8-Bit Pale Ale by Tallgrass Brewing

15129098_533612460168194_8538679456118647198_oRating: 4.5/5

8-Bit Pale Ale by Tallgrass Brewing is a 5.2% ABV American Pale Ale brewed.

COMMERCIAL DESCRIPTION
Just like those classic video games we all grew up with, 8-Bit Pale Ale is spectacularly simple at first glance yet remarkably fun and complex when you get into it. Our Hop Rocket infuses the character of Australian Grown Galaxy Hops into an American Pale Ale, giving a unique tropical, almost melon aroma in a classic American style.

ABV: 5.2%
IBU: 40
Malts: 2 Row, Victory, Vienna & Munich
Hops: Magnum, Centennial, Cascade & Galaxy

==Introduction==

15025381_533612470168193_4433387881888953066_o
The last time I had tried 8-bit Pale Ale was when I visited my friend Steve in Iowa. Before then, it had been sometime in 2012. Today, I was given a chance to bring this one once again to the website thanks to my friend Aaron Mendiola of BeerMetalDude.com. Seeing that it has been years since I last brought this one to the site, I want to take the approach using the tasting experience I have acquired over the years and well, try to analyze it further. This beer is inspired by my youth. The days of Nintendo and video games which to this day I still appreciate. They had released an awesome commercial for this beer where it shows a rooster blowing on the cartridge. I can’t seem to find it anymore as the brewery put it to private but it was definitely that one that made me want to get the beer back in 2012. Still, thanks to my friend Aaron, The old school is back for a review.

Aromas:
Tropical fruit mango hints, honey dew melon, passion fruit, pilsner grain, stone fruit peach, lemon peel, Grassy, Piney, grapefruit hint, floral and citrusy hops.

Flavors:
Grassy, Piney, grapefruit hint, floral and citrusy hops, Cane sugar, tropical fruit honey dew melon, cantaloupe, mango, pineapple, dragon fruit, passion fruit, vanilla, caramel, biscuit bread, stone fruit, peach, apricot, lemon peel, lemon candy, tangerine gummies, pilsner grain and mild peppery spice.

Aftertaste:
Finishing slightly dry with citrus. Grassy and floral hops, tropical fruits, stone fruits, vanilla hints and cane sugar. No alcohol on the taste, Pale Golden light body, crisp, clean, refreshing and smooth mouthfeel along with very easy drinkability.

Overall:
A very delicious beer. No matter what, from the first time I tried to now, this one continues to be awesomely refreshing. Pale ales don’t seem to be as popular as they were years ago possibly due to popularity of IPAs and Double IPAs. A well-made pale ale like this one definitely can compete even with those in my opinion. It is definitely refreshing and possibly a good gateway to craft beer. It’s also classic 8-bit era inspired. So yes, I would definitely recommend this one.

15129069_533612473501526_6286740004966800674_o
Anime Corner:
Samus Aran from Metroid and Chun-li from Street Fighter in Tron/ Shadow Lady form have been used when I first made the review of this brew. What I was going for back then is in the sense of characters in an 8-bit realm could be represented by the bits of 0’s and 1’s essentially leading into a Tron like cyberspace. The whole theme of the beer is videogames so both are video game characters.

Sources:
http://img09.deviantart.net/ce9e/i/2009/113/6/b/zero_suit_poster_by_twilit_arawen.jpg
http://n2.hk/d/attachments/day_110404/20110404_b9a4d7a3172d8bab1936GMpGVAhAgL8R.jpg
http://img12.deviantart.net/82ab/i/2014/284/1/d/time_to_collect_that_bounty_by_g_wolf101-d82h55e.png

 

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Tropical Day Dream Pale Ale by Avila Ales

11952859_10102810038562160_4813084693664417412_oRating: 4.25/5

Tropical Day Dream Pale Ale by Avila Ales is a 5% ABV American Pale Ale brewed with Citra Hops

==Introduction==
Partial base wort was brewed using brewing equipment at Monkish for the “Monster Home brew Event” back in June 2015. The idea was to create a base pale wort using the equipment at Monkish brewing. Each person would get 5 gallons (or 10 or more depending on how much you would pay) from this concoction you would take it home add to the wort to change the style completely to more than 10 different styles of beer. My friend Richard Avila and I went to Monkish on that day to buy 10 gallons of wort each. This is the first custom batch he made using citra hops. Thanks to my friend Richard for sharing this one with me and as a tribute, I was able to bring this beer over to the website.

