Smoke Ale | Rogue Ales

very good
254 Reviews
Smoke AleSmoke Ale

Brewed by:
Rogue Ales
Oregon, United States

Style: Smoked Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Label of 22 oz bottle:

12 Ingredients: Great Western, Harrington, Klages, Munich & Hugh Baird Crystal, Carastan 30/37 & 13/17, Chuck's Alderwood Smoked Munich & Bamberg Beechwood Smoked Malts; Saaz & Perle Hops, Free Range Coastal Waters & Top Fermenting Pacman Yeast. No Chemicals, Preservatives or Additives.


A German Style Rauchbier with an orange-amber hue, a delicate smoke aroma and flavor, with an intense hop finish.

Oregon Brewed - Established 1988

Oxygen Fixing Caps - 48 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-12-2001

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Reviews: 254 | Ratings: 328
Photo of Avagadro
4.77/5  rDev +25.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

A: copper in color and crystal clear. Off-white head quickly diminishes in to a thin film.

S: aroma is bold, and dominated by smoke. Other aromas include bacon and toast.

T: off-dry with heavy notes of bacon and toasty bread.

M: full body and creamy. A nice compliment to the aggressive flavor of this beer.

D: a delicious brew that is well worth a try. One of the better varieties of a rare style.

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Photo of MmmIPA
4.7/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A-Brownish/Orangish hue with a small head that fell to a thing ring.

S-Sorda smells like there Chipotle beer.I can smell the smoke.

T-WOW! This stuff is tasty.I can really taste the smoke in it.There is a slight hop finish.I think the malts are masked by the smoke.I can taste the Pac-man yeast in this as all the Rogues.

M-Medium bodied and goes down smooth.The smoke taste is awesome and its in your face.Not overly carbonated.

D-This stuff was a godsend.I have to pick up a couple bombers next time.It was really tasty and hits the spot.I would recommend this to anyone that enjoys good beer.Hail to the berlin wall for falling.

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Photo of RushLimbmalt
4.64/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I think I am in love with smoke beers and this Rogue offering doesn't do anything except make me want them even more than before... What a wonderful beer... It pours a nice orange/amber color and has a decent white head. It's aroma is filled with a robust smokiness that I can get lost in and the flavor is very much the same in that regard. It is damn fine all by itself, but would be killer paired with some smoked foods.

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Photo of ShogoKawada
4.57/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

If you want it let me hear you say "Gimme some more"

-Busta Rhymes

Found this one at Nikki's... I love me a good smoked beer, so this one was an instant buy. Rogue is quickly becoming one of my favorite breweries, as I need two hands to count their awesome beers.

A- A nice, caramel/rust beer. A beautiful, billowy cloud head is floating on this one.

S- Smoke from a mile away. I'm reminded of Aecht Schlenkerla's Weizen... smells like smoked meats, wood, campfires, and tastiness. Mmmm.

T- Pretty fucking awesome. Lacking some of the nuttiness/meatiness of the Aecht Schlenkerla, this still provides bundles, buckets, oodles of flavor. A nice smoked malt propels this beer to the front of the class. I taste mild hops, a nice balance, but the smoked malt is the main event and is fan-fuckin-tastic.

M- Crisp, tasty... gimme some more! I love this beer.

D- For me, through the roof. I love a good smoked beer, and Rogue has brought its heavy guns to this battle. I am impressed, and find this to be almost an equal to the Schlenkerla beers, which is about the highest compliment I can pay any smoked beer. Seek this one out, cherish it, and bathe in it if you must. A world-class beer.

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Photo of beeragent
4.52/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured into a pint glass from a 22oz bottle.

A - Poured a medium amber, forming a 1 inch white head. Light spots of lace stick to the glass.

S - Strong aroma of smoked malt and spices. Strong and intoxicating!

T - Just as inviting as the aroma. Good flavor of smoked malts and cooking spices. The flavor coats the palate, and stays long after the swallow.

M - Thin bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Very smooth finish.

