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Philadelphia Pale Ale - Yards Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Philadelphia Pale AlePhiladelphia Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
BA SCORE
83
good

314 Reviews
THE BROS
-
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 314
Hads: 941
Avg: 3.68
pDev: 24.46%
Wants: 14
Gots: 194 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Yards Brewing Co.
Pennsylvania, United States | website

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) | 4.60% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 05-17-2002

Not to be boastful, but we honestly believe all others pale in comparison to this one. Crisp and hoppy, Philadelphia Pale Ale is brewed with Pilsner malt and American hops, which impart a surprising citrus aroma.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Reviews: 314 | Hads: 941
Photo of jakester
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This is from the Yards Variety case. I drank it in a goblet. "Filled on" date is on the top of the case, although you have to look carefully to find it. Something is inked on the bottle, but it's too smudged to read it.

Pours a brilliantly clear golden amber with a 1/2 finger head of slightly off white foam. The head falls fairly quickly to islands and a ring, with minimal lacing. Carbonation appears slow.

Aroma is strong piney hops, very clean, with just a touch of light bready malt. Very fruity as well, with notes of pears or golden raisins. A faint citrus smell comes through late.

First flavor is bready malt, but that is quickly kicked away by a pretty strong level of hop bitterness. Next is piney hop flavor, with just a hint of citrus. The fruitiness comes through last, with notes like above. Aftertaste is bitter and on the dry side.

Mouthfeel is dry and slightly chalky, but very pleasant. Carbonation is low to medium. Finish is dry and slightly astringent, but nice.

This is a very good pale ale. It's not sweet, and it's definitely balanced on the hoppy side, but that's what I like in a pale ale. It has a good level of bitterness, a nice hop flavor and aroma, and just enough malt to make a difference. Recommended.

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Photo of FeDUBBELFIST
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Bottle to pint glass. No date on bottle but it was indicated on the outside of the case package. I can't remember the exact date, but this review is within a month and a half of the bottling.

A: A bright white foamy head rises to 2 fingers and deflates over a respectable amount of time. The film is thin but the collar is chunky and still clinging half-way up to the top of my pint glass. The body is a golden straw color with 80% trasnparency. Lacing begins to lay down with proficiency but does not continue throughout the remainder of the beer.

S: Fantastically aromatic but defintely not intense way. More of in 'the right balance with the right conglomeration of flavors' type of way. Plenty of malt and hop aromas for the nose to appreciate. Caramel, cookie and bread, all toasted. The hops are mildly citrusy with oranges and lemons leading the way.

T: Wonderfully flavorful, especially for a pale ale, and ESPECIALLY for a beer weighing in at a mere 4.6%. (BA currently states 4.3%). Lightly sweet.

M: Medium body with a creamy texture and average carbonation level. No bitterness. This beer could and should appeal to a wide range of beer drinkers.

D: This is the definition of drinkability. The flavor is pretty remarkable at sub-5% ABV and is highly accessible in my opinion (and certainlywell priced). The Philadelphia Pale Ale isn't the most hop-forward or flavorfu; pale ale, but it's delicate balance rivals the best. When rated to style, this beer should score well. And despite my high rDEV, I stand by my score.

Yards does low-ABV beers as good as anyone I have access to. For what it's worth, their website is gorgeous too, although lacking depth of information.

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Photo of IMincedTheKing
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The pour was yellow gold with almost no head.

The nose is mostly malts with a vague fruitiness.

On the palate, it's sweet but well-hopped. Hints of tropical fruits and a good amount of spicy hops. It's very tasty with a mild astringency on the finish.

This is quite drinkable, and I'd been looking forward to trying it. I must say, great beer.

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Photo of PollardsVision
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 oz. bottle into pint glass.

Pours a clear, golden.
Very faint citrusy sweetness and the hops clearly take center stage. Certainly not the most complex APA and that's just fine by me. The citrus undertone gets bolder as you drink it. Crisp and refreshing and highly drinkable. This one goes down super easy. A great choice if you are looking for a nice clean hoppy bite and aren't wanting to be blown away by a big IPA.

I'd have no problem having this one stocked in the fridge regularly.

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Photo of gdfan47
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

one of my favorite session beers

it pours a lighter yellow color with a good amount of head

it smells like hops and a little grapefruit

it tastes smooth , citrusy and a little crisp

its just a great beer

if you like hops and even if you dont you should like this beer

i really dig that its a pretty low abv which is nice for someone like me who really doesnt drink enough to get drunk very often

check it out ,its pretty widely avail in philly and cheap

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Photo of CowsCanBark
4.2/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

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

Appearance: Poured a dark, golden yellow with a two-finger head, fluffy as clouds. I let the beer sit and the head took about four minutes to recede, leaving a great sticky lacing on the glass. Even as I drink there is still a half-finger head remaining.

