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Caldera Pale Ale - Caldera Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Caldera Pale AleCaldera Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

356 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 356
Reviews: 198
rAvg: 3.81
pDev: 10.24%
Wants: 12
Gots: 6 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Caldera Brewing Company visit their website
Oregon, United States

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

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Reidrover on 08-22-2005)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Caldera Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 356 | Reviews: 198 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of BEERchitect


3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Well balanced between caramel maltiness and citrusy hops, this beer exemplifies the Pale Ale style nicely.

An expected deep golden to light copper color does the beer pour. Froathy head character amounts to an inch or so before settling it's white lace on the glass. Good retention, but great on lacing. A classic Pale Ale appearance.

Caramel, spice, and hops blend in the nose for the impression of graham crackers, orange rinds, and a touch of ginger. Very appealing aroma that doesn't let the hops nor the malt gain precidence.

Sweet maltiness sets the tone for taste with a medium caramel flavor, cracker-like breadiness, and a light grainy or crusty taste that gives a slight bite that ushers in the hop flavor and bitterness. Grapefruit, orange zest, and light grassy notes peak through early, but grow in intensity until the malt sweetness waivers, giving the finish and aftertaste a decidedly bitter ending to an otherwise balanced beer.

Malt sweetness gives a fuller, rounder sensation to the mouth, while the hops and moderate alcohol provide a drying and crispening finish. Though not complete in dryness or crispness in finish, the beer holds onto enough malt character to attempt balance deep in the finish and aftertaste.

With relatively low/no flaws in execution, the recipe formulation leads to a somewhat one-dimentional caramel malt sweetness that wears on the palate and hurts the sessionability of the beer. And with the standard malt/hop balance, there's not much intrigue to keep me comming back.

Serving type: can

01-28-2011 06:03:54 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of msubulldog25


3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Have had this (and other Calderas) a number of times; this 12 oz. undated (but fresh then) can was a leftover from a buddy's 40th a couple weeks back. Poured to a pint.

"Live Product: Keep Cool, Just Like You"

Around the lip:
"Go Skiing - Go Fishing - Go Snowboarding - Go Biking - Go Rafting - Go Cans"

A: A glassful of golden sunshine on a dreary day; glowing maize with modest carbonation and a fine dusting of unfiltered-ness. Terrific head: a finger-and-a-half of white fluff that cracks slowly and breaks down to a concave cream. Slender icicle bands of lace.

S: Pleasant aroma of dried grass, a bready orange scone, some caramel. Hop aroma isn't pronounced.

T: Crackery pale malts initially, followed by wave after wave of herbed spiciness and orange/citrus pith. Hops are reigned in well, however; bitterness never really grabs hold. As someone who appreciates a balanced blend, this one's right up my alley.

M: Creamy feel, soft carbonation, velvety coating. Medium body. Nothing to get all excited about, unless 'smoothness' gets you excited; if so, this is your beer. Slight stickiness and chalkiness in the finish detracts slightly.

D: Solid Pale Ale, well-balanced and easy to drink. All those activities listed above? Yeah, take this along while doing them. To the list, I'll add: 'Go Play Right Field for the Office Softball Team'; 'Go on a Double-Decker Bus Ride for a Friend's Birthday'; and 'Go Sit on the Couch after Hanging Christmas Lights'. Caldera, take it everywhere you go...

Serving type: can

12-14-2010 23:21:09 | More by msubulldog25
Photo of climax


3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The can seemed to contribute to an exceptionally creamy head atop a cloudy golden yellow body. The color was a bright lemon yellow closer to the light source. The head retained itself well, dropping with rocky craters.

The nose was crisp and refreshing. The bold caramel and citrus aromas hit the nose the hardest, balanced very well. Lemon and orange oils make up the citrus profile. The malt backbone is substantial, clean, pale malts for the most part.

The flavor had more hop intensity than I was expecting, yet the website claims 55 IBU's, so maybe I should have expected it. Strong soapy pine highlights crept close to IPAdom. The finish is long, dry, and bitter.

The body had good viscosity, very creamy feel with a chalky dry finish. Not a bad effort here, this one is not for one who's hop shy. Caldera does make an IPA, I am now more excited (than 15 minutes ago) to try it.

