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Headwaters Pale Ale | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

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very good
601 Reviews
Headwaters Pale AleHeadwaters Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
Pennsylvania, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.20%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by thagr81us on 02-14-2011

For Trade:
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Reviews: 601 | Ratings: 2,574
Photo of Thorpe429
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Bottle courtesy of jcb890. Served in a Hill Farmstead wine glass.

Pour yields a copper-orange beer with a thin white head that doesn't stick around too long and really doesn't leave much lacing behind. The nose brings forward some citrus and floral notes. They are certainly faint, but come out more as the beer warms up and are quite noticeable with a good, hard sniff. Taste is a bit on the light side, though enjoyable. There's a generic "hop character" but nothing really pops out.

Feel is slightly bitter with good carbonation on a medium body. Quite drinkable. Not a huge standout, but with this ABV and overall profile, I could see myself coming back for more of this.

 679 characters

Photo of HosP
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Thanks to TroyG for this beer. Poured 12 oz into pint glass.

A- Pours a nice shade of dark orange, almost amber. Very clear. Nice white head caps it off but does not stick around.

S- Very nice citrus hop aroma right off the bat. Some floral hop notes mixed into the nose. Smells a little sweet.

T- Taste is sweeter than expected. Balances nicely with the bitterness from the hops. Subtle citrus and floral hops throughout. Don't come through as the nose would believe.

M- Lighter beer with moderate carbonation. Very smooth.

O- Very nice, easy going beer. This is a very good summer beer. Flavors aren't as bold, but very easy to drink. Low abv would allow to put down a few of these at once. Thanks Troy!

 711 characters

Photo of mtalley999
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a bottle into a pint glass.

Pours a nice amber color with little head that receded quickly but left very good lacing.

Smell is all citrusy hops to me.

Taste is true to smell. Citrusy hops at first, then a bit of pine. The taste is very crisp and the flavors are very clean to me.

The mouthfeel is slightly thin, with the carbonation still remians even after about 15 minutes in the glass.

Overall this is a solid beer. Very easy to drink and good to just kick back and relax with.

 497 characters

Photo of DrJay
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear amber with a soapy off-white cap, some spotty lacing, decent head retention. Intense hop aroma, fruity grapefruit rind, citrus zest, a bit spicy, with just a little toasty malt in the background. Hop bitterness was sharp, maybe due to the light body and mild malt sweetness. A little spicy, lots of fruity citrus, a bit earthy. Medium-light body with moderate carbonation, off-dry, decent texture. Overall I liked it, but it did tread very close to being overly aggressive in hop character.

 496 characters

Photo of denver10
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

A deep golden color with a little of an amber hue to it with a white bubbly head. A fruity, floral, sweet aroma. Flavor wise this is quite malt forward and relatively sweet for an APA. First thing that hit me was the malts, the hops kicked in mid stream, grassy, floral, and a touch fruity, and they carried through into the finish. Mild and balanced bitterness. A medium plus body that is aided by the carbonation. A little heavier than the style dictates for my taste buds. Overall, a its a nice sessionable pale ale (surprisingly given the heavier mouthfeel). The more of it I drank, the more it grew on me.

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Photo of LAp
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from a 12oz can into a tulip. Pours a crystal clear honey-bronze with a rapidly rising and receding two-finger white-foam head. The nose smells perfectly like a pale-ale should: pine hops with lime citrus, but reserved (no pale ale that blurs the IPA-boundary here). The taste, similarly, is lightly hopped, with orange, blood orange, lime notes neatly arranged along a background of faint pine hops. The mouthfeel is medium, stronger than expected, and this goes a long way to making the beer taste less watery than many similarly subdued pale ales. Overall, it's an excellent representation of the style that does try to curry hop-heads' favor by dancing along the Pale Ale-IPA border.

It's a beer that doesn't stand out as a titan of nuance or big, bold flavor, and for that reason is one that I would perhaps not purchase on a regular basis. Nonetheless, there's something laudable about this beer's comfort being refreshingly understated.

 957 characters

Photo of BeerDawgs
3.74/5  rDev -4.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A - Amber, with 1/2 inch of head and a slight head retention

S - Sweet malts, rye. Smells excellent

T - Sweet up front, and piny hops at the end

M - Medium carbonated, light bodied

O - Not as good as it smells. But not bad for a Pale Ale, which is not one of my favorite styles

 281 characters

Photo of JamesStreet
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Enjoy by date of Oct 15. Poured into snifter out of 12 oz bottle
Poured almost-clear amber hue with thick, white foam. Retention was moderate with a soapy lacing down the glass.
Smelled of some grapefruit citrus, bready malt and caramel malt. Picked up some floral hops in there as well.
Taste is right in the middle. Bready maltiness balance with slight hop bitterness. Nothing other-worldly
Feel is medium-bodied with a good amount of carbonation. Quick, wet finish
Overall, not the hoppy pale variety but a balanced one.

