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Steel Rail Extra Pale Ale - Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.

Not Rated.
Steel Rail Extra Pale AleSteel Rail Extra Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

219 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 219
Hads: 634
Avg: 3.59
pDev: 23.12%
Wants: 11
Gots: 93 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
Massachusetts, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) | 5.30% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: UnionMade on 08-22-1996

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (56) | Events
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Steel Rail Extra Pale Ale Alström Bros
Reviews: 219 | Hads: 634
Photo of Dools9
3.72/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Can, BB 02/22/14

A: Pours a golden yellow with a frothy two finger head, lots of carbonation, head retains well, a nice looking ale.

S: Bready crust, biscuity crackery malt, some clean earthy/floral hop spice. Clean is the best word to describe it.

T; Grainy, biscuity malt, just a touch of a earthy floral hop presence.

M: Lighter end of medium, drinks pretty smooth.

O: No frills, simple yet pretty tasty. I like that BBC is venturing into the canning world.

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Photo of Andrew041180
3.72/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

A - On tap in a 22 ounce frozen glass at Uno's. I hate when they freeze my glass, I froze my hands trying to warm it up a bit before drinking. Best as I could tell the beer was a nice color, once the beer wamed up a bit it looked to be leaving nice lacing on the glass.

S - Could barely detect a smell. See Appearance.

T - Definitely a better-than-average Pale Ale. Nice malty character with barely any hops coming through.

M - Again, once it wamed up a little this one felt really nice.

O - This is on of my go-to's when I see it on the menu and I plan on having food. It goes well with anything, especially after losing several golf balls over nine holes, which was the case on this day.

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Photo of 1759Girl
4.18/5  rDev +16.4%
look: 3 | smell: 5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

appearance> hazy, light carbonation, no head and no lacing.

Smell> apple, cocoa butter

Taste>Medium complexity, starts malty with a sweet floral hop taste and a dry cider like finish. Very unique.

Mouf> Nice. Light and easy.

Drinkability> Quite.

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Photo of garuda
3.58/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

No freshness dating

A - Hazed gold body, white head has good retention and some lacing.

S/T - Light hop presence, mostly floral in the nose, with more of a pine taste with a little citrus. Bready malts, a little doughy, light toasted grains. Touches of off flavors butter and acetone here and there, didn't really affect the drink too bad though.

M - Medium body, crisp carbonation and finish.

O - Standard pale, not bad, but not particularly memorable either.

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Photo of Arithmeticus
2.79/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured chilled on draft at Sacco's candlepin bowling

A: very thin head, no lacing
S: light, lemony, fruity
T: lemony, more like a summer lager than a pale ale; not very hoppy; alcohol nicely balanced against flavor
M: flat

Didn't finish it, but glad I tried it

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Photo of Darkmagus82
3.8/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Served on tap in a pint glass

Appearance – Pours a lightly hazed golden color with a two finger white head. The head fades relatively fast to leave a moderate level of lacing.

Smell – The aroma is sweet with strong notes of a caramel and butterscotch nature. Mixed with this is a lightly roasted bready aroma as well.

Taste – A sweet malty flavor greets the tongue. The biscuit flavored maltiness is mixed with a heavy dose of caramel. As the flavor advances on, the roasted flavor begins to lose their strength, with flavors of butterscotch and light fruits as well as hoppy flavor (which is quite light) working their way into the flavor profile. The taste finishes leaving a rather satisfying flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the beer is on the average side with the carbonation level that is very appropriate. Both good and tasty.

Overall – A very easy to drink and quite enjoyable brew. One to try if you get a chance.