Smell: This smells delicious. There are notes of pine, grapefruit/citrus, hops.

Taste: I like it a lot, actually. You get the taste of the citrus and hops pretty well, with a noticeable citrus linger in the back of your throat. Really tastes like grapefruit to me. There are not really any overpowering hops, and a barely noticeable bitterness that lingers.

Mouthfeel: Overall a good mouthfeel, it has medium-light carbonation and a nice light mouth feel. For some beers, this might not be good, but it just really works with this one.

Overall: I am definitely pleasantly surprised from this offering. It would be great on a hot day and is just nice and citrusy and refreshing. Definitely recommended.

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Photo of Edwin
4.22/5  rDev +14.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Served on tap in my apartment (a VERY special thanks to gfb108 for that!)...

Appearance: Poured out a yellowy color with some hazy amber hints to it. A large, foamy head formed. nice, white and fluffy. Left a LOT of lacing in the glass.

Smell: A wonderful array of hops and fruit notes come out immediately. I was surprised at the amount of hoppiness that I could pick up. Very impressive.

Taste: I could not believe this wasn't an IPA. Lots of good hop flavors, mixed with some citrus notes. I was very pleased with this, as I thought I'd be let down. It is a nicely balanced, crisp hoppiness.

Mouthfeel: Low carbonation and a smoothness that went down easy. The lack of carbonation could have been my lack of experience with the tap system. Not sure.

Drinkability: This is a very drinkable brew. It's got a nice, warm feel to it, and won't smack you in the face with alcohol. I had five and was fine, if not tired (Watching my Falcons get smacked by the Ravens in preseason will do that I guess).

Overall: A great keg to kick of my new tap system. I highly enjoyed this brew. Grab one if you can. Note: make sure you get a fresh case to ensure you have the "NEW" recipie.

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Photo of deapokid
4.24/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This local favorite seemed to be MIA for a while, but it's good to see Yards back in full swing with their new brewery and increased distribution.

This wholly original APA pours out a nice, thick white head with a thin gold coloration that resembles your typical pilsener spiked with citrus pulp. The look doesn't really do the taste justice and its first impression doesn't really complement the flavors.

On to greener pastures, this beer's great hoppy smell makes up for the weak look and permeates the air with the slightest undertones of lemon and orange zest.

The flavor boasts a mild hop bite with a rich aftertaste that was reminiscent of Sam Adams Boston Lager and had subtle caramel notes that showed up as the beer warmed in the glass.

I could drink this beer all day long. It tingles the back of the tongue and slides down the throat nicely, making for one delicious go-to brew.

This is a must have session beer and a one of the finest beers to come out of PA.

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Photo of wailingwench
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I was suprised to see this rated so low. This beer has inspired me to look for more Pa products other than Victory and Rolling Rock. I believe a trip to Phily is in order sometime....

Eye Candy: Brilliant golden orange, cloudy with swirls, huge frothy white head that held on throughout. Gentle rising lines of carbonation. Plenty of sticky lacing and clumping. Fresh, fresh, fresh.

The Nose Knows: Floral and grapefruit hops, white grape juice/ginger ale, sour apple, fresh baked biscuity malts, doughy yeast.

Tongueland: Floral hops up front, slight caramel, sweet bread middle, finished pink grapefruit with a touch of bitter orange peel to balance. Biscuity malt background. Amazing complexity. Thick carbonation, syrupy, palate coating, exc feel.

Bender: Easily see this one on cask. Looking forward to finding this one again. Hops destroy the buds, you can't appreciate anything else after this one, thus drinkability suffers. At listed low ABV, a standout APA.

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Photo of ChappyCubsFan
4.25/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I'm surprised this beer doesn't receive higher marks. We first sampled it at Citizen's Bank Ballpark, and we were ready to declare it as "One of the Top Five Beers You Can Buy at a Major League Ballpark." It was the perfect beer for the hot afternoon game. Not overbearing or too strong in alcohol. It seemed to have a great, single hop taste, which I believe is simcoe hops. The lacing and head were excellent, and the malt taste was in perfect harmony with the hops.

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Photo of Duhast500
4.27/5  rDev +16%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

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

The color is clear light gold color with a nice foamy white head with some lacing.

The smell is sweet, a little floral & hoppy with some grains flavor.

The taste is light and sweet. A really crisp citrus flavor that stays with you after the first sip. Is a good summer, a nice citrus flavor with a tease of lemon and a good hoppiness to the back end. A little bit bitter to even things out.

The mouth feel on this beer is light. It would made for a good summer bear or a good food pairing beer for it's lightness and it's flavor. It goes down easy and quite refreshing.

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Photo of jmalex
4.28/5  rDev +16.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I don't know if there's a beer that speaks more to the Philly beer scene than this one. It's always my choice when going to a Phillies game.

