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U.S. Pale Ale - Capital Brewery

Not Rated.
U.S. Pale AleU.S. Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
78
okay

73 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 73
Hads: 146
rAvg: 3.4
pDev: 10.88%
Wants: 2
Gots: 9 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Capital Brewery visit their website
Wisconsin, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: sweethome on 06-22-2007

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 73 | Hads: 146
Photo of pmcadamis
2.35/5  rDev -30.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

A - Clear light bronze with no trace of haze or opacity. This stuff is like looking through a pair of BluBlockers. The head is about a finger and a half of thick white foam that drops quickly to a cap. Some soapy lace sloshes up on the glass but fails to stick around.

S - Thin pine cone hops have a bit of a Christmas tree aroma, and some salty cracker malts make up the other half of the nose. Nothing special here.

T - Bristling piny hops are the star of the show, but fail to do a good job of kicking any real ass. Salt and mineral notes in there are really not helping things along. This is tinny tasting and under-assertive.

M - Thin and under-carbonated. The neutral finish is far from hoppy or dry, and any memory of what this tasted like is gone from my memory as soon as I swallow.

D - This is sort of like a pale ale lite. Anemic, limp wristed hops flail over a thin base of saltine crackers. I would have guesses that this was a German pils in a blind taste test, and it might have garnered a slightly higher score if it was advertised as such. Boring, but might entice some BMC people to try something other than pale lagers. (1,142 characters)

Photo of KarlHungus
2.4/5  rDev -29.4%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

This beer pours a clear, watery gold color. The head is half an inch in height, and recedes quickly into sparse lacing. The aroma has some grapefruit in it, but it is very faint. The taste is like the aroma, watery grapefruit. The mouthfeel is thin, and watery. Overall, this is one of the worst APA I have yet tasted. It is thin and watery in all dimensions. I will not drink this again. (388 characters)

Photo of shlub
2.45/5  rDev -27.9%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Poured from a 12oz screw cap bottle into an Imperial pint glass. Poured aggressively, resulting in a 1 finger head of foam. Clear and yellow/amber in color, it had several streams of bubbles rising to the surface. Initial smell had a slight fruitiness to it with not much flavor at 1st. Becomes more bitter at the end with little hop to it. It was a little thin and could some more malt. Ok overall, I wouldn't seek it out or turn it down. (439 characters)

Photo of Pedro07
2.53/5  rDev -25.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Saw this can at Siciliano's and thought I'd give it a go.

A- Lighter, clear straw color. White head rises to about a 1/2 inch and then dissipates instantly. This beer almost looks like a lager.

S- The head dissapeared so fast I barely got my nose in there before it was gone. I don't get a lot, a little breadiness and a small hop tone.
Kinda sad after having a few aromatic pale's lately.

T- The taste is a little off. The beer is very underwhelming. I get a small amount of hop with a light biscuity taste. *Sigh* Capital, my first introduction isn't so nice. It tastes like something AB would make. There is only the slightest bite.

M- Very smooth, very drinkable, very...unremarkable. On the can it says "Disarmingly drinkable", and it tastes like they are trying to be the Bud Light of pale ales.

D- Yeah, you could have a few of these and not know any better.

Capital, I am so sorry. I will have to give this one another go. I heard great things and I think I got a bad can, so my score will reflect that until I taste better. (1,045 characters)

Photo of association330
2.8/5  rDev -17.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

12 oz. bottle, no freshness date

A - Slightly hazy medium-gold. A hard pour forms a fleeting half-finger of eggshell head. Lace starts to form, but is pretty much stillborn after a few sips.

S - Vague hops that lean citrusy. Bare hint of dried apricot. Severely toned down.

T - Terse citrus hop note with a bit of watered down malt. Bitterness in the swallow hardly even qualifies as modest. Finishes dry, with ghostlike dried apricot.

M - Leans watery, with moderate carbonation.

D - A generic, lawnmower "pale ale" that is obviously aimed at converting the Leinenkugel's crowd. Palatable, but not something I would seek out again unless it was cheap. (657 characters)

Photo of Bubba83
2.85/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Thanks Kegatron! Poured from a 12oz can into a tumbler at 45F.

