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Independence Pale Ale - Independence Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Independence Pale AleIndependence Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

64 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 64
Hads: 125
Avg: 3.61
pDev: 13.02%
Wants: 3
Gots: 13 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Independence Brewing Co. visit their website
Texas, United States

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

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Pegasus on 10-17-2004

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 64 | Hads: 125
Photo of brentk56
3.86/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a crystal clear golden amber with an impressively sturdy head that leaves quite a few shards behind

Smell: Bready, almost biscuity, with a woodsy, slightly resinous aspect

Taste: Surprisingly sweet (but light) with a real biscuity character; in the middle, there is a Juicy Fruit element that joins with a slightly resinous hop flavor; the sweetness lingers on the palate, in the finish

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Quite different from the typical APA, with a little bit of an English character; I rather enjoyed it

Thanks, duff247, for the opportunity

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.73/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

loudy burnt amber, with no real large head. What was there faded quickly but left a film of gooey, drippy lace skimming on the top, lots of eddys and swirls rounding about on it. Deep dripping lace down the glass, and a bit of a bubble stream coming up from the bottom. Smell was big and strong. Big citrus players here, lots of orange and grapefruit. Very sweet smell, like orange sherbert or candy. Very nice and plesing to the nose, smells like it will be a winner. Taste struck me as odd, after all the sugary itrus in the smell, none really came through in the taste. There was a strong bitter hop presence, providing lots of IBU's however it was more of a pine,resiney type of hops, rather then the sweet candy orange that came through at first. Nice and crisp, clean, very dry and long lingering finish,

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.63/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Beneath the creamy white head of Independence's pale ale lies a slightly hazy golden body. The head drops fairly quickly at first, but then holds a wide, creamy collar throughout the remainder of the glass; and some very nice lace is left behind.

The aroma offers crusty, bready malt backed by grassy, gently citrusy and floral hops with a touch of yeastiness (yeast - not yeasty fruitiness); and the flavor comes through in the same way. It's malty and bready upfront, with just a touch of biscuit and caramel before its brash bitterness cuts across the middle, drying it and leaving the grassy and floral hops to step in. It lingers after the swallow, bitter and mineralish, with smears of grassy hops strewn about.

The mouthfeel is slightly light, on the medium-light side, which adds to its drinkability in a way. And the brash bitterness is an uncommon surprise that also cuts right through leaving the palate dry and wanting of more.

It's a basic but interesting pale ale in that it doesn't follow the mainstream American pale ale cut-out.

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Photo of tempest
3.63/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Picked up a single at Whole Foods. Like the Austin Amber, there's a clear diacetyl character. It just adds a mild butterscotch taste to balance the hops and malt, so it's not a bad beer. A decent Ringwood pale ale I suppose. The aroma is fruity Ringwood candy and the flavor has the same character upfront followed by a herbal lemon citrus taste. It's not a big hoppy American pale ale, but at the end of the night, the more I consider this beer, the more I realize it's is a fine session beer.

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Photo of weeare138
3.57/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to witbier for this...
Appears a light-medium gold with a small white cap and collar. Scattered spots of lacing were left around the glass.
Smell is of caramel malt and citrus hops.
Taste is of the same aromas with a mild step down from the smell.
Mouthfeel seems a bit overly bitter and in need of more malt to make it a bit more substantial and balanced.

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Photo of wl0307
3.88/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Obtained by courtesy of Houston-based BA Steve (Xadoor), brought over when visiting London last month. No freshness info. printed on the bottle. Served light-chilled in a broad-rimmed goblet.

