XPA (Extra Pale Ale) - High & Mighty Beer Co.
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Ratings: 80 | Reviews: 49 | Display Reviews Only:
3.03/5 rDev -12.4%
Malty-sweet, bitterly hopped, medium bodied, somewhat English and somewhat American... and at five percent, High & Mighty's XPA wants to be all things to all beer lovers.
Starting with its bright straw appearance, the beer showcases a non-filtered hazy appearance with creamy white foam to cap the liquid and with light speckled lace left behind.
Aromas of fresh barley, light caramel, and honey rise first, but then is balanced by earthy and citrus hop notes. Background starch and leafy matter round out the sweeter than expected scent. Fruit jammy scents only amplify the impressions of sweetness.
The sweeter and fruitier notes that point toward English ales govern the early taste. Complementary orange and honey notes weave in earthy tea flavors that later lead to bitterness. Balancing hops rise at mid palate and give a citrusy snap to its taste before developing into smooth balanced bitterness to finish.
Medium bodied throughout, the beer's light carbonation gives more texture and richness than higher carbonated versions would. But the malt trails slightly in finish and allows for the mild alcohol warmth and mild broad bitterness to close the beer semi-sweetly.
Where the beer tries to do it all, and all while remaining highly drinkable- it falls in the domain where it lacks identity, or a signature, or a thumbprint that would otherwise keep it from falling into obscurity. But as a nondescript ale, the beer is drinkable enough.
09-21-2012 02:47:09 | More by BEERchitect
3.65/5 rDev +5.5%
I mostly drink this beer out of the bottles.
Its widely available all over Western Mass.
XPA pours a dark orange, and tends to always be fresh because you are getting it local.
It smells great! I love the bitterness smell, and the hops that stand out.
The taste is nothing too crazy, it really is a basic pale ale. It is kind of bitter though.
High and Mighty puts out some good stuff. I really like the fundementals and backbone of this brewry and what they do.
04-20-2012 17:14:31 | More by davewlfpckfan29
2.88/5 rDev -16.8%
A: Pours a clear orange/red color. A large white head forms with good retention. Sticky lace clings to the glass.
S: Toasted malt, caramel sweetness up front. A simple grassy hop aroma lingers.
T: Tastes like unfermented wort. Dirty malt, caramel sweetness. A generic bitterness lingers on forever.
M/D: A medium body and carbonation. Very dirty, and way to thin. This needs to be much cleaner. Not hard to drink if I had no other options.
Not a fan of this one. Tastes like it is not finished fermenting and a little green. Maybe I got a bad bottle, but I doubt I will revisit.
04-17-2012 02:46:05 | More by champ103
3.38/5 rDev -2.3%
Anther local offering, that I was truly hoping to love, but it fell way short of love. High & Mighty boast a mixture of American and English profiles, but to me, the ingredients just do not work together.
A: This gets the highest marks from me, I poured this one into a traditional pint glass and got a hazy orange/gold body with an excellent white head, that left subtle lacing.
S: A sweet aroma that did not elude to a high hopped offering.
T: I was looking for an awesome hops flavor, but was let down because of a hops conflict (in my opinion as a home brewer). The clash of hops did not allow me to truly enjoy this offering.
M: Decent carbonation, but again, too much of a hops/malt conflict.
O: I was "one and done" with this one. One sixer was enough. I found this a conflict of profiles and tastes. Sorry High & Mighty.
My thoughts for the brewer would be to tweak this one to work. Stick with only Maris Otter for the malt. It rises above American 2 row in flavor and paired with US hops, would be a true winner. East Kent Goldings is an awesome hop (let me repeat, an AWESOME hop) but does not work well with Simcoe and Palisade. These two Yakima hops are way too over powering to be paired with such a subtle and flavorful hop. So drop the 2 Row and East Kent Golding, and pair the UK malt with the US hops and brew us a winner.
02-27-2012 06:14:36 | More by TonyC
3.68/5 rDev +6.4%
A- Hazy orange with a two finger mixed bubbly head.
