McEwan's India Pale Ale
The Caledonian Brewing Company

McEwan's India Pale AleMcEwan's India Pale Ale
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English India Pale Ale (IPA)
Ranked #379
Ranked #47,464
2.93 | pDev: 20.14%
The Caledonian Brewing Company
Scotland, United Kingdom
McEwan's India Pale AleMcEwan's India Pale Ale
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Reviews: 147 | Ratings: 176
Photo of Naes
2.16/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Dark amber in color with a small white head.

Aroma is surprisingly malty for an IPA. Some molasses and faint hop presence hit the nose as well.

Where are all the hops? It’s malty sweet with a bit of hop bitterness hidden in there.

Mouth feel is a bit watery in the beginning and finishes a bit oily.

It goes down a bit too easy, as it is a little watered down. Could make a crossover beer.

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Photo of Fugazme
2.61/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a very dark copper with a non-exsistent head.
Some touches of brown.

A very, very slight hop aroma with a touch of alcohol. More malt than anything. A little citrus on the nose.

Taste was more malty. I could barely detect hops. It was a crisp beer, I'll give it that. And the mouthfeel was decent.

Compared to other English IPA's, this one doesn't quite match up.

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Photo of beerluvr
3.46/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours with a dirty white head quickly settling overclear and very deep amber liquid. Nose is lightly sweet, toasty and nutty...unlike any IPA I've ever smelled before. The taste is very un-IPA like as well, starts a bit sweet and earthy, the hops should be the big player here but there's nary a hop to be found in this strange brew. But there is something here that makes it not unbearable to quaff, some sweet malt, some light treacle and smooth carbonation saves this from being too weird to drink. Just think of it as a nice light ale, not an IPA...'cause it ain't!

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Photo of murrayswine
2.92/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This was the only IPA that they had at the bar I happened to be at, so I figured why the hell not.

Color is a subtle golden-amber with a short-lived quarter-inch head.

The aroma reminds me of Spanish Peaks Black Dog Ale, more of a molassas scent than hops. Slight almond hints as well.

The taste is more like a typical American Pale Ale, I can barely taste any hops at all. The finish is slightly bitter, like sourdough bread.

In a pinch it's not that bad, but if you really like IPA's, pass on this beer.

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Photo of smcolw
2.63/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very nice color: copper-amber, clear. Nearly no head, certainly no lace left on the side of the glass

More caramel malt aromas than hop. Not surprisingly, smells more like a Scotch Ale.

At least there is some noteable hop in the taste. Still, this is too muted; you'd be hard-pressed to refer to this as a bitter, much less an IPA. The malt flavor is nice but too dominant for the style. Nice body, decent carbonation. The aftertaste is nearly void of hop flavor.

Interestingly, I might consider this to be an above average Mild. But this clearly misses the moniker of IPA. Too bad since it wouldn't take much (more boiling hops and some dry hopping) to make this a full flavored offering. A good beer for the uninitiated.

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Photo of jp32
2.19/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 2

Pours a medium-brown color with a very fizzy and quickly disappearing head. It looks transparent and appears to be quite thin. The nose is sweet. Almost syrupy and malty sweet. It actually smells very good, just not quite what I had expected from an IPA. I'm maybe noticing some citrus scents in there as well. The taste is kind of flat. Definitly does not taste like an india pale ale at all. Reminds more of Newcastle or Tanner's Jack. Sweet roasted malts and nutty flavors. It does taste decent, just way off track. The mouthfeel is too light-bodied. It has that flat and watery feel to it. Drinkability?.. I can finish this one, but I doubt I'll be trying it again.

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Photo of Hop2it
2.83/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Not much head to speak of, even less retention. Decent brown tint.

A syrupy sweet smell that's not overly inviting.

Smooth on the way down, glazes over the tongue with little interference by the taste buds. This has less bite than a still pond on a hot summer day.

I like IPAs with over-the-top hops and a solid malt base, this has little of either. It's not awful, in my eyes Shipyard's IPA was awful, this is just mediocre

My first impression of English India Pale Ales was from Yards Brewing Co and decided that it had to be my favorite style. If this is more typical of the style then I feel I must amend my profile because this is very lackluster.

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Photo of Brian700
3.46/5  rDev +18.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a crystal clear amber with a white head that fizzles down to a thin layer. The aroma is definately not that of an IPA. Its smells malty and sweet, very little hop aroma. The taste is also not characteristically IPA-like. It tastes like a brown ale to me. Its very malty sweet with very little hops. Decent mouthfeel, light to medium body. Not a bad beer but I probably will not buy any more of this.

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Photo of flood
4.49/5  rDev +53.2%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - the deep red color of a perfect pour (i.e. with just the right amount of head) make the look of a glass of this beer exceptional.

