Welcome back to another Into The Pint Glass!! This week we are talking about Pale Ales. I’m a big fan of Pales Ales, of course that shouldn’t be a big surprise, since I’m team IPA. Pale Ales are one of those classic beers, that makes me think about burgers on the grill and summertime. Katie is going to give us the 411 on this style…
Pale Ales originated in the 20th century when brewers started to experiment with malts, pouring techniques and even using different waters. When these pale ales first originated, the bottled version was called its name sake but the cask and keg versions were called Bitters. The names now are almost interchangeable. It is not, however, interchangeable with an American Pale ale.
Once Lagers reached the US in the 1840s, Ales were forgotten. After Prohibition and World War II, the last standing big breweries were the ones that are still producing Lagers today. But all that ended with Sierra Nevada came around in 1979. They took what the English were producing but instead of relying on British products, they went straight to their own backyard and began to use American hops in the ales. This innovation could possibly be what started the craft beer revolution. English and American ales have two different sets of standards. American ales will be less caramelly and cleaner with a bigger hop finish, especially if it’s a West Coast beer.
Indian Pale Ales are a whole other story.
The Cruiser by Pacific Brewing Company, San Diego, CA
Pacific Brewing is one of our favorite new breweries finds. We actually went back specifically this month so that I could try their Pale Ale for the post. They had two Pale Ales on tap the first time we went and both were so spot on. Luckily they still had one of the two on tap for my post 🙂 They are producing some awesome beers, very true to style and well-balanced. Their description of The Cruiser is oh so true: “Like rolling up the boulevard with the top down on your ’64, this beer was made to enjoy the ride.” At an ABV of 5.4% and IBU of 22.4 it is easy drinking.
Smell: Carmel, malty, clean
Taste: Clean with a bitter finish. Toasted malts, that are well-balanced with a bitter toasty finish. A true pale ale, not a questionable IPA. Great example of the style. Bitterness from the hops are there, but not overwhelming.
Fleet Week Pale Ale by Coronado Brewing, San Diego, CA
I’m a big fan of Coronado’s beers, I have found almost all of their beers very drinkable and well-balanced. Even styles that are not 100% my favorites to begin with.
Smell: Malty, caramel, bready
Taste: Malty with a bitter finish. Caramel on the front end with a strong bitter finish. This Pale Ale comes across more malty and less clean than the Pacific Brewing one. Still a good pale ale, and not one that would be confused for an IPA.
What is your go-to beer pairing with a good burger?
Join us July 23rd for Ciders!! The Into The Pint Glass for you non-beer drinkers 😉