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Saranac Irish Red Ale | Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
78
okay
167 Reviews
THE BROS
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BEER STATS
Reviews:
167
Ratings:
306
Avg:
3.38
pDev:
18.34%
 
 
Wants:
1
Gots:
23
For Trade:
0
Saranac Irish Red AleSaranac Irish Red Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
New York, United States | website

Style: Irish Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.50%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-19-2008

User Reviews
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Reviews: 167 | Ratings: 306
Photo of Gmann
2.78/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a clear amber color with a small wispy light tan head that settles into a sparse cap.

The aroma is very light. Some sweet grainy notes as well as hint of caramel. Light metal flavors.

The flavor is of a steely caramel; sweet from the grain with bitter grain husks. Almost has an adjuncty flavor to it. Some grassy hops try to balance out the sweetness. Definitely rough around the edges, not exactly pleasant.

The feel is light with fizzy carbonation; quite crisp. Very dry on the palate and astrigent.

An average ale from a below average style. Lightly sweet but more dry and oddly bitter.

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Photo of farrago
3.1/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Moderate one finger plus head of light tan coloration, evaporates too quickly to really dimple, mostly smaller bubbles, the lacing appears a thin sheet which drifts quickly down the side of the glass. Copperish color to the liquid, very clear with a horde of loose bubbles rising inside, more bright orange around the rims. Pralines, candied nuts, brown sugar, molasses, kind of grapey with date, fig, banana aspects, does have a bit more grains and hoppiness than expected, gives it better posture in the nostrils. Light-bodied, would likely feel flat were it not for the quite aggressive carbonation which keeps it sloshing around the mouth. Here you get a light metallic aspect along with quinine and more indistinct herbaceousness. Not as sweet as the nose would suggest, however, you do get caramel, cane sugar, molasses, bubblegum notes along with Challah bread. The fig, apple, pear fruit basic enough, supplemented by some orange peel. The nuttiness helps flesh out the finish. All in all, not bad for what it is but not something I’d seek out per se.

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Photo of busterthecat
3.19/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a SA perfect pint glass. Served at 45 degrees.

A- Pours a caramel water hue that sits a clear amber in the glass. A decent cream color fizzy head. Good amount of carb present that leaves wisps of foam and ring.

S- Lots of rich sweet toasty malts. Fresh baked bread, spiced rum cake, figs and candied apples. Smell is pretty appealing.

T- Sweet and semi- sharp apple cider with spice in the end. Falls away from the aroma profile in many aspects. The rich notes detected in the aroma are so faint, they go unnoticed.

M- Too thin and watery to hold the flavors. Sharp and sweet notes linger for a bit on the palate.

O- A drinkable Irish Red Ale, but could really use a bigger body to give it more depth. Nothing special and would only drink again if not much else.

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Photo of bubseymour
3.83/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A very nice clear and red beer with 1 finger head.

Smell - malt and crackers. Smells pleasant but ordinary

Taste - Is this an ale? Tastes like a lager. Nice malty bready flavor, crisp hop finish with a dryness in the finish. Tastes much stronger than 4.5ABV..seems closer to 6%ABV

Mouthfeel - fine

Overall - A fine beer by Saranac. I haven't had many of this style so I'm not to fond of the dry finish, but the flavors are pleasant and its quite sessionable.

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.63/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into pint glass

Appearance - A deep red-brown color which formed a nice billowing white head upon pouring. It persisted for some time before giving way to a thin film on the brew, leaving just a bit lacing on the glass.

Smell – A light sweet aroma of caramel and a bit of malty breadiness. The aroma is relatively light and not too potent.

Taste – After sampling the aroma I didn’t think it would be too much, but actually this had much more flavor then I would have expected. Biscuit maltiness, mixed with a slight bit of caramel starts the taste. The caramel flavor intensifies as time goes on. A nice flavorful beer at only 4.5 % abv. The caramel maltiness makes it very tasty.

Mouthfeel – The thicker caramel and bready backbone of the brew seem to bolster this beers body making it relatively creamy. It has a very nice level of carbonation, which when combined with its body makes it very drinkable and enjoyable.

Overall – This is quite a nice brew. Very flavorful and drinkable.

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Photo of sixerofelixir
3.82/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear, deep copper. Lots of slow carbonation. Off-white film. Smell is equal parts mineral & toasted malts. Taste starts off bitter, morphing into semi-sweet crystal malts and finishing sort of nuttty and tannic. Feel is flat & smooth. Decent.

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Photo of travisnd
3.55/5  rDev +5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I've only been able to find one 6 pack of this beer and it was well worth it. One of the best Irish Red Ale's I've had that didn't break your wallet, but now I can't seem to find it anywhere. Compared to Sam Adam's or O'hara's, it is hard to beat based on price and taste. Another quality beer from Saranac!

