1. The wait is over! Download the BeerAdvocate app on iTunes or Google Play now.
  2. Get 12 issues / year of BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99!

Yellowtail Pale Ale - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Yellowtail Pale AleYellowtail Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
80
good

788 Ratings
THE BROS
88
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 788
Reviews: 334
rAvg: 3.52
pDev: 15.06%
Wants: 15
Gots: 40 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ballast Point Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
Kölsch |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
There's no wonder why our Pale Ale is so popular--it is skillfully crafted in the style of the Kolsch beers of Cologne, Germany. We've chosen German hops for aroma, and rounded out the recipe with a blend of American and German malts.

While it is very much like a pilsner, our Pale Ale is fermented at ale temperatures, giving it a subdued fruitiness--a perfect compliment to the crispness of the wheat and maltiness of the Munich malt. If you like a lighter brew but also like the complexity of craft beers, then our Pale Ale is for you.

23 IBU

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 12-26-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Latest | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Yellowtail Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 788 | Reviews: 334 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JMD
JMD

Connecticut

3.73/5  rDev +6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A: Cloudy light copper, with auburn tints. Big frothy head that laces the glass.

S: Bread, cookie dough, some grass and yeast. Faint wiff of floral hops.

T: Very bready and doughy. Some carmel and lemon. Finishes with some hop bitterness.

M. Moderate carbonation. Very smooth and creamy. I find the texture of this beer to be its most appealing aspect.

D: I really like this beer. All the flavors are subdued, but they work very well together. This beer does down easy and is very refreshing.

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2008 00:48:28 | More by JMD
Photo of LunaChick
LunaChick

Pennsylvania

3.38/5  rDev -4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I'm a bit confused by this one. It pours a nice golden color with a head that dissapates quickly. Smells very faint citrus, maybe some yeast but overall its all very muted. Taste lacks the hop presence of other beer this style--a very faint hint of citrus and a finish of yeast but again very muted. Reminded me much more of a pale ale than a kolsch. Even as a pale ale I would have found the flavors subdued. In the mouth its light-bodied and overall easy to drink.
Just to be sure I wasn't nuts I tried a sample of Kenzinger for comparison.
To me this particular brew by Ballast lacks the brightness and crisp taste of other kolsch brews. And if labled as a pale ale I still would think the overall flavor subdued. Not a bad beer by any stretch though. In fact this might be a good beer to start a macro-drinker into craft beer. Its not too agressively flavored that it would scare anyone off.

Serving type: bottle

07-09-2008 04:39:54 | More by LunaChick
Photo of seanh99
seanh99

Massachusetts

4.35/5  rDev +23.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Server from 12 oz bottle into Sam Adams Glass
A: Golden/ Dark yellow, very clear, Off White head with medium bubbles. Head disipated fairly quickly
S: Floral, malty and a little fruitiness in the background, no real hop scent.
T: Delicious, a bit sweet, simple bit of malt and some esters from the yeast with the hop bitterness being,slight and very late.
M: Aquious, crisp. refreshing.
D: This is a great drinker, I would love to sit out on the patio or out by someones pool and drink these all afternoon.

The taste on this is hard for me to describe other than to say it tastes like "really good beer".

I had this for the first time at the ACBF and when out and spent the $12.50 for six. I drank them all this weekend. I will have more in my fridge tomorrow afternoon.
I think I like Kölsch

Serving type: bottle

07-07-2008 00:49:31 | More by seanh99
Photo of GratefulBeerGuy
GratefulBeerGuy

New Hampshire

4.47/5  rDev +27%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

This one pours into my Sam Adam's 16 oz. glass a honey-golden color, clear and crisp with seemingly perfect carbonation. a little, lacy white crown rises shallow sticks around nicely.

This one has a very aromatic nose for the style. Sweet, clover honey in the clean and wheatie scented malt. Very earthy and herbal scented German hops, green veggies and slightly musty.

This one is a VERY crisp, very clean and refreshing semi-sweet malt that has a subtle clover-honey current with a dry- wheat and herbal hop balance. Yummy and amazingly drinkable.