APPEARANCE: Pours into a Sam Adams glass a very clear golden yellow. A loose-bubbled one-finger head forms on top and drops to a nearly full cap. Some spotty lacing is left on the glass as I drink.

SMELL: The nose is dominated by hops at either end of the spectrum. On one hand you've got earthy, sort of English smelling hops, and on the other is the unmistakable aroma of fresh grapefruit rind. They do block out the aroma of the malt base a bit. But what comes through is clean, bready pale malt.

TASTE: Excellent balance in the flavor. The malt gives off a decent sweetness, but it's accented perfectly by hops that tend well toward the citrusy side. They're aggressive enough that they seem to give the beer a slight tartness toward the finish. Some vague English yeast esters seem to be there, but not enough to pick up on anything specific.

MOUTHFEEL: A higher carbonation level makes the body seem bigger than it is - maybe pushing it from light to medium light.

DRINKABILITY: Awesome marks here. Lighter body, low alcohol, and perfect for the summer. Drink as many as you want.

Man, this makes me yearn for summer and sitting out watching a baseball game. Only 6 days until Opening Day and not too much longer before the weather really starts to warm up. I'll make sure to have plenty of Philly Pale Ale on hand for when it does.

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Photo of emsroth
4.32/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

12oz bottle. Brewed in late march.

App: Slightly chunky 1.5 finger head. True gold with a slight haze. Loads of bubbles.

Smell: Fruity/floral hops with a noticeable bitterness. I'm not a fan of smelling the bitterness beforehand.

Taste: Light malt taste upfront followed by a strong citrus flavor. Low bitterness and a slight mineral taste. The best APA I've had in terms of flavor. This is what I think an APA should be, not the hop-bomb stuff the west coast puts out. Could perhaps use a bit more in the malt zone, but at 4.6% a low malt profile is to be expected.

Wonderfully light in body with a slight film that is rather pleasant. I could have another, and that's saying alot since APA's are not my usual brew.

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Photo of PsychedelicQuaker
4.32/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.5

Look: a pale golden yellowish orange Smell: citrus, pine and grapefruit
Taste: slightly bitter yet extremely smooth and easy to drink. good session ale
Feel: light crisp and refreshing
Overall: a great go to beer for Philly locals, hands down probably the best APA in Philadelphia. Yard's Pale Ale and Philadelphia Brewing Company's Kenzinger are my go-to local brews.

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Photo of devinoconnor
4.32/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Yards Philly Pale Ale is a really special ale. It pours a rich brown color, yet a tad lighter than an ale you'd find brewed in England.

It's taste is exceptional. Just the right amount of hops, with a slight citrus smell and taste. If you like IPA's but find there often a bit too much, give this ale a try.

Washes down very smooth and you'll be begging for more. Its relatively low ABV allows for a few... Enjoy.

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Photo of Hyptochrons
4.32/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.75 | overall: 4

remarkably sessionable indeed.... drank about ten of these at my sisters wedding :D not the hugest ale but god dam is it tasty. super refreshing, nice floral nose and finishes with a perfect piney bitterness. really good session ale!!

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Photo of birdman200
4.32/5  rDev +17.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a pale straw yellow color with a huge 3 finger fluffy white head. Lots of lacing and fluff remain throughout the entire bottle. Smells of pure citrus hops. Has a light malt character with a pleasant mellow hop bite in the taste. Minimal biscuit/caramel malt character. Overall a super easy to drink brew, great session beer. Not as bold as SN Pale Ale, but a great example of the style and a new favorite nonetheless.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
4.33/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A slightly hazy golden body reveals streams of fine, fast-rising bubbles beneath a frothy white head that holds remarkably well and leaves wide swatches of craggy lace about the glass. The nose is bright and fresh with citrusy and floral Simcoe hops over a delicate malt base. The body is medium and its very fine, natural carbonation lends a gentle zest to the tongue before it fades smoothly away. The flavor bristles with bright, fresh hops (fruity, citrusy, subtly pine-like) wrapped in a supple, straightforward malt. It's exceptionally well-balanced with a firm bitterness that leads to a clean and dry finish. A satisfying and refreshing pale ale that offers excellent drinkability.

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Photo of shbobdb
4.33/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Whew! At first, the yeastiness of this beer was a big turn off. But as it warms, the hops and malt come out and mingle with the yeast to produce a fine tasting brew.

Overall, it is a pretty nice brew. There are some earthy hops, with the faintest whiff of lemon, complimented by a nice sulfurous pilsner note that I enjoy and a nice, light, bready sweetness. All brought together by a very floral yeast strain. The nose is quite sharp, I'm not quite sure how to describe it -- it smells like almond flowers.

A nice combination of flavors, and it drinks well above its very low abv, which is a bonus.

