Ipswich Original Pale Ale | Ipswich Ale Brewery

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Ipswich Original Pale AleIpswich Original Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Ipswich Ale Brewery
Massachusetts, United States

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 11-01-2000

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Reviews: 202 | Ratings: 392
Photo of JxDuff
4.88/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I was raised in Ipswich so experiencing what Mercury Brewing produces is a give in.

A: Dark amber color, more of an orange tinge than brown. Very hazy and intriguing.

S: Berry and floral notes hits your nose immediately soon followed by the malt and hops. The smell is very mysterious.

T: What can I say? Perfect! The balance of malts, hops and floral tastes is beyond exceptional.

M: Average carbonation, perfect for this beer, mixed with the medium body make every sip enjoyable.

I whole heartedly agree with the Bros, this ale is world class.

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Photo of h00dak
4.87/5  rDev +26.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I had to privilege of having this beer thanks to my girlfriend who got me a membership to a beer of the month club.

It pours a really rich, caramel/orange color with 3 fingers of toasted white head. Pours perfectly into a pint glass, oozing over the side slightly at the very end. The head stays about 5 minutes. Lacing adorns the glass til the very end.

The smell is citrusy, orange, lemon, and a woody smell as well. All delightful.

I took a swiq through a thick, marshmallow-soft head, and the taste is great. Full flavored, complex, awesome aftertaste.

This beer is great. Do not pass up an opportunity to have it!

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Photo of DudleyRose
4.85/5  rDev +25.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

This is a fabulous beer. The balance of hops, fruit and malt is perfect in a hazy, yeasty brew. In its style it is the best I've had. I find it quite hoppy but it puts one-note hop bombs to shame. If you want hops more over the top, try Ipswich's IPA, but for my money this one's got everything.

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Photo of CrewF24
4.83/5  rDev +25.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Very drinkable english style Pale Ale.

Poured into a standard pub pint glass.

Amber color with a slight copper hue. Unfiltered so minor haziness.

Thick dense foam on the pour that drops down to a fluffy 1/8inch head which persists all the way down to the bottom of the glass leaving rings of foam at each resting point.

Slight biscuit flavor to the malt. Excellent bitterness and balance.

This is by far my favorite session beer.

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Photo of mshallah
4.77/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Ipswich Original Ale pours orange amber with a white head. Aroma is very fruity with some caramel and toasted grain. Taste has the fruitiness for sure with a pleasant dried apricot note as well as caramel, toasted malt and a balancing bitterness that shows how well this beer is crafted. The hopping is dead on as it doesn't mask the fruitiness and makes this a regular in my fridge and at meal times. The freshness in the taste and aroma makes me think of freshly baked bread(apricot glazed brioche) and evokes the same mouth watering response. A pale ale that stands out in a craft beer scene flooded with mediocre pale ales. English ale inspired and perfectly excecuted this beer is a New England classic.

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Photo of JasonCoop
4.75/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

pours a very cloudy orange color with decent white head. you can tell its unfiltered.

smells fruity, malty, and has bread like aspects. smells good and hearty.

taste is like ripe fruit. very strong malty fruit taste. subtle hops, slight bready biscuity tastes, but primarily sweet malts. very very good, full bodied.

mouthfeel is full and rich, very nice. drinkability, what can i say? i usually get it by the growler. it's a great brew. a nice hearty, rich full bodied sweet ale.

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Photo of vitesse
4.65/5  rDev +20.5%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

this has to be one of the greatest american beers i've ever had. beautiful cloudy orange appearance with nice medium-bodied head that retains well. perfect mix of grassy and fruity smells. amazing taste: just the perfect blend of maltiness and touch of hops. plenty of fruity esters and slightly acidic. just nice big round flavor. drinkability is super. no one flavor overpowers you, but it is just such a well crafted pale ale.

if you see this one, pick it up. it was great in bottles.

now, where can i find this one on cask?

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Photo of erosier
4.62/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a nice red amber color with a nice thick tan colored head that laces very nicely. It smells of nice medium roasted malts witha nice earthy hop aroma that smells like a really good beer. It tastes of really rich malted grains followed by a crisp earthy hop bitterness that rounds out the flavor for a really good ale. The mouthfeel is great - nice and crisp with the right amount of carbonation which makes it a pretty drinkable beer. Definately worth it, try this if you can.

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Photo of bjohnson
4.62/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Bukowski's in Boston had this cask conditioned this past Wednesday. I had to try it naturally. What a good beer cask conditioned. Comes out with the usual color and smell, but the flavor is much better. Fruity and malty, it was unbelieveable. The temp., a bit raised of course, made this beer much better. Less head than usual, but still left a bit of lace.

I would definately suggest this beer cask conditioned. It was just that much better.

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Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.54/5  rDev +17.6%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle obtained as part of a mix pack at Market Basket. Pours a hazy amber red with a thin film of off-white head. Smells fruity with toffee and caramel with some grassy tea-like English hops playing a strong role. Grassy tea-like hops hit first, with a fair bit of caramel hitting shortly thereafter. Medium in body with moderate carbonation. Very drinkable, perhaps one of the easiest to finish English Pale Ales I've had. Balanced, full flavored, not overpowering. Near perfect in every way. A solid choice.

