Ridgeway Brewing

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Pale Ale - English
Ranked #57
Ranked #37,293
3.7 | pDev: 13.51%
Ridgeway Brewing
England, United Kingdom
View: Beers
Reviews: 67 | Ratings: 89 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by TheLongBeachBum:
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TheLongBeachBum from California

2.56/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Presentation: 500ml brown glass bottle with a wide body and thin proboscis-like neck. Sealed with a metallic red crown cap and labeled as “Ivanhoe a Very English Pale Ale”. Alc. 5.2% Vol. My bottle looks nothing like the one pictured in the BA Avatar, though I love the Union Jack frontage posted, my bottle looks more like an extract from the Bayeux Tapestry look to it.

Appearance: Classic chestnut body, clarity is total with a laced streamer laden body. Off white bubbly head fills the upper ½” on the pour. Settles down with a rather flat look, low carbonation with a soft edge.

Nose: Funky wet cardboard with a residual malty aroma. Lightly toasted efforts punctuate a rather flaccid nose.

Taste: Faded malts fall flat, insipid middle has an annoying aspect. Astringent tastes with a yeasty palate. Shabby feel, with a let down body. Nutty aftertaste with a murky pondwater finish. Disjointed to say the least.

Mouthfeel: Thin and low on feel, it never quite bolsters itself to anything except a disappointing Pale Ale that could have been. Juicy at times but wanting, desperately needs balance though, lacking in hops, this pale ale feels more like a crappy home brew effort.

Drinkability: Drab and boring, whilst it starts with an interesting entrance this ultimately ends up being a drag.

Overall: Suffers from a cardboard tangent and a deflated feel. Bit of a disappointment this one to say the least. I would happily pick up the Ridgeway Bitter and IPA again. But Ivanhoe!??!, well I would certainly leave this one on the shelves for sure. Label’s itself as a “very English Pale Ale”, but it falls waaaay short of that moniker for me. Needs a lot more work!

“It cannot be that in England there will not be found one to fight for Justice”

I wouldn’t fight for this one. A miss.

Aug 13, 2006
More User Reviews:
Photo of blakesell
blakesell from Ohio

3.89/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from funky pint bottle into a standard pint glass.

Appearance- A great looking golden with excellent clarity and a 1.5 finger head of coffee with ample cream coloured foam on the top. Lacing sticks to the glass and is quite reluctant to let it go.

Smell- Earthy and spicey noble hops. A slight touch of biscuit. Quite hard to get much on the nose out of this beer.

Taste- Creamy and biscuity with more of the spicey hop than the earthy. A very smooth drinker here.

Mouthfeel- Creamy, medium bodied, and not astringent by any stretch of the imagination. A very nice pale here.

Drinkability- I actually feel I may be lowballing the beer's score by giving it a 4.5 on drinkability. This beer has excellent drinkability and I would love to see it on tap at my local pub or on cask.

Nov 25, 2007
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Rochefort10nh from New Hampshire

4/5  rDev +8.1%

Nov 27, 2011
Photo of jwc215
jwc215 from Arizona

3.95/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours light-to-medium copper with a thick, off-white head that slowly descends, leaving patches of lacing.

The smell is of biscuit/bread with floral, tea-leaf, citric fruitiness. Some caramel is in the back.

The taste is of lightly toasted (buttered?) biscuit with a touch of caramel balanced by an earthy, leafy, slightly citric bitterness. Lemon/orange gives a nod towards sourish. It is well-balanced in the English Pale Ale tradition. It has a tea-leafy, cedary dry finish.

It hits medium-bodied and is smooth, though carbonation could be a bit more restrained.

Bottom line - it's a well-balanced (even leaning a bit hoppy for an English Pale) with malty sweetness and hop bitterness mixing well (with a touch of sourish fruitiness). This is certainly a respectable brew, and (perhaps other than the carbonation level, which would probably be helped by having it on-cask), and is not that much of a "detractor" (perhaps personal preference when it comes to this style), this is a "Very English Pale Ale", as asserted on the label. An enjoyable brew with a delightful finish!

Nov 01, 2008
Photo of Drew966
Drew966 from Florida

3.53/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a copper color with minimal head from a 500 ml brown bottle. The label calls this a very British pale ale, it doesn't particularly taste like other British pale ales I've had, but its not bad. Some malt and hop in the aroma. Taste is ok, malt and hops are fairly balanced (the label says they are after balance), aftertaste is sort of nutty or woody, I can't quite put my finger on it. Worth a try.

Mar 22, 2006
Photo of vinicole
vinicole from England

3.66/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Clear burnished gold appearance. Little to no head but a nice gentle stream of rising bubbles.
Typical aroma of English hops and sweet malt.
Again a taste that reflects the flavour of most English summer beers at the moment. Well balanced.
Nice feel due to the bottle conditioning.
Nothing great but a sound pale ale.

