Great Lakes Devil's Pale Ale | Great Lakes Brewery

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Great Lakes Devil's Pale AleGreat Lakes Devil's Pale Ale

Brewed by:
Great Lakes Brewery
Ontario, Canada

Style: English Pale Ale

Alcohol by volume (ABV): 6.60%

Availability: Year-round

Notes / Commercial Description:
Released in the fall of 2006, this was our first seasonal ale. However, the incredible response prompted us to make it available all year long on draught and in 473 ml cans. Brewed with 6 select malts and 4 premium hops, it has a rich mahogany colour, reminiscent of early English pale ales. The wonderful hoppy aroma is revealed even before your first sip, followed by a hearty malty body, and culminating with a pronounced bitterness. Prepare yourself for a devilishly good timeā€¦

Added by Viggo on 08-12-2006

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Reviews: 120 | Ratings: 194
Photo of jackorain
2.47/5  rDev -33.4%
look: 4 | smell: 2 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 2.5

Had this on tap on a recent trip to Toronto. Let's start with this:

American Pale Ale my ass!

A-Copper, clear, nice white head fell to a nice thin bu consistent coat and laft a little bit of lace. Okay so far, lloks like an APA.

S-Here where everything falls apart. All there is a lttle carmel malt and a hint of floral hops. Bear in mind though that thr nose is very very subdued.

T-Carmel malt, a little biscuit malt. The floral hop from the nose is not presnet. There is a bit of funk on the finish. very odd, Maybe this is the Canadain interpretation of the APA, but it ain't mine.

M-Light body, quite fizzy

D- not really.

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Photo of paxkey
2.78/5  rDev -25.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

666 kilograms of malt
6.66 kilograms of hops
66.6 minutes of boiling
6% abv
6.6.06 date of conception.

i can smell the beer as soon as i crack the can.

poured in a Maredsous chalice. appears a nice reddish hue in the glass with a generous tan head. i see no haze in the glass and the head is hanging around a bit. decent lacing.
gorgeous head with a piney grapefruit aroma wafting off.

some sourness in the nose. a combination of cigar, vinegar and grapejuice. interesting but a little all over the place. a swirl of the glass brings a fresh wave of strong hops. i can sense alot of nice bitterness, but the malt profile underneath is still coming off a bit weird. gonna let it decant a bit.

after 2 minutes the head is reduced to a thin film. the malt aroma subdued but present, and no sign of hops, some more swirling produces more malt and almost no hops. disappointing so far.

hop bitterness is present with a bit of a greasy mouthfeel. the midpalate is all about the uneasy malt and the finish is lingering and mostly just bitter.
this beer tries to balance malt and hops and the two could not contrast more making it less of a balance and more of a fail.

not godawaful, but certainly passable.

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Photo of pwoods
2.86/5  rDev -22.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Thanks to grub for this extra at DLD.

16oz. can poured into a pint. No dating.

A: Very deep amber pour, nearly opaque. 1 finger worth of lightly tinted head forms and holds nicely. Some lacing here and there.

S: Mostly malts and they're odd. Very sweet and they remind me of an aged English Barleywine, though not nearly as potent or alcoholic. Some toffee notes as well as some defined butterscotch.

T/M: Butterscotch is much more pronounced in the taste. Bittersweet and rich. Hops are completely gone. More of toffee notes but with an added medicinal or metallic taste. Body is medium and carbonation has survived.

D: Not a terrible brew but not something that I'd be interested in again. Glad I got the opportunity to try it, though. Thanks, Russ!

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Photo of drinkininthewood
2.93/5  rDev -21%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 2.5

Served from a pretty cool looking 473ml tall can into a rhinelander glass. Big 666 road sign on the front of the can looks kinda bad ass.

A- is a murky brown with an off-white head that settles down a 1/4 inch thick layer of foam lacing all the way till the end of the glass.

S- some malts, but generally of dark fruit.

