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Headwaters Pale Ale | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
88
very good
596 Reviews
BEER STATS
Reviews:
596
Ratings:
2,541
Avg:
3.92
pDev:
23.21%
 
 
Wants:
82
Gots:
474
For Trade:
2
Headwaters Pale AleHeadwaters Pale Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States | website

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by thagr81us on 02-14-2011

User Reviews
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Reviews: 596 | Ratings: 2,541
Photo of KidDoc
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%

Poured a 12 oz beer into a standard pint glass. BB date of 3/2015. Deep clear coppery golden color with one-finger head that dissipated fairly quickly. Medium lacing. Nose is predominantly earthy piney hops with minor touch of citrus. Taste is assertively hoppy with nice lighter maltiness in the background. Decent bitterness dries the palate at the finish. Great example of an APA and, frankly, has a bit of IPA profile to it. If you like hops, you will like this.

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Photo of IronCitySteve
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Pours a bright orange color with a nice thick white foam head. Not much lacing.

S: Nice balance of malt and hop characters. A nice amount floral scents with some biscuit and bread malt.

T: Quite balanced. The floral hops are most prevalent on the front end but are quickly balanced out by the light toast and biscuit undertones.

M: Very clean crisp and refreshing. Maybe just a tad on the thin side.

D: This is an easy to drink Pale Ale. Very refreshing...a solid offering from Victory!

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Photo of rorykanderson
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Great pale ale. Enjoyed ice cold straight from the can. Aroma of pine, citrus, grass and hay. Pleasant earthy undertone throughout. Taste of orange, lemon and grapefruit that's immediately balanced out by the bread/biscuit malt flavor. Very well balanced pale ale that finishes with a moderate bitterness that doesn't linger.

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Photo of LittleDon
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pale ale or IPA, you decide.

Clear, light amber, good head retention and lace. Aroma: pineapples, a touch of caramel. Good hop/malt balance, lean toward the hoppy side. Finish is a bit on the flat side. Fairly high amount of carbonation with a medium-light body. Overall, very drinkable as a pale ale/IPA hybrid.

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Photo of kirok1999
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a slightly hazy orange with wispy lace and head. Smells crisp and clean, lots of piney hops, malt sweetness and a bit of citrus.
Taste is just like the smell very crisp and clean, sweet up front with lots of crisp citrus hops, mild pine notes and a refreshingly dry finish. Overall a wonderful session beer, delicious and easy to sip. I want this one in the summer.

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Photo of victory4me
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a standard shaker. Best by date of July 8, 2011.

Pours a clear golden that is darker than expected for a pale ale. Big two to three finger head that leaves a light lacing on the side of the glass. Aroma is really nice. Citrus and piney hops with a sweet malt backbone.

Taste mirrors the smell. Pineapple and citrus in the taste with an underlying apricot sweetness. I would suspect centennial and amarillo in the hop bill. Slightly piney and bitter. A very tasty pale ale with enough hop character to push the boundaries toward an IPA. Typical mouthfeel for the style, I could easily put back several of these with no problem. Lots of flavor for 5.1%.

Recommended. Best comparison would be a lighter version of Ithaca Flower Power.

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Photo of magine
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a becker glass.

Pours a clear light copper with a near white wispy lace head. Head settles to a patchy island. Good clinging to the edges and the head retains the island the whole drink. Pretty good looks.

Brew smells of big floral and herbal hops. Some malted barley as well. Good bready yeasts as well. Good nose.

Brew is crisp and the hops pepper the tongue initially, then a smooth mellow middle and a dry finish. Good hop spiciness; herbal, floral and a nice barley malt and bready back drop. Some sweet citrus makes an appearance as well. Very good feel and taste here.

Wow this is a tremendous APA. A sessionable great tasting brew here. Wow Victory delivers yet again.

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Photo of NiceTaps
4.11/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle in a stemmed tulip glass.

A- Bright copper-orange color. The head is off-white in color and measures 1-finger, it tapers to a thick film with staying power. Not much lacing. It looks good.

S-Nice blend of citra hop goodies, citrus and pine. There's strong malt, almost whiskey-like with the noticeable presence of alcohol factored in.

T-Spicy, citrus, big malt backbone. Some alcohol in those tastes. Earthy pine.

M- It loses a little here, a bit thin. The sweet malt and alcohol give the hops a run for the finish. The hop bitterness holds up, though.

O- I like it. Pale ales that push toward the IPA are all right with me.

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Photo of cokes
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours toasted golden with a large stack of off-white foam. Retention and lacing are both moderate.
Oily, orange rind and mint nose, backed with herbal snappiness, and tangerine and apple butter-smeared toast.
It begins with a taut, crackery maltiness that unfolds towards honeyed Golden Grahams as it warms. Some tangerine fruitiness frolicks in the middle, then a solid slap of minty, herbal, citrus peel bitterness shoots it down the throat.
It's light bodied, with steady, percolating carbonation. It's an absolutely refreshingly quaffable, and with enough character to stay interesting throughout the session.

