Dismiss Notice
Microbrew Invitational
Join us June 3 + 4 in Boston and help us drink 300+ beers, ciders, kombuchas, meads, sakes and more!

TICKETS: beeradvocate.com/micro/

Trail Head Pale Ale | Fat Head's Brewery & Saloon

55 Reviews
no score
Send samples
For Trade:
Trail Head Pale AleTrail Head Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Fat Head's Brewery & Saloon
Ohio, United States | website

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.30%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
Go off the grid and give back some good vibes. Brewed with whole flower Simcoe and Citra hops, Trail Head Pale Ale is a limited edition batch exclusive to Cleveland. A portion of the proceeds from this special beer go directly to the Cleveland Metroparks Trails Fund, which supports the rehabilitation of the park's more than 270 miles of trails. Now grab your gear and take the trail!

Added by Stinkypuss on 06-02-2013

User Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Reviews: 55 | Ratings: 428
Photo of mrtoast
4.72/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Welcome to my first beer rating. Those of us lucky enough to live in NE Ohio are able to enjoy some freaking outstanding beers (most of them from Fat Heads), but this is the one I look forward to the most. It hits me perfectly in the zone between a session ale and an IPA. Totally refreshing and flavorful but without the heaviness of an IPA or the thinness of a session ale, and they do a wet hopped version that takes it to an even higher level of hoppy perfection. Can't say enough good things about this one. I'd give it a 5 but I don't want people to discount my first rating as a noobish beerjackulation.

 610 characters

Photo of woodychandler
4.51/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

This CAN came to me from one of the owners of The Fridge, proving once more that it pays to advertise, especially where The CANQuest (tm) is CANcerned! Many thanks.

From the CAN: "A portion of the proceeds goes directly to the Cleveland Metroparks Trails Fund"; "Award Winning"; "Keep It Cold. Drink It Fresh."; "Silver Medal Fresh Hop Ale Great Ameri[CAN] Beer Festival (R) 2013"; "Trail Head Pale Ale is handcrafted using Citra, Mosaic, Simcoe and Amarillo hops, geared for chillin' out after a great day on the trails. Hey, get your [CAN] off the couch, find a Trail Head and give back some good vibes ... a portion of the proceeds goes directly to the Cleveland Metroparks Trails Fund."; "Chill Out Man, Have A Beer! (tm) [undersigned] Matt [-] Chris [-] Glenn"; "Keep your [CAN] off the streets. Please recycle your empties."

I listened to the loud Crack! and responded with an inverted Glug. This produced three fingers of dense, tawny head with good retention, leaving sticky lacing in its wake as it slowly fell. Color was Amber to Deep Amber/Light Copper (SRM = > 9, < 13) with NE-quality clarity. Nose had both grapefruit and mango/peach/papaya fruity odors and my hophead mouth began to water. Mouthfeel was medium, kind of soft, actually. The tropical fruit flavors were prevalent in my mouth and on my tongue. Mmm. The lacing that was now beginning to develop was going to require a jackhammer to remove later. No wonder this medaled! It was not overly bitter, it had a great mouthfeel and it was going down really easy. A little too easily, in fact. I drank well over half of it without really giving it much thought. The finish was dry, but not so dry as to render me breathless and gasping. This was a really good use of the inherent hops.

 1,757 characters

Photo of ZachDow7
4.51/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Another amazingly hopped beer from Fatheads, picked up a case of cans from the brewery in NO. Great out of the can, but you get the aromas of all the hops way better in a glass. Alot of floaters in the pour though...and I mean ALOT!

 232 characters

Photo of JohnnyMc
4.51/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4.5

New beer to contribute to the Metro Parks system.

Pours out a very nice golden orange with 2 fingers of a fluffy white head.

The aroma is full of pine, grassy hop notes, grapefruit and orange peel. Despite the use of Citra I don't get any of the characteristically tropical fruit notes. A small amount of bready malt is detectable too.

The flavor has a ton of pine right away and that is followed by some bitter grapefruit peel and a nice amount of sweet orange. There is a little bit of bready malt, but not much and this finishes pretty dry and bitter.

The body is light and the mouthfeel is crisp.

This is an extremely refreshing and easy drinking APA, but it tastes more like an IPA with the firm bitterness. A great beer, but I wish the Citra hops would have come through more.

 791 characters

Photo of Evahflow
4.5/5  rDev +9.2%

A: Dark Copper, thick white head that hangs around

S: Immediately you know citra is in this. Big burst of Mango, Guava, Tangelo, Pine and Biscuity backbone.

