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Stone Pale Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Stone Pale AleStone Pale Ale

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

2,476 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,476
Reviews: 962
rAvg: 3.86
pDev: 11.4%
Wants: 73
Gots: 140 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Stone Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: kbub6f on 06-23-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,476 | Reviews: 962 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of pjwilson
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

you damn so-cal bastards!, you can find this beer at every piss ant corner store. here's to hoping that stone extends the distro of this beer a bit further north. from notes:

The first beer grabbed on a recent visit to So-Cal was stone pale ale and Pizza port sharkbite red(awsome but didn't get reviewed, to busy drinking 'em down in hermosa beach, send that one up north too please!). what a great session beer.

appearacne: poured into a standard glass it is darker than excepted, leaning more towards amber and actually darker than the ipa, fantastic head.

smell:a very unstone like boozy, malty, and yeasty nose, a warm sweetness with being actually nutty. complex and inviting.

taste: another un-stone like suprise, malts. after a few of these I really took a liking to this beer. a hard to describe mix of malty malts, not that sweet, not very bitter, but somewhat bitter, a kiss of tangy hops. the beer is dark for a pale, but has none the "nutty" character of a brown. a complex yet sessionable beer. a unique beer for sure.

drinkability: a good sipper or slugger both. a very nice beer from out friends at stone. (now if they would only distrbute it outside of so-cal....you won't have to worry about freshiness issues up here and arizona at least, this could kick fat tire's ass)

pjwilson, Apr 19, 2006
Photo of DogFood11
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

What a truly magnificent pour. Carbonation swirls around this Amber/Orange colored brew, rich tan head leaves chunky lacing. Truly inviting on every level.

Smell is hop dominated but the best part of this brew is how the hops play around with the malts and intermingle in some fruity citrus notes. Malts tend to be on the bready, doughy side of things which once again...surprise, surprise..fits this beer perfectly. Hop twanger in the aftertaste may have some shy away from this brew. It doesn't lean towards the bigger side of a Pale...this is a big pale.

Notes: Really tasty, not a session beer and not a beer I could sit around and have a few, for me a couple at a time is perfect.

DogFood11, Apr 14, 2006
Photo of kdmorse
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Burnt orange with a tan head. Very murky with only a tiny amount of carbonation present. Far from pale by any means.

S: Woody malts with a generous dollop of hops.

T/M: Biscuity sweet malt with a fresh hop finish. Bitter and piney hops in the finish. Very big sweet and huge bitter flavors play well off one another. Balanced well for my hoppy preferences and clean ending.

D: Easy to go sip for sip with any beer. Easy to drink all 22oz in under an hour without regret or drunken stammering.

kdmorse, Apr 13, 2006
Photo of MuddyFeet
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a copper-like red. Would likely be clear if not for being such a deep rust color. Slight head but lots of layered lacing. Nose is malty with a slight evergreen presence.

Flavor is malts with a mellow wood flavor. Understated hops and surprisingly to style. I was expecting more of an IPA. Creamy flavor too. Full, chewy mouthfeel that had a slight creamy feel too. Way too good and easy to drink.

MuddyFeet, Apr 10, 2006
Photo of RJLarse
4.72/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I picked up a six pack of Stone Pale Ale while vacationing in Nevada. We don’t get many Stone brews in the northwest so I grabbed some when I saw it. I poured this beer in to a pint glass.

Pours a redish copper color, a little darker than I expected. A rich foamy off-white head forms which is extremely resilient and sticky. The head produces heavy lacing on the glass.

The smell is fairly strong, floral and fruity. Aroma of citrus fruit is present.

The taste is robust, but not strong or overpowering and wonderfully well balanced between the citrus flavors, malt and hops.

Mouth feel is very smooth. The beer is full-bodied but light, crisp and mildly carbonated.

This is a very VERY drinkable beer, with appealing aromas and flavors. The flavors are very well balanced. I wouldn’t mind having several of these in a session. I would certainly drink Stone Pale Ale again, and I wish I had bought more than a six pack.

