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Pale Ale - Ithaca Beer Company

Not Rated.
Pale AlePale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

143 Reviews

(Read More)
Reviews: 143
Hads: 258
Avg: 3.56
pDev: 12.36%
Wants: 7
Gots: 9 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Ithaca Beer Company visit their website
New York, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.80% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 10-18-2001

No notes at this time.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters | Read the Alström Bros Beer Reviews and Beer Ratings of Pale Ale Alström Bros
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Reviews: 143 | Hads: 258
Photo of Sammy
3.42/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Hi bitterness, like an English bitter. That's good. Good sized White head on yellow body. There is citrus taste, caramel, not that balanced but quaffable. Medium or less mouthfeel. One-dimensional hop fix. Buffalo racetrack beerfest. Run-of-the-track.

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Photo of metter98
3.6/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: The beer is clear light copper in color and has a moderate amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a thin beige head.
S: There are light aromas of citrus and floral hops in the nose.
T: The hops contribute a slight amount of bitterness and citrusy flavors to the overall taste, which also has some notes of toasted malts and hints of sweetness. The malty flavors become a bit stronger as the beer warms up.
M: It feels light-bodied and a bit crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: The beer is very easy to drink and stands apart from other APAs because it is for the most part dominated by hoppy flavors. I would have no problem drinking more than one of these at a time.

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Photo of StonedTrippin
3.3/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

a decent pale ale, if a bit generic. very citrusy hops with some strong english malts in the nose and the taste. while ithaca makes a lot of awesome hop centered beers, this isnt their finest offering. flower power and cascazilla showcase more of what they are capable of. however, this is a very sessionable and refreshing pale ale with a lighter mouthfeel and bright carbonation. i actually enjoyed it quite well with gingerbread men this holiday season, although this feels more like a spring drink to me, big enough for the cold nights but refreshing enough to drink outside with the first warm sunny days. good local product.

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Photo of brentk56
3.58/5  rDev +0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Pours a hazy amber color with a rocky ecru head that leaves some sticky lace around the pint glass

Smell: Clearly not a West Coast beer, as the hop aroma leans toward the earthy side, with just a hint of fruit

Taste: Toasted malt and stone fruit up front, with a growing earthy hop presence; after the swallow, the flavors are rather balanced, though restrained

Mouthfeel: Medium body with moderate carbonation

Drinkability: Not my favorite pale ale, but nothing wrong with it; it tasted a bit more like an ESB to me

Thanks, jjayjaye, for the opportunity

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.45/5  rDev -3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Coppery orange that is as clear as the proverbial bell. A vigorous pour results in two fingers of sandstone colored foam that is stiff, micropitting and persistent. Lace formation requires head deflation and that looks to be several minutes away at least.

The hop bill (Cascade, Willamette and Centennial) should result in a whiz-bang of an APA nose. It doesn't though. The aroma is acceptable, it just isn't as hoppy as it could be. Lightly buttery pale malt rides along beneath a subtle citrus peel fruitiness.

Ithaca Pale Ale is deficient in good, solid hop flavor. It definitely isn't deficient is alpha acids; there are plenty of those flying around. I guess that keeps me from blaming the shortage of flavor on the fact that the 'best by' date is next month. I'm not a brewer, but wouldn't adding the hops later in the boil have helped?

I don't get much, if any, butteriness on the palate. Nor do I appreciate caramel (a little on the back end, perhaps). The grain bill is interesting: pale, caramel, wheat and sour. Wheat isn't typical in an APA and what the hell is sour malt? There is sort of a lemon juice sourness, but it's very nearly obliterated by rampaging bitterness and a saliva-suckingly dry finish. This APA is too rough around the edges to be considered better than slightly above average.

The mouthfeel just does manage to grab and hold onto the bottom rung of the style ladder. It's light-medium initially, fading to light (almost watery) on the swallow. More pale malt would fix the majority of this pale ale's problems. Drinkability is only above average if you're a hophead.

