Samuel Smith's Organic Best Ale | Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)

very good
373 Reviews
Samuel Smith's Organic Best AleSamuel Smith's Organic Best Ale

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

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 02-27-2001

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Reviews: 373 | Ratings: 608
Photo of ralree
4.4/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Gold, slightly cloudy, white head - 2 fingers, good lacing, OK retention.

S: Nice fruity tinge to a classic ale style. Sweet hops and grainy malt dominate the smell.

T: Hops are very good and sweet, and malt backs it up nicely. Honey and light fruit as well. No alcohol detectable, which is nice. Really good for this style.

M: Nice light mouthfeel, rather dry, a bit thick, medium body, good carbonation, very slight astringency.

D: Exactly the type of beer you'd want to slog down after a long hot day. Perfect.

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Photo of BBM
4.39/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a cloudy, bright orange color with a two finger beige head into a Sam Smith Imperial pint glass. Aroma was a beautiful array of fruits, just the right amount of sweet caramel, and floral hints for good measure.

The consumate English ale, there is the unmistakeable flavor of English hops balanced out nicely with a roasted malt backbone. The organic ingredients help create a fresher experience. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied and nicely carbonated. A satsifying and deliciously drinkable ale from Sam Smith. But then again, is there any other kind?

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Photo of neonbrown82
4.39/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer poured a slightly cloudy golden color with a thing head that recedes to a fine ring. A little unimpressive, but looks provide the least bit of physical stimulation of the beer experience. Presentation is important, but not so important that I was worried this beer might suck due to its unimpressive appearance.

I found the balance between hops and malts to be impeccable in both the smell and taste. Each time I would take a drink or a whiff, I would simultaneously experience the sweetness of the malts and the bitterness and bouqet of the hops. Also detected some esters from the yeast and a slight doughy flavor. Very tasty. I enjoyed this much better than the Sam Smith's Pale Ale.

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Photo of Auraan
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Poured a gorgeous amber with a half finger off white head. A nice look that reminds one of an English classic. Scents of caramel, honey, sweet malt and slight apple juice. Not amazing, but it entices one to taste. Flavors of grainy malt, slight caramel and honey sweetness, particularly in the middle of the sip, though both are extremely muted and a nice moderate level of bitterness with some floral hop flavors. Finish is slightly dry. Very well done. Subdued, yet with a hoppy character. Not greatly hoppy like an APA. It balances it's bitterness with a nice grainy malt back bone and a very slight sweetness to make it quite drinkable. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with low carbonation. Perfect for a session ale. A classic English pub style, executed extremely well. The best EPA I've had, well worth drinking.

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Photo of Lupe
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear, golden color, with a huge head that slowly settles down and leave some lace clinging to the glass. Grain aroma with some floral hop scent. Medium body and smooth, creamy mouthfeel. Starts with big malt flavors, but not sweet, more of a grain or bread-like taste. Follows with some light sweetness and finishes with a touch of citrus and hop flavor, with a slightly bitter end. Very easy and pleasing to drink. Would make a good session brew. And it's quite tasty.

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Photo of beerprovedwright
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

One finger head of white, course bubbles and good clinging lace from the pour. Color is a 6 on the SRM beer color chart. Smell of malt, oats, barley, and a flower honey. Great taste, full of flavor, but not heavy. Flavors of roasted wheat, barley, malt and hops. Nothing fancy in this beer, just a great well rounded flavorful ale. A bit pricey, but a pretty good brew for the money.

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Photo of John
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

550mL bottle, bottle conditioned. Hazy amber. Head is generously proportioned. Aroma consists of esters up front, giving way to light-medium toasted malt and moderate hop. Taste is spot on classic English ale. Precisely balanced flavors; malted biscuits, semi-tart yeast, relatively assertive hops. Smooth, slick mouthfeel. Well done.

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Photo of Phocion
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Golden amber with an very creamy head, and excellent retention.

Smells buttery and malty. Earthy hops working their way through, and a little bit of a butterscotch scent.

Excellent balance, this tastes just like it smells. Buttery and malty, with a sweet almost caramel-like undertone and earthy hops.

Medium-bodied, very creamy mouthfeel, but not too thick.

I could drink this one all day. Very creamy, but not too filling. Full-flavored and medium-bodied, a moderate ABV, and a decent pricetag. This is definitely one of my new favorites.

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Photo of bnes09
4.38/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A blend between lemon yellow and orange in color. Single finger white head bubbles up from the brew. Retreats to a creamy froth that lasts forever. Tons of creamy lacing as well.