D - Absolutely delicious flavor. In a world with very few smoked beers, this is a welcome for people like me. Fantastic flavor and decent alcohol level allows for a few of these. My only disappointment is that this is not available in my state (yet).

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Photo of avylover
4.5/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Not much experience with smoked ales, but I may seek more after this. Pours a hazy copper orange color with a small head that died quick.The aroma is moderately hoppy with a good hint of smoke, but does nothing to prepare you for the taste. This beer tastes like smoked cheese, and I love it. Bacon fat and smoked cheese rule the tongue, with some hops trying to work their way into the picture, balancing things out. This is by far the "Smokiest" beer I have had. Mouthfeel is carbonated and slick at the same time, going down way easy. Immensly drinkable, but I imagine this is a "hit or miss" type beer. You either love it or you hate it. I love it.

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Photo of ypsifly
4.47/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Painted bomber poured into an imperial pint. No dates given.

Dark amber, almost light brown, with a two finger head that is light tan and falls quickly to a 1cm layer of foam. Light lacing effect.

Smoke dominates the nose. Not that cheap liquid smoke that is used in cooking, but this has a real aroma like wild fish or game that has been smoked over soaked wood chips. Not over the top; there's a slight sweetness from the malts underneath. Mouthwatering.

Smoke dominates the taste as well. Again, its not out of control as the malts maintain their place, and there's a quick hop bite towards the end. Has a slight juiciness in the middle. Well balanced.

Moderate mouthfeel with just a bit of tongue tingle from the carbonation. I could session this at a bbq or next to a campfire.

This is one of the Rogues that's worth the money.

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Photo of Rainne
4.44/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Never had one before so I decided to try it. I have had quite a few since.

A- Slightly cloudy amber that pours a nice head but it fades pretty fast. It leaves nice lacing though.

S- Smoke! Smooth though like mesquite. Maybe malt and some light spices.

T- Great smoky taste. I love smoked meats and the smell of a campfire so this is right up my alley. Nice additions of malt and very light sweetness with some herb and spices.

M- Maybe the creamiest and smoothest I've ever drank. Very nice and thick.

D- You might not like it if you don't like the smell of smoke or the taste of smoked meat but why are you trying it then. Other wise delicious.

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Photo of russpowell
4.42/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours caramel with a rocky 5 fingers+ light tan head. Good head retention& some lacing

S: Smoked ham & loads of it

T: Smoked ham & then caramel notes sneak in. A slight hop bite on the edge of the tounge & then some peppery notes. Finishes smokey& sweet

MF: Medium body & good carbonation. Pretty good balance

Drinks fairly easy. This more restrained than I remember tastes I've had in years past. This is an excellent breakfast (with eggs & grits!) or BBQ beer. This could almost pass as a Bamberg Rauch IMO, almost

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Photo of wingman14
4.42/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: A light color, good carbonation, with a thick white head.
S: Extremely strong scent of smoke, smells of a backyard BBQ, very inviting. No hop smell present.
T: Tastes almost exactly as it smells, very much like a pulled pork BBQ with some salty and sweet notes that leave you begging for another sip. People often dislike this beer for its imbalance, I personally think that is its strong point. I have found no other beer with such a strong smoke flavor. I do not find the flavor overpowering to the point that you can only enjoy one.
M: A light feel as you drink, a good carbonation for this type of beer.
D: I could drink this beer all day. One of my favorites by Rogue, this beer put them on the map for one of my favorite breweries. I would highly recommend this beer for a night backyard BBQ or watching the game with some wings. Cheers!

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Photo of Reagan1984
4.4/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

After loving the Chipotle Ale I was looking forward to trying this Rogue specialty brew. I have really enjoyed all the "smoked" beers that I've encountered so far.

Pours with a somewhat creamy off white head that is about 2 fingers thick. Fairly nice retention yet no lacing to speak of later. The beer is a deep amber color with decent clarity. No visible carbonation.

Aroma is certainly smoky and immediately reminded me of the Chipotle Ale.