Serving type: bottle

07-05-2008 22:01:06 | More by GratefulBeerGuy
Photo of Blupoet03
Blupoet03

Illinois

3.68/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured clear and golden with a light lacy that did not stick around long.

Initial reaction was that this beer is very light and crisp - good in hot weather. The nose hinted at a light floral hopping, with just a bit of malt in the taste to work with the bitterness. It left a lingering, though not unpleasant, aftertaste.

Overall, it was a good beer. Take it along on your next fishing trip or BBQ.

Serving type: bottle

07-04-2008 01:27:31 | More by Blupoet03
Photo of tempest
tempest

Pennsylvania

3.65/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a single from Abe's.

Well it's a good thing they're calling this a kolsch, because it wasn't much of a pale ale. This beer just has a clean pale malt flavor with a touch of sweet biscuit and a hint of hops. The aroma has sort of a bland light malt smell, but not much more. Still a tasty beer, nothing wrong with drinking this if you want something lighter.

UPDATE: 5/13/10: I'd just add that there's an interesting popcorn aroma and pleasant mineral character to the flavor and water.

Serving type: bottle

07-02-2008 13:55:17 | More by tempest
Photo of DrunkenMaster
DrunkenMaster

California

3.2/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

On tap at Lahainas in Pacific Beach. Clear golden color with no almost no head. Tastes more like a pilsener than an pale. Light floral aroma with just a bit of citrus. I drank about 3 pitchers of this beer just sitting out on the patio at Lahainas on a beautiful night.

Serving type: on-tap

07-01-2008 20:14:29 | More by DrunkenMaster
Photo of Foxman
Foxman

New Jersey

3.45/5  rDev -2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

It pours an absolutely clear macro-esque golden yellow. A finger of white head sinks to sparse circlets of froth. Slips of lacing slide along the inside of the glass.

In the aroma, pale malt, with a light, sugary fruitiness, is joined by distant doughy yeast. Biscuit and a vague but spicy hope presence fade away soon.

Upon tasting, the malt is light in every way, with light grain, light fruit, and light sweetness. A crisp hop note dries things promptly and opens the way to a very low-key spiciness. Soft baked biscuit and bready yeast speak up toward the close. The finish moves from a crusty earth tone to a thin, dry bitterness that falls off clean. Notice how much I used the word "light?"

Light bodied (there's that word again), carbonation bests a fast-flowing body and gives it a little push, but not enough.

Yes, it's light of nature and character and sometimes that makes for a fine session beer, but in this case it makes for more of a boring beer. There's just not enough there to make it notable or especially desirable in any real way. It does drink easily enough, but there's not a lot of reward for the effort, as minimal as it may be. And the downside to a bomber is I just might doze off before I finish it.

Serving type: bottle

06-23-2008 18:35:05 | More by Foxman
Photo of zeff80
zeff80

Missouri

3.95/5  rDev +12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a fizzy, somewhat cloudy, golden yellow color with a foamy, soapy, white, two-figer head. There were some rings of lace.

S - It smelled of citrus and was quite floral.

T - This was pretty sweet with a nice barley and grain taste. It also had some spicy hop presence.

M - It was sharp and very crisp. A light-bodied beer.

D - This is one of the best Kolsch-style ales that I've ever had. I liked the hop kick that it had.

Serving type: bottle

06-19-2008 16:08:53 | More by zeff80
Photo of Blakaeris
Blakaeris

Iowa

3.03/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours cloudy golden yellow with a modest white head that quickly becomes a thin soapy sheen. Slight carbonation and no lacing.

Aroma is pale malt, grassy, with mild citrus hop character.

Taste is similiar to the nose. Dry pale malt up front. Slight metallic bite. Lemon grass and light hops bring a crisp finish.

Mouthfeel is light bodied.

A crisp light beer. Flavor is very mild and subdued. Overall, nothing extraordinary though.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2008 22:29:14 | More by Blakaeris
Photo of bashiba
bashiba

Iowa

2.63/5  rDev -25.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Poured a golden orange color with a light off white head. Decent lacing.

Smell was light and grainy with a bit of corn.

