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Steel Rail Extra Pale Ale - Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.

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

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.

511 Ratings

(view ratings)
Ratings: 511
Reviews: 206
rAvg: 3.58
pDev: 13.69%
Wants: 7
Gots: 34 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
Berkshire Brewing Company Inc. visit their website
Massachusetts, United States

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

Availability: Year-round

Notes/Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: UnionMade on 08-22-1996)
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Ratings: 511 | Reviews: 206 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of mshallah

New Hampshire

3.9/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bomber. Deep golden color with chill haze and a 1/2 inch head that falls but leaves sticky lace. Tiny sediment floats in suspension. Very light sweet malt aroma. Fruity aromas of apricot and peach. Taste is very light but complex. Juicy fruit malt sweetness with balancing bittering hops. Very light citrus hint from aroma hops. Slight butteriness and saltiness towards the finish. Low carbonation with tiny bubbles give a cream ale like mouthfeel. I was looking for something light but flavorful and Steel Rail filled the bill nicely.

Serving type: bottle

07-06-2007 14:22:31 | More by mshallah
Photo of geexploitation


3.1/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Pours a very pale golden color, cloudy with some remaining yeast, and sporting a bright white head that leaves some nice lacing. It looks like a cream ale. The aroma is a bit funky, with some saltiness and an herbal quality. It has an unpleasant aspect to it, too -- more dirty than funky. On the palate it's first fresh and hoppy, but then things take a turn toward a sweet, cloying graininess that sticks to the tongue through the finish and into the aftertaste. Mouthfeel is good -- light, effervescent and not too filling. Overall, though, this beer is average in pretty much every way -- the aroma has some good points that are marred by an unpleasant note; the palate is the same thing redone. I wouldn't turn down a free glass of this, but I wouldn't go out of my way to get it.

Serving type: bottle

04-01-2007 00:24:08 | More by geexploitation
Photo of blackie


3.18/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

appearance: Pours a light, bone white head that soon is nothing but a thin ring. The beer is a slightly cloudy bright golden.

smell: Better than the taste, but still not good enough to rise past "average." Pale malts, much like you'd find in a pils or something, are the dominant force here. Light, somewhat crisp hop aroma...almost noble.

mouthfeel: carbonation around medium and a light body

taste: Pretty bland, benign pale malts and a dull, soggy hop flavor. Light bitterness. Finishes almost (though better) like a macro in both flavor and feel. Could be a little cleaner. Nothing off, nothing great.

drinkability: pretty easy...very reminiscent of a Euro Lager or old Pils to me

from gpcollen1 for my bombing

Serving type: bottle

03-29-2007 03:14:30 | More by blackie
Photo of jcdiflorio

West Virginia

3.28/5  rDev -8.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

poured into a nonic glass froma 22oz. brown bomber with a crimped cap.

Cloudy,golden/straw color looks unfiltered. 2" thick,creamy white head with decent retention with some spotty lacing.

Grassy/dry hay nose with fruityness and some light malt notes

Clean bisquity,fresh bread,some fruityness,light malt,with a bit of a tang. Finishes crisp,clean with a light maltiness. Very good balance.

Smooth,with a bit of grainyness. Easy drinking,refreshing good summer beer.
Has a bit of a Macro feel.would be a good beer to give to a BMC drinker.

Serving type: bottle

03-08-2007 03:35:27 | More by jcdiflorio
Photo of jmz62565


3.98/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly cloudy golden yellow with a medium head that leaves no lacing. The smell is a mixture of bread yeast "bisquity' aromas along with sweet malt and hops. The taste has a crisp hop bite with sweet malt and bread yeast. A light m/f with all the flavors mixing very well. This is a better tasting beer than looking or smell and it could be an everyday brew in the summer. You won't be sad when you pick this up.

Serving type: bottle

02-14-2007 06:31:07 | More by jmz62565
Photo of billybob


4.9/5  rDev +36.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

pours a cloudy golden color with a two finger white head that holds very well and a nice lace to the finish. smell is fruity and citrus but a little weak. taste is yeasty and malty, bready just great. mouthfeel nice smoothness good balance and good carbonation. drinkability is excellent definitely try this beer. its on my list.

Serving type: growler

01-15-2007 17:26:07 | More by billybob
Photo of Nipitato


2.83/5  rDev -20.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Picked up a bomber at Julio's Liqours in Westborough, MA.

