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Stone Pale Ale | Stone Brewing

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very good
984 Reviews
Stone Pale AleStone Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Stone Brewing
California, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.40%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by kbub6f on 06-23-2001

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

For Trade:
User Reviews
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Reviews: 984 | Ratings: 2,713
Photo of Wasatch
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a clear golden/amber color, some carbonation, nice creamy tan head which sticks around, tons of lacing afterwards. Scents of hops, malts, and citrus. Taste of bitter hops, and malts. There is a nice dry sweetness aftertaste. Medium body. Very drinkable. Another strong offering from Stone.

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Photo of tone77
3.21/5  rDev -17.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Poured from a brown 12 oz. bottle. Has a cloudy auburn color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is dominated by piney hops. Taste is a hop bomb. Significant bitterness throughout, no balance to speak of. Feels medium bodied and very bitter in the mouth and overall is a mediocre beer.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
3.64/5  rDev -6.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A nice, slightly hazy, copper color. Pours with a dense white head. Not as aromatic as I was hoping. There is a nice bitterness up front, as I take my first sip, it is accompanied by some biscuit - malty notes. There seems to be a lot of complexity missing here. A straight forward pale ale with not real defining characteristics. It is not balanced enough to work on a subtle level. It is certainly bitter, fairly clean flavors (light fruit, malt and some hoppy flavor contributions). Seems to be missing that certain Stone 'pizzazz'. Overall a decent beer, but I was hoping for something with a bit more definition. I need to see if I can get a known fresh bottle of this, to see if perhaps this is just past it's prime.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
4.13/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A. A sexy looking beer poured from a tap into a pint glass. A nice tan head forms and provides a nice lace.

S. The trademark Stone barley and hops style.

T. A nicely balanced pale ale. Sweet malts bordering on the fruity side with ample hops. A good tasting brew.

M. Medium to full bodied. Smooth and delicious.

D. Very good here. The ABV is appropriate for sessions and this is indeed a beer worth seeking out.

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Photo of plaid75
3.83/5  rDev -1.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a dark copper hazy copper hue with a one finger creamy white head. There was good retention and lacing.

The smell featured an upfront whiff of oily hop that was quickly overtaken by a solid caramel aroma.

The taste was very well balanced and consisted of a husky sweet caramel malt with a drying and slightly spicy citrus hop. Soft doughy finish.

The mouthfeel was toward the thin side with a dry finish.

Overall a tasty and well balanced APA.

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Photo of biegaman
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sun blistered clementine with a modest but pronounced bed of white lint raised above its surface. The tone isn't exactly pale, it's rather dense and transparency is severed substantially. Little bubbles result from the slightest agitations. This shares much more resemblance to traditional pale ales than most modern offerings that share the name.

Assertive, bitter hops cry out for as much attention as their toasted malty counterpart. My nose seems to give more credit to the malty scents of toasted rye bread and broiled butterscotch. The hops contribute a fair bit of pungency to the bouquet with very earthy, somewhat plant-like tones. The zesty citrus is kept to a minimum but not excused altogether.

Those same flavours reside in the taste as well - wild flowers and honeysuckle tossed in with a variety of toasted bread loafs and topped up with caramel drizzle. It's versatile in that it could qualify for easy, mindless drinking although there's enough thought put into the recipe that it wouldn't be an entirely senseless effort to take the time and reflect on it.

As is virtually always the case, the use of only barley, hops, water and yeast proves to be a rewarding one. There is no unpleasantness, no lingering astringency, no short-changing of bitter hops or sweet malts. Although I'm unsure of exactly how youthful this bottle is, I've had the beer fresh on tap and remember it being considerably more zestful and hoppy.

I'm almost tired of giving Stone constant validation for making kick-ass beer; that's just something I've come to expect of them. I think their Pale Ale speaks volumes for the brewery which promotes itself on making big and bold products. The fact that they can still offer something mild and balanced proves the brewer is just as talented as he is arrogant.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.01/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz. bomber

A: Pours almost a blood-red with a thick creamy head, looks almost like a nitro-tap from the bottle, very appealing.