 531 characters

Photo of BWED
3.73/5  rDev -4.6%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

12 oz. bottle poured into a tumbler

A- Golden orange pour. The head is a half finger and white. Retention isn't great, but it hangs on with a little lacing.

S- Floral hop in a good battle with some grainy malt as well. A little citrus comes out of the nose as well.

T- Some grain malt, once again, in a battle with some hop. This time more earthy and piney. Some citrus peel bitterness in there, too.

M- Medium light body. A bit of some fizz. Finish is a tad bitter.

O- A very fresh and decently balanced ale. I love the simultaneous aromas and tastes of both malt and hop.

 579 characters

Photo of MadScientist
3.72/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

A: A pale amber beer with very good clarity. The head is rock, off-white with a decent retention.

S: A medium citrus hops aroma with some resinous character. A clean malt sweetness and a little bit of caramel.

T: A strong hops bitternes and medium-strong citrus hops flavor some piney character. There is a low , peach-like fruit ester. A touch of malt sweetness in middle with balance being decidedly bitter with a crisps, dry finish. Lingering citrus hops and bitterness in the aftertaste.

M: A medium bodied beer with a medium-strong level of carbonation and very crisp.

O: A straight forward, hop driven beer. A darn good pale ale.

 640 characters

Photo of FLima
3.72/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Amber copper color with a thin off-white head with low retention.
Very few times I have felt such intense aroma of papaya in a beer. Also hints of sweet strawberries and white bread.
Bitter flavor with notes of tea bags, oranges, papaya, mango, peaches, caramel, grass, earth and floral and perfumy hops. Dry aftertaste with a long lasting perfumy bitterness.
Medium body with appropriate carbonation and an acid sensation.
A hoppy and earthy APA. Papaya with lemon drops and a handful of hops.

 494 characters

Photo of thecheapies
3.72/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 5 | overall: 4

Orange-copper color and showy carb. Quickly fallen head. 3.0

Piney hops and some grape soda from the malts. A little musty and lightly toasted. 3.5

Spicy hops... almost black peppery. Some dank earthiness evident. Toasted pale malts show off uber-dryness. More pepper in the finish. 3.5

Wow! A heavy-bodied APA. Rich with a busy carb to match. Full and almost creamy in the mouth. Expertly crafted mouthfeel. 5.0

Other than the great feel, not much else stood out. But, I'll simply call it a well-made APA with enough to character to pick it out in a taste test. 4.0

 570 characters

Photo of SFLpunk
3.72/5  rDev -4.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

12oz brown glass pry top. Best before Jul 15th 2011.

Quick review: Pours crystal clear amber with some thin head. Nose is a mixed citrus basket with some faint grain notes. Palate is crisp and citrusy, moderately dry. Somewhat hoppy, but not overly bitter.

A nice example of the "new" American Pale Ale style.

 311 characters

Photo of Kisejohn
3.71/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Victory - Headwaters Pale Ale

Appearance: Honey color. Slight chill haze. Half finger of head with great lacing.

Aroma: Grapefruit and citrus hop aroma, fades quickly. Just a hint of malt sweetness.

Taste: Grapefruit hop flavor and moderate bitterness to start, mixed with a pleasant malt sweetness. Finishes dry with some lingering hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: Medium bodied. Moderate carbonation.

Overall: Very enjoyable pale ale. At 5 percent ABV this beer is easily sessionable. Recommended.

 498 characters

Photo of philbe311
3.71/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A - A billowing pour that leaves to fingers worth of uber fluffy cloud like pure white head... The color is a caramelly amber... The carbonation doesn't rise as much as it sticks to the sides of the glass... Loads of lacing cling to the glass all the way around...

S - The aroma is very muted... Some caramel... Some bready malts... Some earthy hop aromas... Some citrus... Simple and straight forward...

T - The palette follows closely to the aroma... Nothing too surprising here... Just enough flavor to keep it interesting... Bready malts... Citrus... Some caramel...

M - Uber smooth... Light to medium bodied... A bit creamy... Delicate... Delectable... Very nice...

D - Very quaffable... Very sessionable... A very easy going accessible American Pale Ale for most with just enough flavor and character to keep it interesting for beer geeks... Will gladly welcome into the beer fridge in the future, but not more than 6-pack form...

 942 characters

Photo of beerleaguer22
3.71/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured from bottle into pint glass

Appearance – A solid copper color with a nice white head.

Smell – Somewhat fruity/citrusy smell. Nothing overwhelming.