A: Deep gold with a slight off white head. Almost clear.

S: Malty almost pilsner lager like smell. Slight sulfer aromas. Hop aroma is unpronounced.

T: Not bitter or particularly hoppy. Strong malt character for a pale ale. Hop flavor is very weak and what is present is citrusy in character. Not very impressive.

MF: Medium light body. Not filling. Moderate carbonation.

D: An unbalanced, oddly tasting APA. Not an impressive offering from one of the best breweries in New England.

Serving type: bottle

01-14-2007 21:57:56 | More by Nipitato
Photo of EPICAC


4.1/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Appearance: Pours a lightly hazy copper with a thin head that fades to a ring.

Smell: Some light maltiness, toasty with a bit of raw sugar, and some leafy hops.

Taste: Toasty malts that move into mild sweetness. The finish has a nice hop bitterness with some spiciness.

Mouthfeel: High carbonation, light to medium-bodied.

Drinkability: Balanced, a great session beer.

Serving type: on-tap

12-20-2006 06:58:20 | More by EPICAC
Photo of Estarrio


3.58/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a cloudy, hay yellow from a commercial growler. The medium, white, foamy head retained well, leaving watery lacings.

The malt aroma mixes with a doughy, yeast presence and a fruity hop bouquet.

Sweet malt up front, mixing with a lightly bitter, grassy hop flavor. Some sweet, fruit, apple notes become more apparent as it warms. A bread-like yeast flavor is present throughout.

Well carbonated and light bodied, this is a decent session brew. I found the flavor to be somewhat underwhelming.

Serving type: growler

10-31-2006 01:21:43 | More by Estarrio
Photo of bigone4

Rhode Island

4.45/5  rDev +24.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of my favorite session beers from Western MA. I was introduced to this brew four years ago and it has become one of my staple fridge stockers. Great drinking session beer well made and balanced. Everyone that I have try this beer ends up really enjoying its simplicity and great drinkability. I have had this beer so many times that it slipped my radar for a review. I have had it on tap, in a 22oz, and out of growlers.

Great pour hazy yellowish copper straw hue. There is a clean white frothy head that leaves some nice mild lacing down the pint. Initial smell of sweet malts with a nice floral citrus hop balance. Fresh malt and a clean bread like yeast smell followed up by a sweet fruit smell perhaps some mild hints of pear or apple. Very complex smell that is really refreshing. Smooth and very drinkable. The light malt taste with a nice hop bouquet in the finish will make you grow fond of this beer quickly. There is a presence of a bread like yeast flavor almost fruitiness. The nose description is almost exactly how it tastes. You know what you are drinking as soon as you smell it and then you are glad for the great flavor and taste.

I would consider this to be a light to medium bodied brew. Good carbonation slow rise of tiny bubbles. Well constructed flavors from start to finish like always. Being BBC's flagship beer many people have had the chance to drink a little piece of Western MA. Tried and true time winner in my book. Great repeatability in the flavor and the taste. I learned to really appreciate such a well made session brew. Well worth giving this beer a try. From non-micro drinkers alike this one can hit the nail on the head for many. Glad to see the distribution hitting RI now.

Serving type: bottle

10-14-2006 15:03:27 | More by bigone4
Photo of bornridiculous


4.13/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I know my rating for this beer might seem a bit high compaired to others. However, when I think normal session beer, this is it. I can drink growler after growler of this beer. As far as appeariance is concerned It is a nice dark golden color with a decient head retention. The smell is nothing special, it smells moderatly of hops. The taste is fantastic. Not in the way that chocolate is better than brussle sprouts fantastic, but great none the less. The mouthfeel is great, nice and bubbly but not too overpowering with a clean hoppy finish. As for drinkability, when I think beer, this one comes to mine as being the baseline for all other beers. I fully recomend it.

Serving type: growler

10-04-2006 02:14:19 | More by bornridiculous
Photo of TheManiacalOne

Rhode Island

4.25/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass.

A: The beer is a light gold color with a thin but foamy white head that fades at a decent rate and leaves a thick and even lace on the glass.

S: The smell grainy & hoppy with hints of citrus, yeast and wheat.