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Photo of Shiredave
4.52/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Slightly hazy, orange amber with a thin, off white head that recedes quickly leaving specks of lace. Very unique and inviting aroma of nutty grains, sweet tangerines and wet hay. Light to medium bodied with flavors of toast and marmalade fading quickly to a dry, earthy hop finish. A very nice session ale. More of an Amber style than a Pale ale , easy to drink and very tasty stuff. This is a great beer to give to a person just starting thier journey into micro's.

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Photo of kevman527
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Got this beer as part of a Domestic Micro-Brewed beer of the month club. Poured into a pint glass.

A: A very light brownish-reddish color almost golden. About two fingers of head with decent lacing.

S: Very floral and very fruitful aromas with faint malty-bready scent. Love the smell.

T: First tasting does not taste like it smells, instead I get strong notes of coffee and earth like tastes with a strong hoppy aftertaste, very good.

M: Very smooth, finishes a little dry, low carbonation.

D: Easily drinkable would drink again and again.

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Photo of scottbrew4u
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a hazy amber color from sediment. Some orange glow toward the edges. Fluffy off white head with nice lacing.

S: Ripe apples, honey, molasses, toasted malt and some floral and spicy hops. Malt is the dominant and not lacking in complexity.

T: Toasted malt, some nutty notes, a touch of honey, toffee and brown bread. Slightly spicy and some herbal hop flavors.

M: Smooth almost creamy mouthfeel with a nice medium body.

D: Rich, complex malt flavor but easy drinkability. Very flavorful and exciting to have such a wonderful drinking ale. It is refreshing as well and will satisfy those who are more of a maltster. It is worth seeking this one out.

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Photo of ZAP
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A fine english style pale ale...very toasty notes on the nose and taste....also some earthy characteristics....pours a hazy orange color with a nice bubbly cream colored head that rims the glass perfect....Great nose...toasty and earthy like I said....body is medium....perfect mouthfeel...this is sliding down waaaay too easy but it is has a a solid feel to it...Taste is toasty and earthy but also some bready, biscuit notes....Tastes borders on a low amber ale territory...drinkability is sky high...I love English style pale ales like this one....one of the better ones I've tried....blows the hell out of Bass for example...

Johnny P delivers the goods again....Thanks to JP I can now assert that Ipswich is one damn fine brewery..or Mercury Cat or whatever...great beers....perhaps underrated and underappreciated by some....their beers are worth seeking out...

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Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.41/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 0z brown bottle > 16 oz. SA glass

This is a nice dark, orange-hued amber color with a mighty dank all-white crown that is about two-finger width's high, dissipates pretty quick but leaves a bunch of sticky lacing around the top of the glass. The color is nice but it's filled with a hazing of floatie, hazy bits that makes it cloudy, and is clearly unfiltered. The carbonation is agressive and very lively indeed.

The aroma flowing out of my glass is amazing, I'm getting: honey-covered pineapples, strawberry oatmeal, earthy, musty herbs, grains, corn and wheat fields on a hot, rainy day. Very complex aroma for the style. I would compare this to a mix of Stone's runiation and sierra Nevada's classic Pale ale. Rigtous.

This Pale ale is packed with flavor and a sublime balance. The malt is smooth and buttery, but with a big fruity kick...pineapple and watermellon to be exact; and the grainy, zesty and tangy, even slightly sour yeastie effect blends perfectly together. Three ellements that make for a great Pale ale is found here in a big way.

The feel is spot-on. Light and very crispy (for th duration) but hefty and smooth ending. Can't ask for much more.

This is a "local" brew for me, being that this Brewery is not more than an hour away so for us in New Hampshire it's still really fresh.

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Photo of jlindros
4.4/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from bottle to pint glass

A: Light 1 finger airy head with pale orange-red color and quite a bit of haze

N: Nose has a lot of light malts as well as a little bit of dark malts and some very light hops, reminiscent of an Oktoberfest or red ale

T: Taste starts like a red ale with lots of malts both light and dark, some very light hops that add a little spice as well as some grassy floral-like character, some earthiness and rustic taste blend with a biscuity flavor

M: Mouth is very light but sticky and lots of carbonation

F: Finish has lots of malts and earthiness like an oktoberfest, some light hops finish on the back of the tongue, its pretty dry and as it dries off leaves more hops, almost all the hops are very late on the taste

Final Thoughts: It starts with lots of malts and finishes with some light hops, the malts are done very well as it seems to layer and has a lot of earthiness, the light hops tease you on the finish almost as if it wants to get very hoppy but doesn't. This is very drinkable and has a lot of character. Reminds me of when I first had it years ago and loved it back then, even though my tastes have changed this seems to have stayed very tasty.

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Photo of leif86
4.4/5  rDev +14%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A: Cloudy from the yeast with what I would describe as a dull orangey-copper glow. Not much head, though it could be the glass I used, and even less lacing.

S: Malty sweetness right up front. Reminds me of apricots and honey.

