1. Extreme Beer Fest. March 20 & 21, 2015 in Boston, Mass. Join us!
  2. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  3. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Pine Belt Pale Ale - Southern Star Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Pine Belt Pale AlePine Belt Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
86
very good

604 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 604
Reviews: 382
rAvg: 3.83
pDev: 12.01%
Wants: 15
Gots: 54 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Southern Star Brewing Company visit their website
Texas, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  6.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
A deep copper colored ale with a substantial malt backbone accented with British crystal malts with aggressive hop bitterness and substantial American hop flavor and aroma. The yeast profile is neutral.

45 IBU

Malt: Rahr special pale, Simpsons 30-37, Crisp 45
Hops: Galena, CTZ, Nugget
Yeast: California Ale

(Beer added by: BgThang on 04-09-2008)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Usefulness | Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 604 | Reviews: 382 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of rye726
3.05/5  rDev -20.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This pours a brownish amber color with a nice tan head. The nose has some light malts and grainy hops. The taste is also fairly grainy with a bit of sweet malts. Not much of a hop presence. Light body has decent carbonation. Probably closer to an English than American Pale Ale, but not a bad beer.

rye726, Oct 26, 2008
Photo of HardTarget
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Mixed bag here. Loved the tallboy can, great amber color, big fluffy white head that lasted and left sticky lace. The down side: floaties, lots of them. Protein coagulation, I really hope the brewers get a handle on this, I know it's harmless, but it really takes away from the beer.

S: Earth, I would say a little Pine going on, a little butter.

T: A nice English Pale Ale, that's to say the hops are earthy and a bit tea like. It's like a mix of English and American hops, some citric/pine notes, but the bitterness is very low for style.

M: Creamy, nice, a bit chunky toward the end.

D: A good beer, one I can see sessioning and I'm happy to see another Texas brewer getting started. I hope this one continues to evolve a bit though.

HardTarget, Oct 25, 2008
Photo of RblWthACoz
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sweet. 16 ounce cans. I can dig that.

Pours a foggy amber brown with a creme head. Nose is an earthy kind of pine. Flavor has a distinct tangy almost resin edge to it. I also get a resin/chalky thing too. It's fairly dry I have to say. Overall pretty pine like (surprise!). Feel is smooth and slick on liquid. Low on carbonation. Pretty easy to drink I have to say. I bet this would be pretty damn nice on cask.

Huge thanks to a noon trader champ103 for this one.

RblWthACoz, Oct 22, 2008
Photo of kirok1999
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to TexasStout for a generous extra in a trade.
Pours a hazy dark copper with tons of sticky lace and a massive rising head.
Smells just great! Tons of citrus hops, crisp and juicy.
Taste falls a little short of the smell. Somehow the citrus hops don't come through on the palate. Finishes slightly bitter and dry. Much more flavorful than many pale ales I've had before.
Feels smooth and mellow and is very easy to drink. I really wish I had regular access to this one.

kirok1999, Oct 18, 2008
Photo of philipquarles
3.95/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear copper with a resilient half-finger of white foam.

Smells of hops and some grapefruit, along with a decent amount of malt. This carries on to the taste; the amount of malt matches the hoppiness quite well to leave it well balanced on the slightly bitter side.

A very nice, drinkable beer that really embodies what I would expect from a Pale Ale.

philipquarles, Oct 17, 2008
Photo of koopa
3.7/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Received this as an extra in a trade with my boy in texas stumac! Thanks for the opportunity to try this local brew!

Can poured into a Sam Adams Laser Etched Glass

Appearance: Burnt Orange with a slightly khaki 1.5 finger foam head. Well carbonated, fair amount of head retention, lots and lots of sticky lacing all around the glass.

Smell: Can you say malt? An underlying grapefruit hop (probably cascade) presence but mainly all malt.

Taste: Malty Malty Malty, much too malty for my taste. I want a pale ale that is borderline IPA so maybe my opinion is biased.

Mouthfeel: fairly sticky for a medium / borderline full body beer. Lots of carbonation.

