Review of Dogfish Head Pearl Jam Twenty Faithful Ale

25 Feb
For today’s craft beer review I’m going to be trying the Dogfish Head Pearl Jam Twenty Faithful Ale produced by the Dogfish Head Craft Brewery located in Milton, Delaware.

Like most of my generation, Pearl Jam have been a huge influence on me musically.  Now, I just wonder if the Faithful Ale will be as big an influence for me in the realm of craft beer.

From the website,, we find this description of the Faithful Ale. 

Faithfull Ale is a celebration of Pearl Jam’s 20th anniversary as a band and its extraordinary debut album, “Ten.” In recognition of these milestones, this Belgian-style golden ale is delicately hopped to 20 IBUs and fruit-forward from 10 incremental additions of black currants over a one-hour boil. Faithfull clocks in at 7% ABV.

“To me, ‘Ten’ is the perfect example of a record-lover’s-record. The whole thing rocks,” says Dogfish Head President & Founder Sam Calagione. “As an off-centered brewery, we believe in celebrating the breadth of our whole portfolio and we feel an affinity for Pearl Jam a long-player band in a singles-obsessed world.”

Let’s give it a try.

This brew came in a 25.4 oz. bottle and it has an ABV of 7.0%.

It poured a semi-hazy, yellow/gold color with a bright white head that was of real nice size, fluffy, soft and soapy.  It had better than average retention and the lacing looked decent too.  Not a bad looking beer at all. 

The aroma brought forth hints of earthy grain and grassiness.  A fairly subtle spice note mixed with a small amount of breadiness.  I got some small semblance of white grapes.  That could be the currants I guess.  It also had a very, very light “dankness” and funkiness that to seemed to fit the bouquet rather well.  Overall, decently well balanced, but not overly complex or robust.

The taste was of some crisp, pale malts along with dried wafers and white peppercorns.  The white grapes seemed to be established again in the flavor along with just a very minute touch of Belgian yeast and grain.  It seemed like I was picking up some kind of remote lemon citrus or something also.  Who knows?  Because I’ve never tried currants (that I know of) I’m having a hard time distinguishing them.  Again, like the aroma, not bad, but nothing extraordinary either.  

The mouthfeel was medium to medium/light bodied.  Dry, crisp, clean, refreshing and smooth.  A lively carbonation kept things a moving while on the palate and a touch of warmth was noticed from the spice.  A decent amount of flavor was left behind after the sip.

Well…. this beer was just “ok” for me.  Nothing horrible.  Nothing off putting.  Nothing disagreeable.  Just a rather average to slightly above average beer that’s super easy to drink.  I’m glad I tried it though because of the limited availability, however if it was on the shelves every week, I don’t know that it would be something that I would want to pick up on a regular basis.  I’m not saying don’t try it if you happen across a bottle, but just don’t expect to be blown away by this brew.  I can see why so many people have given this beer mixed reviews.  It’s not over the top or overly complex, therefore some may find it to be a bit “boring”.  For me, there was still plenty to ponder and I had no trouble finishing the bottle, so I’m good.  I still want to thank Dogfish Head for pushing the boundaries and trying new things.  I’m sure I will be on the lookout for their next collaboration that’s for sure.

Did you guys have the opportunity to try the Dogfish Head Pearl Jam Twenty Faithful Ale?  What did you think of it?  Leave a comment if you would like.

Thanks for reading everyone.  I truly appreciate it.

Until next time.  Cheers.

Score:  3.55 out of 5
Grade:  B   

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Posted by on February 25, 2012 in Country: USA, Dogfish Head


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