Smithwick's Imported Premium Irish Ale
Guinness Ltd.

Smithwick's Imported Premium Irish AleSmithwick's Imported Premium Irish Ale
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Style:
Red Ale - Irish
Ranked #214
ABV:
4.5%
Score:
79
Ranked #47,480
Avg:
3.47 | pDev: 14.7%
Reviews:
885
Ratings:
3,109
From:
Guinness Ltd.
 
Ireland
Avail:
Year-round
Wants
  73
Gots
  687
SCORE
79
Okay
Smithwick's Imported Premium Irish AleSmithwick's Imported Premium Irish Ale
Notes: Smithwick's is a clear beer with a rich ruby color and creamy head. Clean and delicate aroma with different individual notes: from the top fermentation by the Smithwick yeast come aromatic esters creating a fruity aroma. The Aroma Hops added late in the boil contribute clean fresh floral notes. Ale Malt contributes aroma hints of biscuit and caramel.
Refreshing and clean taste with a gentle balance of bitterness from the hops added early in the boil, sweet/malty notes from the ale malt, and hints of roast/coffee from the roasted barley.
Reviews: 885 | Ratings: 3,109 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of BloodSoakedAleMug
BloodSoakedAleMug from New York

3.53/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Look: An almost amber, drabby brown hue with a one finger beige head. Leaves minimal lacing,.

Aroma: Mild caramel and sweet red apples with a touch of floral on the tail end.

Taste: Follows the nose. Sweet. Upfront caramel and mild toffee, it quickly turns into fruity flavors of red apples and plum. A touch of savory toasted peacans or cashews. It's rounded out on the finish by waxy, bitter hints of hop resin. There is a brief red licorice candy flavor as it warms to room temp.

Feel: Crisp but filling. Sweet/dry. Medium body, moderately carbonated.

Overall: This is nice. My one complaint is that the beer has a very short flavor "reveal". In other words, the flavor doesn't stick to your ribs or coat your palate, it's very brief and although it tastes good, just as it gets going, it's over. Regardless, this is a decent Irish Red with good malty, fruity flavor.

I'm not sure why Diageo doesn't push this more. Out of all the beers they make this is probably one of their better offerings and yet I doubt your average beer drinker outside of Ireland even knows this exists. I could see this being a very popular import for the American mass market if they advertised this more, it strikes a pretty solid middle ground between the layman's perception of "light" and "dark" beer.

Feb 23, 2021
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DrBeergood from Ohio

3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

L: Dark and bubbly. Filtered. Looks great, plus, the bottle is classy.

S: Just what you'd expect. Sharp hops, tangy yeast, and roasted barley, balanced nicely. Lovely nose.

T: Big and bready. Crisp hop bite. No extra ingredients--straightforward how I like it.

F: Creamy with a wet finish. Also heavy and low alcohol. I personally can't catch a buzz off of it, but I appreciate the balanced flavors.

O: Good for when you want to look classy while also keeping your BAC in check.

Jan 25, 2021
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InspectorHound from Canada (ON)

3.71/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.75

Look: Clear amber with strong carbonation. Pours with a 3 finger dirty white head on an aggressive pour. After 5 minutes the head is still a mild cover on the top.
Smell: Bright malt. Whole wheat bread dough and floral notes.
Taste: Delicate and very consistent throughout the entire sip. Carmel and cracked wheat bread. I detect a slight bubble gum and tea aftertaste
Feel: Thin bodied with a sweet coating across the tongue.
A classic Irish red ale. Nothing earthshattering but consistent and sessionable. This earns a solid B.

Dec 05, 2020
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Paddy-loves-beer from Pennsylvania

3.5/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Smithwick's, pronounced 'smid-icks', is a very average but solid beer. Nothing to write home about, but also nothing to turn up your nose to. It's one of those beers that you know what you're gonna get with it. Overall solid.

Oct 15, 2020
Photo of cgonz96
cgonz96 from New Jersey

4.15/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Smithwicks was the first beer I ever had more than one of in a single sitting! For me, there are other Irish reds that are much better, but, this is still definitely an option. It is very session-able, especially when with family and friends. It is pretty smooth

Sep 06, 2020
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TedHead from Illinois

3.42/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Pours actually kind of red if you hold it up to the light with a tan head. Smells biscuity and crackers with very slight hop smells of honey and flowers. Taste is also very biscuity but with notes of honey sweetness and just the slightest floral hop flavor to finish it off. Incredibly drinkable and slightly sweeter than others but not in a bad way. Overall it's a solid beer.

