Dismiss Notice
Subscribe to BeerAdvocate magazine for only $9.99! (Limited time offer, US delivery only)

Al's Cask Ale | C'est What?

Your Rating: None

Want it   Got it 
Al's Cask AleAl's Cask Ale
Very Good
31 Ratings
Al's Cask AleAl's Cask Ale

Brewed by:
C'est What?
Ontario, Canada

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
A balanced pale ale with citrus aromas dominated by Cascade hops.

38 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 10-09-2002

Bros Score:
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Ratings: 31 |  Reviews: 23
Photo of StormAles
3.85/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Photo of SocalKicks
3/5  rDev -22.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of jjboesen
4.17/5  rDev +8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Photo of mhaugo
4/5  rDev +3.6%

Photo of Jotora
3/5  rDev -22.3%

Photo of liamt07
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%

Photo of CurtisD
4.5/5  rDev +16.6%

Photo of MattPS
3.25/5  rDev -15.8%

Photo of dgilks
3.91/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Clear dark golden colour with a creamy white head. Good head retention. Nice.

Light floral hops with a touch of earthiness. Very light malt. Fine but not exceptional.

Smooth maltiness with a touch of earthy, floral hops. Tastes like EKG with a hint of citrus to me. Moderate bitterness. I quite like this. A really nice cask ale with good flavour without being overwhelming.

Medium body with moderately-low carbonation. Good.

A really solid craft ale. Bitter yet smooth with a good dose of English hops. It isn't the same as I remember it being two years ago but this new formulation is still nice.

 602 characters

Photo of kwjd
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Had this on cask at C'est What. Pours a cloudy, golden colour with a finger of white head that sticks around. Some mild lacing down the glass. Smells of floral and citrus hops with a lot of caramel. Flavour isn't too bitter, but there is some bitterness balance to the sweetness. Very smooth mouthfeel. A nice cask conditioned ale.

 331 characters

Photo of Travlr
3.95/5  rDev +2.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Clear golden yellow with a biggish head for a cask ale, great lacing.
S: Fresh grass aroma with some lemon and black pepper, slight background of citrus.
T: Bitter beginning, dry finish. Nice malt and hop balance.
M: Medium body.
D: Mellow cask ale, served a bit too cold, but drinkable overall.

 298 characters

Photo of BigBry
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Enjoyed a pint while visiting bobsy at C'est What. Wanted to try the house brand, rather than something I could get elsewhere. Deep golden color with a thick creamy white head. Slightly yeasty and fruity. Nice bitter taste, grapefruit hops. Clean finish. A very good sessional, everything I expected from an ESB.

 312 characters

Photo of mrmanning
3.03/5  rDev -21.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Tapped a deep golden/cloudy yellow with a foamy froth of head. Nose is of fresh apples and white grapes with a malty essence that reminds me of toffee. Pretty weak as far as the nose goes. Taste is fruity malts with a nice dose of bittering hops and a splash of caramel. Yeasty, fruity finish, a bit watery, with a bubble gum aftertaste. Half pint at the brew pub.

 364 characters

Photo of TurdFurgison
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I had this on cask at C'est What in Toronto. Apparently contract brewed at Durham (along with other C'est What house brews). This ESB was a winner, it brought strong recollections of Fullers on cask in London. This was reddish copper colored with a thick slab of solid-looking foam. It had a nice bready aroma, strong malty notes with a little floral hops (not much). The taste was toasty, bicuit type malt with a slightly bitter yet tasty bitter bite in the back end. Creamy body and solid coating mouthfeel, just delicious, refreshing, and supremely drinkable.

 562 characters

Photo of biboergosum
3.81/5  rDev -1.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

This beer appears a hazy, light apricot colour, with a minor amount of soapy white head, which leaves nary a speck of lace as it wafts away. It smells very faintly of white biscuit grain. The taste is bready, fruiity malt, and light earthy hops. The carbonation almost distracts from the flavour discernment, in the sense that I could barely detect it. This is one smooth beer. The body is fairly full, and this beer finishes dry, with a velvety grain essence, that reminds me of fields of ripe wheat, or something...

 517 characters

Photo of bobsy
4.08/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

The Englishman in me really appreciates this drink. Deep golden pour with a creamy white head. Fruity nose with a bit of yeast thrown in. Crisp bitter taste, with a big dose of grapefruit. Clean on the palate, and very easy going down. A great choice for a session beer.

 270 characters

Photo of allergictomacros
3.9/5  rDev +1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Served a hazy peach, with a short head. Really good staying power on the foam, sticking around to the end.

S - Nose is somewhat mild, with citrus note - mandarin oranges and grapefruit. A hint of honey and funky yeastiness as well.