Ithaca Beer Company has the right idea (C-hops and lots of them), they just need to massage things a little to come up with a more malty, more hop flavorful beer. I still look forward to drinking the rest of their lineup.

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Photo of oberon
3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On tap at Macgregors Canadaigua,poured a copper/amber with a slight head that hung on for quite awhile a malty,fruity aroma of some orange and toasted malt.A more malt accented pale I think lightly sweet caramel malt along with some orange and peach coming thru with a late dryness keeping it fairly balanced in the end.A drinkable ale not outstanding or earth shatttering but I could sit down on the stool and have a few and not complain.

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Photo of mikesgroove
3.35/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured a hazy bright orange with a big fomay off white head. A real nice slow fade with good retention. A very nice layer of lace and just a super hazy overall look.

Smell was crisp, clean and not overly biting or strong. Lightly linger and waffed through the air. Nice hint of subtle hoppiness and a blend of sugary tones. Not bad, could be stronger. First impresssion was very smooth, but then it kinda fell flat on the tongue, with a dull feel. The finish was nice and hoppy and had some lingering to it, and the overall flavor had a nice balance to it with the malt profile.

Overall this is a very nice session beer

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Photo of TheManiacalOne
3.63/5  rDev +2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12oz. bottle into a US tumbler pint glass, as my night of APA’s continues.

A: The beer is a light orange-gold color with a thin white head that fades quickly and leaves a thick lace on the glass.

S: The aroma is of caramelized malt with hints of hops, citrus and spice in the background.

T: The taste is on the malty side with flavors of caramel & citrus. There’s a mild hops character that comes out next and sticks around with a little bit of residual sweetness in the after-taste. It’s pretty decently balanced as well.

M: Crisp and kind of smooth, medium body, medium carbonation, clean and dry finish.

D: Tasty, goes down easy, not very filling, this is a good beer to pound, but I might look for something with a little more of a kick and a bit more flavor.

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Photo of WVbeergeek
3.23/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Appearance is awesome light pale apricot copper tone with a large bubbly thick rocky off white head great retention equals adequate protein content here, lacing of course with some chunky uneven patterns still looks damn good.

Aroma nice malty sweetness with biscuit and apricot qualities that's weird but accurate of what I'm smelling hops that come off real grassy, floral, and with a touch of grapefruit peel also some yeast notes of fruitiness can also be detected very reserved English style pale not a slap you around APA.

Flavor feels proper in the most English sense of the word, with a delicate yet assertive hop profile moderately strong even bitterness with a touch of perfume, grapefruit and grassy earthiness must I say dirt there you go. Malts express themselves minimally here with biscuit pale malt flavors flowing among the hop bitterness still I come back to the perfume comparison even in flavor.
Mouthfeel is medium bodied a trace of hop oil flowing carbonation sturdy maybe even a bit much for this beer oily feel really sticks around on the palate leaving bitter dryness that could feel unpleasant.

Drinkability a decent American brewed English style pale that I'm not crazy about it's not something I would revisit right away but not a beer I found to be bad it's just okay.

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Photo of smcolw
3.95/5  rDev +11%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Low/quick dying head that leaves minimal lace. Light amber color with a subtle haze.

Freshs light hop touch to the aroma--very nice for the style.

Balanced hop/malt presense. Crisp and clean for an ale. Strong hop finish that lasts through the swallow. The aftertaste is all hop that lingers a long time. The body mimics skim milk with a solid level of carbonation.

This is a tasty offering in the pale ale category. Solid.

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Photo of jwc215
3.53/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to armock for this one!

Pours orange-ish amber with a foamy white head that descends to a lasting bubbly cap, leaving thin lines of lacing.

The smell is floral (a bit perfumy) with hints of orange/grapefruit and pine. Mild.

The taste is floral/citric with a honey-ish and towards caramel-ish maltiness. It has a leafy, tea-like dryness with a sweet kiss in the finish.

