Chamberlain Pale Ale
Shipyard Brewing Company

Chamberlain Pale AleChamberlain Pale Ale
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Pale Ale - English
Ranked #194
Ranked #45,393
3.56 | pDev: 13.76%
Shipyard Brewing Company
Maine, United States
Chamberlain Pale AleChamberlain Pale Ale
Reviews: 168 | Ratings: 350 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Reviews by TheLongBeachBum:
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TheLongBeachBum from California

2.19/5  rDev -38.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

Presentation: Bomber. Single label wraps the main body. Dark green background hosts an oval which contains a portrait of Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain. Color coded dark blue, red & white crown cap. The reverse of the label describes the background to the referenced “Chamberlain”, which is useful because as a Brit I never even heard of the dude. Described as a “Pale Ale”, no strength or freshness date listed.

Appearance: Darkened copper amber body with a lovely crystal lucidity. Decent sized creamy vanilla colored head that rises quickly and forms a nice finger thick head. Rolling carbonation with minimal lacing.

Nose: Well there the good start comes to a grinding halt. This one has a strange nose on it. It smells cold, chilled and stark, like frozen food that is well past its Best Before date….you pull it out of the back of the freezer and it has that stinky odor which is repressed, you know it’s off, but the low temperature is polite in restraining the degree of how bad this one really is. Mild sweet toffee malts and some caramel blend with bubble bath and soapy tit wanks…..not good.

Taste: Right out of the stalls this one is extremely bland when chilled, in short it sucks. Nothing more than watered down Iced-Tea, and not even Lipton’s at that!!! The aftertaste reminded me of the feeling of quickly eating an Ice Pop (I think that is Popsicle in the US). Freezer burn on the tongue with a shimmering hint of flavor. Defrosted flavors are not much better. Hints of lemon and tannins as it warms, but the flavors are shockingly flaccid.

Mouthfeel: Insipid, slack, loose, thin and watery… is just like Iced Tea in fact. Erm….yep, that’s it.

Drinkability: A “Libational Anal Glaucoma”…..i.e. I just don’t see my Ass drinking this one …last third was a drain pour. Shockingly easy to stick down the drain.

Overall: When I fist picked this one up, being a Brit, I knew not of Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, the Civil War hero, moreover I thought of an engrained infamous black & white image of the then UK Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain alighting an aircraft waving a piece of paper, the paper was his shambles of an effort to stave off WW2, namely the Munich Agreement. Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain was a man of action it seemed, a fighter, as deserved hero - Neville Chamberlain was a sad pathetic excuse of a leader, a weak and wishy-washy stand-in who wanted to avoid conflict at all costs……..thankfully the UK ditched Neville Chamberlain in May 1940, just in time for he was ill-defined, weak and way out of his depth….they replaced him with the enigmatic Winston Churchill, a man borne of his time……somehow I feel the same about this brew, it needs to be ditched in favor of something stronger…..oh look I have an Okocim Porter….yep that’ll do.

Utter crap. Not befitting of such a Civil War Hero IMVHO. Bland and Forgetful…..just like Neville Chamberlain in fact….history will not be kind to this beer either I feel, but rightly so.


Sep 20, 2005
More User Reviews:
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Hibernator from Massachusetts

3.92/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I had this out of a 12 oz brown bottle and served in an imperial pint glass. Best before date clearly notched for June 2005.

I've had this before from a 22 oz brown bottle from the brewery. This time around, I was able to get this beer in the Shipyard Captain's Collection 12 pack. Probably the best option in there.

Whiffs of butterscotch, sweet malts, heavy cream and a tad of hops in the background.

Pours a nice copper color with a great fluffy head. Chewy, buttery malt mouthfeel. Classic Shipyard butter diacetyl flavors. Slight fruity profile mixed in as well. There is also a nice hoppy presence. Very smooth and drinkable. I enjoy this beer when it's available.

Jan 09, 2005
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SpongeKA from Texas

3.2/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3

Nov 11, 2015
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geexploitation from Indiana

3.62/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours a light, reddish amber with gold highlights and no head. Aromas are predominantly hoppy, with lemony metals showing, and some biscuity malts backing things up. On the palate, bitterness is substantial first-off, with lots of metallic flavors from the hops coming through at the mid-palate. The bitterness of the hops is expertly balanced by the malt, though, in spite of the fact that the malt doesn't contribute much aside from a clover honey in tea kind of sweetness. Mouthfeel is a bit overcarbonated, but otherwise typical. Overall, this is a decent, drinkable amber ale. Nothing special, but certainly something that I could order a few times.