RJLarse, Apr 09, 2006
Photo of ChainGangGuy
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hey! It's quittin' time. Let's have a beer!

Appearance: Pours out a brown-orange color with a sizeable, frothy white head. This is gonna be child's play. Course, I gotta drink it first.

Smell: Hmm. Have you ever, in your life, smelled such a fruity pale ale? Honeydew melon and fresh strawberries are present, as is toffee sweetness and some faintly citrus notes.

Taste: Tangy, with a lively fruity flavor. Plenty of malt caramel sweetness in the mouth. Ends with a snappy, crisp hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Carbonation is sparkling, providing for a spiriting mouthfeel.

Drinkability: Decent and well-balanced. A noble Pale Ale.

"That's a good fssshhhaaaucking milkshake!" -- J. Travolta, _Pulp Fiction_

ChainGangGuy, Apr 06, 2006
Photo of tonistruth
4.45/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A-dark straw in color with a thick 1" head that becomes all fluffy like as it settles. Awesome retention, some kind of head is with the the brew all the way through. White lace on glass.

S- clean, malty and grainy. Inviting.

T- hop freakin crazy. bitterness in middle and aftertaste, surprising delightful. Very grainy and malty, some kind of sweetness in there.

M- dries up on you at the end, but the rest is great. smooth, nice body.

D- smooth with great taste, i could spend a lot of time with this one, and enjoy every mintue of it. Very distinct from other pale ales ive tried.

tonistruth, Apr 03, 2006
Photo of brentk56
3.73/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a clear medium amber color with a frothy head; good retention and lacing

Smell: Caramel malt aroma with fruity hops in the background

Taste: Starts with caramel and biscuity flavors that are joined, mid-palate, by a fruity and herbacious bitterness; the finish is balanced between the two elements

Mouthfeel: Medium/heavy body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Very different from what I would have expected from Stone, this pale ale verges on a hoppy amber in style; I'm not all that crazy about the herbacious bitterness of this brew, to be frank

brentk56, Apr 02, 2006
Photo of aleyeast
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle served in a stone IPA tulip
pours copper with a covering off white head that dissapates
aroma is quite muted
bittering hops on a nice malt backbone, touch of pleastant graininess. classical to the style
easy drinking, probably a very nice beer on tap or cask

aleyeast, Mar 29, 2006
Photo of Rezzin
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a clear amber / copper with a billowy white head that lingers.

S - Hmm... I expected more of a nose on this thing. Fruity hops and malts - almost a sweetness to the aroma.

T - I think my pallete has been tainted with all these IPA I've been drinking lately but this one doesn't have the pow I was expecting but I don't think this is what Stone was trying to do. Slight piny and fruity hops with a sweet malt backbone. Almost candy like.

M - Moderately carbonated. Smooth and refreshing with a slight bitterness on the back to crisp things up.

D - Although I was expecting more of a 'west coast' presence, this is one tasty offering from Stone. I'm not a HOP head but I do personally prefer more of a hop profile in my APAs. An extremely sessionable beer. Solid 4's all around. This might be the beer I use to get my BMC friends to cross over.

Rezzin, Mar 14, 2006
Photo of scottoale
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Being one of Stone's line-up of fine ales that I rarely buy ( I much prefer an Arrogant B. or O.Guardian ), thought I'd give it a taste from the tap since I haven't had it in a while. Not to mention, my buddy was taking care of the tab...what da hell, why not ?

Alrighty then, the pint is a nice darkish amber to copper with a fat finger of white, frothy head that's lasting. Rings of fine lacing as you go.

Smells good, balanced malt and hop with a floral and fruity aroma. Consistant as always, same stuff they bottle but just a bit fresher.

A good tasting, medium bodied, well rounded flavor, the ingredients blend and mask the alcohol well. Hops and malt balanced equally making this ale satisfying and easy to drink.

