Bower City Pale Ale | Gray's Brewing Company

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Bower City Pale AleBower City Pale Ale
15 Ratings
Bower City Pale AleBower City Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Gray's Brewing Company
Wisconsin, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.70%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
No notes at this time.

Added by BeerAdvocate on 04-13-2002

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User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 15 |  Reviews: 15
Reviews by nixhecks:
Photo of nixhecks
3.65/5  rDev +0.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Poured gold with a one-finger sized bubbly head that dissapated quickly. The sides of my glass are completely covered with bubbles, indicating this is one highly carbonated brew. Aroma was almost nonexistent, just a slight floral hop smell, not much else. Flavor was pretty good, mostly a sweet and soft hop bite, and a dry finish. Visible carbonation didn't detract from mouthfeel or taste, and seemed to go down pretty soon after the pour. Aroma also started to give off some fruity qualities as it warmed. Finish was very dry and crisp. Overall this was a good to excellent pale ale, perfect for the summer and very drinkable.

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More User Reviews:
Photo of cokes
3.93/5  rDev +8%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4

Deeply bronzed with a pale yellow cap.
American hoppiness on the nose, but more subtle than many. Citric backed by a caramel sweetness.
This is seemingly distinguished in its malt heft, and it's definitely balanced in that direction. Very solid body of toasted caramel, turning nutty and bready at times. Finishes as expected, with a surge of grapefruit.
An overall impression not unlike a mini-barleywine. It could, however, use some additional bitterness.
Substancial and worthwhile.

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Photo of bditty187
2.81/5  rDev -22.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Largely clear, honey-gold hue, the white head reached almost a finger in height but it faded quickly to a soapy cap, it was sparser in the center. The lacing was spotty and unorganized. It is uneventful in appearance. The nose isn’t very potent, traces of lemony hops and dull maltiness. The invitation is withheld yet I still take a sip. The palate is amazingly uninteresting until the finish, here a modest amount of caramel malts and hop bitterness with notes of flowery-pines. This is an okay Pale Ale, mostly flavorless, dull, and pointless to drink. Only the aftertaste says “pale ale” and that is only a whisper. Medium-light in body, the carbonation is moderate but appropriate, the mouthfeel is decent. This is drinkable but there are so many better Pale Ales to select from. I purchased a single 12-ounce bottle in Iowa City for $1.30. I need not bother to drink it again. I’d say skip it.

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Photo of lester619
3.33/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Not the best pale ale I have ever had. I love the style, and this just does't come close to the good ones I'm sorry to say. Poured from the tap it is a little cloudy rust colored amber. Not much in the way of a head or lacing. The taste has some hoppy citrusy pine notes like a pale ale, but everything is just kind of toned down and dull. I don't get much in the way of the clean hoppy bite that I look for in this style. It is not awful, it's a pretty drinkable decent beer. But with the other selections being so much better, I don't see why you would want to waste time on this.

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Photo of RBorsato
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Tasted on 5/11/05 at Bricks (Beer Bar) in Cedar Rapids, IA.

Golden/copper color with a small off-white light head and light carbonation. Light hop aroma at first but is more English malty in style than hoppy but it does have a nice balance. Light-medium bodied and balanced but not very memorable or outstanding in any way...

Per Gray's website: Roasted barley malts. Cascade hops.
Malts: 4 Varities of 2 row malted barley
Hops: 3 Varities
O.G.: 12.0 P
Alcohol: 5.7v/v

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Photo of Redrover
3.62/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz brown longneck with an interesting label set an angle. Different type of presentation.

Beer pours a nice gold, definitely lighter in color than most pale ales. White head that shrinks but does not disappear. Some wild lacing patterns.

Smell is hops & more hops. You also get a bit of a bread smell. Nice smelling beer here.

Lots of hops and pine taste, but the beer has a slightly sour thing going that keeps the score from going higher. Strange combiantion of bitter and sour.

Carbonation is slightly overstated for style, but the beer is smooth.

This is not a bad pale ale, but if I’m in the Janesville area, I would search out a City Brewery Pale Ale before this one.

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Photo of garymuchow
4.42/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 4.5 | smell: 5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4.5 | overall: 4.5

Maybe it's just I style I really have a thing for, but there are many very good Americal Style Pale Ale's, and this is one of them. The aroma has a very nice fruity almost flowery quality to it, that blends nicely with the hop background. A nice and complex aroma. It pours a good and steady head, that leaves the rings as it is comsumed. Crystal clear, containing a dark gold to tawny color. The flavor has all the hops a hop head could desire, yet there is more to it than that. The flavor has citrus aspects, and medium long finish. There is enough malt to make it smooth and keep it from being too biting. Appropriate body with blending of body and carbonation. A good anytime beer.

