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AleSmith IPA | AleSmith Brewing Company

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AleSmith IPAAleSmith IPA

Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company
California, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 7.25%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-29-2002

For Trade:
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Reviews: 1,315 | Ratings: 4,091
Photo of SheepNutz
4.59/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz. bomber poured into a snifter. It pours a slightly hazy orange color with two fingers of head. A good amount of lacing on the glass. The smell is bursting with citrusy hops. It really leaps out at you and fills the nostrils easily. The taste is all hops baby. Lots of fresh juicy hops with great grapefruit flavor and nice bitterness. The body is creamy and thick. The drinkability is great, I would have never guessed this to be 7.25%. A flippin' fantastic IPA. Thanks to clvand0 for bringing this to our tasting!

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Photo of BeerDawgs
4.59/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A 22oz bottle shipped to me from Escondido, CA. I can't get enough of Alesmith after my trip to the brewery last summer.

A - A bronze amber, with 2 fingers of head, and sticky lace all over the glass. Small bubbles rise to the top throughout

S - Ok, the smell is off the hook. The most delicous citrus hoppy smell ever. It takes over the room as soon as you open the bottle.

T - An incredibly tasty mix of citrus and pine hops. A little bit of a bitter aftertaste, but alot of citrus, fruit flavors for a west coast IPA.

M - Medium bodied, smooth.

O - An amazingly tasty, well balanced IPA. This goes up in my top 5. So damn drinkable and the ABV is completely hidden

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Photo of jomo
4.59/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance is a beautiful, deep orange and pours with a nice, solid head. Only detractor is the amount of yeast floating around. Of course, the bottle conditioning results in more important qualities later.

Smell....Wow. Perfectly hoppy with pine and citrus. I hear this IPA is heavily dry hopped and it is worth it.

Taste is balanced. Not too hoppy, but with some malt and citrus overtones. Finish is long and bitter. If you like a really long finish, this IPA should fit the bill.

Nice, fine carbonation. Champagne like. Middle viscosity which seems right for an IPA.

Drinkability? Would have been a 5, except for the long finish. This is an IPA to savor almost like a spirit.

A well crafted brew.


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Photo of bigreduw64
4.59/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Started pouring this beer and only got about 1/3 of it in my 1/2 L Ayinger willibecker glass. Pours with a ton of head. The aroma hits me from a couple feet away, this is going to be a great IPA. I can smell the hops, grapefruity, floral goodness. The taste punches my tongue and I want it to keep beating me. This is a great beer. Have to say the only downside is that after a couple sips, my taste buds are destroyed. Either I stick with the hops or I will have to go to my backup session beer because this is so flavorful I can't taste anything else. The mouthfeel is what I would expect out of a good IPA, lightly carbonated with a medium body. The drinkability is great, I could drink a couple of these. However I would probably fall down after that because I can definitely feel the alcohol in this one. Great beer!

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Photo of hero27
4.59/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber.

My brother gave me two bombers of this brew for my birthday...how cool is that??
Mellow orange/golden color..off-white head rests above.
One of the most incrediblely aromatic beers I've had to date..the fresh hops are possibly rivaled ONLY by Dreadnaught..and I thought that was an impossible feat.
Thick pine sap hops and puckering citrus that would leave many beer-drinker's tastebuds trembling. Boldness in it's true form.
I seriously could never get sick of a beer like this...
Very smooth mouthfeel and creamy texture.. Absolutely impossible for me to tell whether this is 5%, 6%, 7% abv..the alcohol is overshadowed completely by the multitude of flavors involved.
What else can I say? It meets the hype for me and would without a doubt be a staple in my fridge if it was available anywhere within 100 miles of me.

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Photo of OddNotion
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Poured into my DFH Signature Glass. Quickly receding half finger white head that leaves lacing around the edges. Deep golden/orange color. Transparent.

Smell: Sweet citrusy heaven. Smells so beautifully fruity, a perfect example of IPA, misses a 5 because it is not as pungent as I wish it could be. It doesn't radiate past the edges of the glass. Once my nose is in the glass it smells amazing though.

