Short's Smoked Apple Ale | Short's Brewing Company

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Short's Smoked Apple AleShort's Smoked Apple Ale
64 Ratings
Short's Smoked Apple AleShort's Smoked Apple Ale

Brewed by:
Short's Brewing Company
Michigan, United States

Style: Fruit / Vegetable Beer

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.25%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Pushing the envelope of fermented innovation
Light amber ale infused with seven bushels of apple wood smoked apples.  An initial light toasted maltiness finishing strong of apples and smoke.
17 I.B.U.’s
14.5 deg. Plato
6.25 % A.B.V.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 01-03-2006

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 64 |  Reviews: 49
Reviews by WakeandBake:
Photo of WakeandBake
2.16/5  rDev -39.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

A hazy amber color pour , medium sized off white head , some spotty lacing left , light carbonation . Aroma of burnt wood , ashes , apple and dusty grain. Flavor is like a mouth full of wood ash washed down by a funky cider ,very smokey and ashy , little if any malt or hop notes, slightly salty . Dry chalky mouthfeel , long woody smokey finish . I like Shorts and I suppose someone had to like this somewhers but , um a total drain pour , way too far out there for me eh .

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More User Reviews:
Photo of brownbeer
3.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bright amber color with a nice ring of pillowy white head and great lacing.

Smoke and clove dominated aroma. Sort of a smoky hefe.

The taste goes from smoke, to very tart green apples, and back to a lingering smoky wood and wild yeastiness finish. There is some toffee sweetness in there as well.

Very interesting beer. I wasn't expecting the tartness that it pistol whipped me with, but it was a welcome bonus.

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Photo of hughesm4
3.28/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

a- Very carbonated golden brown in color. It starts as a light gold in the bottle of the glass and gradients to a darker brown towards the top of the glass.
s- More of a smokey taste than an apple taste, however there is a slight apple smell towards the end of the drink.
t- There is a little smoke flavor up front, but the majority of the taste is a sweet apple taste that fills the mouth. There is a little bit of a sour taste towards the end of the drink.
m/d- It smells more smokey than it tastes and has a finishing taste of a sweet apple sider. It is a very interesting drink, not one that I would recommend as a must drink, but worth a try.

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Photo of Kegatron
4.25/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Very foamy initial pour on this but it quickly settles down into a clear gold, with about 2 fingers of thick and frothy bright-white head. Retention is fairly rich here, holding steady at nearly a finger and throwing some robust swathes of heavy lacing up on the sides. The aroma smells of apple juice and sugary malts, along with some floral tones. The smoked character is fairly pronounced and emerges quite quickly as this warms. Each sniff of this alternates evenly between the notes of apple and smoke.

There is a lot more tartness here in the taste from apples up front, mixing with those bready sugars from the malt to impart a sharp tanginess on the rear on the palate. I love the light bitterness that is present, which adds some earthy accents that perfectly balance out the fruity tartness and sweetness here. The smoke is mostly felt in the backend, lingering with just the faintest feel on the breath and in the back of the throat. The mouthfeel is lighter bodied, with a mellow sharpness that still flows rather nicely, despite just the tiniest bit of alcohol warmth being present.

You know, this one was pretty straightforward but it worked for me. The simplicity of the smoked apples, malt, and hops, kept things uncomplicated and were all in balance with each other, while the flavors were complimented by an easy feeling and smooth body despite the higher ABV. Short's impressed me with this one. It was quite tasty and drinkable.

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Photo of alleykatking
4.3/5  rDev +20.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from 12oz bottle. Many thanks go out to Eric (gratefulbeerhead) for this bottle! Eric, you always are amazing with these beers. Review from phone notes.

A- Pours semi-hazy golden orange color. Two finger white head with some good retention to it. Light chunky lacing left on the sides of the glass.

S- Nice baked apple aroma. Some light smoked hints throughout the beer getting bigger when the beer warms. Apple cider notes also come through more as the beer warms.

T- Sweet apple upfront takes on very real flavor. Smokey flavor in the middle through the ending. Almost a bacon-y flavor in the tail end of the beer. Like a hickory smoked bacon that is wrapped around a sweet apple.

M- Light mouthfeel. Carbonation is great for the style. Flavors are crisp and individual flavors do come out. Sweet apples get left on the palate with a bacon tasting smokiness in the aftertaste.

