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Bass Pale Ale - Bass Brewers Limited

Not Rated.
Bass Pale AleBass Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

2,329 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 2,329
Reviews: 1,013
rAvg: 3.35
pDev: 17.01%
Wants: 24
Gots: 138 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bass Brewers Limited visit their website
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-17-2001)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 2,329 | Reviews: 1,013 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of abcsofbeer
3/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

All in all, this is an average beer that I used to think more of, when I didn't know any better.

Pours a dark copper that is very clear and has ample carbonation as witnessed by the rising bubbles. I poured four of these so far some with very thin heads that dissipate rapidly and others that were fairly thick that leaves a trace of lace.

The aroma is bready and yeasty with a fruit undertone. The taste is much the same. There are traces of crackers and wheat bread with a slightly bitter aftertaste. There are hints of spiced apple in the flavor as well. Overall, this is not a bad beer that has a distinct flavor.

abcsofbeer, Oct 09, 2004
Photo of BarrelBrother
3.73/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I must admit that I'm glad local pubs and restaurants are carrying Bass Ale on tap in the southern Chicagoland area. I'm gald to be able to order a Bass on tap rather than the usually Miller & Bud offerings. This beer is a friendly brew that will satisfy with a nice carmel flavor and a subtle sweetness that makes it a nice barroom drinker. Is it a outstanding beer by Beer Advocate standards, well no....not really, pretty average I'd say. But it is a good choice and a solid, tasty alternative for those of us that like character in our beers when you're at the typical American sport bar that offers the usual tasteless American macro brews.

Drinkability is good for Bass and the overall taste and mouthfeel is quite acceptable. I think the balance between sweetness and a somewhat bitter finish is well controlled. A solid choice when faced with limited options at your typical restaurant or pub in the States.

BarrelBrother, Sep 25, 2004
Photo of soper2000
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I can't believe that I've never rated this classic. This along with SNPA and Boston Lager were the 3 beers that introduced me to this world. Pours an amber color with a large head that is full of craters. Smell is of sweet carmelish malt. Taste is full of bready malt accented by sweet carmel. It also has a mild burnt toast flavor. Very little hop aroma or taste. A decent session beer and nice to have once in awhile, but better can definately be had.

soper2000, Sep 21, 2004
Photo of slitherySOB
3.18/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Kind of a murky red colour, with a light, tiny bubbled head. Very little lace stayed on the glass. Smell is of malt, bit of grass, some hops, and mineral water. Taste is more complex with minerals than any actual 'beer' ingredient. Their is a decent hard water taste too this, which detracts from any hop or malt profile. Malt is quite dull, weakened. Just a light sweetness. Hops are more grassy, and again dull and overpowered by minerals used. Overall, a full body mouthfeel. Bit thick and nice. Quite refreshing, though not incredibly enjoyable.

slitherySOB, Sep 18, 2004
Photo of DrJay
3.63/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Clear amber coloured beer topped with a thin white lace. Fruity banana aroma with a light hoppiness and biscuity, bready maltiness. Definite diacetyl flavour and buttery texture. Nice bitterness at the base of the flavour, along with some fruity esters and caramel malt. Medium/light body and lightly carbonated, with a bit of CO2 bite at the finish. Bitter aftertaste with a hint of diacetyl that lingers.

DrJay, Sep 12, 2004
Photo of misterscooter
4.22/5  rDev +26%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A good beer to drink while watching Monty Python's Flying Circus. Normally, I don't have this beer unless it is paired with Guinness in a black and tan (or Harp), but it is good to have it on its own. I nice mild smell with some sweetness goes along with the nice brown color. The first swallow is smooth and malty, going down easily. Not too carbonated, and the aftertaste is more mild maltiness and caramel. Overall, a very good beer to have around. Next time, I should drop the black and just have the tan.

misterscooter, Aug 29, 2004
Photo of NEhophead
3.25/5  rDev -3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Foamy white 1" head that fades leaving rings of lace. Some spotty lacing follows throughout the pint that sticks pretty well. Clear burnt auburn color.

A copper-metallic, burnt caramel malt aroma. Some floral and earthy hop aromas as well.

A faint caramel maltiness. A watery floral hop flavor mid-sip. The bitterness is malty yet metallic tasting. The hop and malt balance seem a bit disjointed.

Medium bodied; sweet on the palate. Moderate carbonation.

Easily consumable and light on the palate; plus you can find this virtually anywhere. Plenty of other EPA's I'd rather be drinking.

NEhophead, Aug 28, 2004
Photo of pootz
3.33/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Bottled Canadian import...pasturized 5.1% AVB...poured a beautiful color with orange highlights....1finger white tightly pored cap..leaves a sticky lace... very suble nose...sweet fruits and floral hops are very understated. Starts mellow and sparkling from the carbonation (too much for this mild ale) flavors of bready malts well balanced with mild citus hops and a nice little underlying hint of honey...very wet mouthfeel...finishes cleanly with a slight metalic hop after taste...a mild English pale that is very drinkable

pootz, Aug 28, 2004
Photo of the42ndtourist
3.35/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A reasonable option when considering what's on tap at most bars and pubs in Ottawa.

