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Stone Pale Ale - Stone Brewing Co.

Stone Pale AleStone Pale Ale

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

2,170 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2170
Reviews: 951
rAvg: 3.87
pDev: 11.37%

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: 2,170 | Reviews: 951 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of BEERchitect


4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

An extremely under rated American Pale Ale that epidomizes what the balance means between bready and caramel malts with citrusy and resiny hops. Neitehr offend, but neither back down from the challenge of balance. Bold and synergistic throughout.

Redish copper colors carry a mild haze, but explode with mousse-like head character of ivory-white foam. Stubborn and persistent until the glass is dry, the blanketed retention and lacing are as formitable and sticky as can be expected for any style.

Very rich and characterful malts (light caramel and bread crust) and compimentary hopping (citrus, pine, and resin) all apease the nose and taste buds. A well balanced blend of these characteristics captivate the nose and carry a consistent demeanor throughout the taste. All the while, showing intermitten and varying degrees of flavors: citrus one minute, then bready-toast flavors the next, then over to malty sweetness a minute later, and then back to resiny bitterness to finish. A true exploration for the taste buds from sip until malty-dry finish

With all the swirling in the mouth, the body remains rich, full, and firm. Finishing with the same semi-dry, citrus crispness that profounds me in the nose.

The beer never deviates from the Pale Ale style in order to stand out or get above the competition. Instead, relying on a well formulated recipe and quality brewing techniqes. A delicately blended brew with power and variety. Oh, by the way, one of the best appearances found in any beer, not just pale ales.

Serving type: bottle

11-20-2006 13:41:05 | More by BEERchitect
Photo of neenerzig


4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a single 12 ounce bottle of this from La Cav Du Vin. Poured into my pint glass. This beer pours a clear medium amber copper color with a nice foamy head about 2 fingers thick that settles to about a finger and then half a finger thick before settling further to a decent ring lining the inside of the glass. Has some nice lacing indeed. Aromas of hops and malt are present, not much else though. Some light hints of caramel, citrus, and spice are present as well. I expected the smell to be a bit stronger. Hops and sweet malt are the tastes upfront, followed by some bitterness, and some hints of spice and citrus. The malty sweetness and hoppy bitterness are very well balanced. Has a nice crisp, smooth, and full bodied mouthfeel with moderate carbonation. Easy to drink in a good way. As with all of Stone's beers, this one is certainly unique. It is also the most mellow, non ass kicking & non in your face type of beer that I have ever had from Stone. This is a good beer for a macro BMC drinker to try who has never had anything from Stone before. Overall I think this beer is a unique, if not good ,representation of the APA style of beer. I will drink this again. A mellow & subtle beer, especailly for Stone, but quite enjoyable as well.


Serving type: bottle

11-27-2006 03:38:18 | More by neenerzig
Photo of WesWes

New York

4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a dark golden/amber color with a thick frothy offwhite head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is good. It has a solid malt scent that is complimented with an equally good hop aroma. It's slightly bitter smelling with some citrus notes. The taste is great! It has a wonderful mix of malts and hops that goes down smooth and finishes bitter with some hop residue. It has enough malts to balance the hops, but they really shine through all the way to finish; very nice. The mouthfeel is good. It is a medium/full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a damn good American pale ale. It's got it all; a fine drinking beer.

Serving type: bottle

04-25-2007 22:15:35 | More by WesWes
Photo of CAMRAhardliner

Ontario (Canada)

4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a killer pale ale.

It pours slightly hazy orange color with a fantastic eggshell froth that drapes the glass in lace. Citric hops and honeyish malts make up the nose. The taste is chock full of fragrant, pithy, grapefruity hops. A slight woody/herbal notion is also detectable. Perfect balance is acheived by a generous dose of cookie dough malts. Hop bitterness is restrained, ensuring this brew never strays into IPA range. The mouthfeel is light and generously, yet delicately carbonated. Floral hops and a bit of bitterness make up the finish.

One of the best Pale Ales Ive yet tried. Definitely worth a try, it rivals SNPA in deliciousness.

Serving type: bottle

12-08-2007 22:12:49 | More by CAMRAhardliner
Photo of PatrickJR

North Carolina

4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into nonic pint glass.

My first experience with Stone, as it just hit my local Total Wine today. It's got a lot of hype going for it...or working against it? We'll see!

A - Clear copper. Large, 3 finger, beige head rises with great retention. After 5+ minutes there's still a thick cap atop the beer. Lots of lacing.

S - Not what I expected, but quite good. A good bit of buttery, toffee malt is present with a slight toasty quality. Predominately floral hops ride atop with some citrus aspects.

