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California Pale Ale - Bayhawk Ales

Not Rated.
California Pale AleCalifornia Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
76
okay

56 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 56
Reviews: 42
rAvg: 3.36
pDev: 22.02%
Wants: 0
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bayhawk Ales 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: kbub6f on 02-27-2003)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 56 | Reviews: 42 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by orangemoustache:
Photo of orangemoustache
1.65/5  rDev -50.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 1.5

This pours a coppery orange with a huge head that is so tall it's starting to piss me off. The head stands a good three inches over the one inch of beer in the bottom,it is creamy and looks pretty nice,I just wish it would go away so I can try to enjoy this offering. Seriously,does this have to be this carbonated? The nose is a little malty with sour notes,no hop is noticed,also smells like plastic. Okay,the head has finely receded to leave a huge glob of lacing on my snifter,it is seriously as big as Tom Sellecks moustache and in the same shape,wtf? This is not that good,the head is somewhat entertaining,though I would trade the laughs for a decent tasting beer right now. This is just kind of sour and under hopped. Maybe it has spoiled? Maybe this is how it's suppose to taste? Maybe they should have a date to drink by printed on the bottle,that would be nice. This has way to much carbonation anyway and not a good mouthfeel or drinking experience. If ya can't get this stuff to the Midwest fresh,don't send it.

orangemoustache, Dec 12, 2008
More User Reviews:
Photo of shapudding
4.38/5  rDev +30.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Medium golden and slightly cloudy, with a white creamy head that left quickly leaving only a thin ring around the edges.

Scents of champagne, grapefruit rind, hoppiness... Smooth mouthfeel. Tastes of grapefruit rind and hops, good bitterness. Light/medium body with a very good drinkability.

Nice session beer, very good hot day beer!

shapudding, Jul 30, 2004
Photo of IntriqKen
4.22/5  rDev +25.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a golden orange that is slightly cloudy with a half finger white head that disappears far too quickly leaving nothing behind.
Aroma is dough-like sweet malt and light green hops.
Taste is impressive with the hop bite coming on the tongue immediately, followed with a sweet dough-like malt that is followed again with a fairly aggressive hop bite
Aftertaste is still about hops but creamy mouthfeel leaves you at least remembering the sweetness of the pale malt.
Clean citrus finish.
This is an extremely flavorful APA with no cheating on the hops.

IntriqKen, Aug 05, 2006
Photo of NeroFiddled
4.38/5  rDev +30.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This bottle-conditioned ale pours a slightly hazy orange-amber body beneath a creamy head of white. Very fine bubbles can be seen rising steadily. The creamy cap holds fairly well initially but drops to an average collar after a few sips; and it leaves only minor lacing about the glass. Sweetish, doughy malt and resinous, grassy/leafy and floral hops greet you in the nose. Once the initial zest of it's natural carbonation brushes across the tongue, it becomes smoother and somewhat creamy in the mouth due to its solidly medium body. Hops dominate up-front in the flavor, but its slightly cookie-dough-ish malt becomes apparent across the middle and makes a great showing in the finish. Hop bitterness anchors it, but it's far from harsh; leaving this as a very well-rounded and drinkable ale. Some spicy hops appear in the aftertaste along with a burst of sweetish, almost wort-like malt that fades to leave a lingering, dull bitterness. A full flavored and rich pale ale that's sure to please.

NeroFiddled, Jul 06, 2004
Photo of russpowell
3.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured an effervescent bronze with 2 fingers of pearl-white head. Above average lacing & very good head retention

S: Slight floral & honey notes, a bit of lemon

T: Citrussy hops, grassyness & a bit of honey malts up front. Biscuitty malt & more grapefruit & lemony hops as this warms. Finishes juicy with plenty of citrussy hops, plus just a bit of grainyness.

MF: Light/medium bodied with moderate carbonation. Balanced pretty good.