T: Simcoe with a capital S. You get that dank pine upfront, Berries, there are berries folks, Orange pulp, Tropical fruit fusion, Caramel biscuitness.

M: Medium carb, its substantial in your mouth. They aren't hitting you with just some 2 row and an adjunct. There is a maltiness to it that is in the kitchen with you dancing while you are getting dinner ready but you never step on its toes, but its presence is known if not felt. Nice bitterness that lets you know it's real.

O: Fat Heads does it again. This is not a pale ale, step off with that. Hold your tongue. This is a straight up IPA and it's a Damn good one. Simcoe and Citra are in the spotlight while the Malt backbone plays the piano. Get this if you Can

 880 characters

4.49/5  rDev +9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.75

Another great beer from fat heads. Guys must be beer wizards. Edit: fresh bottle dated December 12, 2015. Tasted on January 8, 2016. Super bright floral and citrus notes. Gorgeous light orange color with 3 finger head. Bitterness is perfect for the malts, which are there, but the hops are the stars. Wow! So so good. I'd put this fresh up against zombie dust any day.

 368 characters

Photo of schoolboy
4.48/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Fat Head brews have the tendency to just bowl you over. This one does it. I'm not sure how a brew can be this close to perfect. It shows exactly what is great about this style.

It pours a deep yellow with loads of lace. The aroma is fresh and crisp with sharp finishing hops aroma. The taste is that dry over the top APA, but it is a little dark and malty too, giving it some balance. It goes down bitter and stays bitter on the tongue.

The biggest problem with this brew is that I did not buy enough. I will get more at the store tomorrow and maybe stop by the brew pub and have a fresh pint next week.

 606 characters

Photo of AC-Mivsek
4.46/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

A- Pours golden with a medium sized white head
S- Piney citrus hops,
T- Very hop-forward, resiny, slight malt sweetness on the finish
M- High carbonation, medium body, crisp, clean, and refreshing
O- I have nothing bad to say about this beer. Nice and hoppy, very well crafted and balanced.

 292 characters

Photo of BB1313
4.34/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

On-tap at Fat Head's in N. Olmsted, Ohio

Pours a pretty golden with a fluffy white head that leaves nice retention and sticky lacing. The aromas are pretty dank and full of grapefruit and pine. There's a touch of caramel malts, but they basically take a backseat. Flavors are extremely sharp and crisp. Lots of grass and tastes like a fresh hop vine. Tons of pine resin and citrus. Very bitter and earthy. More grapefruit with some orange and lemon in the mix. It has a west-coast vibe to it. Moutheel is wonderful. It's light, but medium bodied. Active carbonation that makes it smooth and creamy. Very fun and easy to drink.

This is an amazing beer. It definitely drinks more like an IPA. It's hitting on all cylinders. It's another hop delight from Fat Head's. Great use of citra and simcoe. One of my new favorites from Fat Head's.

 837 characters

Photo of Swettenham_Shire
4.34/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Currently my highest rated pale ale. Just an amazing concoction of Simcoe and Citra hops; the taste really hits home. Well done Fat Heads.

So happy to see they finally got around to canning this. I'll always have a fresh can in my fridge when the distribution hits Columbus.

The wet hopped version tops the regular version, but both are fantastic!

 349 characters

Photo of wvsabbath
4.34/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Serving Type - Can

Appearance - Golden tan, brown with a 1/2 foamy head that disappeared quickly. Decent lacing.

Smell - Citric fruits, orange, lemon, grapefruit, tangerine, Some pale malts at the finish.

Taste - First sip is a really nice amount of piney hops, lemon and orange with some pale malts. Really Smooth with full flavor. Nice caramel/pale malts add a nice backbone. Citric fruits are throughout this beer, and provide sweet flavors.

Mouthfeel - First the hops sweeten, and bitter the tongue. Citirc fruits coat the palate, along with caramel and pale malts. Aftertaste is citric sweet, minor bitter and malty.

Overall - A really nice beer. Flavorful, loads of flavor, easy to drink, balanced and complex. A another winner for fatheads. A must try, that simple.

 779 characters

Photo of zimm421
4.31/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a pint glass from a can dated 7/29/15. Appears a nice amber color with a thick off-white head that sticks around for a while and leaves great lacing. The nose is very balanced, but slightly muted. There's a good caramel and biscuit maltiness and some small citrus and pine notes. The taste is extremely refreshing with just the right amount of bitterness and sweetness. The malt comes through perfectly and the citrus, tropical fruit and pine all have their place here. Definitely worth grabbing whenever you have the chance.

