Piranha Pale Ale | BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse

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Piranha Pale AlePiranha Pale Ale

Brewed by:
BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse
Arizona, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Winner of multiple awards, including a Silver Medal in American-Style Pale Ales at the 2002 Great American Beer Festival. This hoppy ale is dry-hopped with the snappy flavor and bite of Cascade hops…for hopheads only!

45 IBU

Added by UncleJimbo on 09-29-2004

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Reviews: 31 | Ratings: 133
Photo of Radome
3.47/5  rDev -1.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.75

Tasted on tap at the Albuquerque location. Bright orange color. Crystal clear with lots of bubbles. Strong piney/earthy hops aroma. Strong West Coast hops flavors, no malt to balance. No yeast or alcohol notes. Light body, spritzy carbonation. Hops bitterness higher than expected but it works.

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Photo of JeffBlue
3.25/5  rDev -7.7%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

(Draft revisited, Foster City CA) much better tasting than previous revisits. Has been many years since this was one of my go-to pales. Overall pretty balanced between hops and malts.

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3.96/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I was a bit surprised by this beer. The color is spot on for an APA, but the smell was kind of grainy and uninspiring. I was not expecting much, so my first sip surprised me with a bit of malt sweetness backed up with a good hop punch that lingered and made me want another, and another. Much better than I was expecting.

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Photo of Mora2000
2.13/5  rDev -39.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 2

On tap at BJ’s in Allen, Texas. The beer pours a yellow-orange color with a white head. The aroma is OK, with some pine and orange from the hops, as well as a little bit of toffee. The flavor is not as good as the aroma. I get some resinous and orange hops, but there is an overwhelming dirty flavor that ruins the beer. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Not a good beer.

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Photo of RickS95
2.96/5  rDev -15.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Very clear, light amber in color, thinnish head. Not bad looking, but pretty non-descript.

I tried and tried and tried and simply couldn't pick up any sort of smell, other than that of cut straw.

The taste isn't much different than the smell in that there's not a lot of it. Other than an earthy pine flavor, nothing stood out.

Initially a malt character, then nothing but slight bitter the rest of the way.

Not a good or bad beer, just something that doesn't really stick out.

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Photo of BucannonXC5
3.98/5  rDev +13.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Actually in La Mesa, but Chandler seemed to have the most beer ratings, so I went with that.

Poured from a draft into a pint glass at BJ’s Restaurant in La Mesa, Calif. First thought on the color was caramel, but I think it was more copper orange. About an inch of head. Good amount of lacing on the top. Also some good-looking film that lasted throughout. Just a good-looking beer.

Smelled of citrus, piney hops. Light notes of caramel, grapefruit and fruits as well.

The taste was pretty close to the nose. Citrus, piney hops up front, with caramel coming in late. Orange or tangerine was the lingering taste.

Medium body. Average carbonation. Clean finish, but slight bitterness lingering on the tongue.

A pretty good pale ale overall. I thought about bumping up the feel, but the taste wore on me after awhile. I’d give it another try, though.

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Photo of DM1293
4.2/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served in a 5 ounce tasting glass.

Appearance - A really nice color of deep coppery orange.

Smell - Sharp and acidic. VERY bright hops hit you; its got a strange sweetness to it.

Taste - Tastes much like it smells; but this wasn't anything I was expecting.

Prior experiences with pale ales have told me "you're going to get a bitter punch on the palate and it'll keep on punching". This was entirely different from ones I've tried. The hops hit you full-on, yes; but its sweet, and not that bitter. The sweetness actually counteracts the bitterness really well. I got notes of apple-y to citrus-y intermixed ontop the hops, and they brought the whole thing into a well-rounded taste.

Mouthfeel - Clean and smooth, light hold on the palate.

Overall - ...I'll admit it, this impressed the heck out of me. To the point where I would consider drinking it again. I never thought I'd ever say that about a pale ale, but this has convinced me there are good, balanced, drinkable ones available. If it can do that, I give it high marks.