My wife tried this and immediately commented that it tasted like bacon. Frankly, I don't taste bacon, but can certainly understand the comment. Now for my third reference to the Chipotle Ale. It really reminds me of the other beer without the spicy nature. Deep roasted/smoked flavor with a nice malt backbone. There is a nice hop bite towards the end that melds nicely with the smoky tones.

Medium bodied and smooth feel. Very delicate carbonation.

I love this and it went very well with our BBQ Pork (smoked) Another winner from Rogue. Well done!

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Photo of krberg
4.39/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deep copper with a rocky off white head that needed no prodding to produce.

Malty with rauch undertones. Not very aroma hoppy.

Smoke at first with sweet malt that comes up to balance it out. Long smoky finish. I can't find much in the way of hops. Wonderful!

Thick and smooth with just the right amount of CO2 to give it a bit of zing.

A great beer that I could make a session of.

Just a great beer. This might be the perfect smoke beer to begin sampling this style with. A beautiful match with the Cajun-style red beans and rice I'm having for a late lunch. Matches very well with rye bread as well. This might be the perfect meal.

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Photo of RBorsato
4.39/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear bronze-ish gold with big headed bubbles on the edge. Smoky beechwood aromas and flavors dominate with a very malty base but not sweet in any way. Light-medium bodied with a strong smoky finish.

Not nearly as smoky as I remember from original tastings (maybe due to age) but certainly not weak either.

Per bottle:
14.5 P. 48 IBU. 20.6 L. 76 AA
Malts: Great Western Harrington, Klages, Munich, Hugh Baird Crystal, Carastan (30-37 and 13-17), Chuck's Alderwood Smoked Munich and Bamberg Beechwood Smoked malts.
Hops: Saaz and Perle hops.

1990 - GABF - Gold
1991, 1992, 1993 - GABF - Silver

'97' emb on bottom
Tasted: 08/05/06

($3.49 / 7 oz. Rogue-XS bottling)

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Photo of nsmartell
4.39/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I enjoyed this beer from the comfort of my own home. From a 22-oz bomber to a pint glass.

Appearance: Amber with a little head.

Smell: Smoky charcoal.

Taste: A little malty and an interesting smokiness.

Mouthfeel: Medium to late bodied.

Drinkability: Very easy to drink. I would definitely consider this a session beer. This was my first smoke ale, and I really enjoyed it.

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Photo of granger10
4.35/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Cloudy amber appearance with an off white head. Smell is very smokey as expected. But the taste had a much more toned down smokiness to it, which I liked. The smoke taste is there and lingers in my mouth but it does not overwhelm. Hops are quite spicy and mix excellently with the smoked malt. Other German aspects are there creating a smooth and creamy body. Alcohol becomes more of a precense the warmer the beer gets. Body was on the light side which made drinking this way too easy. I think I need more.

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Photo of cypressbob
4.35/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

650ml bomber, great graphics on the bottle, silk screened

Pours with a deep copper body, shimmering. Creamy tan head with good retention

Smell, lots of american aroma hops, smoke, and a hint of cured meat. Smells like dead guy ale and salami milano or bresaola. Also, reminds me of frying smoked bacon rashers...

Taste, deep smokey flavour, dry ballsy hops. Deep thick malty finish and some lingering hops, meat aswell.

Rogue never disappoint, another fantastic ale, very drinkable and very tasty, slight alcohol warmth on the finish too. Even if you dont think you'd like the idea of smoked malts in a beer (although i do), try it, its damn good

This would go unbelievably well with steak, cured meat or smoked cheeses


Had my third bottle with wholewheat spagetti, dill, butter, lime and smoked salmon with grilled pepper breadcrumbs over the top

Complemented it very well, the smoke and the salmon plus the pepper and the hops

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Photo of Mitchster
4.35/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brewed with Great Western Harrington, Klages, Munich & Hugh Baird Crystal, Carastan 30/37 and 13/17 malts and Chucks Alderwood Smoked Munich and Bamberg Beechwood Smoked Malts. Hopped with Saaz and Perle hops.
14.5 Plato, 48 IBU, 76 Apparent Attenuation, 20.6 Lovibond.

