Pale 31 | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

very good
1,924 Ratings
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Pale 31Pale 31

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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Reviews: 556 | Ratings: 1,924
Photo of JuicesFlowing
4.14/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

Poured into a nonic pint glass.

Look: A clear light golden body with beautifully rising bubbles sits under a thick, foamy head. The head basically never recedes and leaves thick patches of lacing.

Aroma: Citrus zest, peppery crackers, clean spicy hops.

Taste: A soft, slightly bready malt bill lays the ground for white pepper and citrus zest to dance around on. In the finish light tropical fruit notes emerge.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied.

Overall: A nicely balanced APA with a nicely approachable ABV.

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Photo of Lingenbrau
4.29/5  rDev +11.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

You know that smell? The one when a brewery is making a fresh batch, or you and your buddies mashing in on a homebrew? This smells like that, and you either hate it, or love it. I love it. This beer tastes like it too. As far as a regular ol' pale ale with no crazy bells or whistles goes, this one is hard to beat. Cheers!

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Photo of MFMB
3.75/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Well 3.75 across the board... Pours a pale golden color, malts and grass on the nose. Taste off honey malt and light grass with a tiny hint of citrus. Perhaps I taste citrus in everything who knows. Medium mouthfeel with a fairly dry finish. A solid pale IMO.

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Photo of irrevjim
3.77/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

from a bottle to a beer tulip
look; very pale yellow golden, nice 1" white head with some retention, plenty of lacing
smell; mild lemon grass, mild bread, good but mild
taste; very balanced crisp light pale ale, kiss of citrus hops, hint of grass, hint of honey
feel;light body, crisp, finish slightly dry, on the low end of moderate carbonation
overall; It could pass for an american pilsner. I will keep it in mind for when I want something in between an ale and a pilsner, very drinkable with a pleasant beer flavor, good summer ale

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Photo of TH28
3.6/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12oz can. 12/22/15 can date. Appearance: Golden, clear, moderate white head that dissipates quickly.
Aroma: Light breadiness, light grassy hop aroma. Pretty mild hop notes for the style.
Taste: Light crackery maltiness, grassy and resinous hop flavor, with a minimal citrus character. Perceived bitterness is high.
Mouthfeel: Light to medium body, moderately high carbonation.
Finish: Strong grassy, resin hop character lingers. Sticky on the tongue and dry.
Overall: A nice, refreshing beer, but wouldn't qualify it as a top example of the style...but that may be driven by the fact that it's nearly 4 mths old. Aroma is pretty low key for the style, and flavor lacks some complexity of others. Would be interested to try a fresher version to see if the character is the same.

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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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Photo of fx20736
4.34/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Bought a 6 pack from Beers of the World on 3/5/16. Served in a Duvel tulip at fridge temp.

Look: Hazy butterscotch, thick white head, nice lacing

Smell: Fragrant, floral hops, hint of lemon zest

Taste: hop forward but very subtle blend of floral and light lemon zest

Feel: spritzy

Overall: superbly crafted, balanced, immensely drinkable, a home run

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

Poured a light golden color with a 3F head which quickly resolved in a Stone Imperial pint glass.

Aroma: light citrus, earthy.

MF: the body is a bit thin. Medium carbonation.

Taste: light citrus. Not strong. Light hoppy finish.

Hmm... Firestone walker- my favorite brewer of barrel aged beers.
Has the Duvel takeover compromised the quality of their other beers?
Not sure. This is a light weight APA. It needs more carbonation, citrus, and hoppy bitterness.

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Photo of Libeertarian
3.69/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

From notes taken yesterday:

Now, that’s a pale ale. Gasoline color as it’s poured, though considerably darker in the glass, a semi-cloudy golden amber. Head is foamy with crisp surfaces and edges, eggshell to lemon white, of moderate retention with great lacing, filmy on the surface after it has mostly dissipated. I can actually smell the alcohol in this, at least right after the pour, despite it’s not even 5% ABV. Beyond that, it is grass, light lemon. All of this on the palate, excepting the alcohol, and with stronger lemon tartness and the addition of pine and rind bitterness, starting a second or so in and crescendoing with the finish, at which point peppercorn also sets in. Light- to medium-bodied, sloshy, light spritziness, semi-smooth, very quenching.

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Photo of dukeandduke
3.69/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Chicago 1/13/16 (12 oz bottle poured into pint glass). Very clear blonde pour, with high initial carbonation and minimal white head. Orange and pine scent. Nice texture and easy going down. Pleasant malt and orange taste, Solid feel. Solid beer, looking forward to my next offering.

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

From bottle. Pours clear golden with large foamy white head. Moderate lacing. Aroma has floral and citrus. Taste pine, citrus, and floral. Not too hoppy. Light bodied with moderate carbonation.

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Photo of Sabtos
2.37/5  rDev -38.6%
look: 2.75 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 2.25 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.25

Bright yellow, shockingly transparent, with miniature, less abundant champagne bubbles.

Smells faintly of lemon, pungent hops, pilsner.

Light, bitter and astringent. Does not go down as smoothly as anticipated.

Really this is only a slight step up from a typical, conglomerate pils.

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Photo of bonterra69
4.32/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4.75 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Great beer!
Poured into a Pilsner glass. Appearance is a perfect gold. Extremely effervescent throughout its life, with tiny tiny bubbles. Head is thin.
Aroma is very hoppy - Floral, fruity. Hint of apple and grapefruit. Lovely.
Very balanced taste. Dry finish, with a bitter lingering.
Feel is light and tingly.
Overall, the taste is straight ahead. It comes at you, you know what to expect, and then it leaves you wanting more.

