Cumberland Pale Ale | Barrel House Brewing Company

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Cumberland Pale AleCumberland Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Barrel House Brewing Company
Ohio, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.70%

Availability: Rotating

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 09-30-2002

This beer is retired; no longer brewed.

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 62 |  Reviews: 61
Photo of kmpitz2
2.17/5  rDev -39.7%
look: 2 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2

22 oz bomber. The beer is all head. It pours basically an entire glass of head, that settles somewhat slowly to a full coat over top of the brew. After it settles, the brew is a solid copper color with moderate clarity and a modest carbonation whisping off the bottom. The aroms is moderately phenolic and medicinal, with some hints of sweet oranges, and a slightly herbal and peppery hop. I'm not enjoying this. The flavor is sour, with a light orange sweetness and solid phenolics. This reminds me of some of the the flavors I found in their first brew I tried, leading me to believe that this is a systematic issue in the brewery, and not related to batches, therefore I feel it appropriate to review this beer. The aftertaste is astringent bitterness, lacking much in the way of flavor I associate with hop bitter. Mouthfeel is moderate with a very light carbonation. Overall, this one is a disappointment to me. I will give it another shot when I have a chance to see if this bottle is an outlier, as I hope it is.

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Photo of dakid618
2.26/5  rDev -37.2%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Poured from 22oz bottle into pint glass. Tons of soapy head, took me ten minutes to fill my glass. Hazy amber color with some sediment in the bottom of the glass. Smells like a skunked adjunct beer. Taste is way malt heavy and bitter. Medium waxy mouthfeel. Drinkabilty is lacking also. I split this beer with someone and I don't even want to finish my half. Overall a complete letdown.

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Photo of BEERchitect
2.75/5  rDev -23.6%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Though it has been a year since I first tried the Pale, my impresseions of the beer remains the same. This time from the bottle, the beer poured a fizzy carbonated copper, golden color that fails to promise any meaningful body or texture. Flavors allow a metallic / hop flavor to dominate the sweeter malts. Quite solvant-like and grainy on the palate. Though the beer weakens into the finish, it fails to leave any meaningful hop or malt aftertaste. Once again, a beer that struggles for mediocracy.

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Photo of currysage1
2.8/5  rDev -22.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Bottle received as part of the Little Guy BIF, thanks nlmartin!

Look is a hazy burnt orange, topped with a non stop flow of volcanic slight off white head, takes forever to sink, so long I had to start in a Harpoon Leviathan snifter and had to also use a imperial pint to help finish the pour.

Smell is of orange kool-aid, dried grass, not much else going on here to be mentioned.

Taste is defintely grassy, almost hay-like, I have to say it reminds me of one of my first extract beers, not that great but drinkable. Unfortunately it seems unbalanced with not much to offer but one dimensional flavors, on the up side this on is much better than the Hefe I've had from them.

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Photo of Bighuge
2.81/5  rDev -21.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Clear copper. Thin off white head. Lace is spotty and distant. Not a lot on the nose. Grundgy malts. Little hops to speak of. Maybe I catch just a bit of an herbal hop presence....if I try real hard. Flavor is so-so. Doesn't have any of those bright hop tones I expect in an APA. But it's fairly agreeable overall in taste. Hops add just a touch of fragrance and a drying aspect. Malts are biscuity in nature....but very light at that. This is kind of a disappointment even though there are no flaws to speak of. Just one of those beers that is blah-blah.

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Photo of giblet
2.85/5  rDev -20.8%
look: 2.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

good beer. not great but good. decent hops but i would like more. lower abv with the lesser hops make this pale ale easy for about anyone to drink. pale ale is my choice in brews but i prefer stronger abv with more hops.

i recomend trying this. it is inexpensive and relatively local.

suckem up and movem out!!!


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Photo of Goliath
2.98/5  rDev -17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear copper color with a one inch off white head. Decent retention and some nice lacing.

The aroma is decent. A nice citrusy hop with a malty backbone.

