Alpha Pale Ale | Matilda Bay Brewing Co.

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very good
36 Reviews
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Alpha Pale AleAlpha Pale Ale
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Matilda Bay Brewing Co.
Australia | website

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Alpha Pale Ale derives its name from the alpha acids in hops which, added early in the boil, impart a distinctive bitterness. Cascade and Amarillo hops are used to make this beer. Hops are added early and late in the boil and then dry hopped in late fermentation. They contribute a wonderfully complex fruit and citrus aroma. Pale malts round off this beer with a fuller malt character.

55 IBU

Added by DaveFL1976 on 09-27-2005

BEER STATS
Reviews:
36
Ratings:
61
Avg:
3.77
pDev:
14.32%
 
 
Wants:
5
Gots:
3
For Trade:
0
User Reviews
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Reviews: 36 | Ratings: 61
Photo of eric5bellies
3.66/5  rDev -2.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Drank from my Duvel Tulip

A - Pours a nice clear deep copper colour, with an off White head that reduces slowly to a film.

S - Nice pine aromas with some mandarin

T - Up front some malts and yeast then followed by some nioce sweetish hops, with bitter finish.

M - Light to medium body with medium carbonation.

O - An above average APA, that is quite sessionable.

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Photo of Finite
4.05/5  rDev +7.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Dark gold to red amber. A medium head which is a little thinner than one might expect from a high hopped beer.

S- Fresh Halletau hop. Great fruity characteristics come through and a reasonable malt toffee-ness. Says they use late hop additions and it shows but I wish they had gone even harder.

T- More of the toffee sweetness. Some beady dough-like malt flavors and that wonderful hop taste. Pine wood, bitter strawberry, honey drew. Fantastic balance. Really spot on.

M- strong upfront carbonation but fine needle-like biting on th palate. Fading it soothes and frames the great flavours and balance. Medium body. Also very fitting.

D- easy to drink, I don't know if you could session it but this is a really good attempt at an APA. They say on the bottle that the balance is spot on and for the first time the label doesnt lie. A great APA. The best ive had from Matilda bay so far.

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Photo of Macca
4.09/5  rDev +8.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This pours a clear very dark golden colou with a small head that goes quickly a very light covering.

Some great hoppy aromas coming off this one. At the pine resin end of the spectrum.

Much better balanced on the palate than I expected given the big hop aromas. Nice malty sweetness.

Noticeable bitterness but not mouthpuckering.

A very well made APA.

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Photo of vacax
3.33/5  rDev -11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to Jeremy for bringing this to me from Sydney. Alpha Pale Ale pours golden amber with a smallish tightly beaded head, good retention, a bit of lacing. Aroma of honey, worty, caramel, maybe a hint of hoppy freshness. The flavor starts similar to a blonde ale, light, fresh malts, low level hop bitterness, bit of a grainy finish that is quite dry with biscuit notes. Medium to thinnish body with a natural feeling nice carbonation. Not a bad beer, but being familiar with Northwest Style Pale Ales, this one is highly deficient in aroma hops (and yes, this bottle is well within the "drink by" date). I might drink this if I was in Australia with limited options. I appreciate the budding craft beer movement in Oz, but maybe this beer is indicative of playing it a little too safe.

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Photo of mulder1010
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

345 ML poured into a my Great Divide glass

A-- Poured a deep copper color, with bits of gold in the glass and pour. Off white one finger head. Lacing is good, leaving decent sized traces through. Good head retention and shows medium carbonation.

S-- Big grapefruit hops, followed by a sweet carmel biscuit smell. Very nice aroma, though a bit on the sweet side.

T-- Carmel malt kick, followed by a lot of grapefruit. Very oily taste and stays quite oily throughout.

M-- Sweetness and oiliness has a lot of dominance in this. Grapefruit is very evident, but more secondary in this. Medium carbonation, medium feel and creamy. Pine and lemon do come in very late in the mouth and really takes away the sweetness of the malt. Still leaves the oiliness of it though.

D-- Holds its own quite well. Matilda Bay does not make a lot of good beers but this is good. A little sweet but a good beer. Very sessionable at 5.2 % and does a good job of replication of a US PA. While at it this throws in some of the English PA aspects of the sweetness. Could just be a tad bit less sweet though.