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Photo of Maxwell
3.4/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a very hazy lemony pale yellow gold with a nice finger wide head of white soapy bubbles. This could definitely be a dehydrated piss beer. The head fizzles away to a thin skimming on the top of the beer quite quickly but there is some great fanged lacing drizzling down the sides of the glass. It smells like sour sweet bread with a wonderful spicy background aroma that reminds me more of a saison or a wit than of a pale ale. The sour sweet damp smell could be hops peaking through, but they might also be the sweet malts. The beer tastes very bready with an almost bubble gum-like citrus burst in the middle of the taste, which mellows into a ghost of itself in the after taste with some nice biscuitiness as the main flavor. This seems more like an English Pale Ale to me as the hops are not the main thing in this brew, and only a part of its complexly balanced flavor. The mouth feel is a little harsh with carbonation in the initial sip, but mellows out into a slight prickle coating over the inner mouth and a raspy wet feel on the tongue that is slightly dry. Overall this is a very sessionable ale that sits right above the “session-line.” Nothing is very dominant in the flavor, which gives it a great balanced feeling. I could drink a lot of these I just am not sure if I want to…

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Photo of RTEdmunds
3.77/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As the name suggests, it is very pale! Almost a greenish hue to it. The head dissipates pretty quickly.

Smells of honeydew and grains. Aroma is pleasant and sweet, but a little mild.

Fruity flavor. Reminds me of melon or cantaloupe? I would like a little more of a hops presence.

Exceptionally smooth, with a clean finish. Chewy and very drinkable.

It's a little bit mild. But it's quite nice and well balanced. Certainly worth a try.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.13/5  rDev -12.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a bomber into a mug, the beer is hazy, muddled goldenrod color with no head whatsoever. Aromas of roasted grains and a touch of honey sweetness, with a light hopping. Flavors are toasted cereal grains with a floral highlight and sugary sweet toffee blend. Slight, inconsistent layering of cling on the glass, the beer has a medium body that is smooth. Aftertaste is rich and sweet, with a slightly cloying finish. The beer has more of an English Pale feel to it than anything.

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Photo of weeare138
3.68/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appears a hazy light gold with a small white cap that forms a solid collar. Solid tubes of lacing are left around the glass.
Smell is of fruity peach, apricots, and citrus.
Taste is of the aromas with a fruity blast of melon and apple.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied, smooth, and chewy on the finish.

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Photo of puboflyons
4.17/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

From a 22 oz. bomber stamped Best By 03/07/12. Sampled on February 27, 2012. The pour is a cloidy pale yellow with a tremendous head building up from active carbonation bubbles. The aroma has malts, a little yeast, and clean hops in there but there is something else akin to citrus. The body medium and holds its texture well when swirling on my tongue. The taste has a kind of grainy, malt sensatioin along with this hard to define tart, citrus note. The hops end clean. Likeable.

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Photo of sailorastro
4.33/5  rDev +20.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Steel Rail is the beer I recommend friends to try who are new to craft brews or are visiting from a place where microbreweries have a small nitch in their market. It's an easy beer to like, and even easier to come back to again and again.

Appearance: Heavy carbonation caused a three finger head to settle on its clear, golden yellow body. Good lacing.

Smell: Wheat; brown sugar; grass; grapes; cotton; bread.

Taste: Toasted malty flavor, finished with a slight bitterness that's almost transparent between sips.

Body: Light bodied. Clean taste left on the palate.

Served from a pint glass.

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Photo of jb413
3.89/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a clear, golden hue with lots of rising bubbles. About a finger and a half of white foamy head that lasted a little before leaving a thin ring. Great lacing all the way down.

S - Butterscotch candy is very noticeable. Caramel and maple hints as well. Breadiness. Hops are light and there.

T - Sweet in the front with a nice pale malty backdrop. Some of the caramel/butterscotch from the nose. Fruity hints and bready body. Then the hops come in, floral and herbal and balanced as they duke it out with the malt in the bittersweet finish.

MF - Lighter side of medium-bodied, well-matched carbonation. Buttery and smooth. Pretty drinkable.

O - A well-rounded, nicely balanced pale. A solid pick at the price.

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Photo of ryan1788a5
3.28/5  rDev -8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber poured into a pint glass.

A: Crystal clear amber color. Creamy white head is thick and prominent. Excellent retention. Lots of sticky lacing coats the glass.

S: Sweet on the nose with lots of pale malt. Doughy and grainy with hints of husk. Gritty, earthy yeast. Kiss of floral hops. Simple, but good.

