Vale Ale - McLaren Vale Beer Company

Not Rated.
Vale Ale
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BA SCORE
73
okay

38 Ratings
THE BROS
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no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 38
Reviews: 16
rAvg: 3.02
pDev: 17.55%
Wants: 0
Gots: 3 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
McLaren Vale Beer Company visit their website
Australia

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: vancurly on 11-16-2008)
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Ratings: 38 | Reviews: 16 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of pin
1.5/5  rDev -50.3%

Photo of Kroehny_Loves_Hops
2/5  rDev -33.8%

Photo of baumaxx1
2.09/5  rDev -30.8%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.25 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Bottled beer served in a glass.

Appearance-
Thin 1cm head but lasting, clear golden yellow colour, suspended yeast particles, lots of carbonation, leaves some lacing.

Smell-
Sugar, yeast, bread, malty, citrus, musk, slightly skunked.

Taste -
Mostly soda water with a hint of lemon and hops, sweet toffee, and a slightly stale bread taste. A bit bland, slightly over-sour and a metallic beer defect is present.

Mouthfeel-
Lively carbonation, slightly watery body, with a metallic after-taste which coats the roof of the mouth.

Overall-
Disappointing - I remember this being good on tap, and quite fruity, but haven't found it to be the same out of a bottle. Not the only batch to be like this lately. Maybe it used to be better, but I wouldn't recommend it now. This batch was characterless and defective. Will have to re-assess if I have it on tap again.

Note: Don't take this as a reflection on the rest of the brewer's range - the Vale IPA, Lager and Dark are excellent.

Photo of PolarBear3
2.11/5  rDev -30.1%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.75 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A - Pours a pale amber colour although a little cloudy. Frothy head that dissipates rather quickly

S - I get slight burnt toffee aromas but rather sweet bready malts and a hint of vanilla

T - However I don't really get any of the aromas in the taste. Get a little light fruit and earthy flavours that is a little bland and bitter at the finish.

M - Light bodies with medium to high carbonation

O - Not one of my favourites. Very bland and lack s any real depth of flavour. Leaves a horrible after taste and one I would not recommend.

Photo of ADZA
2.28/5  rDev -24.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

I must admit i reckon when you see a beer that has a label that looks classy you get suckered in for thinking/hoping it will be as classy as it looks this is not one of these beers,it pours a very light amber hue with a fast vanishing two finger head and hardly any lacing at all,the aroma is very weak for a APA in fact one of the weakest i have encountered with a weak grainy,citrus aroma and not much else,and from the smell of this beer i must admit i wasnt too confident about its taste and i was right its a weak citrus,grain,wine based taste that lacks any substantial features to remember it by and to be quite honest is just borderlining macro swill,ive got many things to say about this brew but ill try to be short and sweet firstly it is a big let down as it does have an appealing label and doesnt look the worst when poured but it has no aroma,no mouthfeel and pretty much no taste and overall i would not buy it again and would advise this winery to stick to wine unless this beer is significantly modified or they can come up with a beer that fits the bill of an APA.

Photo of csmartin6
2.5/5  rDev -17.2%

Photo of Vanz
2.5/5  rDev -17.2%

Photo of Rwalford74
2.5/5  rDev -17.2%

Photo of heygeebee
2.63/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a light straw / amber - really quite light. Head is good but recedes with little lacing.

Aromas of dough, yeast.

Taste is of bready malt, mainly sweet, some light hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel is OK - reasonably well carbonated for style

All in all... hmm... says Australian Pale Ale on bottle, on this site it's an APA, and tastes more like a somewhat poorly-made Helles Lager than say a Coopers Pale.

Pass. Given it's premium labelling and sold as a premium-priced four pack it doesn't cut it. Half off for the price. Best bit of the whole thing is the label.

Photo of CrazyDavros
2.68/5  rDev -11.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours pale gold with a large fading head.
Not much of note on the nose, a fair bit of sweet clean malt with some graininess, but little in the way of hops, just a slight grassy note.
Grainy malt is more prominent on tasting, quite sweet with some grassy noble hops. Weak, boring bitterness in the finish.
Somewhat watery body, and the carbonation should be higher.

Photo of SleepyMonk
2.75/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Chilled bottle poured into a pilsner glass.

Striking golden amber body with a light touch of cloudy haze. Effervescent two finger head that falls away with light lacing finishing to a thin layer.

Sweet fruit odors bond with sticky hops to form the focus of the aroma, in particular citrus, green apple and mild passionfruit.

