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Kitsilano Maple Cream Ale - Granville Island Brewery

Not Rated.
Kitsilano Maple Cream AleKitsilano Maple Cream Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

43 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 43
Hads: 101
Avg: 3.42
pDev: 12.28%
Wants: 11
Gots: 11 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Granville Island Brewery visit their website
British Columbia, Canada

Style | ABV
Cream Ale |  5.00% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: BeerAdvocate on 03-29-2003

Brewed using a hint of pure Canadian maple syrup, Kitsilano Maple Cream Ale is a smooth reminder of Vancouver’s laid-back lifestyle. Enjoy the bold taste of this bronze-coloured ale and toast all that Vancouver has to offer.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 43 | Hads: 101
Photo of biboergosum
3/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

20oz pint at Original Joe's in downtown west Edmonton - it's been a few years since Granville Island six-packs were a common sight on the shelves of liquor stores around here.

This beer appears a clear, bright brassy amber colour, with a thin cap of fizzy, soapy head, which weirdly takes its sweet time wafting off, leaving some breaking iceberg lace around the glass as it genially recedes.

It smells of pale and caramel malts, the suggestion of crystallized toffee, a touch of store-brand brown sugar, understated overripe apples, and a weak woody maple essence. The taste is more gritty caramel malt, with a slightly integrated, and yet still dry woody maple 'character', a strange metallic stoniness, a bit of dry pithy nuttiness, and some rather underwhelming herbal, weedy hops.

The carbonation is moderate, just a minor frothiness persisting throughout, the body medium-light in weight, weakly smooth, and more than a bit clammy. It finishes off-dry, the lingering caramel malt faced with an unfortunately persistent wet woody, stale vegetal edge, one particularly bereft of maple.

I don't know what happened to the overtly sweet, but generally balanced maple-flavoured beer that I used to enjoy back in the mid-oughts (try saying that without sounding like Grandpa Simpson). It's strange to say, but this recently revived beer needs to actually be sweeter, and the eponymous flavour needs to at least put in more than a mere cameo. However, I'm hardly surprised at the current overall direction of this brewery's offerings.

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Photo of woodychandler
3.52/5  rDev +2.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Another CANadian CAN! CAN you believe it?

I poured it, but before I could take note, the head had disappeared. Okay, let's call it "no head". The color was a slightly hazy medium amber. The nose was very sweet with a definite maple sugar presence. Mouthfeel was medium, at best, with very little carbonation in evidence. The taste on the tongue was sweet, but not cloyingly so, as one might expect from a "maple" beer. Finish was sweet, but tempered by a slight sourness on the extreme finish. Not my bag.

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Photo of smakawhat
2.86/5  rDev -16.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

Poured from the bottle into a Sam Adams pint glass. From notes.

A very dark amber body, some chestnut brown, with a very small head of about two fingers tan in color that dissipates quite quickly. Manages to leave a solid collar while drinking and hardly any lacing.

First whiff and smell is kind of nasty, that bile sense. Some stick malt action similar to a cream ale, but a rank sour and sweetness mix. There is no sense of maple on this at all either.

Taste improves but doesn't bring much enjoyment. Sticky taffy without much cream ale sense of sweetness, and a yeasty rank aftertaste. Again where is the maple flavor, I am not even getting any. Carbonation and feel is a little wet also, not too grainy either.

Overall though, for a cream ale I've had much better, and again.. if you put a flavor on the bottle and I can't even smell or taste it then I am just not impressed. It is drinkable though I'll give it that.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.65/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

(Served in a 1/2 pint sampling glass)

A-light brown with a red tint, very clear body with a thin tan head.

S- light hint of maple at the beginning with a bit of floral hops at the end

T- a little biscuit malt flavor with a hint of tart fruit and a little baby food taste from corn. A complimentary hop bitterness and dry finish pulled this beer together nicely

M- slight creamy noticed in the mouthfeel with strong carbonation that follows

D-very smooth maple hinted beer that is very thirst quenching. Tetnanger hops (stated on the bottle) gave it more depth than a typical cream ale.

