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Blue Heron Pale Ale - Mendocino Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Blue Heron Pale AleBlue Heron Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

478 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 478
Reviews: 290
rAvg: 3.39
pDev: 14.16%
Wants: 8
Gots: 17 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Mendocino Brewing Company visit their website
United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  6.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-22-2000)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 478 | Reviews: 290 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of JWFokker
4/5  rDev +18%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle, it's a golden straw color, with plenty of head which sticks around pretty well. The nose is hops, not overpowering, and some citrus. The taste is good hoppy bitterness, though no where near the potency of a 60 or 90 minute IPA. I think a lot of reviewers have lost sight of what a normal pale ale is. This isn't an IPA and it doesn't try to be one - it just has the right amount of hoppiness for an American pale ale. Mouthfeel is good, with a certain amount of astringency and the plenty of hoppy aftertaste. This would be great with extra sharp cheddar. If you like pale ales, this is a very good one.

Photo of Vvall
3.88/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A friend and I got this the other night along with some other "bird" brews.I enjoyed this one the most,and while it was not the best Pale Ale I have ever had,it was good.I only had the one,and it was after drinking several other types,so I may not have got the full effect.I would not be opposed to trying it again.

Photo of 1fastz28
2/5  rDev -41%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

pours without any head a pale golden color. looks ok so far, smell is nearly non-existent maybe some hops but thats it, taste is bitter, but not a hoppy bitterness, just bitter. mouthfeel is ok, drinkability is very low, i'm not a fan of this beer. maybe i just got a bad one, but this isn't very impressive.

Photo of praufs01
2.85/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance – Cloudy yellow with a frothy white head.

Aroma – Citrus hop aroma.

Palate – Heavy carbonation which gives a rough mouth feel.

Flavor –Smooth very mild up front flavor that finishes with a nice citrus hop bite.

Final thoughts – Nice brew but a little heavy in the carbonation.

Photo of Metalmonk
3.73/5  rDev +10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

One of the palest pale ales I've ever seen. This has an almost lager-look to it, its pale yellow hazed up just a little, which makes it look more ale-like. Comes complete with a thick fluffy head.

Aroma is straw, flowers, honey...light and earthy, though probably too laid back, you really have to grasp to get anything.

Flavor is much more assertive than the aroma hints. The expected flowery hops and honey meet toffee, burnt grains, and a trace of maple. A crisp, somewhat dry finish features hops. Light and fluffy in the mouth; carbonation is polite, letting the flavors take center-stage.

Very drinkable, definitely has an "old-school" feel to it...maybe that's the looks of it more than anything. An excellent session consideration, due to what I'm guessing is a low-ish ABV while also having its own bit of character.

Photo of wagenvolks
3.58/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle into a pint glass.

A golden straw body, fervent with carbonation, fuels a bone white head. Good retention and excellent, thick lacing ensues. Aroma is mild, but pleasant, with a slight flowery hop note, plus wafts of banana, lemon, and vanilla.

Taste is pretty much the same as the aroma. It's mild, but packs just enough flavor to please. A fairly large, bitter hop backbone hits the back of the palate while sweeter light malts visit the rest of the tongue. Aftertaste is clean and hoppy, and the body feels a bit thin, but well carbonated. Not an amazing beer by any means, but a drinkable one.

Photo of arizcards
3.78/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Received as part of the September MicroBeerClub shipment.

Beer poured a golden orange, with a strong white head initially. Nose is malty with no other discernable qualities. Taste is well balanced between the malts and hops with a nice clean crisp finish. Mouthfeel is fairly full and it is lively on the palate. Drinkability is good, This is a nice representation of what i would consider to be an English IPA.

Photo of jwc215
4.38/5  rDev +29.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours slightly hazed deep golden with a foamy white head that stays around, leaving some broken rings of lacing.

The smell is biscuity, grainy with soft citrus and pine.

The taste is of citrus (orange, lemon, grapefruit) - nice hop profile - with a balancing sweet, grainy malt. Both the hop and malt characteristics stand out but remain balanced. It has a long, bittersweet finish.

It is medium-to-full-bodied - almost chewy. Very smooth.

A hoppy, yet balanced, flavorful, smooth and refreshing pale ale. Nice example of a hoppy APA!

