Thomas Hooker American Pale Ale | Thomas Hooker Brewing Company

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Thomas Hooker American Pale AleThomas Hooker American Pale Ale
129 Ratings
Thomas Hooker American Pale AleThomas Hooker American Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Thomas Hooker Brewing Company
Connecticut, United States

Style: American Pale Ale (APA)

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.30%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Thomas Hooker American Pale Ale is an extremely vivid, medium-bodied brew. Hooker Pale Ale stresses the crisp bitterness, lingering resin flavor, and aroma of American hops which are characteristic of the most distinctive West Coast Ales. The caramel sweetness of the malt balances the chock-full-of-hops flavor to yield a complex but quite refreshing brew.

35 IBU

Added by UnionMade on 11-27-2001

User Ratings & Reviews
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Ratings: 129 |  Reviews: 105
Reviews by wyllder:
Photo of wyllder
4.36/5  rDev +29.4%
look: 5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 5 | overall: 5

Second review for the APA here. First time was from the bottle. This time around there's really no comparison. The cask version was, IMO, lightyears beyond the bottle.

The cask version pours out like a deep amber Guinness. Tons of cascading going on while the silky, 1-inch ivory head forms. Looks appealing as hell.

Smell is good too, with plenty of citrus bitterness on the nose. I just don't remember the bottled APA smelling this good.

Taste.. Ahh, the casking does wonders here. As usual, carbonation is low but instead delivers a deliciously creamy mouthfeel. The absence of carbonated bite actually makes the citrus bitter tones easier to distinguish. Aftertaste is pleasantly bitter, inviting the next sip.

Mouthfeel is perfect. Probably because I'm biased towards cask beers, but I love the creamy texture to this.

Drinkability is damn good too.

Overall, this is excellent on cask and I highly recommend it to anyone.


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More User Reviews:
Photo of kaimcm
3.03/5  rDev -10.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

A: really nice dark amber body. head is wimpy though, bubbles too large, no retention.

S: floral hops, powdery resin

T: Clean malt, light hops, a tad watery. Slightly dry on the finish but really lacks a defined hop presence for an APA. while alcohol isnt high at 5.4% you'd expect it to come through considering the flavor of the beer is so subtle but its nowhere to be found.

M: too light, not enough carbonation

D: very drinkable in the sense that its so smooth, watery, and uncomplicated. not drinkable in the sense that its boring and why waste time with another.

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Photo of orbitalr0x
4.09/5  rDev +21.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours from the bottle a dark dirty amber orange with a nice half inch of bubbly head on top. Quite dark for an APA but that doesn't stop it from looking nice in the glass. Tantalizing mix of thick pine sap/citric grapefruit hoppiness wafts up into my nose. Rich deep caramel swirles throughout. Delectable.

First sip brings a melding of crisp, sweet caramel maltiness with a nice piney, slightly citric hop background. A mellow bready, slightly buttery flavor rides in the background. Quite sweet overall with just a touch of bitterness on the finish. A nice APA overall.

Mouthfeel is smooth and creamy with a mellow carbonation that serves the brew well. I could see myself grabbing a sixer of this on a regular basis if I had access to it. An all around tasty brew.

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Photo of Todd
1.99/5  rDev -40.9%
look: 4 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 1.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 1.5

12oz brown bottle. No freshness date. Contract brewed in Saratoga Springs, NY.

Pours a bright coppery orange colored body with large carbonation bubbles. Touch of chill haze. Head is thick and slightly off-white with varying bubble sizes and snaps down to a creamy lace and a bit of stick.

Grainy tannin aroma, with a touch of metallic, buscuity malts and a soft, almost undetectable, floral hop bouquet. Doesn’t set my senses up for much.

Smooth and even body. Non-descript malty base and feel on the palate. No sweetness. Buscuity character upfront. Hint of caramel as it warms. Quite hoppy at first, with a brief and semi-astringent sharp lemony citric snap, followed by a raw/coarse grassy bitterness with earthy and leafy notes. Soapy in spots. Husk tannins move in towards the end, leaving some very unpleasant lingers on the palate.

Tannins run amok and need to be cleaned-up, and the malt character offers nothing. Unbalanced, a bit messy and not very appealing.

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Photo of Jason
2.84/5  rDev -15.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 2.5

12 oz brown bottle with, contract brewed in Saratoga Springs, NY.

A- Excellent lacing, seems to stick everywhere. Shiny copper hue shows of it clarity.

S- Biscuity malt, faint citric hop ... all in all a mild aroma.

T- Big overtones of biscuity malt and the usual APA hop profile. Basic APA characteristics all over, the biscuity malt takes a dive with brash husky flavors. Finishes mildly astringent.

M- Very smooth mouthfeel with a modest crispness.

D- After one bottle I wanted to switch to something else, I'd love to try this beer straight from the brewery rather than a contract brewed bottle to see if there is any difference.

