Phin & Matt's Extraordinary Ale | Southern Tier Brewing Company

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Phin & Matt's Extraordinary AlePhin & Matt's Extraordinary Ale

Brewed by:
Southern Tier Brewing Company
New York, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by wailingwench on 10-29-2004

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Reviews: 621 | Ratings: 1,491
Photo of Sammy
3.82/5  rDev +7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hoppy and Malty, and carmel. Dark Golden. A smoother sweeter member of the North American Grapefruit hophead series of beers. Bold fruit but lemon in finish. Medium mouthfeel. Not much head or lace. Altogether a fine refreshing start to Radekfest, and thanks to the Yankee who served it up.Had on tap a year later and enjoyed hoppiness and fruit though dring.

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Photo of kylehay2004
3.52/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: no head to speak of on a golden and crimson body.

S: light on the nose with mostly pale malt with a musty and floral hop notes.

T: mostly pale malts with a subtle fleeting pine notes. intermixed floral and citrus hops.

M: medium body and moderate carbonation.

Overall: drinkable but with all of the high end flavorful APAs out there this one hardly stands out and is way too simplified.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.55/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

a less hoppy american pale, pouring a clear yellow color with a spiderweb lacey white head an inch high. the nose is light crystal and pale malts, dry and bready, with a mild fruity hopping. flavor is the same, nothing too intriguing here, but a very balanced and fresh tasting brew with some cut grass notes in the finish. crisp and clean, drinkable and refreshing, a sessionable brew. lots of bubbles, light light body. i wouldnt buy this because it isnt my type, but its yummy and down easy with a bowl of chili con carne.

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Photo of Knapp85
3.77/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This beer poured out with a gigantic amount of head on it. It was pretty much the entire glass was foam and with the smallest amount of liquid at the bottom. It took several tries to get the entire beer into the glass. Once it settled this beer was a clear yellow color. The aroma was on the hoppy side not too much else really happening there. The taste was a little piney, the after taste had some malts kicking in but not a whole lot. The mouthfeel was ridiculously carbonated, every sip I took the beer just went crazy and foamed up in my mouth. It was kind of a pain because it was hard to get a decent mouthful.

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Photo of metter98
3.6/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is hazy light yellow in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin white head that dissipated, leaving delicate lacing on the surface and a ring of bubbles around the edge of the glass.
S: There are aromas of floral hops and fruit in the nose along with notes of sweet malts.
T: The taste is similar to the smell and has a light to moderate amount of malty sweetness and a slight amount of bitterness.
M: It feels light-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer is very easy to drink and has some refreshing properties.

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Photo of oriolesfan4
4.05/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A nice solid brew from Souther Tier here. For a pale ale it is quite hoppy but the best part of it is its drinkability. A great taste, light bodied, and a low enough ABV to not make you half in the bag. An easy drinker from a great brewery. I would definitely have this one again.

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Photo of BEERchitect
3.5/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Brewers, when you use words like 'extrordinary' on your labels, you put yourself on a pedistal. This notion will be challenged with each and every sip from your customers. Needless to say, you have some extraordinarily large shoes to fill!

Phin & Matt's pours a rather ordinary light copper/golden color with active carbonation streams feuling a modest white head. Moderate with retention and lace, the beer looks a dissapointing normal.

Graham cracker, orange zest, and a touch of peppery ginger shape the nose with medium but balanced intensity. Though flaws are nil, the beer develops a very simplified scent. Nice, but nothing out of the ordinary.

The flavors of the beer closely mimic the aromas and is a testiment to the consistency of the beer from nose to finish. Citrus notes from hops give a crisp grapefruit and orange peel flavor and bitterness that rises everso slightly above a light caramel and malty/bready base. Light spicy yeast give a mild pepper or ginger 'snappy' character. Lighter than usual flavors give a grainy impression late. Again, simplified but not banal.

Early medium creaminess disipates as the carbonation falls, making for a quick transition to dryness late. The beer seems to end before it should, allowing for a watery notion to play with light graininess far after the finish, heading into aftertaste.

