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Saranac India Pale Ale - Matt Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Saranac India Pale AleSaranac India Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

896 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 896
Reviews: 549
rAvg: 3.31
pDev: 14.8%
Wants: 2
Gots: 37 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American IPA |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-19-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 896 | Reviews: 549 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BadBadger
3.13/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This India Pale Ale pours a light amber color. There is a white foamy head but only briefly. There is a very slight hoppy smell-nothing else to make note of. The taste is rather bland, though there is a slight bitter taste it is limited and nothing special. This beer is not something I would seek out. Nor would I be happy to find this on a beer menue, even if the options were "extremely limited". Don't bother with this when there are so many fine India Pale Ales out there.

BadBadger, May 14, 2004
Photo of brewdlyhooked13
3.15/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance - standard pour into a pint glass gets a brief head, very creamy. Golden orange color is nice but not enough to place it above average.

Aroma - yer standard citrusy orange nose, pine, with some decent staying power. Gets a little lighter after several moments, but still smells good.

Taste - briefly malty, turns mildly citrusy and a little more so for the grapefruit bitterness, but also some unwanted metallic notes. A hop head's 'lite' if you will. Aftertaste is just the grapefruit bitterness, nothing else. Pretty one-dimensional with the effort given to the hop. It's okay albeit a bit shallow character-wise. Not a player in the fiercely competitive IPA category.

Mouthfeel - watery with a good level of carbonation. Actually a little more crisp than most IPAs, a little more refreshing.

Drinkability - a decent warm weather beer, pretty middle of the road for the most part.

brewdlyhooked13, Apr 21, 2004
Photo of kunzbrew
3.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This brew pours a nice hazy dark straw color with a nice head that last for a little while. A nice sexy lace is left behind. The aroma is a little week for my liking, I really can't smell any hops, I smell more astrigent aroma from the malts and the yeast.

A harsh hop bitterness that stings the back of the throat along with the earthy grassy flavor makes for a not so pleasent drinking expirence. The overall mouth feel is not to bad a little film is left in your mouth after after each sip.

This is an over ok beer nothing to write home about.

kunzbrew, Apr 12, 2004
Photo of Quaffer
3.68/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Crystal clear, golden-amber brew. Big, almost three-finger, off-white head that became frothy and stuck well to the side of the glass. Tons of lace, sometimes in solid sheets.

Smell: From the bottle, all raw hops. In the glass, hops combined with roasted and caramel malts. Hints of cherries and vanilla.

Mouthfeel: Light-bodied and thin. A little rough, especially in the back of the throat.

Taste: Only hints of the malt came through, mainly as a sweetness in the aftertaste. The hops overpowered and provided a strong bitterness, but were muddled in flavor. Somewhat flowery and herbal in character. Overall dry, making it more quaffable than it should be.

Not a bad IPA, but the malt presence is weak and the hops flavor isn't wonderful.

Quaffer, Apr 06, 2004
Photo of Jacobob10
3.5/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours out golden amber color with a great, consistent head. Huge aroma here with the hops standing out above all (just like any IPA). I really enjoy the taste of this beer. Big floral, hoppy taste with a slight touch of alcohol. Tastes a little bitter but nothing that you couldn't handle. Extremely similar to Sierra Nevada Pale Ale but maybe a notch below.

Jacobob10, Apr 01, 2004
Photo of FranklinPCombs
3.98/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As far as IPAs go, this is pretty much what you'd expect. It purs a clear light golden orange color. Little head, and no lace. The smell is the typical citrusy pine hops, with the background of malt and yeast. The taste is also pretty typical. Hops hit at the front, with it mellowing into a subtle blend of the hoppy bitterness and the rich maltiness. Mouthfeel is average viscosity, with a very nice amount of carbonation.

FranklinPCombs, Mar 10, 2004
Photo of homersimpson
2.83/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear gold with a white foamy head.
Very faint nose with a floral malt hint.
Has a rather thin, light body.
Thin hop and slight nut flavors quickly dissipate to a sour twang and sweet malt that stay with you for a while.
Not bad persay, just really weak. Not much to it at all, not done well enough to be called "delicate" either.

homersimpson, Mar 07, 2004
Photo of Greenlabel
4.33/5  rDev +30.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm an IPA fan who enjoys both the high-powered IPA's and the more session type IPA's. This one definitely fits the latter category and reminds me of another of my favorite session IPA's, Harpoon. I was introduced to this product via the 12 Beers of Christmas but recently found it available in 6-packs. I thought it was the best of the 12 Beers and drinking a few 6-packs convinces me it's probably the best of the Saranac products. Looks good, smells good, tastes good and has no poor aftertaste. Probably lacks some balance between malt and hops but I prefer the favoritism it shows to hops. It will never replace a Stone's but it's not competing in that market. Well done, in my opinion.

