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LongShot Grape Pale Ale | Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)

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LongShot Grape Pale AleLongShot Grape Pale Ale

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

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.35%

Availability: Limited (brewed once)

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by alexgash on 02-08-2008

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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Reviews: 221 | Ratings: 247
Photo of MeadGuyfromMD
1.63/5  rDev -50%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1

A- Not the appearance I expected when I see the term "Pale Ale" on the bottle. Average head, decent color.

S- Grape is very subtle and I don't smell the Pale Ale side much at all. This says "Maple Syrup Added", I wasn't too sure about that. Maybe if the Grape was more noticeable and natural in flavor, it would have helped. The Maple was not present enough to add any positive notes.

T- In word word, Unexpected. Not much about this beer was pleasant, the grape flavor seemed artificial and off. The Maple Syrup was virtually undetectable. Not what I expect from a Pale Ale.

M- It was a bit thin and I didn't care for the level of carbonation, it seemed wrong for this beer. Overall, it was ok for this style.

D- I couldn't get 1/2 way through this glass. I have had Homebrews from my local clubs that were better. Not sure how this got to the last round. I'm seriously kicking myself for not entering this year. Drinkability is a 2 at best on a 1-10 scale.

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Photo of ohmybock
1.72/5  rDev -47.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

For a pale ale, there's no hop aroma to be found and pretty much no hop flavor or bitterness either. Instead, there's a bit of fruitiness in the aroma, but not something that appeals to me. The flavor is also a bit fruity, but again not something that appeals to me. The description on the bottle actually sounds quite interesting with it's "pale ale after biting into a fresh, seedless, green, grape" description. Unfortunately, this brew totally fails to deliver on the description. I'm getting some fruitiness in the flavor, but I doubt I would guess it's from grapes. Instead, it's more of an apple/pear fruitiness...almost a little like what is sometimes found in some German weizen brews. Actually, that's probably giving this brew much more credit than it is due. In the end, this brew is not memorable at all. One bottle was more than I could finish (it got especially bad as it warmed)...so the next two are destined to be drain-poured. The only positive thing I can say about the Grape Pale Ale is that it came paired with three bottles of excellent Weizenbock. (Paying $7 just for the three weizenbocks is almost worth it!). Additionally, I would certainly buy that weizenbock from Sam Adams if it was a regular, year-round, sixpack, brew. Hey, SA...please make the weizenbock a regular product along with your truly outstanding Hallertau Impy Pils!

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Photo of bebopkola
1.79/5  rDev -45.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

The smell is definatley full of grapes with some hints of syrup. Unfortunatley, the two don't meld together at all. Tastes of grapes up front with a LONG LONG finish of maple syrup. I had to drink two other beers to get rid of the super long finish. I honestly could not drink this beer and I'm sure there were many other brews that should've won before this beer. Just my two cents...

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Photo of mwilbur
1.85/5  rDev -43.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Poured from bottle into shaker pint glass.
A: Golden color, light carbonation, almost no head which quickly disappears...not too exciting.
S: Sweet grape juice aroma. One note, but not bad.
T: Ummmm...like drinking white grape juice mixed with beer...and just as bad as you'd expect (unless you like mixing fruit juice with your beer, which evidently--according to BA mag--Germans like to do). Instead of a beer structure with notes of grape, the grape notes overpower and conflict with the pale ale base.
M: Very slick and oily and sweet. Almost like juice. Very un-beer-like.
D: Not to my taste. I was very interested to try this...exciting potential and I like Sam Adams pushing boundaries...but...this one fell flat on its face. Should have been one of these and five of the Weizenbocks in the sixer. The worst of the Longshot offerings to date...but looking forward to next year's.

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Photo of ZAP
2.12/5  rDev -35%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

I'm always up for different takes on things but this one does nothing for me...it really has a nasty syruppy, sticky texture that makes it hard to drink.

The aroma is light and soft..a little bit of grape and some floral notes of lilac.

The taste is hard to describe....an artificial syrup like sweetness overrides everything...the grape notes are very artificial.

I'm not going to write anymore on this. An experiment gone bad. I'm surprised they decided to bottle this.

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Photo of cokes
2.18/5  rDev -33.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

Pours to a clear copper and is stacked tall and long with beige foam.
White grape juice, maple syrup, and candied orange aroma.
Into the mouth, it begins sweet with the obvious maple syrup addition at the fore, and an equally sweet white grape juice concentrate. The grapey hues begin to shift more tart, but it's almost sticky sweet at this point. The maple turns towards grain, and seems raspy and burnt and astringent around the swallow. Hops add late floral and vague citric tart/bitterness.
Medium built, moderately sticky sweet and cloying. It's not something I would care to drink more than one of, and that's even pushing it.
The flavorings (grape and maple syrup) are certainly loud, and the pale ale base is there, though lightish hop-wise. It's just that the combination doesn't work, as this pulls towards sweet, sour, and bitter, and registers as more conflicted than complex.

