AleSmith Double IPA | AleSmith Brewing Company

AleSmith Double IPAAleSmith Double IPA
BA SCORE
91.6%
Liked This Beer
4.19 w/ 1,945 ratings
AleSmith Double IPAAleSmith Double IPA
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company
California, United States
alesmith.com

Style: American Double / Imperial IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 8.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Also known as YuleSmith (Summer)

Every year we anxiously await the warmer months to unleash this Double IPA, the summer edition of our former YuleSmith seasonals. The flavor imparts orange, grapefruit, and tangerine hop notes with earthy, spicy, and resinous pine undertones. A sturdy malt backbone balances out the profound hop bitterness to create a refreshingly assertive and vibrant beer that offers an unapologetically bold expression of fresh American hops.

YEAR ROUND: No – July / August

Added by xlperro on 11-24-2002

BEER STATS
Ranking:
#1,142
Reviews:
964
Ratings:
1,945
Liked:
1,781
Avg:
4.19/5
pDev:
9.79%
Alströms:
0
 
 
Wants:
267
Gots:
154
Trade:
2
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,945 |  Reviews: 964
Photo of ngandhi
4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I remember reading the background information on a famous homebrew IPA called Sister Star of the Sun. The author went into great detail about what an IPA ought to be and, though he dared to define this style that was previously only known as "hoppy," he did it with great tact and poise. He spoke of what many brewers don't seem to acknowledge nowadays with the advent of the double IPA: malt. He said the malt should be balanced and even noticeable; it should carry some weight and add flavor.

His point rings true in this age of hop teas. If your yeast is clean, the hops will be accentuated and so you can afford some nice malt character. Enter AleSmith YuleSmith.

The focus of this beer is hops. The bittering is up front and aggressive, the aroma is subdued pine with a little alcohol, and the finish is dry.

But the malt character is fruity, bordering on plummy but settling on a deep caramel that seems "spiced" by the lingering hops. The mouthfeel is dextrinous, but not so chewy as to not overwhelm the hops.

YuleSmith is a Lockean white slate for hops. It lets them shine, to do whatever it is they choose, but only within the confines of a normal beer environment. And beer is malt.

Though the bittering is spectacular, the late-boil additions leave little to think about. The hop flavor is one-dimensional and the aroma quite basic. I fear this brew has not fared well through the new year and, of an IPA, I would excuse this. For a double, however, this has faded far too quickly.

Relax, relax.
ng

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Photo of silenius
4.67/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked this up in AZ when Gusler took me to AJ's. We can't get this here in Chicago normally.

Wow. This is one hell of a beer!

Appearance is a clear deep orangish brown with a thin head that dissapates quickly. There was some lacing.

Initial smell is generic citrus, white grapefruit, peaches and a hint of orange. With some warming, a caramel and toffee smell emerges.

Taste is exceptional to say the least. Very well balanced. It is hard to imagine a beer this hoppy that also is balanced by malt, but this does it well. Caramel, canned peach sweetness, and hoppy goodness. The aftertaste is a nice bitterness that makes me want to take another sip.

Mouthfeel is creamy as the carbonation explodes from the beer when it hits my tongue. This makes the beer feel thick, almost like a stout. Very appealing.

This is a very drinkable beer. Burps are pure hops! The alcohol gets to you after 22oz. so one is prudent, but the desire for more and more is a great temptation. This beer is very, very drinikable.

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Photo of StevieW
4.32/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz painted bomber bottle indicates it is the 2002 version. Acquired via the Xmas beer exchange from the esteemed Gusler, with wink and double pistols to the big dog too. I owe you one soon.
Pours a shiny dark copper color into a tulip glass. Dense, bubbly, beige head. Supercharged Cascade hop aroama hits you in the nose. I had not looked this beer up, and expected a fruity belgian type, pleasantly surprised to see it's a supercharged IPA. Fresh citrus hop aromas lead to a nice sticky, resin filled, mouth puckering bitterness on the first sip. "Go Easy" I tell myself. Nice undertones of roasted carmel malts, like melted carmel on toast. Hop bitterness kicks back in. Respectable hop bitterness, ever after nearly 18 months of settling. Very full flavored, nicely done double IPA. Not a hop monster, but nothing to sneeze at either. Moderate abv warms you belly and helps release some resounding hop induced burps to finish. Bitterness lingers on the tongue for a moment then vanishes leaving you aching for another sip. Medium bodied, very full flavored. A good impression by Yulesmith on this ba. Cheers to Gusler for his goodwill.