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Photo of wordemupg
3.67/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

341ml bottle poured into pint glass oct26 2010

A clear light copper with some slow raising bubbles with a very fast falling finger of head that left no lace

S a little burnt brown sugar and maple with a slight metallic smell

T what I smell but a little earthy with some hard toffee, sweet but but too bad

M medium bodied with enough bubbles to give it a creamy feel but then turns to foam in your mouth

D no real problems with this one, decent flavors but I may not drink it all night

lost of hype behind Granville being back in Alberta, decent beers and something different

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Photo of dirtylou
3.6/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

16oz draft, served in a mug at the Brewery on Granville Island in Vancouver, BC

appearance: clear cedar-amber with a strong tan head that dissipates within a minute or two...you could say that it has a maple tint, but that would be cliche

smell: very light aromas, sweet caramel, faint cedar woodiness that is a nice touch, maple not detected

taste: a faint maple candy flavour does come through with more of the light and sweet woody nature the aroma indicated...caramel and nutty

mouthfeel: medium, average carbonation

drinkability: quaffable

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Photo of maximum12
3.95/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap at the Granville Island brewpub. Not a big fan of cream ales but a huge lover of any alcohol with maple in it, so I take the plunge. Maple!

Ruddy-cheeked light red ale that shows up in a smallish glass. Smell is nice, light, malty, with an overpave of maple.

Kitsilano Maple Cream Ale...hard to believe the B- average, because this is very good. The maple jumps out of the bushes to scare the taste buds, & is hard & mapley without being sickly sweet, thick, or syrupy. This maintains the 'cream' portion of the experience, & allows a touch of nut brown to come through. Light hops provide mild bittering, no flavor, & the malts add a touch of sweet that the maple left behind.

Smooth & creamy as promised. Surprisingly light in the stomach, easy to drink.

Very good brew. Happy I tried it & it rec'd high marks from others around the table too. I wouldn't hesitate to order this one again.

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Photo of Rutager
3.21/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance. Pours a clear deep amber with half a finger of thick head.

Smell. Toasty grains and a little sugary maple.

Taste. Toasted grains and a bit of grassy hops. Faint maple is there but everything is very light and a little more
faint than I would like

Mouthfeel. Thin and a little watery with medium, bubbly carbonation.

Overall. Not bad if it's cold and you're thirsty. Not offensive in any way, just a little watery for me.

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Photo of andrenaline
3.82/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Excited to be able to get Granville Island in Alberta. I've had this before in BC and enjoyed it, so am pleased that I have another go-to avaiable in Calgary

A - Pours a crystal clear golden brown, half a finger of head with little retention, and no real lacing.

S - Scent is very bready with caramel malts, burnt sugar, and a touch of maple syrop coming through as well.

T - Bready caramel malts dominate off the top, followed by the maple syrop and burnt sugars. The maple syrop on the finish is fantastic, and it lingers nice and long on the tongue.

M - Very light and bubbly, much to my suprise. I was expecting something a little more thick and chewy, so was pleased with the level of carbonation. The finish is a bit dry, but not a turn-off.

D - This is a tasty maple ale, with flavours that are present but not overpowering. The subtle flavours make it easily sessionable, but also leave you faint reminders of the maple presence. Another go-to ale that would be appreciated by most cream ale fans.

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Photo of canucklehead
3.8/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this bottle in the fridge for the last five months and lo and behold it improved the flavour. The beer dried out some so the sweetness was all but gone. What impressed me was the malt structure was pretty solid. IMHO this is the best of the regular GI offerings. Easy drinking, flavourful, food freiendly and well structured.

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Photo of IronDjinn
3.18/5  rDev -7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I've been waiting to try this for a while, and was happy to find a case around here finally. Many moons from now I shall recall that this maple cream ale from the Granville Island brewery was all about appearance and invitation, and dreams of what could have been...

Aw hell, let's get down to business. This is a very attractive looking ale for the most part. The body is a beautiful rich and clear copper colour, and the big beige head upon initial pour is impressive, but dissolves quickly into a thin ring. There are roasted malt and woody tones in the nose, as well as caramel and another foriegn sweetness, which I take to be the maple presence, although it seems to be under cover. However the taste is a bit burnt up front, and finishes with a metallic taste. Not quite what I expect for a cream ale. It's actually rather watery and nondescript. Disappointing. Yet while it is not apparent in the initial sip, a faint hint of sweet maple can be discerned on the aftertaste, so all is not lost. Still, I was hoping for a bit more maple flavouring from this sample. The mouthfeel is watery for a cream ale as well, the body is not very rich and full. It is an average offering for what it could have been, but it sounded good at the time.