Aug 19, 2020
Photo of Grounder
Grounder from Illinois

4.21/5  rDev +21.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours dark copper with light-golden head. Smells like caramel and fruit, taste is predominantly malt and caramel with some fruitiness. Liked it much more than I expected.

Aug 07, 2020
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German-Helles from Wisconsin

4.37/5  rDev +25.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

This is an 11.2 oz. bottle pored into a 16oz. beer glass. This Ale is a very nice dark amber color. I started with an inch and a half of slightly tan foam. The foam slowly settled to a half inch of foam with thick lacing left behind on the sides of the glass.
The aroma is a great malty aroma, very noticeable from the opening of the bottle.
The flavor follows the nose, malty, bready, slightly sweet, with a bit of a bitter finish maybe from the coffee notes , very nice.
The feel is creamy with medium carbonation.
This is a very solid Irish Red Ale, easy to drink and very refreshing.

Jul 22, 2020
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OK_Denise from Oklahoma

3.9/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This is a really decent Red Ale. I can't really complain about any aspect of its taste. There is nothing super special about it, but there is nothing negative either. The pour is smooth and the color is dark and nice. The smell is appropriate for the style and there is no bitter aftertaste. I would drink this again with no problem.

Jul 20, 2020
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BJB13 from Maryland

3.68/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

330 ml bottle poured into a tumbler.

Two fingers of off-white foam tops a clear ruby red body with slow-rising bubbles. The head leaves a bit of lace. The nose is mild but pleasant, mostly malt and features toasted grains, sweet bread-like and caramel aromas. Tasting much as the nose advertises, malty, more bread and toasted grain than caramel, it is lowly sweet and fairly clean. Body-wise it is medium-light, smooth and a little creamy with moderate carbonation. It does have a slight gritty, mouth-coating quality to it that I didn't notice after the first few drinks as it is super easy drinking.

Jun 15, 2020
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realJohnnyHobo from Maryland

3.7/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pronounced Smid-icks - 11.2 oz fl brown glass poured into mug - the brand has a large amount of history and was at one time branded with a Guinness label. As Harp and Diageo have set out to give this beer its own identity, again, with a revamped 2019-2020 label featuring product contents, tasting notes, and identifying this as an " Irish red" ale.

Pours a rusty brown, with a red-tinted hue, I believe Guinness Stout has more red color to it in the sunlight than this ale. There is a large head with a creamy white slowly dissipating lacing throughout the entire top.

The smell is of faint toasted malts, dark bread, and sweet aromas.

Tasting notes include: upfront sweetness, with mids of mild hop bite and caramel tones, finish includes a bit of barely with a smooth creamy texture.

Hops are mild, though present, and the malty flavor of this is complex and sweet. I praise this beer for its smooth mouthfeel and mild carbonation.

Feb 16, 2020
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SmokySignals from North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz. bottle poured into glass shaker tumbler.
Dark orangey/ almost hazel brown, perfectly clear, and nice foamy white head which lasts til the end.

Cool old funky aromas stimulate my imagination of an old castle or musty dungeon, and present as authentic ale

Tastes great, with a snappy hop, rich sharp caramel barley malt, and a nice dryness in the finish.

I dig it on a this sunny Feb. mtn day.

Feb 09, 2020
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Mindcrime1000 from South Dakota

3.33/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pub glass.

Pours crystal-clear amber with a nice foamy and rocky tan head. It stays quite well.

Caramel malts and toasted grains rather forward, with hints of toffee and crusty bread.

The brew is skewed sweet and very simply but decent nonetheless. Caramel malts forward with toasted grain and some floral hops. The brew gets sweeter as it warms.

The brew is well carbonated and has a nice drying, but not crisp, finish.

Overall, a better-than-average macro that is decently representative of the style.

Dec 15, 2019
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Parmesan from Colorado

3.31/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

L:. Pours a dark Ruby Amber with a fizzy white head and some spotty lacing.

S:. Sweet malt, a note of caramel, a note of creamed corn, a light hop.

T:. Sweet malt, some corn, a note of caramel, a light hop.

F:. Lighter body, smooth carb.

O:. A fairly solid red ale.

