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Whitbread Pale Ale - Whitbread PLC

Not Rated.
Whitbread Pale AleWhitbread Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.

282 Ratings

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Ratings: 282
Reviews: 228
rAvg: 3.35
pDev: 15.52%
Wants: 5
Gots: 2 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Whitbread PLC
United Kingdom (England)

Style | ABV
English Pale Ale |  5.70% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: kbub6f on 10-25-2001

No notes at this time.
View: Beers (6) | Events
Beer: Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 282 | Reviews: 228
Reviews by kkipple:
Photo of kkipple
3.88/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Was munching on some tuna melts tonight and remembered I had a Whitbread Pale in my fridge. It didn’t stay there long.

This review is short because the beer is simple and good. Whitbread Pale Ale is one of a few classic “pub” ales that lends to drinking a half-dozen in short order.

This is a clear, rust-orange with a fast-fading tan head. No lacing on my glass, but I drank the beer so quickly I wasn’t really looking for it either…

Smell is minimal, a cool malt sweetness, a slight bitterness and some biscuit.

Taste is mild malt, a watery, quenching mineral bitterness that’s balanced to drinking perfection. Hops add a pleasing, but mild, edge to the flavor. It's quite mellow. The mouthfeel is lowly carbonated and quite soft, all the better for gulping! I was halfway through this beer before I even had a line written in my notes. Frightening.

I can’t emphasize how absurdly drinkable this beer is. The taste won’t admit to much contemplation, but (much like Guinness Draught) this is the ideal beer to order rounds of at your favorite bar. Would I have another? Yes please! A fine basic beer for when you don’t need something extreme or sophisticated.

Edit: After reading a few pages of reviews, I'm puzzled by the mixed reception this beer has gotten (to put it kindly!). Perhaps there are quality control issues?

More User Reviews:
Photo of oberon
2.94/5  rDev -12.2%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a nice deep copper color with a light but creamy head,the aroma was really sweet (almost to sweet) with some cider notes.The taste has some decent fruitiness but is lacking a nice balance for a pale ale.Average at best beer probably wont go outta my way to buy again.

Photo of JudgeRoughneck
3.44/5  rDev +2.7%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer is the color of rich, strong, ice tea with a nice thick and creamy head that leaves good lacing. It isn't too pale for a pale ale. Aromas are faint but of sweet malt and musty grain. The flavor is mostly dominated by this same malted grain sweetness, tempered by some wet cardboard and bready tastes. The hops definately play second fiddle here, but are fresh and fruity tasting, if very subdued. The mouthfeel is lovely, creamy and mid-bodied. As a "pale ale" this is definately an oddball in my book, but very good and drinkable none the less.

Photo of Dmann
2.56/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

About the only this beer had going for it was it's look. The color was nice and dark armberish and it poured with a nice white head that stuck to my glass nicely. Other than that, the beer reeked of too much sweetness, no balance, and a really thick mouthfeel that made it hard to finnish the bottle. Not recommended at all.

Photo of Jason
3.21/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The sample I had was brewed in Cincinnati, they are not doing this brew any justice. Decent at best, not even close to the real stuff.

Photo of Rifrafboy
4.17/5  rDev +24.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

Note: This sampling is an American under license brew.

Appearance - Dark brown, just like the color of a brown beer bottle. Nice head.

Smell - Clean and sweet, slightly floral.

Taste - Very malty, not a lot of hoppiness. Not quite what I expected from an IPA.

Mouthfeel - Crisp and clean. Medium bodied.

Drinkability - Good. If this is on sale again I will buy it.

Serving type: bottle

Photo of LyonsHead
3.3/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: pours a lot darker brown than one would expect from the style

S: toffee and caramel nose with a slight roasted quality

T: malty sweetness that brings notes of toffee and caramel, very little bitterness. Not too complex

M: medium-light body

D: This to me is just an average beer, perhaps I've grown accustomed to the hopped american styles as opposed to the english styles. Either way, its not bad, I don't think its great!

Photo of far333
3.88/5  rDev +15.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear copper color with an orangey-beige foamy head of meringue that fills a good inch of the glass and sits back down quickly to a thin cap with lace rising up the sides. Faint aroma of biscuity malt and sweet fruit. Flavor is even and balanced, doughey malts, a hint of cinnamon and some ripe apple. Grassy hops ride beneath, adding a fine tingle that complements the flavor. Mouthfeel is full and satisfying, moderate to heavy carbonation adding a bubbly flourish in the finish. Good session beer, pretty balanced and inoffensive without being over the top in any aspect.

