Ipswich Original Pale Ale
Ipswich Ale Brewery

Ipswich Original Pale AleIpswich Original Pale Ale
Write a Review
Beer Geek Stats: | Print Shelf Talker
English Pale Ale
Ranked #12
Ranked #23,342
3.81 | pDev: 12.34%
Ipswich Ale Brewery
Massachusetts, United States
Very Good
Ipswich Original Pale AleIpswich Original Pale Ale
Reviews: 203 | Ratings: 404 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of Admiraldinty
4.27/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

It's hard to believe I never reviewed this. It's been a go-to of mine since I discovered Ipswich about 15 years ago. Pours coppery with a generous, foamy head. Aroma is very malty, but maybe my nose and palate have been affected by so many IPAs lately. Full-bodied and bready. Didn't detect a lot of malts. Great brew.

 318 characters

Photo of clayrock81
3.83/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured a clear, golden body with good head and a lace ring down the glass. The aroma is a pleasant balance of hops and malts. Little bit fuller bodied and possibly bready, the beer is smooth and dry and has a mild flavors that work well together and a crisp, clean finish.

 274 characters

Photo of Thomas_Wikman
3.37/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this tonight at a hotel bar. It had a toasted bready taste with some citrus and a grapefruit like bitterness punch at the end, almost like an IPA. It was nice but at the same time it was not a whole lot to it.

 213 characters

Photo of ordybill
2.98/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Poured from a Bomber into a pint glass.
Aroma- Has a strong ale smell with a hop and yeast mix.
Appearance- This is a pretty good looking amber colored ale, with an off-white head.
Taste- Pretty average ale to me, the yeast flavor isn't bad but it detracts from the overall flavor for me.
Palate- This is a medium bodied brew with moderate carbonation. It has an oily feel and has a dry finish.
Overall-Run of the mill ale to me, I love the packaging but that was the best part of the experience.

 497 characters

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

12 oz. bottle poured into a curved porter glass.

A- a hazy amber, with a finger of off white head that laces nicely.

S- The fruity component of the ale yeast jumps from the glass. Some toasted bread lies underneath.

T- Just plain tasty. Much more to it than most English Pales. More toasted bread than biscuity. It's a showcase of the yeast, as the fruity esters are what make it so darn tasty. A very, very light earthy hop is there, which just adds to the complexity.

M- Pretty viscous for a pale ale. Slick on the palette.

O- My introduction to Ipswich, and I'm very much looking forward to trying the other three in the variety pack! Great stuff. Reminds me a bit of Brooklyn Pennant Ale.

 697 characters

Photo of ryan1788a5
2.27/5  rDev -40.4%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.75 | overall: 1.75

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Dirty amber color with a pea-soup foggy haze. Head dissipates quickly. Lacing is sparse and spotty.

S: Hops hit the nostrils with scents of freshly mowed lawn, pulpy mango, and sharp citrus oils. Grainy and toasty malt base. Husky.

T: Strong floral and oily hop punch. Heavily vegetal. Mango and citrus underneath. Spicy. Muddled malt flavors of dough, caramel, and husky grain. Husky, grainy finish with vegetal flavors.

M: Light bodied. Watery and sharply carbonated. Not much else to say.

O: I hate to be so blunt, but this beer sucked. Not sure if I got a bad batch or what, but there's a lot of cleaning up to be done here.

 675 characters

Photo of Andrew041180
3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Served in a standard pint glass with a bit of head which vanished quickly. There was little to no lacing on the glass. The beer was gorgeous on the deck of the restaurant. Deeply hazy golden orange.

S - Not much to the smell. A little bit of the malt, doesn't really tell me anything beyond what I would expect from this style.

T - Has some nice IPA elements to it - especially the bitterness. Maybe a hint of grapefruit. I didn't detect a lot of maltiness, as other posters have mentioned, and if given a blind taste I wouldn't have thought this was an English Pale Ale.