Pours a nice chill hazed bright orange, I like how neon it is... Off-white two finger head with a kind of rough and tumble look to it. Good retention and good lacing.

A good deal of citrus is present in the aroma, mostly a lemony zing which has been missing from many of the hoppy beers I've had lately... I wonder which hops they're using. Some orange and grapefruit are here too, along with a bunch of caramel in back.

Taste starts off nice, with the citrus right up front with a zingy amount of lemon, lime, orange, and grapefruit all well in balance. Unfortunately after this pleasant profile abruptly ends, a gigantic caramel flavor washes over and finishes very buttery and astringent, almost like a butter rum lifesaver.

Mouthfeel is a little airy for me, it just feels like it isn't oily enough to me or something, and is slightly abrasive instead of soothing.

The session started off well enough until I put the beer into my mouth. It's not bad, but it's not too good either. Alcohol wasn't really present in any way but the astringent caramel and butteryness wore on me. (1,148 characters)

Photo of Chugmonkey
2.95/5  rDev -13.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Pretty average run of the mill pale ale. Capital's website says they dryhop this one. I have tough time believeing that after tasting. Pretty skimpy on the hop flavor & aroma. I had high hopes but this beer is quite pedestrian.

Very smooth, drinkable, and refreshing which is typical of a good pale ale. Just not enough hop action to get excited about here. (358 characters)

Photo of woodychandler
2.97/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Twelve years later and I am still alive, kicking and receiving a pension from Uncle Sugar, courtesy of 15.25 years of honorable service in his Canoe Club! Howzat skew your tables, you actuarians? Why do I mention my time in the U.S. Navy?, you ask. Because they radicalized me in ways I could never imagined as a 17 y/o kid, including putting more weapons in my hands than most people even know of.

From the CAN: "Hops with an Ameri[CAN] accent."; "Disarmingly drinkable." No beer will ever disarm this citizen! They will disarm me when they pry the weapon from my cold, dead fingers.

Wow, I love a beer that CANnot be CANtained! Following the Crack, I had beer foaming out, forcing a quicker Glug than I usually prefer. I got just a finger of foamy, rocky, bone-white head before it dissipated into the ether. Nice lacing, though. Color was a slightly hazy orangish-amber. Nose had a definite citrus-hop bite. My mouth began to water. Mouthfeel was medium and the hops were there, but not disarmingly so. I was frankly a little disappointed. Maybe Capital should stick to their strength - lagers. Finish was powdery in terms of the hops and their bitterness, almost like it was saturated in being dry-hopped. I'd like to like this, but no soap. (1,248 characters)

Photo of Metalmonk
3/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks for mnwags for hookin' a brutha up!

Big bountiful head, bone-white and holding steady while lots of bubbles rush to it. Lace clings like sea foam to the sides. Color is sunny copper. It's nice and looks the part.

Aroma features hops that lean very much on the fruity side, some citrus zest but also apple and a distinct peach smell. Almost like Magic Hat's #9 in the nose. Not a lot of malt backup detected on the sniff, just a mild doughy scent, like shortbread.

Flavor is simplicity incarnate: fruity hops; kiss of doughy malt; light mineral flash. Adequate hop bitterness in the finish, nothing blaring or over-the-top. There's nothing at all wrong with simplicity of course--this just doesn't impress and I can't find much more to say about the flavor.

Mouthfeel is about as ho-hum as the flavor. Remarkably thin, bordering on watery. Not even the ample carbonation can save it.

I had Capital's Autumnal Fire on tap at Chicago's Map Room a couple years back and it was exceptional. This is not. It's not even "disarmingly drinkable," as the label claims, as it falls short where it matters most (taste/flavor). Here's another label claim: "Hops with an American accent." That would be a neutral midwest accent (I can say that, I'm from the midwest and have a neutral accent). Yet another label claim: "America's #1 Rated Brewery," which begs the question "Rated by Whom?" Of course, I would jump at any chance to have their Autumnal Fire again. (1,462 characters)

Photo of Mdog
3/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Gold, small head.

Smell: Light citrus and a little grass.

Taste: Moderate sweetness and some earthy tea-like bitterness. Seems more like an English pale than an American pale.

