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Berkshire Ale Traditional Pale Ale | Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.

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very good
143 Reviews
Berkshire Ale Traditional Pale AleBerkshire Ale Traditional Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
Massachusetts, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 01-30-2002

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Reviews: 143 | Ratings: 253
Photo of OrangeAmps
3.88/5  rDev -1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Picked up a growler of this at Yankee Spirits. There definitely seems to be a price increase on all of the Berkshire offerings across the board, not just at Yankee but at all of the stores. But, its generally pretty great beer, so i dont really mind.

Pours a beautiful pale red color that isnt translucent. The foamy, stark white head billows up to the top of the pint glass and remains for quite some time after the duration of the pour.

I taste bready malts, and a very subdued hop profile. The bitterness is very slight and hits you on the inital taste and then on the back end. The middle is all sugary malts, reminiscent of biscuits or crescent rolls.

Overall, a great beer. Its pretty dark for a pale ale, and pretty good at that.

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Photo of MoreThanWine
3.53/5  rDev -9.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

I really enjoyed this. Poured a 1" head which dissipated to a trace. Gorgeous gazy rust color. Smells like a mild IPA with pine, citrus, and caramel, and tast is a mild version of the same. Very drinkable yet it has more to it than the typical pale ale. Frankly not too pale at all.

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Photo of K7online
4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is one of my favorites. The thick head and a clear copper color make it immediately delicious. Instant smells of orange and lemon are found at first pour. If you have this in the middle of winter it is a great reminder of why summer is so great.

The taste is smooth with a lot of character and ever so slightly bitter. Retains some of the English ale characteristics but with much more flavor. The citrus tones make it extremely drinkable and won't disappoint you. Best enjoyed in a hot summer day with a good steak or burger.

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Photo of Bouleboubier
4.33/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Always nice to come across an American brewery that can do an English pale pretty well.

For a bottle-conditioned ale, the head/carbonation is damn near copious - an off-white cottony cap, dense and creamy, leaving a few sheer bands of lace. The liquid sports a full tawny hue with a rose tinge to it. Clean but near cloudy.

When its temperature is ideal, an assertive, flowery hop bitterness greets you first, eventually met with an equal or arguably more assertive teacake maltiness. Very malty flavor as well. Kind of a sweetish, hot-cross-bun biscuit-bread thing. A little toasty, a little caramel (especially in the finish). Full-flavored. Nicely balances the heightened hop bitterness on the back of the tongue. All the way through it drinks a touch more clean than smooth and, despite not much perceptible carb (great for the style, casky), its one of the most filling, full-bodied examples I've tried. Sodden baguette.

I may have to try this again to compare and reflect, but in general I found this ale most pleasing, if not marathonically sessionable. Recommended to those who have a taste for ales of this ilk.

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Photo of rdpoint
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A nice dark copper color, translucent, with a nice head that quickly fades.

A nice hoppy fruit smell is present.

Taste is like candy in a bottle, I love this beer. Slight taste of hops right off the bat fading to a nice sweet caramel after taste, almost creamy tasting.

This beer looks good and tastes good, excellent for an all day session or an after work beer, either way its worth trying.

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Photo of mjrod2142
2.61/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

22oz. bottle poured into a Perfect Pint glass

This beer has a deep copper color and an excellent head that left thick trails while slowly dissipating. The aroma is buttery, smooth and sweet like caramel.

The taste was also sweet, which caught me off guard. I didn't pick up any bitterness or any hint of hops. This is a pale ale?

Is it brown sugar I'm tasting? I can't for the life of me place the flavors I'm experiencing. I think I'm getting floral notes. This was a huge disappointment because I'm a fan of other BBC varieties.

I'm not a fan.

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Photo of Homebrew35
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Has a nice hazy pale body. Creamy thick one and a half finger off white head.

Smells of some citrus hops, sweet malt, maybe some lemon grass.

Tastes of lemony citrus, some caramel, a touch of grass and lingering earthy hops on the finish.

Mouth feel is medium bodied, medium carbonation, medium dry finish.

Quite drinkable and delicious. I'd get this again.

