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Saranac India Pale Ale | Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

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Saranac India Pale AleSaranac India Pale Ale
938 Ratings
Saranac India Pale AleSaranac India Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
New York, United States

Style: American IPA

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.80%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-19-2001

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 938 |  Reviews: 548
Photo of JoEBoBpr
3.74/5  rDev +13%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a firm copper color with a thin head that leaves quickly but retains some lace, but very little. Strong smell of hops and some roasted malt nice citrusy smell as well. The taste is totally IPA nice strong bitterness and some citrus taste to it. Not to overwhelming and a nice full mouthfeel. Very drinkable IPA and not too hoppy.

 336 characters

Photo of KevinB
2.12/5  rDev -36%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Presentation:Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Chilled Conical.
Appearance: .The Beer looks nice, vivid, rich golden amber color, thick creamy white head, the head retains for a bit then dissipates after several minutes. Nice lacing, hangs on the sides of the glass through out.
Smell: kinda musty smelling, strong hops, hint of malt
Taste: musty, very hoppy, earthy, piney
Mouthfeel: dry, makes me more thirsty
Drinkability: one beer is fine couldn't imagine ordering another.

I was expecting more, didn't taste like an IPA, looked nice, smelled ok, but left me shaking my head. It's a shame cause the body of the beer is nice,very solid, has all the elements, but really comes up short on the taste and feel.

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Photo of beveritt
3/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Presentation: Poured from a 12oz brown bottle into a standard pint glass. Label depicts a waterfall into a mountain lake. No freshness date.

Appearance: Pours with 1/2 inch of almost pure white foam. Settles somewhat qucikly into a thin coating and some lacing. The beer itself is clear and a slightly orange yellow.

Smell: More of a malt nose than hops, not what I would expect for an IPA. Hint of hop spiciness in the end.

Taste: Bitter hop flavor with a good undertone of malt. Some spicy/florally hops in the finish.

Mouthfeel: Average carbonation level. Body is good.

Drinkability: Not bad, but this one has a "base" bitterness that I almost find objectionable. I have picked it up in a few other IPA/PA, and I wonder if it may be a certain hop I am not a huge fan of (Cascade)? Or maybe I am just used to the florally, dry hopped IPAs that are so prevalent now, that I am looking at the more traditional ones in the wrong light.

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Photo of zdk9
2.78/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

This felt like they took the PA and just beefed up the bittering hops without much change to the malt or aroma.

A- Pours out a dark gold. One finger of eggwhite head. Very strong lacing coating the entire glass.

S- Some maltiness comes out, a bit buttery and straw scented. There's also some dustiness or musk flavor which isn't flattering.

T- A good malt body (like the PA). Hops are faint in taste some light citrus, maybe lemon or lime, and earthy.

M- Bitter as an IPA. Not really creamy. Carbination is soft but works out well.

D- It's not a terrible beer, but it's pretty boring. I really enjoy the PA but this doesn't have a good balance and the hops aroma is not what I would like from the style.

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Photo of zebulon
2.93/5  rDev -11.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured as a brown color, immediate foam head which dropped to a token amount fast. Minimal lacing.

Non descript aroma. Taste was one note piney hops.

Light body. I drank this with Mexican food and it went well. You can drink this all day if you like sharp hops, but it just doesn't have the combination of flavors or the body to make it interesting.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.58/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Poured a nice amber bronze with a huge billowing white head, great retention and a nicelace. Smell was lightly hopped with a very good malt back showing through. Taste was good, but forgettable, obvious hop tones but just too lightly done for me. Overall a very sessionable poolside beer, nothing to write home about.

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Photo of sstackho
2/5  rDev -39.6%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

12oz bottle. Pours a light straw with quite a bit of carbonation. Light hoppy aroma. First taste is sparkly and crisp. There's some flavour in there, but not really a lot of hops. A slightly unpleasant aftertaste doesn't stick around for very long. I can't say a had a lot of hope based on my memory of some Saranac beers many moons ago, but this is one still falls below expectations.

 385 characters

Photo of Redwood21
3.53/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: a golden color with a white head that starts out a finger width and keeps a nice lace throughout

S: hoppy, somewhat strong, but a decent hop aroma that one would expect with an ipa

T: A little bitter a little hoppy and a little too light in body. an above par ipa, but a little too milder than some of the more popular ipas.

Thoughts: its a little lighter in body then i would liek and doesnt seem to have a stand out "aspect" but its a good solid ipa and is very drinkable.

