Beer of the Week: Bad Jimmy’s Pale Ale

By Iron Chef Leftovers

1398797369618It is not too often that you will see a pale ale that is pushing over the 6% abv threshold. Pales are generally lower in hops and lower in alcohol than their IPA cousins and are meant to be much more approachable. Bad Jimmy’s takes the opposite approach with their extreme beers, putting out a pale that is 7.2% and 72 IBU, putting it firmly in the range of most IPAs.

The beer pours hazy golden in color with notes of citrus and grain dominating the nose. The beer starts out bitter in an extreme way, assaulting the palate. It is a harsh bitterness that completely overwhelms any other flavor that you might find in the beer, making this extremely one note. There is no balance and a significant alcohol burn. If you are hard pressed, you might be able to find a hint of citrus note in this beer, but it is a challenge. It might have worked better if it were called an IPA, but as a pale, this beer is just plain terrible.

Bad Jimmy’s Pale needs to get out in the sun more with just 1 pasty white boy out of 5.

Beer of the Week: Reuben’s Brews Anniversary Session Pale

By Iron Chef Leftovers

untitled2Reuben’s Brews turned 1 in 2013 and to celebrate, they released a few new beers, notably their Anniversary Session Pale. Clocking in at 4.9% ABV and just 25 IBU, it isn’t really a beer that I would normally order, but what the heck, it was new and I will try anything once.

The beer pours hazy pale yellow in color with light grain on the nose and showing hints of citrus. The beer starts out grain forward on the front end before transitioning off to the hops – light citrus and citrus peel that lingers and a pleasant light bitterness, all were surprising considering the IBU on the beer. The beer then finishes long with a delightful yeast finale with hints of bitterness that linger without overpowering. Well balanced and complex despite being easy drinking and smooth, the session pale is a perfect beer to taste hops without blowing out your palate and plenty of other character to make you want to drink a few.

Reuben’s Anniversary Session Pale throws a party and celebrates with 4 papers out of 5.

Beer of the Week: Anacortes Galaxy Pale

By Iron Chef Leftovers

untitl4edThe final beer in the DNA project is another pale ale, this time by Anacortes Brewing using Galaxy hops. Galaxy hops are described as “Australian high alpha dual purpose triploid cultivar with a marked and unique hop aroma, described as a combination of citrus and passionfruit. The initial aromas and flavors are quite intense, but these moderate as the beer matures.” The beer clocked in at 5.5% ABV.

The beer pours hazy yellow in color with strong notes of passion fruit and grain on the nose, reminding me a bit of Sam Adams Summer Ale without the lemon notes. Lots of citrus up front on the palate of this beer, dominated by lemon and passion fruit. The hops show well and linger for a long time before yielding to a slight malt sweetness as the beer fades on the palate with very little bitterness. Easy drinking, a beer that is perfect for the back deck on a warm summer day.

Anacortes Galaxy Pale jets in with a solid 4 Milky Ways out of 5.

Beer of the Week: NW Peaks Eldorado Pale

By Iron Chef Leftovers

One of the things that you can usually count on from NW Peaks, in addition to some fine beers, is that one, if not both of their house beers will be on tap. I have previously reviewed Redoubt Red here, so it is time for a review of Eldorado Pale.

From the NW Peaks Website:

The name. The mountain. Eldorado is a majestic mountain and stands at8,869′, the 25th tallest peak in the state. Many hikers will be intimately familiar with cascade pass trail at the end of the Cascade River road. The commonly used climbers path leaves the road about 4 miles short of the cascade pass trail head. The relative burly trail climbs several thousand feet through forest, talus, and rock leading to the Eldorado glacier with great views of the summit and the rest of the cascade river basin. While these views are excellent the real treats come at the top of the eldorado glacier where you get views of the Klawatti-Inspiration-Mcallister icecap and is knife-edge summit ridge. While I have done the standard approach/route, the second time I climbed Eldorado we took the “alternative approach” from Pyramid Lake trailhead. On this trip, Eldorado’s mountainBeer partner was the first peak we climbed, Eldorado was the last peak 5 days later, ending one of my favorite trips to the backcountry.

The Beer. In this part of the country, pale ales and IPAs don’t need any introduction. There are so many examples of the style, which run the gamut from being nicely balanced to overly hop forward. We made a pale ale with a light malt backbone and nice bitterness that would support and balance an unmistakably emphasized hop aroma and flavor. We used a few more common varieties of hops so that none would dominate and would blend together to give a nice citrusy and floral aroma.

Malts: Pale, ESB, Wheat. Hops: Apollo, cascade, chinook, centennial ABV: ~5.25%


The beer pours golden/straw in color. There is plenty of grain and malt on the nose with hints of hops hiding in the background, leaving a very clean and light impression. There is an extremely pleasant palate on this beer – a slight malty sweetness followed by the grain. The finish is surprisingly long, with light notes of bitterness and a slightly floral character. The finish is also very crisp with notes of light apple interspersed with the hops.

untitle8dEldorado Pale is light enough to please a pilsner drinker, but with enough complexity to keep the beer geek happy.

NW Peaks Eldorado Pale discovers itself with 3 lost cities out of 5.