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Photo of Billolick
3.01/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12 ounce bottle. No freshness dating. Pours orangy amber, white head, leaves some light lacing. Nose is minimal, perhaps a bit of breadyness. This stuff didnt really do it for me. Its somewhat watery and characterless. Middle of the road APA. Needs an injection of hops to give it some character, as is, too bland and personalityless. just a faint touch of grainy hops and malt is subdued and minor. C'mon Hooker you can do better then this.

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Photo of bl400315
3.01/5  rDev -10.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

pours amber with a one finger white head that dissolved quickly. poor lacing and clearity. smells of floral hops and a grainy, bread-like scent. holds up in mouth pretty well, good carbonation.taste the hops right off the bat, a good an bitter punch, but theres a lack of variety. a dry finish with a grainy feel at the end there. decent drinkability. **fairly balanced but a lack of complexity makes this a poor advertisment for the american ale.

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Photo of Thrasher
3.6/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Good session bitter. Very nice head leaving lace down the glass. Subtle malt character, finishing quite bitter with the hops, lemony stringy quality. A solid ale all around, nothing exceptional, but an easy-drinking anytime beer with an appetizing finish. Hops make me think of pale ale but this has enough qualities of a bitter to make it a valid American interpretation of the style.

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Photo of far333
3.23/5  rDev -4.2%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Amber color with a big beige head with decent lacing. Just a teeny hop aroma. Flavor is hop bitterness plus some mild fruit and florals, and a lingering hop aftertaste. Mouthfeel is a little watery. I expected this to have a smoother mouthfeel and to have a well-balanced hop and malt flavor, but these were lacking.

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Photo of StevenBilodeau
3.13/5  rDev -7.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

As a resident of Connecticut of course I would have to try this beer. Thomas Hooker, of course was the founder of Connecticut when the Bostonian peoples kicked him out due to his conflicting beliefs. Any who, this beer, the American Pale Ale, by Thomas Hooker is pretty decent. You should try it, get a taste of history while your at it.

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Photo of stevemcqueenjr
3.88/5  rDev +15.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Pours nice, 3/4" head,however quickly the head disapates. dark amber color, somewhat cloudy, some lacing.

Very crisp taste, definately worth a try. hops are definately prominent. Overall nice smooth mouthfeel, light to medium bodied. Something to drink a couple of bottles of to relax during the warmer months. this is probably the beer to compare all other APAs to.

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Photo of Dewey0603
3.48/5  rDev +3.3%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

This pours a honey color with a creamy 2 finger head.The smell is hop filled and "bakery like".The taste is hoppy with some carmel aftertaste.This is really nothing special.The m/f is light and weak,but it's also unbalanced with the flavors mixing poorly.This is an easy to drink beer,and in the summer at a BBQ or after some hard work I can see having one,but this is really just an average beer.

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Photo of Ezone024
3/5  rDev -11%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

hazy copper color, frothy head lots of lacing, smells oakey and smokey. Almost reminds me of some english style pales which is why i dont understand why this is called american pale ale.

Medium bodied ale. Mostly smokey malt flavor, hops make a small cameo in the middle of each sip but are hidden by the ultimate smokiness..

drinks ok, can have a 6 pack, although it starts getting too sweet by the end.

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Photo of Damian74
2/5  rDev -40.7%

Photo of cjgator3
3.37/5  rDev 0%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

12oz bottle

A- Pours a slightly gazed orangish amber color with an off-white head.

S- The aroma is sweet malt and caramel with some citrusy hops.

T- The taste is very similar to the aroma with some caramel malts and a moderate bitterness from the citrusy hops in the finish. Not bad but the taste seemed to be watered down a bit.

M- The mouthfeel is light bodied with a moderate amount of carbonation.

D- Overall, this is not a bad Pale Ale that I wouldn't mind having again. Worth a shot.

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Photo of prototypic
3.15/5  rDev -6.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to BeerRay for this one.

Appearance: It pours a darker, bronze color. Very clear and topped with an off-white, two finger head. Retention was good and light coat of lace lined the glass.

Smell: The nose really lacks punch and is disappointing. It predominantly smells malty and breadlike. There's a hint of hops in there, but it's not very strong. Perhaps some light citrus pineapple emerges. It needs some work here.

Taste: This is an interesting (though not necessarily stellar) pale ale. Caramel malts are the primary feature here. It has a sweet, very yeasty/biscuity flavor. There is a bit of hop bitterness in there, but it's really too little for an APA. The balance is off and it needs to be skewed a little more in the hop direction. Whatever citrus scents were present on the nose are clearly lost in the malty flavor here. It finishes sweet and slightly bitter.

Mouthfeel/Drinkability: It's light bodied. Carbonation is pretty high, but it's not exactly crisp. Mouthfeel is merely okay, not quite good. Drinkability is pretty limited. I'm just not crazy about it.

This is a pretty average APA that needs a lot of work to command repeat visits. It's just too malty and sorely needs more hops and diversity. There's also way too many great APAs out there to choose from. I can't see myself revisiting this one.

