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Pale 31 | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

YOUR RATING = None |
BA SCORE
87
very good
545 Reviews
THE BROS
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Pale 31Pale 31
BEER INFO

Brewed by:
Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
California, United States | website

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 4.90%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by Todd on 08-23-2002

BEER STATS
Reviews:
545
Ratings:
1,866
Avg:
3.86
pDev:
19.95%
 
 
Wants:
80
Gots:
245
For Trade:
0
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User Reviews
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Reviews: 545 | Ratings: 1,866
Photo of jwc215
4.39/5  rDev +13.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Thanks to Wasatch for including this in a trade!

Pours slightly hazed golden yellow with a white head that thins to a wide patch, leaving dots of lacing.

The smell is citric, floral, a touch of pine with grainy/caramelish backing.

The taste if of citrus/grapefruit with some floral and piney notes and an orangey, grainy, caramelish balance. It has a bitterish, dry finish. I might like the nose a tad more, but not enough to distinguish in the score.

It has a pretty chewy, medium body.

A relatively modest abv for an American Pale, yet with strength in aroma and taste and a sturdy body. A great choice for a "sessioner" for those who like their pale ales edging on the hoppier aroma side!

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Photo of woodychandler
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

From the bottle: "Passion for the Pale".

I was initially concerned when I popped the cap and foam began to slowly seep up through the neck, but it stopped shortly thereafter and allowed me to pour it into a glass. I ended up with a finger of French Vanilla-colored head with moderate retention. Color was a deep golden-amber with NE-quality clarity. Nose was very pine-like and my mouth began to water in anticipation. Mouthfeel was medium and the hops were immediate upon making contact with my tongue. Man, this was pretty intense for an APA, but I was not complaining, believe me! Finish was pleasantly dry and the malt even made an appearance. Lots of sticky lacing was in evidence as I finished the glass.

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Photo of smakawhat
4.23/5  rDev +9.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured out of the cask into a nonic tumbler at Church Key as part of the official Firestone Walker DC Launch Party.

Looks with a soupy but creamy off white head sitting on a nice cloud gorgeous twenty four carat body. Almost pale amber. Super lacing on the drink while finishing. Looks so delicious.

Bouquet seems to be a real soft floral hop, with a soft malt body. Small hint of crisp, but no buttery sensation that you would want to get from a cask.

Taste is wet, but also a great white dense bread feeling with a hint of sweet clove spice. Texture is an orange juice quality and chewy palate coating.

Overall out of the cask it's a little different, but it's quite tasty and super sessionable as well. This almost feels like a mix somewhere between an on tap and cask Ale, sort of a middle ground between both worlds.

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Photo of drabmuh
3.5/5  rDev -9.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was not impressed with this beer. Poured from a bottle into a standard pint glass. Beer is yellow and hazy. Carbonation is low, a thin white, broken head floats around on top clinging to the glass, leaving almost no lacing.

This beer has almost a sweet / plastic aroma to it. There are some hops in there but more than that there is just this sweet candy like aroma. I don't smell the malt. Maybe buttery. I'm not sure what's going to happen.

Beer is medium body, so that's good. The flavors are mild and understated, which is fine. The sweetness I smelled is present in the beer, for sure. There isn't a lot of bitterness, no aftertaste, I'm not sure how the different flavors are playing together, they all seem disconnected. Drinkability is fine so is mouthfeel.

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Photo of Billolick
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle, Brewed on 12/31/13.

Pours near clear, w/ bubbles continuing to rise. Off white head is moderate in size and leaves a typical film, collar and respectable thicker low sheeting and scattered lace upon a gentle swirl.

Nose is faintly of some piney hops/grapefruit.

Resin and more pine hops on the palate. Grapefruit comes to mind. Respectable and nicely crafted APA. As somebody else remarked this one does not blend the lines between APA and IPA. Aggressive? No. Highly sessionable? Yes.

Quite dry in the long and hoppy finish. Worth a try.

