Zoe | Maine Beer Company

BA SCORE
93
outstanding
604 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score
Send samples
ZoeZoe
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Maine Beer Company
Maine, United States
mainebeercompany.com

Style: American Amber / Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our take on an American amber ale. Complex malt bill delivers notes of dark raisin, chocolate and biscuit. Copious additions of American hops yield notes of pine and citrus.

Added by deltatauhobbit on 12-03-2009

BEER STATS
Reviews:
604
Ratings:
2,455
Avg:
4.19
pDev:
8.59%
 
 
Wants:
320
Gots:
477
For Trade:
14
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 604 | Ratings: 2,455
Photo of tillmac62
4.06/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

BOD 1/5/16. Pours dark amber which turns a brilliant clear dark ruby under intense light. World class head volume, lacing and retention.

Outstanding, but a bit light, complex nose of citrus, pith, hints of dark fruit (fig, raisin), pine and a touch of caramel over a malt base with strong dark toasted notes.

Almost heavy medium body that is quite smooth and has a nice touch of creaminess to it. Superb carbonation with a fair burst of effervescence in the middle and a finely bubbled prickly finish.

The flavor profile is outstanding. Flavor arrives in a blended fashion that has minimal separation. It has the flavors of the nose, with dark toasted grainy malt being the most evident part of the base. Dark fruit (prune) and citric pith are the main components with a touch of pine arriving in the very mildly bittered middle. Balance is achieved with little perceived sweetness and has a very subtle caramel note. The finish is a slow fade of prune and pith.

 972 characters

Photo of sommersb
4.28/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Tasted On: 04-01-2013
Freshness: Bottled 02-26-13
Packaging: 500ml brown bottle, pry-cap
Glassware: Globe glass
Purchased: Received in a trade

Appearance has a big off-white head on the dark amber, clear beer. Head retention and lacing are excellent. The last pour adds some cloudiness from the bottle-conditioning yeast

Smell has spicy hops with big pine and citrus elements. Some caramel malts and dark fruits counter for an overall lovely bouquet

Taste has a fairly strong hop bitterness with typical grapefruit notes, but the malts show up with a bit of sweetness and keep things interesting so its not a one-trick pony. A bit of astringency is a negative factor

The feel is crisp due to the high carbonation. Finishes hoppy and semi-dry, but with some balance.

Overall a very nice treat. I'll admit this is typically not one of my favorite styles, but this is a very good rendition -- hoppy, but complex enough to keep me wanting more. Recommended

Thanks to DrewShal9 for this one!

 993 characters

Photo of ATPete
4.36/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

500ml bottle, thanks Clark from NH!

Received this one in the BA Secret Santa 2010. Love the 500ml bottle. Poured into a pint glass. Zoe looks like pond water, it poured a surprisingly murky brown with some bright highlights around the very edges, gotta say i was expecting more.. red. I dunno. A large, strong, tan head floats upon the brew. Big hits of fresh resinous hops in the nose, some of that grapefruit, lots of wet pine notes and chocolate underneath it all. A very creamy texture is noted, round and silky, chocolatey malt and some bright hops dominate the flavor with a crisp finish, crazy balanced. Unlike anything ive had before really, im very impressed.

 669 characters

Photo of dasenebler
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

17oz. bottle, handwritten date of 8/18/11 on the label (some of the bottles I picked up had stamped dates too, which were the same day, but hard to read). This means that the beer left the brewery on the same day I bought it at Tully's. Wow.

Dark, rich copper with a beige head. Really nice lacing.

The aroma is complex and hoppy. At first very spicy and herbal, but with some hints of tropical fruit. Fresh.

The flavor is surprisingly malty and rich. Malts are dark, with a toasted, near coffee-like quality. Very bitter and resiny, but wonderfully balanced. Hop flavor is spicy and woody. This stuff is really well-crafted, aside from the carbonation, which seemed too low. Maybe it's so fresh it still needs time to condition!

Was expecting a bit more hop presence given the freshness, but Zoe is a very good beer, balanced and very easy to drink. Keep it coming, Maine Beer Co.

 885 characters

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

A: Cloudy, dark amber hue with wonderful lacing and a huge foamy head with great retention

S: Loads of spice, citrus, and pine from the hops but also a sweet bready malt base with a touch of alcohol burn

T: A beautiful balance of sweet bready malts and citrus hops but also some apple cider notes, spices, and a pleasant alcohol presence

F: Nicely carbonated and surprisingly creamy that still retains an oily stickiness

O: A perfectly balanced hoppy beer with pleasant and subtle sweetness and spiciness with just the right amount of alcohol burn at the end; this is a damn good beer

 588 characters

Photo of Fcolle2
4.34/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Pours brown in color, slightly hazy and deep red hues. Head is thin about half a finger off-white almost pink. Head also retains nicely and leaves a fair amount of lacing.

