California Love
Smog City Brewing

California LoveCalifornia Love
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Red Ale - Imperial
Ranked #78
Ranked #23,897
3.84 | pDev: 11.2%
Smog City Brewing
California, United States
Very Good
California LoveCalifornia Love
Notes: Our first official collaboration beer. Porter of Smog City and Zambo of 21st Amendment, San Francisco, got together to create Califronia Love, an Imperial Red brewed with pinot noir grapes, citrus peel and aged on medium toast oak spirals. Designed to bring the best of NorCal and SoCal together; California Love features wine grapes from wine country and citrus peel from SoCal. Together they blend beautifully into our newest release, California Love.
Reviews: 12 | Ratings: 56 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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antonyliu from California

3.96/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a tulip glass…


Poured a red wine hue with a ton of activity between the carbonation and head, which was a thick 3 fingers of puffy froth. One of the best “looking” beers I’ve poured, very inviting. Truly looks alive.

Nose is chocolate, roasty, hoppy aroma

I’m getting molasses, spices, oak and wood aromas, toasty, and a lingering bitter, malty, and tart dry finish

crisply carbonated with a medium, smooth body


This is a quality beer of depth and character. However, I’ve discovered American Imperial Red Ale is not my favorite style. I prefer either a purer hop profile or, a purer malt profile—but not both together. My bottle was only 1 month old so very fresh. Purchased for $2.99 in Southern California.

Oct 13, 2018
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WickedBeer from Alabama

3.7/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Tasting Notes:
Pours a rust crimson color, opaque, ivory white head
Malt, caramel, booze nose
Slightly metallic but lots of malt / caramel.. bitter.. only very slight citrus , not much oak
Smooth, light carb

Jan 10, 2018
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snaotheus from Washington

3.85/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Entered from notes. 500ml bottle. Couldn't find a date.

Pours a dark reddish brown with a big head. Smell is roasty malts and toffee.

Taste is similar, with a nice bitterness and something vaguely fruity.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied. Overall, it's a good beer.

Mar 04, 2017
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Karibourgeois from Texas

3.3/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Clear dark amber color pour with an off-white head. Nice big malty and nutty aroma with a hint of booze. Taste has a combination of strong nut flavors upfront backed by a touch of booziness and herbal bitterness. Medium to full bodied.

Jan 26, 2017
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farrago from New Jersey

3.31/5  rDev -13.8%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Finger worth of heavily dimpled dark tan foam, big quantity of larger bubbles, average retention, the lacing able to form both broad and long streaks. The liquid is a clear reddish brown, touch too dark to appreciate the transparency, few visible bubbles. You get a great deal of cocoa, malt to the nose, caramelized brown sugar, charred oak and then it veers into a dank herbaceousness, the orange peel appears with some clarity yet there’s not many distinct fruit scents, seems reliant on making a big impression via oak and malts. Full-bodied, gluey in texture yet also dry enough to shorten the finish appreciably. Weak carbonation, contributes to slow pacing. Sugary sweet due to an array of molasses, oak and chocolate flavors, in the end though the sour pucker wins out. The hops not as overtly green as in the nose yet a major hue on the palette. Vanillin accents at the end, the citrus remains muted. There’s a lot going on but it seems crammed together with the intent of making a big impression. Lost my interest by the end of the bottle.

Nov 20, 2016
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DrinkThemAll from California

4.05/5  rDev +5.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from a 500ml bottle into a pint glass.

A-Pours a deep amber, with 2 finger tan frothy head. Very nice looking beer.

S-slight oak, berries, brown sugar and a hint of grape. Smells very sweet and nice.

T-citrus oak, with hint of berries and grape. Medium hop bill with a bitter dry finish. You can definitely taste everything going on here. Very sweet and clean. Very good to my taste buds.

M-Medium bodied with large amounts of carbonation. Can definetly taste the Pinot noir must in the mouth. Bitter dry finish.

O-pretty solid beer, IMO. I wouldn't hesitate to grab another off the shelf.

Sep 03, 2016
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Viaduck from California

3.99/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

It's more brown than red not much of a light tan colored head. Lots of herbal hoppyness aroma, smells like an IPA. Kind of sweet, I can taste the citrus but not the grapes. Not bitter, I'm not a fan of IPA's but this is pretty good.

Feb 07, 2016
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mactrail from Washington

3.88/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Color is a really dark red with a brownish tinge. Plenty of off-white foam in the Bellegems Bruin goblet. Sudsy and sharp on the tongue. Long nose of citrus peel and flowery hops. The body is actually fairly light but the aftertaste seems to belong to an even bigger beer.

Tangy fruity flavors with a deep roasted malt taste. Winey but I don't taste the oak so much as celery and leaf mold. Hints of cocoa and lemon peel. Orange marmalade and alcohol heat on the tongue. An interesting strong beer that is full of perplexities. From the 500 ml bottle purchased at Bottlecraft in San Diego.

Oct 08, 2015
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LADaveBN from California

3.82/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Pours a dark amber with half a finger head. Subtle lacing. Nose is hoppy, citrus and malt. Front of palate is also citrus. Finish is where I get more of the maltiness. Feel is excellent. Coats the tongue, lingers just a bit. Overall, a pretty good red ale. Enjoyable though not very complex.

Oct 03, 2015
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crob3888 from California

4/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours much darker than I expected: super dark ruby-brown color. Smell is of vinous, resinous pine, some grapefruit, caramel, and a hint of the grapes. Overall it's another great beer by Smog City, one of LA's best craft breweries.

Sep 27, 2015
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UCLABrewN84 from California

3.73/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

On tap at Smog City Brewing in Torrance, CA.

Pours a clear copper with a foamy khaki head that settles to a partial film on top of the beer. Foamy swaths of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, citrus fruit, red wine grape, and wood aromas. Taste is much the same with citrus, red wine grape, and wood flavors on the finish. There is a medium amount of wood bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a lower level of carbonation with a slightly crisp and dry mouthfeel. Overall, this is a pretty good beer with an interesting combination of the fruit and wood qualities.

Mar 03, 2014
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wethorseblanket from California

4.24/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

On tap @ the source.

A: Pours a brownish burgundy with a 1/2-inch thick tan head which fades to a cap and leaves splotchy lace.

N: Bright orange/citrus, oaky, vinous, some spices, faintly sweet malts. On warming the red grapes become more prominent and play off the oak, orange peel, and hops.

T: Sweetish malts blend well with toasted oak and complement the orange peel and citrus hops (Citra, Amarillo, and Centennial). Faint, at first, the vinous notes build on warming.

M: Moderate body and medium carbonation. Well balanced and integrated components. Slightly dry oak and bitter hops spring over the pinot noir must finish. The ABV is hidden.

O: Interesting No. Cal/So. Cal collaboration. It seems we can get along after all. Well done and proud to call lovely Cali home, no matter which part you're from.

Jan 24, 2014
California Love from Smog City Brewing
Beer rating: 87 out of 100 with 56 ratings