Samuel Smith's India Ale | Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

Samuel Smith's India AleSamuel Smith's India Ale
Liked This Beer
3.68 w/ 1,908 ratings
Samuel Smith's India AleSamuel Smith's India Ale

Brewed by:
Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
England, United Kingdom

Style: English India Pale Ale (IPA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-11-2001

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,908 |  Reviews: 942
Photo of welldigger888
3.66/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 550ml bottle in to my trusty irish pub pint glass. Lovely orange copper hue with a nice rocky white sticky head. Laces well down glass.
Floral and yeasty seem to dominate the nose.
Herbal floral hop bitterness,caramel and fruity yeasty quality seems to dominate with some malt heft in the backbone. Seems pretty tame but in a good way.
Nice carbonation on a medium mouthfeel.
Givin the right conditions (in british isles) would drink this a night. That said I like our version.

 489 characters

Photo of trevorjn06
3.78/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice copper hue with a thick , creamy head that recedes slowly and leaves some lacing on the glass.

Aroma is fruity and malty. Some buttery notes, earthy/grainy malt, lightly fruity/grassy hops and some mineral nuances.

Taste follows the nose a bit, crisp, toffee-like flavors, nutty malt, a crisp yet restrained hop bitterness, light fruitiness and some stone/mineral notes. A bit thin on the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium/low carbonation.

Overall a very good beer, less hoppy than I would hop even for an English IPA, but good nonetheless. I would drink this again.

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Photo of uustal
3.76/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber with a two-finger cream colored head. Nice look, great lacing and the head stays around as well. Light caramel, sweet bread and a hint of apple aroma. Biscuity, sweet bread malt. Light toffee. Followed by some earthy tones until a fruity hint of hops finally shows up. The sweet fruit lingers until the finish.

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Photo of Hoagie1973
4.14/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Light amber color with a one-finger head that dissipates to a froth rather quickly leaving some stringy lacing.

Malty aroma with a fruity hop undercurrent.

Sweet malty base with a touch of earthiness and hints of fruity hop flavor. Moderate bitterness asserts itself well into the sip and lingers in the finish.

Mouthfeel is lighter in the body than American IPA's with nice carbonation levels.

I understand why this only has a grade in the B range. American hop-heads would probably find it a bit weak. However, this is a highly drinkable and flavorful beer from one of the oldest breweries in the country that invented IPA. I like it.
If I'm in the mood for a hop-bomb, this isn't it. But if I just want a more balanced beer with distinct hop flavor that's not overpowering, this is it.
I could put down quite a few of these.

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Photo of CountJustinian
3.74/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The best thing about this ale is its looks, a clean and radiant orange copper. Only minimal lacing though. Nose is hoppy with some caramel and fig. Taste is hoppy with muted maltiness. Dry and semi-sweet. Decent but not overwhelming mouthfeel and good drinkability. Pretty good overall but not a go-getter.

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Photo of Zundo
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Nice copper body with off-white to tan one-finger head. Solid lacing.

Smell: Smells very much like apple cider. Earthy and caramel too.

Taste: Apple cider, pinapple, floral hops and caramel biscuit

Mouthfeel: Failry carbonated and sticky. A bit doughy and then dry finish.

Drink: Pretty drinkable, but could be too sticky overtime.

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Photo of NWer
4.5/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Popped the bottle cold from the beer fridge into a pint glass.
Initial reaction was underwhelming.
Fortunately, I left it for a couple of hours and when I came back to it, it was sublime.
The wonderful balance of fruitiness and hops blended to a taste to behold.
Definitely not to be consumed cold in my opinion.

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Photo of cleolicious
4.35/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Amber in color, thick head, malt and spice aroma. Citrus, malts, yeast, fruits in flavor. Easy on the hops. Smooth, dry mouthfeel. Not too bitter in taste. Freakin' delicious.

I love Sam Smith. This IPA is delicious if you want to go light on the hops. It's a real pleasure to dink. I had it with smoked salmon. It was in heaven.

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Photo of Wattsox
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

500ml bottle, consumed Jan 2011, BBE Jun 2011.

A - Clear amber body with a good generous head that dissipates leaving a lot of lacing.

S - Good lead of caramel malts with a nice hop balance.

T - Nice light caramel malt taste with a good hoppy bitterness, that finishes dry and bitter.

M - Slightly tangy carbonation, medium body, lingering bitter finish.

D - Very pleasant, drinkable ale.

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Photo of chinchill
3.63/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

550 ml bottle served in a pint glass.

A - lovely clear amber with ample tan head. Lasting head leaves plenty of lacing.

S - floral hops; a bit earthy; malt. (Falsely) leads me to expect a high ABV.

