XP Pale Ale - Bear Republic Brewing Co.
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Ratings: 581 | Reviews: 393 | Display Reviews Only:
Reviews by Dantes:
3.58/5 rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5
Package: 1 pint, 6 oz. (22oz.) crowned, brown bomber. Uncharacteristically restrained blue label with large white letters spelling out XP Pale Ale. Detailed blurb explains the name as standing for Exceptional Pale Ale (I think theres a redundancy in there somewhere. Shouldnt it be X Pale Ale?); and the beer as being Bears interpretation of a classic American pale, with English and American malts melded with Centennial and Cascade hops. No date or ABV information.
Cost: $3.49 at Finger Lakes Beverage
Presentation: 20oz. imperial pint at ~50º
Appearance: Vigorous pop and copious gunsmoke greeted me as I opened this bottle. The beer poured a snowy white, voluminous head reminiscent of some French and Belgians. The body was a bit on the pale side (even for a pale), lacking some of the burnished depth of some of the English pales and some recent American Pales Ive had. Crystal clear, it had lots of fine carbonation percolating through, replenishing the Île Flotant-like head, which just sank as I drained the glass without much lacing.
Smell: Crisp and tangy with a wisp of biscuit. The hops lean to the grassy, pine-resin side rather than the citrus (hooray!). The malts are (as expected) a bit subdued. Still, I really enjoyed the very refreshing aroma.
Taste: The first impression is of crisply herbal hops and a very fine prickle of carbonation. Unfortunately, the expected wave of biscuity malts arrives with a whimper. They seem quite diluted and insubstantial, giving the overall flavor a brittle quality. The flavor thats there is quite good, but it lacks concentration. I can sense the balance in the beer, but the extraction might be improved. 5.5% ABV is no lightweight, but this seems to drink like one. The finish is clean and dry but mild and weak.
Mouthfeel: This area is the beers weakest. Ive been drinking a bunch of pale ales lately (they seem to be making a comeback), and this one is amongst the wateriest. The great flavors are vitiated by a lack of body, making the beer thin. I guess its a tribute to Bear Republic that despite the weak body, the hops arent sharp and overly acidic but balance nicely with the pleasant if anemic malts. The carbonation is well-done though.
Drinkability: Very drinkable if not overwhelmingly satisfying. The ABV is well-hidden, as expected in a pale ale. Still, I expected a great drinking experience, not a fair one.
Backwash: Perhaps I had unsustainable expectations after having Hop Rod Rye, Racer 5, and Big Bear Black Stout; but this was a bit disappointing. The flavors and balance were there, but the beer had a very washed-out, diluted flavor to it. Normally Id guess my palate was burnt-out from too many high-octane beers, but I had these by themselves with just popcorn; and Ive had several other pales lately that just seemed to do the job better (Royal Oak, Ithaca, and Alpha King come to mind).
Serving type: bottle
03-21-2005 20:03:36 | More by Dantes
More User Reviews:
3.74/5 rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75
As a fan of a number of Bear Republic's other offerings, I was looking forward to trying this one. I'm not typically a fan of Apas but always down to try something different. This ale pours a hazy golden amber color with a nice white head and substantial lacing. The aroma is Light and malty with a slight hop presence. Nothing remarkable but definitely reminiscent of the style. The mouthfeel is light and easy to drink; definitely one that you could knock back a number of on a hot summer's day. The flavor is well balanced with a nice malt presence that is not overly sweet or cloying and a floral hop presence that is not overly bitter or biting. Overall it is easy to drink, enjoyable, and well balanced. Nothing that will make you stand up and say wow but a nice example of the style.
Serving type: bottle
04-03-2014 04:22:22 | More by lochef81
XP Pale Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 581 ratings.