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Columbus Pale Ale | Columbus Brewing Company

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Columbus Pale AleColumbus Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Columbus Brewing Company
Ohio, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.50%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
This award winning, copper colored pale ale was the first beer we ever brewed and it's still one of our favorites. We carefully blend German and English malts and add generous portions of American hops for a refreshing citrus aroma with a dry finish.

28 IBU

Added by BeerAdvocate on 05-16-2002

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Reviews: 93 | Ratings: 248
Photo of btorsdog
4.33/5  rDev +19.6%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

One of the top top pale ales around in my eyes, got to love this brewing company!
looks a foggy orangish amber,quite pretty
smells of a flower infused buttered up piece of italian bread - toasted, nice.
taste was somewhat aggressive for a pale ale but well rounded out with a pretzel quality malt undertone, tasty and satisfying
full bodied mouthfeel with a pleasant bubbly presence- smooth and slippery
drinkability is stellar ,do yourself a favor and get more than one sixer - GREAT BREW!!!!

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Photo of mattcrill
4.32/5  rDev +19.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Aroma: Orange citrus hops, honey notes, very good flowery hop smell.

Appearance: Clear orange colored pour. A sudsy and sticky white cap.

Flavor: Biscuit malts up front followed by orang rind hop bitterness. Slightly grassy but clean hop notes pop up here and there. Nicely balanced.

Mouthfeel: Medium to lighter bodied with strong carbonation. Just a touch oily with a longer finish.

Overall impression: A very good example of the style. I put this up there with Burning River as one of the best APA's out there. Strongly recommended.

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Photo of BEERchitect
4.3/5  rDev +18.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Solid brew. I kinda felt like the beer was caught somewhere between an English and American Pale, but cleanly brewed nevertheless. Malts bring a touch of caramel, riding on well-attenuated barley malt. Yeast gives quite a bit of fruitiness: apples, peaches, pears, appricots; but of the ripe variety. Not as sweet as English vairieties. Crisp, cracker-like malt give a good support for fresh citrus hops. Dry on the palate with a powdery texture. Finishes with a touch of grapefruit, pine, and caramel. Should have brought a growler back from the brewery.

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Photo of Risser09
4.19/5  rDev +15.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

A: This copper colored ale has a tint of orange and a nice white head. Nice lacing is left on the sides of the glass and on the meniscus.

Smell: Hop flowers ahoy! Grapefruit, lemon peel, chamomile. Well done.

Taste: Great! Hop oils are in the forefront with plenty of vim & vigor. Tastes are citric acid, hops and a slight backbone of malt. A quintessential IPA that is well crafted and could compete with some of the well-known mainstays.

Mouthfeel: Initially oily and flavorful, followed by an alcohol twang and a bitter dryness that really isn’t too bitter. Great all around.

Drinkability: Highly drinkable and worth trying. This is a winner and should be consumed fresh to admire it’s flavors and charming place in the APA style.

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Photo of sixerofelixir
4.18/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

12 oz bottle sampled in a burger joint in Columbus, OH. I believe the brewery uses a botted-on date, but I don't recall checking this one. Scouring for dates is so automatic for me anymore, that they only stand out if the beer is "old". This was handed to me with a standard pint glass.

From what I could see in the darkened room, it was a nice golden color, with a lacy, white head. Smelled fresh and evergreen hoppy. Hop taste was good & complex, styled more like like a mild IPA than the leafy murk of so many APA's.. Very balanced malt-wise; a tasty beer that paired great with a slightly spicy burger.

IMO, this is a beer that should be offered at all Ohio chain restaurants like Great Lakes Dortmunder is - it's a no-brainer to pair with food, and could easily substitute for SN Pale Ale.

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Photo of giblet
4.17/5  rDev +15.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

i am lucky where i live! 1 hour from Cleveburg Ohio and Great Lakes Brewing (excellent!) and 2 hours from Columbus and the brewery district. Columbus Pale Ale is a very good beer. i am sure that since it was fresh and on tap in Columbus helps. Excellent flava and feel!

giver a try!

suckem up and movem out!