Feb 05, 2016
Photo of sinstaineddemon
sinstaineddemon from Connecticut

3/5  rDev -18.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

the bottle i drank has a different label than the pic, it is a label that looks like old parchment and has a few cavalrymen on it. It reads "A very English Pale Ale."

this beer pours with a cloudy tan, with sediment. it ahs a short lasting white foam head, that quickly fades to a lace.

has a very typical pale ale aroma, other than that i smell nothing

taste very typical. it is good, dont get me wrong, but it tastes like every other quality pale ale. perhaps with a wheaty aftertaste.

very smooth mouthfeel and very tasty, but nothing special.

Mar 18, 2006
Photo of BretSikkink
BretSikkink from Mexico

3.95/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Clear amber brown brew, tiny bubbles rise persistently although the head didn't retain all that well. A lot of carbonation. Aroma pumps in some yeast light fruit like apple rind. The hop notes are floral and a little earthy. Hard Burton water also evident.

Good carbonation leads to a nice crispness, ripe fruit flavor initially. This is overtaken by the earthy hops, slight peppery spice, and light caramel sweet malt. Bitter finish, not in a bad way. Very nice drinking ale, well balanced, medium-bodied English pale. No problems whatsoever with warming. All around winner.

May 02, 2007
Photo of Nipitato
Nipitato from Massachusetts

3.76/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a bottle from Julio's Liqours in Westborough, MA

A: Great looking copper hue. Brilliant clarity. Nice quarter inch off white head that tails off after inititial pour. Visibly effervesant.

S: Mild aroma with nothing too prominent. Biscuit malt, slight caramel, and background hop aromas all slightly noticeable.

T: Subtly complex. Hoppy throughout balanced by biscuit malt middle. Some perceptable caramel flavors as well.

M: Medium light mouthfeel. High carbonation probably due to bottle conditioning.

D: The beauty of English pale ales are their subtleness. It makes them a challenge to review but a joy to drink.

Nov 11, 2006
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BlackHaddock from England

3.71/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

New artwork on my 500ml bottle: this bottle conditioned beer was entered into the 2011 Sainsbury beer challenge, as already stated by a couple of other UK based BA's. It didn't win by the way. Best before 11/11/2012, drank as I reviewed on 12 Oct 2011.

Poured into a UK pint sleeve: I might have over cooled it, no chill haze but the head left before it arrived and my wife has been using my cooling fridge for her wines and turned the temp down.

Good looking beer, even without it's head, solid amber, orangey red colour and clear.

Some fruity hop notes, becoming more striking was the beer warmed.

Good balance of flavours, not too hoppy even in the semi-bitter aftertatse, the malts evening out any true bitterness. The alcohol only appears once the mouth is really dry between sips, strange but not unpleasant.

Easy to drink and I'd love a cask one to compare.

Oct 12, 2011
Photo of timmay41
timmay41 from District of Columbia

3.96/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

A= As others have noted, a completely different (and significantly improved) bottle design. Very late medieval, early modern English romance design: a white-cloaked woman hangs at the gallows above the UPC scan, two knights joust, one red and one blue, as the main label image. The label looks and feels like the same vellum that Shakespeare's quartos were printed upon. The beer pours with little head and a copper look reminiscent of a 1976 penny.

S= Sniff deeply, else the subltle hop aromas and roast malts cannot be detected. Smells like London on a crisp day.

T= Light going down. This one does its best work after the fact, perhaps because of the live yeast. Subtle but genuine aftertaste.

M= Again, light and crisp. Gone before I can truly appreciate. Then I sip again. Try to mull it over. Oops, gone again. Have another sip...

D= Exceptional. I could have it for breakfast (and will, perhaps).

Not a Bluebird Bitter, but so easy and so mellow you can't refuse its charm.

Jan 29, 2007
Photo of MrHurmateeowish
MrHurmateeowish from Maine

4.59/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

500ml brown bottle from A-1 to-go in Gardiner. Hazy brown-red body with virtually no head. Smells sweet with spice and earthy hops in the background. Fruity and malty with a fair bit of English hops to support it with some spice toward the finish and a slight roastiness. Light-to-medium in body with less carbonation than expected. Very well balanced and full-flavored. Nothing wrong with this beer. Really drinkable and very tasty. I wish there were a bit more carbonation to it, but otherwise virtually flawless. Definitely getting this one again if I can find it!

Jun 06, 2007
Photo of metter98
metter98 from New York

3.63/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is crystal clear copper in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a finger high frothy light beige colored head that has good retention properties and consistently left a thin layer of bubbles covering the surface.
S: There are moderately strong aromas of floral hops in the nose along with hints of fruity yeast.
T: The taste has flavors of floral hops as well as biscuit, caramel and pale malts. A slight amount of bitterness is present.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and a bit chewy on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer has a great balance between the flavors of malts and hops and is very sessionable. The bottle conditioning definitely improves its taste.

Mar 04, 2012
Photo of Slatetank
Slatetank from Pennsylvania

4/5  rDev +8.1%

May 25, 2013
Photo of Minkybut
Minkybut from Virginia

2.62/5  rDev -29.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

I poured this nasty looking concoction into my tumbler at 45 degrees. The beer was sorta tea colored and dead looking. The beer poured absolutely no head whatsoever. The beer smelled yeasty, looked yeasty and tasted yeasty. I was not liking this beer at all and struggled to finish it off. Will not buy again.

