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Pale 31 - Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Pale 31Pale 31

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

1,398 Ratings
very good

(view ratings)
Ratings: 1,398
Reviews: 473
rAvg: 3.85
pDev: 10.91%
Wants: 63
Gots: 82 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  4.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: Todd on 08-23-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 1,398 | Reviews: 473 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of ehammond1
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%


Churchill's Pub & Grille
San Marcos, CA

Golden amber with a thin white head. Nice lacing down the glass. Looks heavy and substantial.

Abundantly pungent and powerful citrus bill in the nose. Surprising and welcoming!

Not quite as powerful in the mouth as it is on the nose. Hop flavors are certainly present, nice accompanying bitterness, along with some earth and grassy flavors.

Medium to thick body.

A pleasant and flavorful, simple, citrus-hop-forward American pale ale.

ehammond1, May 13, 2011
Photo of AWolfAtTheDoor
3.33/5  rDev -13.5%

Had this on Mother's Day at my parents' house.

Its clear, and bright golden. Little lacing.

Curious smell. Very floral and grassy hop presence.

More hop bitterness, pepper, floral, grass on the mouth. Not a lot of malt backbone to speak of.

Mouthfeel is light and watery.

Overall this beer is OK. I'm honestly very disappointed with everything I've had form Firestone (minus Velvet Merkin). This is not a bad beer, but a poor representation of the style. It honestly tastes like an average homebrew. I actually take that back, I have had better extract based homebrew pale ales than this.

AWolfAtTheDoor, May 07, 2011
Photo of MaltsOfGlory
3.8/5  rDev -1.3%

Pours a small one finger white head that has already gone down to half a finger, it's clear it doesn't want to give me much head. The head is mostly big bubbles, a few small. The body is pretty standard, medium carbonation, pretty see through, but by no means clear, amber-orange in color. It for sure looks like a legit pale ale, the body looks nice, pretty standard but nice, the head is now gone, and I was not impressed with it. Overall an ok look, but nothing special. Nice northwest hops on the smell, very clean smelling, nice and hoppy with a good malt note as well. Probably some fruit, maybe grapefruit, along with a citrucy smell. It smell very good, pretty excited about the taste! Well, for the taste, the first thing I get is a nice mixture of clean water and quality malt up front, and then it finishes with a nice hop bite. There should be more hops in this, and frankly more flavor, but overall it's pretty dang tasty. For sure and clean and refreshing beer, nice on a hot day. I don't know if the taste deserves a 4 or not, because the taste isn't too big, but it is really tasty and easy to drink. Mouthfeel is really really nice, the carbonation and thickness of the beer are both perfect for a pale ale. Overall a really good beer, not outstanding, but super super easy to drink and very tasty.

MaltsOfGlory, May 05, 2011
Photo of di5co5teve
4.1/5  rDev +6.5%

Appearance: Golden

Smell: Overwhelmingly of hops.

Taste: The beer is focused on the hops but it is also balanced. Not as much flavor and aroma as lets say SNPA but still adequate. The bitterness is there.

Mouthfeel: Light and refreshing. Perfect on a summer day.

Drinkability: reasonable ($6.99/six) and light enough to drink a full six pack on a summer afternoon on your porch.

di5co5teve, May 04, 2011
Photo of ADZA
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%

This brew pours a very light see through golden hue with average carbonation that leaves behind a one finger head and some sporadic lacing,the smell is piney hops,apricots and boiled candy,it has a light bodied well carbonated mouthfeel that could be abit less in my mind and has tastes of passionfruit,apricots,mangoes,boiled candy and finished with a light touch of piney hops and to be honest its quite quaffable without being stand outish cheers.

ADZA, Apr 30, 2011
Photo of LazyL
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%

A crystal clear apricot with a faint white fizzy head. This is a hoppy Pale Ale with pine and grassy notes and good citrus scents in the background. This is the beers strong point in my opinion and I had to give it an extra 1/2 point just now for smelling so damn good. The taste is Pale Ale up front and IPA citrus on the back. A bit of clove spice gives it a Pilsner feel. The mouthfeel is semi dry and light. Definitely a pretty nice beer.

LazyL, Apr 25, 2011
Photo of litheum94
3.58/5  rDev -7%

12 oz bottle. No bottling dates.

Clear, golden body. Bone-white head with big bubbles that pop and fizzle, leaving moderate coverage.

