Geary's Pale Ale
D.L. Geary Brewing Company

Geary's Pale AleGeary's Pale Ale
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Pale Ale - English
Ranked #162
Ranked #45,282
3.58 | pDev: 15.08%
D.L. Geary Brewing Company
Maine, United States
Geary's Pale AleGeary's Pale Ale
Notes: Our flagship. This is a classic British pale ale with a nod to the legendary beers of Burton-on-Trent. Copper-colored, dry, clean, and crisp with lots of late hop taste, in an appetizing complex with ale fruitiness from imported Hampshire yeast. Original gravity - 1047; alcohol by volume - 4.5%; two row English malt (pale, crystal and chocolate); Cascade, Mt. Hood, Tettnang and Fuggle Hops.
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Reviews: 222 | Ratings: 449 | Log in to view all ratings and sort
Photo of vi11am
vi11am from Pennsylvania

3.77/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.75

Dark golden amber, floral, clean smell, light carbonation, nice lasting head. Slightly sweet, hoppy taste, lasting hints of bubblegum(?). Delicious, would pair well with seafood, not too hoppy.

Dec 26, 2020
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Chickenhawk9932 from Pennsylvania

3.75/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a pale amber with a cream colored head that leaves some nice lace.

Biscuit malt and piney herbal floral hops.

Taste follows nose with a highly carbonated lively mouthfeel.

Nov 08, 2020
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Gripnrip207 from Vermont

2.86/5  rDev -20.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3.25

Born in Maine, i felt it was wrong that I had never had a Geary’s pale ale, really the beer that started it all. Doing this review however, proved to be very difficult. Beer was copper colored, per usual of pale ales. Smell of hops and malts, pretty simple. On the piney/herbal side, with a splash of biscuit. Taste was underwhelming. Very basic, and surprisingly malt forward with bitter background noise. My bottle stated 5.2% abv. This beer was very light, may I say water. A little under carbonated per style. I really wanted to like this beer, but I just was underwhelmed. My original score would have been 2.75 per style. But then I pondered. This beer, in 1988, would have been phenomenal, and much different than traditionally available beers in the area. I’m glad the recipe has stayed the same, and allowed myself to try something from that era, as opposed to a recipe change to modernize. In that case, i would rate 3.25 for style.

Dec 30, 2019
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vinicole from England

3.75/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Bottle. Clear amber. Receding frothy head which leaves a wispy layer.
Vibrant malt aroma with a touch of balancing hop which continues into the taste.
Medium carbonation and body.
A relatively straightforward bitter which replicates many from English brewers.

Apr 26, 2019
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Amendm from Rhode Island

3.64/5  rDev +1.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

16-oz. can required an easy pour into a 20-oz. mug to produce a two-finger sized egg shell white frothy head that shrinks to a ring with minimal lacing. Clear reddish copper color shows orange-copper in front of light.
Sweet malt and faint hops dominate the smell with a hint of banana and cloves.
Taste has sweet malt with some citrus and apple at first then switches to a drier malt flavor in the middle with a bitter hop finish. There is a bitter hop bite at the end that does not linger.
Feel is medium bodied with proportional carbonation that is balanced and maintained throughout the drink.
On the dark side and a tad sweet for the style. Overall a smooth easy drinker, good balance of sweet malt and bitter hops.

Aug 22, 2018
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BJB13 from Maryland

3.63/5  rDev +1.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

12 oz. bottle poured into a nonic style pint glass.

Clear and copper in the glass it sports about one finger of whitish lathery head with a bit of lacing.

The nose is fairly weak and malty. It is mildly bitter and tastes of pale malt, it isn't unbalanced but the hop character is subdued. Dry, crisp and smooth this is a decent and drinkable English.

Sep 15, 2017
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YoungMtn52 from New York

4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Part of a Beer of the Month...never had this brewer before but I like this one a lot...clean, dry and crisp with great hoppy smell and finish. Hope I can find this one again down here on Long Island!