T- fairly sweet tasting malts with tonnes of dark fruit flavors(plums, raisins). Hops are not has dominant as the fruity character but lend a subtle bitterness in the end.

M- full bodied, very smooth, syrupy in some ways, moderate carbonation.

D- decent drinkability

Overall I wasn't expecting it to be so fruity but its good. I think its only available in the fall.

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Photo of markaberrant
2.95/5  rDev -20.5%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2 | overall: 2.5

A - dark red, clear, dense tan head. Leaves a sheet of lace down the glass.

S - Got a quick hit of DMS when opening the can. Bready, caramel malt, fruity English esters, hops are almost undetectable.

T - hop flavour cuts through the malt sweetness, but not in a good way. Hop flavour is best described as metallic. Really dry biscuit finish (I'm guessing a touch of roasted malt was used).

M - med body and low carbonation is good for the style. Finish is very dry and astringent, like cardboard. Alcohol warmth is excessive for a 6% beer.

D - There are some flaws in this brew, the smell is the only part I'm enjoying, but it smells nothing like a Pale Ale.

Smells and looks like an English Strong Ale, but both are totally out of whack for something marketed as a Pale Ale. Flaws detract from enjoying the brew. I'd give the appearance and smell an extra 1/2 point each if this wasn't called a Pale Ale, because it is the furthest thing from it, English or American. I had to dump the last half of this down the sink.

Thanks to Mattt for the can!

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Photo of Phyl21ca
3/5  rDev -19.1%
look: 3 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Can: Poured a deep dark brown color ale with a big foamy head with good retention and some nice lacing. Aroma of dry malt with some medium notes of caramel malt. Taste is also dominated by some medium caramel malt with a slightly bitter ending. Hops presence was more subdued then what I had expected with some medium carbonation. Interesting but not necessarily something I would go back to very often.

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Photo of joefinnigan15
3.03/5  rDev -18.3%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Appearance: Quite dark, one finger head

Smell: HOPS! (very strong, overwhelming)

Taste/feel: if you like hops, this one's for you. Strong bitter aftertaste, but smooth before that

Overall: I'm not a hops fan, so as far as the style i'd say it works. The pale ale style is actually starting to grow on me though

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Photo of shamus
3.07/5  rDev -17.3%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Anything called the Devil's Pale Ale really ought to be scary bold to drink. even if it had tasted like fermented shoes hopped with rotten eggs it would have made more sense than this very ordinary beer. No head. Chalky gritty aftertaste. An interesting floral smell but no flava. Boo on you devil. You have no taste. I guess that's why the call your abode Hell. Poor Devil.

Addendum: the devil is a wily creature and after finishing this brew I'm much more enchanted by it's flava. it sneaks up on me to the point at which i would say it is not at all bad. i'll let my original rating stand however since i am clearly under satanic influence right now.

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Photo of largadeer
3.09/5  rDev -16.7%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pint sized can received from dyan in our latest trade, just in time for review number 666. Fucking metal. Consumed while listening to the new Miley Cyrus album, the most unholy music I could find.

Appearance: Dirty crimson, like bloodied water. The head is enormous and long-lasting, leaving gobs of lace all over the glass.

Smell: Smells extremely metallic - appropriate enough I guess. There's fruity sweetness beneath the overbearing mineral-like quality.

Taste & mouthfeel: A bit watery up front. Light malty sweetness with fruity overtones. Chocolatey. Mineral/metallic flavors detract quite a bit, and the finish is overhopped. Not such a great beer, but the gimmick is pretty fun.

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Photo of spinrsx
3.11/5  rDev -16.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

500ml can poured into a pint glass

Appearance - dark amber/red. Large foamy/fizzy beige head that hangs around for a while. Great lacing. Average carbonation.

Smell - Hops, citrus notes, roasted malts and nuts

Taste & Mouth - hops up front, lots of carbonation on the tongue, bitter finish - slightly sour even. Slightly metallic.