 487 characters

Photo of wingman14
3.26/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a oragish dark straw with a frothy white head that faded, but leaves some lacing. The smell is underwhelming mostly fruit, malt, and some hops. The taste is very similar, the sweet fruit taste up front with the malt followed by the hops with a bitter finish. The mouthfeel is good, a decent balance in flavor and carbonation. This one is easy to drink and a good way to introduce someone into different styles without too much flavor that might push them away. Another good beer from Saranac, which is a great beer for the price. Worth checking out, I have enjoyed their other beers more though. Cheers.

 609 characters

Photo of AltBock
3.01/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle with a lime green label with a decent painting of a picturesque waterfall that is somewhere in the middle of a forest that I guess is located in upstate New York or somewhere out west. Around the picture is the word "American IPA" in tiny letters, "Saranac" in big red letters, and "India Pale Ale" in black and gold medium sized letters. The barcode and the refund prices are on the left of the picture and the Government warning to the right of the picture. Information about the beer can be found on the lime green neck label surrounding a pint of yellow beer. There is no best before date, but they have another kind of number that only the brewery can read and not the consumer. That number is located on the side of the bottle where the neck meets the bell of the bottle. Served in a Bell's Brewery American pint glass.

Poured a dark honey amber hue with a quarter of an inch head of white foam that had decent retention that left behind some white rings and a spatter of white sticky lace in its tracks. It had a light aroma that consisted of a few juicy fruits, a dab of toasted malts, and a few burned hops in the background. At least it had some kind of an aroma to it. It had a crisp taste of toasted and a few burned malts, a small lick of caramel, a touch of juicy fruits, and then it finished off with a mild taste of charred hops. Why Matt Brewing decided to char the hops is a question in itself. The taste was nothing special, but it wasn't that bad either. It was a light beer with a small aftertaste of charred hops and juicy fruits. Somebody got this beer for me and it only cost them a whole buck. That means it makes it a highly affordable session beer. It's not the most flavorful IPA on the market, but damn if it isn't an affordable drinkable one. It's worth a try at a $1 per bottle.

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Photo of andrewmartin
3.21/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Part of the adirondack trail mix

A: Deep amber with rocky head that sticks around

S: Sharp hops, "smells" rather thin

T: Hop flavors dominate, but not like a typical IPA. I can't really place the falvors, more grassy, like a hoppy pilsner

M: Thin and crisp

D: Not bad for an IPA, but plenty of better ones out there.

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Photo of billybob
4.15/5  rDev +25.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

pours a clear medium golden color with a beige half inch head that held for a while then to just covering the beer to the finish. fruity and pine aromas with a touch of fresh peach flavor up front followed by some grapefruit and pine hops. light to medium mouthfeel with lots of carbonation. one of the better beers i have tasted from saranac. i would buy it again, good session beer.

 384 characters

Photo of happygnome
3.68/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a: pours a dark golden color with about an inch of head that does not dissapear fast and leaves a lot of lacing, very inviting
s: the malt aroma was not very present all i could smell was a piny bitter hop aroma, although i did enjoy
t: no one will accuse this brew oh having too much malt flavor although the bitter hops and piny characteristics were very enjoyable
m: medium bodied beer with average carbonation

This is a very refreshing beer, a very hoppy very nice beer.

 480 characters

Photo of barryhurley
4.19/5  rDev +26.6%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

2nd beer i tried in the trail mix 6 pack. i liked the pale ale but this was even better seeing as how i am a fan of the hoppy beers. a little darker brown in color then the ale. almost no head when poured into a cold glass. nice fruity smell and even better taste. actually couldve been more hoppy to suit my taste but still good. definitely gonna get again.

 358 characters

Photo of woodychandler
3.34/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This poured with a nice, thick, bone-white head with decent retention. Nose was more malty than hoppy. Color was a very clear (NE-quality) coppery-amber. Mouthfeel was medium with a good hop presence on the tongue. The finish had a decent hoppiness. They might have used more hops, but overall, it was a decent IPA.

 315 characters

Photo of neenerzig
3.78/5  rDev +14.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A 12 oz bottle poured into my tumbler. This beer pours a clear medium amber golden color with a head about a finger thick when poured. It settles toa decent film layer about 2-3 minutes after being poured and leaves some nice lacing. Aromas of floral hops and citrus are present and not really much else. Flavors of hops dominate followed by some citrus and a hint of malt. Has a arisp, light to medium bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Not a bad beer, but in some ways this is a wimpy IPA I guess. Goes down too easy for an IPA.


