AleSmith IPA | AleSmith Brewing Company

1,328 Reviews
no score
Send samples
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:
User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 1,328 | Ratings: 4,128
Photo of GarthDanielson
4.4/5  rDev +3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 ounce bomber into a pint glass. The beer pours a deep copper color, with a light, filmy head. There are aromas of heavy hops, with very green/pine notes. The beer has a heavy hop-forward, front tongue flavor, which is extremely well balanced with sweet, citrus flavor. The beer is round and robust, yet crisp in mouth and with aftertaste. Sweet and robust on the aftertaste, with a crisp, light finish. This beer could be trouble, because it is so tasty, and so easy to drink. Fantastic beer!

 509 characters

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

08/02/05- Received fro BA member RKhaze.

Presentation- 22oz bomber with no dating. Poured into my Duvel tulip.

Appearance- Golden amber colored elixer. Forms a very nice 1 inch thick and creamy sparkling white head. Good lacing as well.

Smell- Greeted by a huge scent of many different kinds of hops. The first one that caught me was the big sweet cotton candy scent. Then the light fruit scented ones came followed by the pine tree scent.

Taste- Not the hop bomb expected after the scent, but more of a very nicely balanced IPA. Mostly pine flavored hops, not the sweet ones I smelled at first. Then a nice soft malt backbone. Just enough to be noticed and to add to the mix of hops.

Mouthfeel- Good level of carbonation.

Drinkability- A definite top level IPA. One I would readily buy often if it was easily available here. Definite must try for anyone who loves IPA's.

 890 characters

Photo of drabmuh
4.35/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22 ounce bottle without a freshness date into a goblet. Beer is yellow and hazy, forms a thick white head of large bubbles and carbonation is moderate. Very little lacing left on the glass.

Aroma is dominated by hops. Strong pine present, overall the aroma is weaker than I expected. Still smells like an IPA. Not much malt or sweetness in the aroma.

Beer is full bodied. Good beer, feels like you are chewing through the hops. Fills my mouth. There is nice palate connectivity. Overall a great experience. Second drink, beer is a little dry. The hop resin completely coats your mouth. Lots of sweet hop flavor and nice back of the mouth bitterness. No real aftertaste. Drinkability high, great mouthfeel, overall a great IPA experience.

 753 characters

Photo of Duff27
4.4/5  rDev +3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A- This beers looks awesome. Pours an orange with a white head. Plenty of large sediment floatin around.

S- Citrus! In the words of Blag the Ripper..."Yeah!"

T- Citrus bomb, love, grapefruit, slight lemon. Caramel malts.

M- Medium mouthfeel, not overly carbonated.

D/O- Oh man, could drink this for days. Doesn't drink its 7.25% at all. Reminded me a lot of Sculpin. First AleSmith offering...come to the Midwest.

 431 characters

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

A: poured a murky golden orange with a finger of white head, good retention and great lacing.

S: nice piney aromas with cirus fruit, caramel and a good balance between the sweet malts. After a couple whiffs I also get mango in the nose.

T: great citrus fruit forward flavors with caramel and great balance again between the malts and the piney hops.

M: medium body with good amount of carbonation to accent the overall taste and a pleasent bitter sweet finish.

D: damn good beer in every category and drinks great all the way through. Now I can see why it's in the top 100.

 577 characters

Photo of Gavage
4.36/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: pours a hazy orange color with a fluffy 3"+ head that lasts a long time. Nice lace paints the glass.

Smell: caramel, grapefruit, pine, and a nice hop presence are pleasant on the nose.

Taste: caramel, yeast spiciness, grapefruit, lemon zest, hint of orange, pine, and a hearty bitterness make up a well balanced IPA. A hint of alcohol is present too.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied beer. Crisp to start, less crisp and a bit dry at the finish. Very long bitter aftertaste here.

Drinkability: this beer is very easy to drink and is just a great quality beer you don't want to put down.

 594 characters

Photo of tempest
4.18/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks for crazynelson for the trade.

Appears a dark amber with a white head and lacing. There's a pungent aroma of citrus punch. The flavor has a slightly soapy (not in a bad way) orange rind and grapefruit that quickly turns into a ripping hop bitterness with dirty pepper and light floral perfume. The aftertaste is long and big with more of the biting rind. Basically, they've crammed the flavor, and to an extent, the feel of a DIPA in an IPA. The bitterness is a little dialed back by comparison, but this is a full, delicious beer.