Aromas:
Grapefruit, lemon juice, lemon peel, passion fruit, tart apples, Stone fruit hints like peach, tropical fruit like mango, peppercorn and green tea.

Flavors:
Lots of grapefruit, citrus, lemon peel, rich passion fruit, guava, prickly pear, grassy hops, floral hops, mango, peppercorn, honey dew melon, tart apples, stone fruit peach hints, green tea, herbal notes, grape hints, papaya, pineapple and biscuit bread.

Aftertaste:
Leaving a dry finish in the taste with some residual tropical fruit notes. No alcohol in the taste, Hazy yellow medium body, crisp, clean, refreshing mouthfeel and easy to drink.

Overall:
A very good pale ale. While there maybe some off flavoring due to the original wort being from Monkish, I think the control in the brewing and addition of my friend’s own ingredients to the beer made it a great style. Definitely rich in the tropical aspects including the rich grapefruit and tropical fruit. The only off flavors maybe the bit of lemony tartness or the green tea or tart apple hints but overall making it a pretty wonderful experience overall for being a pale ale. It definitely surpasses the first Pale Ale I made. I think my friend definitely has a great amount of experience to get next batch the way he likes as he will have more control of the wort.

Anime Corner:
Original artwork by Yuuza of DeviantArt was used in this pairing as I wanted to pair the flavors of the beer with the name. The colors representing the vast majority of tropical fruit goodness but alse the aspect of day dreaming which the mind uses to create figments of the imagination. This beer is like a dream in the sense that it tastes so rich and juicy like tropical fruits even for such a low ABV. Even in the artwork, you can see how the day dreams come to life as they are created upon the stroke of the pain brush the mind wields.

Sources:
http://orig12.deviantart.net/be4b/f/2014/023/e/1/painting_the_world_by_yuuza-d64n3cv.jpg

Rosabi by Dogfish Head brewing

1620651_10102245349308950_3380873172692238478_nRating: 4.5/5

Rosabi by Dogfish Head brewing is an 8% ABV Imperial American Pale Ale brewed with Wasabi.

Label:
The vivid rose hue of this imperial Pale Ale comes from a combination of Munich and Caramel malts and a touch of red rice from Louisiana, birthplace of musician and collaborator Julianna Barwick. Citrusy Simcoe and Centennial feed Julianna’s love of hops, and the star of the show is her go-to ingredient: wasabi. What’s hoppy? … Wasabi. The Japanese root adds bittering and herbal notes similar to hops, with its subtle heat creeping in after the kick of carbonation. It’s expansive from start to finish. So go ahead, take a sip, toss your head back, and howl at the red Rosabi moon.

==Introduction==

Now this is a Dogfish Head beer that really intrigued me. After seeing this one at Luekensliquor.com, and the fact that I am a Sushi and Wasabi fanatic, It didn’t take me long to just go on ahead and get this beer. The only unfortunate part is, they only allow you to purchase 1 bottle from the site. This was devastating since I know some good friends who would probably enjoy this beer. I really hope they release this one to all states that sell Dogfish Head. Not sure if this is a gimmick or not but I have never tried a Wasabi beer and this is definitely a great way to explore the vast world of the Lost treasure of beer experience. Cheers!

Aromas:
Rich caramel malt forward, wasabi notes, citrus and grapefruit hops, mango, grapes, hazelnut, rye bread, butterscotch, toffee, dragon fruit, brown sugar, cherries, chocolate hints, coriander spice, toffee, peanut brittle, hibiscus flowers, pineapple and rice cakes.

Flavors:
Subtle but not burning green Wasabi, citrus and grapefruit hops, caramel, grapes, hazelnut, rye bread, peanut brittle, toffee, oranges, mango, peaches, pineapple, chocolate notes, dragon fruit, coriander spice, mild wasabi spice as the beer warms up, apples, brown sugar, rice, cherries, hibiscus flowers, biscuit bread, toasted coconut and vanilla.

Aftertaste:
Lots of Caramel, citrus and grapefruit hops, wasabi notes in the backbone, sweet toffee rye, peanut brittle, hazelnut and mainly malty finish. No alcohol in the taste, crimson ruby rose medium body, moderate drinkability with a silky mouthfeel.