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Photo of WoodBrew
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

After 14 hours on a flight from Australia and being away for 10 days what a welcome sight find a Californian pale ale. This ale is very good, but not the greatest by any stretch. The color was a nice amber with a sweet scent of hop and citrus! It was a very light ale that can be drunk in mass quantity....inm other words SESSION!!! Stay thirsty my friends!.

 358 characters

Photo of GClarkage
4.27/5  rDev +10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

5/18/08- Purchased at Piazza's in San Mateo, CA.

Presentation- 12oz bottle with no freshness info. Poured into a random pint glass.

Appearance- Light golden in color with a 3/4 inch head. Lightly frothy and holds at a slight rim. Light lacing remains.

Smell- Very hoppy with grapefruit rind nose and a touch of pine. A slight toasted malt is hidden, but barely peeks through.

Taste- This one could easily pass an an IPA. It's got a very large grapefruit hop bite and a bit of pine needle flavor as well. Malt is lightly sweet and caramel flavored. Malt comes through more as you get deep into the beer.

Mouthfeel- A tad overcarbonated. Crisp, sweet and bitter lasting aftertaste.

Drinkability- I really enjoyed this IPA...errr, pale ale. Definitely recommended.

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Photo of GarthDanielson
3.64/5  rDev -5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a shaker pint, the beer is a bright, crystal clear, golden coloring with a fluffy, light, bubbly, white head. Aromas of toasted grains, lemon, orange, cut grass, and evergreen. Light on the nose, but balanced. Flavors are grassy forward, with a slight buttered bread and toffee follow. Roasted, with some citrus blend coming through on the back of the tongue. The body is light and effervesced, but almost watery at points, too. The aftertaste is more of the roasted characteristics, with some tangy lemon and orange notes. Light, slightly dry, effervesced finish. Decent, and very drinkable.

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Photo of WesWes
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer pours a gold color with a thick frothy white head that slowly fades to lacing. The aroma is great. It has a light pale and bisquit malt scent along with mild hop aroma and a light oak barrel presence. The aroma is quite complex and highly enticing. The taste is decent. It has a thin pale and bisquit malt flavor that goes down easy and finishes bitter with a nice hoppy aftertaste. The barrel taste really covers up the simple, yet refreshing pale malt flavor. The mouthfeel is good. It is a medium/full bodied beer with adequate carbonation. This is a fine pale ale. It's got an interesting flavor palate, but I could kill a sixer of these easy.

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Photo of tempest
4.03/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Ordered a bottle with my Brick's Ale Burger at the Brickskeller. The body is a clear straw yellow with a white head and lacing.

I know many hold this up as one of the great pale ales, and I'm inclined to agree when you consider the whole package. It holds nearly the same depth of hop flavor as Sierra Nevada, but with a lighter body it's much more drinkable. The malts have a light bready malt taste, that's matched first by piney, citrus hops, and then later a spicy, long-lasting aftertaste. How this beer drinks actually reminds me of a good English bitter, for the ability to hold complex flavors in a light and highly sessionable beer.

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Photo of Mebuzzard
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.25

This is a really nice, quaffable beer. Session? Yes. It's easy drinking with just the right amount of bite to demand notice, but not a tongue scraper. It looks delicious; off golden, clear pour with a huge white fluffy head. Spotty lacing.
Open aroma of floral and citrus with some light cracker underneath.
Flavors are light but powerful. Citrus zest blends well with the floral perfume-ness and the cracker brings it together nicely.
A bit light on the malt for a APA. This is almost like a light IPA. Very drinkable. Really liked this one.

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Photo of Gavage
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear orange color with a 1" head. Some light lacing develops. The aroma is nice as floral hops and oranges are easily detectable. The flavor was nice as malt and floral hops were nicely balanced, but the malt came across as slightly sweeter than other pale ales. The citrus (orange tones) were quite strong.

The mouthfeel was smooth and it had a medium body. The finish was relatively short with bitterness and citrus lasting on the tongue. Nicely drinkable, but the sweetness may be a turnoff to some here.

