Thomas Hooker Irish Red Ale | Thomas Hooker Brewing Company

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Thomas Hooker Irish Red AleThomas Hooker Irish Red Ale
204 Ratings
Thomas Hooker Irish Red AleThomas Hooker Irish Red Ale

Brewed by:
Thomas Hooker Brewing Company
Connecticut, United States

Style: Irish Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A rich, malty brew that uses red wheat and a variety of crystal malts, giving this beer its ruby red hue. Traditional English hops give this easy drinking brew a flavor that's perfect year round.

21 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 12-09-2002

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 204 |  Reviews: 113
Reviews by bjoyce12:
Photo of bjoyce12
4.05/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Purchased in Saybrook, CT. Was hoping for a Liberator, but this was the best they had on sale. Nice amber ruby color, pours with one-inch thick foamy head. Prototypical Irish red appearance; opaque Amber with hint of red, not watery to the eye.

Taste and drinkability lived up to its appearance. Not outstanding, but very worthwhile. Some malty caramel undertones noted, not heavy on the hops, but pretty much a good, solid Irish red. What Killian's can only hope to be. I would definitely buy again if looking for a drinkable ale with good taste but without too heavy a body.

 580 characters

More User Reviews:
Photo of Tiernan
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%

Photo of SuomiHobbit
3/5  rDev -16.4%

Photo of lordofthewiens
3.88/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A nice-looking red/brown color with a medium-size white head which left a fair amount of lacing. It had a malt and sweet fruit aroma. Malt predominated first in the taste, followed by a little cherry flavor, and finishing with some hop bitterness. Fairly dry, and fun to drink.

 277 characters

Photo of Doomcifer
3.15/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Thought I reviewed this a couple years back....guess not. Pours a deep reddish brown color with a great creamy head. Good retention on this beer. Smells very sweet and a bit floral. Lots of candy in the aroma....along the lines of tropical fruit mike n ikes, or the like...or even bubble gum. Tastes of of sweet malts up front then falls off to a very thin finish with a small herbal hop bite, but nothing significant. Medium bodied mouthfeel, airy, not overly carbonated, slightly dry finish. I guess it;s drinkable but I'd go for another Red Ale within arm's reach very quickly, or any other style for that matter.

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Photo of Jason
3.76/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap @ the Sunset Grill

Pour from the tap a dark reddish brew, excellent head retention and good clarity.

Malty aroma, biscuity with hints of bread crust and caramel. Same in the flavor with a more of a toasted and very mildly roasted malt character. Balanced hops and very drinkable, nothing earth-shattering but rather just a good drinking ale.

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Photo of Homebrew35
3.46/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pulled a pint of this at a burger joint in West Hartford, with a one and a half finger head. With a dark maroon color this looks ok. The head dissipates to a few clingy spots on the edges. Smells of sweet Carmel with a hint of grassy earthiness. Tastes initially sweet and Carmel which transitions to a clean slightly bitter finish. This is an easy drinker and think a BMC person could get into this one quite easily. Not a wow beer but not bad either.

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Photo of jcdiflorio
3.27/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

poured into a nonic glass from a 12oz. brown bottle with a crimped on cap.

Clear,mahogany color with a 2" creamy, off-white towards tan head with spotty lacing and some lace curtians

Sweet carmell,very nutty and roasty with subtle burnt notes.A good complex malty nose.

Nutty,carmell taste fruity,tart and some metallic tastes.Finishes clean,sharp with tartness that's a bit sour. Liked the finish on this beer.

The mouthfeel was acidy,a bit of a watery feel,lots of tartness. Goes down good could drink a few but not a lot.

 536 characters

Photo of juicebox
3/5  rDev -16.4%

Photo of far333
4.06/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Dark amber color with a light brown head. The head is small but frothy, with big bubbles bursting into craters on top. Very clingy with good lacing to the glass. Aroma is light hop. Flavor hits the front of the tongue with a hop bitterness, and finishes with well-rounded malt, some fine roasted nuances. Very smooth mouthfeel.

 327 characters

Photo of BranfordBound
3.43/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Had at Friend's & Company in Guilford, CT. Pours amber and there is a lot of caramel and malt sweetness going on. A touch of herbal bitterness in the back-end keeps it all together. Easy to drink but very forgettable.

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Photo of tastybeer
4.03/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep scarlet color with wood tones and a light tan inch high, dense head. The great color draws me in. Sheety lace remains with a healthy layer of retention. Aroma is of sweet, grainy and bready malt, smokey tobacco, with dry British hops. My nose becomes happier and happier as it warms too. Taste has good maltiness and a complimentary dryness that tickles my tongue. Crisply carbonated with a mildly grainy mouth with a delightful prolonged dry finish. And yes...drinkable indeed.

Yummy and satisfying red.

