Pintail Pale Ale - Karl Strauss Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Pintail Pale AlePintail Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

45 Reviews

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Reviews: 45
Hads: 169
Avg: 3.78
pDev: 23.28%
Wants: 6
Gots: 30 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Karl Strauss Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

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

Availability: Rotating

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: tonistruth on 10-01-2007

No notes at this time.
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Reviews: 45 | Hads: 169
Photo of GarrettB
3.06/5  rDev -19%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

October 5th, 2013 - The Pintail: hoppy, fresh and piney in the nose, and the flavor keeps up. There's a nice depth of hops, a floral flourish, and a good, refreshing quality overall.

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Photo of Andrewharemza
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Pours a copper colour with a small head. Aroma of orange marmalade, caramel sweetness and citrus. Flavour of sweet juicy fruitiness, citrusy tartness, floral bitterness, mild graininess and quite heavy caramel malts. Medium bodied. Juicy, dry, fruity finish. Good.

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Photo of Decko
3.73/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Hazy amber colour in the glass with an initially good head which disippated and left reasonable lacing on the way down. Grapefruit hoppy aromas. Hops dominate the taste as you'd expect with a decent balance of sweet maltiness. Good level of carbonation with dryness late adding to the mouthfeel. Overall quite enjoyed it and could see it working as a good session beer for those who enjoy their hops. It lacked a little something to be truly great but happy to drink it again anytime.

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Photo of doktorhops
3.81/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

Straight from the good old US of A is the Pintail Pale Ale from Herr Karl Strauss, and we all have fond memories of the Tower 10 IPA, at least I do, so my best [taste] buds are humming with anticipation at what to expect from this quality west coast brewer because everyone knows "the west is best" when it comes to craft beers... wait, I may be wrong, perhaps it is "the mid-west is best"... It's definitely not "the tex-mex is best" this I know for certain.

Poured from a 355ml bottle into a nonic pint.

A: Body is a classic Pale Ale deep amber with a thin off-white dusting on top, very run of the mill, and who doesn't like run of the mill? I'll kill them... with a mill. It will be one creative death right there.

S: To all the American Pale Ale admirers out there this is, simply put, berfume (a portmanteau of "beer" and "perfume" I invented). A full bouquet of floral/citric/pine hops and generous caramel malt base blend well here. It is borderline Sierra Nevada Awesome [SNA for short] with hops leading the nose well.

T: The taste, however, falls short of SNA with those hops flattening out flavour-wise and presenting less complexity than one is lead to believe by the aroma. Citric hops (minus much of that floral/pine note mentioned above) share evenly with a caramel malt base and finish, for an APA at least, balanced between bitter and dry.

M: Medium bodied (Karl Strauss seem to have a knack for this) with a light but active carbonation.

D: It is an easy drinker and a good introduction to the APA style for those unaccustomed to overtly bitter beers, but ultimately once you've looked into the sun and seen the glory of the universe a glance directly into a lamp doesn't cut it. However that is a gross overstatement/analogy as this is really a top-notch APA that isn't quite SNA but could be DEGMHF*, and if that isn't EIFY† I don't know what is.

Food match: For some reason or another this brew conjured up a desire for a roast lamb with mint sauce and roasted vegetables dinner, however this ale is a little too bold for the simple roast lamb dinner so for something different a spicy Harissa rubbed lamb would easily do the trick.

*Decent Enough Given More Hop Flavour.
†Enough Initialisms For You.

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Photo of chogm54
4.22/5  rDev +11.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

I've started to see more of the Karl Strauss beers pop up around the place. It looks like Sierra Nevada may not be the only american beer to be widely available in Oz. Bring it on I say - Im yet to have a really terrible craft American beer. Poured from a 330ml bottle.

a - Looks how it should - hazy dark orange/brown, pours a 3cm off - white head, that lingers to a 5mm thick lacing.

s - big kick of hoppy floral odours, slight whiff of malt and spicy citrus

t - a citrus tang (blood orange/grapefruit) tang at the very beginning, before the hoppy bitterness comes in, mixed in with some faint roasted malt, with caramel and honey overlapping at the rear

m - moderate to high carbonation (for an APA), light to moderate body with slightly creamy texture

O - slightly more bitter than the average pale ale or APA, this is nevertheless an enjoyable beer, with enough bitterness to enjoy the flavour, but not too much so it isn't sessionable. Definitely work a try if you want an alternative to Little Creatures or Sierra Nevada PA's.