Very floral hops on the nose. Some pine. Brown sugar-like sweet malts. Bready. Tropical fruit sweetness.

Floral tones. Apricot sweetness. Bready, with a decent malt backbone. Some citrus flavors and a very sneaky pine bitterness on the finish. Crisp, with good carbonation.

Very subtle tones. Good flavors, and very sessionable. Won't knock your socks off, but I could drink a bunch of these.

litheum94, Apr 20, 2011
Photo of DovaliHops
3.95/5  rDev +2.6%

Bottled 3/18/11, so this guy's less than a month old. One of my favorite go-to pale ales for sure. Pours a clear, pale, golden color with a medium white head that disappears quickly. Scent is very lovely with nice, subtle hops and malt. Some citrus and floral notes with a hint of grain. Taste is very well-balanced and complex with malt and hop flavors. Some floral notes in the finish along with a bit of citrus bitterness. Mouthfeel is light and crisp. Drinkability is very high. Overall, a very solid pale ale when fresh. I've had this beer old, and still a good beer, but nowhere near when it is fresh like this. Very sessionable.

DovaliHops, Apr 13, 2011
Photo of spinrsx
3.65/5  rDev -5.2%

12oz Bottle

Appearance - Clear amber colour with an above average size frothy white coloured head. There is a low amount of carbonation showing and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for over 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - malts, hops, grapefruit zest, oranges, biscuits

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and the beer has a nice balanced taste. There are a fair amount of hops mixed with caramel and a biscuit sweetness. There is also some orange and grapefruit taste. It finishes with a malty sweet aftertaste with a bit of lingering hops.

Overall - While it is a very good pale ale, it seemed to be lacking something. It was highly drinkable, just not very exciting. It would probably work well as a session beer as it isn't too overpowering.

spinrsx, Apr 09, 2011
Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%

Appearance: Light honey orange. The Head disseminated quickly.

Smell: Oak. Biscuit pale malts blended with oily citric hops. Lemon and nectarine. Great aroma.

Taste: the hops are boss when it comes to taste. Acid citric flavor followed by some biscuit malts. The bitterness is there but it's hard to detect. The finish is extremely sweet. Like nectar. Very refrshing.

Mouthfeel: Light to medium chewy. Some water taste, which is fine in this style. A tad sweet. A perfect introductory pale ale.

Drinkability: Drinkable, affordable, and accessible. I will be introducing this pale ale into my rotations.

BerkeleyBeerMan, Apr 07, 2011
Photo of smakawhat
4.25/5  rDev +10.4%

Poured out of the cask into a nonic tumbler at Church Key as part of the official Firestone Walker DC Launch Party.

Looks with a soupy but creamy off white head sitting on a nice cloud gorgeous twenty four carat body. Almost pale amber. Super lacing on the drink while finishing. Looks so delicious.

Bouquet seems to be a real soft floral hop, with a soft malt body. Small hint of crisp, but no buttery sensation that you would want to get from a cask.

Taste is wet, but also a great white dense bread feeling with a hint of sweet clove spice. Texture is an orange juice quality and chewy palate coating.

Overall out of the cask it's a little different, but it's quite tasty and super sessionable as well. This almost feels like a mix somewhere between an on tap and cask Ale, sort of a middle ground between both worlds.

smakawhat, Apr 05, 2011
Photo of mdfb79
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%

Had on tap tonight at Churchkey in Washington, DC.

a - Pours a clear golden color with one inch of white head and moderate carbonation evident.

s - Smells of floral notes, citrus hops, toasted malts, bready malts.

t - Taste follows the nose, plus some fruity malts. Lots of floral and citrus hops, and some bready malts.

m - Medium body and low carbonation, super smooth and very easy to drink.

do - Overall a very nice pale ale. Not overly strong in any sense, but a lot of nice floral and citrus hops to it. Would have again and a good beer to start a session with.

mdfb79, Apr 05, 2011
Photo of sj660
2.95/5  rDev -23.4%

Yellow and bright with a bright white foam; good laces.

Classic pine, citrus hop aroma. Flavor is similar, with a bit of biscuit and grass. Mineral off taste in this pour.

Felt slippery and light.

