As interest in craft beer continues to grow, throngs of thirsty craft converts continue to fall in love with IPA. Looking to get your hop fix without the boozy heft of an IPA? Brewers responded by creating the Session IPA; but what about the good old American pale ale? Perhaps thats just it, they seem too old fashioned. We contest that a well-crafted American pale ale is a timeless classic that deserves more love. Here are a few must try examples of the beer style that birthed the American craft beer revolution.
Sierra Nevada Pale Ale
This is it. THE American pale ale, a beer that has inspired countless aspiring brewers since its release in 1980. Brewed with what was at the time a new American hop called Cascade, some of its earliest critics told founder Ken Grossman it was undrinkably bitter. Lucky for us, Ken dared to challenge convention and continued to brew this wonderfully piney and citrusy pale ale.
Oskar Blues Dale's Pale Ale
Craft beer in a can? While seemingly commonplace now, not long ago most craft breweries were afraid to adopt a packaging format so closely associated with cheaper macro lagers. Oskar Blues knew that cans would keep their massively hoppy pale ale fresher longer, protecting it from both oxidation and light. Over a decade has passed since they filled their first can of Dales and its as resiny and citrusy as ever.
Deschutes Mirror Pond
Many early examples of American pale ale were inspired by classic pale ales from across the pond. Sporting a big fruity English ale yeast, Deschutes Mirror Pond combines both new and old world brewing traditions into one deliciously smooth and balanced brew. Like Sierra Nevada, this pale showcases Cascade hops in all their glory, providing a lovely citrusy finish.
Brickstone American Pale Ale
In 2012 Brickstone American Pale Ale took home gold at the Great American Beer Festival in Denver Colorado. The pale ale that won bronze? None other than Three Floyds Zombie Dust, thus a nickname was born. This juicy pale ale is generously hopped with Amarillo, Centennial and Citra hops. Loaded with amazingly bright fruity hop aromas, this clean and crisp ale this is proof positive that a well-made pale can be an incredible thing.
Half Acre Daisy Cutter
You cant mention the Chicago beer scene without talking about Half Acre Daisy Cutter. This tall shiny can is an easily identifiable staple found in bars, restaurants and backyards alike. Chock-full of citrusy and grassy hops, it's light enough in body to keep it highly drinkable.
Check out the Beer Buzz
for updates on new beer, tastings, sales and more!