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Yellowtail Pale Ale - Ballast Point Brewing Company

Yellowtail Pale AleYellowtail Pale Ale

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

726 Ratings
THE BROS
88
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 726
Reviews: 329
rAvg: 3.52
pDev: 14.77%


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 Reviewers | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Yellowtail Pale Ale Alström Bros
Ratings: 726 | Reviews: 329 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of chinchill
chinchill

South Carolina

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

12 oz undated but very recently purchased bottle served in a pint glass. Small amount of sediment at bottom of the bottle added mid-tasting.

Near clear golden liquid with a substantial amount of fine-grained carbonation visible. Small white head has moderate retention. More lacing than expected, given the head.

Smells like a malty lager, albeit with a fruitiness that is much more characteristic of ales. The flavor is not as expected. Both the aroma and the "pale ale" labeling led me to expect something with much more hop flavor, but there's only a rather subtle touch of spicy hops in the taste. If I hadn't tried the beer before seeing the description "crafted in the style of the Kolsch beers of Cologne, Germany" I would have been surprised. This beer is mild in flavor, as per the kolsch style. In fact, I had a quite similar, but perhaps even less flavorful kolsch last weekend at the Pisgah (NC) Brewery.

It has a nice, if near watery, mouthfeel with excellent carbonation and some dryness in the finish. Slightly bitter balance, yet more malt than hop flavor.

O - a highly drinkable and refreshing beer that makes an excellent substitute for a light beer ... not that you'd want one of those. Plenty flavorful for the kolsch, but not the PA style.

Serving type: bottle

09-07-2011 00:25:10 | More by chinchill
Photo of francisweizen
francisweizen

Arizona

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

This is a light golden colour with a fluffy head of all-white foam. The aromas are slightly fruity, with nice roasted malts, and slight citrus-y/floral hops in the aroma. The taste is super light and refreshing. You can really tell that this is a low alcohol brew that is crafted with the utmost care and passion. Truly 'artisinal'. The mouthfeel is pretty good, bordering on great and the drinkability is nice for this new age Kolsch as well. A good, solid, brew!

Serving type: bottle

12-22-2003 17:07:45 | More by francisweizen
Photo of spinrsx
spinrsx

Ontario (Canada)

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

12oz bottle - from Total wine summerlin las vegas NV for 1.99$

Appearance - Clear yellow colour with an average size fizzy white coloured head. There is an average amount of carbonation and there is some fair lacing. The head lasted for maybe 2 minutes.

Smell - breads/grains, lemon

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and the taste is made up of breads/grains, lemon juice and zest, and some very light hops. It finishes with a bready/grainy aftertaste with some very subtle hop notes.

Overall - Although very drinkable and refreshing, this beer is quite boring. I expected a little bit more from this brewer. Maybe just a touch more in the citrus/hop department.

Serving type: bottle

04-24-2012 19:52:36 | More by spinrsx
Photo of LilBeerDoctor
LilBeerDoctor

New York

3.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Reviewed on 7/20/08. Bottle. Pours a light orange with a small head. Aroma of light wheat and Kolsch malts, some light fruits. Flavor starts off with a sharp, spicy initial bite followed by Kolsch malts, apple, pear, rhubarb, champagny notes. Very light, very tasty. Good beer, although as noted below, the name is quite misleading.
7/4/7/4/14 (3.6/5)

Serving type: bottle

12-20-2008 20:27:53 | More by LilBeerDoctor
Photo of hopdog
hopdog

Pennsylvania

3.13/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle acquired in trade with DarkElf (thanks!).

Poured a clear gold color with a smaller sized white head. Aromas of grass, citrus and some fruits (apples). Somewhat fruity tasting with light grass and wheat. Medium sweet with a very light hop bitterness finish. Watery body.

