Headwaters Pale Ale - Victory Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Headwaters Pale AleHeadwaters Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
88
very good

559 Reviews
THE BROS
90
outstanding

(Read More)
Reviews: 559
Hads: 2,359
rAvg: 3.93
pDev: 9.67%
Wants: 76
Gots: 365 | FT: 2
Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.10% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: thagr81us on 02-14-2011

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 559 | Hads: 2,359
Photo of yourchoice
3.28/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A- Pours to a clear light golden amber with a quickly dissipating white head. Some lacing, but minimal. Attractive in the glass.
S- A sweet toffee or caramel malty aroma. Some pine as well. Not much of citrus aroma...if any fruit, it something much more subtle.
T- A very neutral pale ale. I prefer something a bit more robust with the hops shining through. Some of the piney characteristic, but not much. More malty than anything else. Neutral in a non-complex kind of way.
M- Rather carbonated, with a thin feel.
D- Could you drink a lot of these? I would say, yes. The lack of complexity makes this an easy drinking beer, but that is not what I was anticipaing from it.

I think this beer may be Victory's attempt to be a little more mainstream, where people who aren't typically craft beer drinkers will venture out and drink this as a bridge to craft beers. I wasn't that impressed. I can see myself having this before a Phillies game when I want to have a beer or two with friends before heading into the game. That thought may seem random, but it gives me a setting I could see this beer being okay.

EDIT: Just read jeffthechef's review posted just prior to mine. "Generic" sums it up perfectly. (1,203 characters)

Photo of twelvsies
3.3/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a very clear light amber, rising bubbles, and a small layer of head. Citric hop nose, hints of lemon and pine, a touch of honey or caramel. Nice balanced flavor. More malt then expected, hearty bread flavor plays well with the sweet fruityness of the hops. Smooth texture and nice body. Really nothing wrong at all with this beer - it's just not super interesting. A decent sessionable pale. (397 characters)

Photo of ToAzwethinkweizm
3.3/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Date: 24 June 2011
Glass: Ithaca English-style pint glass
Type: 12fl bottle

Poured gently, brief 1+ finger head, reduces to a light cap, fairly nice draped lacing, color is clear amber gold

Aroma is wonderfully floral, paired with touches of pine, and a quick wisp of grapefruit.

Taste is incredible for a session beer 5.1% (at least I believe it's of session quality). Taste begins with a lightly floral bitter hops, a touch of pine, and a pale malt backbone. Possibly the slightest touch of lemon, but very brief.

Mouthfeel is extremely crisp, like a quick spike. Doesn't leave a bitterness on the palate. A lemony flavor lasts few a few seconds. Light-bodied beer, great for hop-heads that don't want to spend a lot of money, and want a sessionable beer. Good job again, Victory. (786 characters)

Photo of Stobin
3.3/5  rDev -16%
look: 3.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Really like this style, don't know if this one is a good representation. Smell has a hint of what wine people call "pipi du chat", or cat piss. Didn't care for smell, but tastes much better. Really like this brewery, and most of its offerings, but this one falls a little flat for me. Will try on tap if given the chance, but won't buy in bottles again. (353 characters)

Photo of Ozzylizard
3.3/5  rDev -16%

Bottle dated BB 15 Dec 2014 at 40 degrees into standard pint glass
Aroma citrusy hops
Head average (3 cm), off white, creamy, diminishing to 3 mm ring and layer
Lacing good, complete thick rings of mostly tiny bubbles
Body medium yellow, clear, continuingly rising bubbles
Flavor begins bitter and lightly citrus, ends just bitter; no malt, no alcohol, no diacetyl
Palate light to medium, watery, soft carbonation

Appearance 3.5, Aroma 3.5, Flavor 3, Palate 3.5, Overall 3.625. Final weighted score: 3.3
This pale ale has hop bitterness in abundance but has little hop flavor. Perhaps I’m being harsh for this is an otherwise very good pale ale. The head retention and lacing are good, the nose is attractive, the palate is good – just the flavor is lacking. Since the flavor is the most weighted, a lower final score occurs. (837 characters)

