Summer Swelter Ale | Baxter Brewing Co.

40 Reviews
Summer Swelter AleSummer Swelter Ale

Brewed by:
Baxter Brewing Co.
Maine, United States

Style: Herbed / Spiced Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.70%

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our first unfiltered offering, Summer Swelter Ale is the perfect warm weather beer! Summer Swelter Ale is light and refreshing while still keeping your taste buds interested. The malt base features a hefty dose of wheat for a big, fluffy head and a soft, round body, yet keeps the beer drinkable even during the dog days. The light malt character is more than balanced by a blend of citrusy American hops, giving Swelter a crisp bitterness without being overpowering. The hoppy citrus aroma complements the ingredients that make this beer so unique: lemon and lime peel, Kaffir lime leaves, and lemongrass provide an subtle yet unmistakeable floral nose and just a touch of bracing tartness, taking the refreshment of Swelter to the next level.

Added by Jason on 04-21-2012

For Trade:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Reviews: 40 | Ratings: 209
Photo of cbutova
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- Hazy golden copper body into a tulip from the can. The head is white, fluffy and rises to a half inch high. Good retention and several large blankets of lace.

S- Herbal and citrus driven aroma. The lemongrass definitely comes out strong and beyond that there are general zesty citrus hints and cooking herb notes. Just a touch of cereal grains.

T- Takes on more of a lime feel, actually big time, in the flavor as the bitter peel and some lime juice notes take hold. Balancing out the lime are notes of lemongrass, wood, earthy cooking herbs and general citrus pith. Cereal grains and yeast bread lay down a foundation.

MF- Light bodied overall but the texture builds up with a substantial creaminess and frothy feelings. High end carbonation leading into the bitter citrus peel finish.

Carries itself with plenty of herbal and citrus centered flavors. Best of all none of the ingredients dominate and it finds itself coming on smoothly with a light but creamy body. The lime ends up shining.

 999 characters

Photo of Bierliebhaber3
3.8/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

This ale pours an interesting, opaque dark yellow color with a medium foamy white head. The smell is nice and summery with fairly strong notes of citrus. The flavor is quite pleasant and summery also. There are flavors of lemon, lime, and some bitter hops in the finish. For me the lemongrass is pretty much drowned out by the lemon and lime flavor, which is not too surprising because it’s a pretty subtle flavor, though those flavors aren’t overwhelming themselves and are complementary to the hops. The body is fairly light and refreshing. This is a very solid summer beer and I quite like it though I think that some would probably prefer something even lighter and crisper on a hot summer day.

 702 characters

Photo of BranfordBound
3.45/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

From the 12oz can into a Sam Adam's perfect pint this beer comes out a hazy honey color with a dense white head.

Smell is pretty resinous with the hops, but also a big twinge of lemongrass and herbs, subtle sweetness in the back. At first sip it starts pretty citrusy, some lemon tang, but it's washed away by a blast of bitterness, some herbal flavors. While it's supposed to be hoppy, these appear to be more bittering hops than aroma or taste, and overall the beer is way to bitter for the flavors. I would have preferred this to be sweeter for the summer.

Body is medium, refreshing carb but I can't get past the bitterness.

 630 characters

Photo of JNPIII127
4.85/5  rDev +31.1%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.75

i got this one in a variety pack of craft beers and was pleasantly surprised. the flavor was very hop forward but finished less bitter than expected. overall a good beer.

 170 characters

Photo of thebeers
3.64/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Cloudy golden yellow with some orange tint, a healthy white head and decent lacing. Lime, lemon and some biscuity malts on the nose. Pretty thin mouthfeel. Lemongrass up front in the taste, along with some of the same lime and biscuits from the aroma, but the bitter aftertaste is what stands out. It's okay.

 312 characters

Photo of BostonBrewRu
4.38/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured half in a glass and the smell kinda overwhelmed me. A ton of lemon grass and lime. Drank the rest from a can and it really let you focus on the taste. Dry, bitter, a touch of citrus. Tasty.

 196 characters

Photo of johnnnniee
3.37/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

On tap at Firefly
Slightly hazy light golden color medium short lived head. Spicy earthy hop bite clashes a bit with the citrus and spice that at times are overbearing. One and done for this guy.

 195 characters

Photo of sprat1960
3.68/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Look: Straw-yellow in color; hazy and opaque. Pours with a 3 finger rich creamy head that dies down leaving a thin, uneven coating of foam on the surface of the beer. Some sticky lacing on the sides of the glass.

Smell: Citrus, mild hoppy aroma with a noticeable lime scent. Interesting and refreshing.

Taste: Mild malt combined with tart lemon-lime flavor with a mild hoppy, somewhat bitter finish. Interesting.

Feel: Medium body, slight pucker from the lemon-lime and a mild dry finish.