T - This is nearly the epitome of balance. The malty smoothness takes hold early palate with a buttery and slightly caramel flavor. The toastiness is a great contributor but doesn't overtake. The hops come next; it's a little unfamilar to me but I'm getting a very interesting balance of grapefruit, grass, tea, and a little bit of cheese. Very good though. The hops go out on an herbal note, leaving some trace bitterness and a smidge of graininess.

M - Medium bodied, moderate carbonation. At first I was put off by the heavier body and lighter carbonation as compared to other APAs, but it works extremely well with the flavor profile, and though a little unconventional I couldn't imagine this brew any other way.

D - One of the best session beers I can think of. Extremely well balanced. Not too weak, not too intense.

Serving type: bottle

09-20-2008 07:56:09 | More by PatrickJR
Photo of tbbrown


4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: copper, with slight haze, a great, thick, foamy off-white head that retains and creates nice lacing to the end

Smell: Some caramel, malt nose, fruit, hop

Taste: Strong hop at the end for the style, some nice malty flavors, too

Mouthfeel: great, smooth. Great carbonation, silky, a bit more course toward the end.

Drinkability: Great, love it.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2008 16:44:38 | More by tbbrown
Photo of necoadam


4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours out a clear dark copper/amber color with a fizzy head.

Smell was a solid malt aroma, with a light sweetness in the background. Some citrus and hops mingle together. It all blended together so well.

Taste was an almost perfect balance of malts and hops with an underlying sweetness to it, but then the bitterness of the hops blended in. Nothing is overwhelming, and underwhelming too.

Mouthfeel was medium with a good check in carbonation. Finished with a little a little hops hitting the palate.

An excellent beer. A staple for pale ales for sure.

Serving type: bottle

06-02-2009 17:04:36 | More by necoadam
Photo of johnwarne


4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A beer haiku for you:

"What a nice surprise!
A California taste treat;
Winner from the West".

I have walked by this beer and brewery so many times, believing it to be one of myriad pricey but underwhelming American breweries with delusions of grandeur. To quote my dear old Aunt Sassy from the Panhandle: 'well, slap my mouth'! Extremely drinkable and tasty APA.
Such a pleasant surprise--will definitely check out more of the Stone Company's offerings.

Serving type: bottle

04-03-2010 21:42:53 | More by johnwarne
Photo of yankiac


4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - A hazy golden amber with a thin lace

S - Slight hints of citrus hops and a hint of maltiness

T - Slightly malty up front with a piney hop finish

M - Light body for easy drinking

D - This is a session beer for sure.

Notes: Not as bold as the other stone brews which is nice. Good to see that not every brew needs to push the limits.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2010 01:08:54 | More by yankiac
Photo of Offa


4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Red-gold-amber, it has a med.-big off-white head slowly shrinking to a foamy ring & wisps with some nice lace.

Aroma is very West Coast but excellent, not only clean but with good depth, balance, and complexity. It has caramelized grapefruit, light pine, lemon pith, caramelized toast and caramel.

Taste is excellent example of a classic West Coast style APA, with excellent body, character, depth, balance, and complexity. It has spicy-peppery grapefruit-pine bitterness with caramel and toasty sweetness, juicy yeastiness.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2011 21:09:12 | More by Offa
Photo of Blakaeris


4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours hazy orange amber with a surprisingly dense foamy head.

Aroma is mellow citrus hop and toasted malt.

Taste is a complex bready toasted caramel malt with a lot of subtle flavor. Then a pleasant sweet tropical fruitiness - notably orange and melon. Finishes with a spicy, earthy bitterness with lingering tobacco notes.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied.

Overall smooth and flavorful. A great example of an APA. Easy to drink with a lot of subtle flavor that I look for in lower gravity beers. Hops are apologetically west coast in character without being overpowering.

Serving type: bottle

01-06-2012 22:53:38 | More by Blakaeris
Photo of TheBigE5


4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured from a bottle into a sniffer. Thin white head, about a half finger. Perfectly clear light brown amber color.

S - Very hoppy in the nose, floral, sweet. A bit of malty notes. Great smelling beer.

T - Perfectly balanced. Malty at first, the the hops enter later. A bit of sweetness in the finish.

M - Smooth mouthfeel, not overcarbonated. Get a little bit of tingle in your throat. Very drinkable.

O - Wow, great nose and perfectly balanced. Add its drinkability. Excellent beer.

Serving type: bottle

01-28-2012 01:26:49 | More by TheBigE5
Photo of Rastabama


4.35/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.5

A: Not pale, amber in my book.

S: Lovely Ahtanum aroma, sweet caramel malts.

