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Pale 31 | Firestone Walker Brewing Co.

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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: 552 | Ratings: 1,896
Photo of rfgetz
4.3/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A. bright orangy yellow, full fluffy white head, good lacing

S. appetizing whiffs of sweet clover like hops and malt, slight lemon

T. excellent balance of floral hops and sweet malts, hints of lemon

M. light bodied, good carbonation, refreshing, semi dry

D. fantastic refreshing brew, perfect flavor profile

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Photo of Slatetank
4.15/5  rDev +7.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

I must admit before I get into the review I am becoming more a fan of well-balanced, well crafted brews. This to me is one of those beers - not to say it is for everyone, just an all around well made beer to me.
I picked this bottle up at Outlet Liquors in Rehoboth Beach DE, poured chilled in a mug.

A - A beautiful honey amber w/ 2 1/2 fingers of rocky glistening ecru w/ a very fine bead. The clarity is refulgent and the carbonation visibly rises toward the head.

S - A woody, earthy green hop aroma w/ subtle stone fruit essence. Hints of grapefruit and floral accents are present w/ mild malt in the back

M - A balance of fruity sweet and acidity w/ moderate carbonation and a spicy middle. The ale finishes more on the bitter side, but still retains a mild malt sweetness

T - A light citrus note leads to a light sweet malt w/ a gentle biscuit tinge. More lemony hops w/ mild orange similar to a meyer lemon. More spice from the hops as it opens up w/ a zesty sweet taste and the semi dry finish has moderate bitterness.

D - A great pale ale w/ plenty of hop flavor, citrus and still mostly balanced - perhaps one of the best I've had.

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Photo of fsimcox
3.93/5  rDev +1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle.

Pours a nice clear slightly amber straw color. White foamy head that dissipates quickly. Nice lacing.

Smells of fruity hops, hints of citrus.

Taste is crisp, with hops, finishes dry with a little sour/bitter note.

Mouthfeel is good. A little more carbonation is noticed

This beer is plentiful in central Cali. 4.8% abv makes this a very drinkable beer.

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Photo of originalsin
3.58/5  rDev -7.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

I've avoided drinking this for too long now--Been staring me in the eyes from the shelves, often with a discount sticker. Got this 6 pack on the cheap at a local Ralphs. Pours a transparent honey amber with about a quarter inch of white foamy head that dissipates quickly. Pretty typical looking pale ale. Nothing stands out here.

Smell is of caramel malt and some light citrus hops. Taste doesn't diverge much. Big on the caramel and bready malts. A bit too malty for a pale ale for me with next to no hop bitterness and little hop flavor coming through. Oh well. The mouthfeel is relatively light. All of the above make for a decently drinkable pale ale.

Not necessarily something I'll be drinking again any time soon--far too many better examples of the style for me. I expected a bit more from a company with a "passion for the pale". But that's alright, it's a well crafted pale ale nonetheless. Just no my favorite. Cheers.

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Photo of portia99
3.68/5  rDev -4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle received in trade with Wasatch - thanks John. Poured into a Portsmouth goblet.

A - Beautiful, clear and pale golden color. Minimal loose bubbled, white head - disappears rapidly into a collar around the edge of the glass.

S - Fruity and sweet in aroma. Candy and caramel sweetness...fruity hops. Smells like this one is going to balance on the malty side.

T - Sweet and bready malt dominate this one's flavor. Hop bitterness is minimal, hop flavor is fruity and has just a tinge of citrus. Flavors are all subdued and blend well together. Light and refreshing.

M - Thin in body, carbonation is light, but adequate. Smooth and creamy feeling. Has a light and easy drinking feel to it.

D - These are quite poundable for a craft beer. Alcohol is low at 4.8%, flavors are smooth and well rounded, and not at all powerful. Everything is on the reserved side, but blend together well to create a nic, well rounded beer. Great lawnmower beer.

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Photo of NJpadreFan
4.35/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Firestone Walker- Pale 31

A- Bright yellow orange with a thick frothy head and thick lacing.
S- Light caramel/ butter malt. Lemony citrus with a touch of pine.
T- Sweet buttery caramel/ butterscotch with lemon citrus and a light touch of pine hops.
M- Buttery sweet and smooth with a nice touch of citrus and pine hops.

