Alexander Keith's India Pale Ale | Alexander Keith's

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Alexander Keith's India Pale AleAlexander Keith's India Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Alexander Keith's
Nova Scotia, Canada

Style: English India Pale Ale (IPA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-16-1998

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Reviews: 276 | Ratings: 633
Photo of Sammy
3.35/5  rDev +28.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Better and fresher on-tap but also had it at Granite brewery, who are in a partnership. More color and action through fizz to normal pale color. Good with food. An unoffensive beer and a major step up to your mates from national brands. More malt than hops.

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Photo of biboergosum
2.4/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

All of the East Coast culture that's made its way west seems to be the explanation for the pervasiveness of this so-called IPA in better bars and living rooms in this part of the world. Maybe it's the goofy advertising. Meh. It's in the fridge after a day of killing my legs on the slopes, so away I go.

This 355ml can pours a clear, rather pale golden straw colour, with two fingers of loosely foamy, fairly bubbly off-white head, which leaves some random streaks of splotchy lace around the glass as it quickly settles.

It smells of a very light, very basic pale grainy cereal maltiness, some further sweet corn syrup, a very subtle hint of bland citrus, and some ethereal cooked veggies. The taste is more slightly grainy corn cereal malt sweetness, more stale vegetal character than anything hop-like, with an indistinct, but growing astringency.

The carbonation is quite sedate, a bit of weak frothiness the only thing going on, the body medium-light in weight, and a bit cloying in its plebeian smoothness. It finishes off-dry, the increasingly grotesque malt persisting in its hegemony.

I suppose that this goes down just as well as any mass-market macro lager, given its striking similarity to them. In the past, this offering benefited from me being held hostage by a lack of selection, and a general dearth of education. No longer am I blind, and I see this for what it really is - marketing sheen, and nothing else, as it has very, very little to recommend it - style-wise, or other.

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Photo of Phyl21ca
2.63/5  rDev +1.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pourred a yellowish brew with a nice head. Taste of cereal is very present without any distinctive spice coming out of this. I wonder if this is really a IPA or just another macro pale ale... I would be curious to taste to the original brew before it was bought by Labatt...

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Photo of mothman
2.56/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Had this at Elephant and Castle in Winnipeg.

Poured into 20 oz pint shaped glass.

Looked more like a lager than an IPA. Clear light yellow. 1 finger thin white head. Left some good lacing, however.

Aroma: Slight honey. The hop aroma was very light for an ipa. Kind of grassy. Not something I was expecting. Very weak.

Taste: slight grassy hops, and very little citrus notes. A little orange. Very dulled down ipa.

Mouthfeel is crisp and a tad bitter. Leaves a slight dry aftertaste.

Overall, not something I'd ever consider to be an IPA. I don't think I will ever have this beer again. Try a different IPA and avoid this one.

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Photo of nickfl
2.04/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

A - poured with half a finger of white foam on top of a clear, golden body. The head settles rapidly and leaves light lace.

S - grainy malt and a hint of herbal hops.

T - some sweet malt up front with a hint of honey. Some grainy notes in the middle and a bready finish with light bitterness.

M - medium body, moderately low carbonation, and a sweet finish.

D - kind of odd to call this an IPA. It has little bitterness and virtually no hop charter. A blonde perhaps, or even a european light lager, but certainly not an ipa. Light, sweet, drinkable and thoroughly bland.

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Photo of chinchill
3.61/5  rDev +38.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the brewery in Halifax.
Golden body with excellent clarity.
Very mild, even for a pale ale. So weak and mild, my companion who doesn't even like beer found it drinkable and "like water". Ridiculous calling this an IPA. Ignoring that, it is clean, refreshing and well balanced. Should work well with food.

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Photo of mikesgroove
2.23/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

i actually trade for this one just to finish off this bottom 100 list. served iced cold and thanks to a wonderful ba for the hookup, this one was consumed on 08/29/2010.

light pour for the style with a very light amber, nearly hay color coming through on me. small head clings to the sides of the glass for dear life and really just makes it much lighter then i am used to seeing.

aroma is faint, light citrus hops are drowned out by grains and muted corn and wet cardboard. really not an ipa. clean and crisp, light and refreshing it certainly was not terrible in that regard but was not the big bold flavor i am accustomed to. clean finish with little flavor and light dryness.

overall i would pass on this, i tried it, i am ok now.

