Fernie Brewing Company Base Camp West Coast Pale – American Pale Ale at 5.8% ABV | 39 IBU

Fernie Brewing Company Base Camp West Coast Pale American Pale Ale at 5.8% ABV | 39 IBU (C$5.95 at Andrew Hilton Wine & Spirits, 650 ml, best before 31-Jan-2018, acquired 22-Nov-2017, reviewed 22-Nov-2017)

Appearance: clear medium gold with a towering fluffy ivory head, good retention and moderate clingy lacing. (4/5) Aroma: mild, citrus, caramel, tropical fruit, resiny pine. (7/10) Taste: moderate sweet, moderate-high bitter. (8/10) Palate: medium body, moderate carbonation, off-dry medium bitter finish. (4/5)

I’ve put citrus ahead of caramel in my aroma notes, but the fact is, it’s more of a dead heat between those two, with some assorted (OK, muddled) fruitiness and lightly dank pine following behind. The aroma’s not bad, but it’s not brightly hoppy the way I’d like to see for the style. The flavour is slightly better balanced, and the finish is fairly dry and cleanly bitter. It’s almost a combination of English and West Coast Pale attributes, actually. This can’t be all that old, since it’s a new brew launched in July, but if it’s one of the first batch, it’s certainly conceivable that it’s lost some brightness as a result. I wish Fernie would date their bottles, instead of putting a fairly cryptic, presumably BB date code (“01.2018L”, I think – the printing isn’t clear) on the label. (15/20)

7.5/10 #ryansbooze ryansbooze.com

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