Dirty brown, with a decent 1.5cm head. This doesn't go away too quickly. Taste is crisp, some hop bitterness poking through a thinning curtain of malt. Nothing outstanding, but it at least seems a bit more lively than its competitors - Kilkenny, Boddington's, Caffrey's and the like.

Completely different in cask-conditioned form in the UK... but that's another story.

the42ndtourist, Aug 20, 2004
Photo of beershrine
2.5/5  rDev -25.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Update on what was once a classic. Now brewed in new york by budweiser/inbev

So much can change in a decade, I last reviewed in 2004 the beer I had still had the british taste and profile, brewed from inbev. Not anymore...

Appearance- ok decent copper color and lace

smell- not much a little malt and alcohol

taste- minerally sweet malt and a wiff of alcohol

mouthfeel- carmal malt on the tongue, stiff grainy aftertaste and harsh overtones.
Overgassed, tastes a little better warmed up - do not serve cold

overall- once a british ale classic now weakened by a giant corporation.
It's an ok beer I just can't get over the labeling trying to convince me it's british.
sheep in wolves cloth

beershrine, Aug 15, 2004
Photo of beertaster13
3.35/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A little suprised by this, you see it everywhere so you think it will be below par, far from it, while not great, a solid offering. Pours a dark orange/brownish with a off white 2 inch thick head. The head fizzles down but still impressive, lacing is average. The taste is a fruity hint of huckleberry, slight grainy bread notes throughout, the sweet sugar molasses is light and refreshing, hops are slight but noticable and bring a nice balance to the beer, still seems a little lackluster however. The aroma is of sugared grain, almost brown roasted sugar. The toasted grains are pleasant. Light to medium bodied for a pale, not bad.

beertaster13, Aug 13, 2004
Photo of Phyl21ca
3/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle: Poured a light brown beer with a medium head. Carbonation is on the weak side. Aroma is a nice enough mix of malt. Taste is very classic English ale and ends with some medium bitterness. Very well balance between the malt and the bitterness. I guess this is a very decent if unspectacular drink.

Phyl21ca, Aug 03, 2004
Photo of Hibernator
3.63/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this out of a 19.25 oz brown bottle served in a pint glass. The label reads "Brewed with distinction since 1777".

The appearance was a vibrant amber color with a nice off white head. Good head sustain with sticky lacings on the sides.

Smells sweet and wholesome.

Sweet and toasted grain taste at first with a slight bitter flavor on the finish. Medium balanced beer with a distinctive malt presence.

One of the classic regular available imports. A solid English Pale Ale.

Hibernator, Aug 01, 2004
Photo of oracle
3/5  rDev -10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

bottle pour clear medium amber color with low density 1 inch head. very little lacing left on the glass

Smell was definatly english, with oaken overtones and a moderate amount of hops.

Take was about average for an english ale, good but not outstandanding. Started fruity, but smooth, with a mild malt middle and long bitter finish that stuck around just a bit too long to be truly pleasant.

Overll, it was not bad, but there are better ways to spend your time.

oracle, Jul 26, 2004
Photo of Hunter
4/5  rDev +19.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4.5

568 ML bottle, poured into a 12 oz. beer mug. Just didn't feel like breaking out the pint glass tonight.

Beer pours a clear, deep amber color, topped by a nice cloud of white foam. Good lacing effects.

Aroma is all about the malt. Rich, deep nose of caramel, lightly hopped. No gimmicks, bells or whistles here - just good beer.

Taste follows up the nose, in that all you get is quality malt. Hops come in lightly on the swallow and linger in the aftertaste.

Mouthfeel is smooth but a little on the thin side. Typical, I suppose, of a pale ale but I'd have preferred something a bit more "chewy".

Bass is always a good standby, and a good "gateway" beer for those looking to get away from US macrobrews. There's nothing thrilling here, just comforting.

Hunter, Jul 23, 2004
Photo of Gagnonsux
3.55/5  rDev +6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had this on-tap tonight for the first time and really enjoyed it. Appearance is a nice light amber with an average sized, somewhat thick head. Smell is pretty standard, mainly malt smell noted. Taste isn't as hoppy as I thought it would be, has somewhat of a honey finish. Very enjoyable! A perfect easy-to-drink, yet very tasty beer. Will definently have this beer again.

Gagnonsux, Jul 13, 2004
Photo of TagoMago
2.9/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Presentation: 12 oz. bottle poured into pint glass.

Appearance: Dark gold with a reddish hue. The beer pours with a rather weak head which quickly fades to a thin, somewhat creamy foam that covers the top of the beer. The glass is left with a faint lacing as well.

Smell: Malty aroma with a touch of carmel and hops. A faint, somewhat buttery diacetyl aroma - common with English ales - can also be detected.

Taste & Mouthfeel: Moderate carbonation with a rather smooth and creamy mouthfeel. The flavor is that of buttery diacetyl coupled with some faintly sweet, malty undertones. Herb-like hops lay in the background.