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Photo of Dogbrick
4.15/5  rDev +14.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Firkin version at Barley's 2nd Annual Mini RAF (03/27/04): With a slightly altered recipe, this is the first time a CBC beer has been available on firkin. Pours a lightly hazy dark amber color with a somewhat foamy light beige head. Thin and sticky lacing. The aroma is subdued hops. Medium-bodied and very smooth, you would hardly know this is the same beer as the bottled version. Earthy flavor with hops in the background, along with some malt and fruit. The finish is long and is a mixture of fruit and alcohol. Very unique overall.

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Photo of Wildman
4.13/5  rDev +14.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

@Short North Tavern(also available at other bars in Columbus). This beer was an reddish amber color and formed a white bubbly head. It has an aroma of malt, hops and caramel. The flavor was of malt, hops and lightly of caramel. The finish is a touch astrigent. By far the most popular ale in Columbus and the most readily available in many bars in town.

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Photo of OsuJohn
4.12/5  rDev +13.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Let me start off by saying I do not like pale ales but gave this one a try because I do like other Columbus Brewing Company beers. I generally do not like hoppy beers so I stay away from pale ales. As far as pale ales go it is pretty good. In order for me to drink a pale ale I need to be in the mood.

A-This beer has a cooper, amber color. It poured a finger of head, but settled down to less than 1/16 an inch.

S-The beer has a bright citrusy scent.

T-A hoppy flavor with hints of caramel.

M- Not too bubbly, smooth.

D- too much hoppiness for me, but may be good for the average hop enthusiast.

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Photo of chinchill
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

This is a nice hoppy APA from CBC. Nothing too unusual or bold here, although the beer leans in the bold direction for style. This is a very well brewed PA, with plenty of citrus and a bit of pine in the aroma, and this carries thru to the taste and finish. I appreciate the substantial hop flavor without an over-whelming bitterness. Looks nice too, being crystal clear amber with a durable head.
Highly recommended!

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Photo of metallistout
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Pours a dark copper color, with a foamy head. The head I got was decent and kind of thick. I have seen many others say they had no head, but mine seemed to be pretty good, maybe it is due to temp. or bottled. (no idea)

Definate smell of hops and light malt, floral scent.

The taste is a very strong hops flavor that I seem to really like. Not a whole lot of malt flavor, but very good hop flavor.

A good mouth feel with a dry finish.

I would definately recommend this beer to anybody that likes the taste of a good "bitter".

P.S. - I almost forgot something. "GO BUCKS"!!! BEAT MICHIGAN!

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Photo of andrewmartin
4.1/5  rDev +13.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Lived in C-bus for three years before I got around to giving this one a review, too bad I waited so long.

A: Deep amber, nice head

S: Nose has both grapefruity and piney hop notes, if I sniff hard enough, before I pass out, I think I detect a hint of orange

T: Citrus hops are the story hear, they dominate the front. Fortuantely, like any good brew, there is enough malt to balance it all out-here it stays in the background where it belongs.

M: Very dry, what can I say?

D: Damn drinkable, a solid APA if I've ever had one. Maybe its so good because it is produced down the street, but I can't wait to try the next one.

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Photo of beergeek279
4.05/5  rDev +11.9%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

Served as a sample at Columbus Brewing Company. The color was amber, with a very nice head. The smell was a nice, light citrus hop. The taste was decently hopped...seemed well balanced and fairly close to where the IBUs should be. Mouthfeel seemed a bit thin. Drinkability-wise, definitely an all-dayer.

The CBC Pale Ale was sold as possibly the best beer in the city, and I might have to agree. I almost bought the 6-pack of this one, but was broke after loading up on larger micros. Still, I suppose there's always next time.

