Smithwick's Ale
Smithwick's Brewery / Irish Ale Breweries Ltd

Smithwick's AleSmithwick's Ale
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Irish Red Ale
Ranked #237
Ranked #47,150
3.38 | pDev: 15.98%
Smithwick's Brewery / Irish Ale Breweries Ltd
Smithwick's AleSmithwick's Ale
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Reviews: 325 | Ratings: 764 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by BrewMaster:
Photo of BrewMaster
3.1/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

On tap at Kennedy's Public House in Manhattan.

Appearance; Served in a traditional english pint glass, clear brown color, red when backlit, fizzy tan head with little structure. Decent head retention.

Smell: Malty with a a sweet, faint floral hop scent. Slightly fruity.

Taste: Malty and then, water with some toasty notes. Soft fruits and a mild sour and metallic ending.

Mouthfeel: Light bodied but sticky. Definately watery. Not so great on the palate.

Drinkability: Easy to drink but nothing special. I can't say I'll ever have another.

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BrewMaster from California, Dec 03, 2005
More User Reviews:
Photo of Mike7141954
5/5  rDev +47.9%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

I really like this ale, I will be the only one in this one horse town that will, I rated it all 5's.
I get a toffey taste from it or maybe it's caramel. To me it is a refreshing taste from all the floral taste out there! I would recommend it to my friends.

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Mike7141954 from Arkansas, Mar 20, 2015
Photo of down_to_clown_69
3.1/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.25

Ahhhh Smithwick's. Takes me back to being a wee lad on the Irish shores of Killgehangy. My mum used ter pour it in our bottles. "Makes the kinder grow tough" she'd say. Naturally, I feel a certain kindred as I sip this fine, premium beverage here in our local Irish watering hole. Lit only by a lone candle, this sultry brown ale saddles its way up to me as if she were to say, "Hey there, got any plans later tonight?" To which I would reply with a wink and a nod, "Certainly mam, with you and 11 of your closest friends."

We made love all night, the bar patrons were appalled. I couldn't care less. Here's to Ireland. As they say on the shores of Killgehangy, "Once you go Smithwick's, you never go backwicks."

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down_to_clown_69 from North Carolina, Mar 01, 2017
Photo of DMACH
3.26/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A very nice red not fantastic but goes well with most meals. A great go to beer to avoid the Macro guys. Also a decent choice when you tire of the next super IBU IPA to hit the market

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DMACH from Florida, May 17, 2015
Photo of DrJay
3.08/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Clear nutbrown, red colour topped by a thin lace of light tan/cream-coloured head. The aroma was nutty and had a definite caramel quality, but little to no hop presence. Nuttiness carried into the flavour and light, fruity esters were present. Malt sweetness was nicely balanced by hop bitterness, but there still wasn't a lot of flavour character from the hops. The finish was clean and slightly bitter. Medium body and medium/high carbonation that was more evident towards the finish.

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DrJay from Texas, Oct 09, 2004
Photo of cantfindme
3/5  rDev -11.2%

cantfindme from North Carolina, Feb 03, 2012
Photo of Bokanovski
4/5  rDev +18.3%

Photo of connecticutpoet
3.72/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A nice red clear brew with about a finger-width of fine-bubbled foam that persisted for a couple of minutes. Died down, but lace remained on the glass as I drank.

The aroma was of slightly sweet malt, a little fruity (almost apples but not quite), no hop character to speak of.

The taste was likewise malty, with some nuttiness to it and a little smokiness. It was not bitter.

Mouthfeel was pretty good, given the style.

A nice ale to have as a session beer, or when hanging around the pub with some friends.

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connecticutpoet from Connecticut, Sep 29, 2004
Photo of peteramullen
4/5  rDev +18.3%

peteramullen from California, Dec 15, 2011
Photo of Oldmankeebler
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very smooth. It goes with just about any meal for dinner.

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Oldmankeebler from Connecticut, Feb 21, 2015
Photo of apintofknowledge
3.31/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Hearing this selection was an Irish Red, I was surprised when a tall dark pint appeared at my table, almost as dark as a Guinness, but with significantly larger bubbles of carbonation. The aroma was somewhat mild, but a toasty note came through. As for the taste, it again was somewhat mild… nice flavors of coffee, toasted nuts and caramel with just a touch of a bitter burnt chocolate. All in all, a very drinkable beer, and a few pints will go down quite easy. That being said, it’s also isn’t one to get overly excited about… nice, but not memorable.