T - roasted malt nearly matches level of hops; earthy. Black tea in bitter finish and aftertaste. Importer reports IBU = 46

M - medium body; low carbonation ... too low.

D - heightened by complexity; lowered by slightly excessive earthiness.

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Photo of jsdunlop
2.44/5  rDev -33.7%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Picked this one up at the Greensboro Total Wine, no freshness date to be found on the bottle. Pours out a darker amber, almost no head seemed to form, no lacing either. Smell is malty and slightly musty. Some alcohol can be picked up as well, along with some raisins and figs. Very malt forward beer, with a dulling hop presence that makes it's way onto the palate, providing a touch of bitterness and very little flavor. Some faint dark ripened fruits appear with the first malty sip. Mouthfeel is moderate to light, but slightly watery and creamy. Very little carbonation in this bottle. Overall, something doesn't seem right about this bottle. Very, very low carbonation, flavors seemed extremely muted and meshed within the malt profile of the beer. Perhaps I could have picked up a bad bottle.

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Photo of sommersb
3.63/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served from a brown 550 ml bottle with a bottling date of 07-23-2010, in a Samuel Smith pint glass. This was part of a gift pack I received this past Christmas.

Nice looking beer, a clear honey-like color with 2 fingers of white, frothy head. Had a moderated amount of bubbles in the glass and good lacing.

Smell has a nice caramel malt sweetness to it along with earthy hop aromas. In the taste, I got a lot more of the hop character, meaning it tasted more bitter than I was expecting based on the aroma. Overall taste was of bitterness, but the malts seemed to balanced more as the beer warmed up.

Feel was a medium body with moderate carbonation. Very dry with a bitter aftertaste.

I thought this was a good beer - went well with my pizza dinner.

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Photo of NODAK
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is somewhat hoppy from the English hops...a little bready and toasty. Overall, pretty weak though for style. Not much jumps out.

Poured into my Samuel Smith pint glass, it's dark blonde in hue with a thin head.

Starts off decently malty and a bit bready....but this gives way to a pretty sharp herbal bitterness for an English IPA. In fact, this one could almost pass for an American IPA. A bit sharper than others I've had. Bitterness lingers for a little while after the swallow.

It's decent, though perhaps not my favorite of the style. Pretty drinkable and hopheads probably won't be disappointed.

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Photo of BigPlay1824
3.78/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Served in a pint glass

A: pours a slight amber golden color that is slightly hazy with a finger of foamy white head that dissipates quickly, leaves slight lacing

S: nice sweet hop notes and a fruit like sweetness that is similar to raspberries

T: hmm, sweet hop character with almost none of the citrusy notes seen in most ipas, nice underlying slight maltiness which is complimented nicely by the sweetness

D/M: strong carbonation tingle, nice flavor makes it nice to drink, sweetness helps drinkability

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Photo of scootny
4.17/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A prodigious head and lovely lace. Clear with some bubbling going on at first, it eventually settles. Smell of caramel, honey and earthy hops. A hint of pine and vanilla. Some yeasty bread and light sweet malt. Taste is really something. Subtle and lovely. Caramel and multi grain bread. Firm leafy hops with an orange tea bitterness. Biscuity malt and grains linger in the clean dry finish as well as a leafy bitterness in the back of my throat. Feel is lighter than is typical and gently carbonated, with a nice crispness. Drinkable in the extreme as the lower abv and delightful taste and feel makes it a great session ale.

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Photo of OBeerMeGreatOne
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look: Poured into a Samuel Smith pint. Has a clear copper tint with a fluffy off-white head. Nice rings of lace form as the beer level drops.
Smell: Pretty balanced. You can certainly pick out the English yeast ànd hops. Very nice.
Taste/Mouth: Flowers, citrus, bread, earth. Very light, hoppy and smooth. Moderate carbonation.
Drink: Another good beer from Samuel Smith.

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Photo of soju6
3.83/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a clear copper color with a decent head that fades to some lacing.

S: Has a mild floral aroma with some malt and citrus mixed in.

T: Nice malt flavor with a touch of fruity sweetness. Has a light bitterness and has a nice dry finish.

F: medium body, smooth and creamy. Very well balanced.

D: Very drinkable. Not an overpowering IPA, more of a traditional brew.

 374 characters

Photo of brown2cu
4.46/5  rDev +21.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: poured a clear copper color with a small white head that dissipated into a thin ring around the glass. Minimal lacing.

S: Floral and citrusy, with a nice malt backbone. Perfect!

T: Pretty acceptable for the style. Nice and sweet a lot of citrusy sweetness. Hop bitterness is present, but it is not on steroids like the american varieties. Overall good but light

M: moderately carbonated which I like. It allows for the full flavor to shine forth.

D: very good! I wish I had another.