Drinkability: I'm rating it lower because of the full body and heavy malt characteristic. My idea of a pale ale is far from this but I'm happy to have tried it. Always good to broaden your horizons! Still a very good brew despite it not lending itself to my personal taste.

koopa, Oct 16, 2008
Photo of Deuane
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Kegatron for the hook up of this much desired Texas micro.

A-Slightly hazy golden kissed deep copper. A nice, fluffy medium off-white head reduces to a small cap and leaves healthy lace.

S-Good pop of citrus hops with just a touch of spice. Background notes of slightly sweet biscuity malt,

T-Sharp and crisp citrus hops with that same spicy kick. Nice support from the medium sweet caramel malt. Certainly a hop forward brew....nice.

M-Medium-light bodied with a very sharp and crisp finish. Good lingering hop bitterness.

D-Damn good stuff! I am impressed with this. I would love to do a side by side between this and Sly Fox Phoenix Pale Ale, my personal PA of choice. I would certainly embrace this one if it were readily available.

Deuane, Oct 01, 2008
Photo of mikesgroove
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked this one up as a really nice extra recently. I had never even heard of it or the brewery so you have to understand I was more then anxious to give this one a shot. A sixteen ounce can served cold, right out of the fridge and poured into a tall pilsner glass. Consumed on 09/28/2008.

The pour was extremely nice. Rich and decadent looking with a nice dark amber color with a ton of orange highlights in it. Lightly cloudy with a good bit of carbonation visible on the inside of the glass bubbling up towards the surface. A rich head of maybe two inches then came up over the top and only settled down gradually before becoming a thick layer of foam across the top.

The aroma was heavenly. Rich notes of wet hops mixing in with a deep, biscuit like backing that only served to show it off even more. Lots of pine resin like aromas here, sticky, with an almost fresh, wet hopped like aroma making up the bulk of it. Some subtle sweetness as it began to warm. The flavor was smooth, super smooth with a nice medium body that bordered on being almost chewy at times. I was impressed with the carbonation as well as it never came across as dull in any way either. Started out with a quick bite of hop resin that slowly went over and faded into a nice bit of biscuit like malts. Rich with some nice hints of caramel and a long, drying finish that kept me going back for more of this very session able pale ale.

Overall I have to say that this was damn good. I really did not know what to expect of it going in, but I have to say it was well worth it. A little dark and resiny for a true pale ale, but this one will work for me any day of the week. Solid offering that will have me looking in their direction again.

mikesgroove, Sep 30, 2008
Photo of Wasatch
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks goes out to mhewes for this brew.

Pours a hazy golden brown color, nice carbonation, huge three finger plus creamy off-white head, lots and lots of sticky lacing. The nose is malty, with some hops, slight citrus. The taste is malty/hoppy, with some citrus. Medium body. Drinkable, this one surprised me, very nice.

Wasatch, Sep 28, 2008
Photo of midaszero
3.4/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Hazy amber with 2+ fingers of fluffy off white head

S - Citrus hops with some bready malt and a woodies pine smell all mixed together

T - There is some hop bitterness and some pine flavor but also a good malt flavor that comes in the back

M - Medium body with medium carbonation

D - Pretty decent pale but not a main stay. Good to mix things up

midaszero, Sep 27, 2008
Photo of joe1510
3.78/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

16oz Can

Received this can of craft from TPoling, thanks Travis! Southern Star's Pine Belt Pale Ale fills the pint glass a dingy copper with haze enough to make seeing through the glass difficult. A stream of tiny carbonation bubbles explode to the surface in clumps. The head grew to two fingers of dirty white without a problem and eventually faded to a thick cap with an even thicker collar. Patchy thin lacing was left after each drink.

There is a lot of caramel maltiness along with a candy like nature from the crystal malts. Candied grapefruit peel and sugared pink grapefruit make up the hop presence. This is a fairly straightforward aroma but what's there is enjoyable and draws me right in. I really like the candy sweetness in the nose.

The flavor shows a lot of the same personality the aroma showed although the hop profile and maltiness seem to be a little muddled. There is a lot of caramel maltiness in this beer which not only balances out the hop presence by may even overtake it. Only a touch of that candied grapefruit sweetness comes through in the flavor. I couldn't pick any up in the aroma but pine needle hoppiness, although not very big, takes over in the hop department. This is a good beer but too malt driven for my liking.