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Photo of bum732
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

S: Grapefruit mostly and other citrus with a light bready malt.

L: Crystal clear orange with 1/8 inch creamy off-white head, solid lacing.

T: Bitter hoppiness up front with a medium malty sweetness. This is quickly erased by a medium high citrus bitterness, quite bitter. Some toasty sweetness in the finish.

M: Medium mouthfeel, medium carbonation.

Solid, quite bitter and hoppy for a pale ale.

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Photo of devinoconnor
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Victory's becoming a top tier brewery in my eyes. One brew after another, I'm pleasantly surprised.

This is a strong American Pale Ale, but it borders on an IPA in taste and smell.

Pours a golden color.

Smell is quite hoppy for categorized as a pale ale.

I thought the taste would be overly hoppy from the nose, but it wasn't at all. Yes, there's plenty of hops there, but the beer has a nice smoothness finish. It has a rather in-depth watery taste as it goes down. The Headwaters isn't just part of the name; it's a vital part of the beer.

Overall, highly recommend.

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Photo of Oakenator
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a nice gold color in the glass and a good head. Lacing on the glass is present during consumption. This continues to challenge older traditions of pale ales and has a healthy dose of hops both in the nose and on the tongue. Hops tend to be more spices than citrus or pine. Good refreshing beer and could be used as a session.

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Photo of chadlebald
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Malt is quite pronounced. Smell of multigrain bread - think there's some rye in here.

Nice balance of malt and hops - the latter of which are 'standard fare' (by that I mean not floral, citrusy or otherwise).

I think this is a nice mix between an American pale and English pale. Not sure if this is because I'm drinking it on cask, but it definitely seems to affect the overall experience!

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Photo of Josiah2729
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle poured into pint glass.

Appearance: Light Orange with minimal white head, very clear, with some carbonation bubbles throughout. No lacing.

Smell: Grapefruit scented hops, overpowering.

Taste: Citrus hops, slight malt, the hops are upfront and lingering in the beer.

Mouthfeel: Decent carbonation up front along with hops bitterness followed by a smooth fresh water feel.

Overall: Delicious hoppy pale ale.

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Photo of dieter172
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

This American PA is in the Classic British style and is very well done. Highly recommended. Drinking it makes me really appreciate and respect the brewers' efforts to protect the watershed.

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Photo of ms11781
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best by May 14, 2012 printed on label. 12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

Pours an excellent, crystal clear bright orange with a nice, fluffy head of white foam. The head settles in as a thin white cap and leaves lacing that coats the glass from top nearly to the bottom. Carbonation is evident from appearance.

There's not much to hide behind here and it's pulled off nicely. Nice big hop aroma up front in the nose. Bright citrus and nice floral hops come across first and are balanced by a nice malt sweetness. There's not a ton going on but it's really clean and impressive.

The taste follows along with the nose but it's taken down just a step as the hops here don't match the hops in the nose. That's not to say that there isn't a good amount of hop character. There are plenty of hops here, they just come across better in the nose. The same citrus hops hit first and are the dominant flavor up front. The malt sweetness comes on a bit stronger and stays through to the finish where they pair with some nice floral and herbal hoppiness.

Medium body with medium carbonation leave the beer with a clean mouthfeel to match. Each sip starts crisp and finishes pretty smooth.

This is an excellent beer. It is extremely clean, as noted with the comment opening up the notes about the nose. There really isn't anything to hide behind here. If the flavors and aromas aren't dead on with this beer then it will be very apparent that something is off. This is a great beer to reach for when you're looking for a hop fix but not the higher ABV of an IPA.

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Photo of chodinheaven
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Looks and smells perfect out of the bottle with a big healthy head on top and a nice rich copper color. Smell is heavy on the hops and but there's also some nice sweetish malts that catch the nose as well.

Manages to be hoppy and light at the same time which is uncommon for many beers I try. I love hops and this one is chock full of them, but combined with a creamier mouthfeel and subtle sweetness that balances the beer out nicely. There is a pleasant bitterness to the aftertaste that makes me want to have another sip. All in all this was a good beer and pretty refreshing on a hot day. Reminds me of a hoppier SN Pale Ale, which is nothing but a great compliment. I'm coming to the conclusion that Victory and hops go hand in hand.

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Photo of jzeilinger
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours an amber color with moderate carbonation and a very thin white layer and lacing ring covering the top of the beer.

S - For an APA, the aroma is very nice, up front, and has some pungency to it which is refreshing after having too many pale ales with nothing going on in the nose. Light caramel malt and spicey citrus, the hop aroma is almost vinous in nature.

T - Earthy with some floral citrus bite, balanced, and there's a little bit of pine mixed in there. The malt comes through in a biscuity kind of way.

M - Light medium body, somewhat creamy, a little grainy, and lots of prickly carbonation on the tongue.

