English Bay Pale Ale | Granville Island Brewery

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97 Reviews
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BEER STATS
Reviews:
97
Ratings:
258
Avg:
3.14
pDev:
24.84%
 
 
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3
Gots:
48
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English Bay Pale AleEnglish Bay Pale Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Granville Island Brewery
British Columbia, Canada | website

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our English Bay Pale Ale has a smooth, mild flavour brimming with West Coast character and a caramel malt aroma. A true pale ale, it gets its perfect balance from natural carbonation and careful maturing under the watchful eye of our brewmaster.

Added by 49degrees on 12-27-2002

User Reviews
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Reviews: 97 | Ratings: 258
Photo of donniecuffs
2.88/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this at Joe Forte's Restaurant on a recent trip to Vancouver. Poured copper with two fingers of offwhite head and great lacing. Decent amount of biscuit and malt in the nose, but not much else. The taste revealed biscuit toast and walnut, but not much fruitiness or hoppiness. Not much of a finish either. Not much carbonation in the feel, but it was smooth, and the nice head retention added a subtle creaminess to it. Decent session beer, but definitely needs a more robust flavor profile.

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Photo of TheHammer
3.18/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 2.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

Appearance: Half a finger of head, to lacing or retention, limited carbonation in the body. Clear brown caramel color.

Smell: Biscuity malt sweetness with caramel note and mineral undertones. Also touches of vanilla and even slight hazelnut. Warming helps it out quite a bit, but it's nothing to write home about.

Taste: A sweet caramel malt permeates the beer, it's almost a bit too much, it then turns to a slight acidic citrus note, and then takes another abrupt tone which is then accented by a touch of fairly generic hops.

Mouthfeel: The carbonation does help out the beer, and the malt aftertaste is nice, but in clings and comes across as sticky. The transitioning is a little awkward as well, and tastes like it has an identity crisis.

Drinkability: This beer isn't especially smooth to drink, but it does sit down well enough and I wouldn't say it's a struggle to get down. The problem is that it's all over the place.

Final Thoughts: This beer is far too sweet for a pale, ale and is lacking in hops. It's a little interesting, but it's all over the place, so I wouldn't want to drink it regularly. It's ok, but there are better offerings from Granville.

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Photo of MeisterBurger
2.71/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Pours a rich clear caramel amber topped by a lively head that laces well.

The aroma is caramel and a tinge of halitosis.

The taste is mostly minerally carbonation with light caramel malt. Not overly pleasant peaty, earthy yeastiness in the finish

Light body. Like it's watered down. Meh.

This is a beer that just is. There isn't a single way in which it stands out.

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Photo of Sathanas
2.77/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Looks like an amber lager, tastes and smells like one, too. An extreme mediocre beer, but the after taste is ashy and off putting. This is not a pale ale.

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Photo of slitherySOB
2.73/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.75

Probably the weakest beer in their mix pack, this pale ale has no hops whatsoever. Pours a clear caramel colour with one fingers worth of head that barely lasts. Smells of sweet malts, biscuits, and cinnamon. Tastes more biscuit than the smell. Medium body mouthfeel and kind of dry in the finish. A beer I will not be seeking a sixer of, but if they served it at the bar, I'd drink it.

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Photo of Noxious26
3.18/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

355ml can poured in mug.

Clear, copper-amber colour. Head 1/2 inch beige-orange. Head reduces quickly to a thin layer.

Aroma is sweet & a little fruity. Slightly malty with little hops in background.

Taste is sweet with roasted malts. Perhaps a little too sweet for a pale ale. Smooth. Has a mild bitter bite to the aftertaste that lingers for awhile.

Medium bodied mouthfeel that is well balanced.

This is easy drinking and mild in taste, but not what I usually expect from a pale ale. This isn't a bad beer, but it isn't great either. Another middle of the road beer for Granville Island.

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Photo of mickeymac
3.5/5  rDev +11.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This seems to be the beer of choice at many restaurants and bars in Vancouver. I tried it on tap at several and found it to be a solid but unexciting selection. It has a slightly fruity taste with enough hops to keep things interesting: a middle of the road pale ale to be sure. On this bright side, it would probably make a good crossover beer for friends looking to move into better beers from macros.

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Photo of TheBierdimpfe
3.38/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear copper color. Weak one finger head that dissipates in 5 minutes. Flavors of roasted grains, toffee, faint berries, cinnamon, nutmeg, faint ginger and herbal spices. Is a little bready and biscuity, with bitter red ale spices. Smooth medium bodied, the carbonation is prickly. Light finish that lingers with a faint roasted and grassy feel, and faint gingerbread. Overall decent quality craft. Decent flavors, a little faint, but the balance is great. Well refreshing, a little light, yet satisfying and filling.

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Photo of jackorain
2.47/5  rDev -21.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2

Had this at the hotyel bar on a recent business trip to Vancouver.

A-Dark amber, clear. Thick foamy head with very good retention and great lace. A very attractive glass of beer

S-Caramel malt biascuit malt, no hops to speak of on the nose. very mild aroma overall.