Photo of roller
3.75/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a sunny straw color with a one inch white head. Frothy with large bubbles that left some nice lacing. Not a very strong aroma, but it was mildly floral. There is a pleasant hop presence and grapefruit bitterness lingers on the palate. Some light malt character, but not very complex. Medium bodied and nicely carbonated, Blue Heron PA goes down easy. I'd have another, but not one of my favorites

Photo of gmfessen
3.53/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the bottle into a pint glass, beer is a hazy yellow-orange golden color with a thick, two-finger, slightly off-white head that leaves a blanket of lacing comprised of lots of minute bubbles. The smell isn't overwhelming, but is of pale malts and citrusy, slightly earthy hops. The taste has a little more complexity with a slightly toasted malt flavor and a pretty bitter citrus hop finish. Not the most well done beer ever but better than average. The mouthfeel is medium bodied with a velvety carbonation; very enjoyable. A decently drinkable beer... overall not bad, but there's better tasting ones out there.

Photo of shaebs99
3.78/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I have had other Mendocino beers in the past and have not been really impressed, although I did enjoy their stout, but I was able to pick this up for $5.99 for a 6-pack and figured it was worth a try.

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. rich golden color with nice head retention and lacing.

Hops and light fruit aroma. Nothing overpowering just a very nice hop aroma that seems welcoming.

Nice hoppy, bitter taste with some sweetness throughout, but nothing that attacks or is as gung ho as an american IPA or DIPA. Just a nice hop presence (cascade?). I might not group this with the IPA's. I would consider it closer to Sierra Nevada Pale Ale (that's right I am too cool to abbreviate it) than an American IPA like Stone.

Mouthfeel: Pretty good not too much carbonation.

Drinkability: If I continue to find this for a dollar a bottle I expect that I will continue to buy it. Even if you aren't so lucky I think that it should at least be worth a try for you.

Photo of SSBrennan
3.45/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a very pale amber with a cream colored head that falls slowly with good lacing.

The smell is citrusy hops with yeast and malt sweetness.

Strong hoppy flavor with a biting bitterness. The hops are spicy and citrus with very crisp flavors. The taste lacks something for me.

The mouthfeel is the right weight with a slight oilyness that lingers in the mouth.

I could drink a couple but the lingering flavors are a little overwhelming.

Photo of tonistruth
4.13/5  rDev +21.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A- pours a partly cloudy gold, 2 finger bubbly & thin white head, good retent, white film lacing

S- floral, citrus, hops, bready, strong aromas (could smell this thing from a couple feet away)

T- warming hop bite at finish, well balanced pale, leafy hops, hints of citrus throughout, buttery malts, toasted grains with hints of spice

M- well carbonated, drying finish, smooth, hop tingles

D- great eyes and nose, solid yet mellow flavor, i'd definitely have another, sessionable, brew begs to be paired with food

Photo of Blakaeris
3.58/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours very light straw yellow. Head is a thick sticky mass that clings to the side.

Aroma is subdued. Indistinct pale malt and more substantial floral hop. Some honey like sweetness and lemony citrus.

Taste is initially sweet for a second, then grassy and floral hops take over with citrusy bitterness. Very crisp and lemony.

Mouthfeel is light to medium bodied. Slightly resinous with hop oil.

A good session beer. Tasty, but not overpowering. A little light for a pale ale. Actually it reminds me more of a really good pilsner than a pale ale. Flavor is very crisp and refreshing.

Photo of bashiba
3.6/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a dark golden color, slightly hazy with just a bit of off white head quickly leaving a small white ring, and a bit of lacing.

Smell had a sweet cotton candy like quality with a bit of grainyness.

The sharp juniper flavors hit you first, but the slowly subsides into a light grainny flavor with a touch of candy sweetness.

The mouthfeel is crisp and dry and the junipery hops linger on for a while.

Not a bad lighter style Pale Ale.

Photo of BeerBelcher
2.65/5  rDev -21.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

I was not too impressed with this IPA. Its aroma is only faintly hoppy, flavor is very lightly hoppy but also includes some banana notes I feel do not belong, and mouthfeel is a bit watery. Apearance is excellent, with a hazy and gold color and sloppy-appealing amounts of cumulus head. Not ad, but not really recommended either.