Aroma of fresh baked English muffins. Mostly clean with a hint of herbal hop scent.

Great taste as well. Solid bready malt gives it substance with a toasty quality. English hop flavors, spicy but not pungent, mostly of fresh herbs and spinach leaves. Overall flavor is fresh and perfectly balanced.

Medium bodied with plenty of bready texture without being to thick. The flavor is so rich it would seem like you had to chew this but you don't.

This stuff is excellent. Great look, outstanding and well rounded flavors, even a great feel. A masterpiece.

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Photo of Billolick
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This one classy, well put together brew. Light in color, with a white head. Very smooth, and pleasant on the old tongue. Subtle bittering combined with a lovely malt palate add up to a delicious ale. English in every way. Too polite to knock you taste buds out of the park, (like some crass American brews are known to do, Iove those beers to, dont get me wrong!) The final pour included some nice yeasty sediment, which sealed the deal, great stuff from Sammy S.

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Photo of joshwlt
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Typed this limited review into my cell phone: Ambery gold color, white head. Has a vanilla nutty smell and taste. This beer was incredibly smooth and silky has a hop profile that matches the malts very well, not too bitter. This ale had a decent complexity and balance, nothing one-dimensional here, and a great taste and mouthfeel that made it very drinkable. This is a great if not one of the best examples of a balanced english pale. Highly suggested.

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Photo of WesWes
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a dark gold color with a thin white lace head. The aroma is good. It is quite malty with a yeast fruitiness to it. The taste is excellent. It is full of sweet malts. It has a great balance of malts and hops with a smooth creamy finish. The mouthfeel is great as well. It is a medium bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is an awesome beer. It drinks outstanding; a real treasure.

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Photo of tubacharlie
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The aroma of molasses hits the nose first, with a smattering of earthy notes. The head lays out smooth and white, only a finger or two in height, but leaving a nice ring of lacing as it recedes to a light carpet.

The brew is a dirty yellow-brown color, mostly clear but with a slight haze and active carbonation rising slowly to replenish the ring of foam left from the head.

A large gulp reveals more earthy flavors, with treacle in the background and a solid grain bill supporting the richly hued taste. Biscuit and dried flower accents round out the palate. Enough hops to give it a bit of zest, but overall a very mellow and tasteful offering.

This brew would go well with anything from peanut butter and jelly sandwiches to a stuffed grouse.

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Photo of cswhitehorse
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The Organic Ale of Sam Smith pours a clear amber color with a quickly dissipating foam head that doesn't leave much in the way of lacing.

The aroma is buttery malt with a faint citrusy smell.

The taste is a balanced malt and hop profile. The hop bitterness hits at the beginning then the malt comes and the hop takes over the rest of the journey.

In the mouth you are left with a slight hop zing on the tongue and back of the throat. It is a very well balanced beer and smooth. I could drink these all day.

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Photo of brendan13
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured from the bottle into a pint glass with a 3 centimetres fluffy white head a top a clear dark golden beer. The head falls away fairly quickly & leaves lots of lacing.
S - Floral and fruity hop notes hit first followed by a subtle malt character.
T - So tempted to give this a 5 - a wonderful balance of fruity and floral hops and biscuity, vaugely caramel malt flavours.
M - Ever so slightly on the lighter side of medium bodied with a medium carbonation. The bitterness is just right.
D - Simple, yet full of flavour. A good session beer for sure. This beer proves that you can get a good organic beer. I will probably buy it again.

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Photo of phishgator
4.35/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a Bass pint glass. Nice light pale/golden color with a creamy head that lacies the entire session. Aroma is of ice tea brewed in the sun with nutmeg and caramel. The flavor is the fuggles and Noble hop throughout! The bitterness is in the aftertaste and it is strong. The body is full, a smooth creaminess is there and that never leaves your palate. The brew makes me want to enjoy a bunch of these!

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Photo of rjimlad
4.33/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Poured into a good size handle glass and got a rich head but this didn't last very long or leave much in the way of lacing. The aroma isn't very strong but is sweet and malty. Flavour is all treacle and malt sugar with just enough hoppy fruit to prevent cloying. The bitterness balances perfectly and there is quite a lot of interest in the fruit/malt mix. Carbonation is low as it should be and I found it to be thoroughly drinkable and regretting I only bought one bottle.