O - Of the APA's I've had, this one stands near the top. The style isn't one of my favorites, but this one is very solid.

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Photo of pburland23
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 ounce bottle into a Harpoon IPA glass.

I was pretty excited to hear that Victory was coming out with a new year round beer. When it was announced, it was an APA, I was actually quite pleased. In an era marked by hop bombs and wood barrelled ABV monsters, I was glad to see Victory going in a simpler direction.

Beer pours a light coppery amber with about a finger of soapy, real ale-ish looking head which quickly receded and left no discernible lacing.

Aroma is hoppy. Sharp, crisp and clean. An inviting aroma. Taste is similarly hoppy and citrusy. It's a well balanced APA. Mouthfeel leans to the lighter side which increases the drinkability. All in all, I find Headwaters Pale Ale to be a really nice, well rounded and balanced APA.

It's not going to blow anyone away, but it's a solid drinker.

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Photo of biegaman
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Headwaters Pale Ale has the customary perfectly clear, toasty golden complexion. Its otherwise ordinary, standard sized head leaves intricate and unique patterns of lacing that would require the investigation of a blood-splatter analyst to make sense of.

This pale ale smells like it's been schvitzing for a month in some kind of hop bathhouse. The smell of actual hops - by which I mean the actual buds you pick from those tall vine plants - combines with the conventional smell of boiled hops - the more citrusy and floral effervescence found, not in nature, but in beer. Malts have been lost in the shuffle.

By using a blend of Citra and Centennial hops you're practically begging for fruity, citrusy, floral flavours to dominate your beer; indeed, they have. Notes of passion fruit, rose water, lemon and gooseberry prevail over an (all German) malt bill that is so clean and efficient that it hardly allows its dry, crisp, communion wafer-like taste to be noticed.

Despite the whole flower hop aroma and an ample dosage of kettle hops, this beer is considerably tempered; the bitterness doesn't get too out of hand and the hops brush the palate with the lightness of a feather, rather than falling on it like an iron anvil. The finish is expressly floral, as if I've eaten been eating flower petals all this time.

Victory Brewing is as constant as the north star. It's no surprise that their pale ale turned out as solid as everything else in their lineup. Its delicately floral, fruity hoppiness showcases that there is beauty in simplicity and that you don’t have to read Walden to find heaven in nature. This is definitely no ego-stroking anniversary beer - it's the kind of flavourful, characterful, quality brew this brewery made a name for themselves with.

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Photo of larryi86
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into a snifter

A- A clear bright copper/orange with a white one finger head.

S- Floral, spicy, and earthy hops with a nice biscuity malt backbone.

T- A slightly muted version of the nose, nice balance of malts and hops.

M- Smooth, light to medium body.

O- A nice, easy drink beer. Have had it on-tap a few times, it is a nice go to Pale Ale.

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Photo of NuclearDolphin
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Pint Glass

Appearance - Mildly haze orange color with a small amount of carbonation. Head retention is average, but the lacing on the sides is remarkably abundant!

Smell - Floral hops, caramel, yeasts, and malts. There's a good sweet aroma here, giving it a butterscotch scent. Nice!

Taste - Floral hops, butterscotch, yeasts and malts. For an APA, this is pretty sweet tasting beer without overdoing it. It strikes a balance between sweetness and what an APA normally tastes like!

Mouthfeel - Pretty light in body and the carbonation is above-average here so it gets in the way of the flavor just a little bit. It's not creamy or smooth, but it feels crisp!

Overall - Much like Prima Pils, it's got a simpler flavor but it does it so well that its easy to overlook it's faults, which primarily has to do with the carbonation. It's a good beer to start off your macrobeer drinking friends off with!

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Photo of hosehead83
4.12/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz. bottle into a standard pint glass.
Bright copper/gold in color with a moderate head of off-white foam
Aroma-A big whiff of citrussy, piney hops
Taste-Toasted malt, mineral stone, citrus hops, spicy yeast. Very tasty and flavorfull, a nice "go-to" fridge beer. A great match for a burger or a round of spicy appetizers.

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Photo of Imsothirsty
4.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light copper/ orange, lots of bubbles, no haze, half finger of white rocky head.

Smell is all piney hops. Just a little bit floral.

Taste: Floral hops, some sharp citrus notes, and just a tiny backing of malt. Not complex, but satisfying

Mouthfeel is nice. Body is between medium and light, moderately high carbonation, but it seems appropriate. Just a tiny tiny bit of heat from the alcohol.

Overall maybe the best Pale Ale I've ever had. Probably will be my next homebrew project to clone this.

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Photo of bassboneman
4.13/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

This is an outstanding Pale Ale, despite the # it gets.
It is strong without being over powering - full of hoppy flavor.
It is an easy drinker!
For a good grill-side beer that can handle a bevy of different entrees or apps this is a great beer!
Sam

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Headwaters Pale Ale from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
88 out of 100 based on 596 ratings.