T: It starts off with a bready taste, with hops & citrus mixed in, not very much sweetness, which isn’t a bad thing in this case. The flavor is very straight-forward. This one seems to taste a lot like Berkshire’s Gold Spike Ale with a little more hops.

M: Very crisp and smooth, light-to-medium body, medium-to-high carbonation, very clean finish.

D: Refreshing and tasty, not filling at all, extremely easy to drink, a very good beer overall.

Serving type: bottle

09-21-2006 03:09:34 | More by TheManiacalOne
Photo of plaid75

New York

3.7/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured a light copper hue with a one finger pillowy white head. There was very good retention and sticky lacing.

The smell was a soft biscuity grain with a mellow citrus hop aroma.

The taste was very well balanced. A nice soft, yet substantial doughy malt backbone was nicely decorated with a smooth citrus hop flavor. A substantial yeastiness existed as well.

The mouthfeel was light, yet mildly chewy.

Overall a very easy drinking simple pale ale. Very smooth and very sessionable.

Serving type: bottle

09-07-2006 23:18:39 | More by plaid75
Photo of NEhophead


3.55/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Very pale, light straw with a chill haze. Half inch-high, foamy white head that allows for a half-intact wall of condensed lacing.

Semi-sweet malted wheat and grains. A faint nose of floral hops with a bit of citrus astringency.

Mild lemon and pine with a touch of grapefruit. Creamy, barely sweetened caramel malt character. A nice balance of wheat, malt and hop flavors; none of which, overshadowing the others on the palate. Slightly tart, clean citrus aftertaste.

Light bodied; clean and crisp on the palate.

A Pale that's not steeped in a distinct or pronounced hop profile, but a well-balanced brew nonetheless. A beer to be used to convert the non-craft drinker.

Serving type: bottle

06-11-2006 20:14:45 | More by NEhophead
Photo of BlueHammer


3.03/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a cloudy golden yellowish color with a moderate white head. Head leaves some decent lacing on the glass as it is drunk. Smells somewhat citrus, even a little floral. Tastes just a little on the bitter side, hops are apparant. Starts smooth but with the carbonation it finishes slightly abrasive. Easy to drink since the bitterness isn't overwhelming. A rather bland beer.

Serving type: growler

05-12-2006 23:31:17 | More by BlueHammer
Photo of dbalsock


3.58/5  rDev 0%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I really liked the light shade of this beer, with a golden yellow base, orange seemed to float around in it ever so lightly. The white head was minimal, but it did last and provide a very nice aroma of flowery hops, and maybe some sweetness that had a yeastness to it. Tastewise, it was pretty sweet, supported by the flowery hops. I found it to be pretty balanced, but not perfect by anymeans. The mouthfeel wasn't quite as smooth as I would have liked and I was really looking for a stellar beer experience. It seemed a tad overcarbonated, and that made me switch beers later on, regretably.

Serving type: on-tap

05-12-2006 15:39:38 | More by dbalsock
Photo of MattBrooks


4.43/5  rDev +23.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 22oz bomber, this local brew is golden yellow with a nice foamy, frothy white head. The taste is bitter the way a Pale Ale should be but clean and fresh the way you'd expect an unpasteurized beer to be. The taste is of classic malts and yeast, with just a hint of fruitiness on the finish. The body was good, not too heavy or too light and the beer goes down so easy, it could almost be dangerous that this is a 22oz bomber; but at 5.3%, one doesn't have to worry too much.

Serving type: bottle

04-18-2006 15:06:02 | More by MattBrooks
Photo of mcarroll10177


4.7/5  rDev +31.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Served on tap in a Springfield MA resturant and poured into a 22 oz mug.

A- slightly cloudy, straw color with a nice, thin white head

S- some hops some citrus

T- excellent. Balanced with the hop profile. Smooth up front, clean in the finish.

M- Balance again is the key here, just enough mouthfeel without any trace of water.

D- A most drinkable and refreshing beer. I love it on tap and in the bottle. So refreshing, that this is now my go to beer on tap. The fact that it is locally brewed in Western MA as well, bonus.

Serving type: on-tap

03-15-2006 16:50:27 | More by mcarroll10177
Photo of 3Vandoo

Quebec (Canada)

3.78/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A golden beer with good carbonisation with a very shy sticky foamy head.

Smell of wheat, barley and bread, very cerelic smell, even unbalanced for my taste with a shy hoppy fruity finish but very shy.