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Photo of smcolw
2.78/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Quite pale, clear with virtually no head and no lace.

There is a lack of hop aroma that would be typical for the style. Lots of fruity esters.

This is a step up from most macros, but it is not an IPA in flavor. The hop is nearly undetectable. The fruitiness is present to the flavor. It has a decent body and low level of carbonation.

A clear miss in the IPA world.

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Photo of stakem
2.33/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 2 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I think this beverage got the wrong label. It really doesn't display any characteristics of an IPA regarding both smell and taste. I mean heck yeah it looks good other than the fact that it has no head at all and kinda resembles a pale yellow, watered down pilsner...

Only reason I didnt give it a worse rating is because the carbination is nice and it gives a tingly mouthfeel that is easy to drink...but then again I could have gotten the same excitement from shooting seltzer water up my nose.

If you are in the mood for drinking and IPA...dont drink this one.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.17/5  rDev +21.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Tried Alexander Keith's India Pale Ale at the welcome reception for a conference being held in Calgary. The IPA poured golden clear in a pilsner style glass. There was a thin white head which laced somewhat. The nose had a little hoppyness to it, but nothing overpowering like some IPAs. The taste was good...seemed more like a standard pale ale than IPA. Mouthfeel was smooth and would certainly try this beer again.

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Photo of jwc215
2.21/5  rDev -15%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours light golden yellow with plenty of clarity and a thin white head.

The smell is of sweet grain (some husk?) and corn. Doesn't smell like an IPA - maybe more like a cross between a light Helles Lager and a macro.

The taste -- Where are the hops???? Distant. They are there, but just to balance out the sweetness of the grainy malt, adding little if anything to the taste. Clean, and rather "inoffensive", this is bland to the point of being ridiculous. Some sweet grain and buttered corn (but a bit different than in a corn adjunct way). With modest abv and lack of hop presence, this is out of style. Rated out of style? Bland, boring. Finishes abruptly.

Thin - Light bodied, but not overly fizzy.

Way out of style. Someone send a search and rescue party out for the hops! Other than style? Lackluster.

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Photo of feloniousmonk
2.48/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance: crystal clear, pale golden color, rather un-IPA-like, topped with a large, lush bone-white head...the latter, however, does not redeem the former, though...
aroma: soft, spare, and slightly soapy, a little floral, and once more, exhibiting no India Pale Ale characteristics...not bad, but not what I'd like when the label clearly says IPA.
Taste: neat, tiny hop introduction, but very minor, showing no fruit, no particular hoppy bit,( can't imagine what hops were used, maybe a touch of Centennial and a whisper of Columbus?)..very small tastes of citrus and honey mark the flavor best, but it barely has any business on the palate, says hello and leaves...very light in body, flavor, in the memory, etc. Pleasant enough, but extraordinary shy of showing us any real taste, you can drink this pretty well, but it doesn't tickle me in any fashion, and I can't get past the mistake of the mislabeling. That's where the axe will have to fall in my ranking, for it clearly ain't what it says it is!
I'm having this bottle in between pints of Minneapolis Town Hall Masala Mama IPA, and one of these can be an IPA, but not both, 'cause this one don't cut it...not even an EPA...a blonde, maybe...

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Photo of Tone
2.6/5  rDev 0%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clear, amber color. 1/4 inch head of an off-white color. Slight retention and slight lacing. Smells of slight hops, sweet malt, and pale malt. Barley fits the style of an English IPA. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of pale malt, slight sweet malt, rice/corn, and a hint of hops. Overall, hops are nearly absent, appearance is lacking, and aroma is muted.

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Photo of Gavage
2.43/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance: pours a clear light yellow color with a 1/4" head that falls apart immediately.

Smell: grass and some mild bitterness is all you can detect.

Taste: mild malt, light lemon citrus, golden apples, and a mild bitterness make up a very weak IPA.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crisp thoughout. Aftertaste is very short lived.

Drinkability: when one wants an IPA, this does not really fit the category. Easy to quaff, this is closer to a pale euro lager than an IPA.

