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English Bay Pale Ale | Granville Island Brewery

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English Bay Pale AleEnglish Bay Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Granville Island Brewery
British Columbia, Canada

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 5.00%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Our English Bay Pale Ale has a smooth, mild flavour brimming with West Coast character and a caramel malt aroma. A true pale ale, it gets its perfect balance from natural carbonation and careful maturing under the watchful eye of our brewmaster.

Added by 49degrees on 12-27-2002

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Reviews: 101 | Ratings: 274
Photo of Alexc11
3.54/5  rDev +12%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Dark amber color with nice cream but it dissipates quickly. Malt IPA with a very smooth (like honey) with light bitter finish. Nothing that leaves you overwhelmed but really nice beer worth purchasing. To a novice like me learning as I go, I enjoyed it.

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Photo of RJLarse
3.34/5  rDev +5.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

I bought a six-pack (cans) of English Bay Pale Ale in a BC liquor store. Poured in to a pint glass.

Pours a deep copper color, clear with a bubbly off-white head.

Smells like wet grain. More of a cereal aroma than fruit.

Taste is very malt forward, with a but of a caramel flavor and a very mild bitterness on the finish.

Feel is thin, but not especially crisp. Very much a caramel malt feel.

Overall an OK pale ale. I make this more of a British style ale, with the malt dominance and subdued hop presence. I found better beers in Canada.

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Photo of KGetliffe
4.63/5  rDev +46.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.25 | taste: 4.75 | feel: 5 | overall: 4.75

Pours super smooth with a decent head, nothing to write home about though it left some beautiful lacing. The clear Amber colour has a luminous quality that is very appealing.
Aroma is a bit tough to pin down, definitely a copper penny twang and a sort of sweet undertone.
Flavour is impeccably balanced, just an all around satisfying sip of burnished maltiness with that same coppery tone and a hoppy back bite. Something about this beer is meaty and satisfying without being too sweet or syrupy. A well rounded easy drinker and a perfect pairing for beef.
Seriously delightful mouthfeel, that's where this beer truly impresses me. The carbonation is just right, soft full mouth tingles that just wash the flavour across your palate.
All in all a well rounded beer and a perfect accompaniment to most pub fare.

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Photo of chinchill
3.47/5  rDev +9.8%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

473 ml can on the shore of Keji National Seaside Park (Nova Scotia).

Tea colored with exceptional clarity, visible carbonation and a fine head.
Mild flavor that's only a bit more hoppy than malty.
Clean and well balanced but mild like a session pale ale.
Medium body and carbonation.

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Photo of Lewnanny
3.46/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had this one on a friend. Not that much impressive.

The IBU is 18, a medium bitterness taste. The color is rich copper orange

The 341 ml bottle was in sale and the ABV is 5.0 %

This one is in the middle of my beer taste rating.

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Photo of smirks
4.25/5  rDev +34.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4.75 | taste: 4 | feel: 4 | overall: 4.25

Draught purchased at a restaurant poured into a regular pint glass.

Look: Beautiful caramel color. Clear. No head at all because the server didn't know how to pour beer. A little bit of fine carbonation visible, distributed evenly. I'm not sure whose idea it was to call this a pale ale, cause it ain't pale.

Smell: Caramel and bready grains and brown sugar. Malty and light. Not what a pale ale should smell like, definitely no citrusy, astringent hops at all on the nose, but so, so nice.

Taste: Exactly like the smell. Caramel, bready grains, and brown sugar. Not even the faintest hint of bitterness, though, and no corn syrup sweetness either. It's not the most complex taste, but it's a very nice, light, malty beer. I think I might even call it well balanced.

Feel: Slightly thinner than an English Pale Ale. Less carbonation than an IPA. Very easy on the tongue and very drinkable.

Overall: This will be disappointing if you want an IPA. This will be disappointing if you want an English Pale Ale. This will be excellent if you want a malty beer with no bitter or sour or cloyingly sweet notes that is extremely drinkable. I have no idea what I would call this style. It tastes like it looks.