Sep 07, 2007
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KevMo84 from California

4.25/5  rDev +19.4%

Jun 08, 2014
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ChainGangGuy from Georgia

3.4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.5

Appearance: Light, clear brown body with a small, fizzy ivory-colored head.

Smell: Ringwood aroma with light, buttery notes. Faint caramel. Herbal hop character.

Taste: Light caramel maltiness with a hint of butter. The hops impart flavors of citrus and herbs. Mild, lingering bitterness emphasized by the prickly carbonation on the finish.

Mouthfeel: Medium-bodied. Moderate carbonation.

Drinkability: Union General Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain was a badass. This beer, not so much.

Oct 14, 2007
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Dudon from Maine

3.5/5  rDev -1.7%

May 13, 2014
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plaid75 from New York

3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On drat at The Inn on Peaks Island, Portland, Maine.

Poured a medium copper hue with a one finger foamy white head. There was good retention and good lacing.

The smell featured a flowery hop with a moderate grainy malt.

The taste was malt driven with highlights of grassy hops.

The mouthfeel was toward the fuller side of the style.

Overall a good APA.

Jul 21, 2010
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TTTBeer from Massachusetts

3.75/5  rDev +5.3%

Aug 05, 2014
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stephendedalus from Pennsylvania

3.9/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked this up at a counry store in Vermont -- I had never heard of it (but of course was familar with Shipyard), so I was curious as to what I might encounter. Here's the story:

Excellent head and lacing -- very light and pleasing; long lasting. Nice pale color. Moderate carbonation. Nice whif of maltiness with a little bit of hop spiciness. What sold this brew, however, is the taste. Very nice and sweet malt signature with appropriate accompanying hops. A warning, however: if you are a "hophead" and are looking for a very hoppy pale ale, this beer might not be for you. That said, this is a very drinkable beer -- definitely could be a session beer. Almost feels like a "throwback" beer, a la Brooklyn's "Pennant Ale." A very nice and refreshing beer.

Jun 24, 2005
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snowmageddon from Massachusetts

3.8/5  rDev +6.7%

Nov 28, 2014
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SaCkErZ9 from South Carolina

3.28/5  rDev -7.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Best before date of Sept 08; oops. Pours from a 12oz bottle into a pint glass. Emerges light tan/ sweet tea in color with a one finger sized head. Some lacing and a bit of chill haze.

Aroma wasnt very hoppy at all. It really smelled almost like a brown ale. Slightly sweet and biscuity grainy as well. Not even a touch of hops in this one. Perhaps the age has really done this one in.

Nice flavor, but not APA flavor. More in the amber ale range. More of the biscuit (this beer has a lot of biscuit it seems) and graininess. Again, not much hops. I guess the hop bitterness adds some balance because this one is only slightly sweet.

Thin on the tongue and crisp. Not bad I guess. Grainy and biscuity and not at all like an APA. Easy drinker. I will pass in the future.

Jan 08, 2009
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lost_sailor from Massachusetts

4/5  rDev +12.4%

May 24, 2014
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BuckSpin from Maine

3.4/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Presentation: 12oz bottle (Best By of 1/08) in a classic conical pint

Poured with a gurgle and smooth. Sweet citrus on the nose, nicely hopped, a little sharp, soft pine, subtle grapefruit, hard rock candy. As it warms the hops fade and slightly caramelized malts take the point. Head was a finger's worth of mixed blanched almond foam that faded quickly to a sheen that covered the top. A brassy, warm, crystal clear copper tea best describes the body (what is it with Shipyard and orangish beer?) with a steady parade of slow bubbles sliding up thru it.

Very light on the tongue, a little creamy, mildly hopped and mildly bitter, malts are in the background and slightly earthy. Its a little too light up front for me. There are some things going on, but everything is subdued...too subdued. Someone needs to stand up & take charge. If a roomful of followers with no leaders had a "taste", this is it.