Taste: Wow fruity hop juice is exactly what I am in the mood for and this delivers. Hops dominate the flavor. The malt is wayyy in the background, barely tasted.

Mouthfeel: Thin, well carbonated, nothing out of this world, the taste is the frontliner on this beer, mouthfeel doesn't enhance the beer but it doesn't detract given the style.

Overall: This is great stuff. I love the flavor and feel like I could session this during a hot summer day. I wish this was readily available to me! 6 Packs would be cool too as I hate the bomber format especially for IPAs but beggars can't be choosers.

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Photo of zoso1967
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a lovely medium amber that is orange in the center and golden around the edges. A equally lovely layer of fluffy foam sits on top, slowly melting into the beer and leaving sticky lace. The aroma is full on American northwest hops. Grapefruit, orange and pine. I also detect just a bit of toasted malty sweetness. One sip and I can tell this is definitely a west coast IPA. Tons of hop flavor inundates my tongue. Grapefruit, pine, orange and some dank skunkyness. These hops taste fresh as hell and are delicious. The malt is WAY in the back but does a good job of holding up the hops and keeping this from being too much of a bruiser. Not as bitter as some west coast IPAs, I really am digging what this beer has to offer. The mouthfeel is medium with a very nice amount of carbonation and a clean dry finish. Very drinkable if you are into hops, and one of the finest, if not THE finest IPA I have ever had.

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Photo of wyllder
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

First off: Big thanks go out to drewbage for the chance to sample this.

Alesmith pours a clear (cloudy as you get to the bottom of the 22oz bottle) medium amber with a 1/2 inch ivory head. Head recedes and leaves a good sticky lacing on the glass as you go.

Citrus hops greet the nose, piney grapefruit & apricot with a candied edge to the scent.

Front of the palate is a tart grapefruit bitterness. The midsip introduces just the faintest hint of caramel malt. Aftertaste is a piney bitterness, just begging you to come back for more.

Mouthfeel is a tad resinous, keeping it out of the top digits.

This dances painfully close to leaving a bad, overly bitter, aftertaste, but never gets there and instead is imminently drinkable.

This is beautiful. Very much worthy of its reputation. One of the very best IPA's I've ever had the pleasure of trying.


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Photo of riored4v
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 3/28/08

Poured into a pint glass. Formed a nice thick, white, pillowy head. Body was clear and copper in color. Good lacing and a head that lasted the entire serving.

Smell was strong on the hops. Citrus and grapefruit dominated. Mild malt sweetness.

Strong hop profile. Citrus and grapefuit flavors shine. Perfect amount of malt sweetness and caramel to be give a good balance for an IPA. No real presence of the higher abv.

Oily and medium body. Very slightly dry finish. Medium carbonation.

I'm torn on drinkability. It's an EXCELLENT IPA. One that I could easily have a few of, but with the semi-high ABV, it would catch up real quick.

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Photo of CuriousMonk
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.75

Its high alcohol content may catch you unawares if you're not careful, but it's hard to resist once you've tasted it. 7.25% ABV. Poured from 22oz bomber into dimpled glass - no date on bottle. Pourded a dark golden orange color. Smell consisted of sweet hops and malts accompanying hints of citrus and light pine and/or vanilla. Taste starts off with citrus flavors with a nice malty sweetness. Mouthability was smooth, medium bodied, and well-carbonated along with a nice head and laces that were left throughout. Other than taste, drinkability was the highlight of this beer as it consisted of a smooth nice malt characteristic for an American IPA. My experience with this beer has automatically made my top five IPA to date just sitting below 3F Dreadnaught.

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Photo of nhindian
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

22oz bomber split with my roommate and poured into a tulip.

A - The body on this beer is a pale, golden yellow, with some tangerine highlights to it. Even with a relatively careful pour, it turns out a bit hazy with yeast sediment due to the bottle conditioning, but it's pretty tame. The head is full and consists of 2.5-fingers worth of ivory foam, with a nice balance of tight and loose bubbles making up the texture. I can't see much, if any, carbonation streams in the glass. Lacing is pretty nice, with foamy peaks cresting on the sides of the tulip glass.