The taste is ok. A decent hop presence giving mostly pine notes followed by a bit of caramel. It tastes watered down and soapy. A decent bitterness is also available on the finish.

Mouthfeel is medium bodied and moderately carbonated.

Drinkability is moderate. It's certainly a sessionable beer, however the flavor profile seems a bit boring and has some sizeable flaws.

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Photo of beachbum1975
3.03/5  rDev -15.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 2.5

Got this puppy at Jungle Jim's in Fairfield on a beerrun some time in June. No freshness date on the 22 oz bomber.

A: This guy about exploded into my traditional pint glass after a normal pour. I let it sit out about 10 mins after getting it out of the beer fridge. The head on this guy initially poured at about 5 fingers! Fizz bomb. After about a minute, the suds died down leaving an offwhite receeding head that looked like a bubbling pancake - right before you flip it over. After the suds died down a nice ½ chunky off-white head remained, sitting atop a dull yellowish/dark amber brew... Spotty lacing hung from the walls of the glass as well -looks nice now that it's calmed down.

S: Smells of a moderately caramelized malts mixed with a mild and fruity hops trail. A bit of light yeast (like bleached white bread yeast), as well.

T/M: Onto the fun part... Much like the nose - caramel, light molasses and bready yeasts followed by a light and sour hop dribble to finish it off. The aftertaste, like many of this brewer's beers have a lingering copper or metallic aftertaste to me.

I have had this on draught and feel the metallic-notes are less in the bottle format. With the metallic ending, I also pick up on a mild pine pitch lingering that's odd and drying - almost like the taste that lingers in your mouth after you rub up and or lick your spouse's armpit in the heat of the moment. (he he, sorry - couldn't think of a better example - couldn't resist!!!).

Overall, this is a nice light-bodied example of a pale ale with ample carbonation. The dryness factor in the aftertaste kinda turned me off, but it made me crave more of the beer, as I felt very thirsty. Ok, overall.

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Photo of ppoitras
3.08/5  rDev -14.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

22oz bottle obtained via trade with Lewis13 from RB. Thanks for the opportunity...

Poured into an imperial pint glass, formed a 1/2" beige head over the clear amber brew. Head fades at a moderate to fast pace down to a layer of bubbles, and lacing is average. Aroma makes me think of slightly soured fruit puree coupled with sweet malt. Probably doesn't make much sense, but that's what I get. Taste is grainy sweetness upfront, fruity in the middle, coupled with sort of musty hops character. Mouthfeel is okay, and drinkability just suffers from the nose and flavors I noted before. Not something I'd search out again.

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Photo of beerkittycat
3.2/5  rDev -11.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Appearance is amber-orange with a frothy off-white head. Good lacing. Noticeably cloudy. Aroma has some faint citrus and grassy hops plus malt notes of toffee, caramel and graham cracker. Malt takes center stage in the taste here and it's quite heavy on the toffee flavor with notes of chocolate, and graham cracker. Medium-low hop flavors of grass and citrus as well as medium low hop bitterness, too. Finish is a bit on the sweet side but very drinkable. Overall, a decent beer but this tasted much more like an English Pale.

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Photo of ortie
3.25/5  rDev -9.7%

Photo of GreenWBush
3.26/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Another beer to mysteriously show up en masse around the area. Not surprising in that this is Ohio, but its happening in Fort Wayne and the northern Indiana area as well. Quite the marketing push by simple space-shelf manipulation.

From an appearance standpoint, this beer seems cut from the conventional cloth. Shiny pumpkin, slow streaming lines of carbonation. Below a clingy head-cap sits a nice ring.

Nose is grainy, fantly cascaded. Soft, rainwater. Pedestrian, if approachable. Non-descript.

Taste is – again – non-descript. Grains and an unappealing bitterness. My wife disliked this in particular. Nice session potential perhaps, better fresher or on-draft.

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Photo of MuchoCerveza
3.28/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

I didn't know what to expect from this pale ale going into it, and overall it was average. At first smell you can tell that this is not going to be a real strong ale. Even from the smell you could tell it was going to have a somewhat watered down taste.

