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Fat Yak Pale Ale - Matilda Bay Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Fat Yak Pale AleFat Yak Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

46 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 46
Hads: 117
Avg: 3.49
pDev: 14.04%
Wants: 6
Gots: 18 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Matilda Bay Brewing Co. visit their website

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  4.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: madvoice on 03-06-2009

Fat Yak first impresses with its golden colour, distinctive, hop driven, fruity and herbaceous aromas, giving characteristic passionfruit and melon notes, followed by a hit of hop flavour at the finish. The taste is refreshingly clean on the palate.

25 IBU
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 46 | Hads: 117
Photo of IHasaFlavaFlav
4.2/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Golden colour, one centimeter of bright white head. It disappears to a small ring. Some nice lacing.

S - Bright citrus hops, very crisp and clean.

T - Citrusy hop flavour up front. I find the flavour more intense drinking from the bottle, the glass seems to lose it abit and from what I remember from having it on tap, from the bottle is still my preference.

M - Refreshing, little after taste until you burp. And then you get a big kick of hops.

D - Very drinkable, loses its punch after the first six pack but still a pleasant drop, if you drinking to get pissed.

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Photo of Morningstorm
4.1/5  rDev +17.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My favorite sessionbeer while backpacking in Australia. Drank it loads from the tap and bottles.

A: Pours a deep hazel colour with a 1 cm thick lacing that reduces to a 0.5 lacing that stays the entire drink.

S: Sharp smell of citrus and hops.

T: Accents of hops, citrus and other fruit. Well balanced between the hops and the malt.

M: Nice body, not heavy like some Pale ales but also not too light. Nicely balanced. The carbonation is present but not exploding in your mouth, nice.

Overall: Well balanced beer that’s good for being sessionbeer. Drink it to clench your thirst.

p.s. there’s a huge difference between the tap and bottle. Hops come a lot more forward in the bottle and its more balanced while tapped. I recommend to drink it from the tap.

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Photo of verysupple
4.06/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I've had this many times in bottles and on tap.

L: Both serving styles exhibit perfect pale ale appearance; crystal clear with decent head formation and retention.

S: Citrusy hop character dominates.

T: Again, hops dominate up front with a bit of maltiness coming through mid-pallete and adequate bitterness finishing up.

F: Light-to-medium; good for a pale ale.

O: Very satisfying when fresh and served well on tap. Bottled versions have always seemed to lack a bit of hop punch for me. A decent pale ale.

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Photo of vancurly
3.97/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

a) Pours a burnished gold, and white rocky head which sets well, some nice bubbling

s) Good, fresh late hop introduction: pineapple, peach, passionfruit. Faint crystal hint. Warms to a little more candy notes, and a faint tobacco leaf.

f) Unlike the nose, more seed/spice-like in profile. Cracker poppy/caraway seeds, bread-like notes, touch of guava perhaps. Grassy bitterness is not too over-stated.

m) Medium bodied, not cloying, and balanced

d) Quite a good drinker.... I reckon it's good for a few pints without overstaying its welcome. The fruity nose and spicy flavour provide a good contrast, and interest.

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Photo of madvoice
3.97/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a golden amber colour with a sudsy head that lasts a while. Lots of lacing on the glass. Smells sweet, fruity and hoppy. Has a fruity flavour with a slight bitter aftertaste that balances the sweet. Mouthfeel is smooth and light on the fizz which makes this a very moreish beer. I should've bought more than just one!

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Photo of rowey77
3.85/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Light colored ale with a thick feel to it.

Flavor up front is very acidic and fairly bitter. Floral, tasty hoppiness with light citrus & fruit. Very light on the malt.

Very acidic, coupled with carbonation makes for a stronger mouthfeel without the strong flavor to back it up. Good with food.

I found it easy to drink with a great taste so two thumbs up for me.

