Xtra-Citra Pale Ale
Surly Brewing Company

Xtra-Citra Pale AleXtra-Citra Pale Ale
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Pale Ale - American
Ranked #326
Ranked #10,397
3.96 | pDev: 9.09%
Surly Brewing Company
Minnesota, United States
Very Good
Xtra-Citra Pale AleXtra-Citra Pale Ale
Notes: You'd think hops in the bright sunshine would make us happy, but you'd be wrong. It just makes us Xtra-Surly. This bright colored session ale Xplodes with Citra hop flavor and aroma, in a deliciously drinkable brew.
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Reviews: 166 | Ratings: 662 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of KTCamm
KTCamm from New Jersey

3.68/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12/22/20...golden bright with patchy heavy foam. Faint malt smell, slight citrus. Sharp citrus bitter open. Peppy. Citra hops pop out. Juicy! And quite smooth. Nice.

Dec 28, 2020
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daliandragon from Maryland

4.09/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

As others have said, this is really good for what it is. This is a low abv, high taste pale ale with a burst of citrus and plenty of carbonation. Not a ton of substance but just the thing in the right situation. I wish I had this in the summer but this is a perfect outside beer. It does make me burp a lot.

Nov 27, 2020
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mickyge from Massachusetts

3.74/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured into a can glass yields finger sized fluffy and quickly dissipating head. Opaque golden color
Aroma of grapefruit guava and papaya
Taste is mainly grapefruit and citrus rind and slight stone fruit
Mouthfeel is astringent and tingles the palate. Medium to low carbonation
Overall I feel it’s fairly light and slightly refreshing, if you are into dry slightly bitter
finishing beer this is it.

Nov 08, 2020
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DrDemento456 from Pennsylvania

4.25/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Really sad to see these guys closing especially since I started seeing more of their beers as of late. Great pale ale tons of flavor smooth hop presence and nice session able ABV. Not sure how much I paid but it was worth it. Still like zombie dust a bit more though but this one comes in pounders.

Nov 04, 2020
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TedHead from Illinois

3.9/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Pours a slightly darker amber with a white head that lines the glass as you drink it. Smells incredibly fruity. Smells of citrus peels, pineapple, mango and guava are apparent. Taste flows the nose but is cut by a fair amount of bitterness. This one goes down smoothly. Overall pretty good.

Oct 29, 2020
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MikeWard from Pennsylvania

3.94/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz can into a pint glass. Canned 6/12/20, so less than 4 months old.

Looks good in the glass, slightly hazy yellow body. An initial big foamy head shrinks to a ring and faint covering. No real lacing.

Faintly citrus aroma.

On tasting, it's an aggressive pale ale, loaded with citra hops giving a bitter grapefruit peel taste. Quite bitey.

Mouth medium, finish bitter grapefruit, also mouth watering.

Overall, a casual mouthful produces a wide awakening strong citra hit. Fresh off the line, this must be a bomb. Enjoyed this pale ale.

Oct 02, 2020
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mactrail from Washington

3.4/5  rDev -14.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Clear pale yellow brew with adequate foam in the St. Bernardus globe. Very light and tangy with a generous dose of hops. Quite fragrant with lemon and grapefruit. Zingy carbonation and some flavors of lime rind and club soda pretty much sum it up.

While I don't care much for the "session IPA" style, this is a better than average example. The insistent hot and resiny taste with an unforgiving bitterness seems like the Surly signature, but not my cup of tea. Still, it's a clean and well made item for sloshing down but hopefully with something to munch on. From the 16 oz can purchased on the West Coast. Canned on 08/06/20.

Sep 19, 2020
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metter98 from New York

4.01/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

A: The beer is hazy light yellow in color and has a light amount of visible carbonation. It poured with a short white head that left a narrow collar around the edge and some lacing down the sides of the glass.
S: Moderately strong aromas of gooseberries are present in the nose.
T: The taste follows the smell and has moderate flavors of gooseberries along with a light to moderate amount of associated bitterness.
M: It feels light- to medium-bodied and very crisp on the palate with a moderate amount of carbonation.
O: This beer has a heavy dose of Citra hops in the smell and taste - the level you would expect from an IPA - but it has the drinkability of an APA.

Serving type: can

Sep 13, 2020
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Korbynlehr from Kentucky

4.21/5  rDev +6.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Nice dry IPA. Tastes a lot like another beer from another brewer, except not as much hop tones in this one. Good beer that I was hopeful it would be better.