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Photo of ToasterChef
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Reviewed from my notes. A 22oz bottle was split three ways.

A: Foamy off-white head. Translucent copper liquid. Very little rising carbonation.

S: Well-balanced hop aroma.

T: Very tasty English style pale. Slightly sweet. Mild bitterness. Slight molasses taste/feel. A small amount of bitterness and the aftertaste is ever so slightly metallic.

M: Medium body, low carbonation. Slightly syrupy. Very little coat.

D: I could drink round after round of this. As mentioned, the bottle was split 3 ways, but I think each of us could have drank our own bottle.

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Photo of Duhast500
3.7/5  rDev -5.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured from the 22oz. bottle into a Playboy pint glass.

The color is a slightly hazy amber with a orange highlight and a finger and a half of foamy white pillowy head and some nice lacing.

The smell is bitter with some hop aroma tickling my nose. Some earthy tones with some grassy flavor. A sweet malty flavor going by in the back and seems to mix well together.

The taste is hoppy at first and had a bit of an orange and cream flavor. There is a nice flavor comes out on the second sip and coats things a bit. There is sweet malt flavor poking out of all the corners and is holding it's own.

The feel of this beer is smooth and has a good body. It goes down nice and is really drinkable. A good pale ale.

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Photo of puboflyons
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Sampled on January 17, 2011 from the 22 fl. oz. bottle. The pour is a deep copper-amber that builds to about a three-quarter inch off-white head, which dissolves to a ring. The upward carbonation continues. The aroma tends to be grainy with barley and yeast notes. Yet there is also a slight sweetness around the edges. The flavor is nicely bitter with a simple scrumptious yeast strain, bits of sediment to chew on, and a nice hop ending. Likeable all around.

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Photo of JordonHoltzman
3.41/5  rDev -13%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

pours and orange-brown amber color with a thick tan head.
i get a lightly hopped smell w/ some fruitiness in it. not as malty as i would expect.
the taste is better than the aroma. light caramel malt. a little toasty too. subtle hop taste as well as a bit of fruitiness as well.
pretty good mouthfeel. no alcohol taste for something that is a point higher than average pale ales, although i enjoy the warmth that it brings going down. i get some corn in the aftertaste.
this is a relatively drinkable beer. overall it is enjoyable, good local brew.

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Photo of cbutova
4.1/5  rDev +4.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Have had this one a few times, finally getting to review some of the Berkshire beers I have enjoyed over the last year.

A- Crystal clear red with a creamy off-white head. Head retention is good and the size is decent. A nice coat of lace sticks to the glass.

S- A good blend of malt and hops. Pine, citrus and earthy hops up front blended into caramel malt and yeast breadiness. Slight floral in there.

T- Just like the nose, it brings a nice balanced blend of hops and malt. The hops to me are mostly pine, citrus and floral. The malt is a laid back light caramel and grainy flavor. Certainly some breadiness in here too.

MF- Creamy body that feels moderately thick. The carbonation is at a high-end amount and feels appropriate for the flavor. Somewhat bitter finish.

DB- A pale ale I have enjoyed many of times and probably will many more. Has a nice hop profile without being very hoppy like many other pale ales today (that seem like IPAs). A beer that is flavorful and very refreshing at the same time.

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Photo of Mora2000
3.68/5  rDev -6.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to Exiled for sharing this bottle.

The beer pours an amber color with a white head. The aroma is toffee, caramel and some grassy hops. The flavor is toffee and cocoa, as well as some grassy and earthy hops. Medium mouthfeel and medium carbonation. Not bad, but nothing special in my opinion.

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Photo of bosox941827
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomb bottle into a pint glass
A - Brown/amber color, with a a foamy head that quickly dissipates. A bit of haze is present from it being unfiltered.
S - Mostly sweet caramel malt, a hint of glycerin as well. Not too much hop presence.
T - Sweet, tasty caramel malt, with just a hint of hops in the finish. The hops seem to serve more of a drying/balance purpose than actually lending all that much in the way of flavor. Not saying this as a bad thing, just pointing it out. There's also a wheat bread flavor that's pervasive throughout. Also get just the *slightest* hint of roasted malts and a whiff of alcohol at the end of the palate along with a bit of breakfast tea (!) at the very end as well. All is very balanced and not at all unpleasant.
M - Very smooth; carbonation is low.
D - Pretty high, could easily session this one.
This is a nice contrast to all the hoppy beers I tend to go for; well done and enjoyable.