This would be a good stepping-stone to the stronger ales that Stone has to offer, good stuff !

scottoale, Mar 11, 2006
Photo of bgraney
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rich honey/amber color with small white bubbly head. Very nice to look at. Found myself gazing at it as one would with a fireplace or ocean view.
A hint of everything in the aroma, even a slight alcohol scent. The individual aromas come together and project an excellent collective whole.
Very tasty hop/fruit blend right off the bat but the lack of a lingering flavor was a little disappointing.
I found myself searching for any signs of an aftertaste but came up empty.
This is one you can stick with for the entire day/night. Excellent beer.

bgraney, Feb 28, 2006
Photo of orfeu
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Copper with sheets of active carbonation streaming upwards; massive ecru foam head. Aromas of mellow hops, biscuity malt and fain diacetyl character (?). Wow, the hops in this are way understated for a Stone beer (yes, I know this is a Pale Ale and not an IPA). They're much "earthier" than piney/citrusy -- no Cascades in this one, I imagine. Biscuity malt flavor is sturdily present, and yes, I'm picking up a definite butter flavor as well. All of this leads me to think this is a very "English" beer. Quite unexpected from such a paradigmatic "West Coast" American brewery. Smooth mouthfeel, extremely quaffable. If this were available more regularly back East (and, not to mention for the price they get it in Arizona or CA), I'd stock up on this regularly. Pleasant surprise from a cherished brewery.

orfeu, Feb 24, 2006
Photo of tesguino
4.47/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

the truth of all craft beer, this brewery, -clap, clap...- has an alternative graphic image, screeenprinted bottles, and its beers are really from the "el otro lado", not like the same thing -bud, bud light, miller, and others like this-, with an abuse of adjuncts and aditives, like corn, rice etc. i try this in a pint glass of course, a great taste, exceptional for me, good lacing, smell over flower hops, and disctinctive hops mouthfeel, at last, this is a good beer in the wide offer of craft beers, 92% recommended.

good save the gargoyle.

tesguino, Feb 18, 2006
Photo of neonbrown82
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one of the better pale ales I've had. Thanks to mentor for including this bottle in a trade.

The beer looks great. It is a clear and pale golden amber with a nice carbonation supporting a tall frothy white head. The foam laces to the side of the glass quite well.

The smell is good as well. Has a very bubblegum and hard candy-ish hop aroma with a little bit of floral. Behind the hop bouqet is a sweet caramel malt aroma.

The taste is wonderful and refreshing. The same hop aromas transfer very well to the tastebuds. Very melon-ish. Only a little bite from the hops, and a very well balanced caramel malt flavor. Very refreshing.

I could only ask for a bit more of a carbonated mouthfeel to help give the hop bite that extra zing. Seems a bit light in body, and quite refreshing, though it doesn't seem as crisp as something like SNPA. Either way it is just as tasty and a hell of a drinker. It is obvious that Stone put some quality ingredients into this beer as opposed to some breweries I've tried recently who just throw the cheapest crap they can find together into a brew kettle. Even something as basic as a pale malt has a noticable difference in quality. Kudos to Stone.

neonbrown82, Jan 31, 2006
Photo of Tupperwolf
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice clear, summery gold-red with a nicely forming eggshell white head that leaves intricate lacing down the surface of the glass.

Smells of butterscotch, honey and fresh-cut grass, a warm, sweet, enticing smell.

Taste is homey and malty; It has a significant character of grass - a wheaty, malty flavor, a honeylike sweetness - it's backed up with a small, nicely balacing bitterness of piney hops, This beer has a very full flavor, but is very easy to drink - tasty and unoffensive.

Smooth and slightly spicy mouthfeel - finishes slick with a small lingering sweetness and bitterness.

This is a nice one - Stone continues to be my favorite brewery - my favorite Californian brewery, at least. A San Diego staple.

Tupperwolf, Jan 29, 2006
Photo of Ahhdball
4.22/5  rDev +9.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Big bomber poured cloudy orange under a great big white head which left great lace along the sides.
Citrus and pine lead the aroma which blends to malt and toffee. A little yeast is detected but not a lot.
Again with the pine and citrus (grapefruit) leads to a sticky sweet malt backbone.
All in all nice crisp clean and very drinkable. I enjoyed this IPA and will recommend.

