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Beer review: Goose Island 312 Urban Pale Ale

Nick Trougakos Published: March 10, 2014

Goose Island Beer Co. has announced it will add a beer to its year-round lineup, and it will be the company’s first year-round pale ale.

312 Urban Pale Ale is set for debut on Wednesday.

I was able to score a preview bottle and thought I would pass along a quick review.

For starters, the beer checks in at 5.4% ABV and 30 IBUs. It was bronze in color and displayed a slight haze, most likely due to the wheat malt included in the grain bill. It had a restrained head that dissipated quickly after pouring. I would describe the aroma as thin, or subtle, with just a hint of citrus fruit in the nose. The beer displayed very little lacing. I thought the flavor was nicely balanced between the hop and malt, with neither playing a dominant role. I felt this left it lacking any kind of distinctive punch, however. Bitterness seemed hard to find — definitely below the bitterness level of most of today’s pale ales. The flavor did provide some citrus or maybe even pineapple-like qualities. In summation, this beer did not knock my socks off with flavor, but I wouldn’t call it a bad beer. In fact, the balance between hops and malt was nailed quite well. As someone who typically favors a hop-forward pale ale, it perhaps was just not my cup of tea in that regard. Overall, I would call this an easy-drinking session beer with a crisp, clean finish.

Pints and Pins

-The weekly Monday pint nights today at the McNellie’s pubs are: Guinness at Oklahoma City, Tulsa and Tulsa-South; and Anchor Bock in Norman.

-I was browsing the beer social media feeds this morning when I came across a mention of someone trying to turn their non-craft-beer-drinking friend onto craft beer. What beer did they select to begin this initiation process? A whiskey-barrel-aged imperial stout from Prairie. Now, I’m sure this is typically a fine beer. But as messengers of the craft beer gospel, we have to be smart, people. We might think a whiskey-barrel-aged imperial stout kicks ass, but let’s remember that the palate of the non-initiated can be a fickle thing. As a general rule, let’s start them out slowly, and then bring them along to the more complex stuff. OK, PSA for the day complete.


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