Mount Desert Island Ginger
Atlantic Brewing Company / Mainely Meat BBQ

Mount Desert Island GingerMount Desert Island Ginger
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Herb and Spice Beer
Ranked #252
Ranked #49,006
3.39 | pDev: 16.22%
Atlantic Brewing Company / Mainely Meat BBQ
Maine, United States
Mount Desert Island GingerMount Desert Island Ginger
Notes: A refreshing wheat beer spiced with fresh ginger root. The process of making this wheat beer has been nicknamed "special ginger tea", due to the fact that we add over 20 lbs. of fresh ground ginger root into the boil.

We use pale malt, and wheat, as well as Target and Whitbread Goldings Variation hops to flavor this light, summer ale.

Island Ginger is particularly popular during the warmer summer months, though thanks to the ginger kick it has, it would also be warming in the cold winter months.
Reviews: 134 | Ratings: 218 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
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cbutova from Massachusetts

3.79/5  rDev +11.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A- 12oz bottle pours a mostly clear golden brew into a glass with a small white cap. The head is about a cm tall at its highest with decent retention.

S- A malty base brew with plenty of fresh ginger to be found in the aroma. The grains suggest a sweetness and this is obviously a good pairing for the root. Ginger sweets with crackery and bready hints. A sheet of lace here and there.

T- A little bit less dynamic as compared to the aroma as the ginger loses some steam and there is less flavor from the malts and sweetness becomes more pronounced but nowhere near too sweet. Ginger root leads the way with a fresh and spicy flavor, medium sweetness and just a touch of light barley flavors. Ginger picks up with time.

MF- Light to medium overall body. The carbonation comes in at a moderate level and the brew has a foamy and frothy texture. Ends with spiciness on the palate.

A simple yet clean and well brewed ale that brings a fresh and spicy ginger flavor and most importantly a balanced drinking experience.

Nov 05, 2018
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SABERG from Massachusetts

3.83/5  rDev +13%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into the test glass.
A - Slightly hazy amber/orange color. steady carbonation feeds a quick to leave cap.
Small residual clusters cling to the glass.
S - Surprisingly a bit of citrus, then the malt/wheat and the capped by ginger in the best way. Spicy white pepper and a hint of clove. With a change in yeast. add some esters this would border on Trappsist territory. Which I quite like.
T - Semi sweet start, then the balance swings to summer grain and ginger, real ginger. There is some citrus, orange skin and hints of lemon.
M - A bit thin, starts gently sweet, then a delightful spicy thread runs through, finish is again semi sweet with a mild ginger aftertaste.
O - The body of this offering is light-ish and the carbonation keeps things prickly. In warm months I could see having a few. The ginger addition to a wheat based beer is spot on. The hops and their schedule add a nice citrus component.

Oct 08, 2017
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Lone_Freighter from Vermont

3.99/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The appearance was a hazy orange amber body leaving a small half finger white head lasting for less than ten seconds. Small streams of carbonation were seen rising. There was barely any lacing. The smell had the ginger up front with some light malts coming out as the beer warmed, not much else going on. The taste was basically the same. On the palate, she sat about a medium and was sharp as hell, probably due to the ginger, so its expected (it tells me the ginger is real and not fake). For 5.2, I’d say this is fairly drinkable, but the sharpness of the ginger helps to bring it down a bit. Overall, I’m a big fan of ginger and actually really liked this.

Jun 11, 2017
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Sabtos from Ohio

2.74/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Amber with a low retention head of peach-hued bubbles.

Smell is apple first, then light ginger--not spicy, sadly so.

Taste is bread, caramel, and that really light ginger again.

I like ginger, and I'm surprised to see that this has fresh ginger root in it, because ginger can often give you a kick like wasabi can, and while I wouldn't want to scorch people's taste buds, this just isn't what I expected and hardly has any ginger kick at all. I thought it was more like sprinkling some stale powdered ginger spice into the brew.

Medium body. Slightly fizzy. Meh.

Sep 19, 2016
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illpass78 from Maine

3.55/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: It's an ever-so-slightly hazy copper with a huge white head. Carbonation heavy. No lace.

Aroma: This beer has a pretty diverse smell. There's some ginger candy, caramel, wheat, sour funk, and lots of malt.

