Pale 31 California Pale Ale | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

very good
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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

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Ratings: 1,950 |  Reviews: 567
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 Reidrover
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

22 oz bomber, 4.8% alc.
Clear golden ale,with a nice sized, creamy white head.
Lovelly hop aromas, though it is more "lemony" hops than expected in the typical APA.
Very tasty, again the malts to begin with then a very very pleasing lemony hop finish. Simple but nice.
Great mouthfeel..not boring.
Very very drinkable stuff.
This is another of those "extra" pale ales that some West coast breweries come out with and are placed in the APA category..i really think they come into their own as British style "Golden Ales"
Whatever..very nice beer.

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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.

And now, a CANQuest (tm) entry! Today is T, 18 July 2017.

From the CAN: "California Pale Ale".

I Crack!ed the CAN open, only to get a bit of foaming action through the vent. Once it settled, I saw that the culprit was a brimful craft CAN. leaving the tongue nowhere to go when forced inwards. A slow, gentle Glug, followed by an in-glass swirl, produced just under two fingers of dense, foamy, French Vanilla-colored head with good retention. Color was solid Gold (SRM = 5) with NE-quality clarity, prompting an impromptu visit from The Gelt Gang of Croesus, Midas & Mammon, all anxious for a taste. Nose had notes of grapefruit & coconut along with a biscuity maltiness. The coconut made me wonder if it were not barrel-aged. Hmmm. Mouthfeel was medium. The taste was quite grapefruit citrusy, underlain by a dry, biscuity maltiness, but no coconut, so maybe I was hallucinating (again). It seemed a tad bitter for the style, if SNPA is the standard-bearer. Finish was pleasantly dry & quite refreshing. I could see putting a buncha these in the beach-bound cooler.

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Photo of CorbinB
4.07/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

This beer pours with only about a quarter-inch head but bubbles vigorously, almost champagne-like. The color is a pale orange amber.

I get a faint, bitter citrusy bouquet in the nose along with a very mild malt aroma. Really, the nose is mild overall. But that's not what makes this beer so great.

As for flavor, I get grapefruit with orange rind balanced finely with a mandarin sweetness. The initial flavor is enhanced by a back-end hop bitterness and--it sounds crazy-- even a kiwi sweetness. Lively and light, bubbling mouth that delivers and doesn't linger. So refreshing and easy drinking that I could drink this at brunch or in the middle of summer sitting by the pool.

I don't review beers often but when I do it's because they really, really stand out. This is definitely one of those beers.

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

Served in a chilled pint glass at the Rose & Crown.

A: A finger of white head tops a clear golden beer. Heavy lace.

S: Fruity, aromatic hops. Crisp, bitter, and citrusy. Very nice.

T: Mm. Delicious, light-bodied pale ale. Hops are prominent and tasty, but with little body to back it up. Light, biscuity malt. Bitter aftertaste.

M: Not the best. But maybe that's just me knocking pale ales.

O: Great pale ale! Highly recommended for the style. Highly drinkable and sufficiently hoppy. Would have again.

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

This brew poured a clear amber color with a thin head. Adequage carbonation, not too much lacing.

There was an unmistakible sweet bubblegum aroma with a piney floral hop scent.

Taste was almost on par with the smell, bittersweet grapefruit flavor. Well balanced between the sweet malts and bittering hops.

Good mouthfeel; slight bitterness in the aftertaste which clings to the palate in a good way. Ale was not too thin but had a very light refreshing body.

Very drinkable brew. The only difficult decision on my part is whether I enjoy Firestone 31 or Double Barrel more!

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

Striking golden color, with a decent head that fizzes out pretty fast. The smell is rich, yet hoppy and crisp. Flavor is simple enough, but as with all Firestone beers incredibly executed. Light sweet malt strikes immediately, followed by a brilliant splash of hops that lingers seductively on the palate. I feel the oakiness in their beers more than taste, and it feels damn good. Drinkability is superb.

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

APPEARANCE: Pours a slightly hazy gold color with a small white head that dissipates quickly. There is a small amount of lacing.
Pleasant aroma of orange, apricots and sweet dough. Also some pine.
Smooth slightly sweet with nice balance of citrusy hops. Finishes with a little grassy bitterness.
Medium body with slight syrupy texture. Moderate carbonation. Finishes a bit dry.
Very easy drinking beer. Not too sweet and not to bitter. Nothing exciting but a great session beer.

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

12oz bottle secured from the Boise CoOp, poured into a Sam Adams Perfect Pint.

A: Clear vivid gold, with a smallish wispy white head that leaves some ok lacing...very light and refreshing looking.

S: Dry hopping hits as soon as the cap is lifted; floral and tropical, citrus, orange, mango, pineapple, with an underlying honey sweetness and pale malt graininess.

T: More balanced than the nose, mild but well executed; the floral citrus characters are here, with some orange and tangerine, hints of spiciness, grainy malt and faint caramel.

