Saranac Pale Ale | Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery

Saranac Pale AleSaranac Pale Ale
Liked This Beer
3.42 w/ 1,312 ratings
Saranac Pale AleSaranac Pale Ale

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

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Officially American: previously an English pale ale, we’ve converted this beer over to an American-style Pale Ale.

We’ve dialed UP the hop profile, adding more focus to American style hops, like Cascade, Chinook, Citra, and Willamette.

Hop Infusion: every drop of beer is exposed to our hop slurry as the beer passes from fermentation to aging, resulting in a more brilliant, cleaner hop character.

Saranac Pale Ale’s foundation was built on the tried and true English varieties, Golding and Fuggles. We brighten Pale Ale with the three “C”s; a strong focus on Citra, complimented by Cascade, and Chinook. We then bridge the old world with the new with the two most distinctive hops Bramling Cross and Jester, both descendants of English and North American varieties.

Malts: Crystal, Two-Row
Hops: Bramling Cross, Jester, Citra, Cascade, Chinook

Original Gravity: 13.5° Plato
IBU: 32

Added by BeerAdvocate on 07-08-2001

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,312 |  Reviews: 635
Photo of Dirksen
4.25/5  rDev +24.3%

Photo of dantsbeats
4.25/5  rDev +24.3%

Photo of brewmaster1257
4.25/5  rDev +24.3%

Photo of poohbearzeccola
4.25/5  rDev +24.3%

Photo of Bapplebaum
4.25/5  rDev +24.3%

Photo of Frozensoul327
4.25/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A very nice pale ale. Wish we had these Saranac brews in Metro Detroit, I know they'd be a hit. Pours out to a pumpkin like orange color laden with copper tinge. Nice lace, and a respectable head of white foam. Medium low carbonation. Aromas of natural hops and pine over a sweet citrus background. Taste is totally quaffable; flavors of malts and hops, citrus, cereal grains, oily hops and some traces of caramel. Nice, especially considering this is a "mass made micro", as some would call it. Mouthfeel is fair; not overly impressive or offensive. Very good drinkability. I'd drink this without any reservation. Another winner from Matt Brewing. Recommended.

 661 characters

4.25/5  rDev +24.3%

Photo of craigo19
4.25/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This is a really good goto beer if you are in the mood for an American Pale Ale, cheaper than Sierra Nevada Pale Ale ($2.99/32 oz. growler) and a good substitute. You can taste and smell the hops, but they aren't overbearing. This would be a good beer to introduce someone into the Craft Beer World.

 299 characters

Photo of PhillyNole
4.25/5  rDev +24.3%

Photo of kbettenh
4.25/5  rDev +24.3%

Photo of TheBeerdedCharmer
4.25/5  rDev +24.3%

Photo of Miguel_W
4.24/5  rDev +24%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

With the addition of H.I.P. this Pale Ale has become hoppier. More than most Pale Ales. Just a bit overpowring for me. But if you like IPAs, thos one might be a good alternative if you are looking for something lighter than an IPA.

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Photo of greebsnarf
4.24/5  rDev +24%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

When you see the clear copper tint with an inch of white head and scattered lacing, you'll get a good sense of what you're in for: Saranac Pale Ale is a mellow drink that, like an old friend, doesn't try too hard to impress you but never really lets you down. No single smell dominates its mildly spicy, fruity and malty aroma, but there's a slightly acidic smell which reminds me of tomatoes, oddly enough. The flavor is pleasant though unremarkable and is mostly more of the same, if a bit more malty than the smell, with a pretty mild hops finish that's still lingering on my tongue twenty minutes after I finished the bottle. Great for drinking slowly and very pleasant to relax with, it doesn't really stand out, but it's soothing and goes down easy. I could have three or four of these on a lazy afternoon without getting tired of it.

 840 characters

Photo of Marc427
4.23/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Very enjoyable pale ale
Great fresh taste

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Photo of generallee
4.22/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Its defiantly not pal in color as it pours a beautiful golden amber color with excellent clarity. The head foams up thick and white then thins out to a small thin cap. The aroma is full of fine English hops that are floral and pleasing. The hops are up front on the tongue and give a nice citrusy and earthy character to the flavor. Malts are lighter and add just enough sweetness and toasted flavor to the beer. The palate is smooth with a medium body and a crisp finish that make it oh so drinkable.

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Photo of Brent
4.22/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A very pleasant ale with an interesting aroma - first a quick hit of sweet malt in the nose, then a whiff of hops, and then to a sweet candy aroma. Malt was somewhat sweet, but not overly so, with a good balance of hops. Slight spicyness of alcohol slides in at the back. Very easygoing without being boring.

