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Freshchester Pale Ale | Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.

very good
153 Reviews
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Freshchester Pale AleFreshchester Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
New York, United States | website

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Billolick on 02-12-2006

User Reviews
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Reviews: 153 | Ratings: 578
Photo of BrewMaven
2.8/5  rDev -28%
look: 3.75 | smell: 1.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Had trouble pouring since the head would blast over the top of the glass before the bottle was 20% empty.

Nose was best described as "plastic".

Taste gave a hint of same with a bit of rubber thrown in...Some hops too.

Medium bodied with mild carbonation. Too weird to even consider again..Maybe a bad (outdated) bottle..Stop and Shop might want to take the beer section more seriously.

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Photo of BWED
2.51/5  rDev -35.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

12 oz. bottle poured into willibecher.

A- Semi-hazy copper/orange. Off white head is dense and lumpy. Good, one finger retention and lacing.

S- Hop aroma quite off and muddled. Citrus and pine, with a hint of something rubbery.

T- Dull pale malt, some watery piney hop.

M- Medium light body, with a dull bitterness in the aftertaste.

O- Something was just off on this. I hope it was just the one bottle.

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Photo of Kinger22
3.77/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A strong amber color, with a small white head that fades with time. Leads with a malt flavor, follows with a slight bitterness. Not an overpowering smell by any means. Slight carbonation that is very drinkable. Overall a good pale ale.

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Photo of generallee
3.7/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: It was poured from a brown 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: It’s body has a medium amber colored with good clarity and some visible carbonation. It is topped off with a small white head that fades to wispy thin film layer with a thicker ring of foam at the edge of the glass.

Smell: In the nose I get some light notes of sweet bready and caramel like maltiness. Hops are light and offer a slight herbal and pine like background.

Taste / Palate: The flavor has a base maltiness with light caramel notes and bready sweetness. The come in quickly and balance with some herbal and piney notes. The overall feel is a light middle weight with good carbonation.

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Photo of rorykanderson
3.62/5  rDev -6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Solid pale ale. Picked up while in Mt Kisco, opened within three weeks of bottling. Smooth malt foundation lays the groundwork for the aroma and taste profile. Slightly woodsy, earthy and grainy taste precedes light floral notes from the hops.

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Photo of scotorum
3.68/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75


Yet another selection from the mixed sixpack I composed on a recent trip to NY state. Captain Lawrence products are not distributed in my state.

Poured from the 12 oz. bottle into a Lawson's stemmed tulip.

a: Clear copper with a finger and a half thick offwhite head which receded to mainly thin surface foam and patchy lacing.

s: Alcohol with a few light fruit notes

t; Biscuit malt under slight plum notes, light to moderate hop bite balances the dry finish.

m; Light to medium, ok body, heavy carbonation tingle.

o; An easy drinking pale ale. More a dinner beer than a sipper.

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Photo of BranfordBound
3.83/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Had on tap at the Wood'n'Tap bar in Wallingford. Decent craft selection there! Was a really nice APA, definitely an all-around balanced kind of beer, but when fresh it leans towards hoppy. Light on the body and very drinkable.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had on tap at the Blazer's Pub in Purdys, NY

Appearance - Served up in a pint glass, this brew is crystal clear and copper orange in color. There's a half finger of off-white head that displays good retention. Dissipates to a thin, consistent layer of suds across the top. Leaves a fair pattern of lace around the glass with great stick.

Smell - Citrusy aroma with a strong bready undertone.

Taste - No tricks here; citrus flavors hitting on orange oil and faint lemon. Nice spice bite hits mid-taste, and that bready undertone comes through shortly after to help deliver a bittersweet finish. Mild pith bitterness lingers in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - Medium-bodied with bitey carbonation. Slick on the swallow.

Overall - Pretty darn good pale. Assertive flavor profile with nice, drinkable qualities. A shame it will likely be my first and last glass.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
4.16/5  rDev +6.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Hazy red/burnt siena color. Off-white head sits an
T a half inch in height and leaves sticky webs of lacing.

S: Earthy American hops. Pine, tea and tobacco. Pithy grapefruit and orange. Lemon zest. Solid toast and caramel malt base.

T: Citrusy hops jump out. Orange, ruby red grapefruit, and lemon, all zested. Marmalade. Hop flavors morph on the mid palate as flavors of pine, bark, tea and tobacco come forward. Hints of ripe red berries, bubblegum, and marmalade. Fat toast and caramel malt base shows some English flare. Earthy and toasty finish.

M: Medium bodied with some rich malt texture that presses in gently. Round and creamy. Tight, acutely scrubbing carbonation. Some gritty hop astringency.

O: A well-brewed American Pale with a very classic feel to it. Textbook and pretty tasty.