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Photo of PhantomVodoo
4.03/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Best Columbus, OH brewed beer I've had. While Columbus Brewing Company is no Great Lakes, this is a very solid pale ale. Excellent copper color. Good flavor and drinkability. Seems to be a beer macro drinkers like if they try it, but make no mistake; this is not a watered down flavorless pale ale. This is a full-flavored although not exceptional pale ale that finishes well. Thumbs up to CBC.

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Photo of Keffa
4.03/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Live review. Bottle poured into a standard pint glass.

A: Pours a clear and brilliant copper color, 3 finger head settles into a thin cap and leaves copious, soapy lacing everywhere on the glass. One of the best pale ales I've seen to date.

S: Some slight citrus, a slight sweetness, some toasty, grainy notes behind the sweetness. Very mellow and easy going, but still enough to be interesting.

T: Follows the aroma, citrus, bready, light toast, some light caramel like sweetness. ABV is hidden, and finishes clean.

M: Nicely coating, medium body for the style, and well carbonated without being prickly.

O: Very, very solid. Looks great, smells good, tastes good, drinks easy. I could, and would, put several of these away if put in front of me. Recommended.

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Photo of garuda
4.03/5  rDev +11.3%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - Gold, with a thick white cap that has good retention and lacing.

S/T - Loads of hoppy grapefruit flesh and pineapple, with a caramel, honey-like malt sweetness. Bitter, resinous pine finish. The malts are sturdy, but the bitter pine wins out in the end.

M - Medium body, medium carbonation, finishes clean and bitter.

O - Nice, solid pale ale. Surprised it's not rated higher.

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Photo of blakesell
4.02/5  rDev +11%
look: 4.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Poured from the tap into a tasting glass.

Appearance- Beer pours a clear amber golden with a good finger of head on top of the tasting glass. Fades to a murk across the top that is not unwelcome. Lacing clings to the sides of the glass.

Smell- Not much in the aroma department. In fact, I smell nothing on this. No malts, no hops, nothing. I don't have a cold or anything, what's going on here?

Taste- Where the smell was not, there is amazingly balanced flavour. Cascade and Chinook hops, seems like Chinook. Excellent malt balance. How they made such a balanced beer with so little scent, I would love to know.

Mouthfeel- Creamy, balanced as all hell, well carbonated, medium bodied.

Drinkability- Wow. I will have this again. A very impressive pale by every stretch of the genre.

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Photo of BB1313
4/5  rDev +10.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12oz bottle poured into a pint glass. Pours a deep golden with nice clarity; subtle haze; fluffy white head that fades leaving nice retention and solid lacing. The aromas are floral and full of citrus notes. Some malts in the mix as well. The flavors are very earthy. Lots of grass and pine. Lots of orange and grapefruit. Some hints of caramel. The malts are there, but the hop flavor and hop bitterness still shines. Mouthfeel is medium-bodied. Very smooth and creamy with moderate carbonation. Alcohol goes unnoticed.

This is a great pale ale. I like how they stay true to style and don't try to pass an IPA off as a pale ale.

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

Presentation: On tap into a chilled plastic mug at a tiny local pizza joint ("Little Sicily's").

A- Clear amber. Served with ~2 fingers of tan head, which fades gradually to a thin cap, leaving fair amount of lacing as consumed.

S- Moderate/solid citrus/floral hops, with a subdued malt presence.

T- Solid citrus hoppiness, with slight spicy note, and a lightly caramel malt backbone. Bitterness is moderate.

M- Very crisp, with quite active carbonation and a medium feel. Goes down smooth.

D- Excellent. Solid across the board and easy drinking....highly sessionable brew.

Future outlook: It's been quite awhile since I've had this beer, and I had forgotten how solid and sessionable it was. From my experience, this is a supperior alternative to SNPA when only "moderately" better beers are available, and one I can easily see getting again in similar situations.

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

This CBC Pale would make a good flagship rep for this Columbus brewer. It pours a nice dark, copper amber. A small light beige head atop that leaves just alittle lace behind. The aroma has a sweet but hop note to it. The taste carries that mild sweet grain, balanced well by a mild but present citric hop. This medium bodied pale carries that hop background in the aftertaste, letting it linger in the slightly dry mouthfeel. An overall nice, crisp when cold, good beer.