What I'm curious about is if its the amount of hops they use or the kind of hops they use that gives it this uniqueness. (Cascade Hops)

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Photo of JMad
3.5/5  rDev -0.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The beer pours a light, orange, copper color with just a thin, white filmy head. It smells nice and sweet, I mostly noticed vanilla and orange. The taste is mostly fruity, there are hints of orange, tangerine, lemon and sweet, bready malt. The beer is medium bodied with a good amount of carbonation. I thought the Piranha was very a solid pale ale, I'll probably drink this everytime I go to BJ's.

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Photo of bondjedi
2.41/5  rDev -31.5%
look: 3 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

On tap at the BJ's in Tacoma.

No foam at serving. Some lacing after half a glass. Neutral smell. Bitter and overpowering, not sweet and pleasant. Drinking a glass of this is probably the same experience as drinking a glass of Brut or Afta Shave. A fine accompaniment to the bland pizza I had with it.

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Photo of soju6
3.7/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had at the BJ's in El Paso, TX.

A: Served a golden color with a moderate head that fades to some lacing.

S: Mild aroma of a malty sweetness and citrus.

T: A blend of a light malty sweetness and a piney bitterness. Refreshing.

F: Medium body, crisp and clean. Well balanced.

D: A good drinker, went well with my dinner. Good for a few.

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Photo of tbern007
3.55/5  rDev +0.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Poured at BJs in Henderson, NV
Golden, clear appearance. Light head, dissipates quickly, light lacing.
Smell is light hops, pine.
Taste is citrus, IPA like, pine, light malt. The first half was better than the second half. The longer it sits, the more bitter/sour it becomes.
Too carbonated.
Overall decent. Cheaper than other IPA-types and can be comparable.

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Photo of velkyal
2.8/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2

Part of a flight at the Daytona BJ's

Sight - light copper, white head, standard APA really.
Smell - citrus, a touch of grapefruit, hairspray
Taste - some caramel maltiness, but the hops were seriously lacking, I wanted more from an American Pale Ale, this was kind of bland.
Sweet - 3/5
Bitter - 3/5

Really this did absolutely nothing for me, not enough oomph in the hop department, and I say that an someone who is not an avowed hop whore.

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Photo of twiggamortis420
3.65/5  rDev +3.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Brought to the table in a pseudo-pint glass very full. Its dark gold and slightly hazy, leaving great lacing on the glass as it is consumed pretty damn fast. I was thirsty.

Nose is grainy malts with a toasty, crusty caramel edge to it. Hops are pretty mild and give off a slight floral and grassy aroma. Has a bit of a sweet, biscuity yeast note as well.

Taste is pretty well balanced between toasty malt and bittering piney and grassy hops. There is an earthy, almost peat-like flavor to the malts as well. It could definitely use some more flavoring and aroma hops. Claims to be dry-hopped with Cascade, but I am not getting much citrus in the nose or flavor. Good mouthfeel, biscuity with some heft to the body. It is a serviceable pale ale, nothing to go too crazy over...reminds me a bit of Full Sail PA.

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Photo of BretSikkink
3.72/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Golden color from the taps of the Mesa location. Clear body with a thin, beige head. On the nose, I get quite a bit of the West Coast style citric hopping, and little beyond. Some pale malt sweetness in the flavor, and some hints towards biscuit dough. Otherwise, a pretty hoppy APA and not too bad at the job. Bitter, peppery finish that is whisked somewhat by the high levels of carbonation.

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Photo of Sammy
3.72/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Enjoyed on-tap at the Chandler location. Pretty substantive Cascade hoppy pale, another man's IPA. Orangey with a white head. A hoppy aroma, and good drinkability from the cascade. A bit overcarbonated, but still median mouthfeel. Hits the mark, quenching.

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Photo of jujubeast6000
2.82/5  rDev -19.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2 | overall: 3

Reviewed 4/4/2008 (Tap @ BJs Brewpub, Clear Lake, TX):

Pours a golden amber colored body, with a smallish head, off-white in color, and diminishing. Has some hops, some malts, and some sweetness, but mostly bitter. Bitter, somewhat tempered taste, some sweet malt on the aftertaste.

