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
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 1,908 |  Reviews: 942
Photo of steveh
4.1/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

In the vein of revisiting old favorites -- a beer from my early days of good beer discovery.

A -- Hazy, amber orange color with a dense, slow-settling, light tan head.

S -- Citrus notes, fruit esters of peach and pear, biscuit malt in the background.

T -- Similar citric and fruit notes from the aroma with a mellow caramel and bready backbone. Finishes with the peach-like fruit character and a slightly spicy, earthy and dry aftertaste. There's a yeast bite (ester?) to the character that I often find in English pale ales -- it's not at all distracting, more defining, giving a mineral quality to the flavor.

M -- Smooth mouthfeel with a light-medium body. Dry in the finish.

D -- Very good drinkability -- can imagine whiling away the afternoon in a pub with pints of these. This isn't an American IPA with the big hop hammer over the head, but a well-balanced, easy drinking and very refreshing beer.

 910 characters

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

Golden body with a reddish tint, white stable head, moderate carbonation. Spicy hoppiness with some bread and grain.
Taste is as good as the smell, the hops are stronger but are balanced with a faint malt presence, some grass in the taste as well.
Moderate body, clean feel and pleasant after taste. This is a pretty good India Ale, easy to enjoy.


 362 characters

Photo of AJ01923
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of tmbgnicu
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of NumberNone
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of Libeertarian
3.6/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Extraordinarily clear and bubbly, ever so slightly tarnished copper, very impressive in my Samuel Smith pint glass. Head retention is excellent, as is the lacing. It's quite fluffy, pillowy and is colored a pleasant, basic shade of tan. Looks almost like a lightly toasted marshmallow. Incredibly clean smell, if anything, hops are somewhat earthy or herbal or metallic, but for the most part it smells like bread. Not very strong aromas in any case. Palate is also fairly bready, with moderate amount of caramel which is strongest toward the finish. This English classic is well balanced with herbal, nearly spicy hops. They are subtle, yes, but not at all hard to detect. A more robust flavor but lower bitterness than what you'd find in the continental lager equivalent, the Pilsener, and yet, not all that dissimilar. Unfortunately, it does seem a little watered down. Good for drinkability, but that's never been a huge factor for me. Medium-bodied but somewhat watery, and yet packed and thickened with spritz and suds. Not very comparable to American IPAs. More akin to some of the more rudimentary American Pale Ales.

 1,125 characters

Photo of jeffjeff1
3.68/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked this up when I went to get comics and stopped by Cork and Bottle right next door.

Appearance- amber color, transparent, good lacing, good head retention

Smell- fruity hops, malt

Taste- fruity hops

Mouthfeel- smooth, medium bodied

Drinkability- It was very good. I loved it as I sally do with Samuel Smith's.

 321 characters

Photo of mjurney
3.96/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep amber color, slight haziness. Fairly nice amount of carbonation. Head looks nice, off-white color.

Fruity. Caramel malts. Some hint of hops.

Fruitiness up front along with nice malt background. Fruity character from the yeast, I’m getting apricots/peaches and green apples. Malt is very nice, caramel-toffee, butter scotch, a little touch of nuttiness. Hop character comes right in the finish, but it’s pretty mild for most IPA I had. Body is dry and crisp. Very nice carbonation.

Dry crisp finish. Hop character come right in the aftertaste.

Milder than most English IPA, but a little stronger than most English Pale Ale. It’s a very good beer.

 704 characters

Photo of FreshButterbeer
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of StevieW
4.03/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle. Medium copper color. Darker than most IPA's, darker than I expected I guess. Smell was midly hop filled, not over the top robust hop aromas like some American IPA's. Taste is spot on for the style. Zesty hop presence, but again more subtle than most American IPA's. Lacks the tangy citrus presence, but the hops are still noticable. Malt presence is very noticable and tasty, sweetness underlying. Medium to full bodied, very very drinkable.

 455 characters

Photo of brheuer
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of maddogruss
3.21/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was not what I was expecting, but it was good nonethless.

A: A nice, amber color with a pretty thick white head. Okay retention that reduces to a nice lacing that holds until the finish.

S: Pretty malty smell, so I guess this brew was not dry-hopped at all.

T: This beer did not have too many bittering hops. It actually was a pretty malty beer and reminded more of an English Pale Ale instead of an IPA. There was sort of a bitter aftertaste to counter the caramel malts, but there was not any hops present in the taste or aftertaste.

M: A decent, full-bodied mouthfeel that felt nice and smooth.

D: This is a solid, smooth drinking beer, but I don't really know if I would consider it an IPA. Even gave it a little bit of a rough poor when I was topping off my glass, but still, no signature hop flavor, mostly malts.

 839 characters

Photo of StoutBoi
3.91/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Photo of ypsifly
3.7/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Undated 18.7oz poured into an imperial pint.

Copper with a light tan head that sticks around. Foamy lace.

Smells of floral hops and green apples. Slightly citric.

Overall, the taste is bitter to tart. The malts are in the background. Not as strong as American IPAs or even most APAs, but its a solid brew with a moderate mouthfeel and an abv that helps make it sessionable.

 382 characters

Photo of jwhancher
3.24/5  rDev -12%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Christmas gift from 2015. Pours a relatively clear orange with nice fluffy white head that gives excellent lacing. Smells of characterful English ale yeast: a little fruity, some diacetyl, then some toffee, caramel, earthy yet grassy hopes. Has a mineral aroma character likely from the hard water. Tastes light with biscuity malts, herbal/grassy/earthy hops, finished a tad sweet with caramel touch. Quite even in terms of overall sweetness to bitterness. Alcohol well on check, so much so that I would to have a pint of this on cask. With that said, I wish I knew what I was drinking was absolutely fresh. I have no idea how this bottle was packaged, handled or stored. I feel as if the hops in this bottle are faded and likely not a true representative of this beer at the source. For now, I rate this slightly above average but would like to try this one fresh someday at the source.

 887 characters

Photo of JimmytheSaintPSU
3.75/5  rDev +1.9%

Photo of Rwalford74
4.5/5  rDev +22.3%

Photo of grimey68
3.5/5  rDev -4.9%

Photo of fscottkey
2.95/5  rDev -19.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours an amber color with a reddish tinge to it. Sports a 1 finger bubbly cap that dissipates quickly.

S: More subdued that I anticipated. Some fruits like apple and apricot.

T: I am hit with a spice that I can't place on the initial sip. Same thing on the second sip. There is some bitterness and no sweetness to even it out. I am getting fruit flavors, orange and grapefruit.

M: Cool and crisp all the way through.

O: This is a mildly bitter beer with nothing to balance it out. No sweetness or hops to give any other character. I like Samuel Smith's as a brewery - but this is not their best offering.

 609 characters

Photo of Samp01
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear amber with nice tan head. Aroma of floral hops, caramel. Taste is bitter hops, some caramel. Palate is nice medium body, nice carbonation. Finish is bitter hops balance by light malt, with some caramel. Overall not to remarkable but a good drinkable brew.

 269 characters

Photo of Bonsall_Phil
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of Lobina
4/5  rDev +8.7%

Photo of bigox420
5/5  rDev +35.9%

Photo of JustinMatthew
3/5  rDev -18.5%

Photo of travolta
3.22/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

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

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.