D- This beer is very drinkable. The ABV is low enough to have a couple bottles or a sixer of. This is a interesting beer because it tastes dead on to what it is suppose to. Short's makes yet another crazy beer that tastes great.

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Photo of SpdKilz
3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A huge thanks to erikhoppin for this great extra. Cheers!

Appearance - Pours into my Bell's Tulip with a hazy golden color. About a finger of quickly dissipating white head is achieved with a moderate pour, and is leaving decent lacing on the sides.

Smell - Quite prominent caramel and green apple notes. The more it warms up the more noticeable the "smoky" aroma's become.

Taste - Oh wow...holy cow the first sip is like I'm drinking the leftovers of a campfire. Smokey indeed. This flavor is entirely different from the nose profile to be honest. I could barely smell the smokiness yet bam, that is almost all I taste in this beer. The more I drink the beer the less pronounced the smoky flavor becomes (sensory adaptation?) and the apple flavor begins to emerge. Still, the smoky flavor overpowers the apple. As someone else said, if this beer was just a tad sweeter it would be a bit more balanced in my opinion. Other flavors I notice are white grapes, leather, and just a tad of tobacco. Quite an interesting beer.

Mouthfeel - Light bodied with almost no carbonation. Fits this odd beer to be honest.

Drinkability - While the more I drink this the more it grows on me, I don't think I could ever have more than one of these at one time. I'm glad I was able to try this though. Ironically enough I forced my fiancée to try this and no joke, she said this was one of her favorites I have made her try. That's irony for you!

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Photo of duke1258
3.75/5  rDev +5.3%

Photo of hippityhops85
3.11/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz bottle into pint glass.

Pours a relatively clear burnt orange with a thin white head that quickly dissipates. Aggressive carbonation is evident.

The nose smells almost like a berliner weisse. Tart apple notes. Reminiscent of DFH Festina Peche except with apples.

The taste is woah. The carbonation takes over the mouth which then follows to a... well tart smoked apple flavor. Initially the tartness is noticed followed by a green apple flavor. As the beer enters the back of the throat the smoked qualities come out but not in an overwhelming way.

The mouth feel detracts from the flavor of the beer in my opinion. The carbonation is so aggressive it creates a prickly feeling on the tongue that is almost uncomfortable. I think some of the apple notes are lost in the carbonation.

All in all, not a bad beer. Very interesting. Verging on a cider.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
2.73/5  rDev -23.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle poured into a pilsner glass. No info. 030410.

A - Smoked Apple pours out a lightly cloudy golden yellow with a fluffy white head. The two-finger pile sank with moderate speed to a thin layer and left a healthy coat of lace behind.

S - It smells like a tripel almost. Faint wisps of smoke linger in the background and almost no strong apple aroma rises out. I'm getting a fair amount of golden malts and a light pinch of herbs with a dash of spice. The aroma has the crispness of apples but again, no real apple nose.

T - Almost nothing is going on in the flavor. A small, passive malt flavor with a crispness and again, no apples. A liquid-smoke-like flavor that tastes manufactured is only hinted at on the finish. Very low flavor profile with nothing going on.

M - Thin in body and flavor with a crisp carbonation bite and dry, very lightly smoked finish. Almost a bit on the watery side.

D - The Smoked Apple could work so well as a beer provided there is flavor there which I don't get right now. It's just thin and plain which isn't to say it's uninspired. This has, as an idea, the potential to be a real winner. It just falls short since there's nothing there.

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Photo of hoppymcgee
3.71/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jrallen34 for this! Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a tulip glass.

A: The best feature of this beer. Golden yellow color; nice white foam head; effervescent, a symphony of bubbles fizz from bottom to top the whole way through drinking this beer.

S: Smokiness, almost cheesy, and a little apple in the background. Nose is more pronounced as this warms up.

T: Smoke at the forefront, followed by tart apple. Wish this were a bit more complex.

M: Highly carbonated, spritzy, and dry.

D: The carbonation is a bit much, but at least no booze comes through in this one.

Overall, one of my favorites in the Fruit beer category. Nobody can keep up with the odd beers Short's produces in my opinion.

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Photo of JohnGalt1
3.6/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Part of an amazing trade with Kbeals... Big applause goes out to my buddy Kevin.. Shared this with ditmier and inflatablechair..

Pours hazy deep golden.. chunky off white head.. no real lacing.

Nose is apple cider with some lite background smoke..