I will try another one later to make sure this is representative. This isn't representative of Firestone-Walkers beers, which can be great.

sj660, Apr 05, 2011
Photo of beagle75
3.5/5  rDev -9.1%

Draft pour into a shaker pint glass at Yard House in Irvine.

A: Clear, light amber color with one finger of diminishing white foam head. Light lacing remains on the glass.

S: Mild floral hops outpace the barest hint of toasted malt making for a smell that is weak, unmemorable, and slightly papery.

T: Begins off-dry and rather busy, with butter, toasted pale malt, floral and earthy hop aromatics, and some estery mixed fruit. A whiff of butterscotch is detected in the middle as other aromatic flavors fade while acidity peaks. The finish is clean and toasty, dry by comparison, but only mildly bitter.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, balanced on the palate, with low carbonation.

D: Hardly a little brother to Firestone's Union Jack, this beer is a decent pale with some assertive English qualities on display. It lacks any West Coast hop profile which seems surprising for a beer labeled a 'California pale ale' by its own brewer, yet it generates some interest with more traditional qualities while keeping the abv low and appropriate.

beagle75, Mar 20, 2011
Photo of Clydesdale
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%

A: Pours a lightly hazy orange-gold color. The off-white head is reasonably tall, with a sudsy, frothy texture. Retention is solid, and some nice splotches of lace ring the glass.

S: Some very light toasty/caramel notes, but mainly straightforward pale malts. A freshly citric (orange and grapefruit juice) and a grassily herbal hop nose is also present. Some light, yeasty, fruity tartness adds a bit of depth.

T: A little graininess, along with some caramel sweetness up front. Light cookielike malt as well. Hop bitterness is moderate, accompanied by citric (again grapefruit/orange) and herbal flavors. A few faintly fruity yeast esters as well.

M: Medium-light body. Carbonation is medium, and there's a general crispness to the overall feel. The finish is slightly thinner than I'd prefer, with a slight club soda character.

D: An easily drinkable, nicely balanced pale ale from Firestone Walker. A bit on the thin/light side, but not overly so. There's surely a time and a place for this kind of quaffable brew, even if it's not the most thrilling version of the style.

Clydesdale, Feb 22, 2011
Photo of BaronRogue
3.93/5  rDev +2.1%

I'm assuming this is the same as Pale Ale, since it's an alias, but on the bottle it definitely says "Pale Ale"

Anywho, poured from bottle to chalice. Clear gold with some carbonation, small head and good lacing.

Smells hoppy, piney, spicy-orange, and sour. Yum.

Tastes a lot different than most pale ales, which is why i wanted to try it again and give a review. Malts hit first, and the hops back it up. Rare for a California pale to be so malt heavy and caramel, but still really good balance.

Feels good in the mouth, maybe slightly too carbonated for my taste.

Very drinkable, light-ish beer

BaronRogue, Feb 18, 2011
Photo of WoodBrew
4/5  rDev +3.9%

After 14 hours on a flight from Australia and being away for 10 days what a welcome sight find a Californian pale ale. This ale is very good, but not the greatest by any stretch. The color was a nice amber with a sweet scent of hop and citrus! It was a very light ale that can be drunk in mass quantity....inm other words SESSION!!! Stay thirsty my friends!.

WoodBrew, Feb 17, 2011
Photo of mikegreen138
3.7/5  rDev -3.9%

picked this up in a variety pack at costco
pours out looking like s typical pale ale with a about one finger of head that doesnt stick around too long.
smells of nice floral and citrus highlights with a slight malty aroma that sneaks in, very balanced in its aroma
a little lacking in flavor slightly above average could have had a tiny amount ofl more hopped flavor thats just what i am into thse days, but goes down nice a smooth

nothing ground breaking, but still drinkable

mikegreen138, Feb 14, 2011
Photo of notsoprobeer
4.22/5  rDev +9.6%

Color is light golden yellow and is hazy. It has a white head that stuck around for most of the drink. Aroma is light, but I got some citrus. Flavor is mostly piney hops, and it's the predominant flavor in the beer. I was surprised to see that it was rated at only 38 IBUs. I expected it to be much higher. It has nice malts in the background. Body is light and it's very drinkable. Pale 31 has a similar creamy mouth feel that I noticed in Solace. I wonder if this is a result of fermenting in oak barrels?

notsoprobeer, Feb 07, 2011
Photo of Dlish
4.33/5  rDev +12.5%

First off can't believe I have not reviewed this beer yet. Its pretty much go to 6pack and is a great session beer to get the night started. Being i've had a keg of this for my birthday I might be a bit bias.

