Rock Bottom Red Ale
Rock Bottom Restaurant & Brewery

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Red Ale - American Amber / Red
Ranked #1,069
Ranked #46,673
3.41 | pDev: 15.25%
Rock Bottom Restaurant & Brewery
United States
View: Beers
Reviews: 16 | Ratings: 120 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Highaltituderun

3.81/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A wonderful red ale. Holds a tiny head with minimal lacing. The smell is of sweet candy and molasses. Pours a deep brownish-red. The taste is awesome. I love it. Very malty with enough hops to hold the balance. Overall a terrific beer and one I'd buy again.

Dec 24, 2019
Photo of TheSixthRing
TheSixthRing from California

3.35/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

From tasting notes 05/18/18
Had on-tap at Rock Bottom in the MSP Airport, St Paul, MN

Appearance - served up in a 20oz pilsner glass, clear and copper in color. Thin, broken layer of suds. Webbing and spotting make up the laceĀ 

Smell - Light aroma of Caramel malt and mild floral bitterness.

Taste - Follows the nose. Fair, flavor with caramel malt and floral hop balancing each other out, along with a hint of apple-ish esters. Bittersweet finish. Not much more to it.

Mouthfeel - Light in body with moderate carbonation. Slick, easy drinker with a crisp, slightly dry finish.

Overall - Pretty standard craft amber ale. Very safe, but decent flavor and an easy drinker.

May 27, 2018
Photo of atniup
atniup from Pennsylvania

3.32/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

On draft: Taste is really nice. A bit sweet, I wouldn't say too sweet though. It's a messy taste though, sweetness and hops are everywhere. The only complaint I have is the extremely light feel, almost watery.

Jun 02, 2017
Photo of vw72
vw72 from Missouri

3.43/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A friend brought this back in a growler from Colorado to Missouri. Therefore, I think it was a little less carbonated than normal. Overall, this was a good beer, but seemed a bit sweet, perhaps because of the lower carbonation. I would like to try this on tap, at the brewery.

Jan 03, 2016
Photo of DrDemento456
DrDemento456 from Pennsylvania

3.88/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Actually kind of surprised about the reviews this was actually tasty enough to order a whole pint of. Had it as part of the sampler.

A - Very good red ale a 1/2 inch of foam sticky white head. The beer itself is a bright amber brown clear in color.
S - Has a citrus hop smell strong but not enough to cover up a sweet malt base with caramel notes.
T+M - I found it quite good almost like a "Nugget Nectar" lite. Smooth hop profile, crisp light to medium body. and a sweet finish with some lingering hops.

Overall even though it was one of the best beers I only ordered a pint of it. Was not worth repeated purchase like a growler. A very tasty beer to have with feed.

Mar 18, 2014
Photo of donkeyrunner
donkeyrunner from Massachusetts

3.09/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

@ Rock Bottom Stuart St., just before last night's Baroness show.

Amber with a thin, tight head. Great retention, foam smears my glass like a lengthy skid mark. Mildy toasted grain and a very mild citrus aroma. Tastes about the same with a mild caramel sweetness to balance mild hop bitterness (38IBU). I've used the word "mild" 4 times already and that sounds about right - it's a very James Taylor beer.

A red ale harkening back to the days of balance and restrained hopping. A very clean beer.

Aug 12, 2013
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watermelonman from California

3.41/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This arrived wearing a nice red with slight glow to it, with only a ring of head. Lace was minimal but present.

The smell had good flavor but was slightly muted, caramel malts dominating. The taste was simple but pleasing, again dominated by caramel malts. Hops barely touch the tastebuds in its finish. Simple but effective and definitely drinkable.

Jun 11, 2013
Photo of Rifugium
Rifugium from North Dakota

3.48/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Rock Bottom, King of Prussia, PA

Good basic red ale. Served in a 20oz. mug, a clear reddish amber with a finger of frothy white head that retained well and left quite a bit of lacing. Simple aroma, sweet biscuity malts, and light citrusy hops. Taste of sweet caramel malts, toasty, bready, subdued citrusy hops in the background; no big surprises, but quite solid for the style. Medium body and easily drinkable.

May 14, 2013
Photo of danronian
danronian from Virginia

3.53/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A red ale with a nice foamy head. Brownish red in color.

Smells hoppy, sweet, with a little malt.

Mouthfeel is smooth, not overly dry, and moderately carbonated which adds to its smoothness.

Sweet and balanced taste. A great sipping bear that's not too heavy.


