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Saranac Pale Ale - Matt Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Saranac Pale AleSaranac Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

1,184 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,184
Reviews: 620
rAvg: 3.42
pDev: 13.74%
Wants: 3
Gots: 73 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
Malt Selections: Crystal English Pale Ale
Hop Selections: Cascade, East Kent Golden

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-08-2001)
View: Beers (92) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,184 | Reviews: 620 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of xare
3.75/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Amber colored with nice head that laces somewhat - pretty good appearance for a pale ale. Very appealing.

Smell is of the British hops, floral and with citrus notes. It has a touch of malt at the bottom of the aroma but overall, a good blend that appeals to me.

Taste was decent, a bit lighter than I expected, especially with all the aromas coming from it. I'd have to say that it has touches of malts and a mix of hops that come at the end to clean up your palate, but overall it's weakened down from the aromas but is still a solid brew, just not above average for taste.

Mouthfeel was very crisp and clean. Hops bitterness just lingered for the right amount of time and then went away. No need to worry about the mouthfeel with this brew. Even when it warmed up slightly (I was drinking it outside in full sun), it still had excellent mouthfeel and didn't become too heavy. It isn't light but rather a happy medium.

Drinkability was outstanding. I was drinking this brew and keeping it in the shade outside on a beautiful day with full sun, while working on removing a bush. I kept looking forward to the beer waiting for me in the shade whenever I'd take a break for a gulp or two. Eventually, I finished it off and was unhappy that I didn't have another one to follow it up with.

Overall, I'd say seek out this beer for a change of pace. It isn't for everybody nor would it be approriate for all occasions but if you have something in mind and know what this brew does, then it's an extremely solid choice, especially at its price point.

Photo of ewright
3.68/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer pours a bright, clear amber finishing with 1" of fluffy white head. The head has fairly long retention and diminishes with a bit of sticky lace on the side of the glass.

S: Mild hops up front with very faint citrus notes, accompanied by equally mild sweetness from the malt.

T: Strong bitterness right up front, with faint notes of pine. The malt peeks through with hints of sweetness and something earthy I can't quite put my finger on.

M: The forwardness of the hops produces a bit of puckering in the mouth, but the malt helps ease that later on.

D: A solid pale ale, nothing outstanding, but you could do far worse than a 6pk of this beer.

Photo of philbe311
3.35/5  rDev -2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - Luscious copper and amber mix... Pour calm and rich... Little head

S - Attractive mix of fruit, mainly lime, and hops...

T - Grain and malt at first giving way to strong hops

M - Smooth and well balanced... Medium bodied... Too much fizz and new carbonation on the palette...

D - Solid, but unspectacular...

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.43/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One in a 12 pack sampler. I think they were all relatively good beers. This was an amber color with a thick white head that left a lot of lacing. Not much in the aroma: a little floral and a little malt. Lightly hopped, mostly a grapefruit taste. A decent, middle of the road beer.

Photo of hwwty4
2.5/5  rDev -26.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured a 12oz bottle into my smokestack goblet. The beer poured a reddish amber with a big white head that left ample lacing down the sides of the glass. The aroma of the beer is mostly floral hops with just a bit of caramel. The taste is just...off. While hops come off in the aroma, they are just not present really in the taste. There is an odd soapy taste to it. It is not an unpleasant taste, just not something I would expect in a commercial brew. The mouthfeel is a bit thin, and light carbonated. If someone offered me one, I wouldn't turn it down but I don't think that I would seek this beer out to purchase again.

Photo of Drew966
3/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Saranac Pale Ale pours a light copper color with a white head from a brown twelve ounce bottle. The aroma has very little going on. There's a touch of biscuit malt and a bit of floral hop, but it's very mild by any standard, American or British. Inoffensive, but fairly low in flavor.

Photo of rgb2807
3.25/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a reddish amber color. Doesn't smell very nice in my opinion, I can't put my finger on it, it just doesn't smell nice and doesn't really reveal anything about the taste. The taste is alright, it has a pretty standard body, and a floral/fruity after taste. I could drink these every once in awhile, but I would never strive to pick them up.

Photo of dmamiano
2.78/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured a hazy golden with nice head and lacing.
A mix of hops and an almost metal smell permeating the nose..I am guessing its a mix of hops producing this .
Taste was mildly hopped and a grainy maltiness balancing. Hops were earthly in character.
Ok beer, but I am not buying again

Photo of Lexluthor33
3.5/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A bottle from my local supermarket. I had tried other Saranac beer and this one reads like this:

Look- Golden Amber,medium head with some lacing.