Notes from 6/3/05

Serving type: bottle

11-23-2008 00:34:26 | More by hopdog
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 Brenden
Brenden

Ohio

3.83/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The color is a medium yellow with a deeper amber hue to it. A frothy, thick pure white head starts at 2 fingers tall and eventually falls off to a sturdy foam that drops patchy lacing well down the glass.
It's not until I smell it until I decide to read the description, and it makes a lot more sense. There's a Saaz-like note of mildly sulfuric hops, verifying the brewery's claim; it is indeed like a pilsener in many ways. There's a touch of malty sweetness along with drier malts as well, and the aroma showcases a nice depth as well as proving that a gentler style can have a lot to it.
The flavor showcases those same dusty, earthy and grassy Saaz-like notes as the aroma, with a very gentle bitterness among the malty sweetness. The only thing detracting is that is goes strongly grainy.
The feel is lovely, crisp up front and continuing all the way in a flowing light but deep body with a nice, creamy smoothness that keeps me wanting another sip.
Another good one from Ballast Point.

Serving type: bottle

04-14-2012 03:31:20 | More by Brenden
Photo of maximum12
maximum12

Minnesota

3.98/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Rec'd this bottle in a trade with the generous EliottJW. The last surviving beer from a recent box that was brimming with Cali goodness.

Pours a nice, clear yellow, although the second glass was clouded by the bottom-feeders. Smell is bare light hops & pale malts.

Yellowtail is mild, pleasant, 75 degrees with only high clouds in the forecast. Light spices, cool sweet malt, crushed saltines without the salt, bare minimum of hopping to give it a gummed bite. Nothing leaps out, but this is a brew that one could sip, sip, sip, sip & sip more while grilling or mowing or clipping or all of the above. Drinkability is an 800 pound gorilla. Crisp, clean, sharp, all those adjectives that describe a good, lower ABV brew apply here.

Very nice beer & an excellent example of a kolsch. Too many of this style have a watery aspect, or lack taste, or are just plain boring. This is good. I likes.

Serving type: bottle

05-07-2010 01:09:39 | More by maximum12
Photo of ArrogantB
ArrogantB

Colorado

3.63/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Nice yellow, straw color with a rocky, puffy head. It also had a musty smell to it. The flavor was some must, subtle fruitiness, and the mouthfeel was crisp. I could see drinking a couple of these while doing yard work. Then again, I would probably just buy the Big Eye IPA instead.

Serving type: bottle

11-30-2007 06:04:23 | More by ArrogantB
Photo of merlin48
merlin48

Kentucky

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

Twelve ounce bottle pours a clear goldenrod body that shows a lot of active carbonation. Immense vanilla head retains well and becomes pitted and rocky. Lots of scattered patchy lace.

Aroma is quite biscuity, accented by spicy and floral hops.

Light medium body is well carbonated.

Taste is well balanced, but governed by an earthy and spicy hop bitterness. Malt presence is very biscuity and has a hint of honey. Finishes clean and crisp.

One of the better American examples of the style and very sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

01-25-2009 23:01:27 | More by merlin48
Photo of HuskyinPDX
HuskyinPDX

Washington

3.58/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz poured into a pint glass.

A- Pale orange color with a tan/cream colored 1 finger sized head.

S- Wheat, very pilsner like.

T- Wheat, barley, citrus, fruity.

D- Nice carbonation, light and refreshing. Very easy drinking. This is a nice pale ale, but it is still a pale ale.

Serving type: bottle

05-09-2011 01:26:45 | More by HuskyinPDX
Photo of cpetrone84
cpetrone84

Pennsylvania

4.05/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A-golden yellow color, thick white head, bubbles flowing throughout the glass throughout, light lacing left on the glass

S-light bready smell, some yeast, hint of fruit, and light citrus

T-pale malt up front, citrus hops to balance, sweet fruit finish of white grapes

M-lots of carbonation, light body, crisp finish

D-pretty tasty and light, solid session beer

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2009 22:07:40 | More by cpetrone84
Photo of ADZA
ADZA

Australia

3.35/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This brew pours a see through golden straw hue with decent carbonation that leaves behind a two finger head and lacing everywhere,the smell is very similar to a pilsner with hints of german noble grassy hops and honeysuckle,it has a light bodied well carbonated mouthfeel and has tastes of grassy german noble hops,light jarrah honey,pale malts and finished with a slight herbal hoppy bitterness that is almost reminiscent of a fine German pilsner and not a Kolsch and overall a dissapointment in my mind and could think of other drops from this brewery that id rather revisit than this cheers.