Taking a big swig and exhaling you could really taste the hops but as soon as you swallow the swig the flavor is gone. I was expecting some aftertaste and lingering flavor, but got none. The watered down taste was definitely there.

The best thing this pale ale had going for it was the fact that it was pretty easy to drink. It went down like a regular light beer but with a bigger kick.

If there are other options to be drank I recommend one of the other options.

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Photo of TheSarge
3.3/5  rDev -8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

A lovely golden dark amber color describes the body, with a bit of haze. Not much in the way of head though. I poured this relatively fast from the 22oz bomber, but it only produced about an inch thick light tan head. There is a significant amount of carbonation in this brew, however. There is ample lacing that lasts all the way through.

This gives off aromas of spiced apples. On the other side, there is a typical citrus appeal to this pale ale as well. The taste is balanced good. It starts off relatively sweet, but finishes with a zap of hops.

It feels a little watery and a little weak. Less water and more hops please.

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Photo of gford217
3.36/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

22oz bomber courtesy of SixPackSunday poured into a snifter

Pours a hazy golden orange with a big three finger head that shows strong retention as some minimal lacing. It smells very light and fruity, like applesauce, with a good bit of light grains. Taste is also very light with grains and a very faint hop presence dominated by light fruits. Mouthfeel is very light with heavy carbonation - crisp and clean. This beer is fairly drinkable despite being relatively nondescript in terms of taste and mouthfeel.

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Photo of morimech
3.38/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A little bit darker than most APAs. Amber color with two fingers of head that slowly settles to a thick cap. Just a little spotty lacing is left on the glass. The aroma is dominated by the malt. Smells more Marzen than APA with its strong caramel malt aroma. Some grapefruit from the hops as well. The taste has too much caramel malt. This malt dominates the Cascade hops. Bitterness is there so you know the hops got added to this beer but they are just not making their presence known in the flavor. The body is a little bigger than most and is nicely carbonated. A decent brew and I would try again if I knew it was really fresh.

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Photo of ballewblake
3.41/5  rDev -5.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

poured into a pint glass from bottle.

Two finger head on pour. Tanish head in color, spongy on retreat, sea water lacing on the glass. Copper in color, transparent with good carbonation and a few floaters in there. Got some pine in the aroma and yeasty esters. Clean and carbonated on the tongue, with primarily earthy hops, sweet malts barred in there. Easy on the palette, more drinkable as it warms up.

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Photo of Brent
3.45/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured a light copper/gold. Mouthfeel was good, with a nice balance of malt and carbonation. Hopping was substantial but in range for the style. The hops were a bit one-dimensional, with blunt bittering, but not much else in the way of herbal, pine or citrus notes - probably more in line with an English pale ale than what I think of as the American. Drinkability was good in that the bottle went down easily, but otherwise average in that I was ready for something else, notwithstanding the low abv and session potential.

I was surprised to read the label note about beers shipped to Tennessee from Ohio being highly hopped to survive the journey. Shipping from England to India, I can buy that. But Cinci. to Knoxville? Sounds like marketing hype to me. And if they are going to call this Cumberland Pale Ale, they should use a depiction of Cumberland Falls - the one on the bottle looks nothing like it.

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Photo of FightingEntropy
3.48/5  rDev -3.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

This pale ale pours nicely into the class with a fluffy, foamy head that leaves quickly but lingers for a bit over an amber body that shimmers just a bit in the light. The nose has a sharp citrus hop from the clearly Cascade. Says Cascade on the side of the bottle, a historical pale ale that was sent over the Cumberland Pass, thus the name, to Tennessee with many a hop, a midwest version of the IPA story but lighter. Not sure how a northwestern hop is in a historical beer, but there you go. First taste is a strong hop bite, a medium malt that almost balances. Life was good while it was cold. Wish I would've chugged this one. It got a grassy, astringent flavor as it warmed slowly, and the end of the bottle didn't finish nearly as well as the optimistic start. By no means a bad pale ale, but a little too much like my own fresh hop IPA (which was definately grassy) for my tastes. If in Cincinnati, I'd try it again to compare but probably not going to get another bottle.