T-Carmel malt, biscuit malt, toffee, a hint of coffee. Very malty character. This part was not bad. However, the floral and earthy hop that follow have an odd funky off taste along with them. This off taste continues to linger for quite a long time. There is not the tradition mild hop bite and bitterness expected with an APA.

M-medium body. Smooth but prickly carbonation another dicotomy.

D-I couldn't drink another.

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Photo of kevinlater
2.76/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

draft pour at the clarkson pump & patio, mississauga. aug 28 2015

a: clear copper with off-white head

s: grainy apple

t: grainy caramel, stale bread, floral notes. hints of chocolate and apple

m: medium-minus mouthfeel with moderate carbonation

o: nah

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Photo of GodOfBeer
3.49/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Very nice looking dark amber with a thick white head.

Smells slightly nutty and malty, some caramel. Nothing really stands out here.

The taste is pretty much the same, nutty, caramel malts, nothing to really write home about.

More like a nut brown ale than a pale ale, needs more hops. Nonetheless not a bad beer, but not something I would buy again.

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Photo of trevorwideman
3.2/5  rDev +1.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

355ml can sample poured into a pint glass.

Not a bad looking brew. Pours a coppery-red colour with a 1/2 inch head that dissipates quick. Mild carbonation. Smell is swwet, but not overly so. Very much an apple juice/apple cider type smell with a little pear and roasted malt for good measure. Not much in the way of a hop presence here I'm afraid, but still smells good.

Taste is inoffensive but a little bit boring in that respect. Not terrible though, the apple juice character remains, with a sugary caramel malt presence coming to the forefront, and a slight acidity on the tongue. Where oh where are the hops? This an incredibly easy-drinking ale, more fitting in the British style than the American, with a creamy, slightly watery mouthfeel. Really slides down like water. I usually prefer a heavier ale style, but I could easliy down pints of this on a night out.

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Photo of VbolieuV
3.56/5  rDev +13.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Ruby red with a nice off-white head with some lacing. In the nose you get caramel malts, some breads and some hops. In the mouth it's similar, really sweet, lots or caramel flavors, with a lightly bitter finish.

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Photo of CrazyMike
3.13/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Clear amber/copper appearance with thick white head that sticks around for a while. Smell is mostly of bread, hops and caramel.

Taste is mainly made up of bread and caramel malt, has a hint of grain and sweetness as well. Thin, but buttery, body with moderate carbonation. Strange combination. Aftertaste is bitter.

Overall, not a bad beer. It is drinkable and refreshing, but the body is to light. Kind of waters down the rest of the taste. Still, worth a try.

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Photo of bryehn
2.83/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a rusty amber tone with a definite brown tone. A sizeable, frothy tan head burns off quickly leaving no lace behind before settling as a thin film and collar.

Smells of nuts and fresh grains, with mild butter, alcohol and ripened fruit notes taking shape as it warms.

Tastes of buttery toffee before a solid nuttiness takes over. Very sweet in the finish with an odd, cloying metallic tinge to it.

Very thin and watery overall. Slightly yeasty, creamy feeling on the tongue comes from a light carbonation and long-lasting collar. Oddly sour sensation in the aftertaste.

A thoroughly unimpressive beer that meanders somewhere between a brown ale, an amber and an American pale ale. The metallic/sour finish and aftertaste are enough to keep me from buying it again.

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Photo of Converge
3.67/5  rDev +16.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Alright, I've had this beer a few times now, and it seems like every time I do, I'm getting something completely different. So, I figured now that I seem to have a better idea of what this beer really is, I should come back and do a proper review for it.

341ml bottle poured into a 16oz pint glass.

A - Rather aggressive pour yields a fizzy, light-tan head that's just under one finger and fizzles out fast. Darkish amber-orange in hue, and looks pretty good.

S - A wealth of different warm malt aromas upfront, with a slightly citrusy hops scent looming in the background. It's got a really nice caramel malt thing going on, with some bready and buttery malt complimenting it perfectly.

T - There are times when I've had this beer and it's tasted like a malty masterpiece, and others when it's had a delicious kick of hops in it. This time, it tastes like almost nothing. Is it just this well balanced? This has got to be one the most inconsistent beers I've tried in my lifetime, yet I seem to keep coming back for more. Although it doesn't taste like a lot this time around, there are times when it has an absolute barrage of tasty malt flavors. The warm, bread & butter malt is still present, as is the caramel malt, but it's not as well defined as it can be. As an extension of this, I detect almost zero hops in the finish, despite having a well-hopped bottle of this just last week...

M - Medium carbonation, with medium-to-light body. Nothing exceptional, but fitting. Really easy to drink. Sort of leaves a buttery feel in your mouth afterwards.

D - I really don't know what to make of this beer still. Although it seems to possess a really inconsistent quality from bottle-to-bottle, I still enjoy it every time. It really tastes incredibly simple, without much complexities at all, but something about the malty flavor just appeals to me so much.

