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San Diego Pale Ale .394 - AleSmith Brewing Company

Not Rated.
San Diego Pale Ale .394San Diego Pale Ale .394

Educational use only; do not reuse.

23 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 23
Hads: 238
Avg: 4.23
pDev: 26%
Wants: 20
Gots: 45 | FT: 1
Brewed by:
AleSmith Brewing Company
California, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) | 6.00% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: SocalKicks on 06-09-2014

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 23 | Hads: 238
Photo of NolaHopHead
4.3/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle. Pours hazy light copper color with thin white head, fades to a ring leaving a little soapy lace. Excellent aroma of fresh baked bread and orange citrus. Similar balanced taste with a touch of malt sweetness that is overtaken by citrus peel hops. The back end bitterness lasts the right amount and turns a little piney and earthy. Medium silky soft mouthfeel rounds out this very tasty pale ale.

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Photo of TrojanRB
4.35/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Crisp, Citrusy nose, much more than I was expecting from a pale ale.

Tastes of citrus and grapefruit, with a nice amount of malt. Very fresh tasting. Totally in balance.

Light carbonation....quaffable without being heavy or bloating.

Overall a wonderful showing...great representation of a west coast / San Diego pale ale.

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Photo of philbe311
3.85/5  rDev -9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A - A finger's worth of lopsided lush light khaki colored frothy goodness... Limited retention gives way to a mostly full veil of lacing... The color is a slightly hazy mix of pale straw and light gold... A moderate bit of varying paced carbonation rises throughout, some individually and some in streaks...

S - Citrus and light tropical fruit are at the forefront of the palate... Oranges... Pineapple... Kiwis... This sits atop a sweet malty base... Caramel... Toffee... An outstanding aroma for an American Pale Ale... Quite enticing...

T - The flavor profile is a bit more muddled... A rich bready base asserts itself throughout... The hops take on more of an earthy presence... Much of the sweetness (tropical fruit & caramel) never really materializes on the palate...

M - Medium bodied... Dense from the get go... Limited carbonation... The finish is surprisingly dry... There is also a bit of chalkiness throughout...

D - A solid but not spectacular American Pale Ale... The aroma is the highlight of this offering... All other facets are average to slightly above average... It was nice to see Alesmith offerings in 12oz bottles... Definitely worth checking out and I especially enjoy the baseball tie-in...

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Photo of TriggerFingers
4.47/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.25

I picked up a 6 pack of fresh 394 while in Orange County.

L...light, pale, appropriate.
S...nice mild citrus. If I have one knock of this beer, the nose could be more dramatic. Pleasant overall.
T...malt and bitterness are seamless. Excellent.
F...prob the best mouthfeel on any beer I've had in recent memory. The mouthfeel combines with the fresh taste, malt, and bitterness for a truly spectacular tasting & feeling beer. It really tasted like it was "in tune" or perhaps like a chord.
O...if this beer were as dramatic in the nose as say RR Row 2 Hill56, it would be perfect across the board. The nose is softer than Pale 31 and SNPA for that matter. Also, at $15 for a 6 pack, the QPR is a bit dicey.

Last words: a great pale ale, and perhaps epic. High price may deter others (and me) from purchasing in the future.

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Photo of Nugganooch
4.41/5  rDev +4.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

12oz bottle from the six pack with my FW Imperial Nonic glass
Notes from 05/31/2015

A: Bright caramel colored body with a few amber tones brushed in. Has a slight hop hazed appearance that clouds up the glass some. About two fingers wide of dense white whip hit the brim for a few moments. Lots of broken tracked lacing is left clinging to the glass.

S: The aroma is bright and floral with hops that suggest peach, apricot, and tangerine fruit. Not picking up much malt here at all other than some faint bready sweetness. Hops are super fresh and green with a grassy quality to them. Really loving the nose here as the quality is high and the hops very fresh and clean.

T: Tasting uber fresh with ripe orchard Peach/Apricot, leafy greens, and a tangerine citrus note. The beer has a moderately high amount of bitterness kept in balance by some malt action in the back. Mostly bready and/or light biscuit with a touch of sweetness there. This is just an excellent craft of a Pale Ale chalked full of bright fresh floral hops.

M: Moderate to lighter filling body with a solid cream like consistency. Smooth with a light peppery bitterness across the palate. Finishes dry and crisp with the perfect amount of resinous hop linger.

D: AleSmith nailed it with this near perfect APA. Practically flawless with its bright fresh hops, balanced bready malt, and easy quaffability. Really quite exemplary to the style. They did Tony Gwynn right by this one.

