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Saranac Summer Ale - Matt Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Saranac Summer AleSaranac Summer Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

299 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 299
Reviews: 195
rAvg: 3.12
pDev: 15.06%
Wants: 0
Gots: 7 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Wheat Ale |  4.70% ABV

Availability: Summer

Notes/Commercial Description:
Available in the 12 Beers of Summer sampler. Not to be confused with Saranac Summer Brew (a German Radler).

(Beer added by: WesWes on 04-14-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 299 | Reviews: 195 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of DannyS
3.68/5  rDev +17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

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

A - I very clear orange amber with a nice head of foam that disappears disappointingly quickly, leaving nothing.

S - Little bit of citric hops, slight malt, and honey on the nose, but that's about it.

T - Has a perky, lemon-accented wheat malt taste with just a hint of hops and cinnamon-like spice. Finishes clean and slightly dry.

M - watery and fizzy. Little in the way of body, but not necessarily a bad thing.

D - Low ABV + good taste and mouthfeel = excellent session beer.

overall - a Good idea for a summer thirst quencher. I could easily enjoy a few cold ones on a hot day. I'd call it a lawnmower beer, but we hire landscapers. So it's an outdoor summer drinking beer. Yeah, that should do.

DannyS, Jun 25, 2009
Photo of Ragingbull
3.85/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a straw color with a mild honey nose. Wispy head of light lacing. Thick and full mouthfeel. Very enjoyable in the mouth. A clean attack that gives a touch of lemon and some citrus notes in the flavor. The finish is a bit fruity but cleans up to not allow any lingering aftertaste from the fruit notes. I am not normally a big fan of summer ales, but I truly enjoyed this one. Definitely one of the better summer offerings that is readily available and widely distributed.

Ragingbull, Jun 23, 2009
Photo of KenC411
2.83/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 2 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a clear orange brown with a sickly thin head. Disappears almost instantly, leaving no peaks.

Smell: A sweet citrus

Taste: Citrus, some malt notes with almost no hops. Tastes a strongly carbonated, like seltzer water.

Mouthfeel: The beer is very crisp but watery, and although it tastes gassy is not overly carbonated.

Drinkability: Its sweet but gassy, crisp but watery, strong nose but flavorless. It feels like it is missing something.

KenC411, Jun 22, 2009
Photo of caddybuyer
3.5/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle from the "12 beers of summer" 12 pack.

A-Clear amber with a puffy eggshell head. One of the better looking beers from the pack.

S-Sweet, earthy citrus and grassy.

T-Clean, crisp and refreshing, but not much going on here. Watered down malts, but not bad either.

M-Very light, as one would expect for the style. Decent, but not outstanding.

D-Very drinkable on a warm day. You are not here for taste, as much as for a quencher.

caddybuyer, May 26, 2009
Photo of puboflyons
3.38/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle marked 1179-1118. Sampled on May 24, 2009.

A - An amber, rusty color with a smidge of off-white head and light lacing. Slightly cloudy but reasonable clarity.

S - The aroma is malted and citrus like. It has a freshness about it.

T/M - An average mouthfeel. Not too watered down but not very heeavy either. The taste is kind of fruity and malty.

It works well on a very hot day but beyond that it is really kind of average.

puboflyons, May 24, 2009
Photo of TheFightfan1
2.5/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a cloudy orange color with a white heading. No lacing present.

Smell is kind of spicey,a little coriander,but a funky yeasty smell overrun's the aroma.

Taste and mouth is a bit over carbonated light to medium bodied. Very sweet malty beverage that leaves a funky taste in the mouth not far from the smell.

Drink is unenjoyable I almost had a drainpour but I couldn't bring myself to do it.

TheFightfan1, May 24, 2009
Photo of akorsak
3.88/5  rDev +24.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12 oz bottle, number three from the 12 Beers of Summer pack.

A: The is a tea-colored amber, more yellow-brown than orange. The color isn't so dark, allowing the translucence to remain. Not much head to speak of.

S: Lemon essence is strong, not syrupy or bitter but sugary with an added emphasis on lemon peel. Almost, if not entirely, shandy-like.

T: Not bad at all. Much better, in fact, that I was expecting. The lemon is strong, tempered by cloves and light wheat tartness. The lemon is sweet, not cloying and not tart. The wheat and lemon play nicely, a flavorful combination.

M: The lemon, wheat and spices are all in proportion, with the lemon leading the way. Much better than I was expecting.

D: Very quaffable, this would be excellent on a hot, muggy day.

akorsak, May 17, 2009
Photo of smerkinb
3.73/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a disappointing 1/2" head-fizzy and pure white...not really what I was expecting from a wheat beer. Head is gone in the time it took to write the previous sentence. Coppery gold color, the collar left little lacing.

Smells of caramelly malts, light floral hops and a hint of citrus.

Crisp wheat malts and lemon. The citrus is more than background but wisely stays away from anything resembling a "flavored" beer. The hops in the nose don't show up on my palate. Wheat, wheat, lemon and more tangy wheat.

