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Pintail Pale Ale - Karl Strauss Brewing Company

Pintail Pale AlePintail Pale Ale

Displayed for educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
85
very good

100 Ratings
THE BROS
93
outstanding

(view ratings)
Ratings: 100
Reviews: 40
rAvg: 3.76
pDev: 13.03%


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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: tonistruth on 10-01-2007)
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Ratings: 100 | Reviews: 40 | Show All Ratings:
Photo of UCLABrewN84
UCLABrewN84

California

3.98/5  rDev +5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Part of the Summer Brews pack from Cost Plus World Market.

Pours a clear orange with a 1 inch whitish-orange head that fades to a thin cap. Random foamy streaks of lace form around the glass on the drink down. Smell is of grapefruit, grapefruit juice, and citrus zest. Taste is of grapefruit and it’s juice, citrus zests, and slight malt. Medium bitterness lingers on the palate after each sip. Good carbonation makes for a crisp and clean mouthfeel. Overall, this is a solid pale ale with some nice citrus aromas and flavors and an excellent choice for a Summer beer.

Serving type: bottle

08-02-2011 16:58:01 | More by UCLABrewN84
Photo of BuckeyeNation
BuckeyeNation

Iowa

3.95/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Ferric oxide orange with honeybee highlights and crystalline clarity throughout. The head is equal parts eggshell and ecru and melts in fine fashion. BB-shot lace isn't extensive, but there's enough of it present to result in the above score.

For a spring seasonal, PPA is still pretty hoppy with respect to the aroma. Cascade and Newport were used, with Amarillo for dry-hopping. Tangerine and grapefruit zest on a primarily pale malt base is right up my APA alley.

Pintail Pale Ale is a solid version of the style without a doubt. That's no surprise since the only other Karl Strauss beer that I've reviewed to date (Big Barrel Double IPA) is an underappreciated hoppy humdinger. Little brother is tasty and drinkable as well.

The malts are sufficient in amount and seem very slightly toasted and earthy, as if a small percentage of Munich or Vienna is present. The top notes are all bright citrus peel of the sort described above. It tastes and feels like most of the original 47 IBUs are still kickin'. The finish is lingeringly hoppy-bitter and semi-crisp.

The body/mouthfeel is the only (teensy weensy) fly in the ointment. It's a little bit thin and slightly too harshly bubbled. Things improve in the bottom half, just not enough to make a difference where score is concerned.

It's difficult to say after only two of their offerings, but it appears as though Karl Strauss doesn't get enough love. Maybe it's different out there in California, who knows? This is an excellent choice for those who are looking for a well-hopped American pale ale that doesn't allow its malts to be backseat drivers.

Serving type: bottle

09-26-2010 12:31:43 | More by BuckeyeNation
Photo of RblWthACoz
RblWthACoz

Pennsylvania

3.9/5  rDev +3.7%
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.

Serving type: bottle

08-23-2012 07:32:17 | More by RblWthACoz
Photo of Halcyondays
Halcyondays

California

3.6/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle,

A: Pours amber with a low medium white head. Some soapy lace, good retention.

S: Sweet grapefruit notes and assorted citrus, flowery.

T: White grapefruit and lemon peel are the main flavour. It can get bitter/astringent at times, but the other tastes are good. Malt is nonexistent.

M: Crisp, light to medium-bodied, biting carbonation, thin at points.

D: A solid hoppy San Diego pale ale, good to see this quality from Karl Strauss. Not as good as the standard Sierra Nevada, but can hold its own.

Serving type: bottle

03-05-2011 22:58:19 | More by Halcyondays
Photo of mactrail
mactrail

California

3.85/5  rDev +2.4%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

03-05-2012 06:26:54 | More by mactrail
Photo of lacqueredmouse
lacqueredmouse

Australia

3.54/5  rDev -5.9%
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.

Serving type: bottle

07-06-2013 06:35:04 | More by lacqueredmouse
Photo of Jason
Jason

Massachusetts

4.15/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12oz brown bottle with a code on the neck.

Clear and brassy, thin but impressive lacing. APA nose with floral and citric hop notes with bready and biscuity malt. Somewhat deep smoothness develops into a quick snap of crispness. Medium body. Citric hop flavor runs from pulp to zest to a little bit of rind with a bitterness that sticks. Maltiness holds together well, a good base with biscuity and bread flavors that meld with yeasty undertones. Finishes malt and bitter at the same time, semi-dry though.

A stellar example of the APA style, nothing crazy ... to style.

