Casco Bay Summer Ale | Casco Bay Brewing Co.

36 Reviews
Casco Bay Summer AleCasco Bay Summer Ale

Brewed by:
Casco Bay Brewing Co.
Maine, United States

Style: American Blonde Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): not listed

Availability: Summer

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our hugely popular Summer Ale exploded onto the scene just two short years ago. Light, yet flavorful, this brew complements seafood, steak or salad equally well. Balanced, with an aromatic hop finish, the Summer Ale brings sunshine to your stomach.

Added by Todd on 07-27-2001

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Reviews: 36 | Ratings: 48
Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.59/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bought this up at Total in River Edge the other night, having never had this or seen any beers from Casco Bay before. I'm not a huge fan of Summer offerings and this didn't change my mind regarding those. At the same time, this was a perfectly enjoyable Blonde Ale that went down easily and was light enough to make me think that this was a Kolsch or even a Gose!

Nice pour to this as the blonde hue of this beer shone through and complemented the soft and fizzy head well. Not a lot of body to this and there was a sour grape and grain aroma to this that came on strong from the get-go. Lemon zest, grass, and wood in the taste matched up nicely with the sharpness of the pale malt and the bubbly carbonation. This almost felt like wine or champagne and it went down just as easily as those, even as the floral and herbal notes came out in the back. The mouthfeel was quite light and somewhat juicy as this went down so smoothly and easily.

The alcohol was real light here and this would make for a wonderful session beer once the acquired taste settled in. While not a standout, there was enough to like here and for someone up in New England, the woody and slightly funky undertone here would fit in perfectly with a day out on the lake fishing or kicking back. A fun beer that took a bit of getting used to for me, but well worth the near-bargain that it went for in the store.

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Photo of Omnium
3.63/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle > Pint Glass

A - Clear yellow one finger fizzy white head, very little lacing.
S - Wheat, lots of grain, slight citrus zest.
T - Light lemon sweetness, slight grain, and balanced wheat on the end. Could benefit from some grassy or floral hops
M - Clean and bright, very drinkable.
O - Decent summer ale, refreshing and light.

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Photo of KickInTheChalice
3.45/5  rDev -5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: Pure golden color, transparent with a fizzy 2 inch white head. The bubbles audibly pop and the head fades to nothing.

Smell: Buttery pale malt, with a general fruitiness and soft floral hops.

Taste: I like the transition of flavors, and it does have a little bit of flavor kick for a summer ale. It starts out sharp, with silky smooth pale malt, some light fruitiness, before the hoppyness comes into play. Generally bitter leafy hops eventually reveal a floral character. The finish is dry and bitter.

Mouthfeel: On par with the other Casco's I have had. Bubbly carbonation is noticeable, but calling it crisp would be an overstatement. As the hoppy flavors come into play, the feel dries out somewhat.

Drinkability: The extra hops and bitterness are a new take on the style, but I wasn't really going for something hoppy here. Maybe another time I would like it better.

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Photo of zeff80
3.8/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Poured out a translucent, golden-orange color with a white, bubbly two-finger head of foam. It left a little lace.

S - It smelled of caramel, grains and grasses.

T - This beer leads of with some sweet caramel, touches of honey and a subtle hop bitterness.

M - It was crisp and sharp with a smooth finish. A light bodied summer ale.

D - This was a good blonde ale. It is refreshing and tasty on a warm summer day.

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Photo of strengthdoc
3.8/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this on tap at a hole in the wall pizza place in Freeport, ME while waiting on a pizza to go. The aroma was nicely balanced. The beer was a pale golden color and the taste was nice and smooth with a mild hop bitterness in the finish. This is a nice refreshing summer ale.

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Photo of deltatauhobbit
3.65/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Last of my missing Casco Bay beer reviews for this site, review from two years prior, not sure how much their beers have changed since they were partnered with Shipyard.

Pours a golden color with a good sized head, fades slowly to leave some good lacing.

Smell is a good balanced between the malt and a light hop presence.

Taste is light and crisp, leans more towards the malt side of things but does have a decent citrusy/hop aftertaste.

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Photo of hopdog
3.41/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle best before 7 05.

Poured a medium and cloudy amber color with a small sized white head. Aromas and tastes of citrus (lemons and oranges), light grass and some wheat. Lighter aromas than the tastes. Medium sweet with a light hop finish.

