Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Hangar 24 Amarillo Pale Ale

There’s so much hype about IPAs these days that the classic pale ale tends to be forgotten about. Once in a while a pale ale comes along and reminds me how good the style can be. A good example would be Hangar 24 Amarillo Pale Ale - a beer that has plenty of flavor, bitterness and is highly drinkable without making a big deal about it.

4
   AROMA 8/10   APPEARANCE 4/5   TASTE 8/10   PALATE 4/5   OVERALL 16/20
Chad9976 (790) - Albany, New York, USA - JAN 15, 2013
I poured a 12oz bottle into a tulip glass.

Appearance: Clear, bright orange/amber hue. Plenty of visible carbonation. Forms an average-sized, off-white, foamy head which laces and retains pretty well.

Smell: Sweet, orange candy-like aroma with a general floral bouquet. Clean, but not intense.

Taste: Hangar 24 Amarillo Pale Ale is exactly what I expect in an American pale ale. Plenty of hop character throughout the palate but without the raw density or chutzpah of an IPA. The Amarillo hops give it a distinct orange flavor all around - slightly sweet candy-like flavor up front with a slightly sharper, dryer bitterness through the middle. The malts are muted, imparting a light sweetness to balance out the hops. There’s a quick hop bite at the apex which linger for just a few moments before finishing cleanly.

It’s interesting how much flavor is here, yet at the same time I would not consider this a super robust beer in general. It’s satisfying and enjoyable at the time and seems to have good re-drinkability in that you could drink many of these without it wearing you out.

Drinkability: Half the enjoyment of this beer is how pleasantly drinkable it is. The body is medium, there’s a perfect level of carbonation to give it noticeable, but contained, energy. It’s crisp and refreshing while in the mouth and goes down smooth. I was surprised to see it’s "only" 5.5% ABV as it has so much flavor, but without the weight of something bigger. This might be dangerously drinkable in the summer.
 Grade: 8/10