Flavor was light with touches of light grainy malts and a hint of lemony hops, but they were all overshadowed by a tin like metallic taste that seemed to dominate the flavor.

Mouthfeel was light and a bit dry with some mild carbonation.

Drinkability is ruined by the persistent metallic taste.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2008 22:23:08 | More by bashiba
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear gold with a white-ish head that wastes no time in falling. Flavor is a bit sweet and smooth. Noticeable grain attributes. But that sweet aftertaste sticks with you for quite some time. Feel has a biting carbonation. This is pretty easy to drink. I have to say this kölsch style is growing on me lately.

Serving type: bottle

06-03-2008 07:28:40 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of brentk56
brentk56

North Carolina

4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Pours a clear pale golden color with a marshmallow cap; decent retention and a touch of lace

Smell: Bready, with lemon floral tones

Taste: Opens with sweet malty elements that have a considerable lemon character; after the swallow, the contrasting flavors persist and are joined by a hint of wheat and a dollop of husky grain

Mouthfeel: Light to medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: A little maltier than would be expected for the Kölsch style; when I reviewed this on tap I was overly critical as I thought it was a pale ale

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2008 22:13:56 | More by brentk56
Photo of jmz62565
jmz62565

Connecticut

3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear yellow/straw with a large white head that leaves good lacing. The smell is somewhat pungent with bread yeast and floral scents. The taste is light,crisp,and clean with bread yeast,hops,and floral flavors. The m/f is light with all the flavors mixing well. A nice light summer beer with alot of taste.

Serving type: bottle

05-31-2008 21:13:47 | More by jmz62565
Photo of GClarkage
GClarkage

California

3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

05/24/08- Purchased at City Beer in San Fancisco, CA.

Presentation- 12oz bottle with no freshness info. Poured into a random pint glass.

Appearance- Pale yellow-golden pour with a 1/2 inch seltzery head. Leaves behind decent lace sheets.

Smell- Light scented sweet toasted malt and a handfull of hops.

Taste- Sweet malt with a lemony flavor. Hops are present and are lemon-grapefruit in flavor. A bit grainy as well.

Mouthfeel- Mid to high range carbonation level.

Drinkability- Haven't had many of this style, but it went down easy enough. Decent enough to try.

Serving type: bottle

05-25-2008 03:45:13 | More by GClarkage
Photo of ibbjamin
ibbjamin

California

2.38/5  rDev -32.4%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Paid $3.69 for a bomber from BevMo in Willow Glen, CA. Poured into a pint glass with 2 pours.

A 1 finger off white head that disappears to nothing quickly. Medium carbonation. Transparent light yellow color. Lacing is almost non existent.

Mild aroma of hops with hints of toasty nutty malts.

A sweet dry malty taste with grassy hints.

Light body, watery finish, lightly carbonated.

Serving type: bottle

05-22-2008 02:22:24 | More by ibbjamin
Photo of smcolw
smcolw

Massachusetts

3.1/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Light amber color with a slight haze. Good lace. Modest head, but lasts.

Slightly stinky, but not skunky. Dry malt and slightly grainy. Very low hop.

Astringent is the first word that comes to mind. Flavorful, but dry. Smooth mouthfeel but not overly rich. Nice hoppy finish with good aftertaste.

This wouldn't be the first beer I'd reach for, but it is innocent enough to enjoy. No flaws but no curiosities either.

Serving type: bottle

05-17-2008 22:28:21 | More by smcolw
Photo of edchicma
edchicma

Massachusetts

3.98/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, rich yellow with minimal head. Smell is sweet, malty, inviting. taste is a rich blend of sweet malt on the front with a decent, slightly bitter hop finish. Mouthfeel is almost creamy, slighly chewy. Drinkability is enhanced by the creaminess and light hop finish.