M - On the light side of medium-bodied, but with a little bit of bubbles from the carbonation. Feels nice.

O - If I had to compare this to something it would be more Finest Kind then Whales Tale Pale Ale. The appearance in particular was well out of the norm. I really enjoyed this beer and will be on the lookout for more varieties from Ipswich.

 926 characters

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

Poured into a stemmed tulip glass from the 12 oz. bottle.

a: Appealing amber topped by an inch plus white head which faded slowly.

s: Lightly malty, reminiscent of British beers at English pubs.

t: Mild maltiness balanced by a light hop element.

m: Light to moderate, quite smooth.

o: A good solid English style pale ale. Nicely complemented the Montesino Napoleon Grande cigar in the gazebo on a mid-70s breezeless evening watching fireworks on the telly. Glad I chose this ale to go with that top ten time of the year.

Looking forward to drinking the other three from the variety twelvepack. A great value, by the way, since I paid only $11 for the twelver when it was on sale. A helluva buy for 92 cents a bottle.

 725 characters

Photo of angrybabboon
4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Consumed 12/7/12

Appearance: Pours a cloudy, medium amber - some dark gold and copper - large, fluffy, rocky, off-white head - leaves blobs of lacing behind

Smell: Earthy, bready, toasty, and fruity - toasted light bread with some biscuits - some light and dark fruits - lots of yeasty esters, like apples, pears, and plums - earthy, rock-like, and herbal elements - some sweetness

Taste: In a word, unique - a bit off for an English Pale Ale, definitely not an American Pale Ale, but it's tasty so whatever - lightly toasted white bread, some light biscuits, and some pale grains - fruity, with a range of light fruits and dark fruits (see above) - lightly herbal, tea-like - lightly grassy hops, some bitterness - some sweetness

Mouthfeel: Medium body, smooth, nicely carbonated

Overall: Classic

I drank a lot of this when I was first getting into beer. Years later, it's actually a bit different than I remember. It's way more complex. And it's very unique. From my experience, this is actually best on tap. This is definitely worth seeking out.

 1,054 characters

Photo of BigCheese
3.97/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

bottled on 10/4

pours a pale yellow. Thin white head, some lacing, cloudy/unfiltered. taste/aroma is a nice balance, english yeast, bread crust, biscuit, nutty, piney grassy hops. I'm guessing cascade hops. Some toffee too. Buttery/bready yeast flavors. Very rich body, full mouthfeel, high carbonation. Very solid brew.

 321 characters

Photo of Dools9
3.58/5  rDev -6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle dated 8/24/12, poured into a tumbler.

A: Hazy orange amber, finger of white sudsy head, moderate lacing and retention.

S: Earthy, yeasty, spicy. Malty rye bread crust. Very light hints of citrus.

T: Taste is definitely malt forward.Toasty bready malt some nutty sweetness, traces of earth. Hops are kind of spicy and lightly citrusy. Moderately bitter.

M: Very smooth, medium bodied. Soft, moderate carbonation.

O: Not bad but not really my cup of tea. Very easy to drink but nothing really memorable however.

 521 characters

Photo of zhanson88
3.01/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Appearance: Pours a slightly hazy amber color with a lot of carbonation. A HUGE fluffy white head forms which takes forever to even slightly disappate. Kind of reminds me of an infected beer actually.

Smell: Not infected at least. A bit of caramel, a little yeasty, kind of grainy. Not much here.

Taste: Grainy, a bit of caramel, yeasty with a touch of citrus, and a hint of florals. Not bad, and it actually gets a good deal more flavorful as it warms.

Mouthfeel/Overall: Light to medium bodied, plenty of carb, very nice. Overall, this is far from my favorite style, but it's a decent example. Worth a shot.

 615 characters

Photo of Arithmeticus
3.66/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured chilled in 4-oz. taster, in shifts.