Light to medium-bodied. Rather coating.

There's a slight harshness that slows it down, though a basic lightness that brings it up. Overall, things to mesh quite so well, but is the basic characteristics of a balanced, leaning towards hoppier APA are there. Not a bad brew, just nothing particularly special.

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Photo of WesWes
4.42/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The beer pours a golden color with a frothy white head that remains. The aroma is exceptional. There is quite a bit of hop aroma as well as a grainy balance. The taste is great! Again with the hops complimenting the grain bill. Hops all the way into the finish; a little hop residue. The mouthfeel is low which makes this not only a great tasting beer, but it also drinks very well. I like the new hoppier recipe a ton better than the last. This is a great pale ale.

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Photo of Gavage
3.73/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours a lightly hazy orange color with a short one finger head. Decent amount of tiny carbonation bubbles seen rising. Spotty lacing develops.

Smell: very mild floral hops and a hint of citrus.

Taste: basically a west coast pale ale, with nice malt backbone and a decent orange and grapefruit citrus tone. The hop bitterness is floral and up front.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Crisp throughout. Short aftertaste has most the flavors lingering briefly.

Drinkability: decent session beer. Not one that will stand out in the pale ale category, but is a solid offering. Try some.

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Photo of tempest
3.63/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

On-tap at The Lost Dog Cafe in Ithaca.

Poured with a short white head on an amber body. Smells of american hops, a little grapefruity, but not too strong. Slightly fruity taste. Good balance and goes with my greek chicken. Flavor of an APA, but more subtle like an english pale ale. Tasty and very drinkable. I'm not a big fan of IBC, but this hits the spot.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.25/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A. Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass. Clear orange with a huge pillowy head. A nice smattering of lace.

S. Bready toffee malt and some pine and citrus.

T. Quite hoppy with some earth and pine, mineral twang. The malt body is thin, just some light caramel/toffee balance, english style pale ale with a heap of cascades. As it warms, a roasted note emerges from the malt provides some more balance.

M. Viscious mouthfeel, stings palate with hop. Spritzy carbonation and a medium body.

D. Not a bad pale ale here from Ithaca. If you really like your cascade hops (and I do) this is a Pale Ale you will enjoy.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a tumbler pint, the beer is a bright, orange-gold coloring with a filmy, off-white head. Aromas of citrus and caramel blending, with a slight hoppy blending. Flavors of peppery and resiny hops forward on the initial tongue with a slick, caramel rich backbone. The aftertaste is roasty and bitter, with a rich, bitter finish. Good, solid lacing along the glass as you go. Decent, but middle of the road at best.

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Photo of plaid75
3.25/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a deep copper hue with a one finger head. Decent retention and good lacing.

There was a sweet malty aroma cut with nice pine and citrus notes.

The flavor was a bit on the malty side for me. However, a nice sharp grapefruit bitterness. Decent hop presence throughout.

The mouthfeel was full. It could have been a bit drier if not for the extra sweetness.

A good drinkable APA. Average for the style.

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Photo of akorsak
3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A 12 oz bottle from a variety case purchased at Breski's.

A: The pale ale has an amber color, a few shades lighter than the bottle. The ale is clear, with no activity beyond bubbling carbonation. The head was sizeable, over three fingers on pour, with hints of retention.

S: The nose is mostly grain but does have a solid grapefruit pungency that suggests a certain level of dry hopping.

T: The mouth firmly reminds you that this is a pale ale. The graininess is upfront, with caramel adding flavor. That grainy body is thin though, losing flavor quickly. While the graininess is disappointing, the hop profile is a nice surprise. The citrus profile is strong for the style, citrusy with a very subtle floral taste. The hops see the ale off, managing to take some of the heat off of the malt body.

M: The hop profile is the redeeming factor in the beer, adding a pleasing pep that overcomes the thin maltiness.

D: The abv is low enough that having several would not adversely impact you. Drink this for the hop profile, not the malt base.