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Photo of TheMarkE
3.87/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Cloudy amber with decent head and lacing. Quite a bit of carbonation.

Smell: Citrus and floral hops, caramel, pine.

Taste: Pine, citrus, fresh bready malts.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied with a hop bitterness in the finish.

The Verdict: Very good. Well balanced and tasty, it’s not a bad alternative to Sierra Nevada Pale Ale or Firestone Pale 31.

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Photo of tomgetz
4.25/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Tough to completely review due to it being served in a plastic cup at Disney California adventure. Despite this, this is a solid pale ale with citrusy taste. Low alcohol level makes this very drinkable. For the Midwest people, this is much like founders all day ipa. A very good offering from Karl Strauss.

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Photo of MarriedAtGI
3.74/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

On draft at Whole Foods El Segundo.

A: Transparent copper color with white head. Good lacing.
S: Very subtle aroma, nothing unpleasant
T: Citrus an pine hops with a nice malt backbone.
M: Dry and refreshing
O: A nice dry pale ale. I prefer more hop aroma.

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Photo of BMMillsy
4.03/5  rDev +6.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

No love for Karl Strauss? I thought this was a very nice brew. Pours clear dark golden copper color with a fluffy white two finger head. Floral aroma, with some light citrus coming in in the big nose. Flavor is a nice sweet citrus and light bitter pine on the finish. There is a definite malty biscuit backbone on this one with some caramel sweetness. Slick mouthfeel with high carbonation and some bite lingering on the palate. Very nice beer.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.58/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

355ml bottle purchased from Dan Murphy's in Alexandria. Yeast sediment in the bottle, which I left there.

Pleasant deep orange colour, almost copper in hue, with a very fine, pleasant pale orange-tinged beige head. Lacing is patchy, but solid and streaky where it forms. Body is quite light and fluid, but it holds some decent fine carbonation when tilted. Overall, it looks pretty good.

Pithy pine and lemon nose, hint of barley sugar, some honey and a slight ginger tone. Pleasantly fragrant when swirled, a bit of resin comes forward along with some peppery spice. It's very pleasant.

Taste is lighter and slightly sweeter than expected, although it starts out quite well. Pleasant clean, crisp entry, some leafy hop characters and a mild neutral malt character open it out. Mid palate is where things go slightly awry, with a touch of coconut and a slight buttery character coming in ever so subtly. Under this is still the main thrust of clean mild hops and base malt, but those other characters (while very faint) do detract significantly from the taste overall.

Feel is good—clean and light and crisp, but with enough body to keep it going and to balance the hops.

Overall, this is a very decent brew. It's clean and crisp for the most part and has pleasantly bright flavours which provide interest and drive. Sure, there are those minor flaws, but while they provide a slight splinter in the works, they don't really affect the overall beer, which is pretty tasty.

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Photo of PolarBear3
3.15/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

A - Pours a honey colour with an off white head that retains fairly well

S - Caramel, sweet candy, pineapple and grapefruit. Very promising aromas.

T - Light caramel malts, citrus including grapefruit, lemon together with slight bitterness and a little burnt orange at the finish

M - light to medium bodied with very little carbonation

O - Not a bad effort for a Pale Ale but what promised so much with its aromas but lacked a little in taste. Definately worth a try but I reckon you would have had enough after a couple.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.4/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

On tap at Karl Strauss downtown. Orange color.aroma is nice tropical fruits. Flavor is citrus but very crisp and fleeting like a Speite with no sugar. Aroma was a real tease and gla or didn't live up to it. I wanyed this beer to taste a certain way but its the other way. Ho hum.