S - Although AleSmith doesn't date their bottles (tisk tisk for IPAs...), this beer certainly does smell fresh. This is almost the one beer that compares to Russian River's Pliny the Elder in my opinion, in that it is like sticking your head in a box of pine tree refresheners. I have yet to encounter a beer that rivals Pliny in that regard, and it's only fitting that it comes from another West Coast brewery. As it warms it sort of transforms into a more well-rounded IPA, drawing inspiration from the more citrusy hops and extracting some grapefruit, orange, and mango. Mostly hop-forward and having no apologies for it, this beer is seriously addicting to smell.

T - It's been almost five months since I've had Pliny the Elder, and I can instantly draw comparisons to it. Living on the East Coast, I've surrounded myself with balanced IPAs, that while boasting heavy IBUs, are still balanced heavily by a supportive malt backbone. However, this beer is obviously and unabashedly hop-bomb and I've found that I really enjoy those type of IPAs. Maybe I should move to California. Again, it's mostly like sucking on a pine cone, but with a refreshing wave of citrus behind it to transition the flavor. Comparing this to Pliny the Elder, Surly's Abrasive, Troegs' Nugget Nectar, and Bell's Hopslam, this can easily hold its own and I'm fairly sure I'd place it above Hopslam.

M - Mouthfeel is moderately light-bodied with good carbonation. Pretty smooth for the style and leaves a thick coating on the mouth. The hops don't exactly rip the enamel off of your teeth, but they certainly do tingle after drinking this.

D - Drinkability is high. For an American IPA I'd say this is easily near the top of my rankings, if not for any IPA. Easily rivals the other, better-known competitors and I think this is a dark horse. If I could get this easily, I don't think I'd regularly drink another IPA.

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Photo of jancona
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

My first AleSmith brew! Pours a beautiful orange hue (I rhymed). Off white foam and moderate lacing. Smell is glorious - grapefruit and juicy tangerine. Taste has a nice malt backbone with grapefruit and tangerine - the finish has lingering, bitter floral hops. A nice creamy mouthful. Definitely a candidate for my favorite west coast IPA.

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Photo of beerwolf77
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Bomber shared with my standard drinking buddy. BeerFMAndy.

Poured into my pint glass the beer is a crystal clear golden yellow. The blast of head is rediculous. At least four fingers of stark white head explode to the top of my glass. After waiting a few minutes the head has formed what can only be described as beer ice cream. This beer has some of the finest head retention I've ever laid eyes on.

The aroma is full on juicy pineapple. A boquet of hops, fresh cut grass and pine needles. We joked about pouring this beer inside our cars and use it like hop air freshener. So fruity and hoppy.

The flavor is a mix of pine and grapefruit. Plenty of hop goodness. Some apples and pears with traces of bubblegum. Sweet and sour deliciousness. Dry finish.

Medium body with moderate carbonation.

Overall a spectacular beer. I could drink this one on a daily basis.

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Photo of deadmonkees
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I had this in a bottle on 8/9/09. The appearance is typical American IPA with a caramel color. Excellent head retention and unbelieveable lacing sticks on the side of the glass. The smell starts with a true hop aroma but not over the top. The taste is wonderful. A little citrus but with the extra kick in alcohol (7.25%) it adds a nice malt flavor to balance it out. Mouthfeel is outstanding, with a smooth finish. I enjoyed this better than these great IPA's as well (DogFish Head 90 and Victory Hop Devil Ale).

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Photo of ericj551
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Alesmith IPA pours a very slightly hazy orange with an off white head. Smell is very fruity with a lot of citrus, orange, grapefruit, as well as a slight piney aroma. The taste is more sweet citrus, lots of orange flavor with a hint of bitter grapefruit. The sweet maltiness kicks in just enough to balence the solid hop bitterness. This beer is so balenced, it hides its strength very well. I brought this bottle back from CA, hopefully it makes its way out the the East Coast soon.

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Photo of Vancer
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Holy cow, what a top notch IPA – I’m again jealous of the BA’s on the coasts! They seem to have a great offering of brews.

