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Great Lakes Canuck Pale Ale - Great Lakes Brewery

Not Rated.
Great Lakes Canuck Pale AleGreat Lakes Canuck Pale Ale

Educational use only; do not reuse.
very good

85 Reviews
no score

(Send Samples)
Reviews: 85
Hads: 180
Avg: 3.82
pDev: 14.66%
Wants: 8
Gots: 25 | FT: 0
Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewery visit their website
Ontario, Canada

Style | ABV
American Pale Ale (APA) |  5.20% ABV

Availability: Year-round

Notes & Commercial Description:
Beer added by: Sammy on 01-27-2010

Our version of a west coast pale ale pushes the boundaries much like the Crazy Canucks of the past. We've brewed it for those who enjoy adventure and a departure from the ordinary. The result is a wildly hoppy aroma with a lingering bitterness complemented by a soft breadly malt flavour.
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Reviews: 85 | Hads: 180
Photo of Jeffo
3.07/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Got this at the LCBO this summer.

From a can into a snifter.

APPEARANCE: Pours a one finger, foamy white head with good retention. hazy gamboge orange with medium-high levels of carbonation. Head fades to a faint wisp and a foamy ring that leaves some sticky lacing down the glass. A splotchy wisp remains leaving some decent dots of lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Grapefruit, pineapple and some honeydew melon. Pale malts and some caramel notes as well. Light floral and piney hops there, but mostly fruity. Medium strength.

TASTE: Pale malts and caramel sweetness up front, with grapefruit bitterness and pine flavors at the swallow. Finish is medium and lingering with hop bitterness, grapefruit, floral notes and some honeydew melon sweetness as balance. Flavorful and nice, but a touch watery perhaps.

PALATE: Medium-thin body, medium carbonation and not quite creamy enough, unfortunately. Goes down fine and finishes slightly dry. Bitterness lingers. Not quite full and creamy enough for the style.

OVERALL: This is alright, but nothing that stands out from the crowd. The crowd is picking up the pace in Ontario though, and as the quality of hoppy pales improves, this one might actually just fall off the radar a bit. That said, this is a solid brew and I'd gladly enjoy another on a warm summer's day. Cheers!

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Photo of funkengruven
4.45/5  rDev +16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Yet another I picked up on my last trip, this one poured a nice amber with a touch of nice fluffy head. Smell is primarily of hops, I'm guessing Cascade, with some malt in there too, pretty nice. Taste was suprisingly really good, Hops are nicely balanced giving a nice grapefruit aroma. Finish is bitter but clean. Mouthfeel is full but smooth, quite nice.

A great beer. Definitely will remain a staple in my fridge.

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Photo of ssmack
4.04/5  rDev +5.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured slightly hazy, greenish amber colour. Produced 1 inch of medium head that left very good lacing from the top of the glass to the bottom.

A strong earthy pine and grapefruit citrus aroma. This is the strongest aspect of this pale ale.

The taste is all pine at first. The citrus flavour is not present in the mouth. As the brew warms there is a sweet malty taste too.

A medium feel without any unpleasantness.

Overall this is a solid, well hopped American pale ale. Perhaps a bit of a sleeper in the Ontario pale ale herd.

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Photo of IdeaSpeeder
4.16/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Serving Type - 473ml can poured into a nonic pint glass.

Appearance - Pours a cloudy yellow/golden colour with a thin white head which dissipates quickly. A moderate amount of lacing is left behind.

Smell - Sweet fruits and grass dominate. A few faint floral notes.

Taste - Citrus hops right off the bat...grapefruit seems to be the consensus, followed by grass and grains, and finally towards the end a decent amount of hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel - Medium body. Very grainy, almost unfinished home brew like texture on the tongue, but its not a bad thing. It gives this beer a certain charm. Carbonation is medium to high.

Overall - 4/5

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Photo of greenengineer
3.69/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.75

473 mL Can, in my hotel room Toronto
A - cloudy amber, little bit of foam fades quickly, occasional lacings
S - wow - hops!
T - hops bitterness up front, and behind too. Crisp, but not a lot behind the hops.
M - a little watery, it's like a hop tea
O - I like the hops, but needs more balance.

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Photo of Kremlock
4.07/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

A: Pours a 1 1/2 inch thick head that is frothy and white. After 60-90 seconds it falls to a white film with climbing edges. Lacing is low. Beer colour is straw with hues of orange in it. Beer as a very low haze due to dry hopping.