 539 characters

Photo of LiquidAmber
4.21/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a medium coppery amber with a half finger white head with good retention and light lacing. Aroma of light sweet malt, citrus hops, orange family citrus, grapefruit and lemon rind, lightly floral and estery. Flavor is neutral malt, citrus hops with a little pine, orange and tangerine, with more intense citrus rind hop bitterness in the finish. Lingering citrus hops. Medium bodied with light creaminess. A nice citrus forward IPA. The malt has very little flavor of its own, but does a great job of supporting the hop flavors, which get more intense and interesting in the finish. Some really nice fruit esters and citrus rind flavors develop and linger. Even to my jaded wet and dry-hopped palate in this best of IPA seasons, this stood out for pleasant flavor. The finish is very nicely balanced in hop bitterness and herbal flavors. Well done.

 897 characters

Photo of Mebuzzard
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a nice IPA. It has the balance that IPAs should have, yet the hop profile for the hophead in me.

A semi-bright pour. Polished bronze, clear. Rocky head in parts, mostly dense just-barely-off-white foam. Nice lacing. Clean

Grapefruit aroma, citrus zest, some pine and caramel. Heavy nose up front. It's a hoppy beer, no doubt. After waves of citrus the pine comes out more, then the light caramel. Balance.

Balance is the name of the game on the flavor. Still it leans toward the hoppy side. Pine is more evident here, some earthy. Fruity zests are still on call. Malt makes a presence and sticks around allowing some sweetness in to play. Hops fade a bit from the aroma, but it's a nice beer nonetheless and not an over the top type hop bomb

 753 characters

Photo of TheSevenDuffs
3.92/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Tasting notes from 8/23/10
Thanks to djmichaelk for this bottle!

No freshness date on the bottle, which always annoys me, especially with a bomber.

Poured in to Duvel tulip.

A - Light orange colour, slightly hazy with one finger of thick bubbly white head.

S - The nose is full of bitter juicy citrus hops that have grapefruit and tangerine notes. There is a light malt presence in the background contributing some sweetness to the nose.

T - A good balance of bitter hops and sweet malts. The hops don't have the robust citrus taste that the nose indicated. There is citrus there, along with some pine but specific tastes (ie: the grapefruit and tangerine in the nose) are not discernible. The malts are very evident in the taste, much more so than they are in the nose, and the significantly sweeten up the bitter hops. At times the hops merely seem to contribute bitterness and not much flavour.

M - Medium body, some decent chew, lightly carbonated

D - A very good IPA but didn't meet my expectations. I would like to try this again as I wonder about the freshness of the bottle.

 1,093 characters

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

This beer pours a golden color, with a thick white frothy pale head. The hops are intense with a beautiful floral component. The flavor of carapils and pale malts nearly offsets the hop bitterness, but instead creates a foundation for a truely great flavor. I wish that I could create the high alpha acid aroma that this brewer has perfected in this bottle. It's awesome. It goes down so damn smooth. This is near perfect as an IPA is concerned. The mouthfeel is great. It is a full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a kick ass IPA. It's got malt complexity. It's got hop character. This is a highly drinkable beer period.

 635 characters

Photo of Wasatch
4.62/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Revist: 1 Dec 15
22 oz. Bomber
Bottled On: 07/22/15

Another one of those brew's I've not had for years.

Pours a very nice slightly cloudy dark golden yellow color, very nice carbonation, with a very nice almost two-finger thick/creamy off-white head, which leaves some pretty thick sticky lacing behind. The nose is hoppy, with some malt notes, very nice citrus/pine notes. The taste is pretty freakn' nice, hoppy, very nice malt note, very nice pine/citrus notes. Medium body, with a nice slightly chewiness, very nice bitter/dry finish. Overall, this is still a very very nice IPA, still one of the best for the ABV. Wish I would have had a fresher bottle, well I have been sitting on it for a month at least. Highly Recommended!

22oz. bottle

Pours a deep gold color, huge head. Lacing/head stayed thru out the whole time. Very hoppy/citrus scents. Hoppy/sweet taste with a nice bite at the end. Medium body. This is one helleva brew, awesome taste and quite strong for a IPA, a couple of these and you will be feeling pretty good.

 1,037 characters

Photo of DoubleJ
4.55/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

I originally had a bottle of this a few weeks ago, but it was flat and unsuitable for drinking or reviewing; I unfortunately had to pour it out. I've given this brew another chance to show me what it's got, so let get on to the beer:

The beer is a hazy orange color with a nce foamy head. In the smell, there's a big hop aroma, with sweet notes mixed in, with a fructose/syrupy scent to it. The taste is incredible: not over the top bitter, but plenty of hops for everyone. Silky smooth, with a fruity taste to balance out the beer, weaved with piney notes and a passionfruit flavor. It finishes bitter on the palate with a semi-tart puckering. The alcohol is almost undetectable, which at 7.25%, is something of an accomplishment, and easy to drink for such a big brew.

Notes: Whoa! Very well balanced (by west coast standards), with plenty of sweet and bitter flavors to offer. They may be less famous than Stone among San Diego brewers, but this offering is exceptional.

