Ipswich Original Pale Ale | Ipswich Ale Brewery

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Ipswich Original Pale AleIpswich Original Pale Ale
Very Good
402 Ratings
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

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 402 |  Reviews: 203
Photo of SaCkErZ9
4.35/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Emerges slightly hazy due to sediment residing on the bottom of the bottle. Orange tea color with a nice white head. Quite frothy and a great deal of lacing down the side of the glass as well.

Aroma is biscuity malty with a perfect balance of earthy hops. Some caramel with a touch of old grass and stale hay.

Very smooth anad balanced. The earhty hops add a slight bite but the malt complements everything so well. Slightly more malty with some hop flavor as well.

A really nice beer. I usually am not very fond of this style; I prefer the APA. This one, however, was really well done. Perfect balance all the way around with a touch of fruitiness in the hops as well as a hunger stopping breadiness.

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Photo of glid02
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Got this in a trade with Norica - thanks!

Pours an orange-ish copper color with a one-finger off-white head. The head recedes into a wispy layer of bubbleson top that leaves nice lacing.

Smells of buttery toasted malts with hints of nondescript light fruits.

Tastes similar to how it smells. The toasted malts don't taste as buttery as the smell would lead me to believe, but the fruit flavors are there just as anticipated.

Mouthfeel is good. It has a surprisingly nice body and good carbonation that make this go down smoothly.

Drinkability is good. This is an easy-drinking beer, not too heavy on any one flavor and very tasty.

Overall I was not very impressed with this beer after my first sip, but it definitely grew on me. This had a lot more flavor than Boddington's and a little more flavor than Fuller's. Give this one a shot.

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Photo of climax
4.37/5  rDev +15.3%
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 LeftyBWS
3.93/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle into a pint glass.
A: Bright orange colored brew with nice amber tones and kinda hazy nearer the head. Huge foamy white head, fingery lacing.
S: Citrus and floral hops, graininess, and sugars. Kinda grassy, maybe a pine hop nip? Subtle, nice.
T: Little bit of floral hops, backed by some mild sugars. The hops linger nicely in the finish. Tasty, if somewhat plainish.
M: Dry finish, but a good hop bite. No alcohol feel.
D: Nice, good session ale.

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Photo of bonkers
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a standard pint glass. The beer pours a hazy orange with a moderate white head. The beer does leave nice lacing. The aroma is of bread and faint hops. The flavor is slightly bitter up front and then the malt kicks in. The finish lingers and is pleasantly bitter. The beer is medium bodied and has moderate carbonation. The beer is highly drinkable and would accompany most food well.

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Photo of leif86
4.4/5  rDev +16.1%
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 brentk56
4.1/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy light amber color with a rocky head that splashes a fair amount of lacing around

Smell: About the earthiest aroma that I have encountered and very nice for the style; primarily toasty with hints of toffee and a subtle earthy hop bitterness

Taste: Opens with a toasty flavor that adds some subtle fruit and earthy hop character by mid-palate; after the swallow, the malt becomes a little more prominent, adding depth and complexity with a touch of toffee

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Most pale ales in the US are brewed in an APA style, regardless of what they call themselves; here is a nice EPA that sticks to its knitting

Thanks, donkeyrunner, for the opportunity to try this

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Photo of GrandpaGeorg
4.35/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked-up the Ipswich variety pack (Trad Ale, Dark Ale, IPA, and Oatmeal Stout) at "Thrifty Dutch" in Hanover PA. The bad news is that, when you find something "on the road" that you like, it's frustrating when you can't get it locally. The good news is that this is probably the best "mix" pack I've ever selected "blindly" (e.g., without reading BA first). This one is fantastic.

The Original Ale pours rich and light brown and cloudy in the glass, with a nice head of foam that dissipates quickly and leaves lather-like lacing all the way down. The smell is instantly malt in the nose with a very pleasant fruity hops that subtley balances the whole. Taste is far more complex than I thought--a mix of the aforementioned malt and hops (fruity and piney and a bit of bitterness... more than expected but extremely welcome in the flavor matrix) with a touch of malty sweetness that, along with the subtle carbonation and rich body, renders this one a beer you can't easily put down (on the table that is). It's wonderful. I savored every sip. Easily as good as any Ale (English or APA) I've ever tried.