Notes from: 6/24/05

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Photo of thekevlarkid
3.65/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brought this bottle back from a little trip to Vacationland! Out of the bottle it was a clear, deep honey gold color with a two-finger head of yellow-tinted foam. The head retained fairly well as a tight cap and the lacing was average. The aroma was bright and inviting, floral hops, dry malt and hints of wood. The flavors were quite similar though the malt took on more presence. At first I got the slightly citric and floral hops followed by the robust malt which were big and woody for a summer beer. The finish was a little oily but not bad tasting and it really coated my tongue. The mouthfeel was good but the carbonation a little fizzy and slightly rough. This was a good beer but certainly non-traditional for summer as it was rather filling.

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Photo of smcolw
3.18/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Completely clear with light amber color. Chaulky white head with excellent lacing.

Quite earthy for such a light beer. Lots of dry malt presence with light grapefruit hop in the background.

Super dry, astringent really. Flavors of bark mulch and butter Moderate to low body with strong carbonation. Low hop and nearly no aftertaste. Overall, this is a mild beer with lots of earth tones.

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Photo of Greenlabel
3.98/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Being a hop-lover, I'm not usually impressed with products labeled as Summer Ales. However, having enjoyed other Casco Bay products, I decided to purchase a fresh 6-pack at a Kappys Liquors and give it a try.

Poured a pleasant orangy brown color with a good and lasting head. It's smell seemed almost non-existent but it looked appealing. To my surprise, the typical mild citrusy taste also had some reasonable hop bite to it. More like a good Golden Ale - inoffensive but quite tasty at the same time.

One of the best Summer Ales I've come across - a solid choice for a sessionable product during these too-short summer months.

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Photo of indiapaleale
3.88/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a deep golden color with about a finger and a half of head on top. A fine looking pour. The Casco Bay Summer is clean and clear in appearance with some nice bubbles bouncing around.

Smells sweet and sugary with a faint hint of citrus from the hops perhaps. A bit of apple cider comes out as well. Not a lot of strong smells with this one.

Taste is fruit esters, juicy and quite thirst quenching. There is a nice hop finish that balances this one out nicely. No major complaints from this light blonde beer. All around its a mighty tasty summer ale.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.53/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

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

S: The aroma is of light malts and citrus sweetness along with a good amount of hops.

T: The taste is decently balanced with flavors of citrus fruits, light caramelized malt sand some spice. There’s a good hops presence for the style. The after-taste is slightly bitter.

M: Smooth and very crisp, light body, medium-to-heavy carbonation, finish is clean and dry.

D: Tasty, goes down easily, not filling at all, good representation of style however I think it might be more of an APWA, mild kick, this is a good beer to drink for a while, but it wouldn’t be my first choice if I were looking for a lighter beer.

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Photo of Bowdoinbeerboy
4/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- Pours a very light brown color with tracers of carbonation and a small off white head that quickly dissipates.

Smell- Floral nose with hints of spice.

Taste- Floral hints are reflected in taste as well, somewhat of a peppery taste, quite pleasant and refreshing, just a bit of hoppy bite too.

Mouthfeel- Very crisp on tongue and leaves a not wholly unpleasant tingly sensation on palate.

Drinkability- A delicious brew, having a few of these would be delightful on a hot day.

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Photo of albern
3.77/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this beer on tap at one of the outdoor, on the deck, restaurants in Portland. I'm assuming that the beer may be slightly fresher than that served out of town. The down side is that they serve this in a plastic cup, so the smell, head, retention, and lacing are all compromised. It all appears to be about average, but I could be way off here. This is a refeshing, slightly citrusy ale that is light to medium bodied and very sessionable. I detected a nice balance between hops and malts, with little malty aftertaste that lingered. There may be some interesting fruity notes to this one as well. I will be sure to review this in the bottle, but if you are on one of the Portland decks and need a nice summer ale, Casco Bay is well worth seeking out. Perhaps you can get it served in a glass if you aren't hanging outside drinking.

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Photo of jwc215
3.38/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Maybe this one was knocked around or something because despite a careful pour, it came out all head, and foam continued to come out of the bottle. When it eventually settled (which it did with not too much time), it was hazy yellow.

The smell is of lemon grass with a slight metallic tinge.

The taste is of sweet lemon. A hint of grassiness. Crisp malt. Some earthy/woody hops give it a refreshingly dry finish. That unfortunate metallic tinge that was in the aroma is (barely) noticeable in the taste.

It's appropriately light - not too watery, though.

A decent summer refresher.

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Photo of edchicma
3.88/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden yellow with a half-inch head with excelelnt lacing. Aromas is grassy ...hoppy. Initial malt presence sustains itself with a good hop presence at the back palate, ending in a dry note. Mouthfeel is a very good combination of smooth and dry. Drinkability is very good...very refreshing.

