Samuel Adams Irish Red | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

2,543 Ratings
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Samuel Adams Irish RedSamuel Adams Irish Red

Brewed by:
Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
Massachusetts, United States

Style: Irish Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Pale and Caramel malts, and East Kent Goldings hops.

Added by WilliamPhilaPa on 08-24-2007

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Ratings: 2,543 |  Reviews: 1,013
Photo of Georgiabeer
3.85/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a dark reddish amber with a moderate head that fades to a ring. Smells slightly buttery and malty and grainy with some slight cherry and peach to the malt. Tastes pretty typical for the style with firm malt, a touch of butter and fruit, and lightly hopped. A bit tight and prickly in the mouth, but also fairly robust for the style. Not bad.

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Photo of jjanega08
3.95/5  rDev +11%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A= pours a deep red color almost drown with a thin half finger head that lasts throughout the drink with spotty lacing
S= smells very sweet and malty which is expected. There's almost a wheat smell to it?
T= refreshing and smooth. Great malt, kinda toffee caramely taste. I think I'm picking up a small amount of hops as well.
M= a little thick and covering but a very smooth clean finish.
D= very high. Not a bad beer for the usual lackluster sam adams samplers. I prolly won't seek it out again unless its on sale. Pretty good everyday beer.

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Photo of Rennpferd
3.1/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

It poured a deep amber color, with a red hue. It had a one finger head. No carbonation was present.

It had a sweet malt scent.

It tasted malty and slightly sweet. There was a mild hop presence. It finished a little dry. It was lite-to-medium bodied.

It is a drinkable beer.

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Photo of CityBoy1986
3.68/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a pint glass from a 12 oz. bottle. Freshness date is April 2009.

The pour is a ruddy brown with a finger's worth of off-white head. The head is gone quickly, and lacing is below average.

The nose is toffee with some earthy and floral notes and a bit of butter. The taste has the same flavours, with the flowers and butter at first and the toffee lingering in the aftertaste. A mild bitterness is present throughout the sip.

The mouthfeel is a little thin in body but smooth with a nice amount of carbonation. Drinkability is good; I could have a few.

This is a nice example of the style that I wouldn't refuse if offered one, and I probably will give it a try every few months.

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Photo of hokies1999
4.17/5  rDev +17.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

The smell malty sweet from the generous amount of malt used in this brew. The hops were there in the smell but nowhere near as strong as Sam's signature Boston Lager. They might have been overpowered by the malt. The appearance was amber red with great clarity. The head, when poured into a Sam Adams custom glass was a 1/4" and then reduced to just a sliver over the beer. The beer tasted malty sweet with a hop finish.

This is an easy drinking beer that pleases. It won't knock you socks off with intense flavors but provides a relaxing smooth experience. This style isn't very bold to begin with by Sam's Irish Red is good when you need to "reset" from hop intense or malt intense brews and just let your taste buds relax for the evening.

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Photo of unclejimbay
3.82/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Samuel Adams Irish Red
Style: Irish Red Ale
ABV: 5.50 %
Reviewed 4/7/09 from a brewmasters 6 pack
bottle>dimpled mug

A 4.0 - Rich toasted caramel in color. Decent 2 finger, tan, foamy head.
Head reduced nicely to a cappuccino froth collar.
S 4.5 - Rich malty aroma, smells like a good brew day! This is the standout note on this brew!
Very solid malty aroma with hints of nuts.
T 3.5 - Mild, mellow and balanced on taste. Taste follows the aroma notes, but the taste is much more mellow than the aromas.
MF 3.0 - A bit thinner in body that I expected, higher carbonation than I expected. The mouthfeel is not bad, it's just less than I anticipated.
D 3.5 - It's definitely drinkable for an amber, and a solid rep for the style in my opinion. It's a bit thin in body and taste, but the aroma and appearance are very nice. Respectable brew as most Sam Adams usually are, but it's not one of their greatest hits on my chart. Good fo' shore, just not "great".
The aroma is outstanding!!!

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Photo of rodney45
3.78/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer smells fantastic, look... if you're going to get this beer, or are planning on picking it up... just take a moment, after purchase of course, and smell the s**t out of this beer. It has floral notes on top of malt that isnt overpowered by the Golding hops... Aside from that, the beer is pretty average. Tastes more like a porter than an Irish red. Nice depth though, and I like how they approached this beer. Too much of this beer's flavor comes from the overpowering amount of darker malts used in this beer. However, it tastes too similar to their honey porter to be much in the way of an Irish Red ale. Its heavy, but drinkable, and it is like velvet going down, but where is my carbonation? This is an ale, not a porter, can someone please let them know that! It is part of the brewmaster collection, and rightfully so... but I really wanted an Irish Red when I bought this beer.

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Photo of IronCitySteve
3.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a reddish color with brown hints throughtout. Provides a slight white/off-white head, 1 finger. Some minimal lacing.

S: Mostly caramel, some vanilla, toffee with some minimal hops. Nothing really overwhelming.

T: Mostly get some caramel flavor with just a slight undertone of hops on the back end. Gives it just a slight, ever so slight bitterness.