A: light copper color; decent head (quite a few large bubbles), moderate carb action; lacing ok
S: benign aroma; slight whiff of bread, malt
T: malty, nutty, bready; very flavorful and interesting; ever so slight bits of anise and whorehound; tastes centered in the alto range; hops come off as very fresh; the flavor is complex and interesting

This beer doesn't match the others I've had in this category, so definitely worth a visit.

 480 characters

Photo of PhillyStyle
4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Bukowski's Tavern:

The beer was served in 12oz pint glass and appeared a nice, bright, and clear amber color with a nice slightly off-white foamy head that was well retained that ultimately settled into a thin cap that lasted throughout the beer. The aroma is malty, as expected from the style, with some hop presence, but the aroma is pretty well balanced, again as expected for the style. The taste follows the nose well, a nice toasted malt flavor with a hint of yeast and some earthy hops. The combination worked very well together. The beer had a nice feel to it and was exceptionally smooth and easy to drink. Overall, a good beer and one that I would definitely drink again.

 692 characters

Photo of Offa
4.14/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pale amber, it has a small off-white head steadily shrinking to foamy ring.

Aroma is nice caramelly barley, honey, wet bark, & wood, hints of dry leaves and tea.

Taste is dry, bittersweet character with nutty-caramelly toasty malt & peppery-woody hop bitterness. It has light juicy zesty yeastiness. It is very good, with nicely rounded character.

 349 characters

Photo of Cyberkedi
3.28/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a nice clear amber with an average off-white head. Malty aroma is a little fruity and a little yeasty, promising if not outstanding. Flavor is mainly malty with some fruit and a hoppy-bitter undertone. Not too shabby. Smooth texture has about average body and fizz. Overall, fair to middlin’.

 300 characters

Photo of Hopdaemon39
4.02/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass- pours a hazy bright copper/orange color with one finger bone white head that dissipates quickly and leaves a little bit of froth and lacing.

Smell is pretty malty- definitely makes sense that this is an English style not American. Good light caramel notes with a little hop spice.

Taste is consistent with smell. Good solid malt backdrop- caramel, a little toasty, a little green apple, some earthy dry hop flavors. Not your American citrus/pine hops. Good though.

Superbly drinkable- light to medium body with very good carbonation. In general this is not my type of pale ale- I like the bolder American variety and if I want more malt I'll go for a kolsch or a munich helles. Definitely good stuff for the price though.

 770 characters

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

Poured into a pint glass. Reviewed alongside Great Divide Denver Pale Ale.

A: Hazy amber with tiny particles and a two-finger, white, creamy head that lasted several minutes. Nice lacing.

S: Fruit and caramel malt. Just a hint of hops.

T: Light sweetness and light bitterness. Toasted malt. Bread and very light hops. Pretty good.

M: Medium bodied with soft carbonation. Smooth and creamy feel.

O: Great session beer. The toasted malt flavor was excellent and this ale was very smooth. I liked it slightly more than the DPA.

 529 characters

Photo of Flounder57
3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this a few nights ago while the site was down. Reviewing from notes. Beer was poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Orange amber with one finger head. Some clarity and bubbles coming up through the glass. Head had reduced to a thin layer with no lacing.

Smell: fruity, caramel and bready malts.

Taste: caramel and bready malts, buttery notes, fruity, bitterness from the hops in the back of the palate, and some creaminess too.

Mouthfeel: smooth, medium bodied, light to medium carbonation, slight bitterness, and easy to drink.

Overall: This beer fits well with the EPA style. Will have more in the future.

 617 characters

Photo of VonRoll
3.95/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance: Deep Amber body, poured creamy 1.5" head which fell to a maintained 1/4" full head. Light carbonation. Unfiltered.

Smell: Smells of hops, fruity almost sweet. Light malt smell

Taste: Tastes of hops, almost a fruity sweet hint, not a predominant note. Smooth malt

Mouthfeel: Feels very dry, thin creaminess and very light carbonation bite

Overall: This beer fits the English Style Pale Ale style very well. The beer had a very inviting appearance, attractive smell, and full flavor. All properties of this brew seemed to work together very well.