Overall: This is a good for the style of beer it is - a summer ale. It is refreshing and would be good on a hot day. Summer ales are not my favorite type of beer; however this is one of the better ones that I have had.

 722 characters

Photo of ManapuaMan
3.55/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presents a nice blend of a traditional pale ale with notes of lemon, wheat and fresh cut grass. Very drinkable with the lemon coming through to confront the heat of the summer sun. Drinks smooth throughout and finishes with a clean bitter taste. Good beer.

 256 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.61/5  rDev -2.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap 5/8/2015 at Track 84 in Warwick, RI served in a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a deep yellow color, with a large white head that fades slowly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains lemon, wheat spices, light caramelized malts and a touch of hops.

T: The taste starts out bready with flavors of wheat and a thin malt character. Then some mildly sweet flavors of lemon and spices come in. The hops presence is very mild but brings a decent balance. The after-taste is slightly bready.

M: Crisp and smooth, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean.

O: Tasty, goes down easily, not too filling, mild kick, decent representation of style, this is a decent beer but there are better choices if you’re looking for a lawnmower beer.

 783 characters

Photo of metter98
3.62/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is very hazy yellow in color and has some particulates visible floating in suspension. It poured with a finger high white head that died down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles on the surface, a collar around the edge, and a coating of lacing around the edge of the glass.
S: Light aromas of Kaffir lime leaves are present in the nose.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste is dominated by flavors of Kaffir lime leaves and also has some hints of lemongrass. The taste of lime leaves linger through the finish.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is easy to drink, but I wouldn’t consider it to be something that would be very refreshing or thirst quenching on a hot summer day.

Serving type: can

 777 characters

Photo of WhiteHillsStore
3.7/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance is a light yellow with a fizzy white head. The smell was great with a lot of orange and lime scents coming through strong. The taste was nice enough with some of those lime and orange flavors, although it seemed more of a zest in the beginning than a major part of the beer. The mouthfeel was light and refreshing. Nice for summer, almost like a lime radler, but overall not as impressive as I had hoped.

 415 characters

Photo of tkdchampxi
3.9/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Received this as part of a variety pack. What a pleasant surprise! Very drinkable and refreshing. Great drinking, talking, summer beer.

I always love the kind of beer that just goes down easy and makes your summer day a little bit brighter.

 243 characters

Photo of mvanaskie13
3.74/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a tumbler: color is straw, opaque and dense looking, nice bright white head that presents 1/2 inch thick then dissipates to a ring and light top.

Smell is light, fresh, floral, with some grassy and earthy hop undertones.

Taste is more towards the wheat malt base with biscuit, bread and toast intermingling; spice and additions create a floral flavor, light lemongrass and even some lavender.

Mouthfeel is pleasant at first with nice flavors then drying hops and carbonation overtake. I'd like the flavors to last a bit longer.

Overall, a very nice wheat beer with good wheat flavor presence and unique aromas from the additions.

 645 characters

Photo of newaquarius
3.28/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Wasn't a big fan. It sounded impressive from the description and i was excited about the citrus tones which is what i look for in a summer beer and this one in particular sounded good. Unfortunately i was disappointed. The initial lemony/hoppy taste in great but then there's this lingering herbaly aftertaste that really bothers me. It kinda plays a trick on your mouth between a refreshing summer beer and a rugged ipa. and dont get me wrong i love rugged ipas but in this fashion it just doesn't really work. Anyway a little disappointed that i still have 2 of these in the pack but overall the beer is by no means terrible.

 627 characters

Photo of puboflyons
3.71/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

From the 12 fl. oz. can stamped on the bottom with "Penguin-04-07-14-SSA5661. " Sampled on June 18, 2014

It has a cloudy, foggy pale yellow pour with a modest white fizzy head that eventually fades down.

The thing about the aroma is that it has a kind of olive oil or buttery sensation with those pale malts and crisp, clean hops. Sometimes that's bad but in this case it seems to balance out well.

The body is light and refreshing.

The taste has a nice toasted biscuit malt character but unlike the aroma there is more of a citrus-like character kicking in. This works on a hot day like today.

 600 characters

Photo of illpass78
3.22/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

12 oz can poured into a craft glass.

Appearance: Pours a hazy, heavily carbonated yellow with a big white head. Minimal lacing.

Aroma: Some severe nose action here. Lemon and lime dominate, and there's also some leaves and hops. But there's also this weird off-putting note that kind of smells like a urinal cake or detergent. Thankfully it doesn't show up in the flavor profile.

Taste: Lots of lemon. It's quite bitter and seems reasonably hoppy. It's decent, but basically just a really lemony light ale. Some wheat is also noticeable.

Mouthfeel: Good summer-level depth.