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Photo of BierStein711
3.07/5  rDev -2.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

You don't need to have this beer.

What you have here is a silly attempt at an APA, but there is not enough hop.

Amber in color, off white head that lasts for a minute.

Smells of carmel malt

Tastes like stale biscuits.

Not a beer worth your time as it is very watery.

Overall, don't seek out this beer. Have Rickyard's Blonde

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Photo of Seanstoppable
2.91/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Received a number of cans from Granville Island Brewery from a friend over the holidays. The is the last of the varieties I had to sample.

Pours a dark amber color, bordering on read, with plenty of head. Some head quickly evaporates, but it then settles to about a finger for a while. Minimal lacing left on the glass.

Slight malt scent, but that is about it.

Taste is fairly simple. Some mild caramel malts. Very light. Slightly watery.

Overall, it is drinkable and it does have some flavor, but overall it is fairly bland. Decent, but not something I would choose unless my options were limited.

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Photo of Mit
3.18/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

a-Amber red colour....light head that doesn't last that long.

s-very slight bready notes....faint malt....very subdued.

t-very faint spicey hoppiness..very much an english pale style beer.

m-about average for the abv.

o-Overall this beer was decent. I would grab it again.

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Photo of Haydn-Juby
3.3/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

This review was done from a bottle so take it loosely.

A: Can't really say since I had it straight from the bottle but judging from online photos it seems to be a deep copper color.

S: I get caramel like malts and a nice biscuity quality as well. No hops present really.

T: Almost similar to a very malty amber ale. I really get almost no hops except for a very slight floral presence. Caramel and more biscuit malt than I would have expected. Bitterness is underwhelming. Rather nutty as well.

M: A touch too carbonated for my tastes. A bit of a thin body as well.

O: Not a bad beer but definitely not what I would call a pale ale. More like a ESB with hops and balance removed. Could be a good intro beer.

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Photo of decimator
3.45/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle poured into a pint glass. ABV 5%.

A - Poured a clear copper with a thin off-white head, head reduced to surface bubbles, minimal lacing.

S - Caramel, biscuit, some vanilla, earthy.

T - Light caramel sweetness, hint of butter, hint of spice, mild bitterness. Balance is on the malty side.

M - Medium-light carbonation, medium body, some creaminess, clean finish.

O - The mouthfeel really helps carry this beer. The flavour is light but I found nothing offensive about this one.

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Photo of Cwrw
3.42/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

English Bay Pale Ale is actually not that pale, but coppery, with slight browns and reds. The head was quite minimal, leaving only a small ring. For an English-based pale ale, the small head is not wholly surprising(after all, many of the ales in Britain are not meant to have massive frothy heads). The appearance, however, is simply average; nothing exciting to note. The aroma is worth savouring, although basic in its elements: sweet caramel and malt, with various, dried fruit smells, and perceptible hop, WHEN the beer is a bit warmer, not extremely cold. A very decent aroma for a pale ale, indeed. The taste is quite good, better than average, with strong malt flavour and subtle hop finish, but it is by far a malty offering, not a bitter one. Medium bodied. The mouthfeel could improve somewhat, in that it could be more full, but all considered the drinkability of this craft-brewed British Columbia beer is a touch above the rest. A healthy beer from a respected craft-brewer on the Canadian west coast.

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Photo of PorterPro125
3.44/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Serving Type: 341 mL

A- Copper Colour with a fairly lackluster, quickly disappearing white head. Light lacing.

S- Sweet Caramel Malt and not much else.

T- Same as aroma with the exception of a light hoppiness that has just enough kick to take the edge off the sweetness. Not much in the way of hop flavours.

M- Light body with Moderate to High Carbonation.

O- This beer was easy drinking and the taste was alright, but there is nothing here that would make me want to really try it again. Oh well.

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Photo of vanrassel
3.4/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Highly drinkable, though unremarkable offering from Granville Island.

It looked decent coming out of the bottle, pouring a dark copper with a foamy head that quickly reduced to a ring and left some sticky lace on my glass. The smell was subdued, despite what seemed to be a few different things contributing to it: biscuity malt, some nice fruity esters — I picked up apple and pear, but who knows? — and faint hops.

My first impressions of the taste were uncharitable: that this is a pretty nondescript beer. Given more time to sample and think about it, I'd say "well-balanced" would be a more diplomatic way of putting it.

There are some real pluses to this beer: a nice lively mouthfeel and clean finish, but in this case I think "well-balanced" is a drawback: as someone else mentioned, this beer is a little malty for the style — I would have preferred more of a hoppy bite. That, in turn, would have won me over.

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Photo of JanM
3.65/5  rDev +16.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured in an amber nuance with a peculiar but not unpleasant smell. Not much foam in the pint. The taste was sweet and caramel with strong bread/biscuit notes kicking in after a while. Notes of green apple too. Although the taste is rather different from a mainstream pale ale, it is not bad and gives the brew a personality.

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English Bay Pale Ale from Granville Island Brewery
73 out of 100 based on 97 ratings.