Finally, someone steps up on the palate as the hop bitters take charge over a semi-dry floor of flattened, stony malts. There is a slight orange rind quality as it fades away, finishing with bitters, a little leather, unfortunately a filmy, slightly chalky & slate like coating that leaves a chewiness that is not very pleasing.

This was very easy to drink, but its quite ironic that a beer named after the Union officer who held the flank at Gettysburg (or everyone would be saying "Y'all" now) is a beer without real direction. There is stuff going on, but no real plan/course of taste action. It tastes confused, again a bitter (pun intended) irony given the namesake. I do think it would benefit greatly with some simple pub fair, and it probably would be very good with such. But alone I think, unless offered one, pass on getting more for myself.

May 08, 2007
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risendragon from New Hampshire

3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Shipyard is a company with which I go back and forth. I love some of their offerings, but others are just plain "blah" (Pumpkinhead, anyone?). This one is a great ale though. Bought today at MB in Hudson, NH.

A- Bronze, very good amber hues, head receded quickly.

S- Fruity at first smell, then the malts kick in. No discernible hop notes.

T- Malty, crisp pear and apple notes, with darker bread notes (think a dark wheat bread) and a slightly bitter finish. Hops again are not noticeable until the aftertaste.

M-Clean and crisp, a bit too dry for my liking though.

O- Good stuff! If you are a fan of crisp pale ales this is a great beer. Very refreshing after a warm day full of household activities!

Jun 08, 2014
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rab53 from Washington

3/5  rDev -15.7%

Dec 07, 2011
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j_hollings13 from Ohio

4.5/5  rDev +26.4%

Jun 19, 2014
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riversider76 from New York

3.88/5  rDev +9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy golden orange with a thin white head. Some retention,and decnt laceing. Aroma is buttery, with fruity hop notes as well. Body is medium with some carbonation. Taste is bready up front, fruity as well. Piney hops in the finish. I like it a lot!

Feb 01, 2009
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ffshore545 from Illinois

3.8/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Mar 03, 2017
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Mebuzzard from Colorado

2.78/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

This was listed on the menu at the restaurant as an IPA. I had my doubts as this place doesn't know beer all that well. Anywho...

Nice light copper/golden pour. Clean and clear with a 1 finger white foam perched on top.

The malty aroma told me this wasn't an IPA (and the label told me). Sweet caramel and a tinge of butteriness. I hope this isn't tainted. From what I've read in the reviews, though, is that the butteriness doesn't go away. Still, the hops are present and slightly fruity. A bit more earthy to me.

Yup, the butter is there. Yuck. I hate that stuff. For an APA I just can't justify it. It's caramel sweetness is tainted by it. The hops just don't live that long. Perhaps I'm overly sensitive to diacetyl, if that's what this is. blah. It's not all that powerful, which allowed me to finish the beer, but it takes a severe hit to taste rating.

Feb 17, 2011
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mthomp081 from Delaware

3.44/5  rDev -3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Jul 04, 2017
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beeroclock from Florida

4.1/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a auburn copper color w/ a nice fluffy white head that lasts. Smells of caramel and maybe some honey with some hop. Tastes slightly sweet with a nice bitter kick to it. The flavor holds on to your tongue and has a slight carbonated hint to it as it goes down. Excellent beer, Shipyard has got to be getting big with the beers they are producing, they are no slouch to the beer scene. 2 thumbs up!

Feb 02, 2007
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Icemann383 from New York

3.75/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Jul 11, 2016
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jettjon from Florida

3.83/5  rDev +7.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the 22 oz bomber into a pint glass, a very attractive, near-transparent amber-golden tint with numerous tiny bubbles coruscating. Smallish head that fades quickly toa solid thin cap fueled by constant carbonation. No lacing. Nose is very bready/yeasty and slightly sour. Taste is mild, with a sweet ale-like character, sweet floral taste like perhaps white grape juice. Flavor character overall is light and moderately fruity, almost like a semi-sweet fruit juice. Quite complex and mellow for a “pale” ale. Semi-viscous, mild, smooth mouth with light carbonation. Drinkability is very good, pretty mellow and smooth.

Overall: A good mellow pale ale, well balanced. Recommended.

Jan 15, 2007
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JeffKowalek from Tennessee

3.25/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

Mar 25, 2017
Chamberlain Pale Ale from Shipyard Brewing Company
Beer rating: 81 out of 100 with 350 ratings