Taste: This is a decent amber ale with a mild smoky kick and some ginger background. It has a pretty complex flavor profile, but is definitely malt-forward.

Mouthfeel: Very drinkable. The ginger flavor is approachable, not harsh.

Overall: Decent change of pace. Works best as a summer night beer. Not as sweet as I'd anticipated. Worth a look.

Sep 30, 2014
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The_Kriek_Freak from Pennsylvania

3/5  rDev -11.5%

A very unique flavor to this beer. I must confess that I do no detect any ginger at all which makes me wonder whether I got a "defective" bottle. The aroma is overwhelmingly smoky. Forms a huge head even when poured carefully. Lovely color. The flavor is smoky with hints of caramel and a slight burn indicative of the ginger's presence.

Aug 22, 2014
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tigg924 from Massachusetts

4/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at the brewery

Appearance: minimal head, gold in color, hazy, low carbonation

Smell: smells strongly of ginger

Taste: ginger, pale malt, light toasted malt

Mouthfeel: low carbonation, medium bodied, sweet with herbal spiciness, dry

Overall: I like the taste of ginger and this beer features the spice in all its glory. If you do not like ginger, stay away. The ginger mixes well with the base of a pale malt. I could have several of these and find it to be one of Atlantic's better small bottle beers.

Aug 04, 2014
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Bouleboubier from New Jersey

3.54/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

(no freshness date - poured into a balloon)

A: huge foam stand reminiscent of a hefeweizen or infection... dark orange liquid, mild haze... the foam looks great, with the belly button crest and all

S: a bit like spiced apple cake, with the ginger just poking through in the end of big whiff... mild-moderate spicy phenolics and ocean air... slightly air-cauterized fresh ginger root

T: base of bold, mild-intensity caramel (candy bar quality) with a not-too-sweet candied ginger thread... basically, an amber ale foundation with a soft hit of ginger spice... hops play a background role - nothing particularly "hoppy" about this

M: wheaty roundness to the body like a hefeweizen with an added slickness of crystal malt

O: completely fresh and untainted, this beer retains a refreshing fruity note along with a malty, yet light, foundation with a touch of spicy ginger - this bottle has some of that still intact, though it's been ... first had this beer at the brewery summer of '07, brought home a six-pack... it's just a pleasant twist on the standard light/crisp, blonde/wheat summer ale

Jul 13, 2014
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29Engine from Maryland

3.93/5  rDev +15.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Had this beer while on vacation in Bar Harbor Main. After hiking all day stumbled across this beer. It is very refreshing and I love the taste. Has a fruity smell, cloudy amber color, and a slight hint of ginger. I thought it was good enough to have my local liquer store order me a case.

Dec 02, 2013
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dbrauneis from North Carolina

3.44/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Pours a slightly murky dark golden yellow to amber in color with light amounts of gentle visible carbonation along the sides of the glass and some golden orange highlights. The beer has a half finger tall foamy beige head that slowly reduces to a medium sized patch of thin film surrounded by a thinly mottled very thin film covering about 20% of the remainder of the surface of the beer and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light amounts of lacing are observed

S: Light to moderate aromas of wheat with light aromas of fresh ginger (and just a hint of ginger spiciness).

T: Upfront there is a moderate flavor of wheat with some lighter notes of citrus/orange and fresh ginger - though with only a light amount of ginger spiciness. Minimal amounts of bitterness are present and fade very quickly.

M: Light to medium bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation.

O: Easy to drink but I really wish the aromas and flavors of fresh ginger were more prevalent, more spicy, and more intense. Refreshing and a nice beer for the summer.

Aug 22, 2013
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GarthDanielson from Virginia

3.98/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer was poured on-tap and served in a shaker pint, and it was a bright, hazy, orange-gold coloring with a filmy, foamy, white head. Nose of subtle ginger and toast. Flavors of sweet gingerbread, with a roasty/toasty highlight. Lemony ginger aftertaste, with a cookie character. Smooth, light bodied, with a frothy, clean finish. Very good brew.

Aug 22, 2013
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puboflyons from New Hampshire

3.23/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

From the 12 fl. oz. bottle. Sampled on July 12, 2013.

It doesn't look bad. The pour is copper amber with a head that last briefly and then dissolves into nothingness.