Serving type: can

11-30-2010 02:08:29 | More by climax
Photo of AEK

United Kingdom (Wales)

4.05/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

355ml can poured into a young's pint pot.

A. Bright gold with a towering white head, bright gold that is until the sediment took over proceedings, the beer then took on a 'marbled' appearance with the yeast suspended half way up/half way down the glass. As it diminished, the head sounded like rice crispies 'popping'.

S. Lemony and zesty, good hop character.

T. A lovely hop bite accompanies the slightly fruity malt, splinters of pineapple.

M.Medium, mouth coating.

D. Another good offering from Caldera. These canned craft beers are a joy to have. Maybe one day ALL beer will be canned rather than bottled.

Serving type: can

11-17-2010 12:04:30 | More by AEK
Photo of Tilley4


2.95/5  rDev -22.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Love the IPA from these guys so I had to give this one a go...

Pours a light golden yellow... Sorta hazy... Pretty decent head...

Balanced aromas of malt and hops with the malts being a little more dominant...

Sweet buttery malts with a slight hop finish at the end... The hops seem a bit muted here... Could have been a bit more balanced...

A decent brew I guess... Not one that I will reach for again especially with the IPA available..

Serving type: can

10-28-2010 23:01:36 | More by Tilley4
Photo of wcudwight

North Carolina

4.25/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Bright, clear golden color with a massive head that filled half the glass thanks to my overly-agressive pour. Head settles at a moderate pace and leaves lot's of sticky lacing. Already a sign of hop oils. I'm getting excited.
Citric hops in the aroma. Pink grapefruit.
Same citric hops that are in the aroma, are in the flavor, but the flavor is much more balanced than the nose forshadows. Sweet pale malts with a nice hop kick. Not overly complex but I don't expect APAs to be too complex. This is exactly what I look for in a Pale Ale.
Very crisp and refreshing and easy to drink. I could drink a few of these on a hot summer day. And the fact that it comes in a can just make it that much more portable for hikes and such.

Serving type: can

10-28-2010 01:36:02 | More by wcudwight
Photo of kzoobrew


3.3/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Thanks to tjensen3618 for putting on the LIF which brought me this can.

Clear straw yellow body. Careful pour produces a towering four finger white head. The head works its way back at a moderate pace leaving some scattered lacing.

The aroma is rather balanced. The pale malt is a bit more assertive than I would like to see in an APA. Pale malt is sweet and bready in the nose. Citrus fruit aroma provide the counterpoint to the malt.

Warm toasted bready flavors are the first to hit the palate. The hop flavor follows soon after but fails to assert itself enough to overcome the malt. Light grapefruit with a bit of a pithy bite. A brighter hop profile would do wonders hear.

Light to medium bodied beer with moderate carbonation. Smooth texture. The finish is moderately dry, a bit of malt flavor does linger a bit.

Yes, this beer is very drinkable but it also falls short of my expectations for the style. The aroma and flavor are lacking for an APA, the attributes remind me much more of an english style. This is a beer I could see drinking a few during a barbecue or other social events. Decent session beer.

Serving type: can

10-26-2010 20:28:11 | More by kzoobrew
Photo of hawks10


3.85/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz can poured into an imperial pint glass. A new to me canned beer, love it...

Pours a clear golden amber with three fingers of frothy white head which leaves tons of lacing behind...

Strong citrus hop aroma at first, grapefruit. Sweet malts come forward after a few whiffs, slightly bready...

Decently hoppy for an APA, a lot of them just fall short in this category unfortunately. Overall sweet, juicy citrus hops are prevalent. Sweet, honey-like malt flavors come forward after the initial citrus hop taste fades, with some earthy dry hops quickly washing the sweetness away...

Medium bodied with good carbonation, smooth, a lingering bitter drying finish...

Pretty good, I love APA's out of a can...would like to try this again knowing for certain that it is fresh. Why can't breweries date their beers???!!! Frustrating!

Serving type: can

10-13-2010 00:55:06 | More by hawks10
Photo of dudemuskie


4.13/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Grabbed a single 12oz can at The Andersons in Toledo, Ohio.

Appearance- Pours a brilliant deep straw color with faded hints of pale orange. Big, rocky eggshell white head rises and clings to the glass with each sip leaving an absolutely beautiful lacing behind.