Ahhdball, Jan 28, 2006
Photo of Todd
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz brown bottle, painted label. Cheers to Greg's fridge for the sample. Pours an inviting, shimmering with some initial haze, copper-hued beer topped with a massive 2-finger slightly off-white head - creamy, some stick, great retention and settles to a lacing that lasts the entire beer.

Malty nose, distinct caramel, hints of wood, and delicate floral aromas. Fruity and veggie with some grainy tannins.

Incredibly smooth and a bit silky on the palate. A roughness builds with a leafy hop feel and backing hop flavor. Oily coating. Bitterness is balanced and well placed. Fruity undertones proceed and even malt foundation of moderately sweet grain with bready / biscuity edges. Mild toasty caramel with some slick buttery lingering throughout. Raw hop, oils, grains and some tannins in the finish, but nothing unappealing. It's all good here.

I dig it. Stone's "pay the bills" beer and something that can appeal to novices and geeks.

Todd, Jan 23, 2006
Photo of Bcant
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours an amber/orange color with a thin white head comprised of varying sized bubbles. Some lacing is left on the pint glass as the beer is consumed.

The aroma is very well balanced. Citrus hop smells mingle nicely with malt notes of toffee. For an APA, the flavor is less well balanced. While there is a nice woody, earthy malt character, the hop profile is very long and finishes with a crisp hop bitterness that is very refreshing.

This pale ale has a bit of size and effervescence in the mouth but it tapers off and finishes very soft. This, along with the crisp hop tail, make it very refreshing. Some brewers might call this an IPA, but it is a nice APA offering form Stone.

Bcant, Jan 21, 2006
Photo of Wasatch
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden/amber color, some carbonation, nice creamy tan head which sticks around, tons of lacing afterwards. Scents of hops, malts, and citrus. Taste of bitter hops, and malts. There is a nice dry sweetness aftertaste. Medium body. Very drinkable. Another strong offering from Stone.

Wasatch, Jan 10, 2006
Photo of baiser
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The staple beer of my trip to San Diego. Pretty much every bar in town has Stone PA on tap. Pours a clear copper colour, with a rich white head. Moderately carbonated, smooth mouthfeel and super drinkable. Hoppy, fruity against malty goodness. Very well balanced, fruity and an all around classic. Good session ale.

baiser, Dec 04, 2005
Photo of blitheringidiot
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Picked up a 12 oz'er of Stone's Pale Ale to check it out. Pours into the glass with a clear carbonationless amber red pour topped off with a settled spotty light khaki head cap, leaving impressive lattice lace in the glass.

Aromas are in the ballpark of an ESB initially. Some light wood notes and a sweet leafy tea.

First swigs: Soft caramel meets a slight grapefruit dryness. Well balanced. Falls 60/40 onto the side of a citrus hop profile backed with a husky sugary tea malt. There is even a touch of berry fruit in here.

Just makes a foothold into medium bodied, briskly carbonated and easily drinkable. A slight lingering finish that leaves a clean aftertaste.

Last swigs: Sugary tea and berry finish pale. Expert craftsmanship for an American Pale. When Stone makes a Pale Ale, it translates into an IPA for other breweries.

Beer is good. Happy pale ale beering.

blitheringidiot, Nov 15, 2005
Photo of Mitchster
3.53/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours out to a clear deep amber, forming a tall whipped beige head with excellent retention and delicate yet sticky sheets of lacing. A little darker than I would expect for a pale ale; more akin to an amber in appearance. Carbonation is moderate. The aroma has a strong Cascade and Fuggles hop nose counterbalanced by a nicely expressive and distantly sweet malt body. Fruity esters of apple, strawberry and a touch of melon are subtle. An "English" yeast ester is noticeable but not distracting, combined with some faint Rogue "Pacman" residual sugars. Medium bodied with a fairly smooth initial mouthfeel followed by some slightly astringent hop bitterness in the finish. The taste is more bitter than the aroma would suggest with some mildly harsh English hop finish (I suspect East Kent Goldings) and aftertaste of overly-extracted grain husk tannins. The hop character is earthy and somewhat ruddy.

