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Pisgah Pale Ale - Pisgah Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Pisgah Pale AlePisgah Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

82 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 82
Hads: 227
Avg: 3.79
pDev: 20.84%
Wants: 5
Gots: 28 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Pisgah Brewing Co. visit their website
North Carolina, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: brentk56 on 08-01-2005

Formerly known as Pisgah American Style Pale Ale.

Pisgah Pale is a perfect blend of rich organic malts with whole-leaf Chinook and Nugget hops. A crisp, clean profile makes this, our flagship beer, distinct. 31 I.B.U.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 82 | Hads: 227
Photo of craytonic
2.65/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

On tap at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville, NC

Appearance: Hazy bright copper.

Smell: Citrus, herbs, hops

Taste: Hops & oxidation. Pine resin.

Mouthfeel: Average

Drinkability: More IPA; I was not crazy about the hops used, would not drink again. Their high gravities are much better.

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Photo of houstoncarl
2.71/5  rDev -28.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Serving draft pint
Appearance amber/copper medium polish
Nose - light hop over 2 row

Strange overall. I wrote about this one because of the near cult like following of the brewery. The front end was cardboard which broke into really delightful shards of citrus & hops, but then the finish was bittering hops with no aromatics. Nice to try once, but Asheville has so many good microbrews, I will not be drinking this again

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Photo of Avlbrewer
2.83/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pisgah is a favorite stop while touring asheville, the pale ale (flagship) was a little underdeveloped or green. It's a great beer to enjoy with dinner but I'd prefer something fresher and refined for a daytime brew. The recipe seems to have changed in the years I've been drinking it, but it's always a good standby.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.08/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I love Pisgah's high gravity products, can't say I'm as fond of their session brews. This poured a slightly cloudy golden with not much head. The smell was grainy and even slightly sour- not a good sign, and it was poured for me straight from a keg being served by someone from the brewery. The taste was slightly better, but an initial sweetness seemed a little out of place. This was followed by some decent mild hoppiness and some light graininess. Mouthfeel was medium bodied and right for the beer. Okay, but there are plenty of other apas around that I enjoy more. Dissapointing in that many of their high gravs are outta this world.

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Photo of drperm
3.09/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

(Litre) draught at the Biergarden, Asheville NC

First off, perhaps getting a litre-size was not the best idea. I was so impressed that the establishment offered the litre option for the taps (and at the prices!) that I felt like I couldn't pass up the opportunity. Just not sure if this was the best brew to go with.

I have been a fan of Pisgah brewing for some time. This particular offering is probably my least favorite of their array, however.

Appearance: Copper, cloudy, like a good craft APA should be. Inviting.

Nose: What in the world!?! My least favourite part of the whole experience. Again, might have been the litre mug, might have been an off-tap, who knows? An off nose, at any rate: almost on the way to a "rancid" quality. To the point where in order to enjoy the taste (which I did) I had to close off my nose whilst sipping.

Taste: Smooth and hoppy. All of Pisgah's brews must use the same yeast strain, because I recognized a certain Pisgah-y familiarity on the tongue.

Palate: Snappy and crisp. Very APA-appropriate.

Overall: I'm disappointed in a very good brewery for this one. Again, I might have had an off tap or an off glass. Drink it cold, is my advice.

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Photo of PDXHops
3.15/5  rDev -16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber poured into a Duvel tulip. Slightly hazy orangish amber. Smallish head, lazy streaks of lacing.

Smells and tastes pretty much like a scaled-down version of the Pisgah IPA and, much like that beer, I think this might better be categorized as the English version of the style rather than the American. Light floral notes weave in and out of the husky, grainy nose. Tastes pretty grainy, too, toasty and a touch nutty. Modest earthy and tealike hops. A fairly dry beer with a slight juiciness at the swallow.

Overall impression: Pleasant and easy-drinking, but would be more noteworthy as an English Pale than an APA.

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Photo of TheHopHeadGirl
3.18/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

6% pale ale from NC. Very cloudy orange color. At pizza paradisio a glass goes 6$. Glad i got a small glass cause its just comparing to thhe dogfish head saison du buff thats sitting on my table. Again, its ok. No aftertaste which is good. But it doesnt stand out either.

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Photo of maleman
3.2/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

poured from a 1 pint, 6 oz. bomber into a pint glass.

A - poured a medium amber, with a one-finger creamy head that quickly receded into less than a tight cap. thin lacing.

S - clean hops, piney resin.

T - very resin-like, quite pronounce phenols

M - medium toward heavy-bodied taste. tasted in very back of mouth. a tinny aftertaste/finish.

D - i'm a pale ale fan, but not of this one. the tin/alcohol taste kept it from being overly enjoyable.

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Photo of tdm168
3.28/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On tap at Barley's Taproom in Asheville.

A - amber with a hazy orangish hue; soft white head; great retention

S - earthy, piny, floral - decent hop character

T - toasty, burnt malt character; floral, faint grapefruit

M - medium bodied, light carbonation, smooth

This one has an odd malt character. The toasted malt is off putting. The hop character is good but doesn't redeem this one. I'll probably avoid this in the future.