 560 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.64/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a cask and served in a 20 oz tumbler, the beer is a hazy, unfiltered, honey-brown coloring with a dense, foamy, frothy, off-white head of about an inch. Aromas are a nice, subtle blend of citrus and hops on a sweet toffee backbone. Flavors have a good roasted quality to them, with a resiny and bitter hopping that balances the toffee and caramel sweetness from the malt profiles. Citrus influence is light, with a lemon zest flavor peeking out here and there. Good use of wet hops to clean the palate and impart some strong, peppery characters without being overly bitter. The beer leaves a decent lacing along the glass, and the body is smooth and light. The lack of carbonation from the cask permits all the flavors to truly blend together. The aftertaste is tangy and bitter hops, with a slight, drying finish. Decent brew.

 839 characters

Photo of shangwang
3.42/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Received this one in a beer of the month club my sister signed me up for - thanks sis! I was familiar with the name Ipswich, but I don't think I had tried anything made by them until now. Poured into a traditional pint glass.

Color is a hazy reddish-amber, with an initial finger of foamy white head. That reduced to a thin centimeter layer that hung around for a while. Smell was sweet and malty, with a hint of hoppy bitterness. It also had a toffee/caramel candy quality about it. Tasted very malty with a tart fruity sweetness - maybe grapefruit? It wasn't a dominating taste, more of a subtle characteristic. Definitely agree with the other reviews that mention a tea-like quality. It finished with a piny, hoppy bitterness. Light mouthfeel with a little bit of zip but mostly flat.

Overall, this was a good ale. Fairly well-balanced with good flavor and very easy to drink. Doesn't push boundaries or blow my mind, but my guess is that's not the intent. Solid beer.

 973 characters

Photo of chimaylvr
4.13/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

First I give kudos to the previous review by ChainGangGuy for a cogent, accurate review but I'd like to add my observations:

Appearance is appealing: caramel hue, opaque, .5 finger foam retaining light lacing

Smell: subtle bitter hop aroma, light butter, hint of sage herbal, underlying malt; just nothing pronounced dropping the rating a bit but it's still pleasant

Taste is very pleasing: citrus note comes forth, well balanced hop profile, I also detect a tea flavoring, perhaps orange pekoe, herbal: fennel

Feel is simply great: buttery, somewhat frothy, not acidic, light sweetness. Carbonation is just right.

Overall: I've always enjoyed this beer very much; makes a great seesion beer. The balance of base ingredients and adjuncts is outstanding. Has never failed to satisfy. Mercury knows its #*!* Try their oatmeal stout.

 835 characters

Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.08/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle - $3.99 at Total Wine & More in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Pours a lightly hazed, deep golden body with a frothy layer of off-white suds. Little blips of lace on the way down.

Smell: Gently toasted white bread and biscuit tops with a small, sweet-scented accent to the malts. A bit of stone fruit and citrus mingling together with a dash of spice and earthy dried herbs.

Taste: Bready, biscuity pale malts brushed with a layer of sweet, sugared treacle. Slight apricot fruitiness with a little fresh sweet orange peel, but it's growing increasingly towards an herbal, black tea presence. Medium bitterness. Drying, with a quality a bit like that Constant Comment tea.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Medium carbonation.

Overall: Simple and easy-going, but pleasant overall. Refreshing.

 804 characters

Photo of MoreThanWine
3.45/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a 1" off-white head. Body is an interesting raw sienna yellow color with a slight haze. Smells of malt and caramel. Taste doesn't quite match the smell, it's more standard BMC with a little malt, and definitely more bitter hops coming through in the finish. It's OK, I just don't think it stands out much higher than upper average.

 338 characters

Ipswich Original Pale Ale from Ipswich Ale Brewery
Beer rating: 85 out of 100 with 404 ratings