Let me preface this by saying I LOVE smoked beers, including rauch, smoked porter, smoked mild, etc. I have had one good example of a smoked pale ale on site @ Great Lakes Brew Pub. It inspired me to try to brew a smoked pale ale...
I have recently made a smoked pale ale and I can genuinely recommend against mixing too many hops (especially dry hops) with smoked malt.
This was a "challenge" beer against another brewer and they both turned out pretty bad. Not undrinkable, but not good either. Bad enought that we both decided to brew something else to compete against each other. We both brewed the same recipe but on our own systems. Out of about 150 batches of beer, this is the only beer that I can solidly point to the recipe as the biggest issue. Our basic recipe:
25% Smoked (Rauch malt)
4% Honey Malt
Hops for 5 gallons:
60 min .63 oz Warrior 16.7%
10 min 1oz Ahtanum 6%
0 min 1oz Columbus 13.3%
Dry hop 2oz Centennial.
This is a proven pale ale recipe I have brewed many times without the smoke, but the combined flavor of smoke + hops was down right weird. If I was going to brew this again I would :
A) No dry hops
B) No flameout hops
C) Consider brewing something else, lol
D) Really make sure I don't over-flavor or over-aroma with hops
E) Get the point yet?