Overall- Creamy smooth and nicely balanced.

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Photo of vacax
4.12/5  rDev +6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a Firestone Walker "Passion for the Pale" logo pint glass.

Pours a pale gold with a one-finger moderate dense head. Fair retention and lacing. Fragrant with earthy hops with apples and some citrus and a bit of caramel malts. Taste is primarily full of earthy hops with a bit of pine, moderately bitter with some caramel malt balance. Clear hop flavors in this pale ale, malt balanced without being too sweet or heavy. Medium body and a lively feeling medium carbonation makes for very nice swigging. I do like the hop flavors here and the good mouthfeel make drinking this one effortless.

Though not as common as the Double Barrel Ale, this is often a proper choice in an otherwise bleak grocery store environment. I snag a six pack of this one when I find it on sale. Recommended for an everyday pale.

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Photo of froghop
3.45/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pours a clear yellow with a medium size white head, and good lacing.

smell of hops, floral, a touch of caramel, and just a little pine.

taste is crisp and clean, a little sour, hops, a little caramel, and some grain, ends with a little bitterness.

overall a very nice pale ale.

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

Bought this beer at a gas station in California. We got back on the highway heading North and within 1/2 mile saw the brewery. No time to stop unfortunately.

A- Crystal clear and a gold. It comes with a thick foamy head that hangs around for a while.

S- Smells like a sugar covered pine tree.

T- The piney taste starts slow and builds, but never gets too strong.

M- Smooth and low on carbonation.

D- They called this a California Pale Ale. It is very drinkable.

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Photo of jeffjeff1
3.38/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

This was an ok pale ale. I have had better before.

Appearance- amber color

Smell- sweet, malt

Taste- hops, sweet

Mouthfell- light to medium bodied

Drinkability- ok might drink it again, had it at a bar in Morro Bay, not tto bad would drink it again

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Photo of JBmadera
3.45/5  rDev -10.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I like this beer. nice golden color, mellow hop smell and a somewhat sweet/hop taste with the sweetness lingering just a bit. very easy to drink and it feels good in the mouth with some light carbonation. a solid beer for a hot summer afternoon (or morning here in my case).

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Photo of MetalHopHead6
3.72/5  rDev -3.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a shaped pint glass.

Firestone Pale 31 poured a very pale gold with a thin short head that dissipated quickly. It looked more like a lager or pils than a pale ale.

The smell was earthy, with hints of pine. The taste started similar to the smell but finished with a sweet maltiness that seemed more English than American IPA. The feel was inconsequential, lacking the bitterness of good pale ale, but paired with the low alcohol level, it was very drinkable.

Firestone Pale 31 looks and feels weak--too pale to be pale.

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Photo of BeerDetective
3.79/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I had this on tap during my trip to Monterey, and I think it was the best one I could find on tap. It poured a gold brown, and had a good hoppy nose, that got better as the beer warmed. Taste was nothing spectacular a bit blander than most pale ales I have had, and it was a little thin for a pale ale. Easy drinking though, and more flavorful than the Sierra Nevada. I shall probably have another pint or two this afternoon to confirm my findings.

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Photo of spointon
4.14/5  rDev +7.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

I poured this one from a 12oz brown bottle into a shaker pint glass. Thanks go out to dgb3 for sending this in a recent trade.

A= This ale poured a very clear golden color (filtered I would say) with a fairly low carbonation release and a 1/2" white head. The head dropped to zero very quickly and did not leave any lacing behind.

S= Though I found the aroma of this beer to be very subtle and clean, I did note some nice West coast grapefruit/pine hops and a honeylike malt sweetness in the background. Like I said though, very subdued.

T= Flavor is where this one started to shine for me. For an American pale ale weighing in under 5% abv, I thought it was very balanced and flavorful. The sweetness of the malt played perfectly against the citrusy hop profile. There was even a light floral character to the hops that added some complexity. Finished dry with a small but pleasant hop aftertaste.

MF= Light bodied with a medium carbonation. Just enough actually to give a bit of crispness on the tongue.

D= Overall, I found this to be a really well made and flavorful ale. Drinkability was extremely high...I could session this one all day and enjoy every minute of it!

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

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass.

A: Light-medium orange. Quickly fading head leaves a lot of lacing.

