Headwaters Pale Ale | Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown

BA SCORE
88
very good
2,595 Ratings
Headwaters Pale AleHeadwaters Pale Ale
BEER INFO

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

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

BEER STATS
Reviews:
610
Ratings:
2,595
Avg:
3.92
pDev:
11.22%
 
 
Wants:
89
Gots:
506
For Trade:
2
User Reviews
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Reviews: 610 | Ratings: 2,595
Photo of FickleBeast
4.02/5  rDev +2.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

On tap at victory brewpub.

Arrives in an english imperial pint glass. Clear pale brown color, no head. Aroma is a nice fruity hop.

First sip is nice but the body is a bit thin. Very drinkable due to the dry finish. The hop flavor does assert itself nicely. There is a slight grainy flavor as well.

As I drink this, the beer gets better and better. There is a substantial floral hoppiness that I am really starting to enjoy.

Overall, a very nice offering.

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

12oz bottled Feb 8, 2011.

Pours clear amber with a one finger white head that leaves webs of lacing and holds a small cap.

Aroma is lemon citrus, some orange and grapefruit, grassy and floral hops, bread & biscuit malt. Good to very good strength.

Flavor is lemon, orange, grapefruit hops, some grass, hint of pine, caramel and bready malt, good bitterness for an APA, touch of sweetness in the middle but finishes dry.

Mouthfeel is thin to medium bodied, slick, medium carbonation.

Crisp, hoppy, refreshing APA. Very nicely done, Victory!

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

12oz bottle best by July 8 2011.

An inviting pour into the Dogfish Head off-centered pint glass procures a bright, bubbly body of golden-copper. The head builds to a full inch in height before gently settling to a cap of spittle-white foam. A satisfying bouquet of floral, piny hops greets the nose with notes of tree sap, citrus peel, and fresh lupulin glands. The background is a solidly built base of biscuity, but slightly sweet pale & caramel malt.

Crisp malts snap at the sides of the tongue with a bitter hop burst on top of the palate that suggests pine cones and grapefruit. The hoppiness brings forth too many perceived IBU's and not quite enough hop flavor for me, however. Still, this is a tasty Pale Ale with a solid mouthfeel, uppity carbonation, and medium body. Definitely glad to have another five waiting for me in the fridge after breaking open the six-pack...

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Photo of Casey10
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

I am rating this one by style. It is really good and a really good beer for the style.

A - really nice pour slight head with a nice copper body.

S - light crisp smell grassy.

T - interesting taste can't put my finger on it but it is good.

M - nice feel it lingers a bit with that grassy feel again.

O - I liked this a great representation of the style of a pale ale and nice to see in Maine.

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Photo of Gavage
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 4

Appearance: pours an orange color with a 2" head that slowly falls to a thin coating.

Smell: light cirus and hop bitterness comes through to the nose.

Taste: caramel, orange, lemon zest, and a moderate bitterness are the main flavors.

Mouthfeel: crisp from start to finish. Short lasting aftertaste. Refreshing.

Overall: a very easy to quaff pale ale that has a nice flavor profile and is satisfying.

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Photo of gcamparone
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured from a 12 oz bottle into a snifter.

Pours golden yellow clear body with a small head that reduces quickly leaving no lacing

Smell is caramel, light pineapple and pine, citrus.

Taste is citrus and tropical fruit followed by pale malt and a slight hoppy bite.

Easy drinker, medium body with medium carbonation.

A good pale ale. Has that west coast citrusy feel.

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Photo of JednoPivoProsim
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

Poured from a 12 FL. OZ. bottle into a pint glass. Enjoy By: June 16, 2013.

Appearance: Pours a cloudy orange with a thick soapy off white head. Great looking pale ale.

Smell: Pure tropical citrus from the Citra hops. Smells delicious. A little sweet.

Taste: An interesting struggle between the light tropical Citra and the harsher piney Centennial. This beer is lacking a little in balance. The malt body comes off a little watery and thin in trying to hold up to the heavy hop profile.

Mouthfeel: Appropriately creamy for an American pale ale. Nice.

Overall: I like the direction this beer was trying to head in. Looks and smells great, but in the end, the hops overwhelm the malt body. Still good overall.