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Photo of Calder316
5/5  rDev +47.9%

Calder316 from Ontario (Canada), Dec 06, 2011
Photo of jeffdr123
3.4/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.25

Drank from draft at Shannon's Irsih Pub in Glen Ellyn, IL. Great pub. OK beer. Looks nice with a short head that lingers. Not much smell to it. Sweet malty taste. A little boring. If sweet tea were carbonated, it would taste a little like this.

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jeffdr123 from Florida, Sep 29, 2015
Photo of mynie
4/5  rDev +18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours okay but nothing special. Light amber with a nice head and good lacing.

Faint smell of big malt. Caramel and brown sugar and a bit of grain. There's a very strange kind of mint hop, too.

Tastes very much like it smells. Heavy on the caramel malt giving way to a more robust, toasted malt and a hint of grain on the juicy aftertaste. Very, very smooth. Goes down like butter.

This here is an excellent session ale and it goes great with Irish food.

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mynie from Maryland, Mar 13, 2005
Photo of TheEvilGenius
3.25/5  rDev -3.8%

TheEvilGenius from Pennsylvania, May 24, 2014
Photo of chuckgietzen
2.84/5  rDev -16%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

chuckgietzen from Michigan, Apr 17, 2017
Photo of malthead
3.68/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very nice clear red color, with a beautiful two-finger crowning white head. Smells clean, straight-forward malt and muted hops. Taste is sweet malt, with grainy notes, then light herbal hops with a slightly bitter finish. Above average carbonation, keeping it very light and refreshing. Great drinkability.

Didn't expect to be blown away by this, especially after reading some other reviews, and overall I wasn't. However, this is great for what it is - a light, flavorful beer that doesn't demand too much of the taster - somewhat lower in ABV and wonderful for a session beer.

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malthead from California, Feb 10, 2005
Photo of Antonius08
3/5  rDev -11.2%

Antonius08 from Florida, Jan 23, 2014
Photo of Antc2382
2.8/5  rDev -17.2%

Antc2382 from New Jersey, Nov 30, 2014
Photo of oxmasterscream
2.46/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Had this on tap at McFadden's Pub at Citizen's Bank Park (Phillies' stadium) in Philadelphia, PA. I remember this beer to be really delicious but something's happened to my taste buds between now and then. This time, I just didn't smell or taste anything redeeming in this beer. It poured a beautiful dark reddish brown color, with a nice, thick head which stayed for the duration of the beer. I tried and tried and tried but couldn't recognize any distinguishing aromas. It just smelled like beer. The taste was very wood-like and leathery if that makes any sense. It's got a strong malty backbone but virtually no sweetness whatsoever. It leaves a bitter tang on your tongue as you swallow. It's very, very carbonated and thick to the taste, so much that it feels like you have to chew the bubbles. I really suffered through the glass and actually left a good portion of it because I found no enjoyment in it whatsoever. I won't be drinking it again.

My disclaimer: This beer is popular and in reading reviews, other BAs really enjoy it. I'm not sure what it is but maybe it's just not my cup of tea. Maybe I've been drinking too many bock style beers, stuff from Belgium, and big IPAs... who knows. Maybe it wasn't so good because I wasn't in Ireland while drinking it this time around. Regardless, I just wasn't impressed.

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oxmasterscream from New Jersey, Aug 10, 2004
Photo of WeissBoy
3.25/5  rDev -3.8%

WeissBoy from Ontario (Canada), Nov 30, 2013
Photo of Timc32
3/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Timc32 from Michigan, Mar 10, 2017
Photo of Backer2004
3.92/5  rDev +16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I did not realize this was considered a red ale until looking on this website. Looked much darker in a smoky bar last night and felt heavier on the stomach, reminded me a porter. Therefor, this loses some points in comparsion to other reds. A good balance of hops and malts and drinkable enoght o enjoy two in a row.

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Backer2004 from North Carolina, Feb 27, 2005
Photo of StayCeeJay
3.5/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of StevenC
3.81/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

StevenC from Alabama, Nov 25, 2014
Smithwick's Ale from Smithwick's Brewery / Irish Ale Breweries Ltd
Beer rating: 77 out of 100 with 764 ratings