Pale Ale - Legend Brewing Co.

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Pale AlePale Ale

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127 Ratings
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(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 127
Reviews: 62
rAvg: 3.58
pDev: 12.85%
Wants: 2
Gots: 12 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Legend Brewing Co. visit their website
Virginia, United States

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

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 07-05-2002

Our American style Pale Ale is a hop lover's dream. We craft this copper colored ale to supply a moderate bitterness and an aggressive hop flavor and aroma. Willamette hops pitched early in the boil give a clean, soft bitterness. Late kettle hops include Northern Brewer, Simcoe, and Chinook for plenty of pungent pine and citrus character. Judicious amounts of four specialty malts add counter and depth. Expect a medium bodied brew with an assertive, complex flavor and a dry finish.
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 127 | Reviews: 62
Reviews by Headgoober:
More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
3.91/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured one and a half bottles into an imperial nonic a clear rich copper with a large sticky white head that held like glue to the glass leaving a full ringe of lave as it settled into a frothy mass.Leafy hops and lightly toasted bread in the nose,not much sweetness.Very balanced on the palate with minty/leafy hops mixed with a slightly sweet and toasted bready malt base,a tinge of brown sugar wich was a bit odd came into play the finish as well.A pretty solid pale,not as hopped as many APA's but it has nice flavors.

Photo of ArrogantDeadGuy
3.85/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a middling orange brassy hue with a scant white head. The head gives way to slight white lacing. The aromas are overwhelmingly citrus; orange, grapefruit, tangerine, etc. The flavors are similarly citrusy with great notes of the aforementioned fruits. The pale ale isn't over the top which leaves it wonderfully drinkable and the medium body makes this a refrigerator regular for me.

Photo of OldFrothingSlosh
3.77/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On-tap at Legend Brewing Company.

Cloudy dull copper in color. Minimal white head does a tolerable lacing job. Spicy/fruity aromas, with grapefruit being very, very evident. Taste was bitter, with an almost overpowering grapefruit flavor. Different and actually quite tasty. Crisp and dry finish with a good dose of bitter aftertaste. Medium-bodied with a creamy mouthfeel. Good drinkability. Excellent beer for a hot summer day in Richmond.

Photo of tkelley
3.52/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle from my second Beer of the Every Other Month Club. Poured into a tulip glass.

A - Classic look. Very appealing. Crystal clear copper body. Light tan head. Good retention. Very fine bubbles.

N - earthy malts and hops. Not really too citrusy or piney. Maybe some rye?

T - tasty. Hops flavor but not overpowering. Good biscuity malt body.

M - smooth and drinkable.

O - I rather enjoyed this beer from Virgina. Cheers!

Photo of hophugger
3.18/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 2.25 | overall: 3

Pours a nice deep golden color with an extremely rocky head and almost no lacing. Had a hard time pouring the 12 oz. beer into a 16 oz. glass due to the excessive amout of carbonation. Aroma is slightly hoppy with a touch of pine and some citrus. Flavor was ok, but the carbonation was making it hard to form a good opinion. I taste some hops and sopme citrus but the extreme bubbles made it hard to enjoy this beer. I have had a lot of Legend, especially on draft, but I was not very pleased with the amount of over carbonation in this one. Old batch??, I do not know !!

Photo of Lnedrive14
3.47/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

One of Legend's year round brews - in my experience thus far, their seasonals have been far better. this was no exception.

quite different from your average pale ale - i would say it is almost a cross between a pale and a brown. pours a dark orange with a hint of brown. little head and lacing. taste is of mild hops and candied sugar (the brown ale flavors). Mouthfeel was heavy for the style. drinkability mediocre - would have liked more hops and less sugary sweetness. the sweetness should come from the citrus.

not a bad brew, but doesn't live up to legend's other phenomenal brews (the imp stout is ridic).

Photo of alleykatking
2.91/5  rDev -18.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from 12oz bottle. Thanks to betsona (another night of drinking on the porch)!

A- Pours a darker coppery color. Two finger white head shows medium retention. Nice long streaks of lace on the glass with light webbing.

S- This is a malt forward pale in the nose which to me means it sat a little while. Darker fruits come out as well with a hint of sugary sweetness to them. Light hay like notes as well along with some faded grassy hops. The alcohol is clean with a hint of sweetness to it.

