Pale 31 California Pale Ale | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

Pale 31 California Pale AlePale 31 California Pale Ale
1,967 Ratings
Pale 31 California Pale AlePale 31 California Pale Ale

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

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

Bros Score:
View: Beers | Events
User Ratings & Reviews
Sort by:  Recent | High | Low | Top Raters
Ratings: 1,967 |  Reviews: 574
Photo of Eriktheipaman
4.25/5  rDev +11%

Photo of TrojanRB
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of Kiniey01
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of Eweber
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of ShemRahBoo
4.25/5  rDev +11%

Photo of jtransel
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of IDYVM
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of sevenarts
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of bennetj17
3.8/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bright gold, very Pils-like appearance for a Pale Ale. Clear, few bubbles, very thin head that isn't lasting. The aroma is a bit more impressive: clean, citrus fruit hops with only a faint touch of malt balance. Smells like this is going to be a crisp, hoppy session ale.

The taste is as expected. Fruity hops start out with an IPA level of citrus burst, almost more grapefruity and tangy, before finishing with slightly more sweetness. The malt is very clean. The bitterness does not round things out too much at the end, so it leaves everything feeling a bit one dimensional after a few sips. I really like the hop character but there isn't enough else going on to keep it interesting. Mouthfeel is a bit watery but workable. Carbonation is very fine but sharp.

There is a lot of potential here for a go-to session ale, west coast style. Unfortunately Pale 31 doesn't really deliver. When I think of how this could be better, I imagine something by Sierra Nevada. I think that beer would combine a better malt balance, more superb mouthfeel, and sharper bitterness. This is decent, but I'm hoping for better luck next time.

 1,129 characters

Photo of henryhampton
4.25/5  rDev +11%

Photo of Jordan444
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of humulusphile
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of sd123
3.5/5  rDev -8.6%

Photo of Sekliw
3.25/5  rDev -15.1%

Photo of onepersonriot
4.25/5  rDev +11%

Photo of cherche
4.25/5  rDev +11%

Photo of jheezee
4.25/5  rDev +11%

Photo of Darkmagus82
4.14/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured from bottle into a pint glass

Appearance – The beer pours a nice golden color with two fingers of a foamy gold tinted white colored head. The head has a decent level of retention, slowly fading over time to leave a great level of foamy lace on the sides of the glass.

Smell - The aroma is strongest of some nice hop smells being a mix of a grassy and herbal hop smell as well as some grapefruit hop aromas. Along with these smells is a nice bready malt smell as well as a decent level of tangerine sweetness, producing a rather nicely balanced pale ale smell overall.

Taste – The taste begins a quite bready flavor right up front with some notes of caramel and orange. Some hop of a grassy and lighter grapefruit nature are there from the start as well. The grapefruit hop continues to strengthen throughout the taste and is later joined by a nice level of an herbal hop flavor. While this change in hop potency and presence occurs, more citrus sweetness comes to the tongue in the form of a bit of tangerine. A lighter buttery biscuit flavors also come to the tongue more at the end of the taste, with the combination off hop, malt and sweet leaving a smooth and very satisfying flavor to linger on the tongue.

Mouthfeel – .For a brew of only 4.9 % abv. the body of the beer is on the average to above average side in terms of its thickness and creaminess with a carbonation level that is a bit on the higher side. Both are quite fantastic for the flavors of the beer, combining with the crisp tastes and making it very easy drinking.

Overall – While not a union or double jack in flavor potency, this modest brew packs tons of flavor into a mere 4.9 % abv. Really, this is a very balanced brew at a more modest abv, with a great flavor profile and a wonderful drinkability. Fantastic for the style!

 1,821 characters

Photo of vfgccp
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of jsher1112
3.75/5  rDev -2.1%

Photo of JennuhJak
4.25/5  rDev +11%

Photo of mfigueroa713
4.25/5  rDev +11%

Photo of trytoketchup
3/5  rDev -21.7%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Photo of muddyh2oblues
4/5  rDev +4.4%

Photo of Auraan
4.37/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 3.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured a light amber with a thin white head that receded to a white ring leaving no lacing. It looks okay, but not as good as some. Scents of citrus-zest, pine resin, grapefruit, and faint hints of floral hops and malt. A bit more hop-forward than Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, with more citrus, grapefruit and pine. Very good, but not as balanced as Sierra Nevada's. Flavor begins with a moderate level of hops, with bitter citrus-zest, grapefruit and pine dominating. These flavors stick around throughout the sip. Towards the middle a bit more floral hop flavors come through in the background, but not heavily. Malt is present, though on the breadier, grainer side, not much sweet caramel or toffee like Sierra Nevada Pale Ale. Finish is dry with citrus-zest, grapefruit and pine resin dominating. Aftertaste is bitter with a grainy malt flavor. Pretty good. More hop forward and less balanced than Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, but not in a bad way. It certainly doesn't hurt the flavor profile, it just makes it a different take on a pale ale. Mouthfeel is light bodied, crisp and semi-drying. A bit less smooth than Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, more of an IPA mouthfeel, but not bad to drink at all. It makes you want to drink another sip right after you finish. Overall this is another good American Pale Ale. While not as balanced as Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, it has a good aroma and flavor profile that balance more towards the hop-forward side of things, while still keeping a sessionable ABV and providing a good drinking experience from the mouthfeel. I recommend it.

 1,561 characters

Pale 31 California Pale Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
Beer rating: 3.83 out of 5 with 1,967 ratings
  • About Us

    Founded in Boston in 1996, BeerAdvocate (BA) is your go-to resource for beer powered by an independent community of enthusiasts and professionals dedicated to supporting and promoting better beer.

    Learn More
  • Our Community

    Comprised of consumers and industry professionals, many of whom started as members of this site, our community is one of the oldest, largest, and most respected beer communities online.
  • Our Events

    Since 2003 we've hosted over 60 world-class beer festivals to bring awareness to independent brewers and educate attendees.
  • Our Magazine

    Support uncompromising beer advocacy and award-winning, independent journalism with a print subscription to BeerAdvocate magazine.