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Photo of Decko
3.83/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - clear Amber with good head and decent lacing. S - I love the aromas from this beer, especially when you get it on tap. Floral aromas really burst through and gets the taste buds watering. T- we drink this often as the go to session be and the one we buy by the case at home but it is a little light on flavour compared to what the aromas promise. The hop flavours dominate with fruity notes coming through. M - pretty high degree of carbonation from the bottle and I feel it's better after it has sat for a few minutes. O - a great beer at its price point but lacking something in the flavour which means it doesn't satisfy cravings for a more interesting beer. I do love the aromas though and still drink this on a regular basis.

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Photo of heygeebee
3.83/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Decided to review as had on tap today at Jacksons On George. Had in a pint mug.

Good one finger head, lovely deep copper colour. Lacing stayed for almost the whole pint.

Aromas of citrus, not too overpowering, and hops.

Taste is well balanced on tap, and perhaps less pronounced than from the bottle. Bitterness and hops give a well balanced backbone. Had with a beef pie, lovely match.

Drinkability improved and improved, as the pint went down. I suspect the lighter flavour of the on-tap serving helped here.

Moral of story, try your beers in a number of ways, wherever you can.

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Photo of drtth
3.8/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed from notes taken on a recent trip to Sydney.

Poured into a wine glass. Glass of cold water on the side to sip from periodically.

Appearance: As poured the beer is a clear pale golden, almost bronze color with a ½" white head that leaves some lacing on the glass. but soon recedes and so sipping leaves very little lacing.

Smell: The aroma is mostly floral/grassy hoppiness with touches of citrus and traces of malt.

Taste: The flavors are pretty much as expected from the nose with some floral and grassy hoppiness alsong with some light sweet malt flavors. There also seems to be a touch of tropical fruitiness. The impression is clean flavor, without much crispness, but with a balance favoring the malt. There is some hop character here but the focus is more on the malt.

Mouthfeel: The mouth feel is medium bodied and has some reasonable carbonation throughout most of the beer. The finish is medium in length and hop bitterness shows more as the sweetness fades and turns dry.

Drinkability: I found this one drinkable enough in that one sip followed another easily and I certainly had no difficulty moving on to a second one. That said, I prefer my pale ales with a bit more hop forward character and the extra crispness provided by a stronger hop presence.

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Photo of Andrewharemza
3.75/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

It has golden colour, distinctive, hop driven, fruity and herbaceous aromas, giving characteristic passionfruit and melon notes, followed by a whack of hop flavour at the finish. The taste is refreshingly clean on the palate.

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Photo of ADZA
3.72/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer pours a see thru amber colour with nice carbonation that leaves a pillowy two finger head that subsides and leaves subtle lacing,the aroma is pine needles,citrus and some kiwifruit,it has an above average mouthfeel and starts off a nice citrus burst and finishes with a subtle touch of lemon with no bitterness at all,quite a easy drinking beer and definately alot better than all the macro swill out there but in saying that have had better types of this style.

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Photo of jarmby1711
3.71/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Faintly hazed mid golden ale possessig a fine head that laced just a little.
Smells a tad watery for me but the hops do present themselves begrudgingly.
Plenty of hops on the palate giving pleasnt bitterness but lacking a little in the fruitiness department.What is there is like pineapple which if it was just a little stronger would make this more enjoyable
Overall the mouthfeel is oily but balanced
An interesting style of Pale ALe ,that is worth drinking

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Photo of foles
3.7/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Some people knock matilda bay for releasing this dumbed down version of Alpha Pale Ale. But at least it isnt replacing alpha (as yet), and it doesnt cost as much.

Pours a very clear pale golden colour, with a nice cascade aroma. Easy drinking with the US hop profile, in a light sort of way. Easy drinking to be had here, with a nice hint of flavour to make things interesting. Could do with a touch more bitterness. There is a slight roughness to the hop finish on the back of the tongue. Dont think any specialty malts have been used here, but just good quality pale malt.

Good introduction to craft beer for the average punter.