Aroma - the nose is full of ginger. It is a ginger-based brew and that is really the main ester. Deep behind that are pale malts and mild hops.

The body is about medium.

The taste is ginger-forward as to be expected. There is a milder pale malt note and moderate hop bitterness at the end. It does have a slight bite that the 5.2% ABV would not suggest. It is the kind of beer I really have to be in the mood for - not for regular drinking.

Jul 13, 2013
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keeganfrank from Ohio

3.25/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Caramel-colored ale with a thin head and yellow highlights. Subtle flavors of ginger and yeast, and do I detect molasses? Has flavors of grass and yeast with a nice ginger kick. The ginger flavor is odd but not overpowering. I'm a big fan of unique brews, but this one just doesn't do it for me.

Jun 25, 2013
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schoolboy from Ohio

3.7/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

I probably have a more open mind about brews like this than most of the experienced beer drinkers I know. Most don't much care for the styles that stray this far from the norms, but I'm always impressed by something truly unique.

This one pours out as an ale but pretty yellow, with a fine head. There is a faint aroma of ginger and yeast.

The taste is fairly sweet at first, but it breaks down as you get used to it and it has a sort of tart finish. The ginger taste really makes it a refreshing drink. This would be a nice one for a day that was about 60 degrees warmer than today.

Feb 17, 2013
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woosterbill from Kentucky

2.44/5  rDev -28%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

12oz bottle into a Duvel tulip.

A: Pours a clear orange-amber body under an inch of frothy white head. Ok retention, light lace. Pretty good.

S: Well, it does smell like ginger root, but it's rather dull nonetheless. One-dimensional and uninteresting.

T: Spicy ginger right away, with some wheat malt and a touch of fruitiness (grapes?) midway through; a harsh, bitter, astringent finish ruins what could have been a decent tasting beer, though. Yuck.

M: Light and lively. Appropriate.

O: Disappointing beer, even for a mediocre brewery. I'm toying with the idea of drainpouring the rest of this and moving on to better stuff.


Nov 22, 2012
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Cavanaghty from Maine

3.9/5  rDev +15%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into an Atlantic Brewing Company glass I got with the beers.

Appearance: Nice clear amber color with about three fingers of white head that lasted about two to three minutes. Not a lot of carbonation, but enough to keep a little bit of head on the top for most of the beer. Moderate lacing on the glass.

Smell: Toasted grains and some hints of spices. I could smell a little of the ginger. Not overpowering on the smells.

Mouthfeel/Taste: Smooth and i want to say light bodied, but I feel like this is supposed to be a medium bodied beer. Up front I had toasted malts and hops with a little ginger snap at the end, but not so much that it was overpowering. Spices (and citrus? maybe)on the aftertaste that lingered for some time.

Overall: Quite the enjoyable brew. Certainly will be having this one again. I see this being paired well with seafood or asian inspired foods.

Jul 23, 2012
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Brenden from Ohio

3.33/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

An off-white head grows to just over one finger in height, hanging around for a couple minutes or so before dissipating over a thickly hazed orange brew. A strong foam manages to drop pretty thick leggy lacing behind.
Ginger does pop out of an aroma that's otherwise a bit light but does offer some grainy wheat and a mix of dryer and perhaps caramel malts.
Ginger remains a kery element in taste, though not as strongly ad in the aroma. Still, the gentle heat and flavor particular to ginger are evident. There's an unfortunately bland flavor almost of spent grains, though malts add some heft. A light phenolic flavor lingers in the finish. There's a very light but present doeing of leafy hops that helps for awhile before going slightly sour.
The mouthfeel is fortunately not watery and, while by no mean strong or heavy, could easily be lighter. It tends toward spritziness but doesn't fall too far.

Jan 20, 2012
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dexterk1 from Illinois

3.36/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Pours a reddish copper with a good couple inches of head.
Odor is not really exceptional. Pretty average in that it smells neutral.
Taste is good. You can taste the ginger, but it is not overpowering. Beer has pleasant aftertaste and mouthfeel is about average. Overall, beer is pretty good and a nice specialty beer.

Jan 05, 2012
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negroobserver from New York

2.73/5  rDev -19.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Clear golden color with a nice head. Reminds me of a filtered hefeweizen.

Ginger definitely co es through on the nose. There is a slight hoppy scent. Nothing else stands out.