Serving type: bottle

05-11-2011 14:21:43 | More by ADZA
Photo of ehammond1
ehammond1


3.28/5  rDev -6.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

On Tap

Brazen BBQ
San Diego, CA

Clear golden yellow with a thin white cap. Lots of lacing down the glass.

Simple and muted aroma--lots of bready malts, grain, and little else.

Flavor follows the aroma--very simple and plain. There's some mild bitterness, lots of bread and grain, and a touch of floral and citrus, but not much at all. Though nothing unpleasant, this beer lacks much hop character and is simple and boring.

Medium mouthfeel. Clean, dry, crisp, and refreshing.

I think Ballast Point do themselves a disservice by calling this a pale ale. This is a simple, bready ale, but there's a lot more flavor and character in Sierra Nevada and Stone Pale Ales.

Serving type: on-tap

08-29-2011 22:17:31 | More by ehammond1
Photo of BARFLYB
BARFLYB

Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12oz single bottle into a regular kitchen glass. 1st time trying this.

A- Yellowtail has a yellow appearence with some white gold specs here and there. A semi aggressive pour popped up a inch of nicely layered white foam. Sadly no legs on the foam as it died quick leaving no lace. Some sediment.

S- not getting much hops in fact none, I am getting some toasted malts. A big scent of straws with some fruit hidden beneath. Not so bad.

T- Light toasted malts and some earthy grass plus straw. Pretty tame but this is a simple style. Some faint fruit on the aftertaste. No bitterness at all as hops are not a factor.

M- Light carb and a light body. Not much of an aftertaste except for some fruit. The malts are soothing going down making this enjoyable.

D- Sessionable and good for a go. Im not sold on the Kolsch style yet as i've only tried two in the style but this does not make me jump for more. A good summer beer and I could see myself taking a case to a party.

Serving type: bottle

05-18-2009 03:39:48 | More by BARFLYB
Photo of TheSevenDuffs
TheSevenDuffs

Ontario (Canada)

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

On-tap at The Hopping Pig in San Diego

Expected an APA with this one and didn't realize this was kolsch. A little dissapointing as I wouldn't have ordered it had I known it was not an APA.

A - Straw yellow with a small amount of white head.

S - A very light overall nose. Some grainy/bready notes and light bitterness but not much going on overall here.

T - Bready/grainy malts with a slight hop bitterness. Seems like a pils, not a pale ale. I don't get a lot of hops at all and the malts are very subdued as well.

M - Light body, moderate carbonation.

O - I can't really change my review to reflect the fact that this is a kolsch. At the time, I reviewed it as a pale ale and it didn't meet my expectations. They should change the name of this beer.

Serving type: on-tap

07-15-2011 15:32:30 | More by TheSevenDuffs
Photo of tigg924
tigg924

Massachusetts

4.13/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: clear, orange-yellow in color, minimal head, low carbonation

Smell: tropical fruits and toasted malt

Taste: tropical fruits, toasted malt, caramel, honey, and a bit of bread

Mouthfeel: high carbonation, light body, very sweet

Drinkability: I could have several of these. Nice, sweet, and a bit fruity for the style. A good warm day beer, I could have a six.

Serving type: bottle

07-12-2010 20:41:53 | More by tigg924
Photo of GbVDave
GbVDave

Illinois

3.88/5  rDev +10.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12oz bottle into an imperial pint. Thanks to HeatherAnn for the assist!

A: Pours a pale golden color with a small bright-white head. Major chill-haze at first that finally settles down to something approaching crystal-clear. Absolutely no lace.

S: Right out of the fridge it smelled crisp and bready. As it warmed notes of sweet malt, fruity yeast, and vegetables emerged.

T: See above. Pretty toasty/bready with creeping flavors of caramel, candy, apples, and some noble hops. Slightly soapy, but in a nice way.

M: Crisp and toasty with a nice fruity/sweet edge that adds depth.

D: Quite refreshing for when the temps get up there. Don't know if I'd buy it again, but I certainly wouldn't turn it down at a party/BBQ.

Serving type: bottle

07-10-2009 00:41:24 | More by GbVDave
Photo of morimech
morimech

Minnesota

2.83/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

22oz. bomber $4.49

It is pale and it is an ale so I guess it is a pale ale. But if you are expecting a hoppy beer, you are going to be surprised. It pours a clear, light golden color with a one-fingered head that dissipates quickly. No head retention and no lacing.