The body of this pale ale is velvety smooth with moderate heft. The carbonation is mellow and soft on the tongue creating a very nice silky body. There's mild hop bitterness left on the tongue.

The balance makes this an easy beer to put away. It's so easy, since no alcohol is detected; I can see the alcohol catching up to you. I just keep on drinking without many breaks.

This is a good APA from the new-ish brewery down in Texas. I'm glad to see yet another craft brewer going with cans and in this case, tall boys. Thanks for the taste Travis!

joe1510, Sep 27, 2008
Photo of thethrone
3.98/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pours a golden amber with generous foamy off-white head.

S - The hops come through in the aroma, with lots of pine and citrus. You can also detect the sweet caramel maltiness underneath.

T - Some earthiness in the flavor, hops were pretty subdued given the aroma.

M - Medium-light mouthfeel, carbonation is a bit lighter than I'd expect. Finishes with a light bitterness, no booziness to speak of.

D - Very sessionable beer, would be great for any social gathering.

thethrone, Sep 25, 2008
Photo of champ103
4.16/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a cloudy amber/brown color. A huge pillowing, rocky white head forms. There is a thick coat of lace all the way down my pint glass.
S: Wonderful. Citrus and piney hops. Lots of orange and lemon aromas with a touch of grapefruit. A big caramel malt aroma that balances out everything.
T: At first grapefruit is dominate. As the beer warms the flavors are more balanced. More sweet fruity flavors come through as well as the caramel malt. Lingering bitterness.
M/D: Slick and oily. A medium to full body pale ale. An easy drinking, quaffable beer for the size. Smooth and refreshing.

Gone way down hill since its first release, it use to be one of my favorite beers around. Still a very good option for a bigger pale ale.

champ103, Sep 21, 2008
Photo of JoeCeez
4.03/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Armock for hooking me up with this great brew.

App: pours from a 16oz can a slightly hazy amber with a healthy 3 fingered head that fades away to reveal some lovely lacing.

S: wonderfully piney somewhat citrusy hops with bready malt

T: There is an excellent balance of caramel malt and grapefruit with a hint of pine, the hops are there in a big way but not overpowering like some other popular pale ales, some becomes noticable alcohol in the end. There is a strong bitterness from the hops that is beautifuly complimented by the malty caramel sweetness, this beer has everything I'm looking for in a Pale Ale and I feel it's a perfect take on the style

M: the light body and low carbonation make this creamy smooth and silky on the tounge, unfortunately it's a little thin

D: despite the moderate abv this is an extremely sessionable brew, it's not so hoppy that it tires the palate and it's fairly complex so it remains interesting after a couple cans, if I could get this often it would be a steadfast regular in my rotation

I love craft beer in cans and this is another glowing example of why more breweries should be canning their brews.

JoeCeez, Sep 21, 2008
Photo of joepais
4.13/5  rDev +7.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to ckeegan04 for this one. My can was poured into a standard pint glass .Nice amber body brew toped of with a good two fingers worth of off white head that turned to a thick lace.

Great aromas of pine and sweet malts filled my nose

This is a good pale ale well balanced with the sweetness of the malts coming first and the fresh hoppy flavors finishing it off. The mouthfeel is medium to light and crisp in the carbonation department.

Drinkability is great on this brew; I could sit back with a six of this easily. Another great session brew for sure, finished this one watching the sox win another one

joepais, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of ArrogantB
3.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Tayner for sending this my way. Nice dark orange-brown and cloudy. Interesting smell, slightly hoppy, very malty. The taste pretty much follows the smell but definitely leans towards malts. This is very easy to drink and I like the fact that it is unfiltered. Interesting brew from a joint I've never heard of but could have been a local brewpub. Big ups to Southern Star.

ArrogantB, Sep 20, 2008
Photo of Damian
4.33/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 5

Drank from a 16 FL. OZ./1 PINT can
Served in a pint glass
Thanks to thickerfreakness for including this as an extra in our trade

The beer poured a crystal clear, deep orangey-amber color with a bubbly, fluffy, two-finger, off-white head. Excellent retention. Large blocks of lacing stuck along the glass.