A: pours a slightly hazy, dark orangey amber hue; the beer head comes effervescent, mushrooming to a 2cm thick foamy white sponge, sustaining well and leaving semi-tight lacing along the way; the carbonation is quite lively, but not fierce, ejecting constant streams of microscopic fizz from the bottom~~
S: deeply flowery (Cascade?), balanced with a tinge of honey-drink, ripe lychee-fruits, a little citric-fruitiness and a very soft, semi-sweet sugary malts; a light touch of resins and yeastiness adds to the overall complexity, making a moderately aromatic nose--nice!
T: quite sharply fizzy on the texture upfront; the flavour is dryish-yeasty (wood-sprigs and peppery) and full of sour-bitter, citric/orange zestiness with an assertive tannic edge of tangy hops, while a faintly sweet maltiness plays the second fiddle as a balancer against the hops; the lingering bitterness also comes with a tannic edge, almost like crushed grape-seeds+rubbed dry tea-leaves, resulting in a somewhat "stimulating" mouthfeel b/w the teeth and deeply down the sides of the tongue. As the texture and fizziness soften, a better balance b/w fruitiness and bitterness is reached, making a rather soothing after-mouthfeel (rather than after-taste).
M&D: medium-bodied, very refreshing on the mouthfeel due to lively carbonation, and turning softer bit by bit; overall, a very quaffable and dry-ish pale ale. I'm not experienced enough to judge it fairly "within the style", but this one tastes much drier and less malty in terms of overall balance than most other APAs I've tried. A good depth is rendered by the bulk amount of hops used, for sure, and I suspect a better pour without so much yeast-sediments could've made a more fruity sample?! Gratitude goes to Steve, for sharing this fine ale with me.

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Photo of Gagnonsux
3.65/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The color is light copper with a small bubbly head. The aroma is a combination of citrissy hops and sweet malt. Not bad, but could be a bit stronger or fresher. A sip starts with a good citris hop flavor, but soon the taste is consumed by English caramel malt. This seems like an EPA crafted with American hop varities. Not bad, I'd prefer a slightly stronger hop flavor, but the malts are full-flavored enough to keep me interested.

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Photo of THECPJ
3.23/5  rDev -10.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Reviewed from notes: thanks to tjkinate for sending me this bottle.

appearance: orange yellow with a 1 finger white head

smell: caramel, biscuit, hops, malts

taste: crisp clean pale ale, not to hoppy, caramel, biscuit, malts

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, medium body,

overall: a decent pale ale. nothing over the top. but a good drinkable beer.


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Photo of champ103
3.05/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A: Pours a clear copper orange color. A small white head forms and recedes to nothing in a second. Light lace is left behind.
S: Soapy and piny hops. Pale malts and a light sweetness. Not much else, mostly neutral.
T: Soapy and piny hops again. A grapefruit bitterness. Light butter diacetyl. Pale malts and some sweetness as well.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. Soapy and oily, but crisp. Not hard to drink but I really don't care to have another.

Bland and inoffensive for the most part. Typical of Independence. Not something I would recommend, but really nothing all that bad either.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.45/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a mostly clear golden color with a decent amount of white bubbly foam. Retention is ok as is the lacing.

Smell is piney hops and some earthy malts, reminds me of some freshly peeled cedar bark. The nose is decent, if not a bit faint.

High level of hop bitterness and a decent amount of caramely malt backing make this the most enjoyable Independence brew I have tasted. The hops are grassy in flavor and provide a fairly clean finish with a resinous tailing left on the tongue. Carbonation levels are fairly high, but not over the top. I don't know, it drinks well enough, but doesn't make me want to go out and buy a sixer of it.

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Photo of RonaldTheriot
4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Independence Pale Ale has a very thin, egg shell head, and a clear, golden orange appearance, with lots of streaming bubbles and thick lacing. The aroma gives a whiff of Orange Julius, and then mostly clean water. Taste is quite strong on bitter hops (the predominate flavor aspect), and there are underlying barley malt and pine notes. The mouthfeel is medium and fluffy, and Independence Pale Ale finishes mostly dry, crisp, sharp, and good. Drinkability is moderate to high. Even though it’s rather one dimensional (hops), overall, this is a very good ale.


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Photo of allengarvin
3.97/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a hazy orange-amber color with little foam. Aroma is pleasantly hoppy, in a grapefruit-citrus sort of way. Very nice mix of light malty sweetness and a burst of citrusy bitterness, ending with a lingering dryness. Slightly chalky, tannic mouthfeel.

Quite a nice beer, the best of the Independence line-up.

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Photo of elNopalero
4.32/5  rDev +19.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is a good one. This pours a pale yellow-orange color. Great hop aroma—floral, piney, and grassy. Wonderful flavor, with those grassy and piney hops there, but in moderation. Nice body, with a chew and resin that gives it heft and a good, slightly tacky finish. I’d drink another.