S: Faint hints of malt, with some robust hops, citrus.

T: Malt dominates at first but is balanced with typical West coast hop character, pine and citrus.

M: Creamy, medium-bodied, well balanced.

D: Very good, it is one of Stone's smaller beers, I was expecting a bit more hop character, but overall, it was a very good session brew.

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Photo of Zorro
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours a hazy copper colored brew.

Smell is clean with lots of malt in the smell, faint tea aroma.

Taste is sweet and very hoppy, but not so much so that it is only a one flavor beer like Arrogant Bastard. Nice malt flavor and a bit spicy, sharp bitterness finishes the flavor. Faint citrus flavors and tea are also in this one.

Mouthfeel is good.

A strong but drinkable brew.

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Photo of Georgiabeer
3.85/5  rDev -1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours orange amber with a fairly short head that fades quickly to almost nothing. Smells a bit of juicyfruit, light citrus, wax, and some sweet malt. Taste is similar. Quite juicy and with quite a bit of malt. Lack the graininess that is sometimes found in pale ales. Fairly lightly hopped, and the sweet malt more than balances against the light citrusy hops. Smooth and easily drinkable.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.7/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

Appearance: somewhat cloudy deep orange-gold with a relatively thin head despite a vigorous pour.

Smell: sweet and malty with relatively little hop character, but not bad.

Taste: very malty; toasty, biscuity, bready, but not bad. Not at all what I was expecting; West Coast pale ales tend to be pretty hoppy in my experience, and coming from Stone I expected some seriously luscious lupulin, though there are some muted hops and a nice little bitterness. It was not what I was expecting, but as I drink it it grows on me; in the end it's not too bad.

Mouthfeel: medium body and, while not highly carbonated, the carbonation present is well-integrated and lends a nice creaminess to the mouthfee.

Drinkability: a good beer, but rather sweet for my taste, especially in this style. I'm sure this would be great paired with something unctuous like a steak or bacon.

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Photo of Kelp
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A hazy yellowish color with a decent amount of head to the beer. A nice white head with a bit of lacing left behind.

Floral hops smell dominate some citrus smells to it mild grapefruit. A slight malt smell on the end.

A hoppy, bitter taste to the brew. With a nice dry pinish finish no real lingering tastes to it.

A smooth beer with a medium body and a close to perfect carbonation to it.

This is probably my favorite of stone's pales. I could have a couple of these and enjoy them at a sitting. Not a favorite, but i would snub my nose at it.

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Photo of GreesyFizeek
4.14/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

On tap The Village Tavern in Hammondsport, NY.

Pours a clear copper amber, with a 2 inch head, and really good thick lacing down the glass.

Smells quite hoppy, but slightly metallic. Lots of citrus zest, grapefruit and pine.

The taste is similar. The metallicness is there in the flavor too, but it's not that distracting. Fresh, clean, crisp hop flavor here, with only a little bit of sweet malt that makes the hops taste like sugar-coated grapefruit.

Medium bodied, crisp, clean, dry mouthfeel. Great mouthfeel, almost silky.

This is one of the original Stone beers, and it's still impressive.

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Photo of HopHead84
3.9/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5


On tap at Stone.

A: Dark amber with a respectable beige head. The lacing and retention are also worthy of respect.

S: Caramel and biscuity malt, with notes of pine, orange, and grapefruit. Gives the impression of balance and finesse. Not a typical hop bomb of a Pale Ale you'd find around here.

T: Malt presence is biscuity and slightly toasted with some caramel notes. Hop profile is reminiscent of orange and pine. The flavor is well balanced, with a lower moderate bitterness. Smooth balanced finish.

M: Light medium in body with moderate draft carbonation. Mouthfeel is dry, smooth, and sticky.

Overall: A quality Pale Ale that leans ever so slightly in the direction of the hops.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.5/5  rDev -10%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

On tap at Monk's Kettle, San Francisco.

Pours a surprisingly dark copper, amber colour, with a decently thick head of white foam. Some lacing, but the head collapses to a film.