A- nice golden color, its the American beer color you think of. Golden crisp, with a white head that thinly laces the edge.

S- Smells hops, and it being they use the three C's Cascade, Centenniall and chinook. Although the hops are very faint, to be fair this beer is cooler than normal. The malt profile is hint in the background.

T- The hops really come through in the taste. Nice herby balance, that is refreshing. The clean bitterness flows great into the light and sweet malt profile. This beer could almost be a pale/honey blond beer with how sweet but warm the malt profile is. This beer does not try to be in your face, (nor are most firestone beers) its perfection is in how clean and crisp it is, which is the American pale ale style.

M- Because of the sweet crisp style, it makes this beer incredibly easy to drink. That and its low alcohol content lets you polish off a 6 pack and not even worry about it.

D- I love this beer, I think I already made that clear. It might be a hometown pride, but personally I just think its because its that good.

Dlish, Feb 04, 2011
Photo of dbmernin83
3.55/5  rDev -7.8%

Hazy golden, bubbly head and light lacing.

Smells of citrus hops and more citrus hops

Tastes like a lemon had an orgy with some hops! Light malt tries to poke its head in to see what's going on, but is quickly apprehended and shoved out by the hops

On the lighter side on the mouth.

Definitely a sessionable beer if you like citrus.

dbmernin83, Feb 02, 2011
Photo of madvermin
3.2/5  rDev -16.9%

Pours a crystal clear pale yellow, with generous amounts of pure white foamy head on top that laces averagely.

Smells of hops, lemon citrus and zest, with not much malt behind it.

Taste is very light, and not too strong. Has a nice zesty hop/malt blend to it, with nothing really overpowering, but at the same time nothing really sticking out either. I'm kind of disappointed at how lightly flavored this beer is, but in terms of drinkability it is really as good as it gets, since the abv is low as well.

Mouthfeel is straight up thin - again, disappointing after having some other excellent APAs in the last couple days. Great session beer, a bit underwhelming compared to some of firestone walker's other offerings though.

madvermin, Jan 31, 2011
Photo of nrbw23
3.75/5  rDev -2.6%

A- Pours a hazy pale golden color with thin, bubbly white head. Head has ok retention turns into a layer of bubbles and leaves some spotty lacing.

S- Smell is sweet and fruity with apparent citrus. Sweet caramel malts also here and gives some nice balance.

T- Citrusy hops mainly an orange like taste, sweet caramel malts and has a bit of a medicine like taste.

M- Medium in body and lower side of medium in carbonation.

D- Not a bad pale ale, just maybe a bit too sweet. Easy to drink and I could do this one again.

nrbw23, Jan 27, 2011
Photo of billab914
3.9/5  rDev +1.3%

Poured from a 12oz bottle into my Oberon pint glass. It poured a light amber/gold color with a thin but bubbly white head to it. The head settled after a minute or so but it left some pretty nice lacing on the glass as I drank it.

The aroma shows a moderate citrus hoppiness to it with some lemon and grapefruit notes to it. Some pale and bready malts come through as well in the aroma.

The taste has a pretty nice balance of American hoppiness and pale malts. The hops add some of those grapefruit and lemon notes to them. The malts add a bready flavor and a balancing sweetness to it that really helps balance it out. A bit of bitterness comes in the finish as well.

The mouthfeel is medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Drinkability is good, it was a nicely flavored and easy drinking beer. It wasn't overwhelming with flavors but I found it nicely balanced with some very nice but subtler flavors. A very nice APA overall.

billab914, Jan 07, 2011
Photo of willjschmidt
3.73/5  rDev -3.1%

Poured from a 12oz bottle into a Sierra Nevada hop tulip.

A: Pours a light golden orange with a thin white head.

S: Citrusy hops as well as some caramel malt.

T: A nice dose of "C" hops over a solid caramel malt backbone. Citrus hops with a hint of pine. Only slightly bitter in the finish, very well balanced.

M: Average carbonation, medium-light mouthfeel.

D: A very drinkable and tasty pale ale. Well balanced and the low ABV means you can put down several in one sitting.

willjschmidt, Jan 01, 2011
Pale 31 from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 1,398 ratings.