T: Taste basically follows the nose to a tee. Starts off sweet and rife with grainy pale malt tastes and a hint of grain husk. Hop bitterness kicks in mid-palate and provides some balance, though maybe not quite enough. Gritty, earthy yeast plays an integral role, and is far from just background noise. Sweet, doughy, grainy finish.

M: Light bodied. Foamy and a bit creamy. Moderate carbonation. Maybe a very slight husky astringency.

O: A very simple beer. Decent, if you can take it for what it is. Still, I find it a little too sweet. A bit more balance and a more prominent hop profile might do it some good. But why change it? It's the flagship beer, and it is very well known and loved as it is around these parts. It's worth a try, but don't expect anything fancy.

Notes: It actually paired quite well with a meatball grinder.

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Photo of VelvetExtract
3.63/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A-Pours a cloudy straw color. Head simmers down to simply a ring of white. Leaves lacing dots along the glass.

S-Mostly sweet and malty. Not much hop aroma here. Pleasant nose. Neither intense nor complex, but smells like a good sip.

T-Sweet with a very humble overall flavor. The finish is this beer's high point. Mild hop flavors. Sweet and a bit fruity. Light yeast. Easy to drink.

M-Lighter body with high carbonation. Not much in the way of bitterness. Lightly sticky.

O/D-A nondescript Pale Ale. I enjoyed this on-tap. Would never pick this out an expanded tap-list, but worth a try. And its local.

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Photo of beer2day
3.23/5  rDev -10%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Very pale lemon pour. 1.5 fingers of white head and decent retention, with a 1/2 finger left at the end of the draw. Thin lace. Medium carbonation. Not a fan of the pale color, but have to appreciate the head retention.

Bread dough nose with hints of grape. Little in the way of a hop note.

More bread dough in the taste. Understated grape and a bit of plum. Bits of yeast show through the dough flavor. Way more bread than anything else here. Getting light lemon in the finish.

Feel is decent, with malt body from all that bread dough. Fairly uninteresting, though.

Overall, a pass.

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Photo of tylerprince
3.21/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

22 oz bomber poured into a $55 pint glass...apparently they make these; my dad bought a pair for some reason.

A: Pours a hazy yellow copper. Extremely thin white head, but with good retention. Leaves behind a little bit of lacing. Resins float around at the bottom.

S: Smells like a Belgian. Lots of sweet malts/honey up front, finishing with a faint scent of floral hops with some citrus. Not what I would expect from an extra pale.

T: Sweet. Just way too sweet. Starts off all honey and ends tobacco, with a bit of citrus throughout. Leaves a sweet aftertaste.

M: Very low carbonation, which I would normally appreciate, but the sheer sweetness and fullness of this beer demands some more CO2. A tad chewy...a weird quality for a PA.

O: Disappointed, again, by a brewery that I remembered as one of the best on the east coast before I started reviewing on BA. I'm starting to think BBC just doesn't make beers for hopheads.

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Photo of DrinkingDrake
3.49/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Golden orange with a big bubbly head. It goes away quickly and leaves a couple bubbles floating around. Fresh, pale, biscuit malts for the nose. Floral and grassy hops in the back. Body is medium/light. Flavor is smooth caramel malts. Some of the biscuit malts from the nose are present. Earthy, floral hops pop up after the beer goes down. Not dry or overly bitter. Flavorful hop profile with a strong malty rich backing. Nice beer to have a few rounds of hanging out at the bar.

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Photo of philbe311
3.36/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - A finger's and a half worth of fluffy slightly airy pure white colored head... Decent retention gives way to a full creamy lacing... The color is a pale lemony yellow straw color with an ever so slight haziness... A moderate bit of moderate paced carbonation... Just a tad of lacing clings to the glass...

S - Some crisp grainy notes... Some sweet lemon lime notes... Some green grapes... Some golden raisins... Some grassy and gay notes... A bit musky...

T - Interesting floral notes... Some faint lemon zest... Doughy light biscuit... Perhaps some grape and golden raisin accents...

M - Light to medium bodied... A bit of lushness... Very muted carbonation... Sleek and a bit sticky... Not thin, but perhaps it feels bit flat...

