Boat Beer | Carton Brewing Company

166 Reviews
Boat BeerBoat Beer

Brewed by:
Carton Brewing Company
New Jersey, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.20%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Described by the brewer as more of an American Pale Ale. It's not an India Pale Ale.

Boat Beer is designed to be complex enough to merit drinking a few without being crippled by alcohol. Kolsch yeast and German malts are combined to be crisp and refreshing, while a generous amount of American hops have been added to keep it remarkable. Expect it to dance out of the glass with a whack of grapefruit and open into a crisp, stony tangle of white and yellow fruit with pine and moss notes. An IPA for everyday drinking, drink boat beer when you are thirsty from softball, fishing, or explaining why your team is best.

Session Ale
ABV: 4.2% | IBU: 35 | SRM: 3.5

Added by Citadel82 on 10-24-2011

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 166 | Ratings: 1,247
Photo of thebeers
4.1/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Extremely hazy pale yellow with three fingers of soapy, bright white head that leaves little lacing.

Lemon, grapefruit, soap and a light floral element in the nose.

Delicate flavor -- like a slightly watered mix of grapefruit juice and lemonade -- with a dull, pithy aftertaste.

Heavy bodied for a session ale, with a full mouthfeel that's simultaneously pulpy and gently prickly.

Does start to seem a little sweet by the end of the pint, but has way more depth and body that most sessions. I'm digging it.

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Photo of jhartley
4.34/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Canned on 2/28/17! Poured, straight from the fridge, into a Snorkel glass.

Appearance: Cloudy yellow-green (but only a little) body with a 1/2 finger's worth of head that leaves some nice lacing in the glass.

Aroma: Juicy orange and citrus, piney hops.

Taste: Very clean tasting dry malts and a hint of hoppiness on the end to add a slight bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Crisp and dry. Super easy drinker here.

Overall: This one definitely lives up to it's description of "sessions ale". The perfect beer for a hot day. Crisp and refreshing with just enough hops to balance the dry malts.

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Photo of tigg924
4.49/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours slightly hazy, medium carbonation, light orange in color with 1/4 inch head. Taste is apricot, lemon, and pine. Super light bodied, slightly bitter, with moderate carbonation. Really tasty session beer. Amazing how much flavor is in a beer with such low ABV. I would get this every weekend if I could get it on a regular basis.

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Photo of DrederickTatum
2.86/5  rDev -29.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

I've had this many times and I keep wanting to like it but I guess it's just not for me. Smells nice enough with a good mix of citrus and pine but the taste is where it turns south for me. I mostly get astringent bitterness with a very small hint of grapefruit and nothing else. For the abv it's not exactly bad but I'm a little confused by the high ratings this gets.

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Photo of frykid
4.25/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

L: a light, pale yellow color...cloudy
S: light citrus aromas
T: tastes of lemon, orange......tastes of some orange zest lingering on the palate
F: carbonation levels moderate, very good

overall, an excellent that I will definitely have again when I see it out or in the store.

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Photo of q33jeff
2.12/5  rDev -47.9%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2


Aroma: lemon , citrus, Taste is ashtray and grapefruit. Appearance: yellow hazy, white head small.
Not pleasant. Like a punch on the face.


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Photo of Cachookie
4.67/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

When I picked up this beer, I fully expected it to be a slightly watered down version of the higher ABV versions Carton offers, boy was I wrong. This beer is fantastic. Pours very light in color with a fair amount of carbonation, gold in the glass. The nose picks up fruit, grapefruit in particular. Such a light mouth feel, but very satisfying. Crisp and a tremendous clean finish that leaves a nice piney taste on the tongue, but not overpowering the complexities of this session beer. This could very easily be my go to on a hot summer day, as the ABV is not gonna knock you for a loop. Great beer!

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Photo of soze47
4.22/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Nice corny color with beautiful fluffy head. My gauge on smell is tricky as the guy next to me is eating pungent food. Taste is crisp, zesty, and tangy all in great balance. I need to try homebrewing with some acidulated malt - cool concept. Great beer.

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Photo of zsponring
4.27/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.25

Exactly what I want out of a session, easy drinking, refreshing, light carbonation. Could crush these all day without hesitation. Easily one of my favorite sessions.

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Photo of funkybuddhism
2.57/5  rDev -36.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I poured this beer from a fresh can that was canned less than a week ago on 10/27/16.