 311 characters

Photo of kkosmoski
4.22/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Longneck from the new 'What Ales You' mixed twelve pack served into a Saranac pint glass. Nice rough, pillowy, cream colored head atop a crystal clear amber colored brew. Head suctions to the inside of the glass all of the way around as it settles down. Aroms includes biscuit, toast, lemon, esters. Fruity yeast character to start followed by some piney/citrus hop flavor and bitterness with an underlying toasty malt dimension and finish. Medium-light in the mouth with a smooth carbonation and dry finish. Drinkability is great with this ale. It is very nicely balanced, delicious fresh on draft, and a very dependable pale ale in general.

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Photo of ithacabaron
4.22/5  rDev +23.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I'm a damn sucker for this beer, if only for the fact I can't think of a day that at least one bottle didn't haunt my collegiate fridge. I know it's adjunct ridden, I know some would say its pedigree (or lack thereof) makes it worthy of slagging, but there's just something about this brew that satisfies me time and time again.

It pours a polished bronze, with what I might even call a creamy off-white head, full and proud.

Aroma is of Maris Otter malt, Caramel malt, (a little adjunct twinge, that I'll forgive them for [tastes like rice, but I can't imagine that's what in here])and an austere EKG and Fuggle fog of hops floating over it.

Taste is much the same, and its perfectly balanced presentation calls those that deign to imbibe into the "drink, don't think" school of imbibation. Those who would do so, however, and those who would be fooled by Saranac's cheap price tag, would miss what is, if not a perfect rendition of a Brit Pale, a very, very sessionable beer, and a fine ale to seduce potentially new BAs.

Mouthfeel is spot on.

Drinkability, as I noted, is wonderful here. When in Central/Upstate New York, this will probably become your fallback beer of choice at many bars. Learn its ways, love its ways, and realize it's so much more than you originally thought.

A classic.

 1,313 characters

Photo of Schwarzbart
4.21/5  rDev +23.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: An impressive pour with a 2 finger head. Poured from a 32oz. growler bottle that I picked up in State College, PA. Absolutely awesome lacing that just covered the glass.

Smell: Dominantly a fresh hop aroma of grass backed with mild grains.

Taste: A nice grassy clean hop flavor that isn't overpowering, but it is the dominating character.

Mouthfeel: Medium to light bodied with a crisp finish.

Drinkability: A very good beer at a great price.

 466 characters

Photo of QXSTER1
4.2/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Exceptional pale ale from a mainstream brewer. This ale stands up to many craft brewed examples. Rich, fruity body with a cascade like hop finish. I was pleasantly surprised with the quality of this beer.

 205 characters

Photo of dustylong
4.2/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Another one from their Winter pack...Pours a nice copper color with a decent head, but it faded quickly, and had pretty much no lacing (poured from a bottle into a pint glass). Has a very strong, hoppy smell to it. Has a very smooth taste to it, with just the right amount of bitterness (in my opinion). Very hoppy, but also has a decent balance of maltiness. Thicker in the mouth, with a fairly good amount of cabonation. Overall, a pretty good beer...tastes good..good for the style, too.

 490 characters

Photo of billybob
4.2/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

nice amber color one inch head faded a little to soon with fair lacing. fresh bready citrus smell, taste is bready caramel slight coffee taste also nice hop up front with clean finish. light mouthfeel maybe a little light on the carbonation but it does not distract at all from this beer. i could drink a lot of this beer.

 322 characters

Photo of cracgor
4.2/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

This is by far my favorite beer under $1/bottle. It is widely available. The hops are piney and almost citrusy, and come across both in the taste and smell. Not overwhelming and very well balanced with the malts. Clean, light to medium in body. Refreshing. This isn't over the top on any level, but it is so delicious. I love this stuff. The first beer I started on, and drinking it today reminds me I don't drink it often enough.

 430 characters

Photo of jermar
4.2/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I drink a lot of this since the closest liquor store to my house has been selling it for the past couple of years for $4.99 a six. It's got a nice hoppiness to it, but is definitely an English-style pale ale. Very flavorful.

 226 characters

Photo of LeftyBWS
4.2/5  rDev +22.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a 12 oz. brown bottle into a pint glass.
A: Excellent light amber color, with a tiny amount of carbonation visible on top which bubbles into a creamyish head. Quite nice.
S: A fairly fruity hoppiness persists, and there are some sugarier, breadier notes as well.
T: The hops persist throughout the taste, and a faint amount of malt sneaks in towards the end to round it out. Rather sweet, too. In later sips I detected some citrusy notes.
M: Pretty solid, but fairly bubbly up front, and a little dry in the finish. Doesn’t really detract from this beer since it fits the style.
D: This is a great session beer, since it’s easy to drink a bunch of these in a row, but it’s also an all-around good beer. Good taste and drinkability, a tough combo to achieve.
Overall, this beer isn’t that complex or challenging. It’s just a solid, drinkable pale ale that can be drank all night, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

 939 characters

Saranac Pale Ale from Matt Brewing Company / Saranac Brewery
Beer rating: 25% out of 100 with 1,312 ratings
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