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Photo of rhoadsrage
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

(Served in a globe glass)
A- This beer pours a warm deep orange body with a slight brown hint that is crystal clear. There is a sea of tiny bubbles that makes a fizzy white head that decomposes during the pour.
S- The juicy citrus hop aroma has a flora perfume quality that come through even during the pour. There are fruity notes with a sligh sweet fresh malt finish.
T- The flavor or caramel malt with a fruity berry quality that grows as the beer warms. There is a green hop flavor at a finish with a soft bitterness that lingers.
M- This beer has a medium -light mouthfeel with a tight fizz. D- There is a nice flavor to the malt but still has a strange berry quality to it with a soft hops that are just a tease.

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Photo of dgilks
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Alpha pours a beautiful copper colour with a tight, off-white head. Okay, head retention with the head dissipating to a thin film.

Lots of grapefruity hop character in the aroma. A hint of sweet malt as well. Good, not great.

This is really good. The balance between malt and hops is excellent and reminiscent of an English IPA but the flavour profile is that off an APA. Plenty of citrus and juicy hop with a solid, caramel malt backbone. A luscious, piney aftertaste is great.

Solid, medium body with lower than average carbonation. This is smooth, creamy and really easy to drink. Medium finish.

Alpha Pale Ale is a tasty, well structured beer with the great balance of an IPA but the wonderful flavours and level of bitterness of a great APA. A wonderfully drinkable beer and Matilda Bay's best.

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Photo of juju7
4.13/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a really solid example of balance. Every part of this beer from the citrus-infused caramel malt nose to the medium carbonated full body bitterness. It all lines up in a way that is just lush. Good beer from a brewery that does some really good stuff when it wants to.

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Photo of ADZA
4.17/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a nice copper hue with decent carbonation that leaves a fast vanishing one finger head,it has a really nice piney hop aroma about it,it has a above average mouthfeel that starts out medium and finishes very light and crisp with a really nice citrusy,piney hop taste and suprisingly enough it doesnt finish bitter at all this is one well crafted APA a perfect balance out between malts and hops,im glad i revisted this beer quite a nice drop thats very easy to drink.

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Photo of SleepyMonk
3.82/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Chilled bottle poued into a pilsner glass

Pours with 2 fingers of creamy head and displays a deep reddish brown body that hints towards a cross between rust and mahogany.

The aroma is strong with saturated hops and a moderate twist of fruits getting involved.

The taste too is driven by hops with a complex malt spectrum moving about in the background. In the mouth the beer has a certain syrup like character and there is a slow interchange from hops mixed with malt to just straight dry hops.

Bit of a one trick pony but a good brew none the less.

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Photo of Stavage
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured with a nice finger or two of head which settled down into quite a nice thick lacking. Deep copper coloured fluid.

Smell is big spicy citrus hops, with some bready malts and a fruity aroma besides.

Taste doesn't dissapoint. At first sip theres a sweet malt mixing with a strong bitter bite. The complex bitterness continues as the malt character turns to a more toasty flavour, but its the big spicy hops bitterness that lingers til the end.

Mouthfeel is in my opinion right for the style. Carbonated enough to keep things refreshing without getting in the way of the taste buds. On the lighter side of things and leaves a nice refreshing dryness.

Overall I found this very enjoyable as a meal beer and I'm reviewing it as such. A very capable alternative to LCPA for when you're not in the mood for a lot of floralness.

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Photo of CrazyDavros
3.36/5  rDev -10.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Pours amber, like tea. Nice off-white head fades to a thin layer, leaving lots of lacing. Initially quite floral, and VERY sweet. Smells like hopped malt extract, molasses, with a fair whack of resin. Taste is a bit better, initial sweet toffee malt, then some resiny hops, then a big bitter finish. Unfortunately the bitterness is metallic and slightly astringent. A little too watery. And that aforementioned astringency. Dunno what's going on here, way too sweet and malt dominated for an American pale ale.

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Photo of Kulrak
4.42/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This beer pours a deep amber color with about 1cm of chunky head that seems to be sticking around for a while. The smell, wow, that's a lot of citrusy hop smell, I love it. The taste, is moderately malty sweet, but there's a lot of citrusy hop flavor there, not too bitter, but a lot of hop flavor. Mouthfeel is medium bodied with foamy carbonation, very nice. Overall, it's a very drinkable beer, especially if you like cascade hops, and I do.

