Oskar Blues Brewery, from Lyons Colorado, claims to be the first US craft brewery to can its own beer and they did so with their Dale’s Pale Ale back in 2002. Calling it the “Canned Beer Apocalypse”, they now can six beers year round including Dale’s Pale Ale. Oskar Blues’ take on a pale ale brings forth 6.5% ABV and 65 IBUs from that you’ll find in six packs where ever you can find their beer (see the beer locator on their website, oskarblues.com).
There’s something odd yet very appealing about pouring a craft beer from a can but Oskar Blues claims that aluminum cans keep the beer fresher for longer by keeping out the light and ingressed oxygen. Dale’s Pale Ale pours a clear golden color with just a hint of amber. Into a pint glass I poured about a one finger head. Looking into glass there seems to be moderate carbonation. For the nose I got a slight hop character that gets pushed out of the way by sweeter, bready malt notes. The overall aroma wasn’t overly present in the glass. According to the stamp on the bottom of the can, the beer I’m drinking was canned in early March of this year.
Taking a drink, it starts off big on the bready, cereal malt flavors on the front of the tongue. This beer has a fantastic mouth feel that is smooth and light. The bitterness of those 65 IBUs kick in mid tongue and mingle nicely with the malt. The hops make their presence known at the back of the tongue along with the alcohol. It lingers around in the finish with some hop bitterness and a touch of cereal maltiness. Being on the west coast, when I think of pale ales, I always think of Sierra Nevada Pale Ale and use that as a comparison. Dale’s Pale Ale lacks the spicy hop notes of Sierra Nevada’s offering, but balances out the higher IBUs with more maltiness and a lighter mouth feel.
For my tastes, Dale’s Pale Ale would be a great session beer or something refreshing on a hot day. The beer is very drinkable and has enough character to keep you interested. Although you get a bit of the alcohol at the end, it’s a smooth beer despite being at 6.5% for a pale ale, an ABV higher than you’d typically see for a pale ale.
Beer Geek Nation rating: B
Beer Advocate: B / 3.65
Rate Beer: 3.6