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Photo of TheBierdimpfe
3.38/5  rDev +7%
look: 2.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Clear copper color. Weak one finger head that dissipates in 5 minutes. Flavors of roasted grains, toffee, faint berries, cinnamon, nutmeg, faint ginger and herbal spices. Is a little bready and biscuity, with bitter red ale spices. Smooth medium bodied, the carbonation is prickly. Light finish that lingers with a faint roasted and grassy feel, and faint gingerbread. Overall decent quality craft. Decent flavors, a little faint, but the balance is great. Well refreshing, a little light, yet satisfying and filling.

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Photo of Jeffo
3.92/5  rDev +24.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 4 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 4

Got this one at the LCBO in the Loo this past summer.

From a can into a pint glass

APPEARANCE: Pours a one finger, medium looking, foamy, off-white head with decent retention. Clear, rust in color with lower levels of carbonation. Head fades to a full wisp, though only a splotchy wisp remains the whole way leaving some falling dots of lacing down the glass.

SMELL: Lots of caramel, light toffee, floral notes and bubble gum. Bold as well. Good stuff.

TASTE: Caramel, lightly grainy notes, bubble gum sweetness and toffee notes up front. Bold finish of toffee and caramel sweetness, floral hop bitterness, bubble gum and melon character. Flavorful with lots of sweetness and earthy bitterness as balance. Really good.

PALATE: Medium body and medium levels of carbonation. Creamy enough on the palate, goes down smooth and finishes a touch mouth-coating.

OVERALL: This is really good stuff. Bold, flavorful and plenty enjoyable. Nice malty sweetness and plenty of earthy and floral hop bitterness to balance it all. Perhaps previous batches have been lousy in comparison, or previous reviewers see this and expect it to be an American citrus-bomb IPA. Granted it does say "West Coast" on the label, which is perhaps misleading. Whatever the case, this is a good beer that has been harshly judged. Give it a chance with an open mind and don't expect it to be something it's not. Recommended.

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Photo of kevinlater
2.76/5  rDev -12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

draft pour at the clarkson pump & patio, mississauga. aug 28 2015

a: clear copper with off-white head

s: grainy apple

t: grainy caramel, stale bread, floral notes. hints of chocolate and apple

m: medium-minus mouthfeel with moderate carbonation

o: nah

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Photo of LampertLand
3.79/5  rDev +19.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Granville Is 'English Bay Pale Ale' @ 5.0% , served from x3 341 ml bottles from the Summer Mingler
A-pour is a dark gold from the bottle to a dark gold/amber in the glass with a small beige head leaving a spotty lace along the pint
S-more malty than hoppy
T-crisp & clean , kinda sweet caramel malty tasting
MF-ok/mild carbonation , medium body
Ov-ok beer , decent pale ale
prost LampertLand

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Photo of headlessparrot
3.33/5  rDev +5.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.25

Other reviews here hit the nail on the head: this is a decent enough beer that's just utterly uninteresting. Colour is translucent brown topped by a finger of head that fades to a couple millimetres but persists. Nothing but some mild caramel malt aroma and caramel/molasses/brown sugar flavour--no real sense of balance, no "pop," not enough hop presence of any kind to justify the "West Coast style" designation. Just a caramel-y, fairly bland malty beer. Reminds me a fair bit of Newcastle.

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Photo of PorterPro125
3.44/5  rDev +8.9%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Serving Type: 341 mL

A- Copper Colour with a fairly lackluster, quickly disappearing white head. Light lacing.

S- Sweet Caramel Malt and not much else.

T- Same as aroma with the exception of a light hoppiness that has just enough kick to take the edge off the sweetness. Not much in the way of hop flavours.

M- Light body with Moderate to High Carbonation.

O- This beer was easy drinking and the taste was alright, but there is nothing here that would make me want to really try it again. Oh well.

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Photo of Sathanas
2.77/5  rDev -12.3%
look: 2 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 2.75

Looks like an amber lager, tastes and smells like one, too. An extreme mediocre beer, but the after taste is ashy and off putting. This is not a pale ale.

