About English Style Pale Ale

About English Style Pale Ale
English-style pale ales are pale gold to amber in color and range in alcohol from 4-6%. These beers are characterized by the flavors and aromas of nutty and biscuity English malts, floral and earthy English hops and the notes of fruitiness and faint butterscotch of English yeast. Water also plays a key role in the overall character of these beers. Great examples of this style are brewed with harder water resembling that of Burton-Upon-Trent, lending these beers an impression of dryness in the finish and rounded hop bitterness.

Pale ales originated in England over 300 years ago with the advent of new technology making pale barely malt a possibility. In the 19th century, ales that were pale in color were often referred to as pale ale or bitter interchangeably. Today, there is a distinction between these styles, albeit a very fine distinction with some arguing that “bitter” refers to the style dispensed as draft and “pale ale” to the style when bottled. Noteworthy examples of this style include: Fuller’s London Pride Pale Ale, Sam Smith’s Organic Pale Ale and Marston’s Pedigree English Pale Ale.

Top Picks for English Style Pale Ale

Vancouver Island Brewing Pipers Pale Ale
90 points
Minutely hazy light medium amber color. Aromas of fresh brioche, fresh thyme, warm butter, and toffee candies with a round, crisp, spritzy, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a polished, medium-length tea biscuits, cucumber skins, fresh grated ginger, and honey finish. A spot on American take on the style that nimbly combines sessionability with astringency.
Deschutes Brewery Mirror Pond Pale Ale
90 points
Minutely hazy amber color. Aromas of toast with kiwi-lemon curd, spiced butter roasted corn, dried fruits and ginger, and nut oil with a supple, crisp, effervescent, dry-yet-fruity medium body and an effortless, delightful, medium-long radicchio, candied lemon peel, and nutskin finish. A light and tropical English-Style Pale Ale that doesn’t skimp on lush aromatic hops.
Vancouver Island Brewing Pipers Pale Ale
86 points
Minutely hazy deep amber color. Herbal aromas and flavors of hard bread sticks and pretzels, grilled corn with salted butter, and butter pecan ice cream with a supple, racy, fizzy, dryish medium body and a tingling, brisk finish revealing shades of bitter greens, charred nuts, and baking chocolate finish. A fine English Style Pale Ale with a nice dry finish.
Old Speckled Hen English Style Fine Ale
85 points
Minutely hazy copper color. Aromas and flavors of bit of honey candy, frosted pineapple and banana cakes, buttered strawberry biscuit with honey, and dry eraser marker with a silky, soft, finely carbonated, dry-yet-fruity light-to-medium body and a polished, interesting, medium-long finish with accents of lettuces, praline, and cream finish. An English style pale ale with great fine texture and superb drinkability.
Wild Leap Brew Co. Local Gold Blonde Ale
80 points
Minutely hazy pale light color. Aromas of lemonheads candy, raw sage, lime zest, and veggies with a soft, crisp, effervescent, fruity light-to-medium body and a smooth, brief lemon bar, candied grapefruit, kale, and slightly tinny finish. A thirst-quenching pale ale with refreshing citrus flavors.