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Photo of TheSevenDuffs
1.23/5  rDev -52.7%
look: 1.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

A - VERY pale. This is closer in colour to a light beer than an IPA. There is some visible carbonation, about average for an IPA.

S - Very faint malt aroma. I don't detect any hops on the nose, which for an IPA is puzzling.

T - The palate is a very light, crisp malt profile. No bitterness or hops at all. Barely more flavour than a Coors Light or Bud Lite. Disappointing and not even remotely resembling the style.

M - Light body with some carbonation. This has a good/typical mouthfeel for a lager, not an IPA. The overall mouth feel is not all that bad. If this was a lager, I would give it an average rating, but if you want to call yourself an IPA, I am going to rate you as an IPA, which is not impressive at all.

Overall this is a decent beer, but is NOT AN IPA. The fact that they call it an IPA is truly disappointing. My rating above take in to account that this is supposed to be be an IPA. If they called it "Keith's Lager" I would probably give is a C or C-.


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Photo of DoubleJ
2.23/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Press for this beer is big in Eastern Canada for some odd reason. Not sure what's behind that, but it can't be the beer itself, can it? Sampled at the Sainte-Elisabeth Pub (Montréal), on to the beer:

I only ordered 10 ounces of it, and I'm sure glad I didn't get the 20 ounce size. Appearance is blonde and clear like a lager. Okay aroma of corn grits, DMS (cooked veggies), and a touch of honey. The taste begins with a slight sweetness from the grain. Some cereals show up too. I'm not wincing, but the overall flavor is weak. It goes fruity for a brief second before going dry, kind of like sweetneer. Hops anyone? Where are they? Yawn. And as the beer warmed, it started to get hard to drink.

If this is an IPA, then I'm the Easter Bunny. Molson Canadian can kick this beer's ass back to Nova Scotia.

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Photo of plaid75
2.32/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

I had this beer on tap in Toronto. I have to say that I don't know what the excitement is all about. In fact, when I was in Ireland I was talking to a guy who spent some time in Toronto and he raved about it. My father had it in Nova Scotia and he loved it. I must be missing something.

The appearance is not the copper hue I would expect from an IPA. The smell lacked the hop element I look for in an IPA. The flavor was simple - more like a lager than an IPA. The mouthfeel was fine, but it really didn't matter at that point.

Their slogan is "people who like it really really like it." No truer words have been spoken. However, I am not one of those people.

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Photo of biegaman
1.11/5  rDev -57.3%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1.5 | overall: 1

Although most beer drinkers don't know it, "India Pale Ales" (named such because they were brewed to last the long, turbulent journey from Britain to the sub-continent) were only "pale" by comparison to other beers at the time. IPAs, historically, are reddish copper and this bright, brilliant, watery yellow colour is nice, but most out of place.

I really avoid at all cost using the word "urine" with reference to beers; while some beers have an equally intense, off-putting smell as urine does, very few (if any) ever actually harbor a smell resembling it. That being said, this beer, in all honesty, actually does smell a little like it (along with a dab of rotten orchard fruit and a good dose of vinegar).

Note that I've made no mention of hops. And I'm not likely to at all, unless to say that I'm not smelling/tasting/sensing any. If the beer's mismatched appearance didn't let on that this thing is an IPA in name only, there's no mistaking it from the taste. Not only is there no - not virtually no, but literally no - presence of hops, there's no maltiness either.

Instead, there is a cloying, disagreeable, synthetic taste of corn syrup and... only God knows what else. Thankfully the aftertaste is negligible, but those first few seconds after the swallow are pure hell for the palate. The beer is distasteful, nauseating, too repugnant even to be called insipid. It is abhorrently gross and, in plain English, ruthlessly bad.

I don't know what's worse: the fact that this is an offensive, objectionable, abominably awful rendition of a classic style or that it's just an utterly disgusting, unpalatable offering in its own right. No, it's the fact that they call this an "IPA" when clearly it's nothing more than an industrially-produced, adjunct-ridden macro lager (and a terrible one at that!)

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Photo of Derek
2.98/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

Certainly a leaner brew, without much hop presence. The bottle seems to maintain the hops (what little there is) much better than the keg/draft version, which is practically indistinguishable from a macro lager.

A: VERY clear, slightly yellow. Pours with a fizzy, white head, which quickly dissipates.