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

This offering from the folks at Victory is a very well made, drinkable beer. The beer pours a nice amber-copper color with a very lively cap of foam. The foam clings to the glass causing fractal-like patterns. The aroma is a heavy dose of citrus and and flower hops. The malt provides balance . Caramel and grain offset the dollop of citrus and flower bitterness at the end. A very nice addition to Victory's lineup.

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Photo of Jwale73
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz. bottle served in a willibecker. Pours a light, translucent copper with a one inch, frothy cream-colored head. Nose expresses Simcoe, an earthy/herbal quality, citrus notes and light, toasted malts. Head eventually disperses into a consistent, 1/8th inch cap with delicate spots and strands of lacing revealed in the wake. Taste consistent with nose, as well as the addition of a slight buttery flavor that cuts across the flavor profile and a light, noble hop bitterness at the finish. Mouthfeel is light-medium in body with an assertive, slightly prickly carbonation and some citrus astringency. Overall, a very satisfying and tasty APA that would pair well with pub food and quite quaffable at 5.1%.

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Photo of tony223366
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

A: As is appropriate with a bear named Headwaters... the head is excellent! 3+ fingers of white fluffy head. Color is a rich amber/copper color. Clarity is excellent and I can see lots of action from the carbonation. The head has fantastic retention. Looks amazing!

S: Smells majorly of hops primarily citrus. It does smell the slightest bit dank as well. Nice caramel malt aromas too.

T: First thing that hits me is the citrus hop flavors. It's actually really bright and floral as well. That's followed by a caramelly malt that is wrapped in bread. It's full of really clean and bright flavors. The finish is lightly bitter and actually fairly bready.

M: Nice, high carbonation. Slick and medium body.

O: This pale really took me off guard. I had no idea it was going to be as good as it ended up being. It's bright, balanced and really drinkable. Nice work Victory.

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Photo of Stevedore
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

12oz bottle. No bottling date. Served in a snifter glass.

Pours a medium copper body, one finger white head, medium collar, good retention, bits of lacing. Smells bready, herbal, floral, cereal grain, a bit of biscuit, touch of honey. Nice balanced malt and hop aromas. The hint of sweet caramel comes out. Flavour is a very nice biscuit, mild caramel, a fair bit of floral, grassy hop bite to accompany things. Balanced pale ale. Mouthfeel is medium bodied, crisp and slightly drying, good grassy bite on the finish. Very drinkable. An overall balanced pale ale, nice combination of hop bite, just the right amount of sweet caramel to back it up.

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Photo of Omnium
4.03/5  rDev +2.8%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Bottle > Winter Lager Glass

A - Pours a really nice golden color with a slight orange tint, 1 finger head, thick fluffy lacing.
S - Citrus fruits, earthy and great floral notes, a little yeast, great aroma.
T - Bitter citrus hop flavor, nice floral undertones, and a floury finish.
M - Bitterness hangs on a bit, along with those earthy floral flavors, medium, and a tad watery.
O - Great APA, Victory is somewhat overlooked, but this is a solid go-to beer, and should get more recognition. Refreshing and flavorful

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

A- Nice golden amber with orange and red hues. A glorious creamy white head that really sticks around.

S - Pineapple, tropical fruity, pine and juniper, some bubble gum, slight caramel from the malt, fresh herbs, grass

T - Clean malt forward with subtle hops that kick in with a bit of bitter and some citric and pine quality. The ale is very well balanced and leaves you with a good hop profile while not overwhelming the malt. The minimal bitter comes through the finish. There's a decent herbal quality as well which gives the beer an almost medicinal quality.

M - Good carbonation and clean mouthfeel

O - An enjoyable, crisp, and sessionable pale. Seems more refined than some of its APA brethren.

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Photo of Marko84
4.04/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4.5 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.25

From a variety pack I recently purchased
Victory Headwaters pale ale
I like this. I like this a lot. As with Hop Devil, it doesn't smell as good as it tastes. A musty smell is forgotten the moment it hits your tongue. This was my favorite among the Victory taster pack I bought. I don't mean to draw a parallel, but it feels and tastes more like a wheat beer. Either way, I enjoyed the heck out of it.