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Photo of Lukie
4.35/5  rDev +15.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a nice golden marmalade with a throthy 2 inch head, which reduced into clinging lace. A very fresh Pale Ale.

A strong bark and grassy aroma gives way to some buscuity tones. There are hints of lemon zest, and the grapefruit aroma just seems to want to hurtle through, but won't.

A nice malty, honeyish start gives way to a very grassy, flowery and bark like flavour. This is quite similar to the Rogue Dry Hopped Red, except a bit more subtle. The fruitier aspects are kept to a minimum, giving this a key difference to other APA's I have had.

Overall, the best Matilda Bay beer by far, and very well crafted. I believe this is closer to what the Americans are doing then LCPA, but the fruitiness in LCPA gives that the edge in drinkability. Still very, very good, and worth buying on occassion. The price point is a bit steep though.

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Photo of vancurly
4.16/5  rDev +10.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into James Squire half pint. BB 05/05/09

a) Rocky, foamy offwhite head, 1 inch thick. Haze-free, dark honey colour.

s) Superb late hop nose. Citrus, pine with good malt. Almost identical in aroma to marmelade on toast.

t) Malt complexity is first noticed - toasty, biscuity. Followed then by the hop flavours similar to aroma. Good bitterness at the back.

m) Initial impression of oiliness. Tingly, slightly astringent, yet quite crisp finish.

d) Needs to be savoured. Wouldn't have this as a session ale. But an excellent drink nonetheless.

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Photo of mykie73
3.9/5  rDev +3.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Friend brought this back from a recent trip to Australia as she knew I enjoyed NorthWest IPA's and PAs.

Was very excited to try this.

A-Nice amberish gold..quite transparent.

S Hoppy citrisness goodness. cascade hops perhaps?

T quite hoppy...well balanced...delicious bitter after taste that stays with you. Really enjoying the bitterness. Great full Pale Ale Flavor.

M thin as a Pale Ale should be.

D great. could drink this all night. bitterness stays there way afterwards...which is enjoyable.

All in all, a great Pale Ale! Matilda Bay has done this NorthWest style proud and making it quite unique as well.

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Photo of foles
4.15/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Sampled on draught at the Brass Monkey in Perth.

Pours deep engaging amber with decent fluffy head. American hops on the nose - citrusy, earthy. Spicy hop presence on the tongue, again earthy and citrusy! A few IBUs to be had here.

Very nice, but not well known enough (real shame - everyone in the pub would rather drink something horrible like a pure blonde low carb beer).

Ill go back for this on draught because its far too expensive in the bottle

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Photo of LittleCreature
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - 4.0
Poured a finger of off-white head that steadily reduced to a thin layer over a bright amber body.

Smell - 4.0
A lovely hop-driven aroma that is best before the head disappears. Some sweet malt, honey, fruity hop smells are citrus (orange) and floral.

Taste - 4.0
Is it too hoppy? Nah! This is a fine APA. Sweet biscuity malt, strongly hopped bitter finish, grapefruit, honey and a little grass. Finishes quite dry.

Mouthfeel - 4.0
Just lovely, moderately weighted, light to moderate carbonation. Perhaps a little more lively would be an improvement.

Drinkability - 4.0
Definitely sessionable, definitely worth coming back to.

OVERALL - 4.0
I'd call this the second best Western Australian APA behind Little Creatures. I feel like it deserves a little higher than a 4, but it is really a very good all-rounder without being exceptional in any criteria. I will be visiting the Sail and Anchor to drink this again rather soon!
NOTE: Recently tried on-tap, was possibly a little better, fruitier.

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Photo of Cs1987
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Appearance - Amber, with 2 fingers of head that reduced.

Smell - Probably even stronger than Little Creatures Pale Ale, but not quite as fruity. Passionfruit mixed with grains.

Taste - Bitterness and other flavours are a little too strong compared with the wonderful passionfruit and kiwi-fruit flavours. This definitely improved as it warmed, though.

Mouthfeel - Texture and carbonation both very good.