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Photo of winomark
3.85/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a deep copper with a miniscule head, but lots of bubbles.

Aroma: Combination of hop spiciness and malty richness. Sweetness is quite noticable.

Taste: Hop explosion up-front, with the malt adding richness and depth. Not as hoppy as I anticipated, but quite pleasant.

Mouthfeel: Coating, but not too thick. Very flavorful with a nice, dry lingering finish. Well done.

Drinkability: A solid brew from a great brewery. Super for a cold night by the fire. Find this one when you can; you won't be disappointed.

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Photo of frank4sail
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Thanks in advance to Boilermaker88 for the holday cheer!!!

Caramel malt and whole fresh hop cone smell. Iced tea colored with a thick rich pale brown head. The head is persistant and sticky. Rich malt inital taste is then plastered to the tongue with orange peel, nutmeg, and pine daggers. Reminds me of Bigfoot... like his little brother. Very caramel malt rich with great balence and a dry tongued finish. You are left wanting to drink more. A real holiday treat!!

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Photo of Bierman9
4.23/5  rDev +1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another of those rare West Coast libations has made its way to the North East! Probably a 2003, as the painted bottle simply says Yulesmith Holiday Ale, at 8.5%. Yulesmith pours a clear, rich mahogany, with a decent-lasting tan, creamy head. A lovely hue, with a plethora of miniscule bubbles rising through the liquid! Lacing down the sides of the goblet is also quite attractive. Aroma is nicely hoppy, with a very piney, earthy lean to it, and a touch of citrus. This bier really had a nice, relatively smooth feel on the tongue, though I felt it was a pinch lighter in body than it should be (or perhaps less than I prefer). A few sips of Yulesmith produce a welcome warming sensation down the gullet. It has a nicely sweet foundation of malt, with caramel/toffee notes highlighting the opening salvos. Soon thereafter a healthy whack of resiny, citrussy hops attack the palate, but in a welcome manner! These hop hits stick well in the throat for a longlasting, enticing aftertaste. Was surprized to see this listed as an IPA, as it tasted much more along the lines of a Barleywine or Old/Strong Ale. Anyhow, big thanks go to Drewbage1847 for sending this prize cross-country. Prosit!!

overall: 4.3
appearance: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | mouthfeel: 4 | drinkability: 4

669

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Photo of aaronh
4.25/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

2002 bottling.

The first glass pours a nice clear copper color, while the second is noticeably darker and hazy due to the lees. Aroma is slightly floral with a good citrus note. Very nice for an aged beer. The flavor is well supported by malts, and reveals strong pine backed by a decent citrus and a subtle floral hoppiness. A very nice beer. The hop bitterness lingers on the finish for a while as well. Mouthfeel is solid and rewarding. Drinkability is also very good. I split this bottle with a friend, but I could have easily enjoyed the whole thing myself. Glad I had the chance to experience this one.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.97/5  rDev +18.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Alesmith - Yulesmith 2003 Edition - Served at Cellar Temperature. This liquid is a dark red colour, that approcahes maroon in shading. The head is big and white, but does not last too long. However, this beer shows off some incredible, thick, white lacing, and a little skim of a head that lasts for the entire glass. The head is also easily brought back with some gentle swirling. Aromas are all heavy hops, super, duper deep balanced malts, and spices of some sort. The taste is a lovely blend of heavy hopping and lovely, deep malting. The mouthfeel is very thick but not at all cloying or "too much". The drinkability at cask serving temperature is absolutely unbelievably good! This stuff produces lovely, malty hop burps and I could easily drink this brew all night long. This is some damn-fine classic stuff!

Francis.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.53/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Yulesmith 2002 ...tasted one year later. A hazy, deep amber-copper body reveals very fine bubbles rising slowly towards a huge, rocky head of ivory colored foam. The head retention is impressive, and it maintains an island of rocky foam throughout the pint. The lacing initially leaves wide, creamy rings and sheets of lace; but they eventually die down to lesser-but-still-thick rings of lace! It gives a very impressive appearance despite its cloudiness (which can be somewhat excused as it's bottle conditioned). The nose is bold and resinous with clear notes of sappy pine, grapefruit rind, flowers and grassy hops over a sweetish, bready, caramelish, and biscuity malt. It's creamy and smooth across the palate with just a mild tingle on the tongue at the outset due to its full body and exceptionally fine, moderate, and natural carbonation. The flavor, however is what's really important, and this brings the 3 already on-base home!!! Its rich, caramel-soaked malt offers enough doughy and bready sweetness to stand up to it's bold hop flavor (which reflects the aroma). It's exceptionally well-balanced, satisfying and efficient with a dry finish that leaves it surprisingly drinkable considering its bold character. Certainly worth trying!