Taste – A good blend of a smooth, light, yet hoppy. Has a nice earthy taste and in the end a roasty flavor is left in the mouth.

Overall – I think it is a good beer, nothing spectacular though. Easy to get down. Victory is quality.

 400 characters

Photo of Fenris244
3.71/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Had on tap at the flying saucer in Austin

Been meaning to try this beer for a while glad it came in! dome to me with a white one finger head, good retention and lacing, copper and amber in color.

Lots of citrus aromas in the news, bits of malt sweetness and floral notes as well

Good sweetness followed by a floral hop bitterness with some hints of lemon peel. Malt character is great thick with cooked grain and bready goodness.

Light in body, very crisp and refreshing, smooth to boot

Overall, tasty beer, I'd go back

 524 characters

Photo of OWSLEY069
3.71/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Pours a clean orange-ish to yellow color with an off white head. In the aroma, mellow pine hop and a small malt. In the taste, pine hops balanced with a mellow dry malt. A small hop bite and medium bodied mouthfeel, with a semi dry pine to clean aftertaste. Nice hoppy pale, nice and easy.

 289 characters

Photo of dlmccabe1
3.71/5  rDev -5.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Just saw this and picked it up in a 12oz bottle. Has a drink by date of July 8th, so it seems pretty fresh.

It's a golden color, deeper than many pale ales I've come across. It has crisp straw aromas and an interesting barnyard-y aroma. Kind of smells like hay...and malt. You can tell its going to be a malty pale ale.

The taste is malty, clean and crisp. I didn't get the citrusy notes that the other reviewers have talked about. It feels like a maltier pilsner to me, balanced with american hops. Not a lot of hop bitterness, but its well balanced. Nice hop flavors on the finish.

An interesting take on a pale ale. Not as hoppy as I had expected, more reminiscent of a Stone pale ale than a Sierra Nevada pale ale.

 722 characters

Photo of jmarsh123
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Split a pitcher at Scotty's into a pint glass.

Pours a clear amber slightly orange tinged with a 2 finger off-white head.

Smells of some bready malt, citrus, pine and some grass.

Very malt forward at first, but rounds into a pine/grass hop flavor finishing a bit bitter and dry. More bitter than your average APA and a bit sweeter than I prefer.

Mouthfeel and carbonation are both at good levels.

Very easy sessionable brew. Not the best I've ever had, but in the mood for something a bit lighter with dinner it did the trick.

 531 characters

Photo of baconsausage
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Golden color, nice lacing, smooth drinking. Aroma of big juicy fruit hops not present in the flavor. Reminds me of some of the coveted CA beers from the aroma, but doesnt get there in taste. Still good though. A little citrus and a lot of pine in theflavor, balenced, alittle bitter. Drinks smoove,

 298 characters

Photo of cfalls
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

L - no haze, amber color, white head

S - floral hops come across as plastic or new car smell, fairly malty

T - more floral hops, grassy bitterness, toasty malt, fairly dry

F - light body, medium-high carbonation, nice

O - nice refreshing pale ale, not too malty, hoppier than most, but the hop flavors aren't quite my personal preference

 341 characters

Photo of StoneBrewFanatic
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

A - Pours clear amber into my snifter with just about one finger of head that has moderate retention and lots of patchy lacing.

S - Nice balance of hops and malts. sweet toffee and toasted bread, earthy pine hops and grapefruit citrus hops.

T - Malts are and roasted grain are pretty intense and then they fade right into a rather bitter finish that lingers on the palate, earthy hops, citrus rind, and hints of toffee.

M - Medium in body, smooth and creamy, crisp and refreshing.

O - To me this pale ale is a tug of war between the hops and the malts... The malts come out of the gate strong and then the hops beat them down and leave a lingering bitterness on the palate to remind you who's boss.

 702 characters

Photo of TheCorkStopsHere
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

The Headwaters pours out a clear golden color, with light and fluffy foam on top. Aromas are slightly hoppy, but heavy on the sweet side of things.

Just a touch of hops balance nicely with a substantial amount of malts. The hops are slightly bitter, but more citrus and piney than a sticky/bitter style. The malts are sweet, but not candy/sugary sweet. Very nice balance and a very clean smooth finish.

 403 characters

Photo of powellmg
3.7/5  rDev -5.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Served @ 40F in a pint glass.

Poured with a spare, off-white head, quickly gone. Clear, orange color. Subtle, hoppy aroma of orange and honey. Medium bitterness, mineral taste supported by toasted malt. Some sweetness behind the hops. Dry, lingering finish. Lighter-bodied, average carbonation. Well-balanced and drinkable. A good session beer.

 346 characters

Headwaters Pale Ale from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
3.91 out of 5 based on 2,574 ratings.
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