S: Caramel-toffeeish malt with a hint of citrusy hops.

T: This is more malt-forward than the typical APA, so it's pretty big on the sweetness up front. The hops become more prominent at the end, leaving a pleasant grapefruity-bitter aftertaste.

M: Not too heavy, decent carbonation.

D: I enjoyed this quite a bit. It's everything a pale ale and a session beer should be.

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Photo of oxnard111
4.57/5  rDev +18.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Above good beer here. Not quite exceptional, but I truly love this brew. Poured from a bottle into a pint glass

A-Light golden. Semi cloudy. Thick foamy head that receded quickly. Soapy think residual layer that stays on top of the beer. Low-medium lacing.

S-Piney, citrus hop smells stand out with a slight floral undertones. Hidden malt smells that barely stand out.

T-Orangey hoppy taste. Very slight sweetness. Malt flavors stand out also. Near even balance of all flavors.

M-Medium thickness. Lower carbonation level.

D-The one thing about this brew that I truly love. Very drinkable. I have easily put back six bottles in a session without feeling bad, full or hung over the next day. Beer can be drunk when wrenching or in social scenes.

Truly tasty APA. I love this brew. Another great Firestone brew.

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Photo of NeroFiddled
3.8/5  rDev -1.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Mostly clear deep golden body beneath a full head of white that gently settles to an average collar, leaving behind some thin sheets of lace.

S: Pale malt, gently citrusy and grassy hops, mild yeasty fruitiness. Pretty basic, but clean.

T: Hop flavors and yeasty fruitiness lay just beneath, or perhaps on, the surface of the golden malt. It's just slightly grainy, and just slightly sweet. The fruit and hop flavors help to liven it - the grapefruit gives it a hint of a raspy edge. A median bitterness supports it, and it's almost too perfectly balanced! It finishes pretty much as it starts, with a smear of lingering gently sweet and grainy malt that's threaded through with hints of fruitiness and hops.

M: Medium bodied and gently crisp and smooth with a moderate, fine-bubbled carbonation.

D: Drinkability is where this beer shines. There's just enough malt, yeast, and hop to give it some character, but not enough of any one - or all - to make it shine. But it's perfectly balanced and clean and fresh and easily quaffable!!! It's almost like 'American Pale Ale Light' to a certain extent - everything's there, but it's not nearly as full as you might expect. It's easy to drink, and there's certainly some flavor to it, and that keeps me wanting more... wanting to find those hops and malt and bitterness! But I never will, so I'll just have to have another. Pretty nice!

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Photo of callmemickey
4.17/5  rDev +8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: Light golden-copper with a moderate off-white head. Quickly recedes but leaves behind some lacing.

S: Citric hops dominate the aroma profile. Pleasant and subdued.

T: More of the same... but amped up... Very nice, slightly bitter APA... good malt base adding some caramel and bread complexity.

M: Light-medium body. Resinous. Good carbonation.

D: Greatly enjoyed this brew... not quite like the Pale Ale's out here on the east coast. Refreshing and enjoyable.

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Photo of dickroop
4.28/5  rDev +10.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Scored a sixer of this west-coast stuff at State Line Liquor - had never heard of it before!

Its color could almost pass for Miller High Life - straw with not much head. The give-aways are that it's hazy, not see-thru and the lacing is promising. The smell is also promising - a little sweet, lots of phenolic hops with some citrus and floral notes, against a faintly earthy backdrop. Mmmm.

Taste does not disappoint. Malt sweetness is very muted, and bitterness appears at the back sides of the tongue right away, gentle but persuasive. There's a topnote of malt, faintly bready or biscuity, but the finish is dry and clean. Mmmm, again.

The mouthfeel is light, there's some chewiness, and some really nice zing that comes from ?? somewhere. Drinkability? This brew is Super-Sessionable! With a 4.8 ABV, this ale is for sustained enjoyment. What a treat. Highly recommended.

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

Thanks go out to wasatch for this one.

Presentation: Poured from a 12 oz brown bottle into a standard pint glass. Label depicts a nonic of what I assume is this beer, flanked my a bear and a lion holder a banner.

Appearance: Pours with 1 1/2 fingers of nearly pure white head. This settles slowly to a still substantial cap leaving behind decent lacing. Nice trail of rings as I drink this.The beer itself is pale yellow with a slight haze. A very fine layer of sediment remains in the bottle.