Drank very easy, a pretty simple, but solid APA. Glad to see a step up in taste from their so-called Chocolate Porter

russpowell, Jan 10, 2008
Photo of goochpunch
3.15/5  rDev -6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a honey-toned copper/amber with a white, frothed milk head that settles to a miniscule foam while leaving sheets of lace blotted with bubbles. Nose is sweet pale malts and citrus. Pretty standard. Malts come out a lot more in the flavor. Hops have that citrus flavor, but also tastes like some floral notes as well. The toastiness of the malts is a bit overdone. Mouthfeel could be seen as more flat than smooth and just a tad bit syrupy. A decent drinker.

Being that this is on sale for about $3 a bomber, which is a steal of a deal in the Denton area, I would probably buy this again. Once it goes off sale, I'm not so sure. The quality really surprised me after having tried their awful chocolate porter. Pretty much a run of the mill APA.

goochpunch, Oct 25, 2006
Photo of uberabr
3.5/5  rDev +4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a bomber into a tulip. A slightly murky orange-yellow and moderate one finger head that doesn't really stick around. Smells light and of citrus; nothing to write home about.

Taste is bitter but not the typical California cascade grapefruit hop. It's got some citrus and a woodsy pine, a hint of malt but nothing extreme. I'de guess this one was hopped early with some simcoe or chinook, as most of the hops come through in the bitterness and not in the aroma or flavor of late additions. Mouthfeel is light and a tad watery, but the bitter quality adds some body. All in all a pleasant brew. I'd drink it again but it's not spectacular.

I really like the name, as I've long felt that most California pale ales and IPA's really deserve a category of their own, but ironically, this beer does not really embody any of those unique Cali IPA-isms, and while it' catchy, the name is actually this beer's downfall. In fact, I'de liken this one more to an English pale ale, although the hops are obviously of a Western heritage. The low ABV, mild, even refined flavor, and close to edgy bitterness make this one a solid choice for novice hopheads, with some session potential as well for those with a bitter palate. Again though, I wouldn't exactly run to the shelf for this one if I was looking for a token "California Pale Ale."

uberabr, Jan 23, 2007
Photo of Dukeofearl
3.3/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I have tried this and other Bayhawk beers at a variety of local brewfests around the southern California region over the years, but this is my first review version. 22 oz bottle purchased at La Bodega in Riverside, CA. in July 2006 for $2.99.

Pours a pretty light orange with a very nicely sized fluffy white head.

The aroma is of light sweet citrus (orange-tangerine) but not very powerful. The flavor is also generally light- citrus and flowery hops. But it hits a snag with a metallic back end that affects the flavor and mouthfeel (which is on the thin side, but OK).

Overall, this one is one of those "good enough" beers that I would happily drink, but would also just as happily try something else instead.

Dukeofearl, Aug 13, 2006
Photo of jaydoc
3.25/5  rDev -3.3%

jaydoc, Oct 26, 2013
Photo of largadeer
1/5  rDev -70.2%

largadeer, Nov 01, 2013
Photo of weeare138
3.43/5  rDev +2.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appears a straw yellow color with a 2 inch white head. This brew is mildly carbonated with some decent lacing made during the enjoyment.
Smells slightly skunky with some pale caramel malts coming through and a mild hop aroma.
Tastes ok. I taste caramel malt with a light hop taste on the back of the tongue. I can't say that it's entirely balanced though.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied but slightly watery with mild carbonation.
Drinkability is iffy. Maybe it was just the bottle I got but I'd like to give this a second go around to make sure.

It's ok, dog.

weeare138, May 11, 2005
Photo of jasonjlewis
3.73/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Having lived my childhood in Irvine California I felt obligated to buy this beer.

Pours a nice two finger head with decent retention. amber in color and mildly cloudy.

Citrusy hops on the nose with crystal and caramel malt backround. Somewhat bready smell Seems like this one will be a typical westcoast pale ale. Apple phenol appears as the beer warms.

Crystal malts provide a nice sweetness as well as some slightly weaker caramel malts. Some breadiness comes out as well. This is balanced with a nice citrusy hop bitterness and fruity esters, namely apple.

Mouthfeel is a little bit thin and a little watery.

Nicely done beer that is easily sessionable.

jasonjlewis, Jan 12, 2008
Photo of pperez38
2/5  rDev -40.5%

pperez38, Jan 22, 2012
Photo of jwc215
3.25/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22 oz. bottle:

Pours hazed golden with a nice fluffy head. Lacing sticks.