S: Freshly cut wet grass, floral with hints of grapefruit. Some base malt aromas present.

T: hints of buttery bread, lots of wet grass with some grapefruit. Bitterness is right up there.

M: Silky smooth on the tongue, good carbonation, has a dry finish. low-medium body

O: This is a great Pale Ale. On style very much so.The smell and taste are very well within style and I believe this Pale Ale showcases well and is a standard to look to.

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Photo of HATS4BATS
3.8/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Strong and fresh. Well carbonated with opaque, sunset orange body. Flowering grapefruit and tangerine sweetness in nose that closely matches taste. Weighted, hoppy flavour in balance and moderation that develops into a lightly lemon sugared mouthful with some lingering bitterness that can outstrip development. Watery at times with evaporating flavour. Drinkable.

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Photo of jaz58
4.5/5  rDev +17.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A great aroma when poured. Lemon / grapefruit nose with a great hint of hops.
Slightly cloudy in the glass with a warm orange marmalade colour.
Thick head, with a tinge of carmel colour.
Round mouth feel featuring a tea lemon beginning and finishing with a refreshing bitter.
A very fresh tasting beer. I always go out of my way to try IPA's and PA's and this is a great effort by Great Lakes Brewing Company.

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Photo of emerge077
3.68/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks Jay for sharing this one! Served in a tumbler glass.
"F2512" printed on the bottom of the can.

Hazy orange with yellow edges, sheets of lace inside the glass, thin skim of foam across the surface. Retention is average. Foam has a soapy texture.

Mild earthy herbal hop aroma, orange and bitter citrusy grapefruit rind taste, smooth pale malt in the middle with a lightly resiny bitter aftertaste. Tastes slightly faded but overall well put together.

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Photo of WeedKing4
4.15/5  rDev +8.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Had this on tap at Gigs in London. Pours a golden orange. Tastes of grapefruit with a very nice hop bite and good bitterness overall. A very nice surprise and its quite easy to drink. Loved the hop burps I got from this. This brewery is really making great strides for craft beer.

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Photo of Rutager
3.91/5  rDev +2.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks liamt07!

Appearance. Pours a hazy rich yellow gold with a finger of off-white head.

Smell. Lightly roasted grains, some grassy floral hops.

Taste. Toasted malt, grassy hops and a little citrus. A little bitterness.

Mouthfeel. Medium body, medium carbonation.

Overall. Quite flavourful, another nice can from Ontario. Thanks again, liamt07!

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Photo of Caudalie
4.35/5  rDev +13.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Served in a riedel magnum red wine glass, courtesy of wfeddern from CANbif

I'm pretty impressed overall, as this is neat, aromatic, highly drinkable and smooth, while I had no expectations at all. A really great hoppy Pale Ale, I'd drink this often if it was available nearby.

A: Nice copper color, with some lacing on tops.

S: Nice hops, but not ultra powerful neither. Nice.

T: this is really great, with an intense and really precise pink grapefruit flavor, but not a fake, artificial one. Tastes more like the real deal. The bitterness is present, balanced, and reminiscent once again of grapefruit. Nice lenght too...

O: A pretty smoth, soft pale ale. The kind of beer I'd drink everyday. Thank you!

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Photo of LadyOfMuchBeer
4.25/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Appears a light copper, clear, approx. 1/2" of creamy white head. Very appetizing. Slow and steady carbonation.

Smells of grapefruit peel, hops, and a slight(very faint) ester-y/medicinal quality.

Tastes nice and hoppy on the front, strong acrid grapefruit, fruit esters are a tad present. Overall a nicely balanced tongue, with a not so harsh bitter on the back. Hops may have faded with time, have no clue how fresh this one is. It came in a trade from CANADA.

Mouth feel- Super creamy, delightfully so. It drinks like a hoppy cream ale. No stick to it at all, just cream.

Overall, a very session-able, delightful pale ale. They aren't way up in the air, but both thumbs are up on this one.

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Photo of Digimaika2
4.07/5  rDev +6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Beautiful clear copper hue with a tall and puffy marshmallow-like foam head. Very good retention and lacing.