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Photo of drmeto
4.88/5  rDev +26.4%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 5

-strong floral notes
-pleasantly balanced
-mango,grapefruit,oranges,pineapple,maracuja,caramel hop bitterniss
-well carbonated
Finish is sweet,fruity,slighly bready with medium hop bitterniss.
Absolute Reference in the Style

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Photo of vabeerguy
3.91/5  rDev +1.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a bottle into a nonic glass. I was expecting that the beer may be stale because the bottling date was April 2015. It did not seem to be the case. The beer hit just the right mix of hops. Not too bitter. I can see why this is a popular beer. I will definitely buy it again.

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Photo of stevoj
2.92/5  rDev -24.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Surprised at the ratings here, as I’m underwhelmed by this. Sour notes in the aroma and taste, and appearance is dull. Pleasant hop finish and palate but rest of it is slightly sour, musty, skunky. Perhaps a bad bottle, but lower than what I expected.

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Photo of ONUMello
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle dated 4/8/15 poured into a pint glass
A: Clear yellow-orange with a one-finger head
S: Orange/orange zest, pine and a hint of malt
T: Citrus zest, pine, a hint of earth. Dry/bitter but not much else there
M: Light-bodied, bitter
O: A good session ale, tasty but simple

 280 characters

Photo of 303beer
4/5  rDev +3.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pores a very bubbly golden color with a dense White head about 1 inch in depth. Citrus and hop notes in the nose. Nice balance of hop and citrus in the taste, a little more than you'd expect from a pale ale. Pretty good stuff.

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Photo of Treyliff
3.86/5  rDev 0%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass

A- pours a clear bright golden color with a thick, pillowy and creamy two-finger white head that retains long after the pour

S- toasted cracker malt highlighted by citrusy hop with some grassy, floral & yeasty aromas

T- clean toasted malt up front gives way to some juicy, yet controlled citrus hop flavors, along with some grassy notes. Clean toasted finish with more citrus on the linger

M- medium body and carbonation leads to a foamy mouthfeel and a crisp dry finish, high drinkability

O- solid session ale that gives just enough citrus hop punch to keep it interesting, while remaining remarkably drinkable

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Photo of Act25
3.83/5  rDev -0.8%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

APA is my favorite style and this one I benchmark against my favorite Deals Pale Ale.

A - Pours a clear golden color with a modest head that laces moderately. Not as interesting as Dales.

S: Biscuity aroma that adds floral and citrus notes. Not as intense and original as Dales.
clean, straight ahead. grassy, bright.

T - follows smell, plenty of grassy, hay, coastal hops, salty, and long finish 3.75
F - Good weight, great finish 4

T: Follows smell, but more interest - A biscuity start that is cookie sweet; then by mid-palate, the citrus and grassy hops kick: sunny hay, coastal hops, salty, and long finish.

F: Great feel. Best attribute. Medium bodied with moderate carbonation and nice long finish.

Sessionable APA. This brewer does it all right.

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Photo of mikeg67
3.65/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

12 oz bottle. Pours golden with tall, long-lasting, fluffy white head and nice lacing. Aroma is of citrusy hops, bready malt and some tropical fruit. Body is medium and crisp. Herbal hops, pale malt and ripe fruit fill the mouth. Finish is long and dry. Very good overall.

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

on tap in a pint glass.

Clear golden color, active small-bubble carbonation. 1F white head, ends as a film leaving rings of lacing.

Fruit and citrus hop aroma.

Malt base flavor, pale and caramel, with hops.

Light body with a malt kick.

Clean dry finish.

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

12 fl.oz. bottle. Bottled on 05/05/2015.

A: Pale amber. Clear. Poured with medium amount of foam.
S: Slightly citrus aroma.
T: Slightly citrus and grassy. Medium- bitterness. Dry.
M: Light bodied. Quite refreshing.
O: A decent session beer. Nothing really special.

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Photo of Strat58cat
4.13/5  rDev +7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4.25

With Firestone Walker, less can be more. While their flagship Union Jack is overwrought imho, their Pale 31 is everything a pale ale should be. From brewery to brewery, it's a fuzzy line between what is a proper ale and what is an Indian Pale Ale (and what is a double IPA, but that's another story). Firestone brews an absolutely huge IPA called Union Jack that is over the top for me. Their 31 Pale, however, is a tremendously good ale. It could pass for a session IPA at some other breweries.

31 pale is amber with an orange tint, like many IPAs. It's notably dark for a pale ale. The head froths up beautifully white and billowy and retains. There is a lot of lacing to the bottom of the glass. High quality malt, here.

The aroma is fantastic. It's not all citrus and grapefruit, all pine, or overwhelming fruit. It is a balanced, inviting bouquet featuring some of each.

The taste is a delightful citrus, but not simply grapefruit. It's more of a balanced, tart, refreshing, citrus fruit salad. The malt balances the flavors from the hops with a rich malt backbone that suggests graham crackers to me, or another consumers own subjective grain-based treat. It's really just beer, but it seems like something more important.

The quality malt is in proportion to the aggressive hop profile. The feel is substantial, not watery. It's a rich experience to drink Pale 31.

Firestone Walker has a fantastic beer here. Whether they choose to call it pale ale or IPA, it is delicious and refreshing. Sometimes less is more.

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Photo of andrewjraab
3.69/5  rDev -4.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - Pours a pale yellow with good clarity, fluffy white head and nice stick all the way down.

S - Grassy, yeast, citrus notes, malts.

T - Low to medium bodied, crisp and refreshing. Hops present - citrus, balanced nicely with some grains, yeast, malts. Clean finish.

O - Really solid brew that makes for a nice session APA.
Notes - picked up while visiting family in Cape Girardea, MO.

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Pale 31 from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
3.86 out of 5 based on 1,924 ratings.
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