T- Pale malts come on out first with a hint of citrus hops that quickly fade away. Middle of the beer shows off a darker fruit to it that seemed a little out of place. Caramel malts come out in the ending that blends with a small hint of grassy hops. Alcohol is sweet and adds to the overall sweetness on the beer itself.

M- Medium mouthfeel. Carbonation is a little light for the style. Caramel malts, darker fruit and sugary sweetness are left on the palate. Aftertaste is sweet alcohol, hints of faded grassy hops, and caramel malts. Flavors were a little underbalanced for the style I thought. No off flavors were present just a little stale tasting from what I assume as extended shelf life. Medium alcohol drying on the palate.

O- This beer was bland and in no way to me a pale ale. The malts screamed out while the hops for the most part were nowhere to be found. Oddly, enough though I went back to this beer for another pour so I did like it I suppose..haha.

Photo of akorsak
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A 650 mL bomber from The Cheese Shop. My first experience with Legend.

A: The pale ale more gooey amber than bright orange, a full hue renders the ale nearly opaque. A white head, several fingers in size, left very little lace in isolated patches around the glass.

S: The nose is as full as the color, plenty of caramel malts that control that aromas. A mild citrus hoppiness, nearly imperceptible, adds needed zest. The caramel, though, is stronger.

T: Again caramel is the driving force flavor-wise. The rich maltiness is almost syrupy in its sweetness. The hoppiness is more apparent, its bitterness cutting into the base. The bitterness lingers, a leafy flavor that is stronger than the nose would ever let on. The bitterness and caramel flavors are a good send-off.

M: The mouthfeel, malt-dominated as it is, still manages to offer a dose of hops. The sweet syrupy flavor is not ascerbic.

D: A decent pale ale, darker and fuller than I'd normally expect, but not bad.

Photo of goldbot
3.75/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours clear copper with lots of carbonation and medium white head. Good head retention and pretty good lacing.

Citrusy hop aroma with some pine and herbal notes as well. Backed by a smooth caramel malt aroma. Tastes about an even mix of malt and hops. Caramel and bready malts are prominent along with citrus hops. Moderately bitter with a sweeter malt aftertaste.

Medium body with a very carbonated, almost biting crisp feel. A refreshing, tasty beer; great example of the style. Perhaps a bit on the malty side but it is still great.

Photo of ocelot2500
3.5/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear golden color with a small, white head that leaves little to no lacing,

Smells of grainy malt and some floral hops.

Tastes of a solid grainy malt base with some overlaying hops. Malts lead off with a biscuit and grain feel followed by a slight sugary sweetness. Touches of floral and earthy hops come in and add a slight astringent bitterness. A bit of fruitiness comes in as well.

Mouthfeel is medium-light with a slightly crisp amount of carbonation.

Overall, this is a little different than I remember, but is still a solid addition to the Legend lineup.

Photo of smakawhat
3.23/5  rDev -9.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from the bottle into a nonic pint glass.

A very foamy off white head, that forms like liquid soap at three fingers tall. Lots of retention, with a body of simple pale amber, fairly clear if a little hazy. Soapy lacing rings on the glass throughout while drinking.

Nose is a bit of dense biscuity like malts. Light herbal and hinting citrus hop angle with the malts prominent. Fairly solid, nothing too crazy or impressive.

Body comes with a light but nearly wet feel. Light hop and dry pine angle a bit, but with a fleeting finish. Herbality and mint seems to come on the aftertaste but the malt backbone on this is hardly supportive. A bit grainy also.

Overall it's not terrible but it's not too impressive either unfortunately.

Photo of obywan59
3.95/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

My first review.

A: First pour into a weizen glass was a nice clear golden color, 2nd pour, more of a golden brown and cloudy, like apple cider. Minimal carbonation.

S: HOPS!! out of the bottle. Reminded me of a Stone brew. Hops and some sweet malty notes from the glass.

T: Disappointing at first, but it grew on me. First impression was a watered down Stone not well-balanced. Taste of hops on the swallow that faded and left a sweet lingering maltiness. Later, the hops lingered throughout alongside the malt flavor and the balance seemed to improve. Lemony tartness accented the bitter and sweet flavors. More of a laid-back Stone. The good taste lingers on and on.

M: Medium body leaving a nice oily coating throughout the mouth.