Overall:
Drinking more like an Amber Ale, this beer is really very good. There is no heat but if you know the subtle taste of wasabi, it is there but mild enough to be very enjoyable. It starts with the Wasabi flavor and then moves into a world of sweetness and hoppy goodness. There seems to be more sweetness than hoppy though which could be attributed to the malty sweetness cutting the Wasabi extreme heat. I can only hope that this beer and Sushi would be the ultimate combination which makes me want to have another bottle. I can only recommend this one if you would like a more maltier Pale Ale. There isn’t nothing wrong with that and I generally enjoy sweeter beers more, but I love me some super bitter hops too. So there you have it, Wasabi with some hop bitterness and drinks more like an Amber. Maybe not quite what you’d expect but still a very good beer.

Anime Corner:
Flandre Scarlet from Touhou Project was used in this pairing since I wanted to pair the label of the ruby red moon as well as the green colors of wasabi which you can see by the diamonds. Since this beer is more on the sweeter side than what I had expected, the apple Scarlet is chewing on represent this as well as the fact that this beer is more of an Amber ale than a Pale Ale. However, despite the fact that Wasabi is extreme, maybe how it worked with this beer, it cut all the other bitter hops and cancelled its own spiciness to get to this. This is why Scarlet looks innocent but her burning eyes state another story.

Sources:
http://anime-pictures.net/pictures/get_image/361397-2560×1440-touhou-flandre+scarlet-ankh+%28ankh+05%29-single-short+hair-wide+image.jpg

Arctic Sun Stone collaboration by Amager Bryghus and Three Floyds

10710659_10102214381473740_6624071730411607440_n 10516855_10102214381743200_2416131594113642214_nRating: 4.75/5

Arctic Sun Stone collaboration by Amager Bryghus and Three Floyds is a 6% ABV Denmark/American Pale Ale

Label:
The sunstone – much disputed among scholars. Did the Viking navigators really have such a tool that would help them point out what was east and what was west – even on a less than sunny day? We certainly believe so. Many years later no sunstone was needed when Amager Bryghus was invaded by what very much looked like Viking ancestors of American descent. Hailing from Munster, Indiana, Chris Boggess and Barnaby Struve of Three Floyds Brewing arrived not with a vengeance but with very loud King Diamond on their portable mp3 player. This was not a day for slaughter but for brewing. And brew we did. The mellow and dangerously quaffable Arctic SunStone is proof that even Viking warriors can have a more subtle side to them. All hail to Three Floyds.

==Introduction==
Three Floyds beers are hard to find. Amager Bryghus was even hard too. The fact that I was able to find this one, even if it was a good online store, means that they are getting out there and being distributed more. Since it was a Three Floyds and Amager Bryghus beer, I had to get it. So without further ado, here is the beer treasure, Arctic Sun Stone. Cheers!

Aromas:
Grapefruit, citrus, mild piney and mild grassy hops, caramel, vanilla toffee, tropical fruits like pineapple, honey dew melon, guava hints, mango, apples, tangerines, orange peel, kumquats, lycheefruit roasted peanuts, banana hints and stone fruit apricot.

Flavors:
Citrus,grapefruit, grassy and piney hops, toffee, caramel, biscuit breads, tropical fruit like mango, guava, pine apples, honey dew melon, apples, tangerines, lychee fruit, orange peel, kumquats, strawberries, coriander spice, stone fruit apricot, peach notes, roasted peanuts, bananas and some herbal hop notes.

Aftertaste:
Caramel, biscuit bread, vanilla, citrus, roasted peanuts, toffee, grapefruit and piney hops linger. No Alcohol in the taste, Bold, crisp and refreshing mouthfeel, Hazy medium body and moderate drinkability.

Overall:
A very good Pale Ale. Drinks almost like an IPA but mainly sticking to the more malty sides and yet releasing a lot of the orange citrus and tropical flavors of some of the best pale ales out there. Pale Ales especially American ones, always have their own story to share trying to border line the IPA’s while stil offering more of a balance and not just pure hop bitterness like some west coast styles. Never the less, this one was pretty tasty and worth a try if you can get it.