Smell - Citric, Slight of hops & grain.

Taste - Decent taste of fruits and hop,some malts but not much.

Feel- Dry,Dry, Dry but not so much in a bad way. Some metallic notes.

Drink - I feel this is a beer you should not mind having especially if it is easily available for a low price. I actually like it but it does not get me excited.

Note: First time I poured this beer into a beer mug and there was no head and the taste was off. Second time I used a new glass for ales and it was perfect.

Photo of cbleary
3.2/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Enjoyed from a 12oz glass into a pint glass.

The beer poured with a nice mild amber color with a robust white head. The beer tasted like a very good interpretation of the style, with a tasty sourish malt backbone and a good amount of British hops. Unfortunately, the beer got kind of vomity tasting as it warmed. Still, not bad.

Photo of PhageLab
3.93/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a standard pint glass.

A - Transparent golden amber coloration, small bit of head that eventually reduced itself to a thin soapy layer, very nice lacing.

S - Very sweet citrus aroma with a nice pine hop nose.

T - Well hopped yet balanced pale. Decent malt backing with a mild bitterness and nice dry finish. Very crisp and refreshing, and although while there is nothing outstanding here, it is a very enjoyable brew.

M - Light bodied, mild carbonation, crisp feel.

D - Very good, I could easily enjoy a sixer of this and be happy. Overall I'd say this is a simple yet impressive brew, and could recommend it with confidence.

Photo of Proteus93
3.48/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: A fat, two finger light amber head (a bit of a pale orange, really). Good lacing, decently sticky.

S: A nice hop and malt balance here. The aroma is floral, sweet, with a hint of citrus in it all.

T: Decent, not terrific, but not horrid. Some of the tastes I have found with 4 other Saranac brews are not noticed here (a metallic, biting off-taste). I'd almost see it as being a touch hoppy for an English Pale Ale, not that it's a bad thing, but that might just be my tastes.

M + D: About average. I could likely do another without being too persuaded, I suppose. The body could have been a little more... something. Almost like it wanted to be a little more slick or full. I can't quite place a finger on it. Nonetheless, not bad, not great, about average.

Photo of csmiley
3.85/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours clear and copper with a little more than one inch of head. Retention was good. Lacing was good.

S - Citrus hops dominate but get followed quickly by a caramel and brown sugar aroma. Not much else going on with this one.

T - Combonation of caramel and hops with a slight bitterness on the end. Has a very clean taste. Pretty much what I would expect from a good English Pale Ale.

M - Medium to light bodied. Carbonation was average and beer was smooth.

D - Drinkability is good. I would have no problem drinking several of these. Tends to be clean, light, and smooth.

Photo of BeerTaster
4/5  rDev +17%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Not a bad beer appearance was dark amber clear no haze with a decent head that left nice lace on the way down. Smell was hops not much else. Taste was hops up front malt was restrained seems like they made a decent English Pale Ale. Mouthfeel lite in body mediem in carbonation a good drinkable beer.

Photo of abedenbaugh
3.25/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A:It has a nice clear dark amber color. The head is an average sized white.
S:The only thing I can pick up is a good amount of hops. The hops smell like there is a little bit of citrus, like it was an APA, but it doesn't taste anything like one. There is a little bit of caramel and sweet malts in the nose, too.
T:A small amount of bitterness which is just enough for the beer. The english hop flavor comes out great in it. There is a hit of the citrus in the flavor.
MF:It has a medium body to it. The hop resin gives the body a little boost.
D:It would be easy to drink multiple beer. The low level of bitterness(for a pale ale) balances well with the malt. Overall, it's an average beer, but it's still good.

Photo of armock
3.5/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - poured a copper color with a fluffy off white head that leaves some lacing

S - Is mostly of hops with a slight bit of malt

T - Is of bitter hops for the most part

M - This is a medium bodied beer

D - Overall this is an ok beer sure theres better pales out there but for the price its a good beer its worth a try at least

Photo of fitzy84
3.88/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this one in their sample packs. Its appearance was pretty decent: dark-reddish orange with a thin, thin head. The smell was crisp at first, deep hops and citrus, but then it shockingly trails out. The taste was pretty above average with nothing too strong and definitely not a thin pale ale: good bitter citrus tastes. The carbonation is pretty good and it was excellent with the spicey food I was eating with it. Overall, this is a pretty balanced pale ale that is just relaxing to drink too.