Dec 07, 2019
Photo of Bsimpson91
Bsimpson91 from Georgia

4.9/5  rDev +41.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 5

Surprised to say, This is a very well made and tasty beer. I wasn't expecting the balance of flavors I got.
To start things off, The look. Delicately poured into a tulip glass. The color is deep amber, so dark it looks more like a brown ale. Ultra filtered and with almost no cap. Lacing is minimal and spoty. Carbonation bubbles are big like one would see in a Soda. Moving along to smell. The aroma is quite nice. Very similar to a stout but slightly subdued. I get the aroma of stewed apples and apple cider. You can slightly smell the roasted malts. Now for taste. At first sip, you swear you were drinking a stout. Starts out sweet and builds up to a rich roasted malt and that Apple cider comes in and becomes dominant. the finish is a well balanced hop character that is not bold but really resolves the flavor with added maltyness coming back at the end. Medium dry for the finish. The feel is light to medium, slight creaminess. big soda-like bubbles create a medium carbonation. Overall, Good beer. Interesting to try at least once. I dont think its a "go-to" for me.

Nov 09, 2019
Photo of Ozzylizard
Ozzylizard from Pennsylvania

3.58/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

$ 11.63 (Including tax and deposit)/6-pack of 11.2 oz bottles ($ 0.173/oz) at Clayton Superfine Supermarket, Clayton, NY. Reviewed 9/4/19.
Bottle dated in code “05:01 LB332GD001” and me without my secret decoder ring. Stored on shelf in store. Stored at 42 degrees and served at 42 degrees in a hand washed and dried Jester King snifter.
Appearance – 4.
First pour – Amber, clear.
Body – Amber, clear.
Head – Large (Maximum five cm, aggressive center pour), off-white, high density and creamy, average retention, retracting to an irregular nine to eighteen mm frothy crown and a thick partial cap. A few irregular pieces of lacing remain after head retraction.
Lacing – Good. Irregular wide band of tiny to small bubbles with some tiny stalactites. See also above.
Aroma – 3.5 – Malty.
Flavor – 3.75 - Taste follows the nose – starts with a bit of sweet malt and finishes by a bit of hoppy bitterness. No alcohol taste or aroma (4.5 % ABV), no diacetyl, no dimethylsulfide.
Palate – 3 – Medium, watery, soft carbonation.
Impression and interpretation – 3.5 (- 0.25 point for coded dated individual container) Very typical example of an Irish Red ale.

Sep 04, 2019
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Tripel_Threat from Michigan

3.79/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Served on tap at Murphy's in Alexandria, VA. Nice aromas of biscuit malt and floral hops. Smooth, creamy feel with caramel and biscuit malt, with floral and herbal hop notes. Smooth, clean finish.

Aug 23, 2019
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puck1225 from Texas

3.52/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass clear reddish brown color with thin whit head but decent lacing. Sweet smell and taste up front. Mild bitterness at the finish. Probably not something I will repeat often.

Aug 02, 2019
Photo of Gajo74
Gajo74 from New York

3.75/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

My favorite thing about this beer is its color. It pours a lovely ruby red with a large frothy head that retains all throughout.
Clean aroma at first, albeit slightly metallic, although this fades. Then, notes of lightly toasted and biscuity amber malts and caramel malts. There is also a touch of earthy hops spice.
The taste highlights dry toasted malts and a light caramel sweetness. A modest hops bitterness provides a gentle spice and semi bright fruity and floral flavors.
Medium to light bodied, crisply smooth and with medium carbonation. Easy drinking with a clean finish.
Simple beer overall with a nice malt flavor. Not something I usually drink, nevertheless I enjoyed it.

Jul 29, 2019
Photo of Thisdrinkinglife
Thisdrinkinglife from Switzerland

3.09/5  rDev -11%
look: 5 | smell: 1 | taste: 3 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Review: 500ml can of Smithwick’s Red Ale: 3.8% vol.

Anytime I am back in the old country Smithwicks is my go to drink on tap, love it when I am out and about as it is an easy ale to stomach and you get a lot for your mileage! Albeit it does tend to make one go to the toilet a bit too often!

Coming all nice and shiny in the famous red coloured colours on the can, with the logo of the castle representing the old city of Kilkenny, “Ireland’s Oldest Ale”

Looks good on the pour, good creamy white head and a dark ruby red colour, as advertised!

Nice enough to look at, with some good lacing and a head that sticks around.

Bit of a disappointment in the smell department, in that it was pretty odorless, just the hint of the grains, the malts and the fruits, but very, very light on the nose.

Light enough taste, soft and light bodied, easy going down the hatch, clean and crisp, nice and smooth.