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Photo of ppoitras
3.68/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle obtained via trade with Shippos. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured in an imperial pint glass, forms a 1/2" off-white head, with some staying power, and laces excellently. A light amber brew, with an aroma tending towards hops, but not overpowering. Taste is a well-balanced symphony of pale malts and hops. Mouthfeel and drinkabilty are both reasonably good. Another good session brew from Ithaca.

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Photo of Haybeerman
3.32/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A: Clear coppoer color. Poured a thin 1 finger head that disipated quickly. Laced in broken rings. Decanted continually.

S: Fresh floral hops. Citrus zest.

T: Nice balance of hops and malt. Beer finished pleasantly (slightly) bitter.

M: On the light side of medium body. Ample carbonation. Lingering bitter in the finish (not in a bad way).

D: Solid APA. Tolerable abv. Pleasant balance is important part of this beer.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz Bottle

Appearance - Clear amber/light copper colour with an average size fizzy off-white coloured head. There is a high amount of carbonation showing and there is some good lacing. The head lasted for 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - Malts, caramel, hops, grapefruit

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation and I can taste malts, caramel and some hops. There is also a grapefruit flavour and just a touch of apricot. It ends with a grapefruit and malty sweet aftertaste with a surprsing amount of lingering hop bitterness for an APA.

Overall - An above average APA that is very drinkable and satisfying. It's not going to blow you away like their Flower Power, but it's a little higher on the drinkability scale. I'd say it's worth trying.

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Photo of DrDemento456
3.6/5  rDev +1.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Beer pours a bit hazier than I expected with only a slight 1/4 inch of head no sticky lacing.

S - Smells kind of hoppy, almost with a mint like twang in the nose. Malts and grains smell balanced.

T - Definitely more hop forward than expected. Balances from a bitter pine to a more citrus hit but it does stick to the tongue so maybe a tad too hoppy. Gram cracker like malt has the right amount of sweetness to balance bitter hops.

M - Pretty light to medium bodied fairly easy to drink.

Overall I like only a bit of hops in my pale ales and this one seems like of out of the box on what I consider session able. Still it's a pretty nice beer that borders on IPA.

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Photo of Gusler
3.5/5  rDev -1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A transpicuous golden amber color on the pour, the head pythonic in size, creamy and light tan in color, as the head dissolves, the lace left behind forms a glutinous sheet to hide the glass. Lightly floral at the front sweet malt at the middle, crisp and fresh is the finish to this nose. Start is malt and sweet, the top slender in its feel, the finish delicate in its acidity, the hops delightful if a bit understated, dry as a desert aftertaste, a quite drinkable beer that could be a fine session beer for these long hot desert afternoons.

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Photo of Durge
3.01/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Nice clear deep amber color brew with a modest but healthy looking head and decent lace. The aroma is an acidic wheat/citrus deal with some floral highlights but I also pick up some lake water foulness. It tastes pretty tangy, peppery, kind of dry biscuit on the tongue. On the grassy side, very tart and pretty lively in carbonation. OK summer faire, but not in my wheelhouse.

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Photo of RBorsato
4.42/5  rDev +24.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

I must really be drinking something other than what is mentioned in the below reviews or I just got an exceptional bottle.... UPDATE: just got wind from "John" that the recipe has been changed to Cascade and Centennial so I'm not crazy after all.

Hazy golden color with a full ivory head, good carbonation and lace. NIce citrusy grapefruit hop aroma with flavor leaning hoppy with a nice citrus character. Light-medium bodied (leans light) with a light bitter finish.

Per I.B.Co. website: 12P, Northdown and Hallertau hops (which is wrong - actually Cascade and Centennial now).

The actual hops were a big suprise to me -- I could have sworn this beer was brewed with Cascade hops.... regardless, they did a great job with English and German varieties.

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Pale Ale from Ithaca Beer Company
81 out of 100 based on 143 ratings.