 547 characters

Photo of 2wheeledpirate
3.6/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A very clear amber pour with a decent head that does seem to hang around until the end. Aroma is heavily hopped, more so even than the taste. Medium bodied and excellent carbonation. i could drink this IPA all night long. Saranac for some reason always seems to be available in my area, and I'm glad.

 300 characters

Photo of jonk
3.89/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I don't usually drink IPA's but this was the last beer in my sampler. It had a frothy head and smelled pretty citrusy. I had forgotten how bubbly IPA's are. The taste was clean and crisp, perfect for spicy foods or anything with cheese. I think I'm going to enjoy more IPA's now.

 279 characters

Photo of JDK
2.48/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured a slightly cloudy caramel color with a 1/2" head that quickly disappeared
Medium lacing that stuck around until the end of the drink
Medium mouthfeel with very minimal carbonation, a rather flat taste, with lingering pine aftertaste
A very light piney smell
Taste was not quite what I expected, tasted mostly of pine with almost no citrus, quite different from most of the IPA's I've tried.
I think that this is an IPA that should be tried by IPA lovers just to see if you like the pine more than the citrus flavors.

 528 characters

Photo of MuenchenerKindl
3.65/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured for a 12 oz bottle to a pint glass. The liquid is a nice dark yellow with good carbonation. The head is big 2+ fingers, white and leave a big frothy lace, almost suds on the side of the glass.

The small is ok basic piny IPA.

The taste is ok also, nothing outstanding. woodsy pine hops. lack enough malt to really get your attention.

The Mouthfeel could be thicker. Medium body, ok carbonation.

The drinkability is a little off, but not bad, I would not go out of may way for more. MK

 502 characters

Photo of kernalklink
2.08/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

This brew poured nicely enough- looks like an IPA, and its printed on the bottle- nice try. Im not really understanding saranac on this one. Aromas were slightly sweet in their malt character but the hops- WTF? an odd phenolic nastiness which i was hoping would change on the first few sips did not go away- not sure what kind of hops were used on in this brew- strong, astringent bitters almost medicinal but not in a good way. Either this was contaminated by some crazy yeasts, cleaners or some unfiltered water- who knows. Ugliness. Nothing more to say.

 556 characters

Photo of TheManiacalOne
2.47/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light amber color with a thin white head that fades very quickly and leaves a thin lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is weak and contains a decent amount of hops, but not a lot for the style. What makes the hops smell seem strong is the fact that there really isn’t much else to go along with it, just some caramelized malt and a faint touch of citrus.

T: The taste starts out with a tangy bitterness, but not the normal floral hops bitterness of most IPA’s. There’s a little bit of caramel and citrus sweetness that provide some balance, particularly as the beer warms. However, I found both the hops and malt characters to be kind of thin. After-taste is pale and grainy.

M: Crisp but not very smooth, light-to-medium body, medium carbonation, finish is very dry.

D: I didn’t find it very tasty, which was the most contributing factor to it not being very easy to drink. It was exactly what I was expecting, which was a slightly hoppier version of their Pale Ale. I didn’t like that and I don’t like this either. It’s among the very worst that I’ve had in the style.

 1,163 characters

Photo of riversider76
3.46/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear honey color. Lots of bubbles. Thin white head,with decent retention,and good lacing. I thought the smell was good,but somewhat weak. Earthy hops and citrus, with a hint of malt. Taste is hoppy up front. Smooth,and refreshing. A hint of sweetness in the finish made me wish I had another!

 301 characters

Photo of BeerTruth
3.72/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This very drinkable IPA pours a light copper hue with a nice foamy head. Smell is quite zesty with some lemon background. The taste is fairly hoppy with a nice bite that keeps you going back for more. The bitterness is strong at first but then subsides after a few sips. The mouthfeel has a consistent fizziness throughout. Saranac does a pretty good job with this IPA.

 369 characters

Photo of Jwaks
2.27/5  rDev -31.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Serving 12oz bottle

Pours a translucent dull orange with a finger's worth of bone white, quickly dissapating foam composted of fine bubbles. There is a notable dearth of retained head and carbonation in this beer. Lacing is poor and almost non-existant.

Scent is moderate floral hop bitters, a smaller share of buttery phenols and light malts.

Initial flavors of light malts, sweet floral hops degenerate to awful harsh bitters with austere dry, acidic and astringent notes. Thankfully the finish short yet full of acid. Not a pleasant experience nor a great ipa.

Mouthfeel is thin and unimpressive. Lack of hop fruits to balance the harsh bitters and acid make this beer difficult to put down.

 707 characters

Saranac India Pale Ale from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
Beer rating: 3.31 out of 5 with 938 ratings
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