Flavor has a bit of a sour punch that I wasn't really expecting.. a little medicinal phenol shows too.. apple is obviously the big player.. so is some lite toasty elements.. the smoke comes on more toward the finish.. lite/medium body with a healthy carbonation.. interesting and pretty good.. but I'm glad I was able to split the bottle with a couple of friends who appreciated it too.

Thanks again Kevin... I hope you like your box as much as I loved mine.


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Photo of mikesgroove
4.57/5  rDev +28.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

so i decided last night to break out 10+, thats right 10+ new shorts beers for a nice sampling with the family. turns out my and my brother in law were the only ones willing to go down this road, so long afternoon for sure. serve cold and consumed on 10/02/2010.

this was easily one of my favorites of the night, and also the one that was the hardest for me to get ahold of. having only the one bottle of it i was the hog here for sure. pours out a nice light amber color with a foamy head that almost breached the glass. lots of very active carbonation.

aroma is equal parts tart green apples and rich campfire smoke that really catches you off guard. letting it warm though brought tears to my eyes. simply amazing character here as the flavor bouncings back between tart apples, sweet notes of brown suagr and rich smoked malts. i do not know how they got this one to work so damn well, but it was blowing me away. clean and crisp with a smooth finish that ends with lots of roasted notes that tingle the palate.

overall an outstanding experiment that was just the top of the night for me. would do this one again in a heartbeat.

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Photo of zoso1967
4/5  rDev +12.4%

Photo of DavoleBomb
3.48/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a pint glass.

4.0 A: Hazed golden orange color. First pour was about 4 fingers of frothy white head. Pretty good retention and moderate lacing.

3.5 S: Dank sourish smokiness with tons and tons of burnt wood. Only a touch of apple in there. The smoke is powerful, like a rauchbier, and covers up a lot of the other flavors.

3.5 T: Interesting like any good Short's brew. The smoke is a bit less powerful than in the nose. Sourish apple comes through a lot more. Apple and smoke are by far the dominant flavors, but there is a solid neutral malt depth underneath with some toffee and toastiness.

3.0 M: I really wish I could drink one goddamn beer from Short's that wasn't sickeningly overcarbonated. This is damn hard to drink stright from the pour because the beer blows up in your mouth. Lighter medium body I think. I can't really tell due to the carbonation. Not smooth at all due to the carbonation.

3.5 D: I probably would have given this a 4.0 for taste if I had been able to taste it. The carbonation level is just way too damn high. It makes the whole experience an ordeal. Still, like many Short's brews, this is both interesting and tasty. I'd want to drink this stuff all the time

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Photo of jpmclaug
4.05/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the bottle into my pint glass

A - humongo white head on a hazy orange beer with yellow edges

S - Ummm... is this a lambic? Not sure what I was expecting from this but what I am getting is definitely not it. That does not mean it is bad however. I am picking up sour apples with a little funk to it.

T - I am once again confused. Definitely a sour apple taste with some funky yeast flavors at the end. A bit of smoke but I don't know if I would have picked up on it if I didn't know the name of this beer. Kind of picking up some ham/bacon flavors. This is a unique brew.

M - light to medium with a ton of bubbles. Not that great but it works pretty good for the beer.

D - Easily drinkable unique flavored beer. I've enjoyed this one and would pick it up again. I think it would be great if you are in the mood for something like this.

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Photo of mrmanning
3.32/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tap at MI brewer's guild fest winter-06- Deep copper body is capped with some white foam. Whoa, this is smoky. Smoked bacon and sausage fill the nostrils, and is pretty strong. Some spices also present in the aroma, but this stuff is straight out the smoker. Flavours are dominated by smoke and charred meat. SOme spicy apple flavours in the finish. A tad thin in the later parts. SOme malt is present as well. Interesting.

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Photo of semibaked
2.8/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Poured into a Tulip Glass.

A - Nice apple cider color with active carbonation and just a slight white foam.

S - Decent amount of smokiness with some apple juice undertones, nothing much else though.

T - Overwhelming smoky flavors, kinda like licking smoked wood, the apple is very subtle but a little sweetness comes through.

M - Pretty thin bodied but has really good carbonation.

D - I just can't get past the big smokey flavor, I think if they make this again they need to try to tone down the smoke flavor, it could be good but right now I don't like this very much.

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Photo of ygtbsm94
2.5/5  rDev -29.8%

Photo of TCgoalie
3/5  rDev -15.7%

Photo of tetonka4kzoo
3.77/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Has a thin lacey head. It has a nice orange-amber color, looks like a typical wheat ale.