D - An average at best American Pale Ale... Lots of interesting aromas and flavors, but I'm not sure they add up to much of anything...

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Photo of skibumma70
3.36/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Aroma is not very appealing, almost a skunky like smell. Appearance is a hay golden color. Taste light, not hoppy, pretty easy to drink, and tasty. Almost a light citrus, lemony flavor that is refreshing in the hot weather. It is smooth on the palate, almost perfect carbonation. Overall, it is a pretty good Pale Ale. Nothing new here, but an easy to drink ale that is well balanced.

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Photo of Celtics76
3.77/5  rDev +5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was excited to try this beer as I've enjoyed the Coffee Porter and River Ale from Berkshire. Seems like a quality brewery.

I poured it into a 22oz. Cantina glass that I purchased at Star Tours at Disney Studios. I noticed a very frothy head and a good amount of carbonation. Has sort of a sweet smell to it.

I wasn't terribly impressed after the first couple of sips but enjoyed it more as it warmed a bit. I believe I served it too cold..40 degrees is ideal apparently. Not much going on as far as hops are concerned - it is super easy to drink and I could see myself very easily drinking 2-3 bombers in one sitting.

As far as pale ales go, it is not as flavorful as Sierra Nevada and Flying Dog Pale Ales (2 of my faves), however I will seek it out here and there as I am a fan of Berkshire.

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Photo of hoptualBrew
4.32/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber, I like the label work - traditional yet appealing.

I poured pretty aggressive - comes out a light & mildly hazy golden straw. A frothy off white head mellows down to a thin layer & leaves a trail down the glass.

Belgian-like yeast funk, pale malts, mild earthy hops & some citrus come through in the nose. Looks like Saison meets APA.

Wow, clean & crisp come to mind real quick. Solid malt backbone come together with a moderate amount of hop character & a punch of lemon zest. This pale is a very balanced and refreshing brew. All the components stick together throughout very well with just a touch more citrus in the aftertaste than on the tongue.

Prickly carbonation & foamy effect work well with the refreshing taste - cleansing the palate nicely. Medium body (5/10) makes for great drinkability, dangerously sessionable. This brew would be perfect with a rack of dry rub BBQ ribs.

Thanks goes to my beautiful girlfriend for bringing this back to me from her trip to Boston.

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Photo of mlazzaro
3.42/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Very yellow, very "extra pail". Nice and clear with a white head. So-so head retention. Smells like a lager yeast, almost nutty yeast aroma. Also there is a delicious smelling zestiness to the aroma. Highly drinkable, kind of bland in flavors. It is sweet dominant, strong graininess behind the sweetness. Bitterness and hop presence are mild. English yeast for sure. Smooth, low acidity. Pretty good beer.

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Photo of 9InchNails
2.95/5  rDev -17.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Prepackaged growler from State Liquors in Worcester Massachusetts.

A white foamy head that starts fading a little fast. Golden body with a decent amount of bubbles.

Big time malt, grain and buscuity smell with some floral aromas.

A little bland for my taste. The aroma is actually better than the taste. I get mostly grain, buscuits and a floral taste with a noticeable amount of yeast. Not a fan of this at all.

Light body, carbonation is on the light side. It's quite smooth and easy to drink once you can get passed the mediocre taste.

I won't be seeking this out again. One of the most bland tasting Pale Ales I ever tasted. I would stay away from this beer.

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Photo of SunDevilBeer
4.17/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Ahh, my old friend Steel Rail.

I've been drinking it for years as I enjoy its simplicity and drinkability year round.

Recently got a sixtel of it for a backyard BBQ on a hot summer day.

Pours a clear bright yellow with a decent head retention. Aroma is unique - biscuity and hoppy, though not the ultra-bitter smell. Very inviting to take a sip.

More faint biscuit taste in the mouth with restrained hops. Finishes with a slightly sweet malt finish. Each sip begs another as it's balanced and ultra-clean.

I never really thought of this as a summer beer, but I do now. Sooo easy to drink many of these.

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Steel Rail Extra Pale Ale from Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
82 out of 100 based on 219 ratings.