Mt. Tam Pale Ale - Marin Brewing Company

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

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BA SCORE
83
good

109 Ratings
THE BROS
-
no score

(send 'em beer!)
Ratings: 109
Reviews: 65
rAvg: 3.69
pDev: 14.09%
Wants: 1
Gots: 3 | 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:
No notes at this time.

(Beer added by: xlperro on 03-03-2002)
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 109 | Reviews: 65 | Display Reviews Only:
Photo of jenray
3/5  rDev -18.7%

Photo of ficknish
4.15/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Appearance - Orange, caramel color, Good head retention.

Aroma - Bready, toasty grain smell. Just like the mash tun at the brewery. Very very subtle hop aroma.

Taste - Malty backbone. Strong flavors of bread, toffee, and honey. Complemented nicely with spicy bitterness.

Mouth feel - Light bodied. Medium to high carbonation.

Overall - I love the toasty grain flavor of this beer. The hop profile comes through more on the bitterness side and not so much the aroma or flavor, but I think it makes for a nice balance. Grainy and bitter, yet light and drinkable. Well done Marin.

Photo of ocelot2500
4.33/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a hazy golden orange color with frothy, white head that leaves chunks of lacing.

Smells of some grapefruit and spicy hops.

Tastes of a good wave of hops on top of a solid malt base. Hops greet first with a citrus, tropical fruit, and spicy hop profile. In terms of quantity, this is certainly not under-hopped, but is artfully restrained. The hops meld with the malts and give a nice segue to a toasted bread and caramel flavor. I really feel that everything is blended nicely together in this beer.

Mouthfeel is medium with a smooth amount of carbonation.

Overall, I would recommend this one when looking for a nice pale to have. This beer has a certain smoothness to it that makes me enjoy it more than others.

Photo of Derek
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Copper bronse with a white head, light retention & lace.

Nice west-coast hop aroma (apparently is Cascade, Columbus and Amarillo).

Hopwise the taste is like a modern update to the Sierra Nevada pale ale (the cascades with some newer hops). It doesn't have quite the same malty sweetness though, it's off-dry and fairly crisp. Solid bitterness.

Moderate body is well-attenuated with a clean, crisp finish.

This is really well-crafted and a nice drinker.

Photo of DmanGTR
2.08/5  rDev -43.6%
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.

Photo of BerkeleyBeerMan
3.68/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: Nice Dark Amber color with a good creamy head. Light lacing. Okay retention. This head taste great. It's sweet like ice cream. The beer is somewhat opaque.

Smell: Sweet candied malts. The malts are very characteristic. Nice fruity hints. Not very hoppy. Slighty astringent but not bitter. Not a ton of character hitting my nose.

Taste: Good but not extremely exciting. I taste a caramel toast flavor. There is a breadiness here as well. I expected more out of this. It has a good feel and is definitely drinkable but lacks of a lot of character. The hops are fresh and mild. A bit piney. I think the balance is off with the malts overshadowing the malts. Not bad but not great.

Mouthfeel: Decent. Kind of creamy. I think the head is great. Finishes a bit bitter.

Drinkability: I expected more out of this live ale. I think I would try it at the brewery. Maybe this beer was sitting on the shelf for too long. After taking a few generous swigs I am willing to declare this beer drinkable. I would probably pick my go to Boonville Poleeko Gold over this.

Photo of climax
3.55/5  rDev -3.8%
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.

Photo of beagle75
4.4/5  rDev +19.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 5

Draft pour into a 0.5-liter mug at Hollingshead's.

A: Clear, light amber color with two fingers of off-white foam head that diminishes to a rocky residue that climbs the sides of the glass. Moderate lacing remains on the glass.

S: The smell of hops dominates, with grapefruit citrus and floral aromas. However, the multiple layers of flavors to come are hinted at as well, with faint toasted grain and honey also detectable.

T: Begins dry, with toasted malt and mild acidity. Hop aromatics emerge more toward the middle as bright citrus and some pine foliage, even lingering on into the finish. Bitterness is present but restrained, leaving an overall impression that is clean and refreshing.

M: Thin viscosity, wet on the palate at first but becoming sticky later, with moderate carbonation.

D: Marin's flagship pale ale is a beer that isn't talked about enough, or served out of enough taps, in California. It embraces balance wholeheartedly while still preserving a precise West-Coast hop profile. For example, it delivers the same intensity of hop qualities as Drake's 1500--a beer that seems to sacrifice balancing malt qualities for the sake of the hops. Mt. Tam should be considered the stylistic equal of almost any of Sierra Nevada's pale ales, while steering clear of the spicy notes that the uninitiated may find challenging. It is effortlessly approachable, yet remains interesting even after it has been re-visited on many occasions. If you can't get your hands on a Strand pale ale, then Mt. Tam is a fine second choice.

Photo of earthling
4.58/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

The Mt. Tam Pale Ale is a really fantastic beer. Being a West Coast IPA lover, the hoppy aroma is an immediate attraction. Putting back a Mt. Tam is also like drinking a delicous loaf of bread. It's dry, lightly toasted but unroasted, moderate in strength with well-balanced malt.

This one is a drinker, a universal beer, worthy of riding sidecar to great company and a filling meal or simply keeping a lone drinker company across a long, wooden rail.

Photo of andyfrancis
3.38/5  rDev -8.4%
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.

Photo of jmbranum
4.65/5  rDev +26%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

An excellent, very drinkable,nicely balanced pale ale. Pretty in the glass, subtle aroma but lots of flavor. Surprisingly malty, with nice breadt notes supported by a backbone of hops. just a little bit of toastiness.