T: Tastes sweet like honey at the beginning with some fruity esters hidden the background from the yeast. Some cereal-like grain hidden the background, yet noticeable just before some subtle hop bitterness comes in. Bitterness is very mild yet lingers pleasantly.

M: Excellent balance here although could use a little bit more bubbly. I'm going to again blame the under carbonation on the Wastmalle Trappist glass I'm using.

D: Gonna go pour another right now. I'll probably be drinking this all night.

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Photo of BrewitYerself
4.38/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Pours a hazy, effervescent medium gold, with a copper hue. Thick, dense white head. Very good lacing.

Mild aroma of honey-like malts. Perhaps a touch of herbal hops. No esters.

Taste is surprisingly, yet delightfully bitter upfront; nice herbal hop flavor. Good, moderately sweet honey-like malt backbone. Bitterness fades sharply from start to finish. Finish is sweet honey-like malt, with a touch of bitterness. Moderate pithiness mid-palate through the finish.

Moderate carbonation, medium-full mouthfeel, moderately chewy, good finish, good progression. Perfect for the style.

Overall very delicious; excellent sweet malt profile, very nice hop character. Very, very drinkable.

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Photo of BillyBrew
4.38/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Beautiful murky, golden brown colour with a creamy, whtie head that maintains a full coverage down the pint. Nice earthy, bready malts and estery hops in the air. Great bitter hop bite mellowed with rounding malts, great balance. Very smooth meduim body with a less pronounced carbonation. This beer drinks great, anyday, any situation. The brew leaves a pleasant aftertaste to remeber the beer by and induce continued consumption. A fantatstic choice. Cheers

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Photo of climax
4.37/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - poured a very cloudy burnt pumpkin orange. to the light you could faintly see the different strata of the beer medling around and settling in. a finger of bubbly head faded pretty quicly but left nice lace, the last remaining drops left spots of color of the foam like drips of blood in the snow....

S - bready malts, caramel and honey, apricots and other tangier hops, very appetizing

t - very smooooth, nice sharpness at first. biscuity and somewhat sweet, citrus hops and grainy malt, balanced like two fat kids on a teter totter

m - light hearted, nice spike from the carbonation and a dry finish

d - a pleasure to drink, won't get old, buy it and try it

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Photo of Sam21
4.37/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

12 oz bottle poured into a 20 oz nonic pint glass. The head rises two fingers and recedes rather quickly leaving a ring of lace around the edges of the glass. The body is amber with a heavy grainy haze from the unfiltered nature of the brew. Lace clings to the beer all the way down.

Malt up front that fades into an inviting floral hop scent. There is a caramel sweetness that seems to linger throughout.

Taste is very similar to the smell in that it's a nice balance of malt to hops. The hops remain on the tongue long after the sip. This fruitiness is infectious.

The mouthfeel is on the light side of medium and there is lots of carbonation. This is VERY drinkable. I could easily have a few of these without seeking out a new flavor for my palate

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Photo of mnrider
4.37/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. brown bottle. No freshness date.

A: Pours a cloudy, hazy deep orange. Large off white head with excellent head retention. O.k. lacing.

S: Biscuity, sugary, fruity. Malt sweetness (maybe honey).

T/M: Smooth going down. A large mix of flavors going on. Fruity, nice hop bite with just enough bitterness. A slightly dry finish. Malty with a biscuit toast taste also.

D: wow this is how an Ale should be. I could drink this one every day. Highly recommend this brew.


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Photo of Estarrio
4.36/5  rDev +13%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a translucent copper brown. I was disappointed by the lack of head, save for some fine white lacings.

Sweet smells of malt, fruit, citrus, pine and hops.

Pleasing palate, carbonation is just right. Taste is slightly sweet, mild citrus fruit bouquet and pine balanced with some pleasant hops. Excellent hop flavor and smell, I would have loved more (I love my hops) but seems right on for the style. Aftertaste is a nice bitter, earthy piney flavor that leaves you looking forward to another sip.

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Photo of CSimon
4.36/5  rDev +13%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5


Initiallly pours somehwat cloudy, but settle into and golden-orange hue, just begging to be quaffed.

My father, who is British, calls this his favorite beer.

This is a gourgeous example of the Pale Ale style.

Perfectly bracing mouthfeel, with tastes of biscuits, yeast, a little hops, and maybe even a hint of citrus zest just to make it supremely drinkable.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
4.35/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ipswich- Original Ale

Appearance- Hazy reddish orange/ brown with plenty of floating things in it. Mild frothy head with no lacing.
Smell- Fruit and hops. Mild raisin/ grape blended with green hops, grass, and citrus rind.
Taste- Citrusy with an equal balance of earthy green hops and caramel malt.
Mouthfeel- Big and chewy. Nice thick malt with sweet & bitter in the back end.

Overall- Man this is good! I bought a single for $2 but this is case worthy! If you can find this buy it!! Mercury Brewing is new to NJ!!

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Ipswich Original Pale Ale from Ipswich Ale Brewery
3.86 out of 5 based on 392 ratings.
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