Nose is disappointingly weak, with some muted resinous hops and a slight caramel malt sweetness. Not a huge amount overall, but what it has is pleasant enough.

Taste is similar - certainly not the hop level I expect from an APA (for example Sierra Nevada Pale), but with a slight bite of bitterness on the back, and a rounded caramel malt flavour. Some light astringency. Mouthfeel is carbonated, but not overtly.

It's a pretty tame beer this one. In comparison to most "American" style pale ales made in Australia, it's certainly lacking in hop character - it's also lacking in character compared to some of the other American examples I've had. Little Creatures tastes more like an IPA in comparison, for example. But it's drinkable enough. Just not particularly exciting.

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Photo of corby112
4.23/5  rDev +8.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Pours a clear dark amber color with golden orange hues when held to a light source. Frothy 2 finger beige head that slowly receeds into a lasting cap leaving sporadic lacing.

Citrus floral hop aroma with a nice malty butterscotch backbone. Hints of lemon peel, grapefruit, pine and caramel malt.

Very hop forward for a pale ale. Crisp floral citrus hops with lots of lemon peel, grapefruit and a nice caramel malt backbone. The malt presence is pretty prominent for the style as well. Crisp and quaffable with a slight pine dry hoppy finish.

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Photo of barleywinefiend
4/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap at Daily Pint
Poured a nice yellow with a thin white head. Nose was malty, with a mix of English malts and american hops. Taste was a very fresh and floral tasting pale ale. Nice malty presence, English malts were tart,sweet and itter not overwhelming like Dales Pale Ale. A good tasting Pale.

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Photo of beerthulhu
4.1/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: Poured a beautiful orange-bronze with a slight 1 finger, creamy dirty beige head that despite its small nature retained pretty well. A nice thick, lustrious sheet lacing was left behind down the walls of the glass from such a small initial head. Visible carbonation was strong and aggressive at the pour but quickly gave way to a light-medium state soon after.

S: nice dry and pine, with some sweet dried caramel.

T: The initial flavor yielded a spicy, flowery hop bite balanced beautifully by a rich caramel sweetness. Some sticky sweet pine resin, pink grapefruit with a spicy hoppiness gives this a great sweet-n-spicy flavor. The finish is spicy and flowery and lingers just enough to appreciate and leave you wanting more on the next sip. A classic example by all means.

M: medium-full with a nice bittering hoppiness of grapefruit.

D: Drinkability is damm good and tasty and really enjoyed this one. A great sweet-n-spicy drink that is case worthy by all means and one I could enjoy all night.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
3.4/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

(Served in an American pint glass)

A- This beer has a warm light copper clear body with a thick creamy head that last and last. There is a strong carbonation of tiny bubbles.

S- This beer has a light dry toasted malt note with a finish of pine hops. The hops are soft and balance the malt. This is very atypical for stone.

T- The soft flavor of marshmallows and pale malt has a light tartness to the hops that develop into a pungent bitterness at the finish. The hops have a light pine note when it warms a bit.

M- This beer has a medium-light mouthfeel with a creamy texture that last as long as the head does.

D- This beer has a pretty light flavor with a soft hops flavor. There isn’t much depth to the hops and the malt is pretty light aswell.

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Photo of akorsak
3.55/5  rDev -8.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A 12 oz bottle from a trade with Phatz.

A: The pale ale has a robust color, a dark amber that has equal parts red and orange. The head is thick and, from initial appearances, laces nicely in the glass.

S: The overwhelming aroma is grainy, cereal malts, slightly bready. There is a hint of hoppiness underlying those malts.

T: The ale is heavy on the cereal malts, showing off a grainy, liquid bread that has a fairly short finish. There is a small hop presence but it struggles to overcome the malts. Unfortunately, I find that neither one really stands out very well.

M: The mouthfeel is fairly nondescript, showing off the muted flavor of a pale ale.

D: This is Stone's least memorable brew, in my opinion. It seems like they do best when pushing the boundaries rather than fitting in.