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Photo of SmashPants
2.95/5  rDev -22%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Bottle: decent 355mL brown bottle. Nicely styled label - kind of old-school cute.

Appearance: darker orange amber in colour, with fast but refined carbonation. A limited white head stays for some time. Minor lacing.

Aroma: some citric hops with a light caramel backing. A touch of pine to fill it out. Not outstanding, but a standard pale ale aroma.

Taste: very muted in flavour for a pale ale. There are the usual suspects as there are in the aroma - grapefruit, pine, caramels - but the flavour is quite muted and dull. Quite disappointing actually.

Aftertaste: pretty much the same - muted without much in the way of follow-up aftertaste.

Mouth feel: I think this is half the problem with the muted flavour profile - the light-to-medium body is fine, but the lack of carbonation really seems to dull this beer down. A pity, as this could have been a good beer if it had a bit more backbone.

Overall: this is the second beer I have had from the Karl Strauss Brewery, and the second one that comes up short. A good flavour profile wasted on limited carbonation and no backbone. A pity, really.

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Photo of TheSixthRing
3.78/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance - Pours a clear, golden amber color with an off-white, 2 finger head. Good retention. Lace coats the glass with reckless abandon. Unbelievable stick.

Smell - Primary tropical and citrus aromas. Pineapple and orange. Prominent caramel malt aroma as well. Fantastic smelling beer.

Taste - After the smell and look, a bit of a let down. Taste is well-balanced, but comes across as almost hollow, especially to start. Malts are light and bready, with touches of caramel. Hops are present, but are more or less a ghostly presence until they eventually break through near the finish. Citrus. Touches on pine. Subtle soapiness.

Mouthfeel - Light to medium body. Well carbonated. Smooth and drinkable.

Overall - So close to being elite, but the flavor just isn't there. The aroma is a tease, for sure. Would I buy this beer again? I don't know that I would.

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Photo of dansmcd
3.81/5  rDev +0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - pours a deep golden amber, nice thick and creamy head with excellent retention, sloppy sticky lacing.

S - piney hops, spice and caramel malt.

T - really tasty. Well balanced. Pine, caramel, sweet and bitter. Good example of the style.

M - moderate carbonation, medium body, dry finish.

O - surprisingly good considering the other offerings from these guys.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.91/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours dark amber with a large, lasting head.
Very hoppy aroma, lots of pine, floral notes, citrus fruit and spicy hops. Some light clean malt underneath.
Flavours follow along the same lines, with more floral and spicy notes along with a little fruit. Lovely clean malt underneath with just a hint of a cookie dough-like character.
Carbonation is perhaps just a little high.
Wonderfully refreshing and drinkable.

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

Probably one of the best pale ales that i have had. Tastes very fresh. Nice hop and malt aroma. Slight fruitiness. Overall a very good beer.

This is a beer you can session all year round but probably fits best around summertime. I like to drink this beer whenever i am cleaning my backyard or when i get back from a long day of surfing. If you can get this beer you need try and you will be glad you did. Cheers.

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Photo of RblWthACoz
3.89/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The color on this is much more brown than I would have anticipated for the style. Nice lacing though. There are good tones of spices from hops, but there are a lot of malts on here as well that mix with the hops and hold them back from getting too obnoxious I would say. Carbonation could be tones down a degree or two really. Overall though, a pretty good beer.

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Photo of heygeebee
3.32/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

BB April 2013 (!)

Pours a deep amber, slight head, maybe half a finger. Dies to a film quickly. Sproadic lacing on swirl.

APA on the nose! Firm aromas of citrus, a little fruit salad, honey, and hops.

Taste is a let down after the nose. Hops and pine dominate a one-dimensional palate. Freshness is the issue methinks.

Mouthfeel a little watery. Carbonation good.

Overall, OK but not great example in crowded market.

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Photo of mulder1010
3.27/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

355 ML bottle

A-- Poured a darker orange amber color. Quite clear and some visible carbonation bubbles. Half finger of off white head. Nice lacing with this. Good sticky ring of lacing. Head holds up quite nice.