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Photo of NEhophead
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz brown bottle.

Foamy 1/2" white head that fades to nothing after a moment. A bit of spotted lacing with little strength. Light copper in color with noticeable carbonation.

Mild floral hop aromas with an underlying malt sweetness. A touch of lemon and wheat as well.

Floral hops, pine, and some hints of lemon. A nice, somewhat bold hop bit at mid sip with a bigger pine presence at this point. A slightly dark bitterness with a touch of bready malt. A floral hop aftertaste accompanied by some sweetness.

Medium bodied; crisp but slightly grainy on the palate. Light and refreshing.

A light and drinkable pale. Nothing bad yet nothing special about this one. This isn't anything to search for but it isn't disappointing either.

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Photo of BeerBuilder
3.5/5  rDev -3.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this one at Miller Park during a Twins & Brewers game. An above average APA, nothing too exciting about it. It poured to a deep copper color with a tan head. The aromas were citrus fruit, with a caramel malt backgroud. The flavor was fruity and slightly caramely with a light hop spicing. Not too aggresively hopped like a lot of APAs. It was a medium bodied brew that went down pretty easy. Not too bad.

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Photo of kennyo
3.04/5  rDev -16.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

pours a crispy, clear gold with a nice 1" head tht dissapates fairly quick. Very carbonated. ANiced lace on the glass throughout. Nose has some hops, citrus. Need to put your nose deep into glass to tell. Taste, light malt, a little bitterness, pine, lemon.

This is an ale and is pale so I guess this would be considered a pale ale. Nice drinking and I'm glad I tried it but there is really not much to this beer.

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Photo of Vancer
3.62/5  rDev -0.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Good one here – a semi-rough pour produced a 1” white head on top of a quant amber haze. A little disappointed in the aroma – what aroma?!? But the taste was a nice little malt with an easy citrus hop. Not much tang in the finish, but still a pleasant beer that would be welcomed in the summer or winter. Very smooth and tasty throughout the pint.

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Photo of ZAP
3.44/5  rDev -5.5%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Light copper in color...big frothy head..really not much of a nose at all...The taste is pretty mild...not a boat-load of flavor here...I've had many more tasty and exciting pale ale's....still it isn't has a nice out good head...and is pretty slick on the tounge..

I do like the caramel maltiness of this and there is a nice soft spiciness from the hops...not a bad beer at all...wish the nose was better...everything else is decent..

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Photo of Bighuge
4.09/5  rDev +12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hazy copper color. What little head there is disappears in seconds. Great floral and citric hop nose with a caramel malt underlying. This isn't a hugely bitter APA, but it has some very nice hop tastes. There's a nice floralness. Some light citric accents. And some hop attributed spiciness. Underneath all of this lies a solid malt backbone. Pretty decent brew. Medium-full in body. And nicely carbonated.

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Photo of BuckeyeNation
4.1/5  rDev +12.6%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.5

Medium amber with a modest infusion of orange juice and a 'dust motes in a ray of sunshine' interior. The head is a half shade darker than virgin white, is creamyfirm enough to last and deposits a fair amount of lace in blurred rings. The nose is snappily citric... classic Cascade. Rather than being bright and sunny, it's weighted down just a bit by malt.

Bower City is a well-brewed APA with an adequate malt structure on which an abundance of hops could be placed. Unfortunately, something less than an abundance have been used, but it's still on one of the upper rungs of the style ladder in terms of hop flavor and bitterness. White grapefruit and spruce are especially prominent and the beer is becoming more juicy and bitter as it sits. Long live the Cascade hop!

My only other Gray's Brewing Company beer was Oatmeal Stout, another quality effort. If you're in the market for a delicious APA that showcases the Cascade hop, you could do much worse than Bower City Pale Ale. Wisconsinites should be proud of this one.

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

I tried this in a bar. It was actually being sold under the bar's name. I thought I would try a bottle.

An agressive pour left a 1/2" head. Head went away leaving a weak lacy appearance. Nose had piney and hoppy slant. Taste is not overpowering pretty good hop character and not alot of malt but some. The hop aftertaste is quite enjoyable and the mouthfeel is just right. A little thin for us high alky/ heavy body beer drinkers but I can't complain. This is a GOOD session beer.

Can I have another?

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Bower City Pale Ale from Gray's Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.64 out of 5 with 15 ratings
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