Taste is quite cereals, with a deep touch of barley and a shy hoppy finish that brings note of bananas.

Serving type: bottle

03-04-2006 23:00:16 | More by 3Vandoo
Photo of slap


3.6/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a bomber into a pint glass.

Very pale yellow color, slighty cloudy. Upon pouring a thin white head forms with decent lacing. The nose is fairly mild, nothing bold here. The first taste is smooth and refreshing. Again no bold flavors, to my palate this is a well balanced, tame brew. The finish is slightly bitter but just a tinge on the toungue. The mouthfeel is nice and creamy, very high drinkability.

This is a very refreshing beer. This would make a great session beer for the warmer weather. I can see myself throwing a few of these back in the summer.

Serving type: bottle

03-01-2006 05:03:35 | More by slap
Photo of rousee


4.03/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is a little misleading. When I think of pale ales as it is named, I think of an amber color british style pale ale. This doesnt look or taste like that at all--

Gold murky color. Very pretty looking head of 5 mm setlles quickly and leaves a wisp of foam on top. Some mild lacing. Smell is malty and grainy. Taste is similar to the scent but it has a rich thick enveloping mouthfeel--a very nice smooth beer. There are some bready or biscuit like aspects to this beer which I also enjoy quite a bit.These gold styles tend to be the very much to my liking. Pretty straightforward and just plain good.

More bavarian style than british style.

Serving type: bottle

02-19-2006 21:00:21 | More by rousee
Photo of acarroll413


4.3/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I was anxious to try this beer because my date on Valentine's Day had one and I couldn't drink because I was sick. I had this at a bar in Easthampton, MA. The color is golden, I'm not certain if it's supposed to be cloudy but it was. Like I said, I'm not that's necessarily good. It could have been the glass at the bar. It smelled like wheat, not very alcoholy. The taste was very good, heavy on the wheat and it went to down smooth. This is one of my favorite beers at the moment. I'll definitely drink this again.

Serving type: on-tap

02-19-2006 06:20:35 | More by acarroll413
Photo of akahn


3.18/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sharing a growler with friends, fresh from South Deerfield, just two towns over. "Brewed with Delight"

Pours a slightly cloudy yellow color. Extra pale, indeed. Lasting white creamy head that sticks around, tons of streaming bubbles. Nice patterned lacing.

Wheaty aroma, I could have taken this for an American wheat ale, had I not known that this is called an APA.

Pale and wheaty in flavor as well. This is like a cross between a wheat ale and an APA. There is also a grain husk flavor that unfortunately reminds me of a macro lager. A slight yeasty sourness adds some interest.

Light bodied, but not watery. Gentle carbonation all around.

Definitely goes down easy, but not sturdy enough to remain interesting for more than two, as as the palate numbs some.

This is an extremely popular beer out here in the Pioneer Valley, and I can see why. This is a quaffable and accessible beer. That said, I would take Berkshire Ale or Lost Sailor IPA over this any day for a session.

Serving type: growler

02-13-2006 00:34:19 | More by akahn
Photo of JasonCoop


3.85/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

pours a hazy straw yellowish color with decent fluff and lace.

smells quite sweet nice mellow hops, wheat elements with a little fruit. smells very light. smells similar to a wheat beer.

tastes very light. very mellow sweet malts with the tiniest dash of hops. is that a bit of green grape? if i got this without knowing what it was i would assume it was some kind of wheat brew. it's really pretty good.

mouthfeel is quite light and bubbly. not bad but i prefer something a bit more full. very drinkable though due to this lightness. this is a really good beer that i would never buy again, if that makes sense.

Serving type: bottle

11-29-2005 07:30:31 | More by JasonCoop
Photo of Dogbrick


3.65/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to goodbyohio for the trade. Light amber color with a medium off-white head and stringy lacing. Malt and some floral hops in the nose. Medium body with mild bitterness, sweet malt and hops along with a bit of fruit flavoring. None of the flavors is very assertive but it is a refreshing concoction. The finish is dry and hoppy. Pretty simple overall and it would make a very good lawnmower beer.

Serving type: bottle

09-15-2005 21:39:48 | More by Dogbrick
Steel Rail Extra Pale Ale from Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
81 out of 100 based on 511 ratings.