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Photo of BillRoth
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Excellent APA. An easy sipper the looks and goes down great. Big nose and taste full of citrus and a bit of stone fruit as well. Much more complex and tasty than I had heard. Delicious. Should have packed a few more in the suitcase.

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Photo of FriedSlug
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours orange gold with an white head that left minimal lacing. The smell is citrus and piney hops with a sweet malt scent present in the background. The taste is citrus, slightly sweet malt and pine. The sweetness gives way to the bitter hops but both are quite well balanced. Super nice beer.

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Photo of crob3888
4.5/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a crystal clear light orange color with a slightly off-white one finger head. Lots of lacing left behind while drinking. Smell and taste are really nice: orange, grapefruit zest, tangerine, a hint of pine resin, and a slight touch of light caramel. Great easy drinker, enjoyed knocking back this pint a lot. Overall, Alesmith continues to be one of the most consistently delicious breweries out there. Cheers to those guys!

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Photo of brentk56
3.85/5  rDev -9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Puts on a nice bubble show and foams up to two fingers on top of the clear amber liquid; a few shards of lacing linger

Smell: Rich in sugary tropical fruits (mango and pineapple) and grapefruit; a touch of caramel adds additional sweet tones

Taste: A touch of caramel, some grapefruit and then a full blast of mango and pineapple; some bitterness builds, after the swallow, and the finish has a distinct sulfur aspect though the caramel malt hangs around as well

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Overall: Overall, the sweetness gets to me somewhat and I didn't care for the sulfur in the finish; nits, I realize, but there are lots of good APAs out there

Thanks, mabermud, for the opportunity

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Photo of EyePeeAyBryan
4.26/5  rDev +0.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Seen this around and happy to pick up when visiting from phx. This beer really is a great drinker with incredible fruit flavors, the bitterness isn't in-your-face strong and it's something I wasn't expecting to enjoy this much.

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Photo of mabermud
4.29/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Look: Clear amber. Persistent, dense, white head. Sticky lace. Good artwork left on the sides of the glass as the beer disappears.
Smell: Sharp pine at first. Some malt sweetness. Nice mix, leaning on the pine.
Taste: Hops, pine, malt sweetness. Very nice.
Feel: Medium feel with good amount of lather in the mouth. Heavier than a traditional pale ale.

Overall - For me, this is one the better hoppy beers from AleSmith. I was never a fan of their IPA. The Imperial .394 was not my cup of tea. Now, this one...I like it! More like an IPA if you ask me. Good stuff man.

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Photo of Franziskaner
3.87/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Copper hued with a faint murkiness. A fingernail of beige rests on top. Light lacing on the glass. Aroma of citrus hops is what is featured in the nose along with light malt. Initially it starts off fairly bitter, but that bitterness is quickly mellowed by the light malt Well balanced. The mouth is dry, crisp, and relatively smooth.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Type: 12-oz. bottle
Glass: Stone Ruination IPA pint glass
From: Trader Joe’s in Mission Valley (San Diego), Calif.
Price: $2.00
Purchased: June 26, 2015
Consumed: June 27, 2015
Misc.: I’ve had a taster of this, but this will be the first time I’ve reviewed it.

Poured a paleish, orange, clear color with 2-to-3 fingers of off-white, frothy head. Just a few bubbles coming up from the bottom of the glass. Average, uneven lacing on the sides of the glass. Good retention on the top all the way down. (Sight - 4.25)

Very nice on the nose. Getting Simcoe, Mosaic, Citra, grapefruit zest, pine, tropical, mango, resin (on the back end), pineapple, floral and orange blossom. Reminding me slightly of a Duet and, to a lesser degree, Nelson. Smelling more like an IPA. Lovely. (Smell - 4.75)

Taste wasn’t nearly as good, but still decent. The hop flavor isn’t as potent either. Still getting Mosaic, Citra, floral, pine, grapefruit pulp, tropical, pineapple, mango, nectarine, orange blossom, peach and apricot. Could practically taste pulp. (Taste - 4.00)

Light body. Creamy texture. Average carbonation. Clean, crisp finish. Goes down well. (Feel - 4.00)

This was much better than the last time I tried it at the brewery. Very good. (Overall - 4.25)

4.25 | 95 | A

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Photo of jow_42
4.46/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

32oz growler poured into an Alesmith 394 Pint Glass

A - Crystal clear, very carbonated, light orange color. Fluffy bright white head.

S - Fruity, citrusy hops. Lots of orange, tangerines, grapefruit. Awesome smelling APA

T - Super clean, lots of citrus - again, oranges, tangerines, tropical fruits. There is a bit of grapefruit bitterness middle of the mouth, but it finishes with those sweet hops.

O - a very easy drinking APA. Bottles of this will forever be in my fridge.