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Photo of Kulrak
3.68/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly cloudy pale golden color with about 1cm of creamy white head that's not disappearing in a hurry. Smells of citrusy cascade style hops and a little bit of grassiness, not bad. The taste is very hoppy, but not overly bitter. There's also some sweetness there, but I can't make out any flavors in it before the very dry finish comes on. Mouthfeel is very creamy, not fizzy or scraping. Overall, it's a very drinkable beer, especially if you like the taste of hops. I'll be looking for it again.

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Photo of LittleCreature
3.68/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - 4.0
Amber orange, sticky white head.

Smell - 3.5
Faint citrus fruit and bready pale malt.

Taste - 3.5
Soft, low to moderate bitterness, fruity, citrus flavour.

Mouthfeel - 4.0
Goes down smoothly.

Drinkability - 4.0
A good session beer choice, although not for the die-hard APA drinkers.

My second review of this beer. If I am not impressed by a bottled beer, I rarely bother to review it on-tap, but I thought that it was necessary in the case of Fat Yak. A much better tap beer, although I have found it laced with diacetyl previously. Not in this example, where it is a soft, fruity and easy drinking pale ale that makes a great session beer. A good mainstream-craft crossover beer.

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Photo of biegaman
3.67/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Fat Yak isn't such a big, hairy beer after all. Its clear, filtered complexion and clean, recognizable golden colour give this a real approachable look that won't intimidate anyone. Even the amount of head is agreeable - there's not too little, not too much, but just the right amount.

Obviously Matilda Bay care about quality; they uses only natural ingredients (no additives). So it begs the question: why allot such a prolonged shelf life for a pale ale? The date stamped on this bottle allows for another 8 months. Beers like this are best consumed fresh; hops deteriorate in time.

Nonetheless, this sample showcases a balmy bouquet of delicate floral and fruit notes. Dry-hopping definitely paid big dividends. There's a rose petal/pine needle/citrus rind profile familiar to those who've tried the famous Sierra Nevada Pale Ale or Anchor Liberty or any of the many beers inspired by them.

On the palate, however, malt gets into the driver's seat and doesn't relinquish control, except in the finish where passionfruit and grass flavours make one big, final hurrah. Good thing too because those grainy and bready qualities of pale malt are fine, but not overly exciting in and of themselves.

When it comes to pale ales I'm happy with hops as both opening act and headliner. If I'm to drink a malty pale beer I'd order a lager. Mind you, hops don't have to overwhelm; people love tempered, balanced pale ales like Fat Yak for their ability to include the nice hoppy flavours and leave out the undesirable bitterness. There's good reason beers like this have become so popular the world over.

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Photo of joecast
3.65/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

bright clear golden. medium carb and a light white head.

good fresh hoppy aroma. floral and citrus. very nice.

good hop flavor and a decent level of bitterness. not quite at the level of lcpa but more around the js golden ale. (slight edit. finished off a few more and dropped the taste to 3.5. a bit metallic and not quite as clean as i would like)

mouthfeel is slightly harsh though the carbonation doesnt seem all that high. unfortunately this has a big impact on drinkability for me. maybe let it sit a bit longer to arm up a bit so it can smooth out. not bad for $15 a six pack though.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.63/5  rDev +4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

What time is our flight???? We have an hour and a half??? What are we to do??? You have a membership to the Quantas Club...Let's go...BITCH!!! Yeah Baby! Word to the wise....Brisbane's Quantas Club has Fat Yak....ON TAP!!! YEAH BABY!! United RCC could learn something from this place!!! The color was copper with thin white head. The smell was pleasing...subtle hints of hop and citrus. The taste was equal to the smell....for an Australian Pale....not too bad. Certainly beat the XXXX Gold!!! Fat Yak a SESSION...ABSOLUTELY!!! Stay parched my friends!!!

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Photo of Finite
3.62/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden colour, head is a little disappointing but overall not totally unappealing.

Well balanced. Good hop flavor. Green, pine-like hops prominent in this one. Balance is pretty spot on malt tone reminiscent of a sweet rye.

A well rounded easily quaff able beer. I liked this alot more than I thought I would.

