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Mt. Tam Pale Ale - Marin Brewing Company

Not Rated.
Mt. Tam Pale AleMt. Tam Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

67 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 67
Hads: 129
Avg: 3.72
pDev: 18.28%
Wants: 1
Gots: 9 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Marin Brewing Company visit their website
California, United States

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.40% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: xlperro on 03-03-2002

Mt. Tam Pale Ale is our best-selling flagship brew! It has a bright golden color, a medium body and a smooth taste.
Beer: Reviews & Ratings
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Reviews: 67 | Hads: 129
Photo of DmanGTR
2.12/5  rDev -43%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Thank you to a generous BA for this extra!

Poured extremely carbonated. It started to slowly bubble out of the bottle when I opened it. The pour took forever because it became mostly foam in the glass. However, once I got it to a decent liquid:head ratio, it was rather pretty and had extremely good head retention. Huge chunks of lace. At one point it had formed nearly a complete cap with a hollowed out space beneath. Holy cow, this almost rivals the head on Duvel! The body is a deep amber, rather clear, with bubbles rising from the apex of the glass.

At this point, it all started going downhill. There was no hoppy aroma of any sort. I couldn't find any citrus, pine, grass, earth, or anything that even reminds me of hops. Instead, a perfumey, pear-like and solvent-like aroma dominates, squashing the little honey and toasted grain aroma from reaching my olfactory bulbs. I can't really find anything else here. And the flavor is the same way. Nothing but perfume and solvent. It finishes with a slight bitterness, but that flavor is so off-putting that I had to dump it out. A bit disappointed, since I was really looking forward to trying this beer.

A light-medium body with strong carbonation makes it seem lighter than it really is. I think I might revisit this beer in the future just to make sure it wasn't a random off bottle.

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Photo of JDV
2.24/5  rDev -39.8%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

Wow, very surprised at the ratings. Paid 4+shipping for a bottle I ordered online, and was very disappointed by the quality of the beer itself.
Slightly hazy, honeyed amber color with a mild white head. Smells like an amber with more malt than hops playing in, with some metallic scents too. Thin and VERY bland was my initial reaction. Not offensive, but just very poor in general. 1/2 a bottle later, no different and I didn't waste my time drinking the rest. Very watery hop flavor that made this drink just like a watery iced tea. Too muted a flavor in all respects. Not worth the price by a longshot. Hell, I wouldn't pay 1.99 for a bomber. Many better pales out there, and I wouldn't waste my time with this one.

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Photo of MisterClean
2.54/5  rDev -31.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Shared with a friend.

A - Pours golden with a 2 fingered white head. Dissipates moderately and leaves nice lacing.

S/T - Grassy bready, and with moderate amounts of hop bitterness.

M - I can't describe the balance because there really was none. Hops and malts fought each other for control and left the mouthfeel watery and thin.

D - Not very satisfying. Too bitter and too thin.

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Photo of cswhitehorse
2.94/5  rDev -21%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

The Mt. Tam Pale Ale poured a cloudy orange with less than a finger foam head with some foamy lacing.

The aroma was pretty non-existent. Got a tad bit of hops. The flavor was a slight malt taste with a little bitterness in finish. Overall it was a average if best pale.

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Photo of Fatehunter
3/5  rDev -19.4%

Pours a big foamy head on a hazy straw body.
The aroma is mild lemon and grain.
The taste starts out a little watery, gets some moderate lemon and grapefruit bitterness and finishes with a mild honey sweetness. Nice and easy profile.
The texture is crisp with soft edges.
Nicely drinkable.

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Photo of katan
3/5  rDev -19.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

22 oz bomber bottle, undated

A - Pours a dark hazy color with a pile of carbonation. Impressively strong in fact as it about blew out of the bottle when I opened it. (Not sure how to demerit that) The head is massive and is strongly retained.

S - Incredible floral hops smell here - must be highly dry hopped. Seems to be warrior or centennial as it has the combination of grassy and floral notes.

T - Not nearly as strong in the taste as the smell would indicate. Starts off with some roasted malts - almost nutty. Mainly a hop bomb like bitterness from what probably are some mega high alpha hops. Finishes with a malt note that balanced out the hop strength. I also wonder if some oxidation made it into the beer.

M - Has a strong enough carbonation profile that the mouthfeel is stingy and strong. The body of the beer itself is generally light. Against the style, I think the carbonation hurts it here.

D - The beer is not particularly drinkable as the hops starts to get to me after a while. The ABV isn't all that strong, so that wouldn't bother me as much.