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Photo of Minkybut
3.7/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured this beer into my tumbler at 45 degrees. The beer was kinda amber colored and poured a decent off white head. The beer had a nice toffee smell that Was also in the taste. This is one of those beers that does not knock your socks off but is a good all around beer. I will buy again.

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Photo of tdm168
3.58/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale amber with a reddish hue. There's a 1/4" of foamy head. Good retention. The nose has notes of caramel malt and a diacetylic creaminess. The taste is much the same; creamy, caramel, smooth. The mouthfeel is smooth, light, and mildly carbonated.

Not bad. Overall, well rounded and smooth. Not a bad take on the style.

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Photo of CraftBeerTastic
3.58/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Ba Review #70
Served On: 9/30/2011
Glassware: Mug

Another one from the 2011 Saranac 12 Beers A-Falling 12 pack (An Irish Red in a fall seasonal mixed pack? - whatever).

Look: Darker copper with tinges of red. Head was off-white foam with tight bubbles.

Smell: Earthy spice notes and roasted malts. Not too much else going on in the nose.

Taste: I was surprised by the taste on this one - given the mediocre aroma. Spicy caramel notes hit first with a biscuity quality in the middle. The spiciness returned briefly inside a watery finish. The aftertaste was a semisweet butterscotch.

This was an ok beer. I have yet to find an Irish Red that is real impressive. I guess this was on par with typical Saranac offerings – very drinkable and nothing too extreme.

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Photo of CaptJackHarkness
4.34/5  rDev +28.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

From the Twelve Beers a Falling Collection 2011 12oz bottle.

Pours a clear copper red, with deep white foamy head that dissipates quickly.No lacing of the glass. No aroma to speak of. Taste is excellent, caramel malt with the lightest touch of hops to balance. One of this brewery's better offerings!

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Photo of rdub
3/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

From the 12 beers a fallin' variety pack poured into my Geordie Schooner. Definitely a red brew with a medium head. Malt dominates the aroma, quite pleasantly. This reminds me of a Killian's only better. This was easy drinking and quite mild. Not super complex (actually no complexity). A sold basic red.

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Photo of hopsgirl35
4.05/5  rDev +19.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: reddish copper color with a medium white head.

Aroma: A nice hint of sweet malts with a small amount of hops scent.

Taste: Sweet bitterness with a caramel malt toasted flavor.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a dry finish.

Overall: I enjoyed it out of the 12 Beers A Fallen pack during a football game. :)

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Photo of projectflam86
2.91/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12oz bottle.

A- Pours a reddish copper color with a medium sized head that leaves scattered lace.

S- The nose is semi-sweet malt with some vegetal aromas. Maybe some spice as well?

S- Much like the nose with maybe a tad more caramel. Malt upfront with little to no hop presence. Possibly some spice and an earthy quality in the finish.

M- Light bodied with ok carbonation.

O- Eh, I've had better and probably won't go searching this one out again.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.5/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured out with a nice looking red color with a light cream colored head on top that fizzled away quickly. The smell of the beer was malty, had some light grainy aromas and some hops also. The taste of the beer had a pretty good balance of sweet and bitter to it. The mouthfeel was drinkable and went down pretty easily. Overall this brew wasn't too bad. I wouldn't say I'd buy a case but if it was offered to me I'd drink it again for sure.

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Photo of BeerPhan86
3.45/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a standard pint glass.

A - Pours a clear ruby reddish brown with a one finger light tan head that quickly dissipates. Minimal lacing is slippery and not very sticky.

S - Toffee and toasted caramel, with some dry earthy hops.

T - Grainy and earthy, with nice toasty flavors and a mild sweetness. Slightly fruity in the finish but also slightly metallic. Somewhat nutty but overall rather average tasting. Could benefit from additional hops in the recipe.

M - Clean and crisp, but slightly flat and watery.

O - Not a bad beer at all, just nothing worth seeking out (it came as part of the fall variety pack). A little more hoppiness and it would have some legs.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.99/5  rDev +18%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Another nice hook-up from local trader, tone 77, who keeps me in bottles so that I don't get CANQuested (TM) away.

From the bottle: "Did you know that Irish Reds get their deep garnet color from generous amounts of Crystal Malts? Carefully selected batches of 2-row malts are specially kilned to develop their sugars and then roasted to produce the wonderful caramel and toffee notes that accompany the rich color. You'll find the complexity and drinkability of Saranac Irish Red Ale to be second to none. Enjoy!"

My pour left me with two dense fingers of tawny head with decent retention. Color was a deep coppery-red (with NE-quality clarity) that makes me think of former G/Fs and women with that natural hair color that speaks to the reptilian/neanderthal part of my brain. Goo. Bup. Nose was much hoppier than I anticipated and now I cannot tell you whether that is good or bad. I like hops, sure, but necessarily in my IPAs. Mouthfeel was full and creamy and I got hops initially on the tongue, but quickly followed by a biscuit maltiness. Finish was more malty than hoppy, so it all worked out in the end.

