Jun 30, 2015

Firestone Walker Pale 31

I was on a bit of a Firestone Walker kick the past couple of reviews. Their Easy Jack was a tasty, sessional, if lighter than necessary IPA. Pale 31 — an awarding winning beer I just crossed paths with this year even though it’s been around since 2003 — is just as tasty and fuller on the palate.

Crafted in homage of their home state, California, Pale 31 is an approachable beer (4.9% ABV and 38 IBU) that has plenty of floral hop character and a welcome bit of bready malt to balance out the experience. It’s not a big, piney pale ale as some of its neighbors, but it still has plenty of that West Coast style to keep things interesting and lively.


The beer pours golden amber in color with a dense cap of white foam.

Firestone Walker Pale 31 photo


Big floral hops with grapefruit, herbal notes, pine, soft bread and a hint of malty toffee. The beer smells great.


A wonderful blend of floral and herbal hop notes accompany soft pine and luscious fruits (melon, grapefruit). It’s fairly mellow in terms of hop bite and easy drinking. There’s good balance with the hop flavors mingling smoothly with bready malt, hints of honey and a lightly drying finish.


I can see why this beer has won a few awards in its time. Firestone Walker Pale 31 is delightfully smooth with great hop character and a welcoming amount of lightly sweet malt. I’m just surprised that I’m finally crossing paths with it only recently. It will certainly be making future appearances in the beer fridge.

Rating: 3.75/5