T/M - Grapefruit comes through with a yeastiness. Bitterness and hops are mild. Very soft and creamy, with a fairly dry finish.

D - Pretty well balanced, and very drinkable brew. Nothing stands out as being off, or spectacular either.

 474 characters

Photo of BrewSomerville
3.61/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

I had a pint of this @ C'est What?... It was brewed by County Durham Brewery specifically for the bar.

Aroma: Faint, but citrusy. I smell peaches too.

Looks: Bright, clear golden/yellow. Small white head. Good retention & lacing.

Taste: Very citrusy especially considering that this is an ESB. Bready, biscuity malt characteristics. Green apples. Moderate hop bitterness, but it's noticeable.

Mouthfeel: Very fine, very subtle carbonation. Light- medium bodied.

Overall, I would say that this Beer has it's qualities best appreciated in the warmer seasons. Not what I am used to in an ESB, it tasted more American than British.

 642 characters

Photo of Niniimaa
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was the first beer I had in Ontario and at C'est What?. Was expecting more hops from a Pale Ale (even IPA). Ultimately found Ontario lacking overall in the hops department. This was an acceptable Cask Ale and was very drinkable. An even pale ale taste and recommended from a Cask standpoint.

 296 characters

Photo of gbarron
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

From the cask, served in a full imperial pint.

A - light golden/honey colored, almost with a light orange hue. Head is frothy and bubbly white, small. Slight haze.

S - tangy citrus hop aroma, pineapple, slightly sweet hop smell. Grainy, bready malt notes as well.

T - a very American-style ESB with pronounced citrus hop flavors, pineapple sweetness, even a little pine. The hop flavor and ctrusy bitterness/tanginess are present and assertive but well balanced against a grainy, bready, yeasty malt backbone. Flavors are very light, none outshining the other too much, although the hop content is evident. I'd almost make this more of an IPA.

M - very, very smooth and light, creamy body due to the cask conditioning Carbonation is very low.

D - very tasty little beer, light and highly drinkable.

 813 characters

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

Really nice little cask conditioned IPA sampled on location in a half pint glass. Pale super hazy yellow with a creamy off white head. Nice retention and lacing. Citrusy aromas.
Grassy and earthy hoppy IPA that went down smooth and creamy. Reminded me of several British ones I had over the other side of the pond.

Only negative comment was that it was advertised on the menu as a west cost IPA type brew. I could see some west coast folks taking offense. Would have been better described as a british style IPA. On that note, it was spot on.

 547 characters

Photo of Derek
3.66/5  rDev -5.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Clear, golden-orange, slight haze; creamy, off-white head, some retention, great lace.

S: Hoppy aroma (earth & grass with a slight hint of citrus); slight sulfur.

T: Some fresh hops (earth, grass, citrus); a little bready (pale malt). Not a ton of flavour, yet the alcohol isn't perceptible.

M: Smooth, light to moderate body and carbonation.

D: Good drinkability.

 379 characters

Photo of Viggo
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a slightly cloudy golden, perfect tight white head, lots of lace. Smell is sweet and malty, good floral hops, some grapefruit and a hint of chocolate. Taste is grassy hops, grapefruit, yeast, very deep maltiness with a sweet finish. The body was a little thin even for a cask, low carbonation and smooth mouthfeel combine for a good cask ale.

 348 characters

Photo of GreenWBush
3.71/5  rDev -3.9%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Pale copper. Remarkable frothed head that lingers and leaves large swaths of lace. Creamy aroma of English malts and subtle west-coast hops. The flavor is interestingly off-key: hints of spiced clove and slight lemon. The weird spiciness on the palate seems out of place and forefront, yet the other flavors in the beer stay so constant and pleasant the positives win in the long run. Tasty cask ale…again, nothing to be tracked down or lusted for – just sturdy.

 464 characters

Photo of CAMRAhardliner
3.28/5  rDev -15%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

This is Cest What's house cask ale.

It pours a hazy orange glow with a puffy little ivory head and excellent lacing. The aroma is of lemon and citrus with sweetish malts and a bit of astringency. The taste is very fruity with citrus and lemon drop candy notes. In the middle a tart slightly sour taste emerges. Its kind of like sour milk. The finish is hoppy with more sourness. The mouthfeel is crisp and light with a 'live yeast' feel.

This is an ok bitter. All three times I sampled it the flawed sour taste was present. I have no idea if its caused by oxidization or improper fermentation etc, but the other cask ales at Cest What never taste like this.

Still, this beer has potential and the off flavors certainly dont render it undrinkable.

BTW, Cest what cask beers are very cloudy (do they even use finings?).

 832 characters

first ← prev | 1-25 | 26-50  | nextlast
Al's Cask Ale from C'est What?
Beer rating: 3.86 out of 5 with 31 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.