The aroma is a light apple cider vinegar. It has a pleasant scent.

You notice the taste of smoked malt immediately. The apple taste is light which isn't a bad thing; ciders are too sweet. The smoked flavor is nice and not overwhelming. It's also present in the after taste but still enjoyable.

This brew has a typical medium-bodied feel like most wheat ales.

Not too shabby drinkability. I usually only like a couple of smokey or wheat beers for a sitting. I always like trying the varieties from Shorts.

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Photo of grub
3.97/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Viggo brought this one over. thanks eric!

12oz bottle. sampled may 1/2010.

pours lightly hazy golden amber with a big fluffy off-white head. the head drops slowly and leaves plenty of lace as it falls.

aroma is neat. big apple character - granny smith, golden and red delicious. a nice blend. nice smokey character that blends surprisingly well with the apple character. light caramel and butterscotch. hint of alcohol. whole wheat bread and cracker. touch of biscuit.

taste is interesting. the light smoke blends nicely with the lightly sweet caramel and toffee apples. nice apple blend. caraway rye and whole wheat bread. bit of biscuit and cracker. light alcohol. slightly salty mineral character. low bitterness level.

mouthfeel is good. medium body. medium carbonation level.

drinkability is good. nicely balanced, hiding its alcohol well. the mix with the smoke is interesting and well balanced against the other elements.

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Photo of AgentZero
3.93/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Dark amber color, almost brown in the middle, basically transparent. White head that ha good retention and dissipated to a thick ring on the edges. Some chunk lacing on the edges.

S - Baked apples and a surprising amount of smoke. Really, the apple stands out more than anything, a little bit of malt, but it's mostly light citrus.

T - Apple cider taste with a big smoke taste on the end. Really that's it. Pretty straight forward, tastes solid.

M - Lighter side of medium with good carbonation.

D - Highly drinkable, nothing offensive, a little sweet.

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Photo of TasteTester
3/5  rDev -15.7%

Photo of Bubba83
3.67/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Ah Short's, the Willy Wonka of beer companies.

Thanks Kegatron for tossing me a bottle of this.

Poured into a tulip at 50 degrees. I like the look, but it has been marked down for a ridiculous amount of head. Actually seemed somewhat infected like, rocky on top. Despite this, the body is a nice hazy golden orange that's beautiful, and the head is an ominous bright white that looks quite excited, constantly bubbling. Retention is a little too good, and it sticks around the glass well.

Aroma is mostly smoked malts, reminds me of a campfire, but it follows with a smidge of apple and some decent yeasty fruity character with some zingy black pepper. I like the aroma, it's nice.

Tastes much more like apple than it smells. Infact that's the first flavor I get when I taste it. Decent amount of tartness in the mid-range with some pineapple and green apple tartness. Smokeyness comes through at the end, but unfortunately while it's wrapping up I get a kind of inky flavor that seems so common in every beer I've had from Short's. I'm not sure what it is, but it's an off flavor that kind of bugs me.

A nice medium-thin mouthfeel, with a good bit of carbonation.

The drinkability on a smoked beer is always a little difficult for me, but I have to say the balance of sweet fruity apple works well here. The only thing hampering the whole experience a bit is the inky off flavor I get on the swallow. Overall, pretty good!

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Photo of crusian
2.53/5  rDev -28.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 2

bottle, thanks to stevefinny or Naptown25rs as an extra... and I am sorry I forgot which one, both boxes showed up at the same time, and it has been sitting for a while...


pours a golden hazy hef color. nice, but with tons of head, have to break it up into several pours. lacing, not so much, just runs down the glass, doesn't stick around too long.

smells interesting, definitely apples and smoke in the on the nose... a bit sour as well.

taste, well now, this is where it gets interesting. i am not sure I have ever had a beer that cycles through so many flavors in one passing. on the front, apples, then turns to smoke as it passes the tongue with sour on the back end... lingers back to smoke, and then it hits me... is that ham? Hey babe, taste this please... you taste ham? NO... apples, smoky... um... yes. ham. weird. So, yeah. ham finish.
mouthfeel is nice, good carbonation, but seriously, can't get over that ham finish. I don't want this again. :) Or... I want this with Thanksgiving Dinner... actually... would probably go really well with that.

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Short's Smoked Apple Ale from Short's Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.56 out of 5 with 64 ratings