The aroma was ultra fruity and sweet. A perfect blend of rich caramel malts and juicy, citrusy hops. Candied oranges were also noticeable along with tropical fruits. An unexpected yeasty quality was also detectable (perhaps this was from the bottle conditioning). Some metallic notes were initially present but they soon faded.

The taste was zesty and uber flavorful. This pale ale really packed a punch! Loads of sweet caramel maltiness appeared up front. Notes of orange peel came through in the center. Rich and fruity. The crisp, semi-dry finish was piney and mildly bitter. As the beer warmed, the flavor profile intensified greatly, particularly the maltiness. (Overall, this beer was definitely on the sweeter/maltier end of the spectrum for the style.)

The mouthfeel was a bit thin and watery with a bubbly, effervescent carbonation. This was the only lackluster aspect of the beer.

Pine Belt Pale Ale was a wonderfully flavorful and amazingly well balanced beer. I cannot remember the last time I had a pale ale that was so incredibly drinkable. All in all, this was definitely the best example of the style I have tried to date.

Damian, Sep 14, 2008
Photo of Sammy
3.45/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Serviceable pale, with large fluffy white head on golden. Malty aroma, with a tad of fruit. Taste is a understated C-hop, with malt, and a tad of fruitiness. Not metallic, but there is an under average mouthfeel that almost seems to lead there. Perhaps better on cask. Thirst quencher drinkable.

Sammy, Sep 14, 2008
Photo of gford217
4.1/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Can courtesy of jdv poured into a pint glass.

Pours a deep clear amber with lots of carbonation and a thin white head that lingers as a ring for while leaves a little bit of delicate lacing. The smell is dominated by pine (no surprise) and dark caramel malts. There's some citrus but only as an accent. The taste has the earthy hops up front with some pine and grassy tones, but malts play just as big a role with caramel malts forming a big backbone in the taste. There's a pine hop bitterness that lingers in the finish and leaves a pleasant aftertaste. The drinkability is fantastic on this one and would be a great beer for cruising around on a lake on a summer afternoon. I always enjoy good craft beer in a can and this is no exception. Very good pale.

gford217, Sep 09, 2008
Photo of Atlas1
3.63/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sooo excited to discover a new beer. And a local Texas beer to boot! Giddyup.

Poured into a barrel pint glass, the Pine Belt Pale Ale is a nice looking copper-amber colored brew with a healthy soapy-looking head on top. Rich orange and red hues shine through. Lots of carbonation here too. The nose is very pleasant, with notes of caramel sweetness, light fruits (think apple, strawberry, pear) with a noticeable hop presence. So nice, coming out of a can. The taste is solid, but a bit funky. Some good hop character up front, with a musty malt sweetness that emerges and takes over before giving way in the end to a funky bitter aftertaste. Not bad, and certainly unique, but not overwhelmingly good either. Solid, but strangely dank for a pale ale. Still, a totally drinkable ale. Mouthfeel is crisp and very very dry.

I like this beer, but I don't love it. High marks for appearance and aroma, but the taste and aftertaste leave me wishing it was a bit maltier, or at least a bit more balanced. That said, I like it enough to revisit this later on. Plus, the proper pint can is a nice touch. I hope these guys come out with other new beers in the future.

Atlas1, Sep 03, 2008
Photo of srandycarter
3.68/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Beautiful dark amber with TONS of head - good 2 inches. Retention is pretty good over the course, lacing sudsy but thick and a little web like.

S - Deep malts are there. There is a bitterness to the nose, but I don't get pine or citrus with it.

T - Nice sweet center, bittered at the finish. Again, wish the hops had more flavor - bittering but not flavorful hops.

M - Med + carb (maybe too much carb for me), medium body, good coating.

D - Carb is a bit ramped for me and the bitterness without the taste and smell components of hops that I am accustomed to lowers drinkability.

srandycarter, Sep 01, 2008
Photo of JohnGalt1
4/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A very unexpected and even more very appreciated extra from Mhewes.. Woo Hoo! Shared with Brenda, mine into my Boulevard Smokestack goblet.