Photo of RhettM1
3.31/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Nothing is overpowering in this beer. Smells good...but faint. Taste is there...but subtle . Great example of the style. The taste does not overpower your palette. Some breweries confuse the American pale ale and the India...Victory does not. Overall a good beer that satisfies during a hot afternoon. (301 characters)

Photo of jsprain1
3.32/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A- Light golden with a one finger head that has poor retention. Minimal lacing.
S- This is one of the most herbal beers I've ever come across. It's like chopped cilantro and parsley. SLightly "dank" as they say.
T- More of the same here. I like the herbal presence in a lot of beers but this one goes a touch over the top on it.
M- A bit light, but good active carbonation.
O- I like when pale ales use herbal hops but this one goes too far down that road. Interesting but probably a pass for me. Sadly, my least favorite beer Victory has put out so far. (555 characters)

Photo of meeekyh
3.32/5  rDev -15.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I just spend half an hour writing a review for this beer but my session timed-out. Stupid programming. The improvements to this site usually seem like they are not such good things, here is an example.

In short it was good but not great.

Slainte, but hurry! (259 characters)

Photo of Murrhey
3.33/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Had this beer poured on a flight at Haven Gastropub in Orange, Calif. Reviewed from notes.

A- Finger width head, good retention and carbonation. The lacing is nice as well. Orange-brown body.

S- Hoppy and light.

T- Crisp flavors, bitter and fresh.

M- Smooth and fairly dry.

O- Easy drinking beer. Tasty and floral hops. I wish I took better notes on this one. (366 characters)

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.35/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Light caramel colored pour, good clarity, good head. Best by Sep something 11 date. Nice hoppy aroma, not picking out the specific hop varieties, but whatever the meld, it was enjoyable and even keeled to not be able to say it leaned pine or citrus wise.

Taste, starts off good, carbonation, hops, mild sweet caramel malt, average bitterness. Swallow. Wait for it, ugh, what is that aftertaste in this? Slightly off flavor. Not horrible, just not pleasant like everything else about the beer. Its fresh, it still has 3 more months on it before the best by date, and the hopping is there. The only possible descriptor that came up was like, you know those biscuits that come in the pressurized metal containers that pop open when you depress a spoon on them? This had a like, stale, metallic bitter, biscuit aftertaste really ruined an otherwise pleasurable beer. (863 characters)

Photo of ktrillionaire
3.35/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - The pour is a radiantly translucent bronze; the head, lace, and retention are all underperforming.

S - The nose is comprised of equal parts resiny-tropical hoppiness, and a doughy malt aroma. It doesn't smell particularly strong, but as I get deeper in the glass, the doughy impression increases.

T - The taste offers a good balance of fresh and somewhat vibrant hoppiness, and an understated pale maltiness that serves well. I dig the hop profile, it is earthy, lemony, and cannabis-like. The finish is mildly bitter with some sweetness final revealed at the very end.

M - APA. Good enough.

O - This is a nice little beer, if fresh. Easy to drink, a decent option, but nothing I will seek out. Then again, there is very little I actually seek out so that consideration is somewhat worthless. (800 characters)

Photo of HuskyinPDX
3.35/5  rDev -14.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A - Pours a slightly cloudy orange with a light tan-yellowish head.

S - Bread, citrus, and malts.

T - Sweet malts and carmels.

D - Low carbonation, light body overall.

O - Pretty average all around. Yawn, yawn. (253 characters)

Photo of Darkmagus82
3.36/5  rDev -14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from bottle into pint glass

Appearance – Pours a nice copper color with a big billowy white head. The head fades slowly giving a good amount of lacing.

Smell – The aroma is lighter overall, but has a nice blend of aromas. There are hints of caramel, biscuit, grapefruit citrus hop and some pine.

Taste – The taste begins biscuity and smooth. There is an ever so light sweetness, but it is very light and towards the middle it is almost completely gone. With the loss of the sweetness comes good hints of hop flavors. These are a mix of pine, citrus as well as a lighter earthy hop flavor. These flavors take the taste to the end where a bitter and lightly roasted flavor are left on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – The body of the brew is a bit above average in smoothness and thickness with a carbonation level very average. Both are fitting, but are nothing really to exceptional for the style.

Overall – It has a nice more bittering flavor and is quite easy to drink. Not bad, but not the best either. (1,019 characters)

Photo of Genuine
3.37/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a clean pint glass.