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Photo of Bunman3
3.27/5  rDev +3.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.25 | overall: 3.25

On tap at my local pub, the "best" option in a sea of macro water disguised as beer. I had a few pints, so one would think I could give a detailed account, but this is not a particularly memorable beer.

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Photo of Daefido
3.75/5  rDev +18.7%

I bought it at a regional LCBO in Welland, ON, Canada.
And I am not a professional or amatuer beer drinker or something. Just beer lover.^^;
I think it is like a sweet version of Pale Ale. I've drunk several Pale Ales like Ontario craft ones. They are more bitter than this. This ale is like more drinkable to beginners like me. haha.
However, I've found the bitter pale ale more likely has more flavour or something.
That means it has little bit weak smell. Well, nice beer to me.

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Photo of kevofficiel
3.8/5  rDev +20.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

English Bay. If you are in Vancouver this is one of the best view you can get of the sunset. I have the chance to drink here in Montreal.
The look of it is really curious. It looks like a Red Amber. You have that brown/red color. Nice carbonation. Maybe have half of a finger of head that goes aways but the rest stays inside your glass.
The smell of it, is kind of disappointing. You barely smell something. I really can't tell right now what I smell. it's really difficult to smell any flavour.
Now about the taste. Really powerful. Lot's of flavour. Totally different from the smell.
Very watery. Surprised me that it is a 5% ABV. Remind of the Richard's Red Amber. You have that touch of chocolate. Roasted grain. Really nice but too watery. I wish it could have been a 6% or 7% ABV. You will have that kick. The flavour is there but you don t have that kick you will enjoy just right after. Nice refreshing beer overall
So overall would I recommend it ? For sure. There is nothing wrong with this beer. Just too watery for my criticism. But really refreshing. Get you hands on this beer. Definitely worth it !

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Photo of DaveBar
3.65/5  rDev +15.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.75 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.75

Purchased at the LCBO for just under $ 3.00 as usual for a 473ml can. Served at 4deg c an a draught glass

A- Opens well and pours a good white head. Not much head left after 2mins

S- WOW this is a good beer. Throw a wack of malt and whoop here it is!!

T- See above

M- Malty good and you call it an IPA???

O- An IPA really? This one is a malt bomb LOL

Food Pairing

I didn't have a chance to eat with this beer sorry


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Photo of Haydn-Juby
3.3/5  rDev +4.4%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3.25

This review was done from a bottle so take it loosely.

A: Can't really say since I had it straight from the bottle but judging from online photos it seems to be a deep copper color.

S: I get caramel like malts and a nice biscuity quality as well. No hops present really.

T: Almost similar to a very malty amber ale. I really get almost no hops except for a very slight floral presence. Caramel and more biscuit malt than I would have expected. Bitterness is underwhelming. Rather nutty as well.

M: A touch too carbonated for my tastes. A bit of a thin body as well.

O: Not a bad beer but definitely not what I would call a pale ale. More like a ESB with hops and balance removed. Could be a good intro beer.

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Photo of Trillium
1.12/5  rDev -64.6%
look: 3 | smell: 1 | taste: 1 | feel: 1 | overall: 1

Got this on tap at a local bar. The aroma has very over powering caramel smell. I could not detect any malt or hops through the caramel. The taste has the same overpowering taste of caramel. Aftertaste lingered forever and I found it very unpleasant. This is not a Pale Ale. After a couple a sips, I could not drink anymore. One of the worst beers I have every tried.

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Photo of Brad007
2.89/5  rDev -8.5%
look: 3.25 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.75 | feel: 2.75 | overall: 3

Pours a mild amber color with a generous head into my glass. Looks a lot like an English IPA to me.

Sweet with a healthy dose of caramel malt. Not very hop-forward regardless.

Ditto with the taste. "Nutty" with an overabundance of caramel. Very little that resembles a proper example.

All of these flavors stick around at the back of the throat, albeit in an undesirable manner.

Would work better as a brown ale.

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Photo of VbolieuV
3.56/5  rDev +12.7%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.75 | overall: 3.5

Ruby red with a nice off-white head with some lacing. In the nose you get caramel malts, some breads and some hops. In the mouth it's similar, really sweet, lots or caramel flavors, with a lightly bitter finish.