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Photo of BMoney575
2.21/5  rDev -32.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Sampled on 2-27-08
Best before July 2008

Pours a clear amber/gold color, with a pleasant foamy white head and rings of lacing.

Smell is nothing. Kind of macro, a hint of malt, a bit vegetable harshness.

Taste is ghastly. A sickeningly sweet High Life-style malt gives way to a vegetable kick right in the middle. Acidic, harsh, and appallingly bad.

Mouthfeel is decent, carbonation is well-placed.

Drinkability is poor, the flavors are poor and the aftertaste is very difficult to live with.

Overall, another disappointment. LongShot, indeed.

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Photo of JasonS
2.26/5  rDev -30.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

I like fruit beers and I like pale ales. This beer was neither. The taste had a sickly sweet tinge to it, and I was struggling to find the hop and malt profiles. The green grape juice added nothing of value, and the maple syrup only added more confusion.

When I saw "grape pale ale," the image that popped into my head was a hoppy beer with a subtle "jolly rancher grape" flavor component to it. The concept is pretty cool, but this arrangement is pretty undrinkable.

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Photo of Squelch
2.28/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Really didn't like this one. I think the grape flavor detracts from the taste of the beer. There was little hop aroma and the winey flavor in the beer detracts from the "Beer" flavor which should be evident. Would not buy this one again and was disappointed.

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Photo of Rezzin
2.36/5  rDev -27.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Found this at Bevmo so I decided to pick up a pack.

A - Little to no head with a standard pour into a pint glass. Amber in color and brilliantly clear.

S - Not much in the aroma dept. for a pale ale imo but there is grape in the nose. There is a little malt sweetness and it's a little nutty but I have keep my nose in the glass to pick it up.

T - Hmm... I think I was expecting a little more here. Here's the best way I can describe it - take a plain amber, mix it with a little grape wine cooler and what you have is the 2007 Longshot winner. Unfortunately this beer just doesn't work for me.

M - The mouthfeel is probably the saving grace here. It's mildly malty / light-medium bodied in the front and finishes clean in the back.

D - I think I'll pass on the rest. Perhaps if I appreciate this particular style of ale a little more I'd score higher but I really don't see how this particular beer won.

I scored slightly higher than I wanted simply because I'm trying not to fault the brewer for what she was trying to accomplish. If you like fruit beers, then you might enjoy this.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
2.41/5  rDev -26.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appears a bright filtered copper hue with bright off white head which forms thick with nice retention, lacing is evenly strung with each sip. Aroma pretty much signature Sam Adams bready yeast note with a mild caramel not much of the maple syrup that they proclaim on the label. Tart vinous characteristic is apparent in the smell but overall it smells like any other Sam Adams brew. Flavor doesn't work for me I'm getting more grape seed and peel earthiness than actual fruit sweetness and the maple syrup flavor wasn't so much there but something added to the mouthfeel here to make it become a bit cloying. Mouthfeel is medium bodied slightly sticky and carbonation doesn't even blend too well, pretty sorry LongShot winner here. Drinkability level is low try it for the novelty grape factor and move on or maybe my wine palate isn't expanded enough, kind of a gross offering.

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Photo of DefenCorps
2.44/5  rDev -25.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12oz bottle into my Sam Smith pint

A: Mildly hazy copper with a solid off-white head with good retention and nice lacework

S: Saccharine grape flavor with a dull hop aroma. Overly sweet

T: Very sweet up front, cloyingly so with a thick, sugar syrup flavor with a very rich caramel sweetness. Quite bad. Dryish finish with some grape-like sweetness

M: Too full for an APA, decent carbonation, though

D: Not gonna bother with this one.

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Photo of burtonbe
2.45/5  rDev -24.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Wonderful looking ale. Crystal clear, deep burnt gold in color. Nice head, around 1 finger, yet it dissipates quite quickly.

Malty nose with some funkyness. Very little hoppiness on the nose... very little. Carmel smell. Sweet smelling. Bleh.

Malty funky taste. The grape is not doing it for me. It's a nice octoberfest-like taste. Cloyingly sweet. Not very impressive.

Sticky sweet mouthfeel. It's very good in this respect.

I find this beer not very drinkable. For some reason this beer didn't really click with me. It's too weird and packed with non-beer tastes.

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Photo of SkeeterHawk
2.49/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: Pours a clear reddish golden color with a small 1/8" head of small tannish bubbles that faded rather quickly back into the beer. There are very few bubbles rising to maintain the head.