Aroma- Bright hop aromas of grapefruit, pithy orange peel, and slightly pungent pine. Healthy burnt sugar and sweet malty undertones with a whisper of mineral-like yeastiness.

Flavor- Nice balance from start through the middle and into the finish with soft caramel/burnt sugar maltiness and a hearty pungent citrusy vein of hop goodness. Bitterness and hop pungency intensifies into finish and lingers well beyond the exhale with a kiss of cracker-like light malt. Very refreshing, crisp, and edgy pale ale!

Mouthfeel- Light to medium bodied, low-moderate residual sugars, moderate CO2. Nice balance, but definitely some sticky hoppiness to this brew. Refreshing with an edgy, pungent, minerally dryness in finish.

Overall- This is ridiculously drinkable and just about everything you would want in a pale ale! Big hops, but nice dose of flavor, aroma, and bitterness in there. Just the right amount of malt sweetness to keep drinkability high. This would make an excellent lawnmower beer, but still has enough complexity/flavor to be a great pair with food- I'm thinking pulled pork and slaw, or anything spicy. I'll definitely grab more of this tasty nugget in a can!

Serving type: can

10-12-2010 12:40:30 | More by dudemuskie
Photo of elgiacomo


3.78/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can, unknown date.

Pours semi-hazy golden/orange/amber with a two finger fluffy white head that leaves some lacing and holds a fair cap.

Aroma is fruity and citrusy, oranges, melons, pear, green apple, with with an equal amount of sweet caramel and biscuity malts. Some yeasty mustiness. Good overall strength.

Flavor features some citrus, earthy, floral, and grassy hops, not as fruity as the nose, some crystal malt with mild sweetness, moderate bitterness, finishes quite dry.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied, oily and slick with medium carbonation.

Very good APA.

Serving type: can

10-11-2010 04:18:35 | More by elgiacomo
Photo of ArrogantB


2.93/5  rDev -23.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

12oz can $2. I did not care for this beer. It looked good, orange, pale, good lace, decent head. It smelled kind of weak but not bad. It tasted like stale iced tea and I did not care for that flavor one bit. The IPA I had from this brewer was much better than this. For my money I'd stick with Full Sail Pale Ale for a couple dollars less.

Serving type: can

09-22-2010 02:41:40 | More by ArrogantB
Photo of stephens101


4.18/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A golden orange and slightly fizzy brew with a slight fluffy off-white head that constricts slowly instead of outright fading away. A few minuscule dots of lace line the glass. A note of citrus hops is noticed on the nose at first, then a slight caramel sweetness follows up. Melon rind, a squirt of lemon on the tongue, some graininess in the background, and a drop of honey makes for a happy palate. Light to medium bodied with crisp edges. Cohesion is bliss.

Serving type: can

09-09-2010 22:14:01 | More by stephens101
Photo of StaveHooks


3.65/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a clear apricot orange. 1 finger sticky-looking head. Spotted lacing

S - Bready caramel malt, honey, citrus hops, tea like cracker background. Very tasty. Honey malt aftertaste

T - Honey caramel, spicy hops, green bark, slightly honey kissed floral, a slight earthiness/medicinal to the aftertaste.

M - Perfect. The carbonation yields a sublime texture for the style.

This is a good APA. However it does have some medicinal flavors that I'm not diggin.

Serving type: can

08-24-2010 02:20:46 | More by StaveHooks
Photo of GarrettMD

New York

3.53/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a clear light yellow with 3 fingers foamy white head. Lots of carbonation bubbles.

S - Very nice malt aroma with floral and citrus hop aromas mixing nicely.

T - Taste follows the smell with floral, citrus hop notes, mild bitterness, very rich caramel malt base.

M - Light bodied, lots of carbonation, finish is all bittering hops.

D - Good drinkability, very smooth and the flavors work well together.

Serving type: can

08-14-2010 02:09:18 | More by GarrettMD
Photo of barleywinefiend


4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Poured a nice golden color with good carbonation and a white head

S: Floral notes, herbal, light booze

T: Caramel, floral, even some biscuity notes at times

M: Nice feel, crisp and a good drink

D: Very good. Nice taste, very good West Coast take on a APA.