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Photo of ViveLaChouffe
3.19/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours a lightly hazy golden hue. Bright with a thin cream colored head. Smells sweet and citrusy. Crisp pale malt aromas. Lovely.

Taste is a letdown. Crisp pale malt, a bit of faint snappy hops. A bit lifeless. The appealing citrus smell so lively in the aroma is gone as it crosses the tongue. Crisp and light bodies. Finishes clean and is quite the sessionable brew. The taste just leaves me wanting more, even from a light ale. A just passable summer beer.

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Photo of cbl2
2.4/5  rDev -33.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Drink before 9/24/06.


Pours a hazy dark gold with no head on top, but only a wisp of white lace around the rim of the glass.


Bitter stale sweat socks. I'm not looking forward to this.


Soapy and metallic with an odd bitter medicinal flavor to it. Mouthfeel is smooth and pleasant, but all the flavors are screaming no to me. I've had two from the six pack so far, so this isn't just a bad bottle, but a bad beer.

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Photo of lordofthewiens
3.7/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was a pretty good beer. It was a clear orange color, with a medium-sized head and some nice carbonation. It had a sweet, citrus aroma. The taste was citrus, with some hops. Fairly assertive. A pleasant beer to drink, one that I'd enjoy in the summer (if it ever gets here).

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Photo of Tallboy
3/5  rDev -17.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a nice orange with a light-tan foamy head. Well carbonated, and leaves bits of spotty lacing.The scent was all citrus in the aroma with hints of sweet hops.The taste was all hops and malt. The Mouthfeel was crisp and verry carbonated. My Overall opinion is that this a beer I can drink and enjoy on a nice summer instead of lemonade.

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Photo of jdhilt
3.41/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a white, two finger-head that vanishes slowly leaving some lace. Clear, light amber color. Light carbonation and light bodied. Nose is faintly hoppy and malty. Starts on the sweet side, with a hoppy but clean finish. A nice summer ale. $1.27 for a 12oz bottle from Tulley's Beer & Wine Wells, Me.

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Photo of Boilermaker88
3.73/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presented in a 12oz bottle bearing a "best if drank before" date of 08-21-2005 on the label. Poured into an imperial pint glass.
Good thing I used the impy pint glass; even with a modest pour this brew displayed a big fluffy white head perched over a clear tangerine-colored liquid. Tons of fine carbonation constantly rushing upwards kept the head stoked to the point it never fully faded away. Ghostly lace was left behind. Pretty good-looking beer.
Nose was full of grassy malts, fruitily floral notes, lemon zest and hints of herbal hops. Had a solid malt base and sweet fruitiness that held up well and balanced out the lively citric tang and herbal finish. Finish had a definite herbal bite, almost metallic. The feel was light, crisp and refreshing yet seemed to have more body than the "usual" blonde ale.
Overall, Casco Bay's Summer Ale was a pretty good summertime refesher, well suited for relaxing with after some time spent kicking around in the pool. Easily quaffed and had me looking for a second.

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Photo of Gavage
4.3/5  rDev +18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Clear orange in color with a short 1/2" head. Mild lacing develops. Aroma is of lemon citrus and some floral hops. Flavor is pretty bold for a summer ale, as a decent malt level is nicely balanced with a floral bitterness and strong lemon tones. Not overbearing in the flavor department, but much more flavorful then other summer or blond ales.

Light to medium in body. Very crisp at the start and with a mildly crisp and clean finish. Superbly drinkable as this is refreshing and has a nice flavor that doesn't bore you.

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Photo of AlexJ
3.92/5  rDev +8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours crisp, clear honey colored with a healthy white head that leaves trickles of lace as it fades. Slightly sweet, malty aroma quickly gives way to bright citrus hops. Taste has a bready malt character that is balanced by citrus hops. Hoppier than I anticipated with a touch of lemon, melon, and faint florals. Very crisp, clean tasting and thirst quenching. Medium body, not thin like I was expecting. Hoppy finish leaves me reaching for another. This beer is a pleasant surprise!

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Photo of mschofield
4.03/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours an orange-amber topped with a three finger light-tan foamy head. Well carbonated, and leaves bits of spotty lacing.
Lemon, grass, wheat touch, citrus in the aroma.
Zesty hops in the taste, reminded me of the bitterness in a good pilsner. Fruit, berry, light toffee, lightly carmelized sugar.
Light bodied, dry and crisp, a bit tangy.
It really grew on me as I drank and made me want another

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Casco Bay Summer Ale from Casco Bay Brewing Co.
3.63 out of 5 based on 48 ratings.
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