The smell is of light citrus and a touch of sour fruit and a bit bready.

The taste is of a light citric and herbal/metallic bitterness mixing with a sweet pale maltiness. A bit bready. A lemony tart touch.

It's light-bodied, pretty thin.

Not what I expected for a pale ale from California. It's pretty thin with a slightly metallic touch and a general blandness. The tart/sour touch doesn't excite me, either. Still-in-all the mildness/lightness makes it pretty easy to drink.

jwc215, Mar 18, 2009
Photo of Beerbuddha
3.85/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This beer poured a nice golden, copper color with a huge, white and fluffy head. The head looked like clouds perched on my beer. Best head I've ever gotten.;) The aroma was very floral with hints of sweet honey and citrus. The taste had a wonderful hoppy cirtrus taste going on with sweet malts. Had a nice sour grapefruit taste as well. The body was light wth medium carbonation. Overall a great beer. I really enjoyed this one.

Beerbuddha, Apr 14, 2008
Photo of Conner
3/5  rDev -10.7%

Conner, Dec 04, 2013
Photo of beagle75
3.68/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

22 oz. bomber tasted the day after receipt from the hands of the Bayhawk bottle rep. and poured into a pint glass.

A: Hazy deep golden color, with a 1.5-finger head and slight lacing.

S: Weak to moderate, delicate malt and floral hops.

T: Begins with a gentle malty sweetness, then the hops (simcoe, centennial, and amarillo) emerge. According to the Bayhawk rep., IBUs on this beer are 40-50, which seems accurate. The sweetness of the malt re-emerges at the end, with minimal bitterness in the finish.

M: Wet and light-bodied with moderate carbonation.

D: Good drinkability and low-moderate abv makes this a likely session-beer candidate. The delicate aromas and flavors of this pale ale ally it with others such as Mirror Pond and Mt. Tam, although it falls just short of equaling either. Bayhawk aims to produce "easy-drinking" beers and that term can be used to accurately describe this beer.

It has come to my attention that bottled Bayhawk beers frequently suffer from a bad reputation due to old, mishandled stock. Although I cannot speak for all of their styles, this beer--when fresh--is worthy of better. You may think twice about purchasing Bayhawk beers from retail outlets that keep it at ambient temperature (or at least inquire about the age of the bottle).

beagle75, Dec 07, 2009
Photo of mzwolinski
3.85/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Copper color with even carbonation and lots of it. Huge foamy head that sticks around and leaves its mark down the side of your glass. Aroma is dominated by a grassy/herbal hop scent, from behind which a biscuity malt can only just barley make itself noticed. Flavor is bitter bitter bitter. And what’s this? Slightly sour? I noticed this same sourness in Bayhawk’s chocolate porter there, and found it extremely off-putting. Here it seems again a bit out of place, but not quite as distracting. Indeed, as you work your way down the glass, the flavors seem to blend together rather nicely. Still, it’s a bit of a shock, especially combined with the strong raw, earthy herbal flavor of the hops in this brew. Not a subtle beer, but worth a try for hopheads.

mzwolinski, Apr 18, 2003
Photo of tyanow
1.18/5  rDev -64.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2 | overall: 1

Do you like olive oil in your beer? If you do, bottoms up, you'll dig this stuff.

Had it at a beer tasting and I literally couldn't get myself to take a second sip. The bottle may have been rancid. I am not always a big fan of Bayhawk beers, but they are usually drinkable and at least somewhat enjoyable.

A - cloudy yellow/gold

S - olive oil and undercooked grains

T - olives

M - Oily, fatty, yuck

D - um... I'd say NOT AT ALL

tyanow, Jul 23, 2009
Photo of Suds
3.63/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this brew on tap, with dinner, on a recent trip to California. It’s a nice, deep orange color with an appropriately frothy head: a fine looking brew. It sure smells like a west coast pale ale…plenty of western hops – pine and citrus, and fairly herbal. There’s a little fruit and malt in the aroma. The initial taste is sweet, quickly followed by a solid hop bitterness that lasts well beyond the finish. It’s a well-hopped, drinkable pale ale. The beer is not exactly a stand out, but it made a nice accompaniment to the meal, and I wouldn’t have minded drinking a few more.