Serving type: bottle

07-01-2010 01:55:27 | More by Jason
Photo of DoubleJ
DoubleJ

California

4.18/5  rDev +11.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at OC Brewhouse, on to the beer:

A little paler than copper, this beer has very good head retention and leaves a lot of lacing around the glass. Nose is pleasant, giving off grapefruit and piney aromas. A clean pale ale, leans towards the hoppy side, though never bitter or rough at any moment. The grapefruit seems sweeter in the taste. Piney and limey as well. Gentle and medium-light in mouthfeel, and very easy to quaff.

Refreshing and appetizing beer from Karl Strauss. This would be ideal for lazy summer days.

Serving type: on-tap

06-02-2011 06:01:16 | More by DoubleJ
Photo of Beerandraiderfan
Beerandraiderfan

Nevada

3.58/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Looks the part of a good pale beer, amber colored, thin head. Aroma was very pleasant, good dry hopping here.

Taste, a solid beer, especially from a brewery I've never been a big fan of. Great summer sipper. Citrus hops, snippet of pine even. Nothing too crazy, holds its own. Does recede downhill though, everything that stood out diminishes. Man, if they only served this 5 oz. at a time, it would be excellent. . .

As always, about $1-2 more than superior products in the same category SNPA. . .

Serving type: bottle

07-28-2010 17:41:10 | More by Beerandraiderfan
Photo of FosterJM
FosterJM

California

3.93/5  rDev +4.5%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

04-22-2012 03:27:50 | More by FosterJM
Photo of ArrogantB
ArrogantB

Colorado

3.35/5  rDev -10.9%
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.

Serving type: on-tap

05-03-2013 20:08:45 | More by ArrogantB
Photo of CrazyDavros
CrazyDavros

Australia

3.93/5  rDev +4.5%
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.

Serving type: bottle

10-29-2012 01:32:58 | More by CrazyDavros
Photo of srandycarter
srandycarter

California

4.33/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Pretty burnt orange, nice near white head, leaves to ring fast. Plenty cling lace.

S - Almost solid malt center nose. Bitter circling main focus.

T - Nice sweet malt controlled very well by the hops. This is great for a pale ale. Within style, but so much flavor.

M - Medium body, creamy and carbed, finished clean after sweet and bitter blend.

D - Not overpowering, not high abv. It's a keeper.

Serving type: bottle

10-08-2010 20:41:44 | More by srandycarter
Photo of armock
armock

New York

4/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Poured a copper color with a white head that leaves some lacing behind

S - Is mostly of citrus hops on caramel malt

T - Starts off with grapefruit hops finishes with a touch of caramel malt

M - This beer has a medium body with higher carbonation to it

D - This was a pretty good pale thats easy to drink with its good taste I could probably drink a few of these in a sitting worth picking up sometime to give it a try

Serving type: on-tap

07-04-2010 20:57:23 | More by armock
Photo of Jayli
Jayli

Massachusetts

3.43/5  rDev -8.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Consumed 6/8
Poured in to a pint glass

A: This beer pours crystal clear copper color with a 1/2 inch of off white head. Head recedes relatively quickly leaving spots of wispy lacing on the glass.

S: Nose is really rather malt forward, caramel malts really dominate, some breadiness and a hint of hops.

T: Taste is likened to the nose, very malt forward. Caramel malts in the forefront moving to a slight breadiness. The hop flavoring really comes out toward the finish with some nice citrus hop notes.

M: Medium body, medium carbonation, oily mouthfeel with a slightly dry finish.

D: Not a bad beer, but could have been blended better, goes down pretty easily and is not too filling. You could sit with this for the night, though I would opt for other APA's if available.

Serving type: bottle

06-17-2010 14:19:17 | More by Jayli
Photo of JoEBoBpr
JoEBoBpr

Missouri

4.1/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a nice strong copper color with a 1 inch soapy off-white head that has some good retention. Active carbonation rise form the bottom of the glass.

S - Malty goodness is present with some underlying and delicious grassy hops. Some citrus grapefruit notes are present but the bready grain backbone is definitely dominant.

T & M - Taste starts off with some nice bready grain notes. Freshly baked and toasty. Delicious malt backbone to this brew. There is some nice grapefruit and slightly grassy hop notes to balance the malt backbone. There si some slight malt sweetness to the beer as well. With some slight carmel notes mixed in with the grain. Good light mouthfeel with great overall flavors.

O - I was pleasantly surprised byt his beer. It is up there with some of the more known Cali Pale Ales. In fact to me it trumps SNPA. Good malt backbone with nice hop hints.