S-- Pineapple, passion fruit, Lemon, orange, and lime. Good citrus nose. Some caramel backbone but this is very fruit forward.

T-- Pine, orange and grapefruit in the taste. Turns to a more herbal variety. Citrus tones get lost in the taste. Not much of a backbone to this.

M-- Slight amount of toffee in the feel but not enough to back up the hops. A sort of thin, soapy herbal character to this. A lot of hop bite to this but nothing to sooth it out. Dry, medicinal orange and grapefruit finish. Some resin in the mid palate. Lightly carbonated and medium feel.

O-- More body to back this up. Lots of hops in this and could be very nice with a bigger backbone. Better than a lot of APA's out here but not on par with LCPA. Would buy again as a pretty well hopped APA.

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Photo of rawfish
3.88/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Arrives to the table with a deep orange amber hue and a small off white cap of froth that leaves an even ring of stick on the glass. Nice clarity with active carbonation.

A little muted but nice caramel malt back bone with even balance of citrus and pine hop aromas. Smells lightly herbaceous and clean.

Clean malt bill, not a hint of any coarse grains and it quickly clears allowing the beer to lean towards the hoppy side of the spectrum with grapefruit citrus , pine and lemon zest. Mildly bitter in the finish, with a brightening acidity.

Prickly carbonation but nothing overblown, deceivingly lighter body then the color lets on, doesn't give a drying feeling but unmistakably clean.

Very clean and on the hoppier side of the spectrum as far as pale ales go. Reminds me quite a bit of fresh SN pale which is also very good. One of Karl Strauss' better beers in the standard lineup.

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Photo of FosterJM
3.91/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1227th Review on BA
Draft to Pint

@Karl Strauss Costa Mesa

App-  A decent dark orange with light ambers and a small 1/2 finger of white head. HUGE amazingly clingy lace with webbing for days.

Smell-  Hoppy, piney, citrusy and crisp bitter. Smelled like a clean beer. Had a good small feel. Wasnt too muddled.

Taste- I like this one. Along the lines of a SNPA. Had a good clean profile with a nice hop flavor and then only a small malt profile. 

Mouth-  A clean medium body with a medium carbonation level. Has a semi bitter citrus level.

Drink- Clean all around. Well layered ad has nice simple flavors. Would like this one again.

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Photo of mactrail
3.83/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Deep amber in the pint glass. Long lasting white foam on the brew. Really a tasty light style of Pale Ale. Big floral taste fills the mouth, followed by a very modest bitterness. Resins in the flavors add some interesting spice, and a lot of rich, toasted biscuit flavor fills out the body. An extremely drinkable beer with a big splash of hops, yet light enough for a quaff.

It's hard to get too far away from Karl Strauss in San Diego, but I somehow missed this peg in their standard lineup. Tasted at the La Jolla outlet. This and the Hefeweizen are really quite good, I think.

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Photo of velosuds
3.95/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz. bottle into a clear pint glass.

A-Pours an amber-orange with a one and a quarter finger, off-white head with average retention and nice, even lacing.

S-Very fragrant, citrusy hops and caramel malt.

T-A full flavored light ale. Nice blend of bitterness and tropical fruit notes with a balanced malt presence.

M-Very smooth. Good carbonation.

D-This is very drinkable and a decent ale.

O- Good, but not great, at regular prices. However, I would buy this for $5.99 a sixer, whenever available. A good APA.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
4/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a bottle into a pilsner glass. Just over an inch of head. Color was caramel. Plenty of lacing on top with some film on the sides. The film stayed throughout the pour.

Initial whiff was pine and grapefruit, followed by hops.

Initial taste was a pleasant balance of hops, pine and grapefruit, followed by a small hint of bitterness. Even some lemon wafer cookies in there as well.

Moderate on the carbonation. Flavor stayed consistent throughout. Pine and hops rule the day.

I thought this beer was going to be good and it didn’t disappoint. Heavy on the hops, but smooth. Great combination.

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Pintail Pale Ale from Karl Strauss Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 45 ratings.