Photo of TheTrevor
3.4/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer poured a reddish-tinged copper color with a single-finger head. The smell is mostly malt with a bit of floral hops. The taste starts off with some nice sweet maltiness that's cut nicely by the hops for a crisp finish. The mouthfeel is nice and refreshing with a fair amount of carbonation. Being a Pale Ale fan I found this beer to be very drinkable, and could imagine reaching for another soon.

Photo of mpyle
3.65/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

app - pale amber color, brilliantly clear. Pours a surprisingly large just off-white head with good retention.

aroma - subdued, maybe a bit of an earthy hop aroma. Clean but bland. Slight malt aroma as it warms.

flavor - some hop flavor with initial malt, but also a stale taste to the hops. Strong hop bitterness lingers well into the finish. A mineral, English character to the beer likely from the yeast or a Burtonizing of the water. Pretty true to style, although the malt could be more assertive initially.

MF - medium body and moderately high carbonation. A bit too much carbonation for a British-style beer.

D'ability - the carbonation cuts into the drinkability, but a reasonably priced, bitter English-style beer. Not the finest anywhere, but not bad for the money.

Photo of tweeder263
3.1/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours out agolden amber brew with 2 finger head. has a nice hop aroma not too prominent but still in the forefront. Piney hop flavor up front with coffee type flavors coming towards the end, very different. Mouthfeel is watery , nothing worth mentioning. I gave this an average drinkability,,its not terrible but its nothing i would mention to someone else as a must try.

Photo of DrJay
3.45/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This one was very clear and a light amber colour with a light beige head off the pour. The head retention was decent and it produced a fair bit of lacing. There was little malt presence in the aroma, mostly woody and earthy hops with a hint of pine. Medium bitterness with light malt character - hops were definitely up front. The flavour was a bit herbal and earthy with a light citrus character, quite a nice balance actually. Medium/light bodied with moderate carbonation, which feels a little stronger than it is. This is a fair pale ale, definitely on the mild side. It's not quite English in character and doesn't fall apart at all, there just isn't anything special to bring me back again.

Photo of Brad007
3.38/5  rDev -1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a copper color with an ample head and lacing. Aroma is nice and toasty upfront. Smells biscuity and even slightly hoppy as well. Taste is mostly one of malt with biscuit/breadiness in the middle and a finish that has some hop bitterness. Somewhat bitter as well. Definitely seems to fit the style and it goes down ok. Drinkable. Not much impressive beyond that.

Photo of becktone
3/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Eye: This beer is copper in color with yellow highlights and is very clear. Head is a dirty white creamy looking and unfortunately small creature. There is lacing in the glass, but it doesn't quite make up for the small sized head, just a little bigger would be nice.

Nose: Malty, earthy, buttery, toasty. Focus in this brew is more malt oriented than hop oriented. Not to say there isn't any hop presence, there is some floral hop character, but it is mostly subdued, allowing the malt aromas to come through.

Tongue: If the aroma is any indication of how this beer tastes then I am Micky Mouse. The aroma is much richer than the flavor. Here you get some of the flavors that were mentioned in the aroma, but they are all watered down. I mostly get a toasted malt flavor, not the rich caramel that I detected in the aroma, also no buttery notes. Just a musty earthy note mingled with some toasted malt. Some floral hop flavor in the finish. Let Down!

Mouthfeel and Drinkability: In my opinion this beer is a little light on the palate, just a bit more body would've been nice. This beer is easy to drink, but I won't be buying it again anytime soon. In my opinion it doesn't have enough of the classic flavor. Would be something that one might session, not me though.

Photo of pmcadamis
2.6/5  rDev -24%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A - Amber red rhubarb hue with a nice one finger head that deposits a lot of really fine lace on the glass. Nice head retention.

S - This has the same sort of muddy river bottom silt smell that I noted in the Saranac lager and Sam Adams lager. I also get a little bit of resiny dark fruit....raisins and prunes. The malt is caramely and some very subdued hops are there along with some cinnamon.'

T - Rough grassy hops, mineral water, and a lot of metal flavors. Tonic water and minerals. I like a Gin and Tonic once in a while, but I don't favor tonic water flavors in my beer.

M - Gritty and raw. Medium bodied with an of-dry finish. Metallic aftertaste.

D - Poor. This has an overriding metallic mineral flavor that I don't like at all.

Photo of mogul37
3.85/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Great beer right out of the bottle. Nothing really stands out, but it fits the pale ale profile pretty well. Good taste that balances malty sweetness well with the hops. Lots of carbonation, but good consistency that's not watery like a lot of heavily carbonated macros. Overall, it's a beer I would regularly order when in the mood for a pale ale.

Saranac Pale Ale from Matt Brewing Company
78 out of 100 based on 1,184 ratings.