Brew Review

Beer Review – North Coast Red Seal Ale

About four weeks ago, I reviewed the North Coast Old Rasputin Russian Imperial Stout. Since I absolutely loved that beer, I thought I should delve deeper into the North Coast line up. While browsing the beer aisle at the recently opened Wegman’s Wine, Liquor & Beer store in Cherry Hill, NJ, I decided to pick up a bottle of their Red Seal Ale as part of a mixed six pack (six beers for $10? yes please!).

Here’s what North Coast has to say about their Red Seal Ale:

Malt and hops are beautifully married in this full-bodied, copper-red Pale Ale. Red Seal is generously hopped for a long, spicy finish. An excellent accompaniment to grilled meats and rich sauces.

And now for the my review…

  • Appearance: Pale, hazy orange color. Minimal foam and lacing.
  • Aroma: Honeyed malt. Light brown sugar. Citrusy hops, i.e. tangerine zest.
  • Taste: Lightly carbonated. Somewhat creamy mouthfeel. Moderately sweet malts balanced with some mild hop bitterness. Lingering, slightly bitter finish.
  • ABV: 5.5%

Overall, I found the North Coast Red Seal Ale to be a very easy drinking Amber Ale. Not super exciting, but definitely a well balanced, session worthy, everyday kind of beer that would be perfect alongside a burger and fries.

7 replies »

  1. PETA and the Politically Correct Action Committee For Political Correctness must be notified with a degree of urgency most appropriately referred to as “toot sweet!” I appreciate the homage to Goldfinger (who wouldn’t) but spray painting a dwarf seal simply cannot be tolerated – not in this day and age – not in a state where the majority of the population actually can read and write.

    And while we’re at it, what’s with the communist reference? Red Seal? Really? Bolshevik sea mammals will not look kindly upon this development.


    But while I’m here I might as well chime in on the beer and your review (putting my blinders on with regards to the horrific treatment you’ve subjected that dwarf seal to). Hard to argue with your take on tat beer. It’s a very common brew (perhaps their highest volume offering) due to it’s easy accessability. It follows the Amber Ale Mantra a little too well “do no palette-challenging”. It’s a great looking beer, reasonably refreshing, crisp and versatile but, above all, it’s exceptionally boring. Boring is, for better or for worse, a hallmark of the style. There are very few Ambers which I ever seek out, and even then pretty rarely:

    1. Stone Levitation
    2. Green Flash Hop Head Red (really more of an IPA anyway)
    3. Founders Red’s Rye (again, really a hybrid)

    That said, Red Seal is still a well executed Amber but I’d prefer the style itself to be executed with extreme prejudice.

    And with that…



    • I agree on all counts. Even the business about Goldfinger, PETA, and the Bolsheviks. Once you get a taste for tasty beer, it’s tough to go back to ho hum. This was a good beer for sure, but it didn’t leave me wanting more. It left me wanting something else.


      • Please don’t acknowledge the ramblings of the Monger as legitimate points in a conversation. Goldfinger … PETA … Bolsheviks. Clearly, he is once again, off his meds. Anyway, while the Red Seal might be good but not great, it sounds like something that would be right in my wheelhouse.


      • With regards to The Alemonger, where’s your sense of absurdity?

        And yes, that beer is definitely up your alley. Good. Drinkable. Just not very exciting.


        • There is a significant difference between a sense of absurdity and hearing the many voices in The Alemonger’s head. Good. Drinkable. Just not very exciting. Sounds perfect for me.


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