It turns out that there's really nothing extrordinary about this pale ale (except that the brewing company thinks that the beer is extraordinary). But as pale ales go, it compares well to Sierra Nevada's Pale Ale even if it's lighter in body and taste. Very sessionable without requiring much thought. Regrettably, the beer probably falls in the "forgettable" catagory.

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Photo of brentk56
3.28/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a cloudy amber color with a massive head (twas a gusher) with some nice lacing, too

Smell: Lemony citrus, with hints of Pine-Sol and cedar

Taste: Light malt flavor allows the hop bill to take prominence, but the hops are just not that tasty, with a lemony and cedary astringency that just gets worse after the swallow

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: I think I'll stick to Southern Tier's big beers

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Photo of kojevergas
2.89/5  rDev -19%
look: 2.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Brief initial impressions from a sixer purchased in Brooklyn:

Pours a clear gold of average vibrance with a fluffy-off-white cap.

Hop profile is floral, a bit bubblegummy, and slightly oily & resinous. Pale malts keep it balanced. No notes are particularly vivid or expressive. As a whole, it's balanced but the build is uninteresting. Hop selection isn't stellar, nor is hop pungency/depth of flavour.

Drinkable somewhat refreshing fare, but forgettable. There's nothing here that separates it from the pack, and that's a problem in a style as saturated in the U.S. market as the American pale ale. I'll enjoy polishing off the 6 pack I bought, but this is unimpressive work from Southern Tier.


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Photo of emerge077
3.88/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a crystal clear golden tone with a sticky, soapy head that reduced itself quickly.

Initial floral hop aroma that blows off after a few minutes, laying bare the cereal grain smell of pale malt.

Flavor is redeeming, nice light citrusy hop bite, with lingering earthy herbal hops and a slight honeyish aftertaste long after it's gone. Hints of puffed wheat too, but not distracting in this pale ale. Moderate body, not thin, well balanced with ample carbonation. The glass disappeared in 5 minutes after the 1st sip, if that's any indication of being sessionable.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3.5/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle: Poured a light hazy amber color ale with a medium foamy head with good retention and some lacing. Aroma of light bitter hops with a subtle citrus undertones and medium caramel malt base. Taste is more bitter in terms of aroma then actual taste with a medium caramel malt base. Body is full with good carbonation. A good session ale though more hops presence could have benefited this beer.

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Photo of zeff80
4.17/5  rDev +16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A - Poured out a clear, orange/copper color with a small, bubbly head of tan foam. The head left sudsy trails of lace.

S - It smelled very floral and of citrus, mostly orange peel. Some caramel in the nose, too.

T - It has a nice spicy bite from the hops with a sharp citrus bite. It had a nice roasted malt flavor with sweet caramel.

M - It was crisp and sharp with a dry finish. A light-bodied ale.

D - This is a great APA, tasty and sessionable. This could be a staple in your fridge.

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Photo of superspak
3.68/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle into pint glass, bottled in July 2012. Pours lightly hazy golden amber color with a 1 finger fairly dense white head with good retention, that reduces to a small cap that lingers. Spotty foamy lacing clings down the glass. Aromas of grapefruit, orange zest, pine, pineapple, bread, grass, herbal, and floral. Pretty nice aromas with good balance and decent strength. Taste of pineapple, grapefruit, orange zest, floral, grass, pine, bread, and herbal. Light crisp bitterness on the finish; with lingering notes of citrus, pineapple, grass, pine, herbal, floral, and bread on the finish for a short bit. Nice balance of flavors, with a good hop/malt balance; a bit watery but still tasty; no cloying flavors at all on the finish. Medium carbonation and body; with a very crisp and clean mouthfeel that is great. Alcohol is very well hidden with nearly zero warming noticed after the finish. Overall this is a nice pale ale. Good hop flavor profile with nice balance; extremely crisp and smooth to drink. An enjoyable and sessionable offering I would have no problem getting again.

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Photo of nickfl
4.03/5  rDev +12.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A clear, copper-colored body topped with one and a half fingers of white foam. The head settles quickly and leaves a nice pattern of lace.

S - A moderate aroma of pine hops with a hint of grapefruit. Some toasted malt underneath that combines with the hops to produce a spicy cedar note.