 976 characters

Photo of tone77
3.61/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a golden/orange color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is of caramel malts, light fruits. Taste is pine, malts, some mintiness, very light bitterness. Feels medium/full bodied in the mouth and overall is a good beer, but failed to meet my expectations.

 286 characters

Photo of liamt07
4.38/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bottle from AJ's Fine Foods in on North Central in Phoenix. 22oz into a chalice.

Poured a perfectly clear golden orange with a tight white head, some sticky lace and light retention. Nose has bright citrusy notes, tangerine, clementine and is overtly floral. Light sweet caramel and crackery base. Taste is all about the hops, bitter from start to finish. More tangerine, pine and big, juicy fruit notes. Some mango and similar tropical notes, cut by the bitterness - still with the light crackery base. Only a little bit of sweetness. Pretty light body, with a clean and crisp finish. Dangerously drinkable, with only a suggestion of alcohol on the palate. The smell and flavour on this had me pulling this to my mouth more often than I should have for the bomber. Great hop profile, and an exceptional IPA overall.

 817 characters

Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.26/5  rDev -0.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Bottle purchased at Nathaniel Square Corner Store.

Pours a slightly hazy dark orange, with a small half inch head that recedes quickly, leaving lace at the top of the glass.

The smell includes a ton of citrus, orange and grapefruits mainly, with a bit of honey malt aromas.

The taste is awesome. Lots of citrus, with a little bit of bitterness, and ends with a tiny bit of honey like sweetness. A little bit piney, decent but not overpowering bitterness.

Medium bodied, sticky resinous mouthfeel, starts dry, finishes a bit sweet. Very drinkable.

I've been passing over this one for a while now, for no particularly good reason. I'm glad I finally bit the bullet here and tried this- it was awesome.

 704 characters

Photo of Mora2000
4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to exiled for sharing this bottle.

Pours a hazy, golden orange with a huge white head. The aroma is strong citrus and pine hops. The flavor is more of the same, without the bitterness you sometimes get in West Coast IPAs. Even without the bitterness, there is tons of hop flavor. Medium mouthfeel and carbonation.

 321 characters

Photo of plaid75
4.48/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Poured a hazy copper hue with a one finger frothy white head. There was very good retention and sticky lacing.

The smell featured a full blown piney hop and grainy malt.

The taste consisted of waves of resinous pine and grapefruit. A full grainy malt supported the burden. Clean dry finish rounded out the experience.

The mouthfeel was typical of the style with a vigorous carbonation.

Overall a superior IPA. This is American beer at its finest.

 453 characters

Photo of BARFLYB
3.58/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On Tap at Blue Dog

A- Alesmith IPA has a copperish yellow color with traces of orange throuout. A one inch tan head stuck around for a while leaving some lines of foam on the glass. A bunch of bubbles are seen floating to the top.

S- A bit of toasted caramel malts bursting from the glass. A lot of citrus hops also giving off a slighty pungent pine smell. Some grassy notes. A lot of floral aroma and i gathered the hops were the dominate factor in this IPA go figure.

T- A resinous piney taste up front but over time more of the citrusy hop flavors come into play. Some pineapple and mango. Bready malts come through to the rescue giving the palette a break from the bitterness and floral taste. The alcohol is slightly in the taste.

M- This is medium bodied with a nice bittering effect to it from the hops. Some crispness comes from the carbonation but I prefer the over carbing of alesmith IPA bottles.

D- Not a session ale at 7.25% but i could drink 2-3 of these if I had them available. This is very drinkable even though i'm not blown away by the taste. A good American IPA that I prefer out of a fresh bottle.

 1,124 characters

Photo of biegaman
4.25/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Alesmith IPA has a golden-yellow body that, while it shines, it looks light enough that a zesty, tropical hoppiness should shine through even more. (Spoiler alert: it does!) Sometimes a paler colour can indicate a less characterful IPA, but all it represents here is that the brewery had the good mind not to let sticky-sweet, toasty malts meddle with brimming hops.

The bouquet has enough strength and citrus to be kept with the cleaning products under the kitchen sink. Or, on the other hand, it also has enough perfumy dried fruit peel and earthy, tea-like herbals to be laid with potpourri in the bathroom. Or, better yet, what it really has, is enough vivid lupulin (hop) character that it should go straight down into your belly.

While mention of the flavour must begin and end with bitter citrus piths and peels, there is a long flowing middle part where notes of pine and spruce, biscuity and crispy wafer-like malts, and just a drop of vanilla, can all be appreciated too. A pungent herbal quality creates a shuddering dryness like liking an envelope (but leaves a far better taste in the mouth!)

This small, San Diego brewery re-discovered what the Italians have known all along: bitterness is *not* a bad thing. In fact, some of the most gratifying drinks are bitter in nature. This ale, even at seven odd percent, is still tremendously quenching, a natural in the hot weather, even while it feels like it's filing down the tongue like sandpaper.