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Photo of davidlown
4.85/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

All I can say is perfection. I went to the Brewer and they allowed me to bring a case home even though it was still conditioning in the bottle. So far I've had the 2002 in 2002 and just had this 2003. The 2003 is a different beer than the 2002. The 2002 was more perfumy, less malt profile, but still unbelievable. The 2003 has more malt flavor but is just as bitter. The mouthfeel, like all Alesmith beers except the speedway, is exactly like real ale. Smooth, tiny little bubbles begging for you to drink more. The flavor is perfect. Really hoppy without the last 1% northwest super bite (which I also like) and just malty enough for you to say "wow". Pure perfection and better than any double IPA I've ever had, including Dogfish, Bear Republic, Stone, Pizza Port, 3 Floyds, Rofue, Alpine, Sieera Nevada, Deschutes, Marin, Lagunitas, Moylans, and Ballast.

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Photo of Rumrunner
4.63/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

22oz. bottle. 2003 vintage.

I wish this one was available all year. It does make a great stocking stuffer for those beery loved ones.

It pours a nice caramel brown. Red highlights appear on the sides of the glass if the glass is held up to the light. A good tall off-white head sticks around for a while. Lacing is thick and covers the glass well. The scents are big pine oil sap. Heavy grapefruit and dark unsweetened malts.

The flavors form a great balance. While the bitterness is very high there is a seriously strong malt balance that evens the flavors out. Again there is a strong grapefruit rind with heavy pine flavors. Powerful and robust malts. Malts are dark and unsweetened. Some plumb fruits and dark bitter bread is present. They test the hops and both agree that trying to outdo the other is a waste of time. This is one well put together IPA.

The mouthfeel is strong and a bit sticky. Some alcohol is present on the tongue. It is not a bad thing though. The balance makes this one of the easiest drinking bitter biting IPAs I have ever had. It would also pair well with many foods. Especially foods with some spice in them. Mexican or Indian.

I will stock up if I can find more. I would not want to wait for next years version after only trying this one.

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Photo of BierReise
4.37/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

2003 Vintage. Nice looking ale, deep amber and hazy with a tint of orange. Head is thick and rocky that clings. Big hoppy pine and citrus aroma with a fresh malt grain in the distance that's so nice I can't keep my nose out of it. Extremely smooth medium to full body that tingles your tongue. Flavor is oily resiny hops and a bitter finish with malt playing second fiddle. This is not for the weak, it bites back and I like that. Fantastic double IPA!

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Photo of mickeymac
4.6/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

The '03 Yuletide has arrived! Poured from a bomber with festive red and green lettering, mistletoe, and a wreath, it pours a deep, dark orange with a hint of brown. The head is a monster. Although it fades just a bit after the initial onslaught, it remains a strong presence on the side of the glass and the top of the beer until the glass is dry. At first, the smell of hops seems almost overwhelming, but a nice sweetness comes through after a second or two. The taste at first seems mouth-puckering in its bitterness but, again, it presents a nice surprise when a malty sweetness balances out the hops. On top of that, a bit of grapefruit-like flavor mixes in with just a touch of spice. It's wonderfully creamy. Although the alcohol content has been knocked back slightly, it's still high octane at 8.5%. With complex flavors, the creamy mouthfeel, and the well-hidden alcohol, this is a dangerously drinkable beer. This is further proof that Alesmith can do no wrong.

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Photo of hyuga
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2002 batch. A hazy orange brew topped by a slightly off-white head, which foams massively on the pour into my nonik pint glass and leaves more lace than you'd find on an upper-class Victorian maiden's dress. Massive hop aroma with a huge malt backbone. Floral, citrusy, piney, you name it. Sweet caramel and grainy malt. Alcohol notes here and there. On the palate, rind-like and leafy hops cling to the edges as sweet caramel malt takes the middle, with some graininess following. A bit floral with retro-olfaction. Near the back the malt and hops get into a fight and create a great bittersweet mix. At the end, the hops finally win and take over for a wonderfully dry and leafy finish. Some alcohol is detectable here and there. Massive alcohol warmth kicks in after a bit. I now understand why this is a Christmas beer. This is an excellent kicked up and well-balanced IPA, but I still prefer Stone's Ruination over it. However, that doesn't mean it's not a must-try for anyone who loves the hop as I do.