Drink - A good beer that is worth a try. Something doesn't seem quite right though, and I can't put my finger on it. Seems like it's missing something, or maybe has too much of something

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Photo of TheHammer
3.13/5  rDev -15.6%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 2.5 | overall: 3

Appearance - Got this one courtesy of ludachris, thanks man. Came in a black can with three sixes on it and a whole bunch of 666 associations that have to do with the brewing of the beer. Anyways, the beer itself pours with a good thumb of head, and modesty retains and laces quite well. The beer itself is a dark brownish orange, that seems a bit cloudy to me.

Smell - This beer took a while to warm up for the smell to kick in, but when it did a lot of malt character with some fruity characteristics. I think I'm catching a bit of almond as well, but it did take some time to happen.

Taste - Definite mineral taste, throughout the experience which I'm not a fan of. Starts with a well balanced bitter and sweet malt taste, then shifts to a somewhat watered down fruit flavor and then ends with a solid kick of drier hops, which hits a bit too harshly and lingers a bit too long.

Mouthfeel - As I said, the bitterness at the end of the beer lingers for quite some time. The carbonation is exceptional, but the metallic and dry taste also leave something to be desired.

Drinkability - Well, this beer does refresh and doesn't cause any stomach issues. However, I wouldn't say it goes down that smoothly as that kick at the end really hamstrings it.

Final Thoughts - An interesting brew, although I don't think it's quite as good as it seems to have been made out to be. I suppose the brew is true to it's namesake. Like the devil, at first it starts tempting and pleasant, but once you sign on that dotted line and commit to a drink, you end up suffering at the very end. Good, not great, worth one try not much more.

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Photo of hopdog
3.15/5  rDev -15.1%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

473ml can acquired in trade with Samm - thanks!

Poured a deep orangish color that had kind of a reddish tint and a larger sized off white head. Slightlly hazy too. Aromas of toasted malts with lighter caramel and citrus. Tastes of the same overall toastiness with lighter caramel. Some lacing left on the glass.

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Photo of cyrenaica
3.19/5  rDev -14%
look: 5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

"473ml can
6.0% ABV

I first tried this on December 30, 2007 after purchasing from my local LCBO outlet. First, allow me to write what is on the side of the can

666 kilograms of malt
6.66 kilograms of hops
66.6 minutes of boiling
6% alc/vol
6.6.06 Date of Conception

This beer poured a translucent dark red, it was beautiful. The head was white, very thin, and disappeared quite quickly. The aroma was sweet malt, a little hops, and a faint touch of licorice. The mouthfeel is medium-bodied, salightly creamy, and mildly carbonated. The flavour is primarily malts, with a little bit of sourness. There was no detectable hop presence in the flavour.

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Photo of brushtachio
3.2/5  rDev -13.7%
look: 4 | smell: 4 | taste: 2.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Poured from a 473 ml can. Hold on! The can says pale ale but this stuff is a copper color. Perhaps everything is a little darker in hell. Head is nice (the devil in me says, "why yes, it is quite nice") and fluffy like a mousse and stays around sacrificing bits of itself along the sides on my glass as I drink, perhaps as a reminder that the Teller of Lies is always among us. Ok taking it a bit too far, I know.

Smell is floral hops, caramel. Subtle but appropriate and quite nice.

The taste doesn't build on the smell. Just repeats it with slightly different emphasis. What first promises to be a balancing maltiness is crushed by some brutal bitterness. As my palate adjusts to the bitterness, a distinct diacetyl butteriness emerges and asserts itself more and more. Second half was much less enjoyable than the first.

Medium bodied. Some slight hop oiliness.

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Photo of NV9
3.25/5  rDev -12.4%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 3.5

Poured from a can into a pint glass.

Much darker than I expected from a pale ale, almost can't see through it, goood finger and a half head that doesn't go to fast and leaves nice lacing.