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Photo of Dewey0603
3.58/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This pours a dark ruby mahogany with a smallish head and good lacing. The smell is light with only a little malt present. The taste is stronger than I expected with honey, sweet malt, hops, and some alcohol in the mix. The m/f is light, but the sweet malt clashes with the bitter hops. Not a bad beer, but the flavors don't quite mix right.

 340 characters

Photo of NeroFiddled
4.03/5  rDev +12.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Rich, roasty, nutty and gently caramelish, the Thomas Hooker Irish Style Red Ale steps beyond the bounds of the normally expected Irish amber (Smithwick's, Killian's, Murphy's Red). It's actually more akin to a Scottish ale - not that that's a bad thing!

It pours a clear mahogany body with a ruby cast beneath a full head of frothy tan foam that holds well and leaves some excellent lacing about the glass.

The nose displays a mineralish character resulting from a combination of scorched-caramel maltiness and leafy hops; and as it warms it becomes more biscuity and grassy.

It's smooth and bordering on becoming creamy in the mouth with a decidedly medium body and restrained, moderate carbonation.

Roastiness appears first in the flavor, followed by some sweet notes of toffee, nuts, gently buttered-biscuit crackers, and caramel; and then some leafy and grassy hop flavors as it crosses the palate. The solid bitterness doesn't really appear until the swallow, and then it slowly fades in a long-lasting, bitter and minearlish finish with some residual smokiness.

It's quite nice, rich, and somewhat complex, although it may build on the palate after one of two. However, it's certainly worth trying!

 1,221 characters

Photo of cjgator3
3.08/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12oz bottle

A- 12oz bottle into a pint glass. No freshness dating on the bottle. Pours a brownish red color with an off-white head.

S- The aroma features some biscuity malt and caramel with not much in the hop department. Not a whole lot going on in the nose, a little on the faint side.

T- The taste like the aroma is slightly toasted biscuity malt, caramel and toffee flavors with just a touch of hops in the finish.

M- The mouthfeel is light bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation.

D- Overall, this is a decent beer but nothing I would purchase again in the future.

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Photo of tempest
3.51/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a rich, full-flavored red-ale, but it's a bit thick and tough to drink. It drinks like a stout, or something bigger than this actually is. Don't get me wrong, there's a nice caramel malt flavor with a splash of citrus hops, but it's too much IMO for a red ale. I like the flavor and complexity, but dial back the mouthfeel.

 331 characters

Photo of grahuba
3.75/5  rDev +4.5%

Photo of mikefuski17
3.5/5  rDev -2.5%

Photo of jmerloni
2.35/5  rDev -34.5%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A - Woody orange-amber. Dull looking and not very lively. Head is one of the most minimal I've seen in beer.

S - Not much here. Wheat, yeast, orange, and a tint bit of malt.

T - I honestly can't detect a single flavor. Dank orange taste. A bit of hops. A bit of malt. I'm confused.

M - Pretty awful. Way over carbonated - so much so that you can't even taste anything. Not very dry either, as the style advertises.

D - Moderately drinkable but I wouldn't really care to drink more than a couple of these. Very boring and cheap tasting from a pretty decent brewery.

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Photo of Gmann
3.38/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber brown color with an average head, nothing special. The aroma is dissappointing, I pick up some doughy bread malt, not much else. The taste is of buttery malt, light caramel or toffee, no real hop profile detected. The feel is light to moderate with good carbonation. The finish is dry and astrigent. The drinkability is fine but nothing special. Much better brews out there.

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Photo of drcarver
3.45/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 4.5

A - It poured a deep red color with a small off-white head. The body itself was rather flat with not further carbonation being release post-pour.

S - A clean aroma with the slightest bite of hop

T - Slightly oilly finish. A little bit of toasted grain flavor.

M - This depends on what you are looking for. If you want a red with body, this ain't it. Very light flat watery body. Slight astrigent burn in the mouth after drinking

D - Despite what seems to be a low score I could drink this all day. Not a beer to sit and pontificate on, its a beer to drink.

 560 characters

Photo of KTCamm
3.48/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass. Pours a deep crimson red with minimal white foam and some lacing.

Huge malty sweet smell, almost like a candy shop.

Taste is rich and malty, with some caramel sweetness. Ever so slight hop at the finish.Strong carbonation in the mouthfeel.

Good drinkability - well done example of the style. Would drink again.

 353 characters

Photo of edchicma
3.71/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Amber brown in color with a head that doesn't quit. Lacing remains throughout...eye candy. Smell is mainly malt with a hint of hops below the surface. Taste is likewise a tad sweet with a small hop taste on the finish. Mouthfeel is creamy, but not to a fault..very easy on the palate. Because of its smoothness and medium body, this is a very easy brew to drink...defintely have more than one.

 393 characters

Photo of crossfit_lunatic
3/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of ChrisChagnon
3.25/5  rDev -9.5%

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Thomas Hooker Irish Red Ale from Thomas Hooker Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.59 out of 5 with 204 ratings