Photo of ADR
3.67/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Just slightly hazy dark brown color, dark for the style. Head is pretty much on the refuge side -- 1/8 of an inch for 20 seconds max. Malty aroma, some definite sweet caramel smells. Malt dominated flavors, sweet bread and candy apple, with the afore-mentioned caramel. A bit of cinnamony and flowery hops -- not much. Definitely on the malty side for a Pale Ale, with medium body. Could use a tad more balance but I would drink this one again, as a cool weather transition brew for the shoulder seasons.

Photo of WVbeergeek
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Caramel amber hue with a creamy textured off white head lacing is thin but evenly disparsed. Aroma: Toasted caramel malts in nature very English malt presence solid throughout can't complain. Taste: English malt sweetness excellent with a mild bitterness and a biscuit malt finish. Mouthfeel: Slightly creamy texture easy going nice overall tone. Drinkability: Needs some more hop action nice English style pale but not enough hops going down decent overall.

Photo of OStrungT
3.48/5  rDev +3.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This beer pours a golden orange color, with a thick fluffy light tan head. The head fades very slowly, leaving a thick curtain of lace.

This beer has a citrusy hop aroma. I can detect some sweet malty aroma as well. Some bready aroma mixes in also.

This beer tastes like it smells. It has a more fruity flavor than the aroma. It tastes citrusy with some yeasty flavor as well.

This beer is crisp and refreshing. It leaves a citrusy aftertaste. The carbonation is good.

Thos beer would probably make a decent session beer. It is low in alcohol, and it tastes non aggressive.

Overall: This beer was ok. Nothing I would seak out, but it wasnt bad either. Just boring, even for a pale.

Photo of LXIXME
3.5/5  rDev +4.5%

Photo of jbphoto88
3.21/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A nice amber color with a clean khaki head that stays with you as you drink.

Smell is very clean and crisp, there is a nice caramel scent with a malt finish. Those malts are very light and have no sign of being toasted.

Taste is all caramel and malts. There is a nice diacetyl hint that gives the beer a slight buttery taste and a smooth mouthfeel. Typical with an english pale, there is no discernible hop profile.

An uninteresting beer kind of weak in the flavor department. I don't think there is anything here that makes the beer have any true character.

Photo of InfernoBoss
3/5  rDev -10.4%

Photo of IntriqKen
2.91/5  rDev -13.1%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Poured vigoursly into a tulip glass to get a half finger head which quickly disapated to a pleasant ribbon that followed the drink down the glass.
Very little aroma for me...perhaps too cold?
Color is merely typical brown ale.
Nice carbonation biting the tongue for a crisp feel, however a little watery for this type.
Taste was a mixture of carmel, malt, banana (esthers?) or bubble gum to me. Not unpleasant (and I don't like banana)...more unusual.
Definate bread taste and yeasty, bread aftertaste.
A little fruity but not sweet.
Almost a bitter.
I don't know if I'll try this again (the bottle I bought may have been old and again, served below optimum temperature).
Neither bad nor good....'interesting' describes it best for me.

Photo of NJpadreFan
3.53/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Whitbread- Pale Ale

A- Deep toffee brown with a decent foamy head.
S- Sweet caramel and toffee malt with brewed tea leaves and buttery shortbread.
T- Sweet thick buttery shortbread sponge cake malt with unsweetened tea and slight touch orange and lemon citrus.
M- Thick and buttery sweet with a dry body and finish.

Overall- Full flavored and tasty. Tasted very fresh. A good session Ale.

Photo of tweeder263
3.18/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours out a slightly hazy amber brew with thin white head. Smells slightly caramelly ,malty. Taste very malty slightly tart in the end. Really low in hop flavor. Mouthfeel a little thin.Drinkablility is pretty good not really too high in alcohol. An ok beer , ive had better english pale ales a little too tart for me.

Photo of pmcadamis
3.51/5  rDev +4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A - Chestnut brown and slightly hazy brew with a solid one finger khaki head. Big sheets of cale recede quickly leaving nice wet arches.

S - Big malt aroma with a very light hop profile and some nutty notes. Some soy sauce nuances.

T - Sweet honey, nut, and cake malts, pleasant hints of hops. Very mellow and almost like a nut-brown IMO.

M - On the thicker side of medium bodied and a bit creamy.

D - Very drinkable. A bit too mellow for my tastes....very similar to an English nut brown.