T - Sweet, toasty malt up front with a light note of pine hops. The malt gains momentum through the middle and the pine lingers along with a rising bitterness. Finishes with more sweet, bready malt and a hint of caramel along with light pine hop flavor and modest, balancing bitterness.

M - Medium body, moderate carbonation, and a slightly sweet finish.

D - Very drinkable and well rounded. The hop aroma is more pungent than I would have expected with a big whiff of pine that contrasts the rich malt character nicely. The flavor is more mild with a greater emphasis on the malt, but there is still enough hop flavor and bitterness to keep the beer balanced. Nicely done.

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Photo of oberon
4.22/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear golden with a white one finger head that is gone pretty quickly not leaving much lace behind,evergreen pine aromas here and quite heavy at that with an underlying caramel sweetness but the pine is main attraction.If you like a well balanced pale ale then this is your thing,a dose of citric hops hits up front but the firm caramel/biscuit backbone of this beer melds extremely well with the hops just making this beer not only well balanced and flavorful but very quaffable.I really enjoyed this brew I would say its "extraordinary".

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.22/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A slightly hazy, golden-orange amber body is capped by a full head of frothy bright-white foam that holds fairly well before dropping to a standard collar. Lacing is limited. Bright and citrusy Cascade hops greet you in the nose over a delicate biscuity maltiness. The body is medium; and its slightly restrained carbonation lends just a tingle to the tongue. The malt is much more prevalent in the flavor than the nose suggests, and its dryish, biscuity character works as more than just a backdrop to its hoppiness. It's full-flavored and well-balanced with maltiness up-front; hop flavors across the middle and into the finish; and a bold bitterness that cuts through the biscuity and caramel-drizzled malt to dry it out in the end. Quite a respectable American pale!!!

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
4.07/5  rDev +14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color, with a very thin white head that fades quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is a nice blend of caramelized malt, hops and citrus.

T: The taste starts out very malty and sweet, with flavors of citrus and caramel, then a decent bite of hops bitterness comes in to provide a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet and a little hoppy.

M: Smooth and very crisp, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is clean and dry.

D: Very tasty, goes down very easily, not very filling, decent kick, good representation of style, this is a very good beer to stick with for an evening unless you’re looking for something stronger. Otherwise, the beer is quite satisfying if you want something sessionable but with a lot of substance.

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Photo of dbrauneis
3.63/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a lightly hazy pale golden yellow in color. The beer has a finger tall white head that reduces to a couple of large thin patches and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Significant lacing is observed.

S: There are moderate amounts of some malty sweetness along with some floral hops.

T: Very similar to the smell, the beer starts out with a light amount of malt sweetness. After that there is a light presence of floral hops imparting a moderate amount of bitterness.

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

O: Easy to drink and just on the edge of being sessionable (might be a little too high in ABV and too intense in flavor, but not by a lot). I would definitely have this beer again.

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Photo of Rifugium
3.5/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

First had: on tap at Teresa's, Wayne, PA

Poured a clear copper color with a decent white head. Toasty aroma, malty, with mild hints of floral and citrus hops. Taste of toasty grains and malts, moderately sweet, with floral and citrus hops gently infused, a bit metallic. Medium bodied and quite drinkable, but pretty standard. Aka, not that extraordinary.

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Photo of mactrail
3.23/5  rDev -9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pleasant golden amber color with a nice sudsiness. Little aroma, just some "beeriness."

Bready and leafy flavors with lots of herbal hops and less of the hard-core bitterness. Some mineral taste and just a hint of malty sweetness. The delicate hoppy flavor is really not bad. Watery mouthfeel and a little of the bitter club soda taste when the malt evaporates. A little too insipid to be really refreshing.

The current label lists this at 5.7% ABV. From the 12 oz bottle.

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Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.1/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

16 ounce pint - $5.50 at Taco Mac in Kennesaw, Georgia.

Appearance: Presents a clear, copper-hued body capped with half an inch of white suds. Slender coating of lace on the descent.

Smell: Scent of pale malts marked with a slight toastiness and embedded with citrusy, lemony hop scents.