This one is really like my homebrew which recently got abused by the judges at the state fair. That is probably a confirmation of my opinion that this is not a particularly stellar beer.

The other thought I would have is if perhaps this beer should be considered an IPA. The strong hop profile would make me think its appropriate.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.03/5  rDev -18.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a very slightly hazy dark golden with a thin fizzy head that fades pretty quickly to a thin ring. Smells thin, grainy, and slightly sour. The taste is quite bitter up front, and then segues into a slightly sour graininess. Thin overall, both in taste and body. I thought I'd enjoy this more, but I'd say its not something I'd buy again.

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Photo of Stoneman78
3.15/5  rDev -15.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

750ml poured into Duvel tulip glass
A- Pours an opaque dull orange hue, head is 1-finger tall, white, bubbly with little retention, some thin lacing on the glass
S- Nose is dominated by floral and citrus hops, hints of grapefruit, lemon, and other sweet fruits, some pale malts in the background
T- Initial taste is tangy grapefruit, followed by some floral and herbal spice, sligth chalkiness, biscuit/bread malts come in half-way and soon dissipate leaving a short finish of dry hops exacerbated by overcarbonation
M- Light/medium-bodied beer, watery texture, slight over-carbonation
D- Easy-to-drink in terms of 5.4%abv, this feels too hops-forward for a pale ale, and the carbonation is a bit overwhelming, this is caught between Pale Ale and IPA categories and unfortunately is not a great fit for either
Buy again? Probably not
Personal score- 68/100

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Photo of Tucquan
3.21/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Had this at the brewery on 2009-04-27

The ale is a clear, tea color with zero head as served and mild lacing.

I enjoyed the apples and jasmine smells.

The flavors are of toasted chestnut, citrus bitter and pine.

Carbonation and mouthfeel are light.

A decent APA but not remarkable.

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Photo of A_bit_of_the_Sacrament
3.24/5  rDev -12.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Pours a nice red-orange color with generous head. Good floral aroma. Tastes citrusy with good hop profile. Notes of orange peel are most prevalent. Very well balanced with a light body. Very drinkable even sessionable.

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Photo of domtronzero
3.36/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a clear orange copper with a nice 2 finger short lived frothy head. Little lacing on the glass. Aroma is a nice blend of citrus fruits (oranges and grapefruits) with a nice bready note. TAstes of citrussy hops with a little piney flavors, and the malt is well balanced. The sweetness is evened with a nice hop note. Mouthfeel is somewhat lacking. Does not fill the mouth with flavors, and they aren't quite noted until almost through the finish. Quite watery up front. Carbonation is well balanced, but doesn't make up for the lack of mouthfeel. Overall it is an average brew; I think I will stick to Stone's Pale Ale for now.

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Photo of andyfrancis
3.38/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Reddish gold with a bit of haze, nice thin, creamy head.

Smelt of orange and other citrus hops at first, now that the head has subsided, pale malt and wheat coming through.

Bitter up front, giving way to the malt. They do mingle nicely. If you're into "balanced" beer, you'll like this one. If you focus, you can clearly detect and separate the hop and malt flavors, but they're present at levels that work nicely together if you want to just sit back and enjoy.

I like it, but for me, it's not a stand out.

Paired with a Spring Hill Farms Dry Jersey Jack. Works pretty well. Fairly even strength of flavors.

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Photo of thaichile
3.38/5  rDev -9.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bottle courtesy of Zorro. 22oz. Pours a deep tan with some head but disappearing quickly. Lightly floral scents mixed citrus. Flavor is interesting in an unusual manner. Not overly hoppy at all, but this had almost a funky, herbaceous quality with lemon. Not what I was expecting but not neccessarily a bad thing either.

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Photo of GClarkage
3.42/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

05/29/06- Had on tap at the Marin Brewing Company in Larkspur, CA.

Presentation- Pint fill via the tap.

Appearance- Golden-light amber pour. Seems pretty clear. Small 1/4 inch head and light lacing.

Smell- Smells very similar to their IPA. Pretty hoppy with a fair toasted malt edge. Maybe a touch fruity...lemon?

Taste- Even tastes like their IPA. Pine and lemon rind hops clash with a light roasted hop flavor. Seems a bit too yeasty though.

Mouthfeel- Middle of the road carbonation, a touch watery though.

Drinkability- About an average pale. Good hoppy flavor. Just doesn't come together as well as I would like.

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Photo of weeare138
3.45/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to hopdog for this...
Appears a hazy orange with a small white head. Little lacing is left behind.
Smell is of tangerine and lemon zest.
Taste is of the tangerine and zesty lemon with a light bit of bitterness.
Mouthfeel is zesty with a slight sourness.