MF: Light and refreshing with a surprisingly dry finish. Crisp and clean as it fades away.

O: Drank this way too fast; overall its a perfect light summer hoppy session ale. Not overwhelming in any category, just plain solid.

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Photo of DogFood11
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 2.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured into a pounder glass it formed a wimpy white head that leaves little to no lace behind. Highly filtered, shiney thin amber body with slow rolling carbonation.

Nice boquet of flavor including a floral hop presence, bending towards a citrus side later in each drink. Nice mouthfeel as this is absolutely clean as a whistle and crisp to boot. Malts have a gentle toastiness to them and a perfect compliment to a soft profile all around. Hops are just enough to make this a easy drinking and highly enjoyable pale ale.

Notes: This is another solid offering from Firestone. Its kind of funny in that their flagship beer the double barrell is the only one I found to be not to my liking. This pale ale is a great beer to pair with Bbq, or even some italian dishes fit nicely. Refreshing and with some depth of character.

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Photo of Colin32
4.06/5  rDev +5.2%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of Mark
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I've now tried all the Firestone beers that I have seen in stores. This pale ale poured a deep gold, head retention was so so, but my glass was thick with lace rings. Sharp aroma of hop and grain, inviting. Smooth on the palate, with a solid malt base, lightly hopped. I did detect a note of sweetness like others have mentioned. It didn't bother me. Mouthfeel was a bit thin, but this is a drinkable decent beer. The average ratings for Firestone beers seem to me mostly well under four. I think they're better than that.

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Photo of jlindros
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Yay date, 1/07/14

Pours a pasty white fizzy frothy 1 finger head that fades semi slowly with nice frothy lacing, crystal clear pale pilsner color.

Nose nice floral hops, fruity too, hint grapefruit pith and melon rind, generic mild fruit, faint hint of malt under.

Taste fresh hops, more fruity hops, again mild melon rind and touch of grapefruit pith, generic juicy fruit and hint fruity bubblegum, fair bitterness. Malts add a touch of graininess and very light sweetness to balance. Little floral and very light resin and faint increasing pine note, also from the hops. Finish is dry, grainy malts, a bit more bitterness with hops getting a bit grassy and more floral and spicy even, hint of fruity notes.

Mouth is med bod, just the right amount of carbonation.

Overall pretty nice, nice hops, just enough malts, very drinkable and tasty.

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Photo of obrike
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bought a sixer on the recommendation of my beer guy.

Pours a light golden orange with a thin white head...disappates fairly quickly and leaves just a bit of lace.

I really enjoyed the scent...especially considering this has under 5% booze. Citrus, mainly orange and cantelope hops and a bit of sweet malt. Impressive.

Had a good dose of hops over a solid caramel malt backbone. Citrus hops with a hint of pine. A tiny bitter bite at the end, but well balanced. Super easy drinking. Almost goes down like a light beer...but with actual hop taste!

I think this is a nice summer/pool pale ale. Well balanced with low abv means you can have quite a few in a sitting and maintain. A little pricey, but if you're looking for a tasty sessionable pale aler with a good hop profile...look no further.

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Photo of JJOVa
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of arizcards
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Picked up a 6-Pack at AJ's this month for $7.99.

This is a nice golden color that poured a good two finger head that has sustained quite well. Nose is of citrusy malts. Taste reminds me of an ESB as it has a stronger malt presence than anticipated at the start and finishes with a nice citrusy floral hop with the malts still present. Mouthfeel is OK, decently carbonated and heavy enough for the style. Drinkability is near perfect for a session. This makes for a great tail gate brew!

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Photo of DEdesings57
4.05/5  rDev +4.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured into a teku glass
Age: 1.5 months old

Its a great west coast pale ale! Grapefruit, citrus, and lemongrass with a touch of malt. med to light body and very easy drinking. Great stuff!

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Photo of ExaltedNecrosis
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle poured into pint glass.

A - Mostly clear yellow-gold with a finger of white head.

S - Grassy, citrusy, and sweet.

T - Grassy and herbal hops, a bit of grapefruit and lemon, very slight bitterness, and a good malty sweetness. Well balanced beer, easy drinking, not detectable alcohol.

M - Thin-to-moderate body, moderate carbonation. It has a lingering bittersweetness in the mouth after each sip.

O - Better than I was expecting. An interesting hop profile, well hidden alcohol, and very refreshing and easy to drink.

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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 OsoRojo
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Quintessential California Pale Ale. Brighter and less malty than Sierra Nevada's version and many others. Often overlooked pale ale.

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Photo of JPowell712
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Photo of Ivanhoes_Backpack
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Photo of beerforpresident
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%

Photo of poorbuthappy
4.04/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

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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Pale 31 California Pale Ale from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
3.86 out of 5 based on 1,950 ratings.
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