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Photo of MrHurmateeowish
4.54/5  rDev +19.8%
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 sethmeister
4/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle from the variety 12 pack.

Pours a slightly hazed golden amber with bubbly tan head, leaving spotty lace which tends to slowly slide back down the glass.

Scent is warm fresh bread with honey spread on it; light floral and herbal hops.

Taste is bready malt, lightly sweet honey, and subtly bitter herbal and citrus hops following. Slightly fruity flavor and an earthy note. Bitterness grows as I continue to sip and leaves a nice aftertaste. Strikes a good balance between malt sweetness and hop bitterness.

Mouth is a nice creamy full medium.

Drinkability very good.

A very solid English style Pale.

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Photo of beerthulhu
3.85/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a bright golden orange color with a nicely lasting white head.

S: malty with dry caramel and oranges.

T: sweet upfront followed a huge malty palate that is dry and hearty. There was some burnt caramel and oranges for flavor along with some raisins. bready.

M: moderatly full and creamy. nice coating on the tongue. for an ale was good i thought. good dose of carbonation.

D: A nice big dry English style ale that was malty, dry and enjoyable.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
4.3/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours bright orange with a beige foamy head. Not much lacing here.

Great aromas all around. Toasty bread, fruity malt, hop leaf.

Where to begin. Malt sweetness with some bread/biscuit, substantial hop bitterness. Sweet, bitter, bread. Delicious.

Decent carbonation in this one. Medium body but still very very drinkable. Easy to put good portion of a six pack down -- great for all seasons. A real winner.

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Photo of DavidSeanNJ
4.08/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

To me, this is the definition of an easy drinking pale ale. Nothing too crazy going on here, just done right.


A- Light nut brown color. Somewhat amber. Cream colored head. Looks really nice in my glass.

S- Smell was malt and biscuit. The nose was underwhelming.

T- Ahh. Nice. I got a metallic taste with a tea and malt punch. Hops at the back end. Do I detect some fruit mixed in there? Ehh not much.

M- Medium bodied with a slick mouthfeel. No problem putting this one down.

D- This is a session brew for sure. Enjoyable. Always great stuff from Ipswich.

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Photo of IBUnit63
3.95/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Charlie's Kitchen and their beer garden in Harvard Square...

Pour from the tap is a very nice deep dark mahogany/chestnut hue. Even from an industrial-strength tap there's a little bit of head, but it goes quickly.

Mildly roasted malt dominates here with a little braised tone to it. There's a fair amount of grass and earth in the mild hop profile. Alcohol does not really make an appearance here.

Straightforward taste - malt dominant, with enough grass on the hops to balance this just right. A little toastiness for a colder rainy day.

This is decent on the palate - maybe a little bit on the clammy side (doesn't the average bar serve its beer a bit too cold? This one does). A tinge of grassy hop bitter aftertaste, but not much.

The Ipswich ales have been some of my favorite locals for a while now. Good to see an old friend in this one. Easy-drinking, sessionable offering. Good job.

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Photo of morebeergood
3.75/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Had a pint while at lunch at the Sports Depot in Allston. Color was dark ruby red. Not much head though and no noticeable smell. Not as hoppy as most pale ales on the market. Hint of citrus to the taste. I mainly drink Ipswich Ale due to it's excellent drinkability. It's not the best PA out there, but it's a decent offering by a local brewer and it goes well with food. I could easily have a few of these in one sitting.

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Photo of MMAJYK
3.67/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A- Nearly copper, but gold and hazy. Head is 1/2" and has good retention.

S- Pleasantly hoppy with a nice malt backing. A little bit of honey and some biscuit is all I pick up other than that.

T- Some caramel up front followed closely by a good bitter bite. Some honey and light citrusy notes make things whole.

M- Thin and high carbonation. Very fitting for the style.

D- Good and drinkable. A *little* bit heavier than I would like on a hot day but it would be OK to have 3 or 4 in a session.

Special thanks to Aaronjr123 (who doesn't post and is not very active on BA) for bringing this one back to me from his recent vacation to Boston.