M: A light to medium body, just a tad thin, leaves a little hop bitterness on the palate.

D: I do not have a lot of exposure to Irish Red Ales, so I am not sure how it compares, but I would try it again.

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Photo of earthboundagain
3.51/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Pours a very dark amber with a nice head

S - Very earthy tone, with some a touch of something fruity

T - The term liquid bread fits quite nice. Nice earthy flavor with a strong mineral note. Some caramel malt in there that gives you just enough sweetness. Finish was . . . Well what finish is more like it.

M - I will say it was smooth.

D - Ok you're at your local bar, and it's your buddy's birthday and you know you will be drinking all night long, this is a great choice. Not to powerful or flavorful, but better then say a macro.

This is not one of my favorites from Sam Adams but it is not bad.

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Photo of Seanibus
3.09/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Wish I could get excited about this, but I can't.

Pours deep brownish red with a big fluffy head that collapses quite quickly.

The aroma is malty, but strangely astringent. Not particularly inviting.

The flavor at first is a huge wallop of caramel, completely unexpected for the style. It settles down a bit as the carbonation blows off, but the beer retains a rich, carmelly and buttery character, almost like a dark butterscotch - ok, perhaps in the right place, but in this beer it merely tastes like they boiled it too long.

The mouthfeel is a little thin, but has a nice fizz of carbonation.

Not offensive, but just not what I am looking for in an Irish Red.

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Photo of steelerguy
3.68/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a very clean dark amber. Big frothy head with little carbonation.

S - Estery, first think I smelled while pouring was bananas. Followed by a nice malty aroma, but slightly metallic.

T - More esters, tasted the banana and then a red licorice flavor with some sweetness from the caramel malts. Malty with some residual sweetness, but not cloying. Keep thinking I am tasting red vines in there. I like red vines, but in a beer is a little weird.

M - Creamy, viscous, smooth. Not much tingle of C02 or alcohol.

D - Good session beer. Not spectacular, but a lot of times spectacular becomes tiring when drinking more than more.

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Photo of KBoudreau66
3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle poured in to a Sam Adam's Lager glass.

Pours an amber/red color with a decent sized off white head that dissipates to a thin layer. Has a lot of carbonation in it. Leaves thin lacing down the glass.

Smells of sweet caramel malts, toasted and a bit buttery. The smell of floral hops sneaks in with grapefruit undertones.

Taste is similar to the smell. Caramel malts, toasted, sweet. This drink ends up being well balanced between the malts and hops. Finishes slightly bitter.

Mouthfeel smooth, but carbonated. A little bit bitter and somewhat dry on the back end.

So far this is the best Irish Red that I've ever tried. Very enjoyable, and pretty well balanced.

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Photo of JerzDevl2000
3.28/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Finally got around to having this because it was some important day for the Irish yesterday. I never had a beer in this style before and seeing the ratings for the top brews in this style. I didn't expect a whole lot. Sure, this would have been fine to have if it were on tap anywhere around here, but it's not a beer that I'm likely to have again.

Pretty nice pour to this - a very deep reddish-mahongay hue and deep head that didn't last all that long. There's no lacing to this and the taste is also pretty thin. Malty, with lots of caramel-like notes, but there isn't any sweetness here. Maybe a bit of coffee deep down but the beer itself has a pretty sudsy consistency to this and is a typical Boston Beer brew. Nothing groundbreaking, but good for an easy night out (or in, in my case).

Even though it's over 5.50% ABV, this wouldn't make a bad session beer. There's just a bit of grapefruit-like acidity to this that makes it a bit harder to down than it should be but other than that, this was relativly unmemorable. Call me a beer snob, maybe I'm past the days where a Sam Adams beer stood out for me...

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Photo of CampusCrew
3.73/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Picked this for my st pats dinner at home with my guinness stew. Overall pretty good.

appearance: dark red brown and looed fuller than I thought it would be, creamy head

smell: rish caramel

taste: light carmel and a much heavier malty flavor than I expected from SA, low hops

mouthfeel: good carbonation and delicious

drinkability: very easy and smooth for a red ale

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Photo of Reagan1984
3.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

What else should I have had with my Sheppard's Pie tonight? This seemed like the perfect cheer. Not a bad beer actually. Pleasantly surprised.

I nice thick 2+ finger creamy head that showed some decent retention but eventually faded into the bright reddish amber brew. Excellent clarity with some visible carbonation. Lots of lacing.

Aroma was mineral like (earthy?) light sweet caramel and of course some toasted malt.

Flavor was quite nice. Authentic in that it had the mineral flavor of most English/Irish Ales. A lightly sweet caramel flavor, but definitely not sweet. Some light bready tones near the end, but not too much. Finished a bit flat, but again, I think that's like most of the style.

Fairly smooth brew with very light carbonation.

Easily drinkable. A session brew if need be.

Pretty much on for the style.

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Photo of donkeyrunner
3.98/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Gorgeous crystal clear, deep red color. Large off-white head that leaves drippy lace and thin swirl retention.

Smells of toasty, nutty malt with mild hop spice.