S: Not much nose, but it smells like beer (a little sweet malt & earthy /floral hop aroma).

T: Flavours are very light. It's certainly balanced to the bitter side, leaving a clean, crisp finish. There's not much malty sweetness here, as it's diluted with a little corn flavour.

M: Light to moderate body is well carbonated.

D: Quite good. Very approachable, and a good summer session beer as well.

"Those who like it, like it a lot!"

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Photo of spinrsx
2.48/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

473ml Can

Appearance - The beer pours a clear golden yellow colour with a small fizzy white head. There is an average amount of carbonation showing. There is some faint lacing on the sides of the glass. The head lasted for only a few minutes before it was gone.

Smell - corn syrup, breads/grains, malts

Taste & Mouth - The beer has an average amount of carbonation and I can taste corn syrup, breads/grains and some light malts. It ends with a grainy slightly bitter aftertaste

Overall - I really don't understand why so many people in my area buy this beer. Perhaps I would enjoy it more if they stopped calling it an 'India Pale Ale'. There are lots of better choices - even for an adjunct.

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Photo of wordemupg
2.18/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

355ml can poured into pint glass sept5 2009

A crystal clear straw yellow with a one finger head that's gone before the second sip and leaves no lace

S sweet grains grass and very little hops, not how i expect a IPA too smell. This is however how i expect a macro lager too smell.

T This is a IPA in the same way the Olive Garden is an Italian restaurant. It's a little grassy and has a little skunk too it not very good.

M good carbonation but that's about it

D not the worst beer I've had, not worth spending money on

How they advertise this as an IPA is beyond me. It makes me sad how many people come into my beer room and tell me they like IPA's like Keith's. Please don't buy this beer it's expensive and no good. I feel sorry for all the hop heads that have bought this beer thinking they would get something worth drinking.

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Photo of tigg924
2.11/5  rDev -18.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Appearance: clear, straw colored, high carbonation, big head

Smell: faint, grass and small hops

Taste: also very weak, grass--small hops on the end, almost water like

Mouthfeel: watery, high carbonation, smooth, slightly bitter end.

Drinkability: The worst Keith's I have tried. Most IPAs I have are somewhat bitter. This has a touch of bitter on the end, but that is it. It is weak and watery. One is more than enough as this is a huge disappointment.

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Photo of bylerteck
2.13/5  rDev -18.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Mom felt the need to get a two-four at duty free for some reason.

A - Pours your typical light golden colour with a single finger of white head. Light carbonation. Bright. Head fizzled away pretty quick to a film and no lace.

S - Corny, grainy, sugary. Ick.

T - fairly boring with corny, grainy, sweet notes. Nothing really to be interested in. Very mild with lot's of plain grain.

M - Decent carbonation, light body, really sweet grainy finish.

O/D - Keith's what's more to say. How they call this an IPA is beyone me. Not worth the time.

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Photo of DrJay
2.1/5  rDev -19.2%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Crystal clear pale gold with a fizzy white cap that disappeared quickly -- not even a collar. Slightly sour and musty aroma, faint cereal grains. Very low bitterness, mild sweetness with the same sour character as in the aroma. Slight fruitiness. Short finish, quite dry, light mineral flavour. Light bodied, moderate carbonation. Don't drink this if you're expecting an IPA of any type. Hops are nearly non-existent and while it's mostly inoffensive, it still lacks any sort of character.

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Photo of Brad007
1/5  rDev -61.5%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

One of the few offerings on the shelves that wasn't a variant of Molson, Carling or LaBatt.

Pours a too-bright gold with a huge head into my glass. Something's not right here. Hmm. More fitting for a pils.

Buttery malt in the nose? Check. Low hop presence? Check. Is it an English IPA? ("Price is Right" losing horn)

Tastes like I just drank a pint of dishwater. Hardly any hops, malt or anything.

Watery, metallic finish completes this abomination of an IPA. No, scratch this. This is a drain pour.

Being that this is the "Pride of Nova Scotia", I'd be shocked if empty cans didn't litter the grounds of Sunnyvale Trailer Park.

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Alexander Keith's India Pale Ale from Alexander Keith's
2.6 out of 5 based on 633 ratings.
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