3AROMA 6/10 APPEARANCE 3/5 TASTE 6/10 PALATE 4/5 OVERALL 11/20
Beer nerds tend to dislike summer seasonals since so many beers of the style tend to be bland. But then again, that’s pretty much the point since the hot weather lends itself to beers that sacrifice taste for refreshing drinkability. Blue Point Summer Ale is a perfect example of this notion. In fact, it’s actually a success in terms of a consumer product since beer drinkers of any caliber would find it so easy to drink. However, drinkers like me who place more importance on flavor will likely be unimpressed.
It should be noted that Blue Point’s bottled beers are contract-brewed by the High Falls Brewing Company out of Rochester, New York.
APPEARANCE AND AROMA
I poured a 12oz bottle into a tumbler. Immediately I had to wonder if this wasn’t actually a Genesee product of some sort since it has the appearance of a macro lager: straw gold body, medium carbonation; average-sized soapy white head that evaporates fairly quickly and leaves no lacing on the glass.
The aroma is unimpressive with a generic "beer" smell and just a hint of lemon peel. As it warms the scent begins to sour.
I hate to use a cliché along the lines of, "they’re all the same," but I find myself thinking that whenever I drink a generic "summer ale" from a mid-level or macro quasi-craft brewery. There really isn’t anything to Blue Point’s Summer Ale that would distinguish it from the pack.
Much like the appearance, the majority of the palate here is simply "beer." It could easily be mistaken for a pilsner or pale lager from the light, slightly crisp hop presence. It finishes with a touch of citrus rind and perhaps a very minute trace amount of spice. The problem is, the more I drink the less detailed the palate becomes. In fact, I begin to detect some corn-like flavor which leaves a slightly sour, albeit brief, aftertaste.
Overall, the taste here is much more bland than it is off-putting (at least while it’s cold). A typical BMC drinker might find this somewhat robust, but craft beer enthusiasts will likely scratch their heads wondering where the flavors are.
As a summer beer, Blue Point Summer Ale does exactly what it’s supposed to do as it’s extremely drinkable and refreshing on a hot summer day. The light body and soft mouthfeel create for a palate that is chuggable, and would be just as easy to drink straight from the bottle.
At 4.4% ABV this is definitely a light beer and could match wits with any of the BMC "lites". I’m sure the majority of drinkers would have no problem killing a six-pack of this at a social gathering.
Blue Point Summer Ale is one of those beers that are difficult to fairly judge since I have to guess as to what the brewer’s intentions were. If this is meant to be deliberately bland and refreshing - then it succeeds. But if the brewery would have me believe this is supposed to be a quality craft beer with good taste I’d definitely scoff at that notion. Since I don’t grade on curves I have to call it like I see it and give this beer a thumbs down.