Anime Corner:
Risty and Leina Vance from Queen’s Blade were used in this pairing since I wanted something to pair with the colors of the label, the beer and the Viking. While Risty covers that aspect and the picture with the loud roar, Leina is added to represent the collaboration of the 2 giants, Three Floyds and Amager respectively.

Sources:
http://img3.wikia.nocookie.net/__cb20120329014534/queensblade/images/9/97/Risty_and_Leina_3.jpg
http://danbooru.donmai.us/data/40d37bcd1dca070608a1a478e206087a.jpg

Devil’s Ale by SanTan Brewing

10393581_10101996977019010_3349223764408732983_nRating: 3.95/5

Devil’s Ale by SanTan Brewing is a 5.5% ABV American Pale Ale.

Commercial Description:
Devil’s Ale – Our flagship brew! Devil’s Ale is a new breed of West Coast American Ales. Deep golden maroon in color, Devil’s Ale is defined by as delicious citrus hop character derived from Cascade and Centennial hops grown in the Pacific Northwest and balanced firm caramel malt flavor. Devil’s Ale pairs wonderfully with salmon and pork (i.e. BACON!!) and goes best with sharp cheeses such as Cheddar and Colby. Arizona’s highest rated pale ale! 96 Points- Draft Magazine. 13.5°
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This is the second SanTan brewing beer I try. I see they are mainly from Arizona but also distribute to Texas. I have not seen any of their beers here in California but maybe we will start to see them soon. This beer was donated by my friend Aaron Mendiola from www.beermetaldude.com. I can already see how this beer is the flagship as the name of the brewery is similarly named after the unholy one except for that extra ‘n’ in the middle of the name. Anyways, I wanna see what this Pale Ale is about so let us check it out and Cheers to you Aaron and the readers of my page, thank you for your support!!

Aromas:
Grassy, piney, grapefruit hops, oranges, papaya hints, caramel, biscuit bread, toffee, lychee fruit, floral notes, apples, pear, herbal notes, tangerine and brown sugar.

Flavors:
Orange citrus, grassy, herbal, and grapefruit hops, caramel, biscuit bread, hints of tropical fruit like papaya and mango, guava notes, tangerine, lychee, floral notes, apples, brown sugar, toffee, pears, gummy bears and lemon peel.

Aftertaste:
Dry finish with a little bit of citrus, caramel and grassy hops lingering. No alcohol in the taste, very crisp and refreshing, easy to drink, light to medium body and light to medium mouthfeel.

Overall:
This pale is pretty good. Devil’s ale is hoppy enough and sessionable to the point where one can drink this one all day. I can definitely see myself buying this one as a summer beer and just relaxing with several of these cans. While its complexity is mainly noted and overwhelming, it may not be up there with the crazy double IPAs but for what it is, as delicious as it is, you should definitely give this one a try.

Anime Corner:
Devil girl chracter by Tamaki Kousaka was paired for the obvious reasons. Devil girl for a Devil ale. The moon and the color of her hair and the background pair really well with the colors of the label on the can and the color of the beer. Like I said before, this beer works day and night on a summer day just kicking back and drinking a cold one, just like the Devil chick in this picture is relaxing too.

Sources:
http://i48.tinypic.com/2ep6a14.jpg

Pisces Pale by El Borracho Home Brewing

1779069_10101679695922870_586347337_nRating: 4/5

Pisces Pale by El Borracho Home Brewing is a 5.8% ABV English Pale Ale.

Thanks to my buddy William Carranza for hooking me up with his first master piece. This is his first beer made and I was given the honor to do a review for him. We both went to beer class together and he took it upon himself to brew his first batch of beer. I will be right behind you brother .

Aromas:
Caramel, grassy and piney hops, grapefruit notes, mango hints, biscuit bread, rye, malt grain and honey. 

Flavors:
Earthy, grassy and piney hops, caramel, rye bread, honey, mango hints, biscuit notes, mild toffee, grapefruit, citrus, lemon peel, peanuts, toffee and pecans.

Aftertaste:
Caramel, toffee, earthy, grapefruit hops, peanuts and honey. No alcohol in the taste with easy to moderate drinkability and medium body to it.