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Photo of HamdenHector
3.65/5  rDev -6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: crystal clear; copper colored; 1 finger off white head that receded slowly to a thick cap; very nice lacing;

S: bready malts; citrusy hops;

T: nicely balanced; lightly sweet malt up front; a little bready at mid-palate; lightly bitter on the long lasting finish;

M: medium bodied; low to moderate carbonation;

O: easy drinking;

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Photo of CHickman
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

2010 review: on tap Fresh Chester Pale Ale pours hazy orange in color with a small white head that left great lacing that really sticks to the sides. Smells of floral hops, piney hops, caramel, sweet malt, citrus like grapefruit, grass or herbs and some yeast; nice floral aroma that smells like flowers. Tastes like it smells, with floral hops, piney hops, caramel, sweet malt, grapefruit, orange peel, grains, grass, light spices that give a little heat; very sweet beer that has a great balance between the malt and abundant hops, it's pretty tasty. Mouthfeel is creamy and smooth with very little carbonation and slick feel on the tongue with a semi-dry finish. Highly drinkable and extremely enjoyable, this beer was great on it's own and went well with dinner.

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Photo of seedyone
2.75/5  rDev -29.3%

03/20/13 At Rattle N Hum, NYC. On tap. A bit too bitter for my tastes. I'm hop shy, so it's no surprise. I'd say this is at the high end of the Pale Ale IBU scale. Not hair curling, but once was enough for me.

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.91/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light golden brown color, with a thin off-white head that fades quickly and leaves a spotty lace on the glass.

S: The aroma contains caramelized malts, earthy hops and some citrus.

T: The taste starts out with a nice grassy burst of hops bitterness. Then some sweetness comes in from flavors of citrus and caramel. The malt character is hearty but not too heavy and brings a good balance. The after-taste is slightly sweet and slightly hoppy.

M: Crisp and smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, finish is slightly sticky.

O: Tasty, goes down very easily, not too filling, mild kick, very good representation of style, this is a solid beer to pound down for a while.

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Photo of Brenden
4.49/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This pale ale is amber in color, deep, bright and clear with a tan head fully two fingers tall. It's a tight and dense foamy cream, very strong, that fully sheets the glass for the first couple inches and follows with heavy lacing. This is one of the most beautiful beers I've seen.
The aromatic bouquet coming out of this beer is strong, presenting fresh and oily hops with juicy citrus and a blend of sweetness and zest accompanied by honeyed biscuits.
I'm hit by fresh grapefruit right up front on the tongue, and this is a flavorful and well-hopped beer. There's some depth, too, as some more nuances come out regularly. The flavor is tropical and citrus fruit-driven with good balance from malts.
This firmly medium-bodied pale ale is crisp, smooth, clean and almost creamy as carbonation rolls on the palate. It seems to hit the exact median between sweet and dry. A bit of mineral develops on the very end as it goes.

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Photo of Gajo74
4/5  rDev +2.8%

Pours a lovely darker golden/amber color. Aroma contains hints of peaches. Mouthfeel is crisp and pleasant. Strong citrus taste with bitter grapefruit finish. Refreshing like a lighter beer but with more medium body. Overall this is a quality beer versatile enough to drink by itself or with a light meal.

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Photo of logicalparadox
2.25/5  rDev -42.2%

Did not dig this one. The maltiness is meant to balance the hops, but the brew misses the balance. Too malty for me, not quite sticky sweet, but sweeter than the rest of the beer is prepared to support. The hops are there: sappy, with a mostly pithy bitterness and slight pine background. Some orange blossoms and hints of various cirtus rind can be found. But, it didn't gel for me. Bitterness was high, but nevertheless overwhelmed by sweetness, tasting like grapefruit rinds covered in malt syrup. The rest of the beer fell flat for me and I was eager to be done with it.

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Photo of Glennlawless
3.3/5  rDev -15.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Darker orange-copper color. Poured a once inch frothy off white head. I smell a touch of hop presence but mainly a lot of sweeter caramel malt notes pushing the hops out of the way. getting a crazy amount of barley grainy stuff too...like a touch of bud light. haha. smells good though. getting faint grassy hopes but this beer is suuuuper malty and sweet. not what i wanted since i like hop forward brews but this none the less is pretty tasty and could definitely drink one or two more. Nice creamy mouthfeel as well. It's a pretty solid beer but since I'm pro hop i wouldn't buy it again.

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Photo of Samp01
3.64/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden amber a large off white slowly fading head. Aroma of floral and citrus hops, caramel malt with some grass and grain notes. Taste same as aroma with mild hops bitterness. Palate is a medium body with moderate carbonation. Finish is sweet caramel, some grass and grain notes, fruity with floral citrus hops, has slightly tangy citrus aftertaste on the end. Overall a pretty solid brew for the style.

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Photo of TheItalianStallion
3.7/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a growler into a mug

A: Pour is pale orange in color with a nice 2 finger crown of white foam. Eventually the foam fades to a thin film that sits atop the beer for the remainder of the drink. A good amount of lacing is left clinging to the sides of the glass.