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Photo of AnHeroicHippo
3.87/5  rDev +22.5%
look: 4.25 | smell: 4 | taste: 3.75 | feel: 4 | overall: 3.75

Appearance — Pours very syrupy; appears fairly carbonated; thin ring of head retention; medium lacing; very nice colour: somewhere between pumpkin and leather.

Smell — Toasty, almost woodsy; can’t decide if this smells smoky or just very very toasty and woodsy.

Taste — Overwhelming blast of pretty much what was in the nose, with some additional malty sweetness.

Mouthfeel — Very, very smooth, almost creamy, consistency on the tongue is very pleasant; don’t really feel the carbonation or the alcohol.

Overall — Not sure what an ‘English Bay pale ale’ is supposed to be, but this is a nice, very toasty, slightly sweet pale ale.

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Photo of Flounder57
3.41/5  rDev +7.9%
look: 4.25 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 4.25 | overall: 3.25

341 ml bottle was poured into a pint glass.

Appearance: This beer poured a one finger head that reduced to a thin layer. It is a copper color with good clarity and vision of slow moving bubbles coming up through the glass. Spotty lacing on the glass as the beer was drank.

Smell: Toasted malts, caramel, a little fruity, and mild hop aroma. Nothing out of the ordinary.

Taste: Chewy toasted malts, some sweet caramel and pale malts, a little fruitiness, and mild hop bitterness.

Mouthfeel: A bit smooth, chewy, light, tasty, low to medium carbonation, and very drinkable.

Overall: Pretty standard and enjoyable pale ale. Very impressed with this beer based on how average it is.

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Photo of CalgaryFMC
3.46/5  rDev +9.5%
look: 3.75 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Had a pint on tap at a Calgary pub in the NE. Arrived a nice reddish bronze color with around an inch and a half of off-white head. Subtle aroma was decidedly fruity with a little malt, MacIntosh apple and pear along with a little caramel. Aroma intensity did improve as the beer warmed up. Palate was also on the subdued and mellow side, with some brown bread, brown sugar, and again a lot of apple and pear fruit. Nil citrus that I could discern and the malts were there but decidedly downplayed, the English malt complexity crucial to this style is present but you have to go looking for it. Finish quite crisp and dry, with appropriate earthy hop bitterness and just a little lingering treacle sweetness. Insufficient body. A workmanlike effort that comes off as unfinished or insufficiently conditioned due to all the apple/pear esters trumping the malts on the palate. Decided devoid of all the "west coast character" promised on the label and instead tastes like a "small beer" from across the Atlantic. Granville Island is a lot like Big Rock here in Alberta ... They rarely produce terrible offerings but they do not typically blow anyone's mind either. There's probably a certain comfort in just barely clearing the mediocrity bar.

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Photo of DenisKolkin
3.32/5  rDev +5.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3.25 | taste: 3.25 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.25

473 ml can from LCBO purchased for $2.85 CDN. Served cold into a pint glass.

Appearance - Clear, copper/red color, 2.5 fingers of creamy white head with big time retention. Tons of bubbles present as well. Prominent lacing streaks on the glass.

Smell - Bready, with light grassy and grainy aromas mixed in as well. Everything is mild and subdues. Also detected the faintest whiff of fall fruits such as apple and pear.

Taste - Mild, light sprinkling of aforementioned apple and pear as well as grains. Low hop presence and malts aren't really noticeable either. A little bit of sweetness up front and a very mild and understated aftertaste.

Mouthfeel - High carbonation makes it a bit gassy, but feel and flavor as well as thick feel for 5% ABV. Not watery and not chewy or thick but good amount of fullness, i.e. you know you're drinking a beer with some substance.

Overall - Not a bad beer, definitely drinkable and enjoyable would not turn it down if offered, however for the price better beers in the style are usually available. Overall a little better than expected and good drinkability.

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English Bay Pale Ale from Granville Island Brewery
3.16 out of 5 based on 274 ratings.
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