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Philadelphia Pale Ale - Yards Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Philadelphia Pale AlePhiladelphia Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

311 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 311
Hads: 923
Avg: 3.68
pDev: 24.73%
Wants: 14
Gots: 181 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Yards Brewing Co. visit their website
Pennsylvania, United States

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: 311 | Hads: 923
Photo of mcontr2
3.97/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured with about 1 3/4" head.Body was a dark, goldish hue.
Smell: gave off a grapefruit/citrus aroma with some floral undertones. Good balance of cascade hops..
Taste: ahh PPA, philadelphia (pride) pale ale. Being the only brewery in Philadelphia, it makes a strong statement against the other pale ale's of the surronding area's breweries(specifically Stoudt's pine-esqe Pale Ale). Great balance of hops and malts. Picked up on a grape/green apple flavor with a sharp finishing bitterness that dried the palate.
drinkablity: maybe a little too hoppy for a pale ale session beer

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Photo of rajendra82
3.72/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Received from pezoids as part of BIF 20, this 12 oz. brown bottle lacked any freshness dating. The body looked pale yellow and slightly hazy, and the head was thin, but lasting a good bit as a result of good carbonation. The aroma was floral, citric, and much stronger than anticipated. The taste was hoppy, and grapefruit rind like, but lacked much malt sweetness. The aftertaste was dry with a touch of hay. The beer felt much bitterer than it was, due to the lack of a substantial malt presence. The aftertaste contained a lingering sharp bitterness. If this is how hoppy their APA is, I’d love to see what they have done to the IPA. Felt a lot more West Coast influenced than most others from Pennsylvania.

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Photo of AudioGilz
3.57/5  rDev -3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

not very pale in appearance for a pale ale, but that's not all that big of a deal to me. The floating chunks are quite a surprise though. The head was almost nonexistent, albeit my glass came from the dishwasher unfortunately. The flavor is straight up hops, zingy, crispy, floral. The flavor makes for one heluva session brew. It's crisp mainly; just plain and simply hoppy and that's all it needs to be to make me happy.

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Photo of DevilDogBeer
4.14/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Philadelphia Pale Ale is an English IPA with a darker color than the traditional IPA but still lighter than an amber. The spicy aroma is indicative of the hoppy bite this beer imparts from the first sip to the last. The hop selection for this beer covers the malt flavor and has no hint of citrus. I was impressed that Yards did not apparently filter this beer and allowed the yeast to sit in the bottle and condition this ale naturally. The bottle conditioning added a larger bubbled white head that had great staying power as this ale was consumed. I would suggest serving this beer closer to 50 degrees than to 40 degrees to let the hop aroma fill the glass and come out of the beer. Be cautious in opening and pouring this libation, the yeast in the bottle have added quite a lot of carbonation.

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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 TheDeuce
4.14/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Philadelphia Pale Ale....

Appearance-pours a rather copper golden color with a HUGE three finger head of intense foam, huge amount of lace on the glass with incredibly solid foam. Exceptional clarity.

Smell-some cascade hop aroma, slight malt tendencies but overwhelmingly hoppy, not bad.

Taste-very hoppy with a cascade hop flourish backed up by malt, slightly dry and bitter as it goes down, impressively hoppy yet still well balanced.

Mouthfeel-slightly bittery but it goes down very smoothly with some grapefruit overtones, nice job.

Drinkability-it is imprssive to me that a Pale Ale can be this flavorful and this light in alcohol. A very flavorful sessioner.

Overall-I heard they changed the recipe and many have been saying it's much better, I haven't had the old one, but as for this new recipe let me say that it's phenomanal. To anyone that has tried the old recipe you owe it to yourself to try this one as well.

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Photo of Sammy
3.85/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Floral and grapefruit aroma.Hazy yellow and hop bubbles. Nice bitter lemony citrus dryness. Malt and caramel and herbal flavour there for balance. Guest tap at Independence Pub, a popular brew in this city. Well carbonated. Medium body. Competent pale.

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Photo of TongoRad
4.02/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

The freshness stamp on the bottle is difficult to read, but it looks like 062701.

A decanted pour shows a slightly hazy pale amber beer with a tall (2+ finger) long lasting fairly dense head.

Aroma is a healthy dose of fresh hops. There's some malt behind it all as well as some spiciness and fruit, almost reminiscent of a gerwurtzraminer.

Taste is an almost equal balance between fresh hoppy flavors, light caramel, tropical fruit, and spices. There's also a touch of alcohol. Bitterness has a solid presence, but so does the malt. Nice job.

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Photo of RBorsato
2.68/5  rDev -27.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Bright hazy yellow with a full pillowy white head when poured very slowly from the get-go (I've learned my lesson with Yards' troubled bottles). Very active overcarbonation evident. Strong/intense flowery, strong perfumey, and light citrusy hop aroma and signs of infection/oxidation but more bearable than the other Yards' brews I've tried. Tastes much like it smells but not as intense. No malt character to speak of. Light airy overly carbonated body/mouthfeel.

