Sightings Pale Ale

Prologue:  Sightings is not a beer brand I’d heard off, so in some sort of thing that would drive marketeers crazy when I saw it at Slowbeer I had to have it.

For the record it’s made by the Harcourt Valley brewing company which another beer label backed by a winery, namely Harcourt Valley winery. I guess there are a lot of winemakers out there who think they can make beer.

Packaging:  I’ve stated before that winemakers make great beer labels (Moo Brew being the obvious example), they understand how to communicate quality. This is a study in classy greys and blacks. I first though the black thing was creepy monster fingers reaching across the label but on second look I think it’s a puma.

Why a puma? Well did you know that there are supposedly pumas roaming around in the near the Grampians (which is sort of near Harcourt), if you believe the story some American soldiers where keeping puma cubs as mascots during WWII, when the war ended they let the Pumas free in the bush.     

Appearance:  A cloudy amber colour, with significant yeast particles in it. It has a foamy uneven head which does maintain and lace.    

Smell:  This had essentially no smell, which is very concerning for an American Pale Ale (APA)

Taste:  The first reaction is not great, although it did grow on me. It felt like a reasonable homebrew, but not really up to commercial standards. The malt character was subdued, and there was something a little unpleasant about the hops, It was quite bitter, but there seemed to be no taste or aroma coming from the hops.    

In conclusion: It’s okay, it’s drinkable, but it’s not that enjoyable and I’m not sure I’d bother again given how many good APA’s are out there.     

Ranking:  Maybe just as a Pot.  

Six degrees of Norm: Where prove all beers can be linked back to Norm from Cheers (George Wendt)

  1. This beer is named for a sighting of a Puma
  2. Just like the 1980 movie ‘Pumaman’ (it must be good it get 2/10 on IMDB) which started Donald Pleasence.
  3. Who was also in the mini series ‘Masters of the Game’ with Maryam d’Abo
  4. Who in turn was in ‘Dorian Grey’ with Ben Chaplin.
  5. Who was in ‘The Thin Red Line’ with Woody Harrelson
  6. And Woody of course served beers to Norm in Cheers.
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One thought on “Sightings Pale Ale

  1. My understanding is that Sightings APA is just another “winery brand label only”, and is actually brewed under contract by Mildura Brewery.

    Can’t confirm that as fact, but am fairly sure it’s correct.

    I have been very disappointed on the occasions I drank it. Found it very bland.

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