Nor Cal Ale - Bear Republic Brewing Co.

Not Rated.
Nor Cal Ale
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BA SCORE
84
good

78 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 78
Reviews: 55
rAvg: 3.7
pDev: 12.16%
Wants: 1
Gots: 0 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Bear Republic Brewing Co. visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  4.50% ABV

Availability: Rotating

Notes/Commercial Description:
Inspired by Northern California's brewing history, this California Bitter is as inviting as the Redwoods. Smooth and drinkable, this ale has a well rounded malt character accented by Cascade and Centennial dry hops.

(Beer added by: DefenCorps on 04-28-2009)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 78 | Reviews: 55 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of seedyone
2.75/5  rDev -25.7%

03/29/13 At Rattle N Hum over 1 year ago. On tap. Just OK. Hoppier than I like & not quite the right shade of bitter. I prefer my ESB's to more in the English ale style.

Photo of GClarkage
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of atrocity
3.25/5  rDev -12.2%

Photo of markgugs
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of sixerofelixir
3.25/5  rDev -12.2%

Photo of DIPAFAN
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of argock
3.2/5  rDev -13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Served on-tap in a Shaker pint at Mellow Mushroom (Charlottesville, VA).

A: Very dusky amber with short cap of off-white head that left some lace.

S: Very bland average-homebrewish herbal and pine hoppiness with some citrus character. The malt backing is not too prominent in the aroma.

T: The flavor is also very bland with a steely, almost metallic pine and tannic hops flavor followed by a crackery but otherwise washed out crystal malt backbone. It has a very homebrew character, with too much astringency for the maltiness. If I had to guess this has a big wallop of Northern Brewer hops.

M: Decent slick smooth mouthfeel but the carbonation is too low.

O: I am surprised Bear Republic let this out of their brewery. This is easily the worst beer I have had from them - flabby with too much crystal malt and a semi-astringent hops tannin feel and flavor. Skip it.

Photo of Greenster
3.25/5  rDev -12.2%

Photo of RyanCMcGovern
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of Huhzubendah
3.63/5  rDev -1.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On draft at Lost Dog Cafe.

The beer is golden hued with a small white head. The aroma offers some hops and citrus. Tangy flavor with citrus and a bit of an earthy tone. Grapefruit, biscuits, crackers, grain. Light bodied and thin with moderate carbonation. Overall this was ok.

Photo of Sammy
3.25/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

On tap their Tap Room. Not really an ESB as Cascade and Centennial. Served too cold and overcarbonated. BitterTaste did not come through, it was malt forward, bready, the kind of things altogether that do not make for the style. It was lacey with an off-white head.

Photo of Rhettroactive
3.25/5  rDev -12.2%

Photo of silentdonkey
3.08/5  rDev -16.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this on tap over trivia and Sunday football at Congregation Ale House.

A: Light copper with a small off white head. Nice clarity and minimal lacing left behind.

S: Not much going on with the nose. Faint amounts of biscuit malt and caramel. A slight hint of citrus hoppiness.

T: Just as the nose suggests. A slight malty/caramel backbone and finish with a mild acidic citrus note up front.

M: Smooth, medium/low body with a fair amount of carbonation.

O: A very drinkable pale ale. It is a borderline bitter in my opinion. More malty and bready notes than your typical APA. Not what I was expecting with the name. It suggests a hoppier west coast PA.

Photo of RblWthACoz
3.75/5  rDev +1.4%

Photo of John_M
3.9/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the Meridian Pint the other night.

The beer pours a golden amber color with good head retention and lacing. The nose is likewise attractive, as I pick up some cereal grains and light dry citrus. The flavor profile replicates the nose, but the beer actually had a bit more hoppy bitterness on the finish than I was expecting. This beer is very well balanced, in a dry, west coast style manner, and the finish was clean and refreshingly bitter. Mouthfeel was otherwise medium bodied, and I appreciated the relatively low alcohol in this beer.

Very nice beer, and given the abv., quite sessionable as well. Impressive.

Photo of Beerandraiderfan
3.28/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

On the board at the brewery they refer to this as Nor Cal Bitter. Tastes more similar to a classic bitter moreso than an american pale ale. Looks nice, dark gold, thin white head that had decent lacing. Aroma was off, I don't think they went for the aroma to be so traditional that it had a mild infection to it, but it gave off that kind of soggy mildly soured unintentionally vibe.

Biscuity and bready, the beer has probably noble hops, a little sticky viscosity for a beer this light in terms of alcohol, kind of filling. Far maltier than you would think looking at the color and abv. Wish it had more hoppiness going for it. There's a few examples of hoppy sessions coming out more and more, it would seem to be right up BR's alley, but oh well, this is more likely to impress your 75 year old grandfather from England moreso than anyone else.

Photo of drjman
4/5  rDev +8.1%

Photo of elNopalero
3.65/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer pours a toasted sesame-tan color. It lacks a discernible aroma—it’s muted, like the volume is too low to make anything out. The flavor is crisp, with a honeyed sweetness and a bitterness midpoint. Overall decent but nothing really stands out.

Photo of t0rin0
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of hplevy
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of DrunkenMonk
3/5  rDev -18.9%

Photo of socon67
4.03/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Copper pour with great foam retention. Decent lacing of the glass. Clarity is excellent.

S - Floral scent jumped out originally. Smell of orange & tangerine, and fresh dinner rolls.

T - Slight malty flavor with a mild acidic bite of citrus. Easy drinking APA.

M - Smooth, enjoyable, and went great with my food. Light feel but still plenty of flavor.

O - Good beer that has subdued flavor, but is far from bland.

Photo of jstewart1130
4/5  rDev +8.1%

Photo of fluidmotion
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%

Photo of DrFunkenstein
3.5/5  rDev -5.4%

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Nor Cal Ale from Bear Republic Brewing Co.
84 out of 100 based on 78 ratings.