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Photo of Pegasus
3.52/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Hazy dark golden color with a small off-white head, moderate lacing and mild carbonation. It was mentioned at the brewery that the future production of this beer would be filtered.

Aroma: Prominent citrus and mild pine tar hops with an underlying backbone of pale malt, quite pleasant.

Taste: Light pale malt is overlaid with dominating grapefruit hops, which carry throughout the taste. There is a mild lingering herbal hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Very smooth, pleasant, and full, excellent for the style.

Drinkability/notes: A very good pale ale, clearly demonstrates that Independence Brewing understands their market, pale ales are very popular in Texas, with Sierra Nevada being ubiquitous.

Sampled on tap at the Independence Brewery during the grand opening celebration on October 9, 2004.

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Photo of wagenvolks
3.52/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle into a Foothills pint glass.

An aggressive pour unleashes a clear, golden-straw yellow body with a sluggish carbonation level. Attractive manila head, with a few globs of big bubbles floating amidst a sea of smaller ones; some sticky lacing, too. Aroma is a highlight of this brew, as a solid biscuit and caramel malt note balances well with a light dusting of floral hops. Notes of apricot, kiwi, and white grapes linger in the background.

Interesting flavor...starts out with a subtle spice and biscuit malt note before quickly shifting to a bitter, peppery, piny hoppiness. Where did the fruitiness go? The finish is almost harshly bitter, but the medium body is well-carbonated and refreshing. Not sure what the original bitterness was expected to be when Independence brewed this Pale Ale, but the IBU's are a bit overwhelming for the style. Still, it's a fairly tasty beer that easily trumps their Stash IPA (hoppier, too!).

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Photo of lackenhauser
3.97/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Somewhat hazy, golden color. Reminds me of a cloudy Bud. Small white head atop. Aroma of grass and citrus-very good hop aroma. Nice cross aroma of butter and lemons. Good malty flavor-nicely balanced with a moderate amount of hops. Decent body. One of the better US pales I have had in a while. Well done.

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Photo of HardTarget
3.03/5  rDev -16.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle Inspection: 12 oz brown twisty, label gives 12 oz., Pale Ale, Address of the brewery and a website. Pretty much the “Name, rank, serial number” approach.

Aroma: Malty nose with a hint of grassy hops; very mild overall smell with a hint of brown sugar.

Appearance: Amber brown glass with a light tan head that gives a fair cover that gave very nice lace and tide marks. It seems a bit dark for style.

Flavor: Hop flavors come through nicely, but still backed by a lot of malt for a Pale Ale. Hops are floral and a little citric. Overall it’s very balanced, but I am left wishing for a little more hop flavors. Finish is at the edge of cloying. Deeper in I found a few more citric notes in the hops.

Mouthfeel: Medium-heavy body with an edge of chew, again, a bit heavy for style. Firm carbonation level, slowly drying finish.

Overall Impression: English Pale Ale maybe? I was expecting a little more West Coast, bring the alpha acid, pump up da flava attitude. This is more refined, balanced, and frankly English (not that there’s anything wrong with that). Color is a little dark but the lace is very impressive. Flavor is just a bit sweet, almost under-attenuated.
I really wanted to like this beer more than I did. It’s a decent beer, it could make a summer quencher, but it’s a bit heavy for a lawn mower. I’ll check back after the brewery gets a few more batches out the door.

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Photo of JDV
2.57/5  rDev -28.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Clear amber pour with lasting white head. Smell is caramelly sweet hops at 1st, then grassy, acidic smelling hops. Taste was VERY watery and very bland for a pale ale. A hint of bitter hops in the finish, but by FAR the blandest pale I've ever had. Very low flavor and was what I'd expect a light pale ale would be if it existed. Looking back, I feel I was probably generous with the scores too...

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Photo of Bierguy5
2.95/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle. Good looking copper color, pretty clear. Thin white head disappears immediately, even when poured aggressively.

Some sweet caramel malt aroma, grainy, earthy and grassy hop notes as well.

A bit of malty flavor, with a mixed bag of fruity flavors. The beer moves into an earthy, astringent, mineral flavor, that is not very good. Harsh earthyness lingers on the palate.