Pours to a slightly hazy deep caramel, forming a frothy, spongy, meringue head with excellent retention and wonderfully sticky lacing. Carbonation is mild to moderate. Aroma is very nice...distinct smokiness like Lapsang Souchong, ham, liquid smoke, mixed with a faint floral hoppiness and background of amber malts with caramel overtones. Mouthfeel is soft with a spicy front, medium body, and semi-dry finish. Taste begins with spicy, citric and piney hops with touches of hop resin, followed by smoky ham and incense, a medium-strong herbal bitterness, just a touch of metal, a light residual sweetness, toast, and a very woody and earthy semi-dry finish.

This is a very good brew from the expert brewers at Rogue. Kinda reminds me of a Schlenkerla Marzen mixed 50/50 with Rogue American Amber. Very nice, easy to drink, a Americanized hybrid of the classic rauch style. The potently herbal hops and woody finish distract, and I would rather have a Schlenkerla Marzen if I was going to drink a Rauchbier.

Update: I got ripped off. I bought a 7oz bottle of Rogue-XS Smoke Ale, thinking it was a different beast. Turns out it's the exact same thing you get in the 22oz bottle. Flat, too. $1.49. Still tastes good, though chalkier in the finish. Perhaps more suggestions of prunes and raisins just because it's probably older.

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Photo of bditty187
4.34/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Largely clear, coppery-amber in hue with a slight peachy highlight, it is a lovely color. The head never developed much beyond a fizzy cap. This cap quickly turned into a collar, naked in the middle. There is no subsequent lacing. The appearance is pleasant but far from stellar. The nose is “raunchier” than I thought it would be, which is a great thing! My experiences with Smoke Ale lead me to believe otherwise. It is not Schlenkerla Urbock but what is? The bouquet has all the desired aromas like fatty bacon, charred wood resting at a campfire, hammy too. A pleasant surprise! The potency is solid; while it is not vibrant it is plenty healthy. I find it inviting. The bouquet had me thinking Raunch and not Rogue. I damn near forgot who brewed this and then I tasted it. Hops. Big, bright, American hops… the fingerprints of Rogue. Please don’t misinterpret, this is a damn tasty beer. Lovely stuff. It is just not a Raunchbier nor is like any Smoke Ale I’ve tasted before. It is uniquely Rogue. With that said, the palate starts off with some fatty, hammy, charred woody flavors. None of these tastes are that loud and I am not “wowed” by the intensity. Again, I wasn’t expecting to be. Still I can taste these qualities clearly. That is nice. True maltiness is never detected; I bet this beer would be considerably better with a maltier backbone. Depth is needed. In the middle the hops kick in, citrusy, bitter, kind of brash as they now stand above the initial flavors. By the finish the hoppiness dominates until the aftertaste, which is a nice mix of smoke, fat, and citrus. That might sound odd but it works. Yummy! Medium in body but it seems a tickle too thin, the carbonation is moderate, and overall the mouthfeel is decent. I found this beer to be very tasty. The hoppiness works well with the traditional smoked qualities. This beer would really kick ass with some tangy BBQ. I also found it very easy to drink as I am sailing through the bomber I purchased in Burnsville, MN. Recommended.

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Photo of klewis
4.33/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber

A: Pours a slightly hazy copper color with a big foamy head. Great sustain and lacing.

S: A gentle mesquite smell with a subtle malty aroma.

T: A nice smoked jerky sort of taste with a malty backbone and some hop bitterness in the finish. The smokiness isn't quite as prominent as the Schenkerla rauchbiers.

M: Medium-light and creamy in body with moderate carbonation.

D: This is a bit more subtle and isn't as intense as the Schenkerla rauchbiers, which could be a good thing or a bad thing, depending on your tastes. Being as this comes in a bomber, rather than a 500ml, I think that his is probably a good thing and contributes to this beer's drinkability.