Oct 17, 2012
Photo of Bouleboubier
Bouleboubier from New Jersey

4.57/5  rDev +23.5%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

(on cask at Victoria Freehouse - served in a 20 oz proper pint)

A: pale gold liquid, relatively clear.... attractive, compact, creamy foam - fantastic retention, big bands of sudsy lace

S: bold golden raisin esters... sugar cookie dough malt... herbal, grassy hops - the quality of aroma like fresh, not-quite-dry hop cones

T: smooth, sweetish, light-toffee, graham-cracker-y malt with a fairly aggressive herbal-leafy bitterness that keeps the palate buzzing... faint toastiness and perhaps mint in the aftertaste

M: exceptionally smooth with a mild sugar/resin residue... absolutely ideal

O: just damn tasty... crazy moreish for anyone who enjoys their bitters

Apr 23, 2014
Photo of scottakelly
scottakelly from Ohio

4.25/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Off-white head that lasts a long time. Amber color with a slightly copper tinge.

S: Fruity smell, slightly hoppy.

T: I love the taste of this beer. The flavors aren’t perfectly blended, but that’s ok, this beer is balanced. The dryness stands out, but with slight caramel sweetness on the finish. Earthy hop flavors are very present.

M: The carbonation is brisk and lively at first. Dry.

D: Very high. I could have had several more.

Jun 14, 2007
Photo of brantadid
brantadid from New Jersey

3.98/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a cleary honey amber color with a creamy white head. Some lacing.

A nice light hop quality in the nose.

Taste is of a very slight maltiness followed by a bitter mid to far palate. Not overly bitter but just enought to make you want more.

Mouthfeel is crisp and light. I very drinkable beer. It is what I imagine beer in England is like. I can't wait to get there to find out.

Aug 04, 2008
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philipquarles from Connecticut

4.2/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

50cl bottle. Pours golden-orange with a substantial off-white head that lasts. Great lacing. Smells of sweet, typically English malt and some light aromatic hops. Very nice. Mildly malty taste with hints of caramel and some grassiness otherwise. Slight spiciness at the end. Dry finish. Medium-full body with ideal carbonation. A very nice English pale/bitter.

Oct 16, 2009
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Amalak from New York

3.41/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This is a very smooth, but to be honest it might be too smooth because there really isn't that much flavor to it. This is actually the perfect beer to smoke a cigar with, but by itself it is only average. The best part about it is the saying that's on it's label:

"It cannot be that in England there will not be found one to fight for justice. I challenge the privilege of trial by combat. God will raise me up a champion."

Jan 22, 2009
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Tucquan from Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev +1.4%

Apr 14, 2014
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freewill35 from Indiana

3.75/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Apr 25, 2017
Photo of dsa7783
dsa7783 from New Jersey

3.53/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

1 Pint, .09 fl oz bottle copped from Super Saver in Somerville for $3.99...
A fast pour resulted in a huge, frothy and foamy head that exhibited tremendous staying power before slowly receding and leaving a copious amount of lacing around the head of the serving glass... Dark amber color also apparent...
Faint grainy and earthy aroma slightly noticeable but not too intricate or complex...
Taste was crisp, clean, and smooth with hants of malt sweetness and slight hops to balance things out... Sweet bread and butter flavor also apparent with hints of caramel and a slight tinge of vanilla...
Decent, medium-bodied mouthfeel...
Easily drinkable but lack of complexity on the tongue didn't make this one too exciting...

Apr 09, 2008
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beerthulhu from New Jersey

3.58/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured a deep sunset orange with a 2 finger solid foam beige head that was very well lasting. Visible carbonation was strong and rapid with macro bubbles while several large spongey patches were left behind for a lacing. The carbonation remained strong and steady for the entire course of the drink.

S: The nose was soft and flowery with dried orange peels, grains and dry bread highlighted with a light touch of toasted nuttiness rounding things out. The scent was very light making you work hard for any real appreciation.

T: The flavor was crisp with honey toast bread and sharp orange notes and a flowery bitterness. The level of bitterness was strong especially for an English pale with dry lemony flower notes. The alcohol was fairly noticeable providing a spiciness of dried fruit of pineapple. Overall a dried fruitiness with some spicy attributes combines nicely with a ample show of English floral hops makes for a good example.

M: The mouthful was creamy with a fizzy carbonation. Flowery dry hops gently line the tongue with a wet lemony presence.

D: Moderate drinkability with a respectable amount of hops and definitely worth checking out. Appreciable by style and good for a few.

Jan 25, 2010
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JohnQVegas from Tennessee

4.02/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours slightly hazy amber-gold, thin soapy off-white cap.

Nose is fruity, buttery, bit of caramel, some light floral hops come through.

Taste is buttery, lots of orangey fruit over a malt body that hints at caramel and toast. Nice, firm floral hop note on the finish. Lightly bitter, dry finish.

Mouthfeel is lively, slick and silky, beautiful.

Apr 08, 2009
Ivanhoe from Ridgeway Brewing
Beer rating: 83 out of 100 with 89 ratings