Taste is softly balanced and hops driven, there are no overly bold or aggressive flavors. There is a bitter finish, once again though, that sensation is a little dull which lends itself well to the smoothness that goes toward defining this ale.

Medium bodied with a moderate degree of carbonation, it is refreshing up front with an easy finish. Vale Ale doesn't carry any significant taste characteristics however the smooth and mellow texture of this beer is its strongest feature.

Photo of Gasc0igne
2.75/5  rDev -8.9%

Photo of jjkatter
2.88/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

330ml bottle poured into a La Trappe goblet...

A- golden orange and a bit cloudy in color with a white hea... (correction) where did the head go. No retention whatsoever.

S- hops are at the forefront. I also get fresh straw.

T- whoow, a bit sour for my taste. The hops are present and the sourness disapates at the finish which is not half bad.

MF- not too bad at all once you get past the sour.

O- a the risk of sounding like a smartass, I find the finish is the better part of this beer. If you could somehow dismiss the sourness of this beer, I think you'd be left with something world class. Some publication put this beer as #1 beer brewed in Australia. Hmmmm. I've got 3 more of these to finish. Maybe I should have the neighbors over for a beer.

Food parings- pickled porks feet?

Photo of soju6
2.95/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Pours a slightly hazy golden color with a good head that fades to some lacing.

S: Mild aroma of fruit and bit of malt sweetness.

T: There is a light fruit flavor with a bit of malt sweetness. Mild bitterness and a clean finish.

F: Fairly light body, mild crispness and smooth but fairly bland.

O: A non-offensive pale ale that needs a bit of character.

Photo of adityashekhar
3/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of magpieken
3/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of dmorgan310
3/5  rDev -0.7%

Photo of juju7
3.13/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Joining the ranks of APAs floating arond the country. A fairly nondescript pale ale. Paler in colour than most with a nice creamy head. Nose is more citrus than tropical and not as upfront. A little slick on the palate, dry and uninteresting on the finish, almost lagerish. The bitterness is there and the basic APA traits are too, but if the beer tasted as good as the bottle looks, this beer would be awesome but alas...

Photo of SmashPants
3.14/5  rDev +4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Format: standard brown 330mL bottle, semi-macro label with a touch of classic minimalism. Stylish.

Appearance: pours a mid amber with a light haze and constant fine carbonation across the profile. A half-finger of off-white head drops to a thin cap with great lacing.

Aroma: I was expecting this to be a slightly lighter version of the IPA, but oh boy was I wrong. A faint aroma of earth with a touch of citrus. Quite dull.

Taste: biscuit malts, citrus and that earth again. Hop bitterness right from the start. Thankfully it is stronger than the aroma. Pleasant enough but not quite up to the McLaren Vale standard.

Aftertaste: some bitterness with a bit of an awkward fug from the malts.

Mouth feel: medium in body with a moderate carbonation that actually comes through a bit awkward - too spritzy for the style which makes the hops a touch too bitter rather than flavour-forward.

Overall: after their IPA, Lager and Dark Lager, this one was a bit of a disappointment. Not dreadful by any means, but certainly not the best APA I have ever had. Certainly not worth AU$65 a case.

Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.2/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This recently won the Local Taphouse's poll of the best 100 Australian craft beers of 2011. I hadn't tried it for a while, so I thought I'd check it out there recently when they put it on tap.

Pours a cloudy and bright yellow with a full head. Spidery lace down the inside of the glass. Big bubbled and voluminous carbonation. Looks pretty good overall.

Nose is minimal, and not particularly appealing, giving a very faint dusty, earthy hop aroma with a hint of lemon. A little pale sweetness. Average.

Taste is also a little lifeless. Some spritz, a bit of grainy sweetness and a dry and clean finish. Inoffensive enough, but that's about it. Feel is light at the start and almost empty by the end.

Eh. Best beer of the year? Not a chance. Inoffensive, but certainly not a good flagbearer for craft beer in Australia. What's more, I fear it has gotten worse since my first review.

Photo of tobelerone
3.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of mrjez
3.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of spycow
3.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of Jamestregenza
3.25/5  rDev +7.6%

Photo of Macca
3.28/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This poured a clear golden with an OK head. There was some lacing. Fruity hops and some maltiness were apparent on the nose and the palate. Medium bodied. This was an OK ale. It ticked all of the right boxes but it will not change your world. That word again - OK.

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Vale Ale from McLaren Vale Beer Company
73 out of 100 based on 38 ratings.