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Photo of ArrogantB
4/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle purchased at Bine and Vine. Bright orange color, good head. Nose is citrus hops, nice. Flavor is a nicely balanced pale ale with delicious hops. I really wish I could buy this fresh in Denver.

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Photo of HunterSBeerson
4.48/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

This is hands down one of the best Pale Ales I have ever tried. Pours a perfectly clear copper, with a huge head that doesn't fade. Great hop aroma, and equally great taste. I have tried a lot of Pale Ales, and this might be the best.

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Photo of DoubleJ
4.27/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

It looks like I wasn't the only fan of Tony Gwynn. Here's a beer which will bring back memories of his .394 batting average during the 1994 season. On-tap at AleSmith itself and served in a shaker pint, on to the beer:

Light orange with a brush-up of copper, a creamy half-inch of head retains very well on top. Tiny bubbles are visible in the beer's body throughout the drinking session, and what that happens thick glops of lace stick around the glass. The aroma hits the target to the San Diego fanbase. If you like those hops, get ready for an extra dose. Resin, lycee, pineapple, pine, grapefruit, all good reasons to salivate before your first sip.

After the aroma, I wasn't surprised to taste a very hop-forward pale ale. It tastes juicy, like juiced tropical fruits. It has bittersweet fruits as well. Carmelized malts make a breakthrough before being beaten down by kiwi, sweet grapefruit, and a mélange of citrus fruits. Although hoppy, the beer does not hit the palate as bitter. In fact, the beer is smooth and creamy, and that's just icing on the cake to this delicious ale.

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Photo of dar482
3.87/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

The beer comes in a clear reddish amber.

The aroma is dank, leaning towards cat pee, along with some juicy orange peel, grapefruit.

The flavor has that dank quality up front along with green leaves and pine. Along with some grapefruit peel. A bit of candy sweetness as well as a grainy malt flavor. The beer is a medium bitter on the finish.

A crisp and clean beer, but a bit lacking in hop character.

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Photo of MadCat
4.25/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Look: Golden color with light white head

Smell: Piney and citrusy hops on the nose

Taste: More pine and citrus hops, mild bitterness

Feel: Light body, crisp carbonation

Overall: Pretty good example of the style, has a very San Diego feel to it. Pretty good

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Photo of breadwinner
4.37/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

Big, bright, pungent hops bursting into my nostrils, citrus and maybe a touch of chive/garlic. Palate is really well attenuated, accentuating the sharp hoppiness. This is a West Coast pale ale to be sure and a darn good one at that.

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Photo of UCLABrewN84
4.17/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

On tap at Mohawk Bend in Los Angeles, CA.

Pours a clear orange with a foamy off-white head that settles to a small cap on top of the beer. Foamy rings of lace line the glass on the drink down. Smell is of malt, citrus fruit, and citrus zest aromas. Taste is much the same with citrus zest and grapefruit juice flavors on the finish. There is a mild amount of hop bitterness on the palate with each sip. This beer has a good level of carbonation with a crisp mouthfeel. Overall, this is a very good beer that is quite tasty and super easy to drink.

Serving type: on tap.

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Photo of gshak
5/5  rDev +18.2%

Every once in a while you come across a beer that tells you just how much love and care went into creating it. This would be one of those. I sampled this at the brewery as part of a flight of 4 beers that included BBA Speedway, and this came out the clear winner.
A - looks just like a pale ale should. Light orange-yellow hue with a fair amount of palate-cleansing carbonation.
S - one of the most aromatic beers I've had in a long while. Peaches, nectarines, pineapples, mangoes, pine, guava....oh yes they are all there. Whatever hops they are using, I'd want them for my air-freshener.
T - The malt plays the perfect second to the hop bomb that this beer is. Hops first, second, middle, and last. The biscuity maltiness just does about enough to keep the hops from overloading your senses.
O - call it a pale, or an IPA, this beer is one of the best I've had in a long while. Well done Alesmith!

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Photo of evanforbeer
4.06/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured into an Alesmith grumbler a few hours ago. Pours a very clear golden orange with a light silvery head

Nose: ripe nectarines with bready malt, fresh piney base

Taste: lightly malty with mellow sour tangerine, peaches with pine and resin, Meyers lemon and slight minty tinge. Finishes piney zesty, with juiciness stone fruit and warm

Feel: light bodied, zesty, juicy, vibrant, mildly thin

Great beer. I think this is exactly what I would want in a beer of the so-called "session IPA" category that has taken over. Alas, "San Diego Pale Ale" might be a more appropriate and satisfying label. Cheers Alesmith!

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San Diego Pale Ale .394 from AleSmith Brewing Company
91 out of 100 based on 23 ratings.