Sep 08, 2020
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minterro from Colorado

4.02/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Canned: 08/05/20; consumed: 09/01/20

A&S: Pours huge 2 fingers fizzy white head that hangs around a little. Lively slightly hazy pale yellow beer. Initially, the aroma was pretty pungent citrus hops, however, this fade quickly as it warms, but then, it comes back later. The warmer aroma is grassy

T&M: Taste mostly consists of earthy citrus hops. Pale cereal malts. More bitterness in the finish than I expect, but it is welcomed in this brew. Interesting herbal tones in the finish as well. Light watery body, refreshing, tingly carbonation.

Overall: Wouldn't buy it again. There are plenty of good options in the pale ale style, nothing wrong with this one, but I like other options over it. Probably best for a warm summer BBQ.

Sep 02, 2020
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BEERchitect from Kentucky

3.77/5  rDev -4.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Light, crisp and crushable to its core, the brewers of Surly have this big idea by thinking small. With all the balance, flavor and aroma of Pale Ale, they put the Citra hop to work to create a beer that's bigger than the sum of its smaller parts.

Light gold and cast in a mild haze, Xtra-Citra Pale Ale builds an illustrious froth with a tease of citrus, grain, bread and herb as its light and racy perfume graces the nose. But as the first sip reveals a crisp and concise maltiness, hints of granola, honey and a light toasty nuttiness decorates the early palate.

Its light maltiness starts to fade as soon as it hits the middle palate. But a rise of the Citra hops reveal a radiant and tangy under ripened orange flavor along with the lightness of pink grapefruit, green mango and papaya. But trending from fruity to herbal, the taste of fruit peels, light hemp and tea bring about a moderate bitterness to ensure balance and drinkability.

Medium light in body, the beer's lighter flavor profile also leads to a lighter mouthfeel that brings a dry substrate to the finish and with a fine grassy and herbal aftertaste with hints of verbena, sassafras and orange zest once more.

Aug 29, 2020
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angrybabboon from Massachusetts

3.73/5  rDev -5.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Consumed 8/25/20

Golden yellow with some hints of orange, mostly clear, pours with a medium size white head that fades to a wispy cap
Nice amount of Citra, as the name would suggest, with its trademark citrus notes including orange, grapefruit, and a twist of lime, some hints of pine (unclear if this is just Citra), medium amount of bitterness, super pale and mostly nonexistent malts, could possibly pass for a bizarre seltzer like many "session IPAs" that were everywhere just a few years ago
Light body, medium carbonation, crisp

To put it in a way that not many would understand, this does not really taste like a beer from Surly. It's too boring and it's too cookie-cutter. It's easy to drink and there's nothing really wrong with the flavor, but it's oddly mild for something even with such a low ABV.

Aug 25, 2020
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jimmah120 from Minnesota

4.2/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz can, about a month old. Surprised to see I hadn't written up this sucker

Very hazy orange-yellow, head fades to nothing even with an aggro pour. Smells great, typical citra "hop's armpit" funk. Feels and drinks like a beer at least 1.0% ABV higher. It's noticeably thin, but not thin on flavor. Stanky hop water with light cracker malts

I'm not huge on Surly beer these days (check out War Pigs brewing and the history...), but this beer is a modern marvel. If you want to keep it lighter but love it hoppy - this is your beer

Aug 22, 2020
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dbrauneis from North Carolina

3.98/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

A: Pours a veyr lightly hazy pale golden honey in color with moderate amounts of active visible carbonation rising quickly from the bottom of the glass and moderate pale golden yellow + bright yellow + pale orange colored highlights. The beer has a two finger tall dense sudsy foamy light beige head that reduces to a handful of small patches of thin film surrounded by a large patch of slightly mottled very thin film covering the remainder of the surface of the beer and a thin ring at the edges of the glass. Light to moderate amounts of lacing are observed.

S: Slightly stronger than moderate aromas of citrus/grapefruit pith + citrus/orange rind + citrus/grapefruit hops as well as a light aroma of pine hops over the top of light to moderate aromas of cracker + toasted + grainy malts with a light hint of grainy sweetness.

T: Upfront there are light to moderate flavors of cracker + toasted + grainy malts with a light hint of grainy sweetness. That is followed by slightly stronger than moderate flavors of citrus/grapefruit pith + citrus/orange rind + citrus/grapefruit hops as well as a light aroma of pine hops which impart a light to moderate amount of lingering aggressive bitterness.

M: Slightly heavier than light bodied with moderate amounts of carbonation. Slightly crisp initially with a hint of dryness in the finish.

O: Easy to drink with well hidden alcohol and a pleasantly light + crisp mouthfeel. Refreshing and enjoyable with decent aggressive bitterness + citrus hop presence.

Aug 05, 2020
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patre_tim from Thailand

4.06/5  rDev +2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Yellow jello with medium carbonation and 4 fingers of white head.

Smells like green leaf, dank herbs and lemon.

Tastes of big dank leaf, and yellow jello.

Medium light body with moderate carbonation.