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Photo of joemcgrath27
3.67/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - clear deep amber, short head dissipated quickly to a very thin covering a lace
S - bready and sweet molasses malt complimented by light maple, some leafy green hops and light cedar
T - the bready and molasses malt up front, with the maple syrup decently featured and lingering, light but well utilized leafy hop flavour, and just a little woody hint
M - more carbonation than I expected, a smooth sticky cream ale feel, somewhat heavy, moving to slightly dry and tingly finish
D - the maple is there but I could have used a little more, the flavour is malt weighted, feel generally matches the style although it sits a little heavy despite the good carbonation, but all in all a good attempt at mixing two Canadian stereotypes

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Photo of vette2006c5r
4.09/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Kitsilano Maple Cream Ale pours an amber color, with a nice tan head. There was a nice sweet creamy maple aroma. The taste was very creamy, full, had good notes of maple that mixed well, not overpowering. Good full taste, and easy to drink too. Overall a very good beer.

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Photo of pootz
3.72/5  rDev +8.8%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Bottle: Fills my mug with a dark copper ale with a smallish sticky cap that vanished in a few minutes.weakly lacing the class.

soft carbonation

Aromas of cerial grains and sweet clover

Middle weight malt spine, soft silky mouth feel, soft rounded mellow character

Nice chew of toasty malts at the front side then a mingle of layered tastes, clover, berry, apricot, some soft herb and spice tones all wrapped in the non cloying presense of diluted honey ( floral ash-like)...finishes wet with the honey acting as a mellowing agent for the hops and giving a nice herbacious tone to the bready finish.

Nicely done...I am warming up to the artful use of honey in well crafted beers...it works.

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Photo of mick303
3.48/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

A medium brown colour with a firm cap of head.
Smell has a distinct maple syrup character, a touch of sweetness, nutty,
Taste is a nutty, blandly malty start, lemony some rough edges, ending with a maple character and slight metallic hint.
Feel is light with a heavy carbonation, sharp and a bit watery. Maple character comes through weakly.
The maple character is the unique feature in this session ale, unfortunate the beer itself doesn't do the best job of acting as a showcase for it. Flavourful base, hops are mostly earthy uk varieties. Not a terrible beer, just not a great style, watery, and some cheap hallmarks in the feel. Not particularly interesting or balanced.

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Photo of UnionMade
2.98/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Thanks to my neighbor Sabrina, for bringing this back from BC for me.
The beer pours a perfectly clear, orangey copper. A thin misting of head appears on the pour, quickly thinning into a nondescript collar. Nice bright color, but a bit lackluster in presentation. No lacing. The head all but dies halfway through, a collar a few bubbles wide remaining through the rest of the glass.
The aroma features a sweetened caramel malt profile, hinting slightly at maple syrup. The maple is well integrated into the beer, not over the top, just adding enough to have some presence. Very clean, lager like, with that distinctive crispness.
The flavor starts with a maple accented maltiness. Toasty, with caramel sweetness, it doesn't offer up much variation through the sip. The malt continues, very clean, without nothing else coming through. Some grainy flavor into the finish. A very mild hop presence, sort of floral, mainly just there to provide balance. A semi-sweet finish, but dry at the same time. A light, crisp mouthfeel, with fluffy, bright carbonation. Very light bodied.
Not very exciting, but tasty enough. It recalls something like JW Dundee's Honey Brown, or some gateway beer of that nature. Not challenging on the palate, but easy enough to drink. A decent first beer from the province of British Columbia.

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Photo of BDTyre
3.23/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

I seem to remember this being creamier and smoother on tap. Nice reddy-bronze colour, but I can't smell much. It smells sweet and malty. I could detect the maple syrup.

Taste is not overly sweet. A bit of hops balances out the malts, and the maple syrup is evident but not overpowering. However, it is a little cloying on the tongue and is a bit thick like maple syrup. Not bad: one I'd buy again, but only when the mood strikes me.

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Photo of mikeg67
3.34/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

On tap at the brewery. Pours amber hue with off-white head. Aroma is of caramel, apples and hint of maple syrup. Body is medium, creamy and smooth. Taste is of caramel, maple syrup and hint of herbal hops. Finish is long and semi-dry. Interesting brew.

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Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.31/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Pours a red amber with a few fingers of light caramel colored foam. Aroma is sweetish, with bready pale malts and light toffee/brown sugar coming to the fore along with a touch of sour fruit. Not a lot of maple. Palate is mild, mellow, and smooth, less aggressive than the aroma. There is a pronounced apple flavor along with a whiff of citrus and some herbal notes from the hops I assume, an unassuming caramel sweetness, biscuit, and hints of cardboard and booze. There are flaws but overall drinkable if overrated in my immediate circle (you know who you are).

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Photo of leaddog
3.88/5  rDev +13.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance- Dark amber hue with a thin white foamy head. Very clear and bubbles are present.

Smell- Hint of maple, caramel and slight hint of vanilla.