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Photo of farrago
3.28/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Finger plus of larger bubbles, delicate, eggshell white, razor thin streaks of lacing, decent retention given the larger size of the bubbles. Opaquely cloudy burnt orange color, slight yellowing at the outer edges, looks dense. The nose has a muted character, pine, tree leaves, straw, white grapefruit peels, peat moss, very light glance of toffee and potato bread, comes across as somewhat "closed" in wine terms. Full-bodied, not bottom heavy, heavy from top to bottom. The carbonation doesn't overtly appear active but elicits a few burps with ease. Orange, lemon citrus, forest floor matter and earth, slight metallic ring. Doughy, country style bread aspect. Apricot and peach pit, some pear as well. Very little sweetness, the malts don't coalesce into a recognizable whole, cocoa and mocha there most. Flat-footed finish, plays it close to its vest when it needs something sparkly to catch your eye.

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Photo of kkipple
3.31/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Barley's in Asheville.

This is a bubbly, gold, highly carbonated, piney, fresh tasting, watery, basic, lightly hopped, organic (?), and drinkable pale ale, but nothing to write home to the kids about. A bit on the thin side.

If this were local, I can see myself drinking it from time to time if the price were right. Lacks that elusive magic that some simple beers have that lets you drink them all night. Perhaps some more hop aroma and a slightly fuller mouthfeel would help. Dunno...

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Photo of beerwolf77
3.32/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Bottle received from several BA's reviewed using old notes. Split and poured into tulips.

A: Hazy golden orange hue. Small white head fades leaving soapy lace.

S: Sweet and fruity nose. Hints of grapefruit and pineapple. Mild maltiness in the background.

T: The flavor is much malt forward. The hoppiness of the nose is much more subdued. Hints of hops but nothing big and substantial.

M: Medium to light body. Modest carbonation.

O: Nothing horrible but not really something I would reach for again.

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Photo of callisbeers
3.35/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a copper, orange color with nice inch of head and good lacing. Nice smell of hops
(citrusy, piney). Very disappointed in taste after such a great aroma. Just a bland average taste that doesn't match the hoppy smell. Mouthfeel is fine and would be a good session beer if the taste was a little bit better. I would have again only if I had few other options.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.35/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Fuzzy orange rind with banana peel highlights. A louder than usual escape of CO2 was followed by the creation of four fingers of eggshell colored foam that is on the stiff and rocky side. The glass isn't covered with fine lace so much as small chunklets of suds.

American pale ales (incidently, the brewery dropped the words 'American Style' when they bottled this brew) need to be hoppy for me to enjoy them. Unfortunately, the Chinook and Mt. Hood whole hop flowers don't come through in the aroma like they should. If the flavor follows suit, my first Pisgah brew might be a letdown.

Pale Ale is an okay version of the style that barely squeaks out an above-average score. I'd hate to the think that organic ingredients have anything to do with the lack of 'palate pop', but I've tasted it too many times before. More (and better) hop flavor would have gone a long way toward covering up an off-flavor that is best described as woody.

As far as I can tell, this beer was released in April, so it should be fresh. The malt tastes mostly pale, though there's a lightly toasted grain-like earthiness that is probably coming from a small percentage of Munich. The hops are moderately bitter and are only mild to moderately flavorful (citrus zest primarily). There's no flavor hook here at all.

The mouthfeel is bordering on too light and is slightly too harshly bubbled. With less and higher quality carbonation, I see no reason why this attribute couldn't keep pace with all the others.

Pisgah has a reputation as being one of the South's finest craft breweries. One beer isn't enough of a sample to make me lower my expectations, but Pale Ale could use some major renovations. Suggestions: forget the organic ingredients, find a way to unlock better hop flavor, add more hops, and get the kinks out of the carbonation. I didn't say it would be easy.

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Photo of DefenCorps
3.38/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the Fiddlin' Pig in Asheville last night

A mildly hazy orange with a dense, off-white head with good retention and decent lacing. The nose is classic East Coast pale ale. Moderately sweet with caramel and honey, there's a prominent hoppiness as well, aggressive and bitter. Bitter pine and grapefruit pith are present, and there's not much by way of floral or a more delicate fruity nature. This is also reflected on the palate. Moderately sweet with a mildly husky component to go with the caramel, the bitterness is rather potent. Juicy grapefruit with an aggressive, zesty hop character. Bitter and moderately resiny on the finish, this could use more flavor hops to balance out the bittering hops. Solid

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Photo of brentk56
3.38/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Arrives at the table with a hazy light copper color and a decent head that leaves good lacing

Smell: Vaguely hoppy aroma, almost woody

Taste: Starts out with a caramel malt base but after the swallow it moves in a grainy direction; not as much citrus as I would like; in fact it is dry and woody

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: While this is drinkable, I would like to see a lot more fruit in the flavor

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Photo of Avagadro
3.38/5  rDev -10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: pours a light copper color with a touch of haze , and little in the way of head retention or lacing.

S: very light aroma, with only wisps of pacific northwest hops coming through.

T: a slight malty sweet front quickly succumbs to grapefruit and pine. A tad sweeter than I prefer, but definitely within the style guidelines.