Aroma: My first impression was obscured, and I wasn't sure what I was getting...so I let it sit. After the beer settled a bit, I can pick up something that I am assuming is the grape, but it is giving the beer a bit of a phenolic impression to me. I didn't get any hops to speak of at first, but they found their way into the aroma as the beer warmed up a bit.

Taste: The flavor is interesting. The grapes add a bit of a floral impression to the flavor that still comes across to me as being a bit phenolic...almost medicinal. I guess this was white grapes as there is a bit of a sharpness to this beer that is a tad sour to me. The finish is a bit watery, so it is hard to tell who is in charge. I am going with the malt, but it is only by a nose.

Opinion: Well, I am certainly glad that I don't have a case of this beer. I don't really get much Pale Ale characteristics unless it is a slant on a British example of the style. That being the case, the toasty malts are lacking. I don't know, this beer just doesn't really "do it for me"...you know what I mean? I would certainly drink it over Miller Lite...and (depending on my mood) over Iced Tea...but not over a beer with some flavor and balance.

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Photo of Kallessin
2.54/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The head was very light and was gone in a matter of seconds. A very deep amber color. A lot darker than I was expecting. Very clear, with a lot of bubbles going up through it.

A very non-distinct aroma. A slight sweet malt aroma with a little hops. I can't pick up any grape at all.

I can't pick up any of the grape flavor or maple syrup. Not at all what I was expecting. A slight sweet acidic flavor. I love white grape juice so I was really hoping for grape flavor.

At first it's very crisp, then a filmy dry coating in my mouth.

As I mentioned before, this beer wasn't at all what I was expecting. Overall, not a bad experience, but can't say I'd buy it again were it a regular Sam Adams brew.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
2.54/5  rDev -22.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A vigorous pour produces an almost three-finger thick, pale, tan colored crown of froth. The beer is a brilliantly clear, deep copper / amber color that shows bright copper color when held up to the light. As I visually inspect this beer the aroma smells like a mix of water-downed grape juice and macro-lager. A deeper smell of the aroma intensifies these notes, but doesn't seem to make them all that more appealing. Sharp, yet sweet, fermented grape notes make me think of cheap box-wine, but there is a finish of dry, cracker-like malt aromas that is just noticeable. Other than the cheap beer-like quality I get not real hop character here.

Fairly dry up front, but it picks up a cheap box-wine sweetness towards the finish. Bits of caramelized malt, a touch of biscuit-like grain character and perhaps a hint of herbal hop character in the finish lets one know, fairly unconvincingly I might add, that this is beer. The combination of beer & grape flavors are both washed out here and in combination they just seem to clash.

The best analogy for me really is of cheap, really bad box-wine, which this actually tastes of, but the beer characteristics are on the same level. The grape character makes this seem cheaply fermented, a bit metallic and sweet. Really just a poor tasting beer.

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Photo of klewis
2.57/5  rDev -21.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A: Pours a rich golden color with a big frothy head. Spotty lacing.

S: A stale sort of vegetal macro lager smell with a hint of grape juice.

T: Sweet up front followed by a wollop of DMS taste. Perhaps there is a hint of a grape flavor, but I wouldn't have pegged it as such without the title of this beer. A very slight hop bitterness underlies the flavors.

M: Light and moderately carbonated. A dry, clean finish with little aftertaste.

D: Not a fan of this one. Goes down easy, but it's just not very good.

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Photo of joepais
2.58/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

This beer is an interesting Idea but just didn't live up to the name. The bottle poured into a pint glass produce a good two finger worth of head that settles down to a film of lace. All this on top of a hazy golden body

Smells like a pale ale poured into a glass that just had some white wine in it

It's sweet, extremely pale, pale ale I guess I was hoping for more of a grape presence here or something. I think the name did that along with the description on the bottle. It wasn't a drain pour; its taste wasn't all that memorable either

Light bodied, with plenty of carbonation for your tongue

I did finish the three I had but I wouldn't buy it again. There are better pale ales and better fruit beers out there ( I wish the Weizenbock was sold separately )

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Photo of jujubeast6000
2.6/5  rDev -20.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Reviewed 4/17/2008 (bottle):

Pours an amber colored body, with a smallish off-white colored head that is somewhat lasting. Has a very alcoholy and grapey aroma, with some maltiness. Has a very light nutty taste. A good body. With a sweet light taste to it.

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Photo of mentor
2.66/5  rDev -18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Pours a one finger fizzy yellow head that quickly settles to a thin layer that persists. Clear dilute copper color with a number of streamers. Smells mild. Yeah, some grape, because I was looking for it. Mix between a concord and a niagra grape. Hops are like skunky Heineken with a dab of light citrus. Malt is present, not a biscuity aroma, but along similar lines.