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Photo of tempest
3.6/5  rDev +6.8%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

This could also pass as a hoppy amber for its relatively dark color. The hops here don't really come out until the aftertaste - then as a subtle, yet clear floral flavor. The main taste is a mix of citrus hops with sweet, light toffee grains. It's well balanced, but nothing really stands out. Basically I think it could just use a little more hopping. Still nothing I'd turn away, it's a fine beer.

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Photo of ghebb
3.72/5  rDev +10.4%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 4 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Sampled on tap @ the Bloomfield Brewery.

Poured a clear orange color, with a subtle citrusy hop armoa.

Taste is what youd expect from an APA, strong (but not overwhelming) citrusy hop flavors are at the forefront, with some faint malty sweetness lingering in the backgound. Mouthfeel is medium, with moderate carbonation. Finishes refreshingly crisp and clean, makes you want to want to take another sip.

Nothing groundbreaking here, just a simple tasty APA ala Sierra Nevada.

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Photo of bditty187
3.95/5  rDev +17.2%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Tawny-copper hue, clear, fairly lively animation, almost two fingers of off-white head, the bubbles are rather large and they seemed to be breathing! Good retention, it slowly collapsed at a leisurely pace; a cap remained throughout consumption. The appearance is typical of an APA. Plus it laced rather well. The nose is pleasantly hoppy, reasonable assertiveness, lemon rinds and pine needles. The maltiness is flat and underdone. Still it is an inviting bouquet. On the palate, upfront is sharp acidic hoppiness and a flash of pine, in the middle is a note of malt, I mean just a note. The finish is acidic and very refreshing! It is a strong closer. Clean. The hoppiness is flavorful but it only adds mild “straight” bitterness, especially compared to Sierra Nevada or Alpha King, etc. If the malt had more influence taste-wise this ale would be dynamite. Still it is damn delicious and very, very enjoyable to quaff. This would make a great everyday beer and I bet this would pair well with a fat, juicy hamburger with smoked Gouda cheese and caramelized onions. Medium in body, thinner than need be (add more malt, please!). The level of carbonation was ideal, natural on the tongue but prevalent enough to be cleansing. This is a quality little brew, thank you sulldaddy for including this offering, I really dig it.

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Photo of PhantomVodoo
3.7/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.5

Copper in color with an off-white head.
Aroma is fruity. Citrus and floral hop notes. Toffee malt as well.

Taste shows a toffee malt flavor with a slight burnt aspect. Fruity. Citrus hops. Nice bitterness level, although it lingers just a bit too much. This comes off as more of a typical English pale ale/bitter than an APA to me.

Good mouthfeel.
Good drinkability.

Overall, a solid pale ale.

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Photo of MarkD
2.46/5  rDev -27%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

Pours a rusty clear amber with a 1 finger head that slowly disappears, with little or no lacing. Somewhat unpleasant nose, as if this was too old, but the store said that they had just gotten the shipment that week. Taste is well balanced, with malt eventually winning the battle, but that same unpleasantness in the aroma works itself into the flavor profile. I've had 4 bottles from 2 different sixers befor I wrote this review, and all were the same, almost difficult to finish. The finish is sour and musty, leaving an unpleasant coating in my mouth. Maybe it's the contract brewing, because this is not characteristic of other Troutbrook beers that I've tried.

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Photo of Chinon01
2.92/5  rDev -13.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Appearance - Near opaque deep gold brown. Moderate soapy head.

Smell - Very fig-y sweet malt nose.

Taste - Malty, toasted, maple, mango, fig and other dried fruit. Very assertive hoppiness throughout (and too much in my opinion).

Moderate & Drinkability - Both are low due to overly aggressive hoppiness and overall thinness.

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Photo of Lone_Freighter
3.52/5  rDev +4.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Poured into a becher pint glass.
The appearance was a mild copper color with a fair finger's worth of white foamy head softly dissolving. Some messy lace, here and there.
The aroma had some grassy to resinous hops. Light citrus rind. Bready to biscuity malt.
The flavor mildly leads with some sweet hops. Moderate aftertaste of sweet and bitter citrusy hops and bready malts.
The mouthfeel was almost medium bodied, good sessionability. Carbonation felt good. ABV felt on par. Crisp yet smooth malty to hoppy finish.
Overall, it's mostly easy drinking and not bad.

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Photo of drcarver
2.98/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3 | smell: 2.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

A - Small, off-white head that was mostly gone after a few moments. Light amber color.

S - Floral smell of hops was predominent. Smelled like a cheap microbrew

T - Malt is nondescript. There is a predominent and lingering bitterness throughout the beer.

M - Light and lively body with lots of fizz.

D - Not bad. Not good, but not bad.

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Photo of edchicma
4/5  rDev +18.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4

Hmmm...APA or IPA...Very nice color (dark copper) some lacing. Smell is nice floral hops with a slight malt undertone. Taste is citrus hops throughout with a great dry hop finish. Mouthfeel is dry, slightly astingent..cleanses the tongue very nicely. Nice on the drinkability scale..enough smoothness to invite another sip...just the right dryness.

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Thomas Hooker American Pale Ale from Thomas Hooker Brewing Company
Beer rating: 3.37 out of 5 with 129 ratings