2 Finger head... leaves sticky lacing and a beautiful collar.. hazy orange/amber red brew.

Nose is citric ... grapefruit and tangerines... bready malts with quite a bit of caramel but everything mixes surprisingly well in the bowl.

Flavor is more malty than the nose... toasted bread.. slightly carmalized sweet biscuits... citrus hops play more in the background .. mid palate is hoppy.. sorta oily.. but then the oils seep back into the malts.. finish is slightly toasty with a subtle floral mix.

Body is fairly full for the style.. carbonation is smooth as silk...

I am not sure what to make of this brew other than I really like it... sorta like a malty IPA with a caramel twist.. or maybe a bigger English ESB made with some prominent American hops in the final minutes of the kettle... whatever it is, I like it. If I had access, there is no doubt that it would be a pretty much year round staple... Michael, we must do this again.

4/3.5/4/4/4.5

JohnGalt1, Aug 26, 2008
Photo of everetends
4.08/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

16 oz can thanks to the great hopsleeroy. Poured into a shaped pint.

A: This is light brown, caramel color. Serious, off white head that is huge and rocky. Retention is great and lacing is big and seriously soapy as it sticks to the glass. Clarity has just a bit of haze but pretty damned clear.

S: Smell is of some crazy pine notes. The pine really shines here and you can smell it right as you pop the can open. Citrus hops, sweet malt and bit of metallic can also be found in the nose.

T: Taste is a great combo of pine and hops. The pine actually adds to the bitterness and along with the hops creates a great bitterness to this brew. Sweet, bready malt tries to keep this baby balanced but bitterness shines. All of these flavors are very pleasant and make a fine flavor profile.

M: Sticky, icky. This brew sticks to your mouth and really lets the hps and pine flavors linger on your tongue. Carbonation is perfect and the beer is on the light side of medium bodied. So good.

D: This beer is great. Not exacty a beer you want to pound but excellent. I could definitely keep this brew in stock in the fridge if it was around my area. Next time I am in Texas, a case is coming home with me.

everetends, Aug 20, 2008
Photo of mentor
3.35/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to TexasStout for the opportunity. Just over a finger of oranged-tan head over a murky red-orange liquid. Smells oranges, lemon, cream. Pine? Yeah, with searching some clean (non-resiny) pine/winterfresh. The pine become dominant as the beer warms.

Tastes strong hop flavor and decent hop bitter. over a tame and dusty malt presence. Hop flavor is oranges, tangerine, mild grapefruit, and some resiny pine (chinook hops?). Hop bitter is predominantly grassy rough cohumulone. Malt is lost under the hops. Aftertaste is earthy rising up retronasal with a persistent grassy rough on the flat of the tongue. Esters are missing or swamped out by the hop rough, but a slight creaminess is present. Unbalanced for the APA style (not enough malt and no esters), this is more of an IPA. Light body and strong carbonation. Meh.

mentor, Aug 13, 2008
Photo of msubulldog25
3.85/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A 16 oz. can poured to my 'Abita' pint glass. Thanks to biergut for bringing this to Portland and swapping right before OBF.

On the back of the can: "Clarity is overrated".

A: Darker than copper, really more like a 'maple syrup' light brown. First pour is mildly clear; it's the last few ounces that really turn this cloudy. Good carbonation cuts through the haze, rising to a frothy, light tan head that exceeds 2-fingers. Nice lace in jagged bands.

S: Malty aroma of baked bread. Modest whiffs of pine and grass. Faint mineral/metal twang.

T: Living in the Northwest, I've grown accustomed to APAs with big 'green' hop profiles. This one is different: big (Crystal) maltiness exudes a dark, toasted wheat breadcrust. Light honey/floral sweetness. Hopping is bitter and drying.

M: Somewhat crisp and rather refreshing, though a little thin. Body is medium.

D: Tasty brew, easy to drink. One I'd gladly have again.

msubulldog25, Aug 11, 2008
Pine Belt Pale Ale from Southern Star Brewing Company
86 out of 100 based on 604 ratings.