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Photo of beertunes
3.4/5  rDev -12.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Served in straight pint glass. Poured a light amber color with about an inch of just off-white head that had good retention, but minimal lacing. This beer was a little too dark to be "Pale".

A surprisingly malty aroma had a pleasant twinge of hops at the back. The flavor was more hop forward than the scent had led me to expect. There was bittering hop on the finish that balanced the slightly sweet malt on the front.

The body was slightly thinner than I expected but still enjoyable. This is a very drinkable beer, having more than a couple would be easy enough.

Overall, a very pleasant and enjoyable beer. This beer falls into the trap a lot of brews in this style fall into, being more of an "IPA lite", rather than just being happy as itself. Perhaps this is to be expected in a beer by Arrogant brewers.

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Photo of cjgator3
3.88/5  rDev -0.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on-tap at The Yard House in San Diego.

A- Pours a dark copper color with a nice off-white head. This one is a lot darker in color than most Pale Ale's.

S- The is some malt and citrusy hops with a touch of caramel.

T- The taste starts out malty with the hops coming in to spice up the finish.

M- Very nice malty mouthfeel with a good amount of carbonation.

D- Very drinkable, a really nice Pale Ale to sit around and drink a few pints in one sitting.

Overall, Stone Pale Ale is another solid beer from this outstanding brewery. Recommended.

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Photo of Bitterbill
4.2/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Purchased as part of a mixed 6pack from Wilbur's Liquors in Ft Collins.

This pours from 12oz bottle a hazy orange amber with a medium sized head of foam that dissipated quickly leaving a few islands and it has some nice lacing.

The smell is on the sweet side. I get caramel malt with just a touch of hops and some fruit.

The taste on first sip has some good malty sweetness up front with a solid backbone of hop bitterness that comes in about midway through and dominates the finish but it's not overly aggressive and I'm liking it. A few more sips in and I'm beginning to realize that this APA is all about balance and I start to notice a fruitiness in the flavour that I mentioned in the nose. Maybe cherry? Dang, this is certainly a drinkable example of the style and now I wish I had bought at least a 6pack. Oh well, I can cure that on my next trip to the Fort. ;^)

Bottom line: This a great APA that I can highly recommend. See some grab some.

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Photo of Haybeerman
4.15/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Bright, clear copper color. Poured a 2 finger tan head that dissipated to an even skim. Laced in rings.

S: Light floral hops and some fruity esters. Citrus and a little roasted malt.

T: Esters more prominent than in nose. Transitions quickly to roasted malts. Well-balanced bitter finish.

M: Medium bodied. Moderate carbonation. Again, balance is the hallmark.

D: Very sessionable APA. No one aspect out of balance, but not what I'd call full flavored.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.63/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz Bottle

Appearance - The beer pours a slightly hazy amber/orange colour with a large size creamy beige coloured head. There is some very nice spider web lacing and the head lasted for around 5 minutes before it was gone.

Smell - malts, caramel, hops, grapefruit

Taste & Mouth - There is an average amount of carbonation on the tongue and the beer has a pretty mellow taste. There are lots of malts mixed with caramel and some light hops. The beer also has a cookie like taste and I picked up on notes of grapefruit and oranges and some pine. It finishes with a malty slightly hop-bitter aftertaste.

Drink - I enjoyed this beer more as it neared room temperature. It is an easy drinking version of Stones IPA, very sessionable. Good.. not great.

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Photo of ppoitras
3.75/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12ozer bought as a single from Julio's, Westboro, MA.

Poured into a Samuel Adam Boston Lager glass, formed a 1/2" beige head over the cloudy reddish amber brew. Head lasts, and leaves hearty sticky lacing. Aroma is balanced, with toasty malt and lightly piney hops. Taste is the same biscuity malts sweetness upfront, and citrusy hops in the middle and on through the close. Not as balanced as the nose, more towards the hops here. Mouthfeel is not as smooth as I hoped, with overall drinkability being pretty good. Not my favorite Stone, but not a bad one either.

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Stone Pale Ale from Stone Brewing
3.89 out of 5 based on 2,713 ratings.
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