S: Aromas of herbal hops and biscuity malts are all thats really coming out on the nose.

T: Crisp flavors of herbal hops with a solid malt backbone. Some lingering bitterness on the finish.

M: Light bodied with high carbonation and a crisp, clean mouthfeel that feels a bit thin on the palate.

O: Overall this was a solid pale ale, but nothing that blew me away. It was good and very drinkable, but nothing spectacular. A good accompaniment to a variety of different foods.

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Photo of RonfromJersey
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Bright shiny golden orange body, good clarity, topped by three fingers of curling white foam. Thorough lacing.

Bready aroma.

Huge semi-sweet foundation coats the tongue. Fruitiness follows and balances. Nip of bitterness.

Smooth medium plus mouthfeel.

Solid pale ale. Sometimes we forget what one is these days.

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Photo of corby112
2.6/5  rDev -33.2%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.75

Pours a very cloudy, dark golden orange color with apricot edges and a half finger white foam head that immediately settles into a thin, lasting ring. Minimal spotty lacing left behind. Surprisingly dark and cloudy for a pale ale.

The aroma of this beer is pretty bland, which is surprising coming from captain Lawrence, and it possesses very little of the west coast character that the label claims inspires it. This bottle is under two months old and the hop character is very faint. Some earthy, soil-y hops with subtle grass and pine needle. No citrus/tropical fruit presence that is typically associated with west coast and west coast inspired pale ales/IPAs. Strong malt backbone with strong hints of toast, caramel, toffee, roasted nuts a dark fruit sweetness. Aroma reminds me of a faded American barleywine.

Tastes more like a pale ale than it smells with a light body and crisp, earthy hop bitterness that lingers over the sweeter notes and malt backbone into a dry finish. Very hop forward with dry, sticky resins and grassy pine flavor. Dryness is a bit overwhelming and the hop character is slightly one dimensional, but there is subtle tropical fruit sweetness as it warms. Still, the west coast influence is lacking with only a touch of tart grapefruit sweetness. Feels more English pale ale/IPA inspired. Again, the malt backbone is much stronger than I expect/prefer for the style. Subtle roast with hints of toasted bread and caramel sweetness. Overall, this beer is light and easy to drink but the malts areoverpowering and it lacks complexity and interesting flavors.

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Photo of FLima
3.37/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Amber color with a thick one finger head with good retention.
Aroma with lots of papaya, flowers and bread malt.
Flavor of earthy and herbal hops, minerals, although pale there is a bit of toasty going on, some pine and cooked vegetables. Dry and bitter aftertaste.
Medium body with low carbonation.
I wouldn't classify it as an APA; it is more like an English Pale ale, though it uses American traditional hops. I simply didn't get it, maybe the yeast. It is just 3 months old, but it feels older.

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Photo of danreitz
2.5/5  rDev -35.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Pours a clear gold color with a head that dissipates fairly quickly. Light yet complex taste with an acidic mouthfeel. Has a bit of that numbing brightness that I associate with the more drinkable macro lagers, but is thick and heavy on the tongue. Slightly metallic aftertaste.

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Photo of ElijahRivera
3.8/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Reviewed based on tasting notes from a blind pale ale tasting.

12 oz. bottle inside a paper bag poured into a plastic tasting cup.

A- Nice foamy head; and cloudy, dark orange, amber body.

S- Bouquet reflected the taste.

T- Really nice earthy, nutty, almost candied malts up front with a piney hop finish that is just the right amount of bitterness.

M- I didn't make any notes on mouthfeel.

O- Nicely complex. I wasn't surprised to find out this was Captain Lawrence's Freshchester Pale Ale. I'll definitely be picking this up again. I like supporting New York breweries, especially if they are putting out high quality products like this.

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Photo of fank2788
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle served in a pint glass
Great caramel brown in the glass, very clear, with a finger and a half of frothy light tan bubbles and it laces nicely as most beers with a bunch of hops do. The smell is primarily of the hops. A lot of west coast aromas here but it is quite a broad mix, everything from the citrus grapefruit to the resiny pine and even a bit of the more grassy variety as well. I'm not hugely impressed with the taste of this one. Sure the hops are there, the bitterness is on the mark for an american pale ale but I'm thinking that this is a bit unbalanced. The caramel maltiness of a good pale ale isn't as assertive as I would like it to be. That said there is some caramel, biscuit behind the hop flavors that are all present in the nose. Nothing to complain about in the mouthfeel, it is pretty spot on medium body with moderate carbonation along with the good bitterness make it nicely tingly the finish is slightly sweet with a lingering hop presence. Overall I'm pretty satisfied it goes down easily and is complex and different enough to make it worth trying.

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Freshchester Pale Ale from Captain Lawrence Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 153 ratings.