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Photo of Act25
3.62/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Beats Squires, but underperforms 4 Pines. Good session ale. Best at cask temp.
On my Sydney trip.

A clear dark copper with streams of bubbles that maintain a lasting head with lots of spotty lace. Good looking.

S Pale ale, mellow, but adequate aroma. Most in direction of English Ales... citric hops, sweet malt, lots of caramel.

T Nicely done - follows the smell. Not strong. With a hint of herbal hops, metallic body, caramel malts and lots of grain. Classic English ale.

M Light to medium bodied, clean finish, a bit thin, good long feel on palate.

O Good but slightly bland for OZ. Oz bars tends to lighter, paler, lagers and ales, and to session ales because they watch a lot of rugby, sometimes starting in the afternoon. And they seem to stay lean, fit and outdoors until they drop. It's an amazing country.

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Photo of koolk
3.6/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a fairly clean dark amber colour with a small white head that has good retention.

Inital aromas of dry hopping - a lot of tropical fruit and a fair whack of grass. Passionfruit even. Fairly nice, albeit one dimensional.

Palate flavours are very light and uninspiring. Starts with some citrus flavours but finishes with a nice, but boring, roasted finish. Like the nose, fairly one dimensional. Low bitterness. Slightly watery on finish.

Mouthfeel is intially nice and creamy but drops off to nothing. Very short. Loses big points here.

Overall another standard issue APA. May serve as a gateway beer for many people - which in itself is not a bad thing - however, for my tastes there are far better APAs out there.

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Photo of aBeeraWeek
3.58/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

It is a rich amber colour with a fair amount of haziness. Pours with a reasonable sized light coloured head.

The smell is mostly of the distinctive florals that are typical of the cascade hops - some very light citrus notes.

There is light citrus on the taste but now this is nicely offset with a more malty character. Well balanced with out with a mild hoppy finish.

Medium amount of carbonation and body that suits the refreshing flavours.

Overall it’s nothing too challenging or different, just a brew in the true sense of the American Pale Ale style.

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Photo of tbeckett
3.55/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Bottle from Woolworth's. From notes.

A - Pours dark gold. Good carbonation, one finger of white head, slight lace and a film of retention.

S - Good citrus, grass, orange and light malt. Floral as well. Light but nice.

T - Floral with lot's of citrus. Juicy orange and sweet malt. Good citrus finish with some grain and peach.

M - Strong carbonation, medium body and a dry finish.

O/D - A nice little pale ale. Good drinkability and pretty solid. Not mind blowing but well-crafted with nice flavours and light. Good stuff.

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Photo of aeolianshredhead
3.53/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A- Amber and reasonably murky. Good 2 and a half finger head which didn't stay around.

S- Nothing but floral hops. Simple but still somewhat enticing.

T- That citrusy taste followed by a definite hop bitterness. Can't detect much in the way of maltiness or anything like that. Pretty good, but not jaw-dropping.

M- Crisp and thin. Not a bad thing here though. Refreshing.

O- This beer offers no real surprises. That being said, it is still fairly decent. Basically, this brew is a true case of the old phrase, 'Could be better, could be worse.'

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Photo of wordemupg
3.53/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

330ml bottle poured into pint glass15/3/14

A clear light copper with lots of bubbles of all sizes and speeds feeding a fast falling finger of foam that leaves some polka dot lace

S melon, citric hops, sweet malt, caramel a little faint and simple but decent

T just a hint of herbal hops and a slight metallic aspect that neither helps or hinders, more caramel and some dry cereal's added to what I smell

M medium bodied, stops short of being creamy from the bubbles, fairly clean finish, a little slick on the palate after the fact

O not a whole lot going on but drinkable stuff, better then macros but I'm sure I'll find better craft while in OZ

New Zealand will be a hard act to follow but I'm looking forward to my month in Australia and seeing what I can find. My first brew in OZ and first live review in a while, kind of nice not writing in my note book for a change.

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Fat Yak Pale Ale from Matilda Bay Brewing Co.
80 out of 100 based on 46 ratings.