The more I drink this beer, the more I warm to it. I notice something new every sip. Sometimes a hint of grape, or tangarine, good french bread, ect. So the beer is very engaging. At the same time, the beer is pleasantly simple, you can just drink it and forget about it. Hey, look, a nice mineral element I hadn't noticed before.

Mmmm.

Certainly distinct, but that is what separates this beer from the pack, and I dig that. A good brew. A very good brew, actually.

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Photo of dondeez21
4.33/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

12 oz bottle poured into a tulip glass.
A: Golden Straw colored beer with a thin head and nice amount of lacing left on the glass.
S: Smell is like your average pale ale. Mostly earthy malt with a very light yeast aroma.
T: Very crisp and citrusy. American hops dominate the palate.
M: Crisp light body. Excellent for a warm summer day or a cool fall evening
D: Very easy drinking beer. Low in alcohol but high in flavor. The beer is very refreshing and seems to get better with every sip.

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Photo of letsgopens
4.33/5  rDev +17.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

I experienced this local favorite during a recent trip to Philly. My girlfriend and I wandered in to a small bar in the Old City called Skinner's. We'd been walking around site seeing all day and I, despite the cold, had a hankerin' for something nice and hoppy. After seeing a lack of hops on-tap I gambled on a local APA I hadn't heard of. Let me tell ya, it delivered.

This guy poured an mostly translucent, clear gold with some attractive orange highlights. The head was of average capacity and glowed a nice frothy white. There were really no rising bubbled but the suds retained well. They eventually faded and left little lace.

The aroma was high quality but somewhat average for an APA. Clean with a solid malt backbone and sweet, tangy citrus. The hops are there, spicy and floral, but the nose doesn't let on how great the flavor is.

This is really where the bee shines brighter than most pale ales I can remember. Initially the flavor is full and malty with a distinct toasty character and lots of bit zesty hops. The light caramel malt is not too sweet and the semidry finish is somewhat masked but the big hops. Orange peel further accentuated the bitterness along with some more caramel and honey sweetness in the finish. A nice hint of spice floats aroound as well. So tasty. There is a lot there flavor-wise, everything I look for in the style meshed together; so well balanced.

The mouthfeel is clean and bright with moderate to high carbonation. The finish is semidry but still refreshing (not watery). Just enough to make you want a couple more. Full flavored and complete. This was such a great surprise, especially being that I've never even heard of the beer before. If you're in the area, make it a point to try this one on-tap; possibly accompanied by a cheese steak if you're feeling froggy.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
4.35/5  rDev +18.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Yards- Philly Pale Ale

On tap at Isaac Newton's- Newtown, PA

Appearance- Light orange/ yellow with very little head. Heavy carbonation.
Smell- Light grapefruit not much else.
Taste- Big sweet grapefruit with a touch of apricot?! Nice malt balance as well. Hops are big and bold!!
Mouthfeel- Sweet up front but finishing off with a big flavor and a mild bitterness.

Overall- A delicious Pale Ale! Fresh tasting, and it must be cause I was here a few days ago and they didn't have it!!

***edited on 3/5/09***

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Photo of drtth
4.4/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Poured from a bottle into lightly chilled mug.

Appearance: Light gold clear color with thick fluffy white head that persists and leaves light lacing on sides of glass.

Smell: Nice bright Simcoe hop smell with pleasant citrus balanced by light sweet malt.

Taste: The flavor is well balanced and complex with mild citrus hop bite with no real harshness at all. The hop is followed by pale sweet malt flavor. The overall flavor sneaks up on you rather than clubs you over the head.

Mouthfeel: Smooth, light bodied feel with medium length crisp finish and no trace of harshness.

Drinkability: Each one of these leaves you disappointed that it is finished and wanting more. A beer that is too drinkable for my own good. Clearly moving the brewery to its new location has done this beer no harm.

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Photo of socon67
4.42/5  rDev +20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Had on tap at Citizens Bank Park.

A - Pours yellow/orange. A thick head of foam on top.

S - Smells strong of grapefruit. Perhaps the strongest I can recall.

T - Incredible taste of citrus. About the most refreshing pale ale I can recall.

M - Enjoyable, and perfect for a hot day.

O - Glad to have tried this one. For those who like citrus flavored ales, this is a must.

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Photo of SuncrestBeerMen
4.44/5  rDev +20.7%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Absolutely the best smelling beer on the planet. The citrus and evergreen smell is incredible. The flavor is very balanced, not overly bitter which makes it an incredible session beer. Always have to have a case on hand. I have found that many people who don't care for hoppy beers still like this beer. But then again, I have talked to many people who don't care for the beer at all. I guess its one of those love'em or hate'em beers and I definitely love it. My favorite every day beer.

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Philadelphia Pale Ale from Yards Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 314 ratings.