Red, White, and... Red?

Brewery and Country of Origin: Rock Art Brewery of 632 Laporte Rd, Morrisville, Vermont, 05661, USA

Date Reviewed: 6-04-12

Despite what the British may say, the Irish Red Ale and the American Red Ale are widely considered to be individual styles in their own right. Either way, no matter what you personally believe, the American Red Ale is here to stay. Bold, Rich, Sweet, and light on the Hops, just like America... we think. Even the color red is important. Passion, Love, Masculinity, Warning, Evil, Courage, and Sacrifice, are all somehow portrayed by the color red. And with a set of qualities like that, you'd think that any brewer producing such a fine example of American Art would give it an equally unique name. Not Rock Art Brewery from Vermont. And that is pretty surprising, because whether you are aware or not, this little known New England brewery gives almost all of their beers fun names. Almost. It turns out, however, that a few are also given names congruent to the style they portray. Their IPA is named IPA, their Double IPA is named Double IPA, their Double Porter, however... just kidding; that's named Double Porter as well. But these are just exceptions to the general trend of excitement like Ridge Runner, Midnight Madness, Infusco, and of course, Magnumus ete Tomahawkus. Their American Red, however, took the boring route, which, based on how we felt about this beer, was both appropriate without any real disappointment.
Date Sampled: 5-31-12 At: Yardhouse, Legacy Place, 950 Providence Highway, #200, Dedham, MA 02026, USA
Beer Style: American Red Ale
Alcohol by Volume: 4.80%
Serving Type: Keg, 32 oz "Half Yard" Yardhouse Glass
Rating: 3.35


Being a red ale, yes, this beer does feature a dull, reddish/dark amber tone with a modest level of clarity and shine. A thick, three quarter inch tall foam head dissipates quickly. This beer's high level of carbonation causes it to pour pretty choppy. The beer displays moderate lacing.


A modest, malty aroma invites the caramel ale loving beer fan to try this beer which is brewed with four kinds of malts including Chocolate, Red, Black, and Melandolin malts. Hoppy subtleties are noticeable here as well.


This low to moderately bodied, somewhat smooth, and fairly crisp beer is easy to drink, full of high levels of carbonation, and finishes pretty crisp without any chewyness sediment. This beer has a low viscosity.


Rich and robust with caramel and malty flavors, this beer's complex set of tastes also includes grainy and oaty notes, some hoppiness in the lingering aftertaste, and a little spice throughout. On top of this beer's four kinds of malts, there are also Crystal, Magnum, and Centennial American hops.

Our Take

Overall, a pretty solid performance by a lesser known Green Mountain State brewery. Rich, malty flavors brought out the true essence of what an American Red should be, yet this beer was definitely lacking in some key areas including a less than prominent aroma, dull appearance, and lack of any real substantial feel. That aside, this is a fine example of the American interpretation of what the Brits don't really consider to be a real beer style in the first place. Sure, the Irish Red takes a lot of similar qualities from British Ambers, but don't the Red Coats have enough? Either way, this is not anything terribly bold or outstanding. What this is, is a good go to beer if you're ever in the mood for something slightly different from the norm, and definitely separate from the usual pale lagers you'd normally partake in. We'd recommend you have this beer with a ligher dish, perhaps a sandwich lunch or a light pasta (vodka sauce is what we had). Otherwise, we'd suggest that all you need are some good people to share it with. But that can be said for any good beer.