Greenlabel, Feb 25, 2004
Photo of Imbiber
3/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pale gold, moderate carbonation, fair white head. Pleasant aroma of fresh hops, a little flowery. Taste is moderately hoppy, not very assertive at all. Quite well balanced but somewhat nondescript for an IPA. Moderately bitter finish. Much more an ordinary pale ale than an IPA, unimpressive but pleasant enough. Tame. This won't offend anyone apart from those expecting a more vigorous hop bite.

I doubt I'll bother with this again myself, though it may be a good choice for a 'stepping stone' beer for potentially converting macro swill drinkers to something better.

Imbiber, Feb 22, 2004
Photo of ark57
3.53/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

I feel that this beer is a little light in color and should not have been filtered. It is a very clear golden color. It is topped with a long-lasting, soft head. The bitter aroma reminds me of freshly mowed grass with a little citrus. There is a slight caramel taste to the body, but it is a little thin. The finish tatse of fresh lemon rind, from the use of the Cascade Hops.

ark57, Feb 15, 2004
Photo of smcolw
3.78/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Very light in color--golden. Nice two finger head that leaves a pleasant lace on the the glass. Slight chill haze.

Beautiful hop bouquet in the smell with just enough malt to keep it complex.

Taste: First to mind--lemony. Lots of flavoring hops, lots of aroma hops, almost like the time I took a hop pellet and sucked on it. Even though I'm a hop head I miss the malt balance. The malt is subtle that one needs to seek out. I like the body--just about perfect. The hop stays with me long, long after the swallow.

Perhaps I'll have a Scotch ale to clear my palate.

smcolw, Feb 13, 2004
Photo of TastyTaste
4.1/5  rDev +23.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Note about this beer: IPAs are my favorite style. I saved this bottle for the last from my sampler pack.
Pours a medium gold color with a thick white head. There seems to be particles suspended in the liquid, which is kind of cool looking being held up to light. Smells good. Very bitter and floral with the hops, and there is a tone of alcohol in the background. Taste is overloaded with hops bitterness (I'm not saying that's a bad thing). After I have tried all 12 Saranac's, I will say this is the best one, even though it isn't the best IPA I've ever had.

TastyTaste, Feb 12, 2004
Photo of Charthepirate
3.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very standard, underpowered, underdeveloped IPA.

Poured a pale, almost fizzy lawnmower beer yellow. Big bubbles, but a nice lacing.

Smell knocked me back with a kick of DMS. This may have been a bad bottle, because the DMS dominated.

Flavor is strong on the hops, and some fruity esthers. Even with all that unbalance, it's far too weak in either department to be outstanding.

Easy to drink though, wouldn't make a horrible sesion beer.


Charthepirate, Feb 09, 2004
Photo of Shiloh
4.38/5  rDev +32.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A nice IPA, I enjoyed it, wish I had more.
The colour was a dark golden and very clear. Carbonation was light and the crown was short leaving to a minor lace and cling. The body almost full but shortly lacking.
The nose was mildly floral.
A heavy dose of cascade hops is the first to greet you and it sticks around for an impressive after taste.
IMHO, this brew could use just a little more balance...but not much.

Shiloh, Jan 28, 2004
Photo of Maestro
3.08/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Nice bubbly white head. Yellow with orange hints. The nose is quite hoppy and has some aromas of fresh cut grass. The beer is quite hoppy and the grassy notes come through in the first taste. The malt doesn't seem to peak through very much. Hops dominate the taste. The mouthfeel is quite dry and bitter. The drinkability is average. Not the greatest IPA, but not the worst either.

Maestro, Jan 25, 2004
Photo of Billolick
3/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

clear, straw color. not much of a nose, abit of cascade. Medium hops and minimal malt, Hops in the finish, abit of lime and grapefruit. Doesnt live up to its label " a hop lovers delight!". This really is more like a Pale Ale, not enough of a hop kick to get it up to style....$5.99 a six, I'd rather pay a buck or two more to get a non-watered down attempt at an IPA

Billolick, Jan 19, 2004
Photo of longpondbeerman
3.68/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice light amber ("golden straw" they call it on the label), very clear with a bubbly off-white head. Soft hops aroma with not much else, perhaps a little underlying wheat. The taste is uneventful--no where near the hoppiness I'd expect (again from the label: "very hoppy in both aroma and flavor") and a bit sweeter than I expected, too. The taste improves actually as the ale nears its finish, becoming more complex with a lingering balance of bread and bitter. I like the mouthfeel; maybe a tad overcarbonated, but not too thin at least. I'd drink it again.

longpondbeerman, Jan 16, 2004
Photo of masterbruewer
3.48/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a golden, slightly amber color with a decent white head of about a 1/2 inch. Little carbonation.