Poured a clear copper/amber in color. Formed a nice, slight tan 2 finger head that left some decent lacing.

Smell - some light citrusty hops hit the nose first, with a nice crispness.

Taste - initial hop bite, that floated over the palate for the malts to show up, and finished very clean and smooth. very easy drinking pale ale.

Mouthfeel - medium light.

overall - not a bad pale ale. Not sure if it's one that i'd get again, but it is a very easy drinking pale ale. (525 characters)

Photo of THECPJ
3.37/5  rDev -14.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

reviewed from notes:

appearance: copper orange with a 1 finger white head

smell: hops, malts,

taste: sweet malts, hops, dry bitter finish

mouthfeel: mild carbonation, thin / medium body

drinkability: was hoping for a bit more out of victory, this beer is just not doing it for me unfortunately.

cheers,

the CPJ (318 characters)

Photo of infinitejester
3.38/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Presentation: A sixpack with a freshness date of 9/12/11. Bought with "session-able" in mind. The bottles were poured into a chalice.

Poured a deep amber and presented a white, two finger head. Good retention throughout and left a cobweb-like lacing. The nose begins with hoppy floralness and settles to a toasty malt aroma with some spice. Taste was consistent with the smell, plus some citric elements. The spicy-toast malts in the nose makes a pleasant and balancing presence alongside the bitter hops. The brew felt crisp and refreshing on the palate. A light body finishing mildly bitter and dry. Overall it was balanced and refreshing. The nose and taste were pleasant, but wholly, just seemed rather average. However, as a session beer, it worked out quite nicely. (772 characters)

Photo of plfahey
3.38/5  rDev -14%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle poured into a tulip glass.

Appearance-Deep gold to light amber with good clarity. Moderately tall white head with moderately good retention.

Aroma-Big floral and grassy hop bouquet, with lesser notes of citrus, grapefruit, catty, and resin. Grain, biscuit, and light caramel show up in the malt profile, which is rather subdued compared to the hops.

Flavor-Biscuit, grain, and husky malt flavor. Hop flavors are grassy, hay-like, and catty-a little bit off-putting. The more I drink it, the mustier it seems to be. Hop bitterness is moderate. catty, hay-like hop flavors linger on the palate.

Mouthfeel-Medium body with moderate carbonation.

I really liked the aroma off the bat, but the grass notes get to be a bit much, especially in the flavor. Not my favorite type of hop flavors, which turns me off a bit. (829 characters)

Photo of emerge077
3.38/5  rDev -14%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

BBD: Aug 17 2011

Burnished gold color, offwhite cream colored foam that maintains itself well. Random spotty lace and a partial sheet of foam sticks to the glass. Slowly ascending visible carbonation.

Honeyed malt, mildly aromatic floral hops. Fairly mellow with a sweet, malt forward aroma.

Soft sweet malt, grassy hop, light lingering bitterness. Very simple and understated malt character. Hops come across as slighty spicy and floral. Light carbonation, easy drinking. A bit simple with no real flaws, slightly sweet for my taste personally. Still it's a quality offering, like the majority of Victory's output. Good craft transiton beer. (645 characters)

Photo of BeerBuckeye
3.38/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a bright amber with orange orange, lots of bubbles rising from the bottom with puffy, off-white 2.5 finger head.

S - I could actually smell this one as I was pouring. Smells of grapefruit and citrusy hops. But there's also a little bit of a dirty soap water smell in the background. A bit unpleasant.

T - Good forward amount of citrus along with some piney hop bitterness. But again, that malt in the background tastes quite soapy. It's sort of masking the overall taste for me.