Nice snappy, zingy, mouthfeel--good robust carbonation. Crisp and tangy. Sort of middle of the road--not thin or watery, not thick or syrupy.

I find myself describing this beer in terms of what it's not--not overly complex, not thick/thin, not too lemony.... What it IS though is a tasty refreshing and simple wheat beer with enough character to park it firmly in our camp. It might make an excellent "starter" beer (I hate the term "gateway"). It's refreshing and interesting. It's tasty and accessible and it's going with me to every damn pool party, BBQ, tailgate and beach trip this year.

Thumbs up on the Saranac 12 beers of summer pack. I have officially justified impulse shopping!

smerkinb, May 13, 2009
Photo of NJpadreFan
2.93/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Saranac- Summer

A- Light caramel brown, clear, no carbonation, small light sticky head.
S- Not much here. Slight sugary corn syrup, wheat, and clove.
T- Very light malt, sweet caramel/ corn syrup with a slight fruitiness. Spicy clove and wheat with a thick malt finish.
M- Light sweet malt with a dry body and thicker malt in the backend.

Overall- Light and mellow but a decent drinker.

NJpadreFan, May 09, 2009
Photo of Buschyfor3
2.7/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Sam Adams draft glass.

A: Pours a clear, rich golden amber body with a fizzy white head about 1.5 fingers thick that swiftly dissipates. Leaves thin rings of white lacing.

S: First note was a sweet burst of apricot or peach; then I start to get some husky, musty grain notes. Other than that, I really don't detect a lot going on in the nose.

T: A bit of hoppy bitterness peaks up front, followed by a flash of fruit - apricot, orange rinds, a hint of lemon. Mid sip, the malt background appears with a grainy, wheat-like note followed by the slightest touch of peppery spiciness. In the finish, the malt washes out the citrus notes and ride out the finish. Reminds me of a toned-down Sam Adams Summer Ale - the flavors are there, they just aren't as vibrant and they disappear all too quickly.

M: Light body with alot of carbonation - quite fizzy.

D: 4.70% ABV means you could easily drink a couple of these in a night without any problem. However, I think there are better examples of the style with more "pop" on the palate

Alright, but nothing special. Really, I would probably play it safe and just stick to a Sam Adams Summer Ale if I were presented with the choice between the two.

Buschyfor3, May 07, 2009
Photo of ClockworkOrange
2.85/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a shaker glass. Appears a crystal clear bright yellow color with a finger of quickly fading bone white foam. Smells and taste is over run with citrus, mainly lemon peel. Tastes a tad artificial to me (pledge-like). Notes of grass, and lightly toasted grains are also present. A bit thin bodied with modest carbonation.

ClockworkOrange, May 06, 2009
Photo of KTCamm
2.73/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear golden color with moderate foam that recedes very quickly. Beer is cloudy in appearance, mine has very small bits of sediment in it (not sure if that was intended).

Smell is citrusy malt. Tart.

Taste is overwhelmingly citrus - at times too tart, especially as the beer warms. Its backed by wheat, and no discrenable hop presence. Its almost as if I spilled some lemonade into a wheat beer.

If they could reduce the tartness, this would be much more drinkable. Given its current state, I'd hesitate to have too many of these.

KTCamm, Apr 19, 2009
Photo of yesyouam
2.45/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Saranac Summer Ale is a clear and sparkling golden ale with a thin white head that mostly dissipates. It has an aroma of lemon cleanser or lemon Starburst with a little coriander. A light cereal note-- almost oatmeal-- is present. It is very light and crisp all the way down. It's pretty watery and a little flat. It has a light flavor of lemon dish soap and a hint of Pine-sol hops. It seemed like a good idea, but it tastes very artificial.
(rated May 8, 2007)

yesyouam, Dec 20, 2008
Photo of tmoneyba
2.9/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Draft in Siesta Key, FL.

Poured clear golden color with a moderate frothy white head that was mostly lasting with excellent lacing. Moderate wheat sweet aroma. Medium body with a smooth texture. Medium sweet flavor with a medium sweet finish of average duration.

Smooth soft summer beer.

tmoneyba, Nov 16, 2008
Photo of mtstatebeer
2.93/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle from summer mix pack. Pours a sparkling golden yellow color with an extremely thin white head, little to no lacing. Aroma is initial lemon zest, crisp light/wheat malt, and maybe clove. Flavor is fairly plain, pale malts, lemon, a slight bitter finish. Mouthfeel is crisp, fairly carbonated. Overall a very drinkable beer, but not great.

mtstatebeer, Nov 03, 2008
Photo of oriolesfan4
3.2/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bought as part of the Saranac 12 Beers of Summer mix pack ($11.99/12)

One of the better offerings from the summer mixed pack but still doesn't compare to the other micros. Has a bit of a lemony and citrusy taste to make it 'summer' like, but overall its a beer that is lacking on body and overall taste. Would try again though.

