Reno Brewing Company - Ponderosa Pale Ale

Reno Brewing Company - Ponderosa Pale Ale

Beer Club featured in U.S. Microbrewed Beer Club


United States

Alcohol by Volume:


Reno Brewing Company - Ponderosa Pale Ale

  • ABV:

  • Int’l Bittering Units (IBUs):

  • Serving Temperature:

    45-50° F
Reno uses 94% 6-row pale malt and 6% caramelized malt to brew Ponderosa, which is categorized as a British Pale Ale. Chinook hops are added 10 minutes into the 90 minute boil primarily for adding a slight bitterness to the beer, while Cascade hops are added at 3 separate intervals for both their aromatic and bittering contributions.
Immediately note a sweet floral hoppy and estery nose, almost perfumy. Look for a pale color and good head retention in this filtered, medium-bodied beer. Note a caramel/malt sweetness at the start, a nice hop flavor in the middle, and a hop bitter finish in this nicely balanced, sweet, and clean beer. Overall, an excellent, clean and bitter pale ale, not as bold or complex as Whistler or Airship, yet perhaps the bitterest of the three.
Although Reno's East Fourth Street is known today for the recent controversy over topless entertainment establishments and its many meandering harlots, older Renoites recall the area as their city's premier industrial section and site of the original Reno Brewing Company which opened in 1903. The brewery produced beers such as Sierra Malt Lager, Malt Rose, and Royal Lager and grew over the course of nearly 45 years to a production capacity of over 40,000 barrels per year.

The Reno Brewing Co. was able to survive Nevada prohibition acts by producing near beer, seltzers, soda waters, tonics and fruit-flavored soft drinks. It could not, however, recover from the lack of brewing grains, bottles, bottle tops and other needed supplies that were an inevitable resultant of WW II and the brewery closed in 1948. The name has been fully revived as partners Kirk Ellern and Dave Pierson introduced Ponderosa Pale Ale under the Reno Brewing Co. name in 1993. Wolfpack Wheat, a lighter, American-style wheat was added to the product line soon thereafter and Kirk, whom formulated the existing beer recipes, is now developing several seasonal beers as well.

For more information about the brewery and scheduled tours, call (702) 322-BREW
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