Overall: This is the classic English pale ale and makes for a great session beer. It's nothing special, and is middle-of-the-road all the way. And although a little overpriced, this beer is very accessible and drinkable, and offers a great alternative to the macro-lagers for rather novice beer drinkers.

TagoMago, Jun 26, 2004
Photo of Jacobob10
3.78/5  rDev +12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap @ The Pour House in Boston, MA.

I've been drinking Bass for a few years now, but it was last year that I really started appreciating it. Pours out a light brown color with half an inch of head. The smell isn't anything to write home about, but it's not bad either, just nothing that stands out about it. You can really taste the hops. They give it a nice, clean, smooth taste. Great balance with the malts too. It goes down great without being too heavy or too light. An above average, well-balanced, enjoyable beer with a bit of an old-fashioned character to it.

Jacobob10, Jun 17, 2004
Photo of mobyfann
3.48/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Paid $2.00 for a 12oz. frosted mug on tap with lunch

The appearence is a beautiful amber color with a mid-sized white head and retention was good as with a little lacing as well. The aroma was pretty much just average, a little this-and-that stuff like fruits and sweets

The taste is alright, but not to my expectations; however still a pretty good taste mild hops, sweet, a but fruity and that's about it. The mouthfeel is real nice and smooth and the drinakbility is moreless above average, with too much hint of an alcohol taste at 5% abv.

Final Thought: Pleasent, better on tap than poured from the bottle, a fine pale ale in my book.

mobyfann, Jun 16, 2004
Photo of BobLuvBeer
3.53/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thick, deep head. Light amber color. Floral hop scent. Very soft on the palate with a very mellow hop flavor and limited bitterness. Very basic pale ale. Single, minimamal hop aroma, flavor and bite. Finishes quickly, leaves hardly any aftertaste. Brown 12oz.

BobLuvBeer, Jun 13, 2004
Photo of Doiv
3.4/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Labelled as Bass Premium Ale in the UK, this beer comes in a 500ml brown bottle.

Pours a mid amber colour with a big bubbly off-white head, that quickly disperses to a thing film, leaving little to no lacing.

Aroma was malts, slightly spicy and smoky, hint of hops and cucumber.

Taste was malts, more malts, and a sort of Pimms-esque watery fruit follow on. Small bitter finish.

Bubbly mouthfeel, luckily this beer drinks well.

Overall I was somewhat disappointed by this beer, I'd expect a better body to the beer and a flavour packing more of a punch.

Doiv, Jun 09, 2004
Photo of donnebaby
3.48/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Great-looking copper pale ale, with an off-white lasting head. Substantial lacing. Smell is a little too sweet for my liking--sweet apple malts.

Taste is very sweet malts as well, with a small caramel presence. Good hop touch at the conclusion that mixes with the caramel malts. Medium to heavy body and light carbonation mouthfeel.

A good beer to have more than one of by itself. With food, I'd get too fuuulll.

donnebaby, May 26, 2004
Photo of Holyterror
3.38/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

No, this isn't just another overly-hyped import. In fact, it's hardly hyped at all. I haven't heard a lot about Bass, which is probably the main reason I decided to try it.

From the bottle, it poured a very appetizing dark amber with good clarity and an excellent white head that maintained it's stature 3/4 of the way down. Aroma is mostly what I expect when I grab a pale ale, but lighter and more fruity. There's a slight floral smell hiding in there somewhere. You get the impression that this will be a sweeter ale. A simple taste reveals that it is somewhere in the middle. Note that, like many British beers, it is best served at a slightly higher temperature than the usual American beer temperature (as close to freezing as possible). The flavors are subtle. I wouldn't say the hops are showy, but it's hard for me to really distinguish the malt flavors. When it first hits my tongue, I taste fruit (matching the aroma), but the hops quickly take over. The hops are not strong, however, leaving a mild aftertaste and making for a rather clean finish. Worth trying with food, as it probably won't clash too badly with anything.

This might make a good starting point for those interested in pale ale, but it is definitely one of the weaker examples (character, not overall quality). I prefer a serious I.P.A., but this is by no means bad. I'll be looking for it on tap in the near future.

Holyterror, May 17, 2004
Photo of BadBadger
3.05/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Just an average beer.It was light to intermediate in depth of the amber coloration. There was a nice head which did last the duration of the pint. There was nothing in the smell or taste areas to be excited about. Unfortunately this beer is far to prevalent as an alternative to american macros.

BadBadger, May 01, 2004
Photo of necoadam
3.05/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bass, reach for greatness. That's their new radio ad that's played everyday. So am I reaching for greatness? Not really. Appearance is nice though. Poured out a dark amber color. Quite dark for a pale ale with the right amount of carbonation. Smell was subdued a lot. Some malts in there with some earth tones and some hops, but not very much. Taste was on the light side too. Malts start out and last all the way through then mixed with some hops and buttery tones in the middle that lasts through the end. It was balanced, but too light and thin. Have this beer on tap.

necoadam, Apr 29, 2004
Bass Pale Ale from Bass Brewers Limited
77 out of 100 based on 2,329 ratings.