Tastes somewhat Heineken skunked. Moving beyond that first impression is noticable malt flavor with some sweet supporting a clumby interplay of hop flavor and grape stark. Hops are lemony with some clean bitter that is amplied unpleasantly with a strong carbonation sting on the tastebuds. Grape flavor can only be described as both aromatic and 'dusty'. Tastes like this beer was back-sweetened with artificial maple syrup that coats the tongue.

Mouthfeel is md thin with a gluten stickiness that correlates with non-flavor. Carbonation is way too much. Swirling to eliminate, however, left the beer a bit too sweet. Not a beer I need to repeat.

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Photo of hoplover82
2.67/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I'm not a big fan a fruit beer, and this beer is why. It's just not what I'm into I guess.

Not impressive at all. I think grapes are good in the darker stronger beers. Kinda like in Dogfish Head's Raison D'Etra. I like than one, but I don't like this Longshot winning beer.

Don't know how it won?

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Photo of wedge
2.68/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Pours an attractive clear amber color with a thin, fluffy white head. Smells grainy, crystal malts and a very airy pale fruit aroma...grapes I suppose. Tastes more like an English ale, though not a particularly good one. Tons of sweet maltiness...caramel, white grapiness (?), slightly syrupy. Crisp mouthfeel, solid medium body.

Hope the weizenbock is better...

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Photo of karst
2.69/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured at cellar temp ~50°F four fingers of dense cream head slowly falling into a denser center pillow reminesent of some fine Belgians. Sparkling clear amber/ light copper with no yeast or other sediments at the bottom of the 12 oz bottle.
Minor lace on the Samuel Adams "Ideal" glass and strong beading sent up from the etched ring sustains a thin fine bubbled cap.

Initial grape aroma with typical pale ale aroma and faint nobel floral hops. Some initial sweetness combines with the medium high carbonation to give the sense of a medium body but I suspect it is fairly well attenuated as some mild taninic astrigency and a little hop bitterness dry the finish. They linger on the back of my palate not completely drying the dextrins.

I would prefer a cleaner finish - some of this is the trade off you make when you alter the basebeer recipe to show off the fruit/spice/veg being used.

Fruit beers should show off the stated fruit - IMHO. With this example both the fruit and maple syrup are nearly sublimital as flavors (although the grape aroma is present).

I find no off flavors ( Diacetyl, DMS, Trans-2-Nonel etc._etc.)
2-row malt and crystal 40 or 50°L are of typical flavor profile.
I would expect some increased dextrine sweetness from the maple syrup but none of the natural maple or FENUGREEK spice (the base for imitation maple flavors and flavor booster in maple flavored beers). I believe adding this would further detract from the concept of "drinking pale ale after biting into a fresh green seedless grape".

BUT still, my palate is not delighted by the combination of flavors and the base beer. While this drinks better on the warm side I do not find it very drinkable at any temperature and am struggling to finish the glass - poured from the second bottle. I generally expect a pale ale to be a session beer.

I have brewed a few fruit beers and judged many ( including last year's Long Shot 1st Round - Great Lakes Regional. They are challenging to brew and to judge. Fortunately the rest of the Masterbrewers 07 Longshot is an excellent Weizenbock that we sent on to the final round from our division. (But that is another review)

The six-pack is a must try and I buy it every year to support the Long Shot homebrewers.

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Photo of zdk9
2.75/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

A- Pours light orange with a finger of head that leaves quickly and without a trace.

S- Is there really grape in this beer? I'm only getting some huskiness, and straw smells.

T- The taste is only slightly less underwhelming than the smell. To go along with a good pale malt base, there is a touch of green grapeskin, and even less of a touch of earth tasting hops.

M- Light and easy down the hatch.

D- It's not that this is a bad beer, just that I'm very hard pressed to find any sort of grape flavor, and with not much hops either it reminds me more of a mediocre lager. Not recommended

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Photo of TexIndy
2.76/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle (dating notches on label) into a pint glass. It was a clear orangish amber color and had a ton of carbonation. A bit of lacing. It had a finger and a half of white fizzy head that slowly settled down to a thin foam.

The aroma was very weak. It's really hard to pick out a dominant aroma. I get some grape but it's weak and in the back along with some citrus. Some sweet malt as well. Just not much there. Unfortunately the taste followed the aroma. Weak and not much there. It wasn't bad but it wasn't enjoyable either. Tasted like a macro or watered down beer.

Overall, I got it on a whim and got what I paid for. It's OK and is drinkable but why drink it when so much other good beer out there. Only recommend if your just looking for an easy beer to knock off your list.

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LongShot Grape Pale Ale from Boston Beer Company (Samuel Adams)
3.26 out of 5 based on 247 ratings.
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