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Photo of DoubleJ
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On-tap at Brea's Yard House, on to the beer:

This beer shines in the glass orange/gold with a froathy head on top, very good lacing sticking to the glass. The aroma is mild, a mix of citrus, hops, and fresh-cut pine. Refreshing....yum. By the way, that's the taste I'm talking about. Clean upfront with a mix of bread/citrus/hoppy/floral flavors, the balance being good. This is one beer I'll be coming back to for sure, and it's great on a warm day like today.

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Photo of Tone
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clear, gold/amber color. 1/3 inch head of a white color. Great retention and great lacing. Smells of citrus hops, slight pale malt, slight sweet malt, and hint of alcohol, and a hint of caramel malt. Fits the style of an American Pale Ale. Mouth feel is sharp and crisp, with an average carbonation level. Tastes of citrus hops, slight hop oil, sweet malt, slight pale malt, and a hint of alcohol. Overall, good appearance, decent aroma, body, blend, and feel.

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Photo of BARFLYB
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

A bottle into a Dark Horse Pint Glass. This bottle is almost 3 months old and just came in to Philly, so im not sure if FS is up to snuff on shipping out fresh pale, i will review as is.

Firestone Pale Ale comes into the glass a whistling golden slight copperish color with a nice amount of white suds up top leaving nice streaks. Smell is very citrusy and biscuit malt forward, a nice breadiness comes up. Taste takes a backseat from the scent. Flavors include biscuits from the pale malt, light pine over citrus from the hops. Feel is light and refreshing though with spot on carb. Finishes clean as can be. I drank this very quick and I hope to god FS sends very fresh stuff by the time summer comes around.

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Photo of Gueuzedude
4.12/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

The beer is a gold color and only has a wispy, pale draught head. This beer has an incredible, fresh, hop aroma. I get notes of apricots, some peach, and of course some of the typical citrus notes. The aroma is just quite striking, and I really like the mix of fruit character that the hops evoke here. The taste is pretty light and refreshing and has a light sweetness to it that really helps to accentuate the fruity flavors from the hops. The hop character is definitely dominated by a fresh fruity character that is most evocative of peaches and apricots. This is really quite nice.

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Photo of Wasatch
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours a clear dark golden color, nice carbonation, tiny head, some lacing afterwards.

S - Scents of hops, citrus, bready, slight toffee/caramel.

T - The taste is sweet/hoppy, kinda dry finish.

M - Medium body, nice carbonated feel.

D - Very drinkable, good for a hot summer day. This is my first Firestone brew, will buy other's if the liquor store carries them.

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Photo of LiquidAmber
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a Seattle Beer Week pint glass. Pours a medium bubbly golden amber with a nice two finger white head with excellent retention and lacing. Aroma of citrus hops and sweet malt. Flavor is grassy hops, light citrus, biscuit malt, finishes with a grassy hop bitterness. Light bodied as expected from the style. Flavor is light, but well balanced; an enjoyable, refreshing pale ale. After drinking some hefty darker strong ales and stouts the last week, it's nice to sit back and watch active carbonation in a nicely made light golden beer.

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Photo of Stinkypuss
3.77/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a deep straw with a chill haze. Short lived soapy head.
Aroma is zesty, floral, lemony,herbal and very hoppy. In the taste, grapefruit, orange and nectarine fruityness are apparent from the dry hop/ale yeast combo. A bit of lemon candy and pine are in effect as well. Mellow bitterness on a pale, salt water toffee like malt notes. Medium bodied, well carbonated, semi crisp. Overall this is an interesting pale ale, I'd give it another go easily.

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Photo of Halcyondays
4.18/5  rDev +8.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

12 oz. bottle, single, purchased from the Hi-Times Wine Cellars in Costa Mesa,

A: Pours a macro pale yellow, with a white head that's a tad on the thin side, but has good retention and leaves some nice beer lacing.