 537 characters

Photo of rjd722
4.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: Deep, clean golden with white foam head and lots of lacing.

Aroma: Tropical, piney, and citrus.

Taste: Matches the aroma directly, somewhat sweet, resinous hops dominate.

Feel: Light and refreshing, has a piney, bitter aftertaste.

 241 characters

Photo of mtomlins
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12oz can into a stemmed tulip glass

Poured a slightly hazy copper color with a big white, persistent head that leaves nice lacing as it falls to a creamy collar. It has a fantastic big hoppy nose, pine, grapefruit and floral. The taste is also hop dominated with dry grapefruit, hints of herbal/floral notes, and some other citrus, but there is still a mild malt character providing body and balance. It has a medium body and good carbonation and is light, creamy and refreshing. Overall, this is a great pale ale that, with its 6+ ABV and aggressive hopping, is also a great IPA. Whatever you want to call it, it is fantastic!

 642 characters

Photo of siege06nd
4.27/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Canned on 5/28/2014. Thanks, Mark!

A. Pours a mostly clear light copper color. A stiff three finger white head pops right off the top. It calms to a finger and leaves some very soapy lacing as I sip the brew down. This is a frothy, juicy looking pale ale. Very nice.

S. Citra hopping is very prevalent, with tropical and creamy accents being quite prominent in the bouquet. An underlying herbal and grassy hop profile provides some welcome spiciness to the sweeter, softer citra. Also some very subtle malt on the nose, with a mild biscuity doughiness rounding out the bouquet.

T. Big orange creamsicle, dry, bitter grapefruit zest up front. At that point, the tropically fades out and is replaced, albeit briefly, by some herbal, grassy bitterness with hints of sage and even arugula. Tropicality then returns with sweet orange and some bready malt. Finish goes back to spicy, dry, grassy hops. Finish is slightly astringent, would have enjoyed the brighter tropical notes over the tea leaf and tobacco finish presented here. That said, it's a tasty ass beer.

M. Moderately carved with a surprisingly creamy feel. It's tropical, sweet, and light up front, though the finish really skews towards sage, herbs, and tea leaf. Perhaps a little much so.

O. This is an excellent pale ale with some great citra hopping and an initially tropical flavor profile. While the finish is a little more astringent and drying than I would prefer, it definitely gives you a classic pale ale flavor that is an interesting contrast to the brightness of the citra hops up front. The finish is just a little to herbal/tea leaf for me...almost a plasticy taste in its thin bitterness. But everything before is super top notch, and these notes fade quickly as you are left with a pleasant malt kiss and tropical residual flavor. A great pale ale, Fat Heads Trail Head is another in a long line of top-notch hop-forward offerings from one of the best brewers in the country.

 1,955 characters

Photo of WVbeergeek
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Appears a brilliant copper slight ruby hue to it nice caramel malts came to play, with a whole lot of hops.

Aroma bright citrus notes with big tropical fruit hanging around with each sniff including papaya, mango, a bit of passionfruit in there as well. This is well made pale ale, it’s as hoppy as most IPAs but more flavorful with a moderate level of bitterness only 55 IBUs but it’s kickin’ ass.

Flavor has a strong malt presence some nice caramelization, complemented with big expressive hop notes again with the tropical fruit citrus and herbaceous pine notes in the backend. I could drink this in number without effort, glad to also see it on tap in the Burgh...cans can be found at Fat Head’s in the Southside intermittently that’s where I sourced my six pack.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied even carbonation slick oily hop textures on the palate pretty great tasting beer. Full on lingering hop finish, very nice pleasant experience with each sip.

Overall, I’m down with this beer…quintessentially one of the best pale ales I’ve ever had hands down!

 1,081 characters

Photo of BrewUSA
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

Fat Heads Trail Head

Look 8/10
Smell 18/20
Taste 37/40
Feel 10/10
Drinkability 18/20

Overall 91/100

Really nice pale that really drinks more like an IPA, has a nice malt back one too. Def hop forward and at 6.3 it has a fair amount of bite (for a pale) it really packs a decant hop wallop and has and exceptionally smooth feel and consistency. I'm drinking it less than 10 days old, So it's rather fresh. I could imagine it may fade with age. Still would be good I imagine...