As in true Yards fashion, taste fresh ... I can't seem to get it fast enough.

Best Before: '04/25/06' lasered on neck
Tasted: 03/28/05

($1.43 / 12 oz.)

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Photo of mentor
3.35/5  rDev -9%
look: 2 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle obtained from Francisweizen in Feb 2004 and consumed a couple days later. Pours a ridiculous 6-finger head that needed to settle before pouring the rest. After several tries, a large foam light yellowish head sat on top of a very cloudy straw colored beer. Smells of citrus, dish-soap, and pine sol. Uhhm. Not so good. Reminiscent of Arcadia batch #999. Tastes actually pretty good. Nice malt sweet mixing with hop bitter. I feared a soap or overly piney and co-humulone flavor but instead got a moderate orange and grapefruit with some gentle fruits (peaches and some apricot). The ending was a bit thin and the mouthfeel was mediuim light. Carbonation was about right, which is funny considering the excessive head during the pour. Drinkable? yea, if you're willing to wait for the head to settle.

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Photo of francisweizen
4.5/5  rDev +22.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

*New version*. Bright pale golden orange with the fluffiest white head of foam. Consistently good carbonation creates nice lacing. Aromas are all amarillo and simcoe hop goodness, with a bready, biscuity malt base to back up the show. The taste is a fresh hop explosion laced with the flavor of fresh baked rolls. The mouthfeel is creamy, and almost cask-like from the tap, and the drinkability is very very good. An awesome pale ale!

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Photo of brewQ
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

My first brew of the day while visiting DJ's Six Pack & Dogz, Pittsburgh..

Golden color with firm white head.
Sharp aroma of citrus and pine.
Very refreshing with some sweetness in the taste.
Left me a bit puckered and ready to drink some more!

The ratings on this are all over the place but put me down in favor of this Pale Ale.

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Photo of yeagerbm
3.8/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Acquired as part of a mixed sixer, this ale pours a hazy yellow with a frothy white head and vibrant carbonation. The head holds the whole way through with sudsy like appearance. The smell is all grapefruit like hops with little malt, very appetizing. The taste comes across with strong grapefruit and lemon citrus flavor with sharp acidity and carbonation. It's a little thin on the malt sweetness and body, so it comes across a bit out of balance on the side of citrus hops. I'm all for a low ABV brew, but this one could use a little more gravity to balance everything out. But on the other hand, if you are looking for a sharp flavor to pair with some food, this may be a good choice.

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Photo of heidelbeerg
2.65/5  rDev -28%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

The beer poured a honey color with a tall white head. The smell was of citrus and floral notes. A little bit sweet smelling. The taste is mostly grainy with an astringent citrus flavor. Something lingers in the finish that I just don't like. Just an off taste in my opinion. Too much carbonation also. Not horrible at all, but there is just something I can't quite explain going on that turns me off from wanting another.

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Photo of whartontallboy
3.02/5  rDev -17.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Had this one on tap, it pours an orange-yellow with a small white head.
It smells of citrus and hops with a little bit of pine and floral scent snuck in there as well.
Things take a downturn when the beer hits your mouth. The citrus flavors, particularly grapefruit and lemon, are almost overwhelming, although gradually some grassy tastes come through as well. Somewhat sweet and hoppy with a bitter finish, more like an IPA.
The mouthfeel is thin and very clean; I think this could be refreshing on a hot day.
Drinkability: I've tried this one three times at various bars, and each time, I have only wanted one pint before remembering I don't really dig it and moving on to something else. There are some nice notes in it, but the flavor leaves me desiring a little less grapefruit and a little more of something, anything, else.

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Photo of santoslhalper
3.38/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearence: Mostly clear copper with a huge, frothy head. Takes 3 pours to get in the glass, and that's 2 too many. Lacing is decent, as well as the carbonation.

Smell: Smells sweet and grainy with a normal hop presence. Smells pretty bland though.

Taste and Mouthfeel: A very bready and grainy flavor. Hops are present but light. They round the beer off but not too well. An "almost sweet" aftertaste finishes it off. The mouthfeel is thin but not bad.

Drinkability and Overall: A little better than what I had expected based on the current reviews. Perhaps they're changing this beer making it better. This is a solid APA that would make a killer session brew if it only it were a little better tasting.

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Photo of Gavage
4/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear yellow / orange in color. Huge 3" white head. Very thick lacing forms through the drink. Carbonation levels seem a bit high. The aroma is very of floral hops and citrus. The flavor has a slight graininess to the malt with some strong pleasant bitterness. Grapefruit is also all over this.

Medium in body. The mouthfeel was crisp at the start and finish. The finish was long on the bitterness too. Nicely drinkable and there seems to be some improvement to this brew since last year.

