Beerstitution Volume 20: AMERICAN PALE ALE

Beer Ye! Beer Ye!

As my social studies teacher told me back in my mildly misspent youth, “Canadian culture is a mosaic and American culture is a melting pot.”  That is all I remember from that particularly uninspiring educator but it does happen to ring true when I try to nail down where exactly to place American Pale Ales in the continuum of beer styles.  The APA takes its roots from the pale ale styles that were prevalent in the British Isles, and in true American fashion, it was broken down,  injected with some bold all american hop varieties, principally cascade, and emerged an unmistakably American beverage that makes you want stand up and shout, “USA…USA…USA!!” like a drunken frat boy at a college football game.  

It is not surprising that this patriotic theme reared its head in what many consider the first iteration of the APA. The Anchor Liberty Ale, brewed by Anchor Brewing Company in 1975, was a tribute to the American folk hero Paul Revere.  It is noted by Michael Jackson…no not that one, that this marked the first modern American ale. (This was shamelessly taken from Wikipedia…see for yourself Here)

With this in my our in mind our intrepid group of Beerstitutioneers, or Beerstitutes if will, set out on our odyssey to find the finest facsimile that our mosaic culture north of the border can produce of our southern neighbours’ beloved APA.

Screenshot 2016-08-25 17.18.09

The Beers

Mikkeller- American Dream Hoppy Pilsner (Not actually an APA at all but Thorne was abroad and brought presents)

  • A lovely hoppy aroma, with a golden colour and a deliciously crisp pilsner finish.
  • Thorne needs to go to Europe beerfore every stitution. (anon)

BRSTº Rating: 4/5

St. Ambroise- Session IPA (Again…not an APA)

  • Basically a watered down version of St. Ambroises regular IPA.
  • Meh…(almost everyone)
  • Go straight for the double IPA (Thorne)

BRSTº Rating: 3/5

La Bilboquet – Peau D’Ours (Getting closer to an APA)

  • Pours golden with light floral hop notes and earthy undertones.
  • Tastes like ice tea…and also I volunteer to make the template for Beerstitution write ups (Thorne)

BRSTº Rating: 3.5/5

Pit Caribou – AustraAmericane Pale Ale (Closest yet to an APA except for the Australian part)

  • A delightful marriage of American and Australian hops.
  • Smells like turkey dinner (Corey)

BRSTº Rating: 4/5

St. Arnaud – Petit Train du Nord (Again…not an APA) 

  • Pours a golden blond and then things go off the tracks rather quickly….
  • This train should not have left the station
  • Grandpa’s moldy gloves (Chris)
  • Offensive to my senses (anon)

BRSTº Rating: 2.5/5

Dunham – American Pale Ale (Finally!! A true APA)

  • Pours a cloudy golden yellow with lots of heady citrus notes and a nice malty undertone.
  • Everything Dunham touches turns to gold! (Dave)

BRSTº Rating: 4.5/5

Brasseurs Du Monde – L’Interdite 60 min (Now we’re rolling…two APA’s in a row)

  • A tip of the hat to the post prohibition beers with some big hoppy flavours.
  • Fruity nose
  • Spicy on the tongue

BRSTº Rating: 4/5

Farnham – Double India Pale Ale American (Close enough…)

  • This one was not so well received…a rare miss from Farnham.
  • Cuggly pug? (It was in my rapidly disintegrating notes)
  • Tastes like bird bath water (I’m guessing Corey)

BRSTº Rating: 3/5

À La Fut – Pale Ale Brett (Belgian Pale Ale…but at least it has Brett)

  • This beer was highly divisive among the crowd as brett beers tend to be in the ‘stution.
  • BWAAAAAAACK (Marian)
  • Tastes like a band-aid (Allegra)
  • Tastes like your Nana died

BRSTº Rating: 3/5


Best in Show: Pit Caribou Austraamericane Pale Ale

Surprise of the night: Farnham -Double India Pale Ale American

Sessionable: Dunham- American Pale Ale

Blind Test:

Eric – 1st Choice

Arndell – 1st Choice

Dave – 1st Choice

Corey – Abject Failure

Thorne – Second Choice redemption

Hugo – Second Choice redemption

Marian – Abject Failure

Allegra – Second Choice redemption

Chris – Abject Failure

‘Til next time!
That Guy from Beerstitution


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