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 kunzbrew
3.82/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours a golden straw color with a fluffy head that does not last long leaving a collar with a nice lace behind.

The strong smell of hops hits the nose hard with a biscuit malt aroma as well.

The sweet malt flavor along with a moderate hop aroma fill the mouth. Strong carbonation stings the tongue as well.

The overall mouthfeel is good but not great, same for the flavor.

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Photo of moulefrite
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a very clean looking bright golden. An attractive buttery looking head that leaves ample creamy, sticky lace follows. More depth here than was expected from the fairly simple color. The beer brings to the table a deep maltiness as well as a fine balance of hop that suggests.... "I'm British!" A lush, almost buttery mouthfeel-brown butter at that-and a fresh squeeze of lemon is present throughout, and a lengthly finish features sweet malt and pleasant bitter. This is a solid ale.

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Photo of RoyalT
2.21/5  rDev -44.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Appearance – The body is a light orangish yellow and clear. The head is nice and thick but went down quickly.

Smell – There wasn’t much of a nose to this one. I could pick up some grain and cheap sugar along with a big, musty smell.

Taste – The nasty grain and sour tartness that I’ve come to expect from lesser breweries is here in spades. This stuff is horrible.

Mouthfeel – Light, fizzy carbonation and extremely thin, even for a Pale Ale.

Drinkability – Thank God my wife agreed to put away the rest of this one. She wasn’t too happy with it though and said that she definitely won’t “buy again” (this from a Sam Smith fan).

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Photo of Beastdog75
3.65/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Another organic beer from the Samuel Smith's Old Brewery. According to my Merchant du Vin pamphlet that I picked up in a beer store, this beer uses malted barley, cane sugar, and hops grown by certified organic farmers and that the hops come from New Zealand because the pests that effect hops in Europe aren't as troublesome. Seems like a pretty interesting and well made brew to say the least.

This organic ale pours a nice amber color with some orange hue to it. It also has a slight haziness to it. A decent foamy head forms, lasts about 1 1/2 minutes and leaves sporadic lacing. The smell was dominated by malt. Very sweet, almost caramel like in the nose. This beer feels smooth and moderately carbonated on the palette. As with the aroma, the flavor seems mostly dominated by malt as well. Caramel like notes are present. The hop presence is decent, but pales in comparison to the regular Sam Smith's Pale Ale. The aftertaste has a light-moderate dryness, and has a bit of a nutty flavor to it too. This beer finishes out with a light alcoholic warmth.

Another good beer from Samuel Smith. Those turned off by the more malty brews might want to try something else, as I thought this was one of the more maltier beers that I have sampled. The sweetness lowered the drinkability by just a bit, but this is still a smooth, easy drinking pale ale that has the added bonus of not having any nasty "extras" possibly floating around.

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Photo of BitteBier
3.88/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Semi-clear, honey-colored brew topped with a finger of fine head fed by active carbonation. Lace clings in large sheets. Intensely sweet--even syrupy--floral scents dominate the smell, but in a surprisingly delicate way. Smooth grains at the start fade to a bittersweet taste and a nondescript finish. Mouthfeel is quite creamy but doesn't cling too much. Well balanced, quite drinkable and sort of interesting.

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Photo of mickeymac
4.05/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 550 ml brown bottle, the head is white and foamy. The beer is a pleasant golden-orange. A honey-like sweetness comes through in the smell, with just a trace of hops. The taste is a bit on the light side but thoroughly enjoyable. A bready flavor is backed by the nice honey flavor and it's just bitter enough to keep things interesting. It's nothing earth-shattering, but it is a very nice English Pale Ale.

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Photo of Rumrunner
4.3/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

550ml bottle. Bottle looks old fashioned. Great presentation.

A clear deep golden color. Great head upon pour which leaves nice lacing throughout. The scents are grassy, floral and hoppy. A slight malty sweet scent hangs around as well.

The flavors are very refined. It starts a bit sweet with some spice and herbs. There is a malty bready flavor and some yeast with a wet grass taste as well. Some sugar and a bit of a crisp hop bite near the end. Very nice. This ale tastes as if it should garner respect. It has an attitude of simple yet character driven flavors.

The mouthfeel is smooth and crisp. Not heavy but bold. It is a very easy drinking ale. It feels like a lager in some respects. Enjoy.

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Photo of Shiloh
2.48/5  rDev -37.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pretty enough with limited crown, but at the expense of the taste buds.
Geez this is sweet, they must have run out of hops at the Tadcaster Brewery the day this brew was introduced.
Body is a medium, carbonation is all but missing but the colour is nice.
I'm sure this organic style is appreciated by some, and this may be a special product...but I don't see it!