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Photo of Kromes
2.76/5  rDev -25%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A: hazy amber color with a two finger width off white head. There is no noticable carbonation in the beer.

S: A strong herbal and citrus aroma with some toasted malt. Unfortunately there is a slight astringent aroma , like vinegar, in there also.

T: I can taste the toasted malts up front, more malty than I expected. Then there is a very strong citric acid flavor that I did not like. Finishes acidic and bitter.

M: Medium mouthfeel and hardly any carbonation. The acidity and bitterness in the beer dries out the mouth.

D: It's decent, but I'm starting to think that I might have bought a bad batch. There was dust on the bottle and no date. I think the vinegar flavors mean that it is pretty old....Unfortunately I can't be sure of that and I have 3 more to drink...maybe those will be better.

 800 characters

Photo of haazer
3.41/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The "English Pint" bottle poured into the Samuel Smiths Pint glass.

A- Copper penny colored beer with orange and brown undertones. Looks almost like a lager. Thick, bubbly tan head that takes its sweet time settling. Third Samuel Smith beer that leaves spider web lacing on my glasses.

S- Piney hops with lemon rinds. Bready malt aroma in the background. No standout smells though.

T- Bready and caramel malts hit the palatte first. Hops are piney, slightly lemon and citrusy(if thats a word). Good balance, slightly more of a malt force to this then a hoppy one for the IPA's I'm used to.

M- Nice smooth feel, light to medium in body. Refreshing and crisp. Swirling the beer around brings out bitterness on the tongue, but its never evident upfront.

D- A decent IPA, err English IPA I should say. Easy to drink, and could probably session this. Definitely prefer Samuel Smith's other offerings, and deffinitely prefer hoppier IPA's though.

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Photo of u2carew
3.36/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A) Pours with a finger thick head then settles. Fairly clear body. Copper in color. Lacing is thin and semi-sticky.
S) Oddly a profound apple aroma - quite surprising. Subtle malt aroma underneath - caramel.
T) The combination between malt and hops is interesting. The are bold up front but short lived as the hops move in quickly with a dry and bitter bite. Finishes with all hops. This tastes like an apple cider with a hop element ... not sure what to think.
M) Dry. Medium body. Bitter.
D) A decent brew. I think i'd have another.

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Photo of DrinkingDrake
3.88/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden red/orange with a lot of carbonation but not much head to show for it. Leaves a nice bubbly lace across the top however with a solid white rim. When I cracked the bottle I got a little foam out the top and it was sitting in the fridge for a while.

the nose has a sweet floral fruitiness. A lot of caramel and toffee notes. Very sweet/candy smell. All of this is kind of faint.

It starts with a nice bitter carbonation tingle switches right to a bubbly caramel/toffee malt flavor that sticks around for a second after you swallow. It then transitions to a slightly piney, more mild fruit, hop texture. The aftertaste is a lot of sweet malt and dry citrus hops. It seems like this beer is all about balancing subtle characters.

It has a smooth almost creamy texture and goes down with juicy feel.

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Photo of RunForYourBeer
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Sam Smith glass.

A: Pours a dark orange color with a thin white head.

S: Smells of light citrus hops. Not getting much here.

T: A bit of caramel malt with a bit of fruit and pine hops. Very light citrus hops and bitterness in the finish.

M: Medium, good carbonation.

D: High.

This is the first English IPA I've had. As I'd expected it was much less hoppy than the American versions. Very good beer that I could see myself drinking again. Well-balanced and very drinkable.

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Photo of thecarster1
2.83/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

a- 550ml bottle poured into signature sam smith tulip, one finger fades to crater, warm chesnut color.

s- very aromatic, sweet malts, very very floral hops, interesting.

t- sweet, a touch tangy almost, slightly bitter, a bitterness thats almost earthy, a touch metallic, not the best bipa i've had.

m- medium, slick.

d- not the best, i've had much better, it's certainly drinkable, but i feel like i need a celebration to cleanse my palate.

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Photo of vkv822
4.05/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

550ml bottle into tulip pint.

Pours a clear, deep golden with a one inch thick off-white head made up of many small bubbles. There is a light stream of carbonation rising up.

The aroma is of grassy and citric hops. There are pale biscuit and light caramel malts in the backing. Though it is not hop forward as is an American IPA, the hops and malts are much more well balanced.

The taste follows the nose very well. And while all the tastes are present as in the nose, they are much more blended than in the aroma.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied, with fairly active carbonation.

Overall I found this to be a very well balanced and drinkable beer. I am glad it took me this long to try as I feel that I wouldn't have been able to detect the more subtle and well blended flavors had I tried this earlier in my craft drinking experience. Really just reminds me of what a classic beer should taste like.

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Samuel Smith's India Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
Beer rating: 52.5% out of 100 with 1,908 ratings
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