Enjoyed at gott,s sidewalk cafe on the embarcadero in san francisco.

Photo of yemenmocha
4/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours pale golden with medium sized white head. Nose has some candied citrus, especially grapefruit-orange. More of that candied quality is noted on the palate with juicy-fruit malty goodness and some tangerine fruit from the hop influence. Easy drinking and a long tangerine finish.

Photo of Tucquan
3.18/5  rDev -13.8%
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.

Photo of mikey711
4.18/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Amber/orange with a half inch creamy white head. No lace

S: Big citrus hop aroma, lemon and peach mostly

T: SGood citrus hoppiness that is not too intense. Not much sweetness.

M: Light and slightly watery. Decent body.

D: Very quaffable. Could have multiple bombers if I truly wanted to

Photo of Georgiabeer
3.03/5  rDev -17.9%
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.

Photo of mjl21
4.33/5  rDev +17.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at the brewpub. Poured into a pint glass. Comes in at 5.7%.

A-Pours a clear light amber color. Has a minimal off white head due in part to the bartender overfilling the glass. Visible bubbles can be seen rising from the bottom. Not much lace is left.

S-Lots of fresh hops. Seems hoppier than it used to be, which is not a bad thing. Lots of citrus and evn more pine burst out. It smells like a fresh IPA. Not getting much malt.

T-Lots of sticky fresh pine hops throughout. There is some light pale malt in the back which gives way to more pine flavor. It has a nice level of bitterness in between sips.

M-Mediumn bodied with a smooth mouthfeel. It has a comfortable level of carbonation.

D-Great session beer due to its lower abv. The increased hoppage is a nice bonus.

I have grown up drinking this beer and this was by far the best batch I have ever consumed. It really was much more in line with their IPA. Glad I revisited this one because it has really been tweaked for the better.

Photo of illidurit
3.48/5  rDev -5.7%
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.

Photo of Wasatch
3.48/5  rDev -5.7%
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.

Photo of MisterClean
2.53/5  rDev -31.4%
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.

Photo of Floydster
3.75/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

22 ounce bottle purchased at Cooke's in El Segundo for only $4.19, consumed this past Friday, reviewed from notes, poured into my Stone pint glass, color is a light golden orangish yellow, 3/4 inch foamy white head that sticks around for a little bit, minimal lacing, smell consists of light hops, soft caramel and toasted malts, grassy accents, and mild citrus, flavor starts off with chewy malts, stays that way throught the middle, some mild bitterness in the finish, later on that fades into lemons and yeast, nice balance but could have used some more hoppiness, goes down easy and is refreshing though, light to medium bodied, toaasty, slightly dry, and malty mouthfeel, strong level of carbonation, could drink a few bottles of this no problem, smooth and light overall, welcoming, not bad for the price, would drink again, recommended

Photo of magictrokini
3.48/5  rDev -5.7%
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.

Photo of JoeyBeerBelly
4.18/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

22oz bottle served in a standard pint glass.

L - hazy orange/gold color with a nice sized off-white head that left sheets of sticky lacing on the glass.

S - sweet tea and citrus aroma.

T - sweet and citrusy upfront with a malty balance midway finish is bitter-sweet.

F - medium bodied with a smooth feel.

D - easy drinking and pretty tasty.

Photo of popery
4.13/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A very pleasant pale ale from just across the Golden Gate. It's a great looking beer with a strong golden color and a big sticky head. It smells of piney hops but could hit a bit harder. The hops are more citric on the tongue and nicely bitter. There's some good, balancing malt, but the whole package is a bit restrained and understated which is good and bad. It's a very drinkable beer with a smooth feel and an understated flavor.

Completely inexpert design review time! The label is kind of busy, showing off a grab bag of awards from various craft brewing competitions. I don't dislike label award listings as a rule, but it's hard to pull off. In my opinion, they should have shown off their awards on the back of the label rather than the front because the front is rather aesthetically pleasing otherwise. The label generally evokes Marin and Mt Tam's ecology. Marin is beautiful and Mt Tam is particularly so. The little scene of the wetland bird in a salt water marsh with small but lush mountains in the background is something that you could easily see just driving around Marin. It's more a scene of Mt Tam the park, than Mt Tam the mountain, but that's fine. The color scheme is greens and yellows and serves the aesthetic well. It's a big wraparound label on a bomber, so they have room for some information. I appreciate brewing notes. It's fun to know hop varieties and other such things, even if I have only faint ideas of what it means.

Photo of ironlung
3.88/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Crystal-clear copper hue. Small head, quick dissapition. No lace.

S: Can barely smell this one. Has just a faint floral scent.

T: A lighter even crisper version of their IPA. I'd call it a "Perrier pale ale" since it's so refreshing.

M: Carbonation it hoppin' with the hops! This beer would be great for people that think sierra nevada is to hoppy(not me!).

D: High&Easy. Lookin' for an all-day beer? You've found it!

Photo of snaotheus
4.05/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Picked it up on tap at Jack's Cannery Bar in San Francisco.

This is almost as hoppy as an IPA. Strong pine flavor. Surprisingly tasty beer, though. I had never heard of the brewery before, and wasn't sure what to expect.

I'd still take Sierra Nevada Pale Ale over this, because Sierra Nevada is better balanced.

Mt. Tam Pale Ale from Marin Brewing Company
83 out of 100 based on 109 ratings.