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Photo of tone77
3.63/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a amberish brown color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is a bit on the malty side. Taste is malty, a touch of caramel, just a bit of hops are present. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and overall is a good quality beer.

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Photo of emmasdad
2.88/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Picked up a six pack of this one at Logan Liquors today, simply because of the great price. Poured a dark copper color with a generous light brown head. Aromas of caramel, toasted malt and toffee. Medium bodied and sweet, with toasted malt and caramel.

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Photo of rlee1390
3.31/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap from our recently built kegerator, knicknamed Kegasus. It was a little old but I've taken it into account along with when I've had it previously but not reviewed it.

A-Clear Amber red, generous head, lacing is left behind.

S-Roasted malt, caramel.

T-Rather malty. Lots and Lost of Malt. Also some caramel is in there as well. Not much in the way of hops.

M-Medium bodied, not much carbonation.

O-Like most everything from Saranac it is ehh. However I prefer this Red Ale to Sam Adams. With a choice between the two go with this one.

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Photo of SickGnar
3.6/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Warm, deeply reddish copper – almost leaning to brown. A nice color for the style. Clear with some small rising bubbles. Short off-white head drops fast. Very minimal lace.

S: Caramel and malty sweetness with a hint of toffee and with some faint darker roast to give an edge of dryness. All in a fairly clean manner. Impression of herbal hops lends a soft & pleasant tea-like aspect.

T: Caramel and toffee malts with restrained sweetness & a toasty edge. Balanced by an edge of dark roast malts – more a dry darkly toasty impression than significant roasty
flavors. Malts are also balanced by a pretty good dose of herbal and softly grassy hops – yet balanced. Pleasantly noticeable bitterness and flavor, while the tea-like aspect form nose is gone. Overall – quick caramel open with just light sweetness, turns toasty & dry without getting grainy or harsh, then pretty firm hops fill in & last into the finish along with some lingering, minerally, tongue coating caramel.

M: Average body with just over balanced CO2. Carries the flavors well & keeps it nicely drinkable. Even with the toasty, dry edged malts, the finish does not get too drying.

D: This is a nice & balanced IRA. Caramel/toffee without too much sweetness. Toasty dryness without much darkly toast flavors. Nicely to style and appropriately with balancing hops. Appropriate heft and strength. Well made and nicely drinkable.

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Photo of zeff80
3.45/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Poured out a clear, reddish burgundy color with a small, tan head of foam. It left minimal trails of lace.

S - It smelled malty and sweet with floral notes.

T - It tasted malty and fairly spicy with a sweet caramel backbone.

M - It was crisp and fairly smooth. A light bodied ale with a somewhat dry finish.

O - This is a pretty nice Irish-style red ale. It would make a nice session ale.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.77/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i have been assembling full lineups from breweries and randomly doin these horizontal tastings with my family. The saranac one from a couple weeks ago was more then epic as it took months to gather all of these, but it was a hell of a fun night! Big thanks to Alex for pulling through on the bulk of these

This was a nice little session red that I enjoyed tremendously. Nice light amber pours with a huge head of white that came up a full three fingers in height. Smooth settling left a good bit of side glass lace and a nice and even coating across the top of the glass. Interesting aroma as it started out with a nice and well rounded bready malt that seemed to slowly evolve into a grassy, herbal hop profile with a bit of a kick from the caramel. Did not seem to have a clear direction, but the taste made up for it nicely. Very smooth, nice caramel and malty tones that won me over with ease. Smooth even flavor, crisp, clean and well balanced. Smooth notes of grassy bittering hops coming in at the finish gave it a nice little drying effect and warmed it up. Very drinkable as it went down smooth and left me looking for more right away.

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Photo of CountJustinian
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearace is dark amber red, almost brown. Nice thick creamy head with slightly above-average retention. Nose is sweet and more sweet. Caramel and sugar flavors take center stage, with some secondary candied apple. Light bodied and low carbonation makes for a very drinkable ale. Overall, a pretty good showing in a generally unremarkable class.

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Photo of ngeunit1
3.5/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a clear copper-red color with a finger of frothy off-white head. The head fades fairly quickly to a ring around the glass leaving behind only a touch of lacing on the glass.

S - Aroma has elements of sweet caramel malt and some bread smells. Overall, not very powerful and pretty bland.

T - Starts off with some toffee/caramel malts with some background fruit sweetness. Touch of fruit sweetness. Through the middle only a touch of grain/bread come though, a little bland here. The finish is more of the caramel malt flavor with just a bit of hops balancing that linger slightly.

M - Medium-light bodied with moderate lively carbonation. A little bit sweet overall and the finish is a bit bland. But still fairly crisp.

D - Very drinkable. Very smooth but also fairly simple. There is not too much flavor really going on and it could have used a bit more here or there. Still a refreshing and crisp beer though.

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Saranac Irish Red Ale from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
78 out of 100 based on 167 ratings.