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Photo of magictrokini
3.47/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Solid APA. Pours clear copper with a good off-white head. Nice aroma of malt, hops, and wood. Lots of citrus and hoppy bite up front that mellows into malty sweetness. Nice beer. While the taste is similar to other APAs, this feels cleaner and fresher. One of the better ones in this category.

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Photo of carln26
3.47/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this beer at Noonan’s on Larkspur Landing. It poured a dark copper color light white head, mildly hazy. Nose has light caramel, and a subtle citrus hop. Mild orange and floral flavors. Finish has mild caramel and light fig character. Good carbonation. Slick, light mouth feel. This is an unremarkable beer. I love a lot of Marin and Moylan’s beers. This one is a mild disappointment.

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Photo of illidurit
3.47/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

RBSG09 on tap at the brewpub. Pours a clear deep amber color with a thin wet ecru head. Aroma is hop resins, pale malts, slight marijuana. Flavor is toffee malts up front, then herbal hops towards the end. When the bitterness fades the malty sweetness shines through again shortly. Decent pale ale.

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Photo of Wasatch
3.48/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a cloudy dark golden yellow color, nice carbonation, nice two-finger foamy off-white head, with tons of sticky lacing. The nose is hoppy, with a nice malt balance, slight citrus. The taste is hoppy, with some malts, slightly sweet/bitter, some citrus notes. Medium body. Drinkable, not a bad brew, but was expecting more from this brewery.

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

Pours a clear dark golden brew.

Smell is sharp hops with a hop oil sheen on the top, very aggressive hop scent to this.

Taste is mildly sweet with a floral hop flavor. Malt gets run over by the hops in this.

Mouthfeel is OK.

An unbalanced brew, all hops with not much else.

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Photo of elmocoso
3.5/5  rDev -5.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Gold with a tint of red. Sediment floating and a slightly lacy ring.

Very hopy nose. The bottle says Cascade, Colombus and Amerillo bops but the cascade is not as abvious as the others.

A real nutty maltyness. Good mouthfeel and easy on the tongue.

Quite a tasty brew and i wouldn't mind putting down a few more


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Photo of climax
3.55/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

This one poured a pretty hazy burnt orange/bronze color with a good size foamy eggshell head. The retention is good.

The nose has a hop crispness, but seems a bit more on the malty side. It's mostly caramel and toffee with some floral notes and lemon zest.

The flavor starts off with a hop bitterness and soon fades to malt dominance towards the end. Almost Oktoberfest qualities come around the finish with the malt bill. Caramel, toffee, honey, and cereal grains to be exact. The herbal hop flavors come and go.

The body is on the light side with crisp carbonation. It's a smooth drinkable beer, yet a bit more personality would be appreciated.

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Photo of Gavage
3.56/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: orange with a thick 3" head that lasts a while. Nice lace paints the glass.

Smell: soft orange citrus and a bit of floral hop bitterness are all that you can pull from the glass.

Taste: caramel, a bit of breadiness, orange, and a mild floral bitterness create a basic APA.

Mouthfeel: medium bodied. Lightly crisp from start to finish. Aftertaste is pretty short.

Overall: a decent refreshing pale ale, but the flavors overall were balanced but a bit muted.

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Photo of ArrogantB
3.56/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22oz bottle thanks to a recent trade here, can't remember who sent it but I do appreciate it a lot. Split this with a buddy and we both thought it was a good pale ale. Nice orange color, decent head. Smells a bit hoppy but nothing extra. Taste had a nice hop bitterness with a decent malt backing. I'd drink a couple sixers of this if I could, not bad at all.

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Photo of metter98
3.6/5  rDev -3.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On-tap at Jake's Cannery Bar, San Francisco, CA

A: The beer is clear yellow in color and has a slight amount of visible carbonation along with sone notes of amber hues. It poured with a quarter finger high white head that died down, leaving a thin layer of bubbles on the surface and running down the sides of the glass.
S: Light aromas of citrus hops are present in the nose—oranges seem to stand out in particular.
T: Similar to the smell, the taste has flavors of orange citrus along with some notes of grapefruit There is a light amount of bitterness.
M: It feels a bit shy of being medium-bodied on the palate and has a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This pale ale goes down easily. It's not that bitter, but has some citrusy flavors.

Serving type: bottle

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Mt. Tam Pale Ale from Marin Brewing Company
84 out of 100 based on 67 ratings.