S- A lot of pine in this one and Dark fruits? Raisins and plums are not what I was expecting but. Brown sugar and a bitter dry finish.
T- Interesting hop variety in this hoppy pale. Im getting a lot of pine, A lot of grapefruit citrus and darker fruits flavors. Some dry breaddy notes, kinds reminds me of a Belgian IPA. Taste seems to change with every sip. Not much of a malt presence. Something different every time.
M- very carbonated, Feels alive, A lot of mouth numbing feeling from this one but at the same time, not too bitter.
O- This is a good, unique Pale ale, Worth checking out. I wish this brewery was more available in my area.
12-15-2011 11:16:32 | More by TwelveOunces
3.53/5 rDev +2%
Review from BeerAdvocate Magazine Issue #54 (July 2011):
Their hoppiest beer, though we’re still expecting balance and drinkability, as High & Mighty aims for flavor rather than strength. Pale golden yellow color, faint haze and a white head. A tad fruity and leafy, with blond tobacco, nutty yeast and a hay-like maltiness, making for a mouthwatering aroma. Smoothness has depth with a dry palate; hop bitterness and flavor are broad with a long linger. A tad yeasty with some fruit in tow. Hop flavor stays through the finish and ends up helping with the drinkability. While XPAs might not be as straightforward as most Pale Ales, this one certainly packs the flavor in.
12-15-2011 02:34:10 | More by BeerAdvocate
3.35/5 rDev -3.2%
Pours dark gold with good white foam head. Some slight lacing.
Light malt and mineral bitterness in the nose.
A bready brew for sure. Medium maltiness, but none of the toasty edges I hoped for. Some white bread sweetness and grain, leading to pure unflavored bitterness. The hoppiness is there, but there is no distinction of what kind. Finish is long and bitter.
Medium bodied. Good carbonation.
Just ok with this one. The bitterness got in the way of the lackluster malt. Off balance a bit. Not even sure under what circumstances I would have this...not a summer quencher, not a great food beer, not a sipper either. I don't hate this, but I'm not impressed either.
11-06-2011 21:32:12 | More by OtherShoe2
3.3/5 rDev -4.6%
12oz given as an extra by AleLovinRuskie; cheers! The bottle was split into taster tulips with Klym.
A: Soft very foggy burnt orange body with some extremely white foam, basically ivory bubbles. A respectable finger and a half head rose like hot biscuits, and left small islands of lacing. Looks standard for the style, with nothing really sticking out.
S: Sugary malt crystals with some fairly bright but ambiguous berry notes. I want to say strawberry, but it comes off more like an artificial strawberry. Some orange juice marinated malts, heavy on the crystallized sugars. Really an ephemeral nose at best, where sweetness dominates before it disappears.
T: Big malts up front with a bit milder sugar than I thought there would be considering the nose. The flavor is two-tone with the sweetness and the seed-like creamy flavors. A late presence of hops makes this drink like a reverse IPA. the notes actually come in with a soft whoosh, instead of transitioning straight into a linger. They eventually disappear behind a fairly palate cleansing beverage. Wish there was more here, but not bad.
M: Very light in the mouth, and it does go down very easy. That said the body feels underdeveloped. There seems to be an initial sensation of prickly bubbles that then complete disappear into a very watery body. It's not horrid, and it still has some fairly smooth/silky textures, but I think the flavor dies off with the carbonation.
O: I honestly found myself getting bored really fast with this one. At first I thought there might be a malt forward theme to this beer, but ultimately the malt didn't provide enough depth of flavor to make this interesting. Furthermore, the weaker/thin body compounded upon the flavor problem. I wouldn't ever complain about having this in my glass, I just wouldn't take it as a favorite in style. Enough decency to be good, but nothing to rave about.
07-24-2011 00:43:57 | More by Cavery
3.45/5 rDev -0.3%
Poured into a tulip. Shared with Cavery.