Smells very nicely balanced. Grainy husky malt aromas work nicely with aromas of sweet maple and mildly nutty malt. Malt plays nicely with fresh lightly fruitier hops that have aromas of mango Papaya and hints of grapefruit.

Taste is great. Malt is forward and has some light grainy and toffee flavors before a slight fruity and predominately piney hoppy mild bitterness persists through the midsection. Light floral notes finish on the exhale.

Mouthfeel is good. Moderate to high carbonation is cut by a good amount of hop oils and resin and malty stickiness. Nice balance keeps this highly drinkable with a good body.

 795 characters

Photo of GPHarris
3.76/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

a - poured a dense, three-fingers thick tan head into a snifter that left thick lacing and sheeting throughout. the body was dark amber, almost brown that let some red tints through.
s - muted pineyness.
t - piney with a lot of breadiness, especially as it warms. hints of caramel and raisins.
m - thick and heavy.
o - nice beer, the heartiest red ale i've ever had. or is this a barleywine??

 392 characters

Photo of brureview
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

What a great beer! Served cold, pours a beautiful caramel color with a 3 finger head.

The head has a deep piney aroma reminiscent of the Maine woods:)

The mouth feel is very smooth.

The finish is is a complex piney-citrus and pleasantly hoppy.

A class act!

 260 characters

Photo of BostonHops
4.03/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

500ml bottle served in a standard shaker pint.

pours a cloudy dark amber, almost chestnut tone; somewhat aggressive pour yields a big, billowing heady - a good 3" worth - creamy, and beige in color. decent head retention, and a lot of patchy lacing left on the glass. fairly aromatic nose is hop-forward (pine, a little citrus), with a strong presence of toasted malt.

flavor delivers more of the same characteristics. nice and sort of unique blend of the hoppiness with the toasted/bready malt notes. very tasty. not crazy, mind-blowing tasty, but tasty. medium-full bodied with lively carbonation.

overall this was a really solid amber, i liked it a lot. wouldn't beat down doors trying to get more, but i will happily pick it up if and when i happen across it again.

(originally reviewed: 06-10-2011)

 807 characters

Photo of tlema1
3.71/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

L: beautiful mahogany with a thick creamy tan head
S: some malt, not too much nose
T: well balanced, malty finish
F: great mouthfeel
O: a nice twist on a style I usually don't like

 180 characters

Photo of FickleBeast
4.41/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

16.9 oz bottle poured into a DFH snifter. Bottled 10/2015.

Pours a dark amber color with a finger and a half of off white foam. Nice lacing. Aroma is hoppy, but not overwhelmingly so. More on the grassy side of the hop aroma spectrum, with a bit of sweet tropical fruit.

First sip is wow - a nice rush of hoppy goodness. Dank, grassy, hoppy notes, nice amount of caramel body, and very smoothly bitter finish. The hop schedule is right on point - no harsh or conflicting flavors. This drinks nice, and has tons of flavor.

This is right up there with Troeg's Nugget Nectar unfortunately, it is much, much more expensive. It is a fantastic beer though.

 661 characters

Photo of ChrisPro
4.12/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Blind Beer #12 from Khazadum

16oz? bottle pops with a nice hiss and blast of dank, piny hops.

Into a pint glass it goes, per the blind label. that is NOT the color I was expecting. Pours a dark amber or light maple syrup color with a monstrous four-finger head. The cream-colored pillow seems to just want to hang out with me a while; it just sits there and dissipates, bubble by bubble. As I drink, there are some hints of lace apparent on the glass sides.

Nose still dominated by some big hop aroma: resin and weed just permeate my nostrils. I think there's some nuttiness hidden in there, but this is a hop-forward beer, despite its perplexing color. I really have no idea what to think before diving in...Later I do get some subtle caramel, but barely.

What the hell am I drinking!?!?! My mind is so confused right now. The first sip is so much sweeter than I expected. There's a little caramel and definite roasted nuts, but after a few sips this gives way to a well-balanced bitter hop finish. I get no roasted malt on the back end, so this comes striaght from hop IBUs. What a confusing beer...

Despite its huge frothy hat, there's virtually no carbonation as I drink. I feel like I'm drinking out of a firkin and I like it. Pretty clean around the mouth, but there's a slight lingering slickness on the top of my moth that just won't go away no matter what I do.

Well balanced, and the palate makes the beer incredibly drinkable. I think there's some heat, so we might be looking at like 7.5%, but it still goes down quickly.

At this point, I'm incredibly confused. i'd think something like an imperial amber, or a super dry-hopped india brown ale. I think this is the most perplexing blind beer I've had to date. Not to mention, the unique shaped bottle is confusing me even more.

