13/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 ouncer tried, with bottled on dating on the label. Clear almond flows out of the bottle, insipid white head, dissolving to nothing, no lacing to write about. Nose is fairly weak, just perhaps a wiff of doughness. Not getting a great amount of malt/hops/flavor/complexity here. Clearly a subtle, British style Brown ale. Not impressed, LT makes better stuff then this.

Billolick, Jan 01, 2005
Photo of jcdiflorio
4.03/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

poured into a nonic glass from a long neck brown bottle with a crimped on cap. Sent to me from Sudsdog 4 out of 6 Long Trails.

Clear,ruby red with a 2" creamy off-white head,fair retention with spotty lacing. Not much carbination the head totaly dissapated by the finish.

A good,clean inviting very moderate. Very nutty and fruity,burnt toffee.some grainy smells,perfumy,a slighty vinous English aroma.

Very clean taste,very fruity and nutty with some light carmell notes and nice tartness. Finishes with a pleasing bittersweetness and crisp tartness.

Very smooth mouthfeel with a grainy feel from the tartness.Goes down extremely well. Could get some lower ratings from a slight watery feel. I thought it was a good English Brown really enjoyable and highly drinkable.

jcdiflorio, Apr 04, 2007
Photo of juicebox
3.25/5  rDev -9.5%

juicebox, Dec 13, 2012
Photo of far333
4.4/5  rDev +22.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark amber/copper color with an appetizing frothy beige head. The head settles very slowly, and leaves nice lace on the glass. Smells of sweet malt, a bit of yeast, and mild hops. Flavor is semi-sweet malt, nice and roasty, a bit of caramel. Brown sugar aftertaste. Very warm flavor, with smooth and creamy mouthfeel. This is really nice, one of the best I've had from Long Trail. Got to get more of these.

far333, Jun 23, 2003
Photo of yankeeheel
3.18/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark orange/amber with a moderate off-white head. Decent lacing down the glass. Smells weakly of floral hops and earthy malts.

The taste is middle of the road on the malt scale. Slightly buttery and nutty, but without a whole lot of distinction. Finishes with a teeny bit of hops a slightly sweet. Carbonation is moderate.

A "safe" beer if that makes any sense. It's taste seems pretty cookie cutter. It does nothing to disuade you from drinking it, but it doesn't make you want to run out to the store to get it either.

yankeeheel, Nov 22, 2003
Photo of doremite
2.75/5  rDev -23.4%

doremite, Jul 12, 2013
Photo of NJpadreFan
2.1/5  rDev -41.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Long Trail- Hit the Trail Ale

Appearance- cola brown with a huge frothy head. Slight lacing.
Smell- Opened the beer and stuck my nose to the bottle. Smelled light lemon and grass. Poured the beer into a glass and there was a faint, and I mean faint smell of roasted nut.
Taste- I swear there is no taste at all!! This was bottled on 10/12/05 so thats 3 months old. I can barely detect some malt and coffe/ nut flavor. I could be making it up in my head though.
Mouthfeel- water. water. water.

Overall- what is going on here?! No flavor! I wasn't expecting much from this beer and it delivered even less. There is NO taste!

-maybe my tastebuds are too conditioned to IPA's

NJpadreFan, Feb 02, 2006
Photo of jmz62565
3.38/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This pours a darkish red brown with a medium tan head. There is alot of carbonation in this beer. The smell is average with some malt sweetness to it,but nothing outstanding. The taste is a creamy malt sweetness with alot of carbonation. This is an interesting beer. The m/f is light with the aftertaste being somewhat watery. This is a decent beer that I would try again and one of the better American Brown Ales.

jmz62565, Apr 28, 2006
Photo of twowheelssoar
4.25/5  rDev +18.4%

twowheelssoar, Nov 16, 2011
Photo of NeroFiddled
3.8/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Long Trail "Hit The Trail Ale"
12 oz. bottle

I wasn't particularly fond of the way that Long Trail used American hops in their Hibernator Scottish-style ale because they just don't quite fit. I didn't find that they worked within the overall balance of the beer. Inappropriate hops, however, are not the case here. They've used Northern Brewer and they work out just fine, regardless of where they were actually grown (I'm assuming Pacific northwest). Northern Brewer hops are, in fact, fairly traditional for an English-style brown ale. In this case they add a bit of leafiness, mint-iness, and subtle grassiness at a level that's just strong enough to stand out from the nutty, chocolatey, and lightly caramel-ish maltiness. One valid question might then be, "have they used too much hop flavor as the style really calls for the malt to dominate, followed by the yeast character as the second feature?", and I think the answer is yes. However, this IS an American beer, not an English beer; and I feel that simply mimicking another beer or style really serves no purpose. If I wanted a true English brown ale I could buy one, and therefore this beer is unique. It remains "English" in nature but with a twist. As long as it works, and I think it does, then we should just let style go. With that said, hedonistically, I think it's quite a nice beer, and it's quite enjoyable. It's well-made with a good appearance and a nice balance. Additionally, it's fairly accessible and fits in with a wide variety of situations despite its darker appearance. Worth trying.