Aug 26, 2017
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Lone_Freighter from Vermont

3.48/5  rDev -2.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.5

Poured into an English pint glass, the appearance was a dark pale amber color with a lighter foamy head and a small lacing around the edges. It had a darker malty smell, some biscuits and herbal to earthy notes. The taste had a slight malt along with a slight sweetness, slightly mild and balanced. The palate was about a medium feel. It had a good smoothness to it. Overall, this was a good beer that I might come back to.

Jun 30, 2017
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ScaryEd from New Hampshire

3.81/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pours a lightly hazy copper color with a finger of bright white head. Don't get much retention here but there's lacing for days.

The aroma is full of grainy, cereal malts, caramel, and finished off by a wave of piney hops.

The taste follows the nose: Cereal grains, sweet caramel, and earthy, piney hops on the finish.

The feel is medium-light bodied with decent carbonation. Crisp and refreshing, as a pale ale should be.

Overall, a nice "old school" representation of a pale ale. It's nicely balanced with plenty of hops in the passenger seat. A good beer for all seasons.

May 15, 2017
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BRiddoch from Massachusetts

3.81/5  rDev +6.4%
look: 3.75 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Poured dark gold with a minimal head. Hoppy smell with slightly fruity undertones. Slight bitterness but quite refreshing with a mild fruity aftertaste.

Mar 10, 2017
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jhavs from New York

3.88/5  rDev +8.4%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4

Drank this a ton in my youth. Was hitting a few breweries in Portland and saw a sign for their taproom. Didn't know they opened up the brewery for samples/tours/etc.

Got a 4 oz taster. Clear, amber, bright and shiny in the sun. Nice slightly off-white foamy head settles quickly and rings the glass.

Smells a bit malty, caramel, followed by earthy hops and some citrus zest.

Great all around easy drinking flavor. Nice level of bitterness that is backed by the clean malt bill. Subtle sweetness, hint of caramel or burnt sugar. Get some fruit flavors mixing in. Pleasant.

Reasonably full bodies for a refreshing pale ale. Spot on moderate carbonation.

A great brew from a ME craft legend. Try out the taproom.

Aug 15, 2016
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Brutaltruth from Ohio

3.94/5  rDev +10.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Enjoyed from the 12 oz bottle in a snifter, this FINE pale pours a clear and luminous deep amber with a very nice head of off white foam that subsides to a thick layer, very nice thick ring, and great sudsy lacing. Nose of peaches, subtle citrus, bittering hops, and caramel. Flavors surpass the nose with orchard fruits of peaches and apricots awash in sweet malts with an moderately bitter hop profile that keeps everything in check. Great mouth feel with good carbonation and a lively mouth feel with a moderately bitter hops finish. A great all around pale ale from a great brewery.


Dec 22, 2015
Photo of Gajo74
Gajo74 from New York

4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Look- It poured a copper and orange with a large bubbly and billowing off white head, a nice frothy lace retains until the end.
Smell- raw grain and caramels malts. Some fruit, perhaps dried apricot. Sweet and pleasant.
Taste. Well balanced. Caramel malt, orchard fruits and a nice assertive but smooth hops profile.
Feel- light to medium bodied, tangy mouthfeel, very pleasant.
A nice one all around.

Nov 15, 2015
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ClavisAurea from New York

4/5  rDev +11.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Classic English Pale Ale here. Clear copper color with a decent amount of white head. Moderate carbonation. Nose is very malt forward with toffee, caramel and bready malts. The taste is very much like a Vienna lager with a malt forward character but with a significantly heavier body. The hops bitterness shines through the waves of malt backbone and provides a nice counter balance. There is a nice minerally quality to this beer as well which harkens back to the Burton upon Trent beers. It seems to be a very dry beer but I think those minerals are playing tricks on me. A beautiful brew and I'm glad I got to try it.

Nov 06, 2015
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jmdrpi from Pennsylvania

2.72/5  rDev -24%
look: 3 | smell: 2.75 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 2.75

12 oz bottle - no date

medium copper color, thin white head. the aroma is a bit stale, earthy. the taste is a bit similar. bready, no hop flavor at all. medium body and carbonation.