Suds, Feb 04, 2006
Photo of jakecattleco
3.25/5  rDev -3.3%

jakecattleco, Aug 13, 2013
Photo of DogFood11
3.33/5  rDev -0.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

where the rubber hits the road this brew is just OK but I give it some extra points for being unique.

It is fairly balanced and a bit maltier than most pale's I've had. Hops aren't that strong in the smell but become active in the flavor and mouthfeel profile. Spicey and zippy at times really gives this a nice kick. Bready malts lead the way followed by a meaty body that is kicked to the curb by the whack job of hops and peppered finish. Lingering aftertaste could be cleaned up a bit better.

best offering from this brewery to date and for the price it is worthy of a corner fridge docking point.

DogFood11, Jul 31, 2005
Photo of TheLongBeachBum
4.43/5  rDev +31.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Wow, after the disappointing Chocolate Porter from Bayhawk Ales, this is more like it.

Pours with a lovely clear, golden body that a slight milky amber haze. Inherent carbonation props up a stiff white head in the beginning, but the gases evolve from solution quickly and the head soon dies completely. Sadly this detracts from the overall appearance.

Aromas and Tastes are immediately hoppy, but not overwhelming, though the strength appears to build up as you work your way through this beer. The strong hops are very evident, in the beginning, middle, the finish and beyond. Leaves a nice fresh hoppy residue on the tongue as the bitterness lingers, and it hangs around for quite some time after the beer has gone. What else? Well erm…. not much else going on here apart from the Hops, but hey who cares? A true California Pale Ale, that is not in question and is for definite.

Hopheads will love it. Rare, but well worth seeking out.

Cost me $2.95, Worlds apart and much better than its stable-mate the Chocolate Porter. I will definitely buy this one again – well that’s if I can find it !!!

TheLongBeachBum, Feb 27, 2003
Photo of imagese
3.38/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 4

This is my 2nd go around on tasting this brew, and my 1st review on BA. Going to take some time to really convey my thoughts... Gotta love A.D.D.!!!

Appearance: A nice cloudy orange. Very little head, even with a hard pour.

Smell: Very citrusy nose. A little earthy hop

Taste: Very nice citrus splash with a nice bitter rind and a little hop bitterness kick in the aftertaste. Notes from 1st bottle had a very strong citrus presence

Mouthfeel: This bottle was very low on carbonation. Had more of a watery feel than the 1st bottle.

Drinkability: This is a very sessionable beer. Bitter enough to please hopheads in a pinch (or on a budget), and smooth enough to enjoy all night

Serving type: bottle ($2.99 bomber from Hi-Time)

Overall, this is a decent beer, especially for the price.

imagese, Nov 01, 2010
Photo of Beerney
1.73/5  rDev -48.5%
look: 3 | smell: 1.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 1.5

To start...a little about me to put this review in context. I am a homebrewer. I think that I'm a good home brewer. i read reviews on BA all the time, but this is only the second review that I've written. I like supporting small brewies. When I saw this beer I was excited because I had never heard of Bayhawk Ales. The reason that this beer moved me to write a review is beacuse it infuriates me when I pay a premium price for beers that are not as good as my homebrew. I paid $5 for a 22, which is pretty standard for a craft brew, but still expensive when you consider that it equates to about a $15 6-pack. Don't get me wrong, I will gladly pay $5 for a little strange.

This beer is cloyingly sweet, which is magnified by the very orangey Amarillo hop aroma. It tastes like a mixture of malt liquor and OJ. I think that I will save the rest for tomorrow to see if it tastes any better for breakfast.

To sum up my review, if I made this beer at home, I would not serve it to my friends. I would love to tell you that I'd dump it down the drain, but that might be a little strong given that I have cases and cases of home brew that i won't drink, but can't bring myself to pour down the drain.

This beer re-enforces everything that I know about the State of California. The bay area kicks ass. The central coast is great. Once you get south of Santa Barbara, everyting is shitty until you get to San Diego.

Beerney, Mar 10, 2013
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California Pale Ale from Bayhawk Ales
76 out of 100 based on 56 ratings.