The smell is noticeable - above average

The taste is the best part of this beer - I think IPA is a misnomer for this beer (as the traditional definition goes) - there is not a bite at the end like a typical IPA. The beer is slightly malty but smooth not a distinct aftertaste as with other IPAs - the taste is unremarkable unless your are looking for it - start with an export and the taste is definitely stronger than if you started with something else. This is definitely not a brew for a mix pack.

Mouthfeel is unremarkable but promotes a slow swallow.

I could drink this beer all night and the next night too.

Only problem is it is not distributed in my area any longer.

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Photo of mynie
2.67/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Well--I like the color of this pour, but that's about it. I mean the color is great, don't get me wrong--dark red like maple syrup and glimmering in the low light of my office--but the beer looks like soda pop with its strange bubbling and zero head.

Very malty smell. Kind of like burnt syrup. Sugary sweet, whatever it is. And it's pretty nice.


That's a much nicer smell than it is a taste. It tastes like a strong burst of caramel followed by selzter water blanknes. The drop off in flavor from start to finish is incredible. You have this huge rush of caramel and then--nothing. It's almost magical.

Thin body but it goes down very smooth. This beer is a let down.

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Photo of GClarkage
2.8/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

March 2005- Had on the beach with a buddy.

Presentation- 12 oz bottle poured into a 16 oz plastic cup. Forgot to look for a date on the bottle.

Appearance- Small white head that vanishes fast. Hard to tell if there is lacing in a plastic cup, an amber -gold color.

Smell- Mostly bready malt and a bit of bitterness.

Taste- No hops to be found in this brew. All malt and watery malt at that.

Mouthfeel- Medium carbonation and watery.

Drinkability- This ain't no IPA in my book. I don't know if I have had an English IPA before, but if this it what they taste like, I'm staying away. Where are the hops? I was expecting something different, but I was expecting a different flavor of hops or something. Very confused.

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Photo of Hunter
2.63/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Nice amber color, decent carbonation and a durable head of light tan foam.

Not much by way of an aroma. Some notes of hops and malt but for the most part light.

Much blander in taste and subtle in the hops than I would've expected, but not a bad brew. Need to re-review as this one is based on a a smaple tried 4 days before.

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Photo of Suds
3.56/5  rDev +21.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This brew is a beautiful bronze color with a thick, strong head. It’s a very nice looking beer! The aroma is a subtle mix of hops and malt. The balance is shifted in favor of the hops, but they’re restrained and there’s a very distinct bready sweetness as well. Also an ale-like fruitiness and a hint of butterscotch. It’s not an intense aroma, and certainly nothing like an American IPA. Moderate sweetness and roasted malt flavors up front. The beer dries out in the mid-taste, and finishes with a flourish of bitterness. It’s a polite, very well-balanced beer. Quite drinkable, but not particularly remarkable.

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Photo of RootedFool
3.22/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a twelve ounce bottle purchased at the North Coast Co-op in Arcata, CA. The head is bubbly, has the color of dirty soap -- a slighty grayish tan. As the head, which rose nearly a full three quarters of an inch, falls, it leaves some pasty patches of lace on the glass. The body is a deep brown, rich crimson.


Ritz crackers, dash of apple juice, with a raspy -- bitey -- finish, like lemon grass.


Opens with a muted pinch of bitterness around the circumference of my palate, followed by a hollow twang of green apple, some shallow buttery notes in the background. The finish is a subdued bitterness, barely noticeable, and a very plain sweetness. Very two dimensional.

This beer is about as complex as a pair of tube socks.

The mouthfeel is thin but not terribly thin, it's annoying -- it's almost there, and doesn't quite make it. Crisp carbonation.

Not horrible, by any stretch of the imagination, although it is horribly boring.

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Photo of MuddyFeet
2.47/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Where's the hops? Defintiely not an American IPA. the appearance was my favorite part. It was a deep brown, with a thick, creamy head. The aroma was of apple juice, which is not a good thing because I hate apple juice. The taste was simple malty, carmelly and creamy. There were no hop tones providing balance. I do not think my taste buds are still shot since EBF '05. the mouthfeel was very heavy. Definitely a witner beer, not sure I would like this in the summer if I was looking for crisp, refreching and flavorful.

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Photo of CAMRAhardliner
3.12/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This is the 4.3% canned version. It pours dark amber with a fluffy head that lasts for most of the glass, leaving good trails of lace. The aroma is somewhat malty and fruity but the most noticeable smell is a vinagary tartness. Its pretty unpleasant and mingles with caramel in a strange way.

The taste is thankfully an improvement on the smell. Theres a caramelly, buttery flavor up front. There lots of hop bitterness as well. There are some fruit esters spicey hop bite. The finish is dry with a bit of an off metallic flavor. The mouthfeel is coarse with erratic carbonation and strange artificial feel.

This is an ok beer, though much better than other canned beers. Its got a strong diacetyl flavor that takes away from the hops and malt flavors. The hops are definitely inadequate for an IPA. Still, fans of English Ales should give this beer a try.