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Photo of UnionMade
3.33/5  rDev -16.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

The beer pours a golden amber color, excellent clarity, with a thin ring of whitish head.
Aroma is very light. Malty, with quite a bit of diacetyl butteriness. Some caramel, with a mild british hopping. Very little esteriness, with a touch of pear.
Flavor is initially lightly malty, with some toastiness, overwhemled quickly by a moderate diacetyl buttery taste. A bit of caramel pokes through in the middle, with just a hint of pear. Mild hops appear in the finish, lingering into the aftertaste with some diacetyl. Smooth british carbonation, very mild and smooth. Light to medium bodied.
For an organic ale, this isn't bad at all. I've had some really gross organic beer, and this one was pretty much normal. Aside from the buttery flavor, it's a tasty brew. Worth a try at least once.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.78/5  rDev -5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appears a copper orange with a fluffy textured creamy head nice sized sticks around for a bit and leaves full ring of lacing with each sip very nice appearance here. Aromatics include a delicate floral hop aroma with a choir of biscuit malt singing in the background. As for the taste nice complex yet subtle flavors including a fruit presence in the malt deriven sweetness not bad at all more of the biscuity flavor profile, and hop burps are apparent just mildly hopped delicate "Organically Produced" ale. Mouthfeel well can't complain slightly syrup in the texture medium body smooth wish I found it on cask. Drinkability could very well be a session except I bought this for 3.50 for one bottle so, nope not going to make it a go to but decent and palatable.

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Photo of beerinator
4.12/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Clear tannish gold beer with a white head. Excellent Head Retention.

Aroma: Very good aroma. Nice earthy hoppyness. Smells slightly grainy, toasted wet grain the in the nose. Aroma seems natural/earthy.

Taste: Toasty malt flavor up front, sharp bitterness with a slight hint of citrus. Very earthy malt flavor. Aftertaste is quick leaving a nice smooth finish. Mouthfeel is nice and pleasant.

Notes: Easy to drink. Very smooth beer, exceeding expectations.

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Photo of SixpointJMH
3.53/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i'd heard very good things about this brew and, while i certainly can't say it's a bad brew (far from it), it didn't live up to expectiations. pours a pale amber with an average head that quickly dissolves to a thin lace. floral, fruity smells are apparent with a bit of earthiness as well. picked thiese up in the taste as well along with some a hint of butter flavour perhaps (or caramel?). nice carbonation balance here...less carb than i expected, which to me is a good thing. again, overall a very drinkable beer. i'd happily go back to it, but i have a bunch of other sam smith's ranked ahead of this one.

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

Clear, light-orange body. The head is thick and tawny, pocked and popping, and looks very much like the inside of fresh, home-baked bread.

Aroma is slightly sour, full and yeasty. Yet, there is a slight fruitiness to it. Very interesting and balanced aroma.

Taste is round and slick, almost but not quite chewy, a bit sour on the edges, bright and clear in the mouth as you swallow. For at least half of the time it took me to drink this beer I struggled with the sharp taste of this beer -- what does it taste like? Finally, it came to me. It's like sharp cheddar cheese. Good sharp cheddar cheese.

The slight sourness of the beer diminishes its drinkability for me, though I licked every last drop from the glass. Can't imagine having more than one of these at a time, though I will enjoy drinking one of these in the future.

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Photo of charlesw
3.3/5  rDev -17.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bottle.
Pours light orange-brown. I had to coax the head of it but it was nice and dense and long lasting after coaxing.
Flavor is light and lightly fruity. Nice (light) malt flavor to it. The fruitiness and malt both seem a bit off style (more so for the malt) but, you know, it goes down really well! Some bitterness, but it really is, well, light!
This is a very fine thirst-quenching summer ale and I'd buy and drink it again with that in mind!

 457 characters

Photo of assurbanipaul
3.5/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours light and cloudy with a strong floral bouquet. Taste is fresh and light and easy to drink. Bitter flavors with light malt, almost refreshing, slightly grassy with a mild spice to it.

Smells better than it tastes, not great but a good session beer.

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Photo of AtLagerHeads
3.68/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a nice ale by Samuel Smith. Pours a cloudy amber with a very nice white head. The beer is a great lace creator putting lots of sticky lace all over the glass. The nose is of both malt and hops with a decent balance of the two. The same is true of the taste which has a very substantial malt backing and good bitterness from the hops. Decent body although a little watery as it warms. Very drinkable brew.

