Aquilo (560) - Berkeley, California, USA - MAY 7, 2009
3.6 AROMA 8/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
I don’t think this is nearly as bad as people seem to think. In fact, I don’t think this is bad at all. True, if you don’t like sweet beer, you will almost certainly hate this one. But I try to rate objectively, and besides, I like something sweet now and then. Color is reddish brown with a small white head. Aroma and flavor are very rich strawberry. Nothing subtle, but I like that it really tastes like strawberry, and not artificial flavoring.
Ernest (6540) - Boulder, Colorado, USA - MAY 6, 2009
2.1 AROMA 4/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 8/20
Head is initially average sized, frothy, off-white, mostly diminishing.
Body is medium pinkish-amber.
Aroma is notes of peach/plum/strawberry/etc. candy.
Flavor is moderately to heavily sweet, lightly to moderately acidic, lightly bitter.
Finish is lightly to moderately sweet, lightly to moderately acidic, lightly to moderately bitter.
Medium body, syrupy texture, lively/fizzy carbonation.
Hope ya like soda pop. A liquid Jolly Rancher candy, little more.
swoopjones (6629) - Buffalo, New York, USA - APR 29, 2009
2.1 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 3/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 8/20
Bottle. Pours a light lager with some light pink. Aromas of strawberry & cream that has been out too long. Taste is strawberry but somewhat off. Least favorite of the three & somewhat undrinkable unlike the cherry & raspberry. Dont bother
robforbes (2083) - Bremerton, Washington, USA - APR 21, 2009
2.6 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 2/5 OVERALL 11/20
pours a clear light amber with a tint of red, has a medium light pink head, and some lacing.
smell is of grain, fruit, and some malt.
taste is sweet, berry, and some malt, ends very sweet.
Pinball (11049) - Copenhagen, DENMARK - APR 19, 2009
2.9 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 2/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 12/20
cloudy orange-brown, small orange-brown head.
aroma of strawberries, vanilla, cake cream, sort of like a strawberry birthday cake.
flavor is sweet, fruity, but not fresh fruity, very slightly sour, bitterness from the beer. mouthfeel a bit sticky, overall a fruitbeer i will not revisit, but not bad. too dessert-like for me.
gunnfryd (11860) - Kristiansand, NORWAY - APR 19, 2009
3.3 AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 13/20
Bottle. Red orange colour with a white head. Aroma is sweet, strawberry, sour. Flavour is sweet, sour, strawberry, malt. Medium body. Nice / OK beer.
JaBier (5139) - Capital City, Ohio, USA - APR 15, 2009
3.6 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 8/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 15/20
Sampled as a precursor to the Unibroue tasting at Blacklick Wine and Spirits on 4.10.09. Cloudy pinkish amber color with a medium white head. Strawberry aroma that is both sweet and tart. Slightly funky up front with a sweet strawberry finish.
Ungstrup (29988) - Citizen of the universe, DENMARK - APR 11, 2009
2.4 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 4/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 9/20
Bottled. A hazy amber beer with a thin off-white head. The aroma is sweet and dominated by strawberries. The flavor is sweet with tart notes of strawberries - a bit too artificial for me.
tiffanya (45) - Federal Way, Washington, USA - APR 4, 2009
3.8 AROMA 7/10 APPEARANCE 4/5 TASTE 7/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 16/20
Thanks to Merchant du Vin for the sample bottle. As the Samuel Smith Strawberry Ale will be replacing the Melbourne Bros. Strawberry Ale in the U.S.A., a horizontal tasting of the two was done. Ratings indicated are for the Sam Smith fruit beer.
From the MdV product spec sheet:
"Samuel Smith’s Organic Fruit Beers are handcrafted at Melbourn Bros. Brewery, the tiny, historic brewery lovingly restored by Samuel Smith’s in the 1990s. There the ales gain deep character from brewing and fermentation using the original Victorian equipment. The finest organically grown barley and wheat, as well as organic hops from England, are used to create these complex ales, which undergo primary and secondary fermentation with different yeasts. They are then carefully transported to Samuel Smith’s Old Brewery, at Tadcaster, where they are blended with pure Certified Organic fruit juice before conditioning and packaging."
The new Sam Smith Strawberry ale had a slightly larger head (approx 1/6") that lasted about a minute longer. The new ale maintains a fine lacing around the edge of the glass and appears to have slightly livelier tiny champagne-like bubbles of carbonation.
New Sam Smith Strawberry ale...
Lightly sweet, jammy, strawberry. The aromas came out even greater when inhaled with an open mouth.
Year-old cellared Melbourne Bros. Strawberry ale...
Tart, sharp, fresh, strawberry.
Flavor on both follow the aroma.
The new ale is somewhat delicate and is slightly more sessionable than the former due to decreased acidity. The Samuel Smith Strawberry is lightly dry, has a natural lightly sweet strawberry jammy flavor and a faint bitterness. In opposition, the Melbourne gives a short sharp tartness, which is lacking from the newer Samuel Smith Strawberry.
I look forward to getting in the new Samuel Smith Strawberry Ale and trying it again on its own.
Today’s my initial taste of each was poured into a blind glass by my husband. After smelling and tasting each, and I held up the Sam Smith and said, "I hope this is the Melbourne because the other is much fresher and more tart on the nose and palate for me." (Unfortunately for me I was wrong...I tend to prefer a tart ale!)
However, I think the new Samuel Smith Strawberry will have greater mass-appeal than the Melbourne due to its less tart, and more jammy-berry quality.
For the final taste, I blended the two. The mix of sweet-jammy and tart strawberries was divine!
yngwie (14762) - Kristiansand, NORWAY - MAR 30, 2009
2.7 AROMA 5/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 5/10 PALATE 3/5 OVERALL 11/20
Bottle. It pours a hazy, slightly reddish, orange-golden body under a white head. Lots of strawberry on the nose, especially just after popping the cork. Sweetish and sourish berries then chime in. Very berry-ish actually. Sourish flavor with strawberry jam, white sugar and notes of apricot. Medium full, sticky mouthfeel. Berryish, sourish finish. A quite nice strawberry beer, but not my treat. (090228)