Taste- Lightly flavoured with maple and vanilla. Not too bitter nor sweet.

Mouthfeel- Stays true to its name with its creamy texture. Medium bodied ale that is easy to drink and is very smooth.

Overall- A very nice offering from GIB. I would prefer a little more maple flavour in the beer but pleased that the maple wasn't over kill. I would buy this again.

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Photo of elricorico
3.45/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear medium brown with some redness to it. Had a finger of tan head, but that faded rather quickly, leaving a couple of pools on top and a thin ring around the edge.

The smell is a mix of sugary and malty. I can't say that I would have been able to tell that it has a maple sugar quality if I didn't know the name, but digging really deep I can find that aroma. Mixed in with the maple is an aroma that reminds me of an English Pale Ale I've had, but I can't really pin it down.

The taste is relatively simple, sweet but not overly so, with flavour coming as a mix of the maple and the malt. Not much there for hop bitterness, but there is a hint of lingering crispness.

Mouthfeel is alright for this one. The body is good but the carbonation I find a bit too sharp and prickly. Overall it balances out to be about average, but with a more natural feel to the carbonation it could be quite good.

This one gives the impression that it is meant to be a straightforward and easy to drink beer, and in the end it succeeds at it. Worth a try but not likely to rock anyone's world.

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Photo of MisterClean
2.76/5  rDev -19.3%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

Gifted from a neighbor. I like gifts.

A - Copper to light brown in color, light head, dissipates quick, and very carbonated.

S - Honey, maple, brown sugar and amber malt.

T - Syrup, honey, and sweet amber malt.

M - Slightly sour and syrupy.

D - Not great. Reminds me of an ur-marzen, my least favorite beer. Couldn't finish this one.

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Photo of TheHammer
3.58/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Appearance: Produced a single finger of head that neither laced nor retained, the body is a clear brown, which fits the maple syrup bill well.

Smell: A sweet smell of caramel malt backing the dominant scent of maple with a slight mineral note. It's what I would expect from a maple beer.

Taste: Starts with sweet malt and maple that calms down as a slight woody note comes out which then gets hit with a larger hit of maple that keeps balance with herbal hops and reigns in a unpleasant metallic note.

Mouthfeel: The aftertaste is a nice blend of the taste, although that metallic kick reigns in it sadly which is a shame. The carbonation is frothy but didn't have a lot of staying power.

Drinkability: Fairly solid, not cloyingly sweet which adds to the appeal, and at the same time it doesn't fall flat. Surprisingly light as well and mild.

Final Thoughts: All in all, it works well although I wouldn't say this is an epic implementation of maple syrup and beer. Maybe if somehow the malt was upped and the metal took off, it would be a better grade. Still think it's pretty good though and worth a shot.

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Photo of ChrisCage
3.78/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

A- A nice foamy off white head forms during the pour, and covers the bronzed/orange hued liquid underneath, before settling down to a patchy dense layer. Carbonation appears to be bold, as there are lots of big bubbles clinging to the glass as well as rising to the top. Lacing is not really present, but there is a residue of sticky looking liquid staying behind on the glass. Overall a decent looking brew.

S- Well the aroma of maple syrup is there, and resembles what maple taffy should smell like...not too sweet but distinct. There is also a sweet brown sugar like malt aroma and just a hint of dry hoppy bitterness on the finish.

T- This is really nicely flavored beer! I find it to be really well balanced between the sweet malt, rich, albeit mild maple and the modestly bitter finish. This is where the taffy aroma kicks into flavor, as, like the bottle says and the style should be, it is creamy like the candy.

M- As just noted, this is a creamy, but perhaps just slightly over carbonated beer. It's got enough flavor to feel like you baked with maple syrup as an ingredient but it wont overpower the palate. Body wise, I'd put this on the lite end of the spectrum

D- Yeah, I think I will pick up a sixer from time to time of this beer. It's good enough to warrant 2 or 3 before moving on, as I could see my palate tiring of the maple flavor but it is refreshing nonetheless as it finishes dry and without a real lingering aftertaste. Good job!

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Photo of slitherySOB
2.93/5  rDev -14.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

I'm discovering Granville Island Brewing makes decent session beers. This cream ale pours an amber colour with half a pinkie's worth of head. Smells of malt and hops, with a faint hint of maple and vanilla. Tastes a bit weaker than it smells. I was hoping for more maple flavour. Overall, a decent session ale that I could see pairing or cooking with bbq ribs.

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Kitsilano Maple Cream Ale from Granville Island Brewery
79 out of 100 based on 43 ratings.