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Photo of changeup45
3.03/5  rDev -13.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Sampled on 4/23/08. This was alright. Copper colored, minimal head or lace, with a mild piney hop aroma. Grapefruit hoppy flavor, slightly sweet, but overall somewhat mild. The finishing hops really aren't there as it finishes a touch bland. A decent Pale Ale.

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Photo of Vipsanius
3.43/5  rDev -2.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Had this at the pre-opening of the new San Antonio location. Had a nice color and body to it with an okay head.

Had a sweet and hoppy aroma.

The taste was insanely hoppy. It doesn't appear that's the norm for this beer so I wonder if the brewer was a tad overzealous on this first run. I'd be curious to see if it maintains that intense hoppiness down the road, because I'd surely enjoy it but I doubt the majority would. I imagine they'll dumb it down going forward to increase sales.

The mouthfeel was nice...a bit of a roller-coaster, which I enjoyed.

Overall, the beer was a bit much initially, but actually paired very well with my pizza once it came out.

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Photo of woodychandler
4.4/5  rDev +25%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This was served to me with a medium, light-tan head with low retention. Its color was a coppery-amber with NE-quality clarity. The nose had a decent, mildly hoppy scent. Mouthfeel was medium with a good bit of hops in the mouth and on the tongue. The finish also had a decently hoppy quality. In some parts of the country, this would have been an IPA.

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Photo of baseballrock
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

This i one of the better beers at the BJ's i live near. appearance, there was some lace left around my glass and the smell was hoppy. this is an average APA, by that i mean there is noting in the taste that is really bold. mild hoppyness, the one thing i did notice towards the end of my glass was a little sweetness. the ABV on this beer is not as high as in some other APA's so the drinkability is a little higher.

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Photo of JDV
3.12/5  rDev -11.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 3.5

Light clear amber pour with a small head. Nice sweet subtle fresh floral hop aromas. Taste is mildly hopped, a bit thin overall in the body and flavor, and a decent bitterness in the finish. Overall, nice and unoffensive and very drinkable, but not full bodied and flavored enough as I'd like.

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Photo of Overlord
3.1/5  rDev -11.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

I finally got around to entering my reviews from a session over at BJs.

This is perhaps the most average beer I can recall. Color is yellow, not too gold, not to thin. Some head, but not too much. Mouthfeel is ... average. Not overly carbonated, but I wouldn't say it had gone flat.

A bit o' hops, but again; not much. Just ... beer. I suppose it is more drinkable than the average beer.

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Photo of Gusler
3.92/5  rDev +11.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

The sample is the Cask version served at “Papago” Brewery, and as I sample more Cask conditioned Ales, the more I wish were available. The pour is a limpid amber color, the head is portly in size, frothy in texture, tan in color and as it evanesces, the lace forms a fine covering sheet upon the glass. Ah the smell of the hop flowers, dominates this magnificent nose that is also sweetly malt, fresh and clean, the quintessential “Dry Hopped” aromas all present, sweet malt start, the top moderate in feel. Finish is delicately acidic, “BOOM”, the hops slap your palate and cling till the very dry and lovely finish, just plain “Yummy”!

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Photo of Dogbrick
3.38/5  rDev -4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Sample at the Columbus location. Clear golden-orange color with a medium thin light beige head that dissipates pretty fast. Thin rings of lacing. Citrusy hops aroma. Medium-bodied and moderately bitter with hops, citrus and some sweet malt flavor. The finish is short and somewhat hoppy, and has a lingering sweet malt aftertaste. Average overall.

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Photo of Bierguy5
4/5  rDev +13.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

On tap in Columbus. Golden color, only slightly hazy. Poured with very minimal head. What was there held itself well. Nice patches of lace left on the glass.

Citrusy, faintly piney aroma. Very nice, and classic of an American Pale.

Good malt backbone. A bit of caramel fades into a nice blast of citrusy, slightly piney hops. Well balanced, but daring for a chain place.

Good body and carbonation. I liked this one very much. Well balanced, and easy to drink, while providing a good hop fix.

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Piranha Pale Ale from BJ's Restaurant & Brewhouse
3.52 out of 5 based on 133 ratings.
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