Taste: Opening of standard-issue pale malts with a hint of very, very lightly toasted bread character and only a slim measure of overall sweetness. Steely hop flavor, chiefly citrusy in natural, but there are also some faint floral tones teasing the palate. Medium bitterness. Finishes dry with a light, lingering bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-light body. Medium carbonation.

Drinkability: I found it to be well balanced in all regards, there wasn't scads of malt sweetness and there wasn't a splurge of harsh, unnecessary bitterness. It's just a straight-up good APA.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4/5  rDev +12%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Radiant tangerine with butterscotch borders. The minimally orange-influenced dark cream head is frothyfirm, is a little on the sticky side and develops that melted milkshake look that one might see on an IPA. A jagged king's crown of lace appears, with assorted specks and flecks higher up the glass.

It's hard to say what comprises the hop bill, but I'm guessing they're all native born (swayed by the red, white and blue, star-studded label?). There's plenty of citrus fruit, with orange and lemon more prominent than grapefruit. I don't really pick up any spicy, floral or herbal aromas that would put me in mind of some of the English or European hops.

Southern Tier tends to showcase hops in their beer, which is why I love most everything they brew. Phin & Matt's, though, is less hoppy/bitter than expected. I still like it just fine, it's just that my tongue was expecting a little more action than it's receiving. That's another way of saying that this is a balanced, approachable pale ale. Peach and apricot are at least as evident as lemon and orange.

There's no hint of caramel or anything darker than lightly toasted pale malt. Although the malt backbone is cookie-like, it isn't an overly sweet cookie. On the palate, I'm not so confident in my hop predictions. The beer isn't overwhelmingly bitter, pithy or citrusy, but that could be due to the fact that it isn't an especially hoppy beer. Something about the flavor profile whispers... 'England'.

The mouthfeel is of high quality, but then I'd expect nothing less from these guys. It's firmly medium for the style. While it isn't exactly creamy, it is smooth-edged and poised in the mouth. The 'fades into the background' amount of carbonation is just about perfect.

Southern Tier should re-name their brewery Top Tier since that's where I think they reside when it comes to the best microbreweries in American. I've never had a ST beer that was anything less than delicious and Phin & Matt's Extraordinary Ale does nothing to convince me otherwise. It may not be Extraordinary, but it's a damn fine APA that I'd love to have access to. Thanks Calico.

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Photo of billab914
3.68/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My mom Picked up a Southern Tier mix pack of pales for me for when I came home for the Thanksgiving holiday. This is the first of four beers I will be reviewing out of that pack.

Poured into my Southern Tier tulip glass. Poured a light amber orange color. Poured with a nice white foamy head that quickly disappeared into a small ring around the edge of the glass. Very nice lacing on the glass as I drank this one.

Aroma is slightly citrusy and hoppy with a little malt. Taste is moderately hoppy and tangy. A little maltiness and some bitterness at the end.

Drinkability is very good, this is something I could see myself substituting for any macro beer when drinking more then a few with macro drinkers. Nothing over the top with taste but enjoyable and drinkable.

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Photo of russpowell
4.05/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

cheers to brianj555 for this one!

Pours honey gold with 3+ fingers of eggshell white head. Good head retention & lacing

S: Citrussy hops, honey malt & a bit of grassyness

T: Lemony & grapefruitty hops, & some biscuitty malt up front. Honey malt, & lemony hops as this warms. Finishes with a touch of grainyness & grapefruit

MF: Medium bodied, a bit sticky, moderate carbonation & great balance

Drinks easy, a solid APA

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Photo of smcolw
4.42/5  rDev +23.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear neutral amber. Good chaulky-colored head that leaves thin lace on the glass.

Green, young hop presence in the aroma--dry hopped. Fresh. Malt smells are muted but present; some alcohol in the background.

On first taste, this is a superior pale ale. The beginning is malt with very little hop bitterness. The malt fades and the hop takes over ending with the aftertaste being nearly all hop. The body is smooth, if slightly on the fuller side. This is also a surprisingly crisp beer. Carbonation is right on.

Frankly, I was not expecting much here, but this is a superior American Pale Ale. Very much worth seeking out.

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Phin & Matt's Extraordinary Ale from Southern Tier Brewing Company
3.57 out of 5 based on 1,491 ratings.
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