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Photo of JDV
3.26/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle in trade from joepais. Thanks man!
Pours cloudy amber with a short lived offwhite head. Smell is slightly tart, and lighty musty, earthy hops. Taste is fairly bitter with grassy hops coming in at first and it finishes a little sweeter with some caramel maltiness. Moderately full mouthfeel with nice carbonation. Much more bitter and hoppy than expected of an EPA. Pretty solid and drinkable. Thanks Joe!

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Photo of fitzy84
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had on tap at the Moan and Dove. The beverage had a murky orange look to it with some good lacing and a thin head. Aromas were slightly honey-ish with malts and grains wrapping around the sweet smells. The drink was really sweet even with its earthy tones. Mouthfeel helped the drink from not being too overpowering. Overall, an enjoyable pale ale.

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Photo of fostwal
3.62/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - A rich auburn color. Slighly cloudy with a good size head.
Smell - The smell is very light. Not very promonant.
Taste - The taste is pretty strong for an english ale. There is a defiite bite of hops in the after taste, but not overwelmingly so.
Mouthfeel - Low carbonation and suttle flavors make for a pleasant mouthfeel.
Drinkability - The mix of smell, taste, and feel are a very nice combination. The beer is very drinkable. I would definitely order one when I was at the bar.

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Photo of Reagan1984
3.73/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This Ale was a deep, yet bright, brown ale. Too dark in my mind to be considered copper.
Mostly Clear with a very slight haze.

Served with a very thin head which dissipated quickly.
I was surprised by the amount of lacing as I enjoyed the pint.

I thought the beer had a very nice balance. Started with a nice assertive roasted Malt taste then finished with a nice hop bite. Very impressed. Mouthfeel was nice with a medium body that allowed for great drinkability.

Very nice beer for an English Pale.

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Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
4.41/5  rDev +16.4%
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 MrMonkey
4.17/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy amber, almost orange, with a one-finger off-white head that fades quickly to a thin cap. Quite a bit of sediment floating around. Moderate amount of visible carbonation. Some sticky sheets left behind.

Smell is light biscuity malts balanced well by some floral hops with some citrus undertones, and a hint of yeast.

Taste is pale malts up front, followed by some floral hop notes. There are some subtle orange and grapefruit flavors as well. Finishes with some doughy malt flavors and a mild hop dryness.

Crisp, smooth medium-bodied mouthfeel.

A solid beer with great drinkability. A great session beer.

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Photo of albern
4.29/5  rDev +13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I haven't had this in awhile, and I don't know why. Ipswich is one of those beers that have been around awhile and are just taken for granted, and that's too bad. The downside to this beer was its appearance. It pours a nice hazy orange copper color but there is just no head to this beer to speak of. The smell is a little musty, a bit floral, and a nice indication of balance to come. The beer is fairly medium bodied, modestly carbonated, but I did wish it had more of a lasting head. The beer is very creamy on the tongue and enjoyable throughout. The taste is just so well balanced with a nice spicy hop bite in the finish. The beer is not too dry, not too sweet, and doesn't have any cloying syrupy consistency at all. There is some biscuity overtones, some bready malts, some florals, and then there is the spicy hop bite at the end that brings it all together. This is a really good beer worth seeking out, I just wish its appearance matched everything else. L'Chaim.

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Photo of mmmbeer
3.76/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle with no freshness date; 30 IBUs. The beer is an unfiltered orangey copper, with medium carbonation and two fingers of foamy, light tan head that leaves a few wisps of lace. Not much in the way of aroma, but there are notes of malts and bitter, leafy hops. Apples and oranges are the first flavors to hit, but there are also flavorful malts, grapefruit, a big bitterness and some astringent notes. The body is medium, smooth and very dry, with apple skins lingering on the palate. Not too shabby - a tasty session brew that is hoppy without being too bitter.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
3.68/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very hazy orange body, topped by a good three fingers of level, just-off-white foam. Good lacing.

Non-abrassive nose of bread and biscuits, with a hint of citrus.

Tasty semi-sweet beginning, an enjoyable malt base withoutbeing overly sweet. Subtle earthy English hops build to a juicy citrus peak at the swallow andlinger into the aftertaste.

Good solid medium mouthfeel.

A solidly sessionable English style ale.

Nice to see Ipswich back in NJ. If you're a fan of traditional ale give this a try.

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Ipswich Original Pale Ale from Ipswich Ale Brewery
Beer rating: 3.79 out of 5 with 402 ratings