Pine bomb. Very much an east-coast style pale ale. Tastes thin and boring. Appears yellow and fizzy. I don't understand how this has such a high rating.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
4.26/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

what a great beer this is, neat to see it on tap out here in colorado. nothing quite like it i reckon, hazy straw colored to yellow, creamy looking, with a tall white head and plenty of haze to it. an aroma of juicy hops, really pungent and heavy on the dry hop it seems. sort of a northwestern grapefruit complexion to it, but really clean and bright, not so oily and heavy. the flavor is the same, really hop driven but something a little different there, juicy is accurate, but its not just fruity, its also herbal and super fresh, i wonder which varietals are in here. bitterness is rather low, and there is an appreciable european component here, maybe the malts are some sort of euro pale type, it has a little more character than a flavorless session ipa type usually does on that front. the yeast too is a litte doughy but light, and makes for a much more complete and flavorful experience than i am used to in session beer, even the good ones. i love how alive it feels with the bubbles and the lighter but still creamy body, this is the kind of beer you want to start and end every day with, i would crush so much of this if these cans came out this way...

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Photo of dsa7783
3.84/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Sampled on tap at Verona Inn. Pours a lucid, golden hue with minimal frothing. Mild, mellow aroma reminiscent of fresh pears and apples. Tropical flavor profile without too much hop bitterness. Easily sessionable.

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Photo of aleigator
3.78/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Pours an entirely hazed orange-golden pulp color with a medium sized, bubbly head.

Smells of a flower accompanied fruit blend consisting of fresh squeezed lemon, ripe orange and a hint of juicy mango. Has a herbal undertone with wet grass and a hint of cakey sweet malts.

Offers a higher carbonation, while the beer's mouthfeel remains soft, with light, refreshing, yet hoppy taste.

Tastes of a mineralic aqueous beginning with dry lemon peel, unripe oranges and sweeter malts. More lemon becoms apparent during the mid palate with an utmost light and refreshing, dry finish.

Borderline watery due to its light body, while establishing a crisp and dry hop profile, which keeps the palate entertained.

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Photo of joe1510
4.04/5  rDev -0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

16oz Can

A big, huge thanks to my man, Sammyjaxxxx! Cheers, dude! Boat Beer is another one of those fruit juice looking IPAs from the northeast. It's a cery pale orange, bordering on golden. Looks a lot like pineapple juice, actually. The foam is perfectly white and ultra creamy as it reaches a finger in height on the pour. It shows good staying power as the cap sticks around from first sip to last and leaves behind sheet lacing after each drink.

The nose is big and bold in the hop department. It's pretty complex as well. Pithy grapefruit starts it off along with grapefruit and orange peel. The middle is vaguely tropical in a way that I can't pick out any of the actual tropical fruit involved. The backend is pine driven and slightly herbal. Bready malts round this guy out.

The pine and hoppy herbal qualities take the lead in the flavor profile. Those two kick it off while the middle leans more toward grapefruit pith and citrus. As the citrus pushes through the pine begins to join again. That herbal bitterness takes over on the swallow. The bready malts are rich and fit well with the comlex hop profile.

The body weighs in at moderate with a surprisingly plush mouthfeel when taking the low abv into consideration. The carbonatios is active and keeps the beer moving at a good clip, but it never reaches that overly aggressive place. A firm bitterness hits with each drink and the finish dries up fairly quickly. Saying this beer is highly drinkable simply isn't saying enough.

This is my first hoppy beer from Carton and I'm a fan. It packs a big punch in a small package. It's got a fun, complex hop profile and a good bitterness on the swallow. It's plush and easy to put away. This beer is certainly appropriately named. Thanks again, Sammyjaxxxx,! Good choice!

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Photo of ELS
3.52/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a slightly above average session IPA, nothing special. I think the high ratings are due to the fact that for a low abv beer, it packs a nice little hop punch. Unfortunately, I think the hops just aren't that pleasing. They're a bit astringent and linger poorly on the palette. I pick up the grapefruit, but then just a sharp bitter taste that doesn't work for me. Otherwise it drinks pretty easy. Glad I tried it but will not seek out.

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Photo of llerrafnad
4.73/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75


Piney, Juicy, everything you need a beer to be for a drinking session.

Best to have at a BBQ or on a beach where you want a pack of flavor and not to knock you out.

Worth buying in large quantities.


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Photo of orcrist_cleaver
4.14/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Lemon chiffon body, pith white head. Spotty lacing.

S: Peachy-apricot. Light tones of mint. White fleshed fruit. A tad spicy, lemongrass.

M: Smooth. Crisp. Light.

T: Lemon peel, grapefruit juice. Tangerine sweetness moderated with some grassy hops. Woodsy tartness. Too Light a feel for an APA, but dank citrus hops have an awesome 'mossy' flavor. Green, fresh and crisp. Everything works well together here.

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Photo of woemad
3.68/5  rDev -9.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

16oz can ninja’d to my mailbox by SammyJaxxx. According to the stamp on the bottom, this was canned on March 24, 2016.