D: In the end, a very tasty and drinkable brew I would buy again, especially considering the reasonable price. 6% ABV noticable before finishing the first glass. Good drinking on a warm summer night and a solid offering from the home state!

Photo of Fezfreak
3.91/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I picked up a sixer at a Kroger in Harrisonburg, Virginia during the last weekend of July 2010.

I'm thinking it was a not-so-fresh batch.

All but the first bottle have been inconsistent, leading me to believe it was either old, mistreated, or both.

Although I enjoy beers that age well, most of the ones I drink have a short shelf-life. I'm one of those guys usually who prefers the freshest beer possible. And when I come across something that tastes as inconsistent as this, my first guess is that it's in the autumn of its life. So while this wasn't a "bad" beer, it didn't exactly knock my socks off. Tasted less like a pale ale and more like a dry-hopped brown ale that I once brewed at home.

Pours a nice copper color with a durable 1/2 inch thick head that left good lacing behind.

The smell is what sort of "gnarled" me out first, lots of sour caramelized malt with a noticable dose of grassy hops.

The taste had a bit of sweet raisin biscuit malt in the front, with lots of bitterness in the middle as well as in the finish.

I would love to re-evaluate this beer another time, either on tap or from brewery fresh bottles.

Photo of arguemaniac
3.78/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I'm surprised it's taken me this long to review this brew, I've had it so many times before and it's one of Legend’s better year-round offerings. This deep-amber beer features a tasty caramel malt palate, with great toasted notes, and a crisp, leafy hop spice.

Well-balanced, tasty, and very drinkable.


Photo of jwc215
4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to jcwattsrugger for bringing this 22 oz. bottle back from Virginia for me!

Pours a bright copper amber with a large white foamy head that descends to a lasting thin cover. Some broken rings of lacing stick to the glass.

The smell is of citrus - grapefruity with some orange/tangerine.

The taste is of citrus - bitter grapefruit and orange with a lemony and slighlty herbal touch as it progresses. Some caramelish sweetness rounds it out. There's some saltiness in the bitterish finish.

It has a firm medium body.

A very drinkable APA (despite the slight destraction of a touch of salt) - a hoppy APA (could pass as a more balanced IPA, IMO).

Photo of dball
4.25/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Legend beers seem to be pretty solid across the board. I've only had their larger production beers but would love to make a trip to Richmond for some more tasting. The Pale Ale pours nicely into a glass and has a rich color that is just shy of copper. The head is light and laces a little on the glass. The smell is a bit bland with hints of floral hops. The taste is very nice. It's far from a stand out Pale but is up there and out does a standard for American Pale's, Sierra. I'll get it again for sure. -addition (since this review I visited the brewery and it was worth the stop)

Photo of gearkraft
2.66/5  rDev -25.7%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Bought a six-pack from the local grocery store. Poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint Glass.

A: The pouring releases a nice head, that slowly fades to light islands on the surface of the beer. Lacing is minimal at best.

S: I've had this beer before, and it seems that I received a batch that has sat awhile. I detect almost no hops, with mostly a malty, almost maple syrup like note. Very different then the average Pale Ale.

T: A rolling blend of light malt, deep citrus, hops, with a slight sweet-salted balance.

M: Light yet clingy. Nice.

O: I've had this a few times. This batch feels like it set for some time. I was hesitant to review this because of the "vintage" factor, however I can assert that even a new batch is "Nice" at best. A decent blend of malt and hops, however the hops do not shine at all. I just think about drinking pressed hops pellets.

Photo of rfgetz
3.85/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a lightly hazed amber gold, cap of white froth with some sticky lacing. Scent is mild and is of fresh dried grain and grassy hops - earthy, grainy and fresh. Taste brings mild components of scent and makes them into a refreshing beer - touch of nuttyness comes in with the fresh grains and hops. Lighter side of medium, carbonation in control, dry and grainy on palate. Decent IPA whose fresh qualities make up for lack of complexity.

Photo of constantine_272
3.57/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

A: Golden orange. Small amount of white foam that left some sticky dots. Medium carbonation. Like some other brews from Legend, a hunk of sediment was at the bottom of my bottle. The sediment chunks made it into the glass in a separated murky haze.

S: Wheat, oats and rye. Slightly sweet malt. Dried grass and hay.

T: Sweet cashew nut and honey and malt up front. A light bittering follows with dried leaf and floral notes and grass. A medium amount of wet pine sap. Finishes off with a crisp finish and a slight metallic mineral finish.

