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

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Samuel Smith's Organic Best AleSamuel Smith's Organic Best Ale
Very Good
615 Ratings
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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 615 |  Reviews: 374
Photo of shadow1961
3.62/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Samuel Smith's organically produced ale pours out a finger of loose foam
over a somewhat cloudy orangey brew. Carbonation is evident with the many
big fat bubble and the nose is malt and the vanilla tang of English Ale yeast.
The flavor is pretty simple- light malt with a bit of hop finish. The mouthfeel is
crisp, dry, and a bit tart. This is a good beer to try to get a feel for the way they
used to brew beer, I think. Really quite satisfying.

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Photo of cichief
3.35/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz.(?) bottle into a shaker style pint glass.

A- Very hazy, gold in color with a very thin white head.

S- Slight fruit flavor, yeasty, hoppy.

T- A fruity spicy beer, with a mild dry hop finish.

M- Thin body, dry finish, well carbonated.

D- Overall a decent beer, not a great example of the style however.

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Photo of mwearl
4.25/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Beer poured with a nice full creamy head atop a light golden/copper color. Head dissapated quickly leaving some moderate lacing. Smell is hoppy with a fruity quality, somewhat champagne like immediately after pour. Not a lot of complexity in taste. Hoppy with a bitter finish, a little dull at the end. Mouthfeel is medium with a foamy chewy feel. With the relatively low ABV, this is a very drinkable all season ale.

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Photo of bosco7
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy and pale in color with minimal head. Very little aroma; English hops. Tastes good; bright English hop flavors including lemon rind, floral, light hop spice, and very little malt present. I could drink a couple of these in a sitting maybe paired with some chips and malt vinegar.

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Photo of zeff80
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured out an orange/amber color with a small, short-lived, white one-finger head. No lace.

S - It smelled of grains and grass.

T - It hits you with malt at first sip, but then there is a hoppy quality that gives it a bittersweet kick.

M - It was crisp and dry. A light to medium-bodied beer.

D - A good representation of the style. The appearance and smell were not impressive, but the flavor was excellent.

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Photo of mithrascruor
4.45/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

550 mL bottle poured into a mug.

Appearance: Pours a nice clear copper color. Off-white head is rather bubbly, somewhere in the grey area between airy and creamy.

Smell: Has a generally bready aroma, together with some citrus, and is slightly sweet.

Taste: Nicely balanced malts and hops, with a slight bit of yeast. Starts somewhat sweet, and then the hop bitterness begins to come into play. Nothing amazing, but very tasty.

Mouthfeel: Crisp, medium-bodied feel with an enjoyable carbonation. Generally smooth too.

Drinkability: Great flavor that isn't overwhelming, plus the ABV is just fine.

Very enjoyable English pale ale. Similar to their Old Brewery Pale Ale, but the two are distinct. This is a bit more crisp, and seems a bit more like a summer-time beer. If this were readily available I'd definitely get it quite frequently!

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Photo of mmmbeer
4.17/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Slender, brown 12 oz. bottle - it pours into my Sammy Smith pint golden-orange with low carbonation and a two-finger head that doesn't leave much lace, but never fades completely. Fairly malty in the nose, with caramelly, buttery, and toasty notes, but there are floral/spicy hops and fruity byproducts in the mix as well. Quite similar on the palate, with diacetyl, caramel and toasted malts, and grassy/spicy, floral, piney? hops that impart a medium bitterness; maybe a touch of papery oxidation as well, but it's not too distracting. The body is medium with equal carbonation and finish, and drys the mouth sufficiently. Overall a nice English pale ale which is easy to drink and tastes great to boot.

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Photo of rkuhnel
3.95/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Frrom the North Coast Coop in Eureka, CA for $3.36 this poured a cloudy gold to orange with a hefty off white head that left moderate lacing. Aromas of malts and spicy hops. Mouthfeel is medium and flavors are mostly of malts and hops, with a touch of fruit. Finish slightly bitter. Overall a decent brew.

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Photo of Hampton73
3.62/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a hazy golden tan with a slight off white head.

Aroma is fruity dusty malt. Different.

Taste is malty fruity, with floral overtones, also different, but in a good way. Very earthy.

It is a nice beer, but not something I want to drink all day, or all night.

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Photo of neenerzig
4.3/5  rDev +8%
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 Gmann
3.1/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a slightly hazy, copper color with a small off white head, no lacing. The smell is buttery, sweet malt, a light hint of hops. The taste is caramel malt, some buttery toffee, light dry hop aftertaste. The mouthfeel is a bit watery, nicely carbonated. Not bad, but I am not overly impressed, goes down easy, quite drinkable.