Serving type: bottle

05-14-2008 23:44:25 | More by edchicma
Photo of Floydster
Floydster

California

3.23/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

22 ounce bottle purchased from Cooke's in El Segundo for about four dollars, split with my friend last night, poured into a pint glass

A-Golden yellow color, can see right through this bad boy, one inch foamy white head, did not stick around for long, not much retention or lacing

S-A bit skunky surprisingly, grassy accents, straw and hay, dry hoppiness, some slightly bready malt, all aromas are weak and barely distinguishable

T-This beer was incredibly light and it was hard not to drink really fast, started off with some faint hops, some malt in the middle but not a very noticeable amount, more hops in the finish, scary how easy this stuff went down, especially as it warmed, taste faded mostly by the end but still not bad, would have liked to have more of an aroma and flavor to make this beer stand out, although it never did taste bad, just not too complex

M-Crisp, slightly dry, and slick mouthfeel, thirst quenching, thin body, large amount of carbonation, taste did not last long

D-Could drink a lot of this stuff mainly because it is so light and the ABV is below five, of course there is no booze, would make a nice session, smooth and crisp at the same time

Surprisingly had never tasted this one until yesterday, not one of Ballast Point's best by any means but not bad for its style, might drink again, especially in the summer time, worth trying

Serving type: bottle

05-08-2008 16:43:07 | More by Floydster
Photo of brewgetter
brewgetter

Kansas

2.98/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Very clear pale gold in color, very thin head but has some lacing. Smell is reminds me of the BMC crowd. Taste is better than the smell, but leaves a yeastiness lingering. Light on the hops, carbonation is OK but not great. Not too bad, but I was expecting a little better.

Serving type: bottle

05-01-2008 18:59:15 | More by brewgetter
Photo of mhewes
mhewes

Colorado

3.1/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

A : Pours a golden color with a decent white head

S : Malty with some grass hints

T : Grainy and yeasty with some hop bitterness.

M : Thin with some decent carbonation

D : For a kolsch, it just doesn't do it for me. It is not a crisp and refreshing as I would expect.

Serving type: bottle

04-27-2008 00:15:42 | More by mhewes
Photo of Gavage
Gavage

New Jersey

3.9/5  rDev +10.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a dark golden yellow color with a 1" head that lingers a while. Some spotty lacing develops.

Smell: grass, hay, and some malt sweetness is detectable by the nose.

Taste: grainy malt base with grass, pears, and mild bitterness. Very simple kolsch style that is refreshing.

Mouthfeel: crisp from start to finish. Medium bodied beer. Clean aftertaste.

Drinkbaility: definite session beer here. I was surprised the label states pale ale but the liner notes explain this is a kolsch. Tasty and worth a try.

Serving type: bottle

04-26-2008 23:29:32 | More by Gavage
Photo of YonderWanderer
YonderWanderer

Colorado

3.98/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a pale yellow with two fingers of active foam that dissipates fairly quickly.

S: Some sweet malts, and a hint of grassy hops.

T: This follows the smell. The malt is dominant, with some biscuit and sweetness blending nicely. A nice grassy hops comes in and balances it out.

M: Smooth, thin, but that's how it should be.

D: This is a hell of a session brew. Very tasty, and I could see drinking this on a regular basis.

Serving type: bottle

04-23-2008 23:28:54 | More by YonderWanderer
Photo of jwc215
jwc215

Wisconsin

3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours straw golden yellow with a thin white head that holds up for awhile before becoming a vanishing patch.

The smell is sweet grain with a hint of Continental-type/floral hops.

The taste follows the nose. A touch of "wet cardboard". A bit yeasty, though with some crispness. Sweetish, turning to a dryish finish. Appropriately light-bodied.

A decent attempt at the style, though not quite as crisp and refreshing as some more classic examples of a Kolsch-style beer, IMO.

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2008 14:20:24 | More by jwc215
Photo of Billolick
Billolick

New York

3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

22 ounce bomber, no freshness info offered. Pours light and clear, under a fairly thin off white tiny bubble head, that leaves plenty of sticky, fine sheeting. Resiny hop nose. Easy drinking, snappy, hopped up offering. I personally find it confusing when a brewery puts out a "pale ale" that actually is a Kolsch beer. Anyway, this beer is a pleasant enough light sipper. Nothing special going on here.

Serving type: bottle

04-19-2008 12:11:44 | More by Billolick
Yellowtail Pale Ale from Ballast Point Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 788 ratings.