Drinkability: Since I've seen it in cans, seems to be a stepping stone beer for macro drinkers.

A thoroughly average pale ale, I think it is closer to an English pale ale due to non-citrus hops. Maybe a step above the macros, a little more taste but nothing too outrageous for tentative drinkers taking those first steps away from BMC. (527 characters)

Photo of falloutsnow
3.02/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

From: Friar Tuck in Savoy, IL
Date: "021112A12124" stamped on bottle
Glass: Tulip

Capital's Pale Ale seems to harken back to earlier days in the microbrew industry, when pale ales were fairly well-balanced affairs between malt and hops, each expressing themselves without dominating the other. While a return to this style is refreshing, it's not as deep, complex, or expressive as the style has become.

Pours a 2cm, off-white head of very small bubbles that are dense and compact atop the beer. Retention is very good, lasting several minutes before the head reduces to a thin cap atop the body, leaving substantial streaks and blotches of lacing while doing so. Body is a deep caramel brown color with modest orange highlights, light brightening up the tones significantly and revealing quite a bit of burnt orange-yellow color. Carbonation is visible through the transparent body, both in the center and along the sides of the glass.

Aroma is primarily of pale, toasted, and toffee-like malts, with some fruity esters reminiscent of pear or fruit cocktail syrup; very little hop character is noticeable, which is almost shocking these days for a "US pale ale."

Very modest fruit esters alongside some pale, toasted, and toffee-like malts, a bit of mineral character, and mild, fairly indistinct hop bitterness. Aftertaste is pleasant, a mix of mild hop bitterness, fruity esters, and pale malts.

Beer is medium to medium-light in body, with mid-level carbonation that foams this up slightly on the palate, resulting in a slightly creamy, but still smooth overall mouthfeel. Finish is mostly dry. (1,603 characters)

Photo of bruachan
3.03/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

my first capital brew (well...had the rest of the six pack the other night). i realize that i haven't consumed an APA in awhile, so i am fearful that my standards thereof might have been skewed by heartier drink

very light in color--amber-hued gold--with HUGE bubbles (never seen 'em like this) that reinforce a strong head

cascade aromas with a touch of sweetness

really not all that flavorful. water and hop, with a touch of malt. bitterness is shortlived. mouthfeel is ok

a somewhat average APA (501 characters)

Photo of warnerry
3.05/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

No bottle date. And a twist-off, like going back in time...

A - Pours a semi-hazy light copper with a lot of fine suspended material and one finger of off-white head. Head dissipated quickly, but leaves some spotty lacing.

S - Smell is slightly floral and quite bitter. Decent biscuit malt presence. Quite subtle overall.

T - More malt in the taste than the smell, again quite biscuity. Mild hop bitterness and a floral aftertaste. Decent.

M - Medium mouthfeel with good carbonation and a pleasantly bitter finish. A bit watery.

O - Not sure if this was an old bottle, but it seemed a bit dead. Not offensive in any way, just not much going on. Considering the numerous very good APAs available, I can't see coming back to this one. (737 characters)

Photo of ZAP
3.05/5  rDev -10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

A-Yellow...big white head....good clarity

S-Fresh and floral with some mild citrus and pine

T-Light floral and citrus aspects....some bready malt notes but everything is subtle and not very assertive

M-Feels a little watery...clean but thin...

D-Average to slightly above average...can't hold a candle to Summit's EPA...seems slightly dumbed down and basic... (363 characters)

Photo of scaliasux
3.08/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance - Light amber. Just a little haze. Short ivory head with some persistence.

Smell - Pretty balanced for an APA. Pale malt and light grassy hops.

Taste - Light sweet malt followed by noticeable, but hardly overwhelming grassy hops. Lingering aftertaste. Pretty light and refreshing for an APA. Quite a bit less hoppy than most in this category.

Mouthfeel - A little watery, but smooth.

Overall - It's probably because so many IPAs and APAs overdo the hops, that this beer seems a little indistinguishable. But there it is - I probably won't think twice about this one. Generic name doesn't help. (608 characters)

Photo of Florida9
3.08/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Pours a golden straw color. about a 1/2 inch of foamy head with a little bit of lacing.