Smells spicy, brown sugar, almost molasses, strong hops as well.

Lots of hops in the taste, as you'd expect from the smell and composition of the beer. Definite cocoa taste as well.

Heavy carbonaton, a bit bitter aftertaste, malts afterward as well.

I was expecting a bit more from this beer to be honest, seems to be hyped a lot and it's good but not a standout, in my opinion.

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Photo of seand
3.26/5  rDev -12.1%
look: 4.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

Poured into a pint glass.

A: Pours a clear brown amber, with a few fingers of medium tan head. Retention is quite good, lacing is just decent.

S: Malty with some caramel, hops in the background.

T: Sweet up front, with a big hop bitterness following quickly. Quite bitter. Not my favorite hop flavor really, but done pretty well.

M: Pretty smooth, medium carbonation, a little bit of astringency and a lot of bitterness on the aftertaste.

D: Not too hard to drink, but the big bitterness gets in the way a little bit.

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Photo of Seanstoppable
3.28/5  rDev -11.6%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

I sampled this at a beer festival early this year and remember it standing out, mostly due to how strong it was. Recently, I received a can of it from some friends in Ontario and finally decided to pop it open.

There is nothing pale about this pale ale. Pours a dark mahogany with plenty of off-white head. Head is thick and very slow to evaporate. Tons of lacing left on the glass.

Muted malty scent.

Taste is strong, as I recall, and as labeled on the can itself. Sort of mellows out as you continue to drink. Some rawness is still there, but you also get your caramel malts, some earthiness, a lightly roasted feel, as well as a bit of bitterness at the end.

I don't know if it is because Devil's, but this hit me slightly faster than I expected it to. I could probably put back two or three of these, but after that I would definitely be done.

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Photo of DefenCorps
3.33/5  rDev -10.2%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

16oz can received from Viggo in the Heavy Metal BIF. Thanks Eric! Into my Sam Smith nonic

A: Pours darker than any APA I've seen, a crystal clear crimson with a gorgeous, long lasting dirty white colored head with solid retention and a ton of lacework. Not much visible carbonation

S: On the nose lots of sweet malts with a citrus hop aroma that leans towards the sweeter side of things. Tons of malt in here, there's caramel, figs and a hint of wood. A little too syrupy for my liking. OTOH, as an amber, this is quite nice

T: On the palate, this beer starts off with a some citrus before a good bit of caramel malt, candied fruit and other malt flavors kicked in. Drying on the finish with a mildly bitter finish

M: Rather light and watery but solid carbonation and a nice finish

D: Paired with some Twilight-era Gorgoroth, this beer goes down perfectly. Now, if I only found a way to keep the burning witch in my closet quiet, I'd be able to enjoy this more

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Photo of MattyV
3.35/5  rDev -9.7%
look: 3.5 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

Pours a deep reddish-brown colour with a creamy beige head.
Herbal, spicy hops and caramel malt in the nose.
The taste is much more malty than expected with a nice toasted/lightly roasted character with a slight caramel sweetness and earthiness from the hops that eases into a spicy bitter finish.
Medium body and carbonation, feels slightly creamy going down.

Not a bad beer, but not a flavour profile that I'd regularly seek out. It just seems overly malty at first and then finishes with a raw, harsh bitterness that hurts its drinkability.

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Photo of beachbum1975
3.36/5  rDev -9.4%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 4 | overall: 3

Shared this one with DrewOSU on the back porch. Thanks go out to mjohnston for this in-person EXTRA from DLD '09.

Pours a surprisingly dark mahogany with a nice, thick off white head. Maybe instead of mahogany, I should say blood red.

Smells of orange, maybe light butter and light sweet, caramel malts. The nose is pretty light overall.

Malts are prominent on this one. I get traces of floral hops... High, prickly carbonation and this one finishes lightly bitter.

Nice, sessionable pale ale with no frills , despite the name.