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

I recall a few years ago trying a Columbus Pale Ale that was contract-brewed (in New York?) and was average, at best. This one is actually brewed in Columbus and is available in bottles and on tap throughout the city. Overall, it's much nicer than the one I remember from a few years ago. Deep orange-amber in color, with a foamy off-white head. Huge floral hop aromas (they use cascade). Taste is quite hoppy, with hints of grapefruit, though there is a nice sweetness that comes through from the Crystal malt (which they claim to be "specially kilned"). In any event, it makes for a nicely balanced taste. Carbonation is moderate, so the beer has a pleasant feel going down. Smooth, slightly bitter finish, with a lingering floral aspect. Overall, a nice APA. If you're in Columbus, this is definitely worth a try.

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Photo of JayQue
3.98/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A nice Pale Ale. A friend brought me a 6 pack from Ohio, warned me to keep it cold because it is not pasturized. Pours a beautiful, clear reddish amber color with a big, pillowy slightly off-white head. Head retention is excellent. Leaves a thick ladder-like lacing on the glass.

Nice hoppy smell. Taste is nicely balanced, fairly mild floral hops up front and biscuty malt follow up. This is not an IPA hop bomb. It is a crisp, refreshing balanced beer meant for having a few on a warm day. Mouthfeel is rich enough. Drinkability is excellent.

This is not an IPA hop bomb, just a very drinkable Pale Ale

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
3.98/5  rDev +9.9%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Hazed medium orange with a good-sized, toasted tan head that looks decently firm and sticky. The foam has a 'whipped egg whites' appearance as it slowly retreats and ends up leaving a respectable amount of chunky lace in its wake.

The nose is pure Cascade hops. Not as in-your-face as it would be if it were an IPA, but it's plenty aggressive for the style. If the appearance and the aroma are anything to go by, this is going to be one of the good ones.

Columbus Pale is a solid, flavorful version that is some kind of delicious. I wish that the hop flavor was stronger, but need to keep reminding myself that this isn't an IPA. The somewhat pithy white grapefruit-like Cascade are right up front, but not to the extent that newbies will be overwhelmed.

The flavor profile is nicely balanced by a non-intrusive toasted malt base. The bittering is perhaps greater than one would find in many other APAs. It's a trifle too harsh, but doesn't venture anywhere close to unpleasant. The body/mouthfeel could be a bit more firm since the finish seems a tad thin to me.

Columbus Pale Ale is a well-crafted version that has a few too many (admittedly minor) faults to be considered very good. I still enjoyed the hell out of the bottle and would not mind one little bit if I was back in Columbus and this was one of my regular quaffs. Thanks to Dogbrick for the bottle.

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Photo of bluejacket74
3.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

12 ounce bottle. Served in a chalice, the beer pours a hazy amber/copper color with about a half inch off-white head. Head retention and lacing are both decent. Aroma is citrusy and grassy hops, along with some sweet malt and orange peel. Taste is citrusy and piney hops, biscuity malt, and some orange peel and tangerines. Mouthfeel/body is medium, it's a bit creamy, dry, and has good carbonation. Drinkability is good, it's smooth and easy to drink. Overall I think this is a good all around pale ale, it's a not a bad choice as a session beer. Recommended.

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Photo of AtLagerHeads
3.97/5  rDev +9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Eminently drinkable and enjoyable beer from the Brewery District (go figure) of the great city of Columbus, Ohio. Such a nice Pale Ale to serve as a representative of the city, this is one fine beer. The look is amber with a bashful white head. The lace on my glass was also quite bashful, but not the aromas nor the flavors. Nice citrus hoppy nose and mild blended flavors ending in crisp grapefruit and spice notes. The hops are clean, mild and delicate in their application to this great ale.

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Columbus Pale Ale from Columbus Brewing Company
3.62 out of 5 based on 248 ratings.
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