You know, I’ve always felt that the name “pale ale” is misleading. Even now the first impression of the word “pale” is that it would be light, just how the mass-produced commercial lagers are watered-down versions of the real thing.

Obviously, that’s not why pale ales are called pale, and once I realized that I was quite excited to try out Oh!La!Ho’s extra pale ale.

Oh!La!Ho Captain Crow EPA

It has a clear gold body, and there were proper bubbles running up in it. It’s a sight I missed from craft beer in general so far. It also has a larger, quite solid head.

The word “extra” left me with high expectations regarding the hops, and the nose didn’t let me down. It’s hoppy as should be, with citrus bitters. There are also hints of soap and earthy notes.

It has a medium body with carbonation that’s rather smooth than fizzy. As expected, it has a blast of a strong, dry bitterness not unlike tonic water. The hoppy punch of the taste is grapefruit centered.

There is a light malt presence, mostly playing a role as the thickness. There are also nutty, earthy flavors that gave the fresh bitterness an interesting, refined undertone. Also, was that a cheese note I picked up there?

The raw bitterness, just the bitterness itself, and the calmer flavors that provided a foundation earlier, are the main components of the aftertaste.

I don’t usually call beer complex, because it’s a cliched shorthand for “I’m not good enough to describe this properly”, but that is exactly the sense in what I want to use it now. Captain Crow EPA is complex.