Overall: Interesting summer offering. If you like lemons and weirdness, you'll probably big this. Not a revelation but not a drainpour either.

 721 characters

Photo of lou50rp
3.4/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice yellow, unfiltered color with a white head and some .
Smell is citrusy with a bit of hoppiness
Starts with a lemony citrus and finishes with a definite hop bitterness
Medium mouth feel, good for a summer brew
Hard to describe this brew. Sort of a cross between a hefeweizen with a wedge of lemon and a medium strength IPA. Ok, but probably not a repeater.

 360 characters

Photo of Boto
3.47/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Draught: This one pours a clear golden color. There was a decent sized white head on it that left some lacing. It has a lighter nose. Nice, but not much to it. Maybe some wheat, lemon and spices. The taste is good, but a little light also. Floral and earthy notes. OK

 267 characters

Photo of BeerAdvocate
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

From BeerAdvocate magazine Issue #67 (August 2012):

LOOK: Hazed yellow glow, good frothing

SMELL: Herbal, mineral, citrus rind, grassy, biscuits, lime juice

TASTE: Lighter body, smooth, macerated limes, herbal, lime leaves, lemon rind, fresh grass, grainy, bitter; slightly dry, bready finish

Not your typical summer brew—rather than just pushing out the usual citrus-infused Wheat or Blonde Ale, Baxter uses both lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves on top of the lemon and lime additions. Each sip smacks of all of this. Stays drinkable and keeps our palates in check. Baxter, making the summer interesting.

 612 characters

Photo of u2carew
3.79/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can.
A) Pours with a big white head that slowly settles leaving big bubble lacing at the edge of the glass. Unfiltered hazy yellow gold body. Semi-sticky lacing on the drink down.
S) Fruity notes of orange and lemon. Grainy. Not overly aromatic.
T) Definitely pick out the spice from the first sip - Lemongrass and Kaffir lime. Other citrus notes mix in well. Noticeable hops in the in finish.
M) Light bodied. Smooth and creamy. Slightly dry in the finish.
O) A delicious brew for a hot day. The spices are a pleasant addition.

 533 characters

Photo of Cavanaghty
3.65/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a can into a pint glass.

Appearance: Hazy yellow with a thick white head, no lacing on the glass.

Smell: Pine and lemons for the most part, with some hints of other citrus fruits and hops.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Smooth medium bodied. Taste bitter and sour from the lemons, with some grassy wheat notes as well.

Overall: Not bad, I have had it a couple times now, and I would drink this if it was offered to me again.

 426 characters

Photo of MarkQ617
3.21/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

This was a decent offering and my first beer from Baxter. I had it on tap at the Tip Tap Room. It was surprisingly clear for an unfiltered offering. The golden color was still nice, with a big frothy head. The tartness of the citrus was a bit much...almost to the point of being sour. Not bad overall.

 301 characters

Photo of dbrauneis
3.74/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served on-tap at The Tip Tap Room in Boston, MA

A: Pours a hazy medium yellow in color with moderate to heavy amounts of visible carbonation and some golden yellow highlights. The beer has a finger tall fluffy white head that reduces to a couple of small thin patches, a very thin film covering the majority of the remainder of the surface of the beer, and a medium thick ring at the edges of the glass. Moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Light to moderate aromas of wheat and cereal grain malts along with moderate aromas of citrus/lemon hops.

T: Upfront there are light to moderate flavors of wheat and cereal grain malts that have just a touch of sweetness. Light to moderate flavors of citrus/lemon/lime hops and just a hint of grassy hops. Light to moderate amounts of bitterness that fades after a short while.

M: Light bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: An interesting take on a summer beer, this one is not quite a light/thin as the others in that style...maybe that is a reflection of the slightly more temperate summers they experience in Maine. Low in ABV but not the easiest to drink and not sure I would call it sessionable.

 1,165 characters

Photo of mdfb79
3.88/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From 08/17/12 notes. Bought a can of this at the Publick House in Boston, MA. Poured into a pint glass.

a - Pours a hazy medium yellow color with one finger of fluffy bright white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of bready malts, wheat, grains, light lemon, and light citrus. Not bad at all but lots of bread and not much lemon or lime; just a little weak.

t - Tastes of bready malts, grains, wheat, citrus hops, floral hops, fruity malts, lemon, and lime. Definitely a step up from the nose and a lot more going on here. This is pretty much what I was looking for.

m - Medium body and moderate carbonation. Body is pretty smooth.

o - Overall a pretty nice low ABV summer beer. Brewed with lemongrass and lime, they don't come through a lot in the nose but do in the taste. A nice crisp beer worth checking out.

 833 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Summer Swelter Ale from Baxter Brewing Co.
3.7 out of 5 based on 209 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.