It's very hard to say what happened without knowing what kind of recipe you used and what steps you took. I'll give you as many things to consider as I can think of.
Your water profile may be wrong for this style of beer. As I understand it, water hardness and PH in one extreme or the other can affect the quality of your beer. If you brewed several different recipes of a similar style and always had this problem this is what I would blame. You can get a water report from your city and can compensate for hard/soft water or high/low ph with brewing salts.
A thin mash (>2 quarts water of water per pound of grain) can dilute the enzymes and slow conversion of starches to fermentable sugars. You will end up with a drier beer with a higher ABV.
Mashing at too low of a temp (<150 degrees F) yields a thinner bodied, drier beer.
You may have added too much hops, hops with too high of a alpha acid percentage, or added the hops too early for this style of beer.
You might have kegged/bottled too early. If you added adjuncts like oak chips or cubes, the flavors they added may need additional time to mellow. Just because a beer is done fermenting doesn't mean it should be consumed yet. Some beers ales can take a couple months to taste good. This would be my best guess of what you're experiencing.
check out How to Brew by John Palmer for info. http://www.howtobrew.com/intro.html