S: Light smell of hops and malt, some oak.

T: Very crisp hop bite attacks first with some citrus and tropical fruits, maybe a bit of tangerine. Toffee and sourdough bread come in as the malt backbone, with a very nice vanilla note to end the beer, a gem.

M: Crisp, light and smooth, good carbonation, very refreshing.

D: This is a really good pale, up there with Anchor and Alpha King, possibly the best made in CA.

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Photo of Zorro
3.32/5  rDev -14%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a clear gold color.

Smells distinctly hoppy and fruity. There is a small amount of maltiness in there too.

Taste is malt and hops. The hops used are flavorful and not very harsh so it makes for a very hoppy, yet still not bitter brew. Not sweet at all it is a dry ale.

Mouthfeel is good.

Very drinkable.

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Photo of biegaman
3.88/5  rDev +0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A bright and sunny yellow-tinged scotch with sheer transparency. The colour is golden and gleaming and the clarity consummately clean. Its head, although sickly anemic, is resiliently sticky. Tight clinging bands of white lace appear hopelessly stuck to the glass. This visual certainly imparts the temperate, sunny climate of Paso Robles to my mind.

The aroma is about as existent as it is non-existent. The faint grapefruit-like pungency of the hops suggest this may not be intentional but the lack of aromatic malt suggests it is. I keep taking bigger and bigger whiffs to be sure but my nostrils are largely drawing blanks. The floral qualities of the English Fuggles are apparent but I don't note much to resemble any of the big American C's (Cascade, Centennial, Chinook).

Is it just me or does the "California Pale Ale" taste a touch better than regular old pale ale? Strong bready, biscuity, doughie, cookie and wafer-like malts and a sprinkling of green, zesty recently ripened hop flowers (there's the American influence!) make for a delicious beer in my opinion. The caramel outweighs the grapefruit but not by much, the beer really does taste fresh-hoped even nearly 6 months after the bottling!

This is barrel aged but the beer itself doesn't advertise it. Good. Why should it have to? Novelty and insatiability have become driving factors in a lot of America's (especially California's) microbreweries. Special releases and experimental, high gravity beers (often with the use of blending, wild yeasts or barrel aging) have become the focal point of many breweries and the products on which they're most often judged...

While Firestone is responsible for making what are arguably the best examples of such beers (Firestone 10, 11) it's good to know they put every bit the same craftsmanship and attention into their normal lineup of pale ales too. Between the Double Barrel, the Union Jack IPA and now the Pale 31, I would say with little hesitation that Firestone is responsible for some of the best simple but solid drinking ales on the entire continent. Thanks BuckeyeNation!

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Photo of plaid75
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

On draft at Sapsuckers, Huntington, NY.

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

The smell featured a light citrusy hop and soft pale malts.

The taste offered bready malts, a springy citrus spice and lingering pine.

The mouthfeel was of average fullness for the style.

Overall a tasty simple ale that is highly quafffable.

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Photo of tone77
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

A thanks to the captain of the canquest, woodychandler, for this beer. Poured from a 12 oz. can. Has a light golden color with a 1/2 inch head. Smell is light citrus, hints of pine. Taste is citrus, some pine, light bitterness. Feels medium/light in the mouth and overall is a decent beer, but I was expecting a bit more.

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Photo of flagmantho
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz bottle into a dimpled mug.

Appearance: light golden hue with zero haze and a moderate effervescence. Head is a thin layer of white foam. I enjoy the clarity on this one.

Smell: lightly sweet malt aroma with a combination of citrus and floral hops. I like the composition, but the intensity is a little low for my taste.

Taste: malt is on the sweet side with a low bitterness and more of the citrus/floral hop character. Again, light, but I like it.

Mouthfeel: medium body with a decent carbonation and creaminess.

Overall: this is a highly drinkable beer, with its low-end ABV and relative smoothness on the palate. This would be a great camping beer.

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Pale 31 from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
87 out of 100 based on 545 ratings.
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