 1,796 characters

Photo of sjones5045
4.35/5  rDev +3.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours dark brown and can pick up some hoppy smell. Nothing to remarkable for the sight and smell. The taste is very smooth with an ok hoppy presence which for this beer fits well. It's more of a light hop upfront and a very smooth finish kind of sweet finish. Found myself guzzling it down always ready for another sip. Overall, another impressive beer from Maine Beer Company. This is definitely a beer to share with friends, wish it came in a six pack.

 454 characters

Photo of seedyone
3.5/5  rDev -16.5%

01/28/14 From bottle dated 12/10/13 at home.

Pretty pour. Great rich copper color. Thick full head. Inviting aroma that lead me down a primrose path to expected balance.

First taste was the hops. Very up front & never gave ground. I enjoyed this but as an un-hoppy guy, one will do. If you like hops, you will love this beer.

It's apparent that a lot of care went into this glass. I need to dig into the Maine repertoire to find my match.

 444 characters

Photo of Stevem68
3.99/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a ruby Amber color. Has a bitter hop aroma with notes of roasted biscuit malts. Flavor is citrus peel bitter hops up front with a toasted malty balanced finish. Overall very solid but not overly impressed.

 211 characters

Photo of Gosox8787
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Presentation: Bottled on date of 12.09.10. Poured from the bottle into a Portsmouth snifter in two parts. Served slightly chilled.

Appearance: Dark brown (almost black) in color with a nice full one finger, frothy mocha head and really reamrkable retention. For an amber, this beer is really dark.

Aroma: The hops bring out a really earthy, herbal notes in the nose. I would go so far as to call it floral. Some roasted notes in the background.

Taste: This definitely is way more on the earthy side of the hop spectrum. I get toasted bread and a bit of char here too. I might say this reminds me more of a black IPA than a traditional amber.

Mouthfeel: Really full bodied and creamy for the style, yet it manages to keep crisp.

Drinkability: More than one (at 7.2% ABV) would be tough, but as there is a nice brightness to this.

Overall, an interesting take on the amber style. The char and toasted notes are a nice offset to the earthy hop flavors. I would definitely try this again. Definitely worth buying.

 1,015 characters

Photo of IvoryFoxhole
4.04/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Psyched to find fresh bottles here. Bottled March 15. Poured into Belgian ale glass.

L: Ginormous head, like 4F+, with very good retention and lots of soapy lacing. Dark reddish-brown.

S: Malts up front, some pine. Dark fruits and unsweetened chocolate.

T: A lot of biscuit malt, raisins, hoppy pine.

F: Light to medium bodied, light carbonation, sticky resiny finish, but not unpleasant.

O: A good red ale. Glad I got to try it fresh.

 440 characters

Photo of cavedave
4.33/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

More big thanks to Drazzamatazz for yet another stunning Maine creation.

Pours a brownish dark amber, slighlty cloudy, topped by a massive and thick head that lasts for the entire glass. Heavily hanging hinges of lazy lace lacquer the grateful glass.

Nose is medium aroma of caramel, citrus, lighter pine and floral, even lighter breadiness, still lighter tart yeasty hints. Nice complexity for an amber, very enticing.

Wonderful medium strength taste. It starts with the gentle tart grabbing some bready sweet, taking orange and grapefruit, a little bit of caramel, some ganja for a flavor session, and ends with the citrus notes inviting pine bitter over to dry out the finish. Tastes like a refined and more delicious version of Cascazilla.

Mouthfeel is very fine for the flavors, medium carb. that sharpens them, nicely viscous to allow them some staying power, and a clean clear out to make way for the next sip. Finish straddles the line between juicy and dry, wonderfully so.

My first MBC beer, and I must say I can't wait to try more. One of the best made beers I have had this year, just fucking delicious.

 1,120 characters

Photo of korguy123
4.24/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

012013 Bottle date into my new DFH IPA glass
Consumed 40 days into the 90 days recommended by the brewery.

Clear dark copper/brown pour with a booming 3+ finger light tan head. Lacing is just glued to the sides of the glass.

Sweet strawberries, digestive cookies, fresh bread, slight alcohol, grapefruit and some bitter pine. Sweet malts are fantastic at rounding everything out.

Bitter pine, dark sweet malts and a touch of grapefruit. Dark stone fruits and a dry lingering bitter finish. The bottle does not lie; A hoppy, happy amber.

Light body, medium carbonation.

 573 characters

Photo of Ian_B
4.48/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Deep red-brown ale with a frothy head on the thick side.

The nose is obviously a red ale but is infused with plenty of citrus and pine hop notes that adds an intriguing complexity and balance. The malt character smells wonderful with caramelized and meaty, roasted scents. Notes of raisin and chocolate really come through in the malt, giving it a sweet, bready character.

The flavour is sweet and complex in the malt, tasting much the same as it smells. The hops come in softer than on the nose, but balance the flavours (particularly the sweetness) perfectly without being bitter at all.