Strong abv of 7.75 tries to knock down the ivory head (on top of a nice amber / orange pour) – but the strong lacing wins out!

Sexy piney and citrus in the aroma. A nice quaff adds the dimension of grapefruit to the mix. Just a superb blend of solid IPA tastes that dances about throughout the bomber.

Medium bodied, crisp and clean – doesn’t have an oily texture that the DIPAs get into (but I also like). Even with the kick-ass abv, I would luv to quaff a few more of these, and I will!

A hearty cheers to BRoss242 for the pleasure.

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Photo of tavernjef
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Color is a pale deep orangeish yellow with a light brown tone to it, chill haze present, head just over a finger high, loosly thick and bubbly, cream colored, fades fairly quick and lace sticks well in thin webby spots and thin whispy sheets. Smell is quite a nice hop nose, sweeter pine sense thats bitterly smooth, a touch floral and spiced over a nice toasty caramel malt backbone. Taste is lovely, smooth, soft and rounded, balanced well, nothing overwhelming in the hops, bitterness in check by alot, but whats there is loaded full with nice soft sweet pine, some fresh floral hop hints, caramel malts dotted in the backing thats soft as well. the softness really stands out favorably, I liked it alot. I'm betting its a dried and fresh hop ale variant. Not such a 'in your face' IPA, a simple & welcome surprise and something I find now having had a few Alesmith brews that is something in character that seems to stand out for me in their brews. Feel is soft and pleasant, nearly full, super smooth, nothing harsh here, lingering of bitterness is shorter then most but seems to fit with this one. A bit tamer then the Yulesmith, but nearly the same in every aspect of softness and drinkablity. The softness makes for very easy drinkin'! The bomber was gone in no time. Definately an IPA to keep around for any Ol' time.

Big thanks to Gusler who provided the bomber.

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Photo of bitterthebetter
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

pours a light golden yellow, with slight copper hues and a creamy, lacy white head

grapefruit dominates the nose, with sturdy pine, resiny, floral, and slight lemony hops

hoppy, first piney, then slight citrus with both lemon and grapefruit, but more lemon. floral notes on the finish with a spicy and dry finish

smooth, crisp, hoppy yet balanced, with a lot of good flavors mixing around, with a light yet solid malty backbone; just enough to provide balance yet not cloud the hops. relatively light bodied but very long on the finish

its got all the hop flavors that I look for in an IPA. Solid hops with a plethora of hoppy flavors that last end coat the palate. smooth, big, balanced, delicious, with a light enough body that makes it go down way to easy.

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Photo of pheggeseth
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: golden yellow with a huge rocky white head, tons of lacing, not much carbonation

S: floral and fruity hops up front, slight caramel and berries in the middle

T: oaky wood up front with floral notes again, some fruit in the middle with some piney sweetness, it all tapers off a little more quickly than I would like

M: crisp, maybe a little low on carbonation, ever so slightly thin?

D: a very unique IPA in my opinion, strong and complex, but still totally drinkable

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Photo of Beervis
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours from the attractive (I love the simplicity of AleSmith's bottles)22oz bottle a deep orangey amber with a very thick, fluffy white head. The bubbles danced around in the glass and quickly rose to the top to form the head. What a site!!

Smell is hugely citric and flowery with loads and loads of hops.

Taste was incredible, a huge amount of hops up front, then balanced by a solid malt backbone. Alcohol is very present, but in a way that is not offensive, but rather, adds tons of complexity and spice. The medium body produces layers of flowery and grapefruity biterness, giving way to a snappy dry finish.

The is very drinkable, but at it's strength, vould be pretty "warming". To me, it was right on the verge of a DIPA, but not quite there. It is definitely in my top two for the style, I love this beer, but that's not surprising, as it's AleSmith!!!

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Photo of RonfromJersey
4.6/5  rDev +7.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Finally unwrapping a Christmas present.

Love the almost generic-looking "IPA" in big block letters.

A slighty chilly orange body, topped by a three full fingers of frothy, dentible eggshell bubbles. Good lacing.