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Photo of tempest
4.04/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Best by March 3 of next year, so this one's plenty fresh. The aroma is more light, juicy apricot and floral, while the flavor dives into biting lemon and grapefruit. Toasty, crusty malts pop into the aroma and flavor, for a hop-forward, but not dominant beer. Overall, an excellent pale ale. The bitterness is rough enough to put it on par with some IPAs. I'd buy a six-pack.

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Photo of nukem5
4.04/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

A: Pours a great golden color with a spectacular frothy head which does last thru the entire beer. Nice legs or lacing whichever you prefer.

S: Sweet and little bit of both floral and citrusy hop aromas.

T: Taste is of a malty initial burst then flashes between floral and zesty citrus hop flavors with a great malty backbone.

M: Medium bodied with a light carb level good balance.

O: Very drinkable and would like another sadley have none to have.

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Photo of MoreThanWine
4.04/5  rDev +3.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured a 3" custard head with a pretty long life. The body is a clear golden yellow. It smells of grapefruity hops. The taste is far milder than the smell but the grapefruity hops are still there, and I guess that's what keeps this a Pale Ale instead of an IPA. There's a persistent long finish. And it's a very refreshing beer. Nice.

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Photo of hagbergl
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Bought a sixer of Victory Headwaters Pale Ale as my go-to vacation beverage at Craft Beer Cellar in Belmont, MA for approx. $10.50. Poured into a Redbones pint glass.

Appearance (4/5): Headwaters pours a clear copper color with a rusty red tinge to it and is topped with a two finger off white head of foam that leaves a little lacing behind as it dissipates. This is a good looking pale ale.

Smell (4/5): Take a whiff and you'll know straight away that this is an aggressively hopped pale ale. Piney, lemon-like, and resinous hop aromas escape from the glass, but, this being a pale ale, a significant malt backbone can be detected pushing back and balancing against the hops.

Taste (4/5): The hops are the star and flex immediately, with strong citrus notes in the foretaste that are balanced by the malts at mid-tongue, then linger on into the finish. This is my kind of pale ale. Lots of hop flavor, though not intensely bitter and well-balanced–a pale ale that leans hoppy, but would never be confused for an IPA. The hops lend citrus and mellow, herbal characteristics to this brew that are nicely complimented by the malts. This beer is smooth and easy-going. Never cloying and with a moderate ABV (you cannot detect the slightest hint of alcohol in the flavor), you can drink multiple Headwaters and not get tired of it.

Mouthfeel (4.5/5): I think the mouthfeel on this beer might be the best thing about it. Headwaters is a medium bodied pale–that is to say, a little thicker on the tongue than other pales (perhaps due to the generous hopping) and feels just right on the tongue. This beer "punches above its weight," so to speak. The beer goes down smooth and has a relatively long finish, again due to the hops.

Overall (4/5): This is one tasty APA and another successful creation by Victory. Any experienced BA will appreciate this beer's easy-drinking nature and subtlety of flavors. I would definitely recommend this to anyone that likes hoppy beer but is looking for something lower in ABV and a bit more restrained.

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Photo of silver0rlead
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Pours a nice clear golden with a frothy off-white head that retains OK. The aroma is grassy and citrusy hops upfront, along with grainy malt and some biscuit notes, honey and some minerals. The flavor is similar with honey and biscuit malt initially, along with some grassy, citrusy and slightly floral hops, grainy malt and some fruity esters. The mouthfeel is light and sprightly, and drinkability is excellent. A tasty and quaffable pale ale, perfect for warmer weather.

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Photo of bucklemyshoe
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle at 42 degrees into a pint glass. Enjoy by: July 8, 2011.

A: It pours a clear red-orange color with a half-finger of head that leaves some small-clumps of lace; it looks typical for an APA.

S: Lots of fresh hoppy and citrusy aromas; it is very enticing.

T: The hoppiness is a bit subdued in the taste but plenty of citrus is still present and it has a dry, cereal malt finish. It is not very complex - how many APAs are? - but it is quite refreshing.

M: The body is medium-light with average carbonation and a "sudsy" creaminess on the palate late.

O: it is a little less hoppy than I hoped but it is highly quaffable and inexpensive - $8.99 per sixer.

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Photo of mooselvlt
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12 oz bottle into a pint glass

A - Very clear deep gold color with a nice 2 fingers of off tan head. Excellent retention with nice lacing.