Serving type: bottle

03-31-2011 05:05:31 | More by JoEBoBpr
Photo of magictrokini
magictrokini

California

3.33/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured a clear gold with a bubbly white head. Thin lacing. Metallic malt-and-grassy hops combo typical of the style; nothing outstanding. Carbonated mouthfeel, dry finish. Crystal malt bite with slightly piney hops. Smooth, and refreshing, but not a lot of substance.

Serving type: on-tap

06-06-2009 00:44:53 | More by magictrokini
Photo of BMMillsy
BMMillsy

Florida

4.03/5  rDev +7.2%
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.

Serving type: bottle

11-13-2013 02:54:13 | More by BMMillsy
Photo of beagle75
beagle75

Iowa

4.1/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Draft service into a shaker pint glass at Karl Strauss in Costa Mesa.

A: Clear, medium amber color with less than one finger of diminishing white foam head. Moderate lacing remains on the glass.

S: Citrus and floral hops are pungent anf focused early, but diminish quickly in intensity. Toasted grain is predictably more evident as hops fade, but otherwise the smell is very clean.

T: Begins dry, with aromatic hops that match the smell closely and bright acidity that is strong but welcome. Pale malt emerges in the middle, husky and robust. Bitterness develops gradually, becoming nearly bracing at its peak during the finish.

M: Thin to medium viscosity, wet and balanced featuring an acidic edge, with moderate carbonation.

D: Not only is Pintail one of the best beers Karl Strauss brews, it may also be one of the best APAs brewed in Southern California. One has to consider some other much more poorly-distributed beers--Alpine Hoppy Birthday, Strand 24th Street pale--to find one that is both local and is able to exceed this beer in its masterful approach to the style. While off-flavors are virtually non-existent here, one could potentially criticize the acidity present and the speed at which the hop aromas seem to fade from the smell. That said, even they are small transgressions that should not prevent this beer from rising to the top of the Karl Strauss stable.

Serving type: on-tap

04-08-2011 06:00:17 | More by beagle75
Photo of BucannonXC5
BucannonXC5

California

4/5  rDev +6.4%
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.

Serving type: bottle

08-20-2011 07:55:42 | More by BucannonXC5
Photo of ThreeWiseMen
ThreeWiseMen

California

3.38/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Ordered a pint of this at the Karl Strauss Restaurant in Carlsbad a few days ago. The following review is base on notes taken at that time.

Served in a standard pint glass.

Appearance: Pale amber, crystal clear, and bright; Pintail Pale Ale has a great looking body. A thin, creamy, white cap covers the surface and retains well, partially thanks to a handful of steady bubble streams seen within. Thick lacing early on eventually turns more cobweb-like. All around, quite nice-looking!

Smell: Light caramel, buttered toast, and pine resin come to mind first. As the beer slowly warms, I get key lime followed by grapefruit and orange. Nothing spectacular, but solid for the style.

Taste: More bitter than I'd like, but I guess this is San Diego. Unfortunately, I really can't find a whole lot in terms of flavor profile; I get lots of earth and pine, with mild lemon and buttered bread occasionally peaking through.

Mouthfeel: High carbonation and heavy bitterness make for a palate-wrecking pale ale (obviously nowhere close to palate-wrecking DIPAs, but you catch my drift). Medium-bodied and hop-forward.

Drinkability: With a few less bittering hops, this might be a great pale ale. Unfortunately, the heavy bitterness overpowers any subtleties that may exist in the flavor profile. Too bad. If you're looking for a low ABV hop fix, this may be your beer.

Serving type: on-tap

03-30-2011 18:29:25 | More by ThreeWiseMen
Photo of TheSixthRing
TheSixthRing

California

3.75/5  rDev -0.3%
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.

Serving type: bottle

01-26-2013 04:14:46 | More by TheSixthRing
Photo of heygeebee
heygeebee

Australia

3.28/5  rDev -12.8%
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.

Serving type: bottle

08-11-2012 08:35:01 | More by heygeebee
Photo of mulder1010
mulder1010

Australia

3.23/5  rDev -14.1%
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.

Serving type: bottle

08-01-2012 12:06:16 | More by mulder1010
Photo of dansmcd
dansmcd

Australia

3.83/5  rDev +1.9%
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.

Serving type: bottle

01-01-2013 09:50:06 | More by dansmcd
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Pintail Pale Ale from Karl Strauss Brewing Company
85 out of 100 based on 100 ratings.