Sweet, rich, toasty and nutty malt balanced by a hoppy and grapefruit rind bitter that is bouyed by lively carbonation. Medium body with somewhat drying aftertaste.

Overall one of the best things to come out of Sam Adams since the seasonals in my oh so very humble opinion.

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Photo of Yeastcakes
3.82/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Serving notes - 0.5L German glass, cellar temp
A - beautiful combination of caramel and roast malt. Some hops in background.
A - one finger of head, dark amber-red, clear.
M - medium body and carbonation. Slight alcohol notes.
T - Nicely complex malt flavors. Similar caramel and roasts to aroma. Some earthy hops in the background.
D - Nice red ale, very pleasing beer.

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Photo of jujubeast6000
2.08/5  rDev -41.6%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Reviewed 4/17/2008 (bottle):

Pours a clear reddish colored body, with a small white colored head that is somewhat lasting. Has a malty, and somewhat fruity aroma, but is very weak. A creamy watery taste, malty, and fruity. Has a somewhat fruity taste. Too watery.

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Photo of Stunner97
2.78/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance- reddish brown in color with light to little carbonation, light thin foam head on the top

Smell- Malts and slight hops up front, slightly bitter and alcohol

Taste- sweet malts with a slightly hoppy finish at the end, good balanced beer, a good slight sweet malty brew, creamy finish, something slightly odd though with a metallilc flavor or something thats just weird, wonder if mine is bad batch,

Mouthfeel- Cream smooth and decent medium bodied

Drinkability- Highly drinkable and a tasty session beer, didnt blow me away negative or postive a decent choice i will visit again, the wierd after taste or metallic flavor was odd, wasnt terrible but not great

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Photo of goblue3509
4.13/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A clear red color. Appearance is similar to other reds. The taste is very good. It is slightly dry. The main taste is malty with very little taste of hops. The beer is very smooth, and very light. Very easily you could drink three or four of these. The aroma is slightly complex, it doesn't hit your nose with the malts but it has a pleasant aroma.

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Photo of almychristopher
3.91/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

this beer pours a very nice red color with an off white head that just won't quit. even toward the the bottom of the glass there is still a nice ring of lace leaving an enduring testament along the side of my glass. the aroma is lackluster but still appealing with a nice bit of sweet caramel malt and an undertone of hops. the taste follows the route of the nose, not surprisingly, delivering on the malt very nicely, and almost balanced by the hops at the end. the mouthfeel is nice, full body good co2, can't complain.

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Photo of mmmbeer
3.75/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle with no freshness date notched; brewed with pale and crystal malts, hopped with East Kent Goldings. Pours reddish-copper, crystal-clear, with medium carbonation and a two-inch tan head that leaves some nice lacing. Sweet caramel and grassy malts in the nose, with hops and an herbal quality coming later. Lightly spicy and earthy hops on the palate, with a subtle bitterness, caramel and perhaps chocolate malts, an herbal/tea-like character, a light astringency near the end and some alcohol warmth. High in carbonation, with a crisp and dry body. A fairly balanced and easy to drink ale, but it is too "warm" for the style.

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Photo of Floydster
2.54/5  rDev -28.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12 ounce bottle taken from my friend Scott's fridge tonight, poured into a pint glass, color is a clear amber with a 3/4 inch soapy white head that leaves some lace at first, weak retention, aroma is sweetness, lots of malt, black pepper, light toffee, and a hint of vanilla, no scents really stood out or were very strong, flavor does not seem to have much of a hop presence except maybe some grassy accents early on, mostly malt that is pretty sweet, maybe some light fruit in there too, light and sweet mouthfeel, can be smooth at times, medium bodied, light carbonation, could not drink much more than a bottle, too sweet and malty overall, needs bitterness to battle it out, probably would skip next time, might be worth trying

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Photo of puboflyons
3.97/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured froma 12 fl. oz. bottle marked C-24880016 with an expiration date of Mar 2009. Sampled while watching the NFL Pro Bowl on 2/8/09.

Appearance - It is a handsome looking caramel-brown with a small amount of beige head and a little bit of lacing. I think I was anticipating it to be red or ruby rather than brown.

Smell - The sweet malts are evident immediately.

Mouthfeel - It retains its texture with about 30 seconds of swishing around in the mouth. It has a medium body but not creamy.

Taste - The flavor is led by sweet malts and light hops but it finishes crisp but dry. Overall a pretty good experience.

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Photo of OtherShoe2
3.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured deep red with a an off white bubbly head that left some good lacing.

Lightly scented -- had to dig for it -- some caramel and toasted malt scents.

Sweeter malt flavor, caramel heavy, moving to lightly toasted bread, with a bit of a yeasty edge to it. A little hop bite, and a bit dry/sour in the finish.

Medium bodied, but with some decent carbonation. Interesting combo.

Overall, you can put these back. A tad bit sweeter than expected, but that is ok -- I dug it. It is important to remember that this one is not a one-trick pony -- lots of changes from first sip to the finish. Decent and worthy of a try.

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Samuel Adams Irish Red from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.56 out of 5 based on 2,543 ratings.
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