Harpoon Celtic Ale | Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall

Harpoon Celtic AleHarpoon Celtic Ale
BA SCORE
3.51/5
769 Ratings
Harpoon Celtic AleHarpoon Celtic Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
Massachusetts, United States
harpoonbrewery.com

Style: Irish Red Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Winter

Notes / Commercial Description:
Harpoon Celtic Ale features a deep amber color. The flavor is malty and complex. Celtic Ale has a moderate hop finish that, along with the generous amounts of malt, makes for a medium bodied, smooth, rich beer. Try serving Celtic Ale with a hearty stew… the beer’s robust character will complement the bold flavors.

25 IBU

Added by barleywinebrewer on 01-16-2009

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

BEER STATS
Ranking:
-
Reviews:
365
Ratings:
769
pDev:
14.25%
Bros Score:
3.99
 
 
Wants:
28
Gots:
78
Trade:
0
HISTOGRAM
 
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Alström Bros
Ratings: 769 |  Reviews: 365
Photo of BuckeyeNation
2.86/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Orange-bronze with a hint of brick red that's only appreciated with strong backlighting. The head is off-white with an orangish ecru influence and doesn't rise higher than a finger or two after the pour. It's fairly nondescript and leaves only a stunted collar of lace.

The nose is a few clicks too low on the old intens-o-meter. There isn't much to go on. In fact, I'd have had a hard time coming up with the proper style if I didn't already know it. The beer is slightly more malty than it is hoppy, which is only fitting since it isn't hoppy at all. Weak, weaker, weakest.

Hibernian Ale isn't a bad little drinker. On second swallow, while it isn't that far off the mark, it isn't an especially good version of an Irish red. It's undermalted with a mildly sweet, quasi-caramel flavor that fails to impress. My guess is that it's hopped with some British variety, like Goldings. Since the brewers were overly stingy with the hops, it's hard to tell.

The finish is nothing special and differs only in that it contains a smidgen more herbal English hoppiness and some tea-like notes. Clean and tending toward dry sums it up pretty well. The light mouthfeel aspires to light-medium... and comes up short.

Hibernian Irish Style Red Ale is a fairly lackluster offering from a brewery that is new to me (or at least to my taste buds). I know better than to judge Harpoon by one beer and will have no trouble trying other offerings as I run across them. For instance, there's an interesting little creation called Triticus, brewed by two brothers who know a thing or ten about beer, that I've been itching to try.

 1,621 characters

Photo of drewone
3/5  rDev -14.5%

Photo of Jason
3.95/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Deep shaded reddish amber, nearly tawny with a nice settling white lace. Clean maltiness with some hints of fruitiness and light floral hop. Woody hop and faint bubble gum? Moderate body with a smooth slightly creamy mouth feel, mild hop bitterness lets the delicate malt sweetness come through with waves of toasted malt and grain. Fruit floral yeast. Touch of caramel and a subdued fruitiness in the back ground. Dry toasted grain lingers for a while. Clean, smooth and malty.

A lot of flavor to soak in here for a normal strength beer. A sensible seasonal on their part for the Boston area, this ended up being a more than just a decent beer.

 646 characters

Photo of mikesgroove
3.85/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A new one from Harpoon well what do you know. I had to grab a single of this one and at least give it a try right? Served cold and poured into a pint glass, this one was consumed on 02/13/2010.
 
The pour was a deep orange red in color with a small head of white that sat effortlessly on the top of the glass. Falling back down to earth it left a little bit of lacing on the sides and the bottom of the glass, but again nothing that would really blow me away. Still though decent look overall. Light caramel coming off the glass is the first thing I notice, warming mixing in some light herbal notes, hints of grasses and sweet sugary esters. Nice feel, light, well carbonated but full enough to keep me interested for a while. Rich caramel flavor combined with a nice, lightly drying hop presence really let it take off quite well. Very drinkable and session able I would have no issue at all with throwing down multiples of this.
 
Overall a very solid and well put together offering from Harpoon. Would not mind trying this again and one of the better I have had from them lately.

 1,089 characters

Photo of Slatetank
3.75/5  rDev +6.8%

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.72/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice caramel ruby amber tone forms nice caramel tan off white head forms a collar of lace around my pint not bad eh? Aromatics going on instantly are caramel nut toasted malts with very appetising fruit tones dancing around in there mild hop dosage what an amber should be except for HopBack. A very strong malt backbone compromises the main taste here with some fruit almost sugary fruit notes and toasty malts nice mix mild hop bitterness nice amber ale. Mouthfeel: Medium bodied very reserved carbonation nice beer. Drinkability factor here yeah I could enjoy few of these beauties without a problem.

 611 characters

Photo of InspectorBob
3.5/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of tdm168
3.53/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a ruby amber with a thin layer of soft, creamy, white head that fades away. There are a ton of carbonation bubbles that rise to the top when first poured. The nose has a sweet, rich, caramel malt note. The flavor is caramel malt, sweet, toasted malt, and faint butterscotch. The mouthfeel is medium bodied, crisp, and smooth.

This is a decent beer. I would definitely have a few of these with my St. Patty's celebration.