T: The hops are one tone lower than the cascade not as bright but delicious, high caramel/bread sweet on the front.

M: Medium, balanced, appropriate.

O: The best Stone offering in my opinion. One of the best examples of Californian APA there is. A good session or pairing beer. It is a bit on the sweet caramel side with a darker color than other APAs. I think it's wonderful and has unique character.

Serving type: bottle

12-27-2012 01:47:30 | More by Rastabama
Photo of Act25

New Jersey

4.34/5  rDev +12.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

Finally getting around to this. Stone trumps every brewer currently for my palate, and this basic bread-winner is amazing.

A: 5 for starters it's as perfect a look on a pale ale as you could imagine. If one in 1000 pale ales gets a 5, this is it. Mousse-like ivory head, a pillow that lasts and laces. Cherry copper body. Great weight.
S: I could just sniff this one. It's laid back compared to IPAs, but as it should be. Better as she warms.
T: Great tingling balance of malt and hops, creamy and satisfying. many tight facets of flavor: Citrus, bread, cracker, pepper, pine, Perfect finish
MF: Already said: Creamy, long, tingly, long finish. As good a finish on any beer in the Pale Ale Class.

A wonder. Must try. A favorite.

Serving type: bottle

01-31-2014 21:42:09 | More by Act25
Photo of rkhaze


4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured a slightly hazy golden copper color. Medium sized foamy off white head and noticeable carbonation. Left a bit of lace. Smells of sweet malt, caramel, lots of fruit and spicy hops.
Sweet, slightly earthy malt at the beginning. Caramel and fruits show up in the middle. Finishes bittersweet with an almost honey sweetness nicely balanced by a zippy hop bitterness.
Medium bodied with a full round mouthfeel. Seemed at the edge of having a bit to much carbonation. Would make an outstanding session Pale Ale.

Serving type: bottle

04-10-2004 01:46:20 | More by rkhaze
Photo of bultrey

New York

4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

With all of Stone's bombastic beers, it's easy to overlook the simple yet elegant pale ale. This was my best choice on draft at the bar of the hotel I recently stayed at, and I had no problem sucking down 4 or 5 of these while watching game 7 of the ALCS with a bunch of anti-Yankee fans.
What can I say about this beer except that it has remarkable balance, a trait common to many of Stone's offerings... It pours a burnt orange color with a thin head and sticky lacing. There is an excellent hoppy bite followed by nice, smooth caramel-flavored maltiness. This beer was good served in the unfortunate chilled glass, but excpetional once it warmed up.
Once again, Stone lets quality ingredients do the work for them in this flavorful and very drinkable pale ale.

Serving type: on-tap

10-25-2004 21:09:39 | More by bultrey
Photo of dogfooddog


4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

comment - style for this beer should be burton pale ale or english pale ale (traditional), not APA. Scored by corrected style.

22ox bottle from this renowned california brewery. to date, besides arrogant bastardand smoked porter, i have been unimpressed by their beers, but what do I know.

this beer pours a very deep orange with a fluffy off-white head.

Nose reminds me immediately of a pale ale I had in the UK years ago and I cannot recall the name but the distincthoppy notes with underlying maltiness, almost but not roasted malt, is very distinct in my mind. If I remember the resemblence I will edit this. It might be cask bass ale from pre-sale of the brewery, as I don't think I have had many pale ales in the years 2001-beyond (does inveralmond have/had one? isle of skye?) This beer also reminds me, later in the bottle, to Fullers London Pride (cask).

taste is the almost-sweet buttery notes of a typical burton pale ale, stone has apparently recreated an accurate estimate of the style.

Authentic pale ale in the style of burton-upon-trent, I have not had one that rang so close before. Along with the alesmith anvil esb, there are apparently a decent set of english-style authentic ales available in south california. Well worth seeking out, and certainly better than any bottled bass you will get on this side of the pond.

Serving type: bottle

11-07-2006 04:48:39 | More by dogfooddog
Photo of RonfromJersey

New Jersey

4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Hazy red-orange body, topped by two-fingers-plus of rocky off-white foam. Good lacing.

Mild, pleasant fruity aroma mixes with biscuits. Nicely balanced.

Nice thick slather of malt begins the taste. Fruit builds across the tongue, as a bitter edge forms at the edge of the tongue and across the rof of the mouth. Sharp bitter bite at the swallow, though not overly caustic. You might even call it balanced.

Nice light to medium mouthfeel. Easy drinkability.

The hop masters at Stone manage to keep this in pale ale territory while still supplying a bit of bite. Recommended, of course.

