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Recipe: Donner Pass American Pale Ale

Longtime pro brewer Jeremy Myers shares this homebrew recipe for a throwback American pale ale inspired by a true classic.

Jeremy Myers Jul 23, 2021 - 3 min read

Recipe: Donner Pass American Pale Ale Primary Image

Photo: Matt Graves/

Besides being the founder and former head brewer at Neshaminy Creek Brewing in Croydon, Pennsylvania, Jeremy Myers is currently head of production at Bachs Biermanufaktur in Neunkirchen, Germany. While at Neshaminy Creek, he developed the brewery’s popular pale ale J.A.W.N.—aka, Juicy Ale with Nugget.

This is his own recipe, shared with Craft Beer & Brewing Magazine®, and it’s inspired a bit more directly by a classic example. The name refers to the famous pass in the Sierra Nevada mountains, about 120 miles southeast of Chico, California. The pass itself is named after the Donner Party—so is this a sly reference to the cannibalization of pale ales as a style? “The name is certainly a reference to Sierra Nevada,” Myers says, “and it’s not so much pale ales cannibalizing themselves as much as how hoppy beers have done that—and sometimes something a bit more stripped down makes more sense.”

For more on brewing this foundational style, see Josh Weikert’s Balancing Act: The Classic American Pale Ale in a Changing World.

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