An abundant nose of grapefruit and pine, the fruit juicy and ripe.

A strong, firm malt foundation layers across the tongue, but it's quickly smothered with a rush of hops which flood throughout the mouth. Juicy, fresh, but not overpoweringly bitter. This is beer as a roller coaster. After taste is an almost clean, refreshing memory echoing in your mouth. The beer has gone, but your tastebuds just want to enjoy the fade.

Mouthfeel is slick, just fine for the style.

Drinkability? Hell I'm bummed that I've only got the the one bottle. I've got a niece moving to San Diego. Maybe she can bring a couple back when she comes home to visit. Definitely have this if you can.

Thanks again to Eyechartbrew.

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Photo of Roguer
4.61/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Beautiful translucent brew, orange-amber, good head retention.

Hops are juicy, piney, and potent. Hint of dank herbs, massive bitterness, grapefruit peel finish. Sweet malts with a touch of caramel.

Lively feel, medium bodied and very drinkable with heft. Cloying hop oils, puckering bitterness, dry finish.

This is a damn near perfect IPA. It's almost daring me to give it 5.0s.

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Photo of Hendry
4.61/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

From the moment you pop the top on AleSmith IPA, you get the sense from the nose, even from the bottle, that this has potential for enjoyment. The pour was relatively average with a two finger head that disappeared pretty quickly but did leave nice lacing.

Not really clear-as-a-bell, nor is it truly cloudy off-orange either.The nose is hop forward with notes of grapefruit,tangerine,pineapple and a nice balance of malt presence: carbonation is right on the money.

Flavors are that of a well crafted West Coast IPA: the grapefruit/pineapple/tangerine that are in the nose are also what hit your palate with an exceptionally well balanced malty caramel smack to it,very little alcohol presence and a terrific aftertaste that is on the dry side and invites you back for another sip. Mouthfeel is on the thinner side of medium and bottom line is that this IPA stands out head and shoulders amongst others in the same price range or even higher.

The ratings are high on this nicely crafted IPA, and they deserve every bit of it. Don't let the plain Jane packaging on this bomber turn you off: make this one next on your list to buy if you really enjoy not just tropical fruit hoppiness, but an exceptionally well balanced Ale. Two thumbs way up.

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Photo of Metalmonk
4.62/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Coincidentally, I'm pouring this into a Delirium Tremens tulip glass, as did the reviewer immediately preceding this review. Typical IPA look: burnt orange with a hop-haze and a bone-white head that's pillowy and lasts a good while, leaving nice streaks of lace as it goes.

Aroma is a wonderful melange of grapefruit rind and flesh, orange, and mint. Very slight hint of toffee far back.

On the tongue, this is quintessential west coast IPA. Take the elements of the aroma--citrus rind, juicy citrus fruit flesh, and a hit of spearmint--add a dose of pine resin, more citrus in the form of mango, a mildly astringent green grass character, and sweet malt goodness that provides balance and just enough graininess...put it all together and you have something completely de-freaking-licious.

There's a delicate softness to the mouthfeel that almost resembles that from a tap...bubbles are small and make this thing ultra-silky. Read the text on the back, and you find this is with good reason: it's bottle-conditioned. There you go. Hallelujah.

Wonderful...a fantastic IPA, without any doubt. Excuse me while I go soak up some sun and revel in this beauty.

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Photo of BradBLR
4.62/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer poured a golden amber color that was slightly cloudy and a deep white head. Head lasted most of the beer with a good amount of lacing. The smell was all hops, a very strong floral aroma with hints a citrus (grapefruit).

The taste was really good, a cross between a local IPA (Sequoia Brewing) and Stone's IPA. Very good flavor, nice hoppy flavor right up front, slightly sweet maltiness, and a very sharp bitter back end. Mounthfeel was great, very smooth, nice thickness, and CO2 was perfect.

A very good IPA, that should be a standard for any one wanting to try a high quality IPA. Give it a try!

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AleSmith IPA from AleSmith Brewing Company
4.27 out of 5 based on 4,091 ratings.
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