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Photo of ADR
3.38/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Clear golden appearance with a whitish medium-bubbled head of about 1/4 of an inch and decent duration. Nice slightly thick and complex laces. Fairly un-aromatic and surprisingly grassy for a Pale, almost like a Grolsch in aroma. Malt is straightforward, minimal brown sugar and a bit of freshly-baked white bread. Hops are minimal, slight sense of paprika and re-inforced by the aroma close to the swallow. This brew has a tight balance, but unfortunately, the body was pretty lacking to me -- a teeter-totter balanced by little weight on either side. Too expensive to be a session brew of choice for me, but it is certainly drinkable.

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Photo of MJR
3.63/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a light copper color with perfect clarity. An off-white head starts out big and foamy, then shrinks down to a small and steady cap.

Smell: Faint aroma of malt and hops. A touch of freshly mown hay.

Taste: There's a nice balance between the bready malt and hops, along with a fresh, organic quality (duh!) I pick up on a slight mineral element, from the liquor it was made with. A touch of toffee sweetness hangs in the background and lends a bit of depth to an otherwise ordinary beer.

Mouthfeel: Has a light body with a soft, rounded mouthfeel. Very mellow.

Drinkability: Pretty good. This would make a good session brew, but I wouldn't make a special trip to get it. There are much better beers in the Sam Smith line.

Has anyone else noticed that organic brews seem to be a bit bland and watery?

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Photo of canucklehead
3.8/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This sample came over from Hawaii as it is not available in
B.C. liquor stores. I liked the pale blonde colour and the
slightly sour smell on the nose. This beer is not as dominant
in flavours as the Tadcaster or I.P.A. from Samuel smith. Hoppiness was not huge but balanced well with the rest of the
taste. I would sum this up as nice clean session beer that
works well with cooked meats and poultry.

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

For an ale, this beer pours a surprisingly light, clear, golden copper, looking a little too similar to a pilsener. A sturdy, creamy white head with good head retention. In the nose, the pilsener-like qualities continue. Grassy, malty, leafy hop notes give way, as the beer warms, to fruity/citrus elements like orange and pineapple. The taste is initially minerally, with a clean hop presence and well-balanced. As it warms, woody, earthy, toffeeish elements develop, as well as the fruitier, maltier side of things. It begins, then, to seem a litter more like an ale and less like a lager, approaching more the English bitter genre. The drinkability is high and this would seem to be a good session beer.

A fine if boring offering from a great brewery. Despite coming away from this one feeling like its a well-balanced, solid beer, the lightweight, lager-like quality was disconcerting.

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Photo of Dogbrick
2.7/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

For once a lighter Sam Smith beer that was not lightstruck! Still a thorughly average beer though. Pours a golden color with a thin white head and a little carbonation and thin lacing. Earthy, fruity and yeasty aroma. On this thin side and lacking in any obvious flavor. Unbalanced but drinkable, still I'll go back to the Imperial Stout next time.

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Photo of Morris729
4.5/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a thin and pale amber color with a big frothy white head that billows out of the glass and coats the sides while drinking. Nose is quite floral with notes of fresh lemon and citrus. Smooth and crisp in the mouth. Taste is a combination of a sweet fruitiness and a bready maltiness blended nicely with just the right amount of hop bitterness. Finish is crisp and refreshing. This is a very enjoyable ale and a great session brew.

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Photo of Realale
4.6/5  rDev +15.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Brown bottle!!

Pours a beautiful brassy color. Very dense creamy head rises 3/4" before slowly settling to a solid quarter inch.

Nose is crisp hop, wet stone, and crackery malt. Very British, and very appealing.

In the mouth its light and long, with a solid base of malt, and good bitterness on the finish. The mineral notes are there at the end too.

The mouthfeel is very good, but could move up to exceptional with bottle-conditioning. Very drinkable. Excellent session ale. Probably my favorite of the Sam Smith line-up right now.

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Photo of bewareOFpenguin
4/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Update: I have since purchased this beer in a brown bottle. The difference in unbelievable. Nice balance of hops and malt, no "skunk" or stale taste. I hope their whole line goes into a brown bottle soon.

Why do I keep buying from Tadcaster? It poured a nice yellow color with somewhat of a head. But the taste, typical. It tasted like Bass. This is the third Tadcaster that I have been disappointed with. I surrender. It is just a medeocra beer, light with no body. Just a step above the Macros.

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Photo of Gusler
3/5  rDev -24.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A limpid gold color on the pour, the head impressive, the lace fine sheets to coat the glass. Malt nose, very clean and fresh. Slightly sweet at the start, the top is flimsy, finish is scarcely acidic, sparsely hopped, quite dry aftertaste, very refreshing beer, a bit light for me, but quite good nonetheless.

 310 characters

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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