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Photo of SirSketch
4.28/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

A - Tightly packed, off white head that seems to stay around for awhile. The beer is an orangish auburn color with a wide range of lighter and darker highlights throughout.

S - A wet grain, corn husk smell emerges, then a biscuit/doughy aroma. Earthy hops are detectable, as well.

T - Wonderful interplay of toasty malt and bitter hops. Light citrus at the end, and the malt sweetness lingers, too. Very complex for a pale ale.

M/D - Medium bodied and creamy mouth with a crisp finish. Refreshing and full of flavor! Good work, BBC

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Photo of OtherShoe2
3.6/5  rDev -8.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Pours reddish brown with a big beige head. Decent clarity and bubbles rising, some fair lacing. Nice.

Some sweet malt and caramel aromas, some light alcohol and fruit.

This is sweet beer. Period. Malt forward, with nice toasty notes, but mostly obscured by a sweet toffee-like presence. Some alcoholic stone fruit plays in as well as some bitterness that I cannot but my finger on (herbs? tea?). Finishes bitter sweet. Alcohol is well hidden in the flavors, but you can kinda pick it out. This is not a chugger. Rich, well-defined flavors throughout.

Medium bodied, with just the right carbonation.

Gets lower points in drinkability category from me. Rich and pretty tasty, but once the bomber was gone, I was ready to move on. A bit out of balance with the sugar, and that made this a bit harder to get down. A sipper (which is fine) that needs to dry out a bit. Still, worth a try.

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Photo of Pahn
4.35/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 5

22oz bottle into a Stone pint glass. Reviewing from notes I took on August 11, 2010.

Appearance: Free pour yields a three inch, rocky white head that dissipates slowly leaving big, sticky rings of lacing. Pours a semi-translucent dark reddish amber, and leaves big streaks and islands of lacing.

Smell: Fruity and hoppy. There's floral notes, tropical fruit, mild citrus, and a sweet, unexpected grape note. Some malt sweetness as well. Smelling this beer is a bit like breathing in deeply while walking around a greenhouse. Very fresh aroma.

Taste: The same grape and mild citrus from the nose, then a huge malt backbone. The malt tastes distinctly like fresh country bread. There's a touch of bitterness in the aftertaste, though it's mainly fresh bread with subtle spicy and floral notes. Occasionally has a bit of grape soda character, but it's not offensive (and I hate grape soda, so I mean "just a bit" or else it would be ruining the beer for me).

The balance here is excellent. Nice mild but flavorful hops up front, then that giant and consistent malt backbone colored by little flourishes of spice and hop notes. I'm giving this a 4.0 since the grape was a little out of nowhere, and also because there could be more flavors happening, but honestly I could make an argument for 5.0 given how well balanced everything is, and how palatable the flavors are.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied, creamy and smooth, with mild carbonation.

Drinkability: It would be very easy to drink a lot of this beer, and I'll definitely be buying it again.

Berkshire Brewing Company consistently impresses me. I feel lucky to be able to buy beer of this quality for $3~ a bomber.

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Photo of sitarist
4/5  rDev +2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks: Pabs311

Pours the color of an old penny...copper brown with amber, and purple hues...off white head falls, and leaves lots of lacing.

Doesn't smell like an APA! Malt forward, toffee and caramel, something a little earthy, sweet, passion fruit.

Doesn't taste like an APA! I taste toffee, maple, something a bit wild and funky, if Southern Comfort made a beer it would taste like this! Its almost too sweet. The hops come in a bit on the back end.

Heavy and creamy, it last a long time on my tongue.

If you told me this beer was a Märzen / Oktoberfest, Id have scored this beer higher. Not a great APA at all, but it is one dam good beer!