S: Wow- wasn't expecting this. Very fresh and buttery. Healthy amounts of pine, buttered bread, earthy fungus-like aroma, grapefruit, and nutty elements. Reminds me a lot of Heady Topper aroma-wise. Fantastic.

T: Similar to aromas, but taken down a notch. Piney hops, biscuit bread-like malt, probing citrus, and an element of musky earthy goodness. Quite tasty and certainly fresh tasting.

M: Medium body with a moderate carbonation. A commendable amount of oily character considering the ABV. Overall pleasingly bitter with a certain dryness.

D: Quite an impressive pale ale for Ontario that I could easily include in my go-to sessionable rotation. Fresh, buttery, and smooth. But seriously, this can is hideous.

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Photo of Derek
4.59/5  rDev +20.2%
look: 4 | smell: 5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

The brew has really evolved over the years. Now it's finished with Amarillo & Simcoe hops, which really shine!

Gold with a white head, good retention, bit of lace.

Huge American hop aroma to entice any hop head.

Plenty of citrus hop flavour, with a little piny resin and 'weed'. It's not bong water, but it's pretty bold. Bitterness is somewhat restrained, allowing a little biscuity malt sweetness to poke through. The malt does a nice backup here... but it's really all about the hops!

Well-attenuated, light hop acidity, nice crisp finish.

A very sessionable hop fix.

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Photo of francisfilion
3.62/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a 500 ml can in a ESB Thumper pint.
It was an orange cooper with a white average size head that dissipates rather quickly leaving spotty lacing
Nice aroma's of pine and spruce from the hops very refreshing aroma's
Hoppy taste with a good bitterness and thick malt presence as the backbone
Good carbonation, medium to full-bodied
Overall it was a really really good Pale Ale, a definite re-buy for me!! Very drinkable and refreshing pale ale.

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Photo of sliverX
3.92/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 16oz can to pint glass. Hazy light gold, tight short white cap that faded rocky down to a nice wispy topper.
Smell is a nice light citrusy hop punch.
Taste starts out with that citrus punch, backed with a caramel sweetness that ends bitter citrus/pine cross.
Mouthfeel light crisp, a bit too much carbonation but that can be fixed with a swirl.
Overall this is a fine APA/IPA fully enjoyed.
Thanks to Matt (korguy123) for the awesome CAN from CANada

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Photo of
3.75/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Appearance - Very clear golden with lots of carbonation bubbles. Large and long-lasting rocky head.

Smell - Big hops aromas of passionfruit and pine, sweet caramel coming through as well.

Taste - Not quite as good as the aroma suggests it could be. Fruity hops with a nice amount of bitterness and a solid malt background.

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Photo of paxkey
4.06/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

against my better judgement picked up the summer 2011 discovery pack at the lcbo.

this is my first sample. has a toque hanging off the 'k' in the beer name.

pours yellow and fizzy.

great hop aroma. piney zesty. smells very nice.
good head retention. aromas of kiwi passion fruit.

chewy mouthfeel with a little oiliness. lots of nice hop bitterness lingers on and on. makes the mouth pucker slightly. love it.

definitely going back for more of this tasty brew.

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Photo of thehyperduck
3.87/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tallboy can from the OCB summer mix pack. Pours a pale, cloudy amber colour, atop which sits a finger of foamy, loose, off-white head. Decent retention - it lasts a few minutes before dissipating into a cap and some sticky lacing on the sides. Certainly looks tasty. I don't normally rant about beer odours (largely because I smoke a lot and don't trust my nose's opinions all that much), but this stuff smells fantastic. Hops are front and center and pretty intense, with a piney grapefruit citrus character. Some floral perfume notes; underlying this there is some malty brown sugar sweetness. Alright, I'm eager to try this stuff.

Much of the same strong notes found in the nose are also present on the tongue. Caramel malts and bready grains provide a foundation, but as with the smell the hoppy bitterness is what makes this beer interesting. Fresh, piney earthy hops with a strong astringent grapefruit quality. This astringency lingers for a few seconds after swallowing. Light to medium-light bodied, with moderate carbonation. Although the hops are the more dominant flavour, they're not overpowering so there's no reason this wouldn't make a great session ale.

So far this is the best brew in this year's mixer pack, with only two others left to go. I haven't seen this in my LCBO outside of this pack, but if I ever see singles or sixers this could easily become my go-to APA. Great stuff.