NeroFiddled, Jun 25, 2013
Photo of dantsbeats
4/5  rDev +11.4%

dantsbeats, Feb 19, 2012
Photo of beerluvr
4.03/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours with an off white head of foam. Clear, light auburn liquid. Nose of very light coffee, roasted malt and brown sugar makes for an appetizing aroma. Bittersweet roasted malt with bubbly carbonation, nice subdued flowery hop zing follows. The finish dances on the line between sweet and bitter/dry. Super session ale...I put away a sixer of this stuff while in NH with no problem whatsoever.

beerluvr, May 25, 2004
Photo of UncleFrank
3.53/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Long Trail's Brown ale says it’s an American on the web site but I'm nearly positive it says it’s a Northern on the bottle. It may be both as its not quite like Brooklyn or Pete's yet hoppier than a Newcastle.

The color is caramel brown with a thin tan head. The aroma is a nutty/bready malt dominance with little hop, if any. The taste is bitter at first with malt to follow, attempting to balance. Crystal grain sweetness blends nicely with toasted grain body. Perhaps a touch of Special B. There just aren’t enough grains to keep the hops from establishing themselves from start to finish. Maybe this is where the "American" comes in. The finish is clean for an ale and all flavors just go away.

I like this beer because I like hops, not as a brown ale but as a session beer. A six pack of this may be on hand for the next football Sunday. Cheers!

UncleFrank, Sep 14, 2003
Photo of bewareOFpenguin
3.33/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I was able to purchase a single of this, it usually must be purchased in a twelve pack. It poured a nice amber reddish color. It was pleasant enough, good hops, tastey malts. This is a good after activity session beer. I could picture myself drinking this in front of a campfire. I wonder how it goes with s'mores?

bewareOFpenguin, May 27, 2003
Photo of bditty187
3.3/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Clear, ruby-brown in hue with a bronzy highlight, what a beautiful color. The head developed poorly, at the apex it was a half finger in height but quickly dissipated to a thin cap. After a few moments the cap faded to a collar. There was no subsequent lacing. The nose has its charm, it does lack in potency a bit thus I can’t completely grasp the aromas. I do detect some toasty, caramel malts. I absolutely adore this in Brown Ales. But I do not welcome the buttery, butterscotch notes. Strange sweet, flowery, fruity notes too. Airy finish. The bouquet is fair, not inviting but not off-putting. I’m curious to take a sip even though I hardly know what to expect. I like my Brown Ales to taste like small porters. This one does not. So I will judge it accordingly. There is a wide butterscotch flavor that muddles the palate, IMO. This forces the toasty, caramel flavors to the background. Some sweetness is found at the back, towards the finish before a charred taste emerges. This odd combination lingers into the aftertaste. I can tolerate it but I don’t love it. Weak hop bitterness; any true flavors contributed are not discernible. Overall, the palate is good enough but it needs to be paired with some grilled foods or at least some sharp cheddar cheese. Medium/medium-light in body, low carbonation but the mouthfeel is still pleasant. I like this beer. It is okay. But one 12-ounce bottle was enough for me. Thanks for the sample UnionMade… and the glass!

bditty187, Aug 26, 2004
Photo of PhantomVodoo
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear, pale brown in color. Some sediment. Minimal tan head. Looks thin and light in body.
Aroma of lightly roasted, chocolatey malt. Earthy hops and brown sugar round out the nose.

Taste shows the same lightly roasty, chocolatey malt. Solid earthy/floral hop balance for a brown ale.

Mouthfeel is thin and watery.
Solid drinkability.

Overall, a decent, light-bodied brown ale, but not one I'd search out.

PhantomVodoo, Sep 02, 2003
Photo of Enriquehopnog
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

Enriquehopnog, Nov 12, 2013
Photo of ScottieD
3.25/5  rDev -9.5%

ScottieD, May 11, 2013
Photo of Hagbard
4.03/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark brown with nice ruby highlights. A small white head forms and a nice continual stream of carbonation winds up from the bottom of the glass. The aroma is sweet with malt and touches of brown sugar. To be honest, the aroma is the worst part of this beer, because I love the taste. This seems to be a theme for me with Long Trail beers, I wonder why? The first thing I taste is brown sugar. This firms up into a beautiful malt backbone that has definite caramel highlights. The aftertaste hits almost as hard as the beer itself with the same malt composition. Even though all the tastes I've described are "sweet" smells, the beer itself isn't very sweet at all. This is a great attribute, sweet beers tend to be off-putting to me. The tastes are there without the cloying sweetness. This beer really surprised me in a good way. I wasn't expecting much, but this is a really great session ale that goes down easily and is never offensive.

Hagbard, Jan 21, 2005
Photo of puboflyons
3.93/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This has been made available on tap for the Barley House Restaurant in Concord, N.H. U.S.A. under the moniker of "Black Ice Pond Ale." Sampled on January 15, 2011. The pour was a decent looking amber brown/red with about a half inch of light tan head that leaves a delicate silkiness on top. The aroma is of sweet malts, yeast, and light nuttiness. The mouthfeel was medium. There is a sharp bitterness in the overall flavor coupled with a slightly hopped ending. Quite nice.

puboflyons, Jan 17, 2011
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Hit The Trail Ale from Long Trail Brewing Co.
82 out of 100 based on 195 ratings.