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Photo of tgbljb
3.5/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured a deep golden color with moderate slightly off-white head.
Great lacing.
Smell is very light, with a slight fruity character.
Taste is profoundly dry and bitter. I can't detect any malt flavor, all it is is dry and bitter.
Finish has more dry bitterness.
Really a one-dimensional beer. OK, but not great.

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Photo of tavernjef
3.51/5  rDev -2.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Perfectly clear amber body with a few slowly developed bubbles floating up within. Thinning, pinky high capping of quickly set and fading creamy foam that's a dirted white. A few splotches of lace get thrown about and stick to the glass.

Soft clean nose with caramel and warmed nuttyness with a fuzzy hint of lime and orange skin.

Tasts is simple and delicate in nature with an easy front of balanced in caramel and a smallish of small tangerine, orange, lemony hint of hops. Toasted nuttyness is found sneaking in very, very lightly. Finish is light with a brief fluff of skin and pith citric bitterness thats soft and teeters out very lightly. Not a whole ton of flavors, nor does it carry much length or interest. Fairly average, yet impactful enough for finishing off the bomber with ease.

Feel is light to medium in body, clean, slipperishly malty with caramel with a tenderly firm carbonation at the realm of each sip. Not watery, but definately thin in complexion mostly. A slight malt builds up after a bit that holds a tiny citric fluff off to the edges, but stays mostly malted sweet.

An OK to very average APA. Clean and respectable, but just doesn't pull enough flavor through and what it does have doesn't pull enough weight with it.

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Photo of Billolick
3.56/5  rDev -1.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Bomber bottle, pry off cap. Clear, typical almond amber, under a long lasting light tan head, and leaving plenty of thick, sheeting and wildly scattered lacing. Nice looking brew. Nose is mildly of bread crusts. Bready, balanced ale. Notes of more bready malts, apricot, and honey, and late in the experience, just some mild leafy hop notes to dry things out a bit. Nothing amazing, just a session able and respectably well crafted pale.

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Photo of umustdrink
3.58/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Deep orange or reddish color. Fluffy bright white head settles at an eighth inch. Lacing is average. Prevalent carbonation bubbles.

S - Sharp hop presence with a spicy maltiness.

T - Sweet, light maltiness with some bitter hop notes.

M - Smooth with a slight hop bite.

D - Not too much to say about this one, pretty average overall.

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Photo of jsh420
3.65/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

after drinking the dortmunder for barrel house i thought i try more since they dont distribute in IL. anymore and whats on the self is it

pours copper with a huge head (so pour slowly)- also poured out some yeast that was in the bottle that left floaties

smell/taste - was much like their dortmunder spiced apples with a decents malts and light grasy hops

mouthfeel/drinkability is very light and refreshing good carbonation that leaves a dry crisp finish

overall - this beer is not really a pale ale but still it is very tasty and will buy more of these while supplies last

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Photo of Beejay
3.65/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Straw in color, like apple juice. Not a whole lot of head here, but what was there was white. This beer is crystal clear.. Beautiful.

S: A good bit of malt, some caramel, and then the hops.. Not overpowering at all... This one is a close sniffer.. gotta get close to really pick out the nuances of it.

T: A nice caramel note as well as some malty goodness sets a very nice backbone for the hops. Hops come in the middle to the finish and I taste a lot of grapefruit and citrus. Overall it is clean and refreshing, but there is something about the hops that I am not in love with, which is odd, since I have recently become a big fan of Cascade in general.

M: Very clean finish, maybe a tad high on the carbonation. but overall pretty good.

D: One of the local brews I can be proud of. Unfortunately still not widely distributed, but sure tastes good.

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Cumberland Pale Ale from Barrel House Brewing Company
3.6 out of 5 based on 62 ratings.
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