This is really a bastardized version of an English Pale and it doesn't turn out all that well. I much prefer Stone's IPA and will stick to that in the future when it comes to staple brews. Not that this is bad (I would drink it if it was provided at a party), but I can't stand most brews made with English yeast and hops, and this falls into that category. I would think that Stone, of all people, would avoid having a staple, "dumbed-down" brew, but this is it. I would pass on this again.

Rereview 12/11/07-
Finally, Stone products have arrived here in TC. This one was $1.80 for a 12oz bottle. Pours out to a sparkingly clear dark amber, forming a modest light yellow head with good retention and nice sheets of lacing. Carbonation is moderate. Tightly beaded bubbles. The nose is better than I remember it...the dreaded Cascade twang is absent, but still is akin to Cascade. I dunno what hops they use. There is some interesting sour milk character akin to alot of English style pale ales, fruity apple and pear esters, and some distant vanilla. Mouthfeel is rounded, kinda earthy, with a medium body. Taste is somewhat a cross between an American Amber and an English pale. I think most people would think of this as a hoppy American-style amber. Finish is kinda herbal, with some nice residual sugars and very distant grain husk. Nice counterpoint of sweetness in the finish to offset the bitterness. The aftertaste is kinda ruddy and cardboardy.

Compared to my prior review, I think I like it a little more than last time. Not something I would drink on a regular basis though.

Mitchster, Nov 03, 2005
Photo of Quaffer
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this up in Boulder, CO. Not available here in Wichita.

Appearance: This was an amber-copper beer with the slightest hint of haze. The off-white head rose up to three fingers with an easy pour and then settled very, very slowly. It became a little fluffy as it did so and clung tenaciously to the side of the glass. There were some thin tendrils of lace left behind as I drank.

Smell: A nicely balanced mixture of thick, bready malt and citrus hops. The malt was very strong after the pour, but settled down to more evenly match the hop aroma after a few minutes. There was a slight herbal characteristic to the hops. That was about it. Not overly complex, but it had a great depth and fullness to it.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied, but just barely. It had a full, mouthfilling smoothness along the tongue and picked up a firm carbonation as it hit the throat.

Taste: Just a hint of sweet malt hit the tip of the tongue. The main malt component was roasted, dry, and lightly husky. In the middle, a little more sweetness developed as the herbal and floral hops kicked in. The sweetness lingered into the finish as the hops gained strength. The aftertaste became kind of medicinal with the combination of sweet and herbal.

Not overly complex, but a good, solid, and highly drinkable pale ale. I think that I enjoyed the Levitation a little more, though.

Quaffer, Nov 03, 2005
Photo of UberWasser
4.25/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz brown bottle, no freshness date, served in a Stein.

Pours a reddish amber, a very pretty color. A thick head, probably four to five fingers, bubbles up with an vigorous pour. A shower of bubbles from underneath feed it and keep it in the one finger range at least halfway through. One of the better looking Pale Ales I've had, mailny due to the color.

Smells of sweet malts, sour hops, some spice, and some bread yeast. Nothing is particularly dominant.

Great tasting beer, best Pale Ale I've had so far. The hops get you up front in a wave of smooth citrus. They are followed by a nice wave of malt sweetness to balance. The aftertaste is all hops and dryness. Behind it all is a nice bread flavor. Great stuff! Mouthfeel is also very nice, with a slick thickness that flows over your tongue, and transforms into a bread flavored dryness that coats your mouth. Great.

Such a nice Pale Ale. Definitely a great effort by Stone, and a great introduction to their quality for an initiate. I could drink it all night.

UberWasser, Oct 20, 2005
Stone Pale Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 2,476 ratings.