Reinventing the Pale Ale

Reinventing the Pale Ale

Re-inventing the Pale Ale - Pimped up for 2023

The Pale Ale was the flagship of the craft beer arrival in New Zealand. These clean, hoppy beers mostly from the USA helped to develop our domestic craft beer scene. 

But since the early craft beer days the Pale Ale scene has become muddled with hazy beers dominating the beer taps, and rolled oats appearing in every second beer recipe. What has happened to the sessionable but hoppy pale ale?

 It's time to bring the Pale Ale back and we have given it a make-over to bring it up to date with modern brewing trends while retaining its core. We’ve brought it up to date for 2023.


We have stripped the malt bill back to basics. No more 10 different malts in your beer recipe, but instead a clean malt bill that has complexity, sweetness at the front of the palette and a clean dry finish.

For this we have kept the grain bill to mostly base malts. Pilsner, Pale Malt and UK Maris Otter (for the subtle nutty character). No biscuit, no oats or rolled wheat and no crystals. The only addition was a very small amount of Carapils (or Gladfield’s Gladiator) to assist with the head retention.

We are aiming for a sessional pale ale so we can enjoy several beers (rather than having one 8% Hazy and feeling full and half pissed!)


 Its far too easier to select your big American Juicy Hops. While I love Mosaic, Citra, El Dorado and Simcoe hops in my beers, I don’t want all my beers tasting the same. So we decided to keep these hops for the tropical fruit hazy beers and in our pimped up 2023 Pale Ale we would keep the hops to two varieties – New Zealand Nelson Sauvin and US Centennial.

But we have bought the hop additions up to date with modern brewing practices. The trend to cut back hop additions in the boil and load up the whirlpool and dry hop additions will make the hop character standout and be bold. This means we need to add more late addition hops to ensure we hit the desired level of bitterness. The added bonus of this is a big hop appeal on the nose.


A good IPA should be nice and clean allowing the malt and hops to shine through. So no fruity English strains but instead a nice clean American Ale yeast. WLP001 or Safale 05 are two great options.



 Check it out at our Beer Recipe Blog here  Pimped up Pale Ale (


Buy the all grain recipe here:  Brewers Coop Pimped Pale Ale - Brewers Coop - Shop



Posted: Thursday 19 January 2023