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Photo of MillRat
4.32/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Poured out a 22 oz brown bomber, thin white head that fades fast. Smells of nice EKG with rich bready malt. Flavor is rich caramel and biscuity with an unobtrusive hop bitterness, an exemplar of balancing malts and hops. Mouthfeel is not something exceptional, but absolutely appropriate for the style. Drinkable? Line 'em up and I'll show you drinkable!

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Photo of Jason
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Impressive head retention which is unprecedented for this brewery and is almost a given. Mild chill hazed slowly goes away after the brew warms up. Bight dusty golden hue.

Lemony hop, earthy yeast, mild fruity esters and biscuity grain … it is all you would expect from an ale.

Rounded malty mouth feel with a deeply textured smoothness from the level carbonation. In rolls the toasted and biscuity grain with a lemony hop on top. Bitterness is perfectly balanced with the malt. Some earthy nutty yeast, slight fruity ester and a shade of buttery diacetyl bring a complex mix to the palate. Finishes with a touch of sweetness and residual yeast by-products.

Organic or not I’d drink this brew, not bad for $3 for a 550ml bottle.

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Photo of foamer
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden yellow with a froth head with very good retention. Some malt and faint citrusy hops in the nose. Taste begins with earthy malts and then developed to a lingering dry hoppy finish with a touch of citrus in the end. Mouthfeel is nice. Not too heavy or too light - just right. This would make a tasty session ale. I could have a number of these in a row and not get bored. Nicely complex for the style. A shame Sam Smiths does do more cask ales - this would make a lovely cask ale.

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Photo of ProfessorHomer
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Another wonderful little jewel from Samuel Smith's fine family of beers. The high quality is evident throughout. Highly recommended if you like high-quality smooth malty session ales.

A: Pours a light amber gold color with a nice whitish head that fades rather slowly. Leaves a nice thin lacing on the glass.

S: The aroma is of honey, tea, light caramelized malts and a touch of hops.

T: The taste is very balanced with nice malts and flavors of caramel and dare I say apples? The mellow maltyness makes it stand out - a wonderful hearty beer you'd find in the Lake District taverns. Hops are mild and subdued quite nicely in the background. A nice sweet lingertaste is left on your palette.

M: Full & smooth, nice body with just-right carbonation. Very clean finish that I'll attribute to the fine water used.

D: Very full and tasty. A nice session beer that quaffs easily whilst not too filling. I could drink several of these along with a nice pipe.

Does this fine brewery make a "bad" beer? Methinks not! Man, I just gotta get to this brewery the next time I'm in Great Britain! Another recommended high-quality long drink from Samuel Smith's brewery. Bravo! Huzzah!

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Photo of neenerzig
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a mostly clear light copper color with a nice sized head that is about an inch thick before it settles to about 1/4 of an inch thick and it also leaves some nice lacing before eventually becoming a nice film layer. The head has pretty good staying power. Aromas of sweet malt and caramel are present along with a hint of some fruit. Has a sweet malty, somewhat fruity, and caramel taste upfront followed by a slight dry hop aftertaste. Has a crisp, smooth, and medium bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Very easy to drink in a good way indeed. A good, solid effort from the fine folks at Samuel Smith.


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Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a New Belgium globe glass. The beer is a hazy light-orangish copper color. An off-white head settles to random mass of bubbles in the center. Some light sticky lacing is present. The beer smells of sweet fruits and faint malts. The taste is complex with banana peels, oranges, and malts coming through. The mouthfeel is light and finishes clean.

Overall, this is a pretty tasty pale ale that's very easy to drink. I enjoy it more than their other Pale Ale.

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Photo of cvstrickland
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A 550 ml bottle poured into a seidel yields a sparkling clear golden copper body topped by a finger of rocky white foam. The head retains well, languishing at a fuzzy sheet that leaves light rings and patches of lacing on the glass.

The smell is lightly malty and grainy with a hefty hop-touch of tangy lemon peel and sweet, juicy orange.

The taste is lightly sweet, malty and rich with a mild, succulent citrus note and a lightly floral bitterness. A minerally character with a grassy hop note becomes more prominent as the beer warms.

Samuel Smith's Organic Ale is tasty, crisp, medium-bodied, and well-carbonated, making the brew very refreshing and extremely drinkable.

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Photo of beernut7
4.3/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is one of the most interesting beers I have had the pleasure of tasting. Pours with a pale golden color and quick foamy white head. Nice malty aroma with just a hint of spice. The flavor is very clean with a small lingering hop bite and a drier malt character. Very drinkable and quite a bit tastier than many of its extra pale peers.

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Samuel Smith's Organic Best Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
3.96 out of 5 based on 608 ratings.
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