Photo of xav33
3.23/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Mendocino Blue Heron Pale Ale
12 oz bottle
Unknown bottling (recent?), flown into 05/07
Medium pour in an English pint.

Poured a clear hay yellow with a large frothy white mostly lasting head.

Smelt of moderate light bread and perfume hops.

Taste was upfront moderate to strong sweet bread and light bitter perfume and orange citrus hops followed by a moderate to strong bitter grassy and light sweet bread on an average finish.

Palate was light to medium bodied, oily, softly carbonated and lightly astringent.

Overall, this is a fairly tame pale ale. Sweetness and bitterness are balanced well, but there seems to be a bit too much malt sweetness for a pale ale.

Photo of BeerZack
3.68/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Golden honey color with mediocre headage.

Sweet and sour smells with some earthy and mineral hops.

Minerally and grainy that kinda comes off sour with the tangy hop finish.

This is definately not one of my favorite beers, but I like it because it does challenge my tastebuds a bit. The hoppiness keeps this beer refreshing even though that 'sourness' is kinda fatiguing.

Photo of billybob
4.5/5  rDev +32.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

poured a crystal clear golden color with a three finger white head with a easy pour and left about a half inch head to the finish with a wispy lace to the finish also. smell of citrus and pine. taste is bready, citrus, not sweet but not bitter then hops kick in and linger a bit at the end. mouthfeel is medium to full bodied and carbonation is good. just really liked this beer maybe it just caught me on the right day.

Photo of Ozone
4.22/5  rDev +24.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is one of the better beers available in SC for now (legislation pending). It's got a great pour with a decent, but not frothy head. Consistent lacework on the glass all the way down. It has a clear, light golden hue.

Hops pop, with a subtle citrus flavor and a crisp finish. Body is light without losing character.

Photo of stephendr
3.38/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle - color of golden honey , with a decent off white head - nose of hopps , funk , bright citrus , but earthy – taste of bitter hops , with citrus hopps as well , and slight maltyness - body medium , and lightly carbonated – aftertaste of bitter hopps , and slightly acidic

Photo of williamherbert
3.73/5  rDev +10%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Light but hazy look. Has a dark yellow color, with maybe a tiny hint of orange. A healthy head sits atop the beer. No lace.

Has a light, hoppy smell which appears to be well-balanced by the malt. I can sense a yeasty base just based on the smell. Pleasant. Smells slightly hoppier than a pale.

Has a hoppy first bite, which is followed by a nice yeast aftertaste. Very well-balanced. Lingering malty-yeast flavor. Hints of fruit (apricot, coriander, orange) add depth, but don't dominate.

Good body, not too thick. Creamy, but also smooth. The initial bite is a little strong, but pleasant finish. Sits on the tongue. Has just the right amount of bit, but quite smooth. Repeat drinkings are welcome. Solid brew, for real.

Photo of TechMyst
3.7/5  rDev +9.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Hazy Yellow, actually on the green side of yellow. Mild aroma. Crisp / fresh pale ale. Quality brew. Bottle conditioning gives a soft carbonation feel. Medium mouthfeel. makes the palate slick. Full Bodied beer. I'm liking these guys more and more. Black Hawk stout and White Hawk ipa are very good...

Photo of rhoadsrage
2.85/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a clear golden yellow body with a thin white film as a head. There is a slight haze to the body in the light. There is a very strong carbonation of tiny bubbles.

S- This beer has a green noble hop aroma with a sulfury hint.

T- The big taste of dry noble hops come through strong with a faint grapefruit note as it warms. There is a dry corn and raw grain flavor that comes through once I get used to the hops. There is a slight tartness to the hops finish.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with the finish filled with a fizz texture.

D- This beer has light lager note with some semi-interesting hops notes. This beer doesn't have any qualities of a typical ale and there are no real interesting malts to support the hops.

Photo of zeff80
3.58/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours out a cloudy, yellow with a small head and was highly carbonated. No lacing.

S - It smelled of malt, grasses and pine.

T - It had a strong taste of bitter hops. Also, a good bit of malt flavor to back it up.

M - It was crisp and sharp. A medium-bodied brew.

D - This is a pretty good beer. Its appearance wsn't so good but the taste was.

Blue Heron Pale Ale from Mendocino Brewing Company
78 out of 100 based on 478 ratings.