 329 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.97/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Samuel Smith's organic ale pours a hazy orange-amber body beneath a short head of creamy off-white froth. It drops steadily to an average collar and whispy surface covering, but leaves walls of spots and splashes behind. The nose displays quite a bit of yeasty fruitiness (tangerine, apricot) and some mineralish character over a biscuity malt. It's smooth in the mouth with a medium-light body and gentle tingle from the moderate carbonation. Fruitiness appears up front in the flavor, lightly tart and citrusy over a bready and biscuity malt base that's just slightly caramelish. Some grassy and floral hop flavors perk it up a bit at the swallow as the bitterness rises. Drying finish. Soft fruit and malt linger in the mouth like orange marmalade on toast. Quite nice, and very refreshing.

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Photo of MillRat
4.32/5  rDev +8.5%
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!

 354 characters

Photo of malcontent
3.81/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Pale orange body topped off by a finger of head that dies down to form a nice, sticky lacing. Lots of bubbles rising shooting up from the bottom makes this an above average-looking beer.

The scents are faint and smell mostly of sweet corn/grain and frankly remind me more of a lager.

Given the smell, there is a surprising hop presence with a little bitterness on the tip of the tongue and then a nice, dry, bitter finish. In between there is mostly a soft cereal malt taste with subtle sweetness and little else.

Has the body of an Engilsh Pale in that it isn't overly bubbly and has a smooth mouthfeel. This strikes me as a versatile beer either for sessioning or pairing with food. Its neutrality is its greatest virtue.

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Photo of theopholis
2.9/5  rDev -27.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance- Poured into a tulip glass. Has a bright gold head with very little staying power. Leaves a decent amount of lace. Color is a light amber.

Smell- Gives off a light fruity smell. Some malt character. Just a whiff of bread.

Taste- This drinks like a typical pale English ale. Some hop bitterness/acid on the tip and edges of the tongue. Interesting change in hop bitterness at the back of the throat. A little malt sweetness, but nut much. Tastes vaguely grainy to. Not bad, but not great.

Mouthfeel- Medium body for the style. A tad over-carbonated IMO.

Drinakbility- It's fair. Nothing to write home about.

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3.89/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - 1" off-white head that falls to a cap immediately and leaves no lace. Slightly chill-hazed orange-gold pale ale.

S - Well balanced nose. Bready malt with a tangy hop presence. An herbally English sort of hop.

T - Quick sour citrus flash. All of the EPA tea-like, herbal hop qualities are present here. Buttery, bready malt. Light bitterness. Tasty.

M - Creamy, medium bodied mouthfeel. Medium carbonation.

D - A very flavorful, easy session.

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Photo of Hibernator
3.81/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Samuel Smith's Organically Produced Ale
550 ML brown bottle
Jet ink label - SI01A1
Served in 20 oz tulip pint glass

Pours a golden light orange color with a decent head on top that leaves impressive trails of sticky lacings.

The nose is rather dull. Some whiffs of light malts, hops and lemongrass.

Light apple juice malt and grain profile with an appealing hop snap on the finish. A touch of sweet honey too. The hop finish is unassuming, but is there with flavors of pepper and citrus.

Drinkable to say the least. Very refreshing and like any other Samuel Smith's that I've tried, mighty enjoyable.

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Photo of numenor1
4.02/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Light golden color on the pour with a respectable head that laces so so. Aroma is toasted malt, toffee and very faint diacetyl. On the palate diacetyl is almost undetectable, but toffeeish, caramel malt leads the way. About halfway some nice cherry esters make an appearance (provided you aren't drinking it too cold). Through the finish herbal hops emerge and dry everything out. I get a favor faint note of cocoa in the finish, which seems odd, given the presumed malt-bill, but not out of place flavorwise at all. From start to finish there is a mineral profile to this which I very much enjoy. Body is medium light with medium carbonation (i could go for a touch less). Extremely drinkable.

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Photo of aluskungs
3.7/5  rDev -7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The beer is my glass is cloudy and the foamy head disappears quickly, a lone ring clings to existence at the edge of my glass. The color is nice, like a golden brown grain stalk, but the cloudiness reminds one of a dirt puddle.

There isn't much of a smell, some malt nose and a memory of hazelnut.