Overall:
A very good pale ale. Despite’s Will’s advise about a certain flaw in the beer, I enjoyed it more because I actually enjoyed it better this way. The flaw was that there was more malt concentrated due to the missing extra gallon that was not added to the batch, which case the pale ale to be closer to a red ale,winter warmer or an Extra Special Bitter. While it may not have been what he was looking for in the beer, it ended being great! I love sweet caramel beers and this was just that good in my opinion. The best temperature would be to drink it as cold as possible to get more hop profile out of it. It gets sweeter as it get warmer. There is no off flavors, just nice and sweet stuff. Thanks again Will!

Anime Corner:
Zodiac Sign Pisces original artwork by Deviantart.com artist yuhon was chosen as a pairing to my friends beer to show the name of the beer. Pisces Pale was born in early February 2014 and this with the sign and the name as well as Will’s Zodiac sign, this was the pairing I chose. It make not show case many of the colors of the beer itself, maybe the hops since hops are green, but the vibrant hazel eyes of the fishes and the girl hold its true nature, the flow of a sweet awesome beer. Any other pairing notes that you would like to share, please comment below.

 

Blue Moon Agave Nectar Ale by Coors Brewing

400625_10101146738608600_700180079_nRating: 3.25/5

Blue Moon Agave Nectar Ale by Coors Brewing is a 5.6%ABV American Pale Wheat Ale

Label: 
Inspired by our brewmaster’s travels through Mexico, our limited summer release is crafted with agave nectar for a subtle sweetness and a smooth, crisp finish.
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Growing up I used to drink non-alcoholic agave juice. It was basically a sugary juice that was made from the extract of the agave plant. That stuff was very good. When you try Tequila, its that sugary plant flavor that is the agave. So when I saw this I wanted to see what it was all about. The fragrance is very mild. Adjunct grains, almost wheat, sweet agave notes, minor notes of wheat, orange, corn, cereal and sugar. What can be said, it is definitely close to a lager. The flavors are a little more interesting. You do get that sugary plant flavor of the agave (not sure how much is artificial), cereal grains, touch of wheat, cane sugar sweetness, citrus orange, mild hop and grain bitterness, that sweet corn flavor mixed in with agave, Wasn’t the best Agave beer I’ve ever had, (The best being the Tequila Barrel Aged Barley Wine from Cucapa of Mexicali), but still brings some of that minor agave sugary flavor I remember as a kid. Agave beers aren’t that common. So to find something like this which is at least decent is pretty good in my book. Blue Moon for many is faux craft, but for me it is a great way to introduce craft beer to people. A craft gateway. Blue Moon has been trying out different ideas and even if it does come from macros, I’ll still give it a shot. Blue Moon, Shocktop and New Belgium’s Fat Tire were craft gateways for me. So why wouldn’t I recommend some :P. In terms of this beer, some people that are not into craft beer may like this. Now I am wondering how this will mix with a Tequila mixed drink as it is light enough to probably mix with something :P.

New Albion Ale by New Albion brewing company and bottled under Samuel Adams

602003_10101089986749780_1985370367_nRating: 3.5/5

New Albion Ale by New Albion brewing company and bottled under Samuel Adams is 6%ABV reboot of the first American Pale Ale brewed in America which sparked the way for all brewing awesomeness as we see today.

Label:
Jack McAuliffe’s pioneering spirit paved the way for the American craft beer revolution. We’re rereleasing his original Pale Ale, with its distinct American hop character for the first time in 30 years in honor of Jack and his contributions to craft brewing. Cheers!
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Aromas of this beer sweet honey, somewhat pilsnery, light flowery, slighty fruity and grassy and pretty much like a lager with some malty and some hop fragrances. The flavors are of slight grape, citrus, mild hoppy bitterness, some pilsnery aspects, slight honey, some grains, a touch of vanilla or caramel sweetness but very very slight. This beer is made with a 30 year old recipe and is quite historic. While it may not be on par with some of the greats of this time, I swear, it is still above some of the best lagers out there. This stuff is like borderline ale/lager. Also due to its symbolism in the craft beer movement, It gets my thumbs up and a must try even if at least once. This is how beers were back then and they were still the best alternative out there

Double Barrel Ale by Firestone Walker

67440_10101000887021350_237952427_nRating: 3.75/5

Double Barrel Ale by Firestone Walker is a 5% ABV British Pale Ale.