Serving type: on-tap

08-10-2010 02:34:50 | More by barleywinefiend
Photo of merlin48


4.15/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The can dispenses a hazy amber body with an attractive two finger offwhite head thst appears creamy and long lasting. Abundant patchy and sheet lacing is left on the glass.

Aroma is very citrusy, with orange, pink grapefruit, and pineapple hints. Toasted caramel underneath.

Mouthfeel is clean and evenly balanced, with a medium body and carbonation.

Taste has a prevailing citrusy and earthy hop bitterness that is delicately balanced by a honeyed caramel maltiness. Finishes clean and even with a lasting citrusy hop aftertaste.

Very nice! Tasty and highly drinkable.

Serving type: can

08-08-2010 01:16:53 | More by merlin48
Photo of jampics2


3.2/5  rDev -16%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Can I stumbled across somewhere in Ohio where this beer surfaced after being "imported" on the grey market. I was assured by the proprietor that this was fresh.

Looks wonderful in my pint glass. Serious 2 finger head that sticks around and around. When it does subside, a beautiful lace is left behind. The beer is orange with some gold highlights. Agitation brings it back at full force. A great start.

Smell is average, unfortunately. Some citrus hops and some pale malt. But not as pronounced a boquet as I would ask for. What's there is orange, sweet marmelade on biscuits, and caramel.

Taste is also just not cutting it. Looking at my experience rating APA's, I've had several that just pack more flavor and in more creative ways. Great Lakes Burning River and Three Floyds Alpha King blow this away. However this is decent. My biggest issue is that the citrus-backed bitterness and the sweet kiss of honey and bread crust from the malt just fall short of anything more than the average.

Mouthfeel is above average thanks to the adequate, smooth carbonation and medium body. Finish is wonderful with just a touch of lingering bitterness. Very drinkable as well, I'd like to try it from the source sometime to see what's it's like when maximum freshness is assured. When it surfaces in Ohio, it just lacks the depth and punch I like in my APA's.

Serving type: can

08-02-2010 18:18:38 | More by jampics2
Photo of ThreeWiseMen


4.2/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Poured into a 7oz. snifter.

Appearance: Poured out quite nicely: produced one finger's worth of fluffy, off-white head, which came to rest atop a crystal clear, golden body. Faint streams of carbonation did their best to keep that head up, but it eventually faded to a sticky crown. Bubblebath-like lacing trailed the beer all the way to the bottom of the glass. Nice.

Smell: Pineapple + cat pee = Simcoe. Those are the two aromas I got right off the bat. Pine bark, wholegrain toast, and lime also pulled through. If I could guess, I'd say the hop bill includes late additions of Simcoe and Amarillo hops. Not bad, but not what I typically prefer in a pale either.

Taste: Whole grains, butter and dough form a lovely malt backbone. Lemon zest accents that backbone, while woody hops create a bold, bitter aftertaste. Not sure how old this can is, but I love the malt-hop balance, which is tilted just a bit toward the malty end of the spectrum.

Mouthfeel: Caldera Pale Ale's active yet soft, rolling carbonation massaged my palate for the entire session. The body is light, crisp, and very refreshing. To top things off, the beer finishes bitter but not too dry, and leaves a flavorful, long-lasting aftertaste. It don't get any better than this. Perfect!

Drinkability: The more I drink this, the more it reminds me of New Belgium's Ranger IPA (in a pale ale form, of course). I didn't expect a whole lot out of this one going in, but I finished it in a flash! Will definitely buy more if I come across it again.

Serving type: can

07-29-2010 04:31:41 | More by ThreeWiseMen
Photo of philbertk


3.7/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Caldera Brewing Company--Caldera Pale Ale--2009 12 oz. Micro Can. 5.60% ABV. 55 IBU's. (4.0 / 5.0) Foamy thin mild lace white head. Clear bright thin yellow orange gold color. Sediment dusty end to pour. Rich aromatic floral hop fruit ester front. Crisp mild CO2 light caramel mild sweet fruit smooth tasty Pale Golden Ale body. Refreshing clean no bitter hop citrus hint satisfying end. Very easy almost wheat malt aromatic estery body. Sampled 7/25/2010. 3 Cans. 6-Pack $10.99.