Poured into an Iron Goat pint glass, this was a hazy, “lemonaid-y”, straw-like gold color, with a bone-white head that was creamy looking and pockmarked by bubbles on the surface.

Lightly floral and lemony citrus hop aroma, along with some grassy notes.

Light in the flavor department, but not to an unpleasant degree. It’s not something that seems “vacant” the way a lot of summer blond ales do. At 35 IBUs, there’s considerable hop flavor packed into something that has the same percentage of alcohol as a Bud Lite. What keeps me from scoring higher is that there’s also a sharp, astringent thing happening just after the tastebuds get their first bit of flavor and kind of dominates to the fadeout that if at a slightly higher level would be downright unpleasant. The malts contribute a modest backbone, not much else. Lightly dry at the swallow.

Light bodied, with a watery and slightly prickly mouthfeel.

If not for the sharp, astringent thing that sort of takes over, I’d really dig this as a warm weather beer. Certainly it’s a stepping stone away from bland blonde ales toward an ISA, a style I happen to dig in the right context. Maybe it’s an aberration, and I will try it again if able, but as this particular example stands, 16oz will be enough.

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Photo of ScaryEd
4.21/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 16 oz can dated 03/24/2016.

Pours a cloudy golden straw color with a 1-finger white head. Leaves a fair amount of lacing.

The aroma is grassy with slight notes of lemon tartness.

The taste follows the nose. Subtle pine and grass followed by lemony citrus. The malt is very present, and provides a nice, sweet character to balance out the bitterness of the hops. Excellent balance.

The feel is light bodied with good carbonation. Very crisp and refreshing. Slight lingering bitterness.

Overall, a very good session ale. This beer packs a lot of flavor in a light ABV and is just absurdly crushable.

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Photo of kthoag
5/5  rDev +22.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Let me start by saying - this is my favorite beer of all time. My "desert island" beer. Boat is eminently crushable - it finishes super dry and crisp but with boatloads of grapefruit and apricot hop flavor. The Kolsch yeast smooths everything out and makes for a much more memorable session ale than most "Session IPAs". I feel the same about Tree House Eureka's blonde undertones. Overall, Boat is really in a class of its own. As my definition of a go-to beer is somewhere in the 4-5% ABV range, this is the best of the best. Not really comparable to your barrel-aged whatevers, nor should it be. I genuinely could not see myself leaving the NJ/NY metropolitan area and not having regular access to this beer in my fridge. Boat is Home.

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Photo of mikeg67
4/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 4

Growler from Joe Canal. Pours hazy golden with tall, long lasting, fluffy white head and lively carbonation. Aroma is of citrusy hops, tropical fruit and bready malt. Body is medium and crisp. Citrusy hops dominate the flavor while bready malt and ripe fruit provide support. Finish is long, dry, and grapefruity. Excellent brew.

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Photo of Mateo2699
3.88/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Nice appearance. Tan, pale straw yellow hazy hue with excellent foamy head. Great lacing.

Smell is pretty one dimensional. A little grassy, mild citrus.

Taste is similar to the smell. Grassy, citrusy lemon peel and slightly bitter backbone. Slight tang with the citrus.

Overall very crisp clean and refreshing. A session beer for a reason, no real complaints here.

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Photo of McGee666
3/5  rDev -26.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had on draft in Philadelphia. Been hearing about Carton and I was excited to try one of their offerings. Pours very light with about a half finger of head that disappeared almost immediately. Not much in the aroma department (Faint grains and mild citrus)...but I really had to search. Taste followed suit, almost reminds me of drinking my dad's beer...not necessarily a bad thing if I were mowing the lawn or fishing (on a boat). The dryness is almost off-putting taking away any flavor this beer has to offer.

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Photo of Beers-es
3.97/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

From a 16 oz can, pours a hazy yellow/orange/gold. A finger of dense white foam dissipates after a minute. Looks really nice. Smell is distinctly floral, with some lemon and cracker notes. As it warms, some ripe fruits. Taste follows, with a flowery flavor coupled with a sharp citrus tang and a little yeasty dough aftertaste. More lingering bitterness than I expected. Feel is on the lighter side, which fits with the low ABV, but verges into watery. Overall, a beer that looks and smells better than it tastes and feels. A very well-made beer though, super crushable, and one I would enjoy at a baseball game or party where my reviewing microscope isn't on it.

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Photo of breardon1776
3.75/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Pale frosty, cloudy straw color. Malty and yeasty. Some mild hops. Crisp and clean. Good for a flavorful beer without not too much ABV and heaviness.

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Boat Beer from Carton Brewing Company
4.07 out of 5 based on 1,247 ratings.
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