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Photo of BillyBrew
2.7/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Not a great English IPA.

Light brown colour, nothing spectacular white head turn very thin and creamy.

I kinda of pleasantly-roasted malt. Pretty light, and malty. No hops to smell of.

Tastes like what you would expect from a brown. Roasted malt upfront and very little hop to balance. Pretty artificial tasting.

Medium body that is fairly smooth and finishes dry.

Not a whole lot going on for this expensive/bland import. I guess this is why I drink local


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Photo of hero27
2.67/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a relatively clear, copper color. Head is pretty weak, if you ask me. Looks decent to start but if you blink, you'll miss it.

Smell: Don't pick up anything on the hops side...nothing like I expected. Definitely get a hint of roasted malt but nothing too spectacular.

Taste: Seriously...where are the hops? I don't think it tastes bad, but I was looking forward to some serious IPA-style hoppiness. The weird, pirate-looking dude on the bottle looks like he's all hopped out, but apparently he just must be drunk. You'd have to be if you're smiling that much from drinking this.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a watery mouthfeel..carbonation is decent...maybe the hops are at the bottom of the glass..?

Drinkability: The drinkability is decent. Well, the beer is finished and I'm still disappointed with the complete lack of hops in this bad boy. I paid $8 for a sixer of this? You're killin' me smalls...

If you like English, pub-style ales, then give it a try if you must...but if you're looking for any kind of an IPA, then don't waste your time because you won't find it here.

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Photo of brewQ
3.13/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The tap was an appetizing orange-brown.
Poured somewhat flat, with some malt and light floral aroma,

Flavor was balanced albeit subdued. This is English IPA?

A clean finish yields a very drinkable beer.

This is certainly better than the nasty bottle version I sampled months ago. Not something I'd search for, though.

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Photo of Truh
2.83/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Got the last pickle from the barrel with this one on 1/2/2004. Imperial pint pour at Cornwall's.

Loose cream of head filters down to a gentle mist. Extremely clear, mahogany hue with no action at all; still, all things considered, a very nice overall presentation. Good malt character up front on the nose and almost a fruity, blueberry note follow up. Malt is first, bittering hop is second, in that order, and it is like having two different pints; no complexity, just bluntly hits you over the head with its two-pronged attack; some finishing clover and light smoke character is detected. Doable, but nothing special

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Photo of feloniousmonk
1.76/5  rDev -39.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Clear, caramel-y color, thinnish, evaporating head.
Burnished malt in the nose, dark fruits, but not much noise from hops, rather lifeless, actually.
Not too pleasant over the lips, either...hard to describe, actually...very sad and sickly taste, rough flavor, not tasty at all, then, thankfully gone without a trace. Each further sip brings out a wince, a groan, an unhappy expression I reserve for moments of utmost disdain. Ewwww...sickly sweet, overly caramel-y, no spark, no pizzazz, nothing good to be enjoyed here...eeeyuck!
Gonna have to send this down the ol' bad it hurts!

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Photo of ElGordo
2.41/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours very dark for an IPA, a dark copper hue with a small, creamy white head. Not bad-looking, just out of character. Earthy, roasty aroma of malt, without any sign of hops and a faint sourness. This, however, doesn't prepare for the taste. Completely lacking in the typical sharp hoppiness of an IPA, this resembles more of a red ale. Mellow malt flavor is tempered by a light fruity character from the hops. Mouthfeel is agreeable, nice and creamy. While this is absolutely not what I expect in an IPA, it's an OK beer.

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Photo of Dmann
2.41/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This was not a good IPA by any stretch of the imagination. This poured a decent copper collor with a small head that faded quickly. The smell was non existant other than some trace elements of malt. The flavor was more like a amber ale than a Pale Ale or IPA. It had next to no hop presence and not much maltiness to it either, it was just kind of flat. I will be passing on this one in the future.

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Photo of soper2000
3.13/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

First time I had this beer was on-tap at Macnivens in Indy at a BA gathering and I must say that bottled, this is certainly a different beast. Pours an interesting copper color but with very little head to speak of. Nose has a lot more bready malts than I would like in an IPA. It almost seems like an English Pale instead of an English IPA. Very mild flavor, a nice malt base gives way to a finish that is only slightly hoppy at best. I'm really struggling to pick out any hop characteristics other than a slight vague bitterness. I remember this being much better from the tap.

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Photo of SaunaKing
2.84/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Lets start with the good. Pours a nice dark amber with a tan creamy head. Good looking beer.
Very strange smell - fruity and a grape aroma. Is this a wine? Cuz thats what it smells like.
Light raisony taste, pretty bland but tastes more like wine than beer to me. I wouldn't recommend this one.

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McEwan's India Pale Ale from The Caledonian Brewing Company
Beer rating: 70 out of 100 with 176 ratings