M - It's pretty thin, lots of carbonation though. Very easy to drink

Overall - I thought it was a decent APA. But I'm not sure if I had a bad bottle or what, because there was just that faint trace of soapyness that became all I could think about when drinking. (754 characters)

Photo of TheBrewo
3.38/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

This brew was served in a pint glass from the tap at The Distillery in Victor, NY. It arrived a golden-brown color. It held a one finger head of creamy, foamy white bubbles, which left a decent amount of lacing as is descended. No sediment or haze was noted, and carbonation appeared light. The aroma was of partially adjuncty malts that were pale, with a sweeter toast to them. Hops were minimal, but notes of earth and grass were picked up. Towards the far back of the nose a sweetness of raspberry was detected. As we sipped, the flavoring began with soapy hops and paler malts. The grain here also took on flavors nearing wheat or rye. The middle moved us forward with cleaner malts, much more pale and unfiltered. We ended on notes of bitter grain and further soapy hops. There was also a sweeter boozy fruitiness, as there was in the nose. The aftertaste sung more of the finish, with soap, booze, and berry. The body was medium, and the carbonation was high. The head retained nicely, so this imparted a nice froth and slurp. The mouth was left a bit dried, and overall was cooled and coated. The abv was appropriate and the beer drank easily.

Overall, what we enjoyed most about this brew was the feel. While the carbonation came out on the higher side, with each sip there was a good cream, making this beer nice and satisfying. This beer was good for the style, but the flavoring could have stood to be more pronounced. (1,430 characters)

Photo of jeffthecheff
3.38/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, goldish amber color. Average off-white head.

Aroma is grassy and fruity with some slight citrus tones. Seems like a good volume of fresh hops. There seems to be a bit of sulfur in the nose, until it warms and becomes undetectable.

Flavor is simple and gentle with very light bitterness for a pale ale. The overall hop flavor is gentle and balanced with the malts. The malt flavor is gentle with caramel and toast. It seems like it could use a bit more of a sharp, hop bite in bitterness and flavor. Carbonation is average, with the mouthfeel not bringing much to the table. Overall, a bit generic. (614 characters)

Photo of phreshbeer
3.38/5  rDev -14%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A: Poured into a pint glass... beer is crystal clear and golden in color. Has a white foamy head that dissolved quickly with little residue. Some lacing apparent, not overly carbonated.

S: More aroma than I anticipated. Some straw-like hops and a little musty smell.

T: Solid American Pale Ale, nothing special as far as taste. Some hops present with maybe a little hint of apricot at the finish. Not a lot of malt, but enough to balance it out.

M: Headwaters is a smooth pale ale with a pleasing amount of carbonation. Not too watery, not too heavy. Right on.

D: This wasn't my favorite pale ale, but still very drinkable. I could use this as a session beer. (663 characters)

Photo of Fatehunter
3.4/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a thin head on a hazy medium straw colored body.
The aroma is mild fruit: apricot and some grapefruit.
The taste has a solid moderate bitterness throughout with some balancing malt in the middle to end. It finishes with a little sweet note.
The texture is crisp with a good fizz.
It's enjoyable and on the more bitter side. (329 characters)

Photo of NODAK
3.4/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Aroma is quite hoppy with a high citric content. Definite notes of grapefruit and perhaps lime even.

For an APA, it's rather hoppy as the smell indicated. A person who referred to it as "IPA lite" had a point. It starts off with a good dose of grapefruit, citrus hops smacking the tongue around. A small undercurrent of biscuit malt is present but is most certainly second fiddle. On the finish, the hops linger around with an aspirin-like astringency on the sides of the tongue for a little while.

When I drink an APA, I like a little more balance than this I suppose. It seems like an IPA in a way. It's certainly not bad, just not my favorite in style. (657 characters)

Photo of orangesol
3.41/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on cask at Al's of Hampden into a nonic pint.

A - Pours clear amber orange with a bubbly one finger tall white head leaving small, sticky, rings of lacing down the glass.

S - Smells of lightly toasted caramel malt, dulled citric hops, biscuity malt, and some dull citric fruit. Something tells me this is a bit past its prime.

T - Starts off with a good bit of sweet caramel malt slowly giving way to a mix of chewy malt and dulled citric hops. The hops are nearly gone in this one as it seems to be well past its prime. Finish is mostly malty sweetness with just the faintest hint of hop bitterness, lingering for a short period of time.

M - Medium-Light body and flavor with moderate carbonation. Starts off with a nice creamy feel quickly fading to a dull, slick, feel in the finish.

O - I had one of these on cask a month or two ago and it was very good. Something tells me this one is from that same back, just much older. I still enjoyed it for what it was. (975 characters)

Headwaters Pale Ale from Victory Brewing Company
88 out of 100 based on 559 ratings.