M: Great easy drinking pale. Nice and light bodied with an easy crisp finish. Mellow and cool and mostly clean, except for a slight lingering mineral aftertaste.

O: Not bad pale. A nice lighter version of a pale without all of the dryness. Some places have really overdone the dry hop lately and it's nice to see a restrained version that finishes more crisp than dry. All that said, I felt like there wasn't all that much exciting going on here. Maybe good for kicking back a six pack, but a little boring for sitting down and enjoying a one-off beer,

Photo of Rifugium
3.04/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

First had: on tap at Legend

Clear, amber pour with a small fizzy white head that receded to a tight ringlet. Aroma of grassy and earthy hops, sweet malt backbone. Standard stuff, once again. Taste of light grassy/earthy/citrus hops, sweet caramel malts, a bit of apple skin in there, mildly bitter with a somewhat metallic aftertaste. Light-medium body. A fair beer overall.

Photo of PhageLab
4.11/5  rDev +14.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

1 pint, 6 oz bomber poured into a weizen glass. Fresh Beer - Keep Cool on the side of the bottle.

A - Beautiful transparent light brown coloration with a slight amber hue. Nice 1/2 inch head of white froth. Great retention and spotted lacing. Impressive presentation overall.

S - Pine and caramel mostly. Not the strongest aroma, but what is there is rather nice.

T - Wonderfully balanced hop profile. Very piny and refreshing. Has a cooling characteristic to it. Medium level of bitterness which fades over into the aftertaste. A malty backbone gives this brew just the right amount of depth. Were it a bit more complex, a 5 may have been issued in this department.

M - Fairly light bodied and smooth. Low level of carbonation and no left over residues. It will tinge the taste buds just a bit, but it won't burn anything out.

D - Good I must say. This one disappeared far too quickly, and I suspect another would suffer the same fate. Not too complex, but what is present is damn fine. Wonderful example of a pale ale, if you can find it, drink it.

Photo of TMoney2591
3.71/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a Devil's Backbone willibecher.

Still some VA goodness left in my stash. This proof pours a clear orange amber topped by about two fingers of creamy light ecru foam. The nose comprises mostly light and fluffy buttery biscuits, with only a slight whiff of light florals in the background. The taste is very similar, though some pumpkin skin (or some sort of gourd, anyway) ekes its way in, joining those weak florals in the back. The body is light, with a light carbonation and a rather smooth feel. Overall, a nice little bit o' pale, though something seems missing. Maybe it's just me. Still pretty tasty and drinkable, though.

Photo of AlCaponeJunior
3.78/5  rDev +5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

very amber and easy on the eyes. good head with fabulous lacing. clarity perfect.

Smells like wheaty caramel malts with dark fruits and spices. Very nice.

Tastes spicy, with great mid to dark fruits, slick caramel malts, and easy going semi-sweet aftertaste. This is one slick and smooth beer about which there are no complaints.

Overall, I'd give it a two thumbs up. :-)

Photo of CuriousMonk
3.88/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Nice floral aroma. Somewhat toast bready notes underneath. Pours copper with a big frothy lasting head and some sticky lace. Floral hops up front, toasted malts, light sweetness, a little bready, and more earthy floral hops rounding out the finish. Well carbonated, almost a bit much for my liking, but a nice drinkable and quenching pale ale.

Photo of Imstillthegman
3.87/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Forgot about this's been sitting in the back of the beer fridge since Christmas. Here goes...

Pours a clear copper-amber color with a dirty eggshell head. Some nice lacing remains behind. This is one of the darker pale ales that I have ever had.

The smell has some spicy citrus hops, some resiny pine, and a good malt backbone. Smells a lot better than I remember the other Legend beers I tried smelling.

The flavor is good, but not that much above average. The spicy hops and caramel malts blend nicely, but imo , the hops are a tad too strong for a pale ale. I love hoppy beers and this one is good, but for the style I feel it is a bit over the top. More of an IPA to me.

The mouth feel is on the heavier side of medium. Chewy, creamy. Drying, bitter finish. Very easy drinker, imo. A whole lot better than their Golden IPA. Maybe they just labeled the bottles (or the fermenters) wrong.

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Pale Ale from Legend Brewing Co.
81 out of 100 based on 127 ratings.