 427 characters

Photo of ejimhof
3/5  rDev -14.5%

Photo of rolltide8425
3.5/5  rDev -0.3%

Photo of malfunxion
3/5  rDev -14.5%

Photo of Billolick
2.83/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pours reddish(suprise) amber, slight white head, clear and no lacing. Sort of nondescript beer for my liking. This is a semi sweet brew, I also pick up a little ginger or mint. This just too dull a brew for me. No real character, nor of much interest. My wife liked it, she said "'this is much better then all that crazy strong beer you like" What can I say I like crazy strong, flavorful beer with some character. I wont buy this red ale stuff again anytime soon.

 464 characters

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.5/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dark amber with a touch of red. A fair amount of head and a lot of lacing. On the nose I got a touch of peach and a slight sweet edge. The taste is earthy and full. There are the typical hops and roasted malt on the mouth and the feel is a little bit thick, but good. Overall a nice brew. Worth trying, I suppose. But not something I will seek out again though.

 369 characters

Photo of GarthDanielson
3.46/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a tumbler pint, the beer is a vibrant, dark, copper-red coloring with a light, frothy, off-white head that quickly settles into an uneven film. Aromas of malt depth, with some nutty and scotch characteristics throughout. Light roasting throughout both the aroma and the palate. Strong malt backbone, with layers of nut, caramel, and toffee sweetness blended together into a smooth, rich body. There is a slight hops bitterness that cleans up the tail end of the flavor profile, leading into a light, richly sweet aftertaste. The body is light and smooth, with a sharpness for the finish. Slightly cloying, leaving a slight linger behind. Easy to drink, and some interesting and light flavors.

 718 characters

Photo of mklisz
2.5/5  rDev -28.8%

Photo of jwc215
3/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Best by 06/15/09:

Pours copper - not quite red - with an off-white head that dissipates. Virtually no lacing sticks.

The smell is musty, with some caramel and green apple. There is a hint of herbal spicing.

The taste is of some caramel with metallic notes and a powdery dust. Caramel struggles to stay ahead of a chemicalish dryness. There is an odd, but interesting, nutmeg spiciness.

The body is thin, though the carbonation is fine.

Not a fan of this one. There are certain (metallic/chemicalish) detractors. It's a little harsh, as well. With all these "complaints", it's still not "bad", or "horrible" as it has an "interesting spiciness and there is a maltiness to it. But, it's not "good" either.

 708 characters

Photo of GClarkage
3.53/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

07/04/05- Received from BA member Spinlock upon his return from Boston.

Presentation- 12oz bottle with no dating listed. Poured into a random pint glass.

Appearance- Dark amber pour with a 1/2 inch white head and decent lacing.

Smell- Mostly a heavy malt scent.

Taste- Mildly sweet malt, maybe a bit roasted and toasted. Definite caramel as well. Slight pine hop taste as well.

Mouthfeel- Moderate carbonation with a slick and smooth feel.

Drinkability- Perfectly adequate red ale. But nothing special really popped into my head while drinking it.

 565 characters

Photo of Dicers
4/5  rDev +14%

Photo of sendbeer
3.25/5  rDev -7.4%

Photo of tone77
3.43/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has an amber color with a small head. Smell is of malts, a bit sweet. Taste is crisp, malts with a bit of hops, finishing slightly bitter. Feels medium bodied in the mouth and has average drinkability. Overall this is a good quality brew.

 273 characters

Photo of Rochefort10nh
4/5  rDev +14%

Photo of beernads
3/5  rDev -14.5%

Photo of tempest
3.68/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap a Kelly Cole's

This is a definite St. Patty's Day beer. A good go at the irish red style, reminds me of Smithwick's but less creamy than I'm used too. That'd probably be fixed by a nitro pour, but anyways. Seems a little light in body for a craft beer, but I think that goes with the style. There's a mellow ester flavor from the yeast plus a touch of caramel and a little tang. Almost seems closer to a lager for some reason. Anyways if you want an irish red session beer, get a 6er or order a pint.

 510 characters

Photo of WesWes
3.33/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a dark amber color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is decent. It has a dry and fruity scent that boasts of pale and crytal malt as well as yeast esters. It's not overly malty, yet it retains a minimal caramel sweetness. The taste is average. It has a dull malt character along with and equally dull finish. Harpoon makes the same tasting beer and keeps renaming it. Everything is dumbed down for the masses. It's a easy drink, but it's a very boring one. The mouthfeel is decent. It is a low/medium bodied beer with good carbonation. Harpoon beers continue to uninspire. Celtic Ale is the newest in a rotating lineup of middle of the road beers that just aren't that good.

 728 characters

Photo of Mora2000
3.58/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a clear, dark red color with a tan head. The aroma is heavy on the sweet malt, with some dark fruit thrown in. I get a ton of raisins and cherries in the aroma. The flavor is very similar, with a lot of sweet toffee and some light dark fruit. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. I am not a huge fan of this style of beer, but this one was better than most I have tried.

 389 characters

Harpoon Celtic Ale from Harpoon Brewery & Beer Hall
Beer rating: 3.51 out of 5 with 769 ratings
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