A: Pours a classic pale golden with a small micro and medium bubble head that dies shortly after, leaving a ring of head.
S: Lots of bready malts, some hops, a little grain, a little mango and citrus spritz in the mix.
T: Kind of bizarre. An initial hit of malty sweetness, tropical fruit, and grain that then suddenly peaks with a citrus-rind like bitterness and dies down with a hop bitterness, mellowing out into a slightly bitter maltiness.
M: Mouthfeel is probably the best part of this, perhaps because it's a hot day and I'm enjoying this chilled bottle. It almost slides off the tongue and splashes against the sides of my tongue underneath and spreads the coolness smoothly. Carbonation is slight but plenty for the style and the bitterness never seems to pain any parts of the mouth.
O: Refreshing, not unenjoyable to drink and even has some distinctly unique flavor development, but it mostly underplays its best features and leaves itself forgettable.
07-24-2011 00:23:42 | More by Klym
3.33/5 rDev -3.8%
Modest head that settles to rim bubbles. Leaves only spotty lace. Very cloudy, golden color.
Smells like a blend dry crystal malts and older hops.
Quite spritzy with a moderate body and high carbonation. Relatively dry beer with bitter hop finish. Rather run-of-the-mill.
07-04-2011 01:31:42 | More by smcolw
2.93/5 rDev -15.3%
Poured cloudy dark golden brown with a small amount of tan head that went away quickly. Nose is a weird mix of fruity and piney hops along with some crisp, slightly toasty, pale malt. The flavor is similar to the nose but balanced better by the malty body. I still don't like the hop character. It just doesn't seem like a good combination of hop flavors. A light body but I wouldn't grab one again.
06-19-2011 02:27:00 | More by DrinkingDrake
3.98/5 rDev +15%
Appearance: Poured into a pint glass. Pours a honey, dark golden color. About an inch of foam that took a while to fade.
Smell: Smells really good. Hints of fruit, citrus, and hops.
Taste: Definitely noticed more fruit after tasting it. Almost tasted like apricots. The brew was definitely hoppier than I expected. And surprisingly bitter upfront. But the fruit makes up for the bitterness at the end. Not really sure if I would call this beer an extra pale ale.
Mouthfeel: Nothing to complain about. Went down smooth.
Overall: Not a bad beer. The name XPA was definitely misleading, but once I got over that, it was actually quite enjoyable.
06-02-2011 20:02:56 | More by mcguirmn
3.55/5 rDev +2.6%
A - murky tan gold and straw hues. Minimal but inviting head.
S - slightly fruity and floral. Some grapefruit. More on the sweeter side of an ipa. Maybe it's not super fresh or maybe I'm just spoiled with California heavy ipas.
T - a little lighter than I thought. Kinda metallic which is something I didn't get from the smell. Not bad. A bit of a perfume on the aftertaste.
M - a creeping carbonation that's actually medium high. As it has warmed up a tad bit the hops are coming out a little more.
O - nice nice. I'd be interested to try on cask or tap. Other than that I don't think it quite deserves the xpa title but definitely a nice single or double.
05-13-2011 05:05:07 | More by alenonbeeradv
3.38/5 rDev -2.3%
A- Golden orange with a foamy white head that builds to a nice size and retains well. Lots of sticky suds and a few nice spots of lace.
S- Grassy, floral and citrus zest hops with light caramel malt backbone.
T- Grassy, fruit, citrus and floral hops notes atop a faint sweet caramel malt backbone and some yeast bread hints, grainy as well. Has a very sharp Euro hop bitterness in the finish.
MF- Creamy light body with nice foamy carbonation. Bitterness is a bit too pronounced in the finish for me.
Sort of reminds me of a pilsner or German style mixed with an APA. A very sharp Euro hop bitterness and flavor profile.
04-20-2011 01:35:54 | More by cbutova
XPA (Extra Pale Ale) from High & Mighty Beer Co.
79 out of 100 based on 80 ratings.