Drinkability - Would make a good session drink, despite the bitterness.

Overall - A very good American Pale Ale all round, but doesn't quite match the pure fruitiness of LCPA.

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Photo of lacqueredmouse
3.6/5  rDev -4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Sampled this at The Australian Beer Fest in The Rocks 07.

Standard APA looking orange gold colour, with a filmy white head. Lacing is good. Oh, and cheers for filling this one right to the rim of the tasting glass =)

Slightly sweet citrus on the nose, otherwise a bit weak. Bit of pepper character there. It's a nice nose, but not an amazing one.

Nicely balanced hop bitterness on the palate, with a bit of body and malty sweetness to carry it. Quite drying on the aftertaste, but overall it's pretty decent. Good body in the mouth.

This is nice, and would make a great sessioner, if you could track it down. One of Matilda Bay's best, and I'm glad I took dwarbi's advice and tried this one on tap.

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Photo of brendan13
3.5/5  rDev -7.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Orange amber with a few centimetres of head that falls away quite quickly.
S - Citrus hops with a floral soap hint.
T - The hops are there along with some sweet maltiness.
M - Medium carbonation with a slick, resiny mouthfeel.
D - Nothing too bad about this beer but I know there are others out there that are similar yet better.

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Photo of joecast
4.15/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

best before 06/07. 5.2%abv. 345 ml brown bottle.

clear amber with a slight orange tinge. low to medium carbonation. just off white head starts out rather large, a good three fingers high, from a vigorous pour but settled nicely. good retention and lacing.

full hoppy aroma. sharp citrus, floral and some sweetness from the malt. all parts of the aroma seem almost concentrated so they are all pretty full on. a little bready yeast comes about as it warms.

light bready malt hits the tongue first and is followed quickly by some hop flavor. that is all quickly cleaned up by a strong dose of bitterness. ALPHA for sure!

mouth feel is a bit heavy, leaving the mouth with a slick feeling, and sweet taste. probably this brews only real drawback. however, this also harms the drinkability giving a fuller feeling in the tummy a bit quicker than i would like. though the bottle did go quickly.

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Photo of jarmby1711
4/5  rDev +6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Deep tan to amber in colour Good white head and a small amount of carbomnation Essentially clear.
Plenty of fruity hops to smell , exactly what I was expecting.
The label promises alpha bitterness and a bitter finish It also promises citrus tones and a malt balance.
It delivers it all The label was accurate.
I think that this is a seriously good beer
It maybe lacks a touch of complexity if inevitably compared to LCPA , but a great companion to it

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Photo of ohitsbrad
3.67/5  rDev -2.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

19 November 2005, Best Before Jan 06

Appears clear golden-brown with a small head and a little lacing. Medium mostly hoppy aroma and the typical grapefruit smell of some pale ales, some other fruity aromas too. Taste is obviously hoppy and fruity with a light malt flavour, but has a more honeyish, nectary, flowery, and quite bitter finish. Overall very easy to drink and I'm glad it's bottled.

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Photo of diablo14
3.03/5  rDev -19.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

ill say this much for alpha pale. there are far far worse beers getting around out there. but really, its mutton dressed as lamb. a beer that for all the world wants to be a real APA, but doesnt get within an elephants trumpet of it. the sierra nevada pale ale i had when i got home put it well and truly in perspective.

the color is of a deep golden hue, lots of fizz, and a repectable head which does maintain. the smell was indeed hoppy, but not necessarily top shelf hops. was back with a slightly adjunctly smell and the barest trace of malt. not a lot to the taste. again the barest trace of malt, hints of citrus, and also some floral tones. the finish was passable but not outstanding. above average level of bitterness on the back palate, but nearly gets that raspy dryness at the end that i totally despise. just manages to hold off enuff for me not to slam it. all that said, it does have a certain crispness which is a redeeming feature. i could drink this if there was nothing else around, but i wouldnt keep going if i didnt have to.

alpha is defiantely better now than when it first came out by a long way, but its still only so so at best. at no stage would i be breaking my neck to have a pint of this. just sits on the fence a bit too much for my liking.

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Alpha Pale Ale from Matilda Bay Brewing Co.
85 out of 100 based on 36 ratings.
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