Apr 14, 2010

Karl Strauss Pintail Pale Ale

Label:Karl Strauss Pintail Pale

Note: this is a review of a promotional sample I received from the brewery.

Any time I get a press release from San Diego’s Karl Strauss Brewing, I know it will be followed shortly by a bottle of something quite tasty. Just about everything I have gotten from them has been outstanding. Their latest seasonal, Pintail Pale Ale is no exception.

Brewed with Cascade and Newport hops, the beer is then dry hopped with Amarillo hops for a fragrant aroma. I found it to be one of the hoppier tasting pales I’ve had in recent months.


Pouring a golden amber in color, the beer sits in the glass nicely with a decent sized off-white head that faded to a good, sticky lacing.


Pintail has a lovely aroma. Grapefruits and citrus dominate the nose with a big, yet well rounded hoppiness as a slight maltiness lingers behind. It certainly smells hoppy, but doesn’t present itself as a tongue-busting, bitter beer.


While the nose was quite aromatic, it mislead my brain into thinking my mouth was safe from a solid hop punch. The beer isn’t overly bitter or biting, but it does have an astringent tartness and crispness that will leave you wanting another sip. The hops carry a light pine resinous along with the larger grapefruit and citrus notes. The crisp brew is clean on the palate with a semi-dry, lingering finish.


It’s one of the more fragrant and hoppier tasting pale ales I’ve recently had, but it has a nice balance with the malt backbone. I’d almost venture to call this more of an IPA as it smacks of a tart hoppiness that I would expect from that style. That all said, I really enjoyed this beer. The aromatic nose and biting nature of the hop presence, along with a 5.3% ABV, made this beer quire drinkable and refreshing.

Rating: 3.5/5

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