Medium body, on the lighter side with carbonation.

This is a must try if you're looking for a hoppy American Red that is very well balanced and drinkable. Decent ABV as well.

 768 characters

Photo of Gtreid
4.07/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks go out to drazzamataz for the bottle. 500 ml. bottle poured into a tulip.

A: Very dark red color, almost brown. Almost to brown for an amber, but a big 3 finger head dropped and left sheets of sticky lace.

A: Pretty hoppy for the style, but not something I'm gonna complain about. Grass, pine and caramel with a hint of citrus.

T: Damn nice for an amber. Really nice mix of the caramel malt ith the grassy hops. It gets a bit herbal in the middle and finishes dry and sweet. No really evidence of alcohol.

M: Medium body, good carbonation. Almost a little too creamy, but not in a bad way.

O: This is a very good beer. Hoppy but with enough of a malt backbone to balance it out. Pretty impressed with what Maine Beer Comapany is doing. Skal.

 753 characters

Photo of kirok1999
3.97/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A very cloudy dark copper with a wispy, thick head that leaves a nice amount of lace.
Hoppy as hell with lots of pine, herbs, rosemary and some mild citrus.
Tastes the same as the smell with a lingering aftertaste of spicy herbs and wood.
Feels creamy and smooth and is a pleasure to sip.

 288 characters

Photo of tzieser
4.47/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

poured from a 1pt 9oz bottle into a standard pint glass. bottled 2/9/12

a: dark brown color with a thick cloudiness to it. fluffy white head sticks to glass for a very long time.

s: big hoppy aroma. pine and grapefruit-like citrus hop character. not much malt to speak of.

t: lots of hop flavor. bitter pine hop flavor makes up most of the hop profile with some mild citrus character. malt sweetness keeps it from becoming too bitter. alcohol is very well hidden. wish i got to try this fresher so it had more citrus flavor. well done though!

m: good mouthfeel.

nice to see another strong amber on the shelves. interesting hop flavor. recommended.

UPDATE 9/23/12:

got a fresh bottle (9/2/12). tons more hop aroma and flavor,
with grapefruit like citrus and pine bitterness throughout. finishes with some nice and sweet malts. not too bitter at all. exceptional. steep price for a pint bottle ($7), so Nugget Nectar still reigns supreme for me but if it wss more reasonable i would take this any day.

Old score: 4.1

 1,024 characters

Photo of RuckusDu
3.76/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Huge head of light tan/mocha foam. Large bubbles which stick around and become rocky. Body is a new funky brown that reminded me of root beer when I poured it. Now it has some good red to it. Deep colors. Solid lacing.

S - Very smooth and sweet hops. There is an unknown fruit that could be a green grape but on the opposite side of a wine scent. Maybe it is apple.

T - Fresh and hoppy. Some darker malt flavors but the mouthfeel makes it lighter. Hops are harsher than on the nose. More of a rind bitterness.

M - The carbonation is high but body is light and makes this taste refreshing.

O - An interesting beer that has a lot of new aspects I have never experienced before. Decent all around, but not something I would need to seek out again.

 754 characters

Photo of ToasterChef
4.87/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a cellar temperature bottle into a Maine Beer Company logo glass. The beer has a very dark amber color; it looks nearly brown in this dimly lit room. The head is large, tan colored, and made up of various sizes of bubbles. There is some patchy lacing. The aroma is very impressive. One whiff and I exclaimed aloud "wow!" It smells of very fresh hops. There is almost a toasted quality to the hops that I haven't come across before. The bottle I have is super-fresh (bought today, delivered to the store earlier in the week, most likely bottled late last week), which must improve the aroma a lot. The flavor is just as impressive as the aroma; actually, I find it to be even more complex. It started out with a toasted flavor. It makes me imagine burnt embers leftover after a campfire. The hops kick in quickly. They are big, bitter and floral. The bitterness lends itself to the toasted aroma and initial flavor, perfectly complimenting the aroma. The is just a bit of sweetness in the mix. It lingers on, along with the bitterness, but last longer, which gives the sensation that the beer gets sweeter after you swallow it. After a few sips, the sides of my mouth felt a slight tug. The bitterness provides the slightest amount of puckering. The beer has a lighter body than I expected. There is plenty of carbonation in each swallow. As I mentioned above, the sweetness lingers on; this is through the coating. The beer goes down so easily. I can feel its strength slightly; after a few rounds this may become a problem. I don't believe that the hops/bitter tastes will ever get overpowering. I could drink this beer all night. I feel so lucky that this beer is brewed and sold so close by. Maine Beer Company have outdone themselves.

 1,750 characters

Zoe from Maine Beer Company
4.19 out of 5 based on 2,455 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.

    Subscribe