The ginger again comes through in the taste. It's interesting, but it doesn't dominate the flavors as it should. The middle falls completely flat with respect to flavors. Finishes ith a moderate bitterness, which lingers in the mouth, an aftertaste. Not a very clean finish.

The beer has decent body and offers a bit of a sting on the tongue, probably from the ginger. The body is thinner than a lager but more dense than a pilsner.

Overall, this is an easy to drink beer, which doesn't challenge the palate. I think people who are interested in good beer, will find this one lacking in almost every category.


Sep 24, 2011
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Buggies from Pennsylvania

2.77/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

This one was a dud.

It actually smelled quite pleasant. Definite aroma of ginger, but is also has some hints of caramel and citrus too.

Tastes too boring. The ginger is lost. It has a dominate citrus flavor that leads to a dry finish with just a little bitter bite at the end. It is so dry with no background flavors that it tastes watery.

Just bland and boring.

Aug 23, 2011
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ggilman from Maine

2.7/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz bottle poured into a stemless Pinot glass.

Pours a fizzy apricot color, hazy with a tight champagne like head that settles to nothing. Raisin dried fruit nose. Herbal bitter spicy taste followed by a rush of water soaked hay. Candied Ginger after taste. Crisp refreshing carbonation could save this for fans of the style. Couldn't save it for me. There's actually a nice Ginger bite as it warms, but the straw after taste totally ruins this for me. I think it could work better in a different style. Maybe a Ginger Pale Ale?

Aug 04, 2011
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jlindros from Massachusetts

3.13/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours a decent fizzy 1 finger head that fades at a med pace, over hazy sediment filled orange honey colored beer.

Nose has sweet syrups, plenty of extract aromas, light wheats aromas, hints of spices and ginger, and a light herbal hops.

Taste starts slightly on the sweet side with some wheats, some more extract like flavors, phenols and a bit of plastic, light candied ginger, sweet syrupy extract flavors, a light herbal hop bitterness. Finishes still a bit sweet, little spicy from spices and ginger, sticky syrups, and some light bitterness.

Mouth is med bodied, decent carb.

Overall fairly meh, plenty of off flavors, sweet and syrupy with an extract like wheat flavor that I'm still not sure if it is extract or just very poorly done wheat beer, the ginger is barely there, and some phenols that don't belong.

Aug 02, 2011
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Cylinsier from Pennsylvania

3.85/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz.

Pours a slightly hazy lemon gold color, bit of a sudsy white head.

Smells of barley malt and a bit of spiced ginger sweetness.

Tastes mildly of ginger, a hint of a bite but not much. Otherwise, barley malt, a hint of citrus and some wheat character.

Feels moderate with medium carbonation over the roof of the mouth.

Pretty easy and interesting sessionable brew. The ginger is a welcome spiced flavor that is not overdone. It's there but it complements the beer flavors instead of overriding them. Definitely worth trying and as a fan of ginger, I would think you couldn't hope for much better than this out of a ginger spiced beer.

Jul 29, 2011
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DrDemento456 from Pennsylvania

3.65/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - By gum I got me some floaties! Color is a nice orange amber with a bit of head that turns to a light lace ring.

S - Mostly wheat and a spice I think is ginger. Might not be stong enough and is mixed with the sweet malts.

T - Not bad has sort of a blandness with the simplest of wheat and then a twang of ginger but it doesn't seem to carbonated to make it enjoyable as a "ginger ale"
Taste is balanced though.

M - Light to medium pretty easy drinking

Overall it seems like others said as a basic wheat ale with a bit of ginger added. Not enough to really notice but not too little to make this offensive. I am glad I tried an actual ginger beer.

Jul 25, 2011
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metter98 from New York

3.38/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: The beer is hazy golden yellow in color and has a light amount of carbonation along with some small particles floating in suspension. It poured with a half finger high off white head that died down relatively quickly, leaving a thick ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are light aromas of ginger and wheat in the nose.
T: The taste is very similar to the smell and also has some notes of orange citrus and spices.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer isn’t that difficult to drink and has some refreshing properties. It tastes like a summer ale with a twist of ginger.

Jun 29, 2011
Mount Desert Island Ginger from Atlantic Brewing Company / Mainely Meat BBQ
Beer rating: 78 out of 100 with 218 ratings