Smell: Ever so slight honey sweetness upfront, with light floral notes. A distinct husky grain aroma in the finish.

Taste: Piney, spicy hops upfront. Present, but not overwhelming. Undertones of mildly sweet, caramel and biscuit malts.

Mouthfeel: Lower than average carbonation level, as would be appropriate for the style. Body is good.

Drinkability: My first beer from Firestone Walker and a good example of the style. Would I have it again? Absolutely. Will I? Unfortunately, due to distribution limitations, no.

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Photo of zeff80
3.98/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A - Poured out a clear, bubbly, orange color with gold highlights. It had a bubbly, white, two-finger head of foam that left a little lace.

S - It smelled of citrus and floral notes.

T - It had a nice roasted malt and caramel taste with bitter, floral hops providing a potent kick.

M - It was crisp and sharp with a dry finish. A light bodied ale.

D - This is a high quality APA. I'm glad I was able to find one.

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Photo of Hojaminbag
3.6/5  rDev -6.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 3.5

This beer came as an extra in my recent trade with Wasatch. Thanks John.

A light, very translucent body that is copper in the center but golden around the edges. About one finger of off-white head that disappears almost immediately, but some how manages to leave some decent lacing on my glass.

Some sweet malt in the aroma with a good dose of citric, bittering, west coast style hops. However, overall I would say that the aroma is a little weak.

A blast of hop bitterness greets me during the beginning of my sip, while at the same time the hops express a distinct citric quality much like grapefruit. Next a bit of sweet, caramel-like malts pops up, but only for a second. The finish is pretty clean, just giving the slight hint of bitter hops. The aftertaste is all hops.

Mouthfeel is really oily with a medium body and fairly low carbonation; a good combination in my opinion.

I can understand why the bottle of this one says it is a "California Pale ale" instead of an APA; it is completely dominated by west coast style hops. Lots of bittering and citric hops. Good beer overall, but I like a little more balance in my APAs.

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Photo of oggg
4.45/5  rDev +15.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 5

Six-pack from BevMo

This beer pours a golden orange hue with a soft pillowy white head. Slightly hazy in a good way. Hop aroma is floral, mildly citrusy. A touch of biscuit in the aroma too. On the tongue, moderate carbonation gives way to malty sweetness, then moderate bitterness (less than SNPA or Full Sail PA), hop goodness, and then biscuit and bread. Very clean. Medium bodied.

Overall: this is my new favorite session beer. Beautiful. Good for adventurous newbies, too.

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Photo of seaoflament
4.1/5  rDev +6.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a light amber color with about an inch of foam. The head is formed mostly of large bubbles in the center and smaller ones on the sides. Retention is ok, with some lacing.

Flowery, hints of citrus and earthy hops on the nose. A bit of lemon and subtle notes of tropical fruits like papaya, mango, and peach. As the beer warms up I can smell some of the malts; pale malts and crackers with a bit of caramel. There's some honey aroma once the beer warms up a bit.

Crackers upfront with light toast and some citrus bitterness in the finish. Some flowery hop flavor in the finish as well. More earthy and flowery than citrus with some dry cracker or biscuit flavor. Hints of orange marmalade after a couple of sips. The beer starts to taste a bit grainy mid-way.

Very good mouthfeel, moderate carbonation with a clean and semi-dry finish. Easy to drink.

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Photo of JamesP123
3.92/5  rDev +1.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from 12oz. bottle into a sexy Oakland Raiders Logo Beer Mug.

A. Light orange/Dark yellow, pouredf with one finger of head that quickle dissapates.

S. Smells good, picking up floral hops first immidiately follwoed by a malty sweetness.

T. A bit lighter than expected from the smell, very balanced. Not tasting a lot of floral hops but definately get some spicy bitterness in the aftertaste. Medium carbination races across the tounge with each sip.

M. Light mouthfeel, good amount of carbination running through the mouth.

D. Easy to find, good beer at a moderate price. Nothing blows me out of the water but an all together very good beer across the board. Could see myself bringing to a few BBQ's this summer.

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Pale 31 from Firestone Walker Brewing Co.
3.86 out of 5 based on 1,896 ratings.
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