Snake River Pale Ale Review

Snake River Pale Ale
Snake River Pale Ale
I’ve drivin through Wyoming a few times in my life and learned that if there is any way to avoid doing it again in the future, then I’m probably making the right decision. I’m sure there are some great places in Wyoming, but I just remember seeing signs that didn’t lie which said stuff like “Nothing, next 112 miles.”

Luckily there is a pretty great brewery located in Jackson, Wyoming called Snake River Brewing that gets me a little more excited about driving through next time. I picked their Snake River Pale Ale to represent Wyoming in my 50 beer challenge.

One of the interesting things about their pale ale is that it comes in both bottles and cans. While I hear various opinions on bottles vs. cans, I figured this would be a great beer to do a side by side tasting and see if there was much, if any, difference.

Both the bottle and can looked identical once poured. It’s a light gold color that is fairly clear with small carbonation bubbles gently making their way to the top of the glass. There is a pretty decent sized white head on top of both (they were slightly different sizes only because I tried to pour them both at the same time), that leaves some great lacing on the glass.

Appearance Winner: Tie

Between the two, the can had a slightly stronger, and I thought better aroma.  Both are laced with a gentle dry hopped floral smell that is backed by a biscuit like malt and some slight citrus. The hop bitterness definitely shined a lot more in the beer poured from the can.

Smell Winner: Can

The taste of this beer is incredibly smooth with some slight bitterness that fades into a sweeter toasted malt flavor that’s in line with the pale ale style.  There was quite a bit of difference though in the two beers with the canned version quite a bit hoppier and slightly more complex.  Maybe it was just the slight taste of aluminum that made it better, but I definitely enjoyed the canned beer quite a bit more in regards to the taste.

Taste Winner: Can

I probably would have thought this was a pretty good, but average, pale ale if all I tried was the bottled version of this. However I am really impressed with the flavor of the canned version.  Both are smooth, fairly light, yet have some great bitterness to make this an amazing summer beer (well, I could drink it year round).

Overall Winner: Can

This is the first time I’ve tried a can and a bottle of the same beer side by side and I was a little shocked that I preferred the can version over the bottle. It just had a little more character, but overall both were pretty delicious beers.

I guess this goes to show that some pretty amazing things do come out of Wyoming.

My Snake River Pale Ale Review: A-

Here are the details:

ABV: 5.2%
IBUs: ?
Style: American Pale Ale

What’s your thoughts on Snake River Pale Ale?

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About Logan Thompson

Logan is the owner of Blog About Beer. Along with blogging, he is also the author of two books, Beer Lover's Oregon and Beer Lover's Washington, an avid homebrewer, husband, dad of 2 girls, business owner and lover of ridiculously spicy foods.

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  1. Ha, I was in Jackson literally last week and tried Snake River. They have some delicious beer! I thought their stout may have been the best. Good choice for your Wyoming beer.

  2. Hey Logan!
    Thanks for not only featuring us in your “50 beer challenge” but also doing the third-party taste-test on our Snake River Pale Ale can v. bottle in your blog.

    Obviously, our award-winning brewery strives for excellence in all of our packages and have done many side-by-side tastings ourselves.

    Cans are touted as being a “better package” due to there being no light or O2 to degrade the contents along with people who prefer draught beer are drinking from an aluminum vessel as well.

    Anyway, much more information can be found on our website and our brewers blog ( along with Facebook and Twitter.

    Thanks again and keep enjoying great craft beers from the good ol’ USA!!

    Tim Harland
    Snake River Brewing Company

  3. I have heard that the can holds flavor better and prevents literally anything from sneaking in and changing the beer’s flavor and color, even the darkest bottle and the tightest cap is going to let something escape or in. I think that was a very interesting side-by-side to do. I think I might steal you idea 🙂

  4. Great blog and post.
    I noticed that for Montana you are going to do Big Sky. I highly suggest you do another side-by-side of their cans vs. bottles. Their canned Moose Drools is by-far one of my favorites (Moose Drool in general is probably the most renowned Montana beer). I have always been convinced that the canned version tastes way better. My bf tells me it’s probably just the experience as I’m usually drinking the canned version while on a backcountry trip. I’d love to hear what you think!

  5. Both Big Sky and Snake River get their great aluminum cans from another Wyoming location, Crown Cork and Seal in Worland. Thanks to Big Sky, Snake River and all the other microbrews and beer afficienados who are realizing that great beer tastes even better from a can!

    Don Archer
    Crown Cork and Seal

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