oriolesfan4, Sep 09, 2008
Photo of dacrza1
2.98/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thin, clear golden orange-yellow body with a sudsy white head settling atop a Hoegaarden tumbler--why so much plaer than the Belgian white? the head leaves a slight tracing as the bottle drains... straw and lemon zest to the nose... a bit of pilsner malt plays a part as well... a freshness does exist here... softer yet more astringent than the Belgian in the sampler... malts provide a semblance of a body, but this is still light (purposefully, I imagine) and buttery/creamy on the finish... the malts rush the flavors straight back to the throat--a soft ale exists somewhere in this wheatness... this provides a nice feeling for summer, even if August in NJ has been unseasonably Autmumnal... shorter on hops to increase its drinkability, no doubt, this ale seems to attempt the "sparkling" aspect of a Cooper's perhaps... not bad, but flavor is elusive...

dacrza1, Aug 31, 2008
Photo of changeup45
2.88/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Overall I'm a little disappointed with Saranac's summer beer mix pack. This was one of the better ones from the bunch, but it's still merely average. Pours a copper color, practically no head or lacing on the glass. Doesn't have that cloudy, hazy look that most wheat beers I've tried had. There is a rather strong lemon zing in there for quite the summer effect. Not much else though, the lemon stands out and is a little too much, even for the summer. The bottle says the lemon hints are subtle but don't be fooled by that.

changeup45, Aug 24, 2008
Photo of MTNboy
2.8/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance- A golden yellow color a little bit hazy due to carbonation bubbles but still transparent. Both the head and lace go quick.

Smell- There is something a little off in the aroma. There are tones of citrus, floral hops and metal.

Taste- Spiced roasted malt a little bitter but in a good way.

Mouthfeel- Light and soft texture.

Drinkability- Not a bad little summer beer.

MTNboy, Aug 12, 2008
Photo of oneeye
3.23/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass.
A. Golden yellow with a lot of carbonation. Little white head with little lace.
S. A somewhat metallic aroma with lemon wheat notes and a hint of spice.
T. The taste of wheat malts and some spice. Finishes dry with a lemon metallic aftertaste. The wheat malty taste is the best flavor going on in this beer.
M. Mouthfeel is thin and creamy. Finishes dry.
D. A dry spicy summer brew that would quench your thirst on a summer afternoon. I would not turn one down if offered.

oneeye, Aug 08, 2008
Photo of clayrock81
3.13/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A seethru auburn-tinted gold with a two-finger head that died instantly and left a minor lace ring. A somewhat odd smell of of cherries and caramel...I have no idea why that comes across my nose but that's what I'm picking up with some minor clove/pepper hints and citric hops. A dull, lifeless citric taste with a fluffy but empty medium body. Has some spiciness to it with a crisp backbite, but not really a great beer. Of the six beers in the Saranac Summer Sampler this one seems undeveloped...it is missing something.

clayrock81, Aug 08, 2008
Photo of nrpellegrini
3.28/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very typical summer ale, nothing stood out for me. Surprisingly the other 5 beers in the mixed party pack seemed a lot more worthy of being called summer ales than this one. It was decent, very refreshing and smooth. Just not a lot of flavors coming out. Looks like they played the safe route on this one. I wont being trying this again although it was decent.

nrpellegrini, Jul 28, 2008
Photo of cvstrickland
3.08/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12-ounce bottle poured into a pint willi glass yields a clear bronze body capped with two fingers of soft white foam that holds at a fat sheet and leaves scattered scraps of lacing on the glass.

Smell is softly malty with a twist of lemon and a spicy note.

Taste is toasty malts and a bit nutty with a rush of zippy spice and a mildly bitter finish.

Nice drink, pretty ho-hum.

cvstrickland, Jul 24, 2008
Photo of philbe311
3.18/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Orangish amber with a nice cloud like head... Attractive carbonation...

S - Wheat... Spices... Citrus... Malt... Nice aroma, but too faint...

T - Wheat and spices... Perhaps a hint of citrus...

M - Light and creamy texture... Crisp and refreshing...

D - Refreshing... I'm not a big fan of "summer brews," but this one isn't too shabby and has some redeeming qualities... A little more aroma and taste would have helped out...

philbe311, Jul 04, 2008
Photo of cjgator3
3.4/5  rDev +9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The final beer out of my Saranac Summer mix pack. 12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours a dark golden orange color with a nice off-white head. The aroma is sweet floral malt and a touch of citrus. The taste has some notable wheat flavors with a hint of citrus and hops in the finish. Overall, Saranac Summer Ale accomplishes what it sets out to be, a refreshing and easy drinking beer to enjoy during the warm summer months. Not overly flavorful, but refreshing.

cjgator3, Jun 29, 2008
Saranac Summer Ale from Matt Brewing Company
72 out of 100 based on 299 ratings.