Light body, and seems to be lacking enough carbonation. Disappointing. This got a bit better once it warmed.

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Photo of BeerSox
4.12/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into mug.

Cloudy honey gold hue. Strong one inch egg-shell white head. It has good retention, and likewise lines the glass with lacing. Settles to a thin cap. When held up to the light, you can see the sediment floating in the beer.

Strong piney hop aromas strike first, with a malty backbone. Citrus like flavors can be detected as well. The bottle doesn't say when it was bottled, but it smells absolutely fresh.

Herb like hop flavors dominate the palate, with a malty middle. Finishes dry with plenty of lingering hop flavor. Tastes like an APA more than an EPA, going against what others have stated.

Lighter bodied with medium carbonation. Very crisp feel, and a dry hoppy finish.

I enjoyed this one. It has to be a very fresh sample. The hops were lively and delicious. I recommend you to try one of these, and hopefully you will have one that tastes as fresh as this one does.

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Photo of nlmartin
3.53/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer came my way as part of "The Little Guy BIF" and MushRoomCloud. This beer was served in a pint glass.

Appearance: This beer pours a clear light coppery coloration. The head is a finger and a half high biege color. The head has pretty good staying power. The beer leaves rings of lacing behind on my glass.

Smell: This beer delivers alot of grassy, pine herb hops. The beer has a bit of fruityness to the smell.

Taste: The beer delivers a bit of caramel maltyness and earthy grassy hops.

Mouthfeel/ Drinkability: This beer is just shy of medium bodied. The beer is well carbonated. This beer is not the greatest IPA available; however, I would not turn this beer down.

Big thanks to MushRoomCloud for sending this beer my way.

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Photo of IntriqKen
4/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A golden orange liquid fills the glass and gets topped with a small white head that melts quickly to a ring of white.
Aroma is fresh hops all the way...green grassy and a little piney.
Taste at first scared me into thinking there might be a lager type adjunct in here...rice or corn....but quickly I became aware that wasn't the case at all. This pale ale just happens to be full of flavor. There is nothing one dimensional about it. Slightly sweet malt followed with a tang of citrus (more orange than grapefruit) hop then a little lemon and a grassy earthiness on the dry finish.
Lots of tiny bubbles to tingle the tongue and tickle the throat on the way down.
Great refresher
Thanks assurbanipaul for this little taste of Texas.

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Photo of mntlover
3.85/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a light amber color with a smaller white head that does leave some lace.

Aroma is citrusy grapefruit and lemon some pine hints mixed with sweet malt.

Taste is good hops flavors citrus mixed on a bready malt flavored base some caramel hints but not much. Overall nice flavor good balance some lingering bitter pine resin.

Mouthfeel is light side of medium nice carbonation good feel to it.

Drinkability is good a nice pale ale, would be worth stopping by the brewery if you were in Austin. Thanks go to TxBeer for this sample.

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Photo of ckeegan04
3.68/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Big, fluffy off-white head resting on top of a very cloudy dark orange color. Hints of brown in the color as wel. The head has decent retention and excellent lacing.

S - Slightly weak aroma of some toasted bread, biscuity malt and an interetsing combo of floral and tropical hop aromas. Pick up some pineapple and mango along with the smell of some fresh picked flowers.

T - Very bready sweetness initially before an interetsing hop profile comes in with a bitter punch to the tongue. Very sweet bitterness with hints of trtopical fruits and citrus fruits mixed together. Still getting some pineapple but there is some tangerine and grapefruit mixed in as well.

M/D - Medium bodied with excellent carbonation. Very easy drinking APA for sure.

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Photo of Frozensoul327
4.19/5  rDev +16.1%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A darn good pale ale. Pours out to a shiny hazed golden orange color with a short lived head of foam. Medium low level of carbonation, some notes of lace. Aromas of yeasty bread, sweet grain, rich malts, fresh hops. Wow. Really nice. Taste is solid; lots of malts and hops over a raw honey grain backbone. Nice. Mouthfeel was unspectacular, yet the other aspects of this beer far make up for it. Good drinkability. They know beer in Texas. Special thanks to assurbanipaul for the sample. Recommended drinking.

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Independence Pale Ale from Independence Brewing Co.
82 out of 100 based on 64 ratings.