The smell is bready and yeasty.

The taste is of malt with a little caramel on finish. No hop bitterness noted.

It doesn't finish clean and dry which is another thing I would expect. Leaves a bit of a greasy feeling in the mouth. This is just a mediocre beer regardless of style.

Serving type: bottle

10-05-2007 23:08:08 | More by morimech
Photo of argock
argock

Virginia

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

Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a clear pinot noir wine glass. Best by 02/15/13 stamped on front label. Purchased as a 6-pack at Trader Joes (Mission Beach, San Diego, CA) for $9.99.

A; Extraordinarily clear amber-copper with ample 1-2 fingers of off-white frothy head with decent retention and good lacing around the top of the glass.

S: Aromas are very crackery-bready malty with some spicy herbal hops and a very light citrus fruitiness

T: Tasted like an extremely tame APA with bready and somewhat grainy maltiness that was a little less rough on the second pour but still not as smooth as it could be, especially since, after looking at the 6-pack holder it's a Kolsch! Come on BP! As a kolsch, this is pretty average with too much graininess to really muster much support. The hops are also overly spicy and not smooth enough -- this is supposed to be a beer that reaches the top of the drinkability scale, but this beer isn't even close.

M: THere are many problems here. The carbonation is way too high and contributes to an astringent feel. THe spicy hops and graininess with a light body also equate to a overly sharp beer, almost peppery, exactly what a kolsch is not supposed to be.

O: Certainly not terrible but not all that great for the style. I downgraded them for not calling it what it is -- come on BP, in hops country, do it right.

Serving type: bottle

11-18-2012 05:38:35 | More by argock
Photo of emmasdad
emmasdad

Colorado

3.08/5  rDev -12.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Picked up a bottle of this one at the Ballast Point Brewery/Home Brew Mart in San Diego. More along the lines of a kolsch, rather than a pale ale. Poured a clear yellow color with a good white head. Very mild on the nose, a little biscuit and a kiss of hops. On the palate, this one is light bodied and easy to drink, yet not very interesting in the least. Flavors of light malt and a bit of hops.

Serving type: bottle

05-27-2011 23:27:34 | More by emmasdad
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 NJpadreFan
NJpadreFan

New Jersey

3.25/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Ballast Point- Yellowtail

A- Bright clear yellow with a thick fluffy white head.
S- Sweet lemon and hay/straw. Slight citrus twang.
T- Sweet lemony citrus. Slight grassy hay/ straw.
M- Very sweet and a slight grassy hop dryness.

Overall- A good Kolsch that's a decent beer on a warm day.

Serving type: on-tap

11-10-2003 21:37:17 | More by NJpadreFan
Photo of cjgator3
cjgator3

Florida

3.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle.

A- Pours a pale golden yellow color with a thin white head.

S- The aroma is hints of breadiness and grain with some hints of hops as well. Reminds me more of a Euro Pilsner than an APA.

T- The taste features some pale malt flavors with a slightly spicy hop bitterness in the dry finish. Very nice and refreshing.

M- The mouthfeel is light bodied and prickly from the high amount of carbonation.

D- The drinkability is very high, this would make a wonderful session beer that I could consume in high quantities without getting bored.

Overall, this is a pretty solid brew that I enjoyed drinking. It is perfect to enjoy on a warm summer day. Recommended.

Serving type: bottle

08-08-2008 23:47:50 | More by cjgator3
Photo of flexabull
flexabull

California

3.53/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a pale clear gold color, with a nice tall white head.

Aromas are mostly sweet, with a touch of cirtrus.

Flavors are of light carmel malts, sweet, and creamy in the mouth. The finish is crisp, but the flavors seem a bit flat.

Mouthfeel is pretty good. The carbonation seems about right, but the overall feel to this one just seems a little too light.

Not bad, not great either. I had no trouble drinking this one, but I probably wouldn't buy it again.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2007 04:26:33 | More by flexabull
Yellowtail Pale Ale from Ballast Point Brewing Company
80 out of 100 based on 726 ratings.