Got it in Waynesville, NC, drinking it in Redding California, July 18th 2020. Extremely flavourful for a light beer.

Jul 19, 2020
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RaulMondesi from California

4.24/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Straight up, this one is on the level. You know that picture they sell at IKEA, the one with the dudes eating lunch at the 80th floor of a newly constructed skyscraper? Yeah, this beer is it. It’s straight up composed like Mohammed Ali in the 8th round. Yes. It’s that good. Hella this and hella that!

Get it!

Jul 10, 2020
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roan22 from New Jersey

4.24/5  rDev +7.1%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Lovely bright clear color. Very hoppy beer but light bodied and easy to drink. Nice bitterness. I had two poolside on a 90 degree afternoon and the beer was just perfect with some light snacking.

Jul 06, 2020
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Franziskaner from Missouri

4.02/5  rDev +1.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Straw yellow in color with a light haziness. There’s a fingernail of off white on top. The aroma is of lemon and faint citrus. I’m tasting a lot of lemon with citrus accents. The mouth is light and smooth.

Jun 27, 2020
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PopEyeFromMN from Minnesota

1.31/5  rDev -66.9%
look: 2 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

This is the worst (non-sour) beer I've ever had. It smells like my arm-pit after a really good work out and tastes exactly how body odor would taste if you could somehow bottle it. For fans of Malort and other things people only like ironically.

Mar 15, 2020
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MonDak_Joe1953 from Minnesota

3.65/5  rDev -7.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz can. Stamped canning date is '12/11/19'.
Less than clear, pale gold colored body. One big finger of white head, which reduces to a thin cap. Leaves some scattered areas of lacing.
Aroma of lemon, orange, and a bit of pine.
Taste is lemon, lime, orange, with a very slight bitter pine note towards the end.
Thinner mouth feel, with a slight soapy texture. Excellent carbonation.
Flavors are fit for a session pale ale. Allows for rapid consumption, and multiple rounds. No need to savor this beer.

Jan 22, 2020
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GuyFawkes from Illinois

4/5  rDev +1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Canned 3/22/16; drank 5/8/16 @ the Yarchives.

Cloudy yellow/orange appearance.

A violent pour yielded a big, noisy white head; strong, frothy lace.

Lemon, lime & dry wheat notes in the nose.

Medium thin mouthfeel.

Lemon, mild orange citrus & faint lime flavors up front; dry wheat notes on the finish.

Nice citrus vibes with a dry bite for balance; an enjoyable session brew. I'd have another...

Jan 01, 2020
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MacBrewin from Illinois

1/5  rDev -74.7%
look: 1 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Surly has a new variety pack out. At least it's new to my beer store suddenly, so I bought it even though it has no date (big mistake).
Golden yellow color, clear. Smells like nothing. Tastes like nothing. Thin mouth feel.
Can dated 6-25-19. Consumed 10-16-19. No wonder it tastes like nothing, it's almost 4 months old. If Surly had the integrity to date the variety pack I'd have know this ipa was old, but since they didn't I still feel like I should review it as though it's a fresh beer. If I was looking for a flavorless, odorless, thin beer, I'd have a Budweiser. It seems stability is not Xtra citra's strong suit. This experience has left me less than enthusiastic about trying it fresh.

Oct 17, 2019
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BigGold from Mississippi

3.84/5  rDev -3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Had poured from pint can, purchased at Target No. 1, Roseville, MN, bottom stamped “CANNED ON 07/10/19,” into nonic pint.

Nice head and lace, and interesting if not big fruit and light malt aroma, Xtra-citra is a sessionable APA with at least as much flavor as you would expect in a 4.50 beer.

Sep 26, 2019
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--Dom-- from Missouri

4.03/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

For a session hoppy beer? In my opinion it’s got more flavor than anything else out there. So if that’s what we’re judging here it’s way ahead of the crowd. I really like it, I do. I feel like they could leave everything the same, and just dial in a little more juice/residual sweetness with a less attenuative yeast, or maybe tweak mash temp etc. it could compete with some of the world class ipa’s out there. More juice, less bitter rind, this would kill the game.

Sep 19, 2019
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wmscottsimpsonjr from Missouri

3.76/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Yellow gold with 2+ finger foamy head. Smells of mango, orange, lime, lychee, pineapple, floral, bit of pine with a hint of malt. Bready malt is surprisingly noticeable in the flavor, quite nice. There's a kind of dirty hop flavor and bitterness, kind of resiny and pinesol-y and leaving an aftertaste. This would be a really good beer if it was bittered differently. Overall, moderately bitter. Very dry with high carbonation.

Sep 14, 2019
Xtra-Citra Pale Ale from Surly Brewing Company
Beer rating: 89 out of 100 with 662 ratings