Mt. Tam Pale Ale from California’s Marin Brewing Company comes to The Brew Club as a gift from fellow ‘Brew Clubber’ Melissa! While Melissa doesn’t write beer reviews for the site, she’s hooked me up with some very good beers that she’s enjoyed in the past so I know she’s got good taste in beer! Maybe with some encouragement from the Peanut Gallery 😉 she’ll give beer reviewing a try!
Marin Brewing Company is in Larkspur, CA, and they produce this 5.5% ABV American Pale Ale. I like to read the labels on any new beer I try, and something I don’t recall seeing too often is beer that is not pasteurized. I’m not sure if this is an unusual feature in a beer, or if I’m just not reading the labels carefully enough! There’s also a big red warning on the label – LIVE ALE! – KEEP REFRIGERATED! Which I dutifully did. I don’t want to be responsible for killing live ale!
This Pale Ale looked fairly common in my glass as American Pale Ales go. It was light amber in color, and while there were no particles floating around in the beer, it wasn’t quite clear either.
The smell was at first hoppy as might be expected, but it wasn’t a smack-in-the-face kind of hop aroma. Let’s say moderate citrusy hops were what comes mostly to the nose.
The head is a nice creamy color, and when it fizzles out it leaves that characteristic frothy residue that hoppy beers tend to leave on the surface of the beer.
So far, so good as we get to the tasting bit!
The Mt. Tam Pale Ale was really a nice surprise to me! Not a huge fan of overly hopped beers, this American Pale Ale was just right I think. Similar to the scent, the most identifiable flavor was citrusy hops. Really, it was almost like a grapefruit was squeezed into this beer! While I’ve had American Pale Ales before, I’d never had a beer with this particular flavor profile.
Mt. Tam Pale Ale has a decent body and a very smooth and creamy texture that I really liked as well. It wasn’t highly carbonated either, and again, at 5.5% ABV, I could see putting a few of these away during the warmer months of summer!
See, I’m always hesitant to try hoppier beers, but I’m finding that American Pale Ales like this Mt. Tom is a good way to ease into the hop beer world! It isn’t over the top like I find many IPAs to be. This is an enjoyable beer, and quite a bit different from what I’m used to having. I’m glad I tried it – Thanks Melissa!
Have you tried the Mt. Tam Pale Ale? If not, what’s your favorite American Pale ale? After this, I think I may be warming up to the style a bit!