S - Subtle, good citrus hops mixing with malt backbone. Neither overtake the other.

T - A nice mix of malts and hops, much like the nose. The hops are there but leave a very light lingering bitterness, not overpowering

M - Medium bodied, very smooth with moderate carbonation. Really drinkable. I could see having this as a session brew. .

O - Very solid, drinkable pale ale. Really glad I tried it. This was the last one to go into my mixer 6er today.

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Photo of Gajo74
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had it on tap at Beer Shop and Tasting Table, NYC.
Pours a clearish light copper with a modest head that soon disapates into a sudsy ring cap and some lacing.
The hops aroma is strong and with a semi pungent tone that borders on the IPA level. Dank, resiny and cannabis like. Citrus aromas are there, but, interestingly enough, I detected berries and tea leaves.
In the taste, it is quite hops forward, clean and dry in the palate. The pine hops are sharp and moderately high in bitterness. There is a faint sweetness from the malt backbone, which nevertheless feels raw and grainy. Medium to light bodied, prickly from the hops and crisp from the slightly piercing carbonation.
I liked this one because I had just had a sweet and high ABV stout which made me want to clean my palate. Very drinkable, clean and session worthy.

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Photo of utopiajane
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours clear golden amber with a scant head of bone white foam that fell fast to a cap and ring. Left nice lace and constantly refreshed. In the right light has an orange hue.

Nose is out of this world. Citrus, lemon and orange with apple behind that. Light malt sweetness, grains and light bread. Generous spice, sweetly floral and herbal.

Taste follows the nose all the way. Citrus twang greets you first followed by a light sweet malt. Cereal grains carry it to the back with an earthly presence and a healthy helping of spice to tingle on the tongue. Ample carbonation lightens the body. Mouthfeel is sticky, creamy, crisp and light. The apple is sweet and tart like a good apple should be. Lingers whole in the aftertaste with no one characteristic able to be separated from the others. Terrific balance and the aftertaste has a slight mineral quality.

This is one of the best pale ales you will have. It's refreshing, it's delicious, it's well made and you want to have it always in your refrigerator. It's confident and brisk.

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Photo of BARFLYB
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

12oz Bottle into a glass.

A- A very clear looking olympic gold with some honey color and a bright white and firm inch of ivory colored foam. Very small amounts of stick. I get Citra right off the bat, a nice pale malting and a herbal/earthy scent, not grassy. don't pick up any alcohol. This smells great and the beer is super fresh. Taste really shines from the citra giving off citrus in a pale aleish amount, not shocking like a IPA. Some mango, pale malt, biscuit and just fresh ingredients. Feel is light and comes and goes on the tounge leaving just the lightest aftertaste, that keeps me coming back quicker. This is easy drinking beer and one I can drink a lot of. I won't go crazy over it, but a 6 pack on a hot day will do. This blows hopdevil out of the water, just a more balanced beer alltogether, showing the true skill coming out of Victory. It's harder to make simple beer and pull it off.

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Photo of DaveBlack
4.05/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4.5

A: Good looking beer. Crystal clear orange-ish honey color with maybe 1/2 finger of white head. The head has medium retention and leaves a light spattering of lacing. Upon first pouring it the bubbles stuck to the side of the glass in an almost unbroken wall of bubbles, but they quickly dissipated.

S: Smell is interesting. Slight bit of sweetness is almost overwhelmed by the hops. Lots of grapefruit and pine combine with a smell I can only describe as grassy and fresh.

T: Taste is not as hoppy as the aroma led me to believe, which is a good thing. The hops are definitely there, but they play really well with the malts instead of overpowering them. Lots of pine, a slight fruit flavor and a caramel sweetness rolls over it all.

M: Mouhtfeel is medium-light, relatively high carbonation. Leaves the mouth feeling slightly dry.

O: I find this to be an intensely drinkable beer. Reminds me of a good summers day. I grow tired of beers that are just liquid hops, but this has a nice balance of malts and hops. And the Aroma and flavor both rather remind me of a summers day.

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Headwaters Pale Ale from Victory Brewing Company - Downingtown
3.92 out of 5 based on 2,595 ratings.
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