S: Not a whole lot going on here. Some malts and some hops, but very nondescript.

T: Seltzer water, biscuity malts on the front with a respectable amount of bittering hops on the rear end.

M: Light bodied with medium carbonation. Off-dry. Cleansing.

D: The bottle indicates this beer is "Disarmingly Drinkable" and I would have to agree. This is a session beer all the way. Really just doesn't have all that much character, but there is enough flavor to prevent the beer from being boring. (585 characters)

Photo of deereless
3.15/5  rDev -7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: Light amber in color, minor spotting along the interior of the glass, medium head with decent retention - 3.50, S: Soft bubble gum nose - similar to Hubba Bubba with a mild citrus perhaps a tangerine aroma, malts provide a light toastiness to the smell - 3.75, T: Mild but noticeable hop bite, very slight grapefruit flavors, some clean malt flavors, pretty standard APA - 3.00, M: Light bodied and kind of thin mouth feel - 2.75, D: A basic APA that would benefit from an additional dose of hops, quite drinkable but doesn't really stand out - 3.00 (552 characters)

Photo of Kegatron
3.18/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz can into a pint glass.

Pours a clear copper, with a finger of foamy eggshell-white head. A thin creamy layer of froth skims the surface, leaving back a good bit of light spotty lacing. The aroma is grassy and spicy, with some sweet citric fruit pushing through. The back portion of the nose is filled out by some stiff smelling toasted grains.

The taste is bitter with some light grapefruit and sharper feeling citrus peel flavors. Resins and pine stretch out in the finish. The pale malts give this a tight bready sweetness on the edges and do a just OK job of balancing things. The mouthfeel is light-medium bodied, with some sharpness on top but then a bit more flatter feeling underneath. His could probably use some more crispness to it.

I wanted to like this more but too much graininess, a harsh bitter finish, and the aforementioned need for more of a crisp feel were too glaring to overlook. I guess this would do in a pinch on a hot summer day but there are much better Pale Ales alternatives out there. (1,025 characters)

Photo of mcdevster
3.2/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

I was excited to find a new pale ale to try.. and from Wisconsin to boot..
I poured the 12 oz can into a pint glass..
it smelled fairly promising maybe a little light.. slightly citrus, indicating that hops were indeed present.. the first sip was reassuring.. not bad very good feel and not bad taste.. but as I continued to drink it it just tasted more and more flat to me.. it tasted kind of unbalanced.. with some caramel syrup like flavors against a not so robust hop background. Something just tastes a little bit off with this beer- i wish it was a little more crisp.. its like a watered down hop taste to me.. I find it good but dissapointing.. I would drink it if I had no other option.. but I am not excited by it. (723 characters)

Photo of patrick16o
3.2/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Little bit different label than the rest of the Capital beers. Kinda generic looking. 'Hops with an American accent' and 'Disarmingly drinkable." printed at the top corners. Twist off.

Pours a crystal clear light golden hue, almost resembles a pilsner. Solid two finger off-white crown. Quarter inch crown stays throughout the beer, though not a whole lot of lacing occurs.

Fresh earthy hoppyness and bit of bready malt in the aroma. However it fades rather quickly and by the time I finish noting the appearance, the aroma is hard to detect.

The flavor is by no means bold. There's a bit of really light hoppyness mixed in with some basic pale malt flavors. Some lingering bitterness down the tongue but a pretty straightforward balanced beer. Would like to get more flavor from an american pale ale than I'm getting from this. Fairly light body. They weren't kidding when they claimed 'Disarmingly drinkable'. Would be a decent session or lawnmower beer.

Just not a memorable beer. (989 characters)

Photo of kmeves
3.23/5  rDev -5%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light amber with a small off white head. Aroma is lightly sweet candy, citrus and light floral. Flavor is light citrus hops and faint caramel malt. Light bodied, sticky mouthfeel. Finishes abruptly and bitter. Capital is really known more for its ales. (260 characters)

Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.25/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Slightly more tangerine than amber with a glassiness that can only be achieved by filtering. The beer is crowned by two fingers of cream colored foam that looks decent enough. While the glass isn't exactly slathered, enough sea foam lace sticks to earn the whole package an above average score.