Serving type: can

07-26-2010 05:19:12 | More by philbertk
Photo of Brent


4.1/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A solid APA - hops bittering is a bit non-descript, but perhaps the cleanest flavor profile I've come across in this style. Nice carbonation. Lively, refined malt notes with firm, consistent hops bittering throughout. Excellent drinkability and sessionablity.

Serving type: can

07-23-2010 15:20:59 | More by Brent
Photo of Bubba83


3.23/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured into a tumbler at 45 degrees. Medium yellow body with an eggshell white 1 finger width head. Retention is agreeable, and lacing is average.

Smells of pine, caramel, butterscotch, fusel alcohol and bread eminate from the glass.

Quite a bit of butterscotch up front, which I must admit is a bit of a turnoff for me, I'm alright with caramel, but this was a bit buttery. Finishes up with some caramel, pine needles, grapefruit, and traces of alcohol.

Mouthfeel was about what I expected, and felt pretty solid all the way around.

A pretty good pale ale, but I was left a bit underwhelmed in the end by the malt profile. Just above average for a pale ale.

Serving type: can

07-20-2010 05:32:20 | More by Bubba83
Photo of BeerAdvocate


4/5  rDev +5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Beer review from BA Mag Oct 2007.

The more craft beers that come in cans, the more the stigma that surrounds canned beer will fade away--plus, there is no debate about sunlight and bottle color. That dead horse has been beaten way too much.

Thin tiny-bubbled lace forms from a moderate pour, retention is fine and the lace stays around for most of the session. Brilliant golden color shimmers in the light. Flowery citric hop aroma screams Cascade hops, bit of biscuity malt with a mild caramel sweetness in the nose. Light to medium body with just as much smoothness and crispness, both with ample amounts for the semislick mouthfeel. Minty and earthy yet mainly citric-flavored hop draws in a lot of flavor with a solid bitterness. Very clean palate with bread notes, almost grassy graininess in the middle. Hop bitterness digs in deep but does not go too far to throw anything out of balance. Cascade hops are all over the finish with an earthy citric flavor. Ends with a touch of dry maltiness.

A benchmark ale for PNW Pale Ales, if not American Pale Ales altogether, and that benchmark is not of modest stature. It shows great balance without the Cascade smack taking over, clean and very drinkable. The last of the sample was paired with a plain goat cheese and Pink Lady apples--very nice.

Serving type: can

07-07-2010 00:27:14 | More by BeerAdvocate
Photo of mikereaser


3.9/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - pours a clear orangish rust color with a half inch of sticky white foam

S - nice citrus hop aroma of lemon and grapefruit and bready malts

T - bready malt backbone with some nice citrus hops and a good hoppy bite in the finish

M/D - light bodied with lots of flavor, crisp mouthfeel, i'm definitely going to have more of this one

Serving type: can

07-02-2010 18:12:43 | More by mikereaser
Photo of jkrich


3.8/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. can with a slightly different look from the one shown above. No freshness date

Poured a bright, clear orange with a half-inch white head.

Very subdued fruity aromas which quickly fade. This is the least impressive character of this ale.

The ale begins with a pleasant bitterness that lingers on the tongue. There is a very faint metallic flavor that quickly faded. Overall, this is dry and refreshing.

Noticeably carbonated with a light body. The mouthfeel is clean and refreshing.

While not very complex, this is a summer quaffer with its light, refreshing body and slight fruity bitterness.

Serving type: can

06-26-2010 22:47:05 | More by jkrich
Photo of SpdKilz


3.75/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Pours an almost clear, light golden color with about a finger of relatively slow dissipating head that leaves decent lacing on the glass.

Smell - Toasted bready malts up front with a slight hop profile. I mainly get the bready malt aroma from this, not much else.

Taste - As with the nose, I get heavy bready caramel malt flavor, light floral hops, and just a hint of citrus. Reading some of the other reviews perhaps this is an older can? I do not get nearly the amount of hop profile as others are describing here; mainly light floral hops. Also, I do get just a tinge of honey at the end.

Mouthfeel - Medium to light Mouthfeel, decent carbonation.

Drinkability - This is a good "lawnmower" beer in with flavor. Did not present itself to me as anything special, however, it is a easily quaffable beer that would be great on hot summer days.

Serving type: bottle

06-22-2010 03:13:07 | More by SpdKilz
Caldera Pale Ale from Caldera Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 356 ratings.