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Photo of allergictomacros
3.37/5  rDev -9.2%
look: 3 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3

A - Hmm. Pale ale eh? This one's more than a shade darker than pale with a sizable but loose cream colored head that drops quickly.

S - Malty and fruity for the most part, some apple and funk as well when I get my nose right into it.

T - Toasty. Has a strong roasted character with that toasty astringency. Somewhat tart up front as well, with lots of fruitiness. Definitely malt-dominated, this one. Finish is bitter, but without much in the way of hop flavour or aroma.

M - Heavy and slightly syrupy.

D - I dunno. As a rich, heavy brew it's not bad, but I would get tired of it very quickly. It gives an impression of being very heavy and blunt-instrument.

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Photo of DrJay
3.38/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3 | feel: 3 | overall: 4

Dark and clear, sort of a reddish copper colour with a solid cap of fine beige bubbles. Good head retention, some lacing. The aroma leaned heavily on malt, some caramel, bread, with some citrus hop character. Bitterness hovered between mild up front and being a little more forward towards the finish. Lots of sweet malts throughout, some fruitiness, plus a little alcohol at the end. Citrus hop flavour was fleeting. Texture was alright, light and getting close to watery, but the carbonation held things together. A little dry. Pretty tasty overall.

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Photo of sstackho
3.38/5  rDev -8.9%
look: 4 | smell: 3.5 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3 | overall: 3

500mL can purchased from LCBO in Toronto. (The can is 6.0% alcohol - a bit different from the initial 6.6% alc draft release.) Pours a dark brown - quite unlike a normal pale ale. Aroma isn't too strong, but somewhat malty. Flavour is mainly malt. Some hops - but not a lot - are there for some balance. I wouldn't call this a pale ale by any stretch. It's a decent beer, but closer to a brown ale in style. This isn't what I was trying to buy, so I'm disappointed.

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Photo of Jeffo
3.41/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Got this one at the LCBO this past summer.

From a can into a snifter

APPEARANCE: Pours a one finger, medium looking, off-white head with good retention. Bistre brown in color with medium carbonation evident. Very dark for a pale ale. Head fades to a full wisp and clings to the sides of the glass. A splotchy half-wisp remains leaving some decent lacing to the glass. Interestingly dark and nice looking.

SMELL: Caramel, toffee with pine and floral hops. Light melon too, with some dark bread in there for good measure.

TASTE: Caramel and bready malts, as well as some toasted biscuit notes up front. Caramel and floral flavors at the swallow, with a bold and lingering finish of sweet caramel, a good dose of hop bitterness with some floral and pine lingering on the palate.

PALATE: Medium body and medium levels of carbonation. Creamy on the palate, goes down smooth and finishes quite dry. Bitterness lingers.

OVERALL: This was pretty good, though the pale ale label is a little misleading. I guess it's darker because it's evil like the Devil. Pretty scary stuff, and I like scary stuff. Anyways, can't fault it on flavor and overall quality though, so this is one I'd gladly drink on a regular basis if I lived at home. Good stuff guys. Recommended.

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Photo of Med
3.41/5  rDev -8.1%
look: 4 | smell: 3 | taste: 3.5 | feel: 3.5 | overall: 3.5

Thanks to grub for this one.

Pours a clear dark copper with a frothy white head into my Duvel glass. The head recedes to a this white coating but the lacing sticks nicely and gives a defined line after every sip. Smell is faint while cold, but as the glass warms some raisins and bread crust come through with a little molassas pulling it together. Tastes sweet with hints of prune and green apple with a nice bitterness at the finish. Mouthfeel is medium and the carbonation mild with nice tiny bubbles. All in all a nice little beer and joins that short (but growing) list of good craft beer in a can.

Oh and the name's pretty cool, too. :)

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Great Lakes Devil's Pale Ale from Great Lakes Brewery
3.71 out of 5 based on 194 ratings.
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