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Photo of KTCamm
4.08/5  rDev +4.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

22 oz bomber pour into a pint glass.

Pours dark reddish/brown with some residual white foam. Laces nicely.

Deep malty smell. Caramel. Toffee.

Slight chocolate taste, loads of malt. Minor hop to back. A little sweet but balanced well. Hot damn, this is a nice tasting beer. Not your traditional APA, thats for sure - more malt, less hop.

Good carbonation in the mouth, quite tasty. Lots of flavor.

Loved this one, and look forward to more from the brewery.

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Photo of TommyW
3.9/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A- Reddish gold body with a slight haze; thin white head with an active carbonation.

S- Caramel and slightly fruity with a subtle malt undertone and an equal herbal hop aroma.

T- Mild roasted, caramel and burnt sugars come in on the malt side and a pretty well balanced by a floral and herbal hop profile. Finish has slightly lingering roasted/burnt sugar notes.

M- Medium body with a medium carbonation.

D- Really nice pale ale; more on the malt side than many other of this style.

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Photo of Sam21
3.83/5  rDev -2.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bomber into pint glass.

Appearance - Clean reddish copper body with a dense off-white head. Good retention. Fantastic coats of lacing the entire way down the glass. The second pour yields a hazier body from the bottle conditioning.

Smell - Good amount of fruity esters up front. Caramel malts with some very slight earthiness. Citrus hop notes underneath. Simple and inviting.

Taste - Good balance between malt and hops. Nice malt character with hops rounding out the brew in the most delicate way. Picking up some smoky earthiness in the back. The fruitiness of the malt profile give this beer a unique touch in the American pale ale category.

Mouth Feel - Medium-bodied. Smooth carbonation and overall mouthfeel.

Drinkability - This goes down very smoothly. A great balanced American pale ale. Fruity, malty, and refreshing. Another great Berkshire beer!

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Photo of smcolw
4.02/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a cloudy, orange-light brown. Modest head but it leaves good patches of lace on the glass.

Lots of caramel sweetness with a light hop bitterness in the background.

Creamy mouthfeel which gives this beer a smoothness not common in most beers. This leans to the malty side, but it has a dry finish. This is similar to an English Pale Ale.

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Photo of HopHooligan
3.85/5  rDev -1.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

*Note---> I purchased this on sale at a liquor store that does do through a lot of craft brew, so it might be slightly aged. I could not find a bottling date.

A- Rich copper brown hue, little foam when poured from a bomber into a snifter. Small bubbles lead to even consistent lacing.

S- I get a great cherry/caramel scent off the bat with a grassy smell to end.

T- Surprisingly smooth for the amount of scent I received off the beer. Bready flavor with a bit of bitter at the end. Almost a smoked flavor comes through yet sweet as well. Definitely malty.

M- Light body and Low carbonation on this one, but that may be because of what I mentioned above*.

D- Very drinkable, also reasonable priced. BBC delivers again

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Photo of PowerSeed
5/5  rDev +27.6%
look: 5 | smell: 5 | taste: 5 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Since this is my first review, I'll leave the nuanced, flowery prose to the real aficionados. Suffice it to say that I met this darkish, strawberry blond at the Flat Street Pub in Brattleboro, VT and it was love at first sip. This babe has it all, a beautiful head, a smooth, full body, a yeasty aroma, and a delightfully balanced taste with just the right amount of carbonation. All in all, wonderful, easy-drinking session brew!

I recently moved out of the Berkshire Brewing distribution area and am experiencing TPA withdrawal big time. If anyone can suggest a replacement ale of similar character (I'm in the Philly area now), I love to try it.

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Photo of Soccerski54
4.41/5  rDev +12.5%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

This is my first beer review.

I purchased this in a 22 ounce bottle, It poured nicely with a two finger head and deep copper - light brown color. Really pleasing to the eye. The taste was a nice balance between hop and malt with a mild after taste. Really good for the snowy end of February day that I am enjoying this brew on.

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Berkshire Ale Traditional Pale Ale from Berkshire Brewing Company Inc.
3.92 out of 5 based on 253 ratings.
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