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Photo of merlin48
3.53/5  rDev -4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Immense, overcarbonated, head here. Use care when pouring! The body finally appears as a slightly hazed, medium yellow color, sitting beneath a head that stabilizes at three fingers tall. Head is offwhite and rocky, and initially occupied 90% of the glass.
Aroma has "burn your nose" hops, with powerful scents of pinecone and citrus rind. Grapefruit and lemon rind are predominant, with a hint of biscuity malt in the background.
Moutfeel is overcarbonated, though not as much as suggested by the head. Medium bodied, with a moderate hops bite.
The hops dominate the taste, but are more subdued in the taste than in the nose. Lemonrind is prominent, with a hint of red apples, while grassy and pinesap notes lurk just underneath. Biscuity malt tries to emerge midway through, but is beaten back by the wave of hops .
This is a nicely hopped, American pale ale, but is one dimensional with such overwhelming, hops character. Hopheads should enjoy this one.

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Photo of donnebaby
3.98/5  rDev +8.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Rich, strong gold color with some darker orange touches. Frothy, thick head rides up the glass and leaves thick, watery lacing. Nose is sweet pineapple and oily citrus, potent from the hops (simcoe?).

Taste is crisp and hoppy. Full mouth of green hops that continue through and leave something of a metallic aftertaste--which didn't hurt the drinkability however, as I sucked this right down. Soft carbonation. Faint cereals add some to the body.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.52/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

The loud 'pffft' when I popped the cap indicates some serious overcarbonation. Sure enough, the pour results in 95% head and 5% beer. As the proportions begin to reverse, I see cloudy amber beer beneath a frothy, off-white crown. Because the liquid contains an insane number of bubbles, the cap may not fade in my lifetime. It still manages enough stickiness to produce a few wayward scraplets of lace.

Philadelphia PA has one of the brightest pale ale noses that I've smelled in quite some time. There's a lack of anything that could conceivably be related to malt and a lack of any earthy, spicy or herbal hoppiness. The aroma is of pure, sweet tropical fruit: pineapple, followed by lemon, followed by grapefruit.

Unfortunately, the beer doesn't hold up as well on the palate. The culprit, I believe, is a too thin body. There simply isn't enough substance to fully engage the taste buds. It's a shame because a ghost of the aroma is evident, it just doesn't come together like it should.

Yards Philadelphia Pale Ale is a few (admittedly major) fixes away from being special. I'm pretty sure there's a delicious APA in there, struggling to get out. Thanks blitheringidiot.

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Photo of soilguy
3.03/5  rDev -17.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A pale golden color - head is very large, white - had to wait for it to settle to finish the pour. - The beer itself was also highly carbonated - a little too much for my liking - it seemed on the extreme end for the style. Very little hop aroma - just a slight woody aroma. The high carbonation made it difficult to discern specific flavor elements. Seemed to be a good summer brew.

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Photo of meathookjones
3.13/5  rDev -14.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This pours out with a golden body with a tall foamy rocky white head that I had to wait for to go down before finishing the pour. Good amount of lacing was left as well when this was consumed. The aroma was overall pretty weak with a light floral and citric scent being the only obvious components. Not the most flavorful either but that taste was interesting as there was a bit of caramel malt mingling with the citric flavors with a touch of pine. Pretty good flavor that could have been better if it was a bit less subtle and tried to get noticed. Mouthfeel was about average for the style with no particular pluses or minuses. Not the most robust and flavorful APA but a decent one none the less that I would probably try on tap if I came across it.

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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 GCBrewingCo
3.97/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer poured a pale golden with some chunks of sediment. The head was white and lasted to coat the glass.

The aroma was slightly hoppy with some grassy citrus notes and a touch of malt in the background.

The flavor was bitter with citrus and grassy flavors that blended well with the malt backbone so the flavors were not overdone. The bitterness and flavor hops last.

The finish is dry with those same bittering and hop flavors well into the aftertaste. The body was just below medium.

12 ounce bottle. Which says English malts and English hops, sounds like a bitter to me but the flavors are more American than English, perhaps they are using American cultivars. In any event, it tastes like an APA and is a very nice example of how a beer doesn't have to be high alcohol to pack a flavorful punch.

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Photo of blitheringidiot
3.73/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

YARDS Philadelphia Ale releases from the bottle with bits of suspended particles in a pale cloudy straw pint.

Upfront nose scents are straight out grapefruit peel.

First sips taste of bitter lemon peel hops and grapefruit, but not nearly overwhelming, at all. Quite a tastey pale with nary a malt here. All delicate hops in the flavor.

There is some body to this pale, but it is easy in the carbonation department. A few swirls evokes some suds, but not too much. Extremely drinkable.

Last swigs: Part of a 4 x 6 mixed case that is a steal. Thank goodness it's local. Easy hoppy pale. Well worth a go! Label talk says English hops, malts and 4.3% ABV.

Beer is good. Happy local beering.

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Philadelphia Pale Ale from Yards Brewing Co.
83 out of 100 based on 311 ratings.