Serving type: bottle

05-02-2007 00:03:43 | More by RonfromJersey
Photo of GreenWBush


4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This one must’ve just made its triumphant arrival in the Buckeye state because suddenly six-packs are showing up everywhere. While I was glad to see it, I found it rather silly that a 5.4 percent pale ale would cost two dollars more than a 6.8 IPA! Ratcheting up production? Or is it the Levitation that is relatively rare? I digress.

From the new brewery, best before 1/17/07. Quite fresh. Physical presence is immaculate polished bronze. Streaming bubbles under a clingy white head.

Aroma is sedate, at least by Stone standards. Fresh, clean, and clear (wait, isn’t that a Budweiser ad?) and its hop profile reminds me a bit of tapered-off IPA.

I’ve drank a million pale ales in my time and it takes something special to get my attention at this point. This one does; it’s the rare pale ale that’s excitingly hoppy and malty…you don’t get sick of either of the strong and competing flavors. Crisp, hoppy, but not thin or overly bitter.

This could easily convince people to come over to the darkside. Really good.

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2007 01:19:37 | More by GreenWBush
Photo of MaltyGoodness


4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz bottle

Pours a clear, copper color with a small white head that thins. Mild lacing on the glass.

Aroma is caramel malty with a nice compliment of citrusy hops. Smells very fresh and quite evenly balanced.

Caramel malt taste upfront with a very complimentary citrusy hop flavor. A medium bitterness hits midway through which adds great balance to the malt. Very fresh taste.

Medium-light body, well carbonated.

Well now, this is a damn fine APA. From a brewery that typically tests the limits of brewing, this beer exhibits great balance in every aspect. Super easy to drink, an ideal session brew.

Serving type: bottle

09-25-2007 01:44:24 | More by MaltyGoodness
Photo of funkengruven

Ontario (Canada)

4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This poured a nice dark amber with lots of head, tons of lacing. Smell was very malty, some hops, likely the maltiest beer I've had from Stone so far. This stuff tastes pretty good, really nice balance between hop bitterness and sweet grainy malts. Pretty smooth and refreshing. Of all the Stone brews this one is likely the easiest one to drink, could make for a good gateway beer. I'd recommend this one for sure.

Serving type: bottle

10-06-2007 03:01:32 | More by funkengruven
Photo of Doomcifer

Rhode Island

4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Pours a crystal clear amber color with a nice off-white head that sticks around for a while, leaving nice lacing in it's wake.

Smell - maltiness balanced out with some floral, slightly citrusy hops.

Taste - Very balanced and smooth. Hoppy throughout but nothing overpowering, sweet, slightly biscuity malts rounding out the palette. Finishes a little dry with a nice hoppy and bitter finish.

Mouthfeel - Velvety mouthfeel, good carbonation, light body without being too light.

Drinkability - Extremely drinkable. One of the better APAs I have had the pleasure of having. Yum Yum.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2007 20:26:51 | More by Doomcifer
Photo of DrDogbeer


4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pint glass. Nice looking- amber/red color, slightly cloudy. Nice head - cream colored, long lasting. Good aroma- seems to startr out with some piney hops, then smooth out with malt. Nice balanced beer, tastewise also. Decent hop bite, but also very smooth. What a nice lingering flavor. This definitely may be the perfect session beer. Once again not let down by stone at all!

Serving type: bottle

02-13-2008 17:34:46 | More by DrDogbeer
Photo of DrinkinBuddy

New York

4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light cinnamon brown with an amazing 3 finger light tan head. Smells like like sweet dough and floral hops. Taste is a shock for such a small beer. First tastes like peaches in a caramel glaze with brown sugar mixed in. Follows with nice hops and a grainy finish. Very impressive. Mouthfeel is oh so smoth with a great balance of malt and carbination. Drinkability is a very good. Definately would drink a six of this with NO problem. Stone does it again!!

Serving type: bottle

03-23-2008 14:37:00 | More by DrinkinBuddy
Photo of mattster


4.33/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Opened 22 fluid ounce "Bomber" Bottle, poured into Nonic Glass. I love the fact that Stone uses painted bottles, however this means I can't recycle them for my own use - oh well.

PA pours a nice rich head of 1.5" which holds at 1" with lacing on the glass. Brew is amber colored with nice haze.

Smell is of malts and light hoppyness - slight citrus. Taste is hoppy, with again, a light piney/citrus taste. Bubbles are present but not obnoxious. Well balanced and great finish. Very drinkable. This beer is one of my favorites and I was shocked that I had never reviewed it.

Serving type: bottle

03-30-2008 09:30:00 | More by mattster
Stone Pale Ale from Stone Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 2,170 ratings.