The taste is pretty good though. Nice smooth sweetness like liquid caramel, but not as sweet. This beer seems to roll over my tongue. Very drinkable, like my mouth is a magnet for this beer. I can still taste it as if it was tele communicating with my taste buds and saying, "drink me, drink me!" and so I do. Nutty flavors keep the malt sweetness in check. Almost no hops, only at the end, like it's saying "don't forget me!" This beer really talks to me.

A good nutty, malty, very drinkable beer, that doesn't look very appealing.

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Photo of Osiris9588
3.82/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy dark peach color from a 550ml bottle. It is capped by a creamy white head with slight retention and lacing.

The aroma is very malty and orangey. It smells very earthy, accompanied by the fragrance of wet leaves. The flavor is of candied malt and orange, both creamy and syrupy, with just a whisper of subtle hops on the back end.

The mouth is light, fruity and bright on the front, syrupy and slightly drier on the finish. It lacks great complexity however.

It's a very light and drinkable brew. I could see it being very refreshing in hot weather and complementing a wide array of foods. It would not be my first pick of the Sammy Smith family though.

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Photo of dgallina
3.42/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

550ml brown bottle without intelligible freshness date.

Poured crystal copper with thin soapy head and clingy fine lace. Smells of nutty and leafy hops, caramelized malt. Tastes predominantly of caramel malts, with a cookie-dough and bread center and slightly dry leafy hop finish. Flavor is nice enough, but ultimately a little thin and bordering on phenolic. Thin body with active carbonation. A bit underwhelming overall.

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Photo of cypressbob
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Victorian pint bottle, 550mls

Pours with a light amber body, patchy off white head with fair retention

Smell, slightly floral aroma, some fresh fruit most notably, little bit of musky malt in the background, not much hop presence on the nose

Taste, crisp biscuity malt initially, bit of fruit, some english hop bitterness but only slight. Slightly watery mouthfeel

Another solid beer from Sam Smiths, worth a visit again

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Photo of RichThatchr
4.1/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I found this great reddish ale at Whole Foods tonight while looking for something different in their cold casing. It poured well to a slight head in my pint glass while I was taking out the ham and swiss heroes.

The ale appeared to to settle down quickly as I tasted the first round and I enjoyed the myriad of flavors. I don't think I could catalog all the interesting flavors ranging coffee to candy.

It had an interesting mouthfeel that I had experienced in a couple of Belgian Triples this past summer, yet it finished off slightly bitter.

This was a great ale that would be great with a hearty lamb stew this Fall.

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Photo of wl0307
3.06/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

It's been 1.5 year since I last tried this beer, so a revisit is in order. This 550ml bottle is BB Aug. 07, served cool in an imperial-pint glass.

A: dark orangey golden in colour, coming with a loosely-formed, puffy white head with surprisingly good retention; gentle, constant streams of tiny fizz underneath.
S: upfront is an intense and cloying malty note full of fruit-candy, malt-candy, cane-sugar, a sticky edge of caramel, a touch of honey, with very faint fruity hops behind. The sweetness is simply overpowering, not as nice and balanced as I remember it...
T: biscuity and sugary malts upfront... followed by sugar-cane juice, berry-ish fruits, while a bitter-sweet edge of licorice, hays, and slightly tangy citric hops quietly join in eventually, with just a subtle touch of bitterness of hops as well as pop-corns.
M&D: spritzy and refreshing yet smooth enough, but the flavour profile is simplistic, with very faint inputs of hops submerged by overwhelmingly sweet maltiness. An unbalanced malty bitter overall, IMO. Not saying that it's a bad beer, but Samuel Smith's could do much better than this, I'm sure.

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Photo of yelterdow
2.76/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Served in an English pint glass at just over fridge temperature. $2.99 at Wyckoff Liquors, who also had the entire line of SS beers refrigerated.

Appearance- Pours a bright gold with a clean, white two finger head that laces nicely... the thin foamy mat plants itself firmly over the course of the tasting.

Smell- A metallic edge to a doughy malt character hits the nose first... there's a mild pungency about the aroma that I find undesirable. With no sign of a freshness date, it's hard to say whether or not this may be an off bottle. Some smoke notes peek through the husky, very organic qualities here.

Taste- This drinks like a very ordinary pale ale... a relatively good balance of malts and hops, some grainy aspects, and an English hop bitterness that drys the finish. Unimpressive and uneventful.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability- The mouthfeel only wakes up slightly when aggravated... otherwise it's thin. I won't be visiting this again.

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Samuel Smith's Organic Best Ale from Samuel Smith Old Brewery (Tadcaster)
Beer rating: 3.98 out of 5 with 615 ratings
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