The smell is a little citrusy and grainy, but mostly hoppy.

The taste is pure cascade hops. Not much else, but I didn't find it overly bitter.

The mouthfeel is full, but not thick.

If you like IPA's this is a great example. If you don't like hops, stay away.

masterbruewer, Jan 16, 2004
Photo of UnionMade
3.38/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a rather lightish golden amber, topped with a thick white head. The head dies out to a thick mist after a couple sips, with lots of sticky lace completely coating the sides of the glass. Excellent clarity.
The aroma is rather subdued for an IPA. Hops are definitely apparent, although without the strength I'm accustomed to. Still pleasant. The hops are mildly herbal and grassy, as well as citric. Some maltiness comes through, mostly a toasty aroma. Faily clean, without much in the way of fruitiness. A doughy pasta-like aroma is evident in the malt, which is unusual.
The flavor starts with a semi-grainy toasted maltiness. Just a trace of floral esters come through in the middle before they're washed away in a moderate citric hoppiness. Some herbal and hay-like flavor comes through, after your palate adjusts. A bit of rindy grapefruit flavor is apparent in the aftertaste. Moderate bitterness. Medium bodied, with mild carbonation and a fairly smooth, albeit grainy mouthfeel.
Not half bad. Probably my favorite from the seasonal mix pack so far. I could do without the hay-like hop flavor. Pretty well balanced, with actual hop flavor and some bittering. A bit simple, but I could drink a pint of this after work.

UnionMade, Jan 14, 2004
Photo of taez555
3.53/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured a white head with a rather clear tan/orange body.

The nose was a mix of bread, citrus, yeast, spice and biscuit malt. There seemed to be an interesting mix of hop smells, not just a cascade, maybe a mix of some others. I’d say saaz or maybe a german earthy type hop.

The taste was medium to light bodied. Rather bitter. A big but mellow bitter citrus. Biscuit malt, light caramel, caramel sweetness, some yeast. Nice big and malty. It finishes with a long mellow citrus bitterness.

Basically this beer reminded me of old school microbrews in the days of Sam Adams, Pete’s, before the time of the big craft brews. Just a simple, tasty, IPA. A great session beer, but not one I’d reach for if I saw it on the shelf.

taez555, Jan 10, 2004
Photo of GeoffRizzo
3.2/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Light golden hue, a bit cloudy, a thin creamy head, web lacing noted throughout. A decent hops aroma as well as some fresh fruit on the nose. Up front, rather nice, tangy citrus flavoring gives way to some Cascade hops. Soft, crisp and refreshing. Maybe light bodied, but that's alright. Tiny carbonation in the body, some grapefruit and apple notes, could have been hopped up a little more. A pretty good session IPA, could have been hopped up a little more.

GeoffRizzo, Dec 24, 2003
Photo of WesWes
3.78/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a golden color with a thick frothy white head. The aroma is hoppy and quite aromatic. It has a very powerful floral scent; very nice. The taste is good. It also boasts floral hop flavor. It however has a very plain tasting palate of malts. It tastes like only pale malts. The mouthfeel is good. It is a low bodied beer with good carbonation. This is a good drinking beer; a decent IPA.

WesWes, Dec 24, 2003
Photo of winomark
2.42/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance: Pours a light copper with a substantial foamy off-white head.

Aroma: Some hop citrus, but a slight sweetness is most noticable.

Taste: Malt and cereal notes up front with a slight hoppiness battling with the carbonation. Dry, bitter aftertaste.

Mouthfeel: Not balanced at all. Flavors going in all different directions. Carbonation dominates throughout.

Drinkability: Not an IPA in my book. Avoid if possible.

winomark, Dec 22, 2003
Photo of clvand0
2.5/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This beer poured a golden/yellow color with a small head that dissipated quickly. The aroma was mostly citrus with some malts and hops in the background. The flavor was citrusy with some hops and malts as well, but it seemed to be pretty watery. I didn't think this was a good representation of the IPA.

clvand0, Dec 19, 2003
Photo of mschofield
2.63/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Finishing off my Saranac Holiday 12 pack
Copper-orange with a tall bubbly white head, does lace a little, settles to a cap.
Citrus and pine notes with a tiny bit of green apple in the aroma. Citrus carries through to the taste as grapefruit rind, not enough malt in the flavor, none in the aroma.
Light medium, slightly oily body.
Not a terribly memorable IPA, or one I'd buy if there were other choices available, and there are a lot of better easilt available choices in the same price range.

mschofield, Dec 18, 2003
Saranac India Pale Ale from Matt Brewing Company
76 out of 100 based on 896 ratings.