Getting a nice taste of sweet malts, caramel, the roasted barley and some fruit flavours. Hops are gentle and on the low level. Flavour and tastes are subtle but overall very well balanced to create a beer that is so smooth and clean and crisp in taste and in body.

Light enough, slightly different to what I would normally have on tap which has more of a kick to it and the perfect session ale, a little better to what you would get in the can.

Overall quite smooth and a nice and relaxing beer to have on a slow Sunday afternoon in front of the box. It’s simplicity is what makes this beer, no faffing around with mad potions here. The sweet malts and the roasted barely lovely on the tongue. Yes it’s a winner. The top easy drinking beer, albeit, as mentioned, the tap is far superior to the can, but that’s a given I guess. Always love me old Smithwicks, a fan forever!

Jun 16, 2019
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defunksta from North Dakota

3.58/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a dark copper, brown color. Like bourbon or dark spirits. Pours a tall foamy head reminiscent of a root beer float. (4.00)

Aroma: Light aromas. Some red fruit hops, caramel, molasses and rubbery tobacco aromas. Traces of vague vanilla, cocoa cream, caramel bread and cherry. (3.50)

Taste: Initially only slight floral hops before a strong red fruit, rubber, root beer, and tobacco flavor. Then lots of cream. Reminds me of a root beer float. Yeasty and peppery notes upfront followed by a nutty vanilla, cherry, & caramel backbone that is dry. Hints of vanilla. Almost a cola type of flavor. A lot of nuts and malt, yet clean like cola. Lots of cherry root beer float here. (3.50)

Feel: Crisp and clean and lighter bodied. Lots of flavor for the lower ABV. Good carbonation and finishes peppery, dry on the palate. (4.00)

Compared to Castle Cream 3/4/20: Pours a much darker color .Lighter on the nose. Darker flavors, but lighter, dryer, and cleaner. Less malty and sweet.

Compared to Boddington's Pub Ale 3/11/20: Pours a much darker, amber color. Less head. Has less aroma. Flavor is much more cola and root beer. Less red fruit and cream.

Compared to Sam Adams Boston Lager 4/20/20: Pours a darker color. Stronger aromas. More red fruit, cherry, root beer. Less cinnamon and bread. HOopier and more bitter with less malts and rather different flavors.

Compared to Castle Danger Cream Ale 2/25/21: Darker Color. Stronger aromas. More brown malt aromas of caramel, brown bread, root beer.

Overall: This is a nice dark, but lighter-bodied lager. A wide spectrum of flavors with lots of root beer. Smooth, crisp, and delicious. I would describe it as a much milder steam beer or amber ale. Similar caramel notes to an amber, but lighter in body. Rounded by a strong root beer flavor. Really smooth and flavorful beer for the ABV. Glad I tried this one, it's okay but not great. A little too much rubber and root beer for me. (Final Rating: 3.58)
*Compare to TJ Dark Lager*

May 06, 2019
Photo of Bito24
Bito24 from Pennsylvania

3.56/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.75

Going through an import stage, especially products from England and Ireland. This red ale caught me by surprise. After reading some of the reviews, I wasn’t expecting much. What a pleasant surprise. My best description for this ale is subtlety good. All areas are understated, but put them all together and you have an ale that is better than advertised. I will definitely drink this one again and highly recommend

Apr 06, 2019
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BeerAndGasMasks from Virginia

3.53/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

From the bottle, it pours a clear Irish red, okay..raddish amber color with a large, off-white head that lasts. Light scent of caramel malts in the nose. In the mouth, it is a light flavor of caramel malt and malt. The barest touch of hops as well.

Mar 26, 2019
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HorseheadsHophead from New York

3.88/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Clear dark amber, almost light brown. Capped with a frothy off white head. Great retention and lacing.

Floral and earthy hops on the nose, toasty and rich malt in spades.

Tastes of toffee and toast, caramel, milk chocolate and raisin; with earthy, woody, and slightly floral British hops. Finishes lightly sweet but clean and crisp.

A solid Irish red ale! Makes for a great session beer.

Mar 23, 2019
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paging12 from Virginia

3.2/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

12 oz bottle, poured into a nonic pint glass.

A: A darker amber, denser caramel color. No real head, thin lacing.
S: Sweet, roasty malts.
T: Bready, sweet. One note. Lacking depth. Short finish.
M: Soft, flat.
O: Average, has some flavor. Lackluster, but definitely true to amber beer.

Mar 22, 2019
Smithwick's Imported Premium Irish Ale from Guinness Ltd.
Beer rating: 79 out of 100 with 3109 ratings