Nov 25, 2012
Photo of StonedTrippin
StonedTrippin from Colorado

3.88/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

on tap at RB westminster, co. pours a clearish brick red color into an english pint glass. excellent foamy off white head on top. the nose is dry red malts, hints of caramel and toffee, and a grassy mellow hop. the flavor is about the same, very balanced and actually more hoppy than anticipated. the malts are dry and semisweet, while the hops come in towards the finish with a nice bitter pop. one of the better beers in terms of flavor that ive had at a rock bottom. the feel is good too, medium in body, average in carbonation, and smooth in texture. this is a highly sessionable red ale because there isnt much residual sweetness, a burden of the style for me usually. overall a pretty darn good red.

Oct 22, 2012
Photo of HopHead84
HopHead84 from California

3.5/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5


On tap at Rock Bottom La Jolla.

A: Amber with a white head.

S: Biscuit and bread with light earthy notes. Citrus is restrained, redolent of orange and tangerine.

T: Bread with a touch of caramel. Light orange and grapefruit notes. Smooth malty finish.

M: Lower medium body with medium carbonation.

Overall: A solid ESB. Just not a very interesting style to me.

May 15, 2012
Photo of xnicknj
xnicknj from Pennsylvania

3.08/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

on tap at rock bottom in KOP

Pours a deep reddish color with some golden hues. Thinner beige head slowly fades out, leaving some wispy film behind with patches of lacing on the glass.

Bready and malty in the nose with a slight dash of hops. Caramel with bread crust and some light sweetness.

Very soft hop presence up front, which is quickly swept away by a wave of biscuit and bread crust. The malt is fairly heavy with sweeter tones driven by caramel with a slight dash of honey. A few hints of dark fruit attempt to peek through before the finish. A little sweet and chewy at the end.

Medium body, decent carbonation, a bit chewy and bubbly on the tongue. This is okay, but I'm left searching for something that might allow it to stand out from the crowd.

Feb 17, 2012
Photo of jsprain1
jsprain1 from Minnesota

2.62/5  rDev -23.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A- Red-garnet. Head is one finger and very poor retention.
S- The aroma is very mild. There is some toast and a very light caramel aroma. Also a touch of cut grass. Very mild though.
T- There is a bready flavor and just a very very light fruit flavor. The finish is pretty singularly caramel.
M- Excessively light and watery for the style.
O- In this style I look for good bread/toast/caramel flavors. Here it feels like it has those, but just so mild and watered down. It has potential but it's just lacking in subtance.

Dec 12, 2011
Photo of Offa
Offa from California

3.68/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I think that this is what I had at the Rock Bottom in La Jolla, since they simply called it "Red Ale" and said it was one of their standards and listed it at 5.8%, very close to the 5.6 listed here.

Anyway, I found this to be simple but very good, a very drinkable, fairly well-rounded ale that went well with the food, a surprise for a chain brewpub.

Red amber, it had a creamy, big off-white head steadily shrinking to foamy ring and wisps, and leaving some lace.

Aroma was nice toasty caramelly barley, some faint woody-grassy character. It was simple, but solid and pleasant.

Taste was light, crisp pleasant toasty barleycaramelised fruits, light peppery-grassy hop bitterness balancing the malty caramelly sweetness. It had a strong creamed barley aftertaste. Feel was nice, light but lively and engaging.

Nov 27, 2011
Photo of droomyster
droomyster from Virginia

3.97/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at the Arlington, VA brewpub. Pours a mostly clear dark copper body with a tan head that laces the top of the glass. Aromas are predominately of grapefruit and orange citrus with sweet malts in the background. Taste is consistent with the nose and lingers in a way that is gratifyingly balanced. Medium body is appropriate to the flavor profile. Bravo.

Oct 26, 2011
Photo of AleWatcher
AleWatcher from Illinois

1.75/5  rDev -48.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

This is really chalky and mineraly tasting. Sweet malts and no hops to speak of... No bitterness... The sweet malts, mainly giving a light caramel and sweet bready note, combine with the yeast to run the show.
The yeast seems to be merely a mild ale yeast, so the flavor imparted by it is minimal and unimpressive-- I consider it to be the cause of the mineraly quality I pick up.
Light body with low carbonation. Thin and watery feeling.

This is poor. Not a good representation of the style at all.

Oct 02, 2011
Rock Bottom Red Ale from Rock Bottom Restaurant & Brewery
Beer rating: 78 out of 100 with 120 ratings