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Photo of Jason
4.32/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Presentation: Small 7oz brown twist bottle with no freshness date.

Appearance: Hazy amber hued brew with a very sticky off white creamy lace.

Smell: Very aromatic with a whaft of creamy and smooth smelling smoke ... similar smoke aroma as cured meat or fish.

Taste: Soft and velvety smooth with a quite luxuriant and creamy malt mouth feel. A dose of caramelly sweet malt is quickly quelled by an assertive yet balanced smoky flavour. Lingering spicy hop lays its self from middle to end to add a touch more to the complexity while the smoke stays for a long time with an increasing warming feeling from the alcohol and smoke.

Notes: A step above the rest and an absolute delight to savour. Just a small warning ... the 7 oz bottle is not enough especially if you are a smoked ale lover.

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Photo of dsa7783
4.32/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This was an overall very good selection from Rogue, although the smoked flavor was more subtle on this one... compared to Aecht Schlenkerla, for example, the taste was mild in comparison... slight smokey flavor is somewhat noticeable... more of a strong ale type of taste, but either way, the flavor didn't let me down... good stuff, easily drinkable with a great mouthfeel... bread and butter taste with a nutty flavor and aroma... dark-copper appearance with minimal head... slight caramel flavor with hoppy aftertones... excellent crisp, clear, clean taste... Rogue did well on this one and I would concede to say this was a decent depiction of the style... I would consider this a decent Smoked Beer, and it certainly did score for flavor and taste... the smoked flavor managed to make itself known... Good stuff... Recommended...

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Photo of Terp96
4.32/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber poured into a half liter tumbler.

Appearance is a hazy reddish brown with about a 1/4 inch head that disappears rather quickly.

Smell is awesome. Like beer on the grill. I have had the style before and this rendition has more hop aroma than any other I have had. Very interesting.

Tastes fantastic. Definite charred/smokey flavor from the get go and it lasts. Nice hoppy dry finish.

Mouthfeel is the only thing lacking here. So much smoke and hop flavor that the malt fails to make a strong enough presence to balance this one out. Feels a bit thin but still adequate.

This is very drinkable if you like the style. The flavor is great and I had no trouble getting through this one. I kept wanting more and still do. I will go back for this one again and again.

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Photo of cswhitehorse
4.32/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The smoke ale poured a 2 finger foam head with thin lacing and a reddish orange hue to it. There was the tiny champagne bubbles emanating from the bottom of the glass.

The aroma was smoked fish meat smell. It reminded me of a barbeque. Throughout the drink the smoke never left you. If you don't like smoked foods I don't think you would like this one. There was a nice bitterness on the finish. It is a well balanced beer and after a couple of sips to acclimate yourself it was wonderful. Well done by the guys on the coast.

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Photo of Shaw
4.32/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Reviewed at Rogue's brewery in Newport, Ore.

This was the first smoked beer I'd ever had when I sampled it in Newport in 2001. At the time I thought it was the worst beer ever. But after trying the style again I realized my error. This is one of the toughest beer styles to get into, but very satisfying.

Rogue Smoke Ale is as good as German rauchbiers I've had. The aroma is -- duh -- smoky and malty. The flavor is both smoky and (a Rogue trademark) hoppy. Maybe that's why I like it. The body is medium: just enough heft but not heavy.

If you liked smoked beers, you must try Rogue Smoke Ale.

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Photo of inebrius
4.32/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nose is toasty and subdued smoke, like your jacket might smell a couple days after a bonfire party and with a bunch of crackers in the breast pocket. Hops are kept to a minimum--for a Rogue brew--to allow the fleeting smoke flavor to ease its way across your buds. A very accessible smoke beer, but it doesn't quite sate the guy who sits closest to the campfire. Would make a good starting point if your interested in the style.

Cheers to Billy Stout for the sample!

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Smoke Ale from Rogue Ales
3.81 out of 5 based on 328 ratings.
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