Final Verdict: Real hop heavy and smooth pale worth seeking out~

 545 characters

Photo of earljones199
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

Nice dark amber color with a good amount of hop bitterness balanced with a good malt sweetness. I can taste a lot of orange citrus. Like a lot of good pale ales is that it doesn't overwhelm with too much bitterness but it lasts forever on the tongue

 250 characters

Photo of Huhzubendah
4.25/5  rDev +3.2%

The beer is light orange with a white head. Big hop aromas, with oranges and assorted citrus shining through. Tangy citrus, nectarines, mild sweetness. Medium bodied with ample carbonation. Solid.

 197 characters

Photo of brentk56
4.24/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Appearance: Pours a clear amber with a lot of floaties (never seen that before in a pale ale); the cap levels out at a couple of inches and leaves strands of lacing

Smell: Sugary and floral, with a shortbread and caramel malt tone that is capped by tropical fruit

Taste: Shortbread with a touch of caramel (or treacle), up front, with a huge blast of tropical fruit - mango, honeybell tangelo and pineapple; increasing floral sweetness, after the swallow, though the hops really dominate at all times

Mouthfeel: Medium body, quite creamy; moderate carbonation

Overall: A really tasty APA; while some will argue that it verges on an IPA (and it does), I would stick with the APA classification due to the beguiling malt base; and I will forgive the floaties, except for the occasional clump that winds up in my mouth

Thanks, bittermestupid, for the opportunity

 869 characters

Photo of LiquidCucumber
4.23/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Had a taste of this on draft yesterday at the brewery and bought a sixer to go from the gift shop. I have to admit that this beer tastes much better out of a can, IMHO. A very citrus-forward pale ale.

 200 characters

Photo of ONovoMexicano
4.21/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 ounce can into a can-shaped glass. Canned on 10/29/2014.

Great-looking beer right here. Huge frothy, foamy pale white head. It's massive. The body is dark amber with golden hues and crystal clarity. 4.5

Floral and citrusy simultaneously, with neither overpowering the other. Lemony notes and pine are there too. A biscuity malt presence is in the mix too. It all works pretty well together.

Lemony citrus notes lead on the palate before giving way to the biscuity malt which then leads to a resinous finish. There's a sweet fruity quality underneath the more prominent tastes just mentioned, giving this an impressive medley of flavors. Very well done. 4.25

This beer is potently bitter, creamy and and medium-bodied with a good malt presence. Carbonation is bubbly and colorful and almost has just the right touch. 4.25

Excellent brew. Quite an aggressive pale ale, but it hits all the right notes.

 922 characters

Photo of buschbeer
4.21/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

12 FL. OZ. can
Served in a tulip glass
Wet hopped 9/16/14

L - This beer is amber with golden highlights. It is topped off with several inches of off-white head that clings to the sides of the glass.

S - I get dank citrus with grapefruit and pine asserting themselves.

T - The taste is full of bitter citrus and pine with a lingering pine finish.

M- Medium with plenty of carbonation.

O - This pale ale is better than most IPA's. A fantastic example of what Matt Cole can do.

 479 characters

Photo of rodlavers
4.21/5  rDev +2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Draft serving in Pittsburgh. Red-orange amber, clear, crisp white head, thins to nice white later, lots of cling. Amazing pine aromas, real tropical float presence about the smell, some malt in there. similar flavor profile, very pine forward, very good. Malt more noticeable in flavor. Literally feels wet; very juicy, mouthwatering, fresh and crispy. Overall tasty beer, very enjoyable, check it out, cheers.

 410 characters

Photo of Shroud0fdoom
4.2/5  rDev +1.9%

Courtesy of SomethingClever thanks Brother!

I'm going to keep it short and to the point. This brew pours a gorgeous shade of rich golden amber with a think soapy white head. The aroma is citric, tropical stone fruits and deep resinous hops in there. The flavor is as the nose describes, citrus (nice orange peel and Grapefruit) with Tropical Fruits (Pineapple and Passion Fruit) with also a Resinous Hop flavor toward the finish. The malts are present with a cracker-ish sweetness. The brew finishes bitter sweet, clean and resinous. The feel is light carbonation on point.

Overall: This brew is damn enjoyable! This is slightly off balanced with more focus on hop flavors. I'm a fan of that! The malt is there and acts as a nice backbone, yet allowing the hop resins to clearly shine in the brew. Are we sure this is just a Pale Ale? There's nothing negative to say about this beer, except it isn't Distributed in Baltimore! FatHeads, please come to Baltimore! This Brew is Recommended!

 991 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50 | 51-75  | nextlast
Trail Head Pale Ale from Fat Head's Brewery & Saloon
91 out of 100 based on 55 ratings.