Description:
Our patented Firestone Union uniquely incorporates 60-gallon American oak barrels into the fermentation process that yields beers of extraordinary character and complexity. This system improves the fullness of the palate, balances hop character and lends a clean briskness to the finish. The influence of the toasted oak also imparts unique hints of smokiness and vanilla, as well as a subtle fruitiness to the flavor profile. 
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Aromas are of mild citrus, grassy and earthy hops, biscuit, caramel, butterscotch, and a slight smoke or campfire oak. The flavors of this beer are of caramel, anise, slight grapefruit hops, slightly citrusy, earthy, smokey, oak, toasted bread and black tea. I think this beer speaks better in the taste than its fragrance. Not quite as nutty as an amber ale but leans more towards an amber ale that is lightly oaked and smoked. For a beer that is 5% ABV, way better than an average lager. Definitely above average beer with some great flavors to keep stuff interesting. Served all year long.

Chupacabras Pale Ale by Cucapá

485946_10100990483315460_1112023763_nRating: 3.5/5

Chupacabras Pale Ale by Cucapá of Mexicali Mexico is a 5.8% ABV Pale Ale. This is the 3rd Cucapá beer I have tried. Some of the other 2 like the Tequila Barrel Aged Ale and Obscura ale have been pretty good beers.

Label:
Chupacabras; a mythical extraterrestrial animal said to inhabit both of the Americas. The name translates literally from spanish as “goat sucker”, an activity avidly performed by this creature. Sightings of this cryptid have been reported all the way from Puerto Rico to Maine crossing all of central America and Mexico in his journey. 

Description:
This pale ale is in a way very related to this legendary creature. From one end this brew can be found from Mexico as well as in the U.S. on the other hand [sic] Chupacabras Pale Ale fortunately does not suck goats but will suck you into believing that there is a truly unique Mexican beer. However it is not necessarily an extraterrestrial however we like to think it is.
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Aromas are of grassy and floral hops, a little bit of pineapple and peach, caramel, cereal and wheat grains. The flavors are of some grapefruit, grassy and floral hops along with some caramel, slight mango, apricot, pineapple, coffee, peanuts, biscuit and grains. This pale ale seems to be more on par with an amber ale or bock but not as balanced. The hops seem to linger in the aftertaste but then disappear leaving some biscuit and caramel sweetness. It is still a good beer. While I think the Tequila Barrel Aged Ale one is one of the best I’ve tried, this one still worth a try if once.

Elysian Doom

734946_10100969364807120_1108964645_nRating: 4/5

This is a series from Elysian, The 12 Beers of the Apocalypse. “The End is Beer”
Beer#12 (December) Doom is a 6% ABV Golden Treacle Pale Ale brewed with oats and fermented with golden syrup and raisins. Doom is the End.
This is the final installment to the series depicting the End has come…

Doom is in reference to the final apocalyptic event of ultimate judgment. Whether it was the good deeds or bad that had set fate in motion or simply predetermined at birth, the final stage in which will result into the ultimate judgment of that fate will be sealed. We have already passed 12-21-2012 which was set as the Mayan Apocalypse to be the end of the world. Since it did not happen, does not mean that humanity itself is invulnerable to each individuals fate. We are mortals, we will face death one day and what comes after is the unknown. However, it is believed some type of fate or judgment will come after. Whether you are brought back as a speck of energy, a fly, another person, whether there is a heaven or hell OR whether your existence becomes another piece to the molded universe of this reality…nothing is certain. Things happen for a reason and all we can do is wait and see what happens. Till then, pass the time and drink some phenomenal beers 😛

This is it, the final beer in the series. Upon opening the beer, there was some tropical fragrances reminiscent of a double IPA or an Imperial Pale Ale. Aromas of mango, orange, papaya, pineapple, hop grass, grapefruit, treacle syrup, honey and caramel. There is no aromas of raisins in the fragrance though. The flavors are of orange, tangerines, mango, lemon, pine, grassy and grapefruit hops, honey, caramel, treacle syrup, matured bananas, raisins and a little bit of biscuit bread. The matured banana dryness and hoppy bitterness remains in the aftertaste along with the notes from the tropical fruits. It is pretty good ale and reminiscent of a more Tropical IPA but with lower ABV. Recommended to those that like tropical hoppy pale ales.