Author Topic: Saranac Pale Ale  (Read 1089 times)

Offline madscientist

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Saranac Pale Ale
« on: August 23, 2010, 09:19:53 AM »
So my fiancee's brother was visiting from north carolina this weekend, and I decided to pick up Beer for the family party we were having yesterday.  I decided to pick up the beer, and he suggested either SA oktoberfest or Saranac Pale Ale.  The liquor stor didn't have SA Oktoberfest, so I went with the Saranac and some Bud for everyone else.  I should've went with my gut and just picked up some Sierra Nevada Pale Ale because this Saranac was... bleh.  Just seemed too fruity/flowery.  Didn't really have a clean finish at all and left a bad after taste in my mouth.  Thankfully I brought some homebrew to her parents house a few weeks ago and it was still in the refridgerator. 
Homebrewed since 2010

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Saranac Pale Ale
« Reply #1 on: August 23, 2010, 12:40:12 PM »
That's too bad, I enjoyed a lot of the Saranac beers 15 or 20 years ago.  I wonder if they've changed or it's just me.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline majorvices

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Re: Saranac Pale Ale
« Reply #2 on: August 23, 2010, 03:53:33 PM »
Yeah, I haven't had them in years but they used to be pretty good.
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Offline MDixon

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Re: Saranac Pale Ale
« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2010, 05:01:48 PM »
I have not enjoyed a Saranac branded brew in quite some time. Not saying I haven't had them, just I have not enjoyed them... YMMV  ;)
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Offline dhacker

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Re: Saranac Pale Ale
« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2010, 07:14:59 PM »
They have definitely had a QC issue . . . I had a Black Forest Lager back in May at the Memphis Zoo Brew that was pure vinegar. Bad enough that the server was more or less warning . . Sample at your own risk.  :-\
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Offline weazletoe

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Re: Saranac Pale Ale
« Reply #5 on: September 08, 2010, 05:34:28 PM »
  If it were not for Saranac, I would not be the hop lover I am today. HATED hoppy beers, until I had their IPA. Fell in love with it, and now I cannot gt hoppy enough. In fact, as I write, I enjoying Devil Dancer Triple IPA. 112IBU's, and 12%.
  I will agree with you on the Saranac Plae Ale, I was not at all impressed with it. But, see if you can find the IPA, and I bet you will write a different review.
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Offline MDixon

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Re: Saranac Pale Ale
« Reply #6 on: September 09, 2010, 05:54:03 AM »
The High Peaks? I found it alcoholic and a bit harsh. Just not a Saranac fan...
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Offline brushvalleybrewer

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Re: Saranac Pale Ale
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2010, 05:11:25 AM »
I really like Saranac Pale Ale. I’ll admit that there are better beers out there, but for me it seems there is a lot of flavor in an easy to drink beer. Plus, it’s reasonably priced and almost local for me.

I do notice one flavor that I can’t really identify that I know my wife doesn’t like.

I notice a similar flavor in two other commercial beers: Dogfish Head Shelter Pale Ale and Stone Levitation Ale.

I’d be interested to know if anyone else noticed the same thing and could tell me what the source of the flavor is.
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Offline The Professor

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Re: Saranac Pale Ale
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2010, 08:35:13 AM »
They have definitely had a QC issue . . . I had a Black Forest Lager back in May at the Memphis Zoo Brew that was pure vinegar. Bad enough that the server was more or less warning . . Sample at your own risk.  :-\

I think most of the Saranac products are solid and well made beers.

I think though that the inappropriate "sourness' you experienced is usually more the fault of the bar and their handling of the beers than a fault of the brewery.
Especially considering that Saranac comes from Matt Brewing Co, which has been around long enough (100+ years) to know how to avoid such problems.

Now,  if it were beer from a small micro, I might not be so quick to blame the bar since I've had some firsthand experience with freshly tapped kegs of smaller brewery beer exhibiting really bad off flavors and/or unintended sourness.  I think most small brewers are savvy enough to invest in efficient and quality cleaning and filling equipment in order to avoid such problems, but there are some that probably cut corners and wind up with a result such as this. 

In the case of your bad Saranac experience, I'd wager that the "cellarman" was not taking care of the lines properly,  or using an air/co2 mix (not all that uncommon in establishments looking to save money on co2) ...or a combination of both.
AL
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Offline MDixon

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Re: Saranac Pale Ale
« Reply #9 on: September 11, 2010, 02:28:17 PM »
I cannot recall ever having Saranac in any form other than bottles. Still not a fan, of course that should be clear by now  ;D
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Offline dhacker

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Re: Saranac Pale Ale
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2010, 05:03:19 PM »
They have definitely had a QC issue . . . I had a Black Forest Lager back in May at the Memphis Zoo Brew that was pure vinegar. Bad enough that the server was more or less warning . . Sample at your own risk.  :-\

I think though that the inappropriate "sourness' you experienced is usually more the fault of the bar and their handling of the beers than a fault of the brewery.
Especially considering that Saranac comes from Matt Brewing Co, which has been around long enough (100+ years) to know how to avoid such problems.

In the case of your bad Saranac experience, I'd wager that the "cellarman" was not taking care of the lines properly,  or using an air/co2 mix (not all that uncommon in establishments looking to save money on co2) ...or a combination of both.



The thing is, it was being poured from bottles . . Cellerman exonerated!   ;D
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Offline The Professor

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Re: Saranac Pale Ale
« Reply #11 on: September 23, 2010, 08:00:22 PM »
They have definitely had a QC issue . . . I had a Black Forest Lager back in May at the Memphis Zoo Brew that was pure vinegar. Bad enough that the server was more or less warning . . Sample at your own risk.  :-\

....In the case of your bad Saranac experience, I'd wager that the "cellarman" was not taking care of the lines properly,  or using an air/co2 mix (not all that uncommon in establishments looking to save money on co2) ...or a combination of both.



The thing is, it was being poured from bottles . . Cellerman exonerated!   ;D

Yipes.  Well that's a bummer then.  Especially for the brewery if the problem's on their end (as opposed to distributor mishandling)...they're a fairly high volume plant, so that would be potential for a LOT of bad beer.  Maybe the bottles were over the hill or badly kept. 

Either way, it's a shame.  I've always liked the various brews that came out of that brewery, even the ones that tended more towards BMC style weren't so bad. 
I wonder if the fire they had in their packaging plant a couple years ago had something to do with any QC problems they may be having?
AL
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Homebrewer since July 1971