Clipper City Brewing Company - Heavy Seas Pale Ale

Clipper City Brewing Company - Heavy Seas Pale Ale

Beer Club featured in U.S. & International Variety Beer Club U.S. Microbrewed Beer Club


United States

Alcohol by Volume:


Clipper City Brewing Company - Heavy Seas Pale Ale

  • ABV:

  • Int’l Bittering Units (IBUs):

  • Serving Temperature:

    45-50° F
  • Suggested Glassware:

    Pint Glass
  • Malts:

    2-Row Pale, Munich, Crystal, Caramalt, Black
  • Hops:

    Cascade, Columbus, Fuggles, Golding, Anthanum
Heavy Seas Pale Ale is modeled after the English Pale Ale style, with some US-influence for good measure. We recommend you pull out an American Pale Ale, such as Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, and compare with this one for a good study in English-style vs. American-style Pale Ale. This beer took home the GABF Gold Medal in 2008 in the English Style Pale Ale category and pours a perfect copper color with a firm, frothy head. Has some floral hops on the nose, atop a lightly sweet malt base. Follows suit on the palate with ample bitterness to balance the slightly tasty caramel sweetness. So damned easy to drink, it begs to be followed by another, and accompanied by good conversation.

The history of the Clipper City Brewing Company goes back to the mid-1980s when Hugh Sisson, owner and founder of Sisson's, a local restaurant and bar, first recognized the potential for a small brewery in Baltimore. Upon attempting to get a license to brew beer at his restaurant, he quickly discovered that legislation prevented brewpubs in Maryland. So he began working with Senator George Della, Jr. to successfully lobby the Maryland General Assembly to pass legislation permitting brewpubs in Maryland. In 1989, Hugh began brewing at Sisson's, Maryland's first brewpub.

The move helped usher in the wave of craft brewing in Baltimore, and Hugh engrossed himself in the development and market recognition of both Sisson's brewpub and its beers, while simultaneously serving as this pioneering facility's first Brewmaster. After five years of brewpub brewing, Hugh took his craft brewing to a larger platform by starting a full-scale microbrewery. Three guesses as to who stepped in to say he couldn't do it… that's right, the state. It seems that "they" (a.k.a. "the man") took issue with his owning both a brewpub and brewery. The logic behind this legal blockade? Your guess is as good as ours—this is the business model used throughout Europe for hundreds of years. Fortunately, Hugh was undaunted by the legal challenge, did battle with the powers that be, yet again, and pulled out the win less than two years later. In early 1996, Clipper City Brewing, borrowing a Baltimore sobriquet as its name, officially began brewing on the scale Hugh was going for.

For more information about the brewery and scheduled tours, call (410) 247-7822 or check out their web site at

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