Alesmith IPA is an offering bitter - yet pleasant - enough to redefine your impression of how a beer aught to taste. If you were in the market for a sports car, you wouldn't concern yourself with fuel efficiency; if you're looking for a characterful, full-flavoured IPA be prepared to accept all the bitter, brimming characteristics that come with the territory.

 1,827 characters

Photo of Gueuzedude
4.42/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Nice Tan head, carbonation is medium. The beer itself is a hazy amber color. The aroma definitely tells you that this beer is going to focus on the hops, I get notes of apricot and a pungent hoppiness. The apricot is the strongest aroma component, I like it. The apricot translates to the taste of the beer, it adds a bit of a fruity backdrop that interacts with the fruitiness from the ale yeast. A nice hop bit in the finish, followed by a clinging bitterness as a reminder of the beer that was just on my tongue. This is a nice IPA, not as extreme as some but I really like the flavor and aroma that is packed into this beer.

 628 characters

Photo of flagmantho
4.1/5  rDev -4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 22oz bomber into a pint glass.

Appearance: medium-light orange hue with a light haze and a nice effervescence. Head is a thick finger of frothy ivory foam with a nice lace. Attractive.

Smell: nice aroma of piney, citrusy hops with a bit of grapefruit character. A sweet undertone of malt is also detectable; I like it.

Taste: nice and hoppy all the way through, with a surprisingly smooth and balanced finish; the bitterness matches the sweetness well. Hop character is resiny and citrusy; a good combination. Good stuff.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a good level of carbonation and a decently creamy texture for the style. It works for me.

Overall: quite a good beer, although it doesn't jump out and grab me like the reviews suggested it might. That said, it is highly drinkable for a big IPA like this, and is extremely well balanced. Perhaps overrated in my opinion, but still delicious and wonderfully drinkable.

 933 characters

Photo of dar482
4.73/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

I got this pretty fresh on the East Coast. Thankfully, it’s now dated. April 3, 2013.

It pours in a hazy golden orange color with a head that quickly dissipates.

The aroma has a huge amount of hops of citrus. Sweetness, tropical fruit, West Coast pine.

The flavor hits you with a wonderful bitterness of papaya, peaches, grapefruit, tropical fruits, and then biscuit sweetness. Then the finish has a wonderful big pine flavor.

In the end, this is up there for me for IPAs. I have this near Maine Co. Lunch. It’s just an amazing IPA. It’s truly a complete beer with its tropical and pine hops, but then that strong malt. Be sure to have this cold, as this warmed up, it slowly lacked flavor and was a bit malty for me. Having it cold, I noticed more aroma and fruit, and just the complexity that this beer as to offer.

 829 characters

Photo of yourefragile
4.3/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 oz bottle poured into a Duvel tulip

A: Hazed honey amber color with a large fluffy, light bubbly white head that leaves sticky clumps of lacing but a little lacking in retention
S: Rich smell of alcohol, pine and citrus hops and caramel malty background. Not many words needed to describe it but near perfect balance for an IPA.
T: Very nice balance of rich malt body with biting hop presence. Active carbonation with a medium body and a lingering slightly sweet citrus hop taste. Body of the beer is a very strong caramel malt taste with piney and citrus hops that assert themselves immediately, though not a "hop bomb", at least to me. Very well balanced and very drinkable. Alcohol begins to assert itself as the bottle goes finishes. An excellent IPA, though I still prefer Two Hearted. My feelings for this beer don't seem to exactly mesh with some of the other recent reviews, as far as hop presence and body go, so next time I'm in CA I'd love to try this fresh as this bottle came from Akron, OH and well, Ohio is Ohio (hey, it's the start of college football, I can be antagonistic if I want)

 1,105 characters

Photo of Zorro
4.2/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy orange colored brew.

Smell is STRONG! Cascade hops and I think there is some malt in there too.

Taste is fairly neutral, the must be a lot of malt in this to balance out the hop level in this. The grapefruit and pine flavor of the hops in this is at the tongue numbing level.

Mouthfeel is very full.

Drinkability is questionable. This is a hop monster brew.

 382 characters

AleSmith IPA from AleSmith Brewing Company
4.27 out of 5 based on 4,128 ratings.
  • About Us

    Your go-to website for beer (since 1996), publishers of BeerAdvocate magazine (since 2006) and hosts of world-class beer events (since 2003). Respect Beer.
  • BeerAdvocate Microbrew Invitational

    Join us June 2-3, 2017 in Boston, Mass. for beer, cider, mead, kombucha and sake from over 70 small producers.

    Learn More
  • Subscribe to BeerAdvocate Magazine

    No fake news here. Get real beer content delivered to your doorstep every month.