The aroma is fresh and clean and straightforwardly Cascade-like. As long as an APA smells like American hops, then it's doing its job. Only a lack of power and pungency keeps the score from the next highest rung.

It's obvious that Capital didn't set out to rival the in-your-face hop swagger of such Badger State standouts as Tyranena Bitter Woman and Ale Asylum Ambergeddon, but they could have added more hops than this. More pale malt would have been nice too. Being stingy with ingredients isn't like these guys.

It tastes like there's something slightly toasted in the less than sturdy pale malt backbone. Top notes include white grapefruit pith and bitter orange, although there's more alpha acid raspiness than good hop flavor. My suggestions would be to add more pale malt, add more hops later in the boil, and expand the hop bill to at least three different varieties.

The mouthfeel is predictable given the flavor. In other words, it barely reaches the lighter end of acceptability for the style. It's also fine-bubbled and slightly buzzy. In other words, slightly annoying over the course of the bottle.

Note to Capital's brewer: I've read that you don't like to brew ales. If that's the case, and if U.S. Pale Ale is the best APA that you can come up, why bother? My advice is to either take this beer seriously or concentrate on brewing the styles you have a passion for. (1,684 characters)

Photo of mfnmbvp
3.26/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 fl oz. can, with code on the bottom of the can reading 0234 SP. My second beer from Capital Brewery, and the first of their canned offerings that I'm trying.

Poured into a Duvel tulip glass.

A - It pours a coppery orange colored body with some very decent clarity to it. Three fingers of frothy khaki head, that leaves behind some nice fluffy lacing on the glass. Looks pretty nice.

S - The smell is fairly bland and one dimensional - grainy caramel malt, and a lightly herbal / grassy hop presence. Some dusty tea leaf aroma in there also, but the caramel malt is dominant.

T - Taste follows the nose - caramel / toffee malt, bread, tea leafs, and an indistinct herbal hop presence.

M - The feel is crisp and clean. Light-bodied with good carbonation, but somewhat on the thin side for the style. Semi-dry and bready finish.

Overall, a very average pale ale offering from Capital Brewery. Light in flavor and body, but it goes down nice and easy at 5.00% abv, and the price was right at $7.99 for a six pack.

Capital Brewery U.S. Pale Ale ---3/5. (1,058 characters)

Photo of TheQuietMan22
3.3/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Serving type: 12-ounce bottle. There is a batch code printed on the neck but no freshness date.

Appearance: Straight pour into a pint glass. The color is half copper, half straw; it is light amber, basically. Two fingers of eggshell-colored head dissipated quickly to leave a thin lacing and ring around the edge.

Smell: A semi-sweet mixture of pale and lightly toasted malts. There is a lot of sweet caramel and a little cocoa. There may also be some adjunct grain in there, too, as well as a little grapefruit or tangerine citrus. It is definitely not a bombastic, hop bomb.

Taste: It is a weak and even balance between the sweet/pale malts and the hops I was expecting from the smell. Caramel and light grapefruit/tangerine citrus. It leaves a light, bitter aftertaste coating the mouth after each sip. As it continues to warm, though, the hops become much more prominent and drastically change my opinion of the beer.

Drinkability: It is a decent little brew. It is not big or bombastic, but adequate. (1,009 characters)

Photo of beertunes
3.33/5  rDev -2.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to WoodyChandler for this one. Poured into 9oz pilsener glass. Poured a clean copper-gold color with about 1/4 inch of off-white head that had OK retentionand lacing.

The aroma featured piney hops upfront, with some sweetness in the background, and all that was supported by a nice, even amount of balancing hops. The taste was good, pretty much the same as the aroma, piney hops upfront, some good malts in the middle, and a bit of citrus on the finish.

The body was fairly typical for a Pale, medium, clean and with a dry finish. Drinkability was good, if I had had another, I would would have had it right then. Overall, a nice, middle of the road take on the style. If this were local to me, it'd be a semi-regular for me. It's just the kind of nice, easy-drinking brew we all like to have around. Worth a shot if you see it. (838 characters)

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U.S. Pale Ale from Capital Brewery
78 out of 100 based on 73 ratings.