M: light body, great effervescence, and a mostly clean finish. There is also a slight astringency that is typical with hoppy brews.

O: definitely a solid apa, but there are so many great ones out there that it is hard to give it a higher score. nonetheless, it is a hell of a great brew from one of the most impressive beer scenes in the us.

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Photo of jpro
3.4/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bomber from Peabody's in Boone, NC. Poured into a shaped imperial pint glass...

A: Light amber; slightly off-white, one finger head fades pretty fast leaving some specky lace.

S: Orange rind; biscuit malts; some sweetness / light notes of caramel malts.

T: Some citrusy hops; orange rind; light grapefruit pith; very bready towards the finish; nothing too crazy... simple and good.

M: Almost medium-bodied with a moderate carbonation level; smooth.

D: Very drinkable... perhaps sessionable pale ale; kind of a standard APA (perhaps on the average side, though).

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Photo of babaracas
3.46/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On-tap in Asheville in a shaker pint. Hazy dark orange with thin white head, sheet of fine lace down the glass. Smell: grainy, husky, a little spicy and citric. Taste: a little caramel, way earthy, spicy. A very NC / Pisgah take on the APA with the dominant hop contribution being the earthiness. Different but worth a try.

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Photo of tastybeer
3.48/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Dirty amber color filled with darker hazy clouds throughout. Head is giant at the pour and in due time becomes a frothy + spongy 1/4" pile. Big foamy patches are all over the glass and up to the rim initially, but by the end of the glass there are only a few sparse spots that remain. Smells refreshing, with an assortment of lemon, orange, granny smith apples, green grapes, leaves, lemon grass, and some lightly buttered pizza dough. Oddly enough, all the smells combine bringing milky cocoa to mind. Taste is more grassy, doughy and earthy than fruity. Fairly calm overall. Briskly bitter with seltzer water-like carbonation that is a little assertive. Thin, approaching medium body and fluid, slick texture.

Interesting, easy going but fairly bitter brew. An alright option. I think I would prefer it a lot more, fresh via the tap.

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Photo of BeerFMAndy
3.5/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bottle split and poured into a Central Waters tulip.
31.8 IBU, Organic, no date.

Thanks to Beerwolf for giving me my first Pisgah. Boy that sounds awkward.

A - Pale golden yellow and hazed over with a low but dense cream-colored head. Good retention with an arch of lace reaching skyward.

S - Almost wheat-like pale malt behind a good floral hop nose, mild notes of resin underline the citrusy aroma hops. A bit average though.

T - Toasty caramel malt underlines the subtle hop flavor. Faint floral aspects pop out with a dab of honey and a pinch of lemongrass on top.

M - Malt balanced, hops don't add much more than dryness to the feel. Medium-light bodied and grainy-finishing.

O - Bland but not entirely without flavor, Pisgah's Pale is understated. The one-dimensional hop profile could use quite a bit of tweaking and additional dry-hopping. This one's an easy drinker though!

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Photo of Dave1999
3.52/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Can is 5.7%abv slightly higher than stated above.

Apearance is quite dark amber,semi-transparent with a nice white head.

The smell is pretty faint, some earthy tones.

The taste is bread, biscuit, earth and grains.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with medium carbonation. The finish is crisp and refreshing.

Overall not bad but boring, glad I only picked up a single can.

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Photo of AlexanderSelby
3.52/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Smells citrusy, but there is a little armpit-like twinge in there, as if it were a touch stale. Thiis the only turn off of this brew. Beer is well filtered which yields a handsome tangerine/burnt orange color. Flavor is rather malty, with hops mostly for flavor and not hitting too hard with bitterness. Slight citrus in the finish, but mostly a sweet, balanced malt flavor throughout. A touch biscuity. Goes down smooth, but never lacking in flavor. Not a big excitement, but incredibly pleasant.

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Photo of nlmartin
3.53/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Big thanks to Cuzco for sending this beer to me. The beer was chilled and served in an Imperial Pint glass.

Appearance: The body of the beer has a bright coppery coloration. The head is thick white but fails the mustache test. Nice webs of lacing mark this beers quick passage from my glass.

Smell: Nice caramel malt leads the aroma. Then the next wave of aroma goes to citric hops. Very nicely done.

Taste: The beers flavor leads with a slightly toasted caramel maltyness. The sweetness is put in check by grapefruit hops. The hops and malts ebb and flow very nicely done.

Mouthfeel / Drinkability: The body of the beer is light very gentle on the carbonation. This is a very satisfying throw back beer that I would revisit frequently if it was available in cincinnati.

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Photo of wedge
3.56/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

@ Barley's (Asheville)

Clearish amber body, appearing well-carbonated with a ridiculously long-lasting, super fluffy, frothy white head. Lightly floral, spicy hop aromas with some pale fruit. Spicy, fresh floral hops upfront in the flavor...fresh grain and leafy/herbal notes. Fairly earthy overall - not much in the way of citrus. Medium bodied and satisfactorily bitter. While it's not something to get too excited about, it is a solid, pleasant Pale Ale that I enjoy whenever in the Asheville area.

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Pisgah Pale Ale from Pisgah Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 82 ratings.