Folks, I give you Highland Lost Cove Pale Ale, a beer styled by the brewery as an American Pale Ale, though I’m about to tell you why I don’t think it really is. Not that makes it a bad beer-it’s a good one really-but I just don’t think it packs the hoppy oomph that makes American Pale Ale a waypoint between classic pale ale and India Pale Ale.
Lost Cove Pale Ale is a summer seasonal for Highland, available on tap and in bottles. I’ve yet to see the bottled version, but first enjoyed it at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino in early July of 2015. In October it showed up at my local Taco Mac here in Canton, where I enjoyed it again. At the casino, I was in fact surprised at the wide assortment of craft beers available, many more than the last time I had been there.
After trying my luck at the slot machines for several hours without success, I stopped gambling and started drinking instead, and decided a drinking problem seemed much more affordable than a gambling problem. Fortunately for me I have neither, but that doesn’t change the fact that my latter statement seems true.
Highland says of this beer:
This aromatic American Pale Ale is a session beer meticulously handcrafted with a unique Highland twist. Discover the secrets of Lost Cove in a summery American pale ale inspired by the spirit of Appalachia's past. Delicate Pilsner malt blends with Cascade Hops for a hop-forward, cold-fermented ale with a citrusy aroma and crisp, clean finish.
Highland Lost Cove Pale Ale has an alcohol content of 4.5% by volume with 20 IBUs. I paid $4 for a 16-ounce cup at the casino and $5 for a 20-ounce mug at Taco Mac. Yes, Highland beers are always a bargain. The beer is named for a mysterious ghost town on the North Carolina-Tennessee state line. It’s hopped with Cascades and Hallertaus.
Highland Lost Cove Pale Ale pours to a beautiful brilliant golden color with a moderate sized head of creamy foam and an inviting nose of soft biscuit malt and gentle citrus fruit. Taking a sip, I really love the fresh bready biscuit malt up front, followed by gentle Cascade fruit and a lightly herbal, gently grassy drying bitter finish from the Hallertaus.
So there you are, Highland Lost Cove Pale Ale. Notice I left the American out, because although this beer does balance delicate hoppy fruit and bitterness against a light bready malt profile, the hops don’t sing here-and that’s a must for an American Pale Ale. Still, this is a wonderful, drinkable summer beer and is even quite tasty in fall, too. Would I buy it again? I think I already did my friends…..
And remember, try a new beer today, and drink outside the box.
*Pricing data accurate at time of review or latest update. For reference only, based on actual price paid by reviewer.