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Photo of maxpower
4.5/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

2002 release 22oz bottle pours a glowing hazy copper-orange color with a nice off-white head that leaves a sticky lacing in my glass. Wonderful aromas of fresh grapefruit, pineapple and pine, sticky and resiny pine and citrus flavors coat my tongue, hoppy as hell yet has a solid malt balance, full body with a full and creamy mouthfeel, nice sharp bitterness in it's lasting finish, wow I just wish I could get Alesmith in Missouri, many thanks go out to herbjones for chance to try this awesome brew.

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Photo of tavernjef
4.68/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

2002 bomber - Gorgeous cloudy glowing caramel amber color with a monsterious two inch head that grew fast from the pour to a thick, billowy, lumpyness of dark ivory color, faded down very slowly to one big lump of cookie dough. A solid thick wave of foam always present during the entire glass worth; lace all over in webby sheets.

Aroma is deep dark citrus and nice juicy piney-woodish sense with very nice caramel and biscuit dough backing. Notes of chocolate, nuts and light spice, kinda like the smell of a Mrs. Fields cookie store and a candy store all at once.

Taste is subtle complex layers of malts lending lots of smooth sweet caramal with a touch of chocolate, very soft and bready, light airy buttery biscuit feel lending a bit of chewyness. Hops appear about midway with excellent balance, handled very nicely with dark citrus and pine thats kinda juicy but easy all at once, quite amazing with a nice soft approach as well. Finishes with awesome clean, soft bitterness and drying.

Medium body feel; smooth and lightly creamy/buttery with just the right amount of carb. grab that fuzzes the tongue and soothes the throat. The alcohol is masked very well, but as it warms it makes a bit of an appearance in smell and taste.

One hell of an excellent IPA, soft and subtle in its character with just enough zaz to wake you up and notice that its worth every f*ckin' sip, gulp, and ahhh...

Big Ol' thanks to Gusler for the bottle!

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Photo of cretemixer
4.55/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

2002 edition

Amber-rust in color with a thick, frothy, off-white head. Retention is impressive, settling in at about 1/4 inch.
The aroma reminds me in alot of ways of Sierra Nevada Celebration. Smooth, malty, sweet and hoppy. It has it all.
A smooth, full bitterness dominates but doesn't overpower. There is a well balanced malt presence and a warming note of alcohol. This is one tasty beer. The spruce notes make this beer taste like a Christmas tree smells. Pouring the dregs rounds out the balance even more. The aroma becomes headier, taste becomes breadier. Finishes with a lingering dry, bitter aftertaste.
Medium-full body, slick feel and dead on carbonation that just tingles the tounge.
A truly excellent beer that has me longing for a trip to California. Thanks to EyeChartBrew for the opportunity to sample this jewel.

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Photo of beerguy101
4.52/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

Medium orange color. Medium head. Aroma is hop spicy, grapefruity and citrusy. Big bodied IPA. Big and bold yet, not over the top like most West Coast IPA. Malts are fruity and slightly sweet. Hops are wild, spicy, piney and grapefruity. In the IPA spectrum this one is between 3 Floyds Dreadnaught and Stone IPA. It's a hop fest, without being too bitter. Nicely balanced. Very smooth. Hides the 8.5% alcohol very well. Etched beer bottle. Mouthfeel is full and round. Finish is clean and smooth. Aftertaste is slightly bitter. VERY NICE BEER!

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Photo of jcalabre
4.3/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Originally sampled 30 December 2002. Yulesmith has a citrus nose, and pours the color of apple cider. The head was full of tiny bubbles. It starts out quite hoppy, yet finishes malty & cleanly. A nice drink. I only wish I had picked up a few more when I saw them.

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Photo of aracauna
3.83/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Nice appearance. Good head that leaves nice lacing on the glass, sometimes sheeting. The piney hops overpower the malt but if you pay really close attention you'll notice a nice malt background but it's hard to tell if there's much complexity although I did seem to pick up some creamy fruitiness. The alcohol is just barely noticeable.

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AleSmith Double IPA from AleSmith Brewing Company
Beer rating: 91.6% out of 100 with 1,945 ratings
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