Beer Tastings: Full Suspension Pale Ale — Squatters Craft Beers

Beer Tastings - Utah Beer News

Welcome to Beer Tastings, a weekly series in which Utah Beer News highlights a particularly tasty local brew. What are you drinking? Let us know!

Beer Tastings: Full Suspension Pale Ale

I can’t remember when I tasted my first Full Suspension Pale Ale®, but I’m almost certain it was one of the first Utah-brewed craft beers to touch my lips.

A Northwest-style Pale Ale, Squatters' Full Suspension is a balanced, well-made craft beer.
A Northwest-style Pale Ale, Squatters’ Full Suspension is a balanced, well-made craft beer.

It hit the market in 1996 and I turned 21 a couple years later. It’s my go-to Squatters Craft Beers brew, due primarily to its balance and consistency pint after pint.

Aromas of cracker and wheat, with just a hint of citrus for me. The pale malt gives the beer a richness and mild breadiness you want in your pales.

The brewers describe it as a Northwest Pale Ale, unfiltered and dry-hopped to 40 IBUs. “Groove on this two-time Great American Beer Festival® GOld Medal Winner (2001 and 2002). It really smoothes the bumps.”

Any time I’m craving a classic pale, I have a handful I turn to — but Full Suspension is always in play.

Squatters Craft Beers: Nearly 30 Years in Utah

A craft beer pub in 1980s Salt Lake City? Jeff Polychronis and Peter Cole thought it necessary, especially after a trip to the Pacific Northwest. They found brew pubs to be the place where locals congregated. So on Sept. 5, 1989, Squatters Pub Brewery opened its doors in downtown Salt Lake City.

A second location opened at the Salt Lake International Airport in 2002. The partners also merged with Wasatch Brewery, which opened a few years earlier, to become the Utah Brewers Cooperative. Squatters still maintains its “Triple Bottom Line” philosophy: People, planet, profits.

Fun fact: Jennifer Talley, who recently published Session Beers: Brewing for Flavor and Balance, got her start as brewmaster at Squatters. She spent 20 years at Squatters, creating some incredible beers along the way. Her career continued at well-known breweries such as Redhook Brewery, Russian River Brewing Company and Auburn Alehouse.

Full Suspension Pale Ale — Squatters Craft Beers
Tastings - Full Suspension Pale Ale - Squatters Craft Beers

Product Name: Full Suspension Pale Ale

Product Description: The brewers describe Full Suspension as a Northwest Pale Ale, unfiltered and dry-hopped to 40 IBUs. "Groove on this two-time Great American Beer Festival® GOld Medal Winner (2001 and 2002). It really smoothes the bumps." Aromas of crackers and wheat, and flavors of rich, somewhat caramel, malt characterize this balanced pale.

  • Aroma
  • Appearance
  • Flavor
  • Mouthfeel
4.4

Overall Impression

Some beers are like longtime friends — reliable and comforting. Full Suspension Pale Ale from Squatters Craft Beers is such a beer for me. Its consistency never wavers (when consumed at the pub, at least). It’s a 4% ABV brew full of flavor.

  • Aroma: Some cracker and wheat; just a hint of citrus
  • Appearance: Medium-bodied; copper; off-white dissipating head
  • Flavor: Rich malty breadiness; some caramel
  • Mouthfeel: Silky

But you don’t have to take my word for it.

Note: The tasting notes format is adapted from a Homebrew Academy Beer Tasting Mastery course I took in 2017.

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