IMO the English brew their pale ales a bit too weak for my tastes. I love beers that are up in your face screaming bloody murder...this one whispers. Also, I didn't realize until I looked this beer up on this website that it is brewed by the folks that make Mackeson's XXX Stout...which is one of my all time favorite beers.

Photo of NeroFiddled
3.85/5  rDev +14.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

When I first tried this I was confused by it. It wasn't the beer I'd enjoyed so many years ago. And then I found out it's now contract brewed in Cincinnatti, OH. That said...
Clear. Russett in color with a reddish cast. The head is light tan, very creamy, holds quite well, and leaves a pretty solid lace down the glass. The aroma is quite bold with fruitiness, some caramel-malt, and rich earthy-mineral hops. The body is medium with a fine carbonation that gives a very nice creaminess in the mouth. The flavor mirrors the aroma with a light fruitiness above a rich & smooth medium-crystal maltiness and earthy hop flavor. There's a bit of oxidation as well. A balanced bitterness plays a supporting role to the maltiness. The finish is somewhat dry, but not really bitter, with a lingering maltiness. This "contract" brew lacks the character of the true Whitbread version, especially the fruitiness of their dual-strain yeast; and seems to have a bit of a flabby maltiness that's not present in the authentic version.

Photo of Damian74Shensky
2.75/5  rDev -17.9%

Photo of Jon
3.41/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Whitbread Pale pours a deep copper color, perhaps a shade darker than most pale ales, but quite attractive with a well-retaining off-white head. Nose is full of fruity esters and caramel and not much else. Where are the hops? Taste brings some of the anticipated hops, but only in a subdued fashion. The fruity, caramel malt is the dominant factor here. Mouthfeel is smooth and full for this medium-bodied brew. Fairly drinkable for fans of fruit and sweet malt, though a bit lacking on crispness and hoppiness to make this a truly quaffable ale. Certainly well-crafted, but not among my favorites for the style.

Photo of woodchip
3.25/5  rDev -3%

Photo of BigJim5021
3.1/5  rDev -7.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a dull bronze with a white head that recedes into a semi-ring. Good lacing.

Smells lightly of toasted caramel malts. I don't really know how fresh this bottle is, but the smell is pretty mild.

And if you wanna talk about mild, the flavor is definitely that. The malts actually overpower the hops a little, but you still get a slight twinge of bitterness in the finish. Not spectacular, but not bad either.

Mouthfeel is creamy, but a little thin. Like everything else about the beer, it's pretty decent.

With all that said, it's no surprise that drinkability also sits as decidedly decent. I wouldn't pick up a six-pack, but you could do much, much worse than Whitbread's pale ale.

Photo of DerekP
3.68/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

As usual, I found this at my local six-pack shop, Gun Town Beer. My initial response to the smell and taste of a drop from the mouth of the bottle after pouring it into my mug was "Ughhh....frat-house beer." After a thorough taste though, not so much.

Whitbread Pale Ale smells of sweet malts, is amber/copper in color, and pours out a nice white head with a semi-creamy, semi-thin lacing. Head retention is very good. I don't know the number, but the IBU (International Bitterness Unit) is probably low to mid-range.

There is definitely a bready character that talks to the palate, kind of like a sourdough. The body is a nice medium. There seems to be more of a focus on malted barley than a focus on hops, but the ratio is agreeable. The hops that do come out really shine in the feel of the beer, while adding just enough bitterness to the taste.

In addition, as a Yuengling Traditional Lager drinker, I appreciate Whitbread Pale Ale. It shares some of Yuengling Traditional's characteristics in smell and body. Yuengling fans will not be disappointed with this one from the late Sam Whitbread.

Without a doubt, Whitbread Pale Ale is a solid "session" beer. Give this one a try.

Photo of russpowell
3.19/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Brewed in cincinati? WTFO?? Oh well too kate to take it back, let's review!

Pours amber with an 1" offwhite head. Head drops to a healthy film rapidly. Minimal lacing and head retention

Smell: Big time fruitiness, vanilla, oakiness, and alcohol

Taste: Slight hop bitterness on the tounge followed by malt and fruitiness. Sweetness asserts itself as it warms. Alcohol and dryness along with a slight astringency in the finish. Detracts from what was a good experience up to this point

MF: A little thin and under carbonated

About average drinkability, could've been a contender. Usually a beer of this ABV hides these kind of faults. make up your own mind, maybe this kicks ass in the heartland??

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Whitbread Pale Ale from Whitbread PLC
77 out of 100 based on 282 ratings.