[Updated Jan 2. 2014]

Man, it's been a long time since I last had this one. I picked up another can and compared it to St. Ambroise Pale Ale, Conductor's Craft Ale and Naughty Neighbour in an APA showdown. Tasty stuff, with a nice tropical fruit vibe in addition to the usual piney/earthy notes. The flavour isn't wowing me as much as it did last time, but this is still a very solid APA - and to be fair, I think this can is dated from September so it's far from fresh. Crazy Canuck was one of the first APAs I ever had the opportunity to try, and it still holds up as one of my favourites. I guess that's the problem with being a ticker - in the rush to discover new and better beers, it's easy to forget the old gems.

Final Grade: 3.87, a B+.

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Photo of SebD
3.68/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance: It has a nice orange/copper colour to it. It has a nice white head that dies down moderatly and has some lacing.

Smell: The aromas definitly give out hints of pine and citrus from the hops with a bit of caramel coming from the malts.

Taste: Like the aromas, it has a dominant citrus and pine taste to it with a slight spiciness and has a bit of a bready/caramely sweetness.

Mouthfeel: It has a medium carbonation with a nice overall balance.

Drinkability: It's a smooth drinkable beer accompanied with good flavours and aromas.

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Photo of andrenaline
3.68/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Pours a slightly hazy oragne copper colour, generous finger of big bubbled head with solid retention and some nice sticky lacing.

S - A touch mild. but sweet citrus hops, touch earthy with cedar and pine coming through, and a caramel backbone on the finish.

T - Much like the scent with the citrus hops off the top, the earthy flavours coming through after that, though a touch metallic. The caramel notes linger on the palette alongside some hop bitterness.

M - Medium bodied, smooth and a touch of dryness on the finish.

O - A well hopped pale ale that is both thirst quenching and bold enough in flavour, with some nice hop highlights. A quality ale that is easily drinkable.

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Photo of Yoonisaykul
3.96/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Heard some people say this can made the beer look cheap. Looks awesome to me.

A little excited to try this. Hoping I won'tbe too disappointed.

A- Beautiful deep, dark gold. Yellow tint in the good amount of foam.

S- I think thissmells a little like McCoy, which I also had in the fridge and hesitated to drink instead. Lemony, grassy hops and a little bit of caramel.

T- Bitterness hits you from the start. Resiny, floral hops. You canreally taste the cone.Tiny bit of honey sweetness from the malt.

M- High carbonation. Quite crisp but can't say it's dry. Some hop oil slickness as well as astrigency I think. Good full body.

O- A solid beer. Nothing amazing but very hoppy and pretty well crafted. Don't go out of your way to find it but it is definitely worth buying. I can't get it here in Quebec but I think it would be a good choice if I ever had the chance to chill in Toronto. Canucks can be proud of this one.

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Photo of Stocean1
3.37/5  rDev -11.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

A - poured a frothy two fingers from the can, pale amber colour, nice lacing and a well retained head

S - plenty of sweet floral hops wafting from the can, this is off to a good start

T - whoa what a let down, first hit is pure metallic, then a hint of bread and some floral hops but not what I was hoping for given the scent - lingering bitterness

M - light body as if it has been cut with some water after the fact - decent carbonation and a nice bitter feel on the tongue

O - some potential here but there are so many local pale ales that blow this one away that I will not be picking this up again any time soon

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Photo of JohnnyBarman
3.68/5  rDev -3.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a nonic glass, enjoyed on Canada Day!

A light amber-copper brew, nice n' clear, a half inch of frothy head that survives quite well and leaves a bit of lacing.

Nose is all hops: pine, citrus (grapefruit, mango), a good whiff of resin as well. Right on the mark.

Bitterness is this brew's defining attribute, but bitterness is what I look for in an APA, and so I must say I am well pleased. The malt profile is a bit overwhelmed with all the hoptacular activity, with the caramel and bread only inching in at the beginning. The finish is bitter and very pronounced - lingers for a great deal.

Smooth, slightly creamy, good carbonation.

I am the first to admit I've been less than pleased with this brewery's regular offerings to date, but Crazy Canuck is right on the money. A tip of the cap to Great Lakes, they've got something good here and it's worth celebrating. Will get again.

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Great Lakes Canuck Pale Ale from Great Lakes Brewery
86 out of 100 based on 85 ratings.