I have a feeling this bottle might be quite old, but no way to know.

Feb 10, 2015
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tkelley from Massachusetts

3.5/5  rDev -2.2%

12 oz bottle from beer of the every other month shipment poured into a tulip glass.

A - very clear brownish copper body with a very thin head. Not good lacing but might be more to do with choice of used glass.

N - toffee and baked bread with a little fruity or spicy hops. Buttery yeast as well.

T - no surprises following the smell. Not overly bitter. More malt than hops but with an interesting flavor profile. Sweet and grassy and a little fruity. Ring wood buttery yeast flavor. Not bad here.

M -bubbly and a little hot? Not watery but not heavy at all.

O - pretty good English style. Cheers!

Dec 07, 2014
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mvanaskie13 from Pennsylvania

4.1/5  rDev +14.5%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Poured into a tumbler: color is a dark copper, transparent, fine bubbled efferevesence; head is off white, presents 1/2 inch thick then dissipates quickly to a ring and some fine froth.

Smell is very pleasant, begins with a lightly sweet malt presence, coming through as toffee and caramel, but no over sweet; hop earthiness follows, light grass.

Taste is also very good: sweet malt presents first, fairly crisp and clean flavors, maltiness is toffee and caramel, though light, some subtle fruitiness from the ale fermentation provides a sweeter character; hops are crisp, nicely bitter with a flavor of grass and earth.

Mouthfeel is crisp and refreshing: very appropriate levels of carbonation and nice lingering malt sweetness and hop drying qualities.

Overall, this is a a great english style pale ale, very crisp, great aroma and flavor and mouth presence.

Aug 05, 2014
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MaineBrewing from Maine

3.75/5  rDev +4.7%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

A - poured a brilliantly clear copper with amber highlights. One finger loose large bubbled head resembling a soda head dissipated quickly,

S - grassy hop notes with ample spicyness, followed by s wall of malt aroma, lots of toffee and bread.

T - hop flavor low with slight grassy earth, the taste is mostly malt with subtle notes of caramel, toffee, and a low amount of buttery diacetyl. Very smooth, ends crisp and dry with ample hop bitterness.

M - very light and highly carbonated. Finishes very dry, surprisingly refreshing for how malt forward this is vs a more hoppy brew.

O - I never by this only because I assumed it would be blah, it's actually very good, strikes a balance between ESB and something more refreshing and crisp. Not a bad shelf beer to keep in the fridge.

Jun 17, 2014
Photo of illpass78
illpass78 from Maine

3.87/5  rDev +8.1%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Had a pint on tap at Forest Gardens in Portland, Maine.

Appearance: Pours a rusty gold with a half-inch white head that hangs around a but. It's clear and lacing is moderate to low.

Aroma: Aromas are faint but there's caramel, grassiness, toast, biscuit, malt and oats. Also a little grapefruit tartness.

Taste: The taste follows the nose. Pretty nice, complex flavor. More complexity than the average pale ale. Really good, refreshing beer with nice flavor and hop profiles.

Mouthfeel: It's somewhat light of body but appealing.

Overall: I'm a sucker for a good traditional pale ale, and this is one. Would recommend to anyone.

Apr 19, 2014
Photo of FLima
FLima from Brazil

3.74/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Nice copper color with a thin head with medium retention and leaving laces.
Aroma of an English Ale, notes of caramels, earthy hops and a light tangy citrusy.
I was expecting a more boring flavor, but its hop profile surprised me. Notes of earthy hops, biscuit malts with some roasted edges, caramels, fruity yeast and tea leaves. Dry aftertaste with a persistent bitterness.
Light body with good carbonation.
Good interesting take on an English Ale with hops tuned up to the American way, almost an English IPA. If you dig the style, definitely it is worth trying. Great option for American ex-expats of the old world.

Mar 16, 2014
Photo of Rpritham
Rpritham from Maine

4.51/5  rDev +26%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 4.75

Poured into glass but I would say:
Forms a 2cm foam head, which dissipates in <30 seconds

A:Amber and clear-like water that has too much iron in it, but looks inviting.

S: dull smoky oak aroma- pleasing and not overpowering

T: if bitter could taste delicious and pleasant this would be it- the aftertaste is similar to the smell.

M: carbonated, which first feels like a rush to the taste buds and spreads across the palette without too much intensity.

Overall I thoroughly enjoy it. Definitely one of my new favorite pale ale's

Jan 25, 2014
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Owl-Head from Maine

3.77/5  rDev +5.3%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3 | taste: 4.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Pretty good at of a bottle but far better out of a snifter glass, in fact remarkably better. All qualities out of the bottle slightly chilled are too sweet and too powerful. The glass seems to free the ale of it's hyper sweet aroma and taste and makes the beer rather enjoyable. I suggest serving it in the mid 40s (F) and eating peanuts or pretzels with the drink

Jan 06, 2014
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ThisWangsChung from Maryland

3.18/5  rDev -11.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

12 oz bottle into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear copper color. The head is a one finger off-white shade. It's actually pretty uniform in texture - thick, too. Retention is pretty solid and lacing is minor.

S: It's mainly toasted malts on the forefront, with a fruity undercurrent (think stone fruit). Slight hints of diacetyl are also present. As it sits in the glass, it shows off more fruit notes. Not bad, not bad at all.

T: Again, toasted is a decent word to describe the flavor profile. Some nondescript fruit esters congeal at the middle of the palate before an upsurge of (malt) bitterness finishes this off. The aforementioned fruit notes pop up more strongly on certain sips. It's certainly well made and balanced well - it's just not my style at all.

M: I could use a bit more crisp dryness to help counteract the malty linger on the palate. The carbonation here is quite zesty, but it's not quite enough. Having said that, it's not undrinkable by any stretch - it seems to become drier as I drink more of this, in fact.

O: Biases against crystal malt and English-style pale ales aside, this one does the job well. It's richer than its low ABV would suggest, too. The old adage "it's not you, it's me" is appropriate for this one. Still, I can imagine this one being rock-solid on cask.

Nov 28, 2013
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elNopalero from California

3.03/5  rDev -15.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to @xicanobeerrun for this.

Pours a malty amber-light caramel in color. There’s a subdued hop, almost like a stronger “stale-beer” aroma mixed with an off-putting dank/skunky note lingering around. The flavor has a light bitterness that tapers into a harsh, flat taste. It leaves an aftertaste that is not welcome. I liken this flavor to what happens when you overcook and slightly burn something but end up making a dish with it all the same—it’s not quite enough to make you not want it but its not something you’re going to want to have again either. Oh well.

Sep 04, 2013
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scotorum from Massachusetts

3.91/5  rDev +9.2%
look: 4.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.75

Poured from the 12 oz. bottle into an Alchemist Shaker pint.

a: Rich deep amber boasting a finger thick off white head which receded to even surface foam and heavy lacing.

s: Medium malt.

t: Mainly ale malt with some hop balance. Slightly more fruity than many pale ales, but more traditional and less hoppy than many of the craft-era ones or even the famous English "Bitter." For me, really tasty and wonderful.

m; Medium and quite rich.

o: Excellent traditional British-style pale ale which I will definitely be looking for again. Great to see this made in my region. Similar to and perhaps better than New Hampshire's Shipyard Chamberlain, another good malty real ale style brew.

UPDATE 8/26/14: Hadn't gotten around to re-reviewing this before now. So much good beer, so little digestive capacity. Bought another single though and had it tonight with dinner. Not nearly as crazy about it as I was. It's good and still fruitier than most Pales and still far less hoppy than many American ones, but I did not find it especially distinguished as "tasty and wonderful" or as "rich" as before. Thus downgrading my very high previous rating from 4.55 overall to